In the ancient Near East dreams were one of several ways people sought to see the future and to make decisions that would be beneficial to them. In some societies, people went to temples or holy places to sleep in order to have a dream that would show them the best decision to make.Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (DREAMS)
Saul was a young man dutifully searching for his father’s stray donkeys. Samuel was the renowned prophet, priest, and judge of Israel reluctantly searching for his nation’s first king. When their paths crossed, the course of Israel’s history changed dramatically.
Samuel had served as the Lord’s representative leader of Israel for decades, but he was growing old. When his sons proved to be unfit to succeed him, the people of Israel demanded that a king be appointed to rule over them. They were envious of the monarchies common in surrounding nations.Continue reading MEN OF THE BIBLE (SAUL: WRESTILING WITH DEOMONS)
Worship of the sun and other heavenly bodies was common among the pagan nations of the ancient world. For example, the city of Ur in Mesopotamia from which Abraham migrated was a center of moon worship. The Egyptians worshiped the sun god known as Ra (Gen 12:15). The Lord, speaking through Moses, specifically prohibited this form of idolatry.Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS & CURIOSITIES (WORSHIP OF THE SUN, MOON, AND STARS)
Israel’s greatest problem throughout its history was syncretism-the mixing of pagan religion with worship of the true God. God judged Israel severely for failing to keep worship clean and pure. And one of the easiest inroads to Israel’s heart was through intermarriage with pagan people’s Ezra knew this well, thus his vehement and emotional opposition to taking foreign spouses. Continue reading WHY WAS EZRA SO UPSET ABOUT MIXED MARRIAGES?
The Israelites found themselves in the midst of a Canaanite culture that was awash in pagan immorality. These heathen nations had merged spirituality with sensuality to create a very alluring and very dangerous combination. To keep His people from joining this around-the-clock celebration of perversion. God decreed severe punishment for those guilty of sexual sin. Continue reading WHY WERE PENALTIES FOR SEXUAL SIN SO SEVERE? (LEVITICUS 18:29)
God addressed Ezekiel with an unusual title which will later become Jesus’ favorite way of referring to himself. The title is “son of man.” In the original Hebrew language, it’s literally ben Adam or “son of Adam” since Adam means “humans.” Continue reading WHY “SON OF MAN”?
THERE IS ONLY ONE TRUE GOD!
- Bend down and hear my prayer, O Lord, and answer me, for I am deep in trouble.
- Protect me from death, for I try to follow all your laws. Save me, for I am serving you and trusting you.
- Be merciful, O Lord, for I am looking up to you in constant hope.
- Give me happiness, O Lord, for I worship only you.
- O Lord, you are so good and kind, so ready to forgive, so full of mercy for all who ask your aid.
- Listen closely to my prayer, O God. Hear my urgent cry.
- I will call to you whenever trouble strikes, and you will help me.
- Where among the heathen gods is there a god like you? Where are their miracles?
- All the nations-and you made each one-will come and bow before you, Lord, and praise your great and holy name.
- For you are great and do great miracles. You alone are God.