Today intentional abstention from food and drink for a given period of time is more likely associated with preparation for a medical test or in conjunction with a weight-loss plan than with spiritual development. But in the Bible, the physical act of fasting was employed in order to enrich an awareness of mortal vulnerability and to sharpen awareness of the Lord’s ability to provide.Continue reading EVERYDAY LIFE IN BIBLE TIMES (FAST PT 1 OF 3)
6 Now there was a day when the sons of God came to present themselves before the Lord, and Satan came also among them.
7 And the Lord said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered the Lord, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it.
8 And the Lord said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?Continue reading SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY (JOB 1:6-22 “THE DEVIL AND GOD HAVE A TALK”)
Whether in connection with climate or siege, famine was clearly one of the worst experiences in the ancient world (1 Kings 8:37). The purchase of food would first consume all a person’s precious metal, then livestock, and finally even the land they relied on the produce food, putting its former owners into virtual servitude (Gen 47:13-22). Jeremiah vividly describes the circumstances in which hunger pangs could no longer be endured in silence but were givenContinue reading EVERYDAY LIFE IN BIBLE TIMES (FAMINE PT2)
The prophet Zephaniah declared that God would eventually punish the Assyrians for their cruelty and pagan worship (Judges 1:6 and Nahum 2:3). Their capital city, Nineveh, would become a laughingstock among the nations.Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (MOCKERY AND RIDICULE)
Cloth covering. 1. Women’s veils Rebekah veiled herself before meeting Isaac (Gen 24:65). Her veil was perhaps the sign that she was a marriageable maiden. Tamar used her veil to conceal her identity from Judah (Gen 38:14,19). Another Hebrew term renders “veil” at Isa 3:23. Here veils are but one of the items of finery the elite women of Jerusalem would lose in the coming siege. The same Hebrew term in rendered “shawl” (NASB), “cloak” (HCSB, NIV, REB), and “mantle” (KJV, NRSV) at Song 5:7. There, removal of the shawl was part of aContinue reading DEFINITION OF DAY (VEIL)
Neither the ark of the covenant nor the temple of Solomon housed God in a literal, confining sense. God is both infinite and omnipresent. As the martyr Stephen declared. “The Most High doesn’t live in temples made by human hands” (Acts 7:48. Acts 17:24).Continue reading HOW DID GOD “DWELL” IN THE ARK AND IN THE TEMPLE?
Term used by the KJV to translate two closely related Hebrew words (tannim and tannin). At times the terms appear to be interchangeable. Context indicates that the first term refers to a mammal inhabiting the desert (Isa 13:22; 35:7; 43:20; Lam 4:3). Most modern speech translation equate the animal with the jackal, though perhaps the wolf (REB) is intended. The second term has four possible uses: (1) “great sea monster” (KJV, “great whales”) in the sense of a large seaContinue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (DRAGON)
Elijah’s position in this verse was a stance for deep meditation. He was probably thinking about the victory of the Lord over the priests of the pagan god Baal (1 Kings 18:27) and praising Him for His awesome power.Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (FACE BETWEEN THE KNEES)
The Bible is a historical book as well as a spiritual one. As such, it contains many important historical leaders and describes their impact on the nation of Israel. These people are not often used as symbols in the Bibles, but their influence on the history of God’s people carries symbolic importance because of the particular interactions they had. The Jews look back on these leaders as people who operated under the sovereign will of God either to help them as an instrument of mercy or to test and punish them as an executor of his just wrath.Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (XERXES THE GREAT “and Other Significant Rulers”)
10 Moreover the Lord spake again unto Ahaz, saying,
11 Ask thee a sign of the Lord thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above.
12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the Lord. Continue reading SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY (ISAIAH 7:10-17: THE SIGN OF IMMANUEL)