Sunday, 30 April 2017
GOD TO AHAB—LET’S TALK ABOUT THIS NABOTH DEAL
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1 Kings 21:17-24

17 Then the word of the LORD came to Elijah the Tishbite, saying, 18 "Arise, go down to meet Ahab king of Israel, who is in Samaria; behold, he is in the vineyard of Naboth, WHERE HE HAS GONE TO TAKE POSSESSION. 19 And you shall say to him, 'Thus says the LORD, "HAVE YOU KILLED AND ALSO TAKEN POSSESSION?"' And you shall say to him, 'Thus says the LORD: "IN THE PLACE WHERE DOGS LICKED UP THE BLOOD OF NABOTH SHALL DOGS LICK YOUR OWN BLOOD."'" 20 Ahab said to Elijah, "Have you found me, O my enemy?" He answered, "I HAVE FOUND YOU, BECAUSE YOU HAVE SOLD YOURSELF TO DO WHAT IS EVIL IN THE SIGHT OF THE LORD. 21 Behold, I will bring disaster upon you. I WILL UTTERLY BURN YOU UP, AND WILL CUT OFF FROM AHAB EVERY MALE, BOND OR FREE, IN ISRAEL. 22 And I will make your house like the house of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, and like the house of Baasha the son of Ahijah, for the anger to which you have provoked me, and BECAUSE YOU HAVE MADE ISRAEL TO SIN. 23 AND OF JEZEBEL THE LORD ALSO SAID, 'THE DOGS SHALL EAT JEZEBEL WITHIN THE WALLS OF JEZREEL.' 24 Anyone belonging to Ahab who dies in the city the dogs shall eat, and anyone of his who dies in the open country the birds of the heavens shall eat."

What does Ahab know about Elijah the prophet?  Well, Elijah has confronted him and his wife several times and each time Elijah has come through unscathed and on top; Elijah is GOD’s man and Ahab isn’t going to touch him.  So when Elijah, shows up in Jezreel at Naboth’s vineyard, just when Ahab is surveying his newly acquired property—Ahab knows that this is serious; GOD knows what has happened.  Basically Elijah tells Ahab, that GOD knows that He and Jezebel murdered Naboth and his sons, that Ahab and his supporters for all intents and purposes, threw Naboth and his family on the trash heap so they could steal his property.  But GOD tells Ahab, that he and his wife and all of their male descendants, would wind up on the trash heap—all of them.  It’s significant to note that Ahab thinks that Elijah is his enemy; it hadn’t occurred to him that GOD was the one he had offended.  He also makes a statement regarding how Elijah somehow had “found me.”  Talk about hubris, about arrogance.  This guy and his wife and their supporters thought that nobody noticed what they had done.  But their wickedness was blatant; everyone knew about it.  One of the individuals who had watched them operate was a member of the king’s bodyguard, Jehu; and he, had seen everything; he knew the facts; he knew who had done what; and when the right time would come, he would be GOD’s instrument to throw these worthless individuals on the trash heap.  JESUS tells us that it is a horrible thing for someone to cause others to sin; Ahab and Jezebel did this with both hands.  They caused others to lie, to commit murder in this case; but before that they had led the nation away from the LORD and into Baal worship, into immorality, into depravity.  And there’s one more thing to consider here: their offspring, the sons, were all going to die.  Is this a statement regarding their depravity, regarding what their lives would produce?

Romans 1:18

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.

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Posted on 04/30/2017 8:45 AM by LarryG
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Saturday, 29 April 2017
NABOTH'S VINEYARD—THERE’S NOTHING NEW UNDER THE SUN
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1 Kings 21:1-16

1 Now Naboth the Jezreelite had a vineyard in Jezreel, beside the palace of Ahab king of Samaria. 2 And after this AHAB SAID TO NABOTH, "GIVE ME YOUR VINEYARD, that I may have it for a vegetable garden, because it is near my house, and I will give you a better vineyard for it; or, if it seems good to you, I will give you its value in money." 3 BUT NABOTH SAID TO AHAB, "THE LORD FORBID THAT I SHOULD GIVE YOU THE INHERITANCE OF MY FATHERS." 4 And Ahab went into his house vexed and sullen because of what Naboth the Jezreelite had said to him, for he had said, "I will not give you the inheritance of my fathers." And he lay down on his bed and turned away his face and would eat no food. 5 But Jezebel his wife came to him and said to him, "Why is your spirit so vexed that you eat no food?" 6 And he said to her, "Because I spoke to Naboth the Jezreelite and said to him, 'Give me your vineyard for money, or else, if it please you, I will give you another vineyard for it.' And he answered, 'I will not give you my vineyard.'" 7 And Jezebel his wife said to him, "DO YOU NOW GOVERN ISRAEL? Arise and eat bread and let your heart be cheerful; I will give you the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite." 8 SO SHE WROTE LETTERS IN AHAB'S NAME AND SEALED THEM WITH HIS SEAL, AND SHE SENT THE LETTERS TO THE ELDERS AND THE LEADERS WHO LIVED WITH NABOTH IN HIS CITY. 9 And she wrote in the letters, "PROCLAIM A FAST, and set Naboth at the head of the people. 10 And SET TWO WORTHLESS MEN OPPOSITE HIM, AND LET THEM BRING A CHARGE AGAINST HIM, SAYING, 'YOU HAVE CURSED GOD AND THE KING.' THEN TAKE HIM OUT AND STONE HIM TO DEATH." 11 AND THE MEN OF HIS CITY, THE ELDERS AND THE LEADERS WHO LIVED IN HIS CITY, DID AS JEZEBEL HAD SENT WORD TO THEM. As it was written in the letters that she had sent to them, 12 they proclaimed a fast and set Naboth at the head of the people. 13 And the two worthless men came in and sat opposite him. And the worthless men brought a charge against Naboth in the presence of the people, saying, "Naboth cursed God and the king." So they took him outside the city and stoned him to death with stones. 14 Then they sent to Jezebel, saying, "Naboth has been stoned; he is dead." 15 As soon as Jezebel heard that Naboth had been stoned and was dead, Jezebel said to Ahab, "Arise, take possession of the vineyard of Naboth the Jezreelite, which he refused to give you for money, for Naboth is not alive, but dead." 16 AND AS SOON AS AHAB HEARD THAT NABOTH WAS DEAD, AHAB AROSE TO GO DOWN TO THE VINEYARD OF NABOTH THE JEZREELITE, TO TAKE POSSESSION OF IT.

Let’s think about what is taking place here.  Maybe it’s time to think about these events in light of what we know about how people operate.  Here is the king of the Northern Kingdom, Ahab; and he wants a piece of property that is adjacent to his vacation home.  But there’s a problem; the man who owns it, Naboth, doesn’t want to sell it; it’s been in his family for a long time and he will not part with his ancestral home; he wants to pass it on to his family.  Anyway, Ahab, who with his wife, Jezebel, represents the movers and shakers of the society, makes Naboth an offer; he wants the property and he’ll pay for it.  But Naboth still refuses.  Now we need to think about the law of the land in operation here.  If Naboth sells it to Ahab for money, the law requires Ahab to return it to Naboth’s family, IF THERE ARE ANY SURVIVING MEMBERS OF THE FAMILY at that time, in the year of Jubilee.  Now remember, that Ahab and his wife are the head of the movers and shakers and THEY KNOW THE LAW.  If you don’t think so, just read on.  It is very likely that Naboth suspects that Ahab will not return the property to his family when the Jubilee comes around; in other words, the property, his family’s ancestral home will be lost.  So this deal is a nonstarter.  Ahab goes into his vacation home and sulks; he’s mad.  But then his wife, Jezebel enters and reminds him that he, Ahab is the king and not to worry because she, the queen, will handle the situation.  She essentially uses the LAW of the land to get rid of Naboth and his family.  How does she do this?  First, she devises a LEGAL scenario: we will have some of our friends, the movers and shakers in Jezreel frame Naboth, using the law; we’ll have them accuse him of committing capital crimes.  Hmmm.  Let the accusation be that Naboth cursed GOD and the king.  Yup that’ll do it.  But the law calls for two witnesses to seal the deal; so her instructions to their friends in Jezreel, tell them to provide for two individuals who will supply the required lies.  She tells them to just get rid of Naboth, kill him, which they do along with his surviving sons, which we learn of in 2 Kings 9:26. The narrative describes their willing and efficient compliance.  You kind of get the impression, that these folks thought that Naboth and his family were bad for business; and being on Ahab and Jezebel’s side was the way to go. 

Anyway, they do the deed and report to Jezebel that the property in question now has no owners.  So Jezebel goes to Ahab and basically tells him: the property is free and has no owners, so it has to go to the state—which is Ahab, who just gets up and takes the garden—business is business.

Ahab and Jezebel are “lawless” individuals; they do what they want.  But that doesn’t mean that they don’t use the law of the land; they do; they use it effectively and efficiently.  While you read this passage, you can’t help but think that maybe, just maybe, they had lawyers advising them.  The “lawless” do use the law of the land; but they do so for their own self-serving purposes. Anybody see any resemblance to current events and the way things are done today?

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Posted on 04/29/2017 8:38 AM by LarryG
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Friday, 28 April 2017
ITS ALL ABOUT THE END
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Ezekiel 18:21-25, 32

21 "BUT IF A WICKED PERSON TURNS AWAY FROM ALL HIS SINS THAT HE HAS COMMITTED AND KEEPS ALL MY STATUTES AND DOES WHAT IS JUST AND RIGHT, HE SHALL SURELY LIVE; HE SHALL NOT DIE. 22 None of the transgressions that he has committed shall be remembered against him; for the righteousness that he has done he shall live. 23 HAVE I ANY PLEASURE IN THE DEATH OF THE WICKED, DECLARES THE LORD GOD, AND NOT RATHER THAT HE SHOULD TURN FROM HIS WAY AND LIVE? 24 But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die. 25 "Yet you say, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?... 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord GOD; so turn, and live."

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Posted on 04/28/2017 8:34 AM by LarryG
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Thursday, 27 April 2017
THE POTTER AND THE CLAY
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Jeremiah 18:1-10

1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD: 2 "Arise, and go down to the potter's house, and there I will let you hear my words." 3 So I went down to the potter's house, and there he was working at his wheel. 4 And the vessel he was making of clay was spoiled in the potter's hand, and he reworked it into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to do. 5 Then the word of the LORD came to me: 6 "O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter has done? declares the LORD. Behold, like the clay in the potter's hand, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel. 7 If at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom, that I will pluck up and break down and destroy it, 8 and if that nation, concerning which I have spoken, turns from its evil, I will relent of the disaster that I intended to do to it. 9 And if at any time I declare concerning a nation or a kingdom that I will build and plant it, 10 and if it does evil in my sight, not listening to my voice, then I will relent of the good that I had intended to do to it.

This is the heart of wisdom.  I think Solomon, in his clearer moments, realized this.  GOD is in charge.  He brought everything into existence and He maintains it.  The LORD is outside of our time-space continuum; yet He controls it.  He brings each life into existence and numbers its days; and the lives of every individual, of every nation, of everything has purpose—HIS PURPOSE.  He creates the scenario, molds individuals, shapes nations.

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Posted on 04/27/2017 8:30 AM by LarryG
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Wednesday, 26 April 2017
ALL CREATION BELONGS TO THE LORD
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Ezekiel 18:4  -- Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: the soul who sins shall die.

Throughout scripture GOD keeps reminding us about the Third Commandment: we cannot take His Name in vain; in other words, we have to take Him seriously.  He is the One who created everything; He maintains it.  Consider the verse above: what are the main ideas here?  Number one, GOD reiterates that everything belongs to Him.  Don’t like that?  Doesn’t matter; it’s reality; it’s truth—that’s the way it is.  The second thing we need to consider here is that because GOD created everything and put in place the physical, moral, ethical and spiritual laws that provide the boundaries or conditions of our reality, our existence, things are going to work according to His plan.  But here’s the kicker: when an individual sins, or goes outside GOD’s law, goes against the reality that GOD has created---THE RESULT IF DEATH.  Think about this: GOD’s creation, our reality is self-correcting, imperfection or sin is going to be eliminated.  Why?  Maybe this will happen because our actions set in motion future events that ensure a certain outcome. 

SELAH

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Posted on 04/26/2017 8:26 AM by LarryG
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Tuesday, 25 April 2017
FOR IN THESE THINGS I DELIGHT
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Jeremiah 9:23-24

23 Thus says the LORD: "Let not the wise man boast in his wisdom, let not the mighty man boast in his might, let not the rich man boast in his riches, 24 but let him who boasts boast in this, that he understands and knows me, that I am the LORD who practices steadfast love, justice, and righteousness in the earth. FOR IN THESE THINGS I DELIGHT, declares the LORD." 

This is significant.  What really makes GOD happy?  Answer: He delights when we get to KNOW Him: He wants us to spend time with Him, to fellowship with Him, to be in Communion with Him.  He wants us to understand Him, to know Him.  Why?  Because only by getting to know Him can we come to realize the depth of His justice, His righteousness, His love for us.

SELAH

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Posted on 04/25/2017 8:23 AM by LarryG
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Monday, 24 April 2017
WHY HAVE THESE THINGS COME UPON ME?
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Jeremiah 13:22-23

 22 And if you say in your heart, 'Why have these things come upon me?' it is for the greatness of your iniquity that your skirts are lifted up and you suffer violence. 23 Can the Ethiopian change his skin or the leopard his spots? Then also you can do good who are accustomed to do evil.

When things go wrong for people, it is natural for them to ask: “why is this happening to me?”  Well, apparently, the short answer to this is: DUH.  Why would I say that?  Well, because outcomes are the results of our behavior; our actions matter and they set off effects which manifest sooner or later.  But GOD is telling us more: this is all that we are capable of.  Bad things happen because we do evil things—that’s all were capable of.  Now some are going to be offended by this.  “People are basically good.”  Hmm, is that true.  It is time for a reality check.  How does GOD see us?  He tells us the book of Genesis that all of the inclinations of our hearts are inevitably—evil.  We learn in Isaiah, that everyone, and I mean everyone is corrupt, we all sin and that sin gets so out of control that we are carried away by it, by the ensuing events that follow.  None of us wants to be righteous, to follow GOD.  Even if we wanted to, we are incapable of doing good.  We are driven by the corruption of our innermost beings and BAD TREES PRODUCE BAD FRUIT---THAT’S THE WAY IT IS.  No surprises here.  WE ARE BADDD TO THE BONE!!

So what are we going to do?  Actually, there is nothing that WE can do.  GOD knows that; but that doesn’t mean there’s nothing HE can do; He made us; He maintains us; and He has put in place the cure, the remedy, the antidote. 

FOR GOD SO LOVED THE WORLD

John 3:16 "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

LET’S BE WASHED IN THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB!

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Posted on 04/24/2017 8:18 AM by LarryG
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Sunday, 23 April 2017
OUR SINS LIKE THE WIND—CARRY US AWAY
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Jeremiah 15:2

And when they ask you, 'Where shall we go?' you shall say to them, 'Thus says the LORD: "'Those who are for pestilence, to pestilence, and those who are for the sword, to the sword; those who are for famine, to famine, and those who are for captivity, to captivity.'

What are we being told here?  Maybe GOD is telling us more about destiny and its relationship to our actions.  Do our actions set in motion certain, specific outcomes?  Let’s think about this for a moment: consider what happens when a person murders someone?  This doesn’t happen in a vacuum, it involves people doing something to other people; and people react.  How do people react to seeing someone close to them being murdered, to someone robbing them, to someone deliberately cheating them?  Might we expect that people treated in this manner, might start thinking about retribution?  I guess the thought may arise when we see vengeance being carried out—WHAT DID YOU EXPECT TO HAPPEN?

Make no doubt about it, GOD brought into existence all reality; He knows how it works; and His wrath is built into it.  We can choose what we do, but GOD determines the outcomes.  In the end—WE ARE NOT CAPTAINS OF OUR OWN SOULS.

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Posted on 04/23/2017 8:14 AM by LarryG
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Saturday, 22 April 2017
NOT WILLING THAT ANY SHOULD PERISH
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Lamentations 3:31-36

 31 For the Lord will not cast off forever, 32 but, though he cause grief, he will have compassion according to the abundance of his steadfast love; 33 FOR HE DOES NOT WILLINGLY AFFLICT OR GRIEVE THE CHILDREN OF MEN. 34 TO CRUSH UNDERFOOT ALL THE PRISONERS OF THE EARTH, 35 to deny a man justice in the presence of the Most High, 36 to subvert a man in his lawsuit, THE LORD DOES NOT APPROVE.

Here is something that we need to lock our minds around—GOD LOVES US.  Now that doesn’t mean it’s always going to be smooth-sailing.  GOD has created reality in every dimension and that reality is self-correcting—GOD’s creation only provides for perfection and anything else automatically sets off effects that lead to the elimination of perfection.  The apostle Paul had another way of putting this:

Romans 1:18

For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth.

GOD’s wrath, His predetermined reaction to ungodliness and unrighteousness is built into the creation.  The second part of this passage is also profound: when men sin they are going against the truth of reality.  It goes back to the garden of Eden and the fall of mankind.  What happened there?  Essentially the Serpent, aka. , the Devil, aka.,  Satan, aka.,  the shining one, deceived Eve and eventually her husband Adam, into essentially trying to come up with their own definition of what is right and what is wrong.  Adam and Eve willing accepted the lie and death ensued.

GOD allows things to happen to us, for reality to operate as designed, for us to experience the consequences of our actions—to bring us back to the truth—to bring us back to Him.  With Him, we have safety, with Him we have peace, with Him we have completion.  Like any good father, GOD disciplines us, not to destroy us but to lead us to safety—to lead us to life.  He doesn’t enjoy disciplining us, but He knows what’s best for us and what we need.

SELAH 

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Posted on 04/22/2017 8:07 AM by LarryG
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Thursday, 20 April 2017
In the last days, Christians should live with an attitude of wisdom
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(1 Peter 4:3-6) .

For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles; when we walked in lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries. In regard to these, they think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation, speaking evil of you. They will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. For this reason the gospel was preached also to those who are dead, that they might be judged according to men in the flesh, but live according to God in the spirit.

For we have spent enough of our past lifetime in doing the will of the Gentiles: Peter realizes we all spent enough time living like the world. Now we are called to live like Christians. It is a profound, and foolish, waste of time for Christians to live like the world, and we must simply stop being double-minded and start living as Christians.

Sadly, many Christians (in their heart of hearts) think that they have not spent enough time doing the will of the ungodly. They want to experience more of the world before they make a full commitment to godliness. This is a tragic what a mistake, and takes a path that leads away from eternal life.

They think it strange that you do not run with them in the same flood of dissipation: When the world looks at our godly living, they think it strange that we do not follow them in their flood of dissipation (wastefulness). If life lived after the flesh is anything, it is a waste.

Speaking evil of you: When we don’t participate in the sin around us, we convict those who practice their sin, and they don’t like that - so they speak evil of us.

“It does not matter how your good deeds are received by men. If you are like God, you will find them received with contempt and ingratitude.” (Meyer)

Lewdness means to live without any sense of moral restraint, especially in regard to sexual immorality and violence. When we look at this list (lewdness, lusts, drunkenness, revelries, drinking parties, and abominable idolatries), we see just how little fallen man has progressed in the last 2,000 years.

The magnitude of their foolishness will be displayed on they day when they will give an account to Him who is ready to judge. Even if one seems to live the “good life” living by the world’s rules, their life will be a waste in the measure of eternity.

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Posted on 04/20/2017 10:15 AM by LarryG
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Wednesday, 19 April 2017
In the last days, Christians should have an attitude of commitment.
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(The following is taken from DAVID GUZIK COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE, Studylight.org)

(1 Peter 4:1-2)

Therefore, since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind, for he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, that he no longer should live the rest of his time in the flesh for the lusts of men, but for the will of God.

Since Christ suffered for us in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same mind: The commitment God calls us to have is nothing isn’t greater than the commitment Jesus had in enduring suffering for our salvation. In the last days, we need to have a commitment to God that will endure through great struggles.

Jesus communicated the same idea when He told us that anyone who would come after Him must take up his cross and follow (Matthew 16:24). Taking up the cross meant that you were committed and not looking back!

Arm yourself with the same mind: Many of us are defeated in our battle against sin because we refuse to sacrifice anything in the battle. We only want victory if it comes easily to us. Jesus called us to have the kind of attitude that would sacrifice in the battle against sin (Matthew 5:29-30).

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Posted on 04/19/2017 10:07 AM by LarryG
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Monday, 10 April 2017
A plea for unity and love among God’s people.
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(The following is from DAVID GUZIK COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE)

 (1 Peter 3:8-9)

Finally, all of you be of one mind, having compassion for one another; love as brothers, be tenderhearted, be courteous; not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing, knowing that you were called to this, that you may inherit a blessing.

a. Be of one mind: Most of us are willing to have one mind, as long as that one mind is my mind! But the one mind is to be the mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16). Our common mind is to be Jesus’ mind.

i. This command brings us back to the need to know God’s word. We can’t be of one mind, the mind of Jesus, if we don’t know what His mind is. The word of God shows us the mind of Jesus.

b. Be of one mind speaks to the essential unity of God’s people. We are one; but we are not all the same. While we should all be of one mind, we can’t expect everyone to be like us. God has built both unity and diversity among His people.

i. Every cell of your body is different, and each one has its role to play. But every cell in your body has the same DNA code written in it, the master plan for the whole body. Every cell in your body has the same “mind.”

ii. We could say that Christians are to be like a choir. Each one sings with their own voice, and some sing different parts, but everyone sings to the same music and in harmony with one another.

c. Having compassion . . . tenderhearted . . . courteous: Peter describes the kind of warm love that should be among the people of God. We should be compassionate, brotherly, tenderhearted and even polite. Christians should treat each other with love!

i. Remember that this was the measure Jesus gave to the world to identify His true disciples: By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another (John 13:35). Jesus did not command us to like our brothers and sisters in Christ. But we are commanded to love them, and once we start loving them, we will start liking them.

d. Not returning evil for evil or reviling for reviling, but on the contrary blessing: The greatest challenge to our love for others comes when we are wronged. At those times, we are called to not return evil for evil, but to give a blessing instead.

i. No dispute, argument, or personality conflict among believers should linger. Even if one Christian gets out of line, the loving response of other Christians should keep the problem small and short-lived.

ii. The natural response to hostility is retaliation. This is what the terrible ethnic conflicts all over the world are all about - one group wrongs another, and dedicates the rest of its existence to repaying that wrong. Only the love of Jesus for our enemies can break that terrible cycle.

iii. Jesus reminded us that it is no great credit if we love those who love us in return; the real test of love is to demonstrate compassion to our enemies (Matthew 5:44-47).

e. That you may inherit a blessing: We love one another, but not only for the sake of Jesus, whose body we are members of. We love one another, but not only for the sake of our brother or sister for whom Jesus died. We also love one another for our own sake - by blessing those who have wronged us, we will inherit a blessing. If you can’t love for the sake of Jesus, or for the sake of your brother, then do it for your own sake!

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Posted on 04/10/2017 8:20 AM by LarryG
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Sunday, 9 April 2017
The heart of a godly husband
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(The following is from DAVID GUZIK COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE) 

(1 Peter 3:7) .

Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.

a. Dwell with them: A godly husband abides with his wife. He doesn’t merely share a house, but he truly lives with her. He recognizes the great point of Paul’s teaching on marriage in Ephesians 5:1-33 : that husbands ought to love their own wives as their own bodies; he who loves his wife loves himself (Ephesians 5:28). The godly husband understands the essential unity God has established between husband and wife.

b. With understanding: A godly husband undertakes the important job of understanding his wife. By knowing her well, he is able to demonstrate his love for her far more effectively.

--When a husband has this understanding, God directs him to use it, to dwell with his wife with understanding. He is supposed to take his understanding and apply it in daily life with his wife. This is where many men have trouble following through. They may have understanding about their wives, but they don’t use it as they dwell with them.

c. Giving honor: A godly husband knows how to make his wife feel honored. Though she submits to him, he takes care that she does not feel like she is an employee or under dictator.

-- In giving honor to the wife, the word in the ancient Greek language for the wife is a rare word, meaning more literally “the feminine one.” It suggests that the woman’s feminine nature should prompt the husband to honor her.

e. Heirs together: A godly husband realizes that his spouse is not only his wife, but his sister in Jesus. Part of their inheritance in the Lord is only realized in their oneness as husband and wife.

--Heirs together: This “reminds husbands that even though they have been given great authority within marriage, their wives are still equal to them in spiritual privilege and eternal importance: they are ‘joint heirs.’” (Grudem)

f. That your prayers may not be hindered: The failure to live as a godly husband has spiritual consequences. It can and it will will hinder prayer.

--Some have thought that Peter has in mind here the prayers that husbands and wives pray together. But since he addresses husbands only, and because says your prayers, he is refers to the prayers of husbands.

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Posted on 04/09/2017 8:13 AM by LarryG
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Saturday, 8 April 2017
Examples of submission
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(The following is from DAVID GUZIK COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE)

(1 Peter 3:5-6) .

For in this manner, in former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves, being submissive to their own husbands, as Sarah obeyed Abraham, calling him lord, whose daughters you are if you do good and are not afraid with any terror.

a. In former times, the holy women who trusted in God also adorned themselves: Peter reminds women that he doesn’t call them to a new standard, but something that was practiced by holy women of former times.

b. Who trusted in God: When women submit to their husbands, and when the do not put trust in their outward adornment, they are like the holy women of former times who trusted in God. They powerfully demonstrate their faith.

A woman can trust her ability to influence and control her husband, or she can trust God and be submissive. A woman can trust her outward adornment, or she can trust God and cultivate a gentle and quiet spirit. It all comes back to trust in God, so she should be like the holy women who trusted in God.

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Posted on 04/08/2017 8:05 AM by LarryG
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Friday, 7 April 2017
The true beauty of a godly woman.
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(The following is from DAVID GUZIK COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE)

(1 Peter 3:3-4)

Do not let your adornment be merely outward; arranging the hair, wearing gold, or putting on fine apparel; rather let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God.

a. Do not let your adornment be merely outward: Peter does forbid all adornment. But for the godly woman, outward adornment is always in moderation, and her emphasis is always on inward adornment.

b. Rather let it be the hidden person of the heart: Real beauty comes from the hidden person of the heart. It isn’t something you wear or primp for. It is something you are.

i. The real question is “What do you depend on to make yourself beautiful?” Peter’s point is not that any of these are forbidden, but that they should not be a woman’s adornment, her source of beauty.

c. The incorruptible beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit: The inner beauty of a godly woman is incorruptible. This means that it does not decay or get worse with age. Instead, incorruptible beauty only gets better with age, and is of so much more value that the beauty that comes from the hair, jewelry, or clothing.

d. A gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God: Peter describes the character of true beauty - a gentle and quiet spirit. These character traits are not promoted for women by our culture, they are very precious in the sight of God.

 

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Posted on 04/07/2017 8:00 AM by LarryG
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Saturday, 1 April 2017
GENTLE PERSUASION--EFFECTIVE ACTION
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(The following is from DAVID GUZIK COMMENTARY ON THE BIBLE)

(1 Peter 3:1-2) .

Wives, likewise, be submissive to your own husbands, that even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives, when they observe your chaste conduct accompanied by fear.

That even if some do not obey the word, they, without a word, may be won by the conduct of their wives: The benefit of submission is shown in the way that it affects husbands for God. A wife’s submission is a powerful expression of her trust in God. This kind of faith and obedience can accomplish great things, even without a word.

i. Wives may want to shape their husbands - either to Christ or in Christ - through their words. Peter reminds them that God’s plan is that wives impact their husbands not through persuasive lectures, but through godly submission, chaste conduct, and the fear of God.

ii. There is a sense in which a wife’s efforts to shape her husband through her own words and efforts may hinder the power of God’s working on the husband. It is much more effective it is to submit God’s way, demonstrating trust in Him, and to let God have his way with the husband.

iii. “The attractiveness of a wife’s submissive behaviour even to an unbelieving husband suggests that God has inscribed the rightness and beauty of role distinctions include male leadership or headship in the family and female acceptance of and responsiveness to that leadership . . . The unbelieving husband sees this behaviour and deep within perceives the beauty of it. Within his heart there is a witness that this is right, this is how God intended men and women to relate as husband as wife. He concludes, therefore, that the gospel which his wife believes must be true as well.” (Grudem)

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Posted on 04/01/2017 9:54 AM by LarryG
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