We hear the word a lot around Christian circles, sometimes referring to a prayer before a meal, sometimes to a great big idea associated with the gospel, sometimes as a girl’s name. Paul’s used the term throughout his letters to speak of God’s special favor to every person, the underserved benefit we have of God’s mercy in sending Jesus to die for our sins.Continue reading WHAT IS GRACE?
From a historical perspective, it seems that Daniel came of age at exactly the wrong time in Israel. He was born just in time to see his once-great nation fall to the Babylonians. As punishment for their centuries unfaithfulness and disobedience. God allowed his people to be defeated by their enemies. Daniel, along with other young, strong, and capable people in Israel, was carried away into captivity in Babylon.Continue reading MAN OF THE BIBLE (DANIEL “UNSHAKABLE FAITH”)
Jesus could not live without prayer. When Jesus sought out solitary places for prayer, He gave a clearer picture of the three persons of God (the Trinity)-God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit.Continue reading WHAT WOULD JESUS PRAY ABOUT-IF HE WAS GOD, WASN’T HE JUST TALKING TO HIMSELF?
Nehemiah is an example of a person who lived by prayer. He responded to difficulty with prayer. He planned in prayer. He prayed before he spoke. When he evaluated his work, he did so in prayer. When others attacked, mocked, or threatened him. Nehemiah prayed.Continue reading HOW DID NEHEMIAH PRACTICE PRAYER?
Refraining from eating food. The Bible describes three main forms of fasting. The normal fast involves the total abstinence of foods. Luke 4:2 reveals that Jesus “ate nothing”; afterward “He was hungry.” Jesus abstained from food but not from water.
In Acts 9:9 we read of an absolute fast where for three days Paul “did not eat or drink” (HCSB). The abstinence form both food and water seems to have lasted no more than three days (Ezra 10:6; Esther 4:16). Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (FASTING)
JOHN 11:5 – “Now Jesus loved Martha, her sister, and Lazarus.”
The New Testament informs us that Martha lived in the little village of Bethany (on the east side of the Mount of Olives, a couple of miles from Jerusalem). Some speculate she was married to the man known in the Gospels as Simon the Leper (compare Matt 26:6-7; Mark 14:3; and John 12:1-3). Continue reading WOMEN OF THE BIBLE (MARTHA: THE ‘GET-BUSY, GET-IT-DONE!” GAL)
Asa set a good example for his son and successor, Jehoshaphat. As the fourth king of Judah, Jehoshaphat continued to suppress pagan worship and to encourage worship of the one true God as his father had done. He implemented a nationwide program of teaching his officials and the people of the land to practice justice and follow the Lord’s commands (2 Chronicles 17:7-9).
The king himself practiced what he preached. When confronted by a huge army composed of Edomites, Moabites, and Ammonites, he prayed to the Lord for divine assistance. “We do not know what to do,” he admitted, “but we are looking to you for help” (2 Chronicles 20:12 NLT).
His army marched off to battle with the words of a psalm on their lips. When Judah’s army arrived at the battle site, there was no battle to fight. The allied enemy army had been mysteriously ambushed by an unknown foe. This created confusion among the soldiers of the allied enemy army, and they began to slaughter one another. The only thing Jehoshaphat’s troops had to do was pick up the spoils the confused army had abandoned (2 Chronicles 20:22-25).
During Jehoshaphat’s reign the bitter feelings between Judah and Israel grew more cordial. He and Ahab, king of the Northern Kingdom, formed an alliance against their common enemy-the nation of Aram, or Syria. They attempted to recapture the city of Ramoth Gilead from the Syrians, but their campaign was not successful. As it turned out, the wicked king Ahab was killed in this battle (1 Kings 22:29-36).
Jehoshaphat died after reigning over Judah for twenty-five years. He was commended for his leadership because “he walked in the way of his father Asa” and did “what was right in the sight of the LORD” (2 Chronicles 20:32 NKJV).