1/15/21

The Abiding Word - Introduction


http://www.theabidingword.com/commentary/ABIDING-WORD-REFLECTIONS-No1.pdf

by E.E. Healy

Design Rules by Jerry Fausz, Ph.D.

 

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=2182

Design Rules

by  Jerry Fausz, Ph.D.

[EDITOR’S NOTE: The following article was written by one of A.P.’s auxiliary staff scientists. Dr. Fausz holds a Ph.D. in Aerospace Engineering from Georgia Tech and serves as liaison to the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. (All images in Dr. Fausz’ article are Courtesy of Sandia National Laboratories, SUMMiTTM Technologies, www.mems.sandia.gov.)]

One of the most fascinating areas of modern engineering research is the development of what has become known as MicroElectroMechanical Systems, or MEMS. Imagine a closed-cycle steam engine no bigger than a pinhead that operates on a single drop of water (e.g., Frechette, et al., 2003, pp. 335-344), or mirror mechanisms for micro-optical systems with structures that can be obscured by a single dust mite (McWhorter, 2001; McWhorter, 2006). These devices are so miniscule that their operational performance has to be verified through a microscope. MEMS devices are used to actuate airbags in automobiles, precisely control optics in digital projectors and video cameras, and perform a variety of other functions (see “SAMPLES Program,” 2005; “MEMS Technology,” 2006). Yet, we have barely scratched the surface of possible applications for MEMS.

spider mite
Spider mite on mirror assembly

The fabrication process for MEMS devices is the epitome of exacting, painstaking effort, requiring the highest levels of intricacy and precision. Built on technology developed to fabricate integrated circuits, the procedures for building MEMS must follow methodical rules and be carried out in a tightly controlled environment. This requires very expensive, high fidelity robotic assembly lines operating in clean rooms with extremely low contaminant concentrations (one speck of dust could be the proverbial monkey wrench for these mechanisms). As in the case of micro-chips, MEMS fabrication controls must be followed strictly for the devices to have any chance of carrying out their design functions once their fabrication is complete (“SAMPLES Program,” 2005).

Thus, in the design, fabrication, and operation of MEMS devices, it is clear that “small” is not synonymous with “simple” or “easy to understand or fabricate.” As seen through the microscope, MEMS parts are easily as complex as their counterparts on the larger scale, if not more so. Furthermore, due to the strict requirements imposed by the meticulous fabrication process, the MEMS designer must exercise much more care in laying out the configuration of his design than would a designer working on a larger scale.

clutch
The incredible MEMS clutch mechanism. The miniscule gears are 50 microns across. Keep in mind that there are 25,400 microns to an inch.

To aid the designer in accounting for the tight constraints of a particular MEMS fabrication process, the developers of that process typically provide him a set of design rules to follow in laying out the design. In turn, these rules usually are incorporated within the fabrication process itself through software that checks designs against these rules, and will not admit a design that violates them (“SAMPLES Program,” 2005). So, we see that the design rules and the fabrication process work together to produce devices that ideally will fulfill the desire of the designer throughout its operational life. The design rules characterize fundamental aspects of the fabrication process and, thus, leave an indelible imprint of those process characteristics on each and every new design. These design rules, then, represent a bridge between the mind of the designer and the finished product, in a sense “guiding” the design through the fabrication process.

It is amazing that many of the engineers and scientists who have worked to make MEMS technology a reality believe that the vast, intricate, mechanical workings of the Universe, a Universe that appears to conform to immutable natural laws, came about through mostly random processes. They have witnessed the microscopic complexity of MEMS, yet they admit reasoning that suggests the galaxies, solar systems, planets, and stars evolved from “simpler” particles of matter that somehow came into existence at the beginning of time. They hold these beliefs in spite of their understanding of the painstaking process that is required to design and fabricate a single MEMS mechanism.

transmission
Fully-functioning MEMS transmission

Scientists continue to discover with increasing clarity that the elementary particles of matter that make up everything in the observable Universe, though extremely small, are far from “simple.” In his book, A Brief History of Time, well-known physicist Stephen Hawking states:

Up to about twenty years ago, it was thought that protons and neutrons were “elementary” particles, but experiments in which protons were collided with other protons or electrons at high speeds indicated that they were in fact made up of smaller particles. These particles were named quarks by the Caltech physicist Murray Gell-Mann, who won the Nobel prize in 1969 for his work on them.... So the question is: What are the truly elementary particles, the basic building blocks from which everything is made? (1988, p. 65).

Since science so far has been incapable of even identifying the most elementary components of the Universe, it is unreasonable to conclude that “small” means simple or easy. Given this unexpected complexity at the sub-microscopic (quantum) level, it is incredible that otherwise reasoned thinkers would conclude that everything we observe resulted from random processes.

vernier
Close-up view of one vernier; the teeth are two microns wide and the spaces between them measure four microns.

Likewise, small structures in biological study exhibit extremely high levels of order, complexity, and information content. Now that scientists actually are able to observe single-cellular life, accounts of the immense complexity in these “simple” life forms are becoming increasingly abundant. Consider Dean Overman’s summary of the research of Sir Fred Hoyle and Chandra Wickramasinghe in his monograph, A Case Against Accident and Self-Organization:

ratchet
Sitting atop some MEMS gears, this spider mite is the size of the period at the end of this sentence.
Because there are thousands of different enzymes with different functions, to produce the simplest living cell, Hoyle calculated that about 2,000 enzymes were needed with each one performing a specific task to form a single bacterium like E. coli. Computing the probability of all these different enzymes forming in one place at one time to produce a single bacterium, Hoyle and his colleague, Chandra Wickramasinghe, calculated the odds at 1 in 1040,000. This number is so vast that any mathematician would agree that it amounts to total impossibility.... [T]he total atoms in the observable universe are estimated to be only approximately 1080 (1997, pp. 58-59, emp. added).

The performance observed in such a system (a bacterium) is so intricate and complex on such a small scale, that so far humans are incapable of duplicating it—MEMS is about as close as science has come to doing so. Yet, in stark contradistinction, many scientists seem to accept that a “simple” life form must have organized by accident and, in turn, given rise to all of the life that we observe on Earth.

ratchet mechanism
Complex MEMS ratchet mechanism

The complexity inherent in MEMS, especially in comparison to larger scale systems, suggests a more natural conclusion regarding the existence of the Universe. If one were looking through a microscope in a science class, or working in a laboratory, and unexpectedly saw tiny gears turning or pistons moving, what would he conclude? This scenario actually has been used as a story line in multiple science fiction shows, and the conclusion reached was not that the microscopic machines had evolved naturally through random processes. Besides the fact that such a conclusion might make for a rather boring story, it is simply an unsound conclusion under the circumstances. Complexity on such a small scale, as we have noted, is not easy to design, so why would we ever conclude that it came about by accident? As in the science fiction scenario depicted, the intricate complexity that we observe on such a small scale is not only evidence of a designer, but also evidence of an incredibly advanced design capability—not of undirected random processes.

 

Piston
The world’s smallest functioning triple-piston steam engine. One piston is five microns across or 1/5080 of an inch.

The fact that the Universe operates under seemingly immutable natural laws is further evidence of a designer. We have noted that MEMS designers utilize design rules to ensure the viability of their designs. While science has not fully characterized the rules that govern the Universe, or even proved their existence, scientists firmly believe in them. Countless observations and experiments have demonstrated that the Universe appears to behave in repeatable and predictable ways, indicating that there is an inherent yet unobservable constraint being enforced on that behavior. Similar to MEMS design rules, the natural laws of the Universe determine what structures can viably exist in the system (Conservation of Matter and Energy), how they will behave (Causality, Laws of Motion, Relativity, etc.), and how long they will last (Thermodynamics). It simply is no more reasonable to assume that random processes gave rise to the behavior of the Universe than to assume that random fabrication processes could give rise to operational MEMS devices.

 

drive gear
Drive gear chain and linkages, with a grain of pollen (top right) and coagulated red blood cells (top left, lower right) to demonstrate scale.

Indeed, experience with MEMS illustrates that the ordered complexity we observe at every level within the Universe, but especially on the small scale, is indisputable evidence of a Designer whose capability far exceeds human accomplishment. MEMS research is impressive and fascinating, but pales in comparison to what we observe at the microscopic level, and what we theorize at the sub-atomic level. The science and engineering of mankind has not come anywhere close to duplicating the intricate functional complexity that exists in the realm of nature’s small scale. The Designer responsible for these micro- mechanisms fully understands the fabrication process parameters that are required to bring them into existence and sustain their operation, and has used that process to its utmost effectiveness in the creation of everything we observe. Furthermore, the “design rules” that have been employed to accomplish this are nothing less than the natural laws that, in turn, continue to constrain and direct the ongoing operation of His design.

 

 

REFERENCES

Frechette, L.G., C. Lee, S. Arslan, and Y.C. Liu (2003), “Design of a Microfabricated Rankine Cycle Steam Turbine for Power Generation,” American Society of Mechanical Engineers International Mechanical Engineering Congress, International Meeting on Energy Conversion Engineering, pp. 335-344, November.

Hawking, Stephen (1988), A Brief History of Time: From the Big Bang to Black Holes (New York: Bantam).

McWhorter, Paul (2001), “Intelligent Multipurpose Micromachines Made at Sandia,” Sandia National Laboratories, [On-line], URL: http://www.sandia.gov/media/micro.htm.

McWhorter, Paul (2006), MEMS Image Gallery, [On-line], URL: http://www.memx.com/image_gallery.htm.

MEMS Technology” (2006), [On-line], URL: http://www.memx.com/technology.htm.

Overman, Dean (1997), A Case Against Accident and Self-Organization (Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield).

SAMPLES Program” (2005), Sandia National Laboratories, [On-line], URL: http://mems.sandia.gov/samples.

Defending the Truth on the Campus of the University of Alabama by Kyle Butt, M.Div.

 

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=3753

Defending the Truth on the Campus of the University of Alabama

by  Kyle Butt, M.Div.

On Tuesday, October 19, I was invited by the Tide for Christ campus ministry, in conjunction with the Northport church of Christ campus ministry, to be involved in a multimedia presentation refuting atheism and defending New Testament Christianity. Several days prior to the event, approximately 15 students from Heritage Christian University in Florence, Alabama, in conjunction with several of the students involved in the campus ministries, blanketed the campus, inviting students and handing out literally thousands of flyers about the event. Trae Durden, the campus minister with Tide for Christ, originally organized the event in conjunction with the AAA (Alabama Atheists and Agnostics). Trae worked with them to make sure that several atheists and agnostics on campus were in attendance so that the atheistic position would be well-represented. In all, some 150-200 people were in attendance.

Trae originally wanted to set up a debate with Sam Harris (one of the nation’s leading atheistic writers and speakers), but Harris required $50,000, making his presence cost prohibitive. Instead, several video clips were shown of the world’s most well known atheists expressing their atheistic points of view. I then responded to the assertions, and presented evidence confirming Christian theism. Questions from the audience were then taken. Several students from the AAA and the school’s philosophy department attended, and asked questions or made statements regarding their beliefs. The question and answer session lasted over an hour. The questions raised were mostly from the atheistic point of view. Each question was answered with solid biblical, historical, and scientific information. The truth was defended, God was glorified, and atheism was refuted.

In addition, the Northport church of Christ and the Central church of Christ contributed $500 dollars so that a host of books and materials could be given away free to all those in attendance. Those who attended and received the books seemed extremely grateful, and it was exciting to be able to see atheists and agnostics leave the event with materials that could potentially save their souls. It was also thrilling to be able to review the plan of salvation, knowing that it may have been the first, and possibly only, time that some had heard, or will ever hear, the truth on the subject. I was thrilled to be a part of God’s activities on the campus of the University of Alabama. We pray that many more such events will take place across the country and that the borders of God’s Kingdom will continue to spread. Please visit our Facebook page for pictures of the event.

Dawkins’ Indirect Scientific Inference by Kyle Butt, M.Div.

 

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=3788

Dawkins’ Indirect Scientific Inference

by  Kyle Butt, M.Div.

In his latest book, The Greatest Show on Earth, Richard Dawkins declares that “the ‘theory’ of evolution is actually a fact—as incontrovertible a fact as any in science” (2009, p. vii). He wrote the book because he noted that in his previous books he “realized that the evidence for evolution itself was nowhere explicitly set out, and that this was a serious gap” that he “needed to close” (p. vii). In his failed attempt to close that gap, Dawkins delineated the kind of “evidence” that he would be relying upon. He noted that much of the “evidence” for evolution is necessarily not direct, eyewitness evidence. He stated:

Obviously, the vast majority of evolutionary change is invisible to direct eye-witness observation. Most of it happened before we were born, and in any case it is usually too slow to be seen during an individual’s lifetime.... With evolution, as with continental drift, inference after the event is all that is available to us, for the obvious reason that we don’t exist until after the event. But do not for one nanosecond underestimate the power of such inference (p. 16).

Along those same lines, Dawkins wrote: “I shall never again be tempted to give eyewitness testimony an automatic preference over indirect scientific inference” (p. 15).

The important point to notice in this regard is that often the creationist is criticized by the evolutionary community for suggesting that creation at the hand of a supernatural Creator is a scientific idea. We are told that since scientists cannot touch, see, taste, hear, or smell the Creator directly, here and now, then that “hypothesis” simply cannot be considered scientific. Yet such an assessment of Creation is inaccurate. Creation is simply, in the words of Richard Dawkins, “inference after the event” that deserves as much or more credit, according to Dawkins, as “eyewitness testimony” (cf. Butt, 2007).

In fact, the biblical explanation of Creation clearly defines the concept almost exactly as Dawkins has defined acceptable evidence. Romans 1:20 states: “For since the creation of the world His [God’s] invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse.” A cursory look at the verse shows that (1) people in Paul’s time (as well as our own) were not around to directly observe the act of Creation, (2) the evidence available to Paul’s readers (and modern people) is enough to positively infer the concept of Creation and the existence of a Creator, (3) improper scientific inference from the available evidence would result in a complete misunderstanding of the origin of the Universe.

Dawkins is exactly right that real scientific inference based on indirect observation is an excellent way to arrive at facts and knowledge. Sadly, he is woefully incorrect in his assessment that such inferences substantiate evolution. The fact of the matter is, all properly formulated scientific inferences based on factual scientific evidence establish the conclusion that a supernatural Creator designed our amazing Universe.

REFERENCES

Butt, Kyle (2007), “Indirect Observation,” http://apologeticspress.org/articles/3243.

Dawkins, Richard (2009), The Greatest Show on Earth (New York: Free Press).

"THE GOSPEL OF MARK" Feeding The Five Thousand (6:32-44)

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
"THE GOSPEL OF MARK" 
Feeding The Five Thousand (6:32-44)

INTRODUCTION

1. One of the better known miracles of Jesus is "Feeding The Five Thousand"...
   a. With just five loaves and two fish
   b. With twelve baskets of fragments left over!

2. It is the only specific miracle performed by Jesus recorded in all four gospels...
   a. Mt 14:13-21; Mk 6:30-44; Lk 9:10-17; Jn 6:1-13
   b. We will let Mark's account be the starting point for our study

[Many lessons can be gleaned from this miracle.  What I found striking is first...]

I. WHAT IT REVEALS ABOUT JESUS

   A. COMPASSION...
      1. He wanted His disciples to rest, but compassion moved Him to serve - Mk 6:34
      2. Compassion that moved Him to send the apostles out earlier - Mt 9:36; 10:1
      3. That later moved Him to feed the four thousand - Mt 15:32-38
      4. That qualifies Him to be a perfect High Priest - cf. He 4:14-16; 5:1-2
      -- This miracle reveals the wonderful compassion of our Lord!

   B. POWER...
      1. The power to feed 5000 men with five loaves and two fish - Mk 6:38-44
      2. 5000 men, besides women and children (possibly 10,000?) - Mt 14:21
      3. With twelve baskets of fragments left over - Mk 6:43
      4. The sort of power that provides more than one needs - cf. Ep 3:20
      -- This miracle reveals the overwhelming power of our Lord!

   C. ORDERLINESS...
      1. Jesus arranged the multitude in groups and ranks - Mk 6:39-40
      2. Such orderliness is typical, evidenced by His creation - cf. Col 1:16; Ps 19:1; Ro 1:19-20
      3. He desires it in the organization and worship of His churches - 1Co 14:33,40
      -- This miracle reveals the careful orderliness of our Lord!

[Jesus' compassion, power and orderliness can be gleaned from Mark's
account of this miracle.  From John's account in his gospel, we can also learn...]

II. WHAT IT REVEALS ABOUT MAN

   A. MISUNDERSTANDING...
      1. Their initial reaction was correct
         a. That Jesus was the Prophet who was to come into the world - Jn 6:14
         b. As foretold by Moses and confirmed by Peter -  cf. Deut 18:15-18; Ac 3:18-26
      2. But their desire to make Him king reveals their misunderstanding
         a. They wanted to make Him a literal king - Jn 6:15
         b. His kingdom was not to be a literal kingdom - cf. Jn 18:36; Lk 17:20-21
      3. Today, we should not presume to know what is God's will
         a. His ways and thoughts are often much different than our own - cf. Isa 55:8-9
         b. Thus we should be quick to hear, rather than presume - cf. Ecc 5:1-2
      -- The response to this miracle reveals man's ability to misunderstand God's will!

   B. MATERIALISM...
      1. They sought Jesus for the wrong reasons
         a. They wanted the physical food He provided - Jn 6:26
         b. They should have sought food that endures to everlasting life - Jn 6:27
      2. He wanted to give them true bread
         a. That gives life to the world - Jn 6:32-33
         b. The bread of life, given to those who believe - Jn 6:34-35
      2. Today, people often choose churches for the wrong reasons
         a. Entertainment, youth programs, etc.
         b. When they should be looking for spiritual things - cf. Ro 14:17
      -- The response to this miracle reveals man's tendency to desire material things

   C. DULLNESS...
      1. They complained about Him
         a. Because of His claim to be bread from heaven - Jn 6:41
         b. Because they saw Him only as the son of Joseph and Mary - Jn 6:42
      2. They struggled over His sayings
         a. Taking Him literally - Jn 6:52
         b. Even many of His disciples left Him - Jn 6:60,66
      3. Today, many demonstrate a similar dullness
         a. Unwilling to stay with Jesus (unlike the apostles) - Jn 6:67-69
         b. Unwilling to make use of their time to learn and apply - cf. He 5:11-14
      -- The response to this miracle reveals man's propensity to spiritual dullness

CONCLUSION

1. The miracle we have studied offers insight into the person of Jesus Christ...
   a. His compassion for the souls and bodies of mankind
   b. His power to provide for every need of man
   c. His orderliness in the work He sets out to perform

2. The reaction to this miracle reveals insight into the propensity of man...
   a. To misunderstand the will of God
   b. To seek after material things of the world
   c. To be dull of heart, which leads to the first two

3. What will be our response to this wonderful miracle...?
   a. Let our spiritual dullness to take it lightly, or ignore it altogether?
   b. Let it increase our faith in Him who provides our every need?

Jesus' intention was to draw men to Him as the Bread of Life which
nourishes our souls.  May we not be so blinded by the materialism that
we fail to labor for that which leads to everlasting life (Jn 6:27)... 
 
Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2016

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A Sexless, Unconventional Marriage by Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

 

https://thepreachersword.com/2018/01/18/a-sexless-unconventional-marriage/

A Sexless, Unconventional Marriage

New York socialites Quentin Esme Brown and Peter Cary Peterson got married last weekend in Las Vegas. But it’s not a typical, traditional marriage.

“He has always been my soulmate in every sense of the word and we felt mutually that Vegas was the place to finalize our commitment to partnership,” Brown posted on Instagram. “Peter and I are not romantically involved — in fact we are still dating others and will continue to seek love in all forms.”

According to an article on Yahoo Lifestyle, Brown and Peterson have been best friends for years, and have taken what Peterson said, “a progressive step towards what we believe marriage should be.” According to the report, “they’re planning to make theirs a sexless, open marriage” as they both date others.

Susan Pease Gadoua, a licensed therapist and co-author of The New “I Do,” admitted she didn’t know anyone else with this kind of marriage but believes it fits fine with people’s new views about relationships needs.

“We don’t need to get married for any of the reasons we used to,” Gadoua tells Yahoo Lifestyle. “Once you’ve got everything else in place, it is like the cherry on top.”

Brown also put a statement on Instagram, saying, “I am confident my husband and I will break some walls down,” she wrote.

‘To me, it seems like they’re creating a family out of two people;” Maryland-based psychologist Samantha Rodman told Yahoo Lifestyle. ”It’s a family member you can always count on,”

Furthermore, Gadoua opined that this polyamorous arrangement might be a better alternative to divorce. However, “Where the complications are going to come in is when people outside their relationship look at it like, ‘I don’t want to get involved in that,” she admitted. It’s going to make it a little bit more complicated for them to find partners who understand.”

So, let’s get this straight. Brown and Peterson are best friends and now legally married. They want to enjoy companionship, the benefits of marriage minus a sexual relationship. And, of course, each enjoy romantic interests outside their marriage.

What will people think of next to circumvent God’s plan for the family and marital relationships?

In the beginning, when God made man, He said, “It is not good for man to be alone, I will make a helper suitable for him.” Nothing in the animal kingdom was appropriate, so God made woman. Eve became Adam’s wife. The Bible says “the two became one flesh” referring to their sexual union. They “were both naked and felt no shame’ (Gen 2:18-25).

The nuclear family is not something created by culture, but ordered  by Divine decree. Jesus affirmed the Father’s arrangement of the home as one man for one woman for life (Matt. 19:4-6). He said God joined them together. “And the two shall become one flesh.”

In that relationship a husband and wife enjoy companionship, commitment, support, security, affection and sexual fulfillment. The Bible instructs that to avoid sexual immorality “each man should have his own wife, and each woman her own husband. The husband should fulfill his marital duty to his wife, and likewise the wife to her husband” (1 Cor 7:1-4). Indeed “Marriage is honorable among all, and the bed undefiled (Heb 13:4).

The wise man counseled his son to enjoy the pleasures of marriage with his wife. “Rejoice with the wife of your youth…may her breasts satisfy you always and may you ever be intoxicated with her love” (Prov 5:18-19).

In this intimate relationship, children are to be born, raised and nurtured by a father and mother who love them and train them in the way of the Lord (Eph. 6:1-4).

Sadly, our society is constantly seeking other outlets to replace God’s perfect plan for the home, family and raising children. All  other arrangements will ultimately fail.

The Brown-Peterson marriage model is not only unconventional, it’s unscriptural.

–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

GOD'S WORD VERSUS BAPTIST DOCTRINE by steve finnell

 

https://steve-finnell.blogspot.com/2017/01/

GOD'S WORD VERSUS BAPTIST DOCTRINE by steve finnell


If Baptist doctrine contradicts the word of God, which one is correct?

Baptist Doctrine: Perseverance of the saints, AKA as once saved always saved.

God's Word: Galatians 5:1-4.... You have become estranged from Christ, you who attempt to be justified  by law; you have fallen from grace. (NKJV)

God's Word: Hebrews 6:4-6 4 For it is impossible......6 if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance.....(NKJV)

God's Word: Hebrews 3:12 Beware, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief in departing from the living God; (NKJV)

God's Word: 1 Timothy 4:1...some will depart from the faith...(NKJV)

Christians can become lost. 

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Baptist Doctrine: Water baptism is not essential for the forgiveness of sins and is not essential in order to be saved.

God's Word: Acts 2:38 ....and let everyone of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins.....(NKJV)

God's Word: Mark 16:16 ....and is baptized will be saved...(NKJV)

God's Word: 1 Peter 3:21 There is an antitype which now saves us, namely baptism...(NKJV)

God's Word: Acts 22:16...Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins...(NKJV)

God's Word: Colossians 2:12 -13 buried with Him in baptism...13...having forgiven you all trespasses,(NKJV)

God's Word: Ephesians 5:25-27 ....Christ loved the church and gave Himself for it 26 that He might sanctify and wash it with the washing of water by the word,(NKJV)

God's Word: Romans 6:4-7 Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death.......7 For he who has died has been freed from sin.(NKJV)

God's Word: John 3:5 Jesus answered, "Most assuredly, I say to, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God.(NKJV)


Being immersed in water is an essential part of the gospel plan of salvation.

Galatians 1:8 But even if we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel to you than what we have preached to you, let him be accursed. (NKJV) 

The apostles did not preach Baptist doctrine, they preached the word of God.

Denominations were not formed so they could preach the apostles' doctrine. Denominations were formed so they could change the apostles' doctrine. If all denominations preached only God's word, there would be just one church, the church of Jesus Christ.   

The Lord hears the prayer of the righteous (Proverbs 15:29) by Roy Davidson

 

https://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Davison/Roy/Allen/1940/prayer.html

The Lord hears the prayer of the righteous
(Proverbs 15:29)

It is reassuring that God hears our prayers. "The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much" (James 5:16).

God listens to the righteous.

The Psalmist wrote: "Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will declare what He has done for my soul. I cried to Him with my mouth, and He was extolled with my tongue. If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear. But certainly God has heard me; He has attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, who has not turned away my prayer, nor His mercy from me!" (Psalm 66:16-20).

We read of many answered prayers in Scripture. God heard the cry of Ishmael when he and his mother were without water in the desert (Genesis 21:17). God heard Rachel's prayer for a child, and Joseph and Benjamin were born (Genesis 30:22-24). God heard the cries of the Israelites in Egyptian slavery (Exodus 2:23,24) and sent Moses to set them free. He heard when they were hungry and gave them manna (Exodus 16:12). God gave water to the thirsty, children to the childless, freedom to slaves and food to the hungry.

David's prayer for deliverance was heard: "I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised; so shall I be saved from my enemies. ... In my distress I called upon the Lord, and cried out to my God; He heard my voice from His temple, and my cry entered His ears" (2 Samuel 22:4,7).

God heard the prayer of King Hezekiah and extended his life: "In those days Hezekiah was sick and near death. And Isaiah the prophet, the son of Amoz, went to him and said to him, 'Thus says the Lord: "Set your house in order, for you shall die, and not live." ' Then he turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord, saying, 'Remember now, O Lord, I pray, how I have walked before You in truth and with a loyal heart, and have done what was good in Your sight.' And Hezekiah wept bitterly. And it happened, before Isaiah had gone out into the middle court, that the word of the Lord came to him, saying, 'Return and tell Hezekiah the leader of My people, "Thus says the Lord, the God of David your father: 'I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will heal you. On the third day you shall go up to the house of the Lord. And I will add to your days fifteen years. I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria; and I will defend this city for My own sake, and for the sake of My servant David' " ' " (2 Kings 20:1-6).

Notice that God was influenced by Hezekiah's prayer. First He said he would not recover. But because of his fervent prayer, God changed His mind. Some people think: 'Why should I pray? God will do what He wants anyway.' This is a big mistake. We should pray fervently because God is influenced by our prayers.

God heard the prayer of King Josiah and postponed Judah's punishment until after his reign: "Now it happened, when the king heard the words of the Book of the Law, that he tore his clothes. Then the king commanded ... , 'Go, inquire of the Lord for me, for the people and for all Judah, concerning the words of this book that has been found; for great is the wrath of the Lord that is aroused against us, because our fathers have not obeyed the words of this book, to do according to all that is written concerning us.' So Hilkiah the priest, Ahikam, Achbor, Shaphan, and Asaiah went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvah, the son of Harhas, keeper of the wardrobe. (She dwelt in Jerusalem in the Second Quarter.) And they spoke with her. Then she said to them, 'Thus says the Lord God of Israel, "Tell the man who sent you to Me, 'Thus says the Lord: "Behold, I will bring calamity on this place and on its inhabitants -- all the words of the book which the king of Judah has read -- because they have forsaken Me and burned incense to other gods, that they might provoke Me to anger with all the works of their hands. Therefore My wrath shall be aroused against this place and shall not be quenched." ' " But as for the king of Judah, who sent you to inquire of the Lord, in this manner you shall speak to him, "Thus says the Lord God of Israel: 'Concerning the words which you have heard -- because your heart was tender, and you humbled yourself before the Lord when you heard what I spoke against this place and against its inhabitants, that they would become a desolation and a curse, and you tore your clothes and wept before Me, I also have heard you,' says the Lord. Surely, therefore, I will gather you to your fathers, and you shall be gathered to your grave in peace; and your eyes shall not see all the calamity which I will bring on this place.' " ' So they brought back word to the king" (2 Kings 22:11-20).

Many answered prayers were fervent prayers.

God listens to those who fear Him, who stand in awe of His greatness, goodness and power. "Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, and the LORD listened and heard them; so a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the LORD and who meditate on His name. 'They shall be Mine,' says the LORD of hosts, 'on the day that I make them My jewels. And I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him' " (Malachi 3:16,17).

But maybe you are thinking: 'I prayed to God and He did not do what I asked. Does this mean He has rejected me?' No, not at all. Although God listens to our prayers and is influenced by our prayers, we must understand that a prayer is a request subject to His sovereign will. A good father always listens to his children, but a good father does not do everything his children ask.

Some people view prayer as a kind of remote control of God. He must do everything they say when they push the buttons.

God is sovereign. He has all wisdom and all knowledge. He knows the future. Although He allows Himself to be influenced by our prayers, He must do what is best for the whole world and for all time. You may be praying for sunshine while a farmer is praying for rain. We must be humble when we pray. Our prayers are imperfect. "For we do not know what we should pray for as we ought, but the Spirit Himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. Now He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God" (Romans 8:26,27).

Our prayer makes a real difference. Yet by nature a prayer is always a request to our sovereign Lord in whose will we acquiesce.

The prayer of Jesus in the garden demonstrates this: "Father, if it is Your will, remove this cup from Me; nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done'' (Luke 22:42). An angel came to strengthen Him but He had to drink the cup. His prayer was heard, however. In Psalm 22, which begins "My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?" (verse 1), the triumphant close is introduced in verse 21 with "You have answered Me." The Father heard the prayer of His Son, "who, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications, with vehement cries and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard because of His godly fear" (Hebrews 5:7). God's answer was not prevention of death but resurrection from the grave, victory over death not only for Jesus but for all who believe.

Although Paul healed many by the power of God (Acts 19:11,12), his own request was denied: "And lest I should be exalted above measure by the abundance of the revelations, a thorn in the flesh was given to me, a messenger of Satan to buffet me, lest I be exalted above measure. Concerning this thing I pleaded with the Lord three times that it might depart from me. And He said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me" (2 Corinthians 12:7-9).

Let us pray fervently knowing that God hears the prayer of the righteous (Proverbs 15:29). "The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much" (James 5:16). Let us also understand that prayer is a humble request, a recognition of God's sovereign power. With Christ we must pray "nevertheless not My will, but Yours, be done."

"Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:6,7). "And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose" (Romans 8:28).

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 January 15 - 17 by Gary Rose

 

Bible Reading for January 15 - 17

World  English  Bible 

 

Jan. 15

Genesis 15

Gen 15:1 After these things the word of Yahweh came to Abram in a vision, saying, "Don't be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceedingly great reward."

Gen 15:2 Abram said, "Lord Yahweh, what will you give me, seeing I go childless, and he who will inherit my estate is Eliezer of Damascus?"

Gen 15:3 Abram said, "Behold, to me you have given no seed: and, behold, one born in my house is my heir."

Gen 15:4 Behold, the word of Yahweh came to him, saying, "This man will not be your heir, but he who will come forth out of your own body will be your heir."

Gen 15:5 Yahweh brought him outside, and said, "Look now toward the sky, and count the stars, if you are able to count them." He said to Abram, "So shall your seed be."

Gen 15:6 He believed in Yahweh; and he reckoned it to him for righteousness.

Gen 15:7 He said to him, "I am Yahweh who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldees, to give you this land to inherit it."

Gen 15:8 He said, "Lord Yahweh, how will I know that I will inherit it?"

Gen 15:9 He said to him, "Bring me a heifer three years old, a female goat three years old, a ram three years old, a turtledove, and a young pigeon."

Gen 15:10 He brought him all of these, and divided them in the middle, and laid each half opposite the other; but he didn't divide the birds.

Gen 15:11 The birds of prey came down on the carcasses, and Abram drove them away.

Gen 15:12 When the sun was going down, a deep sleep fell on Abram. Now terror and great darkness fell on him.

Gen 15:13 He said to Abram, "Know for sure that your seed will live as foreigners in a land that is not theirs, and will serve them. They will afflict them four hundred years.

Gen 15:14 I will also judge that nation, whom they will serve. Afterward they will come out with great wealth,

Gen 15:15 but you will go to your fathers in peace. You will be buried in a good old age.

Gen 15:16 In the fourth generation they will come here again, for the iniquity of the Amorite is not yet full."

Gen 15:17 It came to pass that, when the sun went down, and it was dark, behold, a smoking furnace, and a flaming torch passed between these pieces.

Gen 15:18 In that day Yahweh made a covenant with Abram, saying, "To your seed I have given this land, from the river of Egypt to the great river, the river Euphrates:

Gen 15:19 the Kenites, the Kenizzites, the Kadmonites,

Gen 15:20 the Hittites, the Perizzites, the Rephaim,

Gen 15:21 the Amorites, the Canaanites, the Girgashites, and the Jebusites." 

 

 Jan. 16

Genesis 16

Gen 16:1 Now Sarai, Abram's wife, bore him no children. She had a handmaid, an Egyptian, whose name was Hagar.

Gen 16:2 Sarai said to Abram, "See now, Yahweh has restrained me from bearing. Please go in to my handmaid. It may be that I will obtain children by her." Abram listened to the voice of Sarai.

Gen 16:3 Sarai, Abram's wife, took Hagar the Egyptian, her handmaid, after Abram had lived ten years in the land of Canaan, and gave her to Abram her husband to be his wife.

Gen 16:4 He went in to Hagar, and she conceived. When she saw that she had conceived, her mistress was despised in her eyes.

Gen 16:5 Sarai said to Abram, "This wrong is your fault. I gave my handmaid into your bosom, and when she saw that she had conceived, I was despised in her eyes. Yahweh judge between me and you."

Gen 16:6 But Abram said to Sarai, "Behold, your maid is in your hand. Do to her whatever is good in your eyes." Sarai dealt harshly with her, and she fled from her face.

Gen 16:7 The angel of Yahweh found her by a fountain of water in the wilderness, by the fountain in the way to Shur.

Gen 16:8 He said, "Hagar, Sarai's handmaid, where did you come from? Where are you going?" She said, "I am fleeing from the face of my mistress Sarai."

Gen 16:9 The angel of Yahweh said to her, "Return to your mistress, and submit yourself under her hands."

Gen 16:10 The angel of Yahweh said to her, "I will greatly multiply your seed, that they will not be numbered for multitude."

Gen 16:11 The angel of Yahweh said to her, "Behold, you are with child, and will bear a son. You shall call his name Ishmael, because Yahweh has heard your affliction.

Gen 16:12 He will be like a wild donkey among men. His hand will be against every man, and every man's hand against him. He will live opposite all of his brothers."

Gen 16:13 She called the name of Yahweh who spoke to her, "You are a God who sees," for she said, "Have I even stayed alive after seeing him?"

Gen 16:14 Therefore the well was called Beer Lahai Roi. Behold, it is between Kadesh and Bered.

Gen 16:15 Hagar bore a son for Abram. Abram called the name of his son, whom Hagar bore, Ishmael.

Gen 16:16 Abram was eighty-six years old when Hagar bore Ishmael to Abram. 

 

Jan. 17

Genesis 17

Gen 17:1 When Abram was ninety-nine years old, Yahweh appeared to Abram, and said to him, "I am God Almighty. Walk before me, and be blameless.

Gen 17:2 I will make my covenant between me and you, and will multiply you exceedingly."

Gen 17:3 Abram fell on his face. God talked with him, saying,

Gen 17:4 "As for me, behold, my covenant is with you. You will be the father of a multitude of nations.

Gen 17:5 Neither will your name any more be called Abram, but your name will be Abraham; for I have made you the father of a multitude of nations.

Gen 17:6 I will make you exceedingly fruitful, and I will make nations of you. Kings will come out of you.

Gen 17:7 I will establish my covenant between me and you and your seed after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be a God to you and to your seed after you.

Gen 17:8 I will give to you, and to your seed after you, the land where you are traveling, all the land of Canaan, for an everlasting possession. I will be their God."

Gen 17:9 God said to Abraham, "As for you, you will keep my covenant, you and your seed after you throughout their generations.

Gen 17:10 This is my covenant, which you shall keep, between me and you and your seed after you. Every male among you shall be circumcised.

Gen 17:11 You shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskin. It will be a token of the covenant between me and you.

Gen 17:12 He who is eight days old will be circumcised among you, every male throughout your generations, he who is born in the house, or bought with money from any foreigner who is not of your seed.

Gen 17:13 He who is born in your house, and he who is bought with your money, must be circumcised. My covenant will be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.

Gen 17:14 The uncircumcised male who is not circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin, that soul shall be cut off from his people. He has broken my covenant."

Gen 17:15 God said to Abraham, "As for Sarai your wife, you shall not call her name Sarai, but her name will be Sarah.

Gen 17:16 I will bless her, and moreover I will give you a son by her. Yes, I will bless her, and she will be a mother of nations. Kings of peoples will come from her."

Gen 17:17 Then Abraham fell on his face, and laughed, and said in his heart, "Will a child be born to him who is one hundred years old? Will Sarah, who is ninety years old, give birth?"

Gen 17:18 Abraham said to God, "Oh that Ishmael might live before you!"

Gen 17:19 God said, "No, but Sarah, your wife, will bear you a son. You shall call his name Isaac. I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant for his seed after him.

Gen 17:20 As for Ishmael, I have heard you. Behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly. He will become the father of twelve princes, and I will make him a great nation.

Gen 17:21 But my covenant I establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this set time next year."

Gen 17:22 When he finished talking with him, God went up from Abraham.

Gen 17:23 Abraham took Ishmael his son, all who were born in his house, and all who were bought with his money; every male among the men of Abraham's house, and circumcised the flesh of their foreskin in the same day, as God had said to him.

Gen 17:24 Abraham was ninety-nine years old, when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.

Gen 17:25 Ishmael, his son, was thirteen years old when he was circumcised in the flesh of his foreskin.

Gen 17:26 In the same day both Abraham and Ishmael, his son, were circumcised.

Gen 17:27 All the men of his house, those born in the house, and those bought with money of a foreigner, were circumcised with him. 

 

Jan. 15, 16

Matthew 8

Mat 8:1 When he came down from the mountain, great multitudes followed him.

Mat 8:2 Behold, a leper came to him and worshiped him, saying, "Lord, if you want to, you can make me clean."

Mat 8:3 Jesus stretched out his hand, and touched him, saying, "I want to. Be made clean." Immediately his leprosy was cleansed.

Mat 8:4 Jesus said to him, "See that you tell nobody, but go, show yourself to the priest, and offer the gift that Moses commanded, as a testimony to them."

Mat 8:5 When he came into Capernaum, a centurion came to him, asking him,

Mat 8:6 and saying, "Lord, my servant lies in the house paralyzed, grievously tormented."

Mat 8:7 Jesus said to him, "I will come and heal him."

Mat 8:8 The centurion answered, "Lord, I'm not worthy for you to come under my roof. Just say the word, and my servant will be healed.

Mat 8:9 For I am also a man under authority, having under myself soldiers. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and tell another, 'Come,' and he comes; and tell my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it."

Mat 8:10 When Jesus heard it, he marveled, and said to those who followed, "Most certainly I tell you, I haven't found so great a faith, not even in Israel.

Mat 8:11 I tell you that many will come from the east and the west, and will sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in the Kingdom of Heaven,

Mat 8:12 but the children of the Kingdom will be thrown out into the outer darkness. There will be weeping and gnashing of teeth."

Mat 8:13 Jesus said to the centurion, "Go your way. Let it be done for you as you have believed." His servant was healed in that hour.

Mat 8:14 When Jesus came into Peter's house, he saw his wife's mother lying sick with a fever.

Mat 8:15 He touched her hand, and the fever left her. She got up and served him.

Mat 8:16 When evening came, they brought to him many possessed with demons. He cast out the spirits with a word, and healed all who were sick;

Mat 8:17 that it might be fulfilled which was spoken through Isaiah the prophet, saying: "He took our infirmities, and bore our diseases."

Mat 8:18 Now when Jesus saw great multitudes around him, he gave the order to depart to the other side.

Mat 8:19 A scribe came, and said to him, "Teacher, I will follow you wherever you go."

Mat 8:20 Jesus said to him, "The foxes have holes, and the birds of the sky have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head."

Mat 8:21 Another of his disciples said to him, "Lord, allow me first to go and bury my father."

Mat 8:22 But Jesus said to him, "Follow me, and leave the dead to bury their own dead."

Mat 8:23 When he got into a boat, his disciples followed him.

Mat 8:24 Behold, a violent storm came up on the sea, so much that the boat was covered with the waves, but he was asleep.

Mat 8:25 They came to him, and woke him up, saying, "Save us, Lord! We are dying!"

Mat 8:26 He said to them, "Why are you fearful, O you of little faith?" Then he got up, rebuked the wind and the sea, and there was a great calm.

Mat 8:27 The men marveled, saying, "What kind of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?"

Mat 8:28 When he came to the other side, into the country of the Gergesenes, two people possessed by demons met him there, coming out of the tombs, exceedingly fierce, so that nobody could pass that way.

Mat 8:29 Behold, they cried out, saying, "What do we have to do with you, Jesus, Son of God? Have you come here to torment us before the time?"

Mat 8:30 Now there was a herd of many pigs feeding far away from them.

Mat 8:31 The demons begged him, saying, "If you cast us out, permit us to go away into the herd of pigs."

Mat 8:32 He said to them, "Go!" They came out, and went into the herd of pigs: and behold, the whole herd of pigs rushed down the cliff into the sea, and died in the water.

Mat 8:33 Those who fed them fled, and went away into the city, and told everything, including what happened to those who were possessed with demons.

Mat 8:34 Behold, all the city came out to meet Jesus. When they saw him, they begged that he would depart from their borders. 

 

Jan. 17

Matthew 9

Mat 9:1 He entered into a boat, and crossed over, and came into his own city.

Mat 9:2 Behold, they brought to him a man who was paralyzed, lying on a bed. Jesus, seeing their faith, said to the paralytic, "Son, cheer up! Your sins are forgiven you."

Mat 9:3 Behold, some of the scribes said to themselves, "This man blasphemes."

Mat 9:4 Jesus, knowing their thoughts, said, "Why do you think evil in your hearts?

Mat 9:5 For which is easier, to say, 'Your sins are forgiven;' or to say, 'Get up, and walk?'

Mat 9:6 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins..." (then he said to the paralytic), "Get up, and take up your mat, and go up to your house."

Mat 9:7 He arose and departed to his house.

Mat 9:8 But when the multitudes saw it, they marveled and glorified God, who had given such authority to men.

Mat 9:9 As Jesus passed by from there, he saw a man called Matthew sitting at the tax collection office. He said to him, "Follow me." He got up and followed him.

Mat 9:10 It happened as he sat in the house, behold, many tax collectors and sinners came and sat down with Jesus and his disciples.

Mat 9:11 When the Pharisees saw it, they said to his disciples, "Why does your teacher eat with tax collectors and sinners?"

Mat 9:12 When Jesus heard it, he said to them, "Those who are healthy have no need for a physician, but those who are sick do.

Mat 9:13 But you go and learn what this means: 'I desire mercy, and not sacrifice,' for I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance."

Mat 9:14 Then John's disciples came to him, saying, "Why do we and the Pharisees fast often, but your disciples don't fast?"

Mat 9:15 Jesus said to them, "Can the friends of the bridegroom mourn, as long as the bridegroom is with them? But the days will come when the bridegroom will be taken away from them, and then they will fast.

Mat 9:16 No one puts a piece of unshrunk cloth on an old garment; for the patch would tear away from the garment, and a worse hole is made.

Mat 9:17 Neither do people put new wine into old wineskins, or else the skins would burst, and the wine be spilled, and the skins ruined. No, they put new wine into fresh wineskins, and both are preserved."

Mat 9:18 While he told these things to them, behold, a ruler came and worshiped him, saying, "My daughter has just died, but come and lay your hand on her, and she will live."

Mat 9:19 Jesus got up and followed him, as did his disciples.

Mat 9:20 Behold, a woman who had an issue of blood for twelve years came behind him, and touched the fringe of his garment;

Mat 9:21 for she said within herself, "If I just touch his garment, I will be made well."

Mat 9:22 But Jesus, turning around and seeing her, said, "Daughter, cheer up! Your faith has made you well." And the woman was made well from that hour.

Mat 9:23 When Jesus came into the ruler's house, and saw the flute players, and the crowd in noisy disorder,

Mat 9:24 he said to them, "Make room, because the girl isn't dead, but sleeping." They were ridiculing him.

Mat 9:25 But when the crowd was put out, he entered in, took her by the hand, and the girl arose.

Mat 9:26 The report of this went out into all that land.

Mat 9:27 As Jesus passed by from there, two blind men followed him, calling out and saying, "Have mercy on us, son of David!"

Mat 9:28 When he had come into the house, the blind men came to him. Jesus said to them, "Do you believe that I am able to do this?" They told him, "Yes, Lord."

Mat 9:29 Then he touched their eyes, saying, "According to your faith be it done to you."

Mat 9:30 Their eyes were opened. Jesus strictly commanded them, saying, "See that no one knows about this."

Mat 9:31 But they went out and spread abroad his fame in all that land.

Mat 9:32 As they went out, behold, a mute man who was demon possessed was brought to him.

Mat 9:33 When the demon was cast out, the mute man spoke. The multitudes marveled, saying, "Nothing like this has ever been seen in Israel!"

Mat 9:34 But the Pharisees said, "By the prince of the demons, he casts out demons."

Mat 9:35 Jesus went about all the cities and the villages, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the Good News of the Kingdom, and healing every disease and every sickness among the people.

Mat 9:36 But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion for them, because they were harassed and scattered, like sheep without a shepherd.

Mat 9:37 Then he said to his disciples, "The harvest indeed is plentiful, but the laborers are few.

Mat 9:38 Pray therefore that the Lord of the harvest will send out laborers into his harvest."