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1Cor14:18-40

PROPHECY AND TONGUES (cont.)

Paul is not disparaging of tongues, he is thankful that he has the gift. It edifies him.

But in "assembly" he would rather speak five intelligible words to instruct. For the "numbers" people. Five is the number of Grace. What five words would Paul speak if it did refer to God's Grace?

Chuck Missler's guess is:
"CHRIST DIED AND ROSE AGAIN"

Note that this would qualify as prophecy as it was revealed to Paul by divine inspiration. (Relaized on Damascus road)
======================================================
In OT and NT

So stop thinking like children (spiritually immature) and think like adults (spiritually mature)

Cites an Isaiah passage and relates it to "tongues".

Commentators and scholars are all over the map on this one, due to an apparent contradiction with later verses:

1Cor14:22 "Tongues, then, are a sign, not for believers but for unbelievers; prophecy, however, is for believers, not for unbelievers." NIV

I have seen some claim that it is scribal error. Hard to believe that that many scribes would make same mistake(s). Others twist and turn the meaning of words to make it agree with later verses.

To me - the passage refers back to the Isaiah citation (KJV uses "wherefore" rather than "then"). Isaiah came upon a bunch of priests and prophets in Ephraim (Northern Israel) that were "drunk as skunks". So drunk they could not control their stomach or their bowels. Isaiah berated them: How could they legitimately teach or reveal to anyone? The priests and prophets mocked him. So he prophesied that "strange tongues and foreigners would speak to them",and this would be their demise. Isaiah spoke in simple Hebrew to the drunkards. Soon would come the Assyrian army with their stammering lips and foreign tongue. That too would be ignored until it was too late and Northern Israel was conquered and dispersed.

Now go back to 1Cor14:22. Working backwards, Isaiah prophesied in understandable language, but the unbelievers ignored Isaiah. If they had been believers they should have heeded Isaiah. So the strange tongues (Assyrians) came as a sign to the unbelievers, but even this they ignored - leading to their destruction. If they had been believers they would have heeded the prophecy of Isaiah and not needed the sign of "strange tongues".

[NOTE: Just like the signs of Jesus were ignored by unbelievers. If they did not believe in Jesus, they should have recognized him by his works, but signs are fruitless to the "hard of heart".]

Now apply it to Corinth. Unbeliever comes in church and hears "tongues". He is not going to get it (strange tongues)anymore than the drunkards and N. Israel did in Isaiah. He will think you mad and probably (unstated) depart. Thus leading to his Spiritual destruction. Signs(tongues)are there for the unbeliever but they do no good to the church - as the unbeliever will not "get it".

But if an unbeliever comes into the "assembly" and hears revealed (prophecy)words, he will be convicted in the Spirit - exposed and examined and fall to the ground a "believer".

Well, this is where there seems to be a contradiction. However, think about it, the prophecy caused the unbeliever to be a believer. As a believer the prophecy had benefited him as it convinced him he was a sinner and he turned to the Lord. If he is a hard-hearted unbeliever, the prophecy will do no good just like it was ignored by the drunkards in Isaiah.

Prophecy is better because you have a better chance of providing "salvation" to an unbeliever.

This is how I resolve verse 22 in my mind. Tough passage.
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ORDERLY WORSHIP

What is cool is the participation of the Christians in assmebly. Different people bringing something to the table.

The problem was it got crazy in Corinth. Started resembling the pagan worship with everyone jumping up and down trying to speak. Some holding the floor to long (Like this post :), etc.

Paul lays out some rules of order, because God is not a God of confusion. Edification will occur if their is order in the assembly, and as always - that is Paul's main goal for the "assembly".
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DREADED PART: WOMEN AND SILENCE

I disagree with John MacArthur and Bob Deffingbaugh. I think you have to understand the times, why Paul said this about women, and what overall lesson applies today.

In Greek Culture the women were discouraged from speaking in public.

"Not only the arm of the virtuous woman, but her speeches well, ought to be not for the public (µ), and she ought to be modest and guarded about saying anything in the hearing of outsiders ( ), since it is an exposure of herself; for in her talk can be seen her feelings, character, and disposition."
Plutarch, Advice to Bride and Groom 142C-D, essay written somewhere between 75-100 AD.

In Jewish synagouges, the men and women sat on opposite sides of the room. Communication between spouses did not happen. Corinth probably assembled in this way.

Paul has already said in Chapter 11 that women could pray and prophesy. If they prophesy and are judged credible they certainly have the right to help control the prophets.

1Cor14:32 "The spirits of prophets are subject to the control of prophets." NIV

So what is the "silence" and "not speak" that Paul states to be done? The greek words give no clue as to what type of "speech" is being employed. But given the section on orderly worship - it must have been disruptive in some way. If disruptive, it is better to be quiet and discuss it at home per the roles of authority in the Scripture. Christ - Man - Woman.

Yes, this requires submission, but in those times the women were not allowed the education of the men. Perhaps there would be confusion in understanding certain presentations. Perhaps a lot. Rather than disrupt the whole assembly constantly, it could be resolved at home. Remember the man is to love wife like Christ loves the church. He should lovingly explain and discuss points of confusion by wife in private. Perhaps this is better than some stranger yelling out - 'What a stupid question lady?'

I have to leave it at that - Have no better explanation. Today, I just don't see this as an issue in most assemblies of Christians. Couples sit together. Most service are structured in an ordered pattern. I would assume any assembly that allowed a word from God from the Congregation would have some structure within their individual church.

Paul states that these rules of order are the Lord's command.

Summary: "Therefore, my brothers, be eager to prophesy, and do not forbid speaking in tongues. But everything should be done in a fitting and orderly way." NIV

In the Jewish culture at the time of Job it was believed that anything good that happened to a person was a reward for pleasing God and anything bad that happened or any illness was a punishment from God for doing something unpleasing to God. If you stubbed your toe on a rock it was because you did something that God did not like.

Job’s friends were trying to get Job to repent so God would lift His punishment from Job. Job’s refusal to repent was because he felt God was so great and he was so unimportant that he had no right to call on God to relieve him from his suffering. (Job 9:32-34)

God is all that great but we are not unimportant to God! God wants us to bring our problems to Him, large or small. God cannot put His arm around us and bring us comfort during hard times if we shut Him out. God wants to be our comforter – He loves us that much!

God Bless!
Pat

Job 9 (NKJV - Job: There Is No Mediator)
32
“For He is not a man, as I am ,that I may answer Him, and that we should go to court together.
33
Nor is there any mediator between us, who may lay his hand on us both.
34
Let Him take His rod away from me, and do not let dread of Him terrify me.
35
Then I would speak and not fear Him, but it is not so with me.

NOTE:
It is true that God the Father is not a man. In fact, that is a wonderful thing about God—He is God and not a man. As such, He is totally above all creation, He is trustworthy, and He is not fickle.

I Samuel 15 (NKJV)
29
And also the Strength of Israel will not lie nor relent. For He is not a man, that He should relent.”
~~~

Yet, Job needed God to be a man so Job could talk “one on one” with God. God did, however, come to earth in the Lord Jesus Christ, and Jesus is our Mediator.

May we not live “in the fog” and pray “in confusion” about our lives. May we know God’s will as God has revealed in His Word. May we know God intimately through the Lord Jesus by the Spirit of God so we clearly know His guidance, and we follow.

Ephesians 5 (NKJV)
17
Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not be drunk with wine, in which is dissipation; but be filled with the Spirit,

May we know God’s Word and His way, and set our wills to yield to Him and to follow Him with all of our heart. Andrew Murray said in “With Christ In The School of Prayer”:

“[T]he Lord warns us against the vain repetitions of the Gentiles, who think to be heard for their much praying. We often hear prayers of great earnestness and fervour, in which a multitude of petitions are poured forth, but to which the Saviour would undoubtedly answer, ‘What will you that I should do unto you?’”

“But the word of the Master teaches us more. He does not say, ‘What do you wish?’, but ‘What do you will?’ One often wishes for a thing without willing it. I wish to have a certain article, but I find the price too high; I resolve not to take it; I wish, but do not will to have it."

"The sluggard wishes to be rich, but does not will it. Many a one wishes to be saved, but perishes because he does not will it. The will rules the whole heart and life; if I really will to have anything that is within my reach, I do not rest till I have it.”

“The will is the highest power in the soul; grace wants above everything to sanctify and restore this will, one of the chief traits of God’s image, to full and free exercise.”

“Faith is nothing but the purpose of the will resting on God’s Word, and saying: I must have it. To believe truly is to will firmly.”

“It is often spiritual sloth that, under the appearance of humility, professes to have no will, because it fears the trouble of searching out the will of God, or, when [the will of God is] found, [it fears] the struggle of claiming it in faith. True humility is ever in company with strong faith, which only seeks to know what is according to the will of God, and then boldly claims the fulfillment of the promise [in John 15]: ‘You shall ask what you will, and it shall be done unto you.’ LORD TEACH US TO PRAY.”

Job 11 (NKJV- Zophar Urges Job to Repent)
4
For you have said, ‘My doctrine is pure, and I am clean in your eyes.’
5
But oh, that God would speak, and open His lips against you,
6
That He would show you the secrets of wisdom! For they would double your prudence.
Know therefore that God exacts from you less than your iniquity deserves.
7
“Can you search out the deep things of God? Can you find out the limits of the Almighty?

NOTE:
I really have to be careful in proclaiming out of pride that “I know what God wants” if I do not know. There is a clear certainty we can know about God—but it comes out of times of prayer, surrender, and seeking God’s Word and His will until He establishes in us His truth about a matter.

I Corinthians 15 (NKJV)
10
But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.

28
Now when all things are made subject to Him, then the Son Himself will also be subject to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all.

NOTE:
ONLY BY GRACE am I what I am. And thank God that His grace is NOT IN VAIN. Thus, I always need to ask God for the persistent and consistent faith of the Lord Jesus Who never took His eyes from fulfilling the Father’s will.

God’s grace will accomplish God’s will in me. Am I willing for God to have all of me, so grace can fulfill all of God's will in me?

D.L. Moody said, "The world has yet to see a man fully surrendered to God. I will be that man."

Throughout eternity, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, and the Father are one. One God in unity. Yet, in His role, Jesus always is the means of fulfilling the Father’s will. In His role, Jesus brings all in submission to the Father.

Psalm 38 (NKJV)
15
For in You, O LORD, I hope; You will hear, O Lord my God.
16
For I said, “Hear me, lest they rejoice over me, lest, when my foot slips, they exalt themselves against me.”
21
Do not forsake me, O LORD; O my God, be not far from me!
22
Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation!

NOTE:
God is our ONLY salvation! May we always pray: “Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation!”

Amen.

Regarding the Book of Job & Job 5 as we can see below there is much truth in what Job's friends say/tell him in regard to his situation. I don't think the Book of Job is about what his/Job's friends say or think or do - I think the Book of Job is about knowing that even though you may be a righteous person & in God's favor, that that situation can change at any time - not because you have been sinful or disobedient but because you are going to go through the fire in your/our lives to be tested & that is exactly what was happening with Job - so don't be unaware of these circumstances/happenings that will come to God's sons & daughters - it will surely happen, it is part of the process. I don't judge Job's friends but understand them well-they are grasping at straws just like we do when something happens to us or those we love/our friends. I take this as a book of learning & knowing that we will all go through the fire & be tested & to hang on like Job does/did to the truth of God (what he/Job knew) & ride the wild wave to completion/deliverance & reap the reward after the testing (especially if you pass the test).

Job's friends did the best they knew how & according to their experience & knowledge of how the Lord acts/acted in the past in regard to sin/disobedience:

Eliphazs Response Continues
1."You may cry for help, but no one listens. You may turn to the angels, but they give you no help. 2.Surely resentment destroys the fool, and jealousy kills the simple. 3.From my experience, I know that fools who turn from God may be successful for the moment, but then comes sudden disaster. 4.Their children are abandoned far from help, with no one to defend them. 5.Their harvests are stolen, and their wealth satisfies the thirst of many others, not themselves! 6.But evil does not spring from the soil, and trouble does not sprout from the earth. 7.People are born for trouble as predictably as sparks fly upward from a fire.
8."My advice to you is this: Go to God and present your case to him. 9.For he does great works too marvelous to understand. He performs miracles without number. 10.He gives rain for the earth. He sends water for the fields. 11.He gives prosperity to the poor and humble, and he takes sufferers to safety. 12.He frustrates the plans of the crafty, so their efforts will not succeed. 13.He catches those who think they are wise in their own cleverness, so that their cunning schemes are thwarted. 14.They grope in the daylight as though they were blind; they see no better in the daytime than at night. 15.He rescues the poor from the cutting words of the strong. He saves them from the clutches of the powerful. 16.And so at last the poor have hope, and the fangs of the wicked are broken.

17."But consider the joy of those corrected by God! Do not despise the chastening of the Almighty when you sin. 18.For though he wounds, he also bandages. He strikes, but his hands also heal. 19.He will rescue you again and again so that no evil can touch you. 20.He will save you from death in time of famine, from the power of the sword in time of war. 21.You will be safe from slander and will have no fear of destruction when it comes. 22.You will laugh at destruction and famine; wild animals will not terrify you. 23.You will be at peace with the stones of the field, and its wild animals will be at peace with you. 24.You will know that your home is kept safe. When you visit your pastures, nothing will be missing. 25.Your children will be many; your descendants will be as plentiful as grass! 26.You will live to a good old age. You will not be harvested until the proper time!

27."We have found from experience that all this is true. Listen to my counsel, and apply it to yourself."

Job

I agree with Jan, that the friends are doing the best they can with what they know - even if the tone becomes progressively harsher.

Perhaps what is important here is what the friends DO NOT DO:

1) They do not pray. They do sit and empathize with Job for seven days in silence - but no prayer. There is plenty of prayer (addressing God) in Job - but it comes from Job. The friends "talk" about God.

2) Friends do not hear Job. They do not address Job's speeches other than saying, you say this - but God punishes sin, you are being punished, therefore you sinned, repent. How many times do we in consoling friends get locked in on a train of thought and speak it, without really hearing what the other person is saying?
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Bildad ( a bit harsher)

Premise: Man must have God's blessing to prosper.

Starts off without the tact of Eliphaz. "How long will you say such things?
Your words are a blustering wind."

God is just; does he pervert Justice? (NO)

Therefore, God will not punish the righteous.

Implies Job is wicked. So repent.
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JOB REPLIES

For the first time in story involving the speeches, I noice Job hears and responds to what is said.

Job agrees with Bildar's wrods, BUT no man can be just before God.

God has complete power over nature.

Job cannot prove his innocence before God.

To Job it looks like God punishes the good and wicked.

[NOTE: There are some intersting insights (truths)about God by both Job and his friends. They just cannot connect the dots.

CH. 9
v 2. Man cannot be righteous before God

v15. I can only plead for mercy before the Judge. We do not want justice from God - we want and need His Mercy.

V22. God is just, but God also may afflict without cause. Job knows these two things and believes them. However, Job cannot resolve the two in his mind. Later in Jesus, we see the two put together in the sacrtifice of an innocent Christ to save mankind.

In vs. 32-34 Job recognizes there is a missing link. Job cannot stand before God and defend himself, he needs an intermediary. (Foreshadowing Christ)]

In chapter 10 Job returns to the theme - Let me understand or leave me alone to die.
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ZOPHAR (harshest yet)

God is lenient: you deserve worse.

God exacts of you less than your guilt deserves.

Gods ways are incomprehensible.

Repent and God will forgive.



1Cor15:1-28

GOING BACK TO BASICS

Paul reminds the corinthians of the Gospel - the thing that really matters.

CHRIST DIED AND ROSE AGAIN.

But there was division, and this time in an essential. The Corinthians believed in the ressurection of Jesus, but some did not believe in the ressurection of the dead (man).

"Why has Paul so carefully proved the resurrection of Jesus? It wasn’t because the Corinthian Christians believed Jesus did not rise from the dead. In fact, he makes it clear in 1 Corinthians 15:11 that they did believe it: so we preach and so you believed. Then why was it important?

i. The Corinthian Christians were not denying Jesus’ resurrection; they were denying our resurrection. They were influenced either by Greek philosophy (which considered the resurrection undesirable, thinking the state of “pure spirit” superior), or by the thinking of the Sadducees (which thought the world beyond to be just wishful thinking). The bottom line is that the Corinthian Christians believed we lived forever, but not in resurrected bodies.

ii. Remember that resurrection is not merely life after death. It is the continuation of life after death in glorified bodies, which are our present bodies in a glorified state. - David Guzik

Paul presents the logic why ressurection of dead is a truth.
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First Fruits

I cannot remember if I mentioned this during gospels. Christ was the first fruits of the dead. In Judaism, before the field was harvested - a first fruit (wave sheath) offering was made by the priests. Some choice grain was picked and offered to God, then the full harvest would commence. Christ went first and we come after as the harvest of the "body of Christ".

INTRICACY OF GOD'S PLAN
God's plan is so intricate, and in regards to Christ very faithful to the Feasts he declared to Israel.

The first fruits offering (lifting up the sheath of grain to God) was done on the first day after the Sabbath. Not the High Sabbath of Passover, but after the Sabbath (Saturday) that fell after Passover. Offering took place sometime in morning before noon.

So it is entirely possible that on the Sunday following Christ's crucifixion when the priests were making the first fruit offerings to God - that at the moment of the offering - is when Jesus went up to the Father as the literal first fruits offering.

[Note: There was a period of 7 days before Jesus came back to doubting Thomas in the upper room, and later eventually ascended into heaven. Co-incidently the priesthood were to go into their tent (later in seclusion of temple) for 7 days to be ordained in the presence of God before they could be consecrated and perform their priestly functions (LEV8:33). Wonder if that is why Jesus was in presence of God for seven days before returning to the disciples? :)He is our High Priest isn't He?]

More? Acording to Eliot McQuaid of "Friends of Israel" site. Oil (symbol of anointing) was spread on the sheath of grain, and the way it was done the bundle of grain appeared to have stripes on it when held up to the sun. The same as Christ was anointed and He bore the stripes of man when he was lifted up to God.
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Adam and Christ

"For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive."

Repeated concept - twice for emphasis. First it is clear Paul is talking about a real person (Adam). Second, some people have a hard time with concept of one man being the reason for sin in the world. At times, I have a hard time understanding the concept.

Two things:
1) If you can accept Christ (one man) redeemed all sins; then why not one man being the cause of "death" (sin)?
2) The empirical evidence is in. Look at mankind. The OT heroes were flawed. Mankind has each gone his own way like sheep astray (Isaiah). This world is no Garden of Eden - something is wrong - it started somewhere.
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GLORY TO GOD

I believe that this whole creation process by God was to provide a love gift to His Son - Jesus Christ. That Jesus would be the first fruits of many "brothers".

In the END, Jesus who has been given all power in the heavens and earth, in an act of submissiveness (there's that word again)- will return all to the Father as His gift.

Why? Besides out of love and submissiveness to the Father? Because then God will receive His FULL GLORY. And that is what this has been all about from the beginning - God's glory.


Job 8:1-11:20


(For we walk by faith, not by sight:) (2 Corinthians 5:7 KJV)


Job and his three friends: Eliphaz, Bildad and Zophar are walking by sight, sense and circumstance. Granted, they did not have the luxury of reading the Apostle Paul’s writing; however, faith, trusting in God despite the environment that surrounds was just as relevant under the Old Covenant as it is in the New. It may be easy to dismiss their thought patterns and behaviors as strictly Old Testament “folly” but we find ourselves doing the same thing daily.

When making rash judgments on why “bad” things are happening to people, all we have access to is what we experience with our five senses and rationalize with our mind. Without the key, a Revelation from God, we are merely blind men and women groping our way in the dark.

I find myself taking Job’s stance when I try to defend myself or explain why things look the way they do and the only reason why I am doing that is to try to look good/better/righteous in front of others. Information, facts, observances don’t in themselves lead to truth they just may give you more information to come to wrong conclusions. Without a revelation from God, we only know in part. We still are only seeing through a glass darkly. Until we stand in the Presence of the King of kings, we will only be able to observe imperfectly. Theology doesn’t make a relationship with God.

Grace and peace,
Ramona

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