Remember the context for Chapter 3 follows chapters 2 and 1.  Paul has just finished a rich set of blessing-filled thoughts that talk about our salvation in terms of justification, and how that comes by grace through faith, and neither of those come from us as a source, they are a gift of God.  More than that, though we have been saved by the grace of Christ in that we died with Him to sin,...

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NB:  A covenant (binding legal agreement) on the Old Testament is “cut” (ratified) by taking sacrificial animals and dividing them in half and placing them into two piles of remains, with enough room to walk between them.  One pile represents the blessings of the agreement that will be received at its completion if it is kept, and the other side represents the cursings that are incurred if there is a default and it is not...

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Here are the study notes from Ephesians 2: Here at the beginning of the chapter, I must pause to remind everyone that Ephesians 2 comes in the context of immediately after chapter 1 with all of its lofty ideas about predestination for a purpose, how we are Christ’s body the church, and that we have been sealed by the Holy Spirit (God Himself).  Remember, the chapter divisions came during the 1300s and the verse divisions...

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As we dig in to Galatians 2, there are a couple of things to remember: Paul writes this after 14 years of actually preaching the Gospel. That Gospel is summarized in Gal. 1:4: [The Lord Jesus Christ, from v.3] gave Himself for us To rescue [exaireō, to remove, or to deliver from, as in removed the brand from the fire] us From this present evil age [i.e., our sins that tie us to that age]...

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The concept of sacrifice in Scripture begins at the fall of mankind from innocence in the Garden of Eden.  Genesis 3:21 tells us that before banishing Adam and Eve from the garden, he clothed them in animal skins.  God sacrificed the life of an innocent animal to cover the nakedness of the guilty.  (As a side note, I don’t imagine it was easy.  God loves His creation, every bit of it, even the parts that...

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Healing Toward a Thankful Life – Hope
Uncategorized / October 8, 2015

As a child of God, I have already been healed… “by His stripes…” (Isaiah 53:5) The worst illness of all is sin – and with the blood of my Savior, I am covered, and righteous in my Father’s eyes. This body is temporary and the lessons that come from its frailty and inadequate state is priceless (2 Corinthians 5:1; Romans 8:28; 2 Corinthians 12:9). Daily, I am rewarded by His presence – mercies...

You Can’t Put “Terms” on God

Sometimes a person is angry with God for not rescuing the world from evil the way they think an almighty God should. Their pride is so great that they may even be bitter against God for not conceding to their terms. Ultimately, they refuse to serve God and are angry that he has not followed their agenda of what is good and evil and how things should be done. Originally, God did create this world...

Unremarkable…
Christology , Ecclesiology , Soteriology / October 8, 2015

Jesus’ disciples were unremarkable men. There was really nothing special about them. However, that should fill us with hope, because when these men yielded to Him, he used them to turn the world upside down. We too, if we are completely honest with ourselves could be considered unremarkable. We have nothing that can recommend us to God, because we can do nothing to to earn right standing before Him. And yet, when we yield to...

In the Midst
General / October 1, 2015

In the midst of it all, I am fortunate. As I hold tightly to my Father’s Word, I am encouraged. In the midst of it all, I am grateful. As the daylight turns to darkness, I am not afraid, for God is present. In the midst of it all, I am filled. As the world ravages my heart, the mercies through Christ are near. In the midst of it all, I am blessed. As I...

From Rocky to Refined
Resources / October 1, 2015

Sometimes life leaves our hearts hardened like a garden plot in a drought. The surface is cracked, broken, and has no growth or beauty. God is the master gardener and there is nothing too difficult for Him to handle. When we surrender our lives to Him and seek Him with all our hearts, he removes the rocky ground and prepares our hearts for deep growth and renewal in Him. Colossians 2:7 “Let your roots grow...

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