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Showing posts from January 27, 2015

The Dust of the World

The Dust of the WorldProverbs 8:26 Excerpt An intriguing point is Wisdom’s claim to be older than the “dust of the world” (v. 26). Although this could be taken simply at face value, allusions to the creation story in context imply that this is a veiled reference to the formation of Adam from the dust (Gen 2:7). The Hebrew of v. 26 literally reads, “Before he made … the head of the dusts of the world.”168 InGen 1–2 “dust” is associated only with the creation of humanity; there is no account of the creation of dust itself. The “dusts of the world” is humanity, formed of the dust; and its head is Adam.169 The term “dust” also indicates our fragility and mortality and implies that the decision to accept or reject Wisdom is a life-or-death choice. When God cursed Adam, he told him that he was but dust and would return to the dust (Gen 3:19). This concept frequently reappears in biblical wisdom, where “dust” represents human mortality.170 The frailty that comes of being human only increase…

Who's in the Box

Who's in the Box ‎By the first century AD it had become a Jewish custom to place the bones of a decomposed corpse in a stone box called an ossuary. Several of these containers were discovered in Jerusalem in the 20th century.

Holy Rock in Jerusalem

Holy Rock in Jerusalem ‎The Holy Rock is located inside the so-called Dome of the Rock, which is the main Arabic shrine on the site of the temple complex in Jerusalem. The Holy Rock is the highest point of the site. Underneath the rock lies a grotto. Since there is an oblong indentation in the stone (cf. the arrows), some scholars believe that the Holy of Holiest was located here. This place combined many traditions, even though neither the Holy of Holiest nor the altar of burned offering of Jerusalem Temple could have been at this place for static reason; presumably it was further to the north.
Nevertheless, in both the Jewish and the Arabic tradition this place was looked at as the centre of the earth as well as the location of the sacrifice of Isaac. ‎Gen 22

Mamre

Mamre
‎In Haram Ramath el-Khalil, about 3 km north of Hebron, Herod the Great constructed a shrine in memory of the cult site in Mamre that was connected to Abrahams altar. The picture shows the wall surrounding the sacred place; on the floor plan cf. Herod obviously no longer knew the exact location of the biblical Mamre that must be found nearer to Hebron. ‎Gen 13:18; 18:1; 23:17, 23:19; 25:9; 35:27; 49:30

Beware of Personal Favoritism

Beware of Personal Favoritism Excerpt James taught the strongest possible connection between faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and impartiality. God does not play favorites, yet we do (cf.2:9), sinners that we are. The world’s love shows its true nature in its lack of love for the many who suffer under desperate circumstances. Just as James earlier demonstrated the incompatibility of double-mindedness and prayer, he here showed the impossibility of combining faith and the approval of the world. Can favoritism or partiality coexist with the glorious Christ of faith? Impossible. God does display preferential treatment, but toward the poor (2:5) with the intent to demonstrate the greatness of his grace. Special respect of persons based on their high social standing is antithetical to faith in God. Believers must never mix faith with partiality. If they do, it is just another case of double-mindedness. When favoritism dominates, the obedience of faith is compromised and undermined. More Richa…

Live Like Children of God

Live Like Children of God Excerpt Although 2:28–29 is transitional, it also naturally links with 3:1–3 and its emphasis on the identity (and confidence) of the children of God. Those who are born of God have both an identity and responsibility that is consistent with their privileges as God’s children. Six times John notes the believer’s status as God’s children (2:283:12710a, b). Three times he highlights their spiritual birth, which is the basis for this position as children (2:293:9a, b). It is possible to see a shift in subject at 3:4.312 A dual emphasis on Christ’s appearances (the second time to make us like him [3:2] and the first time to deal with sin [3:5]), however, may indicate again that a hard and fast division is unnecessary. The two sections (2:28–3:3 and3:4–10) clearly complement each other. More Akin, Daniel L. 1, 2, 3 John. Vol. 38. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2001. Print. The New American Commentary.

The Background of Hebrews 3:7-11

The Background of Hebrews 3:7-11 Excerpt When the Exodus generation led by Moses first approached the Promised Land, they refused to obey God’s command to enter. Their rebellion led to a dread decree: the Israelites must wander for decades in the desert until every person over 20 had died. Disobedience demonstrated their failure to trust God in the face of a powerful enemy and doomed those who refused to believe to never see the Promised Land or experience rest there. It is this historic experience that the writer of Heb. looks back on as he utters yet another warning. The spirit of unbelief and disobedience which marked the men and women of Moses’ day will surely keep people in the writer’s day from experiencing the rest promised in Christ. More Richards, Lawrence O. The Bible Reader’s Companion. electronic ed. Wheaton: Victor Books, 1991. Print

Origins of the Samaritans

Origins of the SamaritansJohn 4:1-45 Excerpt Josephus traces their origins to the foreigners (he calls them Cutheans) forcibly brought into the territory of Israel after its defeat by the Assyrians in 722 b.c.e. (2 Kgs. 17). The earliest evidence of the schism between Jew and Samaritan comes from the Persian period. This includes the more ambiguous mention of Samaritans in Ezra 4, which could be a geographical designation of peoples rather than a reference to a religious group. More Anderson, Robert T. “Samaritans.” Ed. David Noel Freedman, Allen C. Myers, and Astrid B. Beck. Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible 2000 : 1159. Print.

Mundy's Quote for the Day

Mundy's Quote for the Day Reverend Lynwood F. Mundy
Humility Cures Worldliness
7 Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners; and purify your hearts, you double-minded. 9 Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to gloom. 10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and He will lift you up.
The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982. Print.

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

January 27

  Are there not twelve hours in the day
John 11:9
The very fact of a Christian being here, and not in Heaven, is a proof that some work awaits him.

William Arnot

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

Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening

Morning, January 27                                              Go To Evening Reading

 “And of his fulness have all we received.”
         — John 1:16
These words tell us that there is a fulness in Christ. There is a fulness of essential Deity, for “in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead.” There is a fulness of perfect manhood, for in him, bodily, that Godhead was revealed. There is a fulness of atoning efficacy in his blood, for “the blood of Jesus Christ, his Son, cleanseth us from all sin.” There is a fulness of justifying righteousness in his life, for “there is therefore now no condemnation to them that are in Christ Jesus.” There is a fulness of divine prevalence in his plea, for “He is able to save to the uttermost them that come unto God by him; seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.” There is a fulness of victory in his death, for through death he destroyed him that had the power of death, that is the devil. There is a fulness of efficacy in his resurre…

Connect the Testaments

January 27: Revenge Isn’t Sweet
Genesis 42:29–43:34, Hebrews 5:11–7:28, Ecclesiastes 10:10–20

It’s easy to revel in vigilante justice, be joyful in the irony of someone getting “what’s coming to them,” or feel satisfied when “bad Karma comes back around” to others. The colloquialisms around the subject alone demonstrate our infatuation with justice. Joseph is similarly impassioned; he schemes against his brothers who sold him into slavery. At the beginning of Gen 43, Joseph’s brothers must go back to Egypt to request food from him—their younger brother, whom they do not recognize. Joseph waits for the youngest, Benjamin, to join them. What Joseph intends to do when he does, we’re not told.

When Benjamin and the other brothers arrive, Joseph is either moved with empathy or chooses to act upon his original plan of revealing himself in front of all his brothers (Gen 43:16, 29). Joseph even helps them financially, signaling that he somehow still cares for them (Gen 44). Yet it doesn’t seem…