mm

10-13-2017 What God Is Able To Do

John the Baptist told the Jews, “do not think to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones” (Matthew 3:9 NKJV). Under the Gospel of Christ, Jews, “if they do not continue in unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again” (Romans 11:23 NKJV). And to Christians, “God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work” (2 Corinthians 9:8 NKJV). God is able to by-pass the Jews, save obedient Israelites, help Christians serve Him. The issue is never what God is able to do – but what are you willing to do? Jesus said, “He who believes and is baptized will be saved” (Mark 16:16 NKJV).
This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#christians, #gentiles, #jews

mm

8-9-2017 Gospel Light

“Arise, shine; For your light has come! And the glory of the LORD is risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, And deep darkness the people; But the LORD will arise over you, And His glory will be seen upon you. The Gentiles shall come to your light, And kings to the brightness of your rising” (Isaiah 60:1-3 NKJV). This prophecy has nothing whatever to do with a “solar eclipse!” The prophesied “darkness” would “cover the earth,” but a “solar eclipse” only darkens a narrow path on the earth! This prophecy is about “Gentiles” coming to the light, which points to the New Testament Gospel of Christ. Gospel “light” is “that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel” (Ephesians 3:6 NKJV).
This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#gentiles, #gospel-light, #solar-eclipse

mm

Psalm 117

Vs. 1-2 give “praise to the LORD.”

This is the last of the “Hallel” Psalms (113-118) which begins and ends with a “Hallelujah.” This 30-word Psalm is the shortest chapter in the Bible. This Psalm is addressed to “Gentiles,” which proves the Jews were never intended by God to be His people forever. God’s plan for salvation always included “Gentiles” as this Psalm shows. God promised a people to Abraham (Genesis 12:1-3), and a land (Genesis 13:14-16). The land promise was fulfilled (Joshua 21:43-45) and preserved (2 Chronicles 36:15-23; Jeremiah 25:1-14), the Israelites kept to preserve the lineage for Jesus to be born as the “only begotten Son of God” (Matthew 1:1-25; Galatians 3:1-29; Ephesians 3:1-12). Jesus Christ is now the King of His kingdom of Christians (John 18:36; Acts 17:7; 2:29-38).

Verse 1: “Praise the LORD” (Hallelujah), a thought common to Israelites, is directly pointed to “Gentiles” (an Israelite term referring to all non-covenant people). The call is for all people to have one worship for the One God, and for the same reasons. The Law of Moses stood between Jews and Gentiles, requiring Gentiles to observe Moses (Exodus 12:49; Numbers 15:1-31), but now that Law has been removed and Jews are expected to obey the Law of Christ as well as Gentiles (Ephesians 2:11-22). The only unity is found in Christ (Romans 3:19-31).

Verse 2: God’s “merciful kindness” has been demonstrated not only for the Jews, but also the rest of humanity, time and time again. Only in “Harlotwood’s” fantasies does Satan, evil, and wickedness prevail. Another expression for “merciful kindness” is “grace,” best expressed in Jesus Christ. “For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men, teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly in the present age” (Titus 2:11-12). God’s “truth” is the only absolute truth to be found: His promises stand until He fulfills them; His Creation operates by His complex laws; His people (Christians) know His moral code brings purity to the impure; His Bible stands every challenge to its integrity; faith in Him gives certainty to the fearful. There is no other “truth” except that which is based upon God’s truth contained in His Creation and Bible. Solomon’s Book of Proverbs recorded: “So that your trust may be in the LORD; I have instructed you today, even you. Have I not written to you excellent things Of counsels and knowledge, That I may make you know the certainty of the words of truth, That you may answer words of truth To those who send to you?” (Proverbs 22:19-21)

Because God’s Way is best and planned for all men, indeed, “praise the LORD.”

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

#bible-study, #book-of-psalms, #daily-bible-reading, #gentiles, #god, #grace, #hallelujah, #jesus-christ, #kingdom-of-christ, #law-of-moses, #worship

mm

Psalm 97

Vs. 1-6 show the Earth speaks of God;

Vs. 7-9 contrast the LORD with idols;

Vs. 10-12 show how God connects with people for good.

The description of God’s presence on Earth clearly shows how impressive His power is, certainly producing awe. (1) If the description in verses 1-6 is physical, then God coming to Mount Sinai and giving Moses His law would fit this word picture (Exodus 19:1-25) but the kingdom of Jesus Christ now on Earth did not have that physical terror (Hebrews 12:18-29). (2) If, however, Psalm 97:1-6 is descriptive of the effect of God’s presence on Earth, then it could refer to the first coming of Jesus Christ to Earth (Isaiah 9:1-2 quoted in Matthew 4:13-16; Malachi 3:1-3 quoted in Matthew 11:7-10). (3) Or it could describe the awesomeness of God in Heaven (Revelation 4:1-5). Regardless, God’s Presence is duly noted and to be respected with reverence, so “let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear” (Hebrews 12:28).

Verses 1-6: The claim is: “The LORD reigns;” the effect is: “Let the earth rejoice;” the extent is: “Let the multitude of isles be glad!” (verse 1) Jehovah is over more than just Israelites in their land. The Earth operates by His Laws. “Isles” often refers to areas beyond Israel, referring to “Gentiles” (Isaiah 40:12-17; Jeremiah 31:10). Jesus’ powers over Earth’s might was manifested in His miracles: (verse 2) “clouds” (Matthew 26:63-64), “darkness” (Luke 23:44-45). “Righteousness and justice” go hand in hand: “To do righteousness and justice Is more acceptable to the LORD than sacrifice” (Proverbs 21:3), with both being hallmarks of Jesus’ kingdom on earth (Romans 3:20-26; Matthew 12:14-21). In verse 3, “Fire” will be Jesus’ punishment on sinners at His Second Coming, 2 Thessalonians 1:5-10. Jesus’ life was a flash of light (verse 4) while on earth (John 12:44-50). No mountain was outside of His control (Matthew 17:1-9; 21:18-22). Hence (verse 6) Jesus would have the endorsement of “The heavens.”

Verses 7-9: There can be only shame in serving “carved images” (verse 7), for their substances are made from God’s Creation (Hebrews 11:3). Jerusalem and Judah should “rejoice” because God is right (verse 8). Only God is “Most High” and above “all the earth,” and “far above all gods” (verse 9). The term “gods” cannot rise to the level of “angels” in Hebrews 1:6, as some have mistakenly applied it. The history of mankind and the Bible record are positive proof of the claim in verse 1.

Verses 10-12: One cannot follow both God and evil (verse 10; Psalm 34:14; Romans 12:9), but God “preserves the souls of His saints,” and delivers them from the wicked (as Jesus taught disciples to pray, Matthew 6:13). God’s way provides “light” and “gladness” (verse 11) not dark and sadness (Acts 2:38-41, 46; 14:17). Therefore His saints “Rejoice in the LORD,” (verse 12) “And give thanks” every time they remember “His holy name” and all He has done and continues to do.

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

#bible-study, #book-of-psalms, #creation, #daily-bible-reading, #faith, #gentiles, #god, #jesus-christ

mm

Psalm 96

Vs. 1-3 all the earth should sing praise to God’s glory;

Vs. 4-6 show that no nation has a god to compare with God;

Vs. 7-9 show that giving to God comes from His might;

Vs. 10-13 show God is over all the earth and will judge.

This Psalm is given by David as recorded in 1 Chronicles 16:7, 23-33. There is no manuscript evidence to the contrary, as some commentators are wont to imagine.

Psalm 96 appeals to “Gentiles” to worship the God of Creation, which proves beyond all doubt, that God’s eternal plan was never to have the physical Israelites (including Jews!) only, as His people. He has revealed in the New Testament that “the mystery of Christ” (Ephesians 3:4) is “that the Gentiles should be fellow heirs, of the same body, and partakers of His promise in Christ through the gospel” (Ephesians 3:6). That the Bible is inspired of God shows in passages like this one, which, if left to uninspired Jews, would never have been included and protected as it has been.

Verses 1-3: The “new song” (verse 1) is to declare God’s glory “among the Gentiles” (“nations”). That people should “sing” (verses 1-2) shows pure worship without artificial instruments; and the message of God’s offer of salvation should be proclaimed daily (verse 2b), His glory and miracles declared (verse 3) among “all the earth,” “the Gentiles,” “all peoples.” Truly, He is not just a “Jewish” God!

Verses 4-6: What other “god” is: “great,” “greatly to be praised,” “feared above all gods” (verse 4). Other nations’ “gods” are “idols” contrasted with “the LORD” who created “the heavens” (verse 5). The terms for the LORD describe His true greatness: “Honor,” “majesty,” “Strength,” and “beauty” are “in His sanctuary” (verse 6). His sanctuary under Moses, was on the ark of the covenant and under the tabernacle (Exodus 25:8), but in the New Testament, Jesus Christ is “a Minister of the sanctuary and of the true tabernacle which the Lord erected, and not man” (Hebrews 8:2). “Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation” (Hebrews 9:11).

Verses 7-9: The living God requires giving as a part of “worship,” for “the LORD” should be given “glory and strength” to “His name” (verses 7-8a). “Bring an offering” (verse 8b) uses a term for bloodless sacrifices that surely showed God’s plan would later, through Jesus Christ, include Gentiles (and Jews!) as “living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ” (1 Peter 2:5). God is to be worshipped by Gentiles in “the beauty of holiness” (verse 9), that is, clothed by clean living: “Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see the Lord” (Hebrews 12:14).

Verses 10-13: That Gentiles should worship God shows He is universal and that He “reigns” and “shall judge” everyone “righteously” (verse 10). His Creation (and all who live upon it) gladly point to His righteousness (verses 10-12), for “the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever” (1 John 2:17). “He is coming to judge the earth” (verse 13) is a warning to Gentiles (and Jews!), and “He shall judge the world with righteousness” is applied to Jesus Christ (Acts 17:30-31; Psalm 9:8).

Thought: Since God will judge the world by Jesus Christ, then there is nothing in the plan of God that will excuse the workers of iniquity without obedience to Jesus Christ (Matthew 7:21-23). God’s world declares a Creator (Romans 1:20), God’s Word declares which god is God (1 Corinthians 1:21), God’s Christ declares how we should live (2 Peter 1:2-11), and the invitation is for “every creature” (Mark 16:15-16).

All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

#bible-study, #book-of-psalms, #daily-bible-reading, #gentiles, #god, #jesus-christ, #salvation, #worship

My Favorite Conversion in Acts

My favorite conversion in Acts is the conversion of Cornelius. Why? With Cornelius being the first devout Gentile to be baptized into Christ, his conversion allowed me to become a child of God also. His conversion also had to be one with convincing evidence to be accepted by the Jews. I believe there were two things that convinced Peter; the blanket in chapter 10 and the descending of the Holy Spirit.

This conversion is one the most mis-understood conversions by the “faith only” denominational world.

#baptism, #conversion, #gentiles