"STUDIES IN THE MINOR PROPHETS" Micah - Judgment Now, Blessings Later (1:1-2:13) INTRODUCTION 1. The eighth century (800-700 B.C.) was filled with prophetic activity... a. Starting with Jonah, who prophesied to the city of Nineveh (790 B.C.) b. Continuing with prophets sent primarily to the northern kingdom of Israel 1) Amos (755 B.C.) 2) Hosea (750-725 B.C.) c. The southern kingdom of Judah was also the recipient of God's prophets 1) Isaiah (740-700 B.C.) 2) Micah (735-700 B.C.) 2. In our study of "The Minor Prophets"... a. We have looked at the works of Jonah, Amos, and Hosea b. We now come to the works of Micah, the last prophet of the eighth century B.C. [Before we take a look at the messages of Micah as recorded in his book, it may be helpful to first look at some...] I. BACKGROUND MATERIAL A. MICAH - THE MAN... 1. His name means "Who is like Jehovah?" - cf. Mic 7:18 2. His home was Moresheth-Gath - Mic 1:1,14 a. In the lowlands of Judah, near Philistia b. About 20-25 miles southwest of Jerusalem 3. Nothing is known of his occupation prior to becoming God's prophet 4. Characterization a. "He was the prophet of the poor and downtrodden." (Homer Hailey) b. "He had Amos' passion for justice and Hosea's heart for love." (J.M.P. Smith) c. Comparing Micah to his contemporary Isaiah (as suggested by Hailey) 1) Micah was a man of the fields, Isaiah was of the city 2) Micah took little interest in politics, giving himself to the concern over spiritual and moral problems; Isaiah was in close contact with world affairs, the associate of kings and princes 3) Both Micah and Isaiah... a) Saw God as the infinite Ruler of nations and men b) Recognized the absolute holiness and majesty of God c) Stressed that violating principles of God's divine sovereignty and holiness would bring judgment and doom B. MICAH - THE BOOK... 1. The date: 735-700 B.C. a. During the reigns of Jotham, Ahaz, and Hezekiah, kings of Judah - Mic 1:1 b. Just as the northern kingdom of Israel was falling under Assyria's attack 2. The message: "Present Judgment, Future Blessings" a. Judgment is coming because of Israel's unfaithfulness to God b. Blessings will come because of God's faithfulness to Israel 1) Cf. the promise God made to Abraham - Gen 22:18 2) God would fulfill in the person of Jesus Christ - cf. Ac 3:24-26 3. A brief outline: The book appears to contain three messages or oracles, all beginning with the word "Hear"; therefore the book can be divided as follows: a. The coming judgment, with a promise of restoration - Mic 1:1-2:13 b. God's condemnation of Israel, with a glimpse of the future hope - Mic 3:1-5:15 c. God's indictment of Israel, with a plea for repentance and promise of forgiveness - Mic 6:1-7:20 [In the remaining part of this lesson, let's take look at Micah's first message...] II. THE COMING JUDGMENT AND PROMISED RESTORATION (1:1-2:13) A. JUDGMENT PRONOUNCED ON ISRAEL AND JUDAH... 1. Micah's message is for both Samaria (Israel) and Jerusalem (Judah) - Mic 1:1 2. The Lord announces His coming judgment - Mic 1:2-5 3. The destruction of Samaria (representing the northern kingdom of Israel) - Mic 1:6-7 4. Micah's mourning - Mic 1:8-16 a. For the judgment has reached even Judah and Jerusalem b. His lament involves making a play on words involving the names of cities; for example... 1) "Tell it not in Gath" (Gath is similar to the Hebrew word for "tell") 2) "Weep not at all in Beth Aphrah, Roll yourself in the dust" (Beth Aphrah means "house of dust") 3) "Pass by in naked shame, you inhabitant of Shaphir" (Shaphir means "fair, beautiful, pleasant") 4) "The inhabitant of Zaanan does not go out" (Zaanan means "come out") 5) "Beth Ezel mourns; its place to stand is taken away from you" (Beth Ezel can be paraphrased as "nearby house") c. As revealed in verse 16, their judgment will involve captivity B. REASONS FOR THE INEVITABLE JUDGMENT... 1. The arrogance and violence of the nobles - Mic 2:1-5 a. For coveting fields and taking them by violence b. So it will happen to them 2. For rejecting true prophets, and accepting false ones - Mic 2:6-11 a. They tell the prophets of God not to speak of God's words b. They abuse the people of God c. Destruction is coming, because they are defiled and accept false prophets C. RESTORATION PROMISED... 1. It will involve God assembling a remnant - Mic 2:12 2. God will lead them like a flock of sheep, with a king at their head - Mic 2:12-13 CONCLUSION 1. Later, Micah will tell us more about the ultimate fulfillment of that restoration, and from where that "king" shall arise who shall lead God's flock! - cf. Mic 5:2-5 2. But for now we have seen that Micah certainly follows the pattern of God's prophets at that time... a. Proclaiming the coming judgment, which would involve captivity b. Providing the basis for such judgment, describing the nature of their sins and departure from God c. Promising that God would one day restore the good fortunes of Israel, but requiring repentance and involving a "remnant" 3. How sad that many in Israel and Judah did not heed the words of such men like Micah, Amos, Hosea, and Isaiah... a. But are we heeding God's spokesmen for today? b. Such as His apostles Peter and Paul, and of course, His Son Jesus Christ? We would do well to remember the preaching of Micah as we read in the New Testament... "For this reason we must pay much closer attention to what we have heard, lest we drift away from it. For if the word spoken through angels proved unalterable, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompense, how shall we escape if we neglect so great a salvation? After it was at the first spoken through the Lord, it was confirmed to us by those who heard, God also bearing witness with them, both by signs and wonders and by various miracles and by gifts of the Holy Spirit according to His own will. (He 2:1-4) Israel as a nation failed to heed the message sent to them; are we heeding the message for us today?
Christ at the Door of Your Heart?
|by||Dave Miller, Ph.D.|
One of the most familiar expressions uttered within Christendom is: “Christ stands at the door of your heart.” Many have been the preachers who have urged their hearers to “invite Jesus into their hearts” in order to be forgiven of sin and made a Christian. Someone said if you repeat a statement enough times, people will come to accept it on the basis of sheer repetition and familiarity. The admonition that “Christ stands at the door of your heart” has been repeated so frequently that, for many, to question it is unthinkable. One would think that since this approach to salvation is so widespread, and the expression is so predominant, that surely the statement can be found in Scripture—even if only in so many words. How disturbing to realize that the statement is not found in Scripture and that the Bible simply does not teach this doctrine!
The phraseology is reminiscent of Revelation 3:20—the passage usually quoted to support the idea of Christ standing at the door of one’s heart. But observe the context. Revelation chapters two and three consist of seven specific mini-letters directed to the seven churches of Christ in Asia Minor near the end of the first century. At the outset, one must recognize that Revelation 3:20 is addressed to Christians—not non-Christians on the verge of conversion.
Second, the verse is found among Christ’s remarks to the church in Laodicea. Jesus made clear that the church had moved into an unfaithful condition. They were lost. They were unacceptable to God since they were “lukewarm” (3:16). They had become unsaved since their spiritual condition was “wretched and miserable and poor” (3:17). Thus, in a very real sense, Jesus had abandoned them by removing His presence from their midst. Now He was on the outside looking in. He still wanted to be among them, but the decision was up to them. They had to recognize His absence, hear Him knocking for admission, and open the door—all of which is figurative language to say that they must repent (3:19). They would have to return to the obedient lifestyle so essential to receiving God’s favor (John 14:21,23).
This means that Revelation 3:20 in no way supports the idea that non-Christians merely have to “open the door of their heart” and “invite Jesus in” with the assurance that the moment they mentally/verbally do so, Jesus will come into their heart and they will be simultaneously saved from all past sin and counted as Christians! The context of Revelation 3:20 shows that Jesus was seeking readmission into an apostate church.
“But doesn’t the Bible teach that Christ does come into a person’s heart?” Yes. But not the way the religious world suggests. Ephesians 3:17 states that Christ dwells in the heart through faith. Faith can be acquired only by hearing biblical truth (Romans 10:17). When that biblical truth is obeyed, the individual is “saved by faith” (Hebrews 5:9; James 2:22; 1 Peter 1:22; et al.). So Christ enters our lives when we “draw near with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience [i.e., when we repent of our sins] and our bodies washed with pure water [i.e., when we are baptized in water]” (Hebrews 10:22). Here is the New Testament (i.e., non-denominational) way to accept Christ.
Christ and the Gadarene Demoniac: A Criticism Answered
|by||Wayne Jackson, M.A.|
On the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee, Jesus once encountered a man who was possessed of demons. When the Lord commanded the unclean spirits to leave the gentleman, they requested permission to enter a herd of swine feeding nearby. Christ granted that request. The demons entered the hogs, who, in turn, rushed down an embankment into the sea and drowned. Bible critics have charged Jesus with destroying the property of others. It is alleged that His conduct was reprehensible in connection with this event. There are several things that may be said in response to this baseless accusation.
First, no charge can be made against the Lord unless the event actually happened. Those who criticize Christ must concede, first, that this account represents a factual incident; otherwise, their allegation is baseless. Are they willing to admit that Jesus actually cast out demons? If so, exactly what did that circumstance prove?
Second, if Christ is a Divine Being, then He is sovereign over the entire creation and, in reality, everything belongs to Him (cf. Colossians 1:16). God said: “For every beast of the forest is mine, And the cattle upon a thousand hills” (Psalm 50:10). Hogs, too! Thus, in the interest of a higher good, the Lord had every right to allow this incident to occur.
Third, swine were unclean according to Old Testament regulations (Leviticus 11). It is entirely possible that the owners of these pigs were Jews, engaged in an unlawful enterprise. If such was the case, the Savior’s economic rebuke certainly would have been warranted.
Fourth, as the scholarly R.C. Foster once observed, Christ “permitted the destruction of the swine knowing that it would awaken the Gergesenes from their indifference and ultimately assist in the salvation of a multitude in the community.” There are things that transcend the material, and hardship can have a benevolent result in the final ordering of one’s affairs.
In view of these factors, no legitimate indictment can be leveled against the Son of God in connection with this episode.
Choose the God of Your Choice?
|by||Dave Miller, Ph.D.|
The Christian religion has fallen prey to the pluralistic, multi-cultural mindset of American culture. Religion is now fashioned according to the prevailing mentality that citizens have a right to make their own choices and “do their own thing.” “That’s the American way!” After all, “I have my rights!” “My view is just as good as the other guy’s.” Unfortunately, such self-centered arrogance does not prepare one for humble submission to God (James 4:10). It only encourages compliance with self-stylized religion, i.e., religion that is structured according to one’s own desires. Paul referred to this approach as “self-imposed” or “will worship,” i.e., worshipping according to one’s own will (Colossians 2:23).
Religious conditions in the first century were such that most people believed in a multiplicity of gods (e.g., Acts 17:16). But, in reality, there was only one God (Ephesians 4:6). The fact that men fabricated elaborate trappings like images, temples, etc., and took their religion seriously, did not alter the fact that they were involved in vain worship and false religion (cf. Matthew 15:9; 2 Peter 2:1). Telling them that there was only one God, or that one god was not just as good as another, would not have been a popular teaching. In fact, the doctrine of “one God” was perceived as a genuine threat to the polytheism of the day, and as a serious challenge to the Empire’s religious health. Polytheism had so permeated first-century society that acceptance of the doctrine of “one God” was virtually inconceivable for most people.
History repeats itself many times over. Our day is really no different from those first-century environmental factors. While Americans historically have rejected the notion of “many gods” (although even this foundational truth is changing), the concept of “many churches” has been embraced fully. The prevailing attitude is “attend the church of your choice,” and “one church is as good as another.” But the concept of multiple churches is as foreign to the New Testament as is the idea of multiple gods. The exact same passage that affirms only one God (Ephesians 4:6), affirms only one church (Ephesians 4:4; 1:22-23). Either out of ignorance, discontent, or pride, men have taken it upon themselves to fabricate their own churches, stylizing doctrine, organization, worship, and name according to their own desires. Some never seem to realize that Jesus did not leave anyone free to fashion his or her own church (Matthew 15:9; 16:18). All false doctrines, false teachers, and false churches will be rejected (Matthew 15:13).
Let us not encourage people to “join the church of your choice.” Rather, let us urge them to respond obediently to the Gospel of Christ—through faith, repentance, and water baptism (Acts 2:38)—so that they may be “added” (Acts 2:47) to the church of Christ’s choice (Matthew 16:18; Ephesians 5:23).
In what follows, some of what I say I say with conviction but there are proposals that while I think they might well be correct I don’t feel sure about them. I only offer my opinion thinking it might be going in the right direction.
God raised Jesus from the dead and gave Him authority over all principalities, powers, might and dominion, and over every name that is named not only in this world but in the world to come! Ephesians 1:19-23.
Whatever is true about Satan or demons, Ephesians 1 and numerous other texts speak the truth about Jesus Christ and that is to be kept at the center of the Christian’s thought and reflections in this area. Even in the days of His creaturely weakness (2 Corinthians 13:4) He dismissed demons with a word and loosed with a touch or a thought what Satan had bound (Matthew 8:16; Acts 10:37-38; Luke 13:12, 16).
Discussion about Satan or demons should never be undertaken without the above truth in mind! Jesus is Lord of All!
I mean no insult or anything that would demean others in what I’m about to say in the next few sentences. If I know my heart I feel sad about it (but not a sadness that denies the above truths about the gracious and glorious God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ).
While it is true that where the Judeo–Christian Scriptures have taken root there is still talk about and fear of the demonic and gods but for the most part the fear and marked awareness (in many forms) of these is seen in parts of the world where the God and Father of Jesus Christ has not been taught or embraced. Faith in Jesus Christ and the God of Holy Scripture sidelines and often completely destroys such fear and a constant thinking of them.
As you’d expect there’s still a mass of material on angels and demons around and much of it is a rehearsal of what ancients believed and wrote. It must all be taken into account because it does (and should) affect how we read the scriptures but most of us don’t have the time, energy, interest or ability to weigh the evidence with any degree of certainty. And while it’s obvious that some of the background is important, in various ways, it’s also clear that much of it is as fatuous as our own modern stuff. (The kind of stuff you see in the rash of television shows about ghosts, demons, angels and the like as well as some religious books that claim to be echoing the biblical witness and aren’t.)
Demons are said to be “unclean spirits” (Matthew 10:1 and Mark 3:15). Angels are “spirits” also and some of them are said to be allies of Satan (Matthew 25:41 and Revelation 12:7). We call angels “angels” not because they’re “made of” a certain kind of “stuff” or substance but because they are messengers and presumably they were all originally servants of God. The word “demon” was used in ancient Greek to speak of what was supernatural, a god or goddess, something divine or the spirit or essence of someone. It could be either good or bad. But when we come to the New Testament the central thrust is this: a demon is an evil spirit that expresses opposition to God and His reign and often shows that opposition (in the Gospels especially) by injuring humans. Angels can be good or evil but in the Old and New Testaments demons are invariably evil.
[I won’t deal with the words “spirit” or “spirits” here but that needs to be done at some point. The use of those words in the Holy Scriptures is not at all simple but how we deal with them affects major issues.]
I will be working on the assumption that demons are objective beings rather than a word used to personify evil events and situations or a word used to “explain” the invisible cause of some disease (mental or physical).
Where do demons get their power? What is true of angels is true of demons. As the crucifixion of Christ is at one and the same time God’s holy work and man’s sinful act so demonic activity is at one and the same time their satanic work and God’s redemptive activity. If you ask me how human hurt carried out by evil beings can be God at work redeeming I’ll do no more than point you to cross of Jesus, the case of Joseph and his brothers and Isaiah 10:5-12 on Assyria. If God can use Nebuchadnezzar, Ashurbanipal and the Pharaohs of Egypt for redemptive purposes he can use Stalin, Hitler and demonic beings. The sinful choice remains with both the humans and demonic forces. That God uses their sin to further His good purposes is no glory to them.
There’s little point about being impatient with statements like this because it’s the truth whether we like it or not. Until we come to terms with the truth that God sustains the existence of evil beings as well as good beings we’ll have no peace. He does that in regard to evil nations and individuals and He does it in regard to beings beyond the physical creation. Evil beings are evil beings because they choose to be and God holds them responsible for their evil but in the meantime He allows them to live and uses them to serve His holy and redemptive purposes. Have you seen the fearful passages like 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 and 1 Kings 22:19-23 where Micaiah describes in a picture the truth he tells in 22:23? Whatever we are to make of those texts it would be a mistake not to take them seriously and it would be a mistake not to allow God to claim He is responsible. God takes overall responsibility for creation and the fact that He “allows” things to go on that He is opposed to. We need to remember that what God allows He wills to allow.
Then there’s that startling text in Psalm 78:49 (Lxx 77:49) where the Greek text has God sending against Egypt a band of “evil angels” (KJV). This should warn us that an angel may be called “evil” either because he is himself intending to be sinful or that he is called “evil” because he is the bringer of calamity (see the NIV and RSV). A satanic angel would be malicious in intent so that his act from his standpoint is evil. Nevertheless he might be furthering the will of God so that from God’s angle the event is holy and righteous because that’s God’s motive and purpose. See 2 Corinthians 12:7 where a “messenger of Satan” serves holy purpose by delivering Paul from self-aggrandizing thoughts and actions and so made him a better servant of the Lord.
I currently think (but with some doubting) demons are personal beings that are part of the rebellious forces that seek God’s hurt by spreading their malice and error throughout the creation. [This conviction needs to be tested.]
I think that at the time when God became incarnate in Jesus Christ God (willed to allow) demons added freedom, public notoriety, to underscore the arrival of God’s reign in Christ.
The tangible entrance of demons into human affairs matched God’s tangible entrance into human affairs. I think God did this to demonstrate in public His reign over the invisible powers that work their evil to humanity’s loss. God at his most vulnerable (in weakness–2 Corinthians 13:4) confronted the unclean and destructive forces at their most powerful and dismissed them with a word (compare Matthew 8:16 and elsewhere).
It’s clear enough that the Old Testament knows nothing quite like “demon possession” as it’s seen in the Gospels. There is little talk of demon worship as it is seen in the worship of gods and idols (Deuteronomy 32:17; Leviticus 17:7; Psalm 96:5 (LXX, 95:5 and “demons”). While demons are still a force to be reckoned with after the personal ministry of Christ two things need to be said about it.
One, there is not the same intensity about the subject, that is, it doesn’t jump out at you from everywhere as it does in the Gospels. Two, the miraculous and healing activity of the apostles and early church was seen as an immediate continuation of the ministry of the risen and glorified Lord (compare Acts 1:1; 2:33; 3:6 and see particularly 9:34). I say that to make the point that the public confrontation between the vulnerable Lord and the powerful demons was still being seen in the vulnerable Church which is the form the exalted Lord takes in making His presence known in the world today. And I say that to say that “demonic possession” was less visible and less “in your face” as time passed.
And what was demon “possession”? Demon possession was a starker exhibition of the influence of demonic beings/forces in human affairs. Apparently they’ve always been around but they haven’t always been as visibly oppressive as they were during the personal ministry of Jesus. Paul insisted there was only one God and that gods are non-existent but he did say that to worship idols and non-existent gods was to fall in line with “demons” (1 Corinthians 8:5-6 and 10:19-21). To do that was to eat at a table with demons, though he isn’t suggesting that demons became visible there or that the worshipers consciously meant to eat with demons. Lies and unholiness brought them into contact with a “world” in which the demonic had its home but it wasn’t marked and visible as it was in the Gospel records.
So what was demon possession? It might mean that demons actually entered into the bodies of the victims or it might mean that so powerful was their influence on them that they took over their bodies and minds without actually getting inside their bodies. Satan entered Judas but there’s no compelling reason—none at all— to think he took up spatial residence in him or entered into his body the way we would enter a room. We don’t think that strange; not when we give it some thought. Many of us might have experienced it but I suppose the most of us have heard of cases where a wicked person had such influence over another that the dominated one did exactly what their “lord” wanted them to do or think or say. There was no need for them to morph and get inside their bodies; they “owned them” from outside by gaining control of their minds.
Is demon possession possible today? If we mean do demons literally enter the bodies of people today and live in them I don’t know they ever did; but I don’t think the answer matters a lot. If evil beings can influence us to do evil things while literally outside us then it doesn’t matter if they can get inside our skin.
I think the stark and visible manifestation of demonic forces was a passing phase of their activity confined to the period when God visibly showed Himself in weakness. Has Christ defeated demons? Utterly and eternally! See Colossians 2:15 and numerous other texts on the defeat of the powers.
But are there not texts that seem to plainly say that demons actually became embodied inside people (see especially Mark 5:8-13 and the use of words like “in” and “out”)? Yes, there are texts that look that way and it may be that we are to understand them literally but words like “in” or “under” or “into” often function not as spatial realities but relational or effect realities. We hear in Scripture of people being “filled” with or “full” of anger or compassion or love and we don’t think about these as “volume/capacity” terms. We daily speak of people being “driven” by this or that or people “carried away “by/with” this or that. We speak of people being “in” our hearts or “coming into” our thoughts or lives. Bible language works in the same way. The Holy Spirit is said to be “poured out” (Acts 2:33 and elsewhere) and people are said to be “baptized in the Spirit” but no one thinks of the Spirit as a liquid that persons are immersed in. There’s talk of a “baptism of suffering” or a “baptism of fire” (see Matthew 3:11 and elsewhere).
Christ’s followers are said to be “in” God and God “in” them. God is said to “dwell in” them, but I don’t believe that we’re supposed to think that the triune God has literally taken up spatial bodily residence inside their bodies somewhere. Penitent believers are said to be baptized “into” Christ (Romans 6:3-7; Galatians 3:26-27) but I’m sure we aren’t to think they literally take up bodily residence inside Him. (I’m acquainted with the truth about a “corporate” Christ but that’s another discussion and another area.) The Corinthians are said to have been “bought” 1 Corinthians 6:15, 19-20) and are “parts of Christ” and have been made “temples”. None of these phrases are supposed to be taken literally/physically. They tell of relational realities (expressed in images) that have consequences and that identify the Corinthians.
Here’s what I think though there’s plenty of speculation here. At some time in the past there was a sinful rebellion against God in the world beyond the human (see 2 Peter 2:4; Jude 6, and note “where” the rebels ended up). Spirit beings revolted against the Holy God and so at that point we had angelic beings and demons headed up by Satan. We then have to assume that some spirit rebels were not incarcerated. That moral/spiritual infection which permeated them was brought to humans and they eagerly embraced it and have been spreading it ever since. This human rebellion has the same quality as the supra-natural rebellion and finds its inspiration and model there; hence it is demonic and satanic. Their demonic models trigger the hurt and loss that humans experience (though the guilt is ours and ours alone because we choose to follow—demons and wicked angels have their own problems).
When humans reject God and follow evil they are esteeming Satan and demons above and against God (compare 1 Corinthians 10:18-21 and note the profound meaning of Lord’s Supper as it witnesses against demonism and the gods—that’s the Lord’s Supper that we often hurry through so we can get on with other things). When people reject profound truth and embrace palatable error they embrace doctrines of demons (see 1 Timothy 4:1 and compare 1 John 4:1-6).
Once more, I think that a very marked entrance of demons into human affairs matched God’s very marked entrance into human affairs. I think God allowed this to demonstrate in public His reign over the invisible powers that work their evil to humanity’s loss. I don’t believe that the demons came and went simply on their own accord and I think their visibility in the Gospels was a God-allowed and stark manifestation to signal the arrival of God’s reign in Jesus Christ. That’s what I think!
The Bible discussion (but the NT in particular) about what is anti-God, anti-life and anti-human serves the purpose of branding evil thought and conduct by humans with cosmic significance. We’re being told that evil is evil beyond what is visible and acknowledged by us. We’re being told that there are WORLDS IN COLLISION! Do see Ephesians 6:10-20!
There are invisible forces and powers, influences, philosophies, religions that shape individuals and institutions and governments and schools and cultures and nations in destructive thoughts and deeds. That’s their nature and so they are branded in Holy Scripture as satanic & demonic. I have no problem holding Satan and demons as actual beings but I do have a problem with our building a theology about them that makes them (and particularly Satan) into a being who knows all, can do all and is everywhere.
I think that those who take it on themselves to speak like oracles about the presence of demons in people need to realize what a very serious injury they may be doing to very sensitive people already drowning in the moral struggle. Already vulnerable people can be driven over the moral edge if they think they are controlled by demons. And sinners can be led to despair and then there are others of a different disposition who can be encouraged to place the blame for their sin where it doesn’t belong. “The Devil made me do it.”
To be continued, God enabling.
(Holy Father, whoever and whatever Satan and demons be in Holy Scripture or in life, we by your grace oppose them because they are enemies of yours and since they are enemies of yours they are the enemies of our fellow-humans, enemies of our beloved ones and enemies to us. How happy we are that the Lord Jesus in whose name we pray is Conqueror of all the forces that are anti-God, anti-life and anti-human.)
HYPOCRITES OR FALSE CHRISTIANS? by steve finnell
According to a 2012 Gallup poll 77% of those living in the U.S.A. identify as Christians. How many of the 77% are hypocrites or false Christians?
According to a May 22, 2014 Gallup poll only 46% of those living in the U.S.A. oppose killing unborn babies by abortion.
Obviously a large percentage of those who identify as Christian see nothing wrong with murdering unborn babies, would they be hypocrites or false Christians?
According to a Gallup poll July, 2013 54 % of those living in the U.S.A. support same sex marriage.
Do the Scriptures support homosexual marriage and killing unborn babies?
1 John 3:15 Whoever hates his brother is a murderer, and you know no murderer has eternal life abiding in him.(NKJV)
If killing unborn innocent babies is not murder, then what would it be?
Revelation 21:8 "But the cowardly, unbelieving, abominable, murderers, sexually immoral, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars shall have their part in the lake which burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death."(NKJV)
The sexually immoral and murderers will have their part in the lake of fire.
1 Corinthians 6:9-11 Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God?....nor homosexuals, nor sodomites.....11 And such were some of you . But you were washed, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.(NKJV)
When it comes to participating or approving of abortion and same sex marriage, it should be past tense if you are claiming to be a Christian. The apostle Paul said SUCH WERE SOME OF YOU not ARE SOME OF YOU.
If you claim to be a Christian and approve of sinful practices or live a sinful lifestyle, then you are either a hypocrite or a false Christian.
In a 2008 Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life 57% of Evangelical Christians said there might be other ways to heaven other than Jesus.
Would that indicate hypocrisy or false Christians?
John 14:6 Jesus said to him, "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (NKJV)
ARE YOU A CHRISTIAN ACCORDING TO SCRIPTURE?
Mark 16:16 He who has believed, and has been immersed, will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.(T.B.V.O.T.N.T) by Chester Estes
Galatians 3:17-27....26 Since you are sons of God through that belief, by Christ Jesus. 27 For as many of you as have been immersed into Christ , have put on Christ.(T.B.V.O.T.N.T) by Chester Estes
If you believe that Jesus is the Son of God and that God raised Him from the dead. If you claim Jesus as Lord and Savior. If you have been baptized into Christ for the remission of your sins, then you are a Christian.
The question remains, how many of the 77% who claim to be Christians are hypocrites or false Christians?
Are you an heir of God?
Will you receive “an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith”? (Acts 26:18).
An heir is someone who is entitled to a legacy because of a family relationship or a testament. Although an inheritance is a gift, a testament can require that certain conditions be met.
Some people imagine how grand it would be to inherit a fortune from some unknown, wealthy relative.
As they dream, they fail to realize that their heavenly Father has willed them a fortune worth more than all the world. “Listen, my beloved brethren: Has God not chosen the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?” (James 2:5).
This inheritance is received in the resurrection. “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; nor does corruption inherit incorruption. Behold, I tell you a mystery: We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed -- in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed” (1 Corinthians 15:50-52). This inheritance is an eternal kingdom where death will be no more.
There are conditions. They who live according to the flesh will not inherit the kingdom. “Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God” (Galatians 5:19-21). “For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God” (Ephesians 5:5). “Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God” (1 Corinthians 6:9-11).
Only by the power of God and with the help of His Son, Jesus Christ, can we be restored to a close family relationship with the Father. “All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23). “Your iniquities have separated you from your God” (Isaiah 59:2).
Christ bore the punishment for our sins so we could be reconciled with the Father and receive the inheritance: “He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance” (Hebrews 9:15). The New Testament grants the inheritance and states the conditions.
Christ told Paul to preach to the nations: “to open their eyes, in order to turn them from darkness to light, and from the power of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who are sanctified by faith in Me” (Acts 26:17, 18).
Only by faith in Christ can one become a child of God. Believers must be baptized into Christ to receive the inheritance. “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. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise” (Galatians 3:26-29).
God saves us by grace through a rebirth at baptism. “But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3:4-7).
We are reborn to an inheritance in heaven: “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His abundant mercy has begotten us again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled and that does not fade away, reserved in heaven for you” (1 Peter 1:3, 4).
Through Christ we are freed from bondage to sin so we can be adopted into the family of God. “Now I say that the heir, as long as he is a child, does not differ at all from a slave, though he is master of all, but is under guardians and stewards until the time appointed by the father. Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world. But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, 'Abba, Father!' Therefore you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ” (Galatians 4:1-7).
To receive the inheritance, we must be led by the Spirit: “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, 'Abba, Father.' The Spirit Himself bears witness with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, then heirs -- heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ” (Romans 8:14-17).
God leads us through His word: “So now, brethren, I commend you to God and to the word of His grace, which is able to build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified” (Acts 20:32).
To inherit eternal life we must love God: “And behold, a certain lawyer stood up and tested Him, saying, 'Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?' He said to him, 'What is written in the law? What is your reading of it?'
So he answered and said, '“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your strength, and with all your mind,” and “your neighbor as yourself.”' And He said to him, 'You have answered rightly; do this and you will live'“ (Luke 10:25-28).
Keeping commandments is not enough. To inherit eternal life we must take up the cross and follow Christ: “Now as He was going out on the road, one came running, knelt before Him, and asked Him, 'Good Teacher, what shall I do that I may inherit eternal life?' So Jesus said to him, 'Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God. You know the commandments: “Do not commit adultery,” “Do not murder,” “Do not steal,” “Do not bear false witness,” “Do not defraud,” “Honor your father and your mother.”' And he answered and said to Him, 'Teacher, all these things I have kept from my youth.' Then Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, 'One thing you lack: Go your way, sell whatever you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, take up the cross, and follow Me'“ (Mark 10:17-21 // Luke 18:18-22).
Jesus promises blessings and eternal life to those who put Him first in their lives: “And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or lands, for My name's sake, shall receive a hundredfold, and inherit eternal life” (Matthew 19:29).
To inherit the kingdom we must do good: “Then the King will say to those on His right hand, 'Come, you blessed of My Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world: for I was hungry and you gave Me food; I was thirsty and you gave Me drink; I was a stranger and you took Me in; I was naked and you clothed Me; I was sick and you visited Me; I was in prison and you came to Me.' Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, 'Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?' And the King will answer and say to them, 'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me'“ (Matthew 25:34-40).
This inheritance is in Christ: “In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory. In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory” (Ephesians 1:11-14). The Holy Spirit is a seal, a guarantee of our inheritance.
As we grow in the knowledge of Christ, we better understand how great this inheritance is. Paul prayed that the Ephesians would “know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints” (Ephesians 1:18).
The New Testament explains how you can be an heir of God and a joint heir with Christ. To receive the inheritance you must be rich in faith and you must love God will all your heart. Through the death of Christ your sins can be forgiven so you can be in the family of God. You must be baptized into Christ to become an heir. By the mercy of God through the washing of regeneration you are reborn to an incorruptible inheritance in heaven. To inherit eternal life, you must be led by the Spirit through the guidance of God's word. You must do good, keep God's commandments and follow Christ.
God gives this great promise: “He who overcomes shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son” (Revelation 21:7).
The Scripture quotations in this article are from
The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982, Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers.
Permission for reference use has been granted.
The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982, Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers.
Permission for reference use has been granted.
Published in The Old Paths Archive
Bible Reading March 4 and 5
World English Bible
Exo 14:1 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Exo 14:2 "Speak to the children of Israel, that they turn back and encamp before Pihahiroth, between Migdol and the sea, before Baal Zephon. You shall encamp opposite it by the sea.
Exo 14:3 Pharaoh will say of the children of Israel, 'They are entangled in the land. The wilderness has shut them in.'
Exo 14:4 I will harden Pharaoh's heart, and he will follow after them; and I will get honor over Pharaoh, and over all his armies; and the Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh." They did so.
Exo 14:5 It was told the king of Egypt that the people had fled; and the heart of Pharaoh and of his servants was changed towards the people, and they said, "What is this we have done, that we have let Israel go from serving us?"
Exo 14:6 He made ready his chariot, and took his army with him;
Exo 14:7 and he took six hundred chosen chariots, and all the chariots of Egypt, and captains over all of them.
Exo 14:8 Yahweh hardened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt, and he pursued after the children of Israel; for the children of Israel went out with a high hand.
Exo 14:9 The Egyptians pursued after them: all the horses and chariots of Pharaoh, his horsemen, and his army; and overtook them encamping by the sea, beside Pihahiroth, before Baal Zephon.
Exo 14:10 When Pharaoh drew near, the children of Israel lifted up their eyes, and behold, the Egyptians were marching after them; and they were very afraid. The children of Israel cried out to Yahweh.
Exo 14:11 They said to Moses, "Because there were no graves in Egypt, have you taken us away to die in the wilderness? Why have you treated us this way, to bring us forth out of Egypt?
Exo 14:12 Isn't this the word that we spoke to you in Egypt, saying, 'Leave us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians?' For it were better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness."
Exo 14:13 Moses said to the people, "Don't be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of Yahweh, which he will work for you today: for the Egyptians whom you have seen today, you shall never see them again.
Exo 14:14 Yahweh will fight for you, and you shall be still."
Exo 14:15 Yahweh said to Moses, "Why do you cry to me? Speak to the children of Israel, that they go forward.
Exo 14:16 Lift up your rod, and stretch out your hand over the sea, and divide it: and the children of Israel shall go into the midst of the sea on dry ground.
Exo 14:17 I, behold, I will harden the hearts of the Egyptians, and they shall go in after them: and I will get myself honor over Pharaoh, and over all his armies, over his chariots, and over his horsemen.
Exo 14:18 The Egyptians shall know that I am Yahweh, when I have gotten myself honor over Pharaoh, over his chariots, and over his horsemen."
Exo 14:19 The angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, moved and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud moved from before them, and stood behind them.
Exo 14:20 It came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud and the darkness, yet gave it light by night: and the one didn't come near the other all the night.
Exo 14:21 Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and Yahweh caused the sea to go back by a strong east wind all the night, and made the sea dry land, and the waters were divided.
Exo 14:22 The children of Israel went into the midst of the sea on the dry ground, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand, and on their left.
Exo 14:23 The Egyptians pursued, and went in after them into the midst of the sea: all of Pharaoh's horses, his chariots, and his horsemen.
Exo 14:24 It happened in the morning watch, that Yahweh looked out on the Egyptian army through the pillar of fire and of cloud, and confused the Egyptian army.
Exo 14:25 He took off their chariot wheels, and they drove them heavily; so that the Egyptians said, "Let's flee from the face of Israel, for Yahweh fights for them against the Egyptians!"
Exo 14:26 Yahweh said to Moses, "Stretch out your hand over the sea, that the waters may come again on the Egyptians, on their chariots, and on their horsemen."
Exo 14:27 Moses stretched out his hand over the sea, and the sea returned to its strength when the morning appeared; and the Egyptians fled against it. Yahweh overthrew the Egyptians in the midst of the sea.
Exo 14:28 The waters returned, and covered the chariots and the horsemen, even all Pharaoh's army that went in after them into the sea. There remained not so much as one of them.
Exo 14:29 But the children of Israel walked on dry land in the midst of the sea, and the waters were a wall to them on their right hand, and on their left.
Exo 14:30 Thus Yahweh saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead on the seashore.
Exo 14:31 Israel saw the great work which Yahweh did to the Egyptians, and the people feared Yahweh; and they believed in Yahweh, and in his servant Moses.
Exo 15:1 Then Moses and the children of Israel sang this song to Yahweh, and said, "I will sing to Yahweh, for he has triumphed gloriously. The horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea.
Exo 15:2 Yah is my strength and song. He has become my salvation. This is my God, and I will praise him; my father's God, and I will exalt him.
Exo 15:3 Yahweh is a man of war. Yahweh is his name.
Exo 15:4 He has cast Pharaoh's chariots and his army into the sea. His chosen captains are sunk in the Red Sea.
Exo 15:5 The deeps cover them. They went down into the depths like a stone.
Exo 15:6 Your right hand, Yahweh, is glorious in power. Your right hand, Yahweh, dashes the enemy in pieces.
Exo 15:7 In the greatness of your excellency, you overthrow those who rise up against you. You send forth your wrath. It consumes them as stubble.
Exo 15:8 With the blast of your nostrils, the waters were piled up. The floods stood upright as a heap. The deeps were congealed in the heart of the sea.
Exo 15:9 The enemy said, 'I will pursue. I will overtake. I will divide the spoil. My desire shall be satisfied on them. I will draw my sword, my hand shall destroy them.'
Exo 15:10 You blew with your wind. The sea covered them. They sank like lead in the mighty waters.
Exo 15:11 Who is like you, Yahweh, among the gods? Who is like you, glorious in holiness, fearful in praises, doing wonders?
Exo 15:12 You stretched out your right hand. The earth swallowed them.
Exo 15:13 "You, in your loving kindness, have led the people that you have redeemed. You have guided them in your strength to your holy habitation.
Exo 15:14 The peoples have heard. They tremble. Pangs have taken hold on the inhabitants of Philistia.
Exo 15:15 Then the chiefs of Edom were dismayed. Trembling takes hold of the mighty men of Moab. All the inhabitants of Canaan are melted away.
Exo 15:16 Terror and dread falls on them. By the greatness of your arm they are as still as a stone-- until your people pass over, Yahweh, until the people pass over who you have purchased.
Exo 15:17 You shall bring them in, and plant them in the mountain of your inheritance, the place, Yahweh, which you have made for yourself to dwell in; the sanctuary, Lord, which your hands have established.
Exo 15:18 Yahweh shall reign forever and ever."
Exo 15:19 For the horses of Pharaoh went in with his chariots and with his horsemen into the sea, and Yahweh brought back the waters of the sea on them; but the children of Israel walked on dry land in the midst of the sea.
Exo 15:20 Miriam the prophetess, the sister of Aaron, took a tambourine in her hand; and all the women went out after her with tambourines and with dances.
Exo 15:21 Miriam answered them, "Sing to Yahweh, for he has triumphed gloriously. The horse and his rider he has thrown into the sea."
Exo 15:22 Moses led Israel onward from the Red Sea, and they went out into the wilderness of Shur; and they went three days in the wilderness, and found no water.
Exo 15:23 When they came to Marah, they couldn't drink from the waters of Marah, for they were bitter. Therefore its name was called Marah.
Exo 15:24 The people murmured against Moses, saying, "What shall we drink?"
Exo 15:25 Then he cried to Yahweh. Yahweh showed him a tree, and he threw it into the waters, and the waters were made sweet. There he made a statute and an ordinance for them, and there he tested them;
Exo 15:26 and he said, "If you will diligently listen to the voice of Yahweh your God, and will do that which is right in his eyes, and will pay attention to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of the diseases on you, which I have put on the Egyptians; for I am Yahweh who heals you."
Exo 15:27 They came to Elim, where there were twelve springs of water, and seventy palm trees: and they encamped there by the waters.
Mar 4:1 Again he began to teach by the seaside. A great multitude was gathered to him, so that he entered into a boat in the sea, and sat down. All the multitude were on the land by the sea.
Mar 4:2 He taught them many things in parables, and told them in his teaching,
Mar 4:3 "Listen! Behold, the farmer went out to sow,
Mar 4:4 and it happened, as he sowed, some seed fell by the road, and the birds came and devoured it.
Mar 4:5 Others fell on the rocky ground, where it had little soil, and immediately it sprang up, because it had no depth of soil.
Mar 4:6 When the sun had risen, it was scorched; and because it had no root, it withered away.
Mar 4:7 Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns grew up, and choked it, and it yielded no fruit.
Mar 4:8 Others fell into the good ground, and yielded fruit, growing up and increasing. Some brought forth thirty times, some sixty times, and some one hundred times as much."
Mar 4:9 He said, "Whoever has ears to hear, let him hear."
Mar 4:10 When he was alone, those who were around him with the twelve asked him about the parables.
Mar 4:11 He said to them, "To you is given the mystery of the Kingdom of God, but to those who are outside, all things are done in parables,
Mar 4:12 that 'seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand; lest perhaps they should turn again, and their sins should be forgiven them.' "
Mar 4:13 He said to them, "Don't you understand this parable? How will you understand all of the parables?
Mar 4:14 The farmer sows the word.
Mar 4:15 The ones by the road are the ones where the word is sown; and when they have heard, immediately Satan comes, and takes away the word which has been sown in them.
Mar 4:16 These in like manner are those who are sown on the rocky places, who, when they have heard the word, immediately receive it with joy.
Mar 4:17 They have no root in themselves, but are short-lived. When oppression or persecution arises because of the word, immediately they stumble.
Mar 4:18 Others are those who are sown among the thorns. These are those who have heard the word,
Mar 4:19 and the cares of this age, and the deceitfulness of riches, and the lusts of other things entering in choke the word, and it becomes unfruitful.
Mar 4:20 Those which were sown on the good ground are those who hear the word, and accept it, and bear fruit, some thirty times, some sixty times, and some one hundred times."
Mar 4:21 He said to them, "Is the lamp brought to be put under a basket or under a bed? Isn't it put on a stand?
Mar 4:22 For there is nothing hidden, except that it should be made known; neither was anything made secret, but that it should come to light.
Mar 4:23 If any man has ears to hear, let him hear."
Mar 4:24 He said to them, "Take heed what you hear. With whatever measure you measure, it will be measured to you, and more will be given to you who hear.
Mar 4:25 For whoever has, to him will more be given, and he who doesn't have, even that which he has will be taken away from him."
Mar 4:26 He said, "The Kingdom of God is as if a man should cast seed on the earth,
Mar 4:27 and should sleep and rise night and day, and the seed should spring up and grow, he doesn't know how.
Mar 4:28 For the earth bears fruit: first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear.
Mar 4:29 But when the fruit is ripe, immediately he puts forth the sickle, because the harvest has come."
Mar 4:30 He said, "How will we liken the Kingdom of God? Or with what parable will we illustrate it?
Mar 4:31 It's like a grain of mustard seed, which, when it is sown in the earth, though it is less than all the seeds that are on the earth,
Mar 4:32 yet when it is sown, grows up, and becomes greater than all the herbs, and puts out great branches, so that the birds of the sky can lodge under its shadow."
Mar 4:33 With many such parables he spoke the word to them, as they were able to hear it.
Mar 4:34 Without a parable he didn't speak to them; but privately to his own disciples he explained everything.
Mar 4:35 On that day, when evening had come, he said to them, "Let's go over to the other side."
Mar 4:36 Leaving the multitude, they took him with them, even as he was, in the boat. Other small boats were also with him.
Mar 4:37 A big wind storm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so much that the boat was already filled.
Mar 4:38 He himself was in the stern, asleep on the cushion, and they woke him up, and told him, "Teacher, don't you care that we are dying?"
Mar 4:39 He awoke, and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Peace! Be still!" The wind ceased, and there was a great calm.
Mar 4:40 He said to them, "Why are you so afraid? How is it that you have no faith?"
Mar 4:41 They were greatly afraid, and said to one another, "Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?"
Mar 5:1 They came to the other side of the sea, into the country of the Gadarenes.
Mar 5:2 When he had come out of the boat, immediately a man with an unclean spirit met him out of the tombs.
Mar 5:3 He lived in the tombs. Nobody could bind him any more, not even with chains,
Mar 5:4 because he had been often bound with fetters and chains, and the chains had been torn apart by him, and the fetters broken in pieces. Nobody had the strength to tame him.
Mar 5:5 Always, night and day, in the tombs and in the mountains, he was crying out, and cutting himself with stones.
Mar 5:6 When he saw Jesus from afar, he ran and bowed down to him,
Mar 5:7 and crying out with a loud voice, he said, "What have I to do with you, Jesus, you Son of the Most High God? I adjure you by God, don't torment me."
Mar 5:8 For he said to him, "Come out of the man, you unclean spirit!"
Mar 5:9 He asked him, "What is your name?" He said to him, "My name is Legion, for we are many."
Mar 5:10 He begged him much that he would not send them away out of the country.
Mar 5:11 Now on the mountainside there was a great herd of pigs feeding.
Mar 5:12 All the demons begged him, saying, "Send us into the pigs, that we may enter into them."
Mar 5:13 At once Jesus gave them permission. The unclean spirits came out and entered into the pigs. The herd of about two thousand rushed down the steep bank into the sea, and they were drowned in the sea.
Mar 5:14 Those who fed them fled, and told it in the city and in the country. The people came to see what it was that had happened.
Mar 5:15 They came to Jesus, and saw him who had been possessed by demons sitting, clothed, and in his right mind, even him who had the legion; and they were afraid.
Mar 5:16 Those who saw it declared to them how it happened to him who was possessed by demons, and about the pigs.
Mar 5:17 They began to beg him to depart from their region.
Mar 5:18 As he was entering into the boat, he who had been possessed by demons begged him that he might be with him.
Mar 5:19 He didn't allow him, but said to him, "Go to your house, to your friends, and tell them what great things the Lord has done for you, and how he had mercy on you."
Mar 5:20 He went his way, and began to proclaim in Decapolis how Jesus had done great things for him, and everyone marveled.
Mar 5:21 When Jesus had crossed back over in the boat to the other side, a great multitude was gathered to him; and he was by the sea.
Mar 5:22 Behold, one of the rulers of the synagogue, Jairus by name, came; and seeing him, he fell at his feet,
Mar 5:23 and begged him much, saying, "My little daughter is at the point of death. Please come and lay your hands on her, that she may be made healthy, and live."
Mar 5:24 He went with him, and a great multitude followed him, and they pressed upon him on all sides.
Mar 5:25 A certain woman, who had an issue of blood for twelve years,
Mar 5:26 and had suffered many things by many physicians, and had spent all that she had, and was no better, but rather grew worse,
Mar 5:27 having heard the things concerning Jesus, came up behind him in the crowd, and touched his clothes.
Mar 5:28 For she said, "If I just touch his clothes, I will be made well."
Mar 5:29 Immediately the flow of her blood was dried up, and she felt in her body that she was healed of her affliction.
Mar 5:30 Immediately Jesus, perceiving in himself that the power had gone out from him, turned around in the crowd, and asked, "Who touched my clothes?"
Mar 5:31 His disciples said to him, "You see the multitude pressing against you, and you say, 'Who touched me?' "
Mar 5:32 He looked around to see her who had done this thing.
Mar 5:33 But the woman, fearing and trembling, knowing what had been done to her, came and fell down before him, and told him all the truth.
Mar 5:34 He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has made you well. Go in peace, and be cured of your disease."
Mar 5:35 While he was still speaking, people came from the synagogue ruler's house saying, "Your daughter is dead. Why bother the Teacher any more?"
Mar 5:36 But Jesus, when he heard the message spoken, immediately said to the ruler of the synagogue, "Don't be afraid, only believe."
Mar 5:37 He allowed no one to follow him, except Peter, James, and John the brother of James.
Mar 5:38 He came to the synagogue ruler's house, and he saw an uproar, weeping, and great wailing.
Mar 5:39 When he had entered in, he said to them, "Why do you make an uproar and weep? The child is not dead, but is asleep."
Mar 5:40 They ridiculed him. But he, having put them all out, took the father of the child, her mother, and those who were with him, and went in where the child was lying.
Mar 5:41 Taking the child by the hand, he said to her, "Talitha cumi!" which means, being interpreted, "Girl, I tell you, get up!"
Mar 5:42 Immediately the girl rose up and walked, for she was twelve years old. They were amazed with great amazement.
Mar 5:43 He strictly ordered them that no one should know this, and commanded that something should be given to her to eat.