9/23/20

"THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW" The Lord's Supper (26:26-30)

 

 
 
 
 
 
"THE GOSPEL OF MATTHEW"

The Lord's Supper (26:26-30)
 

INTRODUCTION

1. During His last week, Jesus observed the Passover for the last
   time...
   a. The Passover was a Jewish feast, observed annually - Deut 16:1-8
   b. Commemorating Israel's deliverance from Egypt - Exo 12:1-28,43-49

2. This last Passover was very special to Jesus - Lk 22:14-15
   a. His knew His death was imminent ("before I suffer")
   b. He was with those he loved - Jn 13:1 ("He loved them to the end")

3. On this occasion Jesus instituted what we call the Lord's Supper...
   a. Read our text - Mt 26:26-30
   b. As recorded by Luke, Jesus wanted His disciples to do this in His memory - Lk 22:19

4. The importance of properly observing the Lord's Supper should not underestimated...
   a. The church at Corinth was guilty of abusing it - 1Co 11:20-22
   b. Such misuse has serious consequences - 1Co 11:27,29

[That we might observe the Supper properly, to receive its blessings
rather than condemnation, let's use this opportunity to review what is
revealed about the purpose and observance of "The Lord's Supper"...]

I. THE MEANING OF THE SUPPER

   A. IT IS A MEMORIAL...
      1. Note Paul's account as given by the Lord Himself - 1Co 11:  23-25
         a. We eat the bread in memory of His body
         b. We drink the cup (fruit of the vine) in memory of His blood
      2. We therefore commemorate the death of Jesus on the cross - Mt 26:28
         a. Whose death make the new covenant possible - He 9:16
         b. Whose blood was shed for the remission of sins - Ep 1:7
      -- As the Passover was a memorial commemorating Israel's
         deliverance from Egypt through the blood of the lambs on the
         door post, so the Supper is a memorial of our Lord's death who
         makes our deliverance from the bondage of sin possible

   B. IT IS A PROCLAMATION...
      1. We proclaim our faith in the efficacy of the Lord's death - 1Co 11:26a
         a. That His death was indeed for our sins
         b. If we didn't believe it, why keep the Supper?
      2. We also proclaim our faith in the Lord's return - 1Co 11:26b
         a. For it is to be done "till He comes"
         b. If we don't believe He is coming, then why keep the Supper?
      -- Thus the Lord's Supper looks forward as well as backward, and
         will ever be observed by His disciples who trust in His
         redemption and anticipate His return!

   C. IT IS A COMMUNION...
      1. A fellowship or sharing in the blood of Christ - 1Co 10:16a
         a. As we partake, we commune with the blood of Christ
         b. Perhaps in the sense of reinforcing blessings we enjoy
            through the blood of Christ - cf. 1Jn 1:7,9
      2. A fellowship or sharing in the body of Christ - 1Co 10:16b-17
         a. As we partake, we commune with the body of Christ
         b. Perhaps in the sense of reinforcing fellowship together in
            the body of Christ (i.e., the church), as we break bread together

["The Lord's Supper", which is also called "Communion" and "Breaking of
Bread" (cf. 1Co 10:16; Ac 2:42; 20:7) certainly has great significance
and should not be taken lightly.  We should therefore consider what the
Scriptures reveal about...]

II. THE OBSERVANCE OF THE SUPPER

   A. TO BE DONE WITH REVERENCE...
      1. That is, "in a worthy manner" (NKJV) - 1Co 11:27,29
         a. The KJV says "worthily", which some have misunderstood
         b. It is an adverb, describing how we take it, not whether we
            are worthy (none are truly worthy)
      2. With respect for the supreme price Jesus paid for our sins
         a. Cf. the cruel torture and humiliation of His physical body
         b. Cf. the spiritual anguish suffered as the Son of God bore
            the punishment for our sins ("My God, My God, Why have You forsaken Me?" 
           - Mt 27:46)
      3. Failure to observe with proper reverence brings condemnation - 1Co 11:27,29
         a. One will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord
         b. One will eat and drink judgment to himself
      -- To make light of this memorial puts one in the same category
         as those who mocked Him as He hung on the cross!

   B. TO BE DONE WITH SELF-EXAMINATION...
      1. Such as reflecting upon one's spiritual condition - 1Co 11:28
      2. Are we living in a manner that shows appreciation for His sacrifice?
         a. By accepting the grace of God in our lives? - 2Co 5:18-6:1
         b. By living for Jesus who died for us? - 2Co 5:14-15; Ga 2:20
      3. Or are we by willful sinning, guilty of having:
         a. "trampled the Son of God underfoot"?
         b. "counted the blood by which [we were] sanctified a common thing"?
         c. "insulted the Spirit of grace"? - cf. He 10:26-29
      4. Do we, by refusing to repent of our sins, "crucify again for
         themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an shame"? - cf. He 6:4-6
      -- In one sense, the Supper is a very private matter between a
         Christian and his or her God; a time to reflect the past and
         to resolve for the future

   C. TO BE DONE WITH OTHER CHRISTIANS...
      1. There is ample indication the Supper is designed to be a communal meal
         a. The disciples "came together" to break bread - Ac 20:7
         b. When they came together, they were to "wait for one another"
              - 1Co 11:33
         c. Partaking together of "one bread", they demonstrate they
            are "one bread and one body" - 1Co 10:16
         -- We commune not just with the Lord, but with one another
      2. For this reason I personally question such practices as:
         a. Observing the Supper by one's self when camping or traveling
         b. Observing the Supper on Sunday night when just one or a
            couple of people in the congregation are partaking
         c. Taking the elements to the sick or shut-in who were unable to assemble
         -- While such issues may fall in the realm of "opinion", let's
            not forget that the Supper builds fellowship with one
            another as well as with the Lord!

   D. TO BE DONE OFTEN...
      1. The Biblical evidence is that it was done weekly...
         a. Christians came together on the first day of the week to "break bread" - Ac 20:7
         b. Other indications of a weekly observance:
            1) The church at Corinth was coming together to eat the
               Lord's Supper, though they were abusing it - cf. 1Co 11:17-22
            2) Instructions concerning the collection suggest their
               coming together was on the first day of the week - cf. 1Co 16:1-2
         c. Following the divinely approved example of Christians in
            the Bible, we know God approves of a weekly observance on
            the first day of the week
      2. The earliest historical evidence outside the Bible confirms
         the day and frequency...
         a. The Didache (ca. 95 A.D.) indicates Christians were to come
            together on the first day of the week to break bread - Didache 14:1
         b. Justin Martyr (ca. 150 A.D.) records how Christians
            assembled on Sunday and partook of the Supper - Apology I, 67
      3. Some believe that a weekly observance diminishes the
         importance of the Supper
         a. Which is why some do it monthly, quarterly, or annually
         b. But does the frequent practice of:
            1) Assembling diminishing its value and importance?
            2) Singing praises and offering prayers devalue their benefits?
            3) Preaching and studying God's Word decrease their
               significance to our lives?
      -- Our spiritual lives are dependent upon the value and benefits
         of our Lord's death on the cross; a weekly observance of the
         memorial helps us to live appreciatively and accordingly!

CONCLUSION

1. "The Lord's Supper" is a very special memorial of His death for our sins...
   a. Instituted by Jesus Himself, He asked His disciples to do it in His memory
   b. Jesus told His disciples that He would not eat of the elements again until:
      1) "...that day when I drink it new with you in My Father's kingdom." - Mt 26:29
      2) "...that day when I drink it new in the kingdom of God." - Mk 14:25
      3) "...it be fulfilled in the kingdom of God." - Lk 22:16
      4) "...the kingdom of God shall come." - Lk 22:18
   c. There are two plausible explanations for what Jesus means:
      1) Some think it refers to Jesus having fellowship with us as we
         observe the Lord's Supper in the church, which is His kingdom 
         - cf. 1Co 10:16-17
      2) Others propose that it refers to the special communion we will
         have with Jesus in His Father's kingdom, spoken often in terms
         of a heavenly feast - cf. Isa 25:6-8; Mt 8:11; 22:2-14; Lk 14:15-24; Re 19:9

2. The first Christians "continued steadfastly" in its observance...
   a. Just as they did in the apostles' doctrine, fellowship and prayer - Ac 2:42
   b. Coming together on the first day of the week for that very purpose - Ac 20:7

3. Christians today should never lose sight of its significance...
   a. A constant reminder of the sacrifice Jesus paid for our sins
   b. A communion or sharing of the body and blood of the Lord
   c. A time for self-examination and re-dedication of our service to the Lord
   d. A means for building fellowship with one another in the body of Christ

May such thoughts encourage us to never neglect opportunities we have
to observe the Lord's Supper, but to continue steadfastly and in so
doing "proclaim the Lord's death till He comes." 

Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2016

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The Patriarchal Law by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

 

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=894

The Patriarchal Law

by  Eric Lyons, M.Min.

Have you ever found yourself listening to a teacher or preacher repeatedly using a word or phrase that you do not understand? Have you ever heard someone speak about “hermeneutics” or “premillenialism,” and then come to find out in your personal study of the Scriptures that these terms are nowhere to be found in the Bible? Teachers and preachers (like myself) often assume more than we should. We assume that people recognize the phrase “sacred hermeneutics” as “the science of interpreting the Scriptures.” We use fancy words like “eschatology” (the study of final things), but then never define it. Such often is the case when we speak of “the Patriarchal Law.” We mention it, but rarely do we help the audience understand what it is.

The English term “patriarch” derives from the Greek patriarches, which actually is made of two words—pater, meaning “father;” and arches, meaning “head” or “founder.” A patriarch is “the head of a father’s house—the founder or ruler of a tribe, family, or clan” (Nelson’s, 1986). Surprisingly, the term patriarch(s) is found in the Bible only four times. It is applied in the New Testament to David (Acts 2:29), to the sons of Jacob (twice in Acts 7:8-9), and to Abraham (Hebrews 7:4). The title of patriarch often is assigned to those whose lives are recorded in Scripture previous to the time of Moses. In Peter’s sermon in Jerusalem on the Day of Pentecost, he expanded the term to include King David (Acts 2:29). Today, however, when teachers and preachers use the phrase “patriarchal age,” they most often are referring to the time before the Law of Moses was given at Sinai. [NOTE: For the Gentiles, this “age” lasted until the coming of the Christian dispensation.]

But what about the “Patriarchal Law?” What is this law that we hear mentioned so often, yet seldom see explained? The fact is, the phrase “Patriarchal Law” is never found in the Bible. It is simply a name given to the law that governed all men from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, and for Gentiles from Adam until the Christian dispensation began. Other than Christianity and Judaism, there has been but one other law, through the ages, under which God accepted worship: This was a system that had continued since commands were first given in Eden. Although the Bible does not give this law a “proper name,” it has become known as “the Patriarchal Law.”

The Law of Moses was given only to the Israelites—and to those Gentiles who suffered themselves to be proselyted (by circumcision) to it (Deuteronomy 4:1-8; 5:1-21; Acts 2:10; 13:43; 2 Corinthians 3:1-11). But the Gentiles also were under some kind of law, for the apostle Paul stated, “where there is no law, neither is there transgression” (Romans 4:15). For the Gentiles to have been guilty of sin (which we know they were—Romans 3:10,23), they must have transgressed some law. What law was it? It was not the Law of Moses, because they were not amenable to that law. It was not the Law of Christ, because it did not come into effect until the first century A.D. Then under what law (prior to the events recorded in Acts 10—the conversion of the first Gentiles to Christianity) did the Gentiles live? They lived under the only law to which they were amenable—commonly known as “the Patriarchal Law.”

We know from both sacred and profane history that non-proselytized Gentiles were unable to participate in the Jewish covenant. We also know that God would not (and did not!) abandon millions of people to a life without hope of salvation just because they were outside the Law of Moses, since that would make Him a respecter of persons—something Peter stated very plainly He is not (cf. Acts 10:34). When Paul spoke in Ephesians 2:12 of certain Gentiles who in the past had no hope and were “without God in the world,” he did not imply that they were in that position simply because they were Gentiles, but because they were Gentiles who had not been obedient to the particular law they had been given. We know that Gentiles were, in fact, amenable to a law system that was not the Law of Moses, as Paul made clear in Romans 2:12-16 when he wrote:

For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without the law: and as many as have sinned under the law shall be judged by the law; for not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified: (for when Gentiles that have not the law do by nature the things of the law, these, not having the law, are the law unto themselves; in that they show the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience bearing witness therewith, and their thoughts one with another accusing or else excusing them).

Though Gentiles were not under the Law of Moses (as were all Jews prior to the Christian dispensation), they were under a law, which they could either obey or disobey. At least part of this law included their conscience. In his commentary on Romans, Robertson Whiteside observed:

The Gentiles never had the law of Moses, but there are certain fundamental principles that inhere in the nature of our existence and in our relations to one another. Some things are right, and some things are wrong, within themselves. If a man never had revelation from God, he would know that it was wrong to murder his fellow man, or to rob him of his possessions, or in any way to infringe on his rights. Cain sinned in killing his brother and felt his guilt, though we have no record that God had told him not to kill. God’s moral law is the same to all nations…. [T]hey [the Gentiles—EL] did have an idea of right and wrong (1988, p. 57).

The Gentiles’ Patriarchal Law involved all “the law written in their hearts,” plus whatever direct revelation they received from God. Adam, Cain, Noah, and Abraham all received direct revelation from God. These, and all others who were never under the Law of Moses (e.g., Cornelius, Acts 10), were to obey the commands given to them, as well as “law written in their hearts.” Together, these laws and eternal principles written in the hearts of man made up what is known commonly as “the Patriarchal Law.”

Although there still is much we do not understand about the Patriarchal Law, (e.g., what direct revelations they received; what “laws” were passed down from generation to generation; etc.), we can know that the Gentiles were under a law (that was not the Law of Moses or the Law of Christ), because they were guilty of “transgression” (Romans 4:15; 5:13). And if there is transgression, then there must be some law. Man has given this law a name—patriarchy.

The most important thing you must realize about the Patriarchal Law is that it is no longer in effect today. The reason it continued for Gentiles beyond the giving of the Law of Moses was because the Law of Moses was not a universal law—it was given only to the Israelites and to those Gentiles who suffered themselves to be proselyted to it (Deuteronomy 4:1-8; 5:1-21; Acts 2:10). Today, however, all Jews and Gentiles are under one law—the Law of Christ (Ephesians 2:11-22). Why is this the case? Because this new law is universal in scope. It is addressed to “all nations” and is to be obeyed by both Jews and Gentiles (Matthew 28:19-20; Luke 24:47; cf. Acts 1:8; Acts 17:30).

REFERENCES

“Patriarch” (1986), Nelson’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary (Nashville, TN: Thomas Nelson).

Whiteside, Robertson L. (1988), A New Commentary on Paul’s Letter to the Saints at Rome (Bowling Green, KY: Guardian of Truth Foundation).


The Passing Pleasures of Sin by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

 

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=4182

The Passing Pleasures of Sin

by  Dave Miller, Ph.D.

“But, honestly now, how can we possibly expect married people who are living in adultery to break up their marriage?” This is a question over which every sincere student of God’s Word has agonized. When we consider the tears, the heartache, the children, the finances, the physical and emotional trauma—we cannot help but wish it could be otherwise! Surely,God does not expect adulterous marriages to be dissolved!

But then we reconsider the biblical perspective. We find that, more often than not, living righteously before God entails tremendous hardship and deprivation. We find that the peace, joy, and genuine happiness that characterizes the Christian life is achieved through (i.e., in the midst of) suffering—not through an absence of hardship. Remember Moses (Hebrews 11:23­-27)? Moses literally grew up in Pharaoh’s own household. Imagine the tender affection which he received at the hands of Pharaoh’s daughter. She literally “nurtured him as her own son” (Acts 7:21, NASB). Imagine the deep emotional and psychological bonds that were formed between Moses and his adopted family! Imagine the intellectual influence exerted on Moses’ mind, since his educational basis was derived via the Egyptian world view (Acts 7:22). Visualize the irresistible attraction and allurement of the riches and power that were his. For 40 long years, Moses sank the roots of his very being deeper and deeper into a maze of human relationships and strong emotional ties.

But in God’s sight, this relationship could not last. When Moses realized this, he was forced to amputate the ties of a strong physical, psychological, and emotional relationship in deference to an obedient relationship with God. His choice to forego momentary pleasures meant hardship, suffering and ill-treatment (Hebrews 11:25). Listen to the inspired writer: “By faith Moses, when he became of age, refused to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God than to enjoy the passing pleasures of sin (Hebrews 11:24-25, emp. added).

We, too, must come face to face with the same dilemma. It may be the decision to subdue an insatiable desire for alcohol; it may involve the severance of a financially productive business relationship; and yes, it may entail foregoing a marital relationship. In short, living the Christian life may mean the radical and total disruption of social and family existence (study carefully Matthew 10:34-36; Luke 12:51-53).

The real tragedy is, most are unwilling to make such essential decisions. The sacrifices are simply too great. In Moses’ case, he considered “the reproach of Christ greater riches than the treasures of Egypt; for he was looking to the reward” (Hebrews 11:26). Each of us must decide. Are we willing to launch out and take the necessary steps to please God?


The Origin of the Papacy by Moisés Pinedo

 

http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=11&article=2386  

The Origin of the Papacy

by Moisés Pinedo

The Bible clearly teaches that Peter was not the first pope and that he was simply one of the apostles of Jesus (see Pinedo, 2008a; 2008b). The question remains: “When did the papacy begin?” Since the Bible authorizes no hierarchy like the papacy, we will focus our attention on history to learn how it came into existence.

When Christ established His church in the first century (A.D. 30; cf. Acts 2), “He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors [i.e., bishops or elders] and teachers” (Ephesians 4:11). Jesus never elevated one bishop over others, but rather established an equable office for service. Sadly, man deviated from the original biblical pattern in search of power, honor, and deification. The first indication of this deviation was the distinction among the terms “bishops,” “elders,” and “pastors”—titles which the New Testament writers used interchangeably (e.g., Acts 20:17,28; Titus 1:5,7; 1 Peter 5:1-4). The title “Bishop” was given more significance and applied to only one man who was given sole authority over a local congregation, unlike bishops during apostolic times (cf. Acts 14:23; 15:4; 20:17; Titus 1:5; James 5:14). Soon, the “Bishop” ruled over not only one congregation, but over a “diocese,” several congregations in a city or an entire district (see Miller and Stevens, 1969, 44).

With the influence of Constantine (A.D. 280-337), who made Christianity a “religion of power,” the bishops strengthened and increased their privileges. During this time there were five metropolises: Rome, Alexandria, Antioch, Constantinople, and Jerusalem. Rome in the West and Constantinople in the East gained greater prominence because of their locations (Mattox, 1961, p. 137). While the power of the episcopacy grew in these cities, so did the controversy over which of these two cities, and their representative churches and bishops, should have supremacy.

On October 10, 366, a man named Damasus was elected Bishop of Rome. He was an energetic man who fought for the pontificate against his opponent Ursinus, another bishop elected by a small number of followers (see “Damasus I,” 1997, 3:865-866). During his pontificate, Damasus fought to confirm his position in the Church of Rome. He also fought to compel the other cities to recognize the supremacy of the Bishop of Rome over all other bishops. Damasus even went as far as to assert that the “Church of Rome was supreme over all others, not because of what the council [of Rome in 369 and of Antioch in 378—MP] decided, but rather because Jesus placed Peter above the rest, elevating him as the cornerstone of the church itself” (“Saint Damasus,” 2005).

In spite of Damasus’ efforts to establish the preeminence of Rome and his pontificate, he did not finish his work. After his death in December 384, Siricius was elected as the Pontiff of Rome. He was less educated than Damasus, but empowered himself with a higher level of authority than other bishops had demanded. Siricius claimed inherent authority without consideration of the Scriptures. He demanded, and threatened others, in order to gain more and more power. He was the first to refer to himself as Peter’s heir (see Merdinger, 1997, p. 26). Siricius died on November 26, 399. Without a doubt, he and Damasus were principal forces behind the development of a universal ecclesiastical hierarchy.

In 440, Leo I became the pontiff. He was an ardent defender of the supremacy of the Roman bishop over the bishops in the East. In a declaration to the Bishop of Constantinople, he stated:

Constantinople has its own glory and by the mercy of God has become the seat of the empire. But secular matters are based on one thing, and ecclesiastical matters on another. Nothing will stand which is not built on the Rock which the Lord laid in the foundation.... Your city is royal but you cannot make it Apostolic (quoted in Mattox, 1961, pp. 139-140).

The supremacy referred to by Leo I was based on the assumption that the Lord exalted Rome, including its church and pontiff, over other major cities because of traditions about Peter. By that time it was accepted as “fact” that Peter had been the first Bishop of Rome and that he had been martyred there. Those traditions, along with Rome’s legacy as an evangelistic influence in the first century, gave the city a “divine aura” that supposedly connected it to the apostolic age and distinguished it from other cities. These beliefs greatly influenced the development of a hierarchy in the church.

On September 13, 590, Gregory the Great was named Bishop of Rome. He was another advocate of Petrine tradition, and named himself “Pope” and the “Head of the Universal Church.” By the end of his pontificate, the theory of Peter’s primacy and that of the Bishop of Rome was firmly established. Finally, with the appearance of Boniface III on the papal throne on February 19, 607, Roman papacy became universally accepted. Boniface III lived only a few months after his election. Many other bishops followed his legacy of “runners for supremacy.”

The apostle Paul told the Ephesians, “For the husband is the head of the wife, and Christ also is the head of the church, being Himself the savior of the body” (5:23, emp. added). Just as there should be only one husband with authority over one wife, there is only one Person with authority over the one church. That Person is Jesus Christ!

REFERENCES

“Damasus I” (1997), The New Encyclopædia Britannica (London: Encyclopaedia Britannica).

Mattox, F.W. (1961), The Eternal Kingdom (Delight, AR: Gospel Light).

Merdinger, J.E. (1997), Rome & the African Church in the Time of Augustine (London: Yale University Press).

Miller, Jule and Texas Stevens (1969), Visualized Bible Study Series: History of the Lord’s Church (Houston, TX: Gospel Services).

Pinedo, Moisés (2008a), “Is the Papacy a Divine Institution?” [On-line], URL: http://apologeticspress.org/articles/3780.

Pinedo, Moisés (2008b), “Was Peter the First Pope?,” [On-line], URL: http://apologeticspress.org/articles/3811.

“Saint Damasus” [“San Dámaso”] (2005), [On-line], URL: http://66.​34.225.177/documento.php?f_doc=2477&f_tipo_doc=9.

How To Never Lose Sight of Heaven by Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

 

https://thepreachersword.com/2020/01/28/how-to-never-lose-sight-of-heaven/#more-15281

How To Never Lose Sight of Heaven


 

Donald S. Whitney in his book, “Spiritual Disciplines For The Christian Life,” wrote: “Discipline without direction is drudgery.”

Then he gives an example of Kevin, a six-year-old boy whose parents enrolled him in music lessons. His friends are outside playing ball, having a good time. For Kevin the lessons are drudgery.

Suppose an angel appears and transports Kevin to Carnegie Hall where a guitar virtuoso is giving a concert. Kevin is amazed at how the musician plays with such skill. Kevin is excited and enthralled by the concert

The vision vanished and he’s back in his living room. “Kevin,” says the angel, “the wonderful musician you saw is you in a few years.”

“Wow?” Kevin responds.

The angel disappears and Kevin is sitting alone with his guitar. The other boys are still outside playing ball, but something has changed. Kevin now has a goal. Direction. And a vision for his future.

Our Christian lives can be like that. Without a vision for our future, we can lose sight of where we’re going. The temptations to join the crowd and just have a good time are ever-present. Or the problems of the present may discourage us and diminish our view.

How can you never lose sight of your heavenly goal?

The answer is found in Paul’s inspired counsel in 2 Corinthians 4:16-18:

Therefore we do not lose heart. Even though our outward man is perishing, yet the inward man is being renewed day by day. For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory, while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.

(1) Accept that the Body is Perishing.

In our health crazed culture with an emphasis on the beauty of the body, we focus on the proper diet. Taking vitamins. Getting enough sleep. And exercising. These are not bad. They will probably allow us to live longer. But we still grow older. Eventually, the body will weaken. And we will die. Don’t allow your focus on the physical cloud your view of the spiritual.

(2) Renew yourself inwardly.

As we grow older we should grow wiser; as the outward man perishes, the inward man should grow stronger. As physical strength decreases, spiritual strength should increase.

How?

Focus daily on activities that will refresh, renew and revive your spirit. Bible study. Prayer. Meditation. Fellowship. Worship. Exercising ourselves daily in these disciplines will keep our vision clear and focused.

(3) Put afflictions in the proper perspective.

Afflictions and hardship are a part of life. Yet, Paul seems to suffer more than his share. Imprisonment. Beating. Stoning. Shipwreck. Physical, mental and emotional weariness. Hurtful accusations by false teachers. And a “thorn in the flesh” that wouldn’t go away.

Yet, Paul called them “light afflictions” that were only “momentary.” What a perspective. Paul’s view ought to be ours. Compared to eternity suffering is short; compared to the reward of Glory the burden is light. That’s 20/20 vision.

(4) Don’t fixate on what you see.

Look around. You see the beauty of the physical world that God has created for our enjoyment. Our earthly home. Material possessions. Temporal treasures. Yet, this ought not to be our main focus. These things will soon fade. If we become obsessed with what we literally see, we will lose our vision of heaven’s glory.

(5) Focus on the unseen.

How do you see what you can’t see? Through the eye of faith. We see God on the throne. Jesus our savior on the cross. The Holy Spirit revealing the Word.

We see a day when the saints will be resurrected. When we will be reunited with our loved ones. We see the beauty of heaven with all is resplendent glory and grandeur.

Life’s too short. Eternity’s too long. Hell’s too horrible. And Heaven’s too wonderful to miss. As my friend Dee Bowman says, “If you miss heaven, you’ve just missed all there is!”

Never lose sight of heaven.

–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

WHAT IS THE SALVATION TIMELINE? BY STEVE FINNELL

 

http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com/2017/02/what-is-salvation-timeline-steve.html
 

WHAT IS THE SALVATION TIMELINE?  BY STEVE FINNELL

How long does it take for a person to become saved? It takes as long as it takes to believe and be baptized in water.(Mark 16:16)

On the Day of Pentecost they believed and were baptized in water the same day. (Acts 2:22-38)

Cornelius, his relatives and close friends believed and were baptized in water the same day. (Acts 10:24-48)

The Ethiopian eunuch believed and was baptized in water the same day.(Acts 8:26-38)

Saul (the apostle Paul) believed and then was baptized in water three days later. (Acts 9:9 Acts 22:6-16)

The Philippian jailer and his household believed and were baptized in water the same hour. (Acts 16:25-33)

Salvation is an act of obedience. (John 3:16, Acts 2:38, Romans 10:9-10, Mark 16:16)

Salvation is not keeping the Laws of Moses nor is it the performing of good deeds. 

We serve the living God by Roy Davison

 

http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Davison/Roy/Allen/1940/living.html

We serve the living God

We "serve the living and true God" (1 Thessalonians 1:9), "the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them" (Acts 14:15).

Life is found only on earth. In the dark middle ages, atheistic alchemists believed in the spontaneous generation of life. Pasteur disproved their theory, and one of the basic scientific principles of modern biology is that all life comes from life.

The theory of evolution, by the way, is simply a new form of the old alchemist theory, which pushes the supposed spontaneous generation of life back in time beyond the reach of empirical research. Darwin developed his theory a few years after Pasteur proved the old form to be false.

The empirical scientific evidence is unanimous: life comes from life. Which proposition then is more plausible: that life originally came from dead matter or from a living source?

No explanation is more plausible than the Biblical explanation. The living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them, is the origin of life on earth. "Then God said, 'Let the waters abound with an abundance of living creatures' ... So God created ... every living thing that moves" (Genesis 1:20,21). "And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being" (Genesis 2:7).

The living God is the origin of human life. "God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them" (Genesis 1:27).

We do not bow down before a marble statue, a lifeless image that cannot see, hear, feel or think. Nor do we worship nature or man. We worship the true and living God who created us, who watches over us, who loves us, who hears our prayers, and who intervenes.

"The Lord is the true God; He is the living God and the everlasting King. At His wrath the earth will tremble, and the nations will not be able to endure His indignation" (Jeremiah 10:10).

After Daniel was saved from the lions, the Persian king, Darius, wrote: "To all peoples, nations, and languages that dwell in all the earth: Peace be multiplied to you. I make a decree that in every dominion of my kingdom men must tremble and fear before the God of Daniel. For He is the living God, and steadfast forever; His kingdom is the one which shall not be destroyed, and His dominion shall endure to the end. He delivers and rescues, and He works signs and wonders in heaven and on earth, who has delivered Daniel from the power of the lions" (Daniel 6:25-27).

The living God has spoken to man.

When the old covenant was given, the people "heard the voice of the living God speaking from the midst of the fire" (Deuteronomy 5:26).

When Jesus came as Savior of the world, the voice of God was heard: "And suddenly a voice came from heaven, saying, 'This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased'" (Matthew 3:17). Peter, James and John heard the voice of God when Jesus was transfigured. "Behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, 'This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!'" (Matthew 17:5).

Peter testifies in his second letter: "We did not follow cunningly devised fables when we made known to you the power and coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, but were eyewitnesses of His majesty. For He received from God the Father honor and glory when such a voice came to Him from the Excellent Glory: 'This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.' And we heard this voice which came from heaven when we were with Him on the holy mountain. And so we have the prophetic word confirmed, which you do well to heed as a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawns and the morning star rises in your hearts; knowing this first, that no prophecy of Scripture is of any private interpretation, for prophecy never came by the will of man, but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit" (2 Peter 1:16-21).

The living God has spoken to man. The message is preserved in prophetic writings. Private interpretation of Scripture is not allowed because God's word has a fixed meaning that man can understand. Jeremiah warned the people: "You have perverted the words of the living God" (Jeremiah 23:36). God tells them, "Therefore behold, I, even I, will utterly forget you and forsake you" (Jeremiah 23:39). If we refuse to listen to the living God why should He listen to us?

Peter speaks of untaught and unstable people who twist the Scriptures to their own destruction (2 Peter 3:16). We may not pervert or twist the words of the living God. We bow our heads when we talk to God in prayer. We should be even more reverent when God talks to us, when the holy Scriptures are being read.

We will be judged by the living word. "The word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account" (Hebrews 4:12,13).

The living God has revealed Himself in the person of His Son, Jesus Christ. "No one has seen God at any time. The only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He has declared Him" (John 1:18). The confession of Peter is the confession of all Christians: "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God" (Matthew 16:16). "We have come to believe and know that You are the Christ, the Son of the living God" (John 6:69).

Through Christ, both Jews and Gentiles can become "sons of the living God" (Romans 9:26 // Hosea 1:10). "We trust in the living God, who is the Savior of all men, especially of those who believe" (1 Timothy 4:10). We do not "trust in uncertain riches but in the living God, who gives us richly all things to enjoy" (1 Timothy 6:17). The blood of Christ cleanses our "conscience from dead works to serve the living God" (Hebrews 9:14).

This purification enables Christians to be "the temple of the living God" (2 Corinthians 6:16).

We are "in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth" (1 Timothy 3:15).

We have "the seal of the living God" (Revelation 7:2). He has "sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee" (2 Corinthians 1:22). "You were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise" (Ephesians 1:13). "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption" (Ephesians 4:30).

We "have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven" (Hebrews 12:22,23).

We serve the living and true God, the living God, who made the heaven, the earth, the sea, and all things that are in them. He created us in His own image and, like the Psalmist, we long for our Father. "My soul thirsts for God, for the living God" (Psalm 42:2). "My heart and my flesh cry out for the living God" (Psalm 84:2).

Roy Davison

The Scripture quotations in this article are from
The New King James Version. ©1979,1980,1982,
Thomas Nelson Inc., Publishers unless indicated otherwise.
Permission for reference use has been granted.

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

Bible Reading for September 23 and 24 by Gary Rose



Bible Reading for September 23 and 24

World  English  Bible

 

Sept. 23

Psalms 95-97

Psa 95:1 Oh come, let's sing to Yahweh. Let's shout aloud to the rock of our salvation!

Psa 95:2 Let's come before his presence with thanksgiving. Let's extol him with songs!

Psa 95:3 For Yahweh is a great God, a great King above all gods.

Psa 95:4 In his hand are the deep places of the earth. The heights of the mountains are also his.

Psa 95:5 The sea is his, and he made it. His hands formed the dry land.

Psa 95:6 Oh come, let's worship and bow down. Let's kneel before Yahweh, our Maker,

Psa 95:7 for he is our God. We are the people of his pasture, and the sheep in his care. Today, oh that you would hear his voice!

Psa 95:8 Don't harden your heart, as at Meribah, as in the day of Massah in the wilderness,

Psa 95:9 when your fathers tempted me, tested me, and saw my work.

Psa 95:10 Forty long years I was grieved with that generation, and said, "It is a people that errs in their heart. They have not known my ways."

Psa 95:11 Therefore I swore in my wrath, "They won't enter into my rest."


Psa 96:1 Sing to Yahweh a new song! Sing to Yahweh, all the earth.

Psa 96:2 Sing to Yahweh! Bless his name! Proclaim his salvation from day to day!

Psa 96:3 Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples.

Psa 96:4 For great is Yahweh, and greatly to be praised! He is to be feared above all gods.

Psa 96:5 For all the gods of the peoples are idols, but Yahweh made the heavens.

Psa 96:6 Honor and majesty are before him. Strength and beauty are in his sanctuary.

Psa 96:7 Ascribe to Yahweh, you families of nations, ascribe to Yahweh glory and strength.

Psa 96:8 Ascribe to Yahweh the glory due to his name. Bring an offering, and come into his courts.

Psa 96:9 Worship Yahweh in holy array. Tremble before him, all the earth.

Psa 96:10 Say among the nations, "Yahweh reigns." The world is also established. It can't be moved. He will judge the peoples with equity.

Psa 96:11 Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice. Let the sea roar, and its fullness!

Psa 96:12 Let the field and all that is in it exult! Then all the trees of the woods shall sing for joy

Psa 96:13 before Yahweh; for he comes, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, the peoples with his truth.


Psa 97:1 Yahweh reigns! Let the earth rejoice! Let the multitude of islands be glad!

Psa 97:2 Clouds and darkness are around him. Righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.

Psa 97:3 A fire goes before him, and burns up his adversaries on every side.

Psa 97:4 His lightning lights up the world. The earth sees, and trembles.

Psa 97:5 The mountains melt like wax at the presence of Yahweh, at the presence of the Lord of the whole earth.

Psa 97:6 The heavens declare his righteousness. All the peoples have seen his glory.

Psa 97:7 Let all them be shamed who serve engraved images, who boast in their idols. Worship him, all you gods!

Psa 97:8 Zion heard and was glad. The daughters of Judah rejoiced, because of your judgments, Yahweh.

Psa 97:9 For you, Yahweh, are most high above all the earth. You are exalted far above all gods.

Psa 97:10 You who love Yahweh, hate evil. He preserves the souls of his saints. He delivers them out of the hand of the wicked.

Psa 97:11 Light is sown for the righteous, and gladness for the upright in heart.

Psa 97:12 Be glad in Yahweh, you righteous people! Give thanks to his holy Name.


Sept. 24

Psalms 98-100

Psa 98:1 Sing to Yahweh a new song, for he has done marvelous things! His right hand, and his holy arm, have worked salvation for him.

Psa 98:2 Yahweh has made known his salvation. He has openly shown his righteousness in the sight of the nations.

Psa 98:3 He has remembered his loving kindness and his faithfulness toward the house of Israel. All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God.

Psa 98:4 Make a joyful noise to Yahweh, all the earth! Burst out and sing for joy, yes, sing praises!

Psa 98:5 Sing praises to Yahweh with the harp, with the harp and the voice of melody.

Psa 98:6 With trumpets and sound of the ram's horn, make a joyful noise before the King, Yahweh.

Psa 98:7 Let the sea roar with its fullness; the world, and those who dwell therein.

Psa 98:8 Let the rivers clap their hands. Let the mountains sing for joy together.

Psa 98:9 Let them sing before Yahweh, for he comes to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with equity.


Psa 99:1 Yahweh reigns! Let the peoples tremble. He sits enthroned among the cherubim. Let the earth be moved.

Psa 99:2 Yahweh is great in Zion. He is high above all the peoples.

Psa 99:3 Let them praise your great and awesome name. He is Holy!

Psa 99:4 The King's strength also loves justice. You do establish equity. You execute justice and righteousness in Jacob.

Psa 99:5 Exalt Yahweh our God. Worship at his footstool. He is Holy!

Psa 99:6 Moses and Aaron were among his priests, Samuel among those who call on his name; they called on Yahweh, and he answered them.

Psa 99:7 He spoke to them in the pillar of cloud. They kept his testimonies, the statute that he gave them.

Psa 99:8 You answered them, Yahweh our God. You are a God who forgave them, although you took vengeance for their doings.

Psa 99:9 Exalt Yahweh, our God. Worship at his holy hill, for Yahweh, our God, is holy!


Psa 100:1 Shout for joy to Yahweh, all you lands!

Psa 100:2 Serve Yahweh with gladness. Come before his presence with singing.

Psa 100:3 Know that Yahweh, he is God. It is he who has made us, and we are his. We are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Psa 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, into his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, and bless his name.

Psa 100:5 For Yahweh is good. His loving kindness endures forever, his faithfulness to all generations.

 

Sept. 23

2 Corinthians 3

2Co 3:1 Are we beginning again to commend ourselves? Or do we need, as do some, letters of commendation to you or from you?

2Co 3:2 You are our letter, written in our hearts, known and read by all men;

2Co 3:3 being revealed that you are a letter of Christ, served by us, written not with ink, but with the Spirit of the living God; not in tablets of stone, but in tablets that are hearts of flesh.

2Co 3:4 Such confidence we have through Christ toward God;

2Co 3:5 not that we are sufficient of ourselves, to account anything as from ourselves; but our sufficiency is from God;

2Co 3:6 who also made us sufficient as servants of a new covenant; not of the letter, but of the Spirit. For the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.

2Co 3:7 But if the service of death, written engraved on stones, came with glory, so that the children of Israel could not look steadfastly on the face of Moses for the glory of his face; which was passing away:

2Co 3:8 won't service of the Spirit be with much more glory?

2Co 3:9 For if the service of condemnation has glory, the service of righteousness exceeds much more in glory.

2Co 3:10 For most certainly that which has been made glorious has not been made glorious in this respect, by reason of the glory that surpasses.

2Co 3:11 For if that which passes away was with glory, much more that which remains is in glory.

2Co 3:12 Having therefore such a hope, we use great boldness of speech,

2Co 3:13 and not as Moses, who put a veil on his face, that the children of Israel wouldn't look steadfastly on the end of that which was passing away.

2Co 3:14 But their minds were hardened, for until this very day at the reading of the old covenant the same veil remains, because in Christ it passes away.

2Co 3:15 But to this day, when Moses is read, a veil lies on their heart.

2Co 3:16 But whenever one turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away.

2Co 3:17 Now the Lord is the Spirit and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.

2Co 3:18 But we all, with unveiled face beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are transformed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord, the Spirit.


Sept. 24

2 Corinthians 4

2Co 4:1 Therefore seeing we have this ministry, even as we obtained mercy, we don't faint.

2Co 4:2 But we have renounced the hidden things of shame, not walking in craftiness, nor handling the word of God deceitfully; but by the manifestation of the truth commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.

2Co 4:3 Even if our Good News is veiled, it is veiled in those who perish;

2Co 4:4 in whom the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving, that the light of the Good News of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should not dawn on them.

2Co 4:5 For we don't preach ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake;

2Co 4:6 seeing it is God who said, "Light will shine out of darkness," who has shone in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

2Co 4:7 But we have this treasure in clay vessels, that the exceeding greatness of the power may be of God, and not from ourselves.

2Co 4:8 We are pressed on every side, yet not crushed; perplexed, yet not to despair;

2Co 4:9 pursued, yet not forsaken; struck down, yet not destroyed;

2Co 4:10 always carrying in the body the putting to death of the Lord Jesus, that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.

2Co 4:11 For we who live are always delivered to death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus may be revealed in our mortal flesh.

2Co 4:12 So then death works in us, but life in you.

2Co 4:13 But having the same spirit of faith, according to that which is written, "I believed, and therefore I spoke." We also believe, and therefore also we speak;

2Co 4:14 knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus, and will present us with you.

2Co 4:15 For all things are for your sakes, that the grace, being multiplied through the many, may cause the thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God.

2Co 4:16 Therefore we don't faint, but though our outward man is decaying, yet our inward man is renewed day by day.

2Co 4:17 For our light affliction, which is for the moment, works for us more and more exceedingly an eternal weight of glory;

2Co 4:18 while we don't look at the things which are                     seen, but at the things which are not seen. For                             the things which are seen are temporal, but the                     things which are not seen are eternal.