Saturday, January 1, 2011

Bible Talk



Bible Talk is a section we will post once a week on the weekend. You can get to it by clicking on the 'Bible Talk' tab at the top of the website or at the menu at the side. As we read the Bible together you can post what God has spoken to you in that passage of scripture or what you have learned. You can post everyday or once for the week. It is up to you.

The scripture reading for this week:

Jan 1: Matt 1-4
Jan 2: Matt 5-6
Jan 3: Matt 7-8
Jan 4: Matt 9-10
Jan 5: Matt 11-12
Jan 6: Matt 13-14
Jan 7: Matt 15-17
Jan 8: Matt 18-19
Jan 9: Matt 20-21

May God bless your time in the Word


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33 comments:

Andrew said...

If you look at the people in Jesus' genealogy you will see that God can use anyone. We don't have to be perfect to be used by God. Isn't that awesome?

Natasha said...

Matthew Chapter 4: The Temptation of Christ, reminds me of how important it is for us to be grounded in the Word of God. After having fasted for 40 days and 40 nights, Jesus is tempted 3 times by Satan.

In the first temptation, Satan appeals to Jesus' physical hunger by telling Him to turn stones into bread. Jesus replies, "It is written: Man does not live by bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God." (Matt.4:4). Jesus quotes from Deuteronomy 8:3. The second temptation is one of pride and power. Satan boldly quotes from the word of God (Psalm 91:11-12) to tempt Jesus, " 'If you are the Son of God,' he said, 'throw yourself down. For it is written, 'He will command his angels concerning you, and they will life you up in their hands, so you will not strike your foot against a stone.' " Jesus responds by quoting Deuteronomy 6:16, "It is also written: 'Do not put the Lord your God to the test.' " In the 3rd and final temptation, Satan appeals to the lust for greed. He takes Jesus to a very high mountain to show him all the 'splendour' of the world that can be his if he worships him. Jesus once again quotes the Word of God (Deuteronomy 6:13), "Away from me, Satan! For it is written: 'Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.' "

I have learned that the Word of GOD is powerful. It grounds us, keeps us secure and protects us from temptation.

David said...

For me Matthew 5 is some the most profound and instructive text in the entire Bible.

Love my enemy and I have no war. Of course, there is a good chance that my enemy will kill me.

What a challenge he puts out to believers. What reward will I get for loving just those who love you?

Natasha said...

Hi David,

Thanks for joining us and sharing your thoughts. The command to love our enemies is indeed quite a challenging one. To add to your statement about that being one of the most profound and instructive texts in the Bible, I would humbly like to add Mark 12:28-31. I believe that the instruction to love the Lord and our neighbours is the command upon which all others hinge on. It is interesting that God asks us to do what He Himself does for us. He loved us while we were still enemies of the cross.


----------------------------------------
Mark 12:28-31 (New International Version, ©2010)

The Greatest Commandment

28 One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.[a] 30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’[b] 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[c] There is no commandment greater than these.”

Phillip said...

Just got going on my reading and was going to skip over the geneology part but then said "naw" let's check it out again...and of course reminded of Andrew's point - how God can and did include some 'characters' which we - in our own judgementalism (is that a word?) - we might consider notorious in the geneology of Christ...because of that, I am a reminded of the "amazingness" of His grace!

K said...

I always try to "...do to others what you would have them do to you..." (Matt 7:12). I never knew where this line was in the Bible until now. I find it interesting that I found it at the beginning of my journey.

David said...

Hi Natasha

I agree.

David said...

I am struck by the power of healing made manifest by simple faith. I guess Jesus had a charisma that drew such a wide range of people. I can almost feel his pulse through such a distant time ago.

I am also struck by the price required to be worthy. You must put him above parents and your children. I wonder how such a thing is accomplished

Natasha said...

Can anyone share their perspective on the following verses: Matthew 9:16-17? I have always struggled to understand this. Jesus uses this analogy when asked by the Pharisees and John's disciples why His disciples do not fast. I understand what He is saying in verse 15 but verses 16-17 are a bit of a mystery to me. Thanks for sharing!

16 “No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse. 17 Neither do people pour new wine into old wineskins. If they do, the skins will burst; the wine will run out and the wineskins will be ruined. No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”

KellyKelly said...

Hi Nat,
Maybe we shouldn't mix the old with the new? Jesus' ways/teachings were new. We need to start with a clean slate and an open mind?

Natasha said...

@David-Yes, I was struck by that too...the power of healing manifest by faith. I have pondered this point quite a bit.

Re: 'The price required to be worthy'...you raise an interesting point. In Matt. 9:12, Jesus states that He came for those who are 'sick', then says in vs. 13, "For I did not come to call the righteous, but sinners, to repentance." Nothing, of our own, can make us worthy. It is his mercy and grace that call us, His love and blood that redeem us. You know, I've often thought about this verse (Matt. 10:37-38). Jesus calls us to love Him above all else. Love responds to love. I think if we love Him first, then we can entrust our mother, father, son or daughter to Him and not turn away from Him when times get tough. If we love them more, then they become 'idols' which threaten our relationship with Him. Kinda' like Andrew's Talk Tuesday 'Isaac' post. God tested our hearts separately, before we were married, to see if we would relinquish our 'Isaac' (each other) to Him. 8 years later, the wisdom of God in that simple lesson is overwhelming. We have had to entrust the other to God during times of trial. Things that could cause one to become bitter and turn away, drew us closer to God and to each other. Funny how that works...

Natasha said...

@KellyKelly- Great insight and perspective! It is interesting how Jesus came to fulfill the law and not abolish it, yet He did indeed give us a new 'power' to do so. His grace, His blood and His love equips us- this indeed was new. Hmmnnn...got something to think about. Thanks!

@Phillip- Yup, I hear you about the 'judgementalism'. His Grace still blows me away...it really does. It is comforting.

David said...

Natasha

“No one sews a patch of unshrunk cloth on an old garment, for the patch will pull away from the garment, making the tear worse”

Israel was not ready for the new covenant?

“No, they pour new wine into new wineskins, and both are preserved.”

But one day they will?”

Natasha said...

@David- Wow, thanks! Yes, that DOES make sense. It was the analogy I always struggled with. I couldn't make sense of the correlation of old and new in relation to verses 14-15 of Matt 9 that preceded it. Even that now makes sense, the old way of doing things vs. the new.

Yes, I believe one day they will too. Pretty awesome, thx for the insight :-)

KellyKelly said...

Is it normal to feel fear while reading the Bible? Only 5 days and 12 chapters and that's how I'm feeling. Will the fear go away?

Farah said...

The verse that I encountered a lot this week was from Matthew 6:33"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." It spoke to my heart about my current situation, so I've put it up as a reminder of what God wants me to do and to encourage me as well.
Farah

David said...

Yes Natasha..You put it together nicely!

Kelly you are on the correct path.It takes time.

Psa 25:14 The secret of the LORD is with them that fear him; and he will shew them his covenant.

Andrew said...

I love this verse - Matthew 11:28-30

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

If you have a burden give it to Jesus. Also consider Luke 12:22-26

Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life? Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?

If God is in control what do we have to worry about. We have to take God at His Word. Trust that He is looking out for us and that He has the best plan for our life.

Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Andrew said...

Hey KellyKelly,

Don't worry. When I first became a Christian I was so afraid of reading the Bible that I thought I could read the children's Bible (the one's with pictures) because it was easier to read.

Hang in there. We are praying for everyone. Together we can do it.

David said...

19The Son of man came eating and drinking, and they say, Behold a man gluttonous, and a winebibber, a friend of publicans and sinners. But wisdom is justified of her children.

Does anyone know what is meant
by “But wisdom is justified by her deeds”

Anonymous said...

In Matthew Chapter10 Jesus summons the twelve apostles, equips them spiritually to do miracles,then sends them off to the lost sheep of the house of Israel but instructs them: "Go nowhere among the Gentiles, and enter no town of the Samaritans."(v.5).
However, later, in Chapter 12:15-21 Jesus goes out and cures 'everyone' - Here Scripture says: "This was to fulfil what had been spoken through the prophet Issiah: " He will proclaim justice to the Gentiles...............................And in His name the Gentiles will hope.
I would greatly appreciate someone perspective on this.

Carole said...

Hi KellyKelly,
The fear you are feeling is a holy fear. There is so much you are discovering in such a short time that it boggles the psyche. Hang in there and see God reveal the mysteries of His Word to you in ways that will leave you filled with awe and joy.

KellyKelly said...

Thank you you David, Andrew & Carole. I'm still here!

David109 said...

Kelly glad you are back!

Anonymous

Rom 2:10 But glory, honour, and peace, to every man that worketh good, to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile:

The Jew first?

Luk 4:23 And he said unto them, Ye will surely say unto me this proverb, Physician, heal thyself: whatsoever we have heard done in Capernaum, do also here in thy country.

Luk 4:24 And he said, Verily I
say unto you, No prophet is accepted in his own country.

The Jew Rejects?

Rom 11:11 I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles,for to provoke them to jealousy.

Does this reason cover healing too?

Natasha said...

Hey David,

Thank you for asking that question! I have often wondered that myself :-)

“But wisdom is justified by her deeds” Matthew 11:19 (NIV)

Prior to this statement, Jesus observes the lack of understanding of those who accused John the Baptist of having a demon and the Son of Man as being glutton and winebibber (Matt. 11:18-19). Their focus was not on the righteous, spiritual acts, but on the carnal.

Wisdom is proven right (justified) by her deeds...

( Justify-a : to prove or show to be just, right, or reasonable, Merriam Webster Dictionary).

The deeds of wisdom are synonymous with actions that are motivated by understanding and discernment. If they were walking in wisdom, they would have correctly discerned (recognized) the actions of both John the Baptist and Jesus as being righteous.

The Old Testament allegorically personifies wisdom as a 'she' (in Proverbs). The deeds of wisdom lies in one being able to 'walk in the way of insight' (Proverbs 9:6).

"1 Wisdom has built her house; she has set up its seven pillars. 2 She has prepared her meat and mixed her wine; she has also set her table. 3 She has sent out her servants, and she calls from the highest point of the city, 4 “Let all who are simple come to my house!” To those who have no sense she says, 5 “Come, eat my food and drink the wine I have mixed. 6 Leave your simple ways and you will live;
walk in the way of insight.” Proverbs 9:1-6

Proverbs 17:24 "A discerning person keeps wisdom in view"

Proverbs 14:33 "Wisdom reposes in the heart of the discerning"

Natasha said...

In addition...I found this too re: "Wisdom is known by her deeds."

James 3:13

"13 Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom."

Anonymous said...

Thank you David.

David said...

Thanks Natasha! I see your points

yes,I can see it is an allegory.

I do like that James text” by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom."

So I think basically he was calling them ignorant.

You know in the KJV text it reads

"But wisdom is justified by her children."

So maybe they will not be ignorant forever?

Your welcome anonymous

KellyKelly said...

Hi,
Can someone help me understand Matt 20:16 “So the last will be first, and the first will be last.” ?
And....
Does the 'cup' in Matt 20:22 “You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?” refer to Jesus' coming death?

David said...

Hi Kelly I have always used the KJV version.

Mat 20:16 So the last shall be first, and the first last: for many be called,but few chosen.

I think it is God showing His sovereignty in the affairs of mankind.

Does the 'cup' in Matt 20:22 “You don’t know what you are asking,” Jesus said to them. “Can you drink the cup I am going to drink?” refer to Jesus' coming death?


I agree with you 100 percent.

Natasha said...

@KellyKelly, you ask a very interesting question!

God has chosen to reveal Himself to the world, through the Jewish people. It was prophesied, many hundreds of years before the birth of Jesus, of His coming for the Jew, but also for the Gentile.

Isaiah 49:6

6 he says:
“It is too small a thing for you to be my servant
to restore the tribes of Jacob
and bring back those of Israel I have kept.
I will also make you a light for the Gentiles,
that my salvation may reach to the ends of the earth.

In the book of Romans Chapter 11, the Apostle Paul states that the Jew's rejection of Jesus is not permanent, it only for a while, as we Gentiles are 'grafted in'. So, we who knew God last, have become first as nations to accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the Jews who knew God first, will eventually receive and believe in Jesus Christ as their true Messiah, though they initially rejected Him.

The mercy, grace and wisdom of our Sovereign GOD is quite overwhelming and astounding to me. I think somewhere in that statement, 'So the last will be first, and the first last,' (Matt. 20:16), is a word of advice to remain humble always. The realization that responding to the call of GOD is a privilege that we do not deserve, but do through His grace and mercy...as are His rewards of salvation and eternal life.

David said...

WOW Matthew 24!

Natasha said...

Yup, I was just thinking the very same thing! Just finished reading it too!

BTW, Everyone, please go to the new Bible Talk link for this week to add your comments: "Bible Talk - Jan 10-16 - Matthew and Mark"

Can't wait to continue journeying with you all!