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Showing posts from March 16, 2015

The Book of Proverbs

The Book of ProverbsProverbs 3:1-12 Excerpt The twentieth book of the Old Testament according to the Christian canon and third of the poetical books (Job, Psalms, Proverbs) in the Hebrew canon included among the Writings. The book of Proverbs is a collection of largely proverbial Wisdom Literature traditionally associated with Solomon, the Israelite king famed for his divine gift of wisdom (1 Kgs. 3–4); the Hebrew title for the book (Heb. mišlê; Prov. 1:1) reflects this association. It is clear from literary analyses and internal evidence that the contents of the book must be attributed to a variety of authors over an extended period of time. At least three authors are named in headings (Solomon, 1:110:125:1; Agur, 30:1; Lemuel, 31:1), and other segments are attributed anonymously to “the wise” (22:1724:23). The designation of the whole collection as “proverbs” (LXX Gk. Paroimiai; Vulg. Lat. Liber Proverbiorum) is not entirely apt since large portions of the contents (primarily…

Armor of God Belt

Armor of God Belt ‎The leather belt was tied around a wool tunic. Connected bronze plates hung from the belt to protect the soldier’s groin area.


MeribahNumbers 20:13 Excerpt From the verbs “to test” and “to strive, contend,” respectively, terms referring to a site where the Israelites rebelled against Yahweh in the wilderness. Three distinct traditions of these events are preserved in the Bible. In Exod. 17:1–7 the Israelites camp at Rephidim on the way to Horeb. At Rephidim they complain of thirst to Moses. Yahweh tells Moses to go ahead of the people with some elders to Horeb and strike the mountain so that water will come out of it and the people may drink. The place is called Massah and Meribah because there the Israelites “quarreled” and “tested” God (cf. Ps. 95:8; also Deut. 6:169:22, where only Massah is mentioned). A second tradition locates the rebellion near Kadesh, in the wilderness of Zin, and refers only to Meribah. The focus of this tradition is Yahweh’s judgment on Moses and Aaron. Unlike the Exodus tradition, Yahweh instructs Moses to speak to the rock to produce water, but instead Moses strikes the rock twi…

The Nature of Christ

The Nature ofChristPhilippians 2:6 Excerpt The word translated nature (morphē) in verses 6 and 7 is a crucial term in this passage. This word (trans. “form” in the kjv and nasb) stresses the inner essence or reality of that with which it is associated (cf. Mark 16:12). Christ Jesus, Paul said, is of the very essence (morphē) of God, and in His incarnation He embraced perfect humanity. His complete and absolute deity is here carefully stressed by the apostle. The Savior’s claim to deity infuriated the Jewish leaders (John 5:18) and caused them to accuse Him of blasphemy (John 10:33). Though possessing full deity (John 1:14; Col. 2:9), Christ did not consider His equality with God (Phil. 2:6) as something to be grasped or held onto. In other words Christ did not hesitate to set aside His self-willed use of deity when He became a man. As God He had all the rights of deity, and yet during His incarnate state He surrendered His right to manifest Himself visibly as the God of all splendor …

A Pool Called Bethesda

A Pool Called Bethesda Excerpt Jesus is back in Jerusalem at an unspecified feast. He visits a pool at the northeast corner of the city where people with various illnesses gathered to seek healing.* This pool was actually two large trapezoid-shaped pools with a twenty-one-foot-wide space between them. The whole structure was enclosed by porches on each side, with a fifth porch over the area dividing the two pools. The water was occasionally disturbed, perhaps from an underground source such as a spring with irregular flow or drainage from another pool. People believed one could be healed by getting into the pool when this disturbance occurred. It is implied that at least some of those who got into the pool when it was stirred actually were healed (5:7).* More Whitacre, Rodney A. John. Vol. 4. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999. Print. The IVP New Testament Commentary Series

The Preparation

The Preparation Excerpt Saul soon heard about the brash young man who showed no fear of the Philistine. David lost none of his confidence in the presence of the king. He even volunteered to fight Goliath. Saul scoffed at this suggestion. Goliath had been trained as a warrior; David was but a youth. David, however, defended his fighting credentials. He had slain a lion and a bear in defense of his sheep. Goliath had taunted the armies of the living God. David therefore was confident that Yahweh would deliver him from the hand of Philistine just as he had delivered him earlier from the paw of the lion and bear. Saul was convinced. He prayed Yahweh’s blessing upon his efforts (17:31–37). More Smith, James E. The Books of History. Joplin, MO: College Press, 1995. Print. Old Testament Survey Series.

Martyr's of the Faith

Martyr's of the Faith Excerpt The expression “time will fail me” or “the day will fail” is a rhetorical commonplace by which one segues into a peroration.85 The author calls to mind a host of examples even as he protests that he has not the time to do so.86 Hebrews 11:32–35a, beginning with a list of names spanning Judges through potentially Malachi,87 at least provides a summary of the achievements of faith through 2 Kings; Hebrews 11:35b–38 takes in the fates of the prophets and the Maccabean martyrs as well, thus rounding out the canonical history in addition to making reference to several legends about the deaths of the great prophets of Israel. The survey is structured cleanly in two parts. The first half (11:32–35a) speaks of those figures who, through trust in God, achieved what any person in the world would consider marvelous or miraculous things (military prowess, timely deliverance from death, resuscitation of corpses). The second half (11:35b–38) speaks of those who ar…

Goliath's Armor

Goliath's Armor Excerpt He was well furnished with defensive armour (v. 56): A helmet of brass on his head, a coat ofmail, made of brass plates laid over one another, like the scales of a fish; and, because his legs would lie most within the reach of an ordinary man, he wore brass boots, and had a large corselet of brass about his neck. The coat is said to weigh 5000 shekels, and a shekel was half an ounce avoirdupois, a vast weight for a man to carry, all the other parts of his armour being proportionable. But some think it should be translated, not the weight of the coat, but the value of it, was 5000 shekels; so much it cost. His offensive weapons were extraordinary, of which his spear only is here described, v. 7. It was like a weaver’s beam. His arm could manage that which an ordinary man could scarcely heave. His shield only, which was the lightest of all his accoutrements, was carried before him by his esquire, probably for state; for he that was clad in brass little nee…

Eternal Life

Eternal LifeJohn 3:16 Excerpt The phrase eternal life comes from a Hebrew phrase, literally “life in the (coming) age.” For the Hebrews “the coming age” was the age in which God would destroy the power of sin and evil in the world and set up his own rule of love and peace. In the earliest notions of this coming age, it was probably not looked upon as something that would never end; it was not “eternal” in our sense of the word. However, there is no doubt that by New Testament times “life in the age” was looked upon by many Jews as an everlasting experience. In the New Testament it definitely has this meaning, even though the main emphasis is always on the quality of life one experiences when God rules his life. That is, in the Gospel of John eternal life is basically qualitative, but it is also conceived of as life that never ends, because it comes from God. More Newman, Barclay Moon, and Eugene Albert Nida. A Handbook on the Gospel of John. New York: United Bible Societies, 1993. Pri…

A Handbook on Paul’s Letter to the Philippians

He Emptied HimselfPhilippians 2:7 Excerpt The verb “to empty” is used elsewhere in the Pauline Epistles four times (Rom 4.14I Cor l:17;9.152 Cor 9.3), and in each instance it is used metaphorically in the sense of “to bring to nothing,” “to make worthless,” or “to empty of significance.” Context should always determine the meaning; and in the present context the verb refers back to what immediately precedes and its action is explained by the words which immediately follow. Instead of holding onto his privileges, Christ gave up his divine rank by taking on the nature of a servant. More Loh, I-Jin, and Eugene Albert Nida. A Handbook on Paul’s Letter to the Philippians. New York: United Bible Societies, 1995. Print. UBS Handbook Series

Greetings and Prayer

Greetings and Prayer By: Sister Shirley Thomas
Good morning Father, family, friends and enemies.
The Day of the Lord“…Let all the inhabitants of the land tremble; For cthe day of the Lord is coming, For it is at hand: 2dA day of darkness and gloominess, A day of clouds and thick darkness, Like the morning clouds spread over the mountains. eA people come, great and strong, fThe like of whom has never been; Nor will there ever be any such after them, Even for many successive generations. 3    A fire devours before them, And behind them a flame burns; The land is like gthe Garden of Eden before them, hAnd behind them a desolate wilderness; Surely nothing shall escape them. 4iTheir appearance is like the appearance of horses; And like 2swift steeds, so they run. 5jWith a noise like chariots Over mountaintops they leap, Like the noise of a flaming fire that devours the stubble, Like a strong people set in battle array. 6    Before them the people writhe in pain; kAll faces 3are drained of color. 7    T…

Mundy’s Quote for the Day

Mundy’s Quote for the Day By: Reverend Lynwood F. Mundy Character of the New Man                                                        12 Therefore, vas the elect of God, holy and beloved, wput on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 xbearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do.14 yBut above all these things zput on love, which is the abond of perfection. 15 And let bthe peace of God rule in your hearts, cto which also you were called din one body; and ebe thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another fin psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord. 17 And gwhatever you do in word or deed, doall in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.[1] (Colossians 3:12-17)

v [1 Pet. 1:2] w Luke 1:78; Phil. 2:1; 1 John 3:17 x [Mark 11:25] y 1 Pet…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

March 16

  Come behind in no gift
1 Cor. 1:7
The Scripture gives four names to Christians, taken from the four cardinal graces so essential to man’s salvation: Saints for their holiness, believers for their faith, brethren for their love, disciples for their knowledge.

Thomas Fuller

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

March 16

Elisha A. Hoffman, 1839–1929

  The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. (Deuteronomy 33:27)

When close friends or family members turn to us for comfort in their grief following the loss of a loved one, often we find it difficult to express just the right words of consolation. One day successful author, business man, and devout Presbyterian layman Anthony J. Showalter received sorrowful letters from two different friends, telling him of their recent bereavements. In sending messages of comfort to them, Mr. Showalter included Deuteronomy 33:27—
  “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms …”
As he concluded his letters the thought occurred to him that this verse would be a fine theme for a hymn. Almost spontaneously he jotted down the words and music for the refrain of this soon-to-be favorite.
Feeling that he should have some assistance in completing a text based on this comforting ve…

My Utmost for His Highest

March 16th

The master assizes

For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ. 2 Cor. 5:10

Paul says that we must all, preacher and people alike, “appear before the judgment seat of Christ.” If you learn to live in the white light of Christ here and now, judgment finally will cause you to delight in the work of God in you. Keep yourself steadily faced by the judgment seat of Christ; walk now in the light of the holiest you know. A wrong temper of mind about another soul will end in the spirit of the devil, no matter how saintly you are. One carnal judgment, and the end of it is hell in you. Drag it to the light at once and say—‘My God, I have been guilty there.’ If you don’t, hardness will come all through. The penalty of sin is confirmation in sin. It is not only God who punishes for sin; sin confirms itself in the sinner and gives back full pay. No struggling or praying will enable you to stop doing some things, and the penalty of sin is that gradually you get used to it …

Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening

Morning,                                  March 16            Go To Evening Reading

         “I am a stranger with thee.”
— Psalm 39:12
Yes, O Lord, with thee, but not to thee. All my natural alienation from thee, thy grace has effectually removed; and now, in fellowship with thyself, I walk through this sinful world as a pilgrim in a foreign country. Thou art a stranger in thine own world. Man forgets thee, dishonours thee, sets up new laws and alien customs, and knows thee not. When thy dear Son came unto his own, his own received him not. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. Never was foreigner so speckled a bird among the denizens of any land as thy beloved Son among his mother’s brethren. It is no marvel, then, if I who live the life of Jesus, should be unknown and a stranger here below. Lord, I would not be a citizen where Jesus was an alien. His pierced hand has loosened the cords which once bound my soul to earth, and now I find mysel…

Connect the Testaments

March 16: It Will Seem Simple in Retrospect
Numbers 17:1–18:32; 1 Corinthians 1:1–31; Psalm 18:1–12

We’re all faced with difficult tasks. When Paul wrote to the Corinthians, he was forced to confront their spiritual problems, which were slowly destroying God’s work among them. Paul was thankful for them (1 Cor 1:4–8), but he was also called to a high purpose as an apostle. His calling meant saying what people didn’t want to hear (1 Cor 1:1).
There were divisions among the Corinthians that were going to rip their fledgling church apart, and Paul implored them to make some difficult changes: “Now I exhort you, brothers, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that … there not be divisions among you, and that you be made complete in the same mind and with the same purpose. For … there are quarrels among you” (1 Cor 1:10–11). And here’s where something amazing happens that we often overlook. Paul, a confident man and a former Law-abiding Pharisee, could have stated why he was right and mov…