Power, love and humility.... SUPER!!!

When I was 12, I loved comic books, I just couldn't get enough of them.  I spent every nickel I had on them and would spend far too much time reading and re-reading them.  My favorite was Superman, hands down!!!!! There was just something so very special about a being with all that power, ability and desire to do the "right thing" for his fellow man and yet chose to live as Clark Kent.  Then I grew up and discovered girls and and have not bought another comic book since.  But, I have always been interested in the concept of a "superman" and have seen every movie, some of them multiple times.  The unique picture above conveys the message of Jesus as "superman" and I like it!!!!  This passage from the book of the Gospel of John has always held this particular image of Jesus for me and I hope you get it as well!!!

John, chapter 13
 1 Now before the feast of the Passover, Jesus, knowing that his time had come that he would depart from this world to the Father, having loved his own who were in the world, he loved them to the end. 2 During supper, the devil having already put into the heart of Judas Iscariot, Simon’s son, to betray him,  3 Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into his hands, and that he came forth from God, and was going to God,  4 arose from supper, and laid aside his outer garments. He took a towel, and wrapped a towel around his waist. 5 Then he poured water into the basin, and began to wash the disciples’ feet, and to wipe them with the towel that was wrapped around him. 6 Then he came to Simon Peter. He said to him, “Lord, do you wash my feet?”

  7 Jesus answered him, 
"“You don’t know what I am doing now, but you will understand later.”"

  8 Peter said to him, “You will never wash my feet!”

Jesus answered him, "“If I don’t wash you, you have no part with me.”"

  9 Simon Peter said to him, “Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head!”

  10 Jesus said to him, "“Someone who has bathed only needs to have his feet washed, but is completely clean. You are clean, but not all of you.”"  11 For he knew him who would betray him, therefore he said,"“You are not all clean.”"  12 So when he had washed their feet, put his outer garment back on, and sat down again, he said to them, "“Do you know what I have done to you?  13 You call me, ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord.’ You say so correctly, for so I am.  14 If I then, the Lord and the Teacher, have washed your feet, you also ought to wash one another’s feet. 15 For I have given you an example, that you also should do as I have done to you.  16 Most certainly I tell you, a servant is not greater than his lord, neither one who is sent greater than he who sent him.  17 If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.  18 I don’t speak concerning all of you. I know whom I have chosen. But that the Scripture may be fulfilled, ‘He who eats bread with me has lifted up his heel against me.’  19 From now on, I tell you before it happens, that when it happens, you may believe that I am he.  20 Most certainly I tell you, he who receives whomever I send, receives me; and he who receives me, receives him who sent me.”"

  21 When Jesus had said this, he was troubled in spirit, and testified,"“Most certainly I tell you that one of you will betray me.”"

  22 The disciples looked at one another, perplexed about whom he spoke.  23 One of his disciples, whom Jesus loved, was at the table, leaning against Jesus’ breast.  24 Simon Peter therefore beckoned to him, and said to him, “Tell us who it is of whom he speaks.”

  25 He, leaning back, as he was, on Jesus’ breast, asked him, “Lord, who is it?”

  26 Jesus therefore answered, "“It is he to whom I will give this piece of bread when I have dipped it.”" So when he had dipped the piece of bread, he gave it to Judas, the son of Simon Iscariot.  27 After the piece of bread, then Satan entered into him.

Then Jesus said to him, "“What you do, do quickly.”"

  28 Now no man at the table knew why he said this to him.  29 For some thought, because Judas had the money box, that Jesus said to him, “Buy what things we need for the feast,” or that he should give something to the poor.  30 Therefore, having received that morsel, he went out immediately. It was night.

  31 When he had gone out, Jesus said, "“Now the Son of Man has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him.  32 If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify him in himself, and he will glorify him immediately.  33 Little children, I will be with you a little while longer. You will seek me, and as I said to the Jews, ‘Where I am going, you can’t come,’ so now I tell you.  34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, just like I have loved you; that you also love one another.  35 By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”"

Power and abilities are best utilized in serving others and not your own interests and desires. Jesus exhibits this beyond our wildest imagination!!!  Imagine having the power of God and yet be willing to suffer and die for your creation because you love them???  To me, this is truly a super man; the essence of all that is good and something to be imitated.  Well, here is where reality gets right in your face: I do not have and never will have the power of God!!!  However, I can imitate the heart of God by just doing what he told me to do in verse 34!!!! That is as super as I will ever get and it will just have to be good enough.  The more I think about this passage of Scripture, the more real it becomes to me and I hope it will for you as well!!!  There is however, something I don't understand and that is the secondary picture superimposed on the large S in the picture above.  If someone finds an answer; please let me know, that would be super... you can leave a comment at the appropriate place on the blog.  Thanks!!!!!

Aug. 16 Job 1-4

Aug. 16
Job 1-4

Job 1:1 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job. That man was blameless and upright, and one who feared God, and turned away from evil.
Job 1:2 There were born to him seven sons and three daughters.
Job 1:3 His possessions also were seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen, five hundred female donkeys, and a very great household; so that this man was the greatest of all the children of the east.
Job 1:4 His sons went and held a feast in the house of each one on his birthday; and they sent and called for their three sisters to eat and to drink with them.
Job 1:5 It was so, when the days of their feasting had run their course, that Job sent and sanctified them, and rose up early in the morning, and offered burnt offerings according to the number of them all. For Job said, "It may be that my sons have sinned, and renounced God in their hearts." Job did so continually.
Job 1:6 Now it happened on the day when the God's sons came to present themselves before Yahweh, that Satan also came among them.
Job 1:7 Yahweh said to Satan, "Where have you come from?" Then Satan answered Yahweh, and said, "From going back and forth in the earth, and from walking up and down in it."
Job 1:8 Yahweh said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant, Job? For there is none like him in the earth, a blameless and an upright man, one who fears God, and turns away from evil."
Job 1:9 Then Satan answered Yahweh, and said, "Does Job fear God for nothing?
Job 1:10 Haven't you made a hedge around him, and around his house, and around all that he has, on every side? You have blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land.
Job 1:11 But put forth your hand now, and touch all that he has, and he will renounce you to your face."
Job 1:12 Yahweh said to Satan, "Behold, all that he has is in your power. Only on himself don't put forth your hand." So Satan went forth from the presence of Yahweh.
Job 1:13 It fell on a day when his sons and his daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house,
Job 1:14 that there came a messenger to Job, and said, "The oxen were plowing, and the donkeys feeding beside them,
Job 1:15 and the Sabeans attacked, and took them away. Yes, they have killed the servants with the edge of the sword, and I alone have escaped to tell you."
Job 1:16 While he was still speaking, there also came another, and said, "The fire of God has fallen from the sky, and has burned up the sheep and the servants, and consumed them, and I alone have escaped to tell you."
Job 1:17 While he was still speaking, there came also another, and said, "The Chaldeans made three bands, and swept down on the camels, and have taken them away, yes, and killed the servants with the edge of the sword; and I alone have escaped to tell you."
Job 1:18 While he was still speaking, there came also another, and said, "Your sons and your daughters were eating and drinking wine in their eldest brother's house,
Job 1:19 and behold, there came a great wind from the wilderness, and struck the four corners of the house, and it fell on the young men, and they are dead. I alone have escaped to tell you."
Job 1:20 Then Job arose, and tore his robe, and shaved his head, and fell down on the ground, and worshiped.
Job 1:21 He said, "Naked I came out of my mother's womb, and naked shall I return there. Yahweh gave, and Yahweh has taken away. Blessed be the name of Yahweh."
Job 1:22 In all this, Job did not sin, nor charge God with wrongdoing.
Job 2:1 Again it happened on the day when the God's sons came to present themselves before Yahweh, that Satan came also among them to present himself before Yahweh.
Job 2:2 Yahweh said to Satan, "Where have you come from?" Satan answered Yahweh, and said, "From going back and forth in the earth, and from walking up and down in it."
Job 2:3 Yahweh said to Satan, "Have you considered my servant Job? For there is none like him in the earth, a blameless and an upright man, one who fears God, and turns away from evil. He still maintains his integrity, although you incited me against him, to ruin him without cause."
Job 2:4 Satan answered Yahweh, and said, "Skin for skin. Yes, all that a man has he will give for his life.
Job 2:5 But put forth your hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will renounce you to your face."
Job 2:6 Yahweh said to Satan, "Behold, he is in your hand. Only spare his life."
Job 2:7 So Satan went forth from the presence of Yahweh, and struck Job with painful sores from the sole of his foot to his head.
Job 2:8 He took for himself a potsherd to scrape himself with, and he sat among the ashes.
Job 2:9 Then his wife said to him, "Do you still maintain your integrity? Renounce God, and die."
Job 2:10 But he said to her, "You speak as one of the foolish women would speak. What? Shall we receive good at the hand of God, and shall we not receive evil?" In all this Job didn't sin with his lips.
Job 2:11 Now when Job's three friends heard of all this evil that had come on him, they each came from his own place: Eliphaz the Temanite, Bildad the Shuhite, and Zophar the Naamathite, and they made an appointment together to come to sympathize with him and to comfort him.
Job 2:12 When they lifted up their eyes from a distance, and didn't recognize him, they raised their voices, and wept; and they each tore his robe, and sprinkled dust on their heads toward the sky.
Job 2:13 So they sat down with him on the ground seven days and seven nights, and none spoke a word to him, for they saw that his grief was very great.

Job 3:1 After this Job opened his mouth, and cursed the day of his birth.
Job 3:2 Job answered:
Job 3:3 "Let the day perish in which I was born, the night which said, 'There is a boy conceived.'
Job 3:4 Let that day be darkness. Don't let God from above seek for it, neither let the light shine on it.
Job 3:5 Let darkness and the shadow of death claim it for their own. Let a cloud dwell on it. Let all that makes black the day terrify it.
Job 3:6 As for that night, let thick darkness seize on it. Let it not rejoice among the days of the year. Let it not come into the number of the months.
Job 3:7 Behold, let that night be barren. Let no joyful voice come therein.
Job 3:8 Let them curse it who curse the day, who are ready to rouse up leviathan.
Job 3:9 Let the stars of its twilight be dark. Let it look for light, but have none, neither let it see the eyelids of the morning,
Job 3:10 because it didn't shut up the doors of my mother's womb, nor did it hide trouble from my eyes.
Job 3:11 "Why didn't I die from the womb? Why didn't I give up the spirit when my mother bore me?
Job 3:12 Why did the knees receive me? Or why the breast, that I should suck?
Job 3:13 For now should I have lain down and been quiet. I should have slept, then I would have been at rest,
Job 3:14 with kings and counselors of the earth, who built up waste places for themselves;
Job 3:15 or with princes who had gold, who filled their houses with silver:
Job 3:16 or as a hidden untimely birth I had not been, as infants who never saw light.
Job 3:17 There the wicked cease from troubling. There the weary are at rest.
Job 3:18 There the prisoners are at ease together. They don't hear the voice of the taskmaster.
Job 3:19 The small and the great are there. The servant is free from his master.
Job 3:20 "Why is light given to him who is in misery, life to the bitter in soul,
Job 3:21 Who long for death, but it doesn't come; and dig for it more than for hidden treasures,
Job 3:22 who rejoice exceedingly, and are glad, when they can find the grave?
Job 3:23 Why is light given to a man whose way is hid, whom God has hedged in?
Job 3:24 For my sighing comes before I eat. My groanings are poured out like water.
Job 3:25 For the thing which I fear comes on me, That which I am afraid of comes to me.
Job 3:26 I am not at ease, neither am I quiet, neither have I rest; but trouble comes."
Job 4:1 Then Eliphaz the Temanite answered,
Job 4:2 "If someone ventures to talk with you, will you be grieved? But who can withhold himself from speaking?
Job 4:3 Behold, you have instructed many, you have strengthened the weak hands.
Job 4:4 Your words have supported him who was falling, You have made firm the feeble knees.
Job 4:5 But now it is come to you, and you faint. It touches you, and you are troubled.
Job 4:6 Isn't your piety your confidence? Isn't the integrity of your ways your hope?
Job 4:7 "Remember, now, whoever perished, being innocent? Or where were the upright cut off?
Job 4:8 According to what I have seen, those who plow iniquity, and sow trouble, reap the same.
Job 4:9 By the breath of God they perish. By the blast of his anger are they consumed.
Job 4:10 The roaring of the lion, and the voice of the fierce lion, the teeth of the young lions, are broken.
Job 4:11 The old lion perishes for lack of prey. The cubs of the lioness are scattered abroad.
Job 4:12 "Now a thing was secretly brought to me. My ear received a whisper of it.
Job 4:13 In thoughts from the visions of the night, when deep sleep falls on men,
Job 4:14 fear came on me, and trembling, which made all my bones shake.
Job 4:15 Then a spirit passed before my face. The hair of my flesh stood up.
Job 4:16 It stood still, but I couldn't discern its appearance. A form was before my eyes. Silence, then I heard a voice, saying,
Job 4:17 'Shall mortal man be more just than God? Shall a man be more pure than his Maker?
Job 4:18 Behold, he puts no trust in his servants. He charges his angels with error.
Job 4:19 How much more, those who dwell in houses of clay, whose foundation is in the dust, who are crushed before the moth!
Job 4:20 Between morning and evening they are destroyed. They perish forever without any regarding it.
Job 4:21 Isn't their tent cord plucked up within them? They die, and that without wisdom.'

"THE EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS" Introduction by Mark Copeland

                    "THE EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS"


AUTHOR:  The apostle Paul (1:1), joined in his salutation by Timothy.
Personal references by the author (1:12-14; 2:19-24; 3:4-7; 4:15-16)
are certainly consistent with what we know of Paul from other New
Testament sources.  Paul's authorship of this letter is also supported
by the testimony of early "church fathers" such as Polycarp and

THE CITY OF PHILIPPI:  Named after Philip of Macedonia, the father of
Alexander the Great, it was a major city of Macedonia on the road from
Rome to Asia known as the Egnatian Way.  It was the site of a famous
battle in 42 B.C. in which Antony and Octavius defeated Brutus and
Cassius.  In 30 B.C., Octavian made the town a Roman colony where
retired soldiers could live and enjoy the full privileges of Roman
citizenship (to which Paul may have alluded in 3:20).

THE CHURCH AT PHILIPPI:  During his second missionary journey (49-52
A.D.), Paul and his traveling companions (Timothy and Silas) were 
making their way across Asia Minor (Turkey) when Paul received a vision
at Troas.  In the vision, a man of Macedonia pleaded, "Come over to 
Macedonia and help us."  Perceiving that the Lord was calling them to 
go to Macedonia, they sailed from Troas (Luke having joined them) and 
eventually arrived at Philippi (Ac 16:6-12).

With the conversion of Lydia (Ac 16:13-15) and the Philippian jailor
(Ac 16:25-34), the church was established at Philippi.  The lack of a 
synagogue seems to indicate that Jews were not prevalent and so the 
church may have consisted primarily of Gentiles.  From the conversion 
of Lydia and references in the epistle itself (4:2-3), it is evident 
that a number of women played a role in the growth of the church.

When it became necessary for Paul to leave, Luke seems to have stayed
at Philippi (based upon careful observations of personal pronouns; 
e.g., "we, they", cf. Ac 16:12; 17:1).  As Paul left Macedonia, the 
church at Philippi became a significant source of support (4:15-16; 2
Col 11:9).

Paul visited the church at Philippi again on his third missionary
journey (Ac 20:3,6).

TIME AND PLACE OF WRITING:  Philippians is one of Paul's four "prison
epistles" (1:7,13,17; cf. Ephesians, Colossians, and Philemon).  The 
general consensus is that these epistles were written during Paul's 
imprisonment at Rome (cf. Ac 28:16,30-31).  If such is truly the case, 
then Paul wrote Philippians around 61-63 A.D. from Rome.

PURPOSE OF THE EPISTLE:  The church at Philippi had sent a gift to Paul
in Rome by the hand of Epaphroditus (4:10,18).  Paul uses this occasion
not only to thank them, but to comfort them concerning his situation as
a prisoner for Jesus Christ (1:12-14).  He also writes of his plans to 
send Timothy soon (2:19-24), and why he considered it necessary to send
Epaphroditus back to them (2:25-30).  There may have also been a
problem at Philippi involving two women, for Paul has a few words to 
say concerning them (4:2-3).

THEME OF THE EPISTLE:  Throughout this short and rather personal
epistle, one keynote resounds again and again.  That keynote is joy.  
Five times the word "joy" (Grk., chara) is found (1:4,25; 2:2,29; 4:1),
and the verb "to rejoice" (Grk., chairein) occurs eleven times (twice 
in 1:18; 2:17,18; 4:4; once in 2:28; 3:1; 4:10).  For this reason, the 
epistle to the Philippians has often been called Paul's "hymn of joy" 
in which the theme is:  "Rejoice in the Lord!"

KEY VERSE:  Philippians 4:4

       "Rejoice in the Lord always.  Again I will say, rejoice!"


   1. Salutation (1-2)
   2. Thanksgiving and prayer (3-11)


      1. Imprisonment has actually created opportunities to spread the
         gospel (1:12-14)
      2. Even opposition has provided opportunity for Christ to be 
         preached (1:15-18)

      1. By their prayers and the provision of the Holy Spirit, he 
         knows all will turn out well for his salvation (1:19-20)
      2. Whether he lives or dies, it will be a blessing (1:21-23)
      3. Knowing their need of him at the present, he is confident of
         coming to them once again (1:24-26)


      1. Strive together for the faith of the gospel (1:27)
      2. Do not be terrified by your adversaries (1:28-30)

      1. Make Paul's joy complete by being like-minded, having the same
         love (2:1-2)
      2. In humility, look out for the interests of others (2:3-4)
      3. Follow the example of Christ's humility (2:5-11)

      1. By working out their own salvation, for it is God who is at 
         work in them (2:12-13)
      2. As children of God, blameless and harmless (2:14-16)
      3. Consider Paul's imprisonment as a reason to rejoice (2:17-18)


   A. TO SEND TIMOTHY SOON (2:19-24)
      1. Paul plans to send him shortly (2:19)
      2. Commendation of Timothy (2:20-22)
      3. Timothy to come soon, hopefully followed by Paul himself 

      1. Why Paul felt it necessary to send Epaphroditus (2:25-28)
      2. Receive him in the Lord with all gladness (2:29-30)


   A. AGAINST JUDAISM (3:1-11)
      1. Rejoice in the Lord, bewaring of those who place confidence in
         the flesh (3:1-3)
      2. If anyone had reason to boast in the flesh, it would have been
         Paul (3:4-6)
      3. But he gave it all up, that he might know Christ and the power
         of His resurrection (3:7-11)

      1. Paul's attitude of pressing on to perfection (3:12-14)
      2. An exhortation for them to have the same mind (3:15-17)
      3. A warning against those who serve their own desires (3:18-19)
      4. A reminder of our true citizenship, and the hope it entails


      1. Prefaced with an exhortation to stand fast in the Lord (4:1)
      2. A plea for them to be of one mind, assisted by others (4:2-3)

      1. Rejoice in the Lord always, and be gentle to all (4:4-5)
      2. Through prayer, let the peace of God guard your hearts from
         anxiety (4:6-7)
      3. Meditate upon things worthy of virtue and praise, and follow
         Paul's example (4:8-9)


      1. Paul rejoiced when they were able to care for him again (4:10)
      2. Not that he really had need, for he had learned contentment
      3. But they have done well to share in his distress (4:14)

      1. A brief history of their giving to Paul (4:15-16)
      2. Their giving abounds to their own account, viewed as an 
         acceptable sacrifice to God, who will supply all their need

CONCLUSION (4:20-23)
   1. Praise to God (4:20)
   2. Greetings from those with Paul, even those of Caesar's household
   3. Final benediction (4:23)


1) On which missionary journey was the church at Philippi established?
   - Paul's second missionary journey

2) Where can we read about the beginning of the church at Philippi?
   - Ac 16:11-40

3) Who seems to have stayed at Philippi after Paul left? (cf. "we, 
   they", Ac 16:12; 17:1)
   - Luke

4) From where and when did Paul write Philippians?
   - From Rome, sometime around 61-63 A.D.

5) What three other epistles were written about this time?  What are
   the four epistles sometimes called?
   - Ephesians, Colossians, and Philemon
   - The "prison epistles"

6) What prompted the writing of Philippians? (cf. Php 4:10,18)
   - A gift from the church at Philippi by the hands of Epaphroditus

7) From Acts 16 and Philippians 4, who were some of the members of the
   church at Philippi?
   - Lydia, the jailor, Euodia, Syntyche, Clement, Epaphroditus

8) What is the theme running throughout this epistle?  Which verse
   stands out as the key verse?
   - Rejoice in the Lord!
   - Php 4:4

9) List the six main sections of this epistle as given in the above
   - The situation in Rome
   - Exhortation to behavior worthy of the gospel
   - Plans involving Timothy and Epaphroditus
   - Warnings against Judaism and antinomianism
   - Exhortations to unity, joy, and peace
   - Thanksgiving for their generosity