Therefore I strike you with a grievous blow,
making you desolate because of your sins.
You shall eat, but not be satisfied,
and there shall be hunger within you;
you shall put away, but not preserve,
and what you preserve I will give to the sword.
You shall sow, but not reap;
you shall tread olives, but not anoint yourselves with oil;
you shall tread grapes, but not drink wine.
Micah is explaining to Israel the consequences of their actions. They have abandoned God and forsaken righteousness for the pleasures and treasures of the world. Israel did in ancient times as we do today. We abandon the spirit to please the flesh. For the want of simple worldly things, we bypass righteousness and the work involved, and we do what we rationalize as necessary to make our existence comfortable and easy. Continue reading
You shall not pervert justice. You shall not show partiality, and you shall not accept a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and subverts the cause of the righteous.
God via Moses tries to impart this wisdom upon the Israelites. God knows what man is. God knows that governing produces power, which produces wealth, which produces greed and covetousness.
To those of you who put your faith in government I say read again Deuteronomy 16:19. Continue reading
One person esteems one day as better than another, while another esteems all days alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. The one who observes the day, observes it in honor of the Lord. The one who eats, eats in honor of the Lord, since he gives thanks to God, while the one who abstains, abstains in honor of the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives to himself, and none of us dies to himself. For if we live, we live to the Lord, and if we die, we die to the Lord. So then, whether we live or whether we die, we are the Lord’s.
Paul addresses the fact that we all belong to the Lord. We all come from and go to God. But even though we all come from the same God, we are each unique individuals. We have our own minds, we live our own lives as we choose to live it. Continue reading
because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen.
I wrote a piece about Romans 1:22 -23 (Socrates and a Chicken). In that piece, I wrote about the arrogance of man. It stated how we get so caught up in our creations that we fail to acknowledge our Creator. Here in verse 25 Paul speaks of that sentiment.
….worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator….
We’ve out grown carving wooden animals, layering them with gold, and presenting it with sacrifices with the expectation of divine intervention. Or have we? Continue reading
Again I saw all the oppressions that are done under the sun. And behold, the tears of the oppressed, and they had no one to comfort them! On the side of their oppressors there was power, and there was no one to comfort them. And I thought the dead who are already dead more fortunate than the living who are still alive. But better than both is he who has not yet been and has not seen the evil deeds that are done under the sun.
Solomon is writing about the evil that exists in the world. When I read these verses I wrote the following note to myself: “Evil always has and always will exist in the world.” Solomon writes that those who are dead and those who have not been born are better off than the living. Why does he say this? Because from birth to death we will always come in contact with evil. Only those who no longer exist or those who never existed will be void of evil. Continue reading
1 Timothy 6:10
For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs.
I think this verse is one of the most misquoted verses of the Bible.
I know as a child and a teenager I often misquoted this verse and I remember my grandmother correcting me.
Most people paraphrase this verse especially when trying to make a compelling case against corporations, profits and capitalism.
They will leave out the one key word. They will say “Money is the root of all evil”. But if you read above, you will notice they omitted “love”. Continue reading
1 Kings 20:11
And the king of Israel answered, “Tell him, ‘Let not him who straps on his armor boast himself as he who takes it off.’”
When I read this verse I knew I liked it but it took me a couple of times it to understand the simple message that King Ahab, the king of Israel, was conveying to King Ben-Hadad, the king of Syria.
King Ben-Hadad had gathered all his forces together, which included the armies of thirty two other kings. That must have been a substantial military force. For some reason Ben-Hadad wanted to conquer Samaria which was part of Israel and part of King Ahab’s domain. Ben-Hadad massed all his forces around Samaria and was ready to attack. Continue reading