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Showing posts from September 9, 2015


LightMatthew 5:15–16. Of the various possible uses of light, Jesus obviously has in mind the bringing of illumination through the revelation of God’s willforhis people. Since Jesus is the Light of the world (John 8:12; 9:5), so also his followers should reflect that light. Like lights from a city illuminating the dark countryside or a lamp inside a house providing light for all within it, Christians must let their good works shine before the rest of the world so that others may praise God. The good works are most naturally seen as the “fruits in keeping with repentance” of 3:8. This verse does not contradict 6:1 because there the motive for good behavior in public is self-glorification rather than bringing glory to God.
Both metaphors of salt and light raise important questions about Christian involvement in society regarding all forms of separatism or withdrawal. We are not called to control secular power structures; neither are we promised that we can Christianize the legislation an…

God Has a Universal Desire to Redeem Humanity

God Has a Universal Desire to Redeem Humanity
1 Timothy 2:3–4GOD HAS A UNIVERSAL DESIRE TO REDEEM HUMANITY Paul’s desire for universal prayer was based on the universal desire of God—the salvation of all the human race. God’s desire defines and shapes the nature of this age and should also shape the behavior of believers. Paul desired that the Ephesian believers would pray sincerely for the salvation of all people. This would provide the link between praying and having a quiet life. Prayer for the world’s salvation would also bring peace and righteousness. Salvation is characterized as “good” and pleasing to God (2:3). Sadly, in their disputes the believers were excluding some from their prayers who needed salvation. God is not partisan (cf. 1:16; 4:10). This fact is the reason why it is good to pray for the salvation of all people (cf. 1:13).

Hughes, Robert B., and J. Carl Laney. Tyndale Concise Bible Commentary. Wheaton, IL: Tyndale House Publishers, 2001. Print. The Tyndale Referenc…

A Time to Mourn and a Time to Dance

A Time to Mourn and a Time to Dance

“A time to mourn and a time to dance” (Eccl 3:4). The dancer shown above left is a Greek statuette dating from around 300 B.C. The middle and right photos show two sides of an Attic vase probably dating from about 475 B.C. It is decorated with figures of fourteen mourners—seven men and seven women. In the middle photo the men’s arms are stretched out in front of them. The photo on the right shows the women in mourning beating on their shaven heads.
The NIV translation (“Who knows if the spirit of man rises upward and if the spirit of the animal goes down into the earth?”) better renders the thought of Eccl 3:21 than the KJV’s translation.

Dockery, David S. et al. Holman Bible Handbook. Nashville, TN: Holman Bible Publishers, 1992. Print.

Miriam and Aaron Complain

Miriam and Aaron Complain
‎The next of Moses’ trials came from his own people, the elder brother who had been his mouthpiece, the elder sister who had saved him in infancy. They grew jealous, not of Moses, apparently, but of his wife, either Zipporah or a second mate newly wedded; and they began to assert an independent leadership, claiming that God had spoken through them as well as through Moses.
‎The quaint old print that here depicts the story, is one of those [medieval] pictures where the successive steps are all shown at once. In the foreground Miriam and Aaron assert themselves against Moses and his wife. To the right, God, from within the tabernacle, summons the rebels before Him and rebukes them. In the background are the final scenes. Miriam is stricken suddenly with leprosy; Aaron, terrified, intercedes for her; Moses begs God to pardon her; and Miriam is compelled to remain alone in the wilderness for a week until the disease has wholly passed from her. It was in rebuking…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

September 9

  The beginning of miracles did Jesus
John 2:11
It was out of the common thing that the precious thing was brought; and it is out of the common things of daily life, presented obediently to Jesus and laid at His feet, that He brings His own glorious gifts, so that our whole lives become one great sacrament.

W. Hay Aitken

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

Connect the Testaments: A One-Year Daily Devotional with Bible Reading Plan

September 9: As the Lion Roars
Amos 1:1–4:5; Acts 8:26–9:19; Job 19:13–29

“Surely my Lord does not do anything unless he has revealed his secret to his servants the prophets. A lion has roared! Who is not afraid? My Lord Yahweh has spoken, who will not prophesy? Proclaim to the citadel fortresses in Ashdod and the citadel fortresses in the land of Egypt and say: ‘Gather on the mountains of Samaria and see the great panic in her midst and the oppression in her midst!’ ” (Amos 3:7–9).

It’s easy to make excuses when we don’t know or understand something, and it’s equally hard to admit why. Amos declares that God’s plan and His work in the world are known to us—if we wish to learn. If we’re honest with ourselves, we have to admit that we’re not trying hard enough to learn about Him and His work. God speaks through His prophets and through His Word in the Bible, so there is no reason for us to be unaware of how He is working and how He wants to use us in the process.

What was true for the OT…

Chambers, Oswald. My Utmost for His Highest: Selections for the Year

September 9th
Do it yourself

Determinedly Discipline other Things.

Bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ. 2 Cor. 10:5.
This is another aspect of the strenuous nature of sainthood. Paul says—“I take every project prisoner to make it obey Christ.” (Moffatt.) How much Christian work there is to-day which has never been disciplined, but has simply sprung into being by impulse! In Our Lord’s life every project was disciplined to the will of His Father. There was not a movement of an impulse of His own will as distinct from His Father’s—“The Son can do nothing of Himself.” Then take ourselves—a vivid religious experience, and every project born of impulse put into action immediately, instead of being imprisoned and disciplined to obey Christ.

This is a day when practical work is over-emphasized, and the saints who are bringing every project into captivity are criticized and told that they are not in earnest for God or for souls. True earnestness is found in obeying…

Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening: Daily Readings

Morning, September 9      Go To Evening Reading
 “I will answer thee, and shew thee great and mighty things which thou knowest not.”          — Jeremiah 33:3
There are different translations of these words. One version renders it, “I will shew thee great and fortified things.” Another, “Great and reserved things.” Now, there are reserved and special things in Christian experience: all the developments of spiritual life are not alike easy of attainment. There are the common frames and feelings of repentance, and faith, and joy, and hope, which are enjoyed by the entire family; but there is an upper realm of rapture, of communion, and conscious union with Christ, which is far from being the common dwelling-place of believers. We have not all the high privilege of John, to lean upon Jesus’ bosom; nor of Paul, to be caught up into the third heaven. There are heights in experimental knowledge of the things of God which the eagle’s eye of acumen and philosophic thought hath never seen: God al…