In order to understand the idea of sacrifices and offerings, we must go back to the very beginning of the Bible. By Genesis 4, the first sons, Cain and Abel, were practicing an early form of sacrifice: “Later Cain brought some crops from the land as an offering to the LORD. Abel also brought some choice parts of the firstborn animals from his flock. The LORD approved of Abel and his offering, but he didn’t approved of Cain and his offering. So Cain became very angry and was disappointed” (Gen 4:3-5). From the beginning, offerings and sacrifices generally expressed two attitudes: gratitude and repentance. In the case of Cain and Abel, later history of sacrifice might lead us to think that God’s rejection of Cain’s offering was because it wasn’t a blood sacrifice, but the text doesn’t indicate such a conclusion. Cain’s offering was casual and perhaps careless; Abel’s was costly. Cain brought “some crops”; Abel presented “some choice parts.” Cain’s response to God’s correction revealed his heart. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (SACRIFICE/OFFERING)
REPENTANCE- Change of mind; also can refer to regret or remorse accompanying a realization that wrong has been done or to any shift or reversal of thought. In its biblical sense repentance refers to a deeply seated and through turning from self to God. It occurs when a radical turning of God takes places, an experience in which God is recognized as the most importance fact of one’s existence. Continue reading DEFINITON OF THE DAY “REPENTANCE”
SLOTHFUL-Loose, undisciplined, Hebrew term can refer to a bow not strung or equipped with an arrow for action (Ps 78:57; Hos 7:16). A similar or related Hebrew root describes a loose tongue or mind as deceitful (Job 13:7; 27:4; Pss 32:2; 52:4; Mic 6:12). The slothful person cannot lead but becomes subjected to another’s rule (Prov 12:24; 10:4; 19:15). God’s work must not be done in such a spirit (Jer 48:10). A second Hebrew term refers to that which is difficult, heavy, or hindered and indicates foolish laziness or Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY “SLOTHFUL”
Marriage and the related symbols of bride and bridegroom play as large a role in Scripture as they did in real life in the ancient world. whether we consider the Old Testament picture of Israel as the bride and God as her bridegroom (Isa 62:4-5; Jer 2:2) or the New Testament picture of the church as the bride and Jesus as the bridegroom (2 Cor 11:2; Eph 5:21-32; Rev 21:2, 9), the message points to a special relationship God longs to have with his people. (See also BRIDE, BRIDEGROOM.) Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (MARRIAGE)
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”?
In this verse Hosea condemned God’s people for worshiping idols and using black magic and superstition in making decisions. The New International Version translates this verse, “they [God’s people] consult a wooden idol and are answered by a stick of wood.” Continue reading SILLY SUPERSTITIONS
From the delicate breeze to the terrifying hurricane, wind is a force of nature. We can’t see the wind, but we know it is there. Throughout time, humans have learned to harness the wind to fill sails and run wind turbines. We also struggle to limit the destruction caused by wind as the major cause of erosion on earth. Due to its unpredictability and raw power, wind holds both positive and negative connotations throughout the Bible. Continue reading SIGNS & SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (WIND)
Branches in the world of the Bible were either on trees or vines and were relatively rare given the arid climate, so the picture of a healthy and fruitful tree was a symbol of vigor and prosperity. “Branch” or “branches” could refer to families (Gen 49:22) or rulers (Ezek 31:3,6). Broken or unfruitful branches symbolized judgment or the downfall of a person or nation (Job 15:32; 18:16; Dan 4:14; Isa 9:14: 17:6; Jer 11:16). But God always gives the hope of restoration, and branches figure in the symbolism of redemption as well: “When that day comes, the branch of the LORD will be beautiful and wonderful. The fruit of the land will be the pride and joy of Israel’s survivors” (Isa 4:2). The image of judged or redeemed branches reaches its climax in the prophecies of the messianic Branch and the salvation he brings.
Continue reading BIBLE SIGNS & SYMBOLS (BRANCH)
The harvest and preparation of grain for use as food requires the separation of the kernels from the stalks on which they grow. Because most harvesting today is done mechanically, the significance of a threshing floor and its usefulness as a symbol is somewhat lost to us. A threshing floor was a large, open, hard surface, so threshing floors were often located on hilltops. After bundles of stalks were laid on the surface of the Continue reading SIGNS & SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (THRESHING FLOOR)
Just as the most significant use of the term father has to do with God, likewise the word son gets its highest meaning when used to describe Jesus Christ, the Son of God. The greatest affirmation of Jesus to human listeners came on the occasions of his baptism and his transfiguration. During the former, God said, “This is my Son, whom I love-my So n with whom I am pleased” (Matt 3:17). Later, when Jesus was glorified before three of his disciples, the Father again said, “This is my Son, whom I love and with
Continue reading SIGNS & SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (SON)