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Showing posts from September, 2020

Mark 7

The Pharisees questioned why Jesus’ disciples do not wash according to tradition and Jesus replied with a reproof spoken through Isiah; they neglect the commandment of God to hold to their traditions. Then Jesus gave an example of how they violate the fifth commandment but hold to a tradition set by man. Jesus declared that nothing outside a man, even if it enters him, can defile him, it is the evil that comes from a man that defiles him.  Jesus explained to his disciples that food cannot defile a person but evil thoughts, words and deeds do defile. Jesus healed a non-Jewish woman’s child, because she did not put herself as deserving of the grace given to the Jews but willing to receive even a scrap. Jesus gave a deaf man with garbled speech, hearing and comprehensible speech; because of this and other miracles like it, the name of Jesus was being exalted amongst the people.
There are three principles that we should take from this text:
First, all commandments are love of God and love o…

Mark 6

Jesus was not excepted in his hometown; therefore he could do no work of power their except to heal a few sick people. Jesus sent out the twelve to cast out demons, heal the sick and preach that men should repent; they were to trust that their own needs would be provided through hosts in each town. The people were saying that Jesus was either John the Baptist risen from the dead, or Elijah, or like one of the other old testament prophets. Herodias used Herod’s pride to coerce him to kill John the Baptist because she hated him for preaching that her marriage to Herod was unlawful. When the apostles returned, they reported to Jesus all that they did and taught. Jesus took them to a secluded place at which he feed five thousand to their satisfaction from five loaves of bread and two fish. Jesus sent his disciples away in a boat and sent the people away, so he could be alone to pray. Sometime between 3-6 a.m., Jesus came walking on water to the disciples who were struggling with the wind …

A Weighty Text

Text: Mark 5
Jesus sent out a multitude of unclean spirits from a possessed man who lived in a city on the east shore of the sea of Galilee. The man wanted to go away with Jesus right then and there, but Jesus sent him to be a witness to his people of the great things that Jesus had done and how God had mercy on him. On the other side of the sea of Galilee, a synagogue official asked Jesus to come heal his daughter, Jesus went with him and a crowd followed. A woman who had suffered a hemorrhage for twelve years, reached out and touched the outer garment that Jesus wore and she was healed because of he faith in Jesus. In the mean time, the synagogue official’s child died, but Jesus said that she is asleep and when he commanded that she get up, she immediately got up and began to walk.
While reading this text I felt the wait of it. A non-Jewish man was healed from about two thousand demons (for that was the number of swine); a Jewish synagogue official implored Jesus to come and heal his …

Mark 4

Jesus spoke to the crowd of people from a boat, launched just off the shore. Jesus told his disciples that they have been given the mystery of the kingdom but those outside get everything in parables, less they return and be forgiven. Jesus explained the parable of the sower of seed and the soils to his disciples but did not explain the meaning to those outside the kingdom. Jesus told his disciples take care, listen and more shall be given you, but for those on the outside, even what they have shall be taken away. Jesus related the kingdom of God to that of a farmer sowing and harvesting his crop. Jesus related the kingdom of God to a very small mustard seed that grows larger than all the other garden plants. Jesus publicly spoke in parables but privately explained the meaning to his disciples. Jesus commanded the wind and sea.
The main point of this chapter is not the parables but who is in the kingdom and who is not. Jesus chose his disciples and they left all to follow him. He expla…

Mark 3

The Pharisees angered that Jesus would heal a man, in a synagogue, on the Sabbath, conspired to destroy him. After this, Jesus withdrew to the sea and a boat was prepared for him to allow a bit of separation from the large crowed who gathered because of his healings. Jesus went up on a mountain where he called the twelve to be with him, to preach and cast out demons. The crowds made it difficult for Jesus and the twelve to even eat a meal; therefore, his family believed that he had lost his senses but the scribes were saying that he was possessed by the ruler of demons. However, it was not logical for Satan to cast out Satan; therefore, Jesus said that all sins shall be forgiven men except for blasphemes against the Holy Spirit. Jesus’ declared that whoever does the will of God is his brother and sister and mother.
The Pharisees had no compassion for others but were strict legalist. They wanted the law observed no matter what the outcome meant for individuals. The main point of Jesus’ …

A Change of Mind

Mark 2
Jesus returned to Capernaum where he forgave the sins of a paralyzed man, to the consternation of the scribes; therefore, Jesus healed him, the man picked up the pallet that he had been brought in on and walked out in the sight of everyone. Jesus called Levi who had been near by and he followed him. Jesus ate in Levi’s whom with Levi’s friends but the Pharisees questioned his eating with sinners. Jesus indicated that people fast when they are in great need. People who are use to the old way cannot except the new. The Lord of the Sabbath declared that the Sabbath was made for the good of man. 
A man can forgive sins that are committed against him but not the sins committed against another man. However, all sin is against God, therefore, God can forgive all sin. The Scribes being versed in the Scriptures understood this, so when Jesus forgave the sins of this man who had done nothing wrong to Jesus’ they called it blaspheme. The man had not stolen from Jesus, he had not committed a…

Do Likewise

Mark 1
The gospel of Mark begins with a quote from Isaiah about a messenger being sent before the Lord. John, who baptized people with water was that messenger. When Jesus was baptized by John, the Spirit of God descended upon him and God said, “This is my Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Jesus compelled by the Spirit, went from there into the wilderness for forty days, tempted by satan but ministered to by angels. After John’s imprisonment, Jesus began preaching about the kingdom of God and saying, “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand; repent and believe in the gospel.” Jesus called his first disciples who left all to follow him. In Capernaum, on the Sabbath, Jesus taught in the synagogue where he rebuked an unclean spirit and cast it out of a man. Jesus healed the fever of Simon-Peter’s mother in-law and she served him. That evening, Jesus began healing illnesses and casting out demons. In the morning, Jesus went out to pray but when his disciples found him, they…

All Are Valuable

Text: Leviticus 27
When a man or woman makes a difficult vow, he or she shall be valued at a set rate depending on their age and sex; however, if they are poor, the priest sets their value. Animals that can be presented as an offering were not to be redeemed, but if it is an animal that could not be used as an offering, the priest sets the value. The value of houses consecrated to the Lord are set by the priest. Fields dedicated to the Lord were to be valued proportionate to the seed required to plant the field, multiplied by the number of years until the jubilee. First born animals could not be redeemed because they are the Lords, unless it is an unclean animal which could be redeemed. Everything set apart to the Lord, is holy to the Lord. All the tithe of the land belongs to the Lord. Anything dedicated to the Lord that a man wants to redeem, one-fifth is added to the value, the price for redemption. Thus concluded the Lord’s commandments given to Moses from Mount Sinai.
All human bei…

Blessing and Cursing

Text: Leviticus 26
The Lord begins a closing discourse that refers to the Ten Commandments and the sanctuary; that if they keep his commandments in the land, he will give them abundant life. But if they do not keep his commandments in the land, the Lord will punish them in the land. The evils that he promised to take away if they observed his commandments, he will increase sevenfold. So, they may turn to him, but if not he will increase these evils sevenfold. If they remain rebellious, then the Lord will destroy their cities and scatter them among the nations. The land will get its rest but they will have it very difficult while in the lands of their enemies. When they come to repentance in the land of their enemies, the Lord will remember his covenant with Jacob and with Isaac and with Abraham and he will remember the land; the Lord will remember the covenant that he made with them when he took their ancestors out of Egypt. This is the word of the Lord to the sons of Israel.
In this ch…

Jubilee

Text: Leviticus 25
The Lord commanded through Moses to give the land a sabbatical every seven years. When seven sabbaticals had been observed a trumpet was to be blown on the day of atonement announcing the year of Jubilee. Every 50th year, all servants are released and all property returns to the owner. Thus, no Israelite or Israelite’s land can be owned by another Israelite. The Lord commanded the Sons of Israel to trust him to provide for their needs during these sabbatical years. They are to understand that the land belongs to the Lord. All property can be bought back based on the time until the Jubilee because at the Jubilee, the property reverts to the owner. However, homes in a walled city could be sold and change ownership, except for the home of a Levite. They were not to charge interest on money lended to their countrymen. If a countryman becomes poor and offers his services to another countryman, he may be considered a servant but not a slave and shall be released in the yea…

Eternal Covenant

Text: Leviticus 24
Aaron was to keep the lamps on the golden lamp stand outside of the veil of testimony lite with pure olive oil as fuel from evening to morning perpetually. Every sabbath, twelve cakes of bread were to be baked, placed in two rows on the golden table before the Lord and sprinkled with frankincense; an everlasting covenant for the sons of Israel but only the priests could eat them and in a holy place. 
A man whose father was an Egyptian and whose mother was an Israelite of the tribe of Dan got into a fight with one of the sons of Israel; during the fight he blasphemed, so they brought him to Moses. The Lord commanded Moses to take the man outside the camp and stone him to death and warn that anyone who blasphemes the name shall be put to death. Also, whatever a person does to another person should be done to him, whether he is a stranger or a native son.
The lamps burning perpetually and the bread represent the everlasting covenant. The everlasting covenant is spoken of …

Holy Convocations

Text: Leviticus 23
There were several appointed holy convocations: The first is the sabbath of complete rest. The sons of Israel could work for six days but were commanded by the Lord to rest on the seventh day. In addition to the sabbath, there were appointed holy convocations throughout the year beginning with the passover, followed by the feast of unleavened bread for seven days. Next came the first fruits of the harvest. Before the sons of Israel could eat of the harvest the first fruits are presented before the Lord. From that sabbath, they were to count seven complete sabbaths and bring two loaves of bread to the Lord as a wave offering. Both of these are thanksgiving for the Lord’s provision. They were also commanded to not harvest to the edges of their fields but to leave these for the poor. The next holy convocation is the day of atonement on the tenth day of the seventh month. The day on which the priest atones for his sins and the sins of the people at the mercy seat of the …

Holy Gifts

Text: Leviticus 22
The Lord is holy, therefore, he was to be sanctified among the sons of Israel and among the priests of Israel. The Lord said, “You shall not profane my holy name.” If a priest or member of his household was unclean regarding any of the previously mentioned uncleannesses, then he could not eat of the gifts given to the Lord by the Sons of Israel. The gifts given by the sons of Israel were to be without defect or injury. The Lord set apart the sons of Israel from all of the people on the earth. It was the Lord who brought them from the land of Egypt, to be their God. If a priest touched or ate the gifts of the sons of Israel while unclean he profaned the gift. If a son of Israel gave a gift that was not perfect he profaned the name of the Lord. The Lord is holy and perfect, therefore, the gifts given to him should be perfect in reverence for his name and the priest who ate the gifts should not have any uncleannesses. 
The ceremonial laws are given to make us understand …

Concerning Priests

Text: Leviticus 21
The office of priest to the Lord was to be held in high regard because he was the one who approached the Lord, offering up in fire the food of the Lord on behalf of the people of God. The priestly line of Aaron had restrictions placed on them that were greater than that of the sons of Israel. They could not touch a dead body unless is was the body of a near relative and they could not take a wife that had been touched by any other man; harlotry, divorced or widowed.
However, I do not think that we should focus our attention on the priests. The precepts given for the priests in this chapter are intended to focus our attention on the holiness of the Lord our God. The Lord is holy, therefore, those who approach the Lord must be holy less they profane the Lord’s sanctuary. 
The reason for death is sin. For this reason, touching a dead body defiles the priest to the Lord. Physical deformities are not the fault of the deformed person, however,  they are a result of the curse…

Holiness

Text: Leviticus 20
The Idolatry, human sacrifice and immorality of the people who were in the land of Canaan, before the sons of Israel, is repeated in this chapter. However, this time it isn’t, “You shall not,” but “If you do.” 
This chapter serves as a warning for the people chosen by God. The people of God are to be holy, because the Lord is holy. (Lev. 20:24) Death is always the result of sin. The Lord declared a death sentence for those who practiced child sacrifice to some god named Molech, for mediums and spiritus, for adultery, for cursing ( a curse is a death wish) father and mother, incest, and homo-sex. And many others that will result in being cut off from the people of God. If the people do not cut them off, the Lord promises to cut them off. 
I believe that there are four principles that we should take from this chapter: All human life has value because all were created in the image of God.The Lord hates idolatry and the seeking other gods and spirits.The Lord hates all form…

Loving God and Neighbor

Text: Leviticus 19
When asked, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law? (Mt. 22:36) Jesus answered with two Scripture quotations: Deuteronomy 6:5, and Leviticus 19:18. Then he summed up by saying, “On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.” (Mt. 22:40) During his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus summed up his teaching by saying, “In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law and the Prophets.” (Mt. 7:12) 
Leviticus 19 begins by saying, you shall be holy, for I the Lord your God am Holy. During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said, “Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.” (Mt. 5:48) Much of what Jesus taught in the Sermon on the Mount can be related to what the Lord spoke to Moses in Leviticus 19. This entire chapter is about loving God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might; and loving your neighbor as yourself. 
The apostle Paul wrote, “Owe nothing …

Leviticus 18

The Lord takes sexual immorality very seriously. In fact, he calls any perversion and abomination. It is evident in this text that the Lord wanted it to stop. He commanded, “You shall not do what is done in the land of Egypt where you lived, nor are you to do what is done in the land of Canaan where I am bringing you; you shall not walk in their statutes.” (Lev. 18:3) Through a series of commands on what the Sons of Israel are not to do, we get a picture of what was going on in Egypt and Canaan. The Lord said, “Because of these abominations the land is defiled. (Lev. 18:27) The Lord warns that anyone who does these abominations shall be cut off from among their people. (Lev. 18:29) All of the commandments in this chapter are bookended with the statement, “I am the Lord your God.” (Lev. 18:4, 30) 
So, what was going on in Egypt and in Canaan? They were having sexual relations with their next of kin, their neighbors wives, men with men and with animals. All of these the Lord calls an abo…

Leviticus 17

Making a sacrifice out in the field was a very serious offense. In fact, the person that did so, bloodguiltiness was reckoned to the man. Because he shed blood, he was to be cut off from the people. Life, whether man or beast was to be considered precious. The life of all living beings on the earth is in the blood; therefore, the sons of Israel, or any foreigners who lived with them were not to eat blood. All animals were to be taken to the doorway of the tent of meeting to be slaughtered by a priest; whether the sacrifice was a peace offering, burnt offering, or sin offering.
The sons of Israel were to think of themselves as one people and their king was the Lord. The Lord had designated Aaron and the sons of Aaron as priest to the Lord. The Lord had designated the tent of meeting as the place to make sacrifices. The Lord had commanded that the sons of Israel eat no blood, because the life is in the blood; therefore, it is the blood that makes atonement. The Lord’s portion of any sacr…

Leviticus 16

What does it say? The Lord commanded Moses: Tell Aaron to not enter the holy place beyond the veil anytime or he will die. However, once a year, on the tenth day of the seventh month, he was to enter. He must wash his body with water and put the priestly garments. He must sacrifice a bull to atone for his sins and those of his household. Then he shall take a fire pan full of coals from the altar before the Lord and two handfuls of incense and put the incense on the fire before the Lord inside the veil. Then he was to sprinkle some of the blood of the bull on the mercy seat, on the east side and in front of the mercy seat seven times. From the congregation he shall take two male goats for a sin offering. He shall present the two goats at the doorway of the tent of meeting and cast lots, one for a sin offering and the other for a scapegoat. The sin offering was to be slaughtered and the blood was to be sprinkled in the same manner as the bull. He was to come back out and put some of the …

Leviticus 15

What does it say? When a person has a bodily discharge he or she was considered unclean and anything that he or she touched was considered unclean. If another persons touches him or her they must wash with water and are themselves unclean until evening. Earthen vessels were smashed but other items that the person with the discharged touched could be washed. Seven days were counted from when the discharge stopped. The person took a bath and washed his or her clothes. Then on the eight day two turtle doves or two pigeons were given to the priest; one for a burnt offering and one for a sin offering. Seminal emissions meant uncleanness until evening for both a man and his wife. When a woman has a menstrual discharge she was unclean for seven days and if a man laid with her during her mensuration he was unclean for seven days. However, if she had a discharge that went beyond seven days, the law for a bodily discharge applies just as if it were a discharge from a break in the skin.
What does …

Matthew 28

What does it say? An angel rolled back the stone from the tomb and sat on it and the guards shook with fear. However, when the women came, the angel said, “Do not be afraid, Jesus is not here, his is risen.” The angel told the women to tell his disciples that Jesus will meet them in Galilee. The women departed with fear and joy until they met Jesus and he greeted them. They worshiped him and he told them to tell his brethren to meet him in Galilee. Some of the soldiers reported to the chief priests what happened. The chief priest bribed them with a large sum of money to say that his disciples came by night and stole the body. The eleven disciples went to the mountain in Galilee that Jesus designated. They saw him and worshiped him but some were doubtful. Jesus commissioned them to make disciples, baptize and teach the new disciples to observe all that he commanded to the end of the age.
What does it mean? There are four facts concerning the resurrection of Jesus Christ in this text. There…