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Showing posts from April 25, 2017

Encouragement and Exhortation

Encouragement and ExhortationExcerpt Pray, sing, be anointed and healed!Christians should be bold in expressing their emotions before the Lord, whether that involves sorrow expressed in prayer, or joy expressed in worship (5:13). Those who are ill should not hesitate to ask for prayer. The prayer of faith will heal, and if sin is involved and confessed, God will forgive (5:14–16; see 1 John 1:9). Elijah is our model: Though he was human just like us, his prayers had amazing results (5:17–18; see 1 Kings 17:118:41–46). However, it is not always God’s will to heal the sick (see exposition on 1 Tim. 5:21–25). Suffering, if rightly understood and endured by the believer, can bring glory to God (see Exod. 4:11John 9:1–3; see exposition on 2 Cor. 12:7–10). Note that healing is promised not through so-called faith healers but through elders of local churches. James also urged concern for the spiritually sick (5:19–20). More Willmington, H. L. Willmington’s Bible Handbook. Wheaton, IL: Tynd…

Wilderness of Zin

Wilderness of ZinNumbers 20:4 Excerpt The area lying in the northern portion of the Sinai Peninsula, while the wilderness of Sin lies in the southern part. It is one of the four or five “wildernesses” of the Sinai Peninsula. The others being the wilderness of Paran (Gn 21:21), the wilderness of Shur (Ex 15:22), and the wilderness of Sinai (Nm 9:1) and the wilderness of Sin (Nm 33:11). These areas are not clearly defined, and there is probably some overlap. The area identified as the wilderness of Zin is associated with the village of Zin (Nm 34:4). The wilderness was west of Edom, southwest of the Dead Sea, and south of Judah. Within this arid area were four copious springs or oases including Kadesh-barnea. Most of the 38 years the Israelites spent in the Sinai Desert were spent in this area. From the wilderness of Zin, the spies were dispatched to spy out the land of Canaan (Nm 13:1–2632:8). Here also the rebels were sentenced to die because of their unbelief (14:22–23). Moses sinned …

Searching for Jesus

Searching for JesusExcerpt The explanation for Jesus’ behavior here rests, I believe, in the genuineness of his incarnation and his growing awareness of who he was. Accepting the Incarnation at face value means that Jesus was genuinely a twelve-year-old. Though fully God, he was also human. Choosing not to avail himself of all the prerogatives of deity, he learned in the same way we do. As a child, he had to learn that two plus two equals four, and as a twelve-year-old, he was still learning about every part of life—including faith and relationships. As a twelve-year-old, he did not have the fine-tuned social awareness he would have at age thirty. The point is, he was capable of unknowingly causing his parents distress; but as a sinless being, he was incapable of knowingly doing it. Here, Jesus unknowingly brought anxiety to Joseph and Mary. Moreover, he unintentionally caused his parents to worry because his twelve-year-old mind was totally absorbed with the massive spiritual realizati…

Hypocrisy

HypocrisyRomans 12:9 Excerpt [Hypocrisy is] a term and idea that are primarily limited to the Bible to the NT writings. The Greek word transliterated into English as ‘hypocrite’ was used to denote an actor, one who performed behind a mask. Thus the popular understanding came to be that of persons who pretended to be something that they were not. It is interesting to note, however, that hypocrisy does not appear to be so limited in meaning in the NT. The term can sometimes denote general wickedness or evil, self-righteousness, pretense, or breach of ‘contract.’ The best-known passage in the NTdescribing hypocrisy is Matthew /Matt.* 23:1*/23, where self-righteousness and pretense are both in evidence (cf. also Matt. 6:25167:515:722:1824:51; Mark 7:6; Luke6:4212:5613:15). More Achtemeier, Paul J., Harper & Row, and Society of Biblical Literature. Harper’s Bible dictionary 1985: 414. Print.

Connect the Testaments

April 25: Bound for the Promised Land Joshua 14:1–15:63; 2 Corinthians 11:16–23; Psalm 54:1–7 Faith is not just about being faithful; it’s also about trusting in God’s faithfulness. For years God dealt with the confused and waning nature of His people while they were in the wilderness. They wondered, “Will God actually do what Moses has told us?” They had seen God repeatedly act on their behalf, but they continued to grow frightened and faithless. In return, the first generation that left Egypt never saw the promises of God. Instead, a later generation witnessed His faithfulness. In Joshua 14:1–15:63, we see God fulfilling His words. Caleb and Joshua get a chance to witness this faithfulness, but the Hebrews who doubted that God would act on their behalf did not (Josh 14:6–15; also see Num 13:25–14:45). This is an incredible moment: these two men had watched the failures of their elders and led their peers and people younger than them so that they could witness the faithfulness of God tog…

Morning and Evening

Morning, April 25Go To Evening Reading
“Rise up my love, my fair one, and come away.” —Song of Solomon 2:10
Lo, I hear the voice of my Beloved! He speaks to me! Fair weather is smiling upon the face of the earth, and he would not have me spiritually asleep while nature is all around me awaking from her winter’s rest. He bids me “Rise up,” and well he may, for I have long enough been lying among the pots of worldliness. He has risen, I have risen in him, why then should I cleave unto the dust? From lower loves, desires, pursuits, and aspirations, I would rise towards him. He calls me by the sweet title of “My love,” and counts me fair; this is a good argument for my rising. If he has thus exalted me and thinks me thus comely, how can I linger in the tents of Kedar and find congenial associates among the sons of men? He bids me “Come away.” Further and further from everything selfish, groveling, worldly, sinful, he calls me; yea, from the outwardly religious world which knows him not, and …

My Utmost for His Highest

April 25th Instant in season Be instant in season, out of season.2 Tim. 4:2. Many of us suffer from the morbid tendency to be instant “out of season.” The season does not refer to time, but to us. “Be instant in season, out of season,” whether we feel like it or not. If we do only what we feel inclined to do, some of us would do nothing for ever and ever. There are unemployable's in the spiritual domain, spiritually decrepit people, who refuse to do anything unless they are supernaturally inspired. The proof that we are rightly related to God is that we do our best whether we feel inspired or not. One of the great snares of the Christian worker is to make a fetish of his rare moments. When the spirit of God gives you a time of inspiration and insight, you say—‘Now I will always be like this for God.’ No, you will not, God will take care you are not. Those times are the gift of God entirely. You cannot give them to yourself when you choose. If you say you will only be at your best, you…

Thoughts for the Quiet Hour

April 25 I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee Isa. 41:13 Don’t try to hold God’s hand; let Him hold yours. Let Him do the holding, and you do the trusting. H. W. Webb-Peploe

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