“And Moses wrote all the words of the LORD, and rose up early in the morning, and builded an altar under the hill, and twelve pillars, according to the twelve tribes of Israel” (Exodus 24:4).
A “Jewish” Book
Moses was on Mount Sinai receiving the Law of God. He came down to give to the people part of the Covenant, which they accepted. He wrote down what the Lord had spoken and the first five books of the Bible while Israel was in the wilderness. They had records and tradi
The Book of Psalms is beloved by many. It showcases every emotion, and often brings comfort to the hurting, struggling, or those are facing loss. Who has not heard a portion of Psalm 23 or sang some of these poetic masterpieces? While other cultures in Ancient Near East had praises and prayers written to their gods, Israel had, and has, God’s truth encapsulated in a large book, written over the course of 1,000 years, called the Book of Psalms.
When most people think of the Psalms,
Since God is Good, Why…
For centuries this question has been asked in various ways: “If God is good, then…” or “If God is in control, then why did… happen?” “Why does evil and suffering exist if God is loving?” These are questions skeptics’ use in an effort to discredit Christianity. Believers ask these when they go through difficulties in life, out of anger or anguish. Some ask out of a true desire to know why, while opponents ask in a way to try and demean or destroy the faith of others.
Bondage to Freedom to Bondage
Galatians 5:1 – Stand fast therefore in the liberty (freedom) by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with a yoke of bondage.
Paul is correcting error in the Galatian church where Judaizers came in spreading lies. These individuals said you needed to follow the Old Testament Law in addition to God’s grace in order to be saved. Paul pronounces judgment on those who proclaim a false gos
Galatians 1:8 – But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you tan what we have preached to you, let him be accursed.
Paul corrected problems in the Galatian Assembly. The error he dealt with was the false gospel of the Judaizers. They said Gentiles must add works of the Law, mostly circumcision to God’s grace. Biblically, this is Legalism or doing something from the Law of Moses to add to salvatio
God can use You for His Glory
Exodus 3:11 – But Moses said to God, “Who am I that I should go to Pharaoh, and that I should bring the children of Israel out of Egypt?”
God called Moses out of a burning bush to bring His people out of Egyptian bondage after 400 years. Moses, of course, gives many excuses, but God’s command stood and Moses went. Moses asked a good question though, “Who am I?” At this time, he was 80 years old and had
Ephesians 4:32 – Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor (loud quarreling), and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
One of the most difficult things anyone can do is forgive. We do not forgive for many reasons: 1) We think the other person should take initiative. 2) They hurt me. 3) They don’t deserve it. 4) We like
It was a January evening in 1947 when a few boys were looking after sheep in the area of the Dead Sea. One boy, Juma, decided to throw a rock into one of the thousands of caves in the cliffs, and to his surprise heard a crack of something breaking. The boys had to leave, but Muhammad, Juma’s cousin, the next morning returned to explore what they hoped was a vast treasure of money.
To his disappointment, the “only” things discovered were seven old manuscripts contained in many jars withi
Are Christians Called to Change Culture?
Acts 19:19-20 – Also, many of those who had practiced magic brought their books together and burned them in the sight of all. And they counted up the value of them, and it totaled fifty thousand pieces of silver. So the word of the Lord grew mightily and prevailed.
God did the miraculous through Paul in Ephesus like healing the sick and casting out demons. Some Jewish exorcists wanted to tr
Other than Jesus Himself, perhaps no other Biblical character has been attacked as often in regards to his existence as King David. Critics for many years stated he did not exist and the Bible could not be trusted in regards to its historical references to Israel’s greatest king. This all changed in 1993 when a stela (fragment of stone) was found in Tel Dan, in northern Israel, written in Aramaic and dated to the mid-ninth century (800s) B.C. and is stored today in the Israel Museum.
Pontius Pilate is an interesting individual, particularly when it comes to the Biblical narrative. As is often the case, there was a time when scholars and skeptics questioned the historicity of this man, denying the reliable accounts found in the New Testament.
Then in 1961, an Italian archaeologist was excavating in a Caesarea Maritma ampitheater and discovered a limestone block with three lines still visible.
Line one: Tiberieum,
Line two: ...tius
Wrong Religion or Right Relationship
Acts 18:24-26 – Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things of the Lord, though he knew only the baptism of John. So he began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explai
Need Doesn’t Necessarily Determine Direction
Acts 16:6-7 – Now when they had gone through Phrygia and the region of Galatia, they were forbidden by the Holy Spirit to preach the word in Asia. After they had come to Mysia, they tried to go to Bithynia, but the Spirit did not permit them.
This was during Paul’s second missionary journey with Silas. They traveled towards Asia Minor, modern day Turkey and God forbid them to go. Why? Didn’t
Don’t “Try Jesus”
Acts 4:12 – Nor is their salvation in any other, for there is no other Name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved.
Peter, John and others have been brought before the Sanhedrin, the religious counsel of the day, because they preached Jesus and the resurrection. Peter is filled with the Holy Spirit, preaches the Messiah to them and says there is no other Name anyone can be saved. That is, Jesus is the only w
Method or Message – Church Growth
Acts 2:41 – Then those who gladly received his word were baptized; and that day about three thousand souls were added.
The context of this verse is Peter’s preaching at the Jewish Feast of Pentecost or Weeks, 50 days after Passover. The people were questioning what was done and Peter stands up and boldly proclaims Jesus as Messiah and the fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy. It was this Jesus they cruci
2 Timothy 4:6-7
Dying with Purpose
2 Timothy 4:6-7 – For I am already being poured out as a drink offering, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
Death is part of life because of Adam’s sin, Romans 5:12-19 and it is sad when we have to say goodbye to those we love. Young Timothy was reading the last letter from his mentor, friend and teacher, the Apostle Paul, as s
2 Timothy 3:16-17
Where do you get Your Doctrine?
2 Timothy 3:16-17 – All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Paul writes his last letter to his pastor friend, disciple and man of God, Timothy. This letter records Paul’s last written words we have in God’s word. Paul tells
2 Timothy 3:16-17
Conviction and Confidence
2 Timothy 3:16-17 – All Scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness; so that the man of God may be adequate, equipped for every good work.
Paul addresses his last letter to his young pastor and disciple, Timothy. Paul was going to be martyred soon for the faith. His last exhortation to this young man and his friend focuses on God’s word.
2 Peter 3:15-16
How to Interpret Scripture
2 Peter 3:15-16 – …as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written you, as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures.
Peter wrote about false teachers and the return of Christ. At the
2 Corinthians 11:2
2 Corinthians 11:2 – For I am jealous for you with godly jealousy. For I have betrothed you to one husband, that I may present you as a chaste virgin to Christ.
Paul wrote to a church that was a “thorn” in his side. They had many problems and were much like the church today, yet Paul loved them and told them the truth. Paul is concerned with their faithfulness to Christ and purity in Christ and th
2 Corinthians 10:12
Comparison and Contrast
2 Corinthians 10:12 – For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.
Paul was speaking of false apostles whom he would not compare himself to, not out of pride, but humility because he would not promote himself as these false teachers did. These i
2 Corinthians 5:14-15
2 Corinthians 5:14-15 – For the love of Christ compels us, because we judge thus: that if One died for all, then all died; and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.
Paul wrote to the Church at Corinth for the third time; see 2:4 for reference to the “2nd” letter. This is a personal letter for him as he has to defend himself
1 Peter 2:20-21
Called to Suffer
1 Peter 2:20-21 – For what credit is there if, when you sin and are harshly treated, you endure it with patience? But if when you do what is right and suffer for it you patiently endure it, this finds favor with God. For you have been called for this purpose, since Christ also suffered for you leaving you an example for you to follow in His steps…
Peter was writing to Christians (mainly Jewish believe
1 Kings 19:4 and Matthew 4:1
1 Kings 19:4 – But he (Elijah) himself went a day’s journey into the wilderness, and came and sat down under a broom (juniper) tree. And he prayed that he might die, and said, “It is enough! Now, LORD, take my life, for I am no better than my fathers!”
Matthew 4:1 – Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil.
The context of the first pa
Preparing for Persecution
A friend of mine and I entered a video contest with Voice of the Martyrs a few year ago. The prize was to go to a country where Christians are persecuted. By God’s grace, we were one of the winners and in January 2014, my friend and I went to Colombia South America, not South Carolina, to meet and encourage persecuted Christians. One Christian we met was Maria. We learned that a few years