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Showing posts from January 24, 2017

Walk in His Ways

Walk in His WaysExcerpt The psalmist here shows that godly people are happy people; they are and shall be, blessed indeed. Felicity is the thing we all pretend to aim at and pursue. He does not say here wherein it consists; it is enough for us to know what we must do and be that we may attain to it and that we are here told. All men would be happy, but few take the right way; God has here laid before us the right way, which we may be sure will end in happiness, though it is strait and narrow.Blessednesses are to the righteous; all manner of blessedness. Now observe the characters of the happy people. Those are happy, 1. Who make the will of God the rule of all their actions, and govern themselves, in their whole conversation, by that rule: They walk in the law of the Lord, v. 1. God’s word is a law to them not only in this or that instance. In the whole course of their conversation, they walk within the hedges of that law; they dare not break through by doing any thing it forbids; they…

Healing on the Sabbath

Healing on the SabbathExcerpt After describing this healing John introduces the dramatic note that this occurred on a sabbath (v. 9), thereby setting the stage for the second scene of this story. The Jews reproach the man for carrying his mat on the sabbath (v. 10). The Old Testament does not prohibit this activity, but rabbinic interpretation of the command not to work on the sabbath did prohibit it (m. Šabbat7:2; cf. Carson 1991:244). Since Jesus explicitly commanded the man to carry his mat we have a conflict between interpretations of God’s will. The Jewish opponents believe the man is sinning as he obeys Jesus’ command. A more striking illustration of the conflict between Jesus and these opponents could not be imagined. Indeed, this story becomes a point of reference as the conflict deepens (7:19–24). More Whitacre, Rodney A. John. Vol. 4. Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1999. Print. The IVP New Testament Commentary Series.

God’s Righteous Judgment

God’s Righteous JudgmentExcerpt Jesus warned against condemning others. In the Sermon on the Mount, he said, “Do not judge or you too will be judged” (Matt 7:1). The kind of judging both Jesus and Paul referred to was not a sane appraisal of character based on conduct but a hypocritical and self-righteous condemnation of the other person. In the same context, Jesus told his followers to watch out for false prophets (v. 15), who are to be recognized by their fruit (vv. 16–20).62 That would be difficult, to say the least, apart from determining which actions are moral and which are not. Evaluation is not the same as condemnation. It is the latter that passes sentence. More Mounce, Robert H. Romans. Vol. 27. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1995. Print. The New American Commentary.

Annunciation

AnnunciationLuke 1:11–20 Excerpt The term generally employed for the advance announcement of the conception and birth of Jesus, usually about the angel Gabriel’s visit to Mary (Lk. 1:26–38). Joseph also received word (Mt. 1:20f). In both instances, the indication is given to the agency of the Holy Spirit in the conception of the child and of the name to be given to Him. His mission is stated to Joseph regarding redemption from sin, to Mary regarding His kingly role. Similarly, the birth of John the Baptist was intimated by an angelic announcement to Zechariah the father (Lk. 1:11–20). Included were the following items: the name to be given, his greatness in the eyes of the Lord, his ascetic manner of life, his equipment with the Holy Spirit and his mission “to make ready for the Lord a people prepared.” The pattern of annunciation occurs in the OT in connection with Samson (Jgs. 13:2–5), including his status as a Nazirite and his mission as the deliverer of Israel from the Philistines. In …

Barry, John D., and Rebecca Kruyswijk. Connect the Testaments

January 24: Undue Favor Genesis 38–39; Matthew 27:32–28:20; Ecclesiastes 9:7–10 Genesis 38 interrupts the climax of the Joseph narrative with another tale: Judah and Tamar. Switching protagonists is surprising enough, but the tale itself shocks us. We’re hardly given time to process the strange cultural practices of the ancient Near East, prostitution, deception, and the sudden death of those who displease God before we’re returned to Joseph’s struggles in Egypt. The story is additionally confusing because it seems to lack a hero. Judah uses Tamar, as his two sons did—though he at least acknowledges his actions. Tamar uses her wits and risks her life to secure a future for herself, but she does so through deplorable means. Attempts have been made to justify the characters and put it all in perspective, but there is no neat packaging. The characters in this story face dire circumstances and a unique cultural context—one that is nearly impossible for modern readers to understand. But we don…

Spurgeon, Charles H. Morning and Evening

Morning, January 24                   Go To Evening Reading
“Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler.” —Psalm 91:3
God delivers his people from the snare of the fowler in two senses. From, and out of. First, he delivers them from the snare—does not let them enter it; and secondly, if they should be caught therein, he delivers them out of it. The first promise is the most precious to some; the second is the best to others.
“He shall deliver thee from the snare.” How? Trouble is often the means whereby God delivers us. God knows that our backsliding will soon end in our destruction, and he in mercy sends the rod. We say, “Lord, why is this?” not knowing that our trouble has been the means of delivering us from far greater evil. Many have been thus saved from ruin by their sorrows and their crosses; these have frightened the birds from the net. At other times, God keeps his people from the snare of the fowler by giving them great spiritual strength, so that when they are te…

Chambers, Oswald. My Utmost for His Highest

January 24th The overmastering direction I have appeared unto thee for this purpose. Acts 26:16. The vision Paul had on the road to Damascus was no passing emotion, but a vision that had very clear and emphatic directions for him, and he says—“I was not disobedient to the heavenly vision.” Our Lord said, in effect, to Paul—‘Your whole life is to be overmastered by Me; you are to have no end, no aim, and no purpose but Mine.’ ‘I have chosen him.’ When we are born again we all have visions, if we are spiritual at all, of what Jesus wants us to be, and the great thing is to learn not to be disobedient to the vision, not to say that it cannot be attained. It is not sufficient to know that God has redeemed the world, and to know that the Holy Spirit can make all that Jesus did effectual in me; I must have the basis of a personal relationship to Him. Paul was not given a message or a doctrine to proclaim, he was brought into a vivid, personal, overmastering relationship to Jesus Christ. Verse 1…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

January 24 He made as though he would have gone further Luke 24:28 Is not God always acting thus? He comes to us by His Holy Spirit as He did to these two disciples. He speaks to us through the preaching of the Gospel, through the Word of God, through the various means of grace and the providential circumstances of life; and having thus spoken, He makes as though He would go further. If the ear he opened to His voice and the heart to His Spirit, the prayer will then go up, “Lord, abide with me.” But if that voice makes no impression, then He passes on, as He has done thousands of times, leaving the heart at each time harder than before, and the ear more closed to the Spirit’s call. F. Whitfield

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