Showing posts from October, 2022

What is Repentance?

In Matthew 3:1-2, we are told that the ministry of John the Baptist is best characterized in his statement, " Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand ." Once he was put into prison, Jesus picked up John’s mantle, signifying the beginning of His public ministry as Matthew gives the following testimony: Now when Jesus heard that John had been taken into custody, He withdrew into Galilee; and leaving Nazareth, He came and settled in Capernaum, which is by the sea, in the region of Zebulun and Naphtali. This was to fulfill what was spoken through Isaiah the prophet: " THE LAND OF ZEBULUN AND THE LAND OF NAPHTALI , BY THE WAY OF THE SEA, BEYOND THE JORDAN, GALILEE OF THE GENTILES— "THE PEOPLE WHO WERE SITTING IN DARKNESS SAW A GREAT LIGHT, AND THOSE WHO WERE SITTING IN THE LAND AND SHADOW OF DEATH, UPON THEM A LIGHT DAWNED." From that time Jesus began to preach and say, "Repent, for the kingdom of heaven is at hand."     Matthew 4:12-17 The Greek

Forgetting the Lord

"Beware that you do not forget the Lord your God by not keeping His commandments and His ordinances and His statutes which I am commanding you today; otherwise, when you have eaten and are satisfied, and have built good houses and lived in them, and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and gold multiply, and all that you have multiplies, then your heart will become proud and you will forget the Lord your God who brought you out from the land of Egypt, out of the house of slavery. “He led you through the great and terrible wilderness, with its fiery serpents and scorpions and thirsty ground where there was no water; He brought water for you out of the rock of flint. “In the wilderness He fed you manna which your fathers did not know that He might humble you and that He might test you, to do good for you in the end. “ Otherwise , you may say in your heart, ‘My power and the strength of my hand made me this wealth.’ “But you shall remember the Lord your God, for

The Right to Choose, the Essence of Freedom

In the Garden of Eden, God gave Adam the responsibility to cultivate [ abad – work] and keep [ samar – watch, guard, care for] it (Genesis 2:15-17). The Lord would give him the ability to carry out these requirements by providing all the provisions of life from the trees found in Eden, including the tree of life. There would also be one restriction: “ but from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil you shall not eat , for in the day that you eat from it you will surely die .” The Lord God (Yahweh Elohim) granted man the right to choose, and man would decide and suffer whatever blessings or curses were attached to his decision. The right to choose is the essence of freedom. Adam could decide for himself the quality of his relationship with God. Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the Lord God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said , ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of

The Heritage of Christianity

Flavius Josephus tells us in his work, The Jewish War that there were three separate sects of Jewish leadership, the Pharisees, the Sadducees, and the Essenes in the century before Christ as well as the first century AD. Examining their history gives us a real insight into the environment in which the Christan church was formed.   Since the time of David and Solomon, the position of the high priest was occupied by Zadok, a direct descendant of Eleazor, Aaron’s son, and his descendants. Zadok had proven himself loyal to David when David’s kingship was being threatened by Absalom and Adonijah. He was the high priest who anointed Solomon as king and his lineage is documented in 1 Chronicles 6:4-8. Zadok means just or righteous, a derivative of the Hebrew word, tsadeqah; In Genesis 15:6, Then he believed in the Lord, and He reckoned it to him as righteousness . The high priests were chosen from Zadok’s line through the times when the Jews returned from captivity.   The Sadducees Af

When Willingness Meets Divine Purpose

This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth .        1 Timothy 2:3-4 A healthy relationship with God begins with the divine truth that He wishes salvation, an eternal relationship with Him, for all men. Acts 2:23 tells us that this was the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, and that God, Himself, through His Son would need to be the solution. This solution would not be easy, but the result of an extended struggle, culminating in the seed of the woman, Jesus the Messiah bruising the head of the serpent [Satan] (Genesis 3:15). This solution is intended for everyone, but there is a condition. It is dependent on man’s heart attitude toward God.   Godly Fear Surely His salvation is near to those who fear [reverence] Him , that glory may dwell in our land. Lovingkindness and truth have met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other. Truth springs from the earth, and righ