Little minds in context

These kids are young, maybe five or six years old at most.  They are doing what kids do best:PLAY!!!  But, the picture reveals a lot about their upbringing; namely, they live in a society with computers.  Everything seems to revolve around them.... even having babies???  While we know the last part of that sentence is NOT true... still it seems that way, doesn't it???  Like it or not, we live in a culture increasingly dominated by microprocessors.  But, what happens when we read the Bible?  Do we remember its varying time-frame and cultures?  Here is an example from the book of John....

John, Chapter 9
 1 As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth.  2 His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”

  3 Jesus answered, 
"“Neither did this man sin, nor his parents; but, that the works of God might be revealed in him.  4 I must work the works of him who sent me, while it is day. The night is coming, when no one can work.  5 While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”"  6 When he had said this, he spat on the ground, made mud with the saliva, anointed the blind man’s eyes with the mud,  7 and said to him, "“Go, wash in the pool of Siloam”" (which means “Sent”). So he went away, washed, and came back seeing. 

That people could believe that maladies came from their parents seems odd to us, but that was a common belief a couple of thousand years ago.  Also, the idea of using spittle and dirt to heal likewise seems strange.  BUT, I remember that when I was about five or six, my grandmother dipped some bread into milk and applied the mixture to my infected toenail AND IT WORKED!!!  All this to emphasize one thing: context.  Whatever you read in the Scriptures, remember the culture in the context of the chapter, book and for that matter the whole of The Word of God.   In case you are wondering..., you won't find one single reference to "downloading babies" in the whole Bible!!!  Boy, that is good news, I thought they had something to do with a cabbage patch... so much for MY CULTURE!!!

July 30 2 Chronicles 22-24

July 30
2 Chronicles 22-24

2Ch 22:1 The inhabitants of Jerusalem made Ahaziah his youngest son king in his place; for the band of men who came with the Arabians to the camp had slain all the eldest. So Ahaziah the son of Jehoram king of Judah reigned.
2Ch 22:2 Forty-two years old was Ahaziah when he began to reign; and he reigned one year in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Athaliah the daughter of Omri.
2Ch 22:3 He also walked in the ways of the house of Ahab; for his mother was his counselor to do wickedly.
2Ch 22:4 He did that which was evil in the sight of Yahweh, as did the house of Ahab; for they were his counselors after the death of his father, to his destruction.
2Ch 22:5 He walked also after their counsel, and went with Jehoram the son of Ahab king of Israel to war against Hazael king of Syria at Ramoth Gilead: and the Syrians wounded Joram.
2Ch 22:6 He returned to be healed in Jezreel of the wounds which they had given him at Ramah, when he fought against Hazael king of Syria. Azariah the son of Jehoram king of Judah went down to see Jehoram the son of Ahab in Jezreel, because he was sick.
2Ch 22:7 Now the destruction of Ahaziah was of God, in that he went to Joram: for when he was come, he went out with Jehoram against Jehu the son of Nimshi, whom Yahweh had anointed to cut off the house of Ahab.
2Ch 22:8 It happened, when Jehu was executing judgment on the house of Ahab, that he found the princes of Judah, and the sons of the brothers of Ahaziah, ministering to Ahaziah, and killed them.
2Ch 22:9 He sought Ahaziah, and they caught him (now he was hiding in Samaria), and they brought him to Jehu, and killed him; and they buried him, for they said, He is the son of Jehoshaphat, who sought Yahweh with all his heart. The house of Ahaziah had no power to hold the kingdom.
2Ch 22:10 Now when Athaliah the mother of Ahaziah saw that her son was dead, she arose and destroyed all the royal seed of the house of Judah.
2Ch 22:11 But Jehoshabeath, the daughter of the king, took Joash the son of Ahaziah, and stole him away from among the king's sons who were slain, and put him and his nurse in the bedchamber. So Jehoshabeath, the daughter of king Jehoram, the wife of Jehoiada the priest (for she was the sister of Ahaziah), hid him from Athaliah, so that she didn't kill him.
2Ch 22:12 He was with them hid in the house of God six years: and Athaliah reigned over the land.
2Ch 23:1 In the seventh year Jehoiada strengthened himself, and took the captains of hundreds, Azariah the son of Jeroham, and Ishmael the son of Jehohanan, and Azariah the son of Obed, and Maaseiah the son of Adaiah, and Elishaphat the son of Zichri, into covenant with him.
2Ch 23:2 They went about in Judah, and gathered the Levites out of all the cities of Judah, and the heads of fathers' houses of Israel, and they came to Jerusalem.
2Ch 23:3 All the assembly made a covenant with the king in the house of God. He said to them, Behold, the king's son shall reign, as Yahweh has spoken concerning the sons of David.
2Ch 23:4 This is the thing that you shall do: a third part of you, who come in on the Sabbath, of the priests and of the Levites, shall be porters of the thresholds;
2Ch 23:5 and a third part shall be at the king's house; and a third part at the gate of the foundation: and all the people shall be in the courts of the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 23:6 But let none come into the house of Yahweh, save the priests, and those who minister of the Levites; they shall come in, for they are holy: but all the people shall keep the instruction of Yahweh.
2Ch 23:7 The Levites shall surround the king, every man with his weapons in his hand; and whoever comes into the house, let him be slain: and be with the king when he comes in, and when he goes out.
2Ch 23:8 So the Levites and all Judah did according to all that Jehoiada the priest commanded: and they took every man his men, those who were to come in on the Sabbath; with those who were to go out on the Sabbath; for Jehoiada the priest didn't dismiss the shift.
2Ch 23:9 Jehoiada the priest delivered to the captains of hundreds the spears, and bucklers, and shields, that had been king David's, which were in the house of God.
2Ch 23:10 He set all the people, every man with his weapon in his hand, from the right side of the house to the left side of the house, along by the altar and the house, around the king.
2Ch 23:11 Then they brought out the king's son, and put the crown on him, and gave him the testimony, and made him king: and Jehoiada and his sons anointed him; and they said, Long live the king.
2Ch 23:12 When Athaliah heard the noise of the people running and praising the king, she came to the people into the house of Yahweh:
2Ch 23:13 and she looked, and, behold, the king stood by his pillar at the entrance, and the captains and the trumpets by the king; and all the people of the land rejoiced, and blew trumpets; the singers also played on instruments of music, and led the singing of praise. Then Athaliah tore her clothes, and said, Treason! treason!
2Ch 23:14 Jehoiada the priest brought out the captains of hundreds who were set over the army, and said to them, Have her forth between the ranks; and whoever follows her, let him be slain with the sword: for the priest said, Don't kill her in the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 23:15 So they made way for her; and she went to the entrance of the horse gate to the king's house: and they killed her there.
2Ch 23:16 Jehoiada made a covenant between himself, and all the people, and the king, that they should be Yahweh's people.
2Ch 23:17 All the people went to the house of Baal, and broke it down, and broke his altars and his images in pieces, and killed Mattan the priest of Baal before the altars.
2Ch 23:18 Jehoiada appointed the officers of the house of Yahweh under the hand of the priests the Levites, whom David had distributed in the house of Yahweh, to offer the burnt offerings of Yahweh, as it is written in the law of Moses, with rejoicing and with singing, according to the order of David.
2Ch 23:19 He set the porters at the gates of the house of Yahweh, that no one who was unclean in anything should enter in.
2Ch 23:20 He took the captains of hundreds, and the nobles, and the governors of the people, and all the people of the land, and brought down the king from the house of Yahweh: and they came through the upper gate to the king's house, and set the king on the throne of the kingdom.
2Ch 23:21 So all the people of the land rejoiced, and the city was quiet. Athaliah they had slain with the sword.
2Ch 24:1 Joash was seven years old when he began to reign; and he reigned forty years in Jerusalem: and his mother's name was Zibiah, of Beersheba.
2Ch 24:2 Joash did that which was right in the eyes of Yahweh all the days of Jehoiada the priest.
2Ch 24:3 Jehoiada took for him two wives; and he became the father of sons and daughters.
2Ch 24:4 It happened after this, that Joash was minded to restore the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:5 He gathered together the priests and the Levites, and said to them, Go out to the cities of Judah, and gather of all Israel money to repair the house of your God from year to year; and see that you hasten the matter. However the Levites didn't hurry.
2Ch 24:6 The king called for Jehoiada the chief, and said to him, Why haven't you required of the Levites to bring in out of Judah and out of Jerusalem the tax of Moses the servant of Yahweh, and of the assembly of Israel, for the tent of the testimony?
2Ch 24:7 For the sons of Athaliah, that wicked woman, had broken up the house of God; and also all the dedicated things of the house of Yahweh did they bestow on the Baals.
2Ch 24:8 So the king commanded, and they made a chest, and set it outside at the gate of the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:9 They made a proclamation through Judah and Jerusalem, to bring in for Yahweh the tax that Moses the servant of God laid on Israel in the wilderness.
2Ch 24:10 All the princes and all the people rejoiced, and brought in, and cast into the chest, until they had made an end.
2Ch 24:11 It was so, that whenever the chest was brought to the king's officers by the hand of the Levites, and when they saw that there was much money, the king's scribe and the chief priest's officer came and emptied the chest, and took it, and carried it to its place again. Thus they did day by day, and gathered money in abundance.
2Ch 24:12 The king and Jehoiada gave it to such as did the work of the service of the house of Yahweh; and they hired masons and carpenters to restore the house of Yahweh, and also such as worked iron and brass to repair the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:13 So the workmen worked, and the work of repairing went forward in their hands, and they set up the house of God in its state, and strengthened it.
2Ch 24:14 When they had made an end, they brought the rest of the money before the king and Jehoiada, of which were made vessels for the house of Yahweh, even vessels with which to minister and to offer, and spoons, and vessels of gold and silver. They offered burnt offerings in the house of Yahweh continually all the days of Jehoiada.
2Ch 24:15 But Jehoiada grew old and was full of days, and he died; one hundred thirty years old was he when he died.
2Ch 24:16 They buried him in the city of David among the kings, because he had done good in Israel, and toward God and his house.
2Ch 24:17 Now after the death of Jehoiada came the princes of Judah, and made obeisance to the king. Then the king listened to them.
2Ch 24:18 They forsook the house of Yahweh, the God of their fathers, and served the Asherim and the idols: and wrath came on Judah and Jerusalem for this their guiltiness.
2Ch 24:19 Yet he sent prophets to them, to bring them again to Yahweh; and they testified against them: but they would not give ear.
2Ch 24:20 The Spirit of God came on Zechariah the son of Jehoiada the priest; and he stood above the people, and said to them, Thus says God, Why do you disobey the commandments of Yahweh, so that you can't prosper? because you have forsaken Yahweh, he has also forsaken you.
2Ch 24:21 They conspired against him, and stoned him with stones at the commandment of the king in the court of the house of Yahweh.
2Ch 24:22 Thus Joash the king didn't remember the kindness which Jehoiada his father had done to him, but killed his son. When he died, he said, Yahweh look on it, and require it.
2Ch 24:23 It happened at the end of the year, that the army of the Syrians came up against him: and they came to Judah and Jerusalem, and destroyed all the princes of the people from among the people, and sent all the spoil of them to the king of Damascus.
2Ch 24:24 For the army of the Syrians came with a small company of men; and Yahweh delivered a very great army into their hand, because they had forsaken Yahweh, the God of their fathers. So they executed judgment on Joash.
2Ch 24:25 When they were departed for him (for they left him very sick), his own servants conspired against him for the blood of the sons of Jehoiada the priest, and killed him on his bed, and he died; and they buried him in the city of David, but they didn't bury him in the tombs of the kings.
2Ch 24:26 These are those who conspired against him: Zabad the son of Shimeath the Ammonitess, and Jehozabad the son of Shimrith the Moabitess.
2Ch 24:27 Now concerning his sons, and the greatness of the burdens laid on him, and the rebuilding of the house of God, behold, they are written in the commentary of the book of the kings. Amaziah his son reigned in his place.

Jul. 30, 31 Acts 18

Jul. 30, 31
Acts 18

Act 18:1 After these things Paul departed from Athens, and came to Corinth.
Act 18:2 He found a certain Jew named Aquila, a man of Pontus by race, who had recently come from Italy, with his wife Priscilla, because Claudius had commanded all the Jews to depart from Rome. He came to them,
Act 18:3 and because he practiced the same trade, he lived with them and worked, for by trade they were tent makers.
Act 18:4 He reasoned in the synagogue every Sabbath, and persuaded Jews and Greeks.
Act 18:5 But when Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul was compelled by the Spirit, testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ.
Act 18:6 When they opposed him and blasphemed, he shook out his clothing and said to them, "Your blood be on your own heads! I am clean. From now on, I will go to the Gentiles!"
Act 18:7 He departed there, and went into the house of a certain man named Justus, one who worshiped God, whose house was next door to the synagogue.
Act 18:8 Crispus, the ruler of the synagogue, believed in the Lord with all his house. Many of the Corinthians, when they heard, believed and were baptized.
Act 18:9 The Lord said to Paul in the night by a vision, "Don't be afraid, but speak and don't be silent;
Act 18:10 for I am with you, and no one will attack you to harm you, for I have many people in this city."
Act 18:11 He lived there a year and six months, teaching the word of God among them.
Act 18:12 But when Gallio was proconsul of Achaia, the Jews with one accord rose up against Paul and brought him before the judgment seat,
Act 18:13 saying, "This man persuades men to worship God contrary to the law."
Act 18:14 But when Paul was about to open his mouth, Gallio said to the Jews, "If indeed it were a matter of wrong or of wicked crime, you Jews, it would be reasonable that I should bear with you;
Act 18:15 but if they are questions about words and names and your own law, look to it yourselves. For I don't want to be a judge of these matters."
Act 18:16 He drove them from the judgment seat.
Act 18:17 Then all the Greeks laid hold on Sosthenes, the ruler of the synagogue, and beat him before the judgment seat. Gallio didn't care about any of these things.
Act 18:18 Paul, having stayed after this many more days, took his leave of the brothers, and sailed from there for Syria, together with Priscilla and Aquila. He shaved his head in Cenchreae, for he had a vow.
Act 18:19 He came to Ephesus, and he left them there; but he himself entered into the synagogue, and reasoned with the Jews.
Act 18:20 When they asked him to stay with them a longer time, he declined;
Act 18:21 but taking his leave of them, and saying, "I must by all means keep this coming feast in Jerusalem, but I will return again to you if God wills," he set sail from Ephesus.
Act 18:22 When he had landed at Caesarea, he went up and greeted the assembly, and went down to Antioch.
Act 18:23 Having spent some time there, he departed, and went through the region of Galatia, and Phrygia, in order, establishing all the disciples.
Act 18:24 Now a certain Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by race, an eloquent man, came to Ephesus. He was mighty in the Scriptures.
Act 18:25 This man had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things concerning Jesus, although he knew only the baptism of John.
Act 18:26 He began to speak boldly in the synagogue. But when Priscilla and Aquila heard him, they took him aside, and explained to him the way of God more accurately.
Act 18:27 When he had determined to pass over into Achaia, the brothers encouraged him, and wrote to the disciples to receive him. When he had come, he greatly helped those who had believed through grace;
Act 18:28 for he powerfully refuted the Jews, publicly showing by the Scriptures that Jesus was the Christ.



                             Chapter Eleven


1) To understand why Paul felt it necessary to engage in "foolish 

2) To see how one might be misled by "false apostles" and "deceitful 

3) To appreciate the great amount of suffering Paul endured as a 
   minister of Christ


As Paul continues defending his apostolic authority, he finds it
necessary to engage in "a little folly."  He does so out of concern for
their faithfulness to Christ and his fear that others may have
corrupted their minds from the simplicity that is in Christ (1-4).  He
also finds himself having to explain why he did not accept support from
them.  Evidently this was the basis for charges against him by those
who considered themselves "the most eminent apostles".  But Paul, who
had good reasons for not accepting their support, recognizes these
detractors as they really were:  "false apostles" and "deceitful
workers" (5-15).

While not desiring to act foolishly, he finds it necessary since it 
seems that the Corinthians are so willing to accept those who do
(16-21).  With some foolish boldness, then, Paul claims equal footing
with his detractors as it pertains to physical heritage.  But when it
comes to service as a minister of Christ, he far surpasses them as is 
evident in the things he suffered.  After listing many examples of
suffering, he concludes that if he must boast it will be in the things
which concern his infirmity, giving his escape from Damascus as an
illustration (22-33).



      1. He resorts to a little folly, because with godly jealousy he
         seeks to present them as a chaste virgin to Christ (1-2)
      2. Because of their seeming willingness to receive those who 
         offer a different Jesus, spirit, and gospel, he fears that
         their minds may be corrupted (3-4)

      1. Though untrained in speech, it is not the case with knowledge,
         and Paul has demonstrated that he is not inferior to the "most
         eminent apostles" (5-6)
      2. The reasons he refused to accept support from them (7-12)
         a. While with them, he received support from other churches
         b. He is determined to continue this practice of not being a
            burden to them (9b-10)
         c. Not because he does not love them, but to cut off 
            opportunity for those who wish to be regarded as Paul in 
            matters of which they boast (11-12)
      3. These boasters are "false apostles" (13-15)
         a. As deceitful workers, they transform themselves into 
            apostles of Christ (13)
         b. This is no great marvel, for if Satan transforms himself
            into an angel of light, similar tactics can be expected of
            his ministers (14-15)

      1. Paul is no fool, but for those who think otherwise, then 
         receive him as a fool as he begins to boast (16)
      2. Boasting is foolish and not of the Lord, but seeing that many
         boast and they seem to put up with them gladly in their 
         wisdom, then Paul will boast too (17-19)
      3. Since they seem willing to endure those who abuse them, Paul
         will be bold and boast a little as well (20-21)


      1. Like his opponents, He is a Hebrew
      2. Like his opponents, He is an Israelite
      3. Like his opponents, He is of the seed of Abraham

      1. It is foolish to speak of his opponents as ministers of 
         Christ, but if so, Paul is one much more (23a)
      2. He has labored more, and suffered more, than they (23b)
      3. A list of the suffering Paul endured as a minister of Christ
         a. Five times he was beaten with 39 stripes by the Jews (24)
         b. Three times he was been with rods (25a)
         c. Once he was stoned (25b)
         d. Three times he was shipwrecked (25c)
         e. A night and a day in the deep (25d)
         f. Miscellaneous perils on his many journeys (26)
         g. Miscellaneous discomforts (27)
         h. His daily concern for the condition of churches (28-29)
      4. If he must boast, then let it be concerning his infirmity 
         a. His "infirmity" (possibly his "thorn in the flesh" of 
            11:7-10) was the persecution he endured in service to 
         b. As an example, having to flee Damascus (31-33)


1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - The necessity for some "foolish boasting" (1-21)
   - The grounds for his "foolish boasting" (22-33)

2) How did Paul desire to present the Corinthians to Christ? (2)
   - As a chaste virgin

3) What was Paul fearful of concerning the Corinthians? (3)
   - That their minds may be corrupted from the simplicity that is in

4) What were they seemingly willing to put up with? (4)
   - Those who preach a different Jesus, offer a different spirit, and
     a different gospel

5) In what area did Paul concede that he was untrained?  In what area
   was this not so? (6)
   - In speech; in knowledge

6) What practice of Paul evidently was used as a charge against him?
   - Preaching of the gospel of God free of charge

7) While at Corinth, from whom did Paul receive support? (8-9)
   - Other churches, brethren from Macedonia

8) Why would Paul continue the practice of not accepting support from
   the Corinthians? (12)
   - To cut off opportunity for those who wish to boast that they are
     just like Paul

9) How does Paul describe these opponents of his? (13)
   - False apostles, deceitful workers

10) How does Satan often transform himself?  And his ministers?
   - As an angel of light; as ministers of righteousness

11) How did Paul view the confidence of boasting? (17)
   - Not according to the Lord; as foolishness

12) Then why does Paul engage in such boasting? (18-19)
   - Because many others were doing it, and the Corinthians seem to 
     gladly accept them

13) In what three ways was Paul equal to his opponents? (22)
   - He was a Hebrew, an Israelite, and of the seed of Abraham

14) List five things endured by Paul as a minister of Christ (24-25)
   - Five times he was beaten with 39 stripes
   - Three times he was beaten with rods
   - Once he was stoned
   - Three times he was shipwrecked
   - A night and a day he spent in the deep

15) If Paul must boast, in what would he boast? (30)
   - In the things that concern his infirmity

16) What event does he relate as an example of his infirmity? (31-33)
   - The escape from the governor of Damascus