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Showing posts from May 29, 2016

Witness

What is our responsibility concerning the resurrection of Jesus? After Jesus' resurrection he met with the disciples on several occasions and they continued to ask him, "Lord, are you at this time going to restore the kingdom to Israel?" (Acts 1:6) Previous to his death they had argued about their positions in the newly to be formed kingdom that they thought Jesus was bringing to Israel. He perpetually answered that it was not to come now. So, when he was resurrected they surely thought it would come then. But it was not to happen then either. Why? He responded to them, "It is not for you to know the times or dates the Father has set by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." (1:8) The objective for the original disciples of Jesus and us today is the same. We are to be witnesses. The question then is what are we to witne…

Resurrection

What is it that helps you maintain your Christian walk? Is it the stories of God's interaction with men and women in the Old Testament or Jesus' various miracles and discourses in the Gospels? Sometimes we may think it is the body of Scripture that emboldens us, but let me suggest that it is the missing body of Jesus from the tomb that should impact us more than all the previous. Mary Magdalene and a few other women reach the tomb shortly after dawn on Sunday. They are alarmed by the stone which has been rolled far away from the tomb (weighs 1 ton) and immediately assume that the Lord has been taken out and put somewhere else. (John 20:2) So they run back to inform the disciples. Peter and John run to the tomb looking for evidence of the Pharisees misdeeds concerning Jesus' body. They have easy access to the interior of the grave site and upon entering find "strips of linen lying there" and "the cloth…folded up by itself, separate from the linen." (20:6-7…

Veracity

Do you doubt the truth or accuracy of the Word of God? Are its stories just fables written by men? In 393 A.D. a council of church leaders united the 66 books written in Hebrew, Greek, and Aramaic and by 40 different authors and from that point they have been translated into hundreds of languages. Men and women have spent their whole lives observing a people group to create their written language so that they could eventually translate the Bible for them. The psalmist used multiple words to declare the value of the Word of God. He called it "wonderful," one that "gives light" and "understanding," "right," "righteous," "fully trustworthy," "thoroughly tested," "true," delightful, and "forever right." (Psalm 119:129-144) For centuries unbelievers have tried to find error in its words but to no avail. There are appearances of inconsistency but they are more a lack of our knowledge of the Word than t…

Love the Law

Psalm 119 is a beautiful expression of love for God's laws. The writer takes every letter of the Hebrew alphabet, used one at a time in eight verse segments, to express the greatness of being under its direction. In Psalm 119:97-104, the writer expresses God's laws superiority over three types of human persons who have their own "source of wisdom." First, are his enemies. These are identified as proud, arrogant, and obnoxious people who do not submit to God's laws. They ridicule the godly and believe God's laws to be inferior to their own laws. Their attitude is one of superiority. The psalmist said, "Your commands make me wiser than my enemies." (119:98) Second, are his teachers. These are not the teachers of the law but teachers that study ordinary human wisdom. Although lessons can be learned by human wisdom, it cannot impart what is gained from the laws of God. After all, God is all knowing and reveals truth that supersedes the wisdom of man. The …