3/30/15

From Jim McGuiggan... The Cross is about life!


The Cross is about life!

Because the cross is central to our faith and because the cross (as the expression of God's holy generosity) deals with our sins since we can't deal with them ourselves, evangelicals have pretty well drawn the conclusion that the forgiveness of sins and human helplessness is the overriding message of the NT.
I don't think we need to take issue with what Paul teaches us in Romans 1:18—3:20 about human sinfulness nor do we need to argue with him about the centrality of the cross in relation to God's faithful pursuit of us to win us from sin and reconcile us to himself. All that, I judge, is beyond debate.
But the cross is about more than forgiveness of sins—it's about fullness of life. The cross is not an end in itself—it is a means to an end and that end is fullness of life with God. The cross is not about death—it is about life! The cross is not the last thing we hear about Christ. In and through the cross but following it, is the glorious, death-destroying, sin-obliterating living Jesus. In and through the cross is the exaltation of Jesus to universal dominion and a name above every name.
The cross is the reaffirmation of the eternal creation purposes of the eternal God who purposed us for holy, joy-filled, righteous companionship with himself in his creation. The glorified and immortal Jesus who is the firstborn from the dead and is the first-fruits of all who sleep is who God had in mind in the creation—it was made for him and all who are embraced in his redeeming work (Colossians 1:16).
The cross is about God making us alive! It is about forgiveness of sins but it is about the reconciliation of all things in heaven and earth to God. It is about the defeat of wayward principalities and powers that we might be free to live. To live here and now and not some time in the future; to live within the creation and not in some merely "spiritual" realm. "I came that you might have life to the full," he said.
Simply by default, the constant stress on forgiveness of sins and man's awful depravity suggests that God is obsessed with sin and that humanity is nothing but a trudging, helpless and not to be trusted band of miscreants. I'm not interested in undermining God's holiness or minimising our sinfulness but I'm weary of this ceaseless harping on sin and the cross as the way to get forgiven. I'm weary of these evangelical extremes with the vile "health and wealth gospel" on the one end and the grim plod while we wait to get free of earth and then to heaven on the other end.
The cross is about life!
©2004 Jim McGuiggan. All materials are free to be copied and used as long as money is not being made.
Many thanks to brother Ed Healy, for allowing me to post from his website, theabidingword.com.

Jesus Was Logical by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=10&article=653

Jesus Was Logical

by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

The view of Jesus that prevails in popular culture is one that portrays Him as unconcerned with logic and correct attention to doctrinal detail. Diluted Christendom has conjured up a Jesus that is non-confrontational, “politically correct,” and would never be “judgmental” or “intolerant.” Nevertheless, the New Testament—the only source for ascertaining the identity of Jesus—depicts Him in a completely different light.
Take, for example, the occasion in John 7 when the Jews were critical of Jesus for having healed on the Sabbath a man who suffered from a 38-year-old ailment (John 5:2-9). Many would suppose that Jesus would not be concerned with careful conformity to the Law. They would assume that Jesus would chide the Jews for their nit-picky, legalistic approach to religion, and that He would be quite willing to dismiss the requirements of the Law in order to give priority to human need in the name of compassion. Unfortunately, this viewpoint is fraught with error, not the least of which is its demeaning assessment of law—law which God, Himself, authored. Law, according to God, is given for human well-being (Deuteronomy 6:24; 10:13; Proverbs 29:18). God’s law is “holy and just and good” (Romans 7:12), and serves divinely-intended, positive purposes (e.g., Romans 3:20). Indeed, Jesus’ handling of His persecutors on this occasion illustrates the high regard He had for law, the necessity of carefully conforming to it, and the critical importance of applying it accurately.
Calling attention to the miracle He performed, Jesus offered a logical rebuttal to the allegation that He violated the Sabbath. Here is that argument placed in syllogistic form:
  1. If the Law of Moses requires the circumcision of a male infant on the 8th day after birth—even when the 8th day falls on the Sabbath—then healing a man on the Sabbath is equally legal.
  2. The Law of Moses requires the circumcision of a male infant on the 8th day after birth—even when the 8th day falls on the Sabbath.
  3. Therefore, healing a man on the Sabbath is equally legal.
Jesus then offered a concluding admonition that cinched the validity of His argument: “Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment” (vs. 24). Making application of God’s laws based on “appearance” refers to doing so based on how things seem or look to the person making the judgment, i.e., forming an opinion based on inadequate evidence. To the contrary, to “judge with righteous judgment” means to make accurate assessments by drawing only warranted conclusions from the evidence, i.e., thinking and acting rationally.
This one incident in the life of Christ is typical of His behavior on other occasions, proving that Jesus was logical in His approach to life. It demonstrates the high respect He had for law. It spotlights Deity’s concern for careful compliance with law. All who desire to be like Christ must emulate these same concerns. As Jesus Himself stated: “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven” (Matthew 7:21).

From Mark Copeland... "THE CHRISTIAN HOME AND FAMILY" The Duties Of Wives


                    "THE CHRISTIAN HOME AND FAMILY"

                          The Duties Of Wives

INTRODUCTION

1. Marriage as a sacred institution joins together a man and a woman...
   a. Husband and wife in holy matrimony
   b. Each with their God-given duties to one another

2. Previously, we considered the duties of husbands, who are
   commanded...
   a. Love their wives
   b. Respect their wives
   c. Support their wives

[Now letis consider what the inspired apostles of Christ taught were the
duties of wives, beginning with one that seems to offend many today...]

I. SUBMIT TO YOUR HUSBANDS!

   A. DEFINING THE WORD "SUBMIT"...
      1. The Greek word is hupotasso - to subordinate, to obey
      2. To be under obedience, in subjection to, submit self unto - Strong's
      3. To submit to the orders or directives of someone - Louw Nida
      4. An example:  Jesus submitting to the will of His Father - Jn 6:38

   B. WIVES ARE TO SUBMIT TO THEIR HUSBANDS...
      1. As the church submits to Christ, in everything - Ep 5:22-24
         a. Presuming that it is in keeping with the will of God - Ac 5:29
         b. For husbands must not abuse their authority - 1Pe 3:7
         c. Indeed, husbands are to love their wives as Christ loves the
            church - Ep 5:25-27
      2. Even as Christians wives are to submit to:
         a. God - Jm 4:17
         b. The government - Ro 13:1-5; 1Pe 2:13-15
         c. Their masters - 1Pe 2:18; 3:1
         d. Their elders - He 13:17; 1Pe 5:5
         e. One another - 1Pe 5:5; Ep 5:21
      3. Without nagging, with gentleness and quietness - 1Pe 3:1-4
      4. With respect, even as Sarah respected Abraham - 1Pe 3:5-6; cf.Ep 5:33

   C. WHEN WIVES FAIL TO SUBMIT...
      1. It is not fitting in the Lord - Col 3:18
         a. Grk., aneko - to pertain to what is due, duty, as was
            fitting
         b. In keeping with Jesus' own teaching and example - cf. Mt 20:25-28
      2. The family unit will often be in turmoil
         a. To have a social organization that is functional, you must
            have some chain of authority
         b. God is the head of Christ, Christ the head of man, man the
            head of woman - 1Co 11:3
         c. In the family, it is Godis Will the husband be the head of
            the wife, and that parents be over their children
            - otherwise, the family will be dysfunctional
      3. God will not be gracious to them - 1Pe 5:5
         a. God gives grace to those who humbly submit
         b. He will not grant favor to those who proudly resist His will
         c. Just the prayers of a husband who mistreats and disrespects
            his wife are hindered, so the prayers of a wife who refuses
            to submit to her husband! - cf. 1Pe 3:7
      4. It may even have a bearing on the sexual orientation of the children!
         a. A study by Dr. Irving Bieber was made of the family
            background of 106 male homosexuals
         b. Dr. Bieber found that 81 mothers were dominating
         -- What Everyone Should Know About Homosexuality, LaHaye, p.71-72

[Sadly, lives are ruined when people wonit listen to the teachings of
Jesus and His apostles.  Wives need to submit to their husbands, just as
Christians are to submit to Christ.  Another admonition...]

II. LOVE YOUR HUSBANDS!

   A. WITH AFFECTION...
      1. "admonish the young women to love their husbands" - Tit 2:4
         a. Grk., philandrous - "fond of man, i.e. affectionate as a wife" - Strong's
         b. "pertaining to having affection for a husband --'having love
            for one's husband, having affection for oneis husband.'" - Louw-Nida
      2. This affection is something that can be taught (learned); if
         needed, seek advice from a mature sister in Christ - Tit 2:3-4

   B. WITH INTIMACY...
      1. To prevent unfaithfulness - 1Co 7:2
      2. Rendering affection properly due, not withholding marital
         rights- 1Co 7:3-4
      3. Abstaining only with mutual consent, for the purpose of prayer - 1Co 7:5

[Just as husbands are commanded to love their wives, so the wives are
commanded to love their husbands.  If the original love has been lost,
it needs to be re-learned!  Finally, wives must...]

III. MANAGE THE HOME!

   A. AS HOMEMAKERS...
      1. "to be discrete, chaste, homemakers, good" - Tit 2:5
         a. Grk., oikourous - "a stayer at home, i.e. domestically inclined" - Strong's
         b. "one who works in the home - 'one who takes care of the
            home, homemaker.'" - Louw-Nida
      2. "manage the house" - 1Ti 5:14
         a. Grk., oikodespoteo - to be the head of (i.e. rule) a family:
            guide the house - Strong's
         b. "to command and give leadership to a household -- eto direct
            a household, to manage a home.i" - Louw-Nida
      3. This also can be learned from older sisters in Christ - Tit 2:3-5

   B. AS MOTHERS...
      1. Note the instructions for young widows: "marry, bear children" - 1Ti 5:14
         a. Grk., teknogoneo - "to be a child-bearer, i.e. parent (mother)" - Strong's
         b. "to give birth to a child" - Louw-Nida
      2. The primary design of marriage is to start a family; if a young
         wife is unable to bear a child, adoption if certainly a viable
         and wonderful option!

CONCLUSION

1. The Christian wife is a woman who...
   a. Submits to her husband with respect
   b. Loves her husband with affection
   c. Manages her home and her children

2. This is because the Christian wife is a woman who...
   a. Is a Christian first, and a wife second
   b. Gladly accepts the Biblical injunctions given her as a wife
   c. Looks to the Word of God and prayer for the strength she needs to
      fulfill her duty

3. When a woman is a Christian wife...
   a. She is more likely loved and respected by her husband
   b. She is more likely the sort of wife she should be
   c. The children are more likely as they should be

In our next lesson, we shall  consider the duties of parents.  In the 
meantime, some additional food for thought for wives...

                     The 10 Commandments of Wives

1. Expect not your husband to give you as many luxuries as your father
   has given you after many years of hard labor. (Php 4:11; Am 4:1)

2. You shall work hard to build your house with the husband that you
   have, not fantasizing about "the one that could have been". (Pr 14:1)

3. You shall not nag...hit him with your frying pan, it is kindlier. (Pr 27:15; 21:19)

4. You shall coddle your husband and be a warm wife. (1Co 7:3-5)

5. Remember that the frank approval of your husband is more to you than
   the side glances of many strangers. (Eze 16:32; 2Pe 2:14)

6. You shall not yell at your husband but will be a gentle and quiet
   spirit. (1Pe 3:1-4)

7. Permit no one to assure you that you are having a hard time of it. (1Pe 5:9)

8. You shall not fail to dress up for your husband with an eye to please
   him, as you did before marriage. (So 4:9-11)

9. You shall submit to your husband from your heart and allow him to be
   head of the household. (Col 3:18; 1Pe 3:6; Ep 5:33)

10. You shall assure your husband and others that he is the greatest man
    alive. (Php 2:3; So 5:9-16)

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2011

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From Gary... Bible Reading March 30


Bible Reading  

March 30

The World English Bible

Mar. 30
Leviticus 15, 16
Lev 15:1 Yahweh spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,
Lev 15:2 "Speak to the children of Israel, and tell them, 'When any man has a discharge from his body, because of his discharge he is unclean.
Lev 15:3 This shall be his uncleanness in his discharge: whether his body runs with his discharge, or his body has stopped from his discharge, it is his uncleanness.
Lev 15:4 " 'Every bed whereon he who has the discharge lies shall be unclean; and everything he sits on shall be unclean.
Lev 15:5 Whoever touches his bed shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:6 He who sits on anything whereon the man who has the discharge sat shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:7 " 'He who touches the body of him who has the discharge shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:8 " 'If he who has the discharge spits on him who is clean, then he shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:9 " 'Whatever saddle he who has the discharge rides on shall be unclean.
Lev 15:10 Whoever touches anything that was under him shall be unclean until the evening. He who carries those things shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:11 " 'Whoever he who has the discharge touches, without having rinsed his hands in water, he shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:12 " 'The earthen vessel, which he who has the discharge touches, shall be broken; and every vessel of wood shall be rinsed in water.
Lev 15:13 " 'When he who has a discharge is cleansed of his discharge, then he shall count to himself seven days for his cleansing, and wash his clothes; and he shall bathe his flesh in running water, and shall be clean.
Lev 15:14 " 'On the eighth day he shall take two turtledoves, or two young pigeons, and come before Yahweh to the door of the Tent of Meeting, and give them to the priest:
Lev 15:15 and the priest shall offer them, the one for a sin offering, and the other for a burnt offering. The priest shall make atonement for him before Yahweh for his discharge.
Lev 15:16 " 'If any man has an emission of semen, then he shall bathe all his flesh in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:17 Every garment, and every skin, whereon the semen is, shall be washed with water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:18 If a man lies with a woman and there is an emission of semen, they shall both bathe themselves in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:19 " 'If a woman has a discharge, and her discharge in her flesh is blood, she shall be in her impurity seven days: and whoever touches her shall be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:20 " 'Everything that she lies on in her impurity shall be unclean. Everything also that she sits on shall be unclean.
Lev 15:21 Whoever touches her bed shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:22 Whoever touches anything that she sits on shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:23 If it is on the bed, or on anything whereon she sits, when he touches it, he shall be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:24 " 'If any man lies with her, and her monthly flow is on him, he shall be unclean seven days; and every bed whereon he lies shall be unclean.
Lev 15:25 " 'If a woman has a discharge of her blood many days not in the time of her period, or if she has a discharge beyond the time of her period; all the days of the discharge of her uncleanness shall be as in the days of her period: she is unclean.
Lev 15:26 Every bed whereon she lies all the days of her discharge shall be to her as the bed of her period: and everything whereon she sits shall be unclean, as the uncleanness of her period.
Lev 15:27 Whoever touches these things shall be unclean, and shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and be unclean until the evening.
Lev 15:28 " 'But if she is cleansed of her discharge, then she shall count to herself seven days, and after that she shall be clean.
Lev 15:29 On the eighth day she shall take two turtledoves, or two young pigeons, and bring them to the priest, to the door of the Tent of Meeting.
Lev 15:30 The priest shall offer the one for a sin offering, and the other for a burnt offering; and the priest shall make atonement for her before Yahweh for the uncleanness of her discharge.
Lev 15:31 " 'Thus you shall separate the children of Israel from their uncleanness, so they will not die in their uncleanness, when they defile my tabernacle that is in their midst.' "
Lev 15:32 This is the law of him who has a discharge, and of him who has an emission of semen, so that he is unclean thereby;
Lev 15:33 and of her who has her period, and of a man or woman who has a discharge, and of him who lies with her who is unclean.
Lev 16:1 Yahweh spoke to Moses, after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they drew near before Yahweh, and died;
Lev 16:2 and Yahweh said to Moses, "Tell Aaron your brother, not to come at all times into the Most Holy Place within the veil, before the mercy seat which is on the ark; lest he die: for I will appear in the cloud on the mercy seat.
Lev 16:3 "Herewith shall Aaron come into the sanctuary: with a young bull for a sin offering, and a ram for a burnt offering.
Lev 16:4 He shall put on the holy linen coat, and he shall have the linen breeches on his body, and shall put on the linen sash, and he shall be dressed with the linen turban. They are the holy garments. He shall bathe his body in water, and put them on.
Lev 16:5 He shall take from the congregation of the children of Israel two male goats for a sin offering, and one ram for a burnt offering.
Lev 16:6 "Aaron shall offer the bull of the sin offering, which is for himself, and make atonement for himself and for his house.
Lev 16:7 He shall take the two goats, and set them before Yahweh at the door of the Tent of Meeting.
Lev 16:8 Aaron shall cast lots for the two goats; one lot for Yahweh, and the other lot for the scapegoat.
Lev 16:9 Aaron shall present the goat on which the lot fell for Yahweh, and offer him for a sin offering.
Lev 16:10 But the goat, on which the lot fell for the scapegoat, shall be presented alive before Yahweh, to make atonement for him, to send him away for the scapegoat into the wilderness.
Lev 16:11 "Aaron shall present the bull of the sin offering, which is for himself, and shall make atonement for himself and for his house, and shall kill the bull of the sin offering which is for himself.
Lev 16:12 He shall take a censer full of coals of fire from off the altar before Yahweh, and two handfuls of sweet incense beaten small, and bring it within the veil:
Lev 16:13 and he shall put the incense on the fire before Yahweh, that the cloud of the incense may cover the mercy seat that is on the testimony, so that he will not die.
Lev 16:14 He shall take some of the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it with his finger on the mercy seat on the east; and before the mercy seat he shall sprinkle some of the blood with his finger seven times.
Lev 16:15 "Then he shall kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people, and bring his blood within the veil, and do with his blood as he did with the blood of the bull, and sprinkle it on the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat:
Lev 16:16 and he shall make atonement for the Holy Place, because of the uncleanness of the children of Israel, and because of their transgressions, even all their sins; and so he shall do for the Tent of Meeting, that dwells with them in the midst of their uncleanness.
Lev 16:17 There shall be no one in the Tent of Meeting when he enters to make atonement in the Holy Place, until he comes out, and has made atonement for himself and for his household, and for all the assembly of Israel.
Lev 16:18 "He shall go out to the altar that is before Yahweh and make atonement for it, and shall take some of the bull's blood, and some of the goat's blood, and put it around on the horns of the altar.
Lev 16:19 He shall sprinkle some of the blood on it with his finger seven times, and cleanse it, and make it holy from the uncleanness of the children of Israel.
Lev 16:20 "When he has made an end of atoning for the Holy Place, the Tent of Meeting, and the altar, he shall present the live goat.
Lev 16:21 Aaron shall lay both his hands on the head of the live goat, and confess over him all the iniquities of the children of Israel, and all their transgressions, even all their sins; and he shall put them on the head of the goat, and shall send him away into the wilderness by the hand of a man who is in readiness.
Lev 16:22 The goat shall carry all their iniquities on himself to a solitary land, and he shall let the goat go in the wilderness.
Lev 16:23 "Aaron shall come into the Tent of Meeting, and shall take off the linen garments, which he put on when he went into the Holy Place, and shall leave them there.
Lev 16:24 Then he shall bathe himself in water in a holy place, and put on his garments, and come out and offer his burnt offering and the burnt offering of the people, and make atonement for himself and for the people.
Lev 16:25 The fat of the sin offering he shall burn on the altar.
Lev 16:26 "He who lets the goat go for the scapegoat shall wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp.
Lev 16:27 The bull for the sin offering, and the goat for the sin offering, whose blood was brought in to make atonement in the Holy Place, shall be carried forth outside the camp; and they shall burn their skins, their flesh, and their dung with fire.
Lev 16:28 He who burns them shall wash his clothes, and bathe his flesh in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp.
Lev 16:29 "It shall be a statute to you forever: in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you shall afflict your souls, and shall do no manner of work, the native-born, or the stranger who lives as a foreigner among you:
Lev 16:30 for on this day shall atonement be made for you, to cleanse you; from all your sins you shall be clean before Yahweh.
Lev 16:31 It is a Sabbath of solemn rest to you, and you shall afflict your souls; it is a statute forever.
Lev 16:32 The priest, who is anointed and who is consecrated to be priest in his father's place, shall make the atonement, and shall put on the linen garments, even the holy garments.
Lev 16:33 Then he shall make atonement for the Holy Sanctuary; and he shall make atonement for the Tent of Meeting and for the altar; and he shall make atonement for the priests and for all the people of the assembly.

Lev 16:34 "This shall be an everlasting statute for you, to make atonement for the children of Israel once in the year because of all their sins." It was done as Yahweh commanded Moses.

 Mar. 29, 30
Luke 1

Luk 1:1 Since many have undertaken to set in order a narrative concerning those matters which have been fulfilled among us,
Luk 1:2 even as those who from the beginning were eyewitnesses and servants of the word delivered them to us,
Luk 1:3 it seemed good to me also, having traced the course of all things accurately from the first, to write to you in order, most excellent Theophilus;
Luk 1:4 that you might know the certainty concerning the things in which you were instructed.
Luk 1:5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the priestly division of Abijah. He had a wife of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elizabeth.
Luk 1:6 They were both righteous before God, walking blamelessly in all the commandments and ordinances of the Lord.
Luk 1:7 But they had no child, because Elizabeth was barren, and they both were well advanced in years.
Luk 1:8 Now it happened, while he executed the priest's office before God in the order of his division,
Luk 1:9 according to the custom of the priest's office, his lot was to enter into the temple of the Lord and burn incense.
Luk 1:10 The whole multitude of the people were praying outside at the hour of incense.
Luk 1:11 An angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing on the right side of the altar of incense.
Luk 1:12 Zacharias was troubled when he saw him, and fear fell upon him.
Luk 1:13 But the angel said to him, "Don't be afraid, Zacharias, because your request has been heard, and your wife, Elizabeth, will bear you a son, and you shall call his name John.
Luk 1:14 You will have joy and gladness; and many will rejoice at his birth.
Luk 1:15 For he will be great in the sight of the Lord, and he will drink no wine nor strong drink. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even from his mother's womb.
Luk 1:16 He will turn many of the children of Israel to the Lord, their God.
Luk 1:17 He will go before him in the spirit and power of Elijah, 'to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children,' and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord."
Luk 1:18 Zacharias said to the angel, "How can I be sure of this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years."
Luk 1:19 The angel answered him, "I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God. I was sent to speak to you, and to bring you this good news.
Luk 1:20 Behold, you will be silent and not able to speak, until the day that these things will happen, because you didn't believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time."
Luk 1:21 The people were waiting for Zacharias, and they marveled that he delayed in the temple.
Luk 1:22 When he came out, he could not speak to them, and they perceived that he had seen a vision in the temple. He continued making signs to them, and remained mute.
Luk 1:23 It happened, when the days of his service were fulfilled, he departed to his house.
Luk 1:24 After these days Elizabeth, his wife, conceived, and she hid herself five months, saying,
Luk 1:25 "Thus has the Lord done to me in the days in which he looked at me, to take away my reproach among men."
Luk 1:26 Now in the sixth month, the angel Gabriel was sent from God to a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,
Luk 1:27 to a virgin pledged to be married to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David. The virgin's name was Mary.
Luk 1:28 Having come in, the angel said to her, "Rejoice, you highly favored one! The Lord is with you. Blessed are you among women!"
Luk 1:29 But when she saw him, she was greatly troubled at the saying, and considered what kind of salutation this might be.
Luk 1:30 The angel said to her, "Don't be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God.
Luk 1:31 Behold, you will conceive in your womb, and bring forth a son, and will call his name 'Jesus.'
Luk 1:32 He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his father, David,
Luk 1:33 and he will reign over the house of Jacob forever. There will be no end to his Kingdom."
Luk 1:34 Mary said to the angel, "How can this be, seeing I am a virgin?"
Luk 1:35 The angel answered her, "The Holy Spirit will come on you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore also the holy one who is born from you will be called the Son of God.
Luk 1:36 Behold, Elizabeth, your relative, also has conceived a son in her old age; and this is the sixth month with her who was called barren.
Luk 1:37 For everything spoken by God is possible."
Luk 1:38 Mary said, "Behold, the handmaid of the Lord; be it to me according to your word." The angel departed from her.
Luk 1:39 Mary arose in those days and went into the hill country with haste, into a city of Judah,
Luk 1:40 and entered into the house of Zacharias and greeted Elizabeth.
Luk 1:41 It happened, when Elizabeth heard Mary's greeting, that the baby leaped in her womb, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit.
Luk 1:42 She called out with a loud voice, and said, "Blessed are you among women, and blessed is the fruit of your womb!
Luk 1:43 Why am I so favored, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?
Luk 1:44 For behold, when the voice of your greeting came into my ears, the baby leaped in my womb for joy!
Luk 1:45 Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of the things which have been spoken to her from the Lord!"
Luk 1:46 Mary said, "My soul magnifies the Lord.
Luk 1:47 My spirit has rejoiced in God my Savior,
Luk 1:48 for he has looked at the humble state of his handmaid. For behold, from now on, all generations will call me blessed.
Luk 1:49 For he who is mighty has done great things for me. Holy is his name.
Luk 1:50 His mercy is for generations of generations on those who fear him.
Luk 1:51 He has shown strength with his arm. He has scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
Luk 1:52 He has put down princes from their thrones. And has exalted the lowly.
Luk 1:53 He has filled the hungry with good things. He has sent the rich away empty.
Luk 1:54 He has given help to Israel, his servant, that he might remember mercy,
Luk 1:55 As he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and his seed forever."
Luk 1:56 Mary stayed with her about three months, and then returned to her house.
Luk 1:57 Now the time that Elizabeth should give birth was fulfilled, and she brought forth a son.
Luk 1:58 Her neighbors and her relatives heard that the Lord had magnified his mercy towards her, and they rejoiced with her.
Luk 1:59 It happened on the eighth day, that they came to circumcise the child; and they would have called him Zacharias, after the name of the father.
Luk 1:60 His mother answered, "Not so; but he will be called John."
Luk 1:61 They said to her, "There is no one among your relatives who is called by this name."
Luk 1:62 They made signs to his father, what he would have him called.
Luk 1:63 He asked for a writing tablet, and wrote, "His name is John." They all marveled.
Luk 1:64 His mouth was opened immediately, and his tongue freed, and he spoke, blessing God.
Luk 1:65 Fear came on all who lived around them, and all these sayings were talked about throughout all the hill country of Judea.
Luk 1:66 All who heard them laid them up in their heart, saying, "What then will this child be?" The hand of the Lord was with him.
Luk 1:67 His father, Zacharias, was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied, saying,
Luk 1:68 "Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel, for he has visited and worked redemption for his people;
Luk 1:69 and has raised up a horn of salvation for us in the house of his servant David
Luk 1:70 (as he spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets who have been from of old),
Luk 1:71 salvation from our enemies, and from the hand of all who hate us;
Luk 1:72 to show mercy towards our fathers, to remember his holy covenant,
Luk 1:73 the oath which he spoke to Abraham, our father,
Luk 1:74 to grant to us that we, being delivered out of the hand of our enemies, should serve him without fear,
Luk 1:75 In holiness and righteousness before him all the days of our life.
Luk 1:76 And you, child, will be called a prophet of the Most High, for you will go before the face of the Lord to make ready his ways,
Luk 1:77 to give knowledge of salvation to his people by the remission of their sins,
Luk 1:78 because of the tender mercy of our God, whereby the dawn from on high will visit us,
Luk 1:79 to shine on those who sit in darkness and the shadow of death; to guide our feet into the way of peace."
Luk 1:80 The child was growing, and becoming strong in spirit, and was in the desert until the day of his public appearance to Israel.

From Gary... The path from foolishness and stupidity to wisdom

Some things are self-evident. And so, when I saw the pastoral scene above, I thought to myself, how unnecessary, how foolish would one have to be to label the obvious. Stupidity and foolishness are harsh words, but then again somethings in this world are. Consider...


What you love and what you hate defines you
Proverbs, Chapter 12 (WEB)

 1 Whoever loves correction loves knowledge,
but he who hates reproof is stupid.


The fool
Psalms, Chapter 53 (WEB)
 1  The fool has said in his heart, “There is no God.”

The beginning of knowledge is...
Proverbs, Chapter 1 (WEB) 

7 The fear of Yahweh is the beginning of knowledge;
but the foolish despise wisdom and instruction.


The desire of the heart...
Ecclesiastes, Chapter 7 (WEB)
19 Wisdom is a strength to the wise man more than ten rulers who are in a city.  20 Surely there is not a righteous man on earth, who does good and doesn’t sin.  21 Also don’t take heed to all words that are spoken, lest you hear your servant curse you;  22 for often your own heart knows that you yourself have likewise cursed others.  23 All this have I proved in wisdom. I said, “I will be wise”; but it was far from me.  24 That which is, is far off and exceedingly deep. Who can find it out?  25 I turned around, and my heart sought to know and to search out, and to seek wisdom and the scheme of things, and to know that wickedness is stupidity, and that foolishness is madness. 

Even Christians can act foolishly
Galatians, Chapter 3 (WEB)
  1 Foolish Galatians, who has bewitched you not to obey the truth, before whose eyes Jesus Christ was openly portrayed among you as crucified?  2 I just want to learn this from you. Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by hearing of faith?  3 Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, are you now completed in the flesh?  4 Did you suffer so many things in vain, if it is indeed in vain? 5 He therefore who supplies the Spirit to you, and works miracles among you, does he do it by the works of the law, or by hearing of faith?  6 Even as Abraham “believed God, and it was counted to him for righteousness.”  7 Know therefore that those who are of faith, the same are children of Abraham.
We once were...
Titus, Chapter 3 (WEB)
 1 Remind them to be in subjection to rulers and to authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work,  2 to speak evil of no one, not to be contentious, to be gentle, showing all humility toward all men.  3 For we were also once foolish, disobedient, deceived, serving various lusts and pleasures, living in malice and envy, hateful, and hating one another.  4 But when the kindness of God our Savior and his love toward mankind appeared,  5 not by works of righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy, he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing by the Holy Spirit, 6 whom he poured out on us richly, through Jesus Christ our Savior; 7 that, being justified by his grace, we might be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life


Even the most intelligent, educated and just plain savvy people I have known occasionally have said and done foolish or stupid things. To me, this is a truism. But, there is hope: we all can achieve some degree of wisdom if we are willing to genuinely seek it out;for true wisdom comes from God.  I urge you- consider the verses that you see above, and ask yourself the following: Am I seeking out God on my terms or HIS and why?