4/13/20

"THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW" The Visit Of The Wise Men (2:1-12) by Mark Copeland

                        "THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW"

                   The Visit Of The Wise Men (2:1-12)

INTRODUCTION

1. Common to many nativity scenes commemorating the birth of Jesus is
   the presence of "three wise men"...
   a. Implied is that these men, three in number, visited Jesus while still in the manger
   b. Is this what the Bible really teaches?

2. Matthew is the gospel writer who records this visit...
   a. Which is found in Mt 2:1-12
   b. Which serves as the text for our study today

[This story of "The Visit Of The Wise Men" is both interesting and of
practical value.  Having read the text, let's first note some...]

I. INTERESTING FEATURES OF THIS STORY

   A. FOR WHAT MATTHEW DOESN'T TELL US...
      1. Who exactly were these "wise men from the East"?
         a. Some think they were a group of priests from Persia
         b. Others believe they were astrologers from Babylon
      2. How many were there?
         a. No actual number is given
         b. Three types of gift are mentioned (Mt 2:11), but quality of
            gifts does not necessarily imply the quantity of givers!
      3. What was the nature of the "star"?
         a. Was it an actual "star"?
         b. Was it the planet Jupiter, often associated with the birth of kings
         c. Was it a conjunction of Jupiter and Saturn in the Sign of the Fish?
         d. Was it a comet acting erratically?
      4. How did these wise men connect the star with the birth of the king of the Jews?
         a. Had they been taught by Jews of the Dispersion to expect the Messiah?
         b. Had they been given special revelation from God not recorded in the Scriptures?

   B. FOR WHAT LEGENDS HAVE RISEN...
      1. That these wise men were "three kings from the Orient"
      2. That their names were Melchior, Balthasar, and Caspar
      3. That they visited Baby Jesus together with the shepherds the night of 
          His birth
         a. But it was some time later (up to two years!) - Mt 2:1,16
         b. They visited Mary and the child in a house, not a stable! - Mt 2:11
      4. That they were later baptized by Thomas

[The facts are the Biblical record says little about WHO these men 
were.  Perhaps because the emphasis is upon WHAT they did:  "We have
come to WORSHIP Him." (Mt 2:2,11) What is important is that Jesus is
worthy of worship, which can only mean that He is truly DEITY (cf. 
"Immanuel", or "God with us")!

But there are other lessons that can be gleaned from "The Visit Of The Wise Men"...]

II. LESSONS TO BE LEARNED

   A. IT IS EASY FOR FICTION TO BE TAKEN AS FACT...
      1. We have seen what people have done with the story of Jesus' birth
         a. Making the number of the wise men to be three
         b. Having them visit Jesus in the stable
      2. There are other examples
         a. Making the "forbidden fruit" in the Garden to be an "apple"
         b. Depicting baptism in the Bible as pouring or sprinkling
      -- We need to be like the Bereans (Ac 17:11), and make sure we get the facts straight!

   B. THERE MAY BE TRUE SERVANTS OF GOD IN PLACES WHERE WE MIGHT NOT
      EXPECT TO FIND THEM...
      1. The Lord may have many "hidden ones" (i.e., hidden to our knowledge) like the wise men
      2. Their history on earth may be as little known as that of Melchizedek, Job, Jethro
      3. We must not assume that God's people consists only of those we know about, listed 
           in "our" directories
         a. There can be many faithful Christians in other countries
         b. We may not know about them, but God does! - 2 Tim 2:19
         -- Though unknown to us, we can still pray for them!

   C. IT IS NOT ALWAYS THOSE WHO HAVE THE MOST RELIGIOUS PRIVILEGES,
      WHO GIVE CHRIST THE MOST HONOR...
      1. One would think the chief priests and scribes would have been
         the first to go to Bethlehem, hearing rumors that the Savior was born
         a. But no, it was a few unknown strangers from a distant land
         b. As John wrote in his gospel, "He came to His own, and His own did 
             not receive Him" - Jn 1:11
      2. Sadly, the same is often true today
         a. Those in the Lord's church often show less love and adoration than those in 
             the denominations of men
         b. Children of Christian parents often show less interest than many children of non-Christians

   D. THERE MAY BE KNOWLEDGE IN THE HEAD, WHILE THERE IS NO GRACE IN
      THE HEART...
      1. The chief priests and scribes were quick to provide Herod the answer to his question
         a. But as far as we know, they did not act on such knowledge
         b. They did not go to Bethlehem, and some never did come to believe in Him
      2. What about us today?
         a. We may knowledge in the head (we know the truth), but do we
            have grace in our hearts (do we act on it)?
         b. We need to always grow in grace and knowledge - 2Pe 3:18

   E. THE WISE MEN ARE A SPLENDID EXAMPLE OF SPIRITUAL DILIGENCE...
      1. Consider what it must have cost them to travel
         a. In money
         b. In time
         c. In dangers
      2. What about our diligence?  Are we willing to pay the price...
         a. To find Christ?
         b. To serve Him?
         c. To worship Him?
      -- They traveled at great costs and risk to worship Jesus; many
         Christians won't even take the time to attend a gospel meeting or a second service on Sunday!

   F. THE WISE MEN ARE A STRIKING EXAMPLE OF FAITH...
      1. They believed in Christ...
         a. When they had never seen Him prior to their journey
         b. When the scribes and chief priests were unbelieving
         c. When all they saw was a little child on a mother's knee!
            1) Without miracles to convince them (except the star)
            2) Without much teaching to persuade them
         -- Yet they "fell down and worshiped Him"
      2. This is the kind of faith God delights to honor!
         a. For God saw fit to record their example of faith for us
         b. And every time this passage is read, their example of faith is honored!
         -- As Jesus said later, "Thomas, because you have seen Me, you
            have believed.  Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed." - Jn 20:29

CONCLUSION

1. May the faith and diligence of the wise men serve to inspire us to
   greater service to our Lord!

2. Though the world around us may remain careless and unbelieving, 
   let's not be ashamed to believe in Jesus and confess Him

3. We have much more reason to believe Him and worship Him...
   a. His miracles, His resurrection from the dead
   b. His teachings, His death on the cross for our sins

Are we willing to make the effort to find, worship, and serve this 
great King?  As stated on a popular bumber-sticker:

                        "Wise men still seek Him"

NOTE:  Some of the main points for this lesson were taken from
"Expository Thoughts On The Gospels" by J. C. Ryle.
 

Even Jesus Had A Temper by Kyle Butt, M.Div.


http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=839

Even Jesus Had A Temper

by  Kyle Butt, M.Div.

In most circumstances, Jesus chose to use gentle words and peaceful measures to take care of the Father’s business. But on at least one occasion, aggressive action ruled the day.
From the time of Moses, whenever Jewish men presented themselves to the Lord at the Temple, they were instructed to offer a half-shekel of silver. Exodus 30:13 records: “This is what everyone among those who are numbered shall give: half a shekel according to the shekel of the sanctuary.” When Moses issued this decree, the Israelites were a single, cohesive unit that traded with the same form of money. However, that changed as the years passed and the Jews found themselves dispersed into other countries (such as Babylon, Assyria, and Phrygia). Naturally, those Jews who lived in foreign nations began to use as legal tender the money of the country in which they dwelt.
This posed a problem for them when they wanted to present themselves to the Lord at the Temple, because the Law said that they were to present a half-shekel of silver. The priest of the Temple would accept no foreign currency into the sacred treasury. Therefore, greedy moneychangers posted themselves in the court of the temple in order to offer their services. They would exchange foreign currency for a Jewish half-shekel, but in doing so they routinely exacted an exorbitant “commission” on the deal. What was a foreign Jew to do? Where else could he obtain a Jewish half-shekel except in Jerusalem? The moneychangers had a virtual monopoly. Basically, nobody could come to God unless he first went through the moneychangers.
As if that were not bad enough, the moneychangers and Temple brokers also had a monopoly on the sale of livestock suitable for offering to the Lord. Since many of the worshipers who visited the Temple lived so far away, they would purchase livestock at or near the Temple, rather than trying to bring animals on the trip with them. When they arrived in Jerusalem, they were in for a rude awakening because the acceptable livestock was priced outrageously high. They had no choice but to pay the prices, however, since returning home without sacrificing to God was not an option. Once again, the moneychangers and traders came between God and His worshipers.
Upon this scene of fraud and abuse, the Lion of Judah came roaring. In John 2:14-17, the story is told of Jesus experiencing righteous indignation. He formed a whip of cords and reeked havoc on the moneychangers, overturning their tables, pouring out their money, and driving them and their livestock out of the Temple.
Anger and wrath enter the lives of every one of us. But let us learn from Jesus to be “swift to hear, slow to speak, and slow to wrath” (James 1:19). Let us also learn that there is a time for righteous indignation. When there are those who stand between God and the true worship that is due Him—whether it be through false doctrine, hypocrisy, or any other vice—let us remember the example of the Lord and “be angry, yet sin not” (Ephesians 4:26).

Elders, Deacons, Timothy, and Wine by Dave Miller, Ph.D.


http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=1208

Elders, Deacons, Timothy, and Wine

by  Dave Miller, Ph.D.

Paul’s instructions pertaining to the qualifications of elders and deacons have created misunderstanding regarding the use of alcoholic beverages. Elders are not to be “given to wine” (1 Timothy 3:3), while deacons are not to be “given to much wine” (1 Timothy 3:8). Translations further obscure the matter by their variety of terminology. The ASV has “no brawler” (vs. 3) and “not given to much wine” (vs. 8). The NIV has “not given to much wine” (vs. 3) and “not indulging in much wine” (vs. 8). The NASB has “not addicted to wine” (vs. 3) and “not addicted to much wine” (vs. 8). So the question is: does 1 Timothy 3:8 sanction moderate alcohol use?
The phrase in verse three consists of two Greek words (me paroinos) and, literally translated, means “not beside, by, or at wine” (Vine, 1966, p. 146; Robertson, 1934, p. 613). The phrase is enjoining abstinence, and perhaps even the act of situating oneself in the presence of people and places where the consumption of alcoholic beverages is occurring. The ASV translated the expression “brawler” to emphasize the violent behavior that proceeds from the use of alcohol. Calling for elders to be abstinent is consistent with other terms used in the same listing: nephalion (1 Timothy 3:2)—“free from intoxicants” and “abstinent in respect to wine” (Perschbacher, 1990, p. 284), and sophrona (Titus 1:8)—“of a sound mind, temperate” (Perschbacher, p. 400), “soberminded” (Moulton and Milligan, 1930, p. 622), “self-controlled” (Arndt and Gingrich, 1957, p. 810). Elders must refrain from the use of intoxicants, and they must not associate with places and people who do use them.
In verse eight, the four words used to qualify deacons on this point (me oino pollo prosechontas) are literally translated “not wine much occupied with” (cf. Perschbacher, p. 352; Spain, 1970, p. 64). Does the use of the word “much” mean that deacons may imbibe a moderate amount of wine? At least three alternative interpretations are possible.
First, when Solomon said, “Do not be overly wicked” (Ecclesiastes 7:17—NKJV [“overwicked”—NIV; “overmuch wicked”—ASV]), did he mean to imply that a person can, with God’s approval, be moderately wicked? When Peter noted that pagans do not understand why Christians do not engage in the “same excess of riot” (1 Peter 4:4), did he mean moderate rioting was appropriate? In other words, language can forthrightly condemn an excessive indulgence or great amount of an action without implying that the action is permissible in a lesser amount or to a lesser degree. One cannot assume that what is unlawful in excess is lawful in smaller amounts. We can refer to a person’s frequent involvement in a certain activity (e.g., adultery) without intending to leave the impression that a more moderate participation in the action would be proper. Albert Barnes addressed this point succinctly:
It is not affirmed that it would be proper for the deacon, any more than the bishop, to indulge in the use of wine in small quantities, but it is affirmed that a man who is much given to the use of wine ought not, on any consideration, to be a deacon (1977, p. 148).
The word in verse eight translated “given to” (KJV, NKJV, ASV), or “indulging in” (NIV), or “addicted to” (RSV), is prosecho. It is used elsewhere in 1 Timothy (1:4) and in Titus (1:14) to refer to those who “give heed to” (KJV), or “occupy themselves with” (RSV), or “pay attention to” (NASB) Jewish myths. Who would draw the conclusion that Paul intended to encourage Christians to give some attention to Jewish myths, just not too much attention?
Consequently, Paul was spotlighting an individual who is known for drinking freely of alcoholic beverages. He was saying that no such person should be put into the eldership. A parallel would be to make an observation about a person who carouses and parties every night—“do not put such a man into the eldership!” But the speaker hardly would mean that one who parties less frequently, say on weekends only, would be acceptable. Paul no more intended to suggest that leaders in the church who use small amounts of alcohol are suited to their role than Mosaic law would have permitted priests to do so (Leviticus 10:9). Barnes commented: “The way in which the apostle mentions the subject here would lead us fairly to suppose that he did not mean to commend its use in any sense” (1977, p. 144).
A second possibility is that the terminology that Paul used was a loose form of speech (Bacchiocchi, 1989, p. 250). Both Greek and Hebrew manifest such tendencies. For example, “three days and three nights” was a loose form of speech used in antiquity to refer to two days and a portion of a third (Bullinger, 1898, pp. 845-847; Robertson, 1922, pp. 289-291). Later in the same letter, Paul instructed Timothy to “use a little wine” for his stomach and infirmities (5:23). It is not a foregone conclusion that the “wine” Paul commended to Timothy was inebriating, since evidence from antiquity exists to suggest that he was referring to the addition of grape juice to Timothy’s drinking water for medicinal purposes (see Lees, 1870, p. 374). Even if, however, Paul meant for Timothy to add fermented (i.e., intoxicating) juice to his diet, he nevertheless implied: (1) that Timothy had been abstinent up to that point; (2) that the quantity he was now to add to his diet was to be “a little”; (3) that the juice was to be diluted with water; (4) that its use was strictly medicinal in nature—not social, casual, or recreational; and (5) that it took the directive of an apostle for Timothy to introduce its use into his life and body. [Incidentally, one must not automatically assume that it was the wine that possessed medicinal properties. The wine may have simply been the antiseptic means to purify the polluted water that Timothy had been drinking by killing germs and bacterial organisms, thereby reducing their ill effect on Timothy’s fragile stomach—in which case, Paul was not commending wine; he was commending a method for cleansing contaminated water]. If Paul sanctioned the use of alcohol only on the qualifications that it was in small quantities, and that it was for medicinal purposes, why would he then turn right around and sanction deacons drinking alcohol in larger amounts—avoiding only excess?
The inconsistency of this viewpoint becomes exceedingly apparent when one compares Paul’s instructions to different Christians:
Elders (1 Timothy 3:2-3)—abstain (nephalios); don’t even be near it (me paroinon)
Deacons (1 Timothy 3:8)—drink moderately (me oino pollo)
Wives (1 Timothy 3:11)—abstain (nephalious)
Aged men (Titus 2:2)—abstain (nephalious)
Aged women (Titus 2:3)—drink moderately (me oino pollo)
In view of these inconsistencies, “much wine” must be a loose form of speech intended to express complete restraint in the use of wine.
A third possible interpretation of this verse concerns the meaning of the term “wine.” Unlike the English word (which always connotes an alcoholic beverage), the Greek word oinos is a generic term that includes all forms of the grape (cf. Lees, 1870, pp. 431ff.). The term oinos was used by the Greeks to refer to unfermented grape juice every bit as much as fermented juice. Consequently, the interpreter must examine the biblical context in order to determine whether fermented or unfermented liquid is intended. In light of this realization, some have suggested that Paul instructed the elders to refrain completely from alcoholic beverages, while deacons, on the other hand, were being instructed to engage in a moderate use of nonalcoholic grape juice. At least three lines of argumentation are evident for this interpretation.
First, in the Old Testament, the generic Hebrew term that is equivalent to oinos is yayin. Some passages praise the ingestion of yayin (Song of Solomon 5:1; Psalm 104:15; Ecclesiastes 9:7), while others condemn it (Proverbs 20:1; 31:4). The only plausible explanation is that the former is a reference to grape juice, while the latter is a reference to grape juice that has been transformed into an alcoholic beverage.
Second, only in Timothy and Titus is the word “much” used—as if the secret to pleasing God lies in the quantity of liquid ingested. If fermented juice were intended, the same distinction surely would have been made in the Old Testament. No such distinction is made. But if nonalcoholic grape juice is intended in Timothy and Titus, the intent of the qualification shifts from the level of intoxication to the matter of liquid gluttony. In that case, Paul intended to require moderation in the intake of nonalcoholic liquids.
Third, biblical warnings against the excessive intake of food and liquid are legion (e.g., Deuteronomy 21:20; Proverbs 23:20; 1 Corinthians 11:21-22; Titus 1:12). Solomon even applied the principle to honey (Proverbs 25:27). To understand Paul to be enjoining moderate use of a good gift from God (i.e., grape juice) is consistent with the context that is riddled with references to self-control, temperance, and moderation (e.g., 1 Timothy 3:2,11). It also fits the social conditions extant in Greco-Roman culture in which intemperance was rampant.
In addition to the above considerations, one must keep in mind that even if it could be proved that God sanctioned moderate drinking of alcoholic beverages in the Bible, it does not follow that God sanctions drinking modern “wine,” since the wine referred to in the Bible was unlike the wine of our day. Wine in antiquity was far less potent. One would have had to ingest large quantities in order to receive even minimal alcoholic content. The ancients typically had to add drugs to their drinks to increase their intoxicating potency. In light of all these considerations, the view that maintains that deacons may drink moderate amounts of alcoholic beverages is precarious, dangerous, and biblically unsubstantiated.

REFERENCES

Arndt, William and F.W. Gingrich (1957), A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press).
Bacchiocchi, Samuele (1989), Wine in the Bible (Berrien Springs, MI: Biblical Perspectives).
Barnes, Albert (1977 reprint), Notes on the New Testament: Thessalonians, Timothy, Titus and Philemon (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker).
Bullinger, E.W. (1898), Figures of Speech Used in the Bible (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker, 1968 reprint).
Lees, Frederic R. (1870), The Temperance Bible-Commentary (New York: Weed, Parsons, and Co.).
Moulton, James and George Milligan (1930), Vocabulary of the Greek New Testament Illustrated from the Papyri and Other Non-literary Sources (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 1982 reprint).
Perschbacher, Wesley J., ed. (1990), The New Analytical Greek Lexicon (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson).
Robertson, A.T. (1922), A Harmony of the Gospels (New York: Harper and Row).
Robertson, A.T. (1934), A Grammar of the Greek New Testament in the Light of Historical Research (Nashville, TN: Broadman).
Spain, Carl (1970), The Letters of Paul to Timothy and Titus (Austin, TX: Sweet).
Vine, W.E. (1966 reprint), An Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words (Old Tappan, NJ: Revell).

Egyptian Magicians, Snakes, and Rods by Kyle Butt, M.Div.


http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=1704

Egyptian Magicians, Snakes, and Rods

by  Kyle Butt, M.Div.

Most everyone who has ever read the biblical account of the ten plagues in Egypt cannot help but remember the scene in which Moses and Aaron threw down their rod that became a snake, and Pharoah’s magicians imitated the feat. The biblical account states:
And Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh and before his servants, and it became a serpent. But Pharaoh also called the wise men and the sorcerers; so the magicians of Egypt, they also did in like manner with their enchantments (Exodus 7:10-11).
In regard to this account, many have wondered how the magicians of Egyptian could have possessed the miraculous power to imitate the sign that God had given to Moses and Aaron. Did the magicians truly possess supernatural powers by which they could convince Pharaoh, or could there be some other explanations for the events that transpired with the rods? In regard to these questions, the biblical text does not definitively offer any conclusive answers. There are, however, other clues that seem to indicate that the Egyptian magicians used sleight-of-hand trickery devoid of supernatural ability.
Egyptians have long used the snake in their religious and ceremonial rituals. Many murals, ancient Egyptian paintings and carvings, and written texts portray this animal in connection with ancient Egyptian snake charmers, magicians, and even Pharaohs. In fact, many of the golden burial casts used to intern the ancient Egyptian kings have a sculpture of a snake coming from the forehead of the regal personality. Furthermore, the snake is commonly associated with certain gods of ancient Egypt. In regard to this affinity for the serpentine, the ancient Egyptians often used snakes in charming ceremonies and other practices. Due to this close association with the creature, they would certainly have become quite skilled at capturing, handling, and displaying snakes.
In their celebrated commentary series on the Old Testament, Jamieson, Fausset and Brown comment on the incident between Moses and Aaron and the Egyptian magicians:
The magicians of Egypt in modern times have long been celebrated adepts in charming serpents; and particularly by pressing the nape of the neck they throw them into a kind of catalepsy, which renders them stiff and immoveable, thus seeming to change them into a rod. They conceal the serpent about their person, and by acts of legerdemain produce it from their dress, stiff and straight as a rod. Just the same trick was played off by their ancient predecessors.... [A]nd so it appears they succeeded by their “enchantments” in practicing an illusion on the senses (2002, 1:295, Exodus 7:11-14).
The idea that a skilled magician could use a snake in such a way is no novel concept in the world of magic tricks. Walter Gibson, in his book Secrets of Magic, states that there is a certain type of snake that can be made motionless by applying pressure just below its head. Gibson also notes that the particular species of snake suitable for this stunt happens to be the naja haje (or haja), otherwise known as the Egyptian Cobra (as cited in “Case Studies,” n.d.). Along similar lines, Rod Robison, a comedy magician from Tucson, wrote: “Turning a rod into a snake, for instance, is easily accomplished by the same method modern day magicians turn a cane into a flower or handkerchief. I’ve seen the ‘cane to snake’ performed by magician Allan Rassco. Believe me, it’s impressive” (1999).
In truth, there is nothing inherent in the biblical text that would suggest that these magicians possessed any supernatural powers. Sleight-of-hand trickery can easily account for the “powers” possessed by the Egyptian magicians. While the magicians could at least make it look like they possessed amazing abilities, they could not withstand the power of the Almighty God. Their feeble attempts to mimic the miracle performed by Moses and Aaron was thwarted when God manifested His power by causing the rod of Moses and Aaron to consume all the other rods of the magicians (Exodus 7:12).

REFERENCES

“Case Studies” (no date), [On-line], URL: http://www.autobahn.mb.ca/~ggilbey/para7.html.
Jamieson, Robert, A.R. Fausset, and David Brown (2002 reprint), A Commentary on the Old and New Testaments (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson).
Robison, Rod (1999), “But I Saw Him Levitate!”, [On-line], URL: http://www.dtl.org/article/robison/levitate.htm.

I Won’t! Because I Can’t Believe It! by Jim McGuiggan

http://theabidingword.com/logos/index.html

I Won’t! Because I Can’t Believe It!

When Jesus says the OT is all about Him He doesn’t have in mind a verse here and a verse there, a prediction here or an event there. He sees the entire corpus (Moses, the Psalms and Prophets–Luke 24:25-27, 44-49) as a single narrative with Himself as the unending climax BUT with Himself as one human of faith along with all humans and particularly with humans of faith & of faith in God.
We can see the way He and Paul and others will quote from the Psalms and apply the experience of the psalmist to Himself. “They hated me without a cause.”   “My familiar friend betrayed me.” “The reproach of them that reproached You fell on Me.” And note Hebrews 11:24-26 that makes Moses’ suffering “the reproach of Christ.” Jesus saw Himself as one with the entire nation of Israel and refuses to distance Himself from His sinful family so we find Him being baptized along with them, By this He confesses He is part of a family that has sinned against God.
When He becomes incarnate, lives and is counted by His contemporaries as a sinner and dies sharing what they all experienced He was teaching them and us all manner of things. But He didn’t HAVE TO DO any of that. He didn’t HAVE TO teach us, suffer WITH us and FROM us and FOR us. He did it simply and solely because He WANTED to.

What brought Him to Incarnation, earthly life and ministry, saving death (and resurrection & glory) was no LAW by which God was bound; it was no internal conflict in the Godself between love and “punitive or retributive justice” which left Him helpless to freely, graciously simply forgive Sin. He came in and as the human called Jesus, the fellow-human of a race that chose and chooses ALIENATION—He came to offer restored life and friendship. His coming in pure free and sovereign grace to “plead” with the beloved rebel, the human family to be friends with Him again ( see 2 Corinthians 5:20 and context). I know it’s astonishing but He did it!
In choosing ALIENATION from God we chose the consequences which include inner self-ruin, pain and loss and anguish and temptation; and we choose all that for those around us! God in coming IN and AS the human, Jesus of Nazareth, was choosing the pain and loss and anguish and death that comes with humanity’s alienation.

Like innocent little babies (with profound differences, of course!) the sinless and holy Jesus in an alienated world freely embraced all that comes with being a human in such a world. It was unadulterated and limitless love of the human family, that God expressed in His coming personally to show it and tell it.
He wasn’t expressing any sick notion that He cannot FORGIVE sin unless He punishes it to the nth degree. And that He must punish the Innocent One,  While we continue in this world, the innocent and/or righteous will suffer along with the impenitent guilty. God does not punish the innocent! Sinners do that! Penal substitution is meant to glorify God but it distorts and cheapens Him. Punishment is NOT the same as suffering!
God joined us here. He joined us here to make it clear that our Sin and sins didn’t destroy His love and longing for us and life with us. That sustained act in Jesus of Nazareth is the fountain of all Christian response and it is still going on in the life of those who have been drawn into union and participation with the life and purpose of God’s Son, the Lord Jesus.
The meaning of the life, death of our Lord & Savior who would not distance Himself from His human family and so shared our suffering is being rehearsed and made visible in His body, the Church. He’s till suffering for the world. “Saul, Saul, why are you persecuting Me?” His body in which by His Holy Spirit He now dwells and makes Himself present in the world, is by its very existence bearing witness to all He meant to be and do in His earth-bound presence here and He does it until He returns to completely fulfill God’s eternal purpose.
PENAL SUBSTITUTION

Are You A Christian? GEORGE L. FAULL

http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com/search?updated-max=2017-03-27T12:03:00-07:00&max-results=10&start=5&by-date=false

Are You A Christian?

 

GEORGE L. FAULL

Jane and Bill had been talking awhile about the sports, the weather, taxes and other things about which no one can do anything.
Finally, Bill says to Jane:
Bill:     Are you a Christian?
Jane:   Oh yes, I’ve been a Christian for years.
Bill:     What kind of a Christian?
Jane:   Oh, just simply a Christian.
Bill:    Well, there are all sorts of Christians.  I mean, what brand of a Christian?
Jane:   No brand.  We’re just simply Christians.  We’re not hyphenated Christians, we’re Christians only.
Bill:    Well, I’m content for you to be a Christian or a Disciple of Christ or Believer but you have to profess some name 
           brand.  There are many kinds of milk; there’s Sealtest, Kroger’s or Dean’s.  You’ve got to be some kind of a   
           Christian - Baptist, Catholic, Methodist, Episcopalian, or Pentecostal.
Jane:   No, we just follow the Bible; “No book but the Bible, no name but the Divine, no creed but Christ.”
Bill:     Well that’s just arrogance on your part.
Jane:   Why is it arrogance?  We just think the Bible only makes Christians only.  Creeds do not unite, they separate.  
            Paul says denominating yourself into names is carnal.  (See both I Corinthians 1 and 3.)  I see no arrogance in 
            that.  Milk is milk when it comes out of the cow.  Sealtest or Dean’s don’t make it milk, they process it to be 
            their kind of milk.  We don’t want to be hyphenated Christians.  We see no need to be pasteurized, 
            homogenized and vitamin D enriched.  We’re just milk.  It takes creeds, synods, conventions, and rules of 
            discipline and ecclesiastical authorities to make one a certain brand of Christian.  No, we delight in our freedom 
            in Christ to believe what Jesus and His Apostles have taught us in God’s Word.  When the Bible is believed and 
            obeyed, you have a simple Christian.
Bill:     You’re thinking is warped, prejudice, and conceited. You have to belong to a church of some sort.
Jane:   I do.  I am in Christ’s Church.
Bill:     That infers the rest of us are not!
Jane:   Only in your mind.  The believers who repented and were baptized on Pentecost were saved and added to the 
           Church.  
            What brand of Church was it?  Surely none of the churches you mentioned, for we know the beginnings of 
             each of those churches and they were started centuries later than Pentecost.
Bill:     You’re na├»ve.  You have to have a name to identify yourself.
Jane:   I’m content just to suffer as a Christian.  It is in that name that we glorify Christ and not a name after a mere man 
           or a doctrine or a form of church government.  I’m sorry you want to glory in some other name.
Bill:     You’ve not even asked me what sect I belong to.
Jane:   It doesn’t matter.  I’d rather not know.  I’d like for you simply to see that sectarianism takes away from the unity 
          of all believers and that in all things Christ should receive the pre-eminence.  To call His Church that He bought 
          with His own precious blood or His Bride by another name seems to me to be, what was the word you used of 
          me, arrogant?
Bill:     I’m out of here!

Have compassion for one another by Roy Davison


http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Davison/Roy/Allen/1940/015-compassion.html

Have compassion for one another
 
“Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous” (1 Peter 3:8).

Compassion is a deep awareness of, and sympathy for, another’s suffering, accompanied by a desire to do something about it.

Jesus is our example.

“For we do not have a High Priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).

When Jesus was on earth, He showed compassion.

“But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd” (Matthew 9:36).

Jesus came to be the good Shepherd (John 10:11, 14). He is the “great Shepherd of the sheep” (Hebrews 13:20). He is “the Shepherd and Overseer” of our souls (1 Peter 2:25). We humans need leadership and He is the perfect leader.

Following His example, we should have compassion for those who are lost like sheep without a shepherd.

What should our compassion cause us to do about it? First, Jesus tells us to pray: “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the laborers are few. Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest” (Matthew 9:37, 38).

After praying, we ought to translate our compassion into action. Paul asked: “And how shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach unless they are sent?” (Romans 10:14, 15).

When we have compassion for the lost, we will pray, send and go.

Compassion means that we sometimes help when we really need to rest. “And He said to them, ‘Come aside by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.’ For there were many coming and going, and they did not even have time to eat. So they departed to a deserted place in the boat by themselves. But the multitudes saw them departing, and many knew Him and ran there on foot from all the cities. They arrived before them and came together to Him. And Jesus, when He came out, saw a great multitude and was moved with compassion for them, because they were like sheep not having a shepherd. So He began to teach them many things” (Mark 6:31-34).

Jesus had compassion on people who were hungry. “Now Jesus called His disciples to Himself and said, ‘I have compassion on the multitude, because they have now continued with Me three days and have nothing to eat. And I do not want to send them away hungry, lest they faint on the way’” (Matthew 15:32).

On another occasion, when the disciples wanted to send the crowd away because they had no food, Jesus said: “They do not need to go away. You give them something to eat” (Matthew 14:16).

Jesus had compassion on the sick. “And when Jesus went out He saw a great multitude; and He was moved with compassion for them, and healed their sick” (Matthew 14:14).

Jesus had compassion on mourners. “And when He came near the gate of the city, behold, a dead man was being carried out, the only son of his mother; and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the city was with her. When the Lord saw her, He had compassion on her and said to her, ‘Do not weep.’ Then He came and touched the open coffin, and those who carried him stood still. And He said, ‘Young man, I say to you, arise.’ So he who was dead sat up and began to speak. And He presented him to his mother” (Luke 7:12-15).

We have compassion on others because God has compassion on us. Jesus told about a slave who owed his master a large sum. “Then the master of that servant was moved with compassion, released him, and forgave him the debt” (Matthew 18:27). But when the slave showed no compassion for a fellow slave who only owed him a small amount, his master was angry. “Should you not also have had compassion on your fellow servant, just as I had pity on you?” (Matthew 18:33).

We ought to follow the example of the good Samaritan: “But a certain Samaritan, as he journeyed, came where he was. And when he saw him, he had compassion” (Luke 10:33).

Although we hate sin, we ought to have compassion on sinners and strive to rescue them, being careful not to become entangled ourselves. “And on some have compassion, making a distinction; but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh” (Jude 22, 23).

Without compassion, religious observance is worthless.

When the ruler of the synagogue criticized Jesus for healing on the Sabbath, He replied: “Hypocrite! Does not each one of you on the Sabbath loose his ox or donkey from the stall, and lead it away to water it? So ought not this woman, being a daughter of Abraham, whom Satan has bound - think of it - for eighteen years, be loosed from this bond on the Sabbath?” (Luke 13:15, 16). They had more compassion for a donkey than for this woman.

Another time He told the religious leaders: “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone” (Mathew 23:23).

On the other hand, there are some who mistakenly think that compassion is sufficient for salvation. They are confident that God requires nothing more than being kind to others.

This is proven wrong by the salvation of Cornelius. Although he is described as “a devout man and one who feared God with all his household, who gave alms generously to the people, and prayed to God always” (Acts 10:2) he was not saved because the angel told him: “'Send men to Joppa, and call for Simon whose surname is Peter, who will tell you words by which you and all your household will be saved” (Acts 11:13, 14).

Even though he believed in God, prayed regularly, and gave alms to the poor, Cornelius was not saved. To be saved he had to hear the gospel, believe in Jesus, and be baptized.

God appreciates the good that people do and has promised that those who seek will find. The angel told Cornelius: “Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God” (Acts 10:4). But people cannot be saved just by praying and doing good deeds because along with the good, there is also sin in the life of every person. Only through the blood of Christ can sin be washed away.

So let us follow Jesus’ example and be compassionate. Let us bring the lost sheep to the Shepherd. Let us feed the hungry and help the sick. Let us be compassionate as God has been compassionate to us.

“Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous” (1 Peter 3:8). Amen.
Roy Davison


The Scripture quotations in this article are from The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982, Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers.
Published in The Old Paths Archive
(http://www.oldpaths.com)



Bible Reading for April 13 and 14 by Gary Rose


Bible Reading for April 13 and 14

World  English  Bible

 
Apr. 13
Numbers 17, 18

Num 17:1 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Num 17:2 Speak to the children of Israel, and take of them rods, one for each fathers' house, of all their princes according to their fathers' houses, twelve rods: write every man's name on his rod.
Num 17:3 You shall write Aaron's name on the rod of Levi; for there shall be one rod for each head of their fathers' houses.
Num 17:4 You shall lay them up in the Tent of Meeting before the testimony, where I meet with you.
Num 17:5 It shall happen, that the rod of the man whom I shall choose shall bud: and I will make to cease from me the murmurings of the children of Israel, which they murmur against you.
Num 17:6 Moses spoke to the children of Israel; and all their princes gave him rods, for each prince one, according to their fathers' houses, even twelve rods: and the rod of Aaron was among their rods.
Num 17:7 Moses laid up the rods before Yahweh in the tent of the testimony.
Num 17:8 It happened on the next day, that Moses went into the tent of the testimony; and behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and put forth buds, and produced blossoms, and bore ripe almonds.
Num 17:9 Moses brought out all the rods from before Yahweh to all the children of Israel: and they looked, and took every man his rod.
Num 17:10 Yahweh said to Moses, Put back the rod of Aaron before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the children of rebellion; that you may make an end of their murmurings against me, that they not die.
Num 17:11 Moses did so. As Yahweh commanded him, so he did.
Num 17:12 The children of Israel spoke to Moses, saying, Behold, we perish, we are undone, we are all undone.
Num 17:13 Everyone who comes near, who comes near to the tabernacle of Yahweh, dies: shall we perish all of us?

Num 18:1 Yahweh said to Aaron, You and your sons and your fathers' house with you shall bear the iniquity of the sanctuary; and you and your sons with you shall bear the iniquity of your priesthood.
Num 18:2 Your brothers also, the tribe of Levi, the tribe of your father, bring near with you, that they may be joined to you, and minister to you: but you and your sons with you shall be before the tent of the testimony.
Num 18:3 They shall keep your commands, and the duty of all the Tent: only they shall not come near to the vessels of the sanctuary and to the altar, that they not die, neither they, nor you.
Num 18:4 They shall be joined to you, and keep the responsibility of the Tent of Meeting, for all the service of the Tent: and a stranger shall not come near to you.
Num 18:5 You shall perform the duty of the sanctuary, and the duty of the altar; that there be wrath no more on the children of Israel.
Num 18:6 I, behold, I have taken your brothers the Levites from among the children of Israel: to you they are a gift, given to Yahweh, to do the service of the Tent of Meeting.
Num 18:7 You and your sons with you shall keep your priesthood for everything of the altar, and for that within the veil; and you shall serve: I give you the priesthood as a service of gift: and the stranger who comes near shall be put to death.
Num 18:8 Yahweh spoke to Aaron, I, behold, I have given you the command of my wave offerings, even all the holy things of the children of Israel; to you have I given them by reason of the anointing, and to your sons, as a portion forever.
Num 18:9 This shall be your of the most holy things, reserved from the fire: every offering of theirs, even every meal offering of theirs, and every sin offering of theirs, and every trespass offering of theirs, which they shall render to me, shall be most holy for you and for your sons.
Num 18:10 You shall eat of it like the most holy things. Every male shall eat of it. It shall be holy to you.
Num 18:11 This is yours, too: the wave offering of their gift, even all the wave offerings of the children of Israel. I have given them to you, and to your sons and to your daughters with you, as a portion forever. Everyone who is clean in your house shall eat of it.
Num 18:12 All the best of the oil, and all the best of the vintage, and of the grain, the first fruits of them which they give to Yahweh, to you have I given them.
Num 18:13 The first-ripe fruits of all that is in their land, which they bring to Yahweh, shall be yours; everyone who is clean in your house shall eat of it.
Num 18:14 Everything devoted in Israel shall be yours.
Num 18:15 Everything that opens the womb, of all flesh which they offer to Yahweh, both of man and animal shall be yours: nevertheless you shall surely redeem the firstborn of man, and you shall redeem the firstborn of unclean animals.
Num 18:16 You shall redeem those who are to be redeemed of them from a month old, according to your estimation, for five shekels of money, after the shekel of the sanctuary (the same is twenty gerahs).
Num 18:17 But you shall not redeem the firstborn of a cow, or the firstborn of a sheep, or the firstborn of a goat. They are holy. You shall sprinkle their blood on the altar, and shall burn their fat for an offering made by fire, for a pleasant aroma to Yahweh.
Num 18:18 Their flesh shall be yours, as the wave offering breast and as the right thigh, it shall be yours.
Num 18:19 All the wave offerings of the holy things, which the children of Israel offer to Yahweh, have I given you, and your sons and your daughters with you, as a portion forever: it is a covenant of salt forever before Yahweh to you and to your seed with you.
Num 18:20 Yahweh said to Aaron, You shall have no inheritance in their land, neither shall you have any portion among them: I am your portion and your inheritance among the children of Israel.
Num 18:21 To the children of Levi, behold, I have given all the tithe in Israel for an inheritance, in return for their service which they serve, even the service of the Tent of Meeting.
Num 18:22 Henceforth the children of Israel shall not come near the Tent of Meeting, lest they bear sin, and die.
Num 18:23 But the Levites shall do the service of the Tent of Meeting, and they shall bear their iniquity: it shall be a statute forever throughout your generations; and among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.
Num 18:24 For the tithe of the children of Israel, which they offer as a wave offering to Yahweh, I have given to the Levites for an inheritance: therefore I have said to them, Among the children of Israel they shall have no inheritance.
Num 18:25 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Num 18:26 Moreover you shall speak to the Levites, and tell them, When you take of the children of Israel the tithe which I have given you from them for your inheritance, then you shall offer up a wave offering of it for Yahweh, a tithe of the tithe.
Num 18:27 Your wave offering shall be reckoned to you, as though it were the grain of the threshing floor, and as the fullness of the winepress.
Num 18:28 Thus you also shall offer a wave offering to Yahweh of all your tithes, which you receive of the children of Israel; and of it you shall give Yahweh's wave offering to Aaron the priest.
Num 18:29 Out of all your gifts you shall offer every wave offering of Yahweh, of all its best, even the holy part of it out of it.
Num 18:30 Therefore you shall tell them, When you heave its best from it, then it shall be reckoned to the Levites as the increase of the threshing floor, and as the increase of the winepress.
Num 18:31 You shall eat it in every place, you and your households: for it is your reward in return for your service in the Tent of Meeting.
Num 18:32 You shall bear no sin by reason of it, when you have heaved from it its best: and you shall not profane the holy things of the children of Israel, that you not die.

Apr. 14
Numbers 19, 20

Num 19:1 Yahweh spoke to Moses and to Aaron, saying,
Num 19:2 This is the statute of the law which Yahweh has commanded, saying, Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring you a red heifer without spot, in which is no blemish, and on which never came yoke.
Num 19:3 You shall give her to Eleazar the priest, and he shall bring her forth outside of the camp, and one shall kill her before his face:
Num 19:4 and Eleazar the priest shall take of her blood with his finger, and sprinkle her blood toward the front of the Tent of Meeting seven times.
Num 19:5 One shall burn the heifer in his sight; her skin, and her flesh, and her blood, with her dung, shall he burn:
Num 19:6 and the priest shall take cedar wood, and hyssop, and scarlet, and cast it into the midst of the burning of the heifer.
Num 19:7 Then the priest shall wash his clothes, and he shall bathe his flesh in water, and afterward he shall come into the camp, and the priest shall be unclean until the even.
Num 19:8 He who burns her shall wash his clothes in water, and bathe his flesh in water, and shall be unclean until the even.
Num 19:9 A man who is clean shall gather up the ashes of the heifer, and lay them up outside of the camp in a clean place; and it shall be kept for the congregation of the children of Israel for a water for impurity: it is a sin offering.
Num 19:10 He who gathers the ashes of the heifer shall wash his clothes, and be unclean until the even: and it shall be to the children of Israel, and to the stranger who lives as a foreigner among them, for a statute forever.
Num 19:11 He who touches the dead body of any man shall be unclean seven days:
Num 19:12 the same shall purify himself with water on the third day, and on the seventh day he shall be clean: but if he doesn't purify himself the third day, then the seventh day he shall not be clean.
Num 19:13 Whoever touches a dead person, the body of a man who has died, and doesn't purify himself, defiles the tabernacle of Yahweh; and that soul shall be cut off from Israel: because the water for impurity was not sprinkled on him, he shall be unclean; his uncleanness is yet on him.
Num 19:14 This is the law when a man dies in a tent: everyone who comes into the tent, and everyone who is in the tent, shall be unclean seven days.
Num 19:15 Every open vessel, which has no covering bound on it, is unclean.
Num 19:16 Whoever in the open field touches one who is slain with a sword, or a dead body, or a bone of a man, or a grave, shall be unclean seven days.
Num 19:17 For the unclean they shall take of the ashes of the burning of the sin offering; and running water shall be put thereto in a vessel:
Num 19:18 and a clean person shall take hyssop, and dip it in the water, and sprinkle it on the tent, and on all the vessels, and on the persons who were there, and on him who touched the bone, or the slain, or the dead, or the grave:
Num 19:19 and the clean person shall sprinkle on the unclean on the third day, and on the seventh day: and on the seventh day he shall purify him; and he shall wash his clothes, and bathe himself in water, and shall be clean at even.
Num 19:20 But the man who shall be unclean, and shall not purify himself, that soul shall be cut off from the midst of the assembly, because he has defiled the sanctuary of Yahweh: the water for impurity has not been sprinkled on him; he is unclean.
Num 19:21 It shall be a perpetual statute to them: and he who sprinkles the water for impurity shall wash his clothes, and he who touches the water for impurity shall be unclean until even.
Num 19:22 Whatever the unclean person touches shall be unclean; and the soul that touches it shall be unclean until evening.

Num 20:1 The children of Israel, even the whole congregation, came into the wilderness of Zin in the first month: and the people abode in Kadesh; and Miriam died there, and was buried there.
Num 20:2 There was no water for the congregation: and they assembled themselves together against Moses and against Aaron.
Num 20:3 The people strove with Moses, and spoke, saying, Would that we had died when our brothers died before Yahweh!
Num 20:4 Why have you brought the assembly of Yahweh into this wilderness, that we should die there, we and our animals?
Num 20:5 Why have you made us to come up out of Egypt, to bring us in to this evil place? it is no place of seed, or of figs, or of vines, or of pomegranates; neither is there any water to drink.
Num 20:6 Moses and Aaron went from the presence of the assembly to the door of the Tent of Meeting, and fell on their faces: and the glory of Yahweh appeared to them.
Num 20:7 Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying,
Num 20:8 Take the rod, and assemble the congregation, you, and Aaron your brother, and speak to the rock before their eyes, that it give forth its water; and you shall bring forth to them water out of the rock; so you shall give the congregation and their livestock drink.
Num 20:9 Moses took the rod from before Yahweh, as he commanded him.
Num 20:10 Moses and Aaron gathered the assembly together before the rock, and he said to them, Hear now, you rebels; shall we bring you water out of this rock for you?
Num 20:11 Moses lifted up his hand, and struck the rock with his rod twice: and water came forth abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their livestock.
Num 20:12 Yahweh said to Moses and Aaron, Because you didn't believe in me, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore you shall not bring this assembly into the land which I have given them.
Num 20:13 These are the waters of Meribah; because the children of Israel strove with Yahweh, and he was sanctified in them.
Num 20:14 Moses sent messengers from Kadesh to the king of Edom, Thus says your brother Israel, You know all the travail that has happened to us:
Num 20:15 how our fathers went down into Egypt, and we lived in Egypt a long time; and the Egyptians dealt ill with us, and our fathers:
Num 20:16 and when we cried to Yahweh, he heard our voice, and sent an angel, and brought us forth out of Egypt: and behold, we are in Kadesh, a city in the uttermost of your border.
Num 20:17 Please let us pass through your land: we will not pass through field or through vineyard, neither will we drink of the water of the wells: we will go along the king's highway; we will not turn aside to the right hand nor to the left, until we have passed your border.
Num 20:18 Edom said to him, You shall not pass through me, lest I come out with the sword against you.
Num 20:19 The children of Israel said to him, We will go up by the highway; and if we drink of your water, I and my livestock, then will I give its price: let me only, without doing anything else, pass through on my feet.
Num 20:20 He said, You shall not pass through. Edom came out against him with much people, and with a strong hand.
Num 20:21 Thus Edom refused to give Israel passage through his border, so Israel turned away from him.
Num 20:22 They traveled from Kadesh: and the children of Israel, even the whole congregation, came to Mount Hor.
Num 20:23 Yahweh spoke to Moses and Aaron in Mount Hor, by the border of the land of Edom, saying,
Num 20:24 Aaron shall be gathered to his people; for he shall not enter into the land which I have given to the children of Israel, because you rebelled against my word at the waters of Meribah.
Num 20:25 Take Aaron and Eleazar his son, and bring them up to Mount Hor;
Num 20:26 and strip Aaron of his garments, and put them on Eleazar his son: and Aaron shall be gathered to his people, and shall die there.
Num 20:27 Moses did as Yahweh commanded: and they went up into Mount Hor in the sight of all the congregation.
Num 20:28 Moses stripped Aaron of his garments, and put them on Eleazar his son; and Aaron died there on the top of the mountain: and Moses and Eleazar came down from the mountain.
Num 20:29 When all the congregation saw that Aaron was dead, they wept for Aaron thirty days, even all the house of Israel.
 
Apr. 13
Luke 8

Luk 8:1 It happened soon afterwards, that he went about through cities and villages, preaching and bringing the good news of the Kingdom of God. With him were the twelve,
Luk 8:2 and certain women who had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities: Mary who was called Magdalene, from whom seven demons had gone out;
Luk 8:3 and Joanna, the wife of Chuzas, Herod's steward; Susanna; and many others; who served them from their possessions.
Luk 8:4 When a great multitude came together, and people from every city were coming to him, he spoke by a parable.
Luk 8:5 "The farmer went out to sow his seed. As he sowed, some fell along the road, and it was trampled under foot, and the birds of the sky devoured it.
Luk 8:6 Other seed fell on the rock, and as soon as it grew, it withered away, because it had no moisture.
Luk 8:7 Other fell amid the thorns, and the thorns grew with it, and choked it.
Luk 8:8 Other fell into the good ground, and grew, and brought forth fruit one hundred times." As he said these things, he called out, "He who has ears to hear, let him hear!"
Luk 8:9 Then his disciples asked him, "What does this parable mean?"
Luk 8:10 He said, "To you it is given to know the mysteries of the Kingdom of God, but to the rest in parables; that 'seeing they may not see, and hearing they may not understand.'
Luk 8:11 Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God.
Luk 8:12 Those along the road are those who hear, then the devil comes, and takes away the word from their heart, that they may not believe and be saved.
Luk 8:13 Those on the rock are they who, when they hear, receive the word with joy; but these have no root, who believe for a while, then fall away in time of temptation.
Luk 8:14 That which fell among the thorns, these are those who have heard, and as they go on their way they are choked with cares, riches, and pleasures of life, and bring no fruit to maturity.
Luk 8:15 That in the good ground, these are such as in an honest and good heart, having heard the word, hold it tightly, and bring forth fruit with patience.
Luk 8:16 "No one, when he has lit a lamp, covers it with a container, or puts it under a bed; but puts it on a stand, that those who enter in may see the light.
Luk 8:17 For nothing is hidden, that will not be revealed; nor anything secret, that will not be known and come to light.
Luk 8:18 Be careful therefore how you hear. For whoever has, to him will be given; and whoever doesn't have, from him will be taken away even that which he thinks he has."
Luk 8:19 His mother and brothers came to him, and they could not come near him for the crowd.
Luk 8:20 It was told him by some saying, "Your mother and your brothers stand outside, desiring to see you."
Luk 8:21 But he answered them, "My mother and my brothers are these who hear the word of God, and do it."
Luk 8:22 Now it happened on one of those days, that he entered into a boat, himself and his disciples, and he said to them, "Let's go over to the other side of the lake." So they launched out.
Luk 8:23 But as they sailed, he fell asleep. A wind storm came down on the lake, and they were taking on dangerous amounts of water.
Luk 8:24 They came to him, and awoke him, saying, "Master, master, we are dying!" He awoke, and rebuked the wind and the raging of the water, and they ceased, and it was calm.
Luk 8:25 He said to them, "Where is your faith?" Being afraid they marveled, saying one to another, "Who is this, then, that he commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him?"
Luk 8:26 They arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is opposite Galilee.
Luk 8:27 When Jesus stepped ashore, a certain man out of the city who had demons for a long time met him. He wore no clothes, and didn't live in a house, but in the tombs.
Luk 8:28 When he saw Jesus, he cried out, and fell down before him, and with a loud voice said, "What do I have to do with you, Jesus, you Son of the Most High God? I beg you, don't torment me!"
Luk 8:29 For Jesus was commanding the unclean spirit to come out of the man. For the unclean spirit had often seized the man. He was kept under guard, and bound with chains and fetters. Breaking the bands apart, he was driven by the demon into the desert.
Luk 8:30 Jesus asked him, "What is your name?" He said, "Legion," for many demons had entered into him.
Luk 8:31 They begged him that he would not command them to go into the abyss.
Luk 8:32 Now there was there a herd of many pigs feeding on the mountain, and they begged him that he would allow them to enter into those. He allowed them.
Luk 8:33 The demons came out from the man, and entered into the pigs, and the herd rushed down the steep bank into the lake, and were drowned.
Luk 8:34 When those who fed them saw what had happened, they fled, and told it in the city and in the country.
Luk 8:35 People went out to see what had happened. They came to Jesus, and found the man from whom the demons had gone out, sitting at Jesus' feet, clothed and in his right mind; and they were afraid.
Luk 8:36 Those who saw it told them how he who had been possessed by demons was healed.
Luk 8:37 All the people of the surrounding country of the Gadarenes asked him to depart from them, for they were very much afraid. He entered into the boat, and returned.
Luk 8:38 But the man from whom the demons had gone out begged him that he might go with him, but Jesus sent him away, saying,
Luk 8:39 "Return to your house, and declare what great things God has done for you." He went his way, proclaiming throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.
Luk 8:40 It happened, when Jesus returned, that the multitude welcomed him, for they were all waiting for him.
Luk 8:41 Behold, there came a man named Jairus, and he was a ruler of the synagogue. He fell down at Jesus' feet, and begged him to come into his house,
Luk 8:42 for he had an only daughter, about twelve years of age, and she was dying. But as he went, the multitudes pressed against him.
Luk 8:43 A woman who had a flow of blood for twelve years, who had spent all her living on physicians, and could not be healed by any,
Luk 8:44 came behind him, and touched the fringe of his cloak, and immediately the flow of her blood stopped.
Luk 8:45 Jesus said, "Who touched me?" When all denied it, Peter and those with him said, "Master, the multitudes press and jostle you, and you say, 'Who touched me?' "
Luk 8:46 But Jesus said, "Someone did touch me, for I perceived that power has gone out of me."
Luk 8:47 When the woman saw that she was not hidden, she came trembling, and falling down before him declared to him in the presence of all the people the reason why she had touched him, and how she was healed immediately.
Luk 8:48 He said to her, "Daughter, cheer up. Your faith has made you well. Go in peace."
Luk 8:49 While he still spoke, one from the ruler of the synagogue's house came, saying to him, "Your daughter is dead. Don't trouble the Teacher."
Luk 8:50 But Jesus hearing it, answered him, "Don't be afraid. Only believe, and she will be healed."
Luk 8:51 When he came to the house, he didn't allow anyone to enter in, except Peter, John, James, the father of the child, and her mother.
Luk 8:52 All were weeping and mourning her, but he said, "Don't weep. She isn't dead, but sleeping."
Luk 8:53 They were ridiculing him, knowing that she was dead.
Luk 8:54 But he put them all outside, and taking her by the hand, he called, saying, "Child, arise!"
Luk 8:55 Her spirit returned, and she rose up immediately. He commanded that something be given to her to eat.
Luk 8:56 Her parents were amazed, but he commanded them to tell no one what had been done.

Apr. 14
Luke 9

Luk 9:1 He called the twelve together, and gave them power and authority over all demons, and to cure diseases.
Luk 9:2 He sent them forth to preach the Kingdom of God, and to heal the sick.
Luk 9:3 He said to them, "Take nothing for your journey-neither staffs, nor wallet, nor bread, nor money; neither have two coats apiece.
Luk 9:4 Into whatever house you enter, stay there, and depart from there.
Luk 9:5 As many as don't receive you, when you depart from that city, shake off even the dust from your feet for a testimony against them."
Luk 9:6 They departed, and went throughout the villages, preaching the Good News, and healing everywhere.
Luk 9:7 Now Herod the tetrarch heard of all that was done by him; and he was very perplexed, because it was said by some that John had risen from the dead,
Luk 9:8 and by some that Elijah had appeared, and by others that one of the old prophets had risen again.
Luk 9:9 Herod said, "John I beheaded, but who is this, about whom I hear such things?" He sought to see him.
Luk 9:10 The apostles, when they had returned, told him what things they had done. He took them, and withdrew apart to a deserted place of a city called Bethsaida.
Luk 9:11 But the multitudes, perceiving it, followed him. He welcomed them, and spoke to them of the Kingdom of God, and he cured those who needed healing.
Luk 9:12 The day began to wear away; and the twelve came, and said to him, "Send the multitude away, that they may go into the surrounding villages and farms, and lodge, and get food, for we are here in a deserted place."
Luk 9:13 But he said to them, "You give them something to eat." They said, "We have no more than five loaves and two fish, unless we should go and buy food for all these people."
Luk 9:14 For they were about five thousand men. He said to his disciples, "Make them sit down in groups of about fifty each."
Luk 9:15 They did so, and made them all sit down.
Luk 9:16 He took the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to the sky, he blessed them, and broke them, and gave them to the disciples to set before the multitude.
Luk 9:17 They ate, and were all filled. They gathered up twelve baskets of broken pieces that were left over.
Luk 9:18 It happened, as he was praying alone, that the disciples were with him, and he asked them, "Who do the multitudes say that I am?"
Luk 9:19 They answered, " 'John the Baptizer,' but others say, 'Elijah,' and others, that one of the old prophets is risen again."
Luk 9:20 He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" Peter answered, "The Christ of God."
Luk 9:21 But he warned them, and commanded them to tell this to no one,
Luk 9:22 saying, "The Son of Man must suffer many things, and be rejected by the elders, chief priests, and scribes, and be killed, and the third day be raised up."
Luk 9:23 He said to all, "If anyone desires to come after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me.
Luk 9:24 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever will lose his life for my sake, the same will save it.
Luk 9:25 For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses or forfeits his own self?
Luk 9:26 For whoever will be ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed, when he comes in his glory, and the glory of the Father, and of the holy angels.
Luk 9:27 But I tell you the truth: There are some of those who stand here, who will in no way taste of death, until they see the Kingdom of God."
Luk 9:28 It happened about eight days after these sayings, that he took with him Peter, John, and James, and went up onto the mountain to pray.
Luk 9:29 As he was praying, the appearance of his face was altered, and his clothing became white and dazzling.
Luk 9:30 Behold, two men were talking with him, who were Moses and Elijah,
Luk 9:31 who appeared in glory, and spoke of his departure, which he was about to accomplish at Jerusalem.
Luk 9:32 Now Peter and those who were with him were heavy with sleep, but when they were fully awake, they saw his glory, and the two men who stood with him.
Luk 9:33 It happened, as they were parting from him, that Peter said to Jesus, "Master, it is good for us to be here. Let's make three tents: one for you, and one for Moses, and one for Elijah," not knowing what he said.
Luk 9:34 While he said these things, a cloud came and overshadowed them, and they were afraid as they entered into the cloud.
Luk 9:35 A voice came out of the cloud, saying, "This is my beloved Son. Listen to him!"
Luk 9:36 When the voice came, Jesus was found alone. They were silent, and told no one in those days any of the things which they had seen.
Luk 9:37 It happened on the next day, when they had come down from the mountain, that a great multitude met him.
Luk 9:38 Behold, a man from the crowd called out, saying, "Teacher, I beg you to look at my son, for he is my only child.
Luk 9:39 Behold, a spirit takes him, he suddenly cries out, and it convulses him so that he foams, and it hardly departs from him, bruising him severely.
Luk 9:40 I begged your disciples to cast it out, and they couldn't."
Luk 9:41 Jesus answered, "Faithless and perverse generation, how long shall I be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here."
Luk 9:42 While he was still coming, the demon threw him down and convulsed him violently. But Jesus rebuked the unclean spirit, and healed the boy, and gave him back to his father.
Luk 9:43 They were all astonished at the majesty of God. But while all were marveling at all the things which Jesus did, he said to his disciples,
Luk 9:44 "Let these words sink into your ears, for the Son of Man will be delivered up into the hands of men."
Luk 9:45 But they didn't understand this saying. It was concealed from them, that they should not perceive it, and they were afraid to ask him about this saying.
Luk 9:46 There arose an argument among them about which of them was the greatest.
Luk 9:47 Jesus, perceiving the reasoning of their hearts, took a little child, and set him by his side,
Luk 9:48 and said to them, "Whoever receives this little child in my name receives me. Whoever receives me receives him who sent me. For whoever is least among you all, this one will be great."
Luk 9:49 John answered, "Master, we saw someone casting out demons in your name, and we forbade him, because he doesn't follow with us."
Luk 9:50 Jesus said to him, "Don't forbid him, for he who is not against us is for us."
Luk 9:51 It came to pass, when the days were near that he should be taken up, he intently set his face to go to Jerusalem,
Luk 9:52 and sent messengers before his face. They went, and entered into a village of the Samaritans, so as to prepare for him.
Luk 9:53 They didn't receive him, because he was traveling with his face set towards Jerusalem.
Luk 9:54 When his disciples, James and John, saw this, they said, "Lord, do you want us to command fire to come down from the sky, and destroy them, just as Elijah did?"
Luk 9:55 But he turned and rebuked them, "You don't know of what kind of spirit you are.
Luk 9:56 For the Son of Man didn't come to destroy men's lives, but to save them." They went to another village.
Luk 9:57 As they went on the way, a certain man said to him, "I want to follow you wherever you go, Lord."
Luk 9:58 Jesus said to him, "The foxes have holes, and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head."
Luk 9:59 He said to another, "Follow me!" But he said, "Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father."
Luk 9:60 But Jesus said to him, "Leave the dead to bury their own dead, but you go and announce the Kingdom of God."
Luk 9:61 Another also said, "I want to follow you, Lord, but first allow me to bid farewell to those who are at my house."
Luk 9:62 But Jesus said to him, "No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the Kingdom of God."