Psalm 139:1 – 4

Let’s make some observations as we work through the first four verses of Psalm 139. Psalm 139:1-4           1       O LORD, You have searched me and known me.           2       You know my sitting down and my rising up;    You understand my thought afar off.           3       You comprehend my path and my lying down,    And are acquainted with all my ways.           4       For there is not a word on my tongue,    But behold, O LORD, You know it altogether. ...

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Psalm 139:1

I considered writing about Psalm 139:14 which talks about being fearfully and wonderfully made. The first thing I did was to begin reading at the top to get the overall context for the verse. I thought I could summarize the first thirteen verses, then for the purpose of our study emphasize verse fourteen. After examining the verse like a jeweler scrutinizes a diamond and extolling every facet, I could then fit it back into the setting of the rest of the chapter. But I fell in love with all of Psalm 139. The truth is verse fourteen is probably the most well known ...

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Words and Thoughts

I want to look at the last verse in Psalm 19, which is verse 14. Since I learned the critical concept of context, it has become difficult for me to pull a single verse out of a passage without considering the whole passage. So I’m going to trust you the reader to garner context on your own by reading the whole Psalm. Chapter nineteen is only fourteen verses long but it is rich with imagery and content. You will reap greater reward for a prolonged investment in this chapter. Just a few introductory words about the Psalms in general. The Psalms were composed between ...

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The Word Saint – Part Two

Last time we explored the Old Testament use of the word saint. Let’s take a look at the New Testament use of the word. Every occurrence of the word saint in the New Testament is the Greek word ἅγιος (hagios). It has a very narrow range of meaning. It simply means “Holy” when referring to persons, and “Sacred” when referring to things. I had no Idea how different my perspective would become when I set out to study the word saint. Sometimes I feel like our familiarity with a word and its use in our language is the greatest hindrance to our understanding ...

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The Word Saint – Part One

Congregation
I was recently asked about the Biblical definition of the word saint. I responded with what I called a “non-studied answer” and said, “according to the New Testament, a Saint is simply a believer in Jesus Christ.” While what I said was true, I thought I’d dig a little deeper and give a more detailed answer.  Using the New King James translation, a search for the word “Saint” in both the Old and New Testaments yields 97 results in 95 verses. I went through all 97 results looking at the source language manuscripts, Hebrew for the Old Testament, and Greek ...

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Science versus The Bible – Fair Fight?

When I write I like to spill ink in an effort to discover the meaning of a given Biblical passage. I like to attempt to answer the question, “what did God intend for us to understand when He inspired human authors to put pen to parchment in the form of the Holy scriptures?” I have become genuinely disinterested in persuading people to my way of thinking. Over the years I have discovered my own lack of ability to convince people of the truth. I find it much more rewarding to allow the scriptures to speak. If I can do anything to lend clarity to the message of God’s ...

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Balaam’s Third Prophecy – Part 2

Numbers 24 Then he took up his oracle and said: “The utterance of Balaam the son of Beor, The utterance of the man whose eyes are opened, The utterance of him who hears the words of God, Who sees the vision of the Almighty, Who falls down, with eyes wide open: “How lovely are your tents, O Jacob! Your dwellings, O Israel! Like valleys that stretch out, Like gardens by the riverside, Like aloes planted by the LORD, Like cedars beside the waters. He shall pour water from his buckets, And his seed shall be in many waters. “His king shall be higher ...

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Balaam’s Third Prophecy – Part 1

We come to the third time Balak King of Moab implores Balaam to curse Israel. Predictably, God places a word of blessing for Israel in Balaam’s mouth, not the sentence of demise Balak is hoping to hear. Let’s work our way through this seven verse passage. Numbers 24 Then he took up his oracle and said: “The utterance of Balaam the son of Beor, The utterance of the man whose eyes are opened, The utterance of him who hears the words of God, Who sees the vision of the Almighty,  Who falls down, with eyes wide open: “How lovely are your tents, O ...

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Balaam’s Second Prophecy

King Balak has responded to the cries of his people. They were “sick with dread” because of Israel (Numbers 22:3). He comes up with a brilliant plan to defeat this seemingly unstoppable nation. Recognizing his inferior position, Balak realizes to gain the upper hand, Israel must be cursed. He employs Balaam, the best known diviner of the time, to call down the curse upon the warrior nation. Balaam opens his mouth to curse Israel but a blessing comes out instead. Numbers 23:13-26 records King Balak’s second demand for a curse against Israel and the end result. ...

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Not a Nickname

We’ve been exploring Jacob’s name change to Israel. Last time we discovered the meaning of the name Jacob. According to The exhaustive dictionary of Bible names (Smith, Stelman, and Judson Cornwall.) Jacob (ja’-cub) = He will supplant; he that supplants; he that follows after; a heeler; one who trips up; takes hold by the land; supplanter; a detainer. According to dictionary.com supplant is defined, to take the place of (another), as through force, scheming, strategy, or the like. Jacob got his name mere minutes after being born as recorded in Genesis  25:2...

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