Cattle were primarily a measure or symbol of wealth in biblical times. They were both familiar and significant, good characteristics for symbolic use. Among his livestock, the wealthy Job had a thousand oxen (Job 1:3). Cattle not only provided meat, milk, leather, and other by-products, they were the main animal workforce in ancient agricultural societies. Oxen (castrated bulls) pulled plows as well as wagons. Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (BULL/CALF)
Objects of unknown shape and material used to determine the divine will. Often in the ancient Near East people, especially priests, made difficult and significant decisions by casting lots on the ground or drawing them from a receptacle. Several times Scripture mentions the practice. We do not know exactly what the lots look like. Nor do we know how they were interpreted. We do know that people of the OT and NT believe God (or gods in the case of non-Israelites or non-Christians) influenced the fall or outcome of the lots (Prov 16:33). Thus, casting lots was a way of determining God’s will. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (LOTS)
There are a number of cautionary tales in the Bible, but few are as seamy and sad as this one.
Looking down on the city of Jerusalem form the atop his royal palace one fine spring evening, Israel’s King David spotted a fine young woman. She wasn’t merely attractive; she was “very beautiful.” And, of all the things she might have been doing, she was bathing. Continue reading WOMAN OF THE DAY (BATHSHEBA: THE VERY BEAUTIFUL WOMAN WITH THE VERY TRAGIC LIFE)
This verse compares the Christian life to the footrace in which athletes competed in the Greek games (read 1 Cor 9:25). The foot race was one of the most popular events of the Greek games that were held every year in Athens. Continue reading BIBLE CUSTOMS AND CURIOSITIES (A LIFETIME RACE)
Ehud killed the king of Moab, Eglon, by plunging a sword into his stomach. However Eglon’s death was a result of God’s punishment for oppressing the people of Israel for eighteen years. It is not a question of murder serving God’s will. Rather, God used Ehud Continue reading HOW DOES MURDER SERVE GOD’S WILL AND WIN GOD’S APPROVAL?
Usually understood as the final abode of the unrighteous dead wherein the ungodly suffer eternal punishment; the term translates one OT word and several NT words.
OLD TESTAMENT USAGE – The only Hebrew word translated “hell” in the KJV (though not in modern translatons) is Sheol. Sheol itself is a broad term that, depending on the context, may signify the abode of the both the righteous dead and the ungodly dead. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY (HELL)
Three of the four Gospels tell her story (Matt 9:20-22; Mark 5:25-34; Luke 8:43-48), yet we don’t know her name. We don’t even know the name of her medical condition, only that she had some sort of incurable bleeding disorder-possibly hemophilia or, more likely, something gynecological in nature mophilia or, more likely, something gynecological in nature. Continue reading WOMAN OF THE BIBLE (A BLEEDING WOMAN)
Breaking of the marriage covenant. An action contrary to the pattern of “one man, one woman, one lifetime” revealed by God in Gen. 1:27; 2:21-25. The root idea implied a cutting of the marriage bond. While ancient cultures different in details, most had a concept of marriage and a corresponding concept of divorce. Continue reading DEFINITION OF THE DAY “DIVORCE”
Surely they are, in the sense of ultimate cause. But not necessarily, in the sense of proximate cause. It appears that God used these events as judgments at times. Continue reading ARE DROUGHTS AND FAMINES THE RESULT OF SIN?
As epithets go, it’s hard to beat God’s description of David book of Acts: “a man loyal to [God].” A glimpse into David’s life reveals what it takes to be awarded such a designation. Continue reading MEN OF THE BIBLE (DAVID: A MAN LOYAL TO GOD)