What did Jesus write on the ground?

Remember the only time that Scripture records that Jesus wrote something? It was when the adulterous woman was brought to him as a test.

They asked this to test him. They wanted to find a reason to bring charges against him. Jesus bent down and used his finger to write on the ground. When they persisted in asking him questions, he straightened up and said, “The person who is sinless should be the first to throw a stone at her.” Then he bent down again and continued writing on the ground. Jn 8.6-8 GW.

No one knows what he wrote, of course, since the text does not tell us.

But might Jeremiah 17.13 provide a tantalizing clue?

O Lord, the Hope of Israel, all who abandon you will be put to shame. Those who turn away from you will be written in dust, because they abandon the Lord, the fountain of life-giving water (GW).

The Hebrew text is a bit problematic, so that’s more reason not to be dogmatic.

Maybe, just maybe, the Lord was writing names in the dust, to “write off” his opponents. The idea in Jeremiah’s verse is judgment, where those who abandon the Lord will be destroyed.

Whatever Jesus was writing on the ground, we can be sure that, at that moment, it was nothing positive.

#Jesus #speculation #Jeremiah #writing

Hugh’s News & Views (A Writing Ministry)


I enjoy writing and view it as an extension of my ministry of the gospel and the advancement of the cause of Christ. During my senior year of high school at Mars Hill Bible School in Florence, AL I was the sports editor of our little school paper. Being “editor” meant that I wrote the one sports story (maybe occasionally two) for “The Areopagite.” (You will need to read Acts 17:16-21, 34 to see the connection between the name of the paper and the name of my high school). As I recall, Larry Harper, who was a grade behind me, submitted the winning name in a contest to rename the school newspaper. “The Areopagite” only existed for one or two years before it reverted back to its former name, “The Flashlight,” but I liked the name “The Areopagite.” I also served as one of two associate editors of my high school yearbook “Mizpah.” (If you will read Genesis 31:48-49 you will understand the significance of that name). Continue reading

#hughfulford, #writing

Stan M. has left this world

Friend Stan Mitchell passed away this morning. This was his day to publish on FMag, and we had one article to go up of his. One more for next week also. Then his column goes quiet.

Lee Parish will be filling in on Tuesdays through the end of April. Beyond that, we’ll see.

Family note: DD and her fiancé had started premarital counseling with Stan. They were going to ask him to perform the wedding ceremony.

#departures #writing #FMag

Man labors while God breathes

To collect our thoughts in written form in order to provide knowledge, insight, correction, instruction or even humor in a logical manner, mankind must labor!

Forethought and hindsight and distractions factor greatly upon the human mind while writing. Anxiety pursues, and frustrations can leap off the page faster than words.

Editing and revisions are common place for even the most casual piece of literature. Correction strips, white-out, erasers and the backspace key constitute a circle of friends that are most appreciated.

And yet, to accomplish the very thing we wrestle for, and so much more, all God does is breathe:

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness,” (2 Timothy 3:16 ESV)

From stone-tablets to mobile-devices, the word of God has prevailed and it will continue to do so because it expires without an expiration date.

And moreover, because the Preacher was wise, he still taught the people knowledge; yes, he pondered and sought out and set in order many proverbs. The Preacher sought to find acceptable words; and what was written was upright—words of truth. The words of the wise are like goads, and the words of scholars are like well-driven nails, given by one Shepherd. And further, my son, be admonished by these. Of making many books there is no end, and much study is wearisome to the flesh. Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all. For God will bring every work into judgment, including every secret thing, whether good or evil.” (Ecclesiastes 12:9-14 NKJV)

For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding;” (Proverbs 2:6 NKJV)

#inspiration-of-the-bible, #writing

Seven suspect words for writers

If you’re not willing to edit ruthlessly, you’re not a writer. Writing means, in large part, cutting out extraneous words and replacing weak ones with strong terms. Here are seven vague words to watch out for:

Want to Be a Better Writer? Cut These 7 Words


Fake-news sites targeted by larger media outlets

Google, Twitter, and some traditional news media outlets are targeting what they call fake-news sites in an attempt to refuse them access to, or accounts in, their services. Twitter is shutting down numerous accounts of people they accuse of conspiracy theories and alt-right positions. Facebook has for some time been accused of tweaking their algorithms to give preference to left-wing news media.

If ever there was a time when news organizations pretended to maintain neutrality and objetivity, it has long passed.

Christians, of all people, nurture a special place in their hearts for truth—not only biblical truth, but truth in all its aspects and facets. Continue reading

#corollaries, #exercise, #fake-news, #godliness, #writing

A marvelous invention, the paragraph

The paragraph is a marvelous invention. Within a visual unit of words and sentences a principal idea is captured and featured. Over the centuries the size of paragraphs has shrunk, but some still protest over single-sentence blocks.

Not all prescriptions for paragraphs function in all types of writing. But everyone works with some definition and concept of the paragraph. Continue reading

#corollaries, #god, #new-life, #paragraph, #renewal, #writing

In the era of tl;dr, write accordingly


The common abbreviation in Internet language, tl;dr, means “too long; didn’t read.” It refers to an extensive text that the person did not feel like taking the time to read. The abbreviation sometimes prefaces a short summary of a longer text. Continue reading

#communication, #internet, #writing

Something I saw that set me off. Tho. Sowell on writing.

Economist Tho. Sowell wrote some years back about writing. I just now stumbled over it.

The manuscript of Basic Economics sat around for about a decade. From time to time, something that I saw in a newspaper or magazine or on television would set me off and I would see an economic principle that it illustrated or a fallacy that needed to be corrected—usually the latter. But, once I had written whatever it took to deal with that particular issue, I felt no compulsion to continue writing Basic Economics.

I identify with this statement. What I read spurs me, inspires me, enrages me. I best write when I have read something that, for good or bad, engages my mind.

His piece isn’t short, but worth your time, if you aspire to write or are interested in the craft or the work of editing and publishing.



Hugh’s News & Views (Why I Write)


I love to preach, I love to teach, and I love to write! The reason I love to write is because it is another way to preach and teach the gospel and to set forth the grand principles of Christianity. The preacher who writes greatly expands his “audience” and vastly extends his influence. His words may be read many years after his earthly demise. Continue reading

#hughfulford, #writing

The most important thing you write

This was my email to Forthright Magazine columnists today. It applies to all bloggers and online writers who seek to share the gospel.

So says a BBC site to journalists: “The most important thing you write online as a journalist is the headline.”

First, in journalism, it used to be, anyway, that editors wrote the headlines. Maybe that has changed.

But the idea is true for all of us as well.
Continue reading

#blogging, #headlines, #writing

Frightfully good

Note: We continue to pray for our good brother John Henson’s recovery. He continues in ICU in a Nashville hospital. He writes both for TFR and Forthright Magazine.

Some frightfully good material is coming out of certain quarters among us. Some of it comes from people converted out of the world. They feel the sharpness of the gospel. They know the despair of the darkness and the freedom of the light. They do more than rail at the devil; they ramp up the beauty of redemption and the bounty of God’s plan. They do more than throw a verse at the reader only to launch into strange territory; they engage the text, explore its context, make pungent application.

I confess to feeling embarrassed by the insipidity of some other writings, especially in the area of devotionals. (Perhaps it’s a case of this pot calling the kettle black.) In the presence of the Almighty God, why offer up pablum that has been repeated so often it only rates yawns? It is one thing to be simple. Simplicity recommends itself every time. It is quite another to be simplistic and bland. (It seems best not to muddy the waters with names and addresses.) Continue reading

#corollaries, #missions, #prayer, #writing

Write the verse again and again and again

Writing enhances memory. The act of writing seems to fix the information more firmly in the mind, say both the scientists and personal experience. So perhaps as a part of the process of storing up the word of God in our hearts — heart here representing the whole person including the mind — we might want to consider writing scriptures more often. Continue reading

#bible-study, #memorization, #writing

When words fail to impress

This little poem-prayer slipped out after reading words by a well known writer who failed to impress. I earlier posted the first stanza on my Plink space, which not even my mother reads, so I thought TFR Fellows and friends might appreciate it, since so many of you are writers. Continue reading

#christian-writers, #cliches, #writing

10 advantages to sharing your content on TFR

tfr-logoHere are ten advantages of posting to The Fellowship Room. These are mentioned here (a) to encourage our present Fellows and (b) to motivate others in the Lord’s church who might be interested in joining in our fellowship fest. Continue reading

#group-blog, #housekeeping, #writing