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  • John T. Polk II 4:03 am on December 21, 2012 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , cross, , ,   

    Psalm 70 

    Vs. 1: A call for speedy deliverance;

    Vs. 2-3: A request for opponents to be “turned back;”

    Vs. 4: A desire that those who change glorify God;

    Vs. 5: An appeal from the lowly.

    These verses almost duplicate Psalm 40:13-17. Psalm 40 was written by David and prophetically described Jesus’ death. Psalm 70 is projects the communication between God and Jesus just before Jesus died. For comparison, read both Psalms.

    Verse 1: “God” (Elohim) is the same Deity as “LORD” (Jehovah). The call is for God to be “pleased” to hurry with deliverance, but not from the cross. “Now My soul is troubled, and what shall I say? ‘Father, save Me from this hour?’ But for this purpose I came to this hour” (John 12:27).

    Verse 2: Sinners who see the error of their way have a sense of “shame.” When Jesus “said these things, all His adversaries were put to shame; and all the multitude rejoiced for all the glorious things that were done by Him” (Luke 13:17). “Mutual confusion” is the same as “confounded,” and simply expresses the desire for those who wrongly destroy Jesus, to see their error. Shortly after his conversion to Christ, “Saul increased all the more in strength, and confounded the Jews who dwelt in Damascus, proving that this Jesus is the Christ (Acts 9:22).The Gospel challenges the thoughts of sinners. “Turned back” shows a change of direction, “driven backward” indicates conviction to change, add these expressions and “repentance” is the result. Jesus’ cross should cause those who understand its meaning and their own sins, to be driven back from their sins. After He was raised from the dead, “Then He said to them, ‘Thus it is written, and thus it was necessary for the Christ to suffer and to rise from the dead the third day, and that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in His name to all nations, beginning at Jerusalem’” (Luke 24:46-47). Verse 3: Those who would say, “Aha, aha” are the Gotcha people. “And as He said these things to them, the scribes and the Pharisees began to assail Him vehemently, and to cross-examine Him about many things, lying in wait for Him, and seeking to catch Him in something He might say, that they might accuse Him” (Luke 11:53-54). Listening for the wrong purpose causes people to not even hear what is said!

    Verse 4: “But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened” (Matthew 7:7-8).

    Verse 5: Jesus Christ on the cross, substituted Himself for sinners who are the “poor and needy.” “For Christ also suffered once for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh but made alive by the Spirit” (1 Peter 3:18). This Psalm ends with a statement both Jesus and a sinner can make. The sinner who repents can make the same acknowledgment that Jesus made: only God can deliver. Jesus, in death, committed His spirit to God (Luke 23:46). The sinner must commit his/her spirit into the hands of God’s design. “Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been united together in the likeness of His death, certainly we also shall be in the likeness of His resurrection” (Romans 6:4-5).

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

  • John Henson 3:57 pm on November 12, 2011 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross, ,   

    The Same Road 

    The road Jesus took through life ultimately led to the cross. No one can deny that.

    The road we must take as Christians is the same one. This is where the disagreements begin.

    Yet, Jesus said, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me,” (Matthew 16:24 NASB). To follow Jesus, we must take the same road.

    Some people would be glad to follow Jesus just as long as the road doesn’t lead to suffering. Then they’re ready to part ways with him. Yet, following Jesus always means this. “Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin,” (1 Peter 4:1 NASB).

    The “prosperity gospel” doesn’t fit this, does it? With the prosperity gospel, you give and you get what you want. Jesus’ gospel teaches that if you give you will get tough times and persecution. The Apostle Paul wrote, “Suffer hardship with me, as a good soldier of Christ Jesus,” (2 Timothy 2:3 ASV), and, “Yea, and all that would live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution,” (2 Timothy 3:12).

    Everyone travels a road in this life. Christians travel the “road not taken” as Robert Frost called it. It is a road that leads to suffering, just as it did for our Lord.

  • Mike Riley 7:53 am on November 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: associated, , continue, cross, , , , , , , , , ,   

    The Best Thing About God In 1 Corinthians 

    In my view, the best thing about God, is found in 1 Corinthians Chapter 1, where Paul emphasizes the fact that “the power of God” is closely associated with the “preaching of the cross” (1 Corinthians 1:18; cf. Romans 1:16).

    To those who have no desire to know, understand, or continue to pattern their lives after the instructions found in the saving gospel of Christ, the preaching of the cross is to them “foolishness” (1 Corinthians 1:18; cf. Romans 1:21-22).

  • Richard Mansel 12:25 pm on October 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , cross, ,   

    Did Judas Know? 

    Matthew 26:21-25, ” Now as they were eating, He said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, one of you will betray Me.’ And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and each of them began to say to Him, ‘Lord, is it I?’ He answered and said, ‘He who dipped his hand with Me in the dish will betray Me.’The Son of Man indeed goes just as it is written of Him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born.’ Then Judas, who was betraying Him, answered and said, ‘Rabbi, is it I?’ He said to him, ‘You have said it.'”

    Two things are curious about Judas.

    First, it appears from this passage that  he did not know he would betray Jesus (Luke 22:3)

    Second, none of the apostles thought Judas was capable of such evil (John 13:26-30).

    What comments do you have?

    • Ron 1:05 pm on October 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Richard, it seems to me that Judas, by this time, had a sure sense of what he was doing. Satan entered Judas, and from that time he sought a way to betray, though he may not have known the exactly the way it would “go down.” However, in short order, he had a good idea as to how it would occur. In my opinion, his greatest surprise was when he learned that Jesus knew all about it, especially when the bread was handed to him.

    • Mike Riley 2:05 pm on October 28, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      John 13:2 says that it was “after supper” that the devil put the thought of betrayal into Judas. It wasn’t too long after that event, that Judas went to the chief priests to offer them a bribe (Matthew 26:14-16). The rest of the story is history.

      It’s always amazed me as to what a small amount of money will do to some people – causes them to think irrationally – Judas being one of them.

  • Richard Mansel 11:45 am on June 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , cross, , ,   

    Blood and Water in Salvation 

    I think that an understanding on blood and water in salvation is key to understanding baptism and God’s plan of redemption. I have posted a series of yes/no questions to help guide the student through a the subject of water and blood in salvation.

    • Mike Riley 1:02 pm on June 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Richard, great job of illustrating the need for both blood and water in salvation!

      • Richard Mansel 1:45 pm on June 11, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you, Mike. I feel this study [of blood and water] does not receive the attention it deserves.

  • Richard Mansel 8:10 pm on June 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , cross,   

    “Jesus did not pay for the church with His blood just to have people disdain it and ignore it (Acts 20:28).”

    Martel Pace, “Hebrews” Truth for Today Commentary Series, page 533.
    • John Henson 8:36 pm on June 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Great point, isn’t it? I’ve bought several of the TFT commentaries and I really like them. I have both books on Acts by Bro. Roper and find them very valuable. I hope to have the entire set Genesis-Revelation while I’m still in this earthly sojourn.

      • Richard Mansel 8:37 pm on June 2, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        I am still very early in the purchasing process. I would like to have the volumes on Acts.

  • Richard Mansel 3:56 pm on May 5, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross, , ,   

    Harsh Words 

    To me, clearly one of the most challenging things that Jesus said was:

    “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law'; and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’ He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find” (Matthew 10:34-39).

    We see the fruits of this everyday. They are not willing to pay the price necessary to submit to God. Their flesh is still predominant.

    The most chilling moment for me at the cross was when darkness fell upon the world. I am continually in awe at the depth of the Bible’s teachings on light and darkness.  “The way of the wicked is like darkness; They do not know what makes them stumble” (Proverbs 4:19).

    People walk in darkness and do not make sound decisions. It skews their perceptions of the world and they do not attribute the proper value to things. Hence, they cannot leave their overcome their own fleshly desires and come to Christ (James 4:10).

  • John Henson 1:11 pm on May 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross,   

    “Why hast thou forsaken me?” 

    Of the seven sayings of Jesus on the cross there are several that have caught my mind, but the most compelling and heart-wrenching was, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46; Mark 15:34).

    Not everyone agrees with me why, but that’s okay. Many people, when they hear Jesus’ statement, point to 2 Corinthians 5:21 and say that’s why. This small article is not intended to be an exposition of that scripture. Suffice it to say I believe what Paul is saying there is a metonymy, a putting of a part for the whole, that Jesus was made to be a sin offering, not literal sin (Hebrews 4:15).

    The act of atonement is happening at the cross, or the process where the justice of God meets the satisfaction of the law’s demands. The soul that sins must die, Ezekiel 18:4, 20 tells us. Jesus had never committed a sin, but died as our sin sacrifice (Romans 5:8-10). The penalty of sin must be paid. Had the penalty not been paid, God’s justice is not satisfied and the law is merely a joke.

    But God allowed his son to die. He couldn’t save him. If WE are to be saved, then God the Father must allow his only begotten son to die for US. Doesn’t this take us back to Gethsemane? Jesus asked, “Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless, not my will, but thine, be done,” (Luke 22:42). Certainly, Jesus was faced with his own death, but he was also faced with the prospect that, at some point, he would be separated from his Father.

    Anyone who has ever had to let a family member die knows how difficult it is to let go. But, what if you had the ability to save them? Could you just let them go? God had to do exactly that. He had to allow his son to die so that we could be saved. “But God demonstrates his own love for us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us,” (Romans 5:8 NET).

    • Mike Riley 1:34 pm on May 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      Great observations, John! I’m so thankful that Jesus loved me enough to die in my place for the punishment that I should have received. Hallelujah, what a Savior!

      • John Henson 4:31 pm on May 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        Thank you, brother. You are always so kind.

  • Larry Miles 12:44 pm on May 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross, , Love of Christ,   

    It Is Finished!

    I have to agree with Laura on this one. By our Lord saying these words, it is a culmination of Old Testament prophecy that was in the plan of God before the foundation of the world. Jesus had to be lifted up on the Cross (prophecy) to redeem fallen man, but we can glory in the fact that He is not on the Cross now but died ONCE for us. It behooves us to worship Him Daily and seek to live for Him who died for us!

  • Laura 11:39 am on May 4, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross, , ,   

    It is Finished 

    Jesus’ statement, “it is finished” sticks with me. These three words are not a statement of merely the end of His earthly life. It is so deep and carries with it so much.

  • Richard Mansel 8:30 pm on April 8, 2010 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross,   

    The Cross 

    Separate the gospel from the cross and you are left with a glorified social club.

  • Richard Mansel 11:34 pm on December 17, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross, , , , thomas   

    Do We See the Scars? 

    Paula Harrington delivers her usual powerful article entitled, Scars. She writes of the lessons learned from the scars that we carry in our bodies and spirits.

  • Richard Mansel 8:00 pm on December 15, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross, , , taunton,   

    Drawing Christ on a Cross – Demented? 

    An eight year-old child has been suspended from school and urged to get a psychological evaluation [before he can return to school] because he drew Christ on a Cross. He was asked to draw something that came to mind when he thought about Christmas. Read  more of this astounding article.

    These kinds of overreactions can drive people to the Cross. We must keep preaching and teaching of the loving Savior who died for all (Romans 5).

    This is a result of living in an increasingly secular society that is hostile to Christianity. One that has too many lawyers and lawsuits. Zero tolerance crates a situation where all reason and logic is discarded and everyone is guilty.

    • Randal Matheny 8:43 pm on December 15, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      First reaction is, what can one expect of Massachussetts, but these kinds of horror stories are occurring everywhere, and will probably increase because of the growing secularism that brings on such hostility. As you say, the only remedy is the preaching of the gospel.

    • Mike Riley 11:14 pm on December 15, 2009 Permalink | Reply

      It seems that paranoid behavior exists in folks who have far too much secular education, but not much spiritual education (cf. Romans 1:21-22).

      • joe 11:52 pm on January 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply

        The reference to a secular society is chilling to me for two reasons. One, it sounds a lot like the comments made by jihadists in defending their murderous actions. Two, it suggests that people do have the right to choose that path. Perhaps, if persons such as youself did a better of teching the gospel, the secularism you so decry would not be so widespread. If our society is becoming too secularized, t is YOUR fulat because YOU have done such lousy job of spreading the gospel. What would have done with all these secularists? Would you have them rounded and imprisoned or executed. I truly believe that you and people like you are coming very close to that belief.

        • Richard Mansel 12:08 am on January 10, 2010 Permalink

          Joe, you appear to be eaten up with anger at someone and it is affecting your worldview. I am sorry that you have become bitter. We need to pray for you.

    • Joe 11:59 pm on January 9, 2010 Permalink | Reply

      I write on this board as one who spent four yours as a bible major at Freed-Hardeman whose study of the bible at that esteemed institution revealed it to be nothing more than a fabrication of man and is used as a crutch by weak minded persons who cannot think for themselves.

  • Richard Mansel 4:02 pm on December 3, 2009 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: cross,   

    It Could Be You 

    Paula Harrington writes, “Beside a quiet stretch of interstate in southern Kentucky stands a small wooden cross with the words, ‘It Could Be You” in the center. Sadly, it isn’t the only cross that borders I-24. However, it is the only one that proclaims this written message.”

    Read More

    Paula shares a powerful story behind the article at her blog. You will be edified.

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