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Showing posts from May 16, 2016

Semeion in the Gospel of John

Semeion in the Gospel of John

John 3:2

Excerpt


In the Gospel, there is general reference to the σημεῖα of Jesus (2:23;3:2; 6:2, 26; 9:16) and sometimes there is summary mention of their great number (11:47; 12:37; 20:30). But a few are especially emphasised. In general, they are the kind of miracles expected with the dawn of the Messianic age, cf. the saying in Is. 35:5 (Mt. 11:5/Lk. 7:22).309 No matter how one computes the number of σημεῖα of Jesus which were particularly important for the Evangelist,310 those miracles which he records bear Messianic features and is thus in some sense Messianic epiphany-miracles. The miracle at the wedding in Cana of Galilee in Jn. 2:11, the second miracle at Cana (the healing of the son of the βασιλικός) in 4:54, the feeding of the multitude in 6:14 and the raising of Lazarus in 12:18 are all explicitly called σημεῖα. In relation to the σημεῖα mentioned in 9:16 the healing of the man born blind (9:1ff.) is to the fore while the healing of the lame man …

Thorn Branch, Leaves, and Flowers

Thorn Branch, Leaves, and Flowers

‎There are many species of thorn-bearing bushes in Palestine. Isaiah prophesies that cypress trees will replace them when God rules on Earth. Jesus, always wanting to appeal to the everyday experience of his hearers, referred to thorns as he taught. Just before the Roman soldiers crucified him, they wove a crown of thorns and put it on his head. ‎Isa 55:13, Matt 7:16, Matt 27:29

Human Spirit or Holy Spirit

Human Spirit or Holy Spirit

Romans 8:10

Excerpt


The last part of this verse (literally but the Spirit [is] life because of righteousness”) is also difficult. Paul may be referring to the human spirit (see TEV alternative “your spirit is alive) or to the Holy Spirit. The TEV takes the latter alternative, the Spirit is life for you. Throughout this entire passage (and definitely in verse 11) Paul is using the term Spirit as a reference to God’s Spirit, and so it seems likely that in this verse also he is referring to the Spirit of God. The TEV takes Paul’s term “righteousness” in the same sense in which Paul so frequently uses it:you have been put right with God.


Newman, Barclay Moon, and Eugene Albert Nida. A Handbook on Paul’s Letter to the Romans. New York: United Bible Societies, 1973. Print. UBS Handbook Series.

Tetradrachma of Philip V of Macedon

Tetradrachma of Philip V of Macedon

‎The reverse of this silver coin (not pictured) says that Philip V of Macedon issued it but its obverse features Philip's son Perseus as the Greek mythological hero of the same name. The mortal Perseus here wears the immortal’s distinctive helmet and carries over his shoulder a sword of a style known as a “harpa” also linked to the hero. Philip (ruled 221 B.C.–179 B.C.) and Perseus are mentioned in 1 Macc 8:5. Perseus was ruling Macedon when the Romans conquered it in 168 B.C. ‎Jer 48:14–15, 1 Macc 8:5

Subjection of Christ

Subjection of Christ

Excerpt


“Sanctify Christ as Lord” is the best translation of v. 15. Put Him on the throne of your heart. If He controls our lives, then we will always have an answer when people ask about the hope we have in Him (Mark13:11). A surrendered heart and a good conscience will together give peace when people accuse us falsely.

Sinners may accuse us, but God knows the heart; and we fear God, not men (Isa. 8:12–13). Again, Peter reminds them of the sufferings of Christ, that He was falsely accused yet left the matter with His Father.

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

Mordecai Warns Esther

Mordecai Warns Esther
‎ Great was the terror of the Jews, great the anguish of Mordecai when the bloody decree of Ahasuerus was proclaimed against the race. All “the city Shushan was perplexed.” What meant this sudden license to murder? Mordecai “rent his clothes, and put on sackcloth with ashes.” He went through the city crying out in the streets. He stood before the king’s palace and cried out. So that at length even the secluded Queen Esther heard of his presence there and sent with womanly tenderness to clothe him and learn the cause of his misery. ‎Mordecai sent her his command that she should go to the king, reveal her kinship and entreat mercy for her race. Thus, for the first time, Esther learned of the terrible decree. She was in sore perplexity; for there was a law that no one, not even the queen, might approach Ahasuerus without being summoned. Anyone who did so was immediately slain unless the king himself pardoned the intruder by touching him with his golden sceptre. Thi…

Tunnel, Smyrna

Tunnel, Smyrna

‎A subterranean passage in the Roman era ruins at Smyrna (modern Izmir, Turkey).

Connect the Testaments

May 16: Dysfunctional Problem-Solving
1 Chronicles 3:1–4:23; 1 Timothy 3:8–16; Psalm 77:1–20

When I locate a problem, I often fixate on it. I think that if I analyze it enough, I can solve it. This is a problem when I come to difficult issues that require someone else’s expertise. Stubbornly, I want to figure out the problem myself. I want to be self-sufficient. When God is the only one who can solve my problem, I’ve just created an impossible scenario.
When the psalmist hit troubling times and questioned the things that were accepted truths in his life, he didn’t seek his answer from anyone but God. When he felt far from God and questioned all he had taken for granted, the questions he asks are close to those in our own hearts: “Why God? Have you removed your favor?” (Psa 77:7). “Has your steadfast love ceased forever?” (Psa 77:8). “Do your promises end?” (Psa 77:8).
It would have been tempting to dwell on his personal experiences to answer these questions. But instead, the psalmist t…

Morning and Evening

Morning, May 16      Go To Evening Reading
         “Who giveth us richly all things to enjoy.”          —1 Timothy 6:17
Our Lord Jesus is ever giving and does not for a solitary instant withdraw his hand. As long as there is a vessel of grace not yet full to the brim, the oil shall not be empty. He is a sun ever-shining; he is manna always falling round the camp; he is a rock in the desert, ever sending out streams of life from his smitten side; the rain of his grace is always dropping; the river of his bounty is ever-flowing, and the well-spring of his love is constantly overflowing. As the King can never die, so his grace can never fail. Daily we pluck his fruit, and daily his branches bend down to our hand with a fresh store of mercy. There are seven feast-days in his weeks, and as many as are the days, so many are the banquets in his years. Who has ever returned from his door unblessed? Who has ever risen from his table unsatisfied, or from his bosom un-emparadised? His mercies a…

My Utmost for His Highest

May 16th
The habit of wealth


Partakers of the divine nature. 2 Peter 1:4.

We are made partakers of the Divine nature through the promises; then we have to ‘manipulate’ the Divine nature in our human nature by habits, and the first habit to form is the habit of realizing the provision God has made. ‘Oh, I can’t afford it,’ we say—one of the worst lies is tucked up in that phrase. It is un governably bad taste to talk about money in the natural domain, and so it is spiritually, and yet we talk as if our Heavenly Father had cut us off with a shilling! We think it a sign of real modesty to say at the end of a day—‘Oh, well, I have just got through, but it has been a severe tussle.’ And all the Almighty God is ours in the Lord Jesus! And He will tax the last grain of sand and the remotest star to bless us if we will obey Him. What does it matter if external circumstances are hard? Why should they not be! If we give way to self-pity and indulge in the luxury of misery, we banish God’s rich…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

May 16

  For this child, I prayed, and the Lord hath given me my petition which I asked of him: therefore also I have lent him to the Lord; as long as he liveth he shall be lent to the Lord
1 Sam. 1:27, 28
God sometimes bestows gifts just that love may have something to renounce. The things that He puts into our hands are possibly put there that we may have the opportunity of showing what is in our heart. Oh, that there were in us a fervor of love that would lead us to examine everything that belongs to us, to ascertain how it might be made a means of showing our affection to Christ!

George Bowen

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