What shall we say, then? That Gentiles who did not pursue righteousness have attained it, that is, a righteousness that is by faith; but that Israel who pursued a law that would lead to righteousness did not succeed in reaching that law. Why? Because they did not pursue it by faith, but as if it were based on works. They have stumbled over the stumbling stone,
Works and faith, that is what is being compared in these verses. At least that was my initial thought when I made a note to myself to write something about these verses. But the more I contemplated the words written by Paul, I realized what Paul is writing about. Continue reading
But he knows the way that I take;
when he has tried me, I shall come out as gold.
My foot has held fast to his steps;
I have kept his way and have not turned aside.
I have not departed from the commandment of his lips;
I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my portion of food.
Most of you are familiar with the Book of Job, or at least you have heard the saying, “He has the patience of Job.” If you’re not familiar with the story take some time to read the Book of Job in the Old Testament. In the meantime here is a quick overview.
Job is a righteous, God loving and seeking man. He has been very successful in his life both materially and spiritually. Job had wealth and a loving family.
Satan is allowed by God to take all of this away from Job, because Satan had argued with God that is was easy for Job to be such a righteous man and walk in the ways of the Lord. Job had all the comforts in life and faith comes easy when it’s not being challenged. Satan bet God that if you take all that away from Job he will curse God and lose his faith. God agrees to Satan’s challenge and tells Satan to do whatever he wants but do Job no harm. Continue reading
And when they say to you, “Inquire of the mediums and the necromancers who chirp and mutter,” should not a people inquire of their God? Should they inquire of the dead on behalf of the living? To the teaching and to the testimony! If they will not speak according to this word, it is because they have no dawn. They will pass through the land, greatly distressed and hungry. And when they are hungry, they will be enraged and will speak contemptuously against their king and their God, and turn their faces upward. And they will look to the earth, but behold, distress and darkness, the gloom of anguish. And they will be thrust into thick darkness.
Isaiah is speaking about those who choose to consult mediums and spiritualists, those who feel the dead can give foresight and insight to the living. He is talking about those who choose not to have God in their hearts. He informs them of the results of such a choice. Isaiah is addressing what happens to us when times are tough, our faith is tested, and we have failed to let God into our hearts. Continue reading
Behold, I have given you authority to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy, and nothing shall hurt you. Nevertheless, do not rejoice in this, that the spirits are subject to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.
In the beginning of Luke, Chapter 10, we read about Christ appointing 72 followers to go to the towns that Christ is about to visit. I guess they were like an advance team, sent to let the citizens know what was coming and to give them a glimpse into the Kingdom of God. Continue reading
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
I liked this verse and I wrote it down as a subject for a post. So today I thought it was time to write my post about this verse.
First I thought I would review some commentaries from Biblical scholars to get another point of view on this verse, even though I already had my gut take on it.
All the commentaries had basically the same theme. It was, we are all equal with the caveat, as long as we are “Christians”. They were saying no matter what race or sex or social status, as long as you accept Christ as your savior you’re OK.
Now that was not my gut reaction to this verse. Continue reading
Because the sentence against an evil deed is not executed speedily, the heart of the children of man is fully set to do evil.
We have all asked the question how do such evil people get away with doing such evil things and yet here I am toiling away doing it the right way and getting nowhere?
In Ecclesiastes 8:11 King Solomon is addressing that question because just as today, people had the same thoughts in ancient times. To quote Solomon, “there is nothing new under the sun”. Continue reading
For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things..
In verse 17 Paul writes:
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
The righteous shall live by faith. So very hard to do. Continue reading
But Paul said to them, “They have beaten us publicly, uncondemned, men who are Roman citizens, and have thrown us into prison; and do they now throw us out secretly? No! Let them come themselves and take us out.”
I read this and my first thought was “What balls!”
Paul and Silas have been thrown into jail by the Romans. They pissed off the wrong person. They healed a slave. The slave was possessed by a spirit of divination which the master was using for their own benefit.
Paul and Silas weren’t just hauled up before a judge to be arraigned and await their trial. No, they were stripped, beaten, and then thrown into the deepest recesses of a dungeon. They were shackled into stocks.
All of this because they healed someone and pissed off the wrong person. Continue reading