Wednesday, May 06, 2015

προσκυνέω in John 4:20-24

προσκυνέω in John 4:20-24



Excerpt
John 4:20–24 deals with the question of the legitimate place to worship God. Jesus declares the alternative “Jerusalem or Gerizim” posed by the Samaritan woman at Jacob’s well (v. 20a, b) to be outdated (vv.2123a, b). Though the Jews’ worship is, indeed, put before that of the Samaritans (v.22a, b), this difference is overcome because “now” “the true worshipers worship the Father in spirit and truth” (v. 23a). This does not constitute a rejection of worship at specific places; it is not a matter of the “inwardness” of worship.Spirit is the opposite of “flesh,” of powerless and selfish human existence. Worship “in spirit” is worship within the liberated human situation newly disclosed by God. It happens in the “truth” that has come through Christ (1:17). Indeed, Christ is the “truth” (14:6). God’s Spirit leads into “truth” (16:13). Worship “in spirit and truth” (so also 4:24a, b) is worship made possible by Jesus Christ and realized in the believer by the Holy Spirit. Fellowship with Jesus leads to correct worship of the Father — without rejecting preferred places of worship. In 9:38προσκυνέω is used of an expression of faith in the Son of man Jesus as a response to the experience of divine power in healing (cf. v.33). More
Balz, Horst Robert, and Gerhard Schneider.Exegetical dictionary of the New Testament 1990– : 174. Print

The River in Eden

The River in Eden

Excerpt
The trees (v. 9), the river (v. 10), and the precious gold and gems (vv. 11-12) in the garden will also be in the new earth in its eternal state. The new Creation will be endowed with all these elements (Rev. 21:10-112122:1-2), thus indicating that paradise will be restored in the new earth.
2:11-14. These verses, a long parenthesis, describe the richness of the then-known world. The garden was probably in the area of the Persian Gulf, judging from the place names in these verses. If the geography of that area was the same after the Flood as before, then the Tigris (lit., Hiddeqel) andthe Euphrates, the third and fourth rivers, can be identified. The first of the four rivers,Pishon, was in Havilah, in north-central Arabia, east of Palestine. The second river,Gihon, was in Cush, probably not Ethiopia but possibly the land of the Cassites (kaššu in Akk.) in the mountains east of Mesopotamia.More
Ross, Allen P. “Genesis.” The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures. Ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck. Vol. 1. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985. 30. Print

Jericho: Mount of Temptation

Jericho: Mount of Temptation


‎From its position above the plain of Jericho, west of the city, the Mount of Temptation affords a good view of the Dead Sea, the north of the Judean Desert, and the Hills of Jerusalem. The mountain is described in the New Testament as the Mount in the Wilderness, where Satan tried for forty days and forty nights to tempt Jesus, promising him the kingdoms of the world (Matthew 4:1–11). Christians started to live as hermits in the caves scattered over the mountain slopes in the 4th century A.D. In the 19th century a Greek Orthodox monastery was built on the hilltop, financed by the Russian Church. The monastery is called the Quarantal, a mis pronunciation of the Latin word for forty.


Roman Military Triumphs

Roman Military Triumphs

2 Corinthians 2:14

Excerpt
‎A Roman military triumphal procession was one of the grandest spectacles of ancient times. It was granted to a conqueror only when certain conditions had been fully complied with. Among these it was required that the victory be complete and decisive, that it should be over a foreign foe, that at least five thousand of the enemy should be slain in a single battle, that the conquest should extend the territory of the state, and that it put an end to the war. When the senate decided that all required conditions had been met, a day was appointed and every necessary arrangement was made for the splendid pageant. When the day arrived the people crowded the streets and filled every place from which a good view of the procession could be obtained. The temples were all open and decorated with flowers, and incense was burned on every altar. Fragrant odors from burning spices were profusely scattered through the temples and along the streets, filling the air with perfume. … More
Freeman, James M., and Harold J. Chadwick.Manners & Customs of the Bible. North Brunswick, NJ: Bridge-Logos Publishers, 1998. Print

Christ's Ambassadors

Christ's Ambassadors

Excerpt
The nature of Paul’s appointment was to serve as one of Christ’s ambassadors. The verb presbeuō (are ambassadors) means to be “elder” or “first in rank” (Liddell, Scott and Jones 1978). Here we might think of the role of the statesman, where age and high rank often go together. Then as now, an ambassador was someone who represented the interests of his or her nation abroad. In the Old Testament the range of duties included offering congratulations (1 Kings5:12 Sam 8:10), soliciting favors (Num20:14), making alliances (Josh 9:3–7) and protesting wrongful actions (Judg 11:12). The Roman counterpart to the Greekpresbeutēs was the legate (legatus), who was duly appointed by the emperor to administer the imperial provinces on his behalf. Paul was similarly appointed by God to administer the gospel on Christ’s behalf(hyper Christou; compare Eph 3:2). It is as though God himself were making a personal and direct appeal through Paul More
Belleville, Linda L. 2 Corinthians. Vol. 8. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1996. Print. The IVP New Testament Commentary Series

Stations of the Cross in the Garden

Stations of the Cross in the Garden

Inside the Garden of Gethsemane the Eastern churches have placed the so-called “stations” representing the various incidents of the crucifixion. We were here during the Greek Easter week, and many pilgrims were making the rounds of these “stations” in the garden. One can not be but struck, while standing in the midst of these companies, with the hold Christ has upon the hearts of the human race. Marathon is sacred because there was first a rebuke offered to the tide of Persian civilization. Waterloo is sacred because there, again, was determined the security of Europe for modern times. But here, under the shadow of Jerusalem, in this dark garden (if this be the identical spot), was won the battle which determined the destiny of the race. No wonder that pilgrims from all parts of the world visit these sacred scenes to recall the triumphs of the Son of God over the woes and sins of the sons of men. It was on Friday, in the month of April, at about one o’clock at night, when Jesus and his disciples left their friend’s house in Jerusalem. It was passover night when few people went to bed. And they walked this night on the road from the bridge to Olivet. Jesus, who was in front, turned aside from the people and went through the gate into the Garden of Gethsemane, and his disciples followed him into the shadow of the olive trees, through which the moonlight fell.


Do Not Turn Away From God

Do Not Turn Away From God

Hebrews 3:12-13

Excerpt
In verses 12–13, this example is now applied to all who read Hebrews. The writer’s argument is: If unbelief kept Israelites out of the land of Canaan (a picture of God’s rest), how much more serious is it today to give way to unbelief and thus miss the greater rest (the rest of justification and salvation). The warning is addressed to the whole assembly (See to it, brothers, … encourage one another daily). These phrases recognize individual responsibility to act (that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart, … none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness)and describe accurately the terrible result of sin’s hardening (turns away from the living God). More
Stedman, Ray C. Hebrews. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1992. Print. The IVP New Testament Commentary Series

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour










May 6

  Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth
        Col. 3:2

He who has his affections set on things above is like one who hangs on by the skies; and, having a secure hold of these, could say, though he saw the world roll away from beneath his feet, “My heart is fixed; my heart is fixed; O Lord, I will sing and give praise!”

Guthrie


Hardman, Samuel G., and Dwight Lyman Moody. Thoughts for the Quiet Hour. Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publishing, 1997. Print.

Morning and Evening










Morning, May 6      Go To Evening Reading

         “We dwell in him.”
         — 1 John 4:13

Do you want a house for your soul? Do you ask, “What is the purchase?” It is something less than proud human nature will like to give. It is without money and without price. Ah! you would like to pay a respectable rent! You would love to do something to win Christ? Then you cannot have the house, for it is “without price.” Will you take my Master’s house on a lease for all eternity, with nothing to pay for it, nothing but the ground-rent of loving and serving him for ever? Will you take Jesus and “dwell in him?” See, this house is furnished with all you want, it is filled with riches more than you will spend as long as you live. Here you can have intimate communion with Christ and feast on his love; here are tables well-stored with food for you to live on for ever; in it, when weary, you can find rest with Jesus; and from it you can look out and see heaven itself. Will you have the house? Ah! if you are houseless, you will say, “I should like to have the house; but may I have it?” Yes; there is the key—the key is, “Come to Jesus.” “But,” you say, “I am too shabby for such a house.” Never mind; there are garments inside. If you feel guilty and condemned, come; and though the house is too good for you, Christ will make you good enough for the house by-and-by. He will wash you and cleanse you, and you will yet be able to sing, “We dwell in him.” Believer: thrice happy art thou to have such a dwelling-place! Greatly privileged thou art, for thou hast a “strong habitation” in which thou art ever safe. And “dwelling in him,” thou hast not only a perfect and secure house, but an everlasting one. When this world shall have melted like a dream, our house shall live, and stand more imperishable than marble, more solid than granite, self-existent as God, for it is God himself—“We dwell in him.”








Go To Morning Reading                                                  Evening, May 6

         “All the days of my appointed time will I wait.”
         — Job 14:14

A little stay on earth will make heaven more heavenly. Nothing makes rest so sweet as toil; nothing renders security so pleasant as exposure to alarms. The bitter quassia cups of earth will give a relish to the new wine which sparkles in the golden bowls of glory. Our battered armour and scarred countenances will render more illustrious our victory above, when we are welcomed to the seats of those who have overcome the world. We should not have full fellowship with Christ if we did not for awhile sojourn below, for he was baptized with a baptism of suffering among men, and we must be baptized with the same if we would share his kingdom. Fellowship with Christ is so honourable that the sorest sorrow is a light price by which to procure it. Another reason for our lingering here is for the good of others. We would not wish to enter heaven till our work is done, and it may be that we are yet ordained to minister light to souls benighted in the wilderness of sin. Our prolonged stay here is doubtless for God’s glory. A tried saint, like a well-cut diamond, glitters much in the King’s crown. Nothing reflects so much honour on a workman as a protracted and severe trial of his work, and its triumphant endurance of the ordeal without giving way in any part. We are God’s workmanship, in whom he will be glorified by our afflictions. It is for the honour of Jesus that we endure the trial of our faith with sacred joy. Let each man surrender his own longings to the glory of Jesus, and feel, “If my lying in the dust would elevate my Lord by so much as an inch, let me still lie among the pots of earth. If to live on earth for ever would make my Lord more glorious, it should be my heaven to be shut out of heaven.” Our time is fixed and settled by eternal decree. Let us not be anxious about it, but wait with patience till the gates of pearl shall open.
___________________________________________________________

Go To Morning Reading                                                Evening, May 6

         “All the days of my appointed time will I wait.”
         — Job 14:14

A little stay on earth will make heaven more heavenly. Nothing makes rest so sweet as toil; nothing renders security so pleasant as exposure to alarms. The bitter quassia cups of earth will give a relish to the new wine which sparkles in the golden bowls of glory. Our battered armour and scarred countenances will render more illustrious our victory above, when we are welcomed to the seats of those who have overcome the world. We should not have full fellowship with Christ if we did not for awhile sojourn below, for he was baptized with a baptism of suffering among men, and we must be baptized with the same if we would share his kingdom. Fellowship with Christ is so honourable that the sorest sorrow is a light price by which to procure it. Another reason for our lingering here is for the good of others. We would not wish to enter heaven till our work is done, and it may be that we are yet ordained to minister light to souls benighted in the wilderness of sin. Our prolonged stay here is doubtless for God’s glory. A tried saint, like a well-cut diamond, glitters much in the King’s crown. Nothing reflects so much honour on a workman as a protracted and severe trial of his work, and its triumphant endurance of the ordeal without giving way in any part. We are God’s workmanship, in whom he will be glorified by our afflictions. It is for the honour of Jesus that we endure the trial of our faith with sacred joy. Let each man surrender his own longings to the glory of Jesus, and feel, “If my lying in the dust would elevate my Lord by so much as an inch, let me still lie among the pots of earth. If to live on earth for ever would make my Lord more glorious, it should be my heaven to be shut out of heaven.” Our time is fixed and settled by eternal decree. Let us not be anxious about it, but wait with patience till the gates of pearl shall open.

Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening: Daily Readings. Complete and unabridged; New modern edition. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 2006. Print.

My Utmost for His Highest










May 6th

Liberty on the abyss of the gospel



Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free. Gal. 5:1.

A spiritually minded man will never come to you with the demand—‘Believe this and that’; but with the demand that you square your life with the standards of Jesus. We are not asked to believe the Bible, but to believe the One Whom the Bible reveals (cf. John 5:39–40 ). We are called to present liberty of conscience, not liberty of view. If we are free with the liberty of Christ, others will be brought into that same liberty—the liberty of realizing the dominance of Jesus Christ.
Always keep your life measured by the standards of Jesus. Bow your neck to His yoke alone, and to no other yoke whatever; and be careful to see that you never bind a yoke on others that is not placed by Jesus Christ. It takes God a long time to get us out of the way of thinking that unless everyone sees as we do, they must be wrong. That is never God’s view. There is only one liberty, the liberty of Jesus at work in our conscience enabling us to do what is right.
Don’t get impatient, remember how God dealt with you—with patience and with gentleness; but never water down the truth of God. Let it have its way and never apologize for it. Jesus said, ‘Go and make disciples,’ not—make converts to your opinions.


Chambers, Oswald. My Utmost for His Highest: Selections for the Year. Grand Rapids, MI: Oswald Chambers Publications; Marshall Pickering, 1986. Print.