Tag Archives: John

MEN OF THE BIBLE “THOMAS” MOST LIKELY TO BE NEGATIVE

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Thomas was a “glass is half empty” disciple with a side order of truth issue. Maybe, like Thomas, you refuse to believe anything unless you see it with your own eyes. Continue reading MEN OF THE BIBLE “THOMAS” MOST LIKELY TO BE NEGATIVE

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SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (MARRIAGE)

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      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)

HOW CAN ISAIAH SAY HE SAW THE LORD, WHEN MANY SCRIPTURES DECLARE THAT NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN GOD?

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Isaiah 6 records the prophet’s vision of God, “I saw the Lord.” Yet Exodus 33:20; John 1:18; and 1 John 4:12 state that no one has ever seen God. Continue reading HOW CAN ISAIAH SAY HE SAW THE LORD, WHEN MANY SCRIPTURES DECLARE THAT NO ONE HAS EVER SEEN GOD?

MEN OF THE BIBLE (MATTHEW: TAX COLLECTOR TURNED EVANGELIST)

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Today we know Matthew as the one of the four beloved writers whom God used to chronicle the life of Jesus so we would have it, could refer to it, and could be transformed by it. But Matthew wouldn’t have felt the love during his era. He was from Galilee, and while Rome occupied the area, collaborators like Matthew were the ones who collected taxes for them. Tax collectors were also known to becomes rich by charging more than was due. Continue reading MEN OF THE BIBLE (MATTHEW: TAX COLLECTOR TURNED EVANGELIST)

SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (CANDLESTICK/LAMP STAND)

 

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The most notable candlesticks in the Bible are those created for use in God’s house. The lamp stand or menorah that stood in the tabernalce was made of a single sheet of pure gold and had seven branches, each topped with a lamp in the shape of an almond blossom (Exod 25:31-40). Solomon’s temple had ten of these candles (1 Kings 7:49). Each lamp burned olive oil and was kept burning through the night as a symbol that God was with his chosen people at all times (Exod 27:21; 1 Sam 3:3). Extrabiblical sources suggest that in later times the middle lamp, which represented God himself, was kept burning around the clock. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (CANDLESTICK/LAMP STAND)

SIGNS & SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (EGYPT)

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The Bible most often portrays the land of Egypt as the crucible in which the nation of Israel was forged. But Egypt played an important role earlier, in the lives of Abraham as well as his great-grandson Joseph. Abraham found shelter there during a famine but left in disgrace after lying to the Pharaoh about Sarai (Gen 12:10-20). Joseph was sold into slavery in Egypt and became not only a great blessing to the nation, but also the means by which the rest of his family was kept safe during another devastating famine (Gen 37-46). Eventually Egypt enslaved the young nation and treated them mercilessly for four hundred years. Continue reading SIGNS & SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (EGYPT)

WHAT IS GOD’S GOOD NEWS? (MARK 1:14)

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The Good News that God has for people is all wrapped up in the person, life, and teachings of Jesus Christ. When Jesus started His ministry, He declared that a new time in history had arrived. The God who created this world and all its people was now on the planet in a human body. Knowing that God was not far away or disconnected from this Continue reading WHAT IS GOD’S GOOD NEWS? (MARK 1:14)

BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (GOD’S HAND AND EAR)

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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)

WHAT PURPOSE DID THE TRANSFIGURATION SERVE?

 

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The Greek word translated “transfiguration” is the same word from which we get the English term metamorphosis. In this experience, possibly on Mount Hermon, Christ’s whole appearance changed. Peter, James, and John were able to see, for a few moments, Jesus in His glorified state (2 Peter 1:17). This brilliant revelation of the divinity of Jesus, Continue reading WHAT PURPOSE DID THE TRANSFIGURATION SERVE?

BIBLE SIGNS & SYMBOLS (BRANCH)

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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)