"THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS" Bewitched And Befooled (3:1-5) by Mark Copeland

                     "THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS"

                     Bewitched And Befooled (3:1-5)


1. When Paul wrote of his concern to the churches in Galatia...
   a. He described them as "foolish" - Ga 3:1,3
      1) For seeking to be perfected by the flesh - e.g., via
      2) For suffering many things in vain, as their salvation was
         endangered - cf. Ga 5:4-8
   b. He wondered if they had been "bewitched" - Ga 3:1
      1) A word (baskaino) which means "to be fascinated" (Strong),
         "charmed" (Thayer)
      2) Led astray by charming misrepresentations
   c. He sought to reason with them - Ga 3:1-5
      1) Was not Christ clearly portrayed to them as crucified?
      2) Had they not received the Spirit by the hearing of faith rather
         than by the works of the Law?
      3) Had not the One who supplied the Spirit done so through the
         hearing of faith?

2. Could we face similar dangers today...?
   a. Might someone "bewitch" and "befool" us through false
   b. Should we not be led by calm reasoning rather than fascinating

[We may indeed find ourselves "Bewitched And Befooled", for the
Scriptures reveal there is...]


      1. Jesus and John warned of false prophets - Mt 7:15; 1Jn 4:1
      2. Paul warned of false apostles, ministers of Satan - 2Co 11:
      3. He warned of being cheated through philosophy and principles of
         the world - Col 2:8
      4. He warned of some departing from the faith- 1Ti 4:1-3
      5. He warned of being turned aside to fables - 2Ti 4:3-4
      6. Peter warned of false teachers with destructive heresies, by
         covetousness exploiting with deceptive words - 2Pe 2:1-3
      -- Such warnings clearly confirm the danger of being "Bewitched
         And Befooled"

      1. We are beleaguered by traditions of men (e.g., Catholicism and
      2. We are assaulted by philosophies of men (e.g., humanism,
         secularism, postmodernism)
      3. We are allured by false teachers who appeal to greed (e.g.,
         gospel of health and wealth)
      4. We are challenged by false doctrines denying God and Jesus
         (e.g., evolution, the 'Jesus Seminar')
      5. We are assailed by changing trends (easy divorce, same-sex
      -- The world has clearly been "Bewitched And Befooled"; what about

[Yes, there is "a clear and present danger" that we face today.  If we
are to avoid being "Bewitched And Befooled", then consider from our text
(Ga 3:1-5) what is...]


      1. Jesus and Him crucified - Ga 3:1
         a. Proclaimed by the apostles - 1Co 1:23-24; 2:2
         b. Proclaimed in the Lord's Supper - 1Co 11:26
      2. Never forget that Jesus was crucified for our sins
         a. Thus the Law of Moses with its works (e.g., circumcision)
            can't save us
         b. Nor can any doctrine which denies God and the need for
            Jesus' death
      -- There is no other gospel that can save us - Ro 1:16; Ga 1:8-9

      1. It is by the hearing of faith - Ga 3:2
         a. Promised to those who believe, repent and are baptized 
            - Jn 7:37-39; Ac 2:38
         b. Given to those who are the children of God - Ga 4:6
      2. Never forget that our spiritual lives began in the Spirit 
         - Ga 3:3
         a. We are born of the Spirit - Jn 3:5; Tit 3:5
         b. We are strengthened by the Spirit in the inner man - Ep 3:16
      -- There is no other means by which we can grow as Christians 
         - Ro 8:9-14

      1. It was God - Ga 3:5
         a. Who poured out the Spirit abundantly through Jesus Christ
            our Savior - Tit 3:6
         b. Who bore witness by the signs, wonders, miracles, and gifts
            of the Holy Spirit - He 2:4
      2. Never forget that God bore witness to Christ and His apostles
         - He 2:3
         a. Miracles confirmed those sent out by the Lord - cf. Mk 16:
         b. What miracles have been done by false teachers, foolish
            professors, pompous theologians who would mislead us today?
      -- There is no other way to know the will and word of God other
         than through the apostles of Jesus Christ - 1Jn 4:5-6


1. Many people today have been "Bewitched And Befooled"...
   a. Evidenced by the many different religions
   b. Exhibited by the rapidly changing moral standards
   -- Too many people are being misled so they do not obey the truth

2. If we desire not to be "Bewitched And Befooled"...
   a. Then follow Jesus who was crucified for our sins
   b. Listen to Him and His apostles with "the hearing of faith"

Only then can we be sure to "know the truth, and the truth shall make
you free." - Jn 8:31-32

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2016

eXTReMe Tracker 

Biblical Accuracy Set in Stone by Kyle Butt, M.Div.


Biblical Accuracy Set in Stone

by Kyle Butt, M.Div.

Writing about a rock that was discovered almost 150 years ago certainly would not fit in a current “in the news” section. In fact, since 1868, so much has been written about this stone that very few new articles pertaining to it come to light. But the truth of the matter is that even though it was discovered more than a century ago, many Christians do not even know it exists, and need to be reminded of its importance.
The stone is known as the Moabite Stone (or the Mesha Inscription). A missionary named Klein first discovered the stone in August of 1868 (Edersheim, n.d., p. 109). When he initially saw the black basalt stone, it measured about 3.5 feet high and 2 feet wide. Upon hearing of Klein’s adventure, a French scholar named Clermont-Ganneau located the antiquated piece of rock and made an impression of the writing on its surface. From that point, the details surrounding the stone are not quite as clear. Apparently, the Arabs who had the stone thought that it was a religious talisman of some sort, and broke it into several pieces by heating it in fire and then pouring cold water on it. The pieces were scattered, but about two-thirds of the original stone has been relocated, and currently resides at the Louvre in Paris (Jacobs and McCurdy, 2002).
The written inscription on the stone provides a piece of “rock-solid” evidence verifying the Bible’s accuracy. Mesha, the king of Moab, had the stone cut in about 850 B.C. to tell of his many conquests and his reacquisition of certain territories that were controlled by Israel. In the over 30-line text composed of about 260 words, Mesha mentions that Omri was the King of Israel who had oppressed Moab, but then Mesha says he “saw his desire upon” Omri’s son and upon “his house.” The Mesha stele cites Omri as the king of Israel, just as 1 Kings 16:21-28 indicates. Furthermore, it mentions Omri’s son (Ahab) in close connection with the Moabites, just as 2 Kings 3:4-6 does. In addition, both the stele and 2 Kings 3:4-6 list Mesha as the king of Moab. The stele further names the Israelite tribe of Gad, and the Israelite God, Yahweh. Taken as a whole, the Moabite stone remains one of the most impressive pieces of evidence verifying the historical accuracy of the Old Testament. And, although this find has been around almost 150 years, it “still speaks” to us today (Hebrews 11:4).


Edersheim, Albert (no date), The Bible History—Old Testament, book VI (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans).
Jacobs, Joseph and J. Frederick McCurdy (2002), “Moabite Stone,” JewishEncyclopedia.com, [On-line], URL: http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/view.jsp?artid=680&letter=M.

Exceptional Spider Silk by Eric Lyons, M.Min.


Exceptional Spider Silk

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

To the average person, a spider’s web looks rather weak and flimsy. With the greatest of ease, a person can destroy a web. In only a second, the spider’s house is razed with the wave of a hand. Even Job’s uninspired friend, Bildad, testified of the fragileness of webs when he likened the unrighteous to those “whose trust is a spider’s web” (Job 8:14), who are leaning upon a house that easily perishes. So why are scientists increasingly mesmerized by the spider’s silk webbing?
Scientists are so enamored with spider silk because it has an “exceptional capacity to absorb kinetic energy” (Cunningham, 2007). Although it may not seem strong and tough from the vantage point of a human who easily can tear down a spider’s web, pound-for-pound, the silk from certain kinds of spiders is five times stronger than steel. What’s more, it can stretch 30 percent farther than the stretchiest known nylon, and is twice as flexible. Scientists have discovered that spider silk can even stretch 40 percent beyond its original length without breaking. In fact, due to its amazing strength and flexibility, it has been said that you could stop a jumbo jet in mid-flight with a spider web made of silk only one centimeter thick.
Since harvesting silk from spiders is impractical, scientists are attempting to make synthetic “spider silk” that could be used for countless things, including bulletproof vests, bridge suspension cables, and artificial tendons. Scientists especially covet the silk’s “exceptional capacity to absorb kinetic energy” and are hoping to copy what they call its “winning formula.” How have scientists fared thus far? In truth, even “[t]he best industrial fibers don’t absorb as much kinetic energy as spider silk does.... Despite years of research, scientists still can’t make a material as tough as the silk found within a spider web” (Cunningham, emp. added). Zoologist Chris Holland admitted that synthetic fibers “can’t even come close to” equaling the amazing qualities of spider-produced silk (as quoted in Cunningham).
What explanation do scientists give for the origin of spiders and their exceptional silk? To what do we owe this “winning formula” that intelligent scientists have been attempting to copy for years? According to Holland, “[s]piders...evolved the capacity to spin silk” (as quoted in Cunningham, emp. added). The mastermind behind the unequalled, “energy-efficient, high-performance” fibers in spider silk is, allegedly, mindless evolution. Truly, “the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1 Corinthians 1:25). “For every house is built by someone, but He who built all things is God” (Hebrews 3:4).


Cunningham, Aimee (2007), “Taken for a Spin,” Science News, April 14, [On-line], URL:http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20070414/bob8.asp.

Unbelief and a Divided Christendom by Dave Miller, Ph.D.


Unbelief and a Divided Christendom

by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

Pluralism (the idea that all belief systems and philosophies are of equal validity) has unquestionably encroached upon the national psyche. One manifestation of this infiltration is the fact that the average American has been bullied into unconditional acceptance of any and almost every belief, philosophy, and practice imaginable. Within Christendom itself, this blind, even irrational, celebration of toleration has translated itself into widespread relegation of “doctrine” to a secondary, if not completely irrelevant, status.
The thought is that if Christians would just accept each other, fellowship each other, spend more time getting to know each other, cease condemning one another over doctrinal disagreements or calling attention to the doctrinal diversity that exists, they would realize that what they have in common in their acceptance of Christ far outweighs and overshadows any doctrinal differences that might exist between them, and the world would be more receptive to the Christian religion. It is felt that disunity promotes unbelief, and that if Christendom were unified (defined as accepting one another despite doctrinal disagreement), then faith would result—i.e., the unbelieving world would be more likely to give Christianity a second look and believe in Jesus. This thinking is thought to be in harmony with the prayer for unity Jesus prayed near the end of His life on Earth (John 17). It is argued that unity was more important to Jesus than anything else. Thus, being united—achieving togetherness—takes precedence over doctrine. “Unity in diversity” refers to the view that diversity in doctrine must not be allowed to prevent unity and fellowship with all “believers.” The word “believers” is commonly defined as those who verbally profess acceptance of the lordship of Christ.
The interpretation being given to this passage in effect assigns to it a place of preeminence above all other passages, setting it in contradiction to the rest of the Bible. Jesus could not have been enjoining unity at all costs, since He elsewhere emphasized that such unity never would occur (Matthew 10:34-36; Luke 12:49-53; Matthew 7:13-14). Jesus Himself was unable to quell division and bring about the unity that some say is possible (John 7:12,43; 9:16; 10:19; 12:42; et al.). Any interpretation of a passage that contradicts many other plain passages is a false interpretation, and thus a distortion of the Scriptures (Matthew 15:1-9; Mark 7:1-13; 2 Peter 3:16). The Bible teaches that faith comes by hearing the Word of God (Romans 10:17). Unity is not the ultimate source or stimulus of faith. God’s Word is. Disunity and division will always exist—since most people simply refuse to bring their lives into conformity with God’s Word.
As a matter of fact, John 17 contains at least three contextual indicators that eliminate the slant now being placed upon it. In the first place, Jesus placed strong emphasis on the essentiality of obedience as a prerequisite to unity. Six times in His prayer, He stressed that He had imparted God’s words or truth to them. He noted that the disciples “have kept Your word” (vs. 6); “For I have given to them the words which You have given Me; and they have received them” (vs. 8); “I have given them Your word” (vs. 14); “Sanctify them by Your truth. Your word is truth” (vs. 17); “that they also may be sanctified by the truth” (vs. 19). In these phrases, Jesus made clear that unity is nestled in the hollow of compliance. Before Jesus talked about unity, He talked about obedience. He repeatedly referred to the importance of God’s Word—God’s truth—that must be “received” (i.e., obeyed) if sanctification is to be achieved. Contextually, therefore, the unity and oneness that Jesus enjoined in verses 20-21 is unity that comes when people conform themselves to God’s doctrine.
Second, in the very verses where Jesus prayed for the oneness of believers, He identified how to achieve that oneness. Many within Christendom insist that oneness is secured by refraining from basing unity on doctrine. They say that our common affirmation of the Lordship of Jesus transcends our doctrinal diversity. Therefore, differing doctrinal viewpoints must not be permitted to disrupt fellowship or acceptance of anyone who affirms Jesus as Lord. In stark contrast, Jesus revealed that oneness is accomplished the same way belief is created: “through their word” (vs. 20).
When people hear the Word of God (which includes much more than just the lordship of Christ), they will either believe or disbelieve. If they truly believe, they will obey the Gospel plan of salvation and bring their lives into harmony with biblical teaching (Romans 10:14-17; Mark 16:16; Matthew 24:13; James 1:12; 2:18; Hebrews 11:6; 2 Peter 1:5-11; Galatians 5:6). Those who mutually embrace the doctrinal tenets of the Christian religion in faith will automatically be one, unified in Christ, and in full fellowship with each other and with God and Christ (1 John 1:3,6-7).
Third, Jesus’ prayer was spoken in behalf of the church—not the world or counterfeit Christianity (vss. 9,16). The unity of which Jesus spoke was unity among New Testament Christians—those who obey the Gospel through faith, repentance, confession of the deity of Christ, and water baptism (John 3:5; Mark 16:16; Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 2:38; 22:16; Romans 10:9-10). But much of Christendom has strayed from New Testament moorings into denominationalism, and thus does not teach the New Testament plan of salvation. Those who enter into a denomination, and thereby have complied with that denomination’s peculiar plan of salvation, have not become Christians in the New Testament sense. They have assigned an unbiblical meaning to the term “believer” (e.g., James 2:19-26). They have not come to believe in Christ through the Word of His bona fide spokesmen (John 17:20). Rather, they have embraced the words of mere men. They have been misled into entering counterfeit churches and turning to “a different gospel” (Galatians 1:6-9).
Indeed, disunity confuses and discourages honest searchers of truth. But disunity in itself is not the source of unbelief. If such were the case, God and Christ would be guilty of generating unbelief, since their actions often brought division (cf. John 7:12,43; 10:19). Scriptural unity may be achieved only by conformity to biblical doctrine. All other “unity” is merely union, togetherness, and agreeing to disagree—a far cry from the unity for which Jesus prayed. The disunity that exists within Christendom is the result of people “going ahead and not abiding in the doctrine of Christ” (2 John 9), and “going beyond what is written” (1 Corinthians 4:6). When people introduce personal creeds, human interpretations, and religious additions to God’s doctrine, disunity inevitably results. Jesus did not come to place His stamp of approval on such doctrinal diversity. Those who think so are in hopeless conflict with Jesus Himself, Who certainly did not “go along, to get along.” In fact, He declared: “Do you suppose that I came to give peace on earth? I tell you, not at all, but rather division” (Luke 12:51, emp. added).

The Miracles of Christ—Many and Varied by Eric Lyons, M.Min.


The Miracles of Christ—Many and Varied

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

One of the biblical proofs for the deity of Christ is the miracles that Jesus worked. And, we are asked to believe that Jesus is the Son of God not because He performed one or two marvelous deeds during His lifetime. To the contrary, “miracles cluster around the Lord Jesus Christ like steel shavings to a magnet” (Witmer, 1973, 130:132). The gospel accounts are saturated with a variety of miracles that Christ performed, not for wealth or political power, but that the world may be convinced that He was sent by the Father to bring salvation to mankind (cf. John 5:36; 10:37-38). As Isaiah prophesied, Jesus performed miracles of healing (Isaiah 53:4; Matthew 8:16-17). He cleansed a leper with the touch of His hand (Matthew 8:1-4), and healed all manner of sickness and disease with the word of His mouth (cf. John 4:46-54). One woman who had a hemorrhage for 12 years was healed immediately simply by touching the fringe of His garment (Luke 8:43-48). Similarly, on one occasion after Jesus came into the land of Gennesaret, all who were sick in all of the surrounding region came to Him, “and begged Him that they might only touch the hem of His garment. And as many as touched it were made perfectly well” (Matthew 14:34-36; Mark 3:10). Generally speaking, “great multitudes came to Him, having with them the lame, blind, mute, maimed, and many others; and they laid them down at Jesus’ feet, and He healed them” (Matthew 15:30, emp. added). “He cured many of infirmities, afflictions...and to many blind He gave sight” (Luke 7:21, emp. added). Even Jesus’ enemies confessed to His “many signs” (John 11:48).
Jesus not only exhibited power over the sick and afflicted, He also showed His superiority over nature more than once. Whereas God’s prophet Moses turned water into blood by striking water with his rod (Exodus 7:20), Jesus simply willed water into wine at a wedding feast (John 2:1-11). He further exercised His power over the natural world by calming the Sea of Galilee during a turbulent storm (Matthew 8:23-27), by walking on water for a considerable distance to reach His disciples (Matthew 14:25-43), and by causing a fig tree to wither away at His command. Jesus’ supernatural superiority over the physical world (which He created—Colossians 1:16) is exactly what we would expect from One Who claimed to be the Son of God.
Jesus’ miracles were not limited to the natural world, however. As further proof of His deity, He also revealed His power over the spiritual world by casting out demons. “They brought to Him many who were demon-possessed. And He cast out the spirits with a word” (Matthew 8:16, emp. added). Luke also recorded that “He cured many of...evil spirits” (Luke 7:21, emp. added). Mark recorded where Jesus once exhibited power over a man overwhelmed with unclean spirits, which no one had been able to bind—not even with chains and shackles; neither could anyone tame the demon-infested man (Mark 5:1-21). Jesus, however, cured him. Afterwards, witnesses saw the man with the unclean spirits “sitting at the feet of Jesus, clothed and in his right mind” (Luke 8:35-36). On several occasions, Jesus healed individuals who were tortured by evil spirits. And, “they were all amazed and spoke among themselves, saying, ‘What a word this is! For with authority and power He commands the unclean spirits, and they come out’” (Luke 4:36).
Finally, Jesus performed miracles that demonstrated His power even over death. Recall that when John the Baptizer’s disciples came to Jesus inquiring about His identity, Jesus instructed them to tell John that “the dead are raised” (Matthew 11:5). The widow of Nain’s son had already been declared dead and placed in a casket when Jesus touched the open coffin and told him to “arise.” Immediately, “he who was dead sat up and began to speak” (Luke 7:14-15). Lazarus had already been dead and buried for four days by the time Jesus raised him from the dead (John 11:1-44). Such a great demonstration of power over death caused “many of the Jews who had come to Mary, and had seen the things Jesus did” to believe in Him (John 11:45). What’s more, Jesus’ own resurrection from the dead was the climax of all of His miracles, and serves as perhaps the most convincing miracle of all (see Butt, 2002, 22:9-15).
In all, the gospel records contain some 37 specific supernatural acts that Jesus performed. If that number were to include such miracles as His virgin birth and transfiguration, and the multiple times He exemplified the ability to “read minds,” and to know the past or future without having to learn of them through ordinary means (cf. John 4:15-19; 13:21-30; 2:25), etc., the number would reach upwards of 50. Indeed, the miracles of Christ were varied and numerous. He healed the blind, lame, sick, and leprous, as well as demonstrated power over nature, demons, and death. The apostle John, who recorded miracles of Christ “that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, and that believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31), also commented on how “Jesus did many other signs in the presence of His disciples, which are not written in this book” (20:30, emp. added). In fact, Jesus worked so many miracles throughout His ministry on Earth that, “if they were written one by one, I suppose that even the world itself could not contain the books that would be written” (John 21:25).


Butt, Kyle (2002), “Jesus Christ—Dead or Alive?” Reason & Revelation, 22:9-15, February, [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/121.
Witmer, John (1973), “The Doctrine of Miracles,” Bibliotheca Sacra, 130:126-134, April.

Another Living Fossil by Eric Lyons, M.Min.


Another Living Fossil

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

For nearly 100 years (1839-1938), evolutionists were under the impression that fish known as coelacanths were “close ancestors of the first vertebrates to walk on land” (Perkins, 2001, 159[18]:282). Coelacanths allegedly evolved 380 million years ago and became extinct about 70 million years ago (Raven and Johnson, 1989, p. 857). But then, in December 1938, the scientific community was “rocked” when a living coelacanth was caught off the coast of South Africa (“Diver Finds...,” 2006).
In 2006, a team of French scientists found a shrimp-like crustacean (Neoglyphea neocaledonica) in the Coral Sea. It previously was thought to have died out 60 million years ago (“‘Living Fossil’...,” 2006). Its discovery in modern times, as well as the discovery of the coelacanth, is comparable to finding a living dinosaur, which evolutionists believe went extinct 65 million years ago.
The latest “living fossil” caught on tape is the “prehistoric” frilled shark (see “Rare ‘Prehistoric’...,” 2007). Sometimes caught in fishermen’s nets, but rarely seen alive, this creature (named Chlamydoselachus anguineus) supposedly can be traced back 95 million years in the fossil record (Schmiedekampf, 2007)—thus, the designation “pre-historic” shark. The problem is, it is anything but pre-historic. It is a living fossil (see Butt, 2006, 5[7]:28-R). Even though it looks like a terrifying creature from an evolutionary propaganda painting depicting “pre-historic” times, it is as contemporary as iPods and LASIK surgery.
Once again, a “monster” that evolutionists once did not expect to see in modern times is found in modern times. And, once again, another free pass is given to the evolutionary timetable. One wonders what living fossil (if any) could be found to persuade evolutionists to discard their beloved—but flawed—billion-year geologic timetable.
The Bible still says, “For in six days the Lord made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, and rested the seventh day” (Exodus 20:11). Truly, frilled sharks, shrimp, and coelacanths are only one day older than man (Genesis 1:20-28).


Butt, Kyle (2006), “What is a Living Fossil?” Reason & Revelation, 5[7]:28-R, July, [On-line], URL: http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2975.
“Diver Finds Living Fossil” (2006), Science Now, California Academy of Sciences, [On-line], URL: http://www.calacademy.org/science_now/archive/headline_science/ coelacanth_010601.php.
“‘Living Fossil’ Found in Coral Sea” (2006), The Associated Press, May 19, [On-line], URL: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/12875772/.
Perkins, Sid (2001), “The Latest Pisces of an Evolutionary Puzzle,” Science News Online, 159[18]:282, [On-line], URL: http://www.sciencenews.org/articles/20010505/bob13.asp.
“Rare ‘Prehistoric’ Shark Photographed Alive” (2007), National Geographic News, [On-line], URL: http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2007/01/070124-sharks-photo.html.
Raven, Peter H. and George B. Johnson (1989), Biology (St. Louis, MO: Times Mirror/Mosby College Publishing), second edition.
Schmiedekampf, Katrin (2007), “Japanese Marine Biologists Discover a Pre-Historic Shark,” Spiegel Online, January 29, [On-line], URL: http://www.spiegel.de/international/spiegel/0,1518,462817,00.html.

Choosing Who Has To Die by Kyle Butt, M.Div.


Choosing Who Has To Die

by Kyle Butt, M.Div.

Imagine an armed soldier walking into a kindergarten class, followed closely by a doctor. In a gruff voice, the soldier demands that the 18 five-year-olds line up in single file. The scared children do as they are told. Starting with the first in line, the doctor inspects each child for genetic defects. Those who have asthma are removed from the line. Those with poor eyesight come out of the line. The little girl with scoliosis is taken aside. The Down syndrome boy is yanked from the line. After the inspections are finished, only five children pass the examination. They are given an official certificate from the soldier that says they can live. The other 13 are taken outside, shot in the head, and thrown in the dumpster. Does this sound like the plot from a horror movie, or one of the heinous crimes of Hitler and his henchmen? Do you think our “civilized” society is above such gruesome brutality? Think again.
In her article, “Picking the Best Embryo from the Bunch,” Emily Singer describes new testing methods that can be used on embryos that are created during in vitro fertilization. In a nutshell, in vitro fertilization is the process by which several eggs from a woman are fertilized in a lab. Medical personnel then screen the embryos for genetic health and viability. A few of the most promising embryos are implanted in the mother-to-be’s womb. Other “healthy” embryos might be frozen for future implantation, while the remaining “unhealthy” embryos are discarded. Disposed of. Basically, flushed down the drain.
So what characteristics do these genetic screening methods attempt to identify? Why are some embryos discarded? Singer explains: “Such embryos are less likely to lead to successful pregnancies—they either fail to implant or miscarry, or if they do come to term, they can produce babies with disabilities such as Down's [sic] syndrome.” Notice that Singer implies that a non-successful pregnancy would include one from which a Down syndrome baby is born. Also notice her subtle, but false, differentiation between an embryo and the babies “they can produce.” The truth of the matter is that an embryo is a baby. Sly semantic tactics cannot change that fact. An embryo does not produce a baby. It simply grows into maturity, just as a child does not produce a teenager, but grows into one (for a more complete discussion of this point see Harrub, 2002; Miller, 2006). In reality, then, these genetic screenings are little more than a doctor’s examination to see which babies “deserve” to live and which ones are not “normal” enough to get a chance—because they might be Down syndrome babies, or “defective” in some other way.
Have we forgotten the inspired words of the wise man: “These six things the Lord hates, Yes, seven are an abomination to Him: A proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood...” (Proverbs 6:16-17)? Just because we have acquired the ability to detect “normal” babies at their earliest stages does not give us the right to exterminate all others that might have “less of a chance” of survival, or might survive but have Down syndrome. Who gave us the prerogative to play God in such a vicious fashion? Hitler and his ilk tried to play God and were convicted of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Yet our society has become so insensitive to the value of human life that those who frequently destroy thousands of babies in embryonic stages are decorated as scientific overachievers. As the prophet of old warned: “Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; who put darkness for light, and light for darkness; who put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!” (Isaiah 5:20-21). May God give us the wisdom and the courage to stand against the brutal holocaust that is being carried out in the name of Science!


Harrub, Brad (2002), “The Inherent Value of Human Life,” Reason and Revelation, July 22[7]:49-55, [On-line], URL: http://apologeticspress.org/apPubPage.aspx?pub=1&issue=531.
Miller, Dave (2006), “Embryos are People,” [On-line], URL:http://www.apologeticspress.org/articles/2995.
Singer, Emily (2007), “Picking the Best Embryo from the Bunch,” Technology Review, January, [On-line], URL: http://www.technologyreview.com/printer_friendly_article.aspx?id=18027.

Was Shealtiel or Pedaiah the Father of Zerubbabel? by Eric Lyons, M.Min.


Was Shealtiel or Pedaiah the Father of Zerubbabel?

by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

If a teenage boy whom you just met told you that his parents were “David and Marie,” but then a few minutes later you overheard him tell a county clerk that he was the son of “John and Joanne,” you might assume that the teen had lied either to you or to the county clerk. The fact of the matter is, however, the teen could be telling the truth. It may be that most people recognize his parents by their middle names—David and Marie, but for more official business his parents use their first names—John and Joanne. Or, perhaps the boy had been reared by his grandparents because his parents had died in a tragic car accident when he was an infant. The boy may refer to his grandparents as “mom” and “dad” since they were the only “mom” and “dad” he ever really knew (experientially). In turn, the grandparents may refer to him as their “son.” In most all unofficial documents and casual conversations the terms “mom,” “dad,” and “son” are used. For nearly all official documents and in most formal conversations, the terms “grandparents” and “grandson” are used. These are two very real possibilities as to why a teenage boy may refer to his parents by different names. Assuming and alleging the worst about the teen without knowing all of the facts would be unfair and inappropriate.
The fact is, family ties are often complicated (and especially confusing to outsiders who are unaware of others’ family history). I met two teenage girls a few years ago who informed me that their mother was also their grandmother. I was puzzled initially. Then they told me (if I recall correctly) that their mother had abandoned the family several years earlier and that their dad eventually married their birth mother’s mother. In time, the girls began calling their grandmother “mom.”
There are many names and family ties in Scripture that can be confusing—even in the genealogy of Jesus. Abraham married Sarah, his half-sister (Genesis 20:12; cf. 17:15-16; 22:17). Their son, Isaac, married Rebekah, his second cousin (Genesis 22:20-23; 24:4,15). Jacob, Abraham’s grandson, married his first cousins, Rachel and Leah, who were sisters (Genesis 24:29; 29:15-30). Years later, Jacob’s son, Judah, committed sexual immorality with his own daughter-in-law (thinking she was a prostitute), and she subsequently gave birth to two sons—Perez and Zerah. In one sense, these boys were his sons; in another sense, they were his grandsons (Genesis 38:12-30).
Zerubbabel is another historical figure in the genealogy of Christ around whom there is some confusion. While the books of Ezra (3:2,8; 5:2), Nehemiah (12:1), Haggai (1:1,12,14; 2:2; 2:23), Matthew (1:12), and Luke (3:27) all indicate that Zerubbabel was the “son of Shealtiel,” the chronicler noted the following about his immediate ancestry: “[T]he sons of Jeconiah, the prisoner, were Shealtiel his son, and Malchiram, Pedaiah, Shenazzar, Jekamiah, Hoshama, and Nedabiah. And the sons of Pedaiah were Zerubbabel and Simei” (1 Chronicles 3:17-19a, NASB, emp. added). The obvious question is: “Why does 1 Chronicles indicate that Pedaiah was Zerubbabel’s father, if everywhere else in Scripture his father is said to be Shealtiel?”
Skeptics are quick to list 1 Chronicles 3:19 as a contradiction. The truth is, however, there are reasonable, potential solutions to this conundrum. First, it may be that Zerubbabel was sired by one brother and reared by another. Recall that Mordecai was a father figure to Queen Esther (he “had brought up” the future queen of Persia; Esther 2:7), though he was actually her cousin. Jesus, “being (as was supposed) the son of Joseph,” was, in reality, “of God,” not of man (Luke 3:23). Joseph helped to rear Jesus, and was perceived to be His biological father (Matthew 13:55), but in no way was he Jesus’ father in the normal sense. The fact is, sometimes a “son” is reared by a “dad,” who is not his father in the strictest sense of the word.
Another legitimate, possible explanation to the differences in the aforementioned verses involves a Law of Moses with which many are unfamiliar—the levirate marriage law. According to Deuteronomy 25:5-6,
If brothers dwell together, and one of them dies and has no son, the widow of the dead man shall not be married to a stranger outside the family; her husband’s brother shall go in to her, take her as his wife, and perform the duty of a husband’s brother to her. And it shall be that the firstborn son which she bears will succeed to the name of his dead brother, that his name may not be blotted out of Israel (emp. added; cf. Matthew 22:24-26).
If Shealtiel had been married, yet died prior to siring a son, his brother Pedaiah may have taken Shealtiel’s wife to be his wife. If such was the case, their firstborn son (Zerubbabel) would be called after Shealtiel, not Pedaiah (even though, in the strict biological sense, Zerubbabel would be Pedaiah’s son).
Admittedly, the Bible does not explain why 1 Chronicles 3:19 differs from the other passages in Scripture that refer to Zerubbabel as Shealtiel’s son. What can be established, however, is that logical possibilities exist for the differences. In truth, without more information, it would be just as unfair to accuse the chronicler of lying about Zerubbabel’s father as it would be to disparage a teenager we meet in the community who refers to his grandfather as his “dad.” Surely we can see the rationality of restraint and the foolishness of jumping to unproven conclusions.

Do we remember and forget the right things? by Roy Davison

Do we remember and forget the right things?

Scripture reading: Philippians 3:7-14

Our memory is a tremendous gift from God.
It is intriguing to observe the development of a child’s memory. A preschooler can learn the alphabet in a song long before he can memorize a series of 26 letters.
Our one and a half kilo brain not only controls most body functions (including the unfathomable complexity of seeing, hearing and speaking), but it organizes and stores a vast quantity of data, which is available for recall, and which serves as source material for decision-making and the performance of complicated activities.
Because our memory space is limited, our brain must conserve its memory by forgetting most of what we see, hear and read.
We have short-term memory and long-term memory.
Long-term memory can be enhanced: for example, by music, by repetition, by multisensory input, by association, by orderly organization, and by the conscious assignment of a high level of importance.
Memory data fades to the background if unused, so must be refreshed to remain readily available.
The Creator of our brain tells us to remember certain things and to forget certain things.

What must we remember?

We must remember our Creator!
In Ecclesiastes 12:1-7 Solomon urges young people to remember God before the infirmities of age weigh them down and their life draws to a close.
“Remember now your Creator in the days of your youth,
Before the difficult days come,
And the years draw near when you say,
‘I have no pleasure in them’:
While the sun and the light,
The moon and the stars,
Are not darkened,
And the clouds do not return after the rain;
In the day when the keepers of the house tremble,
And the strong men bow down;
When the grinders cease because they are few,
And those that look through the windows grow dim;
When the doors are shut in the streets,
And the sound of grinding is low;
When one rises up at the sound of a bird,
And all the daughters of music are brought low.
Also they are afraid of height,
And of terrors in the way;
When the almond tree blossoms,
The grasshopper is a burden,
And desire fails.
For man goes to his eternal home,
And the mourners go about the streets.
Remember your Creator before the silver cord is loosed,
Or the golden bowl is broken,
Or the pitcher shattered at the fountain,
Or the wheel broken at the well.
Then the dust will return to the earth as it was,
And the spirit will return to God who gave it.”
In our youth and when older, we should remember our Creator. “You shall remember the LORD your God” (Deuteronomy 8:18). “Remember His marvelous works which He has done, His wonders, and the judgments of His mouth” (1 Chronicles 16:12).
Sometimes God allows us to get ourselves all tangled up to remind us that He is the only one who can save us.
Jonah was willing to be thrown overboard so his shipmates could be saved, and maybe so he could escape his responsibility. But he was the right man for that preaching job at Nineveh, so God gave him a choice: meal for a fish or submarine ride, direction Nineveh?
In the depths of despair because of his own sin, Jonah remembered the Lord, and his prayer was heard: “When my soul fainted within me, I remembered the LORD; and my prayer went up to You, into Your holy temple” (Jonah 2:7).
Remembering God is our only hope: “Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we will remember the name of the LORD our God” (Psalm 20:7).
Fast forward to the twenty-first century. Some trust in tanks, and some in planes; but we will remember the name of the Lord our God, the I AM, who created us and is the only one who can save us.

We must remember the word of God.
Memory plays a crucial role in doing God’s will. To obey His commands we must remember them: “The mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting on those who fear Him, and His righteousness to children’s children, to such as keep His covenant, and to those who remember His commandments to do them” (Psalm 103:17, 18).
Shortly before his death, Peter wrote two letters as reminders: “For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth. Yes, I think it is right, as long as I am in this tent, to stir you up by reminding you, knowing that shortly I must put off my tent, just as our Lord Jesus Christ showed me. Moreover I will be careful to ensure that you always have a reminder of these things after my decease” (2 Peter 1:12-15). “Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior” (2 Peter 3:1, 2).
Jude wrote something similar: “But you, beloved, remember the words which were spoken before by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ” (Jude 17).
Paul told the Ephesian elders: “Remember the words of the Lord Jesus” (Acts 20:35) and to the Romans he wrote: “Nevertheless, brethren, I have written more boldly to you on some points, as reminding you, because of the grace given to me by God” (Romans 15:15).

How can we etch God’s word into our memory?
Before we can remember the words of Christ and His apostles, we must learn them by reading them a sufficient number of times. When we read the Scriptures repeatedly, our memory is refreshed, and God’s word is given a permanent home in our heart.
I warn students who study their lessons only until they barely know them, that they still almost do not know them, and their scant knowledge may be gone the next day!
As time goes by our memory dims if we do not refresh it. Something that must be remembered must be learned well enough that even when our memory dims, the knowledge remains.
We must read God’s word over and over until we remember it, until it becomes a part of us, until it dwells within us: “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” (Colossians 3:16).

We must remember the resurrection of Christ.
Paul tells us to remember the resurrection, which is the focal point of the Christian faith: “Remember that Jesus Christ, of the seed of David, was raised from the dead” (2 Timothy 2:8). We assemble on the first day of the week to break bread because Jesus said: “This is My body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me” (Luke 22:19).
We remember our Creator, His word and the resurrection of Christ.

What must we forget?

We must forget what lies behind us.
Referring to “the righteousness from God that depends on faith” (Philippians 3:9), Paul says: “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect; but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brethren, I do not consider that I have made it my own; but one thing I do, forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12-14 RSV).
We will discuss various elements of this text.
Our goal lies in front of us, not behind us. Thus, to reach that goal we must forget what lies behind us. We must forget the things of the world, our past victories and our past defeats.

We must forget our former life in the world.
Jesus said: “No one, having put his hand to the plow, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God” (Luke 9:62).
I remember watching my father till the soil with a hand- held, horse-drawn plow when I was six years old. It requires great skill and careful attention. One cannot plow an even, straight furrow while looking back!
“Remember Lot’s wife” (Luke 17:32). God gave her an opportunity to escape the destruction of Sodom, but she disobeyed, and looked back.
In the wilderness, the Israelites forgot the immense suffering of slavery and longed for the ‘pots of meat’ they had enjoyed in Egypt (Exodus 16:3). They were not satisfied with manna from God.
Christians sometimes forget the bondage of their former life, and long for worldly pleasures they enjoyed before they were Christians.

We must forget past victories.
We may not rest on our laurels.
Like Paul, we must strain forward to the things that are ahead, we must press on toward the goal. To ‘strain forward’ means to strive for something not yet achieved. A goal is something toward which we are working, something we want to accomplish that gives direction and meaning to our actions.
To reach our goal in the Christian marathon we must cross the finish line with the help and by the grace of God. In this race, everyone who remains faithful until death wins gold, whether he comes in first or last (Revelation 2:10; Matthew 19:30).
No matter how well we have run in the past, we must finish the race to receive the prize. The final stretch is sometimes the hardest part.
In 1971 a promising young Belgian cyclist was killed, evidently because of a habit of looking back to see how far ahead he was. He was ahead of the others, but while looking back on a narrow road he collided with an on-coming car.
We should not look back to see if we are ahead of others. That might cause us to forget how far we are behind Christ.
Paul said: “For we dare not class ourselves or compare ourselves with those who commend themselves. But they, measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (2 Corinthians 10:12).

We must forget past defeats.
Even if we have stumbled in the past, we may not slow ourselves down by continually looking back.
God is willing to forget the sins of His saints: “I will be merciful to their unrighteousness, and their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more” (Hebrews 8:12), “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, being justified freely by His grace through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23, 24). Let us press on, and finish the race. Each day is an opportunity for a new beginning.
Difficulties can be overcome with the help of God. When God’s people were blocked by the Red Sea, with Pharaoh’s army closing in from behind, the Lord said to Moses, “Tell the children of Israel to go forward” (Exodus 14:15).

And what is the goal that lies before us?
“The prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”
It is an upward call. The race is up-hill all the way. We are called by God to be like Christ, to be “conformed to the image of His Son” (Romans 8:29), and that is definitely upward. We are “partakers of the heavenly calling” (Hebrews 3:1). We press forward because we still have a long way to go.
The prize is “the crown of righteousness” (2 Timothy 4:8), “the crown of life” (Revelation 2:10), “the crown of glory that does not fade away” (1 Peter 5:4).
God teaches us to remember and forget the right things.
Let us remember our Creator, His word and the resurrection of Christ, also the words of Paul: “One thing I do, forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:13, 14 RSV). Amen.
Roy Davison
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.
Published in The Old Paths Archive

Bible Reading October 16-17 by Gary Rose

Bible Reading October 16-17
(World English Bible)

Oct. 16
Proverbs 21-23

Pro 21:1 The king's heart is in Yahweh's hand like the watercourses. He turns it wherever he desires.
Pro 21:2 Every way of a man is right in his own eyes, but Yahweh weighs the hearts.
Pro 21:3 To do righteousness and justice is more acceptable to Yahweh than sacrifice.
Pro 21:4 A high look, and a proud heart, the lamp of the wicked, is sin.
Pro 21:5 The plans of the diligent surely lead to profit; and everyone who is hasty surely rushes to poverty.
Pro 21:6 Getting treasures by a lying tongue is a fleeting vapor for those who seek death.
Pro 21:7 The violence of the wicked will drive them away, because they refuse to do what is right.
Pro 21:8 The way of the guilty is devious, but the conduct of the innocent is upright.
Pro 21:9 It is better to dwell in the corner of the housetop, than to share a house with a contentious woman.
Pro 21:10 The soul of the wicked desires evil; his neighbor finds no mercy in his eyes.
Pro 21:11 When the mocker is punished, the simple gains wisdom. When the wise is instructed, he receives knowledge.
Pro 21:12 The Righteous One considers the house of the wicked, and brings the wicked to ruin.
Pro 21:13 Whoever stops his ears at the cry of the poor, he will also cry out, but shall not be heard.
Pro 21:14 A gift in secret pacifies anger; and a bribe in the cloak, strong wrath.
Pro 21:15 It is joy to the righteous to do justice; but it is a destruction to the workers of iniquity.
Pro 21:16 The man who wanders out of the way of understanding shall rest in the assembly of the dead.
Pro 21:17 He who loves pleasure shall be a poor man. He who loves wine and oil shall not be rich.
Pro 21:18 The wicked is a ransom for the righteous; the treacherous for the upright.
Pro 21:19 It is better to dwell in a desert land, than with a contentious and fretful woman.
Pro 21:20 There is precious treasure and oil in the dwelling of the wise; but a foolish man swallows it up.
Pro 21:21 He who follows after righteousness and kindness finds life, righteousness, and honor.
Pro 21:22 A wise man scales the city of the mighty, and brings down the strength of its confidence.
Pro 21:23 Whoever guards his mouth and his tongue keeps his soul from troubles.
Pro 21:24 The proud and haughty man, "scoffer" is his name; he works in the arrogance of pride.
Pro 21:25 The desire of the sluggard kills him, for his hands refuse to labor.
Pro 21:26 There are those who covet greedily all day long; but the righteous give and don't withhold.
Pro 21:27 The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination: how much more, when he brings it with a wicked mind!
Pro 21:28 A false witness will perish, and a man who listens speaks to eternity.
Pro 21:29 A wicked man hardens his face; but as for the upright, he establishes his ways.
Pro 21:30 There is no wisdom nor understanding nor counsel against Yahweh.
Pro 21:31 The horse is prepared for the day of battle; but victory is with Yahweh.

Pro 22:1 A good name is more desirable than great riches, and loving favor is better than silver and gold.
Pro 22:2 The rich and the poor have this in common: Yahweh is the maker of them all.
Pro 22:3 A prudent man sees danger, and hides himself; but the simple pass on, and suffer for it.
Pro 22:4 The result of humility and the fear of Yahweh is wealth, honor, and life.
Pro 22:5 Thorns and snares are in the path of the wicked: whoever guards his soul stays from them.
Pro 22:6 Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.
Pro 22:7 The rich rule over the poor. The borrower is servant to the lender.
Pro 22:8 He who sows wickedness reaps trouble, and the rod of his fury will be destroyed.
Pro 22:9 He who has a generous eye will be blessed; for he shares his food with the poor.
Pro 22:10 Drive out the mocker, and strife will go out; yes, quarrels and insults will stop.
Pro 22:11 He who loves purity of heart and speaks gracefully is the king's friend.
Pro 22:12 The eyes of Yahweh watch over knowledge; but he frustrates the words of the unfaithful.
Pro 22:13 The sluggard says, "There is a lion outside! I will be killed in the streets!"
Pro 22:14 The mouth of an adulteress is a deep pit: he who is under Yahweh's wrath will fall into it.
Pro 22:15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child: the rod of discipline drives it far from him.
Pro 22:16 Whoever oppresses the poor for his own increase and whoever gives to the rich, both come to poverty.
Pro 22:17 Turn your ear, and listen to the words of the wise. Apply your heart to my teaching.
Pro 22:18 For it is a pleasant thing if you keep them within you, if all of them are ready on your lips.
Pro 22:19 That your trust may be in Yahweh, I teach you today, even you.
Pro 22:20 Haven't I written to you thirty excellent things of counsel and knowledge,
Pro 22:21 To teach you truth, reliable words, to give sound answers to the ones who sent you?
Pro 22:22 Don't exploit the poor, because he is poor; and don't crush the needy in court;
Pro 22:23 for Yahweh will plead their case, and plunder the life of those who plunder them.
Pro 22:24 Don't befriend a hot-tempered man, and don't associate with one who harbors anger:
Pro 22:25 lest you learn his ways, and ensnare your soul.
Pro 22:26 Don't you be one of those who strike hands, of those who are collateral for debts.
Pro 22:27 If you don't have means to pay, why should he take away your bed from under you?
Pro 22:28 Don't move the ancient boundary stone, which your fathers have set up.
Pro 22:29 Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will serve kings. He won't serve obscure men.

Pro 23:1 When you sit to eat with a ruler, consider diligently what is before you;
Pro 23:2 put a knife to your throat, if you are a man given to appetite.
Pro 23:3 Don't be desirous of his dainties, seeing they are deceitful food.
Pro 23:4 Don't weary yourself to be rich. In your wisdom, show restraint.
Pro 23:5 Why do you set your eyes on that which is not? For it certainly sprouts wings like an eagle and flies in the sky.
Pro 23:6 Don't eat the food of him who has a stingy eye, and don't crave his delicacies:
Pro 23:7 for as he thinks about the cost, so he is. "Eat and drink!" he says to you, but his heart is not with you.
Pro 23:8 The morsel which you have eaten you shall vomit up, and lose your good words.
Pro 23:9 Don't speak in the ears of a fool, for he will despise the wisdom of your words.
Pro 23:10 Don't move the ancient boundary stone. Don't encroach on the fields of the fatherless:
Pro 23:11 for their Defender is strong. He will plead their case against you.
Pro 23:12 Apply your heart to instruction, and your ears to the words of knowledge.
Pro 23:13 Don't withhold correction from a child. If you punish him with the rod, he will not die.
Pro 23:14 Punish him with the rod, and save his soul from Sheol.
Pro 23:15 My son, if your heart is wise, then my heart will be glad, even mine:
Pro 23:16 yes, my heart will rejoice, when your lips speak what is right.
Pro 23:17 Don't let your heart envy sinners; but rather fear Yahweh all the day long.
Pro 23:18 Indeed surely there is a future hope, and your hope will not be cut off.
Pro 23:19 Listen, my son, and be wise, and keep your heart on the right path!
Pro 23:20 Don't be among ones drinking too much wine, or those who gorge themselves on meat:
Pro 23:21 for the drunkard and the glutton shall become poor; and drowsiness clothes them in rags.
Pro 23:22 Listen to your father who gave you life, and don't despise your mother when she is old.
Pro 23:23 Buy the truth, and don't sell it. Get wisdom, discipline, and understanding.
Pro 23:24 The father of the righteous has great joy. Whoever fathers a wise child delights in him.
Pro 23:25 Let your father and your mother be glad! Let her who bore you rejoice!
Pro 23:26 My son, give me your heart; and let your eyes keep in my ways.
Pro 23:27 For a prostitute is a deep pit; and a wayward wife is a narrow well.
Pro 23:28 Yes, she lies in wait like a robber, and increases the unfaithful among men.
Pro 23:29 Who has woe? Who has sorrow? Who has strife? Who has complaints? Who has needless bruises? Who has bloodshot eyes?
Pro 23:30 Those who stay long at the wine; those who go to seek out mixed wine.
Pro 23:31 Don't look at the wine when it is red, when it sparkles in the cup, when it goes down smoothly.
Pro 23:32 In the end, it bites like a snake, and poisons like a viper.
Pro 23:33 Your eyes will see strange things, and your mind will imagine confusing things.
Pro 23:34 Yes, you will be as he who lies down in the midst of the sea, or as he who lies on top of the rigging:
Pro 23:35 "They hit me, and I was not hurt! They beat me, and I don't feel it! When will I wake up? I can do it again. I can find another."

Oct. 17
Proverbs 24-26

Pro 24:1 Don't be envious of evil men; neither desire to be with them:
Pro 24:2 for their hearts plot violence, and their lips talk about mischief.
Pro 24:3 Through wisdom a house is built; by understanding it is established;
Pro 24:4 by knowledge the rooms are filled with all rare and beautiful treasure.
Pro 24:5 A wise man has great power; and a knowledgeable man increases strength;
Pro 24:6 for by wise guidance you wage your war; and victory is in many advisors.
Pro 24:7 Wisdom is too high for a fool: he doesn't open his mouth in the gate.
Pro 24:8 One who plots to do evil will be called a schemer.
Pro 24:9 The schemes of folly are sin. The mocker is detested by men.
Pro 24:10 If you falter in the time of trouble, your strength is small.
Pro 24:11 Rescue those who are being led away to death! Indeed, hold back those who are staggering to the slaughter!
Pro 24:12 If you say, "Behold, we didn't know this;" doesn't he who weighs the hearts consider it? He who keeps your soul, doesn't he know it? Shall he not render to every man according to his work?
Pro 24:13 My son, eat honey, for it is good; the droppings of the honeycomb, which are sweet to your taste:
Pro 24:14 so you shall know wisdom to be to your soul; if you have found it, then there will be a reward, your hope will not be cut off.
Pro 24:15 Don't lay in wait, wicked man, against the habitation of the righteous. Don't destroy his resting place:
Pro 24:16 for a righteous man falls seven times, and rises up again; but the wicked are overthrown by calamity.
Pro 24:17 Don't rejoice when your enemy falls. Don't let your heart be glad when he is overthrown;
Pro 24:18 lest Yahweh see it, and it displease him, and he turn away his wrath from him.
Pro 24:19 Don't fret yourself because of evildoers; neither be envious of the wicked:
Pro 24:20 for there will be no reward to the evil man; and the lamp of the wicked shall be snuffed out.
Pro 24:21 My son, fear Yahweh and the king. Don't join those who are rebellious:
Pro 24:22 for their calamity will rise suddenly; the destruction from them both--who knows?
Pro 24:23 These also are sayings of the wise. To show partiality in judgment is not good.
Pro 24:24 He who says to the wicked, "You are righteous;" peoples shall curse him, and nations shall abhor him--
Pro 24:25 but it will go well with those who convict the guilty, and a rich blessing will come on them.
Pro 24:26 An honest answer is like a kiss on the lips.
Pro 24:27 Prepare your work outside, and get your fields ready. Afterwards, build your house.
Pro 24:28 Don't be a witness against your neighbor without cause. Don't deceive with your lips.
Pro 24:29 Don't say, "I will do to him as he has done to me; I will render to the man according to his work."
Pro 24:30 I went by the field of the sluggard, by the vineyard of the man void of understanding;
Pro 24:31 Behold, it was all grown over with thorns. Its surface was covered with nettles, and its stone wall was broken down.
Pro 24:32 Then I saw, and considered well. I saw, and received instruction:
Pro 24:33 a little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to sleep;
Pro 24:34 so your poverty will come as a robber, and your want as an armed man.

Pro 25:1 These also are proverbs of Solomon, which the men of Hezekiah king of Judah copied out.
Pro 25:2 It is the glory of God to conceal a thing, but the glory of kings is to search out a matter.
Pro 25:3 As the heavens for height, and the earth for depth, so the hearts of kings are unsearchable.
Pro 25:4 Take away the dross from the silver, and material comes out for the refiner;
Pro 25:5 Take away the wicked from the king's presence, and his throne will be established in righteousness.
Pro 25:6 Don't exalt yourself in the presence of the king, or claim a place among great men;
Pro 25:7 for it is better that it be said to you, "Come up here," than that you should be put lower in the presence of the prince, whom your eyes have seen.
Pro 25:8 Don't be hasty in bringing charges to court. What will you do in the end when your neighbor shames you?
Pro 25:9 Debate your case with your neighbor, and don't betray the confidence of another;
Pro 25:10 lest one who hears it put you to shame, and your bad reputation never depart.
Pro 25:11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.
Pro 25:12 As an earring of gold, and an ornament of fine gold, so is a wise reprover to an obedient ear.
Pro 25:13 As the cold of snow in the time of harvest, so is a faithful messenger to those who send him; for he refreshes the soul of his masters.
Pro 25:14 As clouds and wind without rain, so is he who boasts of gifts deceptively.
Pro 25:15 By patience a ruler is persuaded. A soft tongue breaks the bone.
Pro 25:16 Have you found honey? Eat as much as is sufficient for you, lest you eat too much, and vomit it.
Pro 25:17 Let your foot be seldom in your neighbor's house, lest he be weary of you, and hate you.
Pro 25:18 A man who gives false testimony against his neighbor is like a club, a sword, or a sharp arrow.
Pro 25:19 Confidence in someone unfaithful in time of trouble is like a bad tooth, or a lame foot.
Pro 25:20 As one who takes away a garment in cold weather, or vinegar on soda, so is one who sings songs to a heavy heart.
Pro 25:21 If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat. If he is thirsty, give him water to drink:
Pro 25:22 for you will heap coals of fire on his head, and Yahweh will reward you.
Pro 25:23 The north wind brings forth rain: so a backbiting tongue brings an angry face.
Pro 25:24 It is better to dwell in the corner of the housetop, than to share a house with a contentious woman.
Pro 25:25 Like cold water to a thirsty soul, so is good news from a far country.
Pro 25:26 Like a muddied spring, and a polluted well, so is a righteous man who gives way before the wicked.
Pro 25:27 It is not good to eat much honey; nor is it honorable to seek one's own honor.
Pro 25:28 Like a city that is broken down and without walls is a man whose spirit is without restraint.

Pro 26:1 Like snow in summer, and as rain in harvest, so honor is not fitting for a fool.
Pro 26:2 Like a fluttering sparrow, like a darting swallow, so the undeserved curse doesn't come to rest.
Pro 26:3 A whip is for the horse, a bridle for the donkey, and a rod for the back of fools!
Pro 26:4 Don't answer a fool according to his folly, lest you also be like him.
Pro 26:5 Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own eyes.
Pro 26:6 One who sends a message by the hand of a fool is cutting off feet and drinking violence.
Pro 26:7 Like the legs of the lame that hang loose: so is a parable in the mouth of fools.
Pro 26:8 As one who binds a stone in a sling, so is he who gives honor to a fool.
Pro 26:9 Like a thornbush that goes into the hand of a drunkard, so is a parable in the mouth of fools.
Pro 26:10 As an archer who wounds all, so is he who hires a fool or he who hires those who pass by.
Pro 26:11 As a dog that returns to his vomit, so is a fool who repeats his folly.
Pro 26:12 Do you see a man wise in his own eyes? There is more hope for a fool than for him.
Pro 26:13 The sluggard says, "There is a lion in the road! A fierce lion roams the streets!"
Pro 26:14 As the door turns on its hinges, so does the sluggard on his bed.
Pro 26:15 The sluggard buries his hand in the dish. He is too lazy to bring it back to his mouth.
Pro 26:16 The sluggard is wiser in his own eyes than seven men who answer with discretion.
Pro 26:17 Like one who grabs a dog's ears is one who passes by and meddles in a quarrel not his own.
Pro 26:18 Like a madman who shoots firebrands, arrows, and death,
Pro 26:19 is the man who deceives his neighbor and says, "Am I not joking?"
Pro 26:20 For lack of wood a fire goes out. Without gossip, a quarrel dies down.
Pro 26:21 As coals are to hot embers, and wood to fire, so is a contentious man to kindling strife.
Pro 26:22 The words of a whisperer are as dainty morsels, they go down into the innermost parts.
Pro 26:23 Like silver dross on an earthen vessel are the lips of a fervent one with an evil heart.
Pro 26:24 A malicious man disguises himself with his lips, but he harbors evil in his heart.
Pro 26:25 When his speech is charming, don't believe him; for there are seven abominations in his heart.
Pro 26:26 His malice may be concealed by deception, but his wickedness will be exposed in the assembly.
Pro 26:27 Whoever digs a pit shall fall into it. Whoever rolls a stone, it will come back on him.
Pro 26:28 A lying tongue hates those it hurts; and a flattering mouth works ruin.

Oct. 16
Philippians 1

Php 1:1 Paul and Timothy, servants of Jesus Christ; To all the saints in Christ Jesus who are at Philippi, with the overseers and servants:
Php 1:2 Grace to you, and peace from God, our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Php 1:3 I thank my God whenever I remember you,
Php 1:4 always in every request of mine on behalf of you all making my requests with joy,
Php 1:5 for your partnership in furtherance of the Good News from the first day until now;
Php 1:6 being confident of this very thing, that he who began a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ.
Php 1:7 It is even right for me to think this way on behalf of all of you, because I have you in my heart, because, both in my bonds and in the defense and confirmation of the Good News, you all are partakers with me of grace.
Php 1:8 For God is my witness, how I long after all of you in the tender mercies of Christ Jesus.
Php 1:9 This I pray, that your love may abound yet more and more in knowledge and all discernment;
Php 1:10 so that you may approve the things that are excellent; that you may be sincere and without offense to the day of Christ;
Php 1:11 being filled with the fruits of righteousness, which are through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
Php 1:12 Now I desire to have you know, brothers, that the things which happened to me have turned out rather to the progress of the Good News;
Php 1:13 so that it became evident to the whole praetorian guard, and to all the rest, that my bonds are in Christ;
Php 1:14 and that most of the brothers in the Lord, being confident through my bonds, are more abundantly bold to speak the word of God without fear.
Php 1:15 Some indeed preach Christ even out of envy and strife, and some also out of good will.
Php 1:16 The former insincerely preach Christ from selfish ambition, thinking that they add affliction to my chains;
Php 1:17 but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the Good News.
Php 1:18 What does it matter? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is proclaimed. I rejoice in this, yes, and will rejoice.
Php 1:19 For I know that this will turn out to my salvation, through your supplication and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,
Php 1:20 according to my earnest expectation and hope, that I will in no way be disappointed, but with all boldness, as always, now also Christ will be magnified in my body, whether by life, or by death.
Php 1:21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
Php 1:22 But if I live on in the flesh, this will bring fruit from my work; yet I don't make known what I will choose.
Php 1:23 But I am in a dilemma between the two, having the desire to depart and be with Christ, which is far better.
Php 1:24 Yet, to remain in the flesh is more needful for your sake.
Php 1:25 Having this confidence, I know that I will remain, yes, and remain with you all, for your progress and joy in the faith,
Php 1:26 that your rejoicing may abound in Christ Jesus in me through my presence with you again.
Php 1:27 Only let your manner of life be worthy of the Good News of Christ, that, whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your state, that you stand firm in one spirit, with one soul striving for the faith of the Good News;
Php 1:28 and in nothing frightened by the adversaries, which is for them a proof of destruction, but to you of salvation, and that from God.
Php 1:29 Because it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ, not only to believe in him, but also to suffer on his behalf,
Php 1:30 having the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear is in me.

Oct. 17
Philippians 2

Php 2:1 If there is therefore any exhortation in Christ, if any consolation of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any tender mercies and compassion,
Php 2:2 make my joy full, by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind;
Php 2:3 doing nothing through rivalry or through conceit, but in humility, each counting others better than himself;
Php 2:4 each of you not just looking to his own things, but each of you also to the things of others.
Php 2:5 Have this in your mind, which was also in Christ Jesus,
Php 2:6 who, existing in the form of God, didn't consider equality with God a thing to be grasped,
Php 2:7 but emptied himself, taking the form of a servant, being made in the likeness of men.
Php 2:8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, yes, the death of the cross.
Php 2:9 Therefore God also highly exalted him, and gave to him the name which is above every name;
Php 2:10 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of those in heaven, those on earth, and those under the earth,
Php 2:11 and that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
Php 2:12 So then, my beloved, even as you have always obeyed, not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.
Php 2:13 For it is God who works in you both to will and to work, for his good pleasure.
Php 2:14 Do all things without murmurings and disputes,
Php 2:15 that you may become blameless and harmless, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you are seen as lights in the world,
Php 2:16 holding up the word of life; that I may have something to boast in the day of Christ, that I didn't run in vain nor labor in vain.
Php 2:17 Yes, and if I am poured out on the sacrifice and service of your faith, I rejoice, and rejoice with you all.
Php 2:18 In the same way, you also rejoice, and rejoice with me.
Php 2:19 But I hope in the Lord Jesus to send Timothy to you soon, that I also may be cheered up when I know how you are doing.
Php 2:20 For I have no one else like-minded, who will truly care about you.
Php 2:21 For they all seek their own, not the things of Jesus Christ.
Php 2:22 But you know the proof of him, that, as a child serves a father, so he served with me in furtherance of the Good News.
Php 2:23 Therefore I hope to send him at once, as soon as I see how it will go with me.
Php 2:24 But I trust in the Lord that I myself also will come shortly.
Php 2:25 But I counted it necessary to send to you Epaphroditus, my brother, fellow worker, fellow soldier, and your apostle and servant of my need;
Php 2:26 since he longed for you all, and was very troubled, because you had heard that he was sick.
Php 2:27 For indeed he was sick, nearly to death, but God had mercy on him; and not on him only, but on me also, that I might not have sorrow on sorrow.
Php 2:28 I have sent him therefore the more diligently, that, when you see him again, you may rejoice, and that I may be the less sorrowful.
Php 2:29 Receive him therefore in the Lord with all joy, and hold such in honor,
Php 2:30 because for the work of Christ he came near to death, risking his life to supply that which was lacking in your service toward me.