Four Johns but One Mark In “Another Man with Two Names” we talked about a guy known as John Mark. Although no one knows why he’s called John Mark, it does distinguish him from other men in the Bible named John. John In addition to John Mark, I count four guys in the Bible with […]
Can the God of Creation Control the Sun? Justifying Bible Accounts Through Human Reasoning Limits God’s Power As Joshua leads the nation of Israel into the promised land, they defeat Gibeon in a most amazing battle. Though Joshua’s army does its part, God plays an even bigger role. He orchestrates a hailstorm that pelts the […]
Who is Jude? In the Bible, there is only one mention of a man named Jude. That lone reference occurs in the opening greeting of the letter that he wrote. However, Jude is a variation of Judas. Apparently, Judas was a common name two thousand years ago: Judas Iscariot: who betrayed Jesus Judas (not Judas […]
Philemon and His Friends The short, often overlooked book of Philemon is tucked towards the end of the New Testament, nestled between letters to Titus and to the Hebrews. Philemon and Onesimus Philemon is a letter written by Paul to his friend Philemon about a man of mutual interest, Onesimus. The short version is that […]
Do You Have Life? Whoever has the Son has life In the first of John’s three letters, he writes to the early followers of Jesus, reminding them of God’s essential message about Jesus, light, and life. Jesus, by the way, is the light and he gives life. So amid John’s poetic flare, his words all […]
Are You the Criminal on the Cross Next to Jesus? When Jesus is executed, two criminals are executed with him, one on either side. While we don’t know what these two men did to deserve the death penalty, we can assume it must have been something really bad, such as murder or insurrection. Luke’s report […]
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Does Jesus Offend You? Though many people like an easy Jesus, not everyone accepts what he says Jesus normally teaches the masses in parables. Though most don’t really understand what he means, they like his stories because they’re so countercultural. Inaddition, he sometimes gives them food and heals them. He’s a cool speaker who does […]
How Many Disciples Did Jesus Have? We all know that Jesus had twelve disciples, right? This number occurs repeatedly in all four gospels. And the first three list them by name. Unfortunately, the lists don’t match. Matthew and Mark list Simon Peter, Andrew, James (son of Zebedee), John, Philip, Bartholomew, Thomas, Matthew, James (son of […]
Do You Believe God’s Message? Faith Comes from Hearing God’s Message About Jesus and Believing in Him In the book of Isaiah, the prophet asks, “Who has believed God’s message?” He then goes on to prophetically proclaim what Jesus will do. He will suffer and die for us, sheep that have wandered off. He will […]
Doctor Luke: A Quiet Man with a Lasting Influence Doctor Luke was another companion of Paul. He wrote the Gospel of Luke and The Acts of the Apostles. Despite having penned two major books in the Bible—comprising about 25 percent of the content in New Testament—Luke is only mentioned three times in the Bible, so […]
Isaiah Reveals Three Things About God: He Is Gracious, Compassionate, and Just We Should Wait for God Because He Longs for Us After Isaiah records the stinging words of God against his people, Isaiah adds a passage of comfort and reassurance. It starts with the word yet. He writes, “Yet the Lord longs . . . Here are […]
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Stephen is Martyred The third sermon in the book of Acts: Acts 6:8-7:60 (specifically Acts 7:1-53). Setting: Jerusalem, before the Sanhedrin (the ruling Jewish council) Speaker: Stephen Audience: Jewish leaders (members of the Sanhedrin) Preceding Events: Stephen supernaturally does many miracles and amazing things. The opposition stirs up trouble, has him arrested, and persuades others […]
Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord Almighty Celebrate the Holiness of God The prophet Isaiah has a dream, a vision. He sees into heaven. God sits on his throne over the temple. Six-winged angels, seraphim, hover above him. They sing out, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord Almighty. Earth fills with his glory.” As their […]
Discover the Comeback of John Mark A person who keeps resurfacing in the Bible is a man with two names. Sometimes he is Mark, and sometimes he is John. For clarity, Luke often refers to him as “John, also called Mark“; John Mark for short. Let’s explore the failure and the comeback of John Mark. […]
How Can We Help the Poor? Deuteronomy Instructs Us to Help Foreigners, Orphans, and Widows In the book of Deuteronomy, Moses reminds God’s people that when they’re harvesting a field to not pick it clean, to leave some of the produce for others. This includes foreigners, orphans, and widows (Deuteronomy 24:19). Help Foreigners Orphans and […]
Paul the Reconciler While Philemon is the recipient of the letter that bears his name, Paul is the author. We know a great deal about Paul, as he is mentioned over 250 times in the Bible, mostly in the book of Acts, but also in the letters that he wrote, as well as once by […]
Moses Blames the People for His Mistake Not Taking Responsibility for Our Actions Goes Way Back We often shake our heads in dismay over people who refuse to admit when they have done something wrong. Instead they want to blame others. They refuse to take responsibility for their mistakes. This is not a new development. […]
Peninnah is an unfamiliar Bible character. Hare you ever heard of her? She’s a co-wife with Hannah (the mother of Samuel). Their husband is Elkanah. Having two wives is never a good idea. Conflict ensues. In a tale reminiscent of Jacob and his two wives, Rebecca and Leah, we have the story of Elkanah and […]
Do Our Meetings Do More Harm Than Good? We Must Examine Our Church Meetings to Make Sure They Are Truly Beneficial In Paul’s first letter to the church in Corinth, he talks about worshiping God and then he talks about celebrating the Lord’s Supper. In between these two topics he slips in a condemning one-liner. […]
The Apostle John and the Chosen Lady In John’s second letter he writes to the chosen lady and her kids. Some people assume John is employing an intimate metaphor to reference the church (the chosen lady) and its members (her children). But this interpretation falls apart because the New Testament considers the people as the […]
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