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”
True, Esther doesn’t mention the name of God, yet underlying the story are veiled references to God. Cousin Mordecai encourages Esther to go before King Xerxes saying. “Who can say but that you have been elevated to the palace for just such a time as this?” (Esther 4:14). He was implying that God might use Esther to deliver the Jews. Esther then asks Mordecai to gather the Jews and fast; she herself fasted for three days (Esther 4:3) showing her petition to God for assistance.
Continue reading THE BOOK OF ESTHER DOESN’T MENTION GOD, SO WHY IS IT INCLUDED IN THE OLD TESTAMENT?
Matthew, author of the Gospel of Matthew, was a jewish citizen who collected taxes from his countrymen for the Roman government. After Jesus called Matthew to become one of His disciples, Matthew invited some of his tax collector friends to his home for a meal with Jesus and His other disciples.
The Pharisees criticized Jesus for associating with tax collectors and other whom they considered outcasts and sinners. Tax collectors were hated by the Jewish people because they considered them traitors who cooperated with the Romans to drain their country of its resources (read Luke 5:27).
But Jesus replied that His mission was to seek and to save people like Matthew and his friends. “They that be whole need not a physician,” He said, “but they that are sick” (Matthew 9:12).
MATTHEW 9:10- As Jesus sat at meat in the house [Matthew’s house,] behold, many publicans [tax collectors] and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.
MATTHEW 9:12- But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.
LUKE 5:27- And after these things he went forth, and saw a publican, named Levi, sitting at the receipt of customs: and he said unto him Follow me.
It was customary among the Romans to scourge or flog a condemned criminal before he was executed. A scourage was a whip with sharp pieces of metal or bone imbedded in the leather. The back and chest of the criminal were struck repeatedly with this whip until the flesh was severely lacerated, sometimes all the way down to the bone. Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES “PUNISHMENT BY SCOURGING”
Elijah never died. Celestial chariots of fire and a whirlwind carried him away.
Since his body wasn’t destroyed, some Jews consider it reasonable that he can return. Malachi’s promise leads many Jews to believe that Elijah will become the advance man for the Messiah-or as Isaiah put it, “the voice of someone shouting, ‘Clear the way through the wilderness for the LORD!. . . Then the glory of the LORD will be revealed, and all people will see it together’ ” (Isaiah 40:3,5). Continue reading SECOND COMING OF ELIJAH
That’s a question that people of faith, Jews and Christians alike, have been asking for more than 2,000 years. Most believers in ancient times couldn’t handle what many scholars today insist is the truth about this book. And the truth is that it’s an erotic celebration of love between a man and a woman who graphically praise the physical features of each other and trade fantasies about making love. Though their words aren’t obscene, they are unapologetically sensual. Continue reading WHAT IS A SONG ABOUT SEX-WITH NO MENTION OF GOD-DOING IN THE BIBLE?
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)
Since Jesus is the Son of God who has existed before time began, some people assume He has no family history. But this assumption is wrong. Two Gospel of the New Testament-Matthew and Luke-contain family histories of Jesus. And these genealogies give us valuable information about Him and His revolutionary ministry that changed the world. Continue reading THE FAMILY HISTORY OF JESUS
Matthew, atuthor of the Gospel of Matthew, was a Jewish citizen who collector taxes from his countrymen for the Roman government. After Jesus called Matthew to become one of His disciples, Matthew invited some of his tax collector friends to his home for a metal with Jesus and His other disciples. Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (EATING WITH TAX COLLECTORS)