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Showing posts from December 27, 2014

Pergamum

Pergamum
‎At the turn of the era, Pergamum was the academic and artistic center of the western part of Asia Minor. Parchment is named after this city that produced it, whereby animal skin is stretched, scraped, and dried under tension, creating this especially valuable writing material. The famous Great Altar of Pergamum that today can be visited in the Pergamum Museum in Berlin was regarded as one of the most splendid constructions in antiquity. The picture shows Pergamum’s Hellenistic theater. This theater type had the seating integrated in the landscape, whereas in the Roman theater type, the seating was an independently built part of the construction. ‎2 Tim 4:13; Rev 1:11; 2:12

The Dead Sea

The Dead Sea
‎The Arabs call this Bahr Lut, the Sea of Lot. It is the most remarkable inland sea in the world. It is situated in the lowest part of the valley which extends from the base of Hermon to the Gulf of Akabah. The Hebrews call it the Salt Sea. The Greeks at an early period called it the Dead Sea. It is forty-seven miles in length and its greatest width is nine and a half miles. Its mean depth is 1080 feet, its level below the level of the Mediterranean is 1293 feet. The water contains from twenty-four to twenty-six per cent of solid substances, seven per cent of which is chloride of sodium (common salt). The salt of the Dead Sea has from the earliest times been collected and brought to the Jerusalem markets and is considered particularly strong. To the Government alone belongs all the salt and bitumen brought into and sold in Syria. During the last of April, when the writer and the artist were here, the weather was so hot that it was necessary for us to leave our hotel in J…

You Shall Not Commit Adultery

You Shall Not Commit AdulteryThe seventh commandment (Deut. 5:18) calls for sexual purity and the honoring of marriage as God’s appointed way for the proper use and enjoyment of human sexuality. In ancient Israel, adultery was considered a capital crime (Deut. 22:22), while in today’s society, it’s hardly considered a sin, let alone a crime. God can forgive sexual sins (1 Cor. 6:9–11) but He doesn’t promise to interfere with the painful consequences (2 Sam. 12:13–14; Prov. 6:20–35; Gal. 6:7–8; Heb. 13:4). It’s disgusting the way the media glorify sex and turn fornication and adultery into entertainment.
Wiersbe, Warren W. Be Equipped. Colorado Springs, CO: Chariot Victor Pub., 1999. Print. “Be” Commentary Series.

Uz

Uz The homeland of Job (Job 1:1). Two traditions exist concerning the location of Uz: Edom in the southeast and Syria in the northeast. Neither tradition is completely persuasive, and the evidence concerning the location cannot be reconciled.
Among the arguments for the Edomite location, the personal name Uz appears in Edomite genealogies (Gen. 36:28 = 1 Chr. 1:42), and personal names in the book of Job probably are Edomite in origin (cf. Job 2:11). The personal name Uz is linked with Buz (Gen. 22:21), which also appears as a place name associated with Edom (Jer. 25:23). The LXX appendix to Job describes Uz as bordering on Idumea and Arabia (Jer. 42:17b). Also, Uz is poetically parallel to “daughter Edom” at Lam. 4:21. Other arguments place Uz in Aram (Syria), near Damascus or S of Damascus in the Hauran. The person Uz is a descendant of Aram (Gen. 10:23; 1 Chr. 1:17) and the oldest son of Abraham’s Aramean brother, Nahor (Gen. 22:21). According to Josephus Ouses (Uz), the son of Ara…

Bronze stands

Bronze stands
‎Altogether ten bronze stands (water carts) were positioned in the temple area. They were about 2.5 m high and had a large bowl inserted on the top where water could be stored. The function of these equipment is not clear at all. Perhaps palm branches were put in the water bowl in order to symbolically illustrate the fertility of the land. In Cyprus, similar stands were found in tomb chambers, but they were only 40 cm high. ‎1 Kings 7:23–26; 2 Kings 16:17

The Golden City in Revelation

The Golden City in Revelation
‎The new Jerusalem in Revelation 21:9–27 is a square 12,000 stadia (approximately 1,380 miles) on each side.

No Vain Repetition

No Vain Repetition Excerpt Used of stammerers who repeat the words, then mere babbling or chattering, empty repetition. The etymology is uncertain, but it is probably onomatopoetic like “babble.” The worshippers of Baal on Mount Carmel (I Kings 8:26) and of Diana in the amphitheatre at Ephesus who yelled for two hours (Acts 19:34) are examples. The Mohammedans may also be cited who seem to think that they “will be heard for their much speaking” (ἐντῃπολυλογιᾳ [en tēipolulogiāi]). Vincent adds “and the Romanists with their paternosters and avast.” The Syriac Sinaitic has it: “Do not be saying idle things.” Certainly Jesus does not mean to condemn all repetition in prayer since he himself prayed three times in Gethsemane “saying the same words again” (Matt. 26:44). “As the Gentiles do,” says Jesus. “The Pagans thought that by endless repetitions and many words they would inform their gods as to their needs and weary them (‘fatigare deos’) into granting their requests” (Bruce). More Rob…

Jerusalem

Jerusalem
‎The fortress-like structure of the King David Hotel dominates Jerusalem’s skyline when photographed from the western wall of the Old City. Another hotel bearing the name of a great king, Solomon, looks from here like a block of stone piercing the sky. The Yemin Moshe neighborhood with its red tiled roofs tumbles down the hillside, engulfed in green.

You Will Not Die

You Will Not DieGenesis 3:4 Excerpt You is second person plural in Hebrew, referring to the woman and the man. The construction of this phrase is literally “dying you [plural] will not die,” which may be translated in English “It is not really so that you will die,” or “Certainly, you won’t die,” or “Of course not; you won’t die.” See 2.16–17 for a similar construction. In this case again it will be natural in some languages to begin the speech with the word “No!” Two examples of this are, “No! You-two will not die,” and “No! That’s not true. You-two won’t ….” In one rendering the snake’s denial of the truth of what God has said is expressed as “God is telling a lie. You won’t die.” More Reyburn, William David, and Euan McG. Fry. A Handbook on Genesis. New York: United Bible Societies, 1998. Print. UBS Handbook Series.

Water

WaterIsaiah 55:1Excerpt In the East, water is a precious ingredient; and an abundance of water is a special blessing (41:1744:3). Wine, milk, and bread were staples of their diet. The people were living on substitutes that did not nourish them. They needed “the real thing,” which only the Lord could give. In Scripture, both water and wine are pictures of the Holy Spirit (John 7:37–39Eph. 5:18). Jesus is the “bread of life” (John 6:32–35), and His living Word is like milk (1 Peter 2:2). Our Lord probably had Isaiah 55:2 in mind when He said, “Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to everlasting life” (John 6:27, NKJV). More Wiersbe, Warren W. Be Comforted. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1996. Print. “Be” Commentary Series.

Church of the Holy Table, Nazareth

Church of the Holy Table, Nazareth ‎The scenes connected with the closing events of Christ’s earthly life are limited to the city of Jerusalem. We allow our artist to transport us for a moment to Nazareth, where there is a fanciful tradition which makes the rock visible in the picture the place where Christ and his disciples often ate together. It is found in the interior of the Church of the Holy Table in Nazareth. The rock is about three feet high, ten feet long, and three feet wide. We are standing in front of the church and are looking toward the altar. The picture was taken by our artist on the 7th of May, 1894, at two o’clock in the afternoon. The church is one of the best kept and most pleasant in the city of Nazareth. There is a tradition that our Lord and his disciples often dined upon this rock both before and after his resurrection. The tradition, however, is not traceable further back than the seventeenth century. The chapel itself was built in 1861 and belongs to the Lati…

Transformation of the Land

Transformation of the LandIsaiah 55:12-13Excerpt That this transformation of the vegetation of the desert is not to be taken literally, any more than in Isa. 41:17–20, is evident from the shouting of the mountains, and the clapping of hands on the part of the trees. On the other hand, however, the prophet says something more than that Israel will return home with such feelings of joy as will cause everything to appear transformed.More Keil, Carl Friedrich, and Franz Delitzsch. Commentary on the Old Testament. Vol. 7. Peabody, MA: Hendrickson, 1996. Print.

Kindness

KindnessEphesians 2:7Excerpt The particular channel in which the riches of his grace flows is kindness shown to us in Christ Jesus. Kindness in the matter of the blessing, forgiving us freely, and accepting and adopting us in him; kindness in the manner of the blessing, dealing with us as Jesus dealt with the woman that was a sinner, or with the thief on the cross, or with Peter after he had fallen, or with Saul of Tarsus; kindness in the extent of the blessing, providing amply for every want; kindness in the duration of the blessing—for evermore.More Spence-Jones, H. D. M., ed. Ephesians. London; New York: Funk & Wagnalls Company, 1909. Print. The Pulpit Commentary.

Threshing and winnowing

Threshing and winnowing
‎On the right, oxen are driven over freshly cut grain. They are supposed to knock loose the individual grains with their hoofs. Winnowing is depicted on the left. The threshed grain is thrown up so that the light chaff can be blown away by the wind, and the heavier cereal grain falls back to the ground. ‎Threshing: Deut 25:4; Hos 10:11; 1 Cor 9:9; 1 Tim 5:18 ‎Winnowing:Ruth 3:2; Isa 30:24; Isa 41:16; Jer 4:11; Jer15:7; Jer51:2; Matt 3:12; Luke 3:17

Bethlehem: Shepherd's Field - Goats

Bethlehem: Shepherd's Field - Goats
‎Black goats glean the remains of the yellow grass at the end of a long summer in the surroundings of the Shepherds’ Field. This primeval landscape was the background of many of the events related in the Old and New Testament. Rachel died and was buried nearby, Ruth met Boaz, a meeting which was to lead to the birth of King David, and the shepherds first heard from the angel about the birth of Jesus nearby in Bethlehem. “I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord” (Luke 2:10–11).

Hunter

Hunter ‎Next to arable and stock farming, the hunt came third as a fundamental possibility to earn one’s livelihood. Normally one went hunting with bow and arrow. ‎Gen 10:9; Gen 25:27; Gen 27:3, Gen 27:30, Gen 27:33; Lev 17:13; 1 Sam 26:20; Ps 22:title

Mundy's Quote for the Day

Mundy's Quote for the Day Reverend Lynwood F. Mundy
Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits (Psalm 103:1-2KJV):

Words Not Heard By Human Ear

Words Not Heard By Human Ear
ExcerptBoth by day and by night, God’s creation is speaking (Verse Ps 19:2), but this speech is not heard with the human ear. Verse Ps 19:3 should read, “There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard” (NIV). We hear the voice of God in creation by seeing His wisdom and power. Certainly so complex an entity as our universe (and the universes beyond our own universe) demands a Creator and Sustainer. To believe that the universe evolved out of nothing and arranged itself in this orderly manner is folly. More Wiersbe, Warren W. Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines on the Old Testament. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1993. Print.

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

December 27

  He ever liveth
Heb. 7:25
It is our hope for ourselves, and for His truth, and for mankind. Men come and go. Leaders, teachers, thinkers, speak and work for a season, and then fall silent and impotent. He abides. They die, but He lives. They are lights kindled, and therefore, sooner or later quenched, but He is the true Light from which they draw all their brightness, and He shines for forevermore.

Alexander Maclaren

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

Amazing Grace: 366 Inspiring Hymn Stories for Daily Devotions

December 27

LO! HE COMES, WITH CLOUDS DESCENDING Charles Wesley, 1707–1788
  Look, He is coming with the clouds, and every eye will see Him, even those who pierced Him, and all the peoples of the earth will mourn because of Him. So shall it be! Amen. (Revelation 1:7)
When Jesus made His first entrance to earth, He was seen by only a small group of people—a few lowly shepherds and later by some wandering wise men. Bethlehem’s stable birth attracted little attention and had limited immediate effect upon the rest of the world. It was nearly 30 years before Christ’s earthly ministry gained much notice.

What a contrast it will be when He returns for His second advent—every eye “shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory” (Matthew 24:30). Even those who crucified God’s Son will see and mourn, as will people from every tribe and nation because of their rejection of Him. But for those who have trusted in His redemptive work, the days of mourning will be o…