The physical act of circumcision was a sign of the covenant between of God and Israel in which he had chosen them and promised to be their God for all generations (Gen 17:10-11; Acts 7:8). In this act, the foreskin of a male child’s penis was removed (Lev 12:3). More rarely, circumcision was performed on adults. When God made his covenant promises to Abraham, he insisted that they be sealed with the physical reminder that the Israelites were a people set apart. Those who failed to comply with this condition were excluded from covenant community (Gen 17:14; Exod 12:48). Continue reading SIGNS AND SYMBOLS OF THE BIBLE (CIRCUMSCISION)
Wisdom, the opposite of ignorance, is a gift from God. It is a gift that He gladly gives to those who ask for it in all earnestness and faith (James 1:5). Real wisdom and knowledge are spiritual in nature, having to do with the inborn cunning of our common sense or the learned themes of education. “Fear of the LORD is the beginning of Continue reading IS IGNORANCE, AT ITS CORE, A SPIRITUAL PROBLEM?
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)
Birth is our universal means of arrival in life. We can’t begin to experience all that life has to offer until we have passed through the moment of birth. Life has a formative phase in the womb that the psalmist describes beautifully: Continue reading SINGS AND SYMBOLS (BIRTH)
Use of rocky sites as places of refuge (Num 24:21; Judg 15:8; 20:47) led to the frequent image of God as a rock, that is, a source of protection. Titles of God include the “Stone of Israel” (Gen 49:24 NASB), the Rock (Deut 32:4), the Rock of salvation (32:15), the Rock who begot Israel (32:18), “a rock that is high above me” (Ps 61:2 HCSB). Isaiah 8:13-14 pictures of the Lord of hosts as a “rock to stumble over” (NASB) to the unholy people of Israel and Judah. Paul identified Christ as the spiritual Rock that nourished Israel in the Continue reading DEFINITION OF ROCK
There’s no nice way to say it. Rahab was a harlot-in modern parlance, a hooker. At her home atop the wall that surrounded the bustling, ancient city of Jericho, Rahab took in strange men and gave out sexual favors.
Because of her prominent role in the story of Israel, a few prim and proper types have tried to improve Rahab’s image by engaging in a bit of revisionist history. “Maybe,” they’ve suggested, “she wasn’t actually a ‘lady of the night.’ Perhaps she was only an ‘innkeeper.'” Continue reading WOMEN OF THE BIBLE (RAHAB: THE SHADY LADY)
It is cosmic conflict between the forces of good and evil. The outcome has been determined, but the ongoing conflict still includes a great number of victories and defeats. The soul and life of each person is the battleground. Continue reading WHAT IS SPRITUAL WARFARE?
Old Testament rules of holiness had a vital either/or quality about them, unlike more tolerant religious rules of the present day. These older rules paint a portrait of a holy and just God, one whose will cannot be dismissed and whose word cannot be ignored. On one occasion that illustrates the stringency of these rules, a bystander tried to save the ark of the covenant from a fall, but in so doing violated the rule of holiness and lost his life (2 Samuel 6:6-7). Continue reading WHY WOULD PEOPLE DIE IF THEY GOT TOO CLOSE TO GOD?
Sex is such a strong instinct that it affects every other motivation and loyalty. Biologists are just now discovering how the sex drive governs social organization in animal species from monkeys to dolphins. All animals live in hierarchies, and those hierarchies govern who mate with whom. Sex affects everything. Continue reading WHY IS SEXUAL PURITY SO IMPORTANT “1 THESSALONIANS 4:3-8”
Skipping the next 30 years in Jesus’ life, Matthew jumps to the start of his ministry, marked by two events: baptism and temptation. Continue reading JESUS GOES PUBLIC