Naivete, political agendas and Christians

I have always liked Gene wilder!!!  He has done some genuinely FUNNY work!!!  This picture with commentary has a sort of dry humor to it and does not really relate to Willie Wonka and the Chocolate factory at all.  Its just a play on the naivete of the movie as compared to the silliness of government.  In the recent shootings in the northeast, the gun that was used was STOLEN!!!! America: focus on the criminals and not law-abiding citizens!!!  Mr. president: Christians should be the very last people you should control-- God has already given his followers commands as to how to behave...

1 Peter, Chapter 2
11 Beloved, I beg you as foreigners and pilgrims, to abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;  12 having good behavior among the nations, so in that of which they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they see, glorify God in the day of visitation.  13 Therefore subject yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord’s sake: whether to the king, as supreme; 14 or to governors, as sent by him for vengeance on evildoers and for praise to those who do well.  15 For this is the will of God, that by well-doing you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: 

Unfortunately, not everyone who says they are a Christian really is one.  But to those who really are--- control is unnecessary!!!!  As for criminals-- well, the picture says it all!!!

Bible Reading, Jan. 17

Jan. 17
Genesis 17

Gen 17:1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, Yahweh appeared to Abram, and said to him, "I am God Almighty. Walk before me, and be blameless.
Gen 17:2 I will make my covenant between me and you, and will multiply you exceedingly."
Gen 17:3 Abram fell on his face. God talked with him, saying,
Gen 17:4 "As for me, behold, my covenant is with you. You will be the father of a multitude of nations.
Gen 17:5 Neither will your name any more be called Abram, but your name will be Abraham; for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.
Gen 17:6 I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make nations of you. Kings will come out of you.
Gen 17:7 I will establish my covenant between me and you and your seed after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God to you and to your seed after you.
Gen 17:8 I will give to you, and to your seed after you, the land where you are traveling, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession. I will be their God."
Gen 17:9 God said to Abraham, "As for you, you will keep my covenant, you and your seed after you throughout their generations.
Gen 17:10 This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your seed after you. Every male among you shall be circumcised.
Gen 17:11 You shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskin. It will be a token of the covenant between me and you.
Gen 17:12 He who is eight days old will be circumcised among you, every male throughout your generations, he who is born in the house, or bought with money from any foreigner who is not of your seed.
Gen 17:13 He who is born in your house, and he who is bought with your money, must be circumcised. My covenant will be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.
Gen 17:14 The uncircumcised male who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that soul shall be cut off from his people. He has broken my covenant."
Gen 17:15 God said to Abraham, "As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but her name will be Sarah.
Gen 17:16 I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. Yes, I will bless her, and she will be a mother of nations. Kings of peoples will come from her."
Gen 17:17 Then Abraham fell on his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, "Will a child be born to him who is one hundred years old? Will Sarah, who is ninety years old, give birth?"
Gen 17:18 Abraham said to God, "Oh that Ishmael might live before you!"
Gen 17:19 God said, "No, but Sarah, your wife, will bear you a son. You shall call his name Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his seed after him.
Gen 17:20 As for Ishmael, I have heard you. Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly. He will become the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation.
Gen 17:21 But my covenant I establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this set time next year."
Gen 17:22 When he finished talking with him, God went up from Abraham.
Gen 17:23 Abraham took Ishmael his son, all who were born in his house, and all who were bought with his money; every male among the men of Abraham's house, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the same day, as God had said to him.
Gen 17:24 Abraham was ninety-nine years old, when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.
Gen 17:25 Ishmael, his son, was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.
Gen 17:26 In the same day both Abraham and Ishmael, his son, were circumcised.
Gen 17:27 All the men of his house, those born in the house, and those bought with money of a foreigner, were circumcised with him.

Jan. 17, 18
Matthew 9

Mat 9:1 He entered into a boat, and crossed over, and came into his own city.
Mat 9:2 Behold, they brought to him a man who was paralyzed, lying on a bed. Jesus, seeing their faith, said to the paralytic, "Son, cheer up! Your sins are forgiven you."
Mat 9:3 Behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man blasphemes."
Mat 9:4 Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, "Why do you think evil in your hearts?
Mat 9:5 For which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven;' or to say, 'Get up, and walk?'
Mat 9:6 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins..." (then he said to the paralytic), "Get up, and take up your mat, and go up to your house."
Mat 9:7 He arose and departed to his house.
Mat 9:8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such authority to men.
Mat 9:9 As Jesus passed by from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax collection office. He said to him, "Follow me." He got up and followed him.
Mat 9:10 It happened as he sat in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Jesus and his disciples.
Mat 9:11 When the Pharisees saw it, they said to his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?"
Mat 9:12 When Jesus heard it, he said to them, "Those who are healthy have no need for a physician, but those who are sick do.
Mat 9:13 But you go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,' for I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."
Mat 9:14 Then John's disciples came to him, saying, "Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples don't fast?"
Mat 9:15 Jesus said to them, "Can the friends of the bridegroom mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.
Mat 9:16 No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; for the patch would tear away from the garment, and a worse hole is made.
Mat 9:17 Neither do people put new wine into old wineskins, or else the skins would burst, and the wine be spilled, and the skins ruined. No, they put new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved."
Mat 9:18 While he told these things to them, behold, a ruler came and worshiped him, saying, "My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live."
Mat 9:19 Jesus got up and followed him, as did his disciples.
Mat 9:20 Behold, a woman who had an issue of blood for twelve years came behind him, and touched the fringe of his garment;
Mat 9:21 for she said within herself, "If I just touch his garment, I will be made well."
Mat 9:22 But Jesus, turning around and seeing her, said, "Daughter, cheer up! Your faith has made you well." And the woman was made well from that hour.
Mat 9:23 When Jesus came into the ruler's house, and saw the flute players, and the crowd in noisy disorder,
Mat 9:24 he said to them, "Make room, because the girl isn't dead, but sleeping." They were ridiculing him.
Mat 9:25 But when the crowd was put out, he entered in, took her by the hand, and the girl arose.
Mat 9:26 The report of this went out into all that land.
Mat 9:27 As Jesus passed by from there, two blind men followed him, calling out and saying, "Have mercy on us, son of David!"
Mat 9:28 When he had come into the house, the blind men came to him. Jesus said to them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" They told him, "Yes, Lord."
Mat 9:29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, "According to your faith be it done to you."
Mat 9:30 Their eyes were opened. Jesus strictly commanded them, saying, "See that no one knows about this."
Mat 9:31 But they went out and spread abroad his fame in all that land.
Mat 9:32 As they went out, behold, a mute man who was demon possessed was brought to him.
Mat 9:33 When the demon was cast out, the mute man spoke. The multitudes marveled, saying, "Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel!"
Mat 9:34 But the Pharisees said, "By the prince of the demons, he casts out demons."
Mat 9:35 Jesus went about all the cities and the villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the Good News of the Kingdom, and healing every disease and every sickness among the people.
Mat 9:36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion for them, because they were harassed and scattered, like sheep without a shepherd.
Mat 9:37 Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest indeed is plentiful, but the laborers are few.
Mat 9:38 Pray therefore that the Lord of the harvest will send out laborers into his harvest."

A Brief Summary

Spending Time with Jim McGuiggan

A Brief Summary

This little course is about listening to the voice of God in Scripture. I've made some suggestions as to how we can more easily do that. I'll list them and then conclude the study with several more things we need to keep in mind.
1. Recognise the central purpose of the Bible.
2. Recognise Christ as central and submit to him.
3. Recognise that some truths are more important than others.
4. Look for recurring themes.
5. Allow major and clearly established truths to act as guidelines.
6. Get a good grasp of biblical history.
Know Who's Being Spoken To
Commonsense tells us we can't just open the Bible, read something and believe we must obey. If we opened at the OT book of Leviticus we would find a mass of rules concerning animal sacrifices. These laws were addressed to the ancient Jewish people and have no immediate relevance to any other nation. Read Leviticus for yourself.
Be sure the text is addressing you or your situation before binding yourself to it. Before we justify an action of ours, we need to be sure we are given the authority to act in that way. (Jesus told a man to sell all he had and give the money to the poor Luke 18:22. This would hardly justify a man depriving his wife and children of their home and necessities of life.) Before you require someone to submit to a text, be sure it relates to him. Read Colossians 2:16-17 in this connection. Ask yourself: Does this scripture apply to me or my peers in our circumstances?
Know Who's Doing the Speaking
The Bible faithfully records not only true teaching, it faithfully records lies and false teaching. Jesus is called a glutton and a drunkard in Matthew 11:19, but these are the words of his enemies and not the teaching of God. In Job 9:17 (to choose only one verse from scores) a heartbroken man accuses God of being unfair. Job is wrong when he says this. We are not supposed to believe him! Job's friends "defend' God but they often misrepresent him and God rebukes them for it (Job 42:7). In Numbers 16:2-3 we hear that Moses took too much authority on himself, but a reading of the entire section shows this to be a false accusation and not God's word on the matter.
We need to ask ourselves: Is the speaker speaking God's word or is he expressing his own opinion or feelings? Are we reading the words of an authorised spokesman?
Recognize the Progress of Revelation in the Bible
Hebrews 1:1-2 and Galatians 3:24-25 tell us that the OT was preparation for the full and final revelation of God in the NT. That means there were things not revealed or only partly revealed in the OT. This is true even of the earthly ministry of Jesus Christ because John 16:12-13 tells us they had more to learn which he could not tell them. Be sure to read Ephesians 3:4-5 in connection with this.
"Progress in Revelation' does not mean from error to truth but from ignorance to knowledge or from some truth to more truth. The OT covenantal law was truth! But much of it was truth for that phase of God's developing purpose. When Jesus became Priest and King the ceremonies and sacrifices, the priesthood and ordinances of the OT respectfully set aside as belonging to a former age (Hebrews 7:11-12 and 9:6-10). Of course there were changeless truths taught in the OT and these we gratefully cherish and submit our lives to. Since the NT brings God's revelation to fullness, it must have the final word on what God wills. The NT will not set aside changeless truths taught in the OT but it will often dismiss some OT truth as no longer binding (see Galatians 5:1-2, for example).
Simply Cultural or Universal?
In many cultures the gracious expression of welcome is a kiss or kisses. Other cultures welcome people or greet friends with a handshake. The kiss, handshake or hug are all expressions of the warmth and courtesy felt and extended. In the mid-eastern culture of Paul's day they greeted one another with a kiss (see Romans 16:16). The kiss is cultural, the spirit of warmth is to be universal.
Luke says that they washed the feet of guests as a mark of welcome and hospitality.That is still common practice in many cultures but different cultures have their own ways of showing their hospitality and welcome. The washing of feet is cultural but the duty (and privilege) of being hospitable is a universal obligation.
The wearing of veils, anointing with oil, the tearing of garments, lifting up hands during prayerthese and many more biblical practices are part of the culture through which God revealed universally binding truths.
We need to seek the permanent and universal obligation expressed in the cultural behaviour. It will keep us from mistaking the principle behind the cultural clothing with the clothing itself. If something is bound on all nations and is age-lasting, that is an indication that it goes beyond mere culture (see Matthew 28:19-20 as an illustration).
Look for the Obvious Meaning of the Passage
Settle for what the passage looks like it's saying! The "obvious" sense is the "best sense" unless commonsense tells you it's nonsense.
Jesus called king Herod a fox. He called himself a door, a vine, a shepherd. He called himself bread and light and water. This is called figurative speech. But even when figures like these (metaphors) are used, there is a fitness to them. The message is clear. Herod was cunning, Jesus does sustain us (bread and water), he does deliver us from darkness (light). Even though we have figurative speech here, the meaning is still obvious.
But there are books in the Bible which are written mainly in images. It is called apocalyptic literature. The book of Revelation illustrates it well. It is a bit more difficult to be sure of the meaning of such books than it is of the usual narrative and prose sections of Scripture.
But we're not left completely in the dark.
1) Many of the images are borrowed from other parts of the Bible;
2) The writers tell us now and then just what they mean;
3) Some of the images are so familiar that their meaning is obvious. When we become well acquainted with the Bible we will have less trouble with this literature. Stay with the more obvious scriptures until then.
It's our prayer that God will richly bless your quest for truth as it is in Christ Jesus. (If you think we can help further, please ask!)

Eating Crow by Terry Sturtevant

Eating Crow


Terry Sturtevant

I saw a discussion on Facebook the other day when a woman stated that a person she knew was going to have to "eat crow." A younger person, maybe a relative, replied by questioning why would anyone have to eat a crow. He didn't understand what the colloquial idiom meant.

The statement has become so commonly used that we learn by contextual use and then just accept and know that it means a person said something and was later proven wrong by facts. Therefore he has to carry the shame, if you will, of having been proven wrong.

I have never actually or physically eaten a crow. Chicken is tasty, but duck tends to be a bit greasy with more of a "gamey" taste. Pheasant is very good as well as partridge and Cornish Game Hen. But as for crow, I don't know. You might try asking a fox.

There are several historical references to eating crow. These can be dated in time and in a few areas in different parts of the world. Evidentaly crow doesn't taste good. Check this reference for some of the details of eating crow, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eating_crow; In one story, a farmer claims he can do it and when the bird is cooked it is stuffed to make it taste bad. The farmer starts to eat it, but the taste is so bad that he has to
"eat" his proclamation and is humiliated.

Crows are one of the birds listed in Leviticus chapter 11:4. But it says they are unfit for consumption. Maybe this is because it likes to eat dead animals. It therefore is seen as a dirty, dark and nasty bird. Who would want to eat a animal that eats like that?

But friends, I can say from experience "eating crow" feels bad. I guess it feels as bad as it must actually taste.

Daniel, The Vision Of The Seventy Weeks, Mark Copeland

                          "THE BOOK OF DANIEL"

               The Vision Of The Seventy Weeks (9:20-27)


1. We come now to one of the most difficult passages of the Old
   a. Commonly called "The Vision Of The Seventy Weeks" - Dan 9:20-27
   b. Edward J. Young describes it as "one of the most difficult in all
      the OT, and the interpretations which have been offered are
      almost legion."
   c. Stuart says that "it would require a volume of considerable
      magnitude even to give a history of the ever-varying and
      contradictory opinions that have been offered"
2. With such a difficult passage before us, we should ...
   a. Approach it with humility, and not dogmatically
   b. Not draw conclusions that would contradict clear teachings of

[We begin our study with verse 20, in which Daniel first describes...]


      1. Even as Daniel was confessing his sin and the sin of his
         people, and making supplication for the holy mountain of God
         (i.e., Jerusalem) - Dan 9:20-21
      2. This was the same person seen in the vision at the beginning
         - cf. Dan 8:16

      1. Commanded to do so even at the beginning of Daniel's prayer
         - Dan 9:22-23
      2. For Daniel was "greatly beloved" - cf. Dan 10:11,19

[And so Gabriel, who provided explanation to Daniel regarding the
vision of the ram and the goat (Dan 8:16), now proceeds to give
details concerning...]


      1. 70 "weeks" are determined for Daniel's people (Israel) and his
         holy city (Jerusalem) - Dan 9:24
         a. The word "weeks" in Hebrew is actually "sevens" (i.e., 70
         b. Most agree it likely refers to "weeks", but weeks of what?
            1) Weeks of days?
               a) Then it would be 490 days
               b) Few believe this to be the case, and so most all
                  figuratize this passage to some extent
            2) Weeks of years (i.e., each day representing a year)?
               a) Then it would be 490 years
               b) But the Jews used a lunar calendar (360 days/yr), so
                  it would be 483 years according to our calendar)
               c) Many suggest this to be the answer, but it is not
                  without difficulty
            3) Of some complete, yet non-specific period of time?
               a) Then it may just refer to seventy complete periods of
               b) And each week may not be equivalent in time (i.e.,
                  one "week" may be longer than other "weeks")
      2. This period of time will be for the fulfillment of six things,
         each apparently related to the work of the coming Messiah
         a. To finish the transgression
            1) The marginal reading has "restrain" for "finish"
            2) The idea is that Messiah would provide a restraining
               power and influence which would check the progress of
               sin (Barnes) - cf. Ac 3:25-26
         b. To make an end of sins
            1) The marginal reading has "to seal up" for "make an end"
            2) The idea is that sins will be sealed up, or closed, or
               hidden, so that they will not be seen, or will not
               develop themselves (Barnes) - cf. Ac 3:19
         c. To make reconciliation for iniquity
            1) Literally, to cover iniquity
            2) How this would be done is not stated here, but cf. Isa 53:5-6,10-12
         -- Note:  The first three things relate to our Lord's work of
            dealing with the problem of sin, how sin would 
            "restrained", "sealed up", and "covered over"
         d. To bring in everlasting righteousness
            1) Literally, to cause to come
            2) To provide a way by which a man could become righteous
               and holy - cf. Ro 3:21-26; 2Co 5:21
         e. To seal up the vision and the prophecy
            1) To complete, to finish, meaning the prophecies would be
               fulfilled (Barnes)
            2) Young suggests that it is referring to OT prophecies,
               especially those related to the work of the Messiah
               making an end of sin - cf. Lk 24:44-47
         f. To anoint the Most Holy
            1) Barnes opines that the Most Holy refers to the temple in
            2) And that the anointing of the temple refers to the
               presence of the Messiah in the temple - cf. Mal 3:1-2;
               Mt 12:6
            3) Especially regarding the presence of the Lord in the
               temple during His final week - cf. Mt 21:1-16
            4) Some believe it may refer to the baptism of Jesus when
               the Spirit came upon Him in the form of a dove - Mt 3:

      1. There shall be 7 weeks and 62 weeks - Dan 9:25
         a. Beginning with the command to restore and build Jerusalem,
            until Messiah the prince (the street and the wall shall be
            built, even in troublesome times)
         b. At least three possible decrees may serve as the "terminus
            pro quo" (starting point) of the 70 "weeks"
            1) The decree of Cyrus (539-538 BC) - cf. Ezr 1:1-4
               a) To rebuild the temple (and the city, cf. Isa 44:
                  26-28; 45:13)
               b) If one starts here, then the 70 weeks could not be
                  490 literal years, for that would place the end of
                  the 70 weeks around 55 B.C. (much too early)
               c) The appeal of using this decree as the starting point
                  1] It is the most well-known decree regarding the
                     restoration of Israel
                  2] It was given about the time Daniel received his
                     vision of the 70 weeks
               -- This decree is preferred by many who do not hold to a
                  literal 490 years (Young, Harkrider, McGuiggan)
            2) The decree of Artaxerxes (457 BC) - cf. Ezr 7:13-14
               a) For Ezra to restore the Law and its worship
               b) Starting here, 490 Julian years would end the 70
                  weeks around 33 A.D.
               c) But 490 lunar years end the 70 weeks around 26 A.D.
                  (seven years too early)
               -- This decree is preferred by some amillenialists who
                  hold to a literal 490 years, but not lunar years
                  (Haley's Bible Handbook)
            3) The second decree of Artaxerxes (445-444 BC) - cf. Neh 2:1-8
               a) For Nehemiah to build the city
               b) Starting here, 490 lunar years end the 70 weeks
                  around 38 A.D.
               c) This would place the start of the 70th week near the
                  beginning of Jesus' public ministry (ca. 30 A.D.)
               d) There are problems with the first 7 weeks ending
                  around 396 B.C., which some contend is too late for
                  the restoration of the city
            -- Premillenialists prefer to start with this decree, but
               so do some amillenialists such as Albert Barnes
         c. Each starting date has its problems, but I lean towards
            Barnes' choice of the second decree of Artaxerxes in 445
            B.C. as the terminus a quo for this prophecy
            1) The 7 and 62 "weeks" is the period of time from the
               decree until "Messiah the Prince"
            2) Barnes has this period ending with the baptism of Jesus
               and the beginning of His public ministry
      2. After the 62 weeks, certain events will occur - Dan 9:26-27
         a. Messiah will be cut off, but not for Himself
            1) This refers to the death of Christ
            2) Whose death occurs midway during the 70th week
               (see below)
         b. People of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city
            and the sanctuary
            1) The end of it shall be with a flood; until the end of
               the war, desolations are determined
               a) The people are generally accepted to be the Romans,
                  who destroyed Jerusalem in A.D. 70
               b) The "prince" is thought to be either Titus, the Roman
                  general, or perhaps referring to Jesus Himself (with
                  the Roman army as the instrument of God's judgment
                  upon Jerusalem)
            2) Many contend that the destruction must fall within the
               70th week
               a) However, Young and Barnes argue that such is not
                  necessarily required by the text
               b) The desolation to befall Jerusalem may be the
                  consequence of events during the 70th week, and not
                  fall within the period of the 70th week
         c. For 1 week, he shall confirm a covenant with many
            1) "He" refers to Jesus (Barnes)
            2) "Confirm a covenant" describes the work done by Jesus
               and His apostles in Israel, before and immediately after
               His death (Barnes)
               a) His earthly ministry lasted about 3 and half years
               b) The gospel was preached only to Jews for 3-4 years
                  after Pentecost
         d. In the middle of the week he shall bring an end to
            sacrifice and offering
            1) This refers to Jesus who was cut off, but not for
               Himself (Barnes)
            2) Through His death, He brought the need for sacrifices to
               an end - He 10:12-18
         e. The abomination and desolation to come - Dan 9:27
            1) Alluding to the destruction of Jerusalem in A.D. 70
            2) Jesus referred to this in Mt 24:15
            3) Again, this desolation may be the consequence of what
               occurred in the 70th week, even though it occurred after
               the 70th week
            4) But if required to occur during the 70th week, then the
               70th week must extend beyond A.D. 70 (Harkrider, 


1. Such a brief look at this difficult passage will naturally raise
   many questions, which are beyond the scope of our study

2. For more detailed study, one might consider the following
   commentaries which provide several alternative views...
   a. Commentary on Daniel, Albert Barnes
   b. The Prophecy of Daniel, Edward J. Young
   c. Commentary on Revelation, Robert F. Harkrider
   d. The Book Of Daniel, Jim McGuiggan
   e. Exposition Of Daniel, H. C. Leupold
   -- Each of these examine the passage from the amillenial
      perspective, which finds no place for the "gap theory" favored by
      dispensational premillenialists

While the passage is admittedly difficult, let's not lose sight of the
wonderful promises concerning the Messiah's work related to sin and
righteousness.  For Jesus through His death has truly brought an end to
the consequences of sin and introduced everlasting righteousness!

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2011