Ancient city at the modern site of Izmir, Turkey. Smyrna surrounded a well-protected harbor on the Aegean Coast at the outlet of the Hermus River. The city lay at the foot of Mount Pagus and is located about 35 miles north of Ephesus. Extensive trade to and from Asia passed through the city. During the first century A.D. Smyrna reigned as one of the grandest cities of all Asia. Strabo (64 B.C- A.D. 20s), the Greek geographer, called Smyrna “the most beautiful city of all” cities along this coast. A large temple there, dedicated to Emperor Tiberius, boasted Smyrna’s close alliance with the Empire. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY “SMYRNA”
RABBI- (Ra’b’ bi’) Title meaning “my master,” applied to teachers and others of an exalted and revered position. During the NT period the term “rabbi” came to be more narrowly applied to one learned in the law of Moses, without signifying an official office. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (RABBI)
HADES- (Ha’ dez)- The Greek noun hades is used 61 times in the Greek OT (Septuagint) to translate the Hebrew term she’ ol, which refers to the grave or the realm of the dead (Gen 37:35; 1 Sam 2:6; Prov 15:24; cp Ps 16:10 and Acts 2:27, 31). Although the biblical writers were familiar with pagan concepts of a realm of departed spirits ruled by a deity (the meaning of hades in pagan Greek literature), and they occasionally alluded to such ideas, this concept is not taught in Scripture. The picture generally presented by Sheol is the tomb, where the bodies of the dead lie in silence. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY “HADES”
Judea Capta-“Judea is captured”-read the the coins minted by the Romans in commemoration of their victory 70. Thousands of Jews died in battle; thousands more were taken into slavery; many others chose to leave the country center of worship, the temple, was burned to the ground and the and the capital of Judaism had fallen. Continue reading MANNERS AND CUSTOMS OF THE BIBLE (WHEN SACRIFICE STOPPED)
When you ask for someone’s identity, you normally get a name. Names distinguish individuals from other people. Jane differs from Sarah and from Jennifer, who are all women, similar in many ways yet distinct. But God has no similar others; thus God has no name. Continue reading WHAT DID GOD MEAN BY IDENTIFYING HIMSELF TO MOSES AS “I AM WHO I AM”?
John’s use of the “Word” to describe Jesus was a startling new application of a popular expression. The term was used widely by theologians and philosophers, both Jews and Greeks. It described the agent of creation (Psalm 33:6); God’s message to His people through the prophets (Hosea 1:2); and God’s law, His standard of holiness (Psalm 119:11). In Greek philosophy, “the Word” was the principle of reason that governed the world. Continue reading IN WHAT WAY WAS JESUS THE “WORD”?
Isaiah 59:1- The LORD’S hand [arm niv] is not shortened, that it cannot save; neither his ear heavy [dull niv], that it cannot hear.
This verse is one of the best examples in the Bible of what theologians call an anthropomorphism (Greek Anthropos [man] +morphe [form]. This big word describes the way biblical writers often described God in human terms. Isaiah in this verse said God has a powerful hand that can deliver His people and an ear that is always ready to hear their prayers. Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (GOD’S HAND AND EAR)
Lysias, who was Greek by birth, purchased his Roman citizenship (Acts 22:28), at which time, it is believed, he picked up the forename Claudius. His role as a commander in the Roman army probably put him in charge of over a thousand men. Continue reading MEN OF THE BIBLE (LYSIAS) A LOVER OF JUSTICE
The number thousand (or thousands) in the Bible is sometimes a literal number, but in many cases it is used to create a large round number. Hebrew and the other Semitic languages used approximations to express large numbers because they were rarely needed for small populations and tiny kingdom. Examples of this can be found in Exodus 20:6; Deuteronomy 5:10 and 7:9; 1 Samuel 18:7; and Psalms 50:10, 90:4 and 105:8. Ten
Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (THOUSAND)
Blessed Are The Poor In Spirit, For Theirs Is The Kingdom Of Heaven.
Blessed Are Those Who Mourn, For They Will Be Comforted.
Blessed Are The Meek, For They Will Inherit The Earth.
Blessed Are Those Who Hunger And Thirst For Righteousness, For They Will Be Filled.
Blessed Are The Merciful, For They Will Be Shown Mercy. Continue reading THE BEATITUDES