Numbers 32 records the petition the children of Reuben and Gad made to Moses and the leaders of the congregation of Israel. They desired to settle on the east side of the Jordan River rather than with the rest of the Israelites in Canaan. Moses agreed to allow this, so long as the two tribes guaranteed they would fight with the rest of Israel until “until every one of the children of Israel has received his inheritance” (vs. 18). Having given his approval, Moses warned the people should they go back on their word:
“But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the Lord; and be sure your sin will find you out” (vs. 23).
There are many different examples, in both the Old and New Testaments, of people trying to hide their sin. While it is possible for the sinner to hide his sin from men, it is not possible to hide his sin from the Almighty.
Continue reading » “Your sin will find you out”
Whatever happened to sin? The belief in sin, and the idea that someone could be referred to as a “sinner,” have all but disappeared from our permissive society. Sinful behavior has been explained away, excused, tolerated, defended, and now accepted by many people. To accommodate this “enlightened” view, the doctrines of sin and Hell have even disappeared from some churches.
The Bible tells us that the proper way for God’s people to deal with their sins and receive forgiveness is to confess these sins, repent, and pray to God for forgiveness (1 John 1:9; Acts 8:22). When confronted with the reality of his sin, king David simply said, “I have sinned against the Lord” (2 Samuel 12:13). However, when some Christians are confronted with the sin in their life, they become defensive and seek to excuse the behavior that is under question. In this article we will consider some of the more popular methods that men and brethren use to rationalize their sinful behavior, and we will look at what the Bible says about such efforts. Continue reading » Rationalizing Sinful Behavior
Commentators debate whether Jesus’s story about the rich man and Lazarus is a parable or an actual event that crossed the border between this physical world and the invisible next (Luke 16:19-31).
Regardless, the antagonist of the story is a notable example of a wealthy man who treasured up his riches and ignored the plight of the poor all around him. Dives (pr. die-veez) is the Latin word for wealthy and has become attached through the centuries to the miser of the story, clothed in purple and faring sumptuously each day while this second Lazarus, full of sores, begged for scraps at his gate. Continue reading » Whoever shuts his ears to the poor will cry and not be heard
On one occasion I was visiting an older man who was in the hospital recovering from a stroke. His wife and two grown children were in the room with him. As we were talking about his serious condition, he told me that he was not afraid of dying because he knew he would be in heaven. His son, sensing this was directed towards him, replied, “Dad, I’m not afraid of going to Hell when I die because at least I know I won’t be alone.”
I was shocked when I heard him say this. How could a person not be afraid of going to Hell? However, when you think about it, most people probably do not really know what the Bible says about Hell. If a person understood what Hell is like, they would never make a statement like the one cited above. Therein lies the problem: many people today are ignorant of what the Bible really has to say about Hell. Continue reading » The Bible Doctrine of Hell
Guilt and shame have their proper work in our lives yet they can be great obstacles to overcome. Guilt is good to experience and a must if repentance is to occur; however, some let it drown them in shame and never move on it (see 2 Corinthians 2:5-7). Continue reading » David, The Meek King of Israel
And the brethren say, Amen! Not so fast, fellas, the ladies are listening.
Perhaps to the fairer sex, the proverb will sound rather sexist and one-sided. Surely it would not be among the proverbs that King Lemuel’s mother taught him. Indeed, it is no more pleasant for a woman to dwell in a house with a contentious man, but the proverb is what it is. There are two sides to it, of course, that might just redeem it in feminine minds.
Continue reading » Better to dwell in a corner of a housetop, Than in a house shared with a contentious woman
Babylon is first mentioned in the book of Revelation at chapter 14:8. John writes, “And another, a second angel, followed, saying, Fallen, fallen is Babylon the great, that hath made all the nations to drink of the wine of the wrath of her fornication.” The Babylonian Empire had already fallen hundreds of years before these words were written. What then is John writing about? Who is Babylon? Why is Babylon falling? A study of the book of Revelation reveals Babylon to be the world of sin and sinners. She is Satan’s realm (see John 12:31; 16:11; 1 John 5:19). Babylon is used, throughout the book of Revelation, as a personification of things opposed to the authoritative will of God. She is powerful, seductive, and terrible (see Daniel 2:31). Knowledge of Revelation’s Babylon will better equip the saints today to identify sin and avoid it rather than participating in it (see Revelation 18:4). Continue reading » Babylon in the book of Revelation
C. S. Lewis said, “God became man to turn creatures into sons; not simply to produce better men of the old kind but to produce a new kind of man.” If God never came down on the earth, then no one would have the right to become sons of God (John 1:12). Furthermore, if Christ never died and rose again, then mankind could not be forgiven of their sins and have the possibility of future glory. Continue reading » Did Jesus Rise From The Dead?
There is a mix of pride and melancholy when a middle-aged man is shown a picture of himself in his high school yearbook.
He stands there with his hair graying and thinning, his midsection struggling against his belt, his back and muscles in a state of sorry atrophy. He looks at a twenty-five year old image of himself – thick hair, rippling muscles, trim and sinewy, without a wrinkle or sign of weakness. “The glory of young men is their strength, And the splendor of old men is their gray head” (Proverbs 20:29).
Continue reading » The glory of young men is their strength; the splendor of old men is their gray head
The New York Jets backup quarterback has been a bit of a public relations sensation since entering the NFL. Most agree that the hype surrounding him is probably greater than his actual talent. But, that being said, he is extremely popular, in part because he is a very religious individual and is very forthcoming about his faith.
After touchdowns and on other occasions each game, Tebow drops down to a knee, and in front of tens of thousands of fans, and millions of viewers on television, says a short prayer. Some wag coined his practice “Tebowing” (the name is pronounced with a long ‘o’, like an archer’s bow).
Continue reading » Trademarking “Tebowing”
Jan Hus said, “Rejoice that the immortal God is born that mortal men may live in eternity.” It is so ironic that all the synoptic gospels record how the demons believe in Jesus, but we have to persuade men (Matthew 8:29; Mark 3:11; Luke 4:41; 8:28). Continue reading » Did Jesus Prove He Was The Son Of God?
Bible students debate whether Judge Jephthah actually meant to devote his daughter to human sacrifice when he vowed to offer whatever greeted him first at home in exchange for victory on the battlefield (Judges 11). Continue reading » It is a snare for a man to devote something rashly
Vengeance is one of the most powerful human motivations. Whether it takes the form of a prank or a blow to the body or a knife in the back, seeking revenge for slights both real and perceived is an age-old process.
Continue reading » Do not say, “I will recompense evil”
An anonymous statement says, “All the armies that ever marched, and all the navies that ever were built, and all the parliaments that ever sat, and all the kings that ever reigned, put together, have not affected the life of mankind on this earth as powerfully as has that one solitary life.” Continue reading » Did Jesus Exist?
Many churches have members appointed to an office or wearing a title called “deacon.” These churches have their own concept of what these individuals are and what they are supposed to be doing. In some churches deacons are the decision makers. In other churches deacons are nothing more than figureheads. The preacher is doing the work of the elders, the elders are doing the work of deacons, and the deacons are doing nothing.
Deacons have an important role to play in the Lord’s church. We know that God has set the church in order. He has put every part in its proper place. To understand what a deacon is, and what he is to do, we must understand what the Bible says about deacons. Continue reading » Deacons – Their Qualifications and Work
During Jesus’ ministry, there were three main sects of the Jews that influenced Jewish politics and culture. The Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes.
Interestingly, the Essenes are not mentioned in the New Testament writings. Perhaps their tendencies toward asceticism and monasticism separated them from the common Jew, and limited their influence upon Jewish culture. (Note: It is believed that it was an Essene community, Qumran, that was responsible for the penning of the Dead Sea Scrolls).
The Sadducees were characteristically liberal and secular in their outlook. They were political animals, often affluent, and held the highest political offices among the Jews. “They were a political party, of priestly and aristocratic tendency, as against the more religious and democratic Pharisees” (ISBE, Vol. IV, pg. 2659).
Continue reading » Pharisaism
Babylon goes down in Biblical history as the great harlot of lust, pride, and vain glory (see Revelation 17:5). A study of her rise to power, sin, and fall yields great lessons for the Christian of every generation. Continue reading » Babylon