"THE EPISTLE TO THE ROMANS" The Goodness Of God (2:4-11) INTRODUCTION 1. Many people live their lives with little regard to the goodness of God... a. Unaware of how gracious God has been and is willing to be toward them b. Unaware of how their neglect will one day come back to haunt them 2. Have you given much thought to the goodness of God...? a. The many blessings He bestows? b. The consequences if you fail to respond properly? [One passage of Scripture that ought to give us pause is the one written in Ro 2:4-11, in which Paul expounds upon "The Goodness Of God." From verse 4, we can glean some things about...] I. THE NATURE OF HIS GOODNESS A. HIS RICHES... 1. He is rich in grace - Ep 1:7 2. He is rich in mercy - Ep 2:4 3. He is rich in supplying need - Php 4:19 4. He is rich in giving things to enjoy - 1Ti 6:17 5. He is rich in the strength He provides the Christian - Ep 3: 16,21 B. HIS FORBEARANCE... 1. "Forbearance" (anoche) means "a holding back" - ISBE 2. We see God's forbearance... a. In the days of Israel - cf. Ps 78:38 b. In our present day (since the fullness of God's wrath has yet to come) C. HIS LONGSUFFERING... 1. "Longsuffering" (makrothumia) describes "a slowness in avenging wrath" - Strong's 2. We see God suffering long... a. In the days of Noah, prior to the flood - cf. 1Pe 3:20 b. In our present day, prior to the day of judgment - cf. 2 Pe 3:9-15a [The Psalmist summarizes well the nature of God's goodness: "But You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious, Longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth." (Ps 86:15). As we return to our text in Romans, we are told of...] II. THE PURPOSE OF HIS GOODNESS A. SHOULD LEAD ONE TO REPENTANCE... 1. God's goodness is intended to cause man to repent - Ro 2:4 2. Based on Paul's description of repentance elsewhere, God's goodness should produce... a. Godly sorrow which leads to repentance - cf. 2Co 7:9-10 b. A change of mind (the actual meaning of metanoia, repentance) - Strong's c. A turn from sin to God (as evidence of repentance) - cf. 2Co 7:10-11 B. SHOULD LEAD ONE TO DO WHAT IS GOOD... 1. As just described, an indication of true repentance - cf. 2 Co 7:11 2. As later described in our text, it should lead to doing good... a. With patient continuance - Ro 2:7a 1) Where God was longsuffering (makrothumia) before 2) We are to do good patiently (hupomone) now - cf. Lk 8:15 b. Seeking glory, honor, immortality - Ro 2:7b 1) Glory and honor that will come at the revelation of Jesus Christ - cf. 1Pe 1:7; 2Co 4:16-18 2) Immortality (incorruption) that will be given at the same time - 1Co 15:51-54 [Thus "eternal life" will be given to those who are properly motivated by God's goodness to repent and do good (Ro 2:7). But what of those who spurn the riches of God's goodness...?] III. THE REJECTION OF HIS GOODNESS A. INDICATIVE OF A HARD HEART... 1. For they despise God's goodness - Ro 2:4 2. For they evidently are insensitive and unappreciative of God's goodness - Ro 2:5 3. For they remain impenitent in their heart - Ro 2:5 B. STORES UP WRATH FOR THE DAY OF JUDGMENT... 1. The wrath of God's righteous judgment - cf. Ro 2:5 2. A day of wrath involving indignation, tribulation, and anguish- Ro 2:8-9a 3. A vivid description of which is found in 2Th 1:7-9 CONCLUSION 1. Such is the end of one who does not properly respond to God's goodness... a. Especially as that manifested through the gospel of Jesus b. Which Paul will expound upon later in this epistle to the Romans 2. As we close, be careful to note: there is no partiality with God!- Ro 2:9-11 a. Those who do evil will be punished b. Those who do good will be blessed Have you allowed "The Goodness Of God" to lead you to repentance, especially that repentance called for in the proclamation of the gospel? - cf. Ac 2:36-39; 3:19; 17:30-31
Biblical Accuracy Set in Stone
|by||Kyle Butt, M.Div.|
Writing about a rock that was discovered almost 150 years ago certainly would not fit in a current “in the news” section. In fact, since 1868, so much has been written about this stone that very few new articles pertaining to it come to light. But the truth of the matter is that even though it was discovered more than a century ago, many Christians do not even know it exists, and need to be reminded of its importance.
The stone is known as the Moabite Stone (or the Mesha Inscription). A missionary named Klein first discovered the stone in August of 1868 (Edersheim, n.d., p. 109). When he initially saw the black basalt stone, it measured about 3.5 feet high and 2 feet wide. Upon hearing of Klein’s adventure, a French scholar named Clermont-Ganneau located the antiquated piece of rock and made an impression of the writing on its surface. From that point, the details surrounding the stone are not quite as clear. Apparently, the Arabs who had the stone thought that it was a religious talisman of some sort, and broke it into several pieces by heating it in fire and then pouring cold water on it. The pieces were scattered, but about two-thirds of the original stone has been relocated, and currently resides at the Louvre in Paris (Jacobs and McCurdy, 2002).
The written inscription on the stone provides a piece of “rock-solid” evidence verifying the Bible’s accuracy. Mesha, the king of Moab, had the stone cut in about 850 B.C. to tell of his many conquests and his reacquisition of certain territories that were controlled by Israel. In the over 30-line text composed of about 260 words, Mesha mentions that Omri was the King of Israel who had oppressed Moab, but then Mesha says he “saw his desire upon” Omri’s son and upon “his house.” The Mesha stele cites Omri as the king of Israel, just as 1 Kings 16:21-28 indicates. Furthermore, it mentions Omri’s son (Ahab) in close connection with the Moabites, just as 2 Kings 3:4-6 does. In addition, both the stele and 2 Kings 3:4-6 list Mesha as the king of Moab. The stele further names the Israelite tribe of Gad, and the Israelite God, Yahweh. Taken as a whole, the Moabite stone remains one of the most impressive pieces of evidence verifying the historical accuracy of the Old Testament. And, although this find has been around almost 150 years, it “still speaks” to us today (Hebrews 11:4).
REFERENCESEdersheim, Albert (no date), The Bible History—Old Testament, book VI (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans).
Jacobs, Joseph and J. Frederick McCurdy (2002), “Moabite Stone,” JewishEncyclopedia.com, [On-line], URL: http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=680&letter=M.
Will Science Eventually Kill God?
|by||Jeff Miller, Ph.D.|
Impossible concept, and yet it has captured the attention of the news media of late (e.g., Wolchover, 2012). Will the bulk of society likely tend to continue its movement away from God in the coming years? Probably, since that has historically been the trend, inside and outside the Bible. But God has never been eliminated from human thought in the thousands of years of human existence, because His providential hand brings punishment on societies at those times when the population in sufficient numbers turns its back on God. Then inevitably follows a return by many to spiritual matters (see Miller, 2008).
Still, according to NBC News, Sean Carroll, a theoretical cosmologist at the California Institute of Technology, believes that science will eventually remove the need for God in the equation to explain certain Universal phenomena. He argues that, “God’s sphere of influence has shrunk drastically in modern times” (Wolchover). We are not sure where he is getting his information, because statistically, the world is en masse (84%) theist (e.g., “Major Religions of the World,” 2007), and the percentage of the population in this country that believes that God has played a role in the origin of the Universe (78%) is far beyond the secular evolutionary community (15%) (see Miller, 2012). While there certainly has been an increase in the ranks of the non-religious community in the past several years, the Earth is still, by far, theistic.
Carroll further argues that many of the phenomena that were once highlighted as proof of the existence of God, since science could not explain those phenomena, are gradually being eliminated, in his opinion. He believes that the need for a God to cause the Big Bang to “bang” is side-stepped by the idea of an eternal Universe—a Universe like the one theorized by the Oscillating Universe Big Bang model. [NOTE: This is not to say that we believe the Big Bang Theory to be true. We have outlined several issues that show the Big Bang to be false elsewhere (e.g., Thompson, Harrub, and May, 2003). We are merely addressing his assertions.] He believes that the problem of having a necessary cause for the Universe, even if the Universe is not eternal, is side-stepped by the idea that time started at the Big Bang, and therefore, there is no need of a pre-existing cause. According to Alex Filippenko, an astrophysicist at the University of California, Berkeley that is quoted in the article, “The Big Bang could’ve occurred as a result of just the laws of physics being there. With the laws of physics, you can get universes.” Carroll further argues that the “fine tuning” argument used by theists with regard to many physical constants that seem perfectly suited for our existence, can be side-stepped using theories about parallel universes beyond our’s (Wolchover).
Several comments are worth mentioning in response to Carroll. First of all, notice the tacit admission that God is still needed to explain some things in the Universe, even if they might eventually be eliminated in Carroll’s mind. Many issues that point to God have been eliminated, in Carroll’s opinion: but that implies that some remain.
Second, his attempt to side-step the problem of needing a “trigger” for the Big Bang by giving credence to theories that postulate the eternality of the Universe, does not lend to the idea that science has eliminated the need for God in that area. On the contrary, science has already spoken on that matter. Nothing lasts forever, according to the 2nd Law of Thermodynamics (see Miller, 2007 for an in depth discussion of the Laws of Thermodynamics as they relate to the Universe as a whole). So such theories are not in keeping with the findings of science. Since nothing lasts forever in nature, the Universe could not have lasted forever—God is needed.
His further attempt to side-step the issue of needing a cause for a non-eternal Universe Big Bang model, by arguing that time began at the Big Bang, is reminiscent of Stephen Hawking’s recent comments on the matter. However, as we have discussed elsewhere (see Miller, 2011), that idea is not in keeping with the scientific evidence either. The Universe could not have caused itself since, in nature, nothing comes from nothing. Energy cannot spontaneously generate, according to the evidence from science—specifically the 1st Law of Thermodynamics (see Miller, 2007). Theories that postulate such erroneous concepts are not in keeping with science. So, once again, science has not eliminated the need for God in that instance either. The existence of the Universe still requires an adequate Cause, according to the evidence from science.
Filippenko’s comments merely highlight another issue that science cannot explain without God—the existence of the laws of physics. A poem requires a poet. A law requires a law writer. As eminent atheistic theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and astrobiologist of Arizona State University, Paul Davies, noted, “You need to know where those laws come from. That’s where the mystery lies—the laws” (“The Creation Question…,” 2011). The atheist has no explanation for how the laws of science could have written themselves into existence, and there is no logical explanation outside of a cosmic Law Writer.
Carroll’s attempts to side-step the issue of the theist’s finely tuned Universe argument by postulating parallel Universes is not a sound argument. Science has not proven such a theory. No alternate Universe has ever been witnessed, and therefore is outside the scope of the evolutionary community’s own definition of empirical science. Such an argument is mere conjecture and speculation—not evidence. So again, science has not dismissed the need for God in this instance either.
Time and again, Carroll attempts to make his case for science eliminating God, by relying on theories that cannot be verified with science or that blatantly contradict the evidence from science. So, in the end, Carroll has not proven that science has or could ever eliminate God. The only thing he has proven is that atheists are not self-consistent in their viewpoint on this matter.
Is it true that many people today are accepting such “evidence” and are therefore turning from God? Are they in the process causing God to be eliminated from their minds—i.e., not “retain[ing] God in their knowledge” (Romans 1:28)? Is it likely that there will be more and more people in the coming years that join the bandwagon in rejecting God? Definitely. However, such behavior is not due to the evidence from true science, but rather, due to their own desires (cf. Romans 1:20-32). Ironically, while such atheists wishfully dream that science will one day kill God, science has actually already ruled out atheism as an explanation for the origin of the Universe (see www.apologeticspress.org for evidence on this subject).
REFERENCES“The Creation Question: A Curiosity Conversation” (2011), Discovery Channel, August 7.
“Major Religions of the World Ranked by Number of Adherents” (2007), http://www.adherents.com/Religions_By_Adherents.html.
Miller, Jeff (2007), “God and the Laws of Thermodynamics: A Mechanical Engineer’s Perspective,” Reason & Revelation, 27:25-31, April, http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/3293.
Miller, Jeff (2008), “The Cycle of Unbelief,” Apologetics Press, http://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=7&article=2495.
Miller, Jeff (2011), “A Review of Discovery Channel’s ‘Curiosity: Did God Create the Universe?’” Reason & Revelation, 31:98-107, http://www.apologeticspress.org/apPubPage.aspx?pub=1&issue=1004&article=1687.
Miller, Jeff (2012), “Literal Creationists Holding Their Ground in the Polls,” Reason & Revelation, 32:94-95, September, http://www.apologeticspress.org/APPubPage.aspx?pub=1&issue=1093&article=2040#.
Thompson, Bert, Brad Harrub, and Branyon May (2003), “The Big Bang Theory—A Scientific Critique [Part 1],” Reason & Revelation, 23:33-47, May, http://www.apologeticspress.org/apPubPage.aspx?pub=1&issue=541&article=540.
Wolchover, Natalie (2012), “Will Science Someday Rule Out the Possibility of God?” NBC News: Science, September 18, http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/49074598/ns/technology_and_science-science/#.UFnWIlEpCeZ.
Reasons to Reject the Apocrypha
|by||Eric Lyons, M.Min.|
Most people affiliated with Christianity or Judaism have heard of the Apocrypha. The term apocrypha comes from the Greek word apokryphos, meaning “hidden,” and is used most commonly in reference to the “extra” books contained in the Old Testament of the Catholic Bible. Written sometime between 200 B.C. and A.D. 100, the apocryphal books, as found in the Greek translation of the Old Testament (known as the Septuagint) and the Latin Vulgate, were pronounced by the Roman Catholics as canonical and authoritative on April 8, 1546, in the Fourth Session of the Council of Trent. Since that time, Catholics have read from an Old Testament that contains 46 books, instead of 39—the number of Old Testament books that most non-Catholics accept today. According to the edict established by the Council of Trent, anyone who does not accept all books of the Catholic Bible, as “sacred and canonical,” including such apocryphal books as Tobias, Judith, and Wisdom, are to be “anathema” (i.e., cut off from Jehovah without any hope of salvation) [“Council of Trent”].
In an effort to reaffirm the Christian’s confidence in the 39 books of the Old Testament, and to help the Christian in building an arsenal that can be used in defending the Truth against all error, specifically the errors propagated by Catholicism, the following brief list is provided. The Christian’s rejection of the Apocrypha is based upon solid evidence (see Woods).
- The books never were included in the Hebrew canon. Although they appear in the Septuagint, it is very likely that they gradually found their way into later copies, yet were not in its original translation (see The New Bible Handbook, 1962, p. 39).
- Various credible ancient sources that frequently allude to, and quote from, the Old Testament, exclude the apocryphal books from the canon. Philo (20 B.C.-A.D. 50), Josephus (A.D. 37-95), and Melito (who wrote c.A.D. 165-175), among others, rejected the Apocrypha.
- Apocryphal books are never quoted in the New Testament. Although these writings existed in the first century, and likely were (by this time) incorporated into the Septuagint, they never were quoted or explicitly cited by Jesus or the apostles in the New Testament. Such a fact truly is significant when one realizes that the New Testament writers quote from, or allude to, the Old Testament (minus the Apocrypha) approximately 1,000 times. In all, thirty-five of the thirty-nine Old Testament books are referred to in the New Testament.
- No apocryphal book actually claims to be inspired by God. In fact, some either disclaim it, or reveal evidence of errancy. Several historical, geographical, and chronological mistakes can be found in the apocryphal books—errors that are not characteristic of the 39 Old Testament books.
REFERENCES“Council of Trent—1545-1563 A.D. [On-line], URL: http://www.dailycatholic.org/history/19ecume1.htm
The New Bible Handbook (1962), Chicago, IL: Intervarsity Press.
Woods, Clyde, “Fact Sheet: Reasons for Rejecting the Apocrypha from the Canon,” (Henderson, TN: Freed-Hardeman University).
What Exactly Did Jesus Say?
|by||Eric Lyons, M.Min.|
Numerous times in the gospel accounts, the Bible writers recorded statements made by Jesus while He was on Earth. Puzzling to some Bible readers is the fact that, although Bible writers frequently recorded the same statements, they are not exactly (word-for-word) alike. For example, whereas Matthew recorded that Jesus told Satan, “It is written again (palin gegrapti), ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God’” (4:7), Luke wrote: “It has been said (eiratai), ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God’” (4:12). Although this difference is considered minor, and is referring to the same thing (the Old Testament), Matthew and Luke still recorded Jesus’ statement using different words. Why? Why did Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John not always record the words of Jesus exactly alike?
First, it is possible that some differences are due to Jesus having made both statements. It is unwise to think that every similar statement recorded by the gospel writers must refer to the exact same moment. In the example of Jesus responding to Satan’s temptation, it may be that Jesus repeated the same thought on the same occasion using different words. After telling Satan, “It has been said, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God,” Jesus could have re-emphasized the point (especially if Satan repeated the temptation) by saying, “It is written, ‘You shall not tempt the Lord your God.’” Thus, Jesus could have made both statements.
A second reason why differences exist among the gospel writers’ testimony of Jesus’ teachings is because the writers’ purpose was to record precisely what the Holy Spirit deemed necessary (cf. John 16:13), but not necessarily exactly what Jesus said. Under the guidance of the Holy Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16-17; 2 Peter 1:20-21), one writer may summarize a person’s (e.g., Jesus’) words, while another writer may quote the exact words.
Consider the variation in notes taken by honest, intelligent college students in the same class on the Civil War. At the close of the class, when the notes of the students are compared and contrasted (as the gospel accounts are) differences are evident. If one student recorded that the teacher said Abraham Lincoln delivered his famous Gettysburg Address “in November of 1863 to honor those who died in the Civil War Battle of Gettysburg,” and another student wrote that Lincoln’s speech was delivered “on November 19, 1863 in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania,” their notes would not be considered contradictory. Though there are slight differences in what the students indicate the teacher said, they both are faithful testimonies of what the teacher taught—one student simply chose a less definite style of note-taking (i.e., not mentioning the precise day on which the Gettysburg Address was given).
Throughout the gospel accounts, we find accurate statements that Jesus made, but not necessarily the exact quotations. Inspired summaries of what someone said does not take away from the sacredness of the God-given Scriptures, nor our ability to apply those Scriptures to our lives. What’s more, differences among statements recorded in the gospel accounts also may be the result of the statements being made at different times. In whichever category a difference among the gospel accounts falls, Bible students can be confident of the Bible’s reliability.
Morality Without God: A House Built on Sand
|by||Garry K. Brantley, M.A., M.Div.|
The creation-evolution controversy involves more than a clinically detached discussion of fossils and cosmological theories. The debate inevitably touches each of us on a deeply personal level. Our view of origins is linked inexorably to our own self-concept and how we define our purpose in life. It further exerts a dominating influence on our personal standard of morality. And, despite their opposing philosophical/theological orientations, both theists and atheists agree that some things are “good” or “right,” while other things are “evil” or “wrong.”
To issue such ethical judgments implies a supreme standard that is both objective and absolute. And, regardless of one’s world view, his or her behavior will be directed by some guiding ethical principle. Christians find their highest ethical directive from the personal God of the Bible, while Muslims appeal to Allah’s will as expressed in the Koran. Though atheists reject a theistic moral authority, their lives, nonetheless, are governed by some supreme ethical principle. Whether the governing principle is “live and let live,” “the good of the many outweighs the good of the few,” or “there are no moral absolutes,” etc., each serves as the adherents’ ultimate standard for personal ethics. Thus, while we might argue over what should serve as our absolute ethical norm, we all acknowledge that there is such an authoritative principle governing our behavior. The question now becomes, “Why do human beings accept as authoritative an absolute moral principle for their lives?”
In response to this question, John Frame has suggested that, ultimately, “the source of absolute moral authority is either personal or impersonal” (1994, p. 97). Which of these two options better explains humankind’s sense of moral obligation? Atheists, who reject the idea of a personal Creator, contend that the Universe is a natural artifact, and offer purely naturalistic explanations for its existence. To be consistent with this cosmological position, atheists must also attribute humankind’s sense of moral obligation to impersonal, naturalistic processes. Yet, what type of impersonal structure can both create and demand compliance to ethical mandates? What kind of ethical guidance could we determine from the fortuitous combination of subatomic particles? How could blind, purposeless chance demand our ethical allegiance?
Rather than appealing to unpredictable chance, some atheists have attempted to structure their model of morality on the mandates of impersonal, natural laws. Accordingly, “just as what goes up ‘must’ come down” in the physical realm, there are similar “musts” in the moral realm (Frame, 1994, p. 98). The difficulty with this approach to morality is its inability to explain adequately the sense of obligation that is characteristic of moral systems. For, not only do atheists and theists agree that some things are “good” while others are “bad,” they also recognize that there are some things that we “ought” and “ought not” do. Yet, how can an impersonal source of moral value explain this obligatory impulse common to humankind? Organic evolution’s purposeless, impersonal force that somehow optimizes the preservation of the species is inadequate to create a sense of “ought” in the species it allegedly preserves. In fact, it might be “right” and “noble” to resist such a force, especially if we perceive that it is forcing Homo sapiens sapiens into extinction. Our personal sense of self-preservation would prompt such a legitimate resistance to the ominous “force.”
Obviously, appealing to an impersonal source for an authoritative ethical value has insurmountable difficulties. In reality, the basis for morality derives ultimately from personal relationships (see Saucy, 1993, pp. 25-27). Why do we feel obligated to remunerate someone who has performed a service for us? While there may be other factors at work (e.g., civil law with its threat of litigation, family values, etc.), the sense of “ought” in this regard ultimately stems from a previously forged agreement between two persons, both of whom recognize the other as a person. In such a personal arena, the sense of moral obligation is created. Of course, our obligation to pay our bills for services performed is not absolute. We might refuse to pay the full price for substandard work. In that case, a higher moral arbiter, the court, might be involved. But even the court’s moral authority is not absolute for it, too, operates according to some guiding principle of ethical value (e.g., “justice for all”). Regardless of our particular place in the hierarchy of moral arbitration, there is a universal recognition of moral obligation (the “ought” factor). And this recognition implies some absolute standard of morality—a standard that can both create and rightly demand compliance. Since an impersonal force cannot meet these criteria, and since moral obligation is created in personal relationships, it logically follows that the universal sense of “ought” common to all ethical systems must stem from an absolute personal Being.
Thus, the sense of moral obligation unique to the human species argues powerfully for the existence of the personal God of the Bible Who created human beings in His own image (Genesis 1:26-27). And, practically speaking, without such a standard the lines between “right” and “wrong” not only are blurred, but actually fade into non-existence. In the final analysis, the atheistic attempt to erect a moral superstructure apart from the existence of a personal God will suffer the same fate as a house built on sand—inevitably it will collapse.
Saucy, Robert L. (1993), “Theology of Human Nature,” Christian Perspectives on Being Human: A Multidisciplinary Approach to Integration, ed. J.P. Moreland and David M. Ciocchi (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker).
Why America Must be Punished
|by||Dave Miller, Ph.D.|
As Moses’ life drew to a close, God issued to the nation of Israel the keys to national health, i.e., the specific principles necessary to sustaining national existence. The book of Deuteronomy records these great admonitions that serve as extremely relevant advice for America. One insight pertains to the level of wealth and prosperity that characterizes the lifestyle of the average American. Indeed, this country has achieved a greater level of prosperity for a greater number of its citizens than any nation in human history. America’s standard of living is the envy of the civilized world. Even the poorest American lives far better than much of the world’s population.
This circumstance was anticipated by the Founders who insisted that freedom coupled with Christian principles will enable a country to achieve unprecedented prosperity, progress, and happiness. For example, on October 11, 1782, the Continental Congress issued a proclamation to the nation that articulates this foundational principle, recommending to citizens of
all ranks, to testify their gratitude to God for his goodness, by a cheerful obedience to his laws, and by promoting, each in his station, and by his influence, the practice of true and undefiled religion,which is the great foundation of public prosperity and national happiness (Journals of..., 23:647, emp. added).America has graced the world with unparalleled technological progress, shared prosperity, and benevolent assistance. We literally wallow in abundance.
But this paradisaical status cannot last. America must suffer punishment for turning her back on the Source of her greatness, and for spurning the moral and spiritual principles that propelled her to the premiere position among the nations of the Earth. The reason for national punishment is the same reason given for Israel’s expulsion from Canaan. Their punishment? “[T]herefore you shall serve your enemies, whom the Lord will send against you, in hunger, in thirst, in nakedness, and in need of everything; and He will put a yoke of iron on your neck until He has destroyed you” (Deuteronomy 28:48). But why? Why did Israel merit such punishment? Moses articulated the reason in his farewell address to the nation—words that are eerily apropos to Americans: “Because you did not serve the Lord your God with joy and gladness of heart, for the abundance of everything” (Deuteronomy 28:47, emp. added). If only Americans en masse would awaken to reverence and serve the Master of the Universe.
REFERENCEJournals of the Continental Congress, 1774-1789 (1904-1937), ed. Worthington C. Ford, et al. (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing Office), Library of Congress, http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/amlaw/lwjc.html.
Who Killed Goliath?by Joe Deweese, Ph.D.
“And there was again war with the Philistines at Gob; and Elhanan the son of Jaareoregim the Beth-lehemite slew Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam” (2 Samuel 21:19). “And there was again war with the Philistines; and Elhanan the son of Jair slew Lahmi the brother of Goliath the Gittite, the staff of whose spear was like a weaver’s beam” (1 Chronicles 20:5).The record of David and Goliath (1 Samuel 17) clearly speaks of the defeat of the giant of Gath by the shepherd boy. This story is used to emphasize faith and faithfulness to the young from their earliest ages. However, some have alleged a discrepancy between the account in 1 Samuel and two other passages (2 Samuel 21:19 and 1 Chronicles 20:5). According to 2 Samuel 21:19, it appears that Elhanan killed Goliah; yet 1 Chronicles 20:5 states that Elhanan killed Lahmi the brother of Goliath. The question, then, is who did Elhanan kill?
First, we must recognize who Elhanan was not. According to 1 Chronicles 20:5, Elhanan was the son of Jair. This was not the same man as Elhanan the Bethlehemite, son of Dodo (2 Samuel 23:24; Keil and Delitzsch, 1996, 2:681). Furthermore, it appears that Jair and Jaareoregim actually are the same person (Barnes, 1998, 2:120). Barnes, as well as the editors of The Pulpit Commentary, noted that the difficulty may have begun when oregim, the Hebrew word translated “weaver” in this passage, ended up being placed on the wrong line by a copyist—something that has been known to happen in several instances (see Spence and Exell, 1978, 4:514). Therefore, Jair, combined with oregim, became Jaare-oregim in order to make it fit with proper Hebrew grammar (Spence and Exell, 4:514).
Second, the phrase “Lahmi the brother of” is absent in 2 Samuel 21:19. The King James Version inserts the phrase “the brother of” between “Bethlehemite” and “ Goliath.” Furthermore, in the Hebrew, eth Lachmi (a combination of “Lahmi” and the term “brother”) appears to have been changed into beith hallachmi (Beth- lehemite). With this simple correction, the two texts would be in clear agreement (Clarke, n.d., p. 369). In other words, “the brother of” and the name “Lahmi” likely were combined by a copyist to form what is translated in English as “Beth-lehemite” in 2 Samuel 21:19. This, however, caused the difficulty when the passage was paralleled with 1 Chronicles 20:5.
In his Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties, Gleason Archer used the same scenario mentioned above to explain this difficulty, and then summed up the situation by noting: “In other words, the 2 Samuel 21 passage is a perfectly traceable corruption of the original wording, which fortunately has been correctly preserved in 1 Chronicles 20:5” (1982, p. 179). A fair, in-depth examination of the alleged difficulty shows that there actually is no contradiction at all, but simply a copyist’s mistake.
REFERENCESArcher, Gleason L. (1982), Encyclopedia of Bible Difficulties (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan).
Barnes, Albert (1998 reprint), Barnes’ Notes: Exodus to Esther (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker).
Clarke, Adam (no date), Commentary and Critical Notes on the Old Testament: Joshua to Esther (New York, NY: Abingdon).
Keil, C.F., and F. Delitzsch (1996), Commentary on the Old Testament: Joshua, Judges, Ruth, 1 and 2 Samuel (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson).
Spence, H.D.M., and Joseph S. Exell, Eds. (1978), The Pulpit Commentary: Ruth, I & II Samuel (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans).
God has appointed men as leaders in the home and in the church
After Adam and Eve sinned, God appointed the husband as leader in the home: “To the woman He said: ‘I will greatly multiply your sorrow and your conception; in pain you shall bring forth children; your desire shall be for your husband, and he shall rule over you’” (Genesis 3:16).
The leadership position of men in the church is supported by Paul in this way: “For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression” (1 Timothy 2:13, 14).
Thus, God’s appointment of men as leaders is based on the order of creation (1) and on the Fall (2), not on temporary cultural circumstances as is sometimes claimed.
The husband is the head of his wife.
“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church; and He is the Savior of the body. Therefore, just as the church is subject to Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything” (Ephesians 5:22-24).
The head leads the body. But this assumes that the body listens to the head. Otherwise it is an uncoordinated body, a body that does not function properly. But there is also feedback from the body to the head to which the head must listen. If the head tells the hand to pick up something hot, the hand lets the head know about it!
Providing leadership for your wife is a fascinating challenge and a big responsibility. There are no leaders without followers. Thus the admonition: “Wives, submit to your own husbands, as is fitting in the Lord” (Colossians 3:18). This is much easier if the husband is obedient to the Lord’s command: “So husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies” (Ephesians 5:28).
But what if the husband is inadequate? “Likewise you wives, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear” (1 Peter 3:1, 2).
When the husband does not treat his wife and children correctly, godly women can find themselves in extremely difficult circumstances. In such cases, discussing the problem with fellow Christians can be helpful.
Peter goes on to say, “Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered“ (1 Peter 3:7).
I want to encourage you men to appreciate your wives. The wife does not have an easy position in the family.
I appreciate Rita more and more as time goes by, which means that I did not appreciate her enough in the past! We have been married only 48 years, but we have known each other for 63 years, since secondary school.
It is also good to express your appreciation, which is sometimes hard for men to do. We must not be like the farmer in Carl Sandburg’s “The People, Yes” who told his wife: “When I think how much you’ve meant to me all these years, it’s almost more than I can do, to keep from saying something about it.”
Let us appreciate and honor our wives.
In the family, both the husband and wife provide leadership for the children.1
Men have been appointed by God as leaders in the church.
Jesus, the Head of the church, is a man.2 The twelve Apostles are men. Elders and deacons are men - since they must be “the husband of one wife” (1 Timothy 3:2, 12).
As leaders in the church, men have a heavy responsibility. Paul told the elders at Ephesus: “Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood” (Acts 20:28).
An elder must hold “fast the faithful word as he has been taught, that he may be able, by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict” (Titus 1:9).
Elders are instructed by Peter: “Shepherd the flock of God which is among you, serving as overseers, not by constraint but willingly, not for dishonest gain but eagerly; not as being lords over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock” (1 Peter 5:2, 3).
Younger Christians are to submit to their elders: “Likewise you younger people, submit yourselves to your elders. Yes, all of you be submissive to one another, and be clothed with humility, for ‘God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble’” (1 Peter 5:5).
Some restrictions are placed on women.
Women have extremely important tasks in the church.3 To substantiate God’s appointment of men as leaders in the church, however, certain restrictions are placed on the activity of women.
In the various passages we notice three restrictions that will be discussed individually: (1) women are to remain silent in the assembly, (2) they are not to teach men, and (3) they are not to exercise authority over men.
Women must remain silent in the assembly.
“Let your women keep silent in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive, as the law also says. And if they want to learn something, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church” (1 Corinthians 14:34, 35).
This measure applied to all congregations,4 even though there were differences in customs among Jews, Greeks and Romans.
These passages are not difficult to understand but they are difficult for some people to accept.
Sometimes they are flatly rejected. When a female cleric in Holland was asked what she thought of this passage, she replied: “I wipe my feet on it.”
Someone who wants to appear to follow the Scriptures must resort to evasive, false arguments.
Some claim that ‘remain silent’ here means ‘stay calm’ and that ‘speak’ means ‘speak noisily’, and that women may therefore speak if they speak calmly! First, this does not fit the context since it relates to a difference between men and women. Is it acceptable then for men to speak noisily? Are men then not required to stay calm? Second, anyone who has studied Greek knows that these are the ordinary words for ‘keep silent’5 and ‘speak’6. (See the endnotes for more information.)
Since men are to lead, women may not teach or lead when men are present. To substantiate men’s leadership role, and to avoid any misunderstanding, women are commanded to be silent in the assembly.
This does not apply to singing together, since in that case women are not exercising leadership or authority, but are following the brother who is leading the congregation. It is wrong, however, for a woman to sing a solo or to be part of a “worship team” that leads the singing.
What about women who prophesied? Philip had four virgin daughters who prophesied (Acts 21:9). Paul mentions women who prophesied (1 Corinthians 11:4-10).
Some misuse these examples to invalidate the commandment that women must be silent in the assembly. It is never said, however, that women prophesied in the assembly. They who make that claim are not joining the Scriptures together, but are tearing the Scriptures apart! Several passages must be combined on the basis of what is stated. They may not be brought into conflict by adding something not stated. Since women were not permitted to speak in the assembly, their prophesying would have been outside the assembly.
Women are not permitted to teach men.
“Let a woman learn in silence with all submission. And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man, but to be in silence. For Adam was formed first, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived, fell into transgression” (1 Timothy 2:11-14).
This prohibition underpins the leadership role God has assigned to men. Also outside the assembly, a woman is not to serve as a teacher of men. This restriction is not violated when a woman teaches women or children.
If women are allowed to ask questions and make comments in a mixed Bible study that is not part of the assembly, the study itself must still be led by a man.
This certainly does not mean that a man may never learn something from a woman! Apollos is an example of this. “Now a certain Jew named Apollos, born at Alexandria, an eloquent man and mighty in the Scriptures, came to Ephesus. This man had been instructed in the ways of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he spoke and taught accurately the things of the Lord, though he knew only the baptism of John. So he began to speak boldly in the synagogue. When Aquila and Priscilla heard him, they took him aside and explained to him the way of God more accurately” (Acts 18:24-26).
Notice that they “took him aside” and notice that they “explained” the way of God to him more accurately. These expressions depict a conversational situation.
This passage is sometimes misapplied to appoint a woman, or a man and woman together, to lead a mixed Bible class. In the case of Apollos, however, there was not a teacher-student relationship.
The example of Aquila and Priscilla does show that a Christian couple may invite a preacher into their home and explain the way of the Lord to him more accurately! Many preachers have benefited from such help!
Older women teach younger women. “The older women likewise, that they be reverent in behavior, not slanders, not given to much wine, teachers of good things - that they admonish the young women to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, homemakers, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be blasphemed” (Titus 2:3-5).
Women may not exercise authority over men.
“And I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man” (1 Timothy 2:12).
Again, this restriction is simply a consequence of God’s appointment of men to lead the church. Leadership is not limited to the assembly. Just as a woman may not teach men, neither may she lead men. For this reason, prayers are led by men in a mixed Bible study, although women join in the discussion.
Some try to justify women participating in “chain” prayers (where they go around the room and everyone says a prayer) by claiming that each one is just saying his own private prayer, and is not leading the others. According to Jesus, however, private prayers should be said in private (Matthew 6:6).
According to Paul, group prayers should be understandable, so “amen” can be said afterwards (1 Corinthians 14:15, 16). The thoughts of the group are being led by the one saying the prayer. Thus, outside the assembly as well, the prayers in a mixed group must be led by men.
When a church has elders, decisions are of course made by the elders who are men. When a church does not have elders, since women are not to exercise authority over men, decisions must be made by the men of the congregation. Good leaders discuss decisions beforehand with those being led, which includes getting feedback from women as well as men. Only then can informed decisions be made.
Man’s leadership is compared to Christ’s leadership.
This applies both in the home and in the church.
“Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord” (Ephesians 5:22).
To the church at Corinth, where some women were rebellious, Paul wrote: “But I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, the head of woman is man, and the head of Christ is God” (1 Corinthians 11:3).
Man’s leadership does not mean that he may be a tyrant. He himself is under the authority of Christ. His leadership must agree with the word of God. He has no right to contradict God’s word or to exercise authority that belongs to the Scriptures. In such a case Peter’s explanation to the Jewish leaders would apply: “We ought to obey God rather than men” (Acts 5:29).
Let us respect God’s appointments.
God has appointed the husband as head of the wife, and men as leaders in the church. As a consequence, women are not to teach men, are not to exercise authority over men, and are not to speak in the assembly. Decisions for the church are made either by the elders or, if there are none, by the men of the congregation. God has appointed men as leaders in the home and in the church. Amen.
Roy Davison The Scripture quotations in this article are from The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982, Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers unless indicated otherwise.
Permission for reference use has been granted.
1 “Children, obey your parents in all things, for this is well pleasing to the Lord” (Colossians 3:20). “Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. ‘Honor your father and mother,’ which is the first commandment with promise: ‘that it may be well with you and you may live long on the earth’” (Ephesians 6:1-3).
Fathers have a great responsibility: “And you, fathers, do not provoke your children to wrath, but bring them up in the training and admonition of the Lord” (Ephesians 6:4). Fathers are responsible for bringing up their children in the training and admonition of the Lord. This requires much wisdom and constant attention from birth until the child is grown.
Bringing up children in the training and admonition of the Lord means that their upbringing must be according to the word of God. It also involves teaching children the Scriptures, not only in word, but even more importantly, by example.
Timothy knew the Scriptures from childhood (2 Timothy 3:15). The genuine faith which first dwelt in his grandmother Lois and in his mother Eunice, was also in him (2 Timothy 1:5).
2 In Acts 17:31 it is stated that God “will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained.” The word used here is ἀνήρ, which is the specific word for a male, rather than the generic word for man(kind): ἄνθρωπος.
3 The contribution of women is extremely important in the body of Christ. There are many examples of godly women in the New Testament.
a. Women provided for Jesus from their means (Luke 8:1-3).
b. A woman anointed Christ’s body beforehand for His burial (Matthew 26:6-13).
c. Dorcas was full of good works and charitable deeds. She made tunics and garments for widows (Acts 9:36-39).
d. Aquila and Priscilla explained the way of God more accurately to Apollos in private (Acts 18:26). Paul calls Prisca and Aquila his fellow workers in Christ Jesus (Romans 16:3).
e. Philip the evangelist had four virgin daughters who prophesied (Acts 21:9).
f. Phoebe, a servant of the church in Cenchrea, was a helper of many including Paul (Romans 16:1, 2).
g. Euodia and Syntyche were fellow workers with Paul in the gospel (Philippians 4:2, 3).
4 The Greek word for ‘church’, ἐκκλησία, means ‘assembly’ sometimes in the actual sense and sometimes in the definitive sense. Someone who speaks in an unknown language must “keep silence in church“ unless there is a translator (1 Corinthians 14:28). This refers to the actual assembly. That “the women should keep silence in the churches“ (1 Corinthians 14:34) and that “it is shameful for a women to speak in church“ (1 Corinthians 14:35) also refer to the actual assemblies. In 1 Corinthians 14:33 we find the definitive sense (“As in all the churches of the saints“) followed by the actual sense in verse 34 (“the women should keep silence in the churches“). Thus, “all the churches of the saints“ does not refer to the actual assemblies, but to all local churches of Christ. In other words, in all churches of Christ the women remain silent in the assemblies.
5 The Greek word here for ‘remain silent’ is σιγάτωσαν, the present, imperative form of σιγάω. What do Greek lexicons say? Analytical: ‘To be silent, keep silence’; Thayer: ‘To keep silence, hold one’s peace’; Arndt & Gingrich: ‘Be silent, keep still ... in the senses: a. say nothing, keep silent ... b. stop speaking, become silent ... c. hold one’s tongue, keep something (a) secret.’ A. & G. classify 1 Corinthians 14:34 under meaning a. ‘say nothing, keep silent’.
Here are all passages where σιγάω is found:
- Luke 9:36 - “And they kept silence and told no one in those days anything of what they had seen.“
- Luke 18:39 - “And those who were in front rebuked him, telling him to be silent.“
- Luke 20:26 - “But marveling at his answer they were silent.“
- Acts 12:17 - “But motioning to them with his hand to be silent...“
- Acts 15:12 - “And all the assembly kept silence.“
- Acts 15:13 - “And after they finished speaking...“ [became silent].
- Romans 16:25 - “Kept secret for long ages“.
- 1 Corinthians 14:28 - “But if there is no one to interpret, let each of them keep silence in church“ [referring to speaking in foreign languages].
- 1 Corinthians 14:30 - “If a revelation is made to another sitting by, let the first be silent.“
- 1 Corinthians 14:33,34 - “As in all the churches of the saints, the women should keep silence in the churches.“
6 The Greek word for ‘speak’ (“For they are not permitted to speak,“ “For it is shameful for a woman to speak in church“) is λαλεῖν, infinitive of λαλέω. Anyone who has studied even a little Greek, knows that this is the common word for ‘speaking‘. It does not have the special meaning of ‘speaking noisily’.
Published in The Old Paths Archive
Bible Reading May 31, June 1 (World English Bible)
Please note that since I will not be posting on Thursdays for the foreseeable future, I will make a double reading post on Wednesdays. Gary
Judges 19, 20
Jdg 19:1 It happened in those days, when there was no king in Israel, that there was a certain Levite sojourning on the farther side of the hill country of Ephraim, who took to him a concubine out of Bethlehem Judah.
Jdg 19:2 His concubine played the prostitute against him, and went away from him to her father's house to Bethlehem Judah, and was there the space of four months.
Jdg 19:3 Her husband arose, and went after her, to speak kindly to her, to bring her again, having his servant with him, and a couple of donkeys: and she brought him into her father's house; and when the father of the young lady saw him, he rejoiced to meet him.
Jdg 19:4 His father-in-law, the young lady's father, retained him; and he abode with him three days: so they ate and drink, and lodged there.
Jdg 19:5 It happened on the fourth day, that they arose early in the morning, and he rose up to depart: and the young lady's father said to his son-in-law, Strengthen your heart with a morsel of bread, and afterward you shall go your way.
Jdg 19:6 So they sat down, ate, and drank, both of them together: and the young lady's father said to the man, Please be pleased to stay all night, and let your heart be merry.
Jdg 19:7 The man rose up to depart; but his father-in-law urged him, and he lodged there again.
Jdg 19:8 He arose early in the morning on the fifth day to depart; and the young lady's father said, Please strengthen your heart and stay until the day declines; and they ate, both of them.
Jdg 19:9 When the man rose up to depart, he, and his concubine, and his servant, his father-in-law, the young lady's father, said to him, Behold, now the day draws toward evening, please stay all night: behold, the day grows to an end, lodge here, that your heart may be merry; and tomorrow get you early on your way, that you may go home.
Jdg 19:10 But the man wouldn't stay that night, but he rose up and departed, and came over against Jebus (the same is Jerusalem): and there were with him a couple of donkeys saddled; his concubine also was with him.
Jdg 19:11 When they were by Jebus, the day was far spent; and the servant said to his master, Please come and let us turn aside into this city of the Jebusites, and lodge in it.
Jdg 19:12 His master said to him, We won't turn aside into the city of a foreigner, that is not of the children of Israel; but we will pass over to Gibeah.
Jdg 19:13 He said to his servant, Come and let us draw near to one of these places; and we will lodge in Gibeah, or in Ramah.
Jdg 19:14 So they passed on and went their way; and the sun went down on them near to Gibeah, which belongs to Benjamin.
Jdg 19:15 They turned aside there, to go in to lodge in Gibeah: and he went in, and sat him down in the street of the city; for there was no man who took them into his house to lodge.
Jdg 19:16 Behold, there came an old man from his work out of the field at even: now the man was of the hill country of Ephraim, and he sojourned in Gibeah; but the men of the place were Benjamites.
Jdg 19:17 He lifted up his eyes, and saw the wayfaring man in the street of the city; and the old man said, Where are you going? Where did you come from?
Jdg 19:18 He said to him, We are passing from Bethlehem Judah to the farther side of the hill country of Ephraim; from there am I, and I went to Bethlehem Judah: and I am now going to the house of Yahweh; and there is no man who takes me into his house.
Jdg 19:19 Yet there is both straw and provender for our donkeys; and there is bread and wine also for me, and for your handmaid, and for the young man who is with your servants: there is no want of anything.
Jdg 19:20 The old man said, Peace be to you; howsoever let all your wants lie on me; only don't lodge in the street.
Jdg 19:21 So he brought him into his house, and gave the donkeys fodder; and they washed their feet, and ate and drink.
Jdg 19:22 As they were making their hearts merry, behold, the men of the city, certain base fellows, surrounded the house, beating at the door; and they spoke to the master of the house, the old man, saying, Bring forth the man who came into your house, that we may know him.
Jdg 19:23 The man, the master of the house, went out to them, and said to them, No, my brothers, please don't act so wickedly; seeing that this man is come into my house, don't do this folly.
Jdg 19:24 Behold, here is my daughter a virgin, and his concubine; them I will bring out now, and humble them, and do with them what seems good to you: but to this man don't do any such folly.
Jdg 19:25 But the men wouldn't listen to him: so the man laid hold on his concubine, and brought her forth to them; and they knew her, and abused her all the night until the morning: and when the day began to spring, they let her go.
Jdg 19:26 Then came the woman in the dawning of the day, and fell down at the door of the man's house where her lord was, until it was light.
Jdg 19:27 Her lord rose up in the morning, and opened the doors of the house, and went out to go his way; and behold, the woman his concubine was fallen down at the door of the house, with her hands on the threshold.
Jdg 19:28 He said to her, Up, and let us be going; but none answered: then he took her up on the donkey; and the man rose up, and got him to his place.
Jdg 19:29 When he was come into his house, he took a knife, and laid hold on his concubine, and divided her, limb by limb, into twelve pieces, and sent her throughout all the borders of Israel.
Jdg 19:30 It was so, that all who saw it said, There was no such deed done nor seen from the day that the children of Israel came up out of the land of Egypt to this day: consider it, take counsel, and speak.
Jdg 20:1 Then all the children of Israel went out, and the congregation was assembled as one man, from Dan even to Beersheba, with the land of Gilead, to Yahweh at Mizpah.
Jdg 20:2 The chiefs of all the people, even of all the tribes of Israel, presented themselves in the assembly of the people of God, four hundred thousand footmen who drew sword.
Jdg 20:3 (Now the children of Benjamin heard that the children of Israel had gone up to Mizpah.) The children of Israel said, Tell us, how was this wickedness brought to pass?
Jdg 20:4 The Levite, the husband of the woman who was murdered, answered, I came into Gibeah that belongs to Benjamin, I and my concubine, to lodge.
Jdg 20:5 The men of Gibeah rose against me, and surrounded the house by night. They thought to have slain me, and they forced my concubine, and she is dead.
Jdg 20:6 I took my concubine, and cut her in pieces, and sent her throughout all the country of the inheritance of Israel; for they have committed lewdness and folly in Israel.
Jdg 20:7 Behold, you children of Israel, all of you, give here your advice and counsel.
Jdg 20:8 All the people arose as one man, saying, We will not any of us go to his tent, neither will we any of us turn to his house.
Jdg 20:9 But now this is the thing which we will do to Gibeah: we will go up against it by lot;
Jdg 20:10 and we will take ten men of one hundred throughout all the tribes of Israel, and one hundred of one thousand, and a thousand out of ten thousand, to get food for the people, that they may do, when they come to Gibeah of Benjamin, according to all the folly that they have worked in Israel.
Jdg 20:11 So all the men of Israel were gathered against the city, knit together as one man.
Jdg 20:12 The tribes of Israel sent men through all the tribe of Benjamin, saying, What wickedness is this that is happen among you?
Jdg 20:13 Now therefore deliver up the men, the base fellows, who are in Gibeah, that we may put them to death, and put away evil from Israel. But Benjamin would not listen to the voice of their brothers the children of Israel.
Jdg 20:14 The children of Benjamin gathered themselves together out of the cities to Gibeah, to go out to battle against the children of Israel.
Jdg 20:15 The children of Benjamin were numbered on that day out of the cities twenty-six thousand men who drew the sword, besides the inhabitants of Gibeah, who were numbered seven hundred chosen men.
Jdg 20:16 Among all this people there were seven hundred chosen men left-handed; everyone could sling stones at a hair-breadth, and not miss.
Jdg 20:17 The men of Israel, besides Benjamin, were numbered four hundred thousand men who drew sword: all these were men of war.
Jdg 20:18 The children of Israel arose, and went up to Bethel, and asked counsel of God; and they said, Who shall go up for us first to battle against the children of Benjamin? Yahweh said, Judah shall go up first.
Jdg 20:19 The children of Israel rose up in the morning, and encamped against Gibeah.
Jdg 20:20 The men of Israel went out to battle against Benjamin; and the men of Israel set the battle in array against them at Gibeah.
Jdg 20:21 The children of Benjamin came forth out of Gibeah, and destroyed down to the ground of the Israelites on that day Twenty-two thousand men.
Jdg 20:22 The people, the men of Israel, encouraged themselves, and set the battle again in array in the place where they set themselves in array the first day.
Jdg 20:23 The children of Israel went up and wept before Yahweh until even; and they asked of Yahweh, saying, Shall I again draw near to battle against the children of Benjamin my brother? Yahweh said, Go up against him.
Jdg 20:24 The children of Israel came near against the children of Benjamin the second day.
Jdg 20:25 Benjamin went forth against them out of Gibeah the second day, and destroyed down to the ground of the children of Israel again eighteen thousand men; all these drew the sword.
Jdg 20:26 Then all the children of Israel, and all the people, went up, and came to Bethel, and wept, and sat there before Yahweh, and fasted that day until even; and they offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before Yahweh.
Jdg 20:27 The children of Israel asked of Yahweh (for the ark of the covenant of God was there in those days,
Jdg 20:28 and Phinehas, the son of Eleazar, the son of Aaron, stood before it in those days), saying, Shall I yet again go out to battle against the children of Benjamin my brother, or shall I cease? Yahweh said, Go up; for tomorrow I will deliver him into your hand.
Jdg 20:29 Israel set ambushes all around Gibeah.
Jdg 20:30 The children of Israel went up against the children of Benjamin on the third day, and set themselves in array against Gibeah, as at other times.
Jdg 20:31 The children of Benjamin went out against the people, and were drawn away from the city; and they began to strike and kill of the people, as at other times, in the highways, of which one goes up to Bethel, and the other to Gibeah, in the field, about thirty men of Israel.
Jdg 20:32 The children of Benjamin said, They are struck down before us, as at the first. But the children of Israel said, Let us flee, and draw them away from the city to the highways.
Jdg 20:33 All the men of Israel rose up out of their place, and set themselves in array at Baal Tamar: and the ambushers of Israel broke forth out of their place, even out of Maareh Geba.
Jdg 20:34 There came over against Gibeah ten thousand chosen men out of all Israel, and the battle was sore; but they didn't know that evil was close on them.
Jdg 20:35 Yahweh struck Benjamin before Israel; and the children of Israel destroyed of Benjamin that day twenty-five thousand one hundred men: all these drew the sword.
Jdg 20:36 So the children of Benjamin saw that they were struck; for the men of Israel gave place to Benjamin, because they trusted the ambushers whom they had set against Gibeah.
Jdg 20:37 The ambushers hurried, and rushed on Gibeah; and the ambushers drew themselves along, and struck all the city with the edge of the sword.
Jdg 20:38 Now the appointed sign between the men of Israel and the ambushers was that they should make a great cloud of smoke rise up out of the city.
Jdg 20:39 The men of Israel turned in the battle, and Benjamin began to strike and kill of the men of Israel about thirty persons; for they said, Surely they are struck down before us, as in the first battle.
Jdg 20:40 But when the cloud began to arise up out of the city in a pillar of smoke, the Benjamites looked behind them; and behold, the whole of the city went up in smoke to the sky.
Jdg 20:41 The men of Israel turned, and the men of Benjamin were dismayed; for they saw that evil had come on them.
Jdg 20:42 Therefore they turned their backs before the men of Israel to the way of the wilderness; but the battle followed hard after them; and those who came out of the cities destroyed them in its midst.
Jdg 20:43 They surrounded the Benjamites, chased them, and trod them down at their resting place, as far as over against Gibeah toward the sunrise.
Jdg 20:44 There fell of Benjamin eighteen thousand men; all these were men of valor.
Jdg 20:45 They turned and fled toward the wilderness to the rock of Rimmon: and they gleaned of them in the highways five thousand men, and followed hard after them to Gidom, and struck of them two thousand men.
Jdg 20:46 So that all who fell that day of Benjamin were twenty-five thousand men who drew the sword; all these were men of valor.
Jdg 20:47 But six hundred men turned and fled toward the wilderness to the rock of Rimmon, and abode in the rock of Rimmon four months.
Jdg 20:48 The men of Israel turned again on the children of Benjamin, and struck them with the edge of the sword, both the entire city, and the livestock, and all that they found: moreover all the cities which they found they set on fire.
Jdg 21:1 Now the men of Israel had sworn in Mizpah, saying, There shall not any of us give his daughter to Benjamin as wife.
Jdg 21:2 The people came to Bethel, and sat there until evening before God, and lifted up their voices, and wept sore.
Jdg 21:3 They said, Yahweh, the God of Israel, why has this happened in Israel, that there should be today one tribe lacking in Israel?
Jdg 21:4 It happened on the next day that the people rose early, and built there an altar, and offered burnt offerings and peace offerings.
Jdg 21:5 The children of Israel said, Who is there among all the tribes of Israel who didn't come up in the assembly to Yahweh? For they had made a great oath concerning him who didn't come up to Yahweh to Mizpah, saying, He shall surely be put to death.
Jdg 21:6 The children of Israel grieved for Benjamin their brother, and said, There is one tribe cut off from Israel this day.
Jdg 21:7 How shall we do for wives for those who remain, seeing we have sworn by Yahweh that we will not give them of our daughters to wives?
Jdg 21:8 They said, What one is there of the tribes of Israel who didn't come up to Yahweh to Mizpah? Behold, there came none to the camp from Jabesh Gilead to the assembly.
Jdg 21:9 For when the people were numbered, behold, there were none of the inhabitants of Jabesh Gilead there.
Jdg 21:10 The congregation sent there twelve thousand men of the most valiant, and commanded them, saying, Go and strike the inhabitants of Jabesh Gilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the little ones.
Jdg 21:11 This is the thing that you shall do: you shall utterly destroy every male, and every woman who has lain by man.
Jdg 21:12 They found among the inhabitants of Jabesh Gilead four hundred young virgins, who had not known man by lying with him; and they brought them to the camp to Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan.
Jdg 21:13 The whole congregation sent and spoke to the children of Benjamin who were in the rock of Rimmon, and proclaimed peace to them.
Jdg 21:14 Benjamin returned at that time; and they gave them the women whom they had saved alive of the women of Jabesh Gilead: and yet so they weren't enough for them.
Jdg 21:15 The people grieved for Benjamin, because that Yahweh had made a breach in the tribes of Israel.
Jdg 21:16 Then the elders of the congregation said, How shall we do for wives for those who remain, seeing the women are destroyed out of Benjamin?
Jdg 21:17 They said, There must be an inheritance for those who are escaped of Benjamin, that a tribe not be blotted out from Israel.
Jdg 21:18 However we may not give them wives of our daughters, for the children of Israel had sworn, saying, Cursed be he who gives a wife to Benjamin.
Jdg 21:19 They said, Behold, there is a feast of Yahweh from year to year in Shiloh, which is on the north of Bethel, on the east side of the highway that goes up from Bethel to Shechem, and on the south of Lebonah.
Jdg 21:20 They commanded the children of Benjamin, saying, Go and lie in wait in the vineyards,
Jdg 21:21 and see, and behold, if the daughters of Shiloh come out to dance in the dances, then come out of the vineyards, and each man catch his wife of the daughters of Shiloh, and go to the land of Benjamin.
Jdg 21:22 It shall be, when their fathers or their brothers come to complain to us, that we will say to them, Grant them graciously to us, because we didn't take for each man his wife in battle, neither did you give them to them, else you would now be guilty.
Jdg 21:23 The children of Benjamin did so, and took them wives, according to their number, of those who danced, whom they carried off: and they went and returned to their inheritance, and built the cities, and lived in them.
Jdg 21:24 The children of Israel departed there at that time, every man to his tribe and to his family, and they went out from there every man to his inheritance.
Jdg 21:25 In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.
Joh 8:1 but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives.
Joh 8:2 Now very early in the morning, he came again into the temple, and all the people came to him. He sat down, and taught them.
Joh 8:3 The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman taken in adultery. Having set her in the midst,
Joh 8:4 they told him, "Teacher, we found this woman in adultery, in the very act.
Joh 8:5 Now in our law, Moses commanded us to stone such. What then do you say about her?"
Joh 8:6 They said this testing him, that they might have something to accuse him of. But Jesus stooped down, and wrote on the ground with his finger.
Joh 8:7 But when they continued asking him, he looked up and said to them, "He who is without sin among you, let him throw the first stone at her."
Joh 8:8 Again he stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground.
Joh 8:9 They, when they heard it, being convicted by their conscience, went out one by one, beginning from the oldest, even to the last. Jesus was left alone with the woman where she was, in the middle.
Joh 8:10 Jesus, standing up, saw her and said, "Woman, where are your accusers? Did no one condemn you?"
Joh 8:11 She said, "No one, Lord." Jesus said, "Neither do I condemn you. Go your way. From now on, sin no more."
Joh 8:12 Again, therefore, Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world. He who follows me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the light of life."
Joh 8:13 The Pharisees therefore said to him, "You testify about yourself. Your testimony is not valid."
Joh 8:14 Jesus answered them, "Even if I testify about myself, my testimony is true, for I know where I came from, and where I am going; but you don't know where I came from, or where I am going.
Joh 8:15 You judge according to the flesh. I judge no one.
Joh 8:16 Even if I do judge, my judgment is true, for I am not alone, but I am with the Father who sent me.
Joh 8:17 It's also written in your law that the testimony of two people is valid.
Joh 8:18 I am one who testifies about myself, and the Father who sent me testifies about me."
Joh 8:19 They said therefore to him, "Where is your Father?" Jesus answered, "You know neither me, nor my Father. If you knew me, you would know my Father also."
Joh 8:20 Jesus spoke these words in the treasury, as he taught in the temple. Yet no one arrested him, because his hour had not yet come.
Joh 8:21 Jesus said therefore again to them, "I am going away, and you will seek me, and you will die in your sins. Where I go, you can't come."
Joh 8:22 The Jews therefore said, "Will he kill himself, that he says, 'Where I am going, you can't come?' "
Joh 8:23 He said to them, "You are from beneath. I am from above. You are of this world. I am not of this world.
Joh 8:24 I said therefore to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am he, you will die in your sins."
Joh 8:25 They said therefore to him, "Who are you?" Jesus said to them, "Just what I have been saying to you from the beginning.
Joh 8:26 I have many things to speak and to judge concerning you. However he who sent me is true; and the things which I heard from him, these I say to the world."
Joh 8:27 They didn't understand that he spoke to them about the Father.
Joh 8:28 Jesus therefore said to them, "When you have lifted up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am he, and I do nothing of myself, but as my Father taught me, I say these things.
Joh 8:29 He who sent me is with me. The Father hasn't left me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to him."
Joh 8:30 As he spoke these things, many believed in him.
Joh 8:31 Jesus therefore said to those Jews who had believed him, "If you remain in my word, then you are truly my disciples.
Joh 8:32 You will know the truth, and the truth will make you free."
Joh 8:33 They answered him, "We are Abraham's seed, and have never been in bondage to anyone. How do you say, 'You will be made free?' "
Joh 8:34 Jesus answered them, "Most certainly I tell you, everyone who commits sin is the bondservant of sin.
Joh 8:35 A bondservant doesn't live in the house forever. A son remains forever.
Joh 8:36 If therefore the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed.
Joh 8:37 I know that you are Abraham's seed, yet you seek to kill me, because my word finds no place in you.
Joh 8:38 I say the things which I have seen with my Father; and you also do the things which you have seen with your father."
Joh 8:39 They answered him, "Our father is Abraham." Jesus said to them, "If you were Abraham's children, you would do the works of Abraham.
Joh 8:40 But now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth, which I heard from God. Abraham didn't do this.
Joh 8:41 You do the works of your father." They said to him, "We were not born of sexual immorality. We have one Father, God."
Joh 8:42 Therefore Jesus said to them, "If God were your father, you would love me, for I came out and have come from God. For I haven't come of myself, but he sent me.
Joh 8:43 Why don't you understand my speech? Because you can't hear my word.
Joh 8:44 You are of your father, the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and doesn't stand in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaks a lie, he speaks on his own; for he is a liar, and its father.
Joh 8:45 But because I tell the truth, you don't believe me.
Joh 8:46 Which of you convicts me of sin? If I tell the truth, why do you not believe me?
Joh 8:47 He who is of God hears the words of God. For this cause you don't hear, because you are not of God."
Joh 8:48 Then the Jews answered him, "Don't we say well that you are a Samaritan, and have a demon?"
Joh 8:49 Jesus answered, "I don't have a demon, but I honor my Father, and you dishonor me.
Joh 8:50 But I don't seek my own glory. There is one who seeks and judges.
Joh 8:51 Most certainly, I tell you, if a person keeps my word, he will never see death."
Joh 8:52 Then the Jews said to him, "Now we know that you have a demon. Abraham died, and the prophets; and you say, 'If a man keeps my word, he will never taste of death.'
Joh 8:53 Are you greater than our father, Abraham, who died? The prophets died. Who do you make yourself out to be?"
Joh 8:54 Jesus answered, "If I glorify myself, my glory is nothing. It is my Father who glorifies me, of whom you say that he is our God.
Joh 8:55 You have not known him, but I know him. If I said, 'I don't know him,' I would be like you, a liar. But I know him, and keep his word.
Joh 8:56 Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day. He saw it, and was glad."
Joh 8:57 The Jews therefore said to him, "You are not yet fifty years old, and have you seen Abraham?"
Joh 8:58 Jesus said to them, "Most certainly, I tell you, before Abraham came into existence, I AM."
Joh 8:59 Therefore they took up stones to throw at him, but Jesus was hidden, and went out of the temple, having gone through the midst of them, and so passed by.
Joh 9:1 As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth.
Joh 9:2 His disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?"
Joh 9:3 Jesus answered, "Neither did this man sin, nor his parents; but, that the works of God might be revealed in him.
Joh 9:4 I must work the works of him who sent me, while it is day. The night is coming, when no one can work.
Joh 9:5 While I am in the world, I am the light of the world."
Joh 9:6 When he had said this, he spat on the ground, made mud with the saliva, anointed the blind man's eyes with the mud,
Joh 9:7 and said to him, "Go, wash in the pool of Siloam" (which means "Sent"). So he went away, washed, and came back seeing.
Joh 9:8 The neighbors therefore, and those who saw that he was blind before, said, "Isn't this he who sat and begged?"
Joh 9:9 Others were saying, "It is he." Still others were saying, "He looks like him." He said, "I am he."
Joh 9:10 They therefore were asking him, "How were your eyes opened?"
Joh 9:11 He answered, "A man called Jesus made mud, anointed my eyes, and said to me, 'Go to the pool of Siloam, and wash.' So I went away and washed, and I received sight."
Joh 9:12 Then they asked him, "Where is he?" He said, "I don't know."
Joh 9:13 They brought him who had been blind to the Pharisees.
Joh 9:14 It was a Sabbath when Jesus made the mud and opened his eyes.
Joh 9:15 Again therefore the Pharisees also asked him how he received his sight. He said to them, "He put mud on my eyes, I washed, and I see."
Joh 9:16 Some therefore of the Pharisees said, "This man is not from God, because he doesn't keep the Sabbath." Others said, "How can a man who is a sinner do such signs?" There was division among them.
Joh 9:17 Therefore they asked the blind man again, "What do you say about him, because he opened your eyes?" He said, "He is a prophet."
Joh 9:18 The Jews therefore did not believe concerning him, that he had been blind, and had received his sight, until they called the parents of him who had received his sight,
Joh 9:19 and asked them, "Is this your son, who you say was born blind? How then does he now see?"
Joh 9:20 His parents answered them, "We know that this is our son, and that he was born blind;
Joh 9:21 but how he now sees, we don't know; or who opened his eyes, we don't know. He is of age. Ask him. He will speak for himself."
Joh 9:22 His parents said these things because they feared the Jews; for the Jews had already agreed that if any man would confess him as Christ, he would be put out of the synagogue.
Joh 9:23 Therefore his parents said, "He is of age. Ask him."
Joh 9:24 So they called the man who was blind a second time, and said to him, "Give glory to God. We know that this man is a sinner."
Joh 9:25 He therefore answered, "I don't know if he is a sinner. One thing I do know: that though I was blind, now I see."
Joh 9:26 They said to him again, "What did he do to you? How did he open your eyes?"
Joh 9:27 He answered them, "I told you already, and you didn't listen. Why do you want to hear it again? You don't also want to become his disciples, do you?"
Joh 9:28 They insulted him and said, "You are his disciple, but we are disciples of Moses.
Joh 9:29 We know that God has spoken to Moses. But as for this man, we don't know where he comes from."
Joh 9:30 The man answered them, "How amazing! You don't know where he comes from, yet he opened my eyes.
Joh 9:31 We know that God doesn't listen to sinners, but if anyone is a worshipper of God, and does his will, he listens to him.
Joh 9:32 Since the world began it has never been heard of that anyone opened the eyes of someone born blind.
Joh 9:33 If this man were not from God, he could do nothing."
Joh 9:34 They answered him, "You were altogether born in sins, and do you teach us?" They threw him out.
Joh 9:35 Jesus heard that they had thrown him out, and finding him, he said, "Do you believe in the Son of God?"
Joh 9:36 He answered, "Who is he, Lord, that I may believe in him?"
Joh 9:37 Jesus said to him, "You have both seen him, and it is he who speaks with you."
Joh 9:38 He said, "Lord, I believe!" and he worshiped him.
Joh 9:39 Jesus said, "I came into this world for judgment, that those who don't see may see; and that those who see may become blind."
Joh 9:40 Those of the Pharisees who were with him heard these things, and said to him, "Are we also blind?"
Joh 9:41 Jesus said to them, "If you were blind, you would have no sin; but now you say, 'We see.' Therefore your sin remains.