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Showing posts from January 7, 2016

Ornate Corinthian Column Capital, Sardis

Ornate Corinthian Column Capital, Sardis

Repentance

Repentance
Mark 6:12

Excerpt


In the NT repentance primarily relates to the Greek words metanoéō andmetńoia, meaning to understand something differently after thinking it over. This change of mind necessarily leads to changed actions, in keeping with the Greek view that the mind (noús) controlled the body. Repentance comprises a central theme in the preaching of Jesus, Peter, and Paul.

Jesus began his ministry with a call to repentance as the prerequisite for entering the kingdom of God (Mark 1:15; Matt. 4:17). Mark 6:12–13 summarizes Jesus ministry by saying that Jesus preached repentance, cast our demons, and healed sick people. At the conclusion of his earthly ministry Jesus commissioned his disciples to preach repentance and forgiveness to all nations in his name (Luke 24:47). A call to repentance characterizes the content of his preaching.


Garrett, Linda Oaks. “Repentance.” Ed. David Noel Freedman, Allen C. Myers, and Astrid B. Beck. Eerdmans dictionary of the Bible 2000 : 1118. Print…

Bethlehem: Herodian Fortress

Bethlehem: Herodian Fortress
Herodion. Herod built this fortress some 6 kilometers south-east of Bethlehem around 20 B.C., apparently as a mausoleum for himself in the Judean Desert. The mountain was artificially extended to a height of 758 meters above sea level and built like the mouth of a volcano. According to Josephus Flavius, Herod was buried here in 4 B.C. and on the day he died hundreds of people were killed to make sure that it would be a day of mourning and sorrow. After the suppression of the Great Revolt against the Romans in 70 A.D. rebels who fled Jerusalem found refuge in Herodion until it fell to the Romans in 72 A.D.

Prosperity

Prosperity
Psalm 1:3
Excerpt


For all who take their delight in living by God’s Word, there is prosperity. Under the image of a fruitful tree, the psalmist declared that whatever the righteous do will prosper (cf. 92:12-14). Two qualifications need to be noted. First, the fruit, that is, the prosperity, is produced in its season and not necessarily immediately after planting. Second, what the godly person does will be controlled by the Law of God (1:2). So if a person meditates on God’s Word, his actions will be godly, and his God-controlled activities will prosper, that is, come to their divinely directed fulfillment. More


Ross, Allen P. “Psalms.” The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures. Ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck. Vol. 1. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985. 790. Print.

Jesus Did it for Us

Jesus Did it for Us

Excerpt


Jesus was not tempted so that the Father could determine the Son’s character and ability, for the Father had already approved the Son (3:22) and would do so again (9:35). Nor was He tempted to give Satan a chance to defeat Him, for Satan probably did not even want this confrontation, knowing that Jesus could overcome his every tactic. Jesus was tempted so that He could personally experience what we go through and so be prepared to assist us (Heb. 2:16–18; 4:14–16) and to show us how we can overcome the evil one by means of the Spirit of God (v. 1) and the Word of God (v. 4). The first Adam was tested in a beautiful garden and failed, but the Last Adam was victorious in a terrible wilderness.


Wiersbe, Warren W. Wiersbe’s Expository Outlines on the New Testament. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1992. Print.

Origins and Audience of the Gospel of John

Origins and Audience of the Gospel of John
John 1:1
Excerpt


It is also now recognized that the background of much of John’sGospel is Jewish, and not exclusively Greek. Early traditions place the origin of this gospel in Ephesus, which made it inevitable that scholars should look for an exclusively Hellenistic background, especially in view of the prologue (1:1–18) which explains the incarnation in terms of the word or logos. Apart from the fact that Hellenism is now known to have been all-pervasive throughout the Roman empire, even in Palestine, it is interesting to note that if the prologue is removed from John there is little in the rest of it that demands a Greek background. Not only is there an emphasis throughout the gospel on the fulfilment of the Old Testament, but the evangelist states his purpose in a very Jewish form: ‘these things are written that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ [Messiah], the Son of God’ (20:31).


Drane, John William. Introducing the New Testament. Co…

The Tomb of Rachel

The Tomb of Rachel
‎Between Jerusalem and Bethlehem, on the way to Bethlehem, one of the most interesting spots is that made sacred by an incident from the Old Testament. When Jacob was on his return from Padan-Aram with his flocks and family his beloved Rachel, mother of Joseph and Benjamin, died and “was buried in the way to Ephrath, which is Bethlehem, and Jacob set up a pillar upon her grave; that is the pillar of Rachel’s grave unto this day.” This is an almost undisputed site. Jews, Moslems and Christians all agree that here Rachel was entombed. The pillar Jacob set up has long since disappeared, but some mark has marked the spot for thirty-six hundred years. The present square structure, surmounted by a central dome, is modern. It measures twenty-three feet on each side. The height of the wall is twenty feet and the dome is ten feet high. The eastern chamber is twenty-three feet long by thirteen feet broad. The inner chambers are used by the Jews, who meet here every Friday to…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

January 7

  Now are ye light in the Lord; walk as children of light
  Eph. 5:8
The influence we exert in the world is created by our relationship to Jesus Christ; and our relationship to Jesus Christ is revealed by our influence.

Selected

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

January 7: A Time for Everything
Genesis 12–13, Matthew 10, Ecclesiastes 3:1–8

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven” (Eccl 3:1).
The Bible’s most famous poem has inspired writers for generations, yet has not been improved upon. In a few short, simple lines, the Preacher ponders the whole of life: birth, death, weeping, laughing, mourning, dancing, breaking down, and building up. The buoyancy and familiarity of the text could cause us to gloss over the poetic brilliance of “the matter[s] under heaven.” But when we get to “a time to hate” and “a time to kill,” the romance is—well, killed. Are all these emotions and events really ordained by God? The strength of the poem is in contrast and repetition. By laying the seasons side by side, the Preacher effectively captures the span and cycle of human life. He isn’t providing a list of experiences that we should check off our holistic life to-do list. Rather, he is emphasizing an absolute need for relianc…

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

January 7th
Intimate with Jesus


Have I been so long with you, and yet hast thou not known Me? John 14:9.

These words are not spoken as a rebuke, nor even with surprise; Jesus is leading Philip on. The last One with whom we get intimate is Jesus. Before Pentecost the disciples knew Jesus as the One Who gave them power to conquer demons and to bring about a revival (see Luke 10:18–20 ). It was a wonderful intimacy, but there was a much closer intimacy to come—“I have called you friends.” Friendship is rare on earth. It means identity in thought and heart and spirit. The whole discipline of life is to enable us to enter into this closest relationship with Jesus Christ. We receive His blessings and know His word, but do we know Him?

Jesus said—“It is expedient for you that I go away”—in that relationship, so that He might lead them on. It is a joy to Jesus when a disciple takes time to step more intimately with Him. Fruit bearing is always mentioned as the manifestation of an intimate unio…

Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening: Daily Readings

Morning, January 7      Go To Evening Reading
       “For me to live is Christ.”           — Philippians 1:21
The believer did not always live to Christ. He began to do so when God the Holy Spirit convinced him of sin, and when by grace he was brought to see the dying Saviour making a propitiation for his guilt. From the moment of the new and celestial birth the man begins to live to Christ. Jesus is to believers the one pearl of great price, for whom we are willing to part with all that we have. He has so completely won our love, that it beats alone for him; to his glory we would live, and in defence of his gospel we would die; he is the pattern of our life, and the model after which we would sculpture our character. Paul’s words mean more than most men think; they imply that the aim and end of his life was Christ—nay, his life itself was Jesus. In the words of an ancient saint, he did eat, and drink, and sleep eternal life. Jesus was his very breath, the soul of his soul, the heart …