Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from June 27, 2016

Morning and Evening

Morning, June 28Go To Evening Reading

         “Looking unto Jesus.” —Hebrews 12:2
It is ever the Holy Spirit’s work to turn our eyes away from self to Jesus; but Satan’s work is just the opposite of this, for he is constantly trying to make us regard ourselves instead of Christ. He insinuates, “Your sins are too great for pardon; you have no faith; you do not repent enough; you will never be able to continue to the end; you have not the joy of his children; you have such a wavering hold of Jesus.” All these are thoughts about self, and we shall never find comfort or assurance by looking within. But the Holy Spirit turns our eyes entirely away from self: he tells us that we are nothing, but that “Christ is all in all.” Remember, therefore, it is not thy hold of Christ that saves thee—it is Christ; it is not thy joy in Christ that saves thee—it is Christ; it is not even faith in Christ, though that be the instrument—it is Christ’s blood and merits; therefore, look not so much to thy han…

Marriage Ceremony, Cairo

Marriage Ceremony, Cairo

‎We have remained in Egypt with the holy family long enough not simply to give representations of the tombs and monuments they saw nearly two thousand years ago, but also to give pictures and descriptions of customs and ceremonies and structures which have grown out of the civilization in the midst of which they spent the time of the flight. The Egyptian girl is generally married in her twelfth or thirteenth, and sometimes as early as her tenth year. Before the wedding, the bride is conducted in gala attire, and with great ceremony to the bath. The procession is called “Zeffet et Hammam.” Musicians with hautboys and drums head the procession. Pairs of married friends and relatives of the bride follow, and after these come a number of young girls. The bride is usually enveloped from head to foot in a cashmere shawl. On the head, she wears a small cap or crown of pasteboard. The procession is followed by another body of musicians. Hideous shrieks of joy greet t…

The first covenant

The first covenant

Excerpt


God placed two special trees in the middle of the Garden: the Tree of Life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 2:9, 17; 3:3, 22, 24). Eating from the tree of life would confer immortality (v. 22). Eating from the second tree would confer an experiential knowledge of good and evil, but it would also bring death (2:17). Since they had never experienced evil, Adam and Eve were like innocent children (Deut. 1:39; Isa. 7:15–16). When they disobeyed God, they became like Him in being able to discriminate between good and evil; but they became unlike Him in that they lost their sinlessness and eventually died.

But why did God have to test Adam and Eve? There may be many answers to that question, but one thing is sure: God wanted humans to love and obey Him freely and willingly and not because they were programmed like robots who had to obey.


Wiersbe, Warren W. Be Basic. Colorado Springs, CO: Chariot Victor Pub., 1998. Print. “Be” Commentary Series.

Beware of the World

Beware of the World

Excerpt


John begins this verse by issuing the command that the believer is not to love the world or anything in the world. Initially, this command sounds strange given the fact that John 3:16 says clearly and beautifully that God loves the world and the fact that 1 John 2:2 says the Son made atonement for the sins of the world. What is the difference? The difference is found in the way John uses the term kosmos in each instance. Contextual considerations are crucial. In these epistles and the Gospel, John employs this term in three distinct and basic ways: (1) the created universe (3:17; 4:17; John 1:10); (2) the world of human persons (John 3:16; 1 John 2:2); and (3) an evil organized earthly system controlled by the power of the evil one that has aligned itself against God and his kingdom (4:3–5; 5:19; John 16:11). In these verses, John uses the third meaning. One should note that John is not advocating an ontological dualism or a dualistic cosmology in which the c…

The Sea of Galilee

The Sea of Galilee

‎This sea is called the Sea of Galilee because it is embraced in the province by that name. It is called the Sea of Tiberias because this is the largest city on its shores. It is called the Sea of Gennesaret because of the fertile plain which skirts its western shore. Lamartine, says when he first looked down upon this lake: “I had come to look on the very shores, on the very waves which had borne Him, on the hills on which He had sat, on the stones on which He had rested His head. He had a hundred times walked on that beach which I now trod. With reverential humility, His feet had trod the dust which was now under my feet. He sailed in the banks of the fishermen on the Sea of Galilee. He walked on its waves, stretching His hands to the apostles.” Here lies before us the scene of so many of our Savior’s miracles and teachings. In the times when Christ was here, the cities were very numerous. According to Josephus, the smallest of them contained more than fifteen th…

The Temple in Samaria

The Temple in Samaria

John 4:20–25
Excerpt


According to the Samaritan Pentateuch, which to Samaritans was the only authoritative text, the mountain is the site of Joshua’s altar (Deut. 27:4; JB mg.; MT “Mount Ebal”). The Samaritans also held Gerizim to be the mountain on which God commanded Abram to sacrifice his son Isaac, reading Moreh for Moriah (Gen. 22:2; cf. Gen. 12:6). Samaritan tradition also maintains that the “sanctuary of the Lord” of Josh. 24:26 was a temple on Mt. Gerizim. Probably owing to the shift of sacred activity to Jerusalem under King David, and perhaps because of efforts on the part of Judean writers to detract from the importance of northern sites, the mountain is not mentioned again in the Old Testament. Following the Exile, however, the Samaritans maintained the tradition regarding the mountain, establishing a temple there in the fourth century B.C. Although desecrated by Anticohus IV Epiphanes (2 Macc. 6:2) and later destroyed by the Jewish king John Hyrcanus in…

The Sphinx

The Sphinx

What is the Sphinx? It is the body of a lion couchant, with the head of a man—“a symbol of animal power and of human intellect.” The whole figure was typical of kingly royalty and set forth the power and wisdom of the Egyptian monarch. One traveler describes the present appearance of the great Sphinx as, “a ball of stone rising on a neck some forty feet above the sand.” Miss Edwards says, “the sphinx is purely an Egyptian monster and of immemorial antiquity. The great sphinx of Gizeh is probably the oldest monument in Egypt. There are thousands of sphinxes in Egypt of various sizes, but the great Sphinx is this one at the base of the pyramids. It is carved out of the summit of the original rock from which it has never been separated. Its body is over one hundred feet long; its head is thirty feet long and fourteen in width; the marks of paint still remain on the face—on the eye-brows and on the right cheek. The face is much mutilated; the body is hidden by drifting sands o…

Ruined Brick Building, Ephesus

Ruined Brick Building, Ephesus

Connect the Testaments

June 27: The Truth about Truth
Nehemiah 12:1–13:31; 2 John 1–6; Psalm 115:1–18

John the Evangelist’s letter to the “elect lady” presents a picture of joy and hope, as he “rejoiced greatly to find some of [her] children walking in truth, just as we were commanded by the father” (2 John 4). One word keeps reappearing in John’s letter, focusing his message: truth. John says that he loves the elect lady and her children “in truth” (2 John 1). He says that all who know the truth also love them. His reason is simple: “the truth … resides in us and will be with us forever” (2 John 2). When John speaks of truth, he’s referring to Jesus (John 14:6).
After his initial greeting, John goes on to express his wishes: May “Grace, mercy, [and] peace … be with us from God the Father and from Jesus Christ the Son of the Father in truth and love” (2 John 3). In acknowledging the source of truth, John acknowledges his connection to it. All believers live in truth because they are linked to God, who is the…

Morning and Evening

Morning, June 27 Go To Evening Reading

         “Only ye shall not go very far away.”          —Exodus 8:28
This is a crafty word from the lip of the arch-tyrant Pharaoh. If the poor bondage Israelites must need to go out of Egypt, then he bargains with them that it shall not be very far away; not too far for them to escape the terror of his arms and the observation of his spies. After the same fashion, the world loves not the non-conformity of nonconformity or the dissidence of dissent; it would have us be more charitable and not carry matters with too severe a hand. Death to the world and burial with Christ are experiences which carnal minds treat with ridicule, and hence the ordinance which sets them forth is almost universally neglected, and even condemned. Worldly wisdom recommends the path of compromise and talks of “moderation.” According to this carnal policy, purity is admitted to be very desirable, but we are warned against being too precise; the truth is, of course, to be fo…

My Utmost for His Highest

June 27th
The overshadowing personal deliverance


I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the Lord. Jeremiah 1:8.

God promised Jeremiah that He would deliver him personally—“Thy life will I give unto thee for a prey.” That is all God promises His children. Wherever God sends us, He will guard our lives. Our personal property and possessions are a matter of indifference, we have to sit loosely to all these things; if we do not, there will be panic and heartbreak and distress. That is the inwardness of the overshadowing of personal deliverance.
The Sermon on the Mount indicates that when we are on Jesus Christ’s errands, there is no time to stand up for ourselves. Jesus says, in effect, ‘Do not be bothered with whether you are being justly dealt with or not.’ To look for justice is a sign of deflection from devotion to Him. Never look for justice in this world, but never cease to give it. If we look for justice, we will begin to grouse and to indulge in the discontent of self-pity—‘Why sh…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

June 27

  Be perfect, be of good comfort
        2 Cor. 13:11
A glance at the words is enough to make us feel how contradictory they are. Be perfect—that is a word that strikes us with despair; at once we feel how far away we are from our own poor idea and alas! how much further from God’s ideal concerning us. Be of good comfort—ah, that is very different! That seems to say, “Do not fret; do not fear. If you are not what you would be, you must be thankful for what you are.”
Now the question is this—How can these two be reconciled?
It is only the religion of Jesus Christ that reconciles them. He stands in our midst, and with the right hand of His righteousness He pointeth us upward, and saith, “Be perfect.” There is no resting-place short of that. Yet with the left hand of His love He doth encompass us, as He saith, “Soul, be of good comfort; for that is what I came to do for thee.”

Mark Guy Pearse

Hardman, Samuel G., and Dwight Lyman Moody. Willow Grove, PA: Woodlawn Electronic Publish…