5/19/21

The Decline of Atheism by Dave Miller, Ph.D.

 

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=1725

The Decline of Atheism

by  Dave Miller, Ph.D.

Among a growing number of philosophers, intellectuals, and scholars, atheism is in decline in the world. Two reasons have been posited for this circumstance: (1) atheism is losing its scientific underpinnings, and (2) like religion, atheism has produced its own share of lunatics, frauds, and psychopaths (Siemon-Netto, 2005). The former reason is no doubt spurred by the fact that the theory of evolution, as repeatedly documented in the work of Apologetics Press, continues to take a beating for its paltry attempts to coerce and bully students and society into accepting its assertions without adequate evidence.

Despite this seemingly encouraging revelation, in reality, people are not moving closer to New Testament Christianity. In fact, they are simply becoming more confused and more pluralistic. Their belief systems are degenerating into various forms of false spirituality and outright paganism—analogous to the raw forms of paganism described in the Old Testament, from animism and idolatry to ethical perversity and sexual immorality. How tragic that at the very time in history when the world is open to an alternative to unbelief, the United States of America is in the process of abandoning its own foundational underpinnings as articulated by its Founders: the God of the Bible and the one true religion of Christianity. Nevertheless, the Bible provides the only rational, authentic explanation for the meaning of human existence. Unlike atheism, Buddhism, Hinduism, and Islam, the Christian religion constitutes the only accurate barometer of spiritual reality and the only means of preparation for the afterlife. The Bible merits honest and serious evaluation by every person. It is not enough to be religious—one must be religiously right.

REFERENCE

Siemon-Netto, Uwe (2005), “Science, ‘Frauds’ Trigger a Decline in Atheism,” Washington Times, March 4, [On-line], URL: http://www.washtimes.com/world/20050303-115733-9519r.htm.

The Creativity of the Creator Declares His Glory by Eric Lyons, M.Min.

 

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=1609

The Creativity of the Creator Declares His Glory

by  Eric Lyons, M.Min.

Much of mankind loves to classify and sort things. We like to sort socks by color and shirts by kind. We categorize books topically. We arrange files alphabetically. We organize tools by their function. We take pictures of people by their size (“tallest in the back, shortest up front”) and then arrange them chronologically in “properly” labeled albums. We like things certain ways; we want things “just so”; and when things do not fall in line with our ideas and expectations, we wonder what happened.

Sometimes we just need to “sit back, relax, and enjoy the view” of God’s handiwork. The Lord says, “Be still, and know that I am God” (Psalm 46:10). Sometimes we need to press the pause button and take a page out of God’s Creation revelation (Romans 1:20). Recognize that not everything fits neatly in a systematic filing system, and be thankful that God filled the Earth with His glorious, “manifold…works” (Psalm 104:24; Isaiah 6:3)—that He created all manner of creatures, some of which do not fit neatly in a sorting system, but certainly declare their Maker’s majesty.

Take the duck-billed platypus, for example. It is unlike any other animal on Earth. Scientists classify the platypus as a mammal, but it hardly fits neatly into this category. It is about the size of a house cat with fur thicker than a polar bear’s. It can store food in its mouth like a chipmunk. It has a beaver-like tail and webbed feet like an otter. It has spurs like a rooster, lays eggs like a turtle, and produces venom like a snake. Last, but not least, it has a clumsy-looking, duck-like bill with a complex electro-receptor system in it that allows the platypus to sense weak electric impulses in the muscles of its prey (Scheich, et al., 1986, 319:401-402). The platypus’ modern scientific name (Ornithorhynchus anatinus) means “duck-like, bird snout,” yet we call it a mammal. Truly, if there was ever an animal to call “unique,” it would be the platypus.

Consider also the seahorse. It is one of the most curious-looking animals on the planet. Though it has a head like a horse, eyes like a lizard, a tail like an opossum, and can swim like a submarine, the seahorse is considered a fish. Scientists refer to the seahorse as Hippocampus, a name derived from two Greek words: hippo, meaning “horse,” and campus, meaning “sea creature.”

Most fish swim horizontally by moving their bodies back and forth, from side to side. Seahorses, on the other hand, live in an upright position and swim vertically—like a submarine that can go up and down. The seahorse can properly maintain its balance as it goes up and down in the water because of the gas within its swim bladder (“Sea horse,” 1997, 10:579). Like a well-designed submarine that manipulates gas in order to submerge and resurface, the seahorse can alternate the amount of gas in its bladder to move up and down in the water (Juhasz, 1994). The life of the seahorse is dependent on a perfectly designed bladder. With a damaged bladder (or without a bladder altogether) a seahorse would sink to the ocean floor and die. How do evolutionists logically explain the evolution of this swim bladder if the seahorse has always needed it to survive? If it has always needed it, then it must have always had it, else there would be no seahorse.

Perhaps the most puzzling feature of the seahorse, which does not neatly file away in a normal animal fact folder, is that seahorses are the only known animals in which males actually become pregnant, carry young, and give birth. The male seahorse is designed with a special kangaroo-like pouch near its stomach. At just the right time during the courtship, the female seahorse deposits hundreds of eggs into the pouch of the male. The male fertilizes the eggs, and for the next few weeks carries the unborn seahorses, before squirting the fully formed babies out of the pouch (Danielson, 2002). If nothing like this process is known in the animal kingdom, why would anyone think that evolution can logically explain it? How do undirected time and chance stumble across a different and better way for a particular kind of fish to have babies? Did the first male seahorse to give birth simply have an irritable mate who refused to have babies unless he carried and birthed them? Suffice it to say, seahorses are as baffling to the theory of evolution as are duck-billed platypuses. These unusual animals cry out for a creative Creator, Who cannot be contained in the naturalistic box of evolution. As the patriarch Job asked, “Who…does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this, in whose hand is the life of every living thing?... Ask the beasts, and they will teach you…and the fish of the sea will explain to you” (Job 12:9-10,7-8).

CONCLUSION

God’s creation is full of variety and complexity. The natural world testifies to a masterful Maker, a creative Creator. He made an animal with the bill of a duck and the tail of a beaver. He gave a sea creature the head of a horse and the tail of an opossum. He made furry animals (i.e., bats) that fly on membranous wings, while making flightless birds (i.e., penguins) that live on land and “fly” through frigid waters. He made the prickly porcupine, the puffer fish, and a sloth so slow that it makes the tortoise look like a cheetah. As much as God’s creation testifies to His omniscient, omnipotent, sovereign nature (Job 38-41; Romans 1:20), I respectfully suggest that our great God seems to have had a lot of fun at the foundation of the world. At the very least, His amazing creativity has provided man a lot of laughs and entertainment since the beginning of time.

Oh come, let us sing to the Lord! Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
For the Lord is the great God, and the great King above all gods.
In His hand are the deep places of the earth; the heights of the hills are His also.
The sea is His, for He made it; and His hands formed the dry land.
Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord our Maker (Psalm 95:1-6).

O Lord, how manifold are Your works! In wisdom You have made them all.
The earth is full of Your possessions….
I will sing to the Lord as long as I live; I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.
May my meditation be sweet to Him; I will be glad in the Lord (Psalm 104:24,33-34).

REFERENCES

Danielson, Stentor (2002), “Seahorse Fathers Take Reins in Childbirth,” National Geographic News, June 14, http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/pf/90683716.html.

Juhasz, David (1994), “The Amazing Seahorse,” Answers in Genesis, June 1, http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/cm/v16/n3/seahorse.

Scheich, Henning, et al. (1986), “Electroreception and Electrolocation in Platypus,” Nature, 319:401-402, January 30.

“Sea horse” (1997), The New Encyclopaedia Britannica (Chicago, IL: Encyclopaedia Britannica).

The Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God by Jeff Miller, Ph.D.

 

https://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=5300

The Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God

by  Jeff Miller, Ph.D.

The famous philosopher from the Middle Ages, Thomas Aquinas, is generally given credit for articulating what is known as the Cosmological Argument for the existence of God, although the Bible described the essence of the argument hundreds of years before he was on the scene (e.g., Hebrews 3:4). The argument essentially says that the cosmos is here and had to come from somewhere. It could not have created itself. Nothing comes from nothing in nature, as verified by the First Law of Thermodynamics (Miller, 2013).

The rational person will only draw conclusions that are supported by the evidence (Ruby, 1960, pp. 130-131). The evidence from the natural realm indicates that every material effect must have an adequate antecedent (or simultaneous—Miller, 2012a) cause. The mass of a paper clip is not going to provide sufficient gravitational pull to cause a tidal wave. There must be an adequate cause for the tidal wave, like a massive, offshore, underwater earthquake (“Tsunamis,” 2000, pp. 1064, 2000). Leaning against a mountain will certainly not cause it to topple over. Jumping up and down on the ground will not cause an earthquake. If a chair is not placed in an empty room, the room will remain chairless. If matter was not made and placed in the Universe, we would not exist. There must be an adequate antecedent or simultaneous cause for every material effect. If this Law of Cause and Effect seems intuitive to you, then you understand why the Cosmological Argument is powerful, logical evidence for the existence of God.

Causality and History

The Law of Cause and Effect, or Law/Principle of Causality, has been investigated and recognized for millennia. From at least the time of Plato (1966, 1:96a-b) and Aristotle (2009, 1[3]) in the fourth century B.C., philosophers have pondered causality. In 1781, the renowned German philosopher Immanuel Kant wrote concerning the Principle of Causality in his Critique of Pure Reason that “everything that happens presupposes a previous condition, which it follows with absolute certainty, in conformity with a rule…. All changes take place according to the law of the connection of Cause and Effect” (Kant, 1781, emp. added). In the nineteenth century, German medical scientist and Father of Cellular Pathology, Rudolf Virchow, affirmed that “[e]verywhere there is mechanistic process only, with the unbreakable necessity of cause and effect” (1858, p. 115, emp. added). Fast forwarding another century, our increased understanding of the world still did not cause the law to be discredited. In 1934, W.T. Stace, professor of philosophy at Princeton University, in A Critical History of Greek Philosophy, wrote:

Every student of logic knows that this is the ultimate canon of the sciences, the foundation of them all. If we did not believe the truth of causation, namely, everything which has a beginning has a cause, and that in the same circumstances the same things invariably happen, all the sciences would at once crumble to dust. In every scientific investigation this truth is assumed (p. 6, emp. added).

The truth of causality is so substantiated that it is taken for granted in scientific investigation. It is “assumed.”

This principle is not some idea that can simply be brushed aside without consideration. If the Law of Causality were not in effect, science could not proceed—it would “crumble to dust” since, by its very nature, it involves gathering evidence and testing hypotheses in order to find regularities in nature. The goal of scientific experimentation is to determine what will happen (i.e., what will be the effect) if one does certain things (i.e., initiates certain causes). If there were no relationship between cause and effect, then nothing could be taken for granted. One day gravity may be in effect, and the next day it may not, and there would be no point in studying it, since it might be different tomorrow. There would be no such thing as a “scientific law,” since there would be no such thing as a “regularity,” which is fundamental to the definition of a law of science (McGraw-Hill Dictionary…, 2003, p. 1182).

Moving farther into the 20th century, the Law of Cause and Effect still had not been repealed. In 1949, Albert Einstein, in The World as I See It, under the heading “The Religiousness of Science,” wrote, “But the scientist is possessed by the sense of universal causation” (2007, p. 35, emp. added). In The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, renowned American philosopher and professor Richard Taylor wrote, “Nevertheless, it is hardly disputable that the idea of causation is not only indispensable in the common affairs of life but in all applied sciences as well” (1967, p. 57, emp. added).

Even today, when scientific exploration has brought us to unprecedented heights of knowledge, the age old Law of Causality cannot be denied. Today’s dictionaries define “causality” as:

  • “the principle that nothing can happen without being caused” (“Causality,” 2009).
  • “the principle that everything has a cause” (“Causality,” 2008).

The National Academy of Science’s guidebook, Teaching about Evolution and the Nature of Science, says, “One goal of science is to understand nature. ‘Understanding’ in science means relating one natural phenomenon to another and recognizing the causes and effects of phenomena…. Progress in science consists of the development of better explanations for the causes of natural phenomena” (1998, p. 42. emp. added). Notice that, according to the National Academy of Science (NAS), there can be no progress in science without causality. The NAS, though entirely naturalistic in its approach to science, recognizes causality to be fundamental to the nature of science. It is not, and cannot rationally be, denied—except when necessary in order to prop up a deficient worldview. Its ramifications have been argued for years, but after the dust settles, the Law of Cause and Effect still stands unscathed, having weathered the trials thrust upon it for thousands of years.

The Law of Causality—A Problem for Atheism

The Law of Causality is fundamental to science, and yet it stands in the way of the bulk of today’s scientific community due to their flawed definition of “science.” In an interview in 1994, the late, famous evolutionary astronomer Robert Jastrow, founder and former director of the Goddard Institute for Space Studies at NASA, said:

As Einstein said, scientists live by their faith in causation, and the chain of cause and effect. Every effect has a cause that can be discovered by rational arguments. And this has been a very successful program, if you will, for unraveling the history of the universe. But it just fails at the beginning…. So time, really, going backward, comes to a halt at that point. Beyond that, that curtain can never be lifted…. And that is really a blow at the very fundamental premise that motivates all scientists (as quoted in Heeren, 1995, p. 303, emp. added).

The scientific community today, by and large, incorrectly defines “science” in such a way that anything supernatural cannot be considered “scientific,” and therefore science “fails” in certain areas. Only natural phenomena are deemed worthy of being categorized “science.” According to the definition, if something cannot be empirically observed and tested, it is not “scientific.” [NOTE: The naturalistic community contradicts itself on this matter, since several fundamental planks of evolutionary theory are unnatural—they have never been observed and all scientific investigation has proven them to be impossible (e.g., spontaneous generation of life and the laws of science, macroevolution, etc.; cf. Miller, 2012b).] One result of this flawed definition is highlighted by Jastrow, himself, in the above quote. Contrary to Jastrow’s statement, the laws of science, by definition, do not “fail.” They have no known exceptions. So, it would be unscientific to claim, without conclusive evidence in support of the claim, that a law has failed.

This leaves atheistic evolutionists in a quandary when trying to explain how the effect of the infinitely complex Universe could have come about “unscientifically”—without a natural cause. Four decades ago, Jastrow wrote:

The Universe, and everything that has happened in it since the beginning of time, are a grand effect without a known cause. An effect without a known cause? That is not the world of science; it is a world of witchcraft, of wild events and the whims of demons, a medieval world that science has tried to banish. As scientists, what are we to make of this picture? I do not know (1977, p. 21).

When Jastrow says that there is no “known cause” for everything in the Universe, he is referring to the fact that there is no known natural cause. If atheism were true, if the material realm is all that exists, if naturalistic science can shed light on the matter of origins, there must be a natural explanation of what caused the Universe. Scientists and philosophers recognize that there must be a cause that would be sufficient to bring about matter and the Universe—and yet no natural cause is known. The McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms says that “causality,” in physics, is “the principle that an event cannot precede its cause” (p. 346). However, the atheist must concede that in order for his/her claim to be valid, the effect of the Universe did not precede its cause—rather, it actually came about without it! Such a viewpoint is hardly in keeping with science.

The Law of Causality—A Friend to Creationists

Instead of flippantly disregard­ing the truth of the Law of Causality because it contradicts naturalistic theories, why not recognize that the highly respected, exception-less Law of Causality is not the problem? Why not recognize the fact that naturalistic theories, such as the Theory of Evolution and the Big Bang Theory, are simply not in harmony with science on a fundamental level? Why not consider an option that does not contradict the Law? If one were to follow the evidence wherever it leads, rather than defining God out of science, one is led to the unavoidable conclusion that there must be Someone super-natural that caused the Universe to be. If every material (i.e., natural) effect must have a cause, then the ultimate Cause of the Universe must be supernatural.

Every material effect must have an adequate antecedent or simultaneous cause. Notice that creationists have absolutely no problem with the truth articulated by this God-ordained law from antiquity. In Hebrews 3:4, the Bible says that “every house is built by someone, but He who built all things is God.” A house must have a cause—namely, a builder. It will not build itself. Scientifically speaking, according to the Law of Cause and Effect, there had to be a Cause for the Universe. And that is the essence of the Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God.

The only book on the planet which contains characteristics that prove its production to be above human capability is the Bible (see Butt, 2007). The God of the Bible is its author (2 Timothy 3:16-17), and in the very first verse of the inspired material He gave to humans, He articulated with authority and clarity that He is the Cause Who brought about the Universe and all that is in it. “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the Earth” (Genesis 1:1).

Emile Borel was a famous French mathematician for whom the Borel lunar crater was named (O’Connor and Robertson, 2008). He once said concerning the amazing human brain that is able to author works of literature, “Now the complexity of that brain must therefore have been even richer than the particular work to which it gave birth” (1963, p. 125). The effect of the brain’s existence, like a work of literature, must have an adequate cause. In the same way, we know that the infinite Mind behind the creation of this infinitely complex Universe had to be, and was, more than adequate for the task of bringing it all into existence (Revelation 19:6).

Uncaused Cause?

"But if everything had to have a beginning, why does the same concept not apply to God? Doesn’t God need a cause, too? Who caused God?” First, notice that this statement is based on a misunderstanding of what the Law of Cause and Effect claims concerning the Universe. The law states that every material effect must have an adequate antecedent or simultaneous cause. A law of science is determined through the observation of nature—not super-nature. Since they have not observed the supernatural realm, scientists cannot apply the scientific Law of Causality to it. The laws of nature do not apply to non-material entities. The God of the Bible is a spiritual Being (John 4:24) and therefore is not governed by physical law. In the words of skeptic Michael Shermer, executive director of the Skeptics Society and columnist for Scientific American:

If God is a being in space and time, it means that He is restrained by the laws of nature and the contingencies of chance, just like all other beings of this world. An omniscient and omnipotent God must be above such constraints, not subject to nature and chance. God as creator of heaven and earth and all things invisible would need necessarily to be outside such created objects (2006, Ch. 8, emp. added).

Recall also what Professor W.T. Stace wrote in A Critical History of Greek Philosophy concerning causality. “[E]verything which has a beginning has a cause” (p. 6, emp. added). God, according to the Bible, had no beginning. Psalm 90:2 says concerning God, “Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever You had formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, You are God” (emp. added). The Bible describes God as a Being Who has always been and always will be—“from everlasting to everlasting.” He, therefore, had no beginning. Recall Hebrews 3:4 again, which indicates that God is not constrained by the Law of Cause and Effect, as are houses, but rather, presides as the Chief Builder—the Uncaused Causer—the Being Who initially set all effects into motion (John 1:3).

Again, philosophers recognize that, logically, there must be an initial cause of the Universe. [Those who attempt to sidestep the need for a Cause and argue the eternality of the physical Universe are in direct contradiction to the Law of Causality (since the Universe is a physical effect that demands a cause), as well as the Second Law of Thermodynamics, which indicates that nothing physical lasts forever (see Miller, 2013).] Aristotle, in Physics, discussed the logical line of reasoning that leads to the conclusion that the initial cause of motion must be something that is not, itself, in motion—an unmoved mover (1984, 1:428). Aquinas built on Aristotle’s reasoning and said:

Now whatever is in motion is put in motion by another…. For motion is nothing else than the reduction of something from potentiality to actuality…. It is therefore impossible that in the same respect and in the same way a thing should be both mover and moved, i.e., that it should move itself. If that by which it is put in motion be itself put in motion, then this also must needs be put in motion by another, and that by another again. But this cannot go on to infinity, because then there would be no first mover, and, consequently no other mover…. Therefore it is necessary to admit a first efficient cause, to which everyone gives the name of God (1952, 19:12,13, emp. added).

God, not being a physical, finite being, but an eternal, spiritual being (by definition), would not be subject to the condition of requiring a beginning. Therefore, the law does not apply to Him. Concerning the Law of Causality, Kant said that “everything which is contingent has a cause, which, if itself contingent, must also have a cause; and so on, till the series of subordinated causes must end with an absolutely necessary cause, without which it would not possess completeness” (2008, p. 284, emp. added). An uncaused Cause is necessary. Only God sufficiently fills that void.

Consider: in the same way that dimensional space—length, width, and height—are part of the physical Universe, time, itself, is as well. In the same way that space had to have a cause, time itself had to as well: time had a beginning. That means that its Creator logically could not have a beginning. A “beginning” implies a specific timeframe that has begun. Without time in existence, there could be no such thing as a “beginning.” So the Cause of the Universe could not have a beginning since He created time, itself. In essence, there was no such thing as a “beginning” until the uncaused Cause began something. [NOTE: If time was not created, then it exists apart from God and even God is subject to it. The Bible affirms, however, that time itself was created along with the Universe when it uses the phrase “in the beginning” in Genesis 1:1.]

Consider further: if there ever were a time in history when absolutely nothing existed—not even God—then nothing would continue to exist today, since nothing comes from nothing (in keeping with common sense and the First Law of Thermodynamics; Miller, 2013). However, we know something exists (e.g., the Universe)—which means something had to exist eternally, or we would eventually get to a point in past time when nothing existed, which we have already noted cannot be. That something that existed forever could not be physical or material, since such things do not last forever (cf. the Second Law of Thermodynamics; Miller, 2013). It follows that the eternal something must be non-physical or non-material. It must be mind rather than matter. Logically, there must be a Mind that has existed forever. That Mind, according to the Bible, is God. He, being spirit, is not subject to the Second Law of Thermodynamics and can exist forever—the uncreated Creator. While usable energy in the Universe is inevitably expended, according to the Second Law, moving the Universe ever closer to a state of completed deterioration and unusable energy, God’s power is “eternal” (Romans 1:20).

Of old You laid the foundation of the Earth, and the heavens are the work of Your hands. They will perish, but You will endure; yes, they will all grow old like a garment; like a cloak You will change them, and they will be changed. But You are the same, and Your years will have no end (Psalm 102:25-27, emp. added).

The Universe exists. It cannot be eternal according to the Second Law of Thermodynamics. It could not create itself according to the First Law of Thermodynamics. Its existence requires an adequate, supernatural Cause. The Bible calls Him Jehovah.

REFERENCES

Aquinas, Thomas (1952), Summa Theologica, trans. Fathers of the English Dominican Province (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago).

Aristotle (1984), Physics in The Complete Works of Aristotle, ed. Jonathan Barnes (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press).

Aristotle (2009), Metaphysics, trans. W.D. Ross, http://classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/metaphysics.1.i.html.

Borel, Emile (1963), Probability and Certainty (New York: Walker).

Butt, Kyle (2007), Behold! The Word of God (Montgomery, AL: Apologetics Press), http://apologeticspress.org/pdfs/e-books_pdf/Behold%20the%20Word%20of%20God.pdf.

“Causality” (2008), Concise Oxford English Dictionary (Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press), http://www.wordreference.com/definition/causality.

“Causality” (2009), Collins English Dictionary—Complete & Unabridged (New York: HarperCollins Publishers), tenth edition, http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/Causality?x=35&y=25.

Einstein, Albert (2007), The World As I See It (New York: BN Publishing).

Heeren, Fred (1995), Show Me God (Wheeling, IL: Searchlight Publications).

Jastrow, Robert (1977), Until the Sun Dies (New York: W.W. Norton).

Kant, Immanuel (1781), The Critique of Pure Reason, trans. J.M.D. Meiklejohn (London: Henry G. Bohn), 1878 edition, http://philosophy.eserver.org/kant/critique-of-pure-reason.txt.

Kant, Immanuel (2008), Kant’s Critiques: The Critique of Pure Reason, the Critique of Practical Reason, the Critique of Judgment (Radford, VA: Wilder Publications).

McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific and Technical Terms (2003), pub. M.D. Licker (New York: McGraw-Hill), sixth edition.

Miller, Jeff (2012a), “Simultaneous Causation,” Apologetics Press, http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=687&topic=57.

Miller, Jeff (2012b), “The Atheistic Naturalist’s Self-Contradiction,” Apologetics Press, https://www.apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=9&article=4225&topic=296.

Miller, Jeff (2013), “Evolution and the Laws of Science: The Laws of Thermodynamics,” Apologetics Press, http://apologeticspress.org/APContent.aspx?category=12&article=2786.

O’Connor, John J. and Edmund F. Robertson (2008), “Felix Edouard Justin Emile Borel,” The MacTutor History of Mathematics Archive, http://www-history.mcs.st-andrews.ac.uk/Mathematicians/Borel.html.

Plato (1966), Plato in Twelve Volumes, trans. Harold North Fowler (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press), http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0170%3Atext%3DPhaedo%3Asection%3D96a.

Ruby, Lionel (1960), Logic: An Introduction (Chicago, IL: J.B. Lippincott).

Shermer, Michael (2006), Why Darwin Matters (New York: Henry Holt), Kindle file.

Stace, W.T. (1934), A Critical History of Greek Philosophy (London: Macmillan).

Taylor, Richard (1967), “Causation,” in The Encyclopedia of Philosophy, ed. Paul Edwards (New York: Philosophical Library).

Teaching about Evolution and the Nature of Science (1998), National Academy of Sciences (Washington, DC: National Academy Press).

“Tsunamis” (2000), The Oxford Companion to the Earth, ed. Paul L. Hancock and Brian J. Skinner (Oxford, U.K.: Oxford University Press).

Virchow, Rudolf (1858), “On the Mechanistic Interpretation of Life,” in Disease, Life, and Man: Selected Essays, ed. by L.J. Rather (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press), 1958 edition.

"THE GOSPEL OF MARK" Binding The Hands Of Jesus (15:1) by Mark Copeland

 







"THE GOSPEL OF MARK"

Binding The Hands Of Jesus (15:1)

 
INTRODUCTION

1. In Mk 15:1, we are told the enemies of Jesus bound Him and sent Him to Pilate...

   "Immediately, in the morning, the chief priests held a consultation
   with the elders and scribes and the whole council; and they bound
   Jesus, led Him away and delivered Him to Pilate."

2. As we read this, it is easy for our hearts to be filled with sadness,
   and even with a touch of righteous indignation for that crowd that
   bound Jesus in such a way

3. And yet, there are few today who are not guilty of binding the hands
   of Jesus in a figurative way!

[To see what I mean, consider some of the various ways we can be guilty
of "Binding The Hands of Jesus" today...]

I. BY REFUSING TO OBEY THE GOSPEL

   A. JESUS STRETCHED OUT HIS HANDS AND DIED FOR OUR SINS...
      1. Today, through His gospel, He pleads with all to take advantage
         of His vicarious suffering
      2. He does not want us to suffer for the guilt of our own sins
      3. In truth, then, His "tender invitation" of Mt 11:28-30 is still being offered today

   B. BUT WHEN ONE REFUSES TO OBEY THE GOSPEL...
      1. The hands of Jesus are bound!
      2. There is no way such a person can then receive the benefits of Jesus death!
      3. For him or her, the death of Jesus was in vain!

   C. IS THIS TRUE OF YOU...?
      1. It will be...if you do not obey the gospel of Christ - cf. Mk 16:15-16; Ac 2:38
      2. And if so, you will one day have to face His righteous indignation! - 2Th 1:7-9

[But even those who obey the gospel can be guilty of "Binding The Hands
Of Jesus".  How...?]

II. BY REFUSING TO BE TRANSFORMED

   A. CHRIST’S WILL IS THAT WE BE TRANSFORMED...
      1. This transformation involves a renewal of the mind - Ro 12:1-2; Ep 4:20-24
      2. Through study and meditation upon the Word of God - 1Pe 1:23-2:2; Php 4:8

   B. BUT MANY NEGLECT THE INSTRUMENT OF RENEWAL...
      1. We do not "receive with meekness the implanted word..." - Jm 1:21
      2. Thus we "bind the hands of Jesus" that we do not change!

   C. ARE WE GUILTY OF THIS...?
      1. We are, if we neglect to study the Bible on our own!
      2. We are, if we fail to take advantage of opportunities to study with others!

[Neglect the transforming power of the Word of God, and we are just as
guilty of "Binding The Hands Of Jesus" as were those who delivered Him
to Pilate! We can also bind the hands of Jesus...]

III. BY REFUSING TO PRAY

   A. JESUS HAS BECOME OUR HIGH PRIEST...
      1. He became man for this very purpose - He 2:17-18
      2. He’s made it possible for us to boldly approach the throne of grace in prayer - He 4:14-16
      3. As our high priest...
         a. He is able to save those who come to God through Him - He 7:25
         b. He "ever lives" to make intercession for us - ibid.

   B.  WHEN WE DON’T PRAY AS WE SHOULD...
      1. Jesus cannot be our high priest, our intercessor!
      2. Figuratively, we’ve taken the "praying hands" of Jesus and
         "bound" them behind His back!

   C. ARE WE DOING THIS...?
      1. If so, what a travesty this is!
      2. For here is Jesus...
         a. Who "lives" to intercede for us
         b. But Who can’t, because we prevent Him from doing so by our failure to pray!

[Another way to be guilty of "Binding The Hands Of Jesus"...]

IV. BY REFUSING TO DO OUR PART IN THE CHURCH

   A. THE CHURCH IS DESCRIBED AS THE "BODY" OF CHRIST... - Ep 1:22-23
      1. As His body, we are individually members of one another - 1Co 12:27
      2. As members of one another, we are to care for one another - Ep 4:15-16
      3. It is through such "mutual edification", that Christ provides
         much of His help for the members of His body!

   B. WHEN WE FAIL TO DO OUR SHARE, AGAIN JESUS IS "BOUND"...!
      1. Just as our physical head can do little if our bodily members
         fail to follow its leading, so it is with Jesus and His church!
      2. Jesus could do so much more for His members, if only more of
         the members did their part!

   C. HAVE YOU EVER CONSIDERED...?
      1. That by failing to do our part, we "handicap" the body of Christ?
      2. That because of neglect or apathy...
         a. Either the whole body of Christ suffers
         b. Or others are forced to do "double duty" in order to make up the difference?

[Yes, there are many ways we can be just as guilty of "Binding The Hands
Of Jesus" today as were the religious leaders who delivered Jesus to
Pilate!  But consider just one more...]

V. BY REFUSING TO SHARE THE GOSPEL WITH THE LOST

   A. DISCIPLES ARE JESUS’ "HANDS" TO TAKE THE GOSPEL TO THE LOST...
      1. Consider Mt 28:19-20; Mk 16:15-16; 1Pe 2:9
      2. In every case of conversion recorded in Acts, Jesus used a
         disciple to tell the good news
      3. Jesus works the same way today!

   B. TO THE DEGREE WE KEEP THE GOOD NEWS TO OURSELVES...
      1. We have "bound the hands" of Jesus once again!
      2. We hinder Jesus from telling others of His wonderful grace!

   C. ARE WE "BINDING THE HANDS OF JESUS" IN THIS WAY...?
      1. Every day, countless souls die with no hope of eternal life
      2. This need not be, if more made sharing of the gospel the
         primary concern in their lives!
      3. Sadly, in too many cases the primary concern of Christians is
         the pursuit of pleasure and acquisition of worldly treasures!

CONCLUSION

1. Yes, one does not have to literally "bind the hands of Jesus" to be
   guilty of the same sort of offense that we read about in Mk 15:1; as we
   have seen, there are many other ways as well!

2. Why not today, resolve to "loose the hands of Jesus" so that in us
   and through us He may accomplish His full desire?  Which is...
   a. To save us!
   b. To transform us!
   c. To use us!

               Christ Has No Hands But Our Hands
                  ~ By Annie Johnson Flint ~

     Christ has no hands but our hands to do His work today
     He has no feet but our feet to lead men in the way
     He has no tongue but our tongue to tell men how He died
     He has no help but our help to bring them to His side.

     We are the only Bible the careless world will read,
     We are the sinner’s gospel; we are the scoffer’s creed;
     We are the Lord’s last message, given in word and deed;
     What if the type is crooked? What if the print is blurred?

     What if our hands are busy with other work than His?
     What if our feet are walking where sin’s allurement is?
     What if our tongue is speaking of things His lips would spurn?
     How can we hope to help Him or welcome His return?
         
Executable Outlines, Copyright © Mark A. Copeland, 2016

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How To Cope When Adversity Strikes by Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

 

https://thepreachersword.com/2012/12/19/how-to-cope-when-adversity-strikes/#more-3031

How To Cope When Adversity Strikes

adversityStrikesJob in the long ago said, “man that is born of woman is  of few days and full of trouble.”  How true it is.  Trouble and tragedy is not limited to those that are in the national consciousness, whose names and faces are in the news.

While our nation has been absorbed in and hurting for those affected by the unthinkable murder of the little children in Newtown, CT, others have suffered during the past several days as well.  Their names may be unknown. Their story untold.  Their cry unheard.

But their pain is just as real. Their hearts also are broken.  Their emotions are drained.

I wonder how many have lost a loved one in the past five days?  Who has received a call that their child has died in an accident?  Or learned that a loved one is dying of cancer?  Somewhere a mother has suddenly died leaving a grief-stricken mate and hurting little children.  A father has walked out on his family.  Someone has lost their life-savings.  A fire has destroyed the family home.  Or worse yet taken the lives of little children.

How do I know these things?  Because life is filled with pain. Suffering. Sickness.  And death.  Every day somewhere relationships are ruptured.  Spirits are disquieted.  Souls as distressed.  Hearts are broken.

So what is the answer?  How do we cope?  Where do we turn when adversity strikes?

Let me make four suggestions based on Biblical teaching.

(1) Live in God’s Presence.  James said, “Draw near to God and he will draw near to you.” Jesus promised “I  am with you always even to the end of the world.  Mt 28:29.

When we suffer adversity, we can know that we are in the presence of God.  What a great encouragement, comfort and consolation.

One man said, where was God when my son died?” The answer is: The same place he was when His son diedIf you feel forsaken, Jesus knows how you feel. God is not a spectator of our pain, we are in his presence.

(2) Learn from God’s Promises.   The Psalmist affirmed that God would be with us.  That he is “our refuge and strength, a very present help in time of trouble.”  God promises help. Comfort. Hope.  He says, “I care.  And I will care for you.” (I Pet. 5:7).  He feels our pain.  And will supply our every need.

     (3) Lean on God’s Power When Sennacherib, king of Assyria invaded Judah, the king stood up and said.   “Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed before the king of Assyria, nor before all the multitude that is with him; for there are more with us than with him. 8 With him is an arm of flesh; but with us is the Lord our God, to help us and to fight our battles.” And the people were strengthened by the words of Hezekiah king of Judah” (2 Chron 32:7-8)

Finite strength is undependable and expendable, but God’s infinite power is sufficient for every need.  Indeed we are “kept by the power of God” (1 Pet 1:5)

      (4) Look For God’s Purpose  God’s purpose is not to make you miserable.  Paul said to “rejoice in the Lord” God does not send pain, problems and pressures. God is the giver of good gifts. (Jas. 1:18)

Why does adversity strike?  Maybe it is because of the evil of other people.  Sometimes it is the result of living in a natural world that is filled with sin, suffering and separation.  It could be through our own poor choice (Gal. 6:7-8) Or maybe  the Devil is trying to trap us (1 Pet. 5:8)

So what is God’s Purpose for me in adversity?  To walk by faith and not by sight (2 Cor 5:7)   To Use adversity to make me stronger (Jas 1:2-3)  To focus on the eternal plan in Jesus.  (Eph. 3:11)   To claim victory through his love, grace and mercy. (Rom 8:30-31)

We all will suffer adversity in this life.  Sometimes extreme tragedy will befall us.  Yet, whatever the trial or trouble, there is help and hope.  There is God.

–Ken Weliever, The Preacherman

SELECTIVE "FAITH ONLY" SALVATION BY STEVE FINNELL

 http://steve-finnell.blogspot.com/2016/11/selective-faith-only-salvation-by-steve.html

 SELECTIVE "FAITH ONLY" SALVATION BY STEVE FINNELL


FAITH ONLY BELIEVERS IN CHRIST DENY THAT THE NEW COVENANT PLAN OF SALVATION WAS NOT IN EFFECT UNTIL AFTER THE DEATH, BURIAL, AND RESURRECTION OF JESUS.  IN ORDER TO BE SAVED WITHOUT BEING BAPTIZED INTO CHRIST FOR THE FORGIVENESS OF THEIR SINS,THEY PROCLAIM THAT THEY CAN BE SAVED LIKE THE THIEF ON THE CROSS. (LUKE 23:39-43)

IF MEN TODAY CAN BE SAVED LIKE, THE THIEF ON THE CROSS, THEN WHY CAN THEY NOT BE SAVED LIKE, THE RICH YOUNG RULER?


LUKE 18:18-22 A RULER QUESTIONED HIM, SAYING, "GOOD TEACHER, WHAT MUST I DO TO INHERIT ETERNAL LIFE?" 19 JESUS SAID TO HIM, "WHY DO YOU CALL ME GOOD? NO ONE IS GOOD EXCEPT GOD ALONE. 20 YOU KNOW THE COMMANDMENTS, 'DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY, DO NOT MURDER, DO NOT STEAL, DO NOT BEAR FALSE WITNESS, HONOR YOUR FATHER AND MOTHER.' 21 AND HE SAID, "ALL THESE THINGS I HAVE KEPT FROM MY YOUTH." 22 WHEN JESUS HEARD THIS, HE SAID TO HIM, "ONE THING YOU STILL LACK; SELL ALL THAT YOU POSSESS AND DISTRIBUTE IT TO THE POOR, AND YOU SHALL HAVE TREASURE IN HEAVEN; COME AND FOLLOW ME."


WHAT WAS THE RICH MAN'S PLAN OF SALVATION?

The rich man's question was what must I do to inherit eternal life?

1. Do not commit adultery.
2. Do not murder.
3. Do not steal.
4. Do not bear false witness.
5. Honor your father and mother.
6. Sell all your possessions and distribute them to the poor.

Jesus said do this and you shall have treasure in heaven.

Can men today be saved by, the rich man's plan of salvation? OF COURSE NOT!

Can men today be saved by, the thief on the cross plan of salvation? OF COURSE NOT!

The apostle Peter preached the first gospel sermon under the New Covenant on the Day of Pentecost.

THE NEW COVENANT PLANT OF SALVATION
1. FAITH: John 3:16
2. REPENTANCE: Acts 2:38
3. CONFESSION Romans 10:9-10
4. WATER BAPTISM: Acts 2:38, 1 Peter 3:21, Mark 16:16, Acts 22:16, Galatians 3:27, Romans 6:1-7, Colossians 2:12-13.

(All Scripture quotes from: NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE) 

 

Broken; All Broken by Sandra F. Cobble

 

http://www.oldpaths.com/Archive/Cobble/Sandra/Fontaine/1933/broken.html

Broken; All Broken

Broken. They are all broken. All your good resolutions are broken. Some of them seemed so simple, yet you could not keep even the simplest of them. You have failed. Now you are a failure. But are you a failure? Let us examine carefully the term "failure," both in the light of the scriptures and in the light of reason.

The term "failure" is not found in the King James Version of the Bible, but a number of Hebrew and Greek words have been rendered "fail". The dictionary defines failure: "A turning out to be unsuccessful, disappointing, or lacking ... one who or that which proves unsuccessful or disappointing..." And you were unsuccessful. You were a disappointment to yourself and to your associates? You were a failure. Or were you?

Aristotle taught that since a man was the sum of his actions, therefore a man's state of being was as were his actions. Because of this teaching, we have come to equate a man's actions with his state of being. Thus, when a man's action fails, we call him a failure. When his action is successful, we call him successful. Is this logical? Are we not creatures of many and varied actions, some of which are failures and some of which are successful? For example, a small child is learning to ride a bicycle. He keeps falling. He is failing in his attempt to ride the bicycle. But he can walk. He can run. He can express joy or sorrow. He can laugh. He can sing. Is he a failure? Or is it his action of attempting to ride the bicycle that is a failure? Do you see the difference? Yes, your efforts did fail, but that did not make you a failure!

Perhaps at this point we should distinguish between failing and sinning. The Greek word hamartia, which we translate "sin", means "to miss the mark". Thus, when we fail, we tend to think that we have sinned. The Greek words translated "fail" are: ekleipo -- to leave out, epileipo -- insufficient, and pipto -- to fall. While the meanings may sound similar, there is a distinction. Nowhere in the King James Version of the New Testament do we find hamartia translated "fail". Nor do we find the other words translated "sin".It is true that failure may be the result of sin, but not necessarily so. Likewise, failure may result in sin. Thus, we see that failure, in and of itself, is not sin.

Now, recognizing that you, yourself, are not a failure, what can you do about your actions that have failed? The most important task is to evaluate your actions in the light of God's word. Sometimes something will seem like a mountain of sin to us, while in reality it is not even sin. On the other hand, something may seem insignificant to us, but in the light of God's word be quite serious. It may be wise to talk with one of your elders, or with your minister. They can see the situation more objectively. If you find that you have sinned, repent. Then do whatever your elders suggest in order to make things right with your fellow man.

Frequently, when someone has failed, we hear the advice, "pick up the pieces and go ahead." This usually does not work. I am speaking from the personal experience of having considered myself a failure for most of my life, and from the advice of one who cared enough to show me a better way.

Hebrews 12:1-2 reads, "Wherefore, seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience th race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God." According to Thayer's Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, the word "weight", which is translated from the Greek word "ogkos", denotes "whatever is prominent, protuberance, bulk, mass..."

Have you not observed a child attempting to carry a large object? The object may not have been very heavy, but it was bulky. Soon all his attention became focused on the object, rather than on where he was going. When we attempt to "pick up the pieces" we soon end up with a "bulky load." Our attention will become focused on the pieces, rather than on Jesus, the Author and Finisher of our faith.

We may fail many, many times before we accomplish that which we are attempting. The youngster learning to ride the bicycle will fall many times before he can go sailing down the street with his feet on the handlebars. If he should focus his mind on his falls, rather than on learning to ride, then he may very well give up trying to learn. Is that what you want to do? Or are you determined to succeed? If you are determined to succeed, then when you do fall down, go ahead and cry. A fall hurts. Then get up, get your wounds cleansed and dressed, and try again. No, it will not be your last fall: you will fall again. But keep your mind focused on your goal. And as a Christian, should not your goal be that of trying to be like Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. Let us keep our eyes turned toward Jesus! If you have not yet obeyed the gospel, what is your goal? To what or to whom are you looking? Is your goal of today worth the sacrifice of Heaven and the torment of Hell tomorrow? Think about it!

Sandra F. Cobble

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

Bible Reading for May 19 and 20 by Gary Rose

 


Bible Reading for May 19 and 20 

 

World  English  Bible

 

May 19

Joshua 19, 20

Jos 19:1 The second lot came out for Simeon, even for the tribe of the children of Simeon according to their families. Their inheritance was in the midst of the inheritance of the children of Judah.

Jos 19:2 They had for their inheritance Beersheba (or Sheba), Moladah,

Jos 19:3 Hazar Shual, Balah, Ezem,

Jos 19:4 Eltolad, Bethul, Hormah,

Jos 19:5 Ziklag, Beth Marcaboth, Hazar Susah,

Jos 19:6 Beth Lebaoth, and Sharuhen; thirteen cities with their villages;

Jos 19:7 Ain, Rimmon, Ether, and Ashan; four cities with their villages;

Jos 19:8 and all the villages that were around these cities to Baalath Beer, Ramah of the South. This is the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Simeon according to their families.

Jos 19:9 Out of the part of the children of Judah was the inheritance of the children of Simeon; for the portion of the children of Judah was too much for them. Therefore the children of Simeon had inheritance in the midst of their inheritance.

Jos 19:10 The third lot came up for the children of Zebulun according to their families. The border of their inheritance was to Sarid.

Jos 19:11 Their border went up westward, even to Maralah, and reached to Dabbesheth. It reached to the brook that is before Jokneam.

Jos 19:12 It turned from Sarid eastward toward the sunrise to the border of Chisloth Tabor. It went out to Daberath, and went up to Japhia.

Jos 19:13 From there it passed along eastward to Gath Hepher, to Ethkazin; and it went out at Rimmon which stretches to Neah.

Jos 19:14 The border turned around it on the north to Hannathon; and it ended at the valley of Iphtah El;

Jos 19:15 Kattath, Nahalal, Shimron, Idalah, and Bethlehem: twelve cities with their villages.

Jos 19:16 This is the inheritance of the children of Zebulun according to their families, these cities with their villages.

Jos 19:17 The fourth lot came out for Issachar, even for the children of Issachar according to their families.

Jos 19:18 Their border was to Jezreel, Chesulloth, Shunem,

Jos 19:19 Hapharaim, Shion, Anaharath,

Jos 19:20 Rabbith, Kishion, Ebez,

Jos 19:21 Remeth, Engannim, En Haddah, and Beth Pazzez.

Jos 19:22 The border reached to Tabor, Shahazumah, and Beth Shemesh. Their border ended at the Jordan: sixteen cities with their villages.

Jos 19:23 This is the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Issachar according to their families, the cities with their villages.

Jos 19:24 The fifth lot came out for the tribe of the children of Asher according to their families.

Jos 19:25 Their border was Helkath, Hali, Beten, Achshaph,

Jos 19:26 Allammelech, Amad, Mishal. It reached to Carmel westward, and to Shihorlibnath.

Jos 19:27 It turned toward the sunrise to Beth Dagon, and reached to Zebulun, and to the valley of Iphtah El northward to Beth Emek and Neiel. It went out to Cabul on the left hand,

Jos 19:28 and Ebron, Rehob, Hammon, and Kanah, even to great Sidon.

Jos 19:29 The border turned to Ramah, to the fortified city of Tyre; and the border turned to Hosah. It ended at the sea by the region of Achzib;

Jos 19:30 Ummah also, and Aphek, and Rehob: twenty-two cities with their villages.

Jos 19:31 This is the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Asher according to their families, these cities with their villages.

Jos 19:32 The sixth lot came out for the children of Naphtali, even for the children of Naphtali according to their families.

Jos 19:33 Their border was from Heleph, from the oak in Zaanannim, Adaminekeb, and Jabneel, to Lakkum. It ended at the Jordan.

Jos 19:34 The border turned westward to Aznoth Tabor, and went out from there to Hukkok. It reached to Zebulun on the south, and reached to Asher on the west, and to Judah at the Jordan toward the sunrise.

Jos 19:35 The fortified cities were Ziddim, Zer, Hammath, Rakkath, Chinnereth,

Jos 19:36 Adamah, Ramah, Hazor,

Jos 19:37 Kedesh, Edrei, En Hazor,

Jos 19:38 Iron, Migdal El, Horem, Beth Anath, and Beth Shemesh; nineteen cities with their villages.

Jos 19:39 This is the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Naphtali according to their families, the cities with their villages.

Jos 19:40 The seventh lot came out for the tribe of the children of Dan according to their families.

Jos 19:41 The border of their inheritance was Zorah, Eshtaol, Irshemesh,

Jos 19:42 Shaalabbin, Aijalon, Ithlah,

Jos 19:43 Elon, Timnah, Ekron,

Jos 19:44 Eltekeh, Gibbethon, Baalath,

Jos 19:45 Jehud, Bene Berak, Gath Rimmon,

Jos 19:46 Me Jarkon, and Rakkon, with the border over against Joppa.

Jos 19:47 The border of the children of Dan went out beyond them; for the children of Dan went up and fought against Leshem, and took it, and struck it with the edge of the sword, and possessed it, and lived therein, and called Leshem, Dan, after the name of Dan their father.

Jos 19:48 This is the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Dan according to their families, these cities with their villages.

Jos 19:49 So they made an end of distributing the land for inheritance by its borders. The children of Israel gave an inheritance to Joshua the son of Nun in the midst of them.

Jos 19:50 According to the commandment of Yahweh, they gave him the city which he asked, even Timnathserah in the hill country of Ephraim; and he built the city, and lived there.

Jos 19:51 These are the inheritances, which Eleazar the priest, Joshua the son of Nun, and the heads of the fathers' houses of the tribes of the children of Israel, distributed for inheritance by lot in Shiloh before Yahweh, at the door of the Tent of Meeting. So they made an end of dividing the land.


Jos 20:1 Yahweh spoke to Joshua, saying,

Jos 20:2 "Speak to the children of Israel, saying, 'Assign the cities of refuge, of which I spoke to you by Moses,

Jos 20:3 that the manslayer who kills any person accidentally or unintentionally may flee there. They shall be to you for a refuge from the avenger of blood.

Jos 20:4 He shall flee to one of those cities, and shall stand at the entrance of the gate of the city, and declare his cause in the ears of the elders of that city. They shall take him into the city with them, and give him a place, that he may live among them.

Jos 20:5 If the avenger of blood pursue after him, then they shall not deliver up the manslayer into his hand; because he struck his neighbor unintentionally, and didn't hate him before.

Jos 20:6 He shall dwell in that city until he stands before the congregation for judgment, until the death of the high priest that shall be in those days. Then the manslayer shall return, and come to his own city, and to his own house, to the city he fled from.' "

Jos 20:7 They set apart Kedesh in Galilee in the hill country of Naphtali, Shechem in the hill country of Ephraim, and Kiriath Arba (the same is Hebron) in the hill country of Judah.

Jos 20:8 Beyond the Jordan at Jericho eastward, they assigned Bezer in the wilderness in the plain out of the tribe of Reuben, Ramoth in Gilead out of the tribe of Gad, and Golan in Bashan out of the tribe of Manasseh.

Jos 20:9 These were the appointed cities for all the children of Israel, and for the stranger who sojourns among them, that whoever kills any person unintentionally might flee there, and not die by the hand of the avenger of blood, until he stands before the congregation. 

 

May 20

Joshua 21, 22

Jos 21:1 Then the heads of fathers' houses of the Levites came near to Eleazar the priest, and to Joshua the son of Nun, and to the heads of fathers' houses of the tribes of the children of Israel.

Jos 21:2 They spoke to them at Shiloh in the land of Canaan, saying, "Yahweh commanded Moses to give us cities to dwell in, with their suburbs for our livestock."

Jos 21:3 The children of Israel gave to the Levites out of their inheritance, according to the commandment of Yahweh, these cities with their suburbs.

Jos 21:4 The lot came out for the families of the Kohathites. The children of Aaron the priest, who were of the Levites, had thirteen cities by lot out of the tribe of Judah, out of the tribe of the Simeonites, and out of the tribe of Benjamin.

Jos 21:5 The rest of the children of Kohath had ten cities by lot out of the families of the tribe of Ephraim, out of the tribe of Dan, and out of the half-tribe of Manasseh.

Jos 21:6 The children of Gershon had thirteen cities by lot out of the families of the tribe of Issachar, out of the tribe of Asher, out of the tribe of Naphtali, and out of the half-tribe of Manasseh in Bashan.

Jos 21:7 The children of Merari according to their families had twelve cities out of the tribe of Reuben, out of the tribe of Gad, and out of the tribe of Zebulun.

Jos 21:8 The children of Israel gave these cities with their suburbs by lot to the Levites, as Yahweh commanded by Moses.

Jos 21:9 They gave out of the tribe of the children of Judah, and out of the tribe of the children of Simeon, these cities which are mentioned by name:

Jos 21:10 and they were for the children of Aaron, of the families of the Kohathites, who were of the children of Levi; for theirs was the first lot.

Jos 21:11 They gave them Kiriath Arba, named after the father of Anak (the same is Hebron), in the hill country of Judah, with its suburbs around it.

Jos 21:12 But they gave the fields of the city and its villages to Caleb the son of Jephunneh for his possession.

Jos 21:13 To the children of Aaron the priest they gave Hebron with its suburbs, the city of refuge for the manslayer, Libnah with its suburbs,

Jos 21:14 Jattir with its suburbs, Eshtemoa with its suburbs,

Jos 21:15 Holon with its suburbs, Debir with its suburbs,

Jos 21:16 Ain with its suburbs, Juttah with its suburbs, and Beth Shemesh with its suburbs; nine cities out of those two tribes.

Jos 21:17 Out of the tribe of Benjamin, Gibeon with its suburbs, Geba with its suburbs,

Jos 21:18 Anathoth with its suburbs, and Almon with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:19 All the cities of the children of Aaron, the priests, were thirteen cities with their suburbs.

Jos 21:20 The families of the children of Kohath, the Levites, even the rest of the children of Kohath, had the cities of their lot out of the tribe of Ephraim.

Jos 21:21 They gave them Shechem with its suburbs in the hill country of Ephraim, the city of refuge for the manslayer, and Gezer with its suburbs,

Jos 21:22 Kibzaim with its suburbs, and Beth Horon with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:23 Out of the tribe of Dan, Elteke with its suburbs, Gibbethon with its suburbs,

Jos 21:24 Aijalon with its suburbs, Gath Rimmon with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:25 Out of the half-tribe of Manasseh, Taanach with its suburbs, and Gath Rimmon with its suburbs; two cities.

Jos 21:26 All the cities of the families of the rest of the children of Kohath were ten with their suburbs.

Jos 21:27 They gave to the children of Gershon, of the families of the Levites, out of the half-tribe of Manasseh Golan in Bashan with its suburbs, the city of refuge for the manslayer, and Be Eshterah with its suburbs; two cities.

Jos 21:28 Out of the tribe of Issachar, Kishion with its suburbs, Daberath with its suburbs,

Jos 21:29 Jarmuth with its suburbs, En Gannim with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:30 Out of the tribe of Asher, Mishal with its suburbs, Abdon with its suburbs,

Jos 21:31 Helkath with its suburbs, and Rehob with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:32 Out of the tribe of Naphtali, Kedesh in Galilee with its suburbs, the city of refuge for the manslayer, Hammothdor with its suburbs, and Kartan with its suburbs; three cities.

Jos 21:33 All the cities of the Gershonites according to their families were thirteen cities with their suburbs.

Jos 21:34 To the families of the children of Merari, the rest of the Levites, out of the tribe of Zebulun, Jokneam with its suburbs, Kartah with its suburbs,

Jos 21:35 Dimnah with its suburbs, and Nahalal with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:36 Out of the tribe of Reuben, Bezer with its suburbs, Jahaz with its suburbs,

Jos 21:37 Kedemoth with its suburbs, and Mephaath with its suburbs; four cities.

Jos 21:38 Out of the tribe of Gad, Ramoth in Gilead with its suburbs, the city of refuge for the manslayer, and Mahanaim with its suburbs,

Jos 21:39 Heshbon with its suburbs, Jazer with its suburbs; four cities in all.

Jos 21:40 All these were the cities of the children of Merari according to their families, even the rest of the families of the Levites. Their lot was twelve cities.

Jos 21:41 All the cities of the Levites in the midst of the possession of the children of Israel were forty-eight cities with their suburbs.

Jos 21:42 Each of these cities included their suburbs around them. It was this way with all these cities.

Jos 21:43 So Yahweh gave to Israel all the land which he swore to give to their fathers. They possessed it, and lived in it.

Jos 21:44 Yahweh gave them rest all around, according to all that he swore to their fathers. Not a man of all their enemies stood before them. Yahweh delivered all their enemies into their hand.

Jos 21:45 Nothing failed of any good thing which Yahweh had spoken to the house of Israel. All came to pass.


Jos 22:1 Then Joshua called the Reubenites, the Gadites, and the half-tribe of Manasseh,

Jos 22:2 and said to them, "You have kept all that Moses the servant of Yahweh commanded you, and have listened to my voice in all that I commanded you.

Jos 22:3 You have not left your brothers these many days to this day, but have performed the duty of the commandment of Yahweh your God.

Jos 22:4 Now Yahweh your God has given rest to your brothers, as he spoke to them. Therefore now return and go to your tents, to the land of your possession, which Moses the servant of Yahweh gave you beyond the Jordan.

Jos 22:5 Only take diligent heed to do the commandment and the law which Moses the servant of Yahweh commanded you, to love Yahweh your God, to walk in all his ways, to keep his commandments, to hold fast to him, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul."

Jos 22:6 So Joshua blessed them, and sent them away; and they went to their tents.

Jos 22:7 Now to the one half-tribe of Manasseh Moses had given inheritance in Bashan; but to the other half gave Joshua among their brothers beyond the Jordan westward. Moreover when Joshua sent them away to their tents, he blessed them,

Jos 22:8 and spoke to them, saying, "Return with much wealth to your tents, with very much livestock, with silver, with gold, with brass, with iron, and with very much clothing. Divide the spoil of your enemies with your brothers."

Jos 22:9 The children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh returned, and departed from the children of Israel out of Shiloh, which is in the land of Canaan, to go to the land of Gilead, to the land of their possession, which they owned, according to the commandment of Yahweh by Moses.

Jos 22:10 When they came to the region about the Jordan, that is in the land of Canaan, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh built there an altar by the Jordan, a great altar to look at.

Jos 22:11 The children of Israel heard this, "Behold, the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh have built an altar in the forefront of the land of Canaan, in the region about the Jordan, on the side that pertains to the children of Israel."

Jos 22:12 When the children of Israel heard of it, the whole congregation of the children of Israel gathered themselves together at Shiloh, to go up against them to war.

Jos 22:13 The children of Israel sent to the children of Reuben, and to the children of Gad, and to the half-tribe of Manasseh, into the land of Gilead, Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest,

Jos 22:14 and with him ten princes, one prince of a fathers' house for each of the tribes of Israel; and they were everyone of them head of their fathers' houses among the thousands of Israel.

Jos 22:15 They came to the children of Reuben, and to the children of Gad, and to the half-tribe of Manasseh, to the land of Gilead, and they spoke with them, saying,

Jos 22:16 "Thus says the whole congregation of Yahweh, 'What trespass is this that you have committed against the God of Israel, to turn away this day from following Yahweh, in that you have built you an altar, to rebel this day against Yahweh?

Jos 22:17 Is the iniquity of Peor too little for us, from which we have not cleansed ourselves to this day, although there came a plague on the congregation of Yahweh,

Jos 22:18 that you must turn away this day from following Yahweh? It will be, seeing that you rebel today against Yahweh, that tomorrow he will be angry with the whole congregation of Israel.

Jos 22:19 However, if the land of your possession is unclean, then pass over to the land of the possession of Yahweh, in which Yahweh's tabernacle dwells, and take possession among us; but don't rebel against Yahweh, nor rebel against us, in building an altar other than the altar of Yahweh our God.

Jos 22:20 Didn't Achan the son of Zerah commit a trespass in the devoted thing, and wrath fell on all the congregation of Israel? That man didn't perish alone in his iniquity.' "

Jos 22:21 Then the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the half-tribe of Manasseh answered, and spoke to the heads of the thousands of Israel,

Jos 22:22 "The Mighty One, God, Yahweh, the Mighty One, God, Yahweh, he knows; and Israel shall know: if it was in rebellion, or if in trespass against Yahweh (don't save us this day),

Jos 22:23 that we have built us an altar to turn away from following Yahweh; or if to offer burnt offering or meal offering, or if to offer sacrifices of peace offerings, let Yahweh himself require it.

Jos 22:24 If we have not out of concern done this, and for a reason, saying, 'In time to come your children might speak to our children, saying, "What have you to do with Yahweh, the God of Israel?

Jos 22:25 For Yahweh has made the Jordan a border between us and you, you children of Reuben and children of Gad. You have no portion in Yahweh." ' So your children might make our children cease from fearing Yahweh.

Jos 22:26 Therefore we said, 'Let's now prepare to build ourselves an altar, not for burnt offering, nor for sacrifice;

Jos 22:27 but it will be a witness between us and you, and between our generations after us, that we may perform the service of Yahweh before him with our burnt offerings, with our sacrifices, and with our peace offerings;' that your children may not tell our children in time to come, 'You have no portion in Yahweh.'

Jos 22:28 Therefore we said, 'It shall be, when they tell us or our generations this in time to come, that we shall say, "Behold the pattern of the altar of Yahweh, which our fathers made, not for burnt offering, nor for sacrifice; but it is a witness between us and you." '

Jos 22:29 Far be it from us that we should rebel against Yahweh, and turn away this day from following Yahweh, to build an altar for burnt offering, for meal offering, or for sacrifice, besides the altar of Yahweh our God that is before his tabernacle!"

Jos 22:30 When Phinehas the priest, and the princes of the congregation, even the heads of the thousands of Israel that were with him, heard the words that the children of Reuben and the children of Gad and the children of Manasseh spoke, it pleased them well.

Jos 22:31 Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest said to the children of Reuben, to the children of Gad, and to the children of Manasseh, "Today we know that Yahweh is in the midst of us, because you have not committed this trespass against Yahweh. Now you have delivered the children of Israel out of the hand of Yahweh."

Jos 22:32 Phinehas the son of Eleazar the priest, and the princes, returned from the children of Reuben, and from the children of Gad, out of the land of Gilead, to the land of Canaan, to the children of Israel, and brought them word again.

Jos 22:33 The thing pleased the children of Israel; and the children of Israel blessed God, and spoke no more of going up against them to war, to destroy the land in which the children of Reuben and the children of Gad lived.

Jos 22:34 The children of Reuben and the children of Gad named the altar "A Witness Between Us that Yahweh is God." 

 

May  19

John 2

Joh 2:1 The third day, there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee. Jesus' mother was there.

Joh 2:2 Jesus also was invited, with his disciples, to the marriage.

Joh 2:3 When the wine ran out, Jesus' mother said to him, "They have no wine."

Joh 2:4 Jesus said to her, "Woman, what does that have to do with you and me? My hour has not yet come."

Joh 2:5 His mother said to the servants, "Whatever he says to you, do it."

Joh 2:6 Now there were six water pots of stone set there after the Jews' manner of purifying, containing two or three metretes apiece.

Joh 2:7 Jesus said to them, "Fill the water pots with water." They filled them up to the brim.

Joh 2:8 He said to them, "Now draw some out, and take it to the ruler of the feast." So they took it.

Joh 2:9 When the ruler of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and didn't know where it came from (but the servants who had drawn the water knew), the ruler of the feast called the bridegroom,

Joh 2:10 and said to him, "Everyone serves the good wine first, and when the guests have drunk freely, then that which is worse. You have kept the good wine until now!"

Joh 2:11 This beginning of his signs Jesus did in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.

Joh 2:12 After this, he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, his brothers, and his disciples; and they stayed there a few days.

Joh 2:13 The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.

Joh 2:14 He found in the temple those who sold oxen, sheep, and doves, and the changers of money sitting.

Joh 2:15 He made a whip of cords, and threw all out of the temple, both the sheep and the oxen; and he poured out the changers' money, and overthrew their tables.

Joh 2:16 To those who sold the doves, he said, "Take these things out of here! Don't make my Father's house a marketplace!"

Joh 2:17 His disciples remembered that it was written, "Zeal for your house will eat me up."

Joh 2:18 The Jews therefore answered him, "What sign do you show us, seeing that you do these things?"

Joh 2:19 Jesus answered them, "Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up."

Joh 2:20 The Jews therefore said, "Forty-six years was this temple in building, and will you raise it up in three days?"

Joh 2:21 But he spoke of the temple of his body.

Joh 2:22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he said this, and they believed the Scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.

Joh 2:23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at the Passover, during the feast, many believed in his name, observing his signs which he did.

Joh 2:24 But Jesus didn't trust himself to them, because he knew everyone,

Joh 2:25 and because he didn't need for anyone to testify concerning man; for he himself knew what was in man. 

 

May 20

John 3

Joh 3:1 Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.

Joh 3:2 The same came to him by night, and said to him, "Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do, unless God is with him."

Joh 3:3 Jesus answered him, "Most certainly, I tell you, unless one is born anew, he can't see the Kingdom of God."

Joh 3:4 Nicodemus said to him, "How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother's womb, and be born?"

Joh 3:5 Jesus answered, "Most certainly I tell you, unless one is born of water and spirit, he can't enter into the Kingdom of God!

Joh 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh. That which is born of the Spirit is spirit.

Joh 3:7 Don't marvel that I said to you, 'You must be born anew.'

Joh 3:8 The wind blows where it wants to, and you hear its sound, but don't know where it comes from and where it is going. So is everyone who is born of the Spirit."

Joh 3:9 Nicodemus answered him, "How can these things be?"

Joh 3:10 Jesus answered him, "Are you the teacher of Israel, and don't understand these things?

Joh 3:11 Most certainly I tell you, we speak that which we know, and testify of that which we have seen, and you don't receive our witness.

Joh 3:12 If I told you earthly things and you don't believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

Joh 3:13 No one has ascended into heaven, but he who descended out of heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven.

Joh 3:14 As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up,

Joh 3:15 that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

Joh 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

Joh 3:17 For God didn't send his Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through him.

Joh 3:18 He who believes in him is not judged. He who doesn't believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.

Joh 3:19 This is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil.

Joh 3:20 For everyone who does evil hates the light, and doesn't come to the light, lest his works would be exposed.

Joh 3:21 But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his works may be revealed, that they have been done in God."

Joh 3:22 After these things, Jesus came with his disciples into the land of Judea. He stayed there with them, and baptized.

Joh 3:23 John also was baptizing in Enon near Salim, because there was much water there. They came, and were baptized.

Joh 3:24 For John was not yet thrown into prison.

Joh 3:25 There arose therefore a questioning on the part of John's disciples with some Jews about purification.

Joh 3:26 They came to John, and said to him, "Rabbi, he who was with you beyond the Jordan, to whom you have testified, behold, the same baptizes, and everyone is coming to him."

Joh 3:27 John answered, "A man can receive nothing, unless it has been given him from heaven.

Joh 3:28 You yourselves testify that I said, 'I am not the Christ,' but, 'I have been sent before him.'

Joh 3:29 He who has the bride is the bridegroom; but the friend of the bridegroom, who stands and hears him, rejoices greatly because of the bridegroom's voice. This, my joy, therefore is made full.

Joh 3:30 He must increase, but I must decrease.

Joh 3:31 He who comes from above is above all. He who is from the Earth belongs to the Earth, and speaks of the Earth. He who comes from heaven is above all.

Joh 3:32 What he has seen and heard, of that he testifies; and no one receives his witness.

Joh 3:33 He who has received his witness has set his seal to this, that God is true.

Joh 3:34 For he whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for God gives the Spirit without measure.

Joh 3:35 The Father loves the Son, and has given all things into his hand.

Joh 3:36 One who believes in the Son has eternal life, but one who disobeys the Son won't see life, but the wrath of God remains on him."