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Be Hospitable

Be Hospitable
Excerpt


Hospitality (philazenos, “love of strangers”) is a telltale virtue of the people of God. Paul told the Roman church to “Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality” (Romans 12:13). “Practice” means “pursue” or “chase” and sometimes means “strenuous pursuit.” 
Christians, and especially leaders, are not simply to wait for opportunities for hospitality but are to pursue them. They are to do it “without grumbling,” as Peter says (1 Peter 4:9).

Today’s elder must be a joyous host. He must invite people to his table. His home must be open. Hospitality is all over the New Testament. And the writer of Hebrews offers an enchanting motivation: “Do not forget to entertain strangers, for by so doing some people have entertained angels without knowing it” (Heb. 13:2). These are God’s thoughts on hospitality!


Hughes, R. Kent, and Bryan Chapell. 1 & 2 Timothy and Titus: To Guard the Deposit. Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 2000. Print. Preaching the Word.

Mosaic Law is Fulfilled

Mosaic Law is Fulfilled

Excerpt


The final question is, Do we, then, nullify the Law by this faith? Paul responded in his characteristic expletive, Not at all! (mē genoito, “Let it not be”; cf. comments on Romans 3:4) and then explained, Rather, we uphold the Law.The purpose of the Mosaic Law is fulfilled and its place in God’s total plan is confirmed when it leads an individual to faith inJesus Christ (cf. Romans 3:20; Gal. 3:23-25). Paul repeatedly affirmed that faith, not works of the Law, is the way of salvation. He wrote the word “faith” eight times in Romans 3:22-31! (Seevv. Romans 3:22, Romans 3:25-28, Romans 3:30 [twice], and Romans 3:31.)


Witmer, John A. “Romans.” The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures. Ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck. Vol. 2. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985. 452. Print.

Tongue as Word of Evil

Tongue as Word of Evil
James 3:6
Excerpt


The tongue is “the world of evil.” In the ancient way of thinking, this is not a difficult phrase. The body was the microcosm of the universe. In all its complexity, the human being was a small, self-contained universe, thus the term “microcosmos.” There is a double sense of microcosm here: not only the body in relation to the universe of nature but also the tongue in relation to the universe of wickedness.Thus, contained within the tongue or speech are all the representations of wickedness in the world. Is a representation of evil, in words that is, the same as the evil itself? Obviously not, but the power of verbal representation is not slight; this James knew full well. Words have the power to elicit action; indeed, the activity of speech itself interprets every other human action. There is no evil act that the tongue cannot tell, let alone initiate.


Richardson, Kurt A. James. Vol. 36. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1997. Print. T…

Watch Out, You Need to Live a Godly Life

Watch Out, You Need to Live a Godly Life
Excerpt


The gospel is a doctrine according to godliness, 1 Ti 6:3, and is so far from giving the least countenance to sin, that it lays us under the strongest obligation to avoid and subdue it. The apostle urges that all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. If Christians, who should help one another, and rejoice one another, quarrel, what can be expected but that the God of love should deny his grace, that the Spirit of love should depart, and the evil spirit, who seeks their destruction, should prevail? Happy would it be, if Christians, instead of biting and devouring one another on account of different opinions, would set themselves against sin in themselves, and in the places where they live.


Henry, Matthew, and Thomas Scott. Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary. Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, 1997. Print.

Burned in a Furnace

Burned in a Furnace
Excerpt


Although πεπυρωμένης is without syntactical concord in the sentence, it was preferred by the Committee not only because it is rather well attested (A C Primasius) but chiefly because it best explains the origin of the other readings. In order to remove the grammatical difficulty some copyists readπεπυρωμένῳ (א2053 the ancient versions al), which qualifies καμίνῳ, and other copyists read πεπυρωμένοι (P 046 most minuscules), which qualifies οἱ πόδες.


Metzger, Bruce Manning, United Bible Societies. A Textual Commentary on the Greek New Testament, Second Edition a Companion Volume to the United Bible Societies’ Greek New Testament (4th Rev. Ed.). London; New York: United Bible Societies, 1994. Print.

To Your Offspring...

To Your Offspring...
Excerpt


The smoking furnace and the burning lamp, probably represented the Israelites’ severe trials and joyful deliverance, with their gracious supports in the mean time. It is probable that this furnace and lamp, which passed between the pieces, burned and consumed them, and so completed the sacrifice, and testified God’s acceptance of it. So it intimates that God’s covenants with man are made by sacrifice, Ps 50:5. And we may know that he accepts our sacrifices, if he kindles in our souls pious and devout affections. The bounds of the land granted are stated. Several nations, or tribes, are spoken of, that must be cast out to make room for the seed of Abram. In this chapter we perceive in Abram faith struggling against, and triumphing over, unbelief. Wonder not, believers, if you meet with seasons of darkness and distress. But it is not the will of God that you should be cast down: fear not; for all that he was to Abram he will be to you.


Henry, Matthew, and Thoma…

Bethany

BethanyLuke 19:29
Excerpt


Village on the eastern slope of the Mt of Olives about a mile and a half (2.4 kilometers) east of Jerusalem. Jesus and his disciples sometimes stayed in Bethany when in Judea, as when they attended temple observances during Passover (Mt 21:17; Mk 11:11). Jesus was eating at the home of Simon the leper in Bethany when a woman came and anointed his head with costly perfume (Mt 26:6–13; Mk 14:3–9). Bethany was also the home of Mary and Martha and their brother Lazarus, where Jesus raised Lazarus from the dead (Jn 11:1, 18). The village was near Bethphage on an approach to Jerusalem (Mk 11:1; Lk 19:29) that Jesus followed in preparation for his triumphal entry into Jerusalem. In Bethany Jesus blessed his disciples after the resurrection and parted from them (Lk 24:50). Today the town is called el-Azariyeh (the place of Lazarus).


Elwell, Walter A., and Philip Wesley Comfort. Tyndale Bible dictionary 2001 : 162. Print. Tyndale Reference Library.

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

December 1

  Without Christ
Eph. 2:12
Without a hope to cheer, a Pilot to steer, a Friend to counsel, grace to sustain, Heaven to welcome us, and God to console!

Selected

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

Connect the Testaments

December 1: The Calling of Jeremiah, Colossae, and Us
Jeremiah 1:1–2:37; Colossians 1:1–14; Proverbs 10:1–32

We all have trouble accepting our calling. When God asks us to do His work, we tend to wonder whether we’re able to execute His will. We are not alone in this—the prophet Jeremiah felt the same way.

“And the word of Yahweh came to me, saying, ‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you came out from the womb I consecrated you; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.’ Then I said, ‘Ah, Lord Yahweh! Look, I do not know how to speak, for I am a youth’ ” (Jer 1:4–6).

Jeremiah had been chosen by God before his birth, and yet he struggles. The issue at the heart of Jeremiah’s hesitancy is doubt about how it will all play out. A simple re-framing of his call creates the reassurance he needs: “ ‘Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you to deliver you,’ declares Yahweh. Then Yahweh stretched out his hand and he touched my mouth, and Yahweh said to me, ‘Look, I have…

My Utmost for His Highest

December 1st
The law and the gospel


For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. James 2:10.

The moral law does not consider us as weak human beings at all, it takes no account of our heredity and infirmities, it demands that we be absolutely moral. The moral law never alters, either for the noblest or for the weakest, it is eternally and abidingly the same. The moral law ordained by God does not make itself weak to the weak, it does not palliate our shortcomings, it remains absolute for all time and eternity. If we do not realize this, it is because we are less than alive; immediately we are alive, life becomes a tragedy. “I was alive without the law once: but when the commandment came, sin revived, and I died.” When we realize this, then the Spirit of God convicts us of sin. Until a man gets there and sees that there is no hope, the Cross of Jesus Christ is a farce to him. Conviction of sin always brings a fearful binding sense of the la…

Morning and Evening

Morning, December 1    Go To Evening Reading
   “Thou hast made summer and winter.”     — Psalm 74:17
My soul begin this wintry month with thy God. The cold snows and the piercing winds all remind thee that he keeps his covenant with day and night, and tend to assure thee that he will also keep that glorious covenant which he has made with thee in the person of Christ Jesus. He who is true to his Word in the revolutions of the seasons of this poor sin-polluted world, will not prove unfaithful in his dealings with his own well-belovedSon.

Winter in the soul is by no means a comfortable season, and if it be upon thee just now it will be very painful to thee: but there is this comfort, namely, that the Lord makes it. He sends the sharp blasts of adversity to nip the buds of expectation: he scattereth the hoarfrost like ashes over the once verdant meadows of our joy: he casteth forth his ice like morsels freezing the streams of our delight. He does it all, he is the great Winter King, and…