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Showing posts from September 20, 2016

Blasphemy

Blasphemy

John 10:33, 36

Excerpt


Profane or contemptuous speech or writing about (or action toward) God. In a general sense, “blasphemy” can refer to any slander, including any word or action that insults or devalues another being. In Greek literature, the term was used for insulting or deriding living or dead persons, but it was extended to cover the gods as well, including both doubting the power of and mocking the nature of a god. ... The most common form of blasphemy in the NT is blasphemy against God. One might insult God directly (Rev 13:6; 16:9), mock his word (Ti 2:5), or reject his revelation and its bearer (Acts 6:11). Jesus was accused of blasphemy when he claimed to have a prerogative belonging to God—the power to forgive sins (Mk 2:7). John 10:33–36 reports an attempt to stone Jesus; his accusers said to him, “You, being a man, make yourself God” (v 33). Jesus was condemned by the highest Jewish court, the Sanhedrin, on the charge of blasphemy, because he claimed to be the S…

Gennesaret

Gennesaret
Luke 5:1

Excerpt


The term “Gennesaret” refers to a fertile, heavily populated area at the northwestern corner of the Sea of Galilee. Capernaum lies at the lake’s northern tip. The district’s name was at times extended to the lake so that it could be called the Lake of Gennesaret. In light of the setting, this description serves primarily a geographical purpose rather than a theological one.


Stein, Robert H. Luke. Vol. 24. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1992. Print. The New American Commentary.

Northwest Gateway, Ruins of Tiberias

Northwest Gateway, Ruins of Tiberias

‎Throughout the Mediterranean Basin, Turkey, the Nile Valley, Mesopotamia, and even up into Roman Europe, hundreds of ruins of interest to Bible scholars have been excavated, and yet many haven’t. Tiberias was founded in A.D. 20 and has been continuously inhabited since then. But even there, ruins remain to be excavated. ‎Isa 58:12, Jer 51:37, Amos 9:11, Jer 51:37, Acts 15:16

But Because You are Lukewarm...

But Because You are Lukewarm...
Excerpt


The Laodiceans were in spiritual things cold, comparatively, but not cold as the world outside, and as those who had never belonged to the Church. The lukewarm state, if it is the transitional stage to a warmer, is a desirable state (for a little religion, if real, is better than none); but most fatal when, as here, an abiding condition, for it is mistaken for a safe state (Rev 3:17). This accounts for Christ’s desiring that they were cold rather than lukewarm. For then, there would not be the same “danger of mixed motive and disregarded principle” [Alford]. Also, there is more hope of the “cold,” that is, those who are of the world, and not yet warmed by the Gospel call; for, when called, they may become hot and fervent Christians: such did the once-cold publicans, Zaccheus and Matthew, become. But the lukewarm has been brought within reach of the holy fire, without being heated by it into fervor: having religion enough to lull the conscience i…

The Mosque of Amr

The Mosque of Amr
‎ This lofty and solitary ruin on the west side of Old Cairo is the Mosque of Amr, the earliest Saracenic edifice in Egypt. It was built by Amr ibn el-Asi, the Arab conqueror of Egypt in the twenty-first year of the Hegira (A. D. 642), ten years after the death of Mohammed. It was constructed on the plan of a single quadrangle two hundred and twenty-five feet square, surrounded by a covered colonnade, one range of pillars in depth on the west side, four on the north, three on the south and six on the east, which is the place of prayer. The columns, two hundred and forty-five in number, were brought from earlier Roman and Byzantine buildings, which had been overthrown by earthquakes. The heterogeneous nature of the columns is accounted for by the fact that they were brought from other buildings in Cairo, ruined by the same earthquake, and were adapted to their new functions by rude procrustean methods of lengthening and shortening. This is called “The Crown of the Mo…

Loading a Camel

Loading a Camel

‎The camel was prized in ancient times, as it still is, for its ability to carry loads and passengers long distances through a dry country. Needing little water and content with rough forage, it formed a major part of the wealth of ancient patriarchs. While the Jews were forbidden to eat camel meat, they could use its hair for a type of rough cloth as John the Baptist did. ‎Gen 12:16, Gen 24:64, Job 42:12, Mark 1:6, Luke 18:25

Troubled Hearts

Troubled Hearts

John 14:1–2

Excerpt


To comfort the disciples, Jesus gave them several exhortations along with promises. Do not let your hearts be troubled, He said. “Troubled” is tarassesthō (“stirred, agitated”) from the same verb translated “troubled” in11:33; 13:21; 14:27. One’s heart is the center of his personality. Each believer is responsible for the condition of his heart (cf. Prov. 3:1, 3, 5; 4:23; 20:9). By a firm trust in God the Father and Jesus the Son, they could relieve their soul-sorrow and be sustained in their coming tests

Blum, Edwin A. “John.” The Bible Knowledge Commentary: An Exposition of the Scriptures. Ed. J. F. Walvoord and R. B. Zuck. Vol. 2. Wheaton, IL: Victor Books, 1985. 322. Print.

Connect the Testaments

September 20: Measuring Out God’s Goodness
Habakkuk 2:6–3:19; Acts 18:1–28; Job 26:1–14

Although we don’t usually question God’s goodness, we do make assumptions about how He should act in the world. We expect God to use us in His work and to intercede on our behalf—and rightfully so since those promises come from Him. But when we find ourselves in messy or uncertain situations, we sometimes run ahead of God. Frustrated with the waiting and the unknown, we risk making judgments about how well He is running the world.
As Habakkuk watches the destruction, violence, contention, and strife in Israel, he turns to Yahweh and makes bold demands: “Why do you cause me to see evil while you look at trouble?” (Hab 1:3). But by the end of the dialogue, he has changed his mind. He will rejoice in Yahweh “though the fig tree does not blossom, nor there be fruit on the vines; the yield of the olive fails, and the cultivated fields do not yield food, the flock is cut off from the animal pen, and there…

Morning and Evening

Morning, September 20 Go To Evening Reading

“The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon.” —Judges 7:20
Gideon ordered his men to do two things: covering up a torch in an earthen pitcher, he bade them, at an appointed signal, break the pitcher and let the light shine, and then sound the trumpet, crying, “The sword of the Lord, and of Gideon! the sword of the Lord, and of Gideon!” This is precisely what all Christians must do. First, you must shine; break the pitcher which conceals your light; throw aside the bushel which has been hiding your candle, and shine. Let your light shine before men; let your good works be such, that when men look upon you, they shall know that you have been with Jesus. Then there must be the sound, the blowing of the trumpet. There must be active exertions for the ingathering of sinners by proclaiming Christ crucified. Take the gospel to them; carry it to their door; put it in their way; do not suffer them to escape it; blow the trumpet right against their ears. Reme…

My Utmost for His Highest

September 20th
The divine rule of life


Be ye,therefore perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect. Matthew 5:48.

Our Lord’s exhortation in these verses is to be generous in our behaviour to all men. In the spiritual life beware of walking according to natural affinities. Everyone has natural affinities; some people we like and others we do not like. We must never let those likes and dislikes rule in our Christian life. “If we walk in the light as God is in the light,” God will give us communion with people for whom we have no natural affinity.

The Example Our Lord gives us is not that of a good man, or even of a good Christian, but of God Himself. “Be ye, therefore, perfect, even as your Father in heaven is perfect”—show to the other man what God has shown to you; and God will give us ample opportunities in actual life to prove whether we are perfect as our Father in heaven is perfect. To be a disciple means that we deliberately identify ourselves with God’s interests in other…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

September 20

  Base things of the world and things which are despised hath God chosen
1 Cor. 1:28
In some of the great halls of Europe may be seen pictures not painted with the brush, but mosaics, which are made up of small pieces of stone, glass, or other material. The artist takes these little pieces, and, polishing and arranging them, he forms them into the grand and beautiful picture. Each individual part of the picture may be a little worthless piece of glass or marble or shell; but, with each in its place, the whole constitutes the masterpiece of art.

So I think it will be with humanity in the hands of the great Artist. God is picking up the little worthless pieces of stone and brass that might be trodden under foot unnoticed and is making of them His great masterpiece.

Bishop Simpson

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