Scripture makes it all too clear that Jehovah’s desire is that he has a close relationship with his human creation. For example, James 4:8 tells us, if we ‘draw near God, he will draw near us.’ However, many who are worship God find the relationship distant, not close. It is not that they do not desire such a close and intimate relationship; it is that they just do not know how to cultivate such a relationship. Well, we need not look any further than chapter three of the book of Proverbs.
Observe the Commandments of Your Heavenly Father
Proverbs 3:1-2 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
3 My son, do not forget my teaching,
but let your heart keep my commandments,
2 for length of days and years of life
and peace they will add to you.
Chapter 3 opens with an exhortation for the youth to receive parental guidance into the very core of his being. He must not forsake the teaching (Heb. torah) of his mother. The son is told to let your heart keep my commandments. As was true in 2:2, “inclining your heart to discernment” and 2:10 “for wisdom will enter your heart,” this is referring to the mind, the inherent mental power of the brain with which we accumulate information, reason, and draw conclusions. In 2:1, the son is told to “treasure up my commandments with you,” which referred to the instruction that was given by the teacher of wisdom. The conjunction “for” ties the promises of this verse to the previous verses. Generally speaking, if you do (A) you will get (B). If the son, does not ignore the father’s instruction, and does not forsake his mother’s teaching, and keeps the commandments, length of days and years of life and peace will add to his life as God promised at Exodus 20:12, “‘Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be prolonged in the land which Jehovah your God gives you.’”
The most important point at the outset, which we need to keep in mind, regardless of whether we are talking about a human relationship or a relationship with our heavenly Father is; it should always be based on a value system, a moral code, one’s worldview of life. If we have a friend that does not share our values, because he believes in things that are morally wrong, it will not be long before the friendship grows apart. Worse still, there is the ever-present danger that we will adopt his system and abandon our own.
Jehovah God will never abandon his values. His values are perfect and are something to be desired. To be friends with Jehovah God, we must adopt his value system. To draw close to God like James mentioned means that we must have the same value system as outlined in God’s Word. While Solomon is the inspired writer, Jehovah God is the author. Let us go back to James for 4:8. James informs us, if we ‘draw near God, he will draw near us.’ However, that it James 4:8a, the latter half of that verse qualifies what must be done in order to draw near God. The second half of that verse says we need ‘to recognize that we are sinners, cleanse our hands and purify our hearts.’ The use of religious ceremonial language is sending a moral message to the reader. To cleanse our hands is to stop all wrongdoing that we may be doing and clean up our lives. To purify our hearts is to remove all wrong thinking that we carry on in our lives, meaning that we clean up our inner person as well.
Proverbs three is expecting no less because right away we are told that if we are going to be a friend of God, we must know his teachings, and be living by them. We are to have his laws written on our heart, meaning that every motivation we have in life, will be geared in the direction of his teachings. Remember the Bible promises that relate to human activity are not absolutes. In other, if you do (A) you will get (B) is not an absolute guarantee. This is not how this literary device works. It is best understood, if you place a qualifier at the beginning, such as generally speaking, usually, normally, most often, if you do (A) you will get (B). Thus, if we do not forget Jehovah’s teachings, normally, we can expect that we will live longer, as well as having a more peaceful life.
We cannot stop unforeseen occurrences in this system of things, which may lead to an early death. If we follow Jehovah’s teaching, but end up being hit by a car, or are the victim of a natural disaster, or get an incurable disease, we are not going to live longer, and peace will not be. However, there is everlasting life, which is outside of what was meant here, but that can bring us peace of mind in any event. However, if we look at the life of a person that violates traffic laws, smokes tobacco, lives an immoral life, and lives in an area plagued with natural disasters, he is more likely to suffer the ills of his actions.
Are We Determined to remain Dependable, Faithful, Reliable, and Trustworthy In Our Relationship with God Come What May?
Proverbs 3:3-4 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
What does it mean to be loyal or steadfast (Heb. checed)? It means that one is dependable, faithful, reliable, and trustworthy. Loyal love is an unfailing kindness, a devotion, that is, a love or affection that is steadfast based on a former relationship (Ex. 34:6-7), which is often used in reference to God’s love that is based on one’s faithfulness to his covenant. If we are truly a friend of God, then we must stand by him regardless of what our human imperfections, this wicked fallen world, or even what Satan and his demon horde might throw at us. The same holds true for our brothers and sisters of the faith. Are we looking to draw close to them, to remain faithful to them, even in trying times, regardless of their imperfections?
We are to bind steadfast or loyal love and faithfulness around our neck, which is where people of the Ancient Near East wore beautiful and precious jewels. “Perhaps the neck is here mentioned because disobedience is elsewhere described as a stiffening of the neck (e.g., Jer. 7:26; 17:23).” We are to write steadfast or loyal love and faithfulness on the tablet of our heart, meaning that we are to make them a part of who we are as a person. In other words, our steadfast or loyal love and faithfulness should be pure.
We should deeply value loyal love and faithfulness and visibly display them as we would a priceless necklace around our neck. In addition, we also need to inscribe these qualities on our heart, making them an essential, indispensable part of who we are. The wisdom that we attain will make us more attractive to others as we display it. It does us no good to simply hear instructions, take in knowledge; then, grasp or understand, to then forget what we heard, like the young man, we do need to have it inscribed on our heart. Loyal love and faithfulness should become our internal values, not just some external rules and principles that we sometimes live by. God has promised us through Jeremiah the prophet (31:33) that “I will put my law within them, and I will write it on their hearts.”
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Make Personal Decisions Wisely
Proverbs 3:5-6 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
5 Trust in Jehovah with all your heart,
and do not lean on your own understanding.
6 In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Trust in Jehovah with all your heart: Trust means to rely on, depend on, have confidence in, to have a firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone, and, in this case, Jehovah God. (2 Ki 18:5; 18:30; Ps 22:10; Isa 36:15; Jer. 28:15; 29:31) When we trust in God, this means that we know that he is our only true source of wisdom, strength, and power in everything that we think, feel, or do; therefore, we give him our complete trust. With all your heart means with all your mind, the element of a person that enables them to be aware of their Creator, the world and their experiences, to think, and to feel; the full force of the mental faculty of consciousness and thought, with no reservation.
And do not lean on your own understanding: Lean on renders a word (Heb. šā·ʿǎn) meaning to lean upon oneself or support oneself. Understanding (Heb. teḇû·nā(h)) is the ability to see how the parts or aspects of something are connected to one another. One who possesses understanding can see the big picture (comprehending the entire matter) and not just the isolated facts. In all your ways acknowledge him: Your ways are a reference to everything that you do. Acknowledge him is to know him, to have taken in knowledge and information about him, to have a personal intimate acquaintance with him, to be aware of him. Here in this context, knowing God goes beyond some intellectual awareness that he exists but rather accepting him for who he is and allowing him to guide and direct our lives.
And he will make straight your paths: Make straight renders a verb (Heb. yā·šǎr) that means to smooth out, make level, or remove the barriers to prepare a path, with a focus of our never wandering or turning from a course, inferring that we say the course with purpose or ease. In this context, it can refer to our life and the different moral choices that we will have to make.
Certainly, there is not another person that we could ever trust more than Jehovah God himself. If we are trusting Jehovah with all of our heart, this means that we completely surrender ourselves to him. Imagine that we were on a safari in Africa when the vehicle breaks down, and we are now being led by a guide through grasslands, scrub, or open woodlands, a 50-mile trek back to safety. Would we offer him our advice at every turn, question his decision, complain to any who might listen? No, we would give this guide our complete trust, because he is the expert and our life depend up his decisions. Jehovah God has given us his word, as a guide through this difficult part of human history. He is the expert, and our everlasting life depends upon him. Abraham entered into a lifelong journey of 100 years of traveling with Jehovah God as his guide, and the lands he traveled were far more dangerous than some African safari mishap. Abraham became the father of true faith and trust.
However, when it says do not lean on your own understanding, does this mean that we cannot think for ourselves? No, it is Jehovah God himself, who gave man the capacity to think and reason, which he expects us to use them wisely, to serve and worship him. Verse 5 is contrasting our thinking ability with the of Jehovah, in which case if what we think, feel, and believe is not in harmony with his, we are to go with his direction. In other words, in that case, his thinking would guide our own. (Isa. 30:21) If we are a serious student of God’s Word, over time, we will become permeated with his way of thinking, and our decisions will reflect this.
Verse 6 is another if you do (A) you will get (B) situation. If we remember to trust Jehovah (A), he will make our paths straight (B). First, making our paths straight means that he will make our lives easier, as it is easier to follow a straight path. Of course, generally, if we completely trust Jehovah, life will be much easier, as we will avoid many pitfalls. However, life in an imperfect world, full of imperfect people, there is bound to be some difficulties. Nevertheless, we can know that our direction and purpose will always be straight.
A Healing to Your Navel
Proverbs 3:7-8 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
7 Be not wise in your own eyes;
fear Jehovah, and turn away from evil.
8 It will be healing to your body
and refreshment to your bones.
Be not wise in your own eyes is another way to say, do not lean on your own understanding from verse 5. We do not want to think that we are wise to the point of forgetting that it is Jehovah, who is the true source of wisdom. If we are wise in our own eyes, then we have a superiority element about ourselves. Moreover, this means that we are not open to anyone’s observations, views, thoughts, but our own. If we are wise in our own eyes, we are prideful. If we fear Jehovah, looking to him, we are humble. To fear Jehovah is not a dreadful fear, it is a reverential fear of displeasing the one we love. If that were the case, we would certainly turn away from evil. Turn away from evil is also used in describing Job in Job 1:1, saying “that man [Job] was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil.”
3:8 is the result of listening to the counsel in 3:7. It will be a healing to your body points back to the wisdom of being humble and reverentially fearing Jehovah. Healing to your body in the Hebrew is literally “healing shall be to your navel.” If “navel” means the umbilical cord, it may be stressing our need for complete dependence upon God, just as a helpless fetus is entirely dependent upon its mother for nourishment. However, if “navel” refers to the muscles and tendons of the body, it could be that these parts are being contrasted with the bones of 3:8b, the body’s more solid elements. Whatever Solomon specifically meant, one thing is certain: having a reverential fear of Jehovah is the path to wisdom.
And refreshment to your bones is literally “and drink for your bones.” Just as “navel” is used figuratively in 3:8a, so is bones in 3:8b. The Bible often uses the word “bones” metaphorically in reference to being affected by deep feelings and emotions. The emotional distress of such things as fear, sorrow, envy, resentment, hatred, pride, and guilt, will lead to physical ailments of the body. A person avoiding these evil emotions, because of their fear of displeasing Jehovah will surely be refreshing to their bones, that is being influenced by deep feelings and emotions that are invigorating and exhilarating.
Honor Jehovah with Your Wealth
Proverbs 3:9-10 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
9 Honor Jehovah with your wealth
and with the firstfruits of all your produce;
10 then your barns will be filled with plenty,
and your vats will be bursting with wine.
Honor Jehovah with your wealth: The principal Hebrew term denoting “honor” is kabed, which literally means “to be heavy, weighty.” Thus, a person who is honored is seen as being weighty, that is, they amount to something. To Honor someone means that we hold them in high esteem, to recognize them as being great and worthy of our respect. Because of his being our Creator and Sovereign, God is deserving of our honor, our reverential regard or respect, wherein we speak highly of him at all times. (1 Tim. 1:17; Heb. 3:3, 4; Rev. 4:9-11) God deserves our honor not just for what he has done, or what position he holds in creation but also for who he is, as God is love. – 1 John 4;8.
Jehovah deserves our honor because of his good name, strong moral character or strength, and adherence to ethical principles. Our honoring him means that we have great respect and appreciation for him. Moreover, we do so by proclaiming his name. Our wealth (valuable things) need not necessarily refer to monetary. We can honor him with our time, our God-given talents, our body strength, by being grateful for all that he has done (Deut. 6:9-11), by being more reflective of him as we were made in his image (3:27-28), and yes, as well as our financial possessions. – Proverbs 11:25.
The reference to firstfruits takes us back to the time of Moses (Deut. 26:2, 10; Lev 23:15–21), where the Israelites were expected to give Jehovah God the firstfruits of their farming labors, which was an act of worship. This was heartfelt evidence that they appreciated all that Jehovah had given them. In all that we can honor God with, it should always be our first and our best of what we do in life.
Here we are again, with another, if you do (A); you will get (B). Largely, if the Israelites honored Jehovah with their prosperity from hard labor (A), they would have full barns and wine to drink (B). The barns and vats in the days of the Israelite nation are not representative of wealth. They are illustrative of the basics of life at that time, bread and wine. In other words, generally speaking, if the Israelites honored Jehovah God with the firstfruits of their labor, he would make sure that they did not fall below the basics of life.
Appreciating the Purpose of Discipline
Proverbs 3:11-12 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
11 My son, do not despise the discipline of Jehovah
or loathe his reproof,
12 for whom Jehovah loves he reproves,
as a father the son in whom he delights.
Here in verses 11-12, we find that the author switching the topic by introducing the idea that ‘trusting in Jehovah’ may result in pain or difficulty. My son, do not despise the discipline of Jehovah: Here we see the beginning of a new theme in the early part of Proverbs, which is marked by this form of address. Despise (Heb. mā·ʾǎs) is the rendering of a word having almost the same meaning as that used in 1:7 and 30. It means to reject someone or something (including corrective counsel) with contempt, having feelings of hostility or great displeasure. Regardless of the amount of wisdom that one possesses, including that of Solomon, there is a need for Jehovah’s fatherly corrective counsel to increase wisdom and blessing. We should never resist such correction.
Discipline (Heb. mû·sār) renders a word used in 1:2-3, 7-8, where the RSV translates it as “instruction.” Here in 3:11, the 2017 CSB also translates it as “instruction.” However, in this verse and this context, the sense is that of being disciplined (trained); it is referring to being chastised, corrected, rebuked, or warned. Jehovah’s discipline is the corrective criticism (firm counsel) or admonishment that the Jehovah gives. Or loathe his reproof: Loathe (qûṣ) renders a verb that has the sense to abhor or to find repugnant, to hate, loathe, be disgusted with. Solomon, known for his great wisdom is asking the one trying to acquire wisdom to not to be disgusted with or to hate the reproof (corrective counsel) or punishment that Jehovah gives.
For whom Jehovah loves he reproves: Reprove renders the active verb (Heb. yā·ḵǎḥ) that has the sense of one admonishing or warning another forcefully. To love (Heb. ʾā·hǎḇ) means to have great affection for or to care for or to be loyal to someone based on a close relationship. As a father the son in whom he delights: Delights is the translation of the active verb (Heb. rā·ṣā(h)), which has the sense of being pleased with, taking pleasure in, or mental satisfaction. That is, Jehovah has a feeling or attitude of affection and finding pleasure in his faithful servants, signifying that it is delightful and favorable in his conclusion.
Hebrews 12:11 says, “All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterward it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness.” In the book of Proverbs, discipline seems to suggest that one is walking with Jehovah through corrective counsel, like that of an obedient son.
The one whom God loves will receive discipline from time to time. The word for discipline in Hebrew is musar, which may be translated as “instruction, discipline, or correction.” This discipline is a reference to correction by way of teaching and training that educates the wrongdoer. When God disciplines us, be it through his word, or by the congregation, it is to help us progress spiritually, we should feel bitter about his love. The apostle Paul in the book of Hebrews cites this verse, which helps us to better appreciate that God only disciplines those he loves.
Hebrews 12:5-6 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
5 And have you forgotten the exhortation which addresses you as sons?
“My son, do not regard lightly the discipline of the Lord,
nor faint when you are reproved by him.
6 For those whom the Lord loves he disciplines,
and scourges every son whom he receives.”
Happy Is the One Who Finds Wisdom
Proverbs 3:13 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
13 Happy is a man who finds wisdom,
and the one who gains understanding,
Many Christians might not be aware of these “beatitudes,” as well as others in the Book of Proverbs (8:32, 34; 14:21; 16:20; 20:7; 28:14; 29:18). The RSV, LEB, CSB, and the UASV render the Hebrew word (asre) “happy, while the ESV and the NASB render it “blessed.” Happy, blessed: (Heb. asre; Gr. makarios) Asre occurs 11 times in the Hebrew Old Testament and makarios 50 times in the Greek New Testament. Happiness and being highly favored by God characterize this joy. It is speaking of a person who is content, full of joy. This is not to be confused with the Hebrew word barak which means, “to bless,” as in a divine blessing. The Hebrew barak and the Greek eulogeo is the act of being blessed, while the Hebrew asre and Greek makarios is the state or condition of the person who is being blessed, who is a highly favored one. – 1 Ki 10:8; Ps 1:1; 119:1-2; Pro. 14;21; 16:20; Matt. 5:3-11; 11:6; 13:16; Lu 1:45; John 13:17; 20:29; Ac 20:35; Rom. 4:7-8 to mention just a few.
As we know by now, wisdom is personified in the book of Proverbs as a female, which helps the reader to better understand the different qualities that make up wisdom. Wisdom is the ability to apply knowledge correctly. One may have substantial knowledge but lacks the ability to use it because wisdom is absent.
Understanding is the ability to see how the facets, characteristics, features, or parts of something have a significant connection with or bearing to one another, to be able to picture the whole matter and not just remote pieces of information. Proverbs 9:10 (NASB) says, “Knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.” This means that if we are ever to have a deeper understanding of things, it must be in conjunction with Jehovah God and his will and purposes. If we possess understanding, we are the type of person that can connect the new information with what we already know, which means, “knowledge is easy to one who has understanding.” (Pro. 14:6, NASB) Verse 13 is reminiscent of this repeated language found in the book of Proverbs where a young man “who finds a wife,” which “is a good thing,” as “her worth is far above jewels.” (Pro. 18:22; 31:10) Yes, finding wisdom is like finding a worthy wife.
The Greatest Happiness
Proverbs 3:14-15 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
14 for the gain from her is better than gain from silver
and her profit better than gold.
15 She is more precious than corals,
and nothing you desire can compare with her.
For the gain from her is better than gain from silver: The value of wisdom supersedes that of silver. The Hebrew noun gain (sǎ·ḥǎr) has the sense of an advantage or benefit that one receives or acquires. The primary meaning is that of receiving or acquiring profit or gain, namely, by way of money or possessions by means of trade, dealings, buying and selling. It is being used here in a figurative sense because we do not literally make wisdom a commodity (product). What the author means is what we receive or acquire (gain) when we discover or possess wisdom.
And her profit better than gold: This refers to the discovering wisdom (knowledge, insight, understanding) in verse 13. The Hebrew noun profit (teḇû·ʾā(h)) is referring to a word that is commonly used for agricultural produce but has the general sense of the financial gain, income (what is valuable) that one acquires over a period of time.
She is more precious than corals (jewels): Of course, here again, she, is referring to wisdom. The Hebrew adjective precious (yā·qār) is referring to something of great value or worth of high quality; not to be wasted or treated carelessly. The Hebrew noun (penî·nîm) rendered literally as corals in the UASV and jewels in the ESV, CSB, and the NASB is a hard stone-like substance that is made from the bones of tiny sea creatures. It is found in the ocean in a variation of colors, which include red, white, and black. Corals were very abundant in the Red Sea. In Bible times, the red coral was highly sought after and was made into jewels and other decorations. (Prov. 8:11) Nothing you desire can compare with her: The author, Solomon, knows the value of gold, silver, and corals (jewels) better than most, so he is also very much aware that they can only buy material gain but wisdom can buy what money cannot.
The merchant sat in the center of an ancient town ready to do commerce, ever seeking to get his hands-on silver, gold, and precious jewels. His bottom line was to make the greatest gain possible. True enough silver and gold can buy much, but an unwise merchant will never have much anyway. What wisdom has the ability to acquire is what silver and gold could never ascertain. Wisdom is far more valuable than any treasure, gain or profit.
Nothing Can Compare to the Wisdom of God
Proverbs 3:16 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
16 Length of days is in her right hand;
in her left hand are riches and honor.
Today many engage in unrestrained living, sexual immorality, drug or alcohol abuse, and so forth. From what we see every day in the news and right within our communities, are people who practice those things really happy? Or rather do they bring upon themselves as well as others much sorrow and pain, even early death?
Length of days is in her right hand: The Hebrew words for “length of days” (ʾō·rěḵ yôm) means “a long time” and in this context “a long life” or “many years of life.” The sense of this phrase is that she, wisdom, is bearing gifts in here right and left hand for all who seek her. In her right hand, the position of preference, is a long life of many years, while her left hand holds riches and honor. However, the overall message is clear once more, wisdom is of a far greater value than these, as verse 15 stated, “nothing you desire can compare with her.”
in her left hand are riches and honor: There is no contrast between the right hand and the left hand here as to the size and significance of the gift. There are great gifts in both hands. The point is that here hands are full of great gifts. Riches (Heb. ashar) refers to an abundance of material possessions and resources. It is having possessions, finances, and resources above and beyond the norm, with an emphasis on wealth. Honor (Heb. kabod) is respect and recognition of one’s name, position, or status in life.
The right hand in Bible times is figuratively used as the hand of protection, the hand that saved you in dangerous times. (Ps 16:8; 109:31) In her left hand “are riches and honor.” The wise person has the ability to use the knowledge that lies within Scripture effectively, which will bring them a peaceful and pleasant life that is blessed by God.
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Wisdom Can Save Those Who Possess Her
Proverbs 3:17 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
17 Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
and all her paths are peace.
Her ways are ways of pleasantness: “Her ways” is a reference to the path or route in the life of this imperfect age wherein we are guided, directed, or lead by wisdom. The Hebrew noun pleasantness (nō·ʿǎm) has the thought of that which is satisfactory and agreeable to one. (Ps 90:17; Prov. 3:17; 15:26; 16:24; Zech. 11:7, 10) In other words, wisdom can make your life satisfactory and agreeable.
All her paths are peace: The Hebrew noun paths (neṯî·ḇā(h)) has the sense of a way of life, a lifestyle, a course of conduct. The paths on which wisdom leads us can lead to peace, well-being, safety, and security. If we recall, chapter 2 of Proverbs was filled with the path that led to destruction, while the paths that wisdom leads us on here, it is to pleasantness and peace.
Wisdom can save those who possess her from a life filled with difficult times because they will sidestep what those from the world wade right through, even early or untimely death. (vs. 18) Wisdom leads us to the paths of the greatest happiness and satisfaction, not dullness. The Hebrew noun peace (šā·lôm) stands for a life of harmonious relationships, which can be free from disputes; however, it is more than the absence of conflict, as such peace also entails joy and successfulness, as well as being fully blessed by God.
Wisdom Gives a Long Life Now and Eventually Eternal Life
Proverbs 3:18 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
18 She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her;
those who hold her fast are called happy.
She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her: Maybe taken from the tree of life in Eden (Gen. 2:9; 3:22; cf Rev 2:7 and 22:2), the phrase “tree[s] of life” occurs numerous additional times in the Scriptures, always in a figurative, or symbolic, sense. We see here in our verse under consideration that “she [wisdom] is a tree of life.” “Wisdom” (ASV), “Good sense” (ESV), “insight” (CSB), “understanding” NASB) “is a fountain of life to one who has it,” in that wisdom will supply us with that which we require, not only to enjoy our present life but also to obtain eternal life (John 3:16; 17:3), that is, accurate knowledge of God and the insight and good sense to be obedient to his commands. (Prov. 3:18; 16:22) The Hebrew verb for “lay hold of” (ḥā·zǎq) has the sense of to seize or grasp, to hold firmly with the mind, which must be gotten down into the heart.
Those who hold her fast are called happy: Hold … fast renders another Hebrew verb (tā·mǎḵ), which is very similar in meaning to lay hold of in 3:18a, and here has the sense of sticking firmly be it in a physical or abstract. The repeating of this thought twice helps to emphasize the idea of seizing or holding firmly to wisdom. Called happy in the Hebrew (ʾā·šǎr) is literally “are blessed,” “happy,” or “fortunate.” Wisdom gives a long life now and eventually eternal life to those who stick firmly to her.
Happy, blessed: (Heb. asre; Gr. makarios) Asre occurs 11 times in the Hebrew Old Testament and makarios 50 times in the Greek New Testament. Happiness and being highly favored by God characterize this joy. It is speaking of a person who is content, full of joy. This is not to be confused with the Hebrew word barak which means, “to bless,” as in a divine blessing. The Hebrew barak and the Greek eulogeo is the act of being blessed, while the Hebrew asre and Greek makarios is the state or condition of the person who is being blessed, who is a highly favored one. – 1 Ki 10:8; Ps 1:1; 119:1-2; Pro. 14;21; 16:20; Matt. 5:3-11; 11:6; 13:16; Lu 1:45; John 13:17; 20:29; Ac 20:35; Rom. 4:7-8 to mention just a few.
Role of Wisdom in Creation and Society
Proverbs 3:19-20 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
Wisdom Brings Security
19 Jehovah by wisdom founded the earth;
by understanding he established the heavens;
20 by his knowledge the deeps broke open,
and the clouds drop down the dew.
Jehovah by wisdom founded the earth: God used wisdom to create all spiritual life outside of the physical universe and all physical life in the universe of Genesis 1, which is anticipated and expanded on in Proverbs 8:22-31. As we will find out further in Proverbs chapter 8 Jesus Christ is none other than the wisdom of God (1 Cor. 1:24; 8:6).” John said, “In the beginning was the Word.” (John 1:1) However, he went on to say in verse 3, “All things came into being through him, and apart from him not one thing came into being that has come into being.” The Apostle Paul informs us that, “[Jesus] is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation because all things in the heavens and on the earth were created by him.” (Col. 1:15-16) In Revelation 3:14 (NASB), we read, “To the angel of the church in Laodicea write: The Amen, the faithful and true Witness, the Beginning of the creation of God.” Wisdom was at the beginning of the creation as a master worker, carrying out the creation of the heavens and earth, as well as the greatest creation, man.
Founded (Heb. yā·sǎḏ) the earth infers the idea of laying a foundation, which in turn points us to Proverbs 8:27-29 where wisdom claims to have been there “before the beginning of the” creation of the earth (8:23), explicitly stating, “when he [wisdom] marked out the foundations of the earth” (8:29), the creation of the heavens and the earth. (Gen 1:1-10) Wisdom emphasizes the idea “that whoever abandons wisdom runs against the very structure by which the world was made.” By understanding he established the heavens: Creation declares that God is the perfect Organizer. We know only “the fringes of his [God’s] ways,” and “how faint is the word we hear of him!” (Job 26:14) However, the scarcity of what we know about planets, stars, galaxies, and universes moves us to accept that these heavenly bodies are very well organized.
By his knowledge: Knowledge (Heb. daath) is possession of information learned by personal experience, observation, or study. The Bible strongly urges us to seek and treasure accurate knowledge, as it is far superior to gold. (Prov. 8:10; 20:15) The Bible frequently links Jehovah and knowledge, calling him “a God of knowledge” and describing him as “perfect in knowledge.” (1 Sam. 2:3; Job 36:4; 37:14, 16) However, God does not acquire knowledge through personal experience, observation, or study. While Genesis 1:7 tells us of God making “a separation between the waters, which were under the expanse and between the waters, which were above the expanse,” the Hebrew words for the deeps broke open in Proverbs 3:20 are identical with “the great deep burst open,” the description of the flood in Genesis 7:11. Jehovah overflows in and provides us with both knowledge and wisdom. – Romans 11:33; James 1:5.
Keeping Sound Wisdom and Discretion?
Proverbs 3:21 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
21 My son, do not lose sight of these;
keep sound wisdom and discretion,
The demonstrative pronoun these can refer to the qualities of God wisdom, and the related attributes understanding, and knowledge mentioned in 3:19-20. However, it is possible that Solomon is referring to sound wisdom and thinking ability within this verse. Therefore, he would be beginning a new section here with an appeal to the reader to not lose sight of wisdom and discretion (thinking ability). In other words, we would say do not let wisdom and discretion (thinking ability) out of our sight. Do not let them depart from your eyes (Heb. ʿǎ·yin), which has the sense of paying attention, concentrating on the qualities of God to the exclusion of Satan’s world that surrounds us. To keep is the same word guarding (Heb. nā·ṣǎr) in Proverbs 2:8, making you safe from danger within your relationship with Jehovah (Ps 40:12) Godly wisdom is a gift from Jehovah, one that we should keep (observe), guard.
Discretion (thinking ability): (Heb. mezimmah) In the evil sense, this can mean wicked plans, evil ideas, schemes, and devices. In the favorable sense, it can mean shrewdness, perceptiveness, discretion, and prudence. In the favorable sense, it is the ability to judge wisely and objectively. Mezimmah, therefore, the human mind and thoughts can be used for an admirable and upright end, or for evil purposes. – Ps 10:2; Pro. 1:4; 2:10-12; 5:1-2.
Enjoy a Long Life Now
Proverbs 3:22 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
22 and they will be life for your soul
and adornment for your neck.
The focus of Proverbs 3:21-26 is that wisdom will serve as a protection in this life, like the beauty of an “adornment for your neck.” We need not be afraid as we can securely walk through this Satanic age and there is generally no stumbling with the difficulties of this life, as is true of those who reject the wisdom of God.
They will be life for your soul: The demonstrative pronoun they is referring to God’s qualities wisdom, and the related attributes such as understanding, knowledge, wisdom, and thinking ability mentioned in 3:19-21. However, once again, it is possible that Solomon is referring to sound wisdom and thinking ability within verse 21. Life for your soul is an expression that means a long life. These qualities of God can serve as a protection while we live in imperfection surrounded by Satan’s world.
Soul: (Heb. nephesh; Gr. psyche) The Hebrew word nephesh and the Greek word psyche basically refer to (1) people, (2) animals, or (3) the life that a person or animal has. (Gen. 1:20; 2:7; Num. 31:28; 1 Pet. 3:20) The Bible author’s use of both nephesh and psyche, in connection with earthly creatures, humans or animals, refer to that which is material, tangible, visible, and mortal. The Human soul = body [dust of the ground] + active life force (“spirit”) [Hebrew, ruach] within the trillions of human cells which make up the human body + breath of life [Hebrew, neshamah] that sustains the life force from God. In other words, the “soul” is we as a whole, everything that we are, so the soul or the human can die. (Ecclesiastes 3:19-20) The sense of they will be life is that wisdom and the related attributes of God will give us a long life, or that because of them we can have a long life now.
No Longer Walk as the Unbelievers Walk
Proverbs 3:23 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
23 Then you will walk on your way securely,
and your foot will not stumble.
Then you will walk on your way securely: The Hebrew adverb then (ʾāz) expresses the relationship between verse 3:23 and all that had been conveyed and promised about wisdom in verses 3:21-22. The Hebrew verb walk (hā·lǎḵ) is expressing a life course that one will experience as a result of possessing the wisdom of God and the Hebrew noun securely (bě·ṭǎḥ) is telling us that as compared to those ignoring or rejecting the wisdom of God we will walk … securely. This is not saying that we will absolutely be free from danger or injury but rather, Solomon is saying far more so than those who lack wisdom.
Your foot will not stumble: 3:23b is repeating the idea expressed in 3:23a, in that, we will not stumble (nā·ḡǎp̄) in our walk with God if we possess and use our wisdom. The literal expression is “strike your foot.” (nā·ḡǎp̄) The same expression is also found in Psa. 91:12, where it goes on to say, “against a stone.” To stumble means to trip or momentarily lose one’s balance because they have struck their foot on something unexpectedly; almost fall while walking. In other words, in our life course of figuratively walking with God, we will not stumble over the same life difficulties as the unbeliever, i.e., making a moral false step or doing wrong. If we are to walk with God, we should no longer walk as the unbelievers walk. We want to walk with God, as he will lead us in the way we should walk, as he is “the only wise God.” (Rom. 16:27) We need to talk and walk with God as we listen to his voice through Scripture, as to which way we should go. (Psa. 119:101; 2 Pet. 1:19) The life course of understanding, knowledge, wisdom, and thinking ability is a life of security. Even though we possess these attributes of God, even if it is in abundance, we will also suffer at times as well, we will not stumble over sinful wrongdoing as is the case with the unbeliever.
The Wise Person Who Possesses God’s Attributes
Proverbs 3:24 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
24 If you lie down, you will not be afraid;
when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.
If you lie down: The Hebrew verb (šā·ḵǎḇ) rendered lie down is to assume a reclined position, implying to lie down to rest or to sleep.
You will not be afraid: As we have seen, the wise person, who also possesses God’s other attributes, such as understanding, knowledge, and thinking ability does not need to be plagued with worry, fear, stress, or anxiety. When you lie down at night, there will be no concern of the things in your life or a dread of what tomorrow may bring. (Cf. Deut. 28:65-67)
Sleep will be sweet: The Hebrew verb sweet (ʿā·rǎḇ) is used in the sense of nice, peaceful, pleasing, or enjoyable. In other words, the wise person, who also possesses God’s other attributes, such as understanding, knowledge, and thinking ability will sleep peacefully or have a pleasing, or enjoyable night’s sleep. We find the same Hebrew expression used by Jeremiah the prophet, “At this I awoke and looked, and my sleep was pleasant to me.” (Jer. 31:26)
Solomon himself initially, failed to not lose sight of sound wisdom and discernment. His kingdom was successful, as was he until he failed to apply his own counsel. He took on hundreds of wives and concubines, who contributed to his falling away to false worship. (1 Ki. 11:1-8) Solomon’s experience helps future readers to see that knowledge alone will be of little benefit if one does not have the common sense to apply it.
The actions of Solomon had greater ramifications than just a life that ended in misery, and a people that suffered based on his wisely applying truth. The kingdom would be split in two; the ten-tribe kingdom to the north and the two kingdoms to the south, and the Israelite nation were thrown into a tailspin that they never recovered from. Wisdom certainly would have preserved the lives of so many, like the beauty of an “adornment for your neck.”
The Bible is full of lessons about how wise persons walked with God in a life of security, with no spiritual stumbling (Enoch, Abraham, Joshua, Paul). Conversely, unwise decisions contributed to some very prominent Bible persons missing the security of Jehovah and stumbling themselves into some recurrent tragedies (Moses, Solomon, Peter). Psalm 119:165 tells us “Great peace belongs to those loving your law, and for them there is no stumbling.” Those who walk wisely with God need not be afraid, as their sleep will not be plagued with anxiety and restlessness, it will be sweet.
God Will Be Your Confidence
Proverbs 3:25-26 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
25 Do not be afraid of sudden panic
or the storm of the wicked, when it comes,
26 for Jehovah will be your confidence
and will keep your foot from being caught.
In Proverbs 3:25-26, Solomon goes on to help us appreciate that we will only have peace and freedom from anxiety by our trust in the wisdom of God.
Do not be afraid of sudden panic: Sudden: (Heb. piṯ·ʾōm) is describing an incident that occurs or happens quickly and unexpectedly or without warning, coming as a complete surprise, creating panic, fear, dread, or even terror within us. It is the second line that offers some insight into the nature of the sudden fear, fright, terror.
Or the storm of the wicked, when it comes: The storm (Heb. šô·ʾā(h)) of the wicked has the sense of an incident that results in the destruction of the wicked ones. It is a storm-like occasion that comes on the wicked like a storm, resulting in their destruction.
For Jehovah will be your confidence: The Hebrew conjunction for (kî) gives us the reason for the reassurance that was just offered in verse 25. Confidence (Heb. kě·sěl) is referring to the trust that we can have in Jehovah, the faith that we can have, the reliability that we know. When looking at the context of verses 24-26, confidence gives us the sense of the courage we can possess, the hope in Jehovah that we can have, and the security that we can feel in the face of threatening conditions because of our complete trust in Jehovah.
Will keep your foot from being caught: Clearly, the thought here is of one getting his foot caught in a trap or a snare. The foot (Heb. rě·ḡěl) here is not specifically speaking of the part of the leg below our ankle but rather is referring to the whole person, meaning that Jehovah will not allow us to be caught unawares, off guard in some incident that occurs quickly and unexpectedly or without warning, surprising us to the point of sudden fear, fright, terror.
Now, let us take a moment to establish what it does not mean. Should we understand these verses, or any other in Scripture that because we are wisely walking with Jehovah God that he will miraculously step in to protect each Christian personally from disease, mental disorders, injury or death? These sorts of miracles are the exception to the rule. Of the 4,000 plus years of Bible history, from Adam to Jesus, with tens of millions of people living and dying, we have but a few dozen miracles that we know of in Scripture. Even in Bible times, miracles were not common, far from it. Hundreds of years may pass with no historical record of a miracle happening at all.
If we are wisely walking with Jehovah, we can be confident that bodily injury and early death is far less likely than if we were not. Moreover, we can draw on the resurrection hope. Does Jehovah God miraculously heal us? Yes, but it is an extreme exception to the rule. He miraculously heals those who are going to play a major role in his settling of the issues that were raised in the Garden of Eden.
What these verses and the rest of Scripture teach us is this, if we walk by using biblical discernment and exercising biblically sound judgment, unless an unexpected occurrence befalls us, we can be confident that we will not stumble into the difficulties that the world of mankind alienated from God faces every day. Conversely, the wicked do not have this protection. In other words, Christians live by the moral values of Scripture, who gives them an advantage over those that do not. Therefore, God answers our prayers by our faithfully acting on behalf of those prayers, by applying Scripture in a balanced manner. If we have not taken in a deep knowledge of God’s Word, how can we have Spirit-inspired wisdom, the very knowledge of God to guide and direct us in our ways?
Treat Others Fairly
Proverbs 3:27-28 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
Do Good to Others
27 Do not withhold good from its owners,
when it is in your power to do it.
28 Do not say to your neighbor, “Go, and come again,
tomorrow I will give it,” when you have it with you.
Do not withhold good: The Hebrew verb (mā·nǎʿ) withhold or hold back (deny, refuse, deprive) means that one refuses to do what is good and right for another person, he or she is causing the other not to possess what is good or right. From its owners means “from those to whom it is due” or “to whom it belongs.” The sense here is a person who needs it. In other words, we should not withhold, hold back, or refuse to do good to a person who is in need.
When it is in your power to do it: The sense of this line is that whenever it is in our power or we have the opportunity to help another, we should not hesitate to do good to the person. Doing good to others encompasses generously using our resources (money, time, energy) in their behalf.
Do not say to your neighbor, “Go and come again …”: This verse is an exhortation to give immediately, gladly, and willingly. Hence, one who truly loves shares things when the help is needed; he does not count the cost so long a time that he never shares anything or if he does share it, it is too little, too late. Your neighbor may be the person living next door, a co-worker, someone we have an interaction with incidentally, or more intimately a friend, or even a relative. Go and come again is part of what we should not say to a person in need; nor should we say tomorrow I will give it.
When you have it with you: It, of course, is referring to the thing that is needed and has been requested or the thing that the neighbor needs. You are the person being addressed here if you are reading these words of wisdom, you should never behave in this way.
Sin is not just what we do that is not in harmony with God’s standards, but also encompasses what we were obligated to do, but failed to do. There are many examples of this, but the principle has an endless number of applications. For example, you might have a wealthy businessperson, who fails to pay his workers a just wage. This writer is aware of a popular business of 45 years in Southeastern, Ohio of the United States that has long paid new workers $20.00 for eight hours of work, when the government minimum mandate is $60.00 for eight hours of work. Another might be a selfish person, who has it within their means to give aid to a person they know to be struggling, who is on the brink of disaster. In addition, it might be a person who owes taxes to the government but fails to pay them. Verse 28 covers those that owe something to another for some labor they carried out, who neglect to pay the person promptly. This is both selfish and hurtful because for these one’s daily living is dependent upon payment.
We live in a world full of imperfect people, run by Satan, and at times our physical or spiritual brothers and sisters, find themselves in distressful need, through no doing of their own. This could have come about by an economic downturn, a natural disaster, a fire, an accident, physical illness, or even persecution. If we know this, it is within our power to help, and we withhold that help, ‘how does the love of God abide in us?’ – 1 John 3:17.
Do Not Plow Wickedness or You Will Reap Injustice
Proverbs 3:29-30 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
29 Do not plan harm against your neighbor,
who dwells trustingly beside you.
30 Do not contend with a man for no reason,
when he has done you no harm.
Do not plan evil against your neighbor: The Hebrew verb (ḥā·rǎš) rendered plan here in this context is one who plots some unprovoked wicked act secretly against an innocent victim. It can also refer to a tool that is made of metal, which is used to plow or cut a furrow into the earth during the planting in farming. Thus, the Hebrew for plan or plot can mean to plow furrows in a field or devise a plan, which is encompassed nicely by Hosea 10:13, which tells us “You have plowed wickedness, you have reaped injustice …” It is evil to plan schemes again your neighbor in order to cause harm or injury, or anyone else, who has placed trust in us. The best Old Testament illustration of this is Jezebel’s scheme against Naboth. – 1 Kings 21:1-27.
Who dwells trustingly beside you: The Hebrew noun (bě·ṭǎḥ) is rendered trustingly and refers to the freedom from anxiety that one possesses, which is dependent on the kindness or friendliness of his neighbor, a measure of peace, security and safety. It is a complete betrayal to plot wicked actions against our neighbor, i.e., a person who has placed their trust in us.
Do not contend with a man for no reason: The Hebrew verb (rîḇ) rendered contend means to have a disagreement, dispute or quarrel, be hostile and opposed to another person or group. Man translates the Hebrew (ʾā·ḏām) and can refer to anyone, male or female. The Hebrew adverb (ḥin·nām) rendered for no reason translates an expression that has the sense of without cause; without a good reason. This is one who argues just to be arguing, which is in vain, for nothing, resulting in nothing that benefits either party.
When he has done you no harm: This clause limits contending with another (arguing) only when we have been harmed in some way. If whatever has happened to us has not harmed us in any way; there is no need to contend or ague with another. In other words, Solomon is saying that we need not argue unnecessarily or pointlessly with someone who has done us no harm.
Verse 30, as to suing another, is not saying that you cannot sue another, but that you do not bring lawsuits lacking substance and not worth serious consideration against others. It is harmful to everyone to bring worthless lawsuits that have no merit against others. You tie up the courts, which makes it even more difficult for those that have legitimate concerns. You also harm the reputation of the person you are frivolously suing.
Endeavoring to Live Upright Lives
Proverbs 3:31-32 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
31 Do not envy a man of violence
and do not choose any of his ways,
32 for the devious man is an abomination to Jehovah,
but those who are upright are his confidence.
Do not envy a man of violence: The Hebrew verb envy (qā·nā(ʾ)) means to be or become painfully desirous of what another has. Many persons who are prone to violence acquire goods or wealth that may lead others to be or become envious of their illegal fortune. The Hebrew noun violence (ḥā·mās) refers to acts of aggression, fierce, cruel, destructive, unlawful behavior, lacking moral restraint, especially involving physical contact. Psalm 37 warns us not to be “be not envious of wrongdoers!” The Psalmist King David said that God delivered him “from the man of violence.” – Psalm 18:48.
Do not choose any of his ways: Christians seek to avoid violent encounters. When they are faced with a threat of violence, they turn to flight when it is practical. They thus show that they are not trying to “repay no one evil for evil” or to reform Satan’s fallen world and overcome every injustice but are waiting on God to express his wrath against the evildoers. – Romans 12:17, 19.
For the devious man is an abomination to Jehovah: The Hebrew verb devious (lûz) refers to one who is insincere and deceitful, perverse, lost spiritually, misleading others from correct behavior, getting them off of the path to life. The Hebrew noun abomination (shiqquts) means abhorrence, an object to abhor, horror, monster, filth. The sense of shiqquts is a detestable thing, also implying that it can make a person unclean. – 2 Kings 23:13; Ezra 5:11; 11:21; Daniel 9:27; 11:31; Hosea 9:10.
But those who are upright are his confidence: The Hebrew adjective upright (yā·šār) refers to a person’s behavior that is in harmony with God’s principles or standards, the sense of honesty and integrity in relations as contrasted with the violent and devious man.
God Favors the Humble
Proverbs 3:33-35 Updated American Standard Version (UASV)
33 Jehovah’s curse is on the house of the wicked,
but he blesses the dwelling of the righteous.
34 Toward those who scorn, he is scornful,
but to the humble he gives favor.
35 The wise will inherit honor,
but the stupid ones glorify dishonor.
Jehovah’s curse is on the house of the wicked: Curse (Heb. meʾē·rā(h)) when it is toward a human from the supernatural, it is what is spoken to punish, i.e., injure another causing misery or death (a spell in sorcery). However, when a curse is spoken by God, such as is the case here, it is a pronouncement of a forthcoming punishment on someone, like when a court hands down a just sentence on a criminal. The house of the wicked (Heb. bǎ·yiṯ rā·šāʿ) is referring figuratively to the house, person or persons; i.e., the wicked one’s lives and livelihood. Wicked: (Heb. rā·šāʿ) is the unrighteous who are evil, being guilty of willfully and purposely violating the standards of God. In the Old Testament, it refers to the one who refuses to acknowledge or obey God. In the book of Proverbs explicitly, it refers to the foolish one who ignores or refuses to follow the divine teachings of God. It is a state or condition of evil that focuses on the violating of God’s laws or standards. – Prov. 3:33; 18:3.
But he blesses the dwelling of the righteous: Bless: (Heb. bā·rǎḵ) When it refers to God blessing a human it is pronouncing good or showing favor, having favorable circumstances or state at a future time (Gen. 1:22), for those who have a righteous standing before him. Righteous; upright; just: (Heb. ṣǎd·dîq) refers to one who is in a righteous standing before God, who is characterized by righteous actions and morals in accordance with God’s moral standards. (Gen. 18:23-24) Dwelling: (Heb. nā·wě(h)) is any kind of house that one lives in as a home. Here, though, like house in line one, it is referring figuratively to person or persons; i.e., this time, the righteous or just one’s lives and livelihood.
Toward those who scorn, he is scornful: Scorner; scoffer; mocker; babbler: (Heb. lēṣ) refers to someone who mocks, jeers, or treats another with contempt, or calls out to them in disdain, ridicule, and contempt. (Psa. 1:1; Prov. 1:22; 3:34; 9:7, 8; 13:1; 14:6; 15:12; 19:25, 29; 20:1; 21:11, 24; 22:10; 24:9; Isa. 29:20) Here in this context, these ones believe themselves to be superior or greater than others.
But to the humble he gives favor: Humble: (Heb. ʿā·nî) refers to a modest, unassuming, and straightforward person, who lacks arrogance, hubris, or pride (Zech. 9:9) This is one who has been afflicted by Satan’s world, the victim of suffering pain, injury, or harm physically or emotionally.
The wise will inherit honor: Wise; shrewd: (Heb. ḥā·ḵām) is one who has the capacity for understanding and discernment (Prov. 10:8), who has acquired the teachings of wisdom, whom we can trust to guide us. Inherit: (Heb. nā·ḥǎl) can refer to one who receives something from another who has died. However, at Proverbs 3:35, it is referring to one who obtains or receives honor. Honor: (kā·ḇôḏ) is high respect, esteem, praise, or recognition that is given by those who recognize a person as being wise.
But the stupid ones glorify dishonor: Stupid Ones; Foolish Ones: (Heb. kesîl) is a person who lacks good judgment, lacks understanding, inferring rebellion. (Prov. 10:18) This is a person, who shows a rude and arrogant lack of respect, i.e. a rebel against the standard (principles of conduct informed by notions of honor and decency) or person. (Prov. 10:18)
Many people are struggling to have even the basics of life. They are just one paycheck from living on the streets. It is a very difficult thing to live by Bible principles, and at the same time, we see those that are living a life of luxury and pleasure, because they are men of violence. It can be tempting to be envious of such ones. However, we need to keep in mind that this is only a temporary pleasure for the wicked. Why? Such devious persons are an abomination to Jehovah. The wicked one’s actions will only lead to his eventual destruction. However, the upright one will live as a friend of God, carrying the hope of life.
Envy is foolish because Jehovah (1) will curse the wicked one and bless the righteous one. (2) He will be scornful to those that scorn, mock or ridicule and he will favor the humble. In addition, (3) he will honor the wise one while disgracing the foolish one. – James 4:6; 1 Peter 5:5.
BIBLE DIFFICULTIES Proverbs Chapters 3
PROVERBS 3 No Bible Difficulties
- (3:1-2) What rewards will you receive if you observe the commandments of your heavenly Father?
- (3:3-4) What does it mean to remain dependable, faithful, reliable, and trustworthy in our relationship with God?
- (3:5-6) Why should we make personal decisions wisely?
- (3:7-8) What are the results of our reverential fear of God?
- (3:9-10) How can we honor Jehovah with our wealth and with what results?
- (3:11-12) What does it mean to appreciate the purpose of discipline?
- (3:13) Why can it be said, the one who finds wisdom will be happy?
- (3:14-15) What is the greatest happiness when it comes to wisdom?
- (3:16) How does wisdom lead to a long happy life?
- (3:17) How can wisdom save those who possess her?
- (3:18) How does wisdom give you a long life now that can lead to eternal life?
- (3:19-20) What role did wisdom play in creation and society?
- (3:21) How do you keep sound wisdom and discretion?
- (3:22) How can keeping sound wisdom and discretion cause us to enjoy a long life now?
- (3:23) What does it mean to walk securely so that our foot does not stumble?
- (3:24) Why is it important that you possess the attributes of God?
- (3:25-26) How can you have peace and freedom from anxiety?
- (3:27-28) How do these verses help you to appreciate the need to treat others fairly?
- (3:29-30) How can you plow wickedness and what will happen if you do?
- (3:31-32) Talk about upright lives in connection with this verse.
- (3:33-35) How do these verses show that God favors the humble?
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Yes, God will be pleased to give you strength. He even gives “extraordinary power” to those who are serving him. (2 Cor. 4:7) Do you not feel drawn to this powerful Almighty God, who uses his power in such kind and principled ways? God is certainly a “shield for all those who take refuge in him.” (Psalm 18:30) You understand that he does not use his power to protect you from all tragedy now. He does, however, always use his protective power to ensure the outworking of his will and purpose. In the long run, his doing so is in your best interests. Andrews shares a profound truth of how you too can have a share in the power of God. With THE POWER OF GOD as your guide, you will discover your strengths and abilities that will make you steadfast in your walk with God. You can choose to rise to a new level and invite God’s power by focusing on The Word That Will Change Your Life Today.
Herein Andrews will answer the “why.” He will address whether God is responsible for the suffering we see. He will also delve into whether God’s foreknowledge is compatible with our having free will. He will consider how we can objectively view Bible evidence, as he answers why an almighty, loving and just God would allow bad things to happen to good people. Will there ever be an end to the suffering? He will explain why life is so unfair and does God step in and solve our every problem because we are faithful? He will also discuss how the work of the Holy Spirit and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit should be understood in the light of wickedness. Lastly, Andrews will also offer biblical counsel on how we can cope when any tragedy strikes, …
GOD knows best. Nobody surpasses him in thought, word, or action. As our Creator, he is aware of our needs and supplies them abundantly. He certainly knows how to instruct us. And if we apply divine teaching, we benefit ourselves and enjoy true happiness. Centuries ago, the psalmist David petitioned God: “Make me to know your ways, O Lord; teach me your paths. Lead me in your truth and teach me” (Psalm 25:4-5) God did this for David, and surely He can answer such a prayer for His present-day servants.
Whom do we lean upon when facing distressing situations, making important decisions, or resisting temptations? With good reason, the Bible admonishes us: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways know him, and he will make straight your paths.” (Prov. 3:5-6) Note the expression “do not lean upon your own understanding.” It is followed by “In all your ways know him.” God is the One with a truly sound mind. Thus, it follows that whenever we are faced with a decision, we need to turn to the Bible to see what God’s view is. This is how we acquire the mind of Christ.
Yes, God will be pleased to give you strength. He even gives “extraordinary power” to those who are serving him. (2 Cor. 4:7) Do you not feel drawn to this powerful Almighty God, who uses his power in such kind and principled ways? God is certainly a “shield for all those who take refuge in him.” (Psalm 18:30) You understand that he does not use his power to protect you from all tragedy now. He does, however, always use his protective power to ensure the outworking of his will and purpose. In the long run, his doing so is in your best interests. Andrews shares a profound truth …
All of us will go through difficult times that we may not fully understand. The apostle Paul wrote, “in the last days difficult times will come.” (2 Tim. 3:1) Those difficulties are part of the human imperfection (Rom. 5:12) and living in a fallen world that is ruled by Satan (2 Cor. 4:3-4). But when we find ourselves in such a place, it’s crucial that we realize God has given us a way out. (1 Cor. 10:13) Edward Andrews writes that if we remain steadfast in our faith and apply God’s Word correctly when we go through difficult times, we will not only grow spiritually, but we will …
Why should you be interested in the prophecy recorded by Daniel in chapter 11 of the book that bears his name? The King of the North and the King of the South of Daniel are locked in an all-out conflict for domination as a world power. As the centuries pass, turning into millenniums, first one, then the other, gains domination over the other. At times, one king rules as a world power while the other suffers destruction, and there are stretches of time where there is no conflict. But then another battle abruptly erupts, and the conflict begins anew. Who is the current King of the North and the King of the South? Who are the seven kings or kingdoms of Bible history in Revelation chapter 17? We are living in the last days that the apostle Paul spoke of, when he said, “difficult times will come.” (2 Tim. 3:1-7) How close we are to the end of these last days, wherein we will enter into the Great Tribulation that Jesus Christ spoke of (Matt. 24:21), no one can know for a certainty. However, Jesus and the New Testament authors have helped to understand the signs of the times and …
The theme of Andrews’ new book is “YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE.” As a Christian, you touch the lives of other people, wherein you can make a positive difference. Men and women of ancient times such as David, Nehemiah, Deborah, Esther, and the apostle Paul had a positive influence on others by caring deeply for them, maintaining courageous faith, and displaying a mild, spiritual attitude. Christians are a special people. They are also very strong and courageous for taking on such an amazingly great responsibility. But if you can make a difference, be it with ten others or just one, you will have done what Jesus asked of you, and there is no more beautiful feeling. YOU CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE with joy.
Many have successfully conquered bad habits and addictions by applying suggestions found in the Bible and by seeking help from God through prayer. You simply cannot develop good habits and kick all your bad ones overnight. See how to establish priorities. Make sure that your new habits work for you instead of your old bad habits against you. It is one thing to strip off the old habits, yet quite another to keep them off. How can we succeed in doing both, no matter how deeply we may have been involved in bad habitual practices?
It may seem to almost all of us that we are either entering into a difficult time, living in one, or just getting over one and that we face one problem after another. This difficulty may be the loss of a loved one in death or a severe marriage issue, a grave illness, the lack of a job, or simply the stress of daily life. As Christians, we need to understand that God’s Word will carry us through these times, as we maintain our integrity whether in the face of tremendous trials or the tension of everyday life. We are far better facing these hurdles of life with the help of God, who can make the worst circumstances much better and more bearable.
The world that you live in today has many real reasons to be fearful. Many are addicted to drugs, alcohol, bringing violence into even the safest communities. Terrorism has plagued the world for more than a decade now. Bullying in schools has caused many teen suicides. The divorce rate even in Christian households is on the rise. Lack of economic opportunity and unemployment is prevalent everywhere. Our safety, security, and well-being are in danger at all times. We now live in a prison of fear to even come outside the protection of our locked doors at home. Imagine living where all these things existed, but you could go about your daily life untouched by fear and anxiety. What if you could be courageous and strong through your faith in these last days? What if you could live by faith not fear? What if insight into God’s Word could remove your fear, anxiety, and dread? Imagine a life of calmness, peace, unconcern, confidence, comfort, hope, and faith. Are you able to picture a life without fear? It is possible.
John 3:16 is one of the most widely quoted verses from the Christian Bible. It has also been called the “Gospel in a nutshell,” because it is considered a summary of the central theme of traditional Christianity. Martin Luther called John 3:16 “The heart of the Bible, the Gospel in miniature.” The Father had sent his Son to earth to be born as a human baby. Doing this meant that for over three decades, his Son was susceptible to the same pains and suffering as the rest of humankind, ending in the most gruesome torture and execution imaginable. The Father watched the divine human child Jesus grow into a perfect man. He watched as John the Baptist baptized the Son, where the Father said from heaven, “This is my Son, the beloved, in whom I am well pleased.” (Matt. 3:17) The Father watched on as the Son faithfully carried out his will, fulfilling all of the prophecies, which certainly pleased the Father.–John 5:36; 17:4. …
This commentary volume is part of a series by Christian Publishing House (CPH) that covers all of the sixty-six books of the Bible. These volumes are a study tool for the pastor, small group biblical studies leader, or the churchgoer. The primary purpose of studying the Bible is to learn about God and his personal revelation, allowing it to change our lives by drawing closer to God. The Book of James volume is written in a style that is easy to understand. The Bible can be difficult and complex at times. Our effort herein is to make it easier to read and understand, while also accurately communicating truth. CPH New Testament Commentary will convey the meaning of the verses in the book of Philippians. In addition, we will also cover the Bible background, the custom and culture of the times, as well as Bible difficulties. …
SECTION 1 Surviving Sexual Desires and Love will cover such subjects as What Is Wrong with Flirting, The Pornography Deception, Peer Pressure to Have Sexual Relations, Coping With Constant Sexual Thoughts, Fully Understanding Sexting, Is Oral Sex Really Sex, …SECTION 2 Surviving My Friends will cover such subjects as Dealing with Loneliness, Where Do I Fit In, Why I Struggle with Having Friends, …SECTION 3 Surviving the Family will cover such subjects as Appreciating the House Rules, Getting Along with My Brothers and Sisters, How Do I Find Privacy, … SECTION 4 Surviving School will cover such subjects as How Do I Deal With Bullies, How Can I Cope With School When I Hate It, … SECTION 5 Surviving Who I Am will cover such subjects as Why Do I Procrastinate, … SECTION 6 Surviving Recreation will cover such subjects as … SECTION 7 Surviving My Health will cover such subjects as How Can I Overcome My Depression, …
Who should read THIRTEEN REASONS WHY YOU SHOULD KEEP LIVING? Anyone who is struggling in their walk as a young person. Anyone who has a friend who is having difficulty handling or coping with their young life, so you can offer them the help they need. Any parent who has young ones. And grade school, junior high or high school that wants to provide an, in touch, anti-suicide message to their students. … Many youths say that they would never dream of killing themselves. Still, they all have the deep feeling that there are no reasons for going on with their lives. Some have even hoped that some sort of accident would take their pain away for them. They view death as a release, a way out, a friend, not their enemy. …
The purpose of Waging War is to guide the youth of this program from start to finish in their therapeutic efforts to gain insight into their patterns of thinking and beliefs that have led to the current outcomes in their life thus far and enable them to change the path which they are on. Waging War is a guide to start the youth with the most basic information and work pages to the culmination of all of the facts, scripture, and their newly gained insight to offer a more clear picture of where they are and how to change their lives for the better. Every chapter will have work pages that Freeman has used and had found to be useful in therapy, but most importantly, this workbook will teach the Word to a population that does not hear it in its’ most correct form. What is the significance of controlling ones’ thoughts and how does that apply to you? Doubts, fears, and insecurities come from somewhere, especially when they are pervasive. Understanding this idea will help one to fight those thoughts and free them from the shackles their mind puts around their hearts, preventing them from achieving their dreams and the plans God had intended for them when they were created.
There are many reasons the Christian view of humanity is very important. The Christian view of humanity believes that humans were created in the image of God. We will look at the biblical view of humanity. We are going to look at the nature of man, the freedom of man, the personality of man, the fall of man, the nature of sin and death, as well as why God has allowed sin to enter into the world, as well as all of the wickedness and suffering that came with it. Andrews will answer the following questions and far more. How does the Bible explain and describe the creation of man and woman? Why is it imperative that we understand our fallen condition? What does it mean to be made in the image of God? …
In FOR AS I THINK IN MY HEART – SO I AM, Edward D. Andrews offers practical and biblical insights on a host of Christian spiritual growth struggles, from the challenge of forgiveness to eating disorders, anger, alcoholism, depression, anxiety, pornography, masturbation, same-sex attraction, and many others. Based on Proverbs 23:7 (NKJV): “For as he thinks in his heart, so is he,” Andrews’ text works from the position that if we can change the way that we think, we can alter the way we feel, which will modify the way we behave. FOR AS I THINK IN MY HEART – SO I AM offers far more than self-help to dozens of spiritual struggles, personal difficulties, and mental disorders. It will benefit Christian and non-Christian alike. The Scriptural advice and counsel coupled with cognitive behavioral therapy will be helpful even if every chapter is not one of your struggles. For As I Think in My Heart enables readers to examine the lies and half-truths …
THERE IS A GENUINE HAPPINESS, contentment, and joy, which come from reading, studying and applying God’s Word. This is true because the Scriptures offer us guidance and direction that aids us in living a life that coincides with our existence as a creation of Almighty God. For example, we have a moral law that was written on our heart. (Rom. 2:14-15) However, at the same time, we have a warring against the law of our mind and taking us captive in the law of sin, which is in our members. (Rom. 7:21-25) When we live by the moral law, it brings us joy, when we live by the law of sin; it brings about distress, anxiety, regrets to both mind and heart, creating a conflict between our two natures. In our study of the Bible, we can interact with a living God who wants a personal relationship with us. And in APPLYING GOD’S WORD MORE FULLY, we will learn how to engage His words like never before. Andrews helps his readers …
THERE IS ONE MAJOR DIFFERENCE between Christian living books by Andrews and those by others. Generally speaking, his books are filled with Scripture and offer its readers what the Bible authors meant by what they penned. In this publication, it is really God’s Word offering the counsel, which is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness.” (2 Tim. 3:16-17) From the moment that Adam and Eve were expelled from the Garden of Eden, humans have been brought forth in sin, having become more and more mentally bent toward evil, having developed a heart (i.e., inner person) that is treacherous, and unknowable to them, with sin’s law dwelling within them. Sadly, many of us within the church have not been fully informed …
A clean conscience brings us inner peace, calmness, and profound joy that is seldom found in this world under the imperfection of fallen flesh that is catered to by Satan, the god of the world. Many who were formerly living in sin and have now turned their life over to God, they now know this amazing relief and are able today to hold a good and clean conscience as they carry out the will of the Father. WALK HUMBLY WITH YOUR GOD, has been written to help its readers to find that same joy, to have and maintain a good, clean conscience in their lives. Of course, it is incapable of covering every detail that one would need to consider and apply in their lives …
This book is primarily for WIVES, but husbands will greatly benefit from it as well. WIVES will learn to use God’s Word to construct a solid and happy marriage. The Creator of the family gives the very best advice. Many have been so eager to read this new publication: WIVES BE SUBJECT TO YOUR HUSBANDS. It offers wives the best insights into a happy marriage, by way of using God’s Word as the foundational guide, along with Andrews’ insights. WIVES learn that marriage is a gift from God. WIVEStake in information that will help them survive the first year of marriage. WIVES will be able to make Christian marriage a success. WIVES will maintain an honorable marriage. WIVES will see how to submit correctly to Christ’s headship. WIVES will learn how to strengthen their marriage through good communication. …
This book is primarily for HUSBANDS, but wives will greatly benefit from it as well. HUSBANDS will learn to use God’s Word to construct a solid and happy marriage. The Creator of the family gives the very best advice. Many have been so eager to read this new publication: HUSBANDS LOVE YOUR WIVES. It offers husbands the best insights into a happy marriage, by way of using God’s Word as the foundational guide, along with Andrews’ insights. HUSBANDS learn that marriage is a gift from God. HUSBANDS take in information that will help them survive the first year of marriage. HUSBANDS will be able to make Christian marriage a success. HUSBANDS will maintain an honorable marriage. …
Technological and societal change is all around us. What does the future hold? Trying to predict the future is difficult, but we can get a clue from the social and technological trends in our society. The chapters in this book provide a framework as Christians explore the uncharted territory in our world of technology and social change. Some of the questions that Anderson will answer are: What are the technological challenges of the 21st century? How should we think about the new philosophies like transhumanism? Should we be concerned about big data? What about our privacy in a world where government and corporations have some much information about us? How should we think about a world experiencing exponential growth in data and knowledge? What social trends are affecting baby boomers, baby busters, and millennials?
Government affects our daily lives, and Christians need to think about how to apply biblical principles to politics and government. This book provides an overview of the biblical principles relating to what the apostle Paul calls “governing authorities” (i.e., government) with specific chapters dealing with the founding principles of the American government. This includes an examination of the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, and the Federalist Papers. The thirteen chapters in this book not only look at the broad founding principles but also provide an in-depth look at other important political and governmental issues. One section explains the history and application of church and state issues. Another section describes aspects of political debate and discourse. A final section provides a brief overview of the Christian heritage of this nation that was important in the founding of this country and the framing of our founding documents.
Economics affects our daily lives, and Christians need to think about how to apply biblical principles to money, investment, borrowing, and spending. They also need to understand the free enterprise system and know how to defend capitalism. Chapters in this book not only look at broad economic principles, but a section of the book is devoted to the challenges we face in the 21st century from globalization and tough economic times. A section of the book also provides an in-depth look at other important social and economic issues (gambling, welfare) that we face every day …
Do you desire to follow Jesus Christ and transform the culture around you? Are you sure you know what it means to be a disciple and follow a dangerous revolutionary who often comforts the afflicted and afflicts the comfortable? Jesus Christ is not the mild status quo rabbi you may have been taught in your local church. He is dangerous and anyone who follows him is on a dangerous journey. The demands he places upon you and the challenges you will encounter are necessary on the journey. The journey with Jesus Christ is not for the fainthearted. If you are really serious about joining Jesus Christ in the transformation of the culture around you, here is a raw outlook on what to expect on this DANGEROUS JOURNEY.
Each of the twenty-five chapters in the POWER THROUGH PRAYER provides helpful methods and suggestions for growing and improving your prayer life with God through the power of prayer. So, what can we expect if we make prayer a part of our life? Prayer can give you a peace of mind. Prayer can comfort and strength when facing trials. Prayer can help us make better life choices. The Bible says: “If any of you lacks wisdom [especially in dealing with trials], let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.” (James 1:5) Prayer can help to avoid temptation. Prayer is the path yo forgiveness of sins. Your prayers can help others. You will receive encouragement when your prayers are answered.
DOZENS OF QUESTIONS WILL BE ANSWERED: Why is prayer necessary? What must we do to be heard by God? How does God answer our prayers? Does God listen to all prayers? Does God hear everyone’s prayers? What may we pray about? Does the Father truly grant everything we ask for? What kind of prayers would the Father reject? How long should our prayers be? How often should we pray? Why should we say “Amen” at the end of a prayer? Must we assume a special position or posture when praying? There are far more than this asked and answered.
What forms of prayer do you personally need to offer more often? Who benefits when you pray for others? Why is it important to pray regularly? Why should true Christians pray continually? To whom should we pray, and how? What are proper subjects for prayer? When should you pray? Does God listen to all prayers? Whose prayers is God willing to hear? What could make a person’s prayers unacceptable to God? When Jesus says, “whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive if you have faith,” an absolute guarantee that we will receive it? HOW TO PRAY by Torrey and Andrews is a spiritual gem that will answer all of these questions and far more. HOW TO PRAY is a practical guidebook covers the how, when, and most importantly, the way of praying. An excellent devotional resource for any Christian library.
Christian Apologetics and Evangelism
Was the Gospel of Mark Written First? Were the Gospel Writers Plagiarists? What is the Q Document? What about Document Q? Critical Bible scholars have assumed that Matthew and Luke used the book of Mark to compile their Gospels and that they consulted a supplementary source, a document the scholars call Q from the German Quelle, or source. From the close of the first century A.D. to the 18th century, the reliability of the Gospels was never really brought into question. However, once we enter the so-called period of enlightenment, especially from the 19th century onward, some critical Bible scholars viewed the Gospels not as the inspired, inerrant Word of God but rather as the word of man, and a jumbled word at that. In addition, they determined that the Gospels were not written by Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, saying the Gospels were written after the apostles, denying that the writers of the Gospels had any firsthand knowledge of Jesus; therefore, for these Bible critics such men were unable to offer a record of reliable history. Moreover, these critical Bible scholars came to the conclusion that the similarities in structure and content in the synoptic (similar view) Gospels (Matthew, Mark, and Luke), suggests that the evangelists copied extensively from one other. Further, the critical Bible scholars have rejected that the miracles of Jesus and his resurrection ever occurred as recorded in the Gospels. Lastly, some have even gone so far as to reject the historicity of Jesus himself.
Inside of some Christians unbeknownst to their family, friends or the church, they are screaming, “I doubt, I doubt, I have very grave doubts!” Ours is an age of doubt. Skepticism has become fashionable. We are urged to question everything: especially the existence of God and the truthfulness of his Word, the Bible. A SUBSTANTIAL PORTION of REASONABLE FAITH is on healing for the elements of emotional doubt. However, much attention is given to more evidenced-based chapters in our pursuit of overcoming any fears or doubts that we may have or that may creep up on us in the future.
How can you improve your effectiveness as teachers? Essentially, it is by imitating THE GREAT TEACHER: Jesus Christ. You may wonder, ‘But how can we imitate Jesus?’ ‘He was the perfect, divine, Son of God.’ Admittedly, you cannot be a perfect teacher. Nevertheless, regardless of your abilities, you can do your best to imitate the way Jesus taught. THE GREAT TEACHER: Jesus Christ will discuss how you can employ all of his teaching methods.
How can you improve your effectiveness as teachers? Essentially, it is by imitating THE TEACHER the Apostle Paul. You may wonder, ‘But how can we imitate Paul?’ ‘He was an inspired author, who served as an apostle, given miraculous powers.’ Admittedly, Paul likely accomplished more than any other imperfect human. Nevertheless, regardless of your abilities, you can do your best to imitate the way Paul taught. THE TEACHER the Apostle Paul will discuss how you can employ all of his teaching methods.
How true is the Old Testament? For over two centuries Biblical scholars have held to the so-called documentary hypothesis, namely, that Genesis – Deuteronomy was not authored by Moses, but rather by several writers, some of whom lived centuries after Moses’ time. How have many scholars questioned the writership of Isaiah, and are they correct? When did skepticism regarding the writership of Isaiah begin, and how did it spread? What dissecting of the book of Isaiah has taken place? When did criticism of the book of Daniel begin, and what fueled similar criticism in more recent centuries? What charges are sometimes made regarding the history in Daniel? Why is the question of the authenticity of the books of Moses, the Book of Isaiah and the Book of Daniel an important one? What evidence is there to show that the books of Moses, the Book of Isaiah and the Book of Daniel is authentic and true? Do these critics have grounds for challenging these Bible author’s authenticity and historical truthfulness? Why is it important to discuss whether Old Testament Aurhoriship is authentic and true or not?
Agabus is a mysterious prophetic figure that appears only twice in the book of Acts. Though his role is minor, he is a significant figure in a great debate between cessationists and continualists. On one side are those who believe that the gift of prophecy is on par with the inspired Scriptures, infallible, and has ceased. On the other side are those who define it as fallible and non-revelatory speech that continues today in the life of the church. Proponents of both camps attempt to claim Agabus as an illustration of their convictions. This study defends the position that Agabus’ prophecies are true in every detail. Beginning with a survey of major figures in the debate, the author conducts an exegetical analysis of passages where Agabus appears in defense of the infallible view.
Islam is making a significant mark on our world. It is perhaps the fastest-growing religion in the world. It has become a major obstacle to Christian missions. And Muslim terrorists threaten the West and modern democracies. What is the history of Islam? What do Muslims believe? Do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? Why do we have this clash of civilizations? Is sharia law a threat to modern democratic values? How can we fight terrorists in the 21st century? These are significant questions that deserve thoughtful answers. This book provides practical, biblical answers so Christians can understand Islam, witness to their Muslim friends, and support efforts by the government to protect all of us from terrorism.
IS THE QURAN THE WORD OF GOD? Is Islam the One True Faith? This book covers the worldview, practices, and history of Islam and the Quran. This book is designed as an apologetic evangelistic tool for Christians, as they come across Muslims in their daily lives, as well as to inform them, as a protection again the misleading media. The non-Muslims need to hear these truths about Islam and the Quran so they can have an accurate understanding of the Muslim mindset that leads to their actions. Islam is the second largest religion in the world. Radical Islam has taken the world by storm, and the “fake media” has genuinely misled their audience for the sake of political correctness. This book is not a dogmatic attack on Islam and the Quran but rather an uncovering of the lies and describing of the truths. The reader will be introduced to the most helpful way of viewing the evidence objectively. We will answer the question of whether the Quran is a literary miracle, as well as is there evidence that the Quran is inspired by God, along with is the Quran harmonious and consistent, and is the Quran from God or man? We will also examine Islamic teachings, discuss the need to search for the truth, as well as identify the book of truth. We will look at how Islam views the Bible. Finally, we will take up the subjects of Shariah Law, the rise of radical Islam, Islamic eschatology, and how to effectively witness to Muslims.
The average Christian knows somewhat how dangerous radical Islam is because of the regular media coverage of beheadings of Christians, Jews, and even young little children, not to mention Muslims with which they disagree. However, the average Christian does not know their true beliefs, just how many there are, to the extent they will go to carry out these beliefs. Daily we find Islamic commentators on the TV and radio, offering up misleading information, quoting certain portions of the Quran while leaving other parts out. When considering Islamic beliefs, other Islamic writings must be considered, like the Hadith or Sunnah, and the Shariah, or canon law. While Islam, in general, does not support radical Islam, the vast majority do support radical beliefs. For example, beheadings, stoning for adultery or homosexuality, suicide bombings, turning the world into an Islamic state, and far too many other heinous things. THE GUIDE TO ISLAM provides Christians with an overview of Islamic terminology. The reader will learn about Muhammad’s calling, the history of the Quran, how Islam expanded, the death of Muhammad and the splinter groups that followed. In addition, the three sources of their teaching, six pillars of belief, five pillars of Islam, the twelfth Imam, and much more will be discussed. All of this from the mind of radical Islam. While there are several books on Islam and radical Islam, this will be the first that will prepare its readers to communicate effectively with Muslims in an effort toward sharing biblical truths. …
If you have the desire to become better equipped to reach others for the lost or to strengthen your faith, Judy Salisbury’s guide—written specifically to meet the needs of Christian women today—offers you a safe, practical, and approachable place to start. In her lively, … If you have the desire to become better equipped to reach others for the lost or to strengthen your faith, Judy Salisbury’s guide—written specifically to meet the needs of Christian women today—offers you a safe, practical, and approachable place to start. In her lively, straightforward style, Salisbury covers such issues as: Does God exist? Can I trust the Bible? Does Christianity oppress women? Can we know truth? Why would God allow evil and suffering? Was Jesus God and did He really rise from the dead? How does or should my faith guide my life?
A Time to Speak: Practical Training for the Christian Presenteris a complete guide for effective communication and presentation skills. Discuss any subject with credibility and confidence, from Christian apologetics to the sensitive moral issues of our day, when sharing a testimony, addressing a school board, a community meeting, or conference. This exceptional training is the perfect resource for Christians with any level of public speaking ability. With its easy, systematic format, A Time to Speak is also an excellent resource for home-schooled and college students. The reader, in addition to specific skills and techniques, will also learn how to construct their presentation content, diffuse hostility, guidance for a successful Q&A, effective ways to turn apathy into action, and tips on gaining their speaking invitation.
Historical Criticism of the Bible got started in earnest, known then as Higher Criticism, during the 18th and 19th centuries, it is also known as the Historical-Critical Method of biblical interpretation. Are there any weakness to the Historical-Critical Method of biblical interpretation (Historical Criticism), and why is historical criticism so popular among Bible scholars today? Its popularity is because biblical criticism is subjective, that is, based on or influenced by personal feelings or opinions and is dependent on the Bible scholar’s perception. In other words, biblical criticism allows the Bible scholar, teacher, or pastor the freedom to interpret the Scriptures, so that God’s Word it tells them things that they want to hear. Why is this book so critical for all Christians? Farnell and Andrews will inform the reader about Biblical criticism (historical criticism) and its weaknesses, helping you to defend God’s Word far better.
Biblical criticism is an umbrella term covering various techniques for applying literary historical-critical methods in analyzing and studying the Bible and its textual content. Biblical criticism is also known as higher criticism, literary criticism, and historical criticism. Biblical criticism has done nothing more than weaken and demoralize people’s assurance in the Bible as being the inspired and fully inerrant Word of God and is destructive in its very nature. Historical criticism is made up of many forms of biblical criticism that are harmful to the authoritative Word of God: historical criticism, source criticism, form criticism, redaction criticism, social-science criticism, canonical criticism, rhetorical criticism, structural criticism, narrative criticism, reader-response criticism, and feminist criticism. Not just liberal scholarship, but many moderate, even some “conservative” scholars have …
APOLOGETICS: Reaching Hearts with the Art of Persuasion by Edward D. Andrews, author of over seventy books, covers information that proves that the Bible is accurate, trustworthy, fully inerrant, and inspired by God for the benefit of humankind. The reader will be introduced to Christan apologetics and evangelism. They will learn what Christian apologetics is. They will be given a biblical answer to the most demanding Bible question: Problem of Evil. The reader will learn how to reach hearts with are the art of persuasion. They will use persuasion to help others accept Christ. They will learn to teach with insight and persuasiveness. They will learn to use persuasion to reach the heart of those who listen to them.
REVIEWING 2013 New World Translation of Jehovah’s Witnesses is going to challenge your objectivity. Being objective means that personal feelings or opinions do not influence you in considering and representing facts. Being subjective means that your understanding is based on or influenced by personal feelings, tastes, or ideas. If the reader finds these insights offense, it might be a little mind control at work from years of being told the same misinformation repeatedly, so ponder things objectively. We can also have preconceived ideas that have been a part of our thinking for so long; we do not question them. Preconceived is an idea or opinion that is formed before having the evidence for its truth. If we are to be effective, we must season our words, so that they are received well. Then there is the term preconception, which means a preconceived idea or prejudice. Seasoned words, honesty, and accuracy are distinctive features of effective apologetic evangelism.
Use of REASONING FROM THE SCRIPTURES should help you to cultivate the ability to reason from the Scriptures and to use them effectively in assisting others to learn about “the mighty works of God.” – Acts 2:11. If Christians are going to be capable, powerful, efficient teachers of God’s Word, we must not only pay attention to what we tell those who are interested but also how we tell them. Yes, we must focus our attention on the message of God’s Word that we share but also the method in which we do so. Our message, the Gospel (i.e., the good news of the Kingdom), this does not change, but we do adjust our methods. Why? We are seeking to reach as many receptive people as possible. “You will be my witnesses … to the End of the Earth.” – ACTS 1:8.
Why should we be interested in the religion of others? The world has become a melting pot of people, cultures, and values, as well as many different religions. Religion has the most significant impact on the lives of mankind today. There are only a few of the major religions that make up billions of people throughout the earth. According to some estimates, there are roughly 4,200 religions in the world. God’s will is that “all sorts of men should be saved and come to an accurate knowledge of truth.” (1 Tim. 2:4) God has assigned all Christians the task of proclaiming the Word of God, teaching, to make disciples. (Matt. 24:15; 28:19-20: Ac 1;8) That includes men and women who profess a non-Christian religion, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, and Islam to mention just a few. If there are Hindus, Buddhist or Muslims are in your community, why not initiate a conversation with them? Christians who take the Great Commission seriously cannot afford to ignore these religions. …
Evangelism is the work of a Christian evangelist, of which all true Christians are obligated to partake to some extent, which seeks to persuade other people to become Christian, especially by sharing the basics of the Gospel, but also the deeper message of biblical truths. Today the Gospel is almost an unknown, so what does the Christian evangelist do? Preevangelism is laying a foundation for those who have no knowledge of the Gospel, giving them background information, so that they can grasp what they are hearing. The Christian evangelist is preparing their mind and heart so that they will be receptive to the biblical truths. In many ways, this is known as apologetics. Christian apologetics [Greek: apologia, “verbal defense, speech in defense”] is a field of Christian theology which endeavors to offer a reasonable and sensible basis for the Christian faith, defending the faith against objections. It is reasoning from the Scriptures, explaining and proving, as one instructs in sound doctrine, many times having to overturn false reasoning before he can plant the seeds of truth. …
MOST Christian apologetic books help the reader know WHAT to say; THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST is HOW to communicate it effectively. The Christian apologist’s words should always be seasoned with salt as he or she shares the unadulterated truths of Scripture with gentleness and respect. Our example in helping the unbeliever to understand the Bible has been provided by Jesus Christ and his apostles. Whether dealing with Bible critics or answering questions from those genuinely interested, Jesus referred to the Scriptures and at times used appropriate illustrations, helping those with a receptive heart to accept the Word of God. The apostle Paul “reasoned with them from the Scriptures, explaining and proving” what was biblically true. (Ac 17:2-3) The material in THE CHRISTIAN APOLOGIST can enable us to do the same. Apologist Normal L. Geisler informs us that “evangelism is planting seeds of the Gospel” and “pre-evangelism is tilling the soil of people’s minds and hearts to help them be more willing to listen to the truth (1 Cor. 3: 6).”
THE EVANGELISM HANDBOOK is a practical guide (for real-life application) in aiding all Christians in sharing biblical beliefs, the Good News of the Kingdom, how to deal with Bible critics, overturning false beliefs, so as to make disciples, as commanded by Christ. (Matthew 24:14; 28:19-20; Ac 1:8) Why do Christians desire to talk about their beliefs? Jesus said, “And this gospel of the kingdom will be proclaimed in the whole inhabited earth for a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” (Matt 24:14) This is the assignment, which all Christians are obligated to assist in carrying out. Jesus also said, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” (Matt. 22:39) Jesus commanded that we “go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them” and “teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.” (Matt. 28:19-20) If one failed to be obedient to the great commission of Matthew 28:19-20, he or she could hardly claim that they have genuine faith. All true Christians have a determination to imitate God, which moves us to persist in reflecting his glory through our sharing Bible beliefs with others.
“Absorbing, instructional, insightful. Judy Salisbury’s book Divine Appointments embodies examples of truly speaking the truth in love. The stories she weaves together provide perfect examples of how to relate to others through conversational evangelism… Divine Appointments is an apt companion to any apologetics book, showing how to put principles into practice. It’s an apologetics manual wrapped in a warm blanket. Snuggle up with it.”— Julie Loos, Director, Ratio Christi Boosters
The reader will receive eight small introductory books in this one publication. Andrews’ intention is to offer his reader several chapters on eight of the most critical subject areas of understanding and defending the Word of God. This will enable the reader to lay a solid foundation for which he can build throughout his Christian life. These eight sections with multiple chapters in each cover biblical interpretation, Bible translation philosophies, textual criticism, Bible difficulties, the Holy Spirit, Christian Apologetics, Christian Evangelism, and Christian Living.
“‘Deep’ study is no guarantee that mature faith will result, but shallow study guarantees that immaturity continues.”(p. xiii)—Dr. Lee M. Fields.
The Culture War. How the West lost its greatness and was weakened from within outlines how the West lost its values, causing its current decline. It is a forceful attack on the extreme liberal, anti-religious ideology which since the 1960’s has permeated the Western culture and weakened its very core. The West is now characterized by strict elitist media censorship, hedonism, a culture of drug abuse, abortion, ethnic clashes and racial divide, a destructive feminism and the dramatic breakdown of the family. An ultra-rich elite pushes our nations into a new, authoritarian globalist structure, with no respect for Western historical values. Yet, even in the darkest hour, there is hope. This manifesto outlines the remedy for the current malaise and describes the greatness of our traditional and religious values that once made our civilization prosper. It shows how we can restore these values to bring back justice, mercy, faith, honesty, fidelity, kindness and respect for one another. Virtues that will motivate individuals to love one another, the core of what will make us great again.
EARLY CHRISTIANITY IN THE FIRST CENTURY will give its readers a thrilling account of first-century Christianity. When and how did they come to be called Christians? Who are all obligated to be Christian evangelists? In what way did Jesus set the example for our evangelism? What is the Kingdom of God? What was their worship like and why were they called the Truth and the Way? How did 120 disciples at Pentecost grow to over one million within 70-80-years? What was meant by their witness to the ends of the earth? How did Christianity in its infancy function to accomplish all it did? How was it structured? How were the early Christians, not of the world? How were they affected by persecution? How were they not to love the world, in what sense? What divisions were there in the second and third centuries? Who were the Gnostics? These questions will be answered, as well as a short overview of the division that grew out of the second and third centuries, pre-reformation, the reformation, and a summary of Catholicism and Protestantism. After a lengthy introduction to First-Century Christianity, there is a chapter on the Holy Spirit in the First Century and Today, followed by sixteen chapters that cover the most prominent Christians from the second to fourth centuries, as well as a chapter on Constantine the Great.
Inside of some Christians unbeknownst to their family, friends or congregation, they are screaming, “I doubt, I doubt, I have very grave doubts!” OURS is an age of doubt. Skepticism has become fashionable. We are urged to question everything: especially the existence of God and the truthfulness of his Word, the Bible. A half brother of Jesus warned us against doubting: “the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.” (Jam. 1:6) When insidious doubts begin to creep into the mind and the heart, it is only a matter of time before a CRISIS OF FAITH gives way spiritual shipwreck. Since we have been warned that “some will fall away from the faith,” we should be ready “to save some,” even ourselves. …
The intention of this book is to investigate the biblical chronology behind Jehovah’s Witnesses most controversial doctrinal position that Jesus began to rule invisibly from heaven in October 1914. This biblical chronology of the Witnesses hinges upon their belief that the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians, which they say occurred in 607 B.C.E. The Witnesses conclude that Chapter 4 of the book of Daniel prophesied a 2,520 year period that began in 607 B.C.E. and ended in 1914 C.E. They state, “Clearly, the ‘seven times’ and ‘the appointed times of the nations’ refer to the same time period.” (Lu 21:24) It is their position that When the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem, the Davidic line of kings was interrupted, God’s throne was “trampled on by the nations” until 1914, at which time Jesus began to rule invisibly from heaven. …
In order to overcome and church problems, we must first talk about the different problems of the church. Many of the church problems today stem from the isms: liberalism, humanism, modernism, Christian progressivism, theological liberalism, feminism, higher criticism, and biblical criticism. Moreover, many are simply not a biblically grounded church regardless of how much they claim to be so. The marks of a true Christian church would be like the different lines that make up a church’s fingerprint, a print that cannot belong to any other church. The true Christian church contains their own unique grouping of marks, forming a positive “fingerprint” that cannot belong to any other church. William Lange Craig wrote, “Remember that our faith is not based on emotions, but on the truth, and therefore you must hold on to it.” What truth? Jesus said to the Father in prayer, “Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth.” (John 17:17) Are you doing the will of the Father? Is your church doing the will of the Father? – Matthew 7:21-23; 1 John 2:15-17.
Evangelist Norman Robertson claims that “Tithing is God’s way of financing His kingdom on the earth.” He asserts that “It is His system of economics which enables the Gospel to be preached.” Not bashful about telling his followers of their duty to give, he flatly states: ‘Tithing isn’t something you do because you can afford it. It is an act of obedience. Not tithing is a clear violation of God’s commandments. It is embezzlement.’ Most likely you accept that giving should be part of Christian worship. However, do you find continuous demanding appeals for money disturbing, perhaps even offensive? FLEECING THE FLOCK by Anthony Wade is an exhaustive examination of all of the popular tithing arguments made from the pulpit today. …
DECEPTION IN THE CHURCH by Fred DeRuvo asks Does It Matter How You Worship? There are 41,000 different denominations that call themselves “Christian” and all would claim that they are the truth. Can just any Christian denomination please God? Can all be true or genuine Christianity if they all have different views on the same Bible doctrines? DeRuvo will answer. He will focus on the largest part of Christianity that has many different denominations, the charismatic, ecstatic Signs and Wonders Movements. These ecstatic worshipers claim … DeRuvo will answer all these questions and more according to the truth of God’s Word.—John 8:31-32; 17:17.
Plunkett exposes the errors corrupting the Christian church through the Word of Faith, New Apostolic Reformation, and extreme charismatic movements. LEARN TO DISCERN, by author Daniel Plunkett highlights how an encounter with a rising star in the Word of Faith / “Signs and Wonders” movement was used by God to open his eyes to the deceptions, false teachings, and spiritual abuses running rampant in the charismatic movement today. These doctrines are thoroughly explored as taught by some of today’s most prominent speakers and evangelists and contrasted with the clear teachings of Scripture. LEARN TO DISCERN is an invaluable resource …
Translation and Textual Criticism
The King James Bible was originally published in 1611. Some have estimated that the number of copies of the King James Version that have been produced in print worldwide is over one billion! There is little doubt that the King James Version is a literary masterpiece, which this author has and will appreciate and value for its unparalleled beauty of expression. This book is in no way trying to take away from what the King James Version has accomplished. The King James Version is a book to be commended for all that it has accomplished. For four centuries, when English-speaking people spoke of “the Bible,” they meant the King James Version. The question that begs to be asked of those who favor the King James Bible is, Do You Know the King James Version? What do most users of the King James Bible not know about their translation? Whether you are one who favors the King James Version or one who prefers a modern translation, Andrews will answer the questions that have long been asked for centuries about the King James Bible and far more.
THE COMPLETE GUIDE TO BIBLE TRANSLATION (CGBT) is for all individuals interested in how the Bible came down to us, as well as having an insight into the Bible translation process. CGBT is also for those who are interested in which translation(s) would be the most beneficial to use. The translation of God’s Word from the original languages of Hebrew, Aramaic, and Greek is a task unlike any other and should never be taken lightly because it carries with it the heaviest responsibility: the translator renders God’s thoughts into a modern language. It is CGBT’s desire to take challenging and complex subjects and make them easy to understand. CGBT will communicate as clearly and powerfully as possible to all of its readers while also accurately communicating information about the Bible. …
We have come a long, long way from the time that the KJV was The Bible in English and the many translations available today. Finding the right Bible for the right person can be daunting, with almost too many choices available. However, it is still possible to divide the options into two broad categories: literal translations and dynamic equivalents. What is the difference, and why should you care? Bible publishers used to say that literal translations are good for study purposes, and dynamic equivalents are better for reading. So literal translations were advertised with terms like “accurate,” “reliable,” and, of course, “literal.” For dynamic equivalent translations, terms like “contemporary,” “easy to read,” and “written in today’s English” were used. Naturally, publishers do not advertise the negatives, so they did not point out that the literal translations might be a little harder to read, or that the dynamic equivalents might not be entirely faithful to the original languages of the Bible. However, more recently, some scholars have been taking this analysis in a new direction, assessing literal translations as less desirable than dynamic equivalents even for accuracy and reliability.
There are more than 150 different Bible translations in the English language alone. Some are what we call literal translations, which seeks to give the reader the exact English equivalent of what was written in the original language text, thus allowing the reader access to the actual Word of God. Then, there are dynamic equivalents, where the translator determines what the author meant by the original language text, and this is what they give the reader. There is also a paraphrase translation, which is an extremely interpretive translation. Exactly what are these differences? Are some translations better than others? What standards and principles can we use to determine what makes a good translation? Andrews introduces the readers to the central issues in this debate and presents several reasons why literal translations are superior to dynamic equivalent and paraphrase translations. We do not need to be a Bible scholar to understand these issues, as well as the importance of having the most accurate and faithful translation that is reflective of the original text. …
THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT (TTNT) is an introduction, intermediate and advanced level coverage of the text of the New Testament. Andrews introduces the new and relatively new reader to this subject in the first few chapters of the TTNT. Andrews deepens his handling of the material, while still making it easy to understand in the next few chapters of the TTNT, all the while being very informative in both sections. All of this prepares the reader for Wilkins’ advanced chapters. THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT was copied and recopied by hand for 1,500 years. Regardless of those scribes who had worked very hard to be faithful in their copying, errors crept into the text. How can we be confident that what we have today is the Word of God? Wilkins and Andrews offer the reader an account of the copying by hand and transmission of the Greek New Testament. They present a comprehensive survey of the manuscript history from the penning of the 27 New Testament books to the current critical texts. What did the ancient books look like and how were documents written? How were the New Testament books published? Who would use secretaries? Why was it so hard to be a secretary in the first century? How was such work done? What do we know about the early Christian copyists? What were the scribal habits and tendencies? Is it possible to establish the original text of the NewTestament? …
THE EARLY CHRISTIAN COPYISTS OF THE NEW TESTAMENT intends to examine and evaluate the making of New Testament books, the book writing process of the New Testament authors and early Christian Scribes, the original or earliest text of the New Testament, and the secretaries in antiquity and their materials. We will also assess the early Christian copyists, the reading culture of early Christianity and their view of the integrity of the Greek New Testament, scribal tendencies or habits, as well as the sources of New Testament textual criticism, which would include a lengthy chapter on ancient versions of the New Testament. We will also look into how paleographers date the ancient manuscripts and how did textual variations and manuscript families arise? Just how many textual variants are there and how are they to be counted? All of this to determine what guarantee do we have as to the reliability of the Greek text. What sort of changes did scribes make to the text and can we restore the Greek New Testament to its original state. NOTE: If you have read THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT by Andrews and Wilkins, you need not read this publication, as it is select chapters from TTNT.
Edward D. Andrews boldly answers the challenges Bart D. Ehrman alleges against the fully inerrant, Spirit-inspired, authoritative Word of God. By glimpsing into the life of Bart D. Ehrman and following along his course of academic studies, Andrews helps the reader to understand the biases, assumptions, and shortcomings supporting Ehrman’s arguments. Using sound reason, scholarly exegesis, and the Historical-Grammatical method of interpretation, as well as New Testament textual criticism, Andrews helps both churchgoer/Bible students, as well as scholars, overcome the teachings of biblical errancy that Ehrman propagates.—Easy to read and understand. …
CALVINISM VS. ARMINIANISM goes back to the early seventeenth century with a Christian theological debate between the followers of John Calvin and Jacobus Arminius, and continues today among some Protestants, particularly evangelicals. The debate is centered around soteriology, that is, the study of salvation, and includes disputes about total depravity, predestination, and atonement. While the debate has developed its Calvinist–Arminian form in the 17th century, the issues that are fundamental to the debate have been discussed in Christianity in some fashion since the days of Augustine of Hippo’s disputes with the Pelagians in the fifth century. CALVINISM VS. ARMINIANISM is taking a different approach in that the issues will be discussed as The Bible Answers being that it is the centerpiece.
A comprehensive book on HOW TO STUDY YOUR BIBLE by observing, interpreting, and applying, which will focus on the most basic Bible study tools, principles, and processes for moving from an in-depth reading of the Scriptures to application. What, though, if you have long felt that you are not studiously inclined? Realize that the primary difference between a serious Bible student and a less serious Bible student is usually diligence and effort, not being a gifted student. Being a gifted Bible student alone is not enough. Efficient methods of Bible study are worth learning, for those seeking to become serious Bible students. The joy missing from many Bible students is because they do not know how to study their Bible, which means they do not do it well. Perhaps you dislike Bible study because you have not developed your study skills sufficiently to make your Bible study enjoyable. Maybe you have neglected your Bible study simply because you would rather be doing something else you enjoy.
How can we find more enjoyment in studying the Bible? How can we make our study periods more productive? What circumstances contribute to effective personal study? How can we derive real benefit and pleasure from our Bible reading? From what activities can time be bought out for reading and studying the Bible? Why should we watch our spiritual feeding habits? What benefits come from reading and studying the Scriptures? There is a great and constantly growing interest in the study of the English Bible in these days. However, very much of the so-called study of the English Bible is unintelligent and not fitted to produce the most satisfactory results. The authors of this book already have a book entitled “HOW TO STUDY: Study the Bible for the Greatest Profit,” but that book is intended for those who are willing to buy out the time to put into thorough Bible study.
Why is personal and family Bible study so important in our life now? How can we apply the Word of God in our lives? How can we use the Bible to help others? How can we effectively use the Scriptures when teaching others? How can we make decisions God’s way? How can Bible principles help us to decide wisely? Why should we have faith in God and his word? The Psalmist tells us, God’s Word “is a lamp to my foot, and a light for my path.” (Psalm 119:105) Since the Bible is a gift from God, the time and effort that we put into our personal Bible Study is a reflection of how much we appreciate that gift. What do our personal Bible study habits reveal about the depth of our appreciation of God’s Word? Certainly, the Bible is a deep and complex book, and reading and studying are not easy at times. However, with time and effort, we can develop a spiritual appetite for personal Bible study. (1 Peter 2:2)
Correctly interpreting the Bible is paramount to understanding the Word of God. As Christians, we do not want to read our 21st-century worldview INTO the Scriptures, but rather to takeOUT OF the Scriptures what the author meant by the words that he used. The guaranteed way of arriving a correct understanding of God’s Words is to have an accurate knowledge of the historical setting, cultural background, and of the people, governments, and religious leaders, as well as the place and time of the New Testament writings. Only with the background, setting, and context can you grasp the author’s intended meaning to his original readers and …
The life of Christ is an exhaustless theme. It reveals a character of greater massiveness than the hills, of a more serene beauty than the stars, of sweeter fragrance than the flowers, higher than the heavens in sublimity and deeper than the seas in mystery. As good Jean Paul has eloquently said, “It concerns Him who, being the holiest among the mighty, and the mightiest among the holy, lifted with His pierced hands empires off their hinges, turned the stream of centuries out of its channels, and still governs the ages.” …
Stalker’s Life of St. Paul became one of the most widely read and respected biographies of the Apostle to the Gentiles. As an insightful compendium on the life of Paul, this work is of particular interest to pastors and teachers who desire to add realism and vividness to their account of one of the greatest Christians who ever lived. Stalker’s work includes a section at the back entitled “Hints for Teachers and Questions for Pupils.” This supplement contains notes and “further reading” suggestions for those teaching on the life of St. Paul, along with a number of questions over each chapter for students to discuss. In addition, seventeen extra chapters have been added that will help the reader better understand who the Apostle Paul was and what first-century Christianity was like. For example, a chapter on the conversion of Saul/Paul, Gamaliel Taught Saul of Tarsus, the Rights, and Privileges of Citizenship, the “Unknown God,” Areopagus, the Observance of Law as to Vows, and much more.
With solid scholarship and exceptional clarity, beginning in Gethsemane, Stalker and Andrews examine Jesus’ trial and crucifixion. Their work is relevant, beneficial and enjoyable because they cover this historical period of Jesus’ life in an easy to understand format. Stalker’s expressive and persuasive style provides a great resource to any Bible study of the events leading to the death of Jesus Christ. THE TRIAL AND DEATH OF JESUS CHRIST is an academicish book written with a novelish style.
Delving into the basics of biblical interpretation, Edward D. Andrews has provided a complete hands-on guide to understanding what the author meant by the words that he used from the conservative grammatical-historical perspective. He teaches how to study the Bible on a deep, scholarly level, yet making it understandable to all. He has sought to provide the very best tool for interpreting the Word of God. This includes clarification of technical terms, answers to every facet of biblical interpretation, and defense of the inerrancy and divine inspiration of Scripture. Andrews realizes that the importance of digging deeper in our understanding of the Bible, for defending our faith from modern-day misguided scholarship. Andrews gives the reader easy and memorable principles and methods to follow for producing an accurate explanation that comes out of, not what many read into the biblical text. The principal procedure within is to define, explain, offer many examples, and give illustrations, to help the reader fully grasp the grammatical-historical approach. …
Anybody who wants to study the Bible, either at a personal level or a more scholarly level needs to understand that there are certain principles that guide and govern the process. The technical word used to refer to the principles of biblical interpretation is hermeneutics, which is of immense importance in Biblical Studies and Theology. How to Interpret the Bible takes into consideration the cultural context, historical background and geographical location in which the text was originally set. This enables us to obtain clarity about the original author’s intended meaning. Linguistic and literary factors are analyzed so that the various genres of Scripture are examined for their true meaning. The importance of having sound principles of interpretation cannot be overstated as …
Once upon a time, Postmodernism was a buzzword. It pronounced Modernism dead or at least in the throes of death. It was a wave that swept over Christendom, promising to wash away sterile, dogmatic and outmoded forms of church. But whatever happened to postmodernism? It was regarded as the start of a major historical transition to something new and promising and hailed as a major paradigm shift. Is it a philosophy that has passed its “sell-by” date? No! The radical fringe has become the dominant view and has been integrated into all aspects of life, including the Christian church. With the emergence of multicultural societies comes interaction with different belief systems and religions. Values like tolerance and a dislike of dogmatism have become key operating concepts, which reflect a change in worldview. …
In an age obsessed with physical and psychological health the author emphasizes the importance of spiritual well-being as an essential element of holistic health for the individual Christian and for Christian communities. This work constitutes a template for a spiritual audit of the local church. It offers an appointment with the Great Physician that no Christian can afford to ignore. Developing Healthy Churches: A Case-Study in Revelation begins with a well-researched outline of the origins and development of the church health movement. With that background in mind the author, aware that throughout the history of the church there have been a number of diverse views about how Revelation ought to be interpreted, presents the reader with four distinct interpretive models. These are the idealist, preterist, historicist, and futurist. Beville explains these interpretive approaches simply and critiques them fairly.e …
This is a comprehensive study of euthanasia and assisted suicide. It traces the historical debate, examines the legal status of such activity in different countries and explores the political, medical and moral matters surrounding these emotive and controversial subjects in various cultural contexts. The key advocates and pioneers of this agenda-driven movement (such as the late Jack Kevorkian, popularly known as “Dr. Death” and Philip Nitschke, founder of Exit International) are profiled. Not only are the elderly and disabled becoming increasingly vulnerable but children, psychiatric patients, the depressed and those who are simply tired of life are now on a slippery slope into a dystopian nightmare. The spotlight is brought to bear on the Netherlands, in particular, where palliative care and the hospice movement are greatly underdeveloped as a result of legalization. These dubious “services” are now offered as part of “normal” medical care in Holland where it is deemed more cost-effective to be given a lethal injection. The vital role of physicians as healers in society must be preserved and the important but neglected spiritual dimension of death must be explored. Thus a biblical view of human life is presented. …
Journey with Jesus through the Message of Mark is an insightful and engaging survey of Mark’s Gospel, exploring each major section of the text along with key themes. It is a work that can be enjoyed by laypersons as well as pastors and teachers. Pastors will find the abundant use of illustrations to be helpful in preparing their own messages and as such, it will find a welcome place in the preacher’s library. Simply, powerfully, with great precision, and exegetical accuracy, Kieran Beville masterfully brings us on a life-transforming journey. Readers will be both inspired and challenged as they hear the words of Jesus speaking afresh from the page of Scripture and experience the ministry of Jesus in a spiritually captivating way. The author has a pastor’s heart, a theologian’s mind, and a writer’s gift. His style is gripping, as he beautifully explains and illustrates Mark’s Gospel. Kieran Beville has done a great service to the church, and especially to true believers, who desire to grow in grace, increase in their knowledge of truth, and experience the intimacy, joy, and underserved and unspeakable privilege of walking, as disciples, with Jesus. This book is ideal as a study companion for Mark’s Gospel. One can read a section from the gospel and then read the corresponding section to receive a fresh viewpoint and a practical application. …
What are angels & demons? Can angels help us? What does the Bible say about angels? What is the truth about angels? Can Angels affect your life? Who were the “sons of God” in Genesis 6:2? Who were the Nephilim in Genesis 6:2? Who is Michael the archangel? Can Satan the Devil control humans? How can we win our struggle against dark spiritual forces? How can you resist the demons? Do evil spirits exercise power over humankind? Is Satan really the god of this world and just what does that mean? What did Jesus mean when he said, “the whole world lies in the power of the evil one [i.e., Satan]”? Andrews using the Bible will answer all of these questions and far more. …
Donald T. Williams learned a lot about the Christian worldview from Francis Schaeffer and C. S. Lewis, but it was actually Tolkien who first showed him that such a thing exists and is an essential component of maturing faith. Not only do explicitly Christian themes underlie the plot structure of The Lord of the Rings, but in essays such as “On Fairie Stories” Tolkien shows us that he not only believed the Gospel on Sunday but treated it as true the rest of the week and used his commitment to that truth as the key to further insights in his work as a student of literature. “You can do that?” Williams thought as a young man not yet exposed to any Christian who was a serious thinker. “I want to do that!” His hope is that his readers will catch that same vision from this book. An Encouraging Thought elucidates the ways in which Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings are informed by and communicate a biblical worldview. This book will help readers appreciate the ways in which a biblical worldview informs Tolkien’s work, to the end that their own faith may be confirmed in strength, focused in understanding, deepened in joy, and honed in its ability to communicate the Gospel.
People grow old, get sick, and die. Even some children die. Should you be afraid of death or of anybody who has died? Do you know what happens if we die? Will you ever see your dead loved ones again? “If a man dies, shall he live again?” asked the man Job long ago. (Job 14:14) Did God originally intend for humans to die? Why do you grow old and die? What is the Bible’s viewpoint of death? What is the condition of the dead? Are the dead aware of what is happening around them? What hope is there for the dead?
Herein Andrews will give the reader exactly what the Bible offers on exposing who the Antichrist and the Man of Lawlessness are. If we look at the texts that refer to the antichrist and the man of lawlessness, we will have lines of evidence that will enable us to identify them. Why is it important that we know who the antichrist and the man of lawlessness are? The antichrist and the man of lawlessness have had a greater impact on humanity and Christianity over the past centuries than many know. Moreover, the influence on the true worshipers of Christianity today has been even more significant and will only go from bad to worse as we come closer to the second coming of Christ. …
Throughout the Scriptures, God is identified as the Creator. He is the One “who created the heavens (He is the God who formed the earth and made it, He established it.” (Isa 45:18) He is the One “who forms mountains and creates the wind” (Am 4:13) and is the One “who made the heaven and the earth and the sea, and all that is in them.” (Ac 4:24; 14:15; 17:24) “God . . . created all things.” (Eph. 3:9) Jesus Christ tells us that it is the Father who “created them [humans] from the beginning made them male and female.” (Matt. 19:4; Mark 10:6) Hence, the Father is fittingly and uniquely called “the Creator.” (Isa 40:28) It is because of God’s will that we exist, for He has ‘created all things, and because of his will they existed and were created.’―Revelations 4:11 …
Eschatology is the teaching of what is commonly called the “Last Things.” That is the subject of Andrews’ book, which will cover, Explaining Prophecy, Explaining Clean and Pure Worship, The New Testament Writers Use of the Old Testament, Explaining the Antichrist, Explaining the Man of Lawlessness, Explaining the Mark of the Beast, Explaining Signs of the End of the Age, Explaining the Rapture, Explaining the Great Tribulation, Explaining Armageddon, Explaining the Resurrection Hope, Explaining the Millennium, Explaining the Final Judgment, Explaining the Unevangelized, Explaining Hell
The information herein is based on the disciples coming to Jesus privately, saying, “Tell us, (1) when will these things be, and (2) what will be the sign of your coming, and (3) of the end of the age?” (Matthew 24:3) What will end? When will the end come? What comes after the end? Who will survive the end? These questions and far more will be answered as Andrews delves into The SECOND COMING of CHRIST. In chapters 1 and 2, we must address why Jesus is saying there would be an end to the Jewish age. In chapter 3, we will take a deep look at the signs that establish the great tribulation is closing in, and when is it time to flee. In chapter 4, we will go over the signs of the end of the Jewish age. In chapter 5, we will walk through the events leading up to the end of the Jewish age from 66 – 70 C.E., and how it applies to our Great Tribulation in these last days. In chapter 6, we will cover the second coming of Jesus where the reader will get the answers as to whether verses 3-28 of Matthew Chapter 24 apply to Christ’s second coming. We will close out with chapter 7, and how we should understand the signs, and how we do not want to be led astray, just as Jesus warned even some of the chosen ones would be misled. We will also address what comes after the end.
What Really Is Hell? What Kind of Place is Hell? What Really Happens at Death? What Did Jesus Teach About Hell? How Does Learning the Truth About Hell Affect You? Who Goes to Hell? What Is Hell? Is It a Place of Eternal Torment? Does God Punish People in Hellfire? Do the Wicked Suffer in Hell? What Is the Lake of Fire? Is It the Same as Hell or Gehenna? Where Do We Go When We Die? What Does the Bible Say About Hell? Andrews Shares the Truth on WHAT IS HELL From God’s Word.
Miracles were certainly a part of certain periods in Bible times. What about today? Are miracles still taking place? There are some very important subjects that surround this area of discussion that is often misunderstood. Andrews will answer such questions as does God step in and solve every problem if we are faithful? Does the Bible provide absolutes or guarantees in this age of imperfect humanity? Are miracles still happening today? Is faith healing Scriptural? Is speaking in tongues evidence of true Christianity? Is snake handling biblical? How are we to understand the indwelling of the Holy Spirit? The work of the Holy Spirit. Andrews offers his readers very straightforward, biblically accurate explanations for these difficult questions. If any have discussed such questions, without a doubt, they will be very interested in the Bible’s answers in this easy to read publication.
Today there are many questions about homosexuality as it relates to the Bible and Christians. What does the Bible say about homosexuality? Does genetics, environment, or traumatic life experiences justify homosexuality? What is God’s will for people with same-sex attractions? Does the Bible discriminate against people with same-sex attractions? Is it possible to abstain from homosexual acts? Should not Christians respect all people, regardless of their sexual orientation? Did not Jesus preach tolerance? If so, should not Christians take a permissive view of homosexuality? Does God approve of same-sex marriage? Does God disapprove of homosexuality? If so, how could God tell someone who is attracted to people of the same sex to shun homosexuality, is that not cruel? If one has same-sex attraction, is it possible to avoid homosexuality? How can I as a Christian explain the Bible’s view of homosexuality? IT IS CRUCIAL that Christians always be prepared to reason from the Scriptures, explaining and proving what the Bible does and does not say about homosexuality, yet doing it with gentleness and respect. Andrews will answer these questions and far more.
If you’ve struggled in the world of difficulties that surround you, you’re not alone. Maybe you have looked for help, and you have been given conflicting answers. 40 DAYS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS: Coming-of-Age In Christ, can help you. Its advice is based on answers that actually work, which are found in the Bible. God’s Word has helped billions over thousands of years to face life’s challenges successfully. Find out how it can help you! 40 DAYS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS includes seven sections, with several chapters in each. It includes the following sections: Sexual Desires and Love, your friends, your family, school, recreation, your health. You need advice you can trust! 40 DAYS DEVOTIONAL FOR YOUTHS will give you that. This author has worked with thousands of youths from around the world. The Bible-based sound advice helped them. Now you can discover how it can help you.
Young ones and teens, you are exposed to complex problems that your parents may not understand. Young Christians, you are bombarded with multiple options for solving everyday problems through social media. Where do you turn to find answers? Where can you look to find guidance from Scripture? In order to provide a Christian perspective to problem-solving, the author of this devotional book decided to take a different approach. Terry Overton was determined to find out what problems middle school children and teens were worried about the most. While visiting her grandchildren one weekend, she asked her granddaughter to send topics to her so that she could write a devotional about the topic. In a matter of weeks, not only did her granddaughter send her topics, but the other grandchildren and their friends sent topics of concern. Once the author wrote a devotional for a topic, it was sent to the teen requesting the devotional. Soon, these requests were happening in real time. Students sent text requests about problems happening in school and asked what the student should do? How should this be handled?
This devotional book follows the author’s own faith journey back to God. Significant life events can shake our world and distort our faith. Following life’s tragedies, a common reaction is to become angry with God or to reject Him altogether. Examples of tragedies or traumas include life-changing events such as physical or sexual assault, destruction of one’s home, the tragic death of a loved one, diagnoses of terminal diseases, divorce, miscarriages, or being a victim of a crime. Tragedies or traumas can cause feelings of anxiety, depression, shame, and guilt.
Throughout the book, common themes emerge to support caregivers. The reader will find interesting Bible Scriptures, offering a Christian perspective, for handling issues that may arise. These inspiring passages will assist the caregiver in finding peace and faith as they travel their journey as a caregiver. Although caregivers may not know how long they will play this role, they take on the responsibility without any question. Taking care of others is often mentioned in the Bible and, as noted in this devotional, this self-sacrificing, highly valued, and often challenging service will ultimately be rewarded.
Humans must breathe in the air of our atmosphere to survive. Many cities because of pollution face a dangerous level of contamination in their air. However, an even more deadly air affects both Christians and nonChristians. Ordinary methods or devices cannot detect this poisonous air. The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, spoke of the “air,” when he said that Satan was “the ruler of the authority of the air.” (Eph. 2:2) In that, very same verse Paul said the “air” is “the spirit now working in the sons of disobedience.” If we breathe in this “air,” we will begin to adopt their attitude, thoughts, speech, and conduct.
Humans must breathe in the air of our atmosphere to survive. Many cities because of pollution face a dangerous level of contamination in their air. However, an even more deadly air affects both Christians and nonChristians. Ordinary methods or devices cannot detect this poisonous air. The apostle Paul, in his letter to the Ephesians, spoke of the “air,” when he said that Satan was “the ruler of the authority of the air.” (Eph. 2:2) In that, very same verse Paul said the “air” is “the spirit now working in the sons of disobedience.” If we breathe in this “air,” we will begin to adopt their attitude, thoughts, speech, and conduct.
BREAD OF HEAVEN helps the reader to have a greater understanding of the timeless truths of Scripture and a deeper appreciation of the grandeur of God. It offers meditations on selected Scriptures which will draw the reader’s attention upwards to the Savior. Kieran Beville’s daily devotional combines down-to-earth, unstuffy humanity in today’s world with a biblical and God-centered approach, and draws on rich theology in a thoroughly accessible way. He addresses not just the intellect and the will but gets to the heart, our motivational center, through the mind. If your Christian life could benefit from a short, well-written daily blast of Christ’s comfort and challenge, get this book and use it! These short Bible-based meditations are fresh and contemporary. Beville gives to the twenty-first-century reader what earlier authors have given to theirs. Here is practical wisdom that is a helpful guide to stimulate worship and set you thinking as you begin each day with God.
The Conversation: An Intimate Journal of the Emmaus Encounter is a unique and riveting reconstruction from the unnamed disciple’s account found in Luke 24 regarding his journey with Cleopas on the road to Emmaus after witnessing Jesus’s crucifixion and burial, along with hearing claims of His empty tomb. Suddenly, a Stranger begins walking with them. With their eyes “prevented” from recognizing Him as the risen Lord Jesus Christ—Yeshua the Messiah, their new, wise Traveling Companion correlates the Old Covenant Scriptures, by way of Moses and the prophets, with what they witnessed.
This “journal” is your opportunity to eavesdrop and learn what that conversation might have been like, as pertinent prophecies unfold revealing evidence that the Messiah’s suffering, death, burial, and resurrection were, in fact, specifically foretold.
Unique and life-changing, More Than Devotion, through a melding of accounts from both the Old Covenant and New, proves that our trustworthy God truly is the same yesterday, today, and forever. All fifty convicting devotions draw from a rich scriptural context, concluding with a practical, achievable call to action, plus journaling space for personal reflection. New believers and veteran followers of our Lord can grow in the innermost areas of their lives and enjoy a more intimate walk with the Savior.
AN APOCALYPTIC NOVEL: As you are no doubt are aware, Jerry B. Jenkins and Tim LaHaye in 1995 wrote a novel entitled “Left Behind.” Jerry and Tim had some prior success with a major publisher and were able to get their novel published. The Left Behind novel was published by Tyndale House beginning in 1995 within a multiple volumes Left Behind series resulting in sales exceeding 60 million books. In 1992 Don Alexander wrote the storyline embedded in Left Behind. He copyrighted the novel in 1992 under the title “Oren Natas” [who is the Anti-Christ in his storyline]. The entire novel is contained in a single volume. It is a novel written depicting a colorful and witty cast of characters who live through all the “end time” Bible prophecies.
A routine classified telepathic interrogation of a potential terrorist, followed by an assignment that doesn’t go as planned thrusts Tabatha – the world’s only telepathic human – into the public eye. The exposure leads an evil neuro-scientist requesting a meeting with her in hopes of luring her to his cause as well as unveiling a deadly creative work that has spanned three decades of research and development.
ONLINE REVIEW: “Very fun read. Fast paced and honest. Tons of evolution occurs during the process thru the story. Wonderful girl trying to become an adult Christian in a world that also pits her superpowers against terrorists with the help of her own special forces team. Buy this book and just enjoy!”
In June 1985, an excavation project was undertaken by The British Antiquities Volunteers (BAV) at a plot of rocky land where the Kidron and Hinnom Valleys meet near the eastern side of Old Jerusalem. That year many hundreds of (mostly redundant) ‘small finds’ were recovered in the Judean desert but none of such significance as a handful of scrolls retrieved from a buried Roman satchel (presumed stolen) at this site. The discovery has since come to be known as ‘The Diary of Judas Iscariot.’ In The Diary of Judas Iscariot Owen Batstone relates the observations and feelings of Judas, a disgruntled disciple, as he accompanies Jesus of Nazareth during His ministry, and uses this fable and allegory to explore some of the ways a person might resist becoming a Christian.
Kevin Trill struggles with the notion that he may have missed the Rapture. With nothing but the clothes on his back and a solid gold pocket watch, he sets off towards Garbor, a safe haven for those who haven’t yet taken the mark of the beast. While on his way to Garbor, he meets up with an unlikely trio who befriends him. Together, they set out towards Garbor. Unfortunately, however, they are soon faced with their first major catastrophe, which sparks debate among them as to whether or not they really are in the Great Tribulation. On their journey, the group meets up with many people, some of them good and some of them evil. …
There grew an element in the valley that did not want to be ruled by the Light of the Word. Over time, they convinced the people to reject it. As they started to reject this Light, the valley grew dim and the fog rolled in. The people craved the darkness rather than the Light because they were evil. They did not want to embrace the Light because it exposed their wickedness. They rejected the Light of the Word and ruled themselves. Those few who had embraced the Light and hated the darkness were killed. Since that time anyone who embraced the Light of the Word, pursued or talked about it were arrested. Those arrested were sentenced to death by stoning. The last prophet gave a prophecy before he was martyred. “The whisperer will come and empower three witnesses that will make manifest the works of darkness and destroy it, and deliver my people from the grip of darkness to the freedom found in the light.” All the Children of the Light were killed off or went into hiding living among the Children of Darkness in secret, not mentioning the Light for fear of death. Generations grew up being ignorant of the Light of the Word and never knowing the difference. No one ever mentioned the Light or dared to even talk about the Light. …
When an ancestor saddles them with the responsibility to purge Australia of a demon threatening to wipe out humanity with black flames, fraternal siblings Amber and Michael Hauksby lay their lives on the line. As the world crumbles around them into chaos, and ancient marsupials wreack havoc in their hometown, they must journey into the treacherous wild lands of the outback to extinguish the black flames that loom on the horizon. First, Amber must seek the counsel of a mysterious being, who calls himself the light spirit. …
“Write Place, Right Time” follows the pre-apocalyptic misadventures of freelance journalist Don Lamplighter. While on what he expects to be a routine Monday night trip to a village board meeting, Lamplighter’s good nature compels him to help a stranded vehicle. Little does he know that by saving one of the car’s occupants, he sets forth a chain of what to him seem to be unrelated events where he must use his physical and social skills to save himself and others from precarious situations.
 Or law
 Or steadfast love, kindness
 Lit understanding
 John H Walton, Zondervan Illustrated Bible Backgrounds Commentary (Old Testament) Volume 5: The Minor Prophets, Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, 474 (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2009).
 Lit Healing shall be to your navel
 A quotation from Prov 3:11-12
 Wisdom is mentioned in the book of Proverbs 46 times!
 Or jewels
 I.e. Long life
 Andrew Knowles, The Bible Guide, 1st Augsburg books ed. (Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg, 2001), 253.
 Duane A. Garrett, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Songs, The New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman Press, 1993), p. 83.
 Or thinking ability; the ability to give wise and careful attention (study) of a matter, based on accurate or full knowledge
 Lit strike your foot
 Or fear, dread, terror
 Or from those to whom it is due
 Lit raise high dishonor