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Showing posts from August 26, 2014


Appreciation Excerpt ‎Apparently some time elapsed between gifts from the Philippian church. It may have been years between the gifts mentioned in 2 Cor 8 and the one delivered by Epaphroditus. Perhaps Paul had despaired of their love for him since so much time elapsed and since they were the ones who remembered him financially and a financial gift uniquely expressed love. Their gift was a cause of joy in the Lord. Perhaps they expected Paul to be joyful because of the gift but, as the context clearly reveals, his joy was in the Lord. Spiritual relationships brought the most satisfaction: their love for him because of Christ’s love and his love for the Lord. Thus it was natural for a material gift to become an occasion for Christian joy. The Christian nature of this relationship is supported by the word Paul used for “concern.” It is the key verb of the epistle, phroneō. Paul used it consistently to point out proper Christian attitudes in following the mind of Christ. He must have co…

God Justifies

God JustifiesRomans 8:33-34 Excerpt ‎The next two questions Paul raised and answered are forensic or legal in nature. Who will bring any charge (enkalesei, “make a formal accusation in court; press charges”; cf. Acts 19:40; 23:29; 26:2) against those whom God has chosen? Satan is identified as “the accuser” of God’s people (Rev. 12:10; cf. Zech. 3:1). His accusations are valid, because they are based on the believer’s sinfulness and defilement. But Satan’s accusations will be thrown out of court, because it is God who justifies. The Judge Himself declares the accused person righteous on the basis of his faith in Jesus Christ (Rom. 3:24; 5:1). As a result all accusations are dismissed and no one can bring an accusation that will stand.
‎The related question is, Who is He that condemns? The Greek participle ho katakrinōn can have a future sense, “will condemn,” which seems preferable here. (Cf. katakrima, “condemnation, punishment” in 8:1.) Jesus Christ is God’s appointed Judge (John 5:…

Fishing In the Sea of Galilee

Fishing In the Sea of Galilee ‎In the Hellenistic period, fishing boomed around the Sea of Galilee. Now it was possible to dry (pickle) fish; thus it could be delivered to regions farther away. Until the middle of the 20th century CE, fisherman fished there the same way as in the time of the New Testament: A net was spread between two boats, then pulled together so that the fish were trapped in the area enclosed by the net. ‎Matt 4:18; Mark 1:16; Luke 5:2

Paul' Salutation

Paul' Salutation Excerpt
‎Paul began his letter by identifying himself in three different ways. First, he was a “servant of Christ Jesus.” He belonged without reserve to the one who confronted him on the Damascus road. Although cultured Greeks would never refer to themselves in such a demeaning fashion, the Old Testament designation “servant of the Lord” was a title of honor given to Moses and other prominent leaders (Josh 14:7; 24:29). Then Paul said that he was “called to be an apostle.”God initiated the process. Paul did not choose the role for himself. And even before he was called, he had been “set apart” to serve in the interests of the gospel ofGod. All three statements reflect the subordinate role the apostle played. Not for a moment did he elevate himself above his assigned position as a servant of God, set apart and called to serve in the interests of the proclamation of the gospel.

Mounce, Robert H. Romans. Vol. 27. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1995. Pr…

The Right Side of the Altar

The Right Side of the Altar

‎The angel stood between the altar and the shew-bread table. On entering the holy place, the officiating priest would have on his right the table with the shew-bread, on his left the great candlestick, and before him would be the golden altar, which stood at the end of the holy place, in front of the veil which separated this chamber and the dim, silent holy of holies.

Spence-Jones, H. D. M., ed. St. Luke. Vol. 1. London; New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1909. Print. The Pulpit Commentary.

Who Saw and Called Moses?

Who Saw and Called Moses?

Exodus 3:4

‎A literal translation of both Lord and God is confusing, for it suggests that the one who saw was not the one who called. This is a literary seam, where two different traditions have been joined together, one tradition using the sacred name [YHWH] (Lord) and the other using the usual word for deity, ’[Elohim] (God). The confusion is easily avoided by using the pronoun in place of God, as in 3:4 [TEV]: “When the Lord saw … he called.”3:4 [TEV] transfers the use of “God” to verse 5, where it fits more naturally in place of the pronoun “he.”

‎This confusion about the participants is increased with the reference to “the angel” in 3:2a. As explained above, the clause in 3:2a should be understood as a summary or preview statement, with the details of how it happened then listed in sequence. Only one participant in dialogue with Moses is intended throughout the narrative; he is called the Lord, God, and “the angel,” depending on the perspective of…

Who is the Loyal Yokefellow?

Who is the Loyal Yokefellow?

Philippians 4:3

‎The exact identity of Paul’s loyal yokefellow is not known. Some say “yokefellow” (syzygus) is a proper name. Paul knew he could count on him to work with the women and bring them back to fellowship with each other and with the Lord. Clement and other fellow workers had also contended for the gospel with these women. (This is more likely than supposing the words “along with Clement and the rest of my fellow workers” go with “help,” as though Paul were enlisting Clement and others to help Syzygus unite the women.)

Lightner, Robert P. “Philippians.” The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures. Ed. J. F. Walvoord & R. B. Zuck. Vol. 2. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985. 663. Print.

Logos Verse of the Day

Gateway Bible Verse of the Day

Romans 12:4-5King James Version

For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another.

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Public Domain

New King James Version

For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another.

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Read all of Romans 12

Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc.

English Standard Version

For as in one body we have many members, and the members do not all have the same function, so we, though many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

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Read all of Romans 12

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers.

New American Standard Bible

For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same func…

Connect the Testaments: A Daily Devotional

August 26

Lives of Spiritual Opulence
Isaiah 52:1–54:17; Luke 20:41–21:24; Job 12:1–12

The Pharisees upheld a faulty religious system. They were supposed to be the Jews’ spiritual leaders, but they were more interested in making themselves the religious elite. They loved “greetings in the marketplace and the best seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at banquets” (Luke 20:46). Their ministry was built on the backs of the poor.

In contrast, the widow depicted in Luke 21 chose to give all she had. Because she had so little, her generosity was sacrificial. Those who gave out of abundance didn’t feel the loss of income like she did. But the contrast between the widow and the Pharisees shows us much more. Luke says that spiritual wealth can be present where we least expect it—that things aren’t always as they appear.

Although Jesus is the long-anticipated Messiah, following Him is never going to bring a life of glory and fame. Jesus is ushering in a kingdom like a mustard seed (Luk…