Recently, my wife and I were on a train for a long time.  At times it was very boring, with nothing much to do but look out the window, read, talk or just watch the people around us.  Directly in front of us was a couple who never stopped kissing and at times, necking!  Hour after hour they continued to embrace and this led me to this of the following passage from the book of Ecclesiastes...

Ecclesiastes, Chapter 9
9 Live joyfully with the wife whom you love all the days of your life of vanity, which he has given you under the sun, all your days of vanity: for that is your portion in life, and in your labor in which you labor under the sun.

Loving someone means more than just kissing; it is trying to bring them happiness in any way possible.  This can range from taking out the garbage, to being patient during a sickness, or overlooking a character flaw and probably a thousand other things.  When I can, I like to bring good natured humor into our relationship as well as multiple kisses and saying "I love you" (ILY) daily.  Every relationship has its problems, but I find a kiss every so often does wonders!!!  Try following the squirrels example... couldn't hurt.  If you don't care much for kissing; you might try memorizing jokes or practice making funny faces. Whatever works... really!!!

Sept. 19 1 Corinthians 15

Sept. 19
1 Corinthians 15

1Co 15:1 Now I declare to you, brothers, the Good News which I preached to you, which also you received, in which you also stand,
1Co 15:2 by which also you are saved, if you hold firmly the word which I preached to you--unless you believed in vain.
1Co 15:3 For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures,
1Co 15:4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures,
1Co 15:5 and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve.
1Co 15:6 Then he appeared to over five hundred brothers at once, most of whom remain until now, but some have also fallen asleep.
1Co 15:7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles,
1Co 15:8 and last of all, as to the child born at the wrong time, he appeared to me also.
1Co 15:9 For I am the least of the apostles, who is not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the assembly of God.
1Co 15:10 But by the grace of God I am what I am. His grace which was bestowed on me was not futile, but I worked more than all of them; yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.
1Co 15:11 Whether then it is I or they, so we preach, and so you believed.
1Co 15:12 Now if Christ is preached, that he has been raised from the dead, how do some among you say that there is no resurrection of the dead?
1Co 15:13 But if there is no resurrection of the dead, neither has Christ been raised.
1Co 15:14 If Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain, and your faith also is in vain.
1Co 15:15 Yes, we are found false witnesses of God, because we testified about God that he raised up Christ, whom he didn't raise up, if it is so that the dead are not raised.
1Co 15:16 For if the dead aren't raised, neither has Christ been raised.
1Co 15:17 If Christ has not been raised, your faith is vain; you are still in your sins.
1Co 15:18 Then they also who are fallen asleep in Christ have perished.
1Co 15:19 If we have only hoped in Christ in this life, we are of all men most pitiable.
1Co 15:20 But now Christ has been raised from the dead. He became the first fruits of those who are asleep.
1Co 15:21 For since death came by man, the resurrection of the dead also came by man.
1Co 15:22 For as in Adam all die, so also in Christ all will be made alive.
1Co 15:23 But each in his own order: Christ the first fruits, then those who are Christ's, at his coming.
1Co 15:24 Then the end comes, when he will deliver up the Kingdom to God, even the Father; when he will have abolished all rule and all authority and power.
1Co 15:25 For he must reign until he has put all his enemies under his feet.
1Co 15:26 The last enemy that will be abolished is death.
1Co 15:27 For, "He put all things in subjection under his feet." But when he says, "All things are put in subjection," it is evident that he is excepted who subjected all things to him.
1Co 15:28 When all things have been subjected to him, then the Son will also himself be subjected to him who subjected all things to him, that God may be all in all.
1Co 15:29 Or else what will they do who are baptized for the dead? If the dead aren't raised at all, why then are they baptized for the dead?
1Co 15:30 Why do we also stand in jeopardy every hour?
1Co 15:31 I affirm, by the boasting in you which I have in Christ Jesus our Lord, I die daily.
1Co 15:32 If I fought with animals at Ephesus for human purposes, what does it profit me? If the dead are not raised, then "let us eat and drink, for tomorrow we die."
1Co 15:33 Don't be deceived! "Evil companionships corrupt good morals."
1Co 15:34 Wake up righteously, and don't sin, for some have no knowledge of God. I say this to your shame.
1Co 15:35 But someone will say, "How are the dead raised?" and, "With what kind of body do they come?"
1Co 15:36 You foolish one, that which you yourself sow is not made alive unless it dies.
1Co 15:37 That which you sow, you don't sow the body that will be, but a bare grain, maybe of wheat, or of some other kind.
1Co 15:38 But God gives it a body even as it pleased him, and to each seed a body of its own.
1Co 15:39 All flesh is not the same flesh, but there is one flesh of men, another flesh of animals, another of fish, and another of birds.
1Co 15:40 There are also celestial bodies, and terrestrial bodies; but the glory of the celestial differs from that of the terrestrial.
1Co 15:41 There is one glory of the sun, another glory of the moon, and another glory of the stars; for one star differs from another star in glory.
1Co 15:42 So also is the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption; it is raised in incorruption.
1Co 15:43 It is sown in dishonor; it is raised in glory. It is sown in weakness; it is raised in power.
1Co 15:44 It is sown a natural body; it is raised a spiritual body. There is a natural body and there is also a spiritual body.
1Co 15:45 So also it is written, "The first man, Adam, became a living soul." The last Adam became a life-giving spirit.
1Co 15:46 However that which is spiritual isn't first, but that which is natural, then that which is spiritual.
1Co 15:47 The first man is of the earth, made of dust. The second man is the Lord from heaven.
1Co 15:48 As is the one made of dust, such are those who are also made of dust; and as is the heavenly, such are they also that are heavenly.
1Co 15:49 As we have borne the image of those made of dust, let's also bear the image of the heavenly.
1Co 15:50 Now I say this, brothers, that flesh and blood can't inherit the Kingdom of God; neither does corruption inherit incorruption.
1Co 15:51 Behold, I tell you a mystery. We will not all sleep, but we will all be changed,
1Co 15:52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we will be changed.
1Co 15:53 For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality.
1Co 15:54 But when this corruptible will have put on incorruption, and this mortal will have put on immortality, then what is written will happen: "Death is swallowed up in victory."
1Co 15:55 "Death, where is your sting? Hades, where is your victory?"
1Co 15:56 The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.
1Co 15:57 But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1Co 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the Lord's work, because you know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.

Sept. 19 Psalms 83-85

Sept. 19
Psalms 83-85

Psa 83:1 God, don't keep silent. Don't keep silent, and don't be still, God.
Psa 83:2 For, behold, your enemies are stirred up. Those who hate you have lifted up their heads.
Psa 83:3 They conspire with cunning against your people. They plot against your cherished ones.
Psa 83:4 "Come," they say, "and let's destroy them as a nation, that the name of Israel may be remembered no more."
Psa 83:5 For they have conspired together with one mind. They form an alliance against you.
Psa 83:6 The tents of Edom and the Ishmaelites; Moab, and the Hagrites;
Psa 83:7 Gebal, Ammon, and Amalek; Philistia with the inhabitants of Tyre;
Psa 83:8 Assyria also is joined with them. They have helped the children of Lot. Selah.
Psa 83:9 Do to them as you did to Midian, as to Sisera, as to Jabin, at the river Kishon;
Psa 83:10 who perished at Endor, who became as dung for the earth.
Psa 83:11 Make their nobles like Oreb and Zeeb; yes, all their princes like Zebah and Zalmunna;
Psa 83:12 who said, "Let us take possession of God's pasturelands."
Psa 83:13 My God, make them like tumbleweed; like chaff before the wind.
Psa 83:14 As the fire that burns the forest, as the flame that sets the mountains on fire,
Psa 83:15 so pursue them with your tempest, and terrify them with your storm.
Psa 83:16 Fill their faces with confusion, that they may seek your name, Yahweh.
Psa 83:17 Let them be disappointed and dismayed forever. Yes, let them be confounded and perish;
Psa 83:18 that they may know that you alone, whose name is Yahweh, are the Most High over all the earth.

Psa 84:1 How lovely are your dwellings, Yahweh of Armies!
Psa 84:2 My soul longs, and even faints for the courts of Yahweh. My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.
Psa 84:3 Yes, the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young, near your altars, Yahweh of Armies, my King, and my God.
Psa 84:4 Blessed are those who dwell in your house. They are always praising you. Selah.
Psa 84:5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you; who have set their hearts on a pilgrimage.
Psa 84:6 Passing through the valley of Weeping, they make it a place of springs. Yes, the autumn rain covers it with blessings.
Psa 84:7 They go from strength to strength. Everyone of them appears before God in Zion.
Psa 84:8 Yahweh, God of Armies, hear my prayer. Listen, God of Jacob. Selah.
Psa 84:9 Behold, God our shield, look at the face of your anointed.
Psa 84:10 For a day in your courts is better than a thousand. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God, than to dwell in the tents of wickedness.
Psa 84:11 For Yahweh God is a sun and a shield. Yahweh will give grace and glory. He withholds no good thing from those who walk blamelessly.
Psa 84:12 Yahweh of Armies, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

Psa 85:1 Yahweh, you have been favorable to your land. You have restored the fortunes of Jacob.
Psa 85:2 You have forgiven the iniquity of your people. You have covered all their sin. Selah.
Psa 85:3 You have taken away all your wrath. You have turned from the fierceness of your anger.
Psa 85:4 Turn us, God of our salvation, and cause your indignation toward us to cease.
Psa 85:5 Will you be angry with us forever? Will you draw out your anger to all generations?
Psa 85:6 Won't you revive us again, that your people may rejoice in you?
Psa 85:7 Show us your loving kindness, Yahweh. Grant us your salvation.
Psa 85:8 I will hear what God, Yahweh, will speak, for he will speak peace to his people, his saints; but let them not turn again to folly.
Psa 85:9 Surely his salvation is near those who fear him, that glory may dwell in our land.
Psa 85:10 Mercy and truth meet together. Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
Psa 85:11 Truth springs out of the earth. Righteousness has looked down from heaven.
Psa 85:12 Yes, Yahweh will give that which is good. Our land will yield its increase.
Psa 85:13 Righteousness goes before him, And prepares the way for his steps.


                         "THE EPISTLE TO TITUS"

                              Chapter One


1) To review the qualifications for elders in the church

2) To examine the work of elders related to the Word of God


Paul begins by identifying himself as a servant and an apostle whose
service is according to the faith of God's chosen people and the truth
which is according to godliness.  It is also in hope of the eternal
life promised by God before time began, and whose word is now being 
manifested through preaching.  He then greets Titus as his "true son in
the common faith", bestowing upon him grace, mercy and peace from God
the Father and Jesus our Savior (1-4).

Paul quickly addresses the reason he left Titus in Crete, to set in 
order what things were lacking and to appoint elders in every city.  To
assist him in that task, Paul reviews the qualifications necessary for
those who would be appointed as elders (5-9).

The last qualification for elders (being able to convict those who 
contradict) leads right into the final section of this chapter, in 
which Titus is told to sharply rebuke those of the circumcision who 
through insubordination and deceit had been subverting entire 
households, acting just like the characterization made by one of the 
ancient Cretan prophets.  Motivated by dishonest gain, giving heed to
Jewish fables and commandments of men, they became defiled even in
their mind and conscience.  These false teachers may have professed to
know God, but by their works they denied Him and proved themselves
unfit for every good work (10-16).



   A. FROM PAUL (1-3)
      1. A servant of God and apostle of Jesus Christ (1a)
      2. According to... (1b)
         a. The faith of God's elect
         b. The acknowledgment of the truth which is according to 
      3. In hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie... (2-3)
         a. Promised before time began
         b. In due time has manifested His Word
            1) Through preaching
            2) Which was committed to him according to the commandment
               of God

   B. TO TITUS (4)
      1. His true son in their common faith (4a)
      2. Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and Jesus Christ
         our Savior (4b)


      1. To set in order the things that are lacking (5a)
      2. To appoint elders in every city as Paul commanded him (5b)

      1. Positive qualifications
         a. Blameless
         b. The husband of one wife
         c. Having faithful children not accused of dissipation or
         d. Blameless as a steward of God
         e. Hospitable
         f. A lover of what is good
         g. Sober-minded
         h. Just
         i. Holy
         j. Self-controlled
         k. Holding fast the faithful word as he has been taught
         l. Able by sound doctrine to exhort and convict those who
      2. Negative qualifications
         a. Not self-willed
         b. Not quick-tempered
         c. Not given to wine
         d. Not violent
         e. Not greedy for money


   A. THEIR CHARACTER (10-13a)
      1. Insubordinate (10a)
      2. Idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the 
         circumcision (10b-11)
         a. Whose mouths must be stopped
         b. For they subvert whole households
         c. For they teach things which they ought not, for the sake of
            dishonest gain
      3. They live up to the estimation of one of Crete's own prophets:
         "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons." (12-

      1. They are to be rebuked sharply (13b-14)
         a. That they may be sound in the faith
         b. That they not give heed to Jewish fables and commandments
            of men
      2. To the pure all things are pure... (15)
         a. But to those who are defiled and unbelieving, nothing is
         b. But even their mind and conscience are defiled
      3. They profess to know God... (16)
         a. But in works they deny Him
         b. Being abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every
            good work


1) What are the main points of this chapter?
   - Introduction (1-4)
   - Concerning elders (5-9)
   - Concerning false teachers (10-16)

2) In keeping with what two things was Paul a servant of God and an
   apostle of Jesus Christ? (1)
   - The faith of God's elect
   - The acknowledgment of the truth which is according to godliness

3) What is said about eternal life and God's Word? (2-3)
   - Eternal life was promised before time began
   - His Word was manifested in due time through preaching

4) How does Paul describe Titus? (4)
   - My true son in our common faith

5) What were the two reasons Titus had been left in Crete? (5)
   - To set in order the things that are lacking
   - To appoint elders in every city

6) What are the positive qualifications for elders? (6-9)
   - Blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not
     accused of dissipation or insubordination, blameless as a steward
     of God, hospitable, a lover of what is good, sober-minded, just,
     holy, self-controlled, holding fast the faithful word as he has
     been taught, able by sound doctrine to exhort and convict those 
     who contradict

7) What are the negative qualifications for elders? (6-9)
   - Not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not given to wine, not 
     violent, not greedy for money

8) Who especially in Crete were insubordinate, idle talkers, and 
   deceivers? (10)
   - Those of the circumcision

9) Why must their mouths be stopped? (11)
   - They were subverting whole households, teaching things they ought
     not, for dishonest gain

10) What had one of the Cretan prophets said? (12)
   - "Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons."

11) What was Titus to do with these false teachers? (13)
   - Rebuke them sharply

12) What two reasons are given for extending such rebuke? (13-14)
   - That they may be sound in the faith
   - That they not give heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men

13) What is said of the pure?  Of those who are defiled and 
    unbelieving? (15)
   - All things are pure
   - Nothing is pure; even their mind and conscience is defiled

14) How did some who professed to know God actually deny Him? Why? (16)
   - In their works
   - They were abominable, disobedient, and disqualified for every good