5/13/19

"THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PETER" Loving One Another Fervently (1:22) by Mark Copeland


"THE FIRST EPISTLE OF PETER"

Loving One Another Fervently (1:22)

INTRODUCTION

1. In our last study, we saw that "Proper Conduct As Obedient Children" means:
   a. Not to conform ourselves to the former lusts - 1Pe 1:14
   b. To be holy in all our conduct - 1Pe 1:15-16
   c. To conduct ourselves in fear - 1Pe 1:17-21

2. Another responsibility we have as obedient children is found in verse 22...
   a. Simply stated, we are to "love one another fervently".
   b. A closer look at verse 22 reveals:
      1) What "fervent love" is
      2) And how it is possible for Christians to "love one another fervently"

[But before we take that closer look, consider this question...]

I. WHY IS "FERVENT LOVE" IMPORTANT?

   A. IT IS A DEMONSTRATION OF DISCIPLESHIP...
      1. While Judas had gone to betray Him, Jesus gave a new 
         commandment - Jn 13:33-35
      2. It is a commandment to love one another, even as Jesus loved us
      3. The reason for such a commandment:  to convince the world that
         we are truly His disciples!
      4. Where there is no "Christ-like love", our actions betray our words
         a. We may profess to be Christ's disciples...
         b. But failure to have a fervent love like Christ had for us 
            will cause the world to doubt our discipleship!

   B. IT IS A DEMONSTRATION OF SPIRITUAL LIFE...
      1. "Love of the brethren" is an indication that we have passed 
         from spiritual death to spiritual life - 1Jn 3:14
      2. Failure to love the brethren is an indication that we are 
         still spiritually dead!

   C. THIRDLY, IT DEMONSTRATES OUR RELATIONSHIP TO GOD...
      1. God is love, and those who truly love have been born of God 
         - 1Jn 4:7
      2. Failure to love leaves the impression that we have not been 
         born again and that we do not truly know God! - 1Jn 4:8

[Certainly these three reasons should convince us that "loving one
another fervently" is important.

But what qualifies as a "fervent love"?  What kind of love will 
demonstrate our discipleship, our spiritual life, our relationship with
God?]

II. WHAT IS "FERVENT LOVE"?

   A. CLEARLY, IT IS "FERVENT"...
      1. The same word is used in reference to prayer in Ac 12:5
         a. There it is translated "constant" or "earnest"
         b. Just as the disciples were constantly praying for the 
            release of Peter, so our love for one another is to be "unceasing"
      2. Therefore, only that love which is constant and earnest can 
         qualify as "fervent love"

   B. IT MUST ALSO BE "SINCERE"...
      1. Translated "unfeigned" in some versions
      2. The Greek word literally means "not hypocritical"
      3. This makes it clear that "fervent love" is not to be some kind
         of show, but coming from the heart - cf. Ro 12:9

   C. FINALLY, IT MUST ALSO BE "PURE"...
      1. Love of the brethren must always be kept in the context of 
         moral purity
      2. Under no circumstances is our love to be a cover for sexual 
         immorality - Ep 5:2-3
      3. Pure, sincere, fervent love, then, is one that emulates 
         Christ's love, i.e., a sacrificial love!

[How do we measure up to this type of love?  Do we have a pure and 
sincere love for one another?  Does the word "fervently" accurately 
describe our feelings and actions towards each other?

If our only contact with one another is a weekly assembly, and if we 
are not opening our hearts and our homes to one another, can it be said
that we love one another fervently?  Brethren, think upon these things!

Finally...]

III. HOW IS "FERVENT LOVE" POSSIBLE?

   A. IT IS POSSIBLE BECAUSE OUR SOULS HAVE BEEN PURIFIED...
      1. By obeying the truth we have been forgiven - 1Pe 1:22; 
         cf. Ac 2:38
      2. By continuing to heed the truth, we are taught to be pure 
         - cf. Ep 4:20-24
      3. Therefore we can be fervent in our love for it will be a pure love

   B. IT IS POSSIBLE BECAUSE WE HAVE BEEN "BORN AGAIN"
      1. Born again by the incorruptible word of God! - cf. 1Pe 1:23
      2. How does being born again by the Word of God prepare us to 
         love one another fervently?
         a. By the Word of God we come to know what true love really is
         b. For the Word of God tells us of:
            1) The love of Jesus - 1Jn 3:16-18
            2) The love of God - 1Jn 4:9-10

   C. IN OTHER WORDS...
      1. We CAN have this fervent love because we have been purified 
         and understand the need for a sincere, pure love of the brethren
      2. We WILL have this fervent love, because the love of Jesus and
         God motivates us!

CONCLUSION

1. If we fail to "love one another fervently" with sincerity and 
   purity, it is an indication that we either:
   a. Have never been purified, born again
   b. Or are not allowing the love of God and Jesus to motivate us

2. Furthermore, failure to love one another fervently presents a 
   picture to the world which belies our claim to:
   a. Be true disciples of Christ
   b. Possess spiritual life
   c. Have a relationship with God as our heavenly Father

3. Perhaps this is the reason Peter exhorts us to love one another 
   fervently, not only here in verse 22, but also in 1Pe 4:8!

4. In view of these truths found in God's Word, how are we doing in our
   gave for one another?
   a. Even if we excel in this department, there is room for 
      improvement - cf. 1Th 4:9-10
   b. In the days ahead, think of how you can be more fervent in your 
      love of the brethren
   c. But just don't think, ACT!  Open your hearts and homes to each other!

If you are not a Christian, we want you to enjoy the blessings of God's
love and the love of His children.  But these blessings are only for 
those who have purified themselves by obeying the truth!

Why not do so today?

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2016

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Life on Mars? by Trevor Major, M.Sc., M.A.

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=280


Life on Mars?

by Trevor Major, M.Sc., M.A.


A group of scientists believes it has found evidence for life on Mars (McKay, et al., 1996). NASAwas ecstatic, and quick to point out that its personnel and funds were behind the project. This could not have come at a better time for the struggling Space Agency. The organization’s multi-billion dollar budget for the proposed orbiting space station—which NASA thinks is essential for manned explorations to Mars—has been the target of deep cost-cutting measures. July 1996 marked the twentieth anniversary of the first Viking landing and, in late 1996, NASA launched the first of two new Mars-bound probes.
However, NASA’s vested interests explain only part of the hype. Most important, we have the first serious claim of life beyond our own planet. For some observers, the ramifications reach even farther. According to NASA Administrator Daniel S. Goldin, the new finding “gets to the foundations of beliefs of the human species.” Supposedly, this speculation about Mars will only trouble “creationists and Christian fundamentalists who adhere to a literal interpretation of Genesis” (Monmaney, 1996). But should Bible believers be disturbed by these findings? Let us take a look at the evidence.
In 1984, a geologist picked up a 4½ pound rock from the icy wastes of Antarctica. The sample, ALH84001, was very unusual, but it had all the physical and chemical signs of being a meteorite. Ten years later, a scientist identified this rock as belonging to a rare group of meteorites, apparently blasted in our direction by impacts on the Martian surface. [Eleven other meteorites have a similar composition to ALH84001. One of these meteorites, EET79001, has crystallized “bubbles” containing gas matching the atmosphere of Mars as measured by the Viking landers. The inference, therefore, is that all these meteorites have a common origin, i.e., Mars.] Also, researchers suggest that ALH84001 came from a rock formed in the planet’s earliest geologic era.
In their paper, David S. McKay and his colleagues offered several clues that, they believe, add up to evidence for life on ancient Mars:
  • ALH84001 contains relatively high concentrations of polycylic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs. Converting organic matter into coal, or grilling a hamburger, are just two ways of creating PAHs on Earth. The authors suggest that the meteorite’s PAHs resulted from the chemical alteration of organic matter in the original rock.
  • The sample contains carbonate globules with magnetite crystals and iron-sulfide minerals, both of which are produced by, or contained in, certain bacteria on Earth.
  • The globules show tiny egg- and tubular-shaped features that may be the fossilized remains of bacteria. The authors speculate that the bacteria grew in calcium-rich waters that had penetrated the cracks of the rock, and were preserved as the fluid hardened into carbonate.
However, each of these clues, taken individually, is not unique to life. For example:
  • Completely inorganic processes can form PAHs. Astronomers have detected these compounds in interstellar space, and in the atmospheres of cool stars.
  • Magnetite, iron sulfides, and carbonates commonly form by inorganic processes.
  • Several researchers believe that the globules in ALH84001 formed at high temperatures inhospitable to life (Harvey and McSween, 1996).
  • Apart from their external appearance, the bacterium-like shapes on the globules show no cell walls or other features unique to living organisms, and are hundreds of times smaller than any such fossils found on Earth.
  • The proportion of sulfur isotopes in another Martian meteorite suggests the absence of organic activity.
Obviously, the claims are very tenuous. William Schopf, who was present at the NASA conference, voiced many of the objections listed above (see Grady et al., 1996). “The biological explanation,” he said, “was unlikely.” Another critic was John F. Kerridge—lead author on a paper advising NASA on a strategy for finding life on Mars. Although impressed with the science in the paper, Kerridge concluded that it “fell far short of establishing the case for evidence of biological activity.” Even McKay, as the project’s team leader, denied having found the “smoking gun” of life, let alone “absolute proof ” of life, either past or present. “We’re just saying we have found a lot of pointers in that direction” (as reported by Kerr, 1996). With regard to more complex organisms, Goldin insisted that there is “no evidence or suggestion that any higher life-form ever existed on Mars.”
This is not the last we will hear of such research; scientists will continue to offer less ambiguous evidence for extraterrestrial life. Of course, Bible believers have every right to be as skeptical of the Martian-rock claims as anybody else. Ken Ham offered the following response in light of Scripture:
The Bible does not say whether or not life is found elsewhere in the universe. However, because the Earth was created first and the Sun, Moon, and stars were made on the fourth day, it seems likely that because the Earth was center stage in the Creation, everything else was created for the Earth. We can’t be dogmatic about this, but it is most likely that only Earth has life (1996, 3[9]:3; for a slightly different viewpoint, see Jackson, 1996).
Given the current evidence, there is no reason to conclude that intelligent life exists anywhere except on Earth (Thompson, 1991). Ham, and others, also point out that if there ever was life (or at least, the remains of life) on Mars, then perhaps it was carried there by the solar wind from Earth’s outer atmosphere. Life, wherever we may find it, owes its ultimate existence to the Creator-God (Exodus 20:11).
Evolutionists believe that this latest discovery might help them understand how life can come from nonliving chemicals. Certainly, from their perspective, if life can arise by purely natural means once, then it can arise many times. This would suggest that there are universal principles at work. Surely these should be so obvious, and so pervasive, that we would have some experience of life’s appearing from nonlife. But this is not the case, and there is no reason to think that life on Mars will solve this most intractable problem of materialistic evolution.

REFERENCES

Grady, Monica, Ian Wright, and Colin Pillinger (1996), “Opening a Martian Can of Worms?,” Nature, 382:575-576, August 15.
Ham, Ken (1996), “Life in the Rock?,” Answers in Genesis Newsletter, 3[9]:1-3,7-8.
Harvey, Ralph P. and Harry Y. McSween (1996), “A Possible High-Temperature Origin for the Carbonates in the Martian Meteorite ALH84001,” Nature, 382:49-51, Nuly 4.
Jackson, Wayne (1996), "Has Evidence of Primitive Life Been Found on Mars?," Christian Courier, 32[6]:21-23, October.
Kerr, Richard A. (1996), “Ancient Life on Mars?,” Science, 273:864-866, August 16.
Kerridge, John F. (1996), “Mars Media Mayhem,” Science, 274:161, October 11.
McKay, David S. (1996), “Search for Past Life on Mars: Possible Relic Biogenic Activity in Martian Meteorite ALH84001,” Science, 272:924-930, May 17.
Monmaney, Terence (1996), “Launch Pad for Flights of Wonder,” L.A. Times, Saturday, August 31.
Thompson, Bert (1991), “Is There Intelligent Life In Outer Space?,” Reason & Revelation, 11:37-40, October.
[See related article: “Mars Rock Update”]

Lessons Learned in the Practice of Law: God is a Perfect Judge by Kevin Cain, J.D.

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=3793


Lessons Learned in the Practice of Law: God is a Perfect Judge

by Kevin Cain, J.D.


[Editor’s Note: The following article was written by A.P. auxiliary staff writer, Kevin Cain, who holds degrees from Freed-Hardeman University (B.S., M.Min.) and the Doctor of Jurisprudence from South Texas College of Law. A former Briefing Attorney of The First Court of Appeals, his current practice focuses on litigation at the trial and appellate levels in both State and Federal Courts.]
I am an attorney. I make a living studying the law, applying the law, and helping my clients navigate the murky waters of the legal profession. Over the years practicing as an attorney, I have come across cases, legal maxims, rules of law, statutes, and experiences that remind me of subtle lessons that God has long ago passed on to us through His holy Word. It simply reminds me of the great wisdom and superiority of God and His ways. One of these lessons was impressed upon me at a recent hearing.
I do not practice criminal law, but many trial courts have a combined civil and criminal docket—meaning they try both civil and criminal cases. Therefore, when I show up at the courthouse for a hearing on a civil case, I often sit and listen to people in orange jumpsuits plead guilty and beg for the judge’s mercy while I wait for my hearing to be called. Usually the assistant district attorney (ADA) and the defense attorney have reached a deal before the defendant pleads guilty. However, this agreement merely results in a recommendation from the ADA to the judge for purposes of sentencing the defendant. The judge may or may not accept this recommendation. The judge may give the defendant deferred adjudication or probation, or he may sentence the defendant to jail time. Rarely does the judge pass a sentence that is harsher than the sentence recommended by the ADA—rare, but not impossible.
I recently sat in a courthouse and listened to an attorney and the defendant’s mother plead for leniency and mercy on behalf of the defendant, who had just plead guilty to arson. The defense attorney begged for probation, while the ADA recommended 10 years in prison. The judge sentenced the 22-year-old man, with his one year-old daughter in the court room, to 15 years in prison. The defendant wept silently, and his mother wept bitterly as her son was led out of the courtroom in handcuffs to begin his 15 years in prison. I do not envy the judges who have to make life-changing decisions like this.
In this lifetime, on this side of eternity, we will never know perfect judgment, where justice and mercy are perfectly blended together resulting in judgment that is perfectly fair. Judges are faced with pleas for mercy, tears of sympathy, and cries for justice. What is a judge to do? Each judge must ask, “Is this defendant truly sorry and changed, or is he simply regretting that he got caught and sorry he is facing judgment?” While we often hear of judges who appear to have exercised poor judgment in their sentencing, and presume that we could do better, this is not a job I want day in and day out. As a judge stares down his gavel at a defendant pleading for his life, how is a judge to know if that person is truly sorry, sincere, or is simply putting on a show?
The true God we read of in the Bible is a perfect judge. He knows the hearts and minds of men. Our God searches the hearts of men—that is, he knows our every thought (Romans 8:27).  God tries our hearts and our minds (Psalm 7:9). “The Lord searches all hearts and understands every plan and thought” (1 Chronicles 28:9). God can look past the external distractions that so often mislead, and He looks directly into our hearts (1 Samuel 16:7). Because of God’s ability to know our thoughts, our motives, and the intents of our hearts, He is a perfect judge who will exact perfect judgment. “Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Genesis 18:25). “And He shall judge the world in righteousness, He shall minister judgment to the people in uprightness” (Psalm 9:8). Our God will judge us all with precision, bringing together mercy and wrath perfectly. “But with righteousness shall He judge the poor, and reprove with equity for the meek of the earth: and He shall smite the earth: with the rod of His mouth, and with the breath of His lips shall He slay the wicked” (Isaiah 11:4). In other words when God judges this world, separating the saved from the lost, we will still be able to say, “He has done all things well” (Mark 7:37). When we pray for forgiveness, only God knows if we are truly sincere, sorry, and changed. God is a perfect judge.
A person can stand before a judge and fool him into leniency based on a purely external show of feigned sorrow. Another person may incur the judge’s wrath even though he is truly heart-broken and penitent. Nevertheless, our God looks beyond the external tears, confessions, pleas, and apologies; and He knows those who truly have torn hearts and those who merely demonstrate an external, superficial show of sorrow (Joel 2:13). “But the Lord said to Samuel, ‘Do not consider his appearance or his height, for I have rejected him. The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart’” (1 Samuel 16:7). God is a perfect judge.
Our biases and inconsistencies on this subject are obvious and apparent. When we hear of some person (whom we have never met) who has committed some atrocious crime, we immediately think, “I hope he is punished to the fullest extent of the law, and even beyond that if possible.” However, when it is me or someone I personally know who is facing criminal prosecution, we immediately pray and beg for mercy and understanding from the judge, because we truly are sorry. So, where is the balance, and what is the answer?
In the United States, we have a legal system that is literally second to none. Many people risk their lives every day around this world defending this nation and our liberties and rights. Among those rights, according to the U.S. Constitution, is the right to a trial by jury. People are dying every day in an effort to enter this country of ours to have access to our legal system that is driven and founded on concepts of liberty, justice, and equity. We have a judicial system where disagreements are settled in a civil manner in the court house, not in the streets at the hands of an angry mob. However, our legal system is far from perfect and has more problems and flaws than most attorneys, judges, and jurists would care to admit. We will never know perfect judgment in this lifetime. And thankfully, I am not called to judge every person to determine where they will spend eternity, much less attempt to exact some form of temporary justice for every wrong that is committed today. Rather, God wants me to present every person with God’s Word (Matthew 28:19-20)—the very text, law, and code that will be the guide by which everyone will someday be judged (Revelation 20:12). God wants me to stand in the gap and warn the world of the righteous judgment to come (Ezekiel 3:17-19; 22:30). God will take care of the judging. My role is not to ensure perfect judgment in my time, but to prepare for perfect judgment in God’s time.  God is a perfect judge.

Jesus Used Logic by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=3755


Jesus Used Logic

by Dave Miller, Ph.D.


Jesus was undoubtedly the Master Logician. He demonstrated unsurpassed logical prowess on every occasion. One such incident occurred when He was preaching to a group that had gathered in a house. So many people were crammed into the house that four men were unable to bring a paralytic into contact with Him, so they carried him onto the roof, punched a hole through the ceiling, and lowered him down through the hole into the presence of Jesus. The text then reads:
When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, “Son, your sins are forgiven you.” And some of the scribes were sitting there and reasoning in their hearts, “Why does this Man speak blasphemies like this? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” But immediately, when Jesus perceived in His spirit that they reasoned thus within themselves, He said to them, “Why do you reason about these things in your hearts? Which is easier, to say to the paralytic, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Arise, take up your bed and walk’? But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins”—He said to the paralytic, “I say to you, arise, take up your bed, and go your way to your house.” Immediately he arose, took up the bed, and went out in the presence of them all, so that all were amazed and glorified God, saying, “We never saw anything like this!” (Mark 2:5-12).
Observe that in their private thoughts the scribes accused Jesus of blasphemy, since He claimed to forgive the man of his sins on the spot—an act that only Deity could rightly perform. By asking the question, “Which is easier…?,” Jesus was urging them to reason correctly and think through what was taking place. If Jesus had the power to cause a bedfast paralytic to stand up and walk, instantaneously healing him of his affliction, then He either had divine backing or He, Himself, was God. Anyone can verbally say, “Your sins are forgiven” (cf. Catholic priests). That is what Jesus meant when he used the word “easier.” For a mere human to pronounce forgiveness upon a fellow human does not make it so. How, then, can one determine whether sin is actually forgiven, i.e., that Godforgave the individual? Answer: The one making the claim would either have to be God in the flesh, or he would have to have divine authority for his action, and that divine authority would have to be verified, i.e., proven and shown to be authentic.
The purpose of miracles throughout the Bible was to authenticate God’s spokesmen. To verify that his words and claims were authored by God, the speaker would perform a miracle (see Miller, 2003; cf. Hebrews 2:3-4). When an observer saw a bona fide miracle performed before his very eyes, he could know, i.e., have complete certainty, that the speaker was a genuine representative of God. Jesus, therefore, prodded the scribes to face up to the fact that if Jesus could merely speak to the paralytic and cause him to be healed, then Jesus possessed divine credentials and had every right to also forgive the man of his sins. Follow the logic:
  1. If Jesus can perform miraculous feats, then His claim to be the Son of God Who can forgive sin is true.
  2. Jesus can perform miraculous feats (He healed the paralytic on this occasion).
  3. Therefore, Jesus is the Son of God Who can forgive sin.
Having pressed this remarkably logical handling of the situation, all that remained was for Jesus to perform a miraculous feat, thereby validating His power to forgive the paralytic man of sin. So Jesus healed the man, prefaced with this logical conclusion: “But that you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins” (vs. 10). Jesus’ logic was impeccable, powerful, and perfectly consistent with Deity.

REFERENCES

Miller, Dave (2003), “Modern-Day Miracles, Tongue-Speaking, and Holy Spirit Baptism: A Refutation—EXTENDED VERSION,” http://apologeticspress.org/apcontent.aspx?category=11&article=1399.

Attributes of God (Part 3) God is HOLY by Ben Fronczek


http://granvillenychurchofchrist.org/?p=1689


Attributes of God (Part 3) God is HOLY

In the last two lessons I have attempted to help you understand a little more about our awesome and wonderful God. He is not only the mighty creator of all things, He is completely sovereign and all powerful – omnipotent. He is eternal, existing forever and will forever exist, and beyond the limits of time.   And because of this, all events of time are before Him in a moment. He is omnipresent or ever present, and hence all knowing. Nothing is hidden from Him.
Admittedly these attributes are hard if not impossible to fully understand or even imagine. Read what David wrote in Psalm 139:1-18. He basically wrote, ‘God where can I go from your presence? And then states, ‘I can’t, You are everywhere Lord, and know everything.’’
Our God is an awesome God!
Today I would like to touch on something very, very special and unique about our Lord and our God. It defines much of who He is and how He acts.          It is the fact that God is HOLY.
This is a familiar term especially as we think about moral purity, but the Holiness of God is something so much more. It is a general term referring to God’s absolute (absolute) perfection and total glorious nature. In God’s case it does refer to His infinite and absolute moral perfection which crowns His infinite intelligence and power.
The Hebrew word translated Holy is qadach, and the Greek, is hagios, they mean: distinct, separate. Therefore nothing in the creation, no one in the creation, not even man created in the image of God compares to God in His essential nature. He is incomparable. He is infinitely (infinitely) perfect. His being transcends all because of His infinite perfection because so much has been spoiled, tainted, or influenced by sin.
As Habakkuk the prophet wrote, “Your eyes are too pure to approve evil. You cannot look on wickedness.” Job 34:10 says, “Far be it from God to do wickedness, to do wrong.” In Revelation 15:4 it says, “You alone are holy.” And there lies the point I want you to see… Only God is truly (truly) holy.
That is why man cannot enter into His presence unless our spirit and soul are cleansed or purified by what God Himself has provided; the blood of Jesus.
Even though He loves us dearly, He will not defile Himself by being in the presence of, or exposing Himself to those who are dead spiritually because of sin. Do you want to know what new TV show that is now airing that I detest? The show, ‘Walking Dead’ about evil zombie like characters, half decomposed dead people who are still moving about.
But before we are cleansed and healed by Jesus, in my imagination that’s how I perceive those unsaved in God’s eyes, as the walking dead. In the OT those who came in contact with a dead body or even those who had some kind of nasty skin disease had to stay out of the camp, or God’s presence. (Num. 5:1-4)
His holiness is a difficult attributes to explain or fully understand. Why? Because it is one essential attributes that is not inherently shared by man. We are created in God’s image, and we can share many of His attributes, to a much lesser extent, those attributes like love, mercy, faithfulness, etc. But only God is absolutely, perfectly Holy in every way.
Holiness is not something that we will possess as an inherent part of our nature; we only become holy in a sense when we enter into a relationship with Christ. But this is an imputed or an assigned holiness. Only in Christ do we “become the righteousness of God” 2 Corinthians 5:21 says “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” .
God’s perfect holiness is what separates Him from all other beings, what makes Him separate and distinct from everything else. It is another reason why He is totally unique.
God’s holiness is more than just His perfection or sinless purity; it is the essence of His majesty. Because of it He transcends all other beings as well as everything else created. And because of it those who come in contact with Him are awed.
Isaiah firsthand witness of God’s holiness in his vision described in Isaiah 6. Even though Isaiah was a prophet of God and a righteous man, his reaction to the vision of God’s holiness was that of feared for his life because he recognized his own sinful nature in light of one SO HOLY. Read Isaiah 6:1- 5.   “In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord, high and exalted, seated on a throne; and the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him were seraphim, each with six wings: With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they were flying. And they were calling to one another:
“Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty;
the whole earth is full of his glory.”
At the sound of their voices the doorposts and thresholds shook and the temple was filled with smoke.
“Woe to me!” I cried. “I am ruined! For I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips, and my eyes have seen the King, the Lord Almighty.””
Even the angels in God’s presence, those who were crying, “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD Almighty,” covered their faces and feet with four of their six wings.
Covering the face and feet no doubt denotes the reverence and awe inspired by the immediate presence of God almighty.
The seraphim stood covered, as if concealing themselves as much as possible, even recognizing their unworthiness in the presence of the Holy One.
And if these pure and holy angelic seraphim exhibit such reverence in the presence of our Lord, how should Isaiah or anyone else having been polluted by sin dare to draw near to Him without fear and awe!
 The reverence shown to God by the angels should remind us of our own presumption when we rush thoughtlessly and irreverently into His presence, as we often do because we do not understand His holiness, simply thinking of our own needs. Shame on us when we refer to Him as the big man in the sky or even refer to His name as a curse or swear word. John’s vision of the throne of God in Revelation 4 was similar to that of Isaiah. Again, there were living creatures around the throne crying, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty” in reverence and awe of the Holy One. John goes on to describe these creatures giving glory and honor and reverence to God continually around His throne. (Click on and Read Revelation 4)
God’s holiness influences His entire being and shapes all His other attributes. His love is a perfectly holy love. His mercy is a perfect holy mercy. And even His anger and wrath are perfectly holy forms of anger and wrath. These concepts are difficult for humans to grasp, just as God is difficult for us to understand in His entirety.
To be holy is to be set apart. And God is. He’s one of a kind. He’s not common, but rather He’s sacred. He’s higher and greater than anyone or anything else.
What is the proper way for us to respond to the holiness of God? Make no mistake about it. The way we respond has eternal implications.
 What did people who encountered God in the Bible do?
In Exodus 3:6 Moses hid his face; for he was afraid to look upon God.
In Isaiah 6:1-7 Isaiah: Isaiah realizes his own sinfulness.
In Ezekiel 1:28, we read that Ezekiel fell on His face before the Lord.
In Matthew 17:5-6 The Apostles on the Mount of Transfiguration fell on their face because they were afraid.
In Revelations 1:17 The Apostle John fell at His feet as if he were dead when he saw the Lord.
In Revelation chapter 4, 5, and 7 we see that the 24 elders fell before the throne on their faces, and they worshipped God.
Our God is that awesome. And Glorious. He deserves praise and worship whether you see Him face to face or not.
As we come to know God in this manner…
#1. we should think of God and approach Him with a whole new perspective. No this life, this existence is not all about us. He is the one that deserves glory, and honor, and praise, and worship, as well as our love and obedience, because His holiness stirs something inside us. C. S. Lewis wrote, How little people know who think that holiness is dull. When one meets real thing, it is irresistible.”
There is no on like Him. Because of His holiness we are told that one day every knee will bow before Him. I don’t think we will have the strength to do much else other than bow and prostrate ourselves before Him.
#2. His Holiness should open our eyes as to how imperfect and wrenched we really are, and how much we need His mercy and grace in our life. We have no right to approach Him or even be in His presence. It should open our eyes as to how really important Jesus sacrifice was, because without it we would never be able to enter into heaven or in His presence in Glory. Isaiah 64:6 says “All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away.”       So even our best is not good enough without Jesus!
So many people out there think that Just because they live a so called ‘good life’ and they don’t kill someone, or if they do kind and charitable things God will welcome them into heaven. But Isaiah is letting us know that this is not so. Without Jesus even our best is this verse here is compared to a dirty, filthy menstrual rag.
#3. Knowing about God’s holiness should produce a humble and thankful heart knowing that in all creation, and considering all the things, our Lord God who has created and continues to hold together stopped to provide an opportunity for salvation and cleansing for you personally.
What greater gift in all the universe could one receive than the opportunity of one day being able to come into His Holy, eternal presence in the glory of Heaven itself without fear of being cast out or destroyed.
#4. Last of all I believe this should have an effect on how you live your life. Let me read what the Apostle Peter has to say concerning this very subject in 1 Peter 1:1-16. (Click on and READ)
My final challenge for you is to take some time to learn more about this subject of God’s holiness. Today I’ve only scratched the surface, for our God is such an AWESOME GOD!
For more lessons click on the following link: http://granvillenychurchofchrist.org/?page_id=566
All comments can be emailed to: bfronzek@gmail.com

Are you clothed with Christ? by Roy Davison

http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Davison/Roy/Allen/1940/067-clothedwithchrist.html

Are you clothed with Christ?

How are we dressed?
Most people are concerned about their physical appearance. But what about our spiritual appearance? Are we properly clothed both physically and spiritually?

What about our physical clothing?
When Adam and Eve realized they were naked, they “sewed fig leaves together and made themselves coverings” (Genesis 3:7). But fig leaves were not enough. “For Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them” (Genesis 3:21).
We choose the clothing we wear for various reasons. We may choose clothing that is comfortable. We may choose clothing based on what we will be doing that day.
Christians also take spiritual values into consideration. We select clothing that is appropriate for someone who walks according to the Spirit and not according to the flesh (Romans 8:4).
Many fashion designs are intended to show off wealth, to show off the body and to arouse lust. Christians may not wear indecent, sensuous clothing that excites sexual desire. Yet, avoiding the grossly carnal is not enough.

Christians clothe themselves modestly.
Christians want to have a modest appearance that expresses their moral and spiritual values. Their spiritual attire is their main concern. They wish to “Worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness” (Psalm 29:2).
Paul wrote: “Therefore I desire ... that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing, but, which is proper for women professing godliness, with good works” (1 Timothy 2:8-10).
Physically, women are to adorn themselves with restrained good taste. Spiritually, they are to beautify themselves with good works.
To women, Peter wrote: “Do not let your beauty be that outward adorning of arranging the hair, of wearing gold, or of putting on fine apparel; but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible ornament of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God. For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves” (1 Peter 3:3- 5).
True beauty is found in the hidden person of the heart, adorned with a gentle and quiet spirit. Modesty enhances beauty.

What spiritual clothing pleases God?
Job said: “I put on righteousness, and it clothed me; my justice was like a robe and a turban” (Job 29:14).
But there is a problem: “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). And sin is not pretty.
Before we can wear decent attire spiritually, we must be cleansed from sin. After David repented of adultery and murder, he prayed: “Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. ... Purge me with hyssop, and I shall be clean; wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow” (Psalm 51:2, 7).
We have been polluted by sin. For our cleansing, God sent His Son to die on the cross as an atonement for sin. The ones who stand before God “arrayed in white robes” will be those who “washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb” (Revelation 7:13, 14).
To appear before God clothed in righteousness, we must be clothed with Christ: “For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ” (Galatians 3:26, 27).
When we become Christians we put on Christ in baptism. Clothed with Christ, we strive to be like Hem. 

We put off the old man and put on the new man.
We do not put clean clothes over dirty ones. With God’s help, the old man must be replaced by the new man.
The truth in Jesus is “that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in righteousness and true holiness” (Ephesians 4:22-24).
God tells us what to put off and what to put on: “But now you must also put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth. Do not lie to one another, since you have put off the old man with his deeds, and have put on the new man who is renewed in knowledge according to the image of Him who created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcised nor uncircumcised, barbarian, Scythian, slave nor free, but Christ is all and in all. Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection” (Colossians 3:8-14).
We must put off anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy and filthy language before we can put on tender mercies, kindness, humbleness, meekness and longsuffering. And we must put on love to bind it all together.

We must put on the armor of light.
“Therefore let us cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light. Let us walk properly, as in the day, not in revelry and drunkenness, not in licentiousness and lewdness, not in strife and envy. But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts” (Romans 13:12-14).
How can light protect us? The armor of light protects us from the power of darkness. “Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:11-17).

Did you look in a mirror this morning?
Some people even have a full-length mirror. Then they know how they look from head to toe. The word of God is our full-length mirror that shows us how we look to God.
What about our physical clothing? Are we modestly dressed in a way that pleases God?
What about our spiritual clothing? Are we still wearing the filthy rags of sin because we have not yet come to Christ for cleansing? Then we need to believe the gospel, repent of our sins, confess our faith, and put on Christ in baptism.
After becoming Christians, do we still look too much like the old man? Then we need to put on the new man. We must cast off the works of darkness and put on the armor of light, put on the whole armor of God, put on the Lord Jesus Christ. 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.


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

Bible Reading May 13, 14 by Gary Rose


Bible Reading May 13, 14 

World  English  Bible 

May 13
Joshua 7, 8

Jos 7:1 But the children of Israel committed a trespass in the devoted things; for Achan, the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, took some of the devoted things. Therefore Yahweh's anger burned against the children of Israel.
Jos 7:2 Joshua sent men from Jericho to Ai, which is beside Beth Aven, on the east side of Bethel, and spoke to them, saying, "Go up and spy out the land." The men went up and spied out Ai.
Jos 7:3 They returned to Joshua, and said to him, "Don't let all the people go up; but let about two or three thousand men go up and strike Ai. Don't make all the people to toil there, for there are only a few of them."
Jos 7:4 So about three thousand men of the people went up there, and they fled before the men of Ai.
Jos 7:5 The men of Ai struck about thirty-six men of them, and they chased them from before the gate even to Shebarim, and struck them at the descent. The hearts of the people melted, and became like water.
Jos 7:6 Joshua tore his clothes, and fell to the earth on his face before the ark of Yahweh until the evening, he and the elders of Israel; and they put dust on their heads.
Jos 7:7 Joshua said, "Alas, Lord Yahweh, why have you brought this people over the Jordan at all, to deliver us into the hand of the Amorites, to cause us to perish? I wish that we had been content and lived beyond the Jordan!
Jos 7:8 Oh, Lord, what shall I say, after that Israel has turned their backs before their enemies!
Jos 7:9 For the Canaanites and all the inhabitants of the land will hear of it, and will surround us, and cut off our name from the earth. What will you do for your great name?"
Jos 7:10 Yahweh said to Joshua, "Get up! Why are you fallen on your face like that?
Jos 7:11 Israel has sinned. Yes, they have even transgressed my covenant which I commanded them. Yes, they have even taken of the devoted things, and have also stolen, and also deceived. They have even put it among their own stuff.
Jos 7:12 Therefore the children of Israel can't stand before their enemies. They turn their backs before their enemies, because they have become devoted for destruction. I will not be with you any more, unless you destroy the devoted things from among you.
Jos 7:13 Get up! Sanctify the people, and say, 'Sanctify yourselves for tomorrow, for Yahweh, the God of Israel, says, "There is a devoted thing in the midst of you, Israel. You cannot stand before your enemies until you take away the devoted thing from among you."
Jos 7:14 In the morning therefore you shall be brought near by your tribes. It shall be that the tribe which Yahweh selects shall come near by families. The family which Yahweh selects shall come near by households. The household which Yahweh selects shall come near man by man.
Jos 7:15 It shall be, that he who is taken with the devoted thing shall be burnt with fire, he and all that he has, because he has transgressed the covenant of Yahweh, and because he has done a disgraceful thing in Israel.' "
Jos 7:16 So Joshua rose up early in the morning and brought Israel near by their tribes. The tribe of Judah was selected.
Jos 7:17 He brought near the family of Judah; and he selected the family of the Zerahites. He brought near the family of the Zerahites man by man, and Zabdi was selected.
Jos 7:18 He brought near his household man by man, and Achan, the son of Carmi, the son of Zabdi, the son of Zerah, of the tribe of Judah, was selected.
Jos 7:19 Joshua said to Achan, "My son, please give glory to Yahweh, the God of Israel, and make confession to him. Tell me now what you have done! Don't hide it from me!"
Jos 7:20 Achan answered Joshua, and said, "I have truly sinned against Yahweh, the God of Israel, and this is what I have done.
Jos 7:21 When I saw among the spoil a beautiful Babylonian robe, two hundred shekels of silver, and a wedge of gold weighing fifty shekels, then I coveted them and took them. Behold, they are hidden in the ground in the middle of my tent, with the silver under it."
Jos 7:22 So Joshua sent messengers, and they ran to the tent. Behold, it was hidden in his tent, with the silver under it.
Jos 7:23 They took them from the middle of the tent, and brought them to Joshua and to all the children of Israel. They laid them down before Yahweh.
Jos 7:24 Joshua, and all Israel with him, took Achan the son of Zerah, the silver, the robe, the wedge of gold, his sons, his daughters, his cattle, his donkeys, his sheep, his tent, and all that he had; and they brought them up to the valley of Achor.
Jos 7:25 Joshua said, "Why have you troubled us? Yahweh will trouble you this day." All Israel stoned him with stones, and they burned them with fire and stoned them with stones.
Jos 7:26 They raised over him a great heap of stones that remains to this day. Yahweh turned from the fierceness of his anger. Therefore the name of that place was called "The valley of Achor" to this day.

Jos 8:1 Yahweh said to Joshua, "Don't be afraid, neither be dismayed. Take all the people of war with you, and arise, go up to Ai. Behold, I have given into your hand the king of Ai, with his people, his city, and his land.
Jos 8:2 You shall do to Ai and her king as you did to Jericho and her king, except its spoil and its livestock, you shall take for a plunder for yourselves. Set an ambush for the city behind it."
Jos 8:3 So Joshua arose, and all the people of war, to go up to Ai. Joshua chose thirty thousand men, the mighty men of valor, and sent them out by night.
Jos 8:4 He commanded them, saying, "Behold, you shall lie in ambush against the city, behind the city. Don't go very far from the city, but all of you be ready.
Jos 8:5 I, and all the people who are with me, will approach to the city. It shall happen, when they come out against us, as at the first, that we will flee before them.
Jos 8:6 They will come out after us, until we have drawn them away from the city; for they will say, 'They flee before us, like the first time.' So we will flee before them,
Jos 8:7 and you shall rise up from the ambush, and take possession of the city; for Yahweh your God will deliver it into your hand.
Jos 8:8 It shall be, when you have seized on the city, that you shall set the city on fire. You shall do this according to the word of Yahweh. Behold, I have commanded you."
Jos 8:9 Joshua sent them out; and they went to set up the ambush, and stayed between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of Ai; but Joshua stayed among the people that night.
Jos 8:10 Joshua rose up early in the morning, mustered the people, and went up, he and the elders of Israel, before the people to Ai.
Jos 8:11 All the people, even the men of war who were with him, went up, and drew near, and came before the city, and encamped on the north side of Ai. Now there was a valley between him and Ai.
Jos 8:12 He took about five thousand men, and set them in ambush between Bethel and Ai, on the west side of the city.
Jos 8:13 So they set the people, even all the army who was on the north of the city, and their ambush on the west of the city; and Joshua went that night into the midst of the valley.
Jos 8:14 It happened, when the king of Ai saw it, that they hurried and rose up early, and the men of the city went out against Israel to battle, he and all his people, at the time appointed, before the Arabah; but he didn't know that there was an ambush against him behind the city.
Jos 8:15 Joshua and all Israel made as if they were beaten before them, and fled by the way of the wilderness.
Jos 8:16 All the people who were in the city were called together to pursue after them. They pursued Joshua, and were drawn away from the city.
Jos 8:17 There was not a man left in Ai or Beth El who didn't go out after Israel. They left the city open, and pursued Israel.
Jos 8:18 Yahweh said to Joshua, "Stretch out the javelin that is in your hand toward Ai, for I will give it into your hand." Joshua stretched out the javelin that was in his hand toward the city.
Jos 8:19 The ambush arose quickly out of their place, and they ran as soon as he had stretched out his hand, and entered into the city, and took it. They hurried and set the city on fire.
Jos 8:20 When the men of Ai looked behind them, they saw, and behold, the smoke of the city ascended up to heaven, and they had no power to flee this way or that way. The people who fled to the wilderness turned back on the pursuers.
Jos 8:21 When Joshua and all Israel saw that the ambush had taken the city, and that the smoke of the city ascended, then they turned again, and killed the men of Ai.
Jos 8:22 The others came out of the city against them, so they were in the midst of Israel, some on this side, and some on that side. They struck them, so that they let none of them remain or escape.
Jos 8:23 They captured the king of Ai alive, and brought him to Joshua.
Jos 8:24 It happened, when Israel had made an end of killing all the inhabitants of Ai in the field, in the wilderness in which they pursued them, and they had all fallen by the edge of the sword, until they were consumed, that all Israel returned to Ai, and struck it with the edge of the sword.
Jos 8:25 All that fell that day, both of men and women, were twelve thousand, even all the men of Ai.
Jos 8:26 For Joshua didn't draw back his hand, with which he stretched out the javelin, until he had utterly destroyed all the inhabitants of Ai.
Jos 8:27 Only the livestock and the spoil of that city Israel took for prey to themselves, according to the word of Yahweh which he commanded Joshua.
Jos 8:28 So Joshua burnt Ai, and made it a heap forever, even a desolation, to this day.
Jos 8:29 He hanged the king of Ai on a tree until the evening, and at the sundown Joshua commanded, and they took his body down from the tree, and threw it at the entrance of the gate of the city, and raised a great heap of stones on it that remains to this day.
Jos 8:30 Then Joshua built an altar to Yahweh, the God of Israel, in Mount Ebal,
Jos 8:31 as Moses the servant of Yahweh commanded the children of Israel, as it is written in the book of the law of Moses, an altar of uncut stones, on which no man had lifted up any iron. They offered burnt offerings on it to Yahweh, and sacrificed peace offerings.
Jos 8:32 He wrote there on the stones a copy of the law of Moses, which he wrote in the presence of the children of Israel.
Jos 8:33 All Israel, and their elders and officers, and their judges, stood on this side of the ark and on that side before the priests the Levites, who carried the ark of Yahweh's covenant, the foreigner as well as the native; half of them in front of Mount Gerizim, and half of them in front of Mount Ebal, as Moses the servant of Yahweh had commanded at the first, that they should bless the people of Israel.
Jos 8:34 Afterward he read all the words of the law, the blessing and the curse, according to all that is written in the book of the law.
Jos 8:35 There was not a word of all that Moses commanded, which Joshua didn't read before all the assembly of Israel, with the women, the little ones, and the foreigners who were among them.

May 14
Joshua 9, 10

Jos 9:1 It happened, when all the kings who were beyond the Jordan, in the hill country, and in the lowland, and on all the shore of the great sea in front of Lebanon, the Hittite, the Amorite, the Canaanite, the Perizzite, the Hivite, and the Jebusite, heard of it
Jos 9:2 that they gathered themselves together to fight with Joshua and with Israel, with one accord.
Jos 9:3 But when the inhabitants of Gibeon heard what Joshua had done to Jericho and to Ai,
Jos 9:4 they also resorted to a ruse, and went and made as if they had been ambassadors, and took old sacks on their donkeys, and wineskins, old and torn and bound up,
Jos 9:5 and old and patched shoes on their feet, and wore old garments. All the bread of their provision was dry and moldy.
Jos 9:6 They went to Joshua to the camp at Gilgal, and said to him, and to the men of Israel, "We have come from a far country. Now therefore make a covenant with us."
Jos 9:7 The men of Israel said to the Hivites, "What if you live among us. How could we make a covenant with you?"
Jos 9:8 They said to Joshua, "We are your servants." Joshua said to them, "Who are you? Where do you come from?"
Jos 9:9 They said to him, "Your servants have come from a very far country because of the name of Yahweh your God; for we have heard of his fame, all that he did in Egypt,
Jos 9:10 and all that he did to the two kings of the Amorites who were beyond the Jordan, to Sihon king of Heshbon and to Og king of Bashan, who was at Ashtaroth.
Jos 9:11 Our elders and all the inhabitants of our country spoke to us, saying, 'Take provision in your hand for the journey, and go to meet them, and tell them, "We are your servants. Now make a covenant with us." '
Jos 9:12 This our bread we took hot for our provision out of our houses on the day we went out to go to you; but now, behold, it is dry, and has become moldy.
Jos 9:13 These wineskins, which we filled, were new; and behold, they are torn. These our garments and our shoes have become old because of the very long journey."
Jos 9:14 The men sampled their provisions, and didn't ask counsel from the mouth of Yahweh.
Jos 9:15 Joshua made peace with them, and made a covenant with them, to let them live. The princes of the congregation swore to them.
Jos 9:16 It happened at the end of three days after they had made a covenant with them, that they heard that they were their neighbors, and that they lived among them.
Jos 9:17 The children of Israel traveled and came to their cities on the third day. Now their cities were Gibeon, Chephirah, Beeroth, and Kiriath Jearim.
Jos 9:18 The children of Israel didn't strike them, because the princes of the congregation had sworn to them by Yahweh, the God of Israel. All the congregation murmured against the princes.
Jos 9:19 But all the princes said to all the congregation, "We have sworn to them by Yahweh, the God of Israel: now therefore we may not touch them.
Jos 9:20 This we will do to them, and let them live; lest wrath be on us, because of the oath which we swore to them."
Jos 9:21 The princes said to them, "Let them live, so they became wood cutters and drawers of water for all the congregation, as the princes had spoken to them."
Jos 9:22 Joshua called for them, and he spoke to them, saying, "Why have you deceived us, saying, 'We are very far from you,' when you live among us?
Jos 9:23 Now therefore you are cursed, and some of you will never fail to be bondservants, both wood cutters and drawers of water for the house of my God."
Jos 9:24 They answered Joshua, and said, "Because your servants were certainly told how Yahweh your God commanded his servant Moses to give you all the land, and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land from before you. Therefore we were very afraid for our lives because of you, and have done this thing.
Jos 9:25 Now, behold, we are in your hand. Do to us as it seems good and right to you to do."
Jos 9:26 He did so to them, and delivered them out of the hand of the children of Israel, so that they didn't kill them.
Jos 9:27 That day Joshua made them wood cutters and drawers of water for the congregation and for the altar of Yahweh, to this day, in the place which he should choose.

Jos 10:1 Now it happened when Adoni-Zedek king of Jerusalem heard how Joshua had taken Ai, and had utterly destroyed it; as he had done to Jericho and her king, so he had done to Ai and her king; and how the inhabitants of Gibeon had made peace with Israel, and were among them;
Jos 10:2 that they were very afraid, because Gibeon was a great city, as one of the royal cities, and because it was greater than Ai, and all its men were mighty.
Jos 10:3 Therefore Adoni-Zedek king of Jerusalem sent to Hoham king of Hebron, to Piram king of Jarmuth, to Japhia king of Lachish, and to Debir king of Eglon, saying,
Jos 10:4 "Come up to me, and help me, and let us strike Gibeon; for it has made peace with Joshua and with the children of Israel."
Jos 10:5 Therefore the five kings of the Amorites, the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, the king of Eglon, gathered themselves together, and went up, they and all their armies, and encamped against Gibeon, and made war against it.
Jos 10:6 The men of Gibeon sent to Joshua to the camp to Gilgal, saying, "Don't abandon your servants! Come up to us quickly, and save us, and help us; for all the kings of the Amorites that dwell in the hill country have gathered together against us."
Jos 10:7 So Joshua went up from Gilgal, he, and all the people of war with him, and all the mighty men of valor.
Jos 10:8 Yahweh said to Joshua, "Don't fear them, for I have delivered them into your hands. Not a man of them will stand before you."
Jos 10:9 Joshua therefore came on them suddenly. He went up from Gilgal all night.
Jos 10:10 Yahweh confused them before Israel, and he killed them with a great slaughter at Gibeon, and chased them by the way of the ascent of Beth Horon, and struck them to Azekah and to Makkedah.
Jos 10:11 It happened, as they fled from before Israel, while they were at the descent of Beth Horon, that Yahweh cast down great stones from the sky on them to Azekah, and they died. There were more who died from the hailstones than who the children of Israel killed with the sword.
Jos 10:12 Then Joshua spoke to Yahweh in the day when Yahweh delivered up the Amorites before the children of Israel; and he said in the sight of Israel, "Sun, stand still on Gibeon! You, moon, stop in the valley of Aijalon!"
Jos 10:13 The sun stood still, and the moon stayed, until the nation had avenged themselves of their enemies. Isn't this written in the book of Jashar? The sun stayed in the midst of the sky, and didn't hurry to go down about a whole day.
Jos 10:14 There was no day like that before it or after it, that Yahweh listened to the voice of a man; for Yahweh fought for Israel.
Jos 10:15 Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to the camp to Gilgal.
Jos 10:16 These five kings fled, and hid themselves in the cave at Makkedah.
Jos 10:17 Joshua was told, saying, "The five kings are found, hidden in the cave at Makkedah."
Jos 10:18 Joshua said, "Roll large stones to the mouth of the cave, and set men by it to guard them;
Jos 10:19 but don't stay. Pursue your enemies, and them from the rear. Don't allow them to enter into their cities; for Yahweh your God has delivered them into your hand."
Jos 10:20 It happened, when Joshua and the children of Israel had finished killing them with a very great slaughter until they were consumed, and the remnant which remained of them had entered into the fortified cities,
Jos 10:21 that all the people returned to the camp to Joshua at Makkedah in peace. None moved his tongue against any of the children of Israel.
Jos 10:22 Then Joshua said, "Open the mouth of the cave, and bring those five kings out of the cave to me."
Jos 10:23 They did so, and brought those five kings out of the cave to him: the king of Jerusalem, the king of Hebron, the king of Jarmuth, the king of Lachish, and the king of Eglon.
Jos 10:24 It happened, when they brought those kings out to Joshua, that Joshua called for all the men of Israel, and said to the chiefs of the men of war who went with him, "Come near, put your feet on the necks of these kings." They came near, and put their feet on their necks.
Jos 10:25 Joshua said to them, "Don't be afraid, nor be dismayed. Be strong and of good courage, for Yahweh will do this to all your enemies against whom you fight."
Jos 10:26 Afterward Joshua struck them, put them to death, and hanged them on five trees. They were hanging on the trees until the evening.
Jos 10:27 It happened at the time of the going down of the sun, that Joshua commanded, and they took them down off the trees, and cast them into the cave in which they had hidden themselves, and laid great stones on the mouth of the cave, which remain to this very day.
Jos 10:28 Joshua took Makkedah on that day, and struck it with the edge of the sword, with its king. He utterly destroyed them and all the souls who were in it. He left none remaining. He did to the king of Makkedah as he had done to the king of Jericho.
Jos 10:29 Joshua passed from Makkedah, and all Israel with him, to Libnah, and fought against Libnah.
Jos 10:30 Yahweh delivered it also, with its king, into the hand of Israel. He struck it with the edge of the sword, and all the souls who were in it. He left none remaining in it. He did to its king as he had done to the king of Jericho.
Jos 10:31 Joshua passed from Libnah, and all Israel with him, to Lachish, and encamped against it, and fought against it.
Jos 10:32 Yahweh delivered Lachish into the hand of Israel. He took it on the second day, and struck it with the edge of the sword, with all the souls who were in it, according to all that he had done to Libnah.
Jos 10:33 Then Horam king of Gezer came up to help Lachish; and Joshua struck him and his people, until he had left him none remaining.
Jos 10:34 Joshua passed from Lachish, and all Israel with him, to Eglon; and they encamped against it fought against it.
Jos 10:35 They took it on that day, and struck it with the edge of the sword. He utterly destroyed all the souls who were in it that day, according to all that he had done to Lachish.
Jos 10:36 Joshua went up from Eglon, and all Israel with him, to Hebron; and they fought against it.
Jos 10:37 They took it, and struck it with the edge of the sword, with its king and all its cities, and all the souls who were in it. He left none remaining, according to all that he had done to Eglon; but he utterly destroyed it, and all the souls who were in it.
Jos 10:38 Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to Debir, and fought against it.
Jos 10:39 He took it, with its king and all its cities. They struck them with the edge of the sword, and utterly destroyed all the souls who were in it. He left none remaining. As he had done to Hebron, so he did to Debir, and to its king; as he had done also to Libnah, and to its king.
Jos 10:40 So Joshua struck all the land, the hill country, and the South, and the lowland, and the slopes, and all their kings. He left none remaining, but he utterly destroyed all that breathed, as Yahweh, the God of Israel, commanded.
Jos 10:41 Joshua struck them from Kadesh Barnea even to Gaza, and all the country of Goshen, even to Gibeon.
Jos 10:42 Joshua took all these kings and their land at one time, because Yahweh, the God of Israel, fought for Israel.

Jos 10:43 Joshua returned, and all Israel with him, to the camp to Gilgal. 

May 13
Luke 23

Luk 23:1 The whole company of them rose up and brought him before Pilate.
Luk 23:2 They began to accuse him, saying, "We found this man perverting the nation, forbidding paying taxes to Caesar, and saying that he himself is Christ, a king."
Luk 23:3 Pilate asked him, "Are you the King of the Jews?" He answered him, "So you say."
Luk 23:4 Pilate said to the chief priests and the multitudes, "I find no basis for a charge against this man."
Luk 23:5 But they insisted, saying, "He stirs up the people, teaching throughout all Judea, beginning from Galilee even to this place."
Luk 23:6 But when Pilate heard Galilee mentioned, he asked if the man was a Galilean.
Luk 23:7 When he found out that he was in Herod's jurisdiction, he sent him to Herod, who was also in Jerusalem during those days.
Luk 23:8 Now when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceedingly glad, for he had wanted to see him for a long time, because he had heard many things about him. He hoped to see some miracle done by him.
Luk 23:9 He questioned him with many words, but he gave no answers.
Luk 23:10 The chief priests and the scribes stood, vehemently accusing him.
Luk 23:11 Herod with his soldiers humiliated him and mocked him. Dressing him in luxurious clothing, they sent him back to Pilate.
Luk 23:12 Herod and Pilate became friends with each other that very day, for before that they were enemies with each other.
Luk 23:13 Pilate called together the chief priests and the rulers and the people,
Luk 23:14 and said to them, "You brought this man to me as one that perverts the people, and see, I have examined him before you, and found no basis for a charge against this man concerning those things of which you accuse him.
Luk 23:15 Neither has Herod, for I sent you to him, and see, nothing worthy of death has been done by him.
Luk 23:16 I will therefore chastise him and release him."
Luk 23:17 Now he had to release one prisoner to them at the feast.
Luk 23:18 But they all cried out together, saying, "Away with this man! Release to us Barabbas!"-
Luk 23:19 one who was thrown into prison for a certain revolt in the city, and for murder.
Luk 23:20 Then Pilate spoke to them again, wanting to release Jesus,
Luk 23:21 but they shouted, saying, "Crucify! Crucify him!"
Luk 23:22 He said to them the third time, "Why? What evil has this man done? I have found no capital crime in him. I will therefore chastise him and release him."
Luk 23:23 But they were urgent with loud voices, asking that he might be crucified. Their voices and the voices of the chief priests prevailed.
Luk 23:24 Pilate decreed that what they asked for should be done.
Luk 23:25 He released him who had been thrown into prison for insurrection and murder, for whom they asked, but he delivered Jesus up to their will.
Luk 23:26 When they led him away, they grabbed one Simon of Cyrene, coming from the country, and laid on him the cross, to carry it after Jesus.
Luk 23:27 A great multitude of the people followed him, including women who also mourned and lamented him.
Luk 23:28 But Jesus, turning to them, said, "Daughters of Jerusalem, don't weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children.
Luk 23:29 For behold, the days are coming in which they will say, 'Blessed are the barren, the wombs that never bore, and the breasts that never nursed.'
Luk 23:30 Then they will begin to tell the mountains, 'Fall on us!' and tell the hills, 'Cover us.'
Luk 23:31 For if they do these things in the green tree, what will be done in the dry?"
Luk 23:32 There were also others, two criminals, led with him to be put to death.
Luk 23:33 When they came to the place that is called The Skull, they crucified him there with the criminals, one on the right and the other on the left.
Luk 23:34 Jesus said, "Father, forgive them, for they don't know what they are doing." Dividing his garments among them, they cast lots.
Luk 23:35 The people stood watching. The rulers with them also scoffed at him, saying, "He saved others. Let him save himself, if this is the Christ of God, his chosen one!"
Luk 23:36 The soldiers also mocked him, coming to him and offering him vinegar,
Luk 23:37 and saying, "If you are the King of the Jews, save yourself!"
Luk 23:38 An inscription was also written over him in letters of Greek, Latin, and Hebrew: "THIS IS THE KING OF THE JEWS."
Luk 23:39 One of the criminals who was hanged insulted him, saying, "If you are the Christ, save yourself and us!"
Luk 23:40 But the other answered, and rebuking him said, "Don't you even fear God, seeing you are under the same condemnation?
Luk 23:41 And we indeed justly, for we receive the due reward for our deeds, but this man has done nothing wrong."
Luk 23:42 He said to Jesus, "Lord, remember me when you come into your Kingdom."
Luk 23:43 Jesus said to him, "Assuredly I tell you, today you will be with me in Paradise."
Luk 23:44 It was now about the sixth hour, and darkness came over the whole land until the ninth hour.
Luk 23:45 The sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was torn in two.
Luk 23:46 Jesus, crying with a loud voice, said, "Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!" Having said this, he breathed his last.
Luk 23:47 When the centurion saw what was done, he glorified God, saying, "Certainly this was a righteous man."
Luk 23:48 All the multitudes that came together to see this, when they saw the things that were done, returned home beating their breasts.
Luk 23:49 All his acquaintances, and the women who followed with him from Galilee, stood at a distance, watching these things.
Luk 23:50 Behold, a man named Joseph, who was a member of the council, a good and righteous man
Luk 23:51 (he had not consented to their counsel and deed), from Arimathaea, a city of the Jews, who was also waiting for the Kingdom of God:
Luk 23:52 this man went to Pilate, and asked for Jesus' body.
Luk 23:53 He took it down, and wrapped it in a linen cloth, and laid him in a tomb that was cut in stone, where no one had ever been laid.
Luk 23:54 It was the day of the Preparation, and the Sabbath was drawing near.
Luk 23:55 The women, who had come with him out of Galilee, followed after, and saw the tomb, and how his body was laid.
Luk 23:56 They returned, and prepared spices and ointments. On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment.

May 14
Luke 24

Luk 24:1 But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they and some others came to the tomb, bringing the spices which they had prepared.
Luk 24:2 They found the stone rolled away from the tomb.
Luk 24:3 They entered in, and didn't find the Lord Jesus' body.
Luk 24:4 It happened, while they were greatly perplexed about this, behold, two men stood by them in dazzling clothing.
Luk 24:5 Becoming terrified, they bowed their faces down to the earth. They said to them, "Why do you seek the living among the dead?
Luk 24:6 He isn't here, but is risen. Remember what he told you when he was still in Galilee,
Luk 24:7 saying that the Son of Man must be delivered up into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again?"
Luk 24:8 They remembered his words,
Luk 24:9 returned from the tomb, and told all these things to the eleven, and to all the rest.
Luk 24:10 Now they were Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and Mary the mother of James. The other women with them told these things to the apostles.
Luk 24:11 These words seemed to them to be nonsense, and they didn't believe them.
Luk 24:12 But Peter got up and ran to the tomb. Stooping and looking in, he saw the strips of linen lying by themselves, and he departed to his home, wondering what had happened.
Luk 24:13 Behold, two of them were going that very day to a village named Emmaus, which was sixty stadia from Jerusalem.
Luk 24:14 They talked with each other about all of these things which had happened.
Luk 24:15 It happened, while they talked and questioned together, that Jesus himself came near, and went with them.
Luk 24:16 But their eyes were kept from recognizing him.
Luk 24:17 He said to them, "What are you talking about as you walk, and are sad?"
Luk 24:18 One of them, named Cleopas, answered him, "Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who doesn't know the things which have happened there in these days?"
Luk 24:19 He said to them, "What things?" They said to him, "The things concerning Jesus, the Nazarene, who was a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people;
Luk 24:20 and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him.
Luk 24:21 But we were hoping that it was he who would redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened.
Luk 24:22 Also, certain women of our company amazed us, having arrived early at the tomb;
Luk 24:23 and when they didn't find his body, they came saying that they had also seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive.
Luk 24:24 Some of us went to the tomb, and found it just like the women had said, but they didn't see him."
Luk 24:25 He said to them, "Foolish men, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken!
Luk 24:26 Didn't the Christ have to suffer these things and to enter into his glory?"
Luk 24:27 Beginning from Moses and from all the prophets, he explained to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.
Luk 24:28 They drew near to the village, where they were going, and he acted like he would go further.
Luk 24:29 They urged him, saying, "Stay with us, for it is almost evening, and the day is almost over." He went in to stay with them.
Luk 24:30 It happened, that when he had sat down at the table with them, he took the bread and gave thanks. Breaking it, he gave to them.
Luk 24:31 Their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, and he vanished out of their sight.
Luk 24:32 They said one to another, "Weren't our hearts burning within us, while he spoke to us along the way, and while he opened the Scriptures to us?"
Luk 24:33 They rose up that very hour, returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and those who were with them,
Luk 24:34 saying, "The Lord is risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!"
Luk 24:35 They related the things that happened along the way, and how he was recognized by them in the breaking of the bread.
Luk 24:36 As they said these things, Jesus himself stood among them, and said to them, "Peace be to you."
Luk 24:37 But they were terrified and filled with fear, and supposed that they had seen a spirit.
Luk 24:38 He said to them, "Why are you troubled? Why do doubts arise in your hearts?
Luk 24:39 See my hands and my feet, that it is truly me. Touch me and see, for a spirit doesn't have flesh and bones, as you see that I have."
Luk 24:40 When he had said this, he showed them his hands and his feet.
Luk 24:41 While they still didn't believe for joy, and wondered, he said to them, "Do you have anything here to eat?"
Luk 24:42 They gave him a piece of a broiled fish and some honeycomb.
Luk 24:43 He took them, and ate in front of them.
Luk 24:44 He said to them, "This is what I told you, while I was still with you, that all things which are written in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms, concerning me must be fulfilled."
Luk 24:45 Then he opened their minds, that they might understand the Scriptures.
Luk 24:46 He said to them, "Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day,
Luk 24:47 and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name to all the nations, beginning at Jerusalem.
Luk 24:48 You are witnesses of these things.
Luk 24:49 Behold, I send forth the promise of my Father on you. But wait in the city of Jerusalem until you are clothed with power from on high."
Luk 24:50 He led them out as far as Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them.
Luk 24:51 It happened, while he blessed them, that he withdrew from them, and was carried up into heaven.
Luk 24:52 They worshiped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy,
Luk 24:53 and were continually in the temple, praising and blessing God. Amen.