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I Chronicles 12 (NKJV)
23
Now these were the numbers of the divisions that were equipped for war, and came to David at Hebron to turn over the kingdom of Saul to him, according to the word of the LORD

NOTE:
God’s word ALWAYS—in every case, 100% of the time—comes true. Merging with God’s Word, however, is the fact of our lives. We have to choose to consistently yield to, to believe, and to allow God’s Word to come true IN OUR LIVES.

God had promised David that he would be king. It took YEARS for God’s Word to be fulfilled. David stayed faithful to God with the right heart even through the YEARS when Saul—who had given himself over to what displeased God—tried to kill David.

David is a great example of one who believed God. God is able to use David as an example of the 100% faithfulness of His will and His Word.

Psalm 89 (NKJV)
20
I have found My servant David; with My holy oil I have anointed him,
21
With whom My hand shall be established; also My arm shall strengthen him.

30
“If his sons forsake My law and do not walk in My judgments,
31
If they break My statutes and do not keep My commandments,
32
Then I will punish their transgression with the rod, and their iniquity with stripes.
33
NEVERTHELESS MY LOVINGKINDNESS I WILL NOT UTTERLY TAKE FROM HIM, NOR ALLOW MY FAITHFULNESS TO FAIL.
34
MY COVENANT I WILL NOT BREAK, NOR ALTER THE WORD THAT HAS GONE OUT OF MY LIPS.
35
Once I have sworn by My holiness; I will not lie to David:
36
His seed shall endure forever, and his throne as the sun before Me;
37
It shall be established forever like the moon, even like the faithful witness in the sky.” Selah
~~~

Abraham was also an excellent person of noble spirit whose life allowed God to display His amazing faithfulness to His Word:

Romans 4 (NKJV)
16
Therefore it is of faith that it might be according to grace, so that the promise might be sure to all the seed, not only to those who are of the law, but also to those who are of the faith of Abraham, who is the father of us all

18
who, contrary to hope, in hope believed, so that he became the father of many nations, according to what was spoken, “So shall your descendants be.” [GENESIS 15:5]
19
And not being weak in faith, he did not consider his own body, already dead (since he was about a hundred years old), and the deadness of Sarah’s womb.
20
HE DID NOT WAVER AT THE PROMISE OF GOD THROUGH UNBELIEF, BUT WAS STRENGTHENED IN FAITH, GIVING GLORY TO GOD,
21
AND BEING FULLY CONVINCED THAT WHAT HE HAD PROMISED HE WAS ALSO ABLE TO PERFORM.
22
AND THEREFORE “IT WAS ACCOUNTED TO HIM FOR RIGHTEOUSNESS.” [GENESIS 15:6]
~~~

May we be people like David and Abraham who love God and His Word. May our lives be showcases of the God’s 100%, guaranteed commitment to His Word!

I Chronicles 13 (NKJV)
10
Then the anger of the LORD was aroused against Uzza, and He struck him because he put his hand to the ark; and he died there before God.
11
And David became angry because of the LORD’s outbreak against Uzza; therefore that place is called Perez Uzza [LITERALLY OUTBURST AGAINST UZZA] to this day.

NOTE:
God’s Word cannot be broken, and God is holy. As mentioned, God had already given His specific Word on how the ark was to be handled in Numbers 4:5-15.

We need to pray and yield ourselves to God and His Word, or we live our lives very dangerously. I have not always lived my life according to God’s Word.

Yet, thank God for GRACE which is received by faith, which will enable us to live by God’s Word as we yield and surrender to God.

Romans 1 (NKJV)
17
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “The just shall live by faith.” [HABAKKUK 2:4]

NOTE:
Consider this wonderfully challenging quote about FAITH from this text: PREFACE TO THE LETTER OF ST. PAUL TO THE ROMANS BY MARTIN LUTHER, 1483-1546

“Faith is a work of God in us, which changes us and brings us to birth anew from God (cf. John 1). It kills the old Adam, makes us completely different people in heart, mind, senses, and all our powers, and brings the Holy Spirit with it.”

“What a living, creative, active powerful thing is faith! It is impossible that faith ever stop doing good. Faith doesn't ask whether good works are to be done, but, before it is asked, it has done them. It is always active.”

“Faith is a living, unshakeable confidence in God's grace; it is so certain, that someone would die a thousand times for it.”

“Through faith, a person will do good to everyone without coercion, willingly and happily; he will serve everyone, suffer everything for the love and praise of God, who has shown him such grace."

"It is as impossible to separate works from faith as burning and shining from fire.”

“ASK GOD TO WORK FAITH IN YOU; OTHERWISE YOU WILL REMAIN ETERNALLY WITHOUT FAITH, NO MATTER WHAT YOU TRY TO DO OR FABRICATE.”
~~~

Psalm 9 (NKJV)
19
Arise, O LORD, do not let man prevail; let the nations be judged in Your sight.
20
Put them in fear, O LORD, that the nations may know themselves to be but men. Selah

NOTE: What a wonderful and awesome prayer to pray. God does not belong to any single nation—but to all nations that will honor Him as the Sovereign God, and honor Jesus as Son of God and Lord.

Proverbs 19 (NKJV)
5
A false witness will not go unpunished, and he who speaks lies will not escape.

NOTE:
I keep coming back to God’s faithfulness to the TRUTH of His Word. God will forever honor His Word.

Thus, God will expose everything that is not true.

If I am not living by God’s Word—not living and speaking truth—I will be exposed sooner or later.

May we live the way the Lord Jesus taught.

Matthew 5 (NKJV)
3
Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

8
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

Vance

In regard to what Vance said here: "Proverbs 19:5 (NKJV)A false witness will not go punished, and he who speaks lies will not escape.

NOTE:
I keep coming back to God’s faithfulness to the TRUTH of His Word. God will forever honor His Word.

Thus, God will expose everything that is not true.

If I am not living by God’s Word—not living and speaking truth—I will be exposed sooner or later.

May we live the way the Lord Jesus taught."

I do so agree with the Word of God on this - all things in the dark will be brought to the light & exposed.

I find that so many people are liars these days & for what reason I can't understand - I suppose one of them is fear & the other just an outright unholy spirit of lying. It is so sad that the TRUTH is no longer important to the "world." Of course not, the world is at enmity with God. If we are friends with the world we are not with God (per His Word).

I find many things to be getting worse as time goes by & hopefully the spiritual things of God are getting better/more powerful than the sin/enemy in the world. Lord Jesus come quickly.

jan


Sorry about the error in typing/copying & pasting: the word should be "unpunished," when I pulled the text together I guess the "un" got swept away.

"Proverbs 19:5 (NKJV)A false witness will not go "UNPUNISHED," and he who speaks lies will not escape.

jan

Romans

Background

A friend of mine who is a member of a different church (from mine)told me, 'Well that is Paul, you have to take Paul with a grain of salt. You can't take to heart everything Paul writes.'

Really???? I told him,
'Paul was a Jew, he was taught by a great rabbi and leader of the Sanhedrin - Gamaliel (Acts 22:2-3), Paul was a Pharisee, he participated and led the persecution of the followers of "the Way", Paul had great zeal for the Lord.
(re: Gamaliel http://www.keyway.ca/htm2000/20001213.htm )

And on the way to Damascus to capture more followers of Jesus - he had a change of heart???? Paul became a leading evangelist of the early Church. Paul founded several early churches. He suffered beatings, a stoning, imprisonment, and rebuke from his former collegues. What makes a man "switch teams like that - do it in the prime of his life when he has great power, authority within Israel, and zeal for God?

Paul claims he had an encounter with Christ, accepted Jesus as his Savior, and was called to be an apostle.

Now either that is true, and you need to "take to heart" everything Paul wrote. or -

It is false, and Paul is a liar, and you can just toss the Bible (as it can not be trusted) and search elsewhere for life's answers.

Your choice.'

NOTE: reason I use ' instead of " - is my indication of paraphrasing. Also the tone of comment was friendly, and he took it as "food for thought".

======================================================

Letter to Romans seems to be written between 57 and 60 A.D. Paul wrote it before going to Rome. The Romans were beginning to understand Christianity was not just a subset of Judaism. Persecution on a large scale is just around the corner.

So if, Paul had not been to Rome - how come there are believers there already?

We know Aquila and Priscilla are there and a number of people Paul had met, converted, and/or exhorted in his travels. (Rom 16:3). Rome was the "big city", people gravitated to it like they do NYC, LA, London, Paris, etc. today. The territories were full of former Roman soldiers, freed slaves, and Roman businessmen - if some became Christians - it is not surprising that some percentage would return to Rome and share the gospel. Apparently they did this with success.

Paul did not want to step on anyone's toes.

Rom 15:20
"It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else's foundation." NIV

Wait a minute! Christ was known, what is Paul talking about???? Most commentators (notable exception would be Catholics) believe (and I agree) that:
word had spread, and people had converted, but no "church" had been established. No apostle had been to Rome to found a church at the time of these writings. There had been no public declaration of the gospel, just the word of mouth. Paul was planning on coming to change that, and provide a public and cohesive force to the Christians in Rome. To preach the Gospel and minister to new Christians. To Build and Edify as he had done in other churches. To exhort and encourage Christians in their walk with God.

Gal 2:8-9
"For God, who was at work in the ministry of Peter as an apostle to the Jews, was also at work in my ministry as an apostle to the Gentiles. James, Peter and John, those reputed to be pillars, gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship when they recognized the grace given to me. They agreed that we should go to the Gentiles, and they to the Jews." NIV


Power of God

"God has great power," Psalm 79:11.
"God has strong power," Psalm 89:13.
"God has glorious power," Exodus 15:6.
He has mighty power, Job 9:4.
He has everlasting power, Isaiah 26:4­
He has sovereign power, Romans 9:21.
He has effectual power, Isaiah 43:13.
He has irresistible power, Deuteronomy 32:39.
He has incomparable power, Psalm 89:8.
He has unsearchable power, Job 5:9.

Jeremiah 10:12 says: "It is He who made the earth by His power."

Jeremiah 27:5 says: "It is I who by My great power and My outstretched arm have made the earth."

In Psalm 33:8-9 it says: "Let all the earth fear the Lord, let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him for He spoke and it came to be."

Restructured a John MacArthur quote to make a "cleaner post".
http://www.biblebb.com/files/MAC/45-8.htm

1 Chronicles 12:19-14:17


So David decided not to move the Ark into the City of David. He took it instead to the home of Obed-edom of Gath. The Ark of God remained there with the family of Obed-edom for three months, and the LORD blessed him and his entire household. (I Chronicles 13:13-14).

This passage has always fascinated me. Only two sentences long but is says so much. The Ark had sat twenty years in the house of a man called Abinadab (1 Sam. 7:2), yet no one was blessed—it just sat there just like a regular great big old box with no God sitting on the mercy seat (between the wingspan of the two angels)—nothing happening. The Presence of God was in someone’s house yet the manifestation of God never happened. Obed-edom had the Ark in his house for three months and everyone on the house was blessed. What was going on?

I wonder how often we put God in a box and put him by the door of our lives and nothing, absolutely nothing is going on. Then someone takes God into their lives, their homes and everyone gets blessed who walks through the front door. What are we missing? Hmmm.

Grace and peace,
Ramona


Romans 1:1-4

"Paul, a servant of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle and set apart for the gospel of God— the gospel he promised beforehand through his prophets in the Holy Scriptures regarding his Son, who as to his human nature was a descendant of David, and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord." NIV
======================================================
Paul's Position

Paul chose to be a Gk. "doulos" - bondservant of Jesus Christ. Recap of bondservant.

Exodus 21:2,5-6
If you buy a Hebrew servant, he is to serve you for six years. But in the seventh year, he shall go free, without paying anything....But if the servant declares, 'I love my master and my wife and children and do not want to go free,' then his master must take him before the judges. He shall take him to the door or the doorpost and pierce his ear with an awl. Then he will be his servant for life." NIV

It is interesting (and I missed this in readings of Exodus), but after the Ten Commandments and instructions on altars and idols, this "Law of the Bondservant" is the first of a list of additional ordinances. WHY?????

["Deuteronomy 20:18 “And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw it, they removed, and stood afar off.”

They were terrified of God and of coming near to Him. They were willing to serve Him because they feared Him, but God desired for them to serve because they loved Him and appreciated what He had done for them. I believe this issue is why the first mishpat, or judgment the LORD teaches them of is the law of the bondservant."]

http://www.hissheep.org/hebrew/the_law_of_the_bondservant.html

Paul chose to be a bondservant of Christ out of love.
======================================================
Paul's Authority

Paul was called [to be] an apostle.

"called" is Gk. "kletos" and can mean "invited" or "divinely selected and appointed". So did Paul choose or was he appointed an apostle?

I think these verses clear that up:

2Tim1
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God..NIV

1Cor1:1
Paul, called to be an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God...NIV

2Cor1:1
Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,... NIV

Paul was divinely selected and appointed to be an apostle.
======================================================
Paul's Message

Paul was set apart for (or unto) the gospel of God.

Paul was set apart by God for a purpose - not to KEEP him from something - but for the gospel of God.

The Gospel of God is God's message - not mankinds. It did not depend on Paul. He was just the messenger. It does not depend on today's ministers either.

The good news Paul speaks of in Romans 1:1 is the good news that God has burst through the box and desired to communicate with man. In a world filled with bad news, it is remarkable to know that God Himself has given us good news. That is especially true when you realize man is utterly unworthy of any good news. Yet in spite of that the apostle Paul reiterates again and again the good news that comes from God - John MacArthur
======================================================
The good news (gospel) that was promised in the Old Testament and fulfilled in Jesus. Human nature as a descendant of David....

"declared with power to be the Son of God..."

The key to understanding this verse is the word "declared. " It comes from the Greek word horiz[ma]o which means "boundary. " We get our English word horizon from it. It refers to the clear demarcation line between the earth and sky. Paul is saying some may have questioned in the minds of some about whether Jesus was the Son of God, but because of the resurrection, the line was drawn in absolute clarity: Jesus Christ is God in human flesh. As clearly as the horizon divides the earth from the sky, so the resurrection divides Jesus from the rest of humanity. When God raised Jesus Christ from the dead, He was irrefutably distinguished from all other human beings. - John MacArthur

"With power" Gk. "dunamis"
1) strength power, ability

a) inherent power, power residing in a thing by virtue of its nature, or which a person or thing exerts and puts forth

b) power for performing miracles

c) moral power and excellence of soul

d) the power and influence which belong to riches and wealth

e) power and resources arising from numbers

f) power consisting in or resting upon armies, forces, hosts

Jesus Christ = ALL OF THE ABOVE. Doesn't get much stronger than that.

"..by his resurrection from the dead.."

The definitive linchpin of Christianity. The declaration with power was accomplished because Christ was raised from the dead. Without it Christianity would just be anoter religion.


Power of God

"God has great power," Psalm 79:11.
"God has strong power," Psalm 89:13.
"God has glorious power," Exodus 15:6.
He has mighty power, Job 9:4.
He has everlasting power, Isaiah 26:4
­He has sovereign power, Romans 9:21.
He has effectual power, Isaiah 43:13.
He has irresistible power, Deuteronomy 32:39.
He has incomparable power, Psalm 89:8.
He has unsearchable power, Job 5:9.

Jeremiah 10:12 says: "It is He who made the earth by His power."

Jeremiah 27:5 says: "It is I who by My great power and My outstretched arm have made the earth."

In Psalm 33:8-9 it says: "Let all the earth fear the Lord, let all the inhabitants of the world stand in awe of Him for He spoke and it came to be." What power .... what power.

Reformatted a John MacArthur quote from a sermon to make a more readable post.
http://www.biblebb.com/files/MAC/45-8.htm

Romans 1:16-17

I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God for the salvation of everyone who believes: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. For in the gospel a righteousness from God is revealed, a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: "The righteous will live by faith." NIV
======================================================
Why was Paul not ashamed?

"He is bold to preach because of what the gospel is, because of what the gospel does....The reason why Paul is not overcome by the temptation to be ashamed of the gospel, but quite the contrary, the reason that he proclaims it so joyously, so anxiously is because it is powerful, it changes lives. And he knows that and he has seen that and he believes that. Sure it's a stumbling block, (1 Corinthians 1:18), and of course it's foolishness but it's also the power of God unto salvation to them that believe, and he knows that." - John MacArthur

1Cor1:18
"For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." NIV

[Men would like to change, do you know that? I believe that. Really, all advertising that goes on in the world is based on one presupposition, and that is people want things different than they are. They want to look better, feel better, think better, have better experiences. They want to change their life. Basically, people want to change their life. There's an appeal to that because that's a basic human drive. And deep down inside, people, they really want things to be different but they are utterly impotent to change things.

In Jeremiah 13:23 Jeremiah says: "Can a leopard change his spots? Can the Ethiopian change his skin?" You have just about as much chance to change your heart. Men are impotent. They can't do a thing about what they are. They can't change any­thing. Oh, they may make a few reformations here and there and operate a little differently but real changes never happen.
http://www.biblebb.com/files/MAC/45-8.htm

But because of the POWER of God (see list above) we can have salvation (eternal life) if only we believe the gospel.
======================================================
There is some controversy over the phrase in verse 17:
"..a righteousness from God is revealed.."

NIV translates it "from God", but "of God" is acceptable and used by KJV, NAS and others. Which is it? Because it makes a huge difference.

If it is "from God" we should understand it as per the Gospel as God's gift to us. We can not be righteous on our own, it is only by God's grace and gift of righteousness (justification) that we can be saved. It is imputed to us. - or -

If it is "of God" then it is simply saying that the Gospels reveal that God is righteous.

Of course God is righteous, and I believe the correct phrase is "from God". Why???

Because the Gospel is about God's good news of salvation. About how we can appear before God when we pass on. About attaining the righteousness needed to stand before God. How many times in John did it say you have to "believe" to gain eternal life? You had to have faith (same word as belief).

I believe that it is the "righteousness from God" imputed to man (who believes) and is given person to person (faith to faith) the same for everyone throughout time. (Or by faith from the first to last - i.e. from the beginning to the end of person's life - it does not change). Just as it is revealed in Old Testament???

Hab 2:4
See, he is puffed up;
his desires are not upright—
but the righteous will live by his faith

Just as it was in the Old Testament, it's nothing new. Habakkuk 2:4: "The just shall live by faith." Nothing new. Abraham believed God and it was counted to him for righteousness. - John MacArthur

is this
about a1) the righteous person's faith in God or a2) faithfulness to God, or
about b) God's ("His" rather than "his") faithfulness toward the righteous
person?

a1) is the answer if Paul is to be consistent with readings in "Acts" and the Abraham example.

[Support for Paul, though, comes from a surprising place (at least I was
surprised to see this). In Geza Vermes translation of the Dead Sea Scrolls, if
my memory serves me well, he translates this part of the Habbakuk
pesher/commentary as "the righteous shall live by faith"--i.e., his faith in
the Teacher of Righteousness. Apparently the Qumran scribes/community believed the meaning of Habbakuk 2:4 was "faith" in the Teacher of Righteousness rather than "faithfulness" to the Teacher of Righteousness.]
http://www.ibiblio.org/bgreek/archives/greek-3/msg01216.html


Romans

Will try to be more concise on future posts. I kept getting surprised at the amount of stuff that came up in just these 17 verses.

Hopefully the divisions mark out complete thoughts - that way one can choose to read the pieces that interest them - if any :)

Typepad maintenance up got me going later than usual.

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