We sometimes think of the Old Testament as a book in which God makes repeated appearances of many kinds. But when we put a time line next to the account, we quickly realize that God’s manifest presence was far more rare and purposeful than we realized. The last time God made a direct appearance in Genesis he visited Jacob in a dream (46:1-7) and assured him his family would become “a great nation” while in Egypt (v. 3). Over four hundred years would pass before God would make another recorded appearance. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (MOUNT SINAI)
To kill an innocent animal seems quite cruel. Our modern sensibilities are often by this requirement. But the lesson is this: Sin is serious! It offends a holy God. Human behavior bears consequences for all of creation. Continue reading ANIMAL SACRIFICE SEEMS BARBARIC AND PRIMITIVIE. WHY WOULD GOD REQUIRE SUCH AN UNPLEASANT RELIGIOUS EXERICSE?
RAPE- Crime of engaging in sexual intercourse with another without consent, by force and/or deception. Mosaic law required a man who had seduced a virgin to pay the bride price and offer to marry her (Exod 22:16-17). The rape of an engaged woman was a capital offense (Deut 22:25-27). In other cases of rape, the offender was required to Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (RAPE)
Ancient Israelites attached a severe social stigma to rape. A young woman victim was “ruined”-she became an outcast with no means of financial support and no prospects for a family of her own. So the law imposed on the perpetrator the responsibility of care for the victim-providing her a home and family-at considerable cost to him. Such an arrangement also reduced the need of the victim’s family to seek forcible revenge, thus sparing the culture much violence. Continue reading OLD TESTAMENT LAW REQUITES A MAN WHO RAPES A VIRGIN TO MARRY HER. WHY FORCE THE VICTIM OF SUCH A TERRIBLE CRIME MARRY THE PERPETRATOR?
One scholar recently uncovered controversial evidence suggesting that the ancient Egyptians produced written sheet music during the same centuries as the building of the mighty Sphinx, about 4500 years ago. Maureen M. Barwise claims to have deciphered musical hieroglyphs that date back as far as the fourth dynasty of the old kingdom, roughly 2600 B.C. Continue reading MANNERS AND CUSTOMS OF THE BIBLE (THE WOLD’S OLDEST SHEET MUSIC?)
CIVIL RIGHTS- Basis for civil rights is grounded in the impartiality of God (Deut 10:7-18; Acts 10:34; cp. Luke 20:21), in the created order by which all persons are made in the image of God (Gen 1:27-28; 9:6), and in the redemptive work of Christ (Gal 3:28). Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (CIVIL RIGHTS)
40. Behold, I have longed after thy precepts: quicken me in thy righteousness.
41. Let thy mercies come also unto me, O LORD, even thy salvation, according to thy word.
42. So shall I have wherewith to answer him that reproacheth me: for I trust in thy word. Continue reading SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY (PSALM 119:40-45)
- Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called the sons of God: therefore the world knoweth us not, because it knew him not.
- Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
Continue reading SCRIPTURE OF THE DAY (1 JOHN 3:1-6) LIVING AS CHILDREN OF GOD
What is righteousness? Most of us immediately think of a person trying to keep a list of rules, like a little boy or girl who never steps over the line. When Paul speaks of righteousness in Romans, he means far more than this commonsense understanding of the word. He draws on the Old Testament concept of righteousness, which speaks of a proper relationship between God and a person, or between God and His people. Continue reading “RIGHTEOUSNESS”
Some people quit partway through a candy sale. Some students finish only half their homework. When it comes to bedrooms, some kids give up before everything’s cleansed up. What about digging into the Bible? Isn’t “halfway” good enough for such a big book? Continue reading HOW TO LOVE GOD’S WORD