Monthly Archives: September 2020

UNDERSTANDING MARK 9:42-50


Mark 9:42 – Jesus has emphasized that receiving lowly persons in Christ’s name means receiving him (read v 37). Now he warns against causing such people who believe in me to sin, that is, to lead them to disbelief or to transgression of God’s moral laws. Any who do this will receive severe punishment from. God (thrown into the sea). This warning applies to anyone who would seek to destroy the faith of a child or a new Christian.

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THE TIME BETWEEN THE TESTAMENTS

Most of the writers of the NT grew up in the world of “second Temple Judaism,” the time between the temple’s reconstruction (516 B.C.) and its final destruction (A.D. 70). This period introduced changes into the political structure, culture, and religion of the OT world.

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DEFINITION OF THE DAY (SOAP, SOBER)

SOAP – Cleaner made by mixing olive oil and alikali from burning certain salt-producing plants. It was used of washing the body (Jer 2:22) and of washing clothes (Mal 3:2). Perhaps the scant references to soap are due to the fact that people in the Near East use oil for cleansing the body and pound clothes on rocks while wet to cleanse them.

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SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY (MARK 9: 42-50: CAUSING TO STUMBLE)

42 And whosoever shall offend one of these little ones that believe in me, it is better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea.

43 And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched:

44 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched.

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A CLOSER LOOK AT DELILAH

The biblical text gives us a clear picture of Delilah. She was a calculating woman. She was aware of the power her sexuality gave her and quick to use sex for personal gain. While Samson had fallen in love with Delilah, she only pretended affection for him. Delilah was more than willing to let Samson use her body, for she was using him to become rich.

How Samson failed to see what was happening we cannot imagine. Her repeated efforts to get him to betray the secret of his strength seem so transparent. But Samson was blinded by his passion and was easily manipulated by Delilah. Her pretended doubt of his love, and her appeal to prove his love by revealing his secret finally wore Samson down.

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DEFINITION OF THE DAY (SUICIDE)

The Bible records several instances of suicide (Abimelech-Judg 9:54; Samson-Judg 16:29-30; Saul-1 Sam 31:4; Saul’s armor beaer-1 Sam 31:5 Ahithophel-2 Sam 17:23; Zimri-1 Kings 16:18; and Judas-Matt 27:5; cp. Acts 16:27). Of these, the deaths of Abimelech and Saul could be called “assisted” suicide. With the possible exception of Samson (whose death may be better termed “martyrdom”), the Bible presents each person who committed suicide as an individual whose behavior is clearly not to be emulated.

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SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY ( MARK 11:22-24)

22 And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.

23 For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.

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MEN OF THE BIBLE (SAUL: WRESTILING WITH DEOMONS)

Saul was a young man dutifully searching for his father’s stray donkeys. Samuel was the renowned prophet, priest, and judge of Israel reluctantly searching for his nation’s first king. When their paths crossed, the course of Israel’s history changed dramatically.

Samuel had served as the Lord’s representative leader of Israel for decades, but he was growing old. When his sons proved to be unfit to succeed him, the people of Israel demanded that a king be appointed to rule over them. They were envious of the monarchies common in surrounding nations.

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SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY (1 TIMOTHY 6:2-10 – FALSE TEACHINGS AND TRUE RICHES)

And they that have believing masters, let them not despise them, because they are brethren; but rather do them service, because they are faithful and beloved, partakers of the benefit. These things teach and exhort.

If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness;

He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings,

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DEFINITON OF THE DAY (SON OF MAN)

Expression found in both the OT and the NT. “Son of man” is used in these ways; (1) as a poetic synonym for “man” or “human,” as in Psa 8:4 and 80:17; (2) in Ezekiel as the title by which God regularly addresses the prophet (2:1,3; 3:1, 3); and (3) in Dan. 7 as the identity of the glorious person whom the prophet sees coming with the clouds of heaven to approach the Ancient of Days. “The Son of Man” is a designation of Christ found frequently in the NT. It was Jesus’ favorite designation of Himself to imply both His messianic mission and His full humanity.

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