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Showing posts from December 13, 2016

The House of God

The House of GodExcerpt All that the writer has said about the Melchizedek priesthood of Jesus is recalled here. Believers have not only a positive spirit but also a competent advocate. He is continually available, completely aware of our present situation, and vitally involved with us in working all things together for good. His great concern is the welfare of each member of the household of God, and “we are his house,” as the writer has told us unmistakably in 3:6.  Stedman, Ray C. Hebrews. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1992. Print. The IVP New Testament Commentary Series.

Live Like Children of God

Live Like Children of GodExcerpt Although 2:28–29 is transitional, it also naturally links with 3:1–3 and its emphasis on the identity (and confidence) of the children of God. Those who are born of God have both an identity and responsibility that is consistent with their privileges as God’s children. Six times John notes the believer’s status as God’s children (2:283:12710a, b). Three times he highlights their spiritual birth, which is the basis for this position as children (2:293:9a, b). It is possible to see a shift in subject at 3:4.312 A dual emphasis on Christ’s appearances (the second time to make us like him [3:2] and the first time to deal with sin [3:5]), however, may indicate again that a hard and fast division is unnecessary. The two sections (2:28–3:3 and 3:4–10) clearly complement each other.  Akin, Daniel L. 1, 2, 3 John. Vol. 38. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 2001. Print. The New American Commentary.

Paul’s Experience Explained (3:1–16)

Paul’s Experience Explained (3:1–16)Excerpt Some commentators suggest that in this section Paul addressed his opponents. They say that he consciously countered a perfectionistic group, sometimes called “divine men,” who claimed their own completeness. Others suggest that Paul produced this section because of the Jewish opponents of 3:2 taught that perfection could be achieved by keeping the law. Still, others see Paul continuing the logic of 3:4–11, issuing a warning because of a tendency to misunderstand his teaching. His introduction of 3:15 with the words “all of us who are mature,” (lit., “perfect”), however, suggests that there may have been some irony in his tone. The context does not require an opponent, and it is unlikely that he envisioned one. A group within the church may have misunderstood his teaching on justification and taken it to their own “logical” conclusions, which were theologically unacceptable. Melick, Richard R. Philippians, Colossians, Philemon. Vol. 32. Nashvil…

Criticisms of the Judaizers

Criticisms of the JudaizersGalatians 1:1 Excerpt Judaizing teachers had persuaded the Galatians that Paul had taught them the new religion imperfectly, and at second hand; that the founder of their church himself possessed only a deputed commission, the seal of truth and authority being in the apostles at Jerusalem: moreover, that whatever he might profess among them, he had himself at other times, and in other places, given way to the doctrine of circumcision.  Jamieson, Robert, A. R. Fausset, and David Brown. Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible. Vol. 2. Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1997. Print.

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

December 13

  The disciples were called Christians first in Antioch
Acts 11:26
This name suggests that the clear impression made by our character, as well as by our words, should be that we belong to Jesus Christ. He should manifestly be the center and the guide, the impulse and the pattern, the strength and reward, of our lives. We are Christians. That should be plain for all folks to see, whether we speak or be silent.
Is it so with you?

Alexander Maclaren

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

My Utmost for His Highest

December 13th
What to pray for

Men ought always to pray, and not to faint. Luke 18:1.

You cannot intercede if you do not believe in the reality of the Redemption; you will turn intercession into futile sympathy with human beings which will only increase their submissive content to being out of touch with God. In intercession you bring the person, or the circumstance that impinges on you, before God until you are moved by His attitude towards that person or circumstance. Intercession means filling up “that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ,” and that is why there are so few intercessors. Intercession is put on the line of—‘Put yourself in his place.’ Never! Try to put yourself in God’s place.
As a worker, be careful to keep pace with the communications of reality from God or you will be crushed. If you know too much, more than God has engineered for you to know, you cannot pray, the condition of the people is so crushing that you cannot get through to reality.
Our work lies…

Morning and Evening

Morning, December 13Go To Evening Reading

         “Salt without prescribing how much.”          —Ezra 7:22
Salt was used in every offering made by fire unto the Lord, and from its preserving and purifying properties it was the grateful emblem of divine grace in the soul. It is worthy of our attentive regard that, when Artaxerxes gave salt to Ezra the priest, he set no limit to the quantity, and we may be quite certain that when the King of kings distributes grace among his royal priesthood, the supply is not cut short by him. Often are we straitened in ourselves, but never in the Lord. He who chooses to gather much manna will find that he may have as much as he desires. There is no such famine in Jerusalem that the citizens should eat their bread by weight and drink their water by measure. Some things in the economy of grace are measured; for instance our vinegar and gall are given us with such exactness that we never have a single drop too much, but of the salt of grace no stint is m…

Sage Advice

December 13: Sage Advice
Jeremiah 25:1–26:24; Romans 4:1–24; Proverbs 19:1–29

Proverbs are full of sage advice, and some examples deserve special attention. No words could better describe the concept expressed here: “Better a poor person walking in integrity than one who is perverse in his speech and is a fool” (Prov 19:1).
When times get tough—especially when the money runs out—integrity is often the first thing we sacrifice. Yet only those who have truly lived in poverty understand the trials it brings. We can’t begin to know how we would act if we had nothing. For this reason, we should mentally prepare for times of want. In doing so, we might better gauge whether we’re conducting ourselves appropriately in times of plenty.
I heard of a man who chose to live as a homeless person so that he could understand their plight. It’s easy for the rich person to call such an act foolish, but how much did that man learn as he was challenged to maintain his integrity during hard times? Does the…