12/21/15

From Mark Copeland... "LIFE AFTER DEATH" Shall We Know Each Other There?



                           "LIFE AFTER DEATH"

                     Shall We Know Each Other There?

INTRODUCTION

1. Our studies in "Life After Death" so far have endeavored to show 
   that:
   a. Such a study is profitable
   b. Death should be thought of as a positive thing for Christians
   c. The nature of man is two-fold:  soul and body
   d. The departed spirits of believers go to be with Christ at death
   e. The souls of the redeemed are in a conscious state during this 
      "intermediate" state

2. The question we will focus on in this lesson pertains to the idea of 
   recognition after death:
   a. I.e., shall we know each other after death?
   b. For one may agree with all that has been said so far, yet believe 
      that we shall NOT know one another...
      1) Either in the "intermediate" state
      2) Or in the "final" state

3. But what does the Bible reveal about this question?

[We begin by observing...]

I. SCRIPTURES WHICH SUGGEST RECOGNITION AFTER DEATH

   A. ISAIAH 14:3-4, 9-11,16
      1. This passage refers to the king of Babylon
      2. Who is recognize by those in Hades upon his death

   B. EZEKIEL 32:17-32
      1. This passage speaks of Pharaoh and his army
      2. Who is recognized by others in Hades - 21
      3. Who in turn recognizes those of Assyria, Elam, Edom, etc. 
         - 22-31

   C. LUKE 16:19-31
      1. This is the familiar story of Lazarus and the rich man
      2. In which the rich man recognizes both Lazarus and Abraham 
         - 23-24

   D. 1 THESSALONIANS 2:19-20; 2 CORINTHIANS 4:14
      1. Both of these passages reveal Paul's expectation of being with 
         His converts at Christ's coming
      2. Recognizing them would be a source of great joy for Paul

   E. MATTHEW 8:11-12
      1. Reference is made to Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob in the kingdom of 
         heaven
      2. The recognition of which would increase the joys of those 
         present (and the dismay of those "cast out into outer 
         darkness")

[To these examples we could add Samuel (who after his death was 
recognized by Saul - 1Sa 28:3-19), plus Moses and Elijah (recognized
on the Mount of Transfiguration - Mt 17:1-5).  All clearly indicating
that we will indeed know one another after death!

But what are some objections commonly made about this view?  And how
might one answer them?]

II. SOME OBJECTIONS CONSIDERED

   A. OBJECTION #1
      1. STATED...
         a. Some of these passages speak of conditions after the 
            resurrection
         b. At that time we will have bodies by which recognition may be 
            possible
         c. But that does not prove that "disembodied" souls in heaven 
            now recognize each other
      2. ANSWERED...
         a. Most of these passages are definitely speaking of the 
            "intermediate" state
            1) Those referring to the King of Babylon, Pharaoh and his 
               army
            2) The rich man and Lazarus
            3) Samuel, Elijah, and Moses
         b. Angels have no "bodies", yet recognize one another 
            - e.g.,Dan 10:13

   B. OBJECTION #2
      1. STATED...
         a. If we can actually recognize one another, then we can miss 
            those not there
         b. This would cause unhappiness in heaven
      2. ANSWERED...
         a. What about Jesus?
            1) Does He not miss many that He sincerely admonished (as in 
               the case of the rich young ruler - Mk 10:21)?
            2) Would one then say that Jesus is unhappy?
         b. Perhaps the answer to this question lies in the following 
            direction:
            1) That when we die, all earthly ties that were not in 
               Christ (including family ties) will lose their meaning!
            2) Do not passages like Mt 12:46-50 and Mt 10:37 point 
               in that direction?
               a) Our spiritual family becomes our true family, as it 
                  was with Jesus
               b) Our love for Jesus will far surpass the love we have 
                  for others
         c. Or does not God...
            1) Who has the power to take away death, sorrow, crying, 
               pain (cf. Re 7:17; 21:4)
            2) Also have the power to remove any unpleasant awareness of
               loved ones lost while still permitting blessed awareness 
               of loved ones saved?

   C. OBJECTION #3
      1. STATED...
         a. According to Mt 22:23-33, all earthly ties will lose their
            meaning
         b. Hence, any recognition of those whom we have known on earth 
            would be meaningless
      2. ANSWERED...
         a. The passage simply teaches that there will be no "marriage" 
            relationships in the resurrection
         b. In this sense, we will be like the angels in heaven
         c. This does NOT say "all" relationships will be abolished!

CONCLUSION

1. There is good reason, therefore, to believe that we shall know one 
   another after this life

2. And that can serve as a powerful motive...
   a. To live our lives pleasing in the sight of God
   b. To try and take those we love with us by encouraging them to live 
      likewise!

In our next study, we shall take a look at the condition of the wicked 
during the "intermediate" state...

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2015

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The Stone that Rocked the World by Garry K. Brantley, M.A., M.Div.


http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=13&article=384

The Stone that Rocked the World

by Garry K. Brantley, M.A., M.Div.

Juma became increasingly apprehensive as he watched several of his goats climbing too high up the cliffs. Being a conscientious shepherd, he decided to retrieve the strays. As he climbed, he noticed two small openings to a cave. Thinking that one of his goats might be hiding inside, he tossed a stone into the opening. Much to his surprise, he heard an unusual cracking sound. His younger cousin and fellow shepherd, Muhammed adh-Dhib, investigated the cave the following day and discovered that Juma’s stone had broken open a pottery vessel containing ancient documents. Little did Juma realize that his fortuitously cast stone on that afternoon in 1947 eventually would rock the world of biblical scholarship for decades to come.
The cave (called cave 1) housed the first seven manuscripts of the now-famous Qumran materials commonly known as the Dead Sea Scrolls. Subsequent expeditions in the 1950s and 1960s uncovered a vast cache of ancient Jewish writings from ten other caves in the forms of well-preserved scrolls and fragments that represent an entire library of over 800 volumes (Shanks, 1990, p. 1). Unfortunately, after nearly five decades large portions of these documents have not been published, which has caused considerable controversy over the last few years.
Some Qumran material has been published, however, and analyses of these manuscripts have produced some interesting developments in biblical studies. For example, these documents have radically altered mainstream Johannine scholarship. The gospel of John purports to have been written by one who was a contemporary and close companion of Jesus (John 21:20-24). Extrabiblical and biblical evidences suggest that John, the son of Zebedee, authored his Gospel during the latter part of the first century (see Thiessen, 1943, pp. 162-170). Obviously, it would be physically impossible for one of Jesus’ contemporaries to live much into the second century.
Prior to the Qumran discoveries a popular belief among more liberal theologians was that the Fourth Gospel was a mid-to-late second century document whose author was influenced heavily by Grecian philosophy (see Guthrie, 1970, pp. 277-279). This view, which clearly repudiated the biblical implication that an eyewitness wrote the narrative, was first espoused in 1847 by F.C. Bauer, and persisted into the 1950s (Charlesworth, 1993). Linguistic parallels between John’s Gospel and Grecian literature formed the basis for this perspective. These scholars argued that such terms as Logos, truth, light, and darkness appearing in the Fourth Gospel corresponded to Grecian thought but were foreign to common Judaistic concepts. Thus, John was regarded as the latest Gospel and, because of its late date, historically unreliable.
Texts from Qumran, however, demonstrate the usage of such terminology in Jewish literature during the first century. One manuscript called the Rule of the Community contrasts the “Sons of Righteousness” with the “Sons of Deceit.” This document states that the former walk in the “ways of light,” but the latter walk in the “ways of darkness.” Further, it declares that the “nature of truth” emanates from a “spring of light,” and deceit emerges from a “well of darkness.” This language is strikingly similar to many phrases in John’s Gospel. For instance, John 12:35 states: “Walk while you have the light, lest darkness overtake you; he who walks in darkness does not know where he is going” (John 12:35; cf. John 1:1-9; 3:19-21). Due to this information from the Dead Sea Scrolls, most scholars now “...agree that [John] dates from around 100 C.E. [A.D.] or perhaps a decade earlier” (Charlesworth, 1993, 9[1]:20).
This does not necessarily mean, (as some scholars suggest) that John was influenced directly by the Qumran community, but it does demonstrate that these were terms commonly employed by Jews both earlier than, and contemporary with, John (see Charlesworth, 1993, 9[1]:25). Thus, as Charlesworth further admitted, almost all the scholarship that denied John as a first-century Jewish composition “...must be discarded” (9[1]:19). That small stone thrown forty-seven years ago continues to rock the biblical world of liberal scholarship.

REFERENCES

Charlesworth, James (1993), “Reinterpreting John: How the Dead Sea Scrolls Have Revolutionized Our Understanding of the Gospel of John,” Bible Review, 9[1]:19-25,54, February.
Guthrie, Donald (1970), New Testament Introduction (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity).
Shanks, Hershel (1990), “The Excitement Lasts: An Overview,” The Dead Sea Scrolls After Forty Years (Washington, DC: Biblical Archaeology Society).
Thiessen, Henry (1934), Introduction to the New Testament (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans).

The Atheistic Naturalist's Self-Contradiction by Jeff Miller, Ph.D.



http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=4225

The Atheistic Naturalist's Self-Contradiction

by Jeff Miller, Ph.D.

When thoroughly scrutinized, error always exposes itself through some kind of self-contradiction. Truth alone stands the test of scrutiny. One such example is highlighted when considering a fundamental plank of the atheistic naturalist’s position.
The atheist says, “I refuse to consider believing in anything that isn’t natural—whose explanation cannot be found in nature. Everything must and can be explained through natural processes.” So, according to the atheist, the existence of everything in the Universe must be explainable by natural means—nothing unnatural (e.g., a supernatural Being) can be considered in the equation. Evolutionary geologist Robert Hazen, who received a Ph.D. in Earth Science from Harvard, is a research scientist at the Carnegie Institution of Washington’s Geophysical Laboratory and a professor of Earth Science at George Mason University. In his lecture series, Origins of Life, Hazen said:
In this lecture series I make a basic assumption that life emerged by some kind of natural process. I propose that life arose by a sequence of events that are completely consistent with the natural laws of chemistry and physics. In this assumption I am like most other scientists. I believe in a universe that is ordered by these natural laws. Like other scientists, I rely on the power of observations and experiments and theoretical reasoning to understand how the cosmos came to be the way it is (2005, emp. added).
The problem is that in holding this position, the naturalist quickly runs into walls of scientific fact that contradict it. The laws of science are formal declarations of what have been proven, time and again through science, to occur in nature without exception. The naturalist cannot hold a view that contradicts the laws of nature and not simultaneously contradict himself. But this is precisely the position that the naturalist is in. He must allege an explanation not in keeping with nature for many things we find in the Universe. For example, the naturalist’s explanation of the origin of matter and energy (i.e., spontaneous generation or eternal existence) is unnatural (i.e., in contradiction to the 1stand 2nd Laws of Thermodynamics; see Miller, 2007). The naturalist must further contradict himself by alleging an unnatural explanation for the origin of life (i.e., abiogenesis, in contradiction to the Law of Biogenesis; see Miller, 2012). And what’s more, the naturalist must contradict himself by alleging that various kinds of living creatures can give rise to other kinds of living creatures through macroevolution—a contention which, unlike microevolution, has never been observed to occur in nature (see Thompson, 2002). Abiogenesis, spontaneous energy generation, the eternality of matter, and macroevolution are all unnatural suggestions since they have never been observed to occur in nature, and yet they are fundamental to the naturalist’s unnatural view. Simply put, the atheistic naturalist’s position is self-contradictory.
The worldview that is in keeping with the evidence—that is not self-contradictory—is the Christian faith as described on the pages of the Bible. The naturalist cannot explain the Universe without relying on unnatural means. The creationist has no problem with unnatural explanations, since the Bible clearly states that God—a supernatural Being—created the Universe and life. Truth is never self-contradictory. When scrutinized, it always comes out on top. When a person chooses to fight it, he will inevitably get hurt in the end. “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’” (Psalm 53:1).

REFERENCES

Hazen, Robert (2005), Origins of Life, audio-taped lecture (Chantilly, VA: The Teaching Company).
Miller, Jeff (2007), “God and the Laws of Thermodynamics: A Mechanical Engineer’s Perspective,”Reason & Revelation, 27[4]:25-31, April, http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/3293.
Miller, Jeff (2012), “The Law of Biogenesis [Parts I & II],” Reason & Revelation, 32[1/2]:1-11,13-22, January-February, http://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=4165&topic=93.
Thompson, Bert (2002), The Scientific Case for Creation (Montgomery, AL: Apologetics Press).

Evolutionary Theory Changes Its Tune...Again by Eric Lyons, M.Min.



http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=3484

Evolutionary Theory Changes Its Tune...Again

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

The song has been playing like a broken record for decades: “Evolution is true. Evolution is a fact. Evolution is true. Evolution is a fact....” As long as this mantra is repeated by enough intellectuals, it seems many will become and/or remain enamored with evolutionary theory—even when the underlying evidence is shown continually to be inadequate and at odds with reality. Many evolutionary-laden science textbooks declare that natural selection (e.g., English peppered moths), mutations, embryology, homology, the fossil record (e.g., the horse “family tree”), etc. all prove the General Theory of Evolution. In actuality, none of these proves what evolutionists claim. Creationists recognize the fossil record, similarities among living things, natural selection, and mutations, but we have observed nothingthat proves humans descended from amphibious creatures that crawled out of the water hundreds of millions of years ago. The fact is, evolutionists’ “proofs” are simply assertions. Their theory is merely a twisted interpretation of the physical world. What’s more, their “story” changes from one year to the next—and sometimes one day to the next.
Consider evolutionists’ assertions regarding the origin of birds. A 1989 Earth Science high school textbook declared: “The fossil record clearly shows that the immediate ancestor of this bird [ArchaeopteryxEL] was a dinosaur” (Namowitz and Spaulding, p. 565, emp. added). In 1994, Prentice Hall published a widely used middle school textbook titledEvolution: Change Over Time. Adjacent to a chart showing how long ago birds supposedly evolved from dinosaurs, the editors placed these words: “[B]iologists think that birds are actually modern-day dinosaurs. Current theory indicates that birds evolved from the most famous of the dinosaurs, Tyrannosaurus rex” (p. 67). Only last year, evolutionary scientists in China confidently affirmed that “birds evolved from dinosaurs” (“Feathered Fossils...,” 2009), and just last month we reported how evolutionary scientists writing in Naturemagazine allegedly “confirmed” (yet once again) that birds evolved from dinosaurs (Butt, 2010).
Shortly after this most recent dinosaur-to-bird article was published in Nature this past January (Zhang, et al., 2010), an article by Oregon State zoologist John Ruben appeared in the pro-evolutionary journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. What’s different about this story? For starters, Ruben acknowledged in the first line of the article that “new fossils, and reinterpretations of well-known fossils, sharply at odds with conventional wisdom never seem to cease popping up” (2010). Furthermore, he admitted to the “vagaries of the fossil record,” declaring what creationists have been affirming for years: “current notions of near resolution of many of the most basic questions about long-extinct forms should probably be regarded with caution” (2010, emp. added). “Even major aspects of paleobiology of intensely studied, recently extinct taxa (<10 added="" emp.="" remain="" span="" uben="" unresolved="" yrs.="">
One “major” unresolved aspect of paleobiology that Ruben addressed was the origin of birds.Although “many scientific and lay communities,” including countless public school textbook editors, have been championing for decades that birds are “living dinosaurs,” Ruben urged readers to put the brake on this bandwagon. First of all, “very recent data suggest that many clearly cursorial theropods [ground dwelling dinosaurs—EL] previously thought to have been feathered may not have been” (Ruben; cf. Lingham-Soliar, et al., 2007, 274:1823-1829; see also Butt, 2010). What’s more, “the group that birds are assumed to have been derived from, may not even have been dinosaurs” (Ruben, emp. added)! Even though for many years, innumerable impressionable minds have been taught the “factuality” of dinosaur-to-bird evolution, evolutionary zoologist John Ruben says this wasonly an assumption. Scientists have never proven that dinosaurs evolved into birds. In fact, based upon recent model glide tests done by several scientists around the country (see Alexander, et al., 2010), a growing number of evolutionists appear to be “broadly at odds with one another” (Ruben).
Evolutionary theories regarding bird-origins are contradictory, plain and simple. Some contend, “The evidence shows that birds evolved from dinosaurs,” yet others are drawing “totally different” conclusions (“Challenge to Dino-Bird...,” 2010)—based upon the same evidence. Although dinosaur-to-bird theorists have “insisted...that the debate is all over and done with,” Ruben has stated that “this issue isn’t resolved at all. There are just too many inconsistencies with the idea that birds had dinosaur ancestors” (Viegas, 2010). Instead, Ruben believes that “the evidence is finally showing that these [raptors] which are usually considered dinosaurs were actually descended from birds, not the other way around” (as quoted in “Challenge to Dino-Bird...,” 2010, emp. added, bracketed item in orig.).
Ruben is correct about one thing: the often-parroted claim that dinosaurs evolved into birds is merely an assumption (and a wrong one at that!). Yet, Ruben and others are sadly mistaken that birdsevolved into dinosaurs. Both of these conclusions are simply unjustified, unproven interpretations of the fossil record. The fossil record in no way proves evolution. Dinosaurs never evolved into birds and birds never evolved into dinosaurs. God created these animals on days five and six of Creation...and no fossil has ever contradicted this fact.

REFERENCES

Alexander, David, Enpu Gong, Larry Martin, David Burnham, and Amanda Falk (2010), “Model Tests of Gliding with Different Hindwing Configurations in the Four-Winged Dromaeosaurid Microraptor Gui,”Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(7):2972-2976, February 9, [On-line], URL:http://www.pnas.org/content/107/7/2972.abstract?ijkey=6634b3c679eee990cb37865665b5a06956ee476e&keytype2=tf_ipsecsha.
Butt, Kyle (2010), “Were Dinosaur ‘Feathers’ Colored?” Resources, [On-line], URL:http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/240350.
“Challenge to Dino-Bird Evolution Theory Not Dead Yet” (2010), [On-line], URL: http://www.world-science.net/othernews/100210_bird.htm.
Evolution: Change Over Time (1994), (Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice Hall).
“Feathered Fossils Prove Birds Evolved from Dinosaurs, Say Chinese Scientists” (2009), Mail Online, September 25, [On-line], URL: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-1215998/Feathered-fossils-prove-birds-evolved-dinosaurs-say-Chinese-scientists.html.
Lingham-Soliar, Theagarten., Alan Feduccia, and Xiaolin Wang (2007), “A New Chinese Specimen Indicates that ‘ProtoFeathers’ in the Early Cretaceous Theropod Dinosaur Sinosauropteryx are Degraded Collagen Fibers,” Proceedings of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences, August 7, 274:1823-1829.
Namowitz, Samuel and Nancy Spaulding (1989), Earth Science (Lexington, MA: Heath).
Ruben, John (2010), “Paleobiology and the Origins of Avian Flight,” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 107(7):2733-2734, February 9, [On-line], URL:http://www.pnas.org/content/107/7/2733.extract?sid=aae35bc0-203d-4460-b1c2-cadd08fd1665.
Viegas, Jennifer (2010), “Some ‘Dinosaurs’ Evolved from Birds?” DiscoveryNews, February 17, [On-line], URL: http://news.discovery.com/dinosaurs/some-dinosaurs-evolved-from-birds.html.
Zhang, Fucheng, Stuart Kearns, Patrick Orr, et al. (2010), “Fossilized Melanosomes and the Color of Cretaceous Dinosaurs and Birds,” Nature, January 27, [On-line], URL:etahttp://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature08740.html.

Peace, Politics, and Principle by Dave Miller, Ph.D.



http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=7&article=1243

Peace, Politics, and Principle

by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

One certain feature of current culture is the widespread consensus that truth is subjective and relative (not objective and absolute), and that the “rightness” and “wrongness” of a particular belief or action is defined by the effect it has on others. Hence, the only “sin,” the only morally reprehensible act, is to beintolerant of others’ beliefs and actions. “Openness”—the willingness to accept others regardless of their personal beliefs or behavior—is the ultimate virtue. Those who have embraced this philosophical posture view all of life through that perspective. Like “rose-colored glasses,” it serves as a lens or filter through which the legitimacy of every belief or action is assessed. Belief and actions are deemed acceptable or unacceptable on the basis of whether they are tolerant or intolerant of the beliefs and actions of others. This relativistic approach to life naturally results in a blanket disapproval of an objective moral standard with spiritual absolutes. In fact, such firm, uncompromising values are dismissed as “judgmental,” “mean-spirited,” “unloving and uncompassionate,” “politically incorrect,” and “narrow-minded.”
Within the church, the parallel to this circumstance (perhaps even the result of it) is the loss of genuine commitment to the impartial application of biblical truth. Circumstances are examined, weighed, and judged on the basis of their political ramifications, or how kinfolk will be affected, or what legal repercussions will ensue. Take, for example, the office of elder in the church of Christ. The Bible teaches that the elders’ central responsibility before God is to monitor the spiritual well-being of members in order to get them to obey God so that they can get to heaven (e.g., Hebrews 13:17). Unfortunately, however, elders can come to view their role first and foremost as one of peacekeeping. This distortion and prostitution of the role of the elder inevitably results in the sacrifice of truth and biblical principles in order to achieve a “peace and harmony” that, quite unbiblically, is defined as “absence of conflict.”
Absence of conflict becomes the polar star, the guiding light, by which an eldership may come to make its decisions. This illicit filter often results in truth being swept aside when, to act in harmony with the truth, would result in disruption, division, or conflict. It allows elders to ignore, overlook, and minimize the status of wayward, disobedient, unfaithful members, rather than pursuing the biblically prescribed process that will culminate in only one of two possible outcomes: restoration or expulsion (Matthew 18:17; 1 Corinthians 5:2,13; Titus 3:10). When righteous, godly people are demonized as “divisive,” disrespected, and sacrificed in order to coddle, appease, and mollify rebellious members, Jesus and the Bible no longer are the guiding principle of decision making. Satan has been allowed to have his way (Ephesians 4:27), his clever ploys have worked (Ephesians 6:11), people have been blinded to spiritual reality by him (2 Corinthians 4:4; 1 John 2:11), he has been feasting (1 Peter 5:8), and he has taken people captive to do his will (2 Timothy 2:26). The display of such favoritism is so unlike God (Luke 20:21; Galatians 2:6).
This intoxication with pseudo-peace, and its corresponding refusal to be scripturally confrontational, has been the cause of much heartache and perversion of God’s will. The secular mind covets freedom from conflict at all costs. But the preferable peace of which the Scriptures speak so frequently is not “absence of conflict.” Such peace will never exist in this life. Yet, the peace enjoined in the Bible may be possessed—even in the midst of conflict and turmoil. Jesus contrasted two types of peace when He said to His disciples: “Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you” (John 14:27). There is a spiritual peace and a worldly peace. Not long after the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6) promised this peace to His disciples, those very disciples faced tremendous conflict in their relations with other humans (e.g., Acts 5:40; 6:11-12). Did Jesus’ promise go unfulfilled?
“Peace” in God’s sight is not gauged by the presence or absence of conflict or division. In fact, when conditions are harmonious and peaceful, God’s will very likely is being neglected (Luke 6:26; Jeremiah 6:14; Galatians 1:10; John 15:18-21). Jesus was very forthright in dashing the popular conception of “peace.” He declared: “Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division” (Luke 12:51). The only conclusion to be drawn from this paradoxical declaration is that peace may be possessed only on the condition of obedience to God’s will (Romans 5:1).
Being submissive and obedient to God brings peace to the mind and heart of the individual (Isaiah 26:3; Philippians 4:7; Colossians 3:15)—even when one’s surroundings are turbulent. Due to the fact that many—even within the church—refuse to humble themselves before God’s will, it is inevitable that there must be turmoil and conflict between the obedient and the disobedient (Proverbs 28:4; Ephesians 5:11). Those who are faithful will possess peace—even as they plunge themselves headlong into spiritual war (Ephesians 6:12; 1 Timothy 6:12; 2 Timothy 2:3; Jude 3).
So many look around them in the local congregation and see “peaceful” conditions, even though they worship side by side with impenitent purveyors of error, fornicators, gossips, tale-bearers, and false-accusers, and even though unfaithful members have exited the assembly never to return. When they ought to be “contending with the wicked” (Proverbs 28:4), they instead smile proudly and feel God is surely pleased, for “peace prevails.” Those who have the spiritual and godly gumption to take a stand on critical spiritual issues and speak out are immediately turned upon by a vicious pack of “peace lovers” who mount a cowardly, behind-the-scenes campaign to assassinate the character and destroy the influence of the faithful. Jeremiah alluded very directly to those who seek the promotion of peace (i.e., nonconfrontational absence of conflict) in the presence of disobedience and violation of God’s principles. He accused them of saying, “Peace, peace!” when there was no peace (Jeremiah 6:14). He meant that their notion of peace (i.e., absence of conflict over sin) was not really peace (i.e., obedient harmony with God’s will). Their “peace” was merely a makeshift, temporary dressing of a more serious wound.
May God forgive those unprincipled church leaders who congratulate themselves in their quest to maintain peaceful conditions at the expense of faithful adherence to truth without regard to personalities or politics. Their preoccupation with physical peace and avoidance of tribulation is wicked. It eats away at the foundations of God’s spiritual house. It corrodes congregational resolve to remain fervent in conformity to God’s will. It simply does not match the biblical record. For Jesus announced: “These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace.” But in the very next breath, He said: “In the world you will have tribulation” (John 16:33).

How Old was Terah when Abraham was Born? by Eric Lyons, M.Min.



http://apologeticspress.org/AllegedDiscrepancies.aspx?article=758&b=Genesis

How Old was Terah when Abraham was Born?

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

Unfortunately, in an attempt to defend the strict chronology of Bible genealogies, there are some who read them without taking into account that certain Hebrew phrases possess a wider connotation than what might be perceived in English. One of these phrases is found several times in Genesis 11. In this chapter, we learn of various Messianic ancestors who lived a certain age and begot sons. For example, verse 16 of that chapter reads: “Eber lived thirty-four years, and begot Peleg.” Later, we read where “Nahor lived 29 years, and begot Terah” (11:24). The sons listed in this chapter are generally thought to be the firstborn sons, yet the evidence shows that this was not always the case because there was not always a father-to-firstborn-son linkage.
Many have assumed that because Genesis 11:26 states, “Now Terah lived seventy years, and begot Abram, Nahor, and Haran,” that Abram (also known as Abraham; cf. Genesis 17:5) was Terah’s firstborn, and that he was born when Terah was 70. The truth is, however, Abraham was not born for another 60 years. When Stephen was delivering his masterful sermon recorded in Acts 7, he stated that Abraham moved to the land of Palestine “after the death of his father [Terah—EL]” (7:4). Yet if Terah was 205 years old when he died (Genesis 11:32), and Abraham departed Haran when he was 75 (Genesis 12:4), then Terah was 130, not 70, when Abraham was born. In light of this information Henry Morris and John Whitcomb have aided us in better understanding Genesis 11:26 by paraphrasing it as follows: “And Terah lived seventy years and begat the first of his three sons, the most important of whom (not because of age but because of the Messianic line) was Abram” (1961, p. 480).
Lest you think this is an isolated incident (where the son mentioned was not the firstborn son), consider another example. Genesis 5:32 states: “And Noah was five hundred years old, and Noah begot Shem, Ham, and Japheth.” Like the situation with Terah begetting Abraham, Nahor, and Haran, here we read that at age 500, Noah begot Shem, Ham, and Japheth. Was Shem the firstborn? Were the three sons of Noah triplets? Or was Shem mentioned first because of his Messianic connection? In all likelihood, the evidence seems to indicate that Shem was not the firstborn, but was born two years later. Consider the following passages:
“Noah was six hundred years old when the flood waters were on the earth” (Genesis 7:6).
“And it came to pass in the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, that the waters were dried up from the earth and Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and indeed the surface of the ground was dry” (Genesis 8:13, emp. added).
“Shem was one hundred years old, and begot Arphaxad two years after the flood” (Genesis 11:10, emp. added).
These verses seem to suggest that Shem was not born when Noah was 500, but rather when Noah was 502. A comparison of Genesis 11:10 with 10:22 may suggest that Shem’s son, Arphaxad, was not the firstborn son in his family. Likely, Shem, Arphaxad, and others are mentioned first for the same reason Abraham is—because they are Messianic ancestors, and not because they were the firstborn sons of their fathers. Interestingly, numerous other Messianic ancestors, such as Seth, Isaac, Jacob, Judah, and Perez, were not firstborn sons. Was Moses being dishonest when he recorded these genealogies? Absolutely not. We must remember,
the year of begetting a first son, known in the Old Testament as “the beginning of strength,” was an important year in the life of the Israelite (Gen. 49:3; Deut. 21:17; Psa. 78:51; and Psa. 105:36). It is this year…and not the year of the birth of the Messianic link, that is given in each case in Genesis 11 (Whitcomb and Morris, 1961, p. 480).
Just as Genesis 5:32 does not teach that Noah was 500 when Shem was born, Genesis 11:26 does not teach that Abraham was born when Terah was 70. This verse basically means that Terah began having children at age 70, not that all three children were born at that age. According to other passages, Terah was 130 when Abraham was born. Those who allege these passages contradict Genesis 11:26 simply are misunderstanding the text by not taking into account that certain Hebrew phrases possess a wider connotation than what might be perceived in modern-day English.
REFERENCES
Custance, Arthur (1967), The Genealogies of the Bible, Doorway Paper #24 (Ottawa, Canada: Doorway Papers).
Whitcomb, John C. and Henry M. Morris (1961), The Genesis Flood (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker).

From Jim McGuiggan.... A PRAYER FOR GOD'S COMING

A PRAYER FOR GOD'S COMING

O Lord, it seems that we have always been looking for you. Prophets told of your coming and psalmists sang of your future arrival. The whole creation groans and wonders when you will show yourself and right all wrongs and deliver it from the bondage to which it has been subjected not of its own will but in hope. A hope for which it longs.

Your church herself wonders why you are taking so long to arrive. Sometimes we think that even the evil doers of the world have moments when they wish you would come and stop them in their evil tracks so that they will not plunge even deeper into the moral mire they presently wallow in.
Millions toil only to have the wages of their honest labor cruelly snatched from them and they weep bitter tears as they continue impossible tasks. Millions sell themselves and their body parts and even their children to stay alive and women are forced into shame so families can eat a handful of rice. People ask for bread and are given a stone while tyrants live in luxury and governments reward violence.

It’s been so long and still we haven’t seen you exalt the humble and bring down the proud and arrogant. We have heard such stories of you in olden days and we believe them but we wonder why there are none to tell today. We hear of them happening here and there and once in a while and we wonder why they don't happen everywhere and all the time.

Forgive our impatience but do please remember that it stems in part from your own established righteousness and reputation which is proclaimed in the hymns and songs of your People and in light of the promises you have made. Still, forgive us and help us to continue to believe that in Jesus Christ you have vindicated yourself and will gloriously fulfill all your promises, and that we will all see and know that you are a God worthy of praise and that your faithful love endures forever.
With sadness and some fear we recognize that you might have come to us and gone away again—might have come to us in disguise, perhaps as a child wanting to be loved, a woman looking for justice or a man wearily and in some irritation looking for his soul. Perhaps we were too busy praying for your coming that we had no time for you when you came. We implore you not to leave us this way but to return to us. And when you do finally come to us without disguise may you find us busy responding compassionately to you in your many disguises. O come to our aid, we pray, though we are a wicked and wayward human family for there is so much pain and suffering and loss and there is no one to help us but you. No one but you!
©2004 Jim McGuiggan. All materials are free to be copied and used as long as money is not being made.

From Wayne Jackson... Psallo and the Instrumental Music Controversy



http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Jackson/Boyd/Wayne/1937/psallo.html

Psallo and the Instrumental Music Controversy

For more than a century the advocates of the use of instrumental music in Christian worship have contended that one of the stronger arguments in defense of that practice is to be found in the Greek word psallo. This term, found only five times in the New Testament, is rendered by the English terms “sing” (Rom. 15:9; 1 Cor. 14:15; Jas. 5:13), and “make melody” (Eph. 5:19).
It has been alleged, however, that psallo embraces the use of a mechanical instrument. In classical Greek the word meant “to strike,” as, for instance, “striking” the strings of a harp. And so, it is claimed, this concept is transferred into the New Testament.

The History of Psallo

Words have histories, and linguistic history often reveals that terms are altered in their meanings as they pass through the centuries. So it was with psallo.
The history of the Greek language extends back about fifteen centuries before Christ. The era called the “classical” period was from around 900 B.C. (the time of Homer) to the conquests of Alexander the Great (c. 330 B.C.). During this time psallo carried the basic sense of “to touch sharply, to move by touching, to pull, twitch” (Liddell, p. 1841).
Aeschylus (525-456 B.C.), the Greek playwright, used the word of “plucking hair” (Persae, p. 1062). Euripides (480-460 B.C.?), another Greek writer, spoke of “twanging” the bowstring (Bacchae, p. 784). Psallo was used of “twitching” the carpenter’s line so as to leave a mark (Anthologia Palatine, 6.103). Finally, in Plutarch the verb also could convey the sense of “plucking” the strings of an instrument (Pericles 1.6).
Surely it is obvious that in these various passages the object of what is “touched” was supplied by the context.
Scholars are aware, however, that languages change with time. In 1952, F.F. Bruce wrote: “Words are not static things. They change their meaning with the passage of time” (Vine, 1997, p. vi). This concept must be understood if one is to arrive at the meaning of psallo as used in the New Testament.
The Septuagint (LXX) is a Greek translation of the Old Testament that dates from the 3rd century B.C. In this production, psallo is used to represent three different Hebrew words. The term may be used to denote simply the playing of an instrument (1 Sam. 16:16). It may bear the sense of singing, accompanied by an instrument (as certain contexts reveal – cf. Psa. 27:6; 98:5 – Eng. versions). Or, the word may refer to vocal music alone (cf. Psa. 135:3; 138:1; 146:2).
After a detailed consideration of the use of psallo in the Greek OT, Ferguson affirms that “what is clear is that an instrument did not inhere in the word psallo in the Septuagint” (p. 7 – emp. orig.). He contends, in fact, that the “preponderance of occurrences” of psallo in the LXX refer simply to “vocal music.”
In a study of the transitional uses of psallo across the years, one thing becomes apparent. The task of the conscientious Bible student must be to determine how the verb is used in the New Testament. This is the only relevant issue.
Incidentally, if one is going to quote the classical usage of psallo, or that conveyed in the LXX (as defenders of instrumental music commonly do), then he could well argue for the playing of instruments as a pure act of worship – with no singing at all – because that sense is clearly employed at times in those bodies of literature.

Language Authorities

J. H. Thayer (1828-1901) was Professor of New Testament Criticism and Interpretation at the Divinity School of Harvard University. He also served on the revision committee that produced the American Standard Version of the New Testament.
In 1885 A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament was published, which reflected Thayer’s translation, revision, and enlargement of an earlier work involving the labors of C.G. Wilke and C.L.W. Grimm. In its day, Thayer’s work was the finest lexicon available, and still is of considerable value.
In discussing psallo, after commenting upon the word’s use in classical Greek, and in the Septuagint, he notes that “in the N.T. [psallo signifies] to sing a hymn, to celebrate the praises of God in song” (p. 675).
The first edition of W.E. Vine’s Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words was issued in 1940 in four volumes. In 1952 a one-volume edition was published. F.F. Bruce, Head of the Department of Biblical History and Literature at the University of Sheffield, wrote the Foreword for that production. Therein, Prof. Bruce praised Vine’s work. He stated that the “Greek scholarship was wide, accurate and up-to-date.” He noted that the author had a “thorough mastery of the classical idiom,” a “close acquaintance with the Hellenistic vernacular,” and an awareness of the influence of the Septuagint upon the New Testament.
In his popular work, Vine, in commenting upon psallo (under “Melody”), notes the classical sense, the Septuagint usage, and then says: “in the N.T., to sing a hymn, sing praise” (1997, p. 730).
In another book, Vine explained the matter more fully.
“The word psallo originally meant to play a stringed instrument with the fingers, or to sing with the accompaniment of a harp. Later, however, and in the New Testament, it came to signify simply to praise without the accompaniment of an instrument” (1951, p. 191 – emp. added).
In 1964. the prestigious Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (edited by Kittel, Friedrich, and Bromiley) issued from the press. The article which dealt with psallo was written by Gerhard Delling. Relative to Ephesians 5:19, Delling contended that the literal use of psallo, as “found in the LXX, is now employed figuratively” (Kittel, et al., p. 499).
In an abridgement of this work, published in 1985, Bromiley expressed it this way: “psallontes does not now denote literally playing on a stringed instrument” (p. 1226).
In the revised edition of the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia, David Howard of Bethel Theological Seminary, commented upon psallo.
Psallo originally meant to play a stringed instrument; in the LXX it generally translates zimmer and ngn. In the New Testament it refers to singing God’s praises (not necessarily accompanied by strings)” (p. 314).
In the Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament, Balz and Schneider write: “In the NT psallo always refers to a song of praise to God” (p. 495).
In his popular work, Word Meanings in the New Testament, Ralph Earle comments on psallo in Ephesians 5:19.
“‘Making melody’ is one word in Greek, psallontes. The verb psallo meant first to strike the strings of a harp or lyre. Then it meant to ‘strike up a tune.’ Finally it was used in the sense ‘to sing’” (p. 333).
It is important to remember that these men were affiliated with denominational groups that employ instrumental music in their worship. They have no motive for misrepresenting the facts of this issue. Their testimony, therefore, is compelling indeed.
On the other hand, we must acknowledge that a few scholars have set aside the historical evidence, being swayed by their own theological prejudices. They assert that psallo in the New Testament embodies the idea of “playing” a musical instrument. Liddell & Scott, as well as Edward Robinson, in their respective works, listed the term “play” as the significance of psallo in Ephesians 5:19.
The best example of unwarranted lexical liberty in recent times is the Baur-Arndt-Gingrich production. In the first edition (1957), William Arndt and F.W. Gingrich defined psallo as follows: “in our literature, in accordance with OT usage, sing (to the accompaniment of a harp), sing praise … Rom. 15:9… Eph. 5:19”
What most did not realize at the time, however, was that the phrase “to the accompaniment of a harp” was not in Baur’s original work. It was added by the subsequent editors. Following the death of Arndt, Frederick Danker joined with Gingrich for yet another revision (2nd Ed.). At the time, Danker apparently was unaware of the “tampering” by Arndt & Gingrich. When he learned of it, he admitted that the earlier editors had made a “mistake” in their rendition. He promised to try to remedy the error in a future revision.
Gingrich later acknowledged that the added phrase was only his interpretation. In the 2nd edition (1979), the phrase was deleted. However, this comment was added — obviously to placate someone.
“Although the NT does not voice opposition to instrumental music, in view of Christian resistance to mystery cults, as well as Pharisaic aversion to musical instruments in worship … it is likely that some such sense as make melody is best here [Eph. 5:19]” (p 891; see McCord, pp. 390-96).
One might have hoped for something better in the 3rd edition, over which Danker had control. But such was not to be. The editor initiated a “departure” from earlier formats by offering an “expanded definition” of words. And so the “sing, sing praise” of the 2nd editon becomes “to sing songs of praise, with or without instrumental accompaniment” in this latest edition.
However, both 2nd and 3rd editions suggest that those who render psallo by the word “play” in Ephesians 5:19 “may be relying too much on the earliest meaning of psallo [i.e., the classical meaning].” And yet, this is precisely what Arndt, Gingrich, and Danker have done. They imported the classical sense into the New Testament, when their lexicon was supposed to define words according to the “New Testament and other early Christian literature” usage.
People need to realize that Greek lexicons are not inspired of God; they can be flawed at times. J.H. Thayer summed-up the issue rather candidly.
“The nature and use of the New Testament writings require that the lexicographer should not be hampered by a too rigid adherence to the rules of scientific lexicography. A student often wants to know not so much the inherent meaning of a word as the particular sense it bears in a given context or discussion … [T]he lexicographer often cannot assign a particular New Testament reference to one or another of the acknowledged significations of a word without indicating his exposition of the passage in which the reference occurs. In such a case he is compelled to assume, at least to some extent, the functions of the exegete” (p. VII).
Some scholars have clearly set aside the true significance of certain words and allowed their theological bias to flavor their definitions. This has happened with baptizo (immerse), when some suggest that “sprinkling” is encompassed in the verb’s meaning. Some theologians manipulate the meaning of the preposition eis (for, unto, in order to obtain) in Acts 2:38 in an effort to avoid the conclusion that immersion in water is essential to salvation. This is a sad but tragic reality within the theological community.

Translations

It must be a matter of some consternation, to those who argue that psallo necessarily includes the instrument, that virtually no standard (committee) translation of the English language (e.g., KJVASVRSVNEBNIVNASBNKJVESV) provides a hint of instrumental music in any of the five texts where the verb is found in the New Testament. This should be dramatic testimony to the fact that the cream of the world’s scholarship has not subscribed to the notion that psallo inheres a mechanical instrument of music.

Post-Apostolic Testimony

In a thorough discussion of the topic, Prof. Everett Ferguson has shown dramatically that the writers of the first several centuries of the post-apostolic period employed psallo simply to denote the idea of “singing,” or else they used the term in its classical sense only metaphorically, e.g., in Ephesians 5:19, plucking the strings of one’s heart in praise to God (pp. 18-27). (Note: In his translation, Hugo McCord rendered this passage as “plucking the strings of your heart,” thus giving the “plucking” a figurative thrust.)
At this point we must add this testimony from McClintock & Strong’s celebrated Cyclopedia:
“The Greeks as well as the Jews were wont to use instruments as accompaniments in their sacred songs. The converts to Christianity accordingly must have been familiar with this mode of singing; yet it is generally believed that the primitive Christians failed to adopt the use of instrumental music in their religious worship. The word psallein, which the apostle uses in Eph. 5:19, has been taken by some critics to indicate that they sang with such accompaniments … But if this be the correct inference, it is strange indeed that neither Ambrose … nor … Basil … nor Chrysostom … in the noble encomiums which they severally pronounce upon music, make any mention of instrumental music. Basil, indeed, expressly condemns it as ministering only to the depraved passions of men … and [he] must have been led to this condemnation because some had gone astray and borrowed this practice from the heathen … The general introduction of instrumental music can certainly not be assigned to a date earlier than the 5th or 6th centuries” (p. 759).

An Ad Hominem Observation

An ad hominem (“to the man”) argument is designed to show the fallacy of an illogical position. It appeals to an erroneous proposition being defended, and demonstrates that, if followed to its logical conclusion, the idea manifests an unreasonable viewpoint. That this is a valid method of dealing with error is evidenced by the fact that Jesus himself occasionally employed it to expose false teaching (cf. Mt. 12:27). There is certainly a legitimate usage of this type of argument in the music controversy.
Several writers, who have argued the psallo position, have contended that an instrument of music is unavoidably inherent within the term. O.E. Payne alleged that if the Christian fails to employ the instrument in worship, he “cannot conform to the divine injunction to psallein” (p. 172). Others (e.g., Dwaine Dunning and Tom Burgess) have argued similarly (see Bales, pp. 97ff).
In view of this, let us consider Ephesians 5:19, where the inspired apostle commands the saints in Ephesus to practice “speaking one to another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody psallontes with your heart to the Lord.”
If the participle psallontes retains a literal, classical sense (to pluck), and therefore inheres the instrument, then the following conclusions necessarily result.
This command cannot be obeyed without the employment of the instrument.
Since each Christian is under the obligation to psallo, each person must play an instrument.
The instrument must be one capable of being “plucked” (e.g., the harp), which would eliminate organs, pianos, trumpets, etc.
This writer has never encountered an advocate of the use of instruments in worship who will stay with the logical demands of his argument in defense of psallo. That speaks volumes.

Recent History

Perhaps the most telling thing of all in this controversy over instrumental worship is the fact that in the recent history of our exchanges with those of the Independent Christian Church (with whom we’ve had most of our discussions), the psallo argument has been virtually abandoned.
One of the last major debates on instrumental music was between Alan E. Highers (churches of Christ) and Given O. Blakely (Independent Christian Church) in April, 1988. During the course of that encounter, Blakely never attempted to introduce the psallo argument. In fact, he “broke new ground” in that he argued that “authority” for what one does in worship is not even needed; worship is a wholly unregulated activity — a position wholly absurd!
Instrumental music in Christian worship is indefensible.

Interesting Quotations

“Although Josephus tells of the wonderful effects produced in the Temple by the use of instruments of music, the first Christians were of too spiritual a fibre to substitute lifeless instruments for or to use them to accompany the human voice” (The Catholic Encyclopedia, p. 651).
“There is no record in the NT of the use of instruments in the musical worship of the Christian church” (Pfeiffer, p. 1163).
“Whatever evidence is forthcoming, is to the effect that the early Christians did not use musical instruments” (Smith, p. 1365).
“The foregoing argument [of this book] has proceeded principally by two steps. The first is: Whatsoever, in connection with the public worship of the church, is not commanded by Christ, either expressly or by good and necessary consequence, in his Word is forbidden. The second is: Instrumental music, in connection with the public worship of the church is not so commanded by Christ. The conclusion is: Instrumental music, in connection with the public worship of the church, is forbidden” (John J. Girardeau, Professor, Columbia Theological Seminary (Presbyterian), p. 200).
Sources/Footnotes
  • Bales, James D. 1987. Instrumental Music and New Testament Worship. Resource Publications: Searcy, AR.
  • Balz, Horst & Schneider, Gerhard. 1993. Exegetical Dictionary of the New Testament. Vol. 3. Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, MI.
  • Baur, W., Gingrich, F. W., Danker, F. 1979. Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament. University of Chicago: Chicago, IL.
  • Bromiley, G.W., Ed. 1985. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament — Abridged. Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, MI.
  • The Catholic Encyclopedia. 1913. The Encyclopedia Press: New York, NY.
  • Earle, Ralph. 2000. Word Meanings in the New Testament. Hendrickson: Peabody, MA.
  • Ferguson, Everett. 1972. A Cappella Music. Biblical Research Press: Abilene, TX.
  • Girardeau, John J. 1888. Instrumental Music in the Public Worship of the Church. Whittet and Shepperson: Richmond, VA.
  • Howard, David. 1986. “Melody,” International Standard Bible Encyclopedia – Revised. Vol. 3. G. W. Bromiley, Ed. Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, MI.
  • Kittel, Gerhard, et al., Eds. 1964. Theological Dictionary of the New Testament. Vol. VIII. Eerdmans: Grand Rapids, MI.
  • Liddell, Henry and Scott, Robert. 1869. A Greek-English Lexicon. Clarendon: Oxford, England.
  • McClintock, John & Strong, James Baker: 1969 Reprint. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological, and Ecclesiastical Literature. Vol. VI. Grand Rapids, MI.
  • McCord, Hugo. n.d. Fifty Years of Lectures. Vol. 2. Church of Christ: Atwood, TN.
  • Payne, O. E. 1920. Instrumental Music Is Scriptural. Standard: Cincinnati, OH.
  • Pfeiffer, C. F., Vos, Howard and Rea, John. 1998. Wycliffe Bible Dictionary. Hendrickson: Peabody, MA.
  • Smith, William and Cheetham, Samuel. 1880. A Dictionary of Christian Antiquities. Vol. II. John Murray: London, England.
  • Thayer, J. H. 1958. Greek-English Lexicon. T. and T. Clark: Edinburgh, Scotland.
  • Vine, W. E. 1951. First Corinthians. Zondervan: Grand Rapids, MI..
  • Vine, W. E. 1997 ed. Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words. Nelson: Nashville, TN.
Copyright © 2013 Christian Courier. All rights reserved. Used by permission.

Published in The Old Paths Archive
(http://www.oldpaths.com)

From Gary... Bible Reading December 21



Bible Reading 

December 21

The World English Bible



Dec. 21
Micah 1-4

Mic 1:1 The word of Yahweh that came to Micah the Morashtite in the days of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah, which he saw concerning Samaria and Jerusalem.
Mic 1:2 Hear, you peoples, all of you. Listen, O earth, and all that is therein: and let the Lord Yahweh be witness against you, the Lord from his holy temple.
Mic 1:3 For, behold, Yahweh comes forth out of his place, and will come down and tread on the high places of the earth.
Mic 1:4 The mountains melt under him, and the valleys split apart, like wax before the fire, like waters that are poured down a steep place.
Mic 1:5 "All this is for the disobedience of Jacob, and for the sins of the house of Israel. What is the disobedience of Jacob? Isn't it Samaria? And what are the high places of Judah? Aren't they Jerusalem?
Mic 1:6 Therefore I will make Samaria like a rubble heap of the field, like places for planting vineyards; and I will pour down its stones into the valley, and I will uncover its foundations.
Mic 1:7 All her idols will be beaten to pieces, and all her temple gifts will be burned with fire, and all her images I will destroy; for of the hire of a prostitute has she gathered them, and to the hire of a prostitute shall they return."
Mic 1:8 For this I will lament and wail; I will go stripped and naked; I will howl like the jackals, and moan like the daughters of owls.
Mic 1:9 For her wounds are incurable; for it has come even to Judah. It reaches to the gate of my people, even to Jerusalem.
Mic 1:10 Don't tell it in Gath. Don't weep at all. At Beth Ophrah I have rolled myself in the dust.
Mic 1:11 Pass on, inhabitant of Shaphir, in nakedness and shame. The inhabitant of Zaanan won't come out. The wailing of Beth Ezel will take from you his protection.
Mic 1:12 For the inhabitant of Maroth waits anxiously for good, because evil has come down from Yahweh to the gate of Jerusalem.
Mic 1:13 Harness the chariot to the swift steed, inhabitant of Lachish. She was the beginning of sin to the daughter of Zion; For the transgressions of Israel were found in you.
Mic 1:14 Therefore you will give a parting gift to Moresheth Gath. The houses of Achzib will be a deceitful thing to the kings of Israel.
Mic 1:15 I will yet bring to you, inhabitant of Mareshah. He who is the glory of Israel will come to Adullam.
Mic 1:16 Shave your heads, and cut off your hair for the children of your delight. Enlarge your baldness like the vulture; for they have gone into captivity from you!
Mic 2:1 Woe to those who devise iniquity and work evil on their beds! When the morning is light, they practice it, because it is in the power of their hand.
Mic 2:2 They covet fields, and seize them; and houses, and take them away: and they oppress a man and his house, even a man and his heritage.
Mic 2:3 Therefore thus says Yahweh: "Behold, I am planning against these people a disaster, from which you will not remove your necks, neither will you walk haughtily; for it is an evil time.
Mic 2:4 In that day they will take up a parable against you, and lament with a doleful lamentation, saying, 'We are utterly ruined! My people's possession is divided up. Indeed he takes it from me and assigns our fields to traitors!' "
Mic 2:5 Therefore you will have no one who divides the land by lot in the assembly of Yahweh.
Mic 2:6 "Don't prophesy!" They prophesy. "Don't prophesy about these things. Disgrace won't overtake us."
Mic 2:7 Shall it be said, O house of Jacob: "Is the Spirit of Yahweh angry? Are these his doings? Don't my words do good to him who walks blamelessly?"
Mic 2:8 But lately my people have risen up as an enemy. You strip the robe and clothing from those who pass by without a care, returning from battle.
Mic 2:9 You drive the women of my people out from their pleasant houses; from their young children you take away my blessing forever.
Mic 2:10 Arise, and depart! For this is not your resting place, because of uncleanness that destroys, even with a grievous destruction.
Mic 2:11 If a man walking in a spirit of falsehood lies: "I will prophesy to you of wine and of strong drink;" he would be the prophet of this people.
Mic 2:12 I will surely assemble, Jacob, all of you; I will surely gather the remnant of Israel; I will put them together as the sheep of Bozrah, as a flock in the midst of their pasture; they will swarm with people.
Mic 2:13 He who breaks open the way goes up before them. They break through the gate, and go out. And their king passes on before them, with Yahweh at their head.
Mic 3:1 I said, "Please listen, you heads of Jacob, and rulers of the house of Israel: Isn't it for you to know justice?
Mic 3:2 You who hate the good, and love the evil; who tear off their skin, and their flesh from off their bones;
Mic 3:3 who also eat the flesh of my people, and flay their skin from off them, and break their bones, and chop them in pieces, as for the pot, and as flesh within the caldron.
Mic 3:4 Then they will cry to Yahweh, but he will not answer them. Yes, he will hide his face from them at that time, because they made their deeds evil."
Mic 3:5 Thus says Yahweh concerning the prophets who lead my people astray; for those who feed their teeth, they proclaim, "Peace!" and whoever doesn't provide for their mouths, they prepare war against him:
Mic 3:6 "Therefore night is over you, with no vision, and it is dark to you, that you may not divine; and the sun will go down on the prophets, and the day will be black over them.
Mic 3:7 The seers shall be disappointed, and the diviners confounded. Yes, they shall all cover their lips; for there is no answer from God."
Mic 3:8 But as for me, I am full of power by the Spirit of Yahweh, and of judgment, and of might, to declare to Jacob his disobedience, and to Israel his sin.
Mic 3:9 Please listen to this, you heads of the house of Jacob, and rulers of the house of Israel, who abhor justice, and pervert all equity.
Mic 3:10 They build up Zion with blood, and Jerusalem with iniquity.
Mic 3:11 Her leaders judge for bribes, and her priests teach for a price, and her prophets of it tell fortunes for money: yet they lean on Yahweh, and say, "Isn't Yahweh in the midst of us? No disaster will come on us."
Mic 3:12 Therefore Zion for your sake will be plowed like a field, and Jerusalem will become heaps of rubble, and the mountain of the temple like the high places of a forest.
Mic 4:1 But in the latter days, it will happen that the mountain of Yahweh's temple will be established on the top of the mountains, and it will be exalted above the hills; and peoples will stream to it.
Mic 4:2 Many nations will go and say, "Come, and let us go up to the mountain of Yahweh, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths." For out of Zion will go forth the law, and the word of Yahweh from Jerusalem;
Mic 4:3 and he will judge between many peoples, and will decide concerning strong nations afar off. They will beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks. Nation will not lift up sword against nation, neither will they learn war any more.
Mic 4:4 But they will sit every man under his vine and under his fig tree; and no one will make them afraid: For the mouth of Yahweh of Armies has spoken.
Mic 4:5 Indeed all the nations may walk in the name of their gods; but we will walk in the name of Yahweh our God forever and ever.
Mic 4:6 "In that day," says Yahweh, "I will assemble that which is lame, and I will gather that which is driven away, and that which I have afflicted;
Mic 4:7 and I will make that which was lame a remnant, and that which was cast far off a strong nation: and Yahweh will reign over them on Mount Zion from then on, even forever."
Mic 4:8 You, tower of the flock, the hill of the daughter of Zion, to you it will come, yes, the former dominion will come, the kingdom of the daughter of Jerusalem.
Mic 4:9 Now why do you cry out aloud? Is there no king in you? Has your counselor perished, that pains have taken hold of you as of a woman in travail?
Mic 4:10 Be in pain, and labor to bring forth, daughter of Zion, like a woman in travail; for now you will go forth out of the city, and will dwell in the field, and will come even to Babylon. There you will be rescued. There Yahweh will redeem you from the hand of your enemies.
Mic 4:11 Now many nations have assembled against you, that say, "Let her be defiled, and let our eye gloat over Zion."
Mic 4:12 But they don't know the thoughts of Yahweh, neither do they understand his counsel; for he has gathered them like the sheaves to the threshing floor.

Mic 4:13 Arise and thresh, daughter of Zion; for I will make your horn iron, and I will make your hoofs brass; and you will beat in pieces many peoples: and I will devote their gain to Yahweh, and their substance to the Lord of the whole earth.

 Dec. 21
Revelation 3, 4

Rev 3:1 "And to the angel of the assembly in Sardis write: "He who has the seven Spirits of God, and the seven stars says these things: "I know your works, that you have a reputation of being alive, but you are dead.
Rev 3:2 Wake up, and keep the things that remain, which you were about to throw away, for I have found no works of yours perfected before my God.
Rev 3:3 Remember therefore how you have received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If therefore you won't watch, I will come as a thief, and you won't know what hour I will come upon you.
Rev 3:4 Nevertheless you have a few names in Sardis that did not defile their garments. They will walk with me in white, for they are worthy.
Rev 3:5 He who overcomes will be arrayed in white garments, and I will in no way blot his name out of the book of life, and I will confess his name before my Father, and before his angels.
Rev 3:6 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies.
Rev 3:7 "To the angel of the assembly in Philadelphia write: "He who is holy, he who is true, he who has the key of David, he who opens and no one can shut, and who shuts and no one opens, says these things:
Rev 3:8 "I know your works (behold, I have set before you an open door, which no one can shut), that you have a little power, and kept my word, and didn't deny my name.
Rev 3:9 Behold, I give of the synagogue of Satan, of those who say they are Jews, and they are not, but lie. Behold, I will make them to come and worship before your feet, and to know that I have loved you.
Rev 3:10 Because you kept my command to endure, I also will keep you from the hour of testing, which is to come on the whole world, to test those who dwell on the earth.
Rev 3:11 I am coming quickly! Hold firmly that which you have, so that no one takes your crown.
Rev 3:12 He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of my God, and he will go out from there no more. I will write on him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, the new Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from my God, and my own new name.
Rev 3:13 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies.
Rev 3:14 "To the angel of the assembly in Laodicea write: "The Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Head of God's creation, says these things:
Rev 3:15 "I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were cold or hot.
Rev 3:16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will vomit you out of my mouth.
Rev 3:17 Because you say, 'I am rich, and have gotten riches, and have need of nothing;' and don't know that you are the wretched one, miserable, poor, blind, and naked;
Rev 3:18 I counsel you to buy from me gold refined by fire, that you may become rich; and white garments, that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes, that you may see.
Rev 3:19 As many as I love, I reprove and chasten. Be zealous therefore, and repent.
Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, then I will come in to him, and will dine with him, and he with me.
Rev 3:21 He who overcomes, I will give to him to sit down with me on my throne, as I also overcame, and sat down with my Father on his throne.
Rev 3:22 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the assemblies."

Rev 4:1 After these things I looked and saw a door opened in heaven, and the first voice that I heard, like a trumpet speaking with me, was one saying, "Come up here, and I will show you the things which must happen after this."
Rev 4:2 Immediately I was in the Spirit. Behold, there was a throne set in heaven, and one sitting on the throne
Rev 4:3 that looked like a jasper stone and a sardius. There was a rainbow around the throne, like an emerald to look at.
Rev 4:4 Around the throne were twenty-four thrones. On the thrones were twenty-four elders sitting, dressed in white garments, with crowns of gold on their heads.
Rev 4:5 Out of the throne proceed lightnings, sounds, and thunders. There were seven lamps of fire burning before his throne, which are the seven Spirits of God.
Rev 4:6 Before the throne was something like a sea of glass, similar to crystal. In the midst of the throne, and around the throne were four living creatures full of eyes before and behind.
Rev 4:7 The first creature was like a lion, and the second creature like a calf, and the third creature had a face like a man, and the fourth was like a flying eagle.
Rev 4:8 The four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within. They have no rest day and night, saying, "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God, the Almighty, who was and who is and who is to come!"
Rev 4:9 When the living creatures give glory, honor, and thanks to him who sits on the throne, to him who lives forever and ever,
Rev 4:10 the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives forever and ever, and throw their crowns before the throne, saying,
Rev 4:11 "Worthy are you, our Lord and God, the Holy One, to receive the glory, the honor, and the power, for you created all things, and because of your desire they existed, and were created!"