The prophet Isaiah, the son of Amoz (ʾāmōṣ—“strong or courageous”), was apparently a member of a fairly distinguished and influential family. Not only is his father’s name given, but he appears to have been on familiar terms with the royal court even in the reign of Ahaz. He must have been a well-educated student of international affairs, who spent most of his time in the city of Jerusalem, where he was in touch with the crosscurrents of national and foreign affairs. Directed by God to oppose with vigor any entangling alliances with foreign powers (whether with Assyria as against Samaria and Damascus, or with Egypt as against Assyria), his cause was foredoomed to failure, for both government and people chose to put their trust in political alliances rather than in the promises of God.
Until the death of Hezekiah (in 697 or 698), Isaiah enjoyed a large measure of respect despite the unpopularity of his political views, and in the period of religious reform carried through by Hezekiah, his influence upon religion was most significant. Yet as God warned him in the temple vision (Isa. 6:9–10), the nation by and large turned a deaf ear even to his spiritual message. Apart from a small minority of earnest believers, his ministry to his contemporaries was little short of a failure. In the reign of Manasseh, the degenerate son of Hezekiah, a strong tide of reaction set in against the strict Jehovah-worship of the previous reign. Isaiah lived to see the undoing of all his own work so far as contemporary politics were concerned. In spiritual matters, his countrymen fell into an even more desperate condition of depravity than they had in the reign of Ahaz. Recognizing the inevitability of God’s judgment upon the unrepentant nation, Isaiah’s interest during the reign of Manasseh came to be focused increasingly upon the coming overthrow of Jerusalem, the Babylonian Captivity, and the restoration which lay beyond. An old tradition relates that he was martyred at some time in the reign of Manasseh, possibly by being sawed in two inside a hollow log (cf. Heb. 11:37). Since he records the death of Sennacherib in Isa. 37:37–38, it is fair to assume that Isaiah lived until after Sennacherib’s death in 681 B.C.
Critical Theories of the Composition of Isaiah
With the growth of deism in the western world during the late eighteenth century, it was only natural that men of antisupernatural convictions would take exception to those extensive portions of Isaiah which exhibit a foreknowledge of future events. If the book was to be treated as of merely human origin, it was an unavoidable necessity to explain these apparently successful predictions as having been written after the fulfillment had taken place, or at least when it was about to occur. We may distinguish four stages in the history of Isaianic criticism.
- Johann C. Doederlein (1745–1792), professor of theology at Jena, was the first scholar to publish (in 1789) a systematic argument for a sixth-century date for the composition of Isaiah 40–66. He reasoned that since an eighth-century Isaiah could not have foreseen the fall of Jerusalem (in 587) and the seventy years of captivity, he could never have penned the words of comfort to exiled Judah which appear in chapter 40 onward. Furthermore, from the rationalistic standpoint it was obviously impossible for anyone back in 700 B.C. to foresee the rise of Cyrus the Great, who captured Babylon in 539 and gave permission to the Jewish exiles to return to their homeland. But not only was his work foreseen, Cyrus was even referred to by name in two texts: Isaiah 44:28 and 45:1. Obviously, therefore, the author of these prophecies must have been some unknown Jew living in Babylon sometime between the first rise of Cyrus as an international figure (around 550 B.C.) and the fall of Babylon to his expanding empire. This spurious author living in Babylon around 540 came to be known to the critics as “Deutero-Isaiah.”
These arguments proved so persuasive that the other Old Testament scholars like Professor Eichhorn embraced the same view and expressed their agreement. In 1819, Heinrich E W. Gesenius (1786–1842) published a commentary, Jesaja, Zweiter Theil. A professor of theology at Halle and an eminent Hebrew lexicographer of rationalistic convictions, he made out a very able argument for the unity of the authorship of the last twenty-seven chapters of Isaiah and refuted the attacks of those who had already attempted to separate even Deutero-Isaiah into several different sources, arguing that all the main themes throughout these chapters were treated from a unified standpoint and employed language exhibiting striking affinities in vocabulary and style from chapter 40 to 66. He insisted that they all came from the pen of a single author who lived sometime around 540 B.C.
- Inasmuch as conservative scholars had objected to the exilic date assigned to Isaiah II on the ground that even in Isaiah I impressive evidences could be found of a foreknowledge of the future importance of Babylon in Israel’s history, it became necessary to take a second look at the first thirty-nine chapters of Isaiah. Ernst E K. Rosenmueller (1768–1835), professor of Arabic at Leipzig, took the next logical step in elaborating the implications of Doederlein’s position. If an eighth-century author could not have written the passages in 40–66 which betray a foreknowledge of Babylon’s significance, then those extensive sections in Isaiah I (such as chaps. 13 and 14) which show a similar foreknowledge must likewise be denied to the historical Isaiah and assigned to the unknown exilic prophet. The removal of such Babylonian sections logically led to the questioning of Isaianic authorship of other passages too, even those in which divine prediction was not a factor. In the process of time, the genuinely eighth-century portions of Isaiah came to be whittled down to a few hundred verses.
- In the course of this debate it became increasingly apparent that numerous passages in so-called Deutero-Isaiah could hardly be reconciled with a theory of composition in Babylonia. The references to geography, flora, and fauna found in Deutero-Isaiah were far more appropriate to an author living in Syria or Palestine. Arguing from this evidence, Professor Bernard Duhm (1847–1928) of Gottingen came out with a theory of three Isaiahs, none of whom lived in Babylonia. According to his analysis, chapters 40–55 (Deutero-Isaiah) were written about 540 B.C., somewhere in the region of Lebanon, whether in Phoenicia or Syria was not clear. Chapters 56–66 (Trito-Isaiah) were composed in Jerusalem in the time of Ezra, around 450 b.c. Duhm went on to show, however, that in all three Isaiahs there were insertions from still later periods in Judah’s history, all the way down to the first century b.c., when the final redaction was worked out. It was this school of criticism which George Adam Smith adhered to, for the most part, in his homiletical commentary on Isaiah in The Expositor’s Bible. It hardly needs to be pointed out that with the discovery of a second-century B.C. Hebrew manuscript of the complete Isaiah (discovered in the First Qumran cave in 1948) Duhm’s theory of first-century insertions becomes impossible to maintain.
Perhaps it should be added that this divisive criticism did not go unanswered, even in Germany, during the nineteenth century. Among the more notable scholars who upheld the Isaianic authorship of all sixty-six chapters were the following: (a) Carl Paul Caspari (1814–1892), a convert from Judaism who became a professor at the University of Christiania in Norway. He was a pupil of Ernst Wilhelm Hengstenberg (in Berlin); (b) Moritz Drechsler, likewise a pupil of Hengstenberg, who published a commentary on Isa. 1–27, but died before completing the rest of his work; (c) Heinrich A. Hahn (1821–1861), who published and supplemented Drechsler’s work as far as Isaiah 39; (d) Franz Delitzsch (1813–1889), who ably maintained the genuineness of Isaiah’s prophecies through all the editions of his celebrated commentary on Isaiah until the final one (when he finally made room for an exilic Deutero-Isaiah); (e) Rudolf E. Stier (1800–1862) was another able exponent of the Conservative position. In England, the same position was maintained by Ebenezer Henderson, who taught at the Ministerial College, 1830–1850. In America, Joseph Addison Alexander of Princeton Seminary published a very able commentary in two volumes in which he thoroughly refuted the divisive theories of liberal German scholarship.
- In the twentieth century, the tendency of liberal scholarship has been to lower the date of the non-Isaianic portions of Isaiah rather than to multiply the number of Isaiahs. Thus, Charles Cutler Torrey of Yale argued for a single author for Isa. 34–66 (except 36–39), which were composed by a writer who lived in Palestine, quite probably in Jerusalem itself, near the end of the fifth century. This author, according to Torrey, did not address the exiles at all, but the people to whom he spoke were in his own land of Palestine. The mention of Cyrus and the references to Babylon and Chaldea are all mere interpolations which occurred only in five passages and may therefore be disregarded.
Some more recent scholars, such as W. H. Brownlee, are coming to the view that the entire Isaianic corpus of sixty-six chapters betrays such strong evidences of unity as to suggest an orderly and systematic arrangement by one or more adherents of a so-called Isaianic School. According to this position, a circle of disciples treasured a recollection of the eighth-century prophet’s utterances and then gradually added to them with each successive generation until finally an able practitioner of this school, living possibly in the third century, reworked the entire body of material into a well-ordered literary masterpiece.
Isaiah: Critical Arguments for Source Division
Broadly speaking, the grounds adduced for disproving the Isaianic authorship of chapters 40–66 may be classified under three headings: differences in theme and subject matter, differences in language and style, and differences in theological ideas. Each of these criteria is now to be analyzed, with a view to its soundness and tenability.
ALLEGED DIFFERENCES IN THEME AND SUBJECT MATTER
Divisive critics argue that in Isaiah I (1–39) it is contemporary conditions which occupy the center of the author’s attention. In Isaiah II (40–66) the center of interest is shifted to the Babylonian Exile and the prospect of a return to the ancestral homeland. It is argued that a futuristic viewpoint could not possibly have been maintained over such a large number of chapters. This has proved to be a persuasive consideration even to those mediating scholars who are not prepared to rule out the theoretical possibility of genuine prediction. By and large, however, the principal architects of the Two-Isaiah theory have simply assumed on rationalistic grounds the impossibility of divine revelation in genuinely predictive prophecy. From this philosophical a priori viewpoint they have addressed themselves to the actual data of the text. As J. A. Alexander pointed out in his Commentary, the basic assumption of all such critics, however else they may differ among themselves, is that there cannot be such a thing as a distinct prophetic insight of the distant future. He goes on to observe:
“He who rejects a given passage of Isaiah because it contains definite predictions of the future too remote from the times in which he lived to be the object of ordinary human foresight, will of course be led to justify this condemnation by specific proof drawn from the diction, style or idiom of the passage, its historical or archaeological allusions, its rhetorical character, its moral tone, or its religious spirit. On the discovery and presentation of such proofs, the previous assumption, which he intended to sustain, cannot fail to have a warping influence.”
This comment contains a valid psychological insight which needs to be borne in mind in any analysis of the structure of the higher critical assault on the genuineness of Isaiah. If there can be no such thing as fulfilled prophecy, it becomes logically necessary to explain all apparent fulfillments as mere vaticinia ex eventu, that is, prophecies after the event. The problem for the antisupernaturalist becomes particularly acute in the case of the references to King Cyrus by name (44:28; 45:1). It might be a plausible supposition that some keen political analyst living in the early 540s could have made a successful prediction of the eventual success of the able young king who had already made a name for himself in Media by 550 B.C. But it is quite another thing for an author living in 700 B.C. to foresee events 150 years in advance of their occurrence.
It is usual in this connection to urge that the Scripture seldom predicts a future historical figure by name. Yet it should be pointed out that where the occasion calls for it, the Bible does not hesitate to specify the names of men and places even centuries in advance. For example, the name of King Josiah was, according to 1 Kings 13:2, foretold by a prophet of Judah back in the time of Jeroboam I (930–910), a full three centuries before he appeared in Bethel to destroy the golden calf and idolatrous sanctuary which Jeroboam had erected. This of course may be explained away as a late interpolation in 1 Kings; but there are other instances which cannot be so neatly disposed of. Thus Bethlehem is named by Micah (5:2) as the birthplace of the coming Messiah, seven centuries before the birth of the Lord Jesus. This was a fact well known to the Jewish scribes in the time of Herod the Great.
It is important to observe that the historical situation confronting Isaiah in 690 B.C. gave ample warrant for so unusual a sign as the prediction of Cyrus by name 150 years in advance of the fall of Babylon. Judah had sunk to such a low ebb in matters of religion and morals that the very honor of God demanded a total destruction of the kingdom and a removal of the entire nation into exile (just as had been foretold or forewarned in Lev. 26 and Deut. 28). If God was going to vindicate His holy law, and honor His own promises of disciplinary chastisement, there was no alternative but devastation and captivity. But once a people had been carried off into exile in a distant land, there was virtually no hope that they would ever return to their ancestral soil. Such a thing had never happened before in history, and humanly speaking, there was no prospect that the dispersed Judah of a future generation would ever return to the land of promise. It was therefore altogether appropriate for God to furnish a very definite token or sign to which exiled believers might look as an indication of their coming deliverance and restoration to Palestine. This sign was furnished in the specifying of the very name of their future deliverer.
Attempts have been made by C. C. Torrey and others to remove the two references to Cyrus as later insertions which did not truly belong in the text. But the contextual evidence will not permit any such deletion. O. T. Allis in The Unity of Isaiah (p. 79) points to the climactic and parallelistic structure of 44:26–28, and shows that this would be quite destroyed or fatally impaired if the name Koresh were removed. In this passage the greatest emphasis is laid on God’s ability to foretell the future and to fulfill what He has predicted. The name is then introduced to serve as objective confirmation of the divine authority underlying the entire prophetic utterance.
Allis also points out that the references to Cyrus which begin at 41:2–5 reach a climax in 44:28, and then taper off until the final reference (in which the Persian deliverer is alluded to although not named) in 48:14. Counting all the allusions, there are repeated references to Cyrus through these eight chapters; there is vivid description of his person and work, and his character is set forth as two-sided. On the one hand he is represented as God’s “anointed shepherd,” and on the other hand he is depicted as a pagan foreigner from “a far country” (46:11) who has not known Jehovah (45:5). It goes without saying that all this would be quite pointless if at the time these passages were composed Cyrus had already become a well-known figure who had made his reputation as the consolidator of the Medo-Persian empire (as the 550–540 date would imply). On the contrary, this future deliverer of captive Israel is always presented as a liberator who will make his appearance in the distant future; and his appearance, in confirmation of this promise, is to furnish an irrefutable demonstration of the divine authority of Isaiah’s message.
It should be pointed out that even in the first 39 chapters of Isaiah, the greatest emphasis is laid upon fulfilled prediction, and many future events are foretold. Some of these fulfillments took place within a few years of the prediction; for instance, the deliverance of Jerusalem from the power of Sennacherib by sudden supernatural means in 701 B.C.(37:33–35), the defeat of Damascus within three years by the Assyrian emperor in 732 B.C. (8:4, 7), and the destruction of Samaria within twelve years after Isaiah foretold it (7:16). Other events were not to take place until long after Isaiah’s death; for instance, the fall of Babylon to the Medes and Persians (13:17), and the eventual desolation of Babylon which should render it an uninhabited and accursed site forever (13:19–20). Also, another long-range prediction was the coming of the glorious Light in a future generation (9:1–2), which was to be fulfilled by the ministry of Christ seven centuries later (cf Matt. 4:15–16).
As for a foreknowledge of the Babylonian Exile, it should be pointed out that even chapter 6, which is acknowledged by all critics to be authentically Isaianic, points forward to the utter depopulation and devastation of Judah which took place under Nebuchadnezzar. In verses 11 and 12 we read that God’s judgment is to be visited upon Judah “until cities be waste without inhabitant, and houses without man, and the land become utterly waste, and Jehovah have removed men far away, and the forsaken places be many in the midst of the land” (ASV). The following verse, when translated according to the indications of the context, clear contains a clear reference to the restoration of the captivity from exile: “Yet in it shall be a tenth, and it shall return, and shall be eaten up.” Some interpreters have construed wašābâ (“will return”) as having the force of the adverb again, but in this case such an interpretation is excluded by the appearance of the name of Isaiah’s son three verses thereafter. It is obvious that Shear-jashub (“A Remnant will Return”) in 7:3, was a name bestowed upon this child as a token of Isaiah’s faith that God would fulfill the promise of 6:13, that a remnant would return. To this should be added the clear prediction made by Isaiah himself to Hezekiah (Isa. 39:5–7) after the latter’s ill-considered display of all his treasure to the Babylonian envoys, that some day all of this wealth would be carried off to Babylon, along with Hezekiah’s own descendants, who would have to serve as slaves there. Since Babylon was only a subject province of the Assyrian empire at the time of this prediction, the same accurate foreknowledge of future Chaldean supremacy must have been revealed to the eighth-century Isaiah as appears in chapters 40–66.
In the latter part of Isaiah, as has already been suggested, the situation confronting Isaiah as a prophet of Yahweh in the midst of the crass idolatry of Manasseh’s time demanded a response from the Lord which would be appropriate to the challenge. If God should bring judgment upon disobedient Judah, even to the point of total military defeat and a complete destruction of the land, it might be possible for observers to interpret this as a mere stroke of misfortune such as might happen to any people. Possibly it might even be construed as an expression of displeasure on the part of the national God of Israel toward His unfaithful devotees, for even the pagan religious thinkers were apt to explain national misfortune in this way. (Thus the Babylonian Chronicle explains the subjugation of Babylon by Cyrus on the ground that Marduk was vexed at her for some unspecified offenses. Likewise King Mesha of Moab explained the former subjugation of Moab by Israel on the ground that Chemosh was angry with his own devotees.) A decisive testimony to the righteousness and sovereignty of Jehovah as the one true God could be made out only if His acts of punitive judgment and subsequent redemption were solemnly announced by special revelation long before the occurrence of the fulfillment. Only thus could the identity and authority of the Sovereign of the universe be clearly established before the eyes of all mankind. (Cf. Isa. 48:5, where God states that He foretold what He would do, “lest thou shouldst say, Mine idol hath done them, and my graven image, and my molten image, hath commanded them.”) So it was that the degenerate age of Manasseh, which threatened to extinguish completely the testimony of Israel, presented a set of circumstances which altogether demanded an extended series of predictive prophecies such as are contained in Isa. 40–66.
Quite clearly this is the intention of the author. In Isa. 41:26 we read: “Who hath declared it from the beginning, that we may know? and beforetime, that we may say, He is right?” (ASV). (There is an allusion here to previous predictions of Isaiah which had already been strikingly fulfilled.) In 42:9, 23: “Behold, the former things are come to pass, and new things do I declare; before they spring forth I tell you of them.” And again in 43:9, 12: “Who among them [i.e., the heathen gods] can declare this, and show us former things?… I have declared, and I have saved, and I have showed.” Likewise in 44:7–8: “Who, as I, shall call, and shall declare it? And the things that are coming, and that shall come to pass, let them [the idols] declare.… Have I not declared unto thee of old, and showed it? And ye are my witnesses.”
Such passages as these make it abundantly plain that the extensive and precise predictions of the future contained in these chapters of Isaiah 2 were intended to achieve a very special purpose. They were to furnish confirmation that the prophet’s message was in fact the message of the one true God, who is absolute Sovereign over the affairs of men; that it was by His decree rather than because of the might of Babylon that the covenant nation would be carried off into captivity. Only through the powerful encouragement of fulfilled prediction would the future generation of exiles summon up the courage to return to Palestine, even after the permission of the new Persian government had been granted. In order to sustain the faith of Israel through all these overwhelming reverses—the complete devastation of cities and farmlands, and the destruction of the temple—it was necessary to furnish an absolutely decisive proof that these events had taken place by the permission and plan of the God of Israel, rather than because He was a puny god overcome by the more powerful deities of the Chaldean empire (a conclusion which all heathendom would inevitably draw after the fall of Jerusalem).
It should also be pointed out that the Babylon-centered chapters (40–48) do not appear without some advance preparation in the earlier part of Isaiah. As E. J. Young points out, chapters 1–39 constitute a “staircase, as it were, which gradually leads one from the Assyrian to the Chaldean period. The two belong together, since the former is the preparation for the latter, and the latter is the completion of the former.” That is to say, the atmosphere of Isaiah’s day was filled with the threat of exile. Samaria had already been carried away captive by the Assyrians in 722; Sennacherib made a supreme attempt to do the same to Jerusalem in 701. With deliberate purpose, Isaiah placed chapters 38 and 39 (even though they narrated earlier events from about 712 B.C.) after chapters 36 and 37, which narrate episodes occurring in 701. (Note Isa. 38:5–6, which quite clearly point forward to the future invasion of Sennacherib in 701.) This is because chapters 38 and 39 lead up to the reason for the coming Babylonian Exile: the pride of Hezekiah in displaying his wealth to the Babylonian envoys sent by Merodach-Baladan. Hence chapter 39 closes with an ominous prediction of the Chaldean captivity. But even in the prior chapters there are numerous intimations of the coming exile of the nation (cf. 3:24–26; 5:5–6; 6:11–13; 24:11–12; 27:13; 32:13–18). Only by the question-begging device of labeling all such references as later interpolations can one evade the impact of this considerable body of evidence that the eighth-century Isaiah foreknew that the Exile was coming. Furthermore, there is the testimony of 2 Chron. 36:23 and Ezra 1:2 that Cyrus’s decree of release for the Jewish exiles at Babylon included an affirmation that Yahweh had “charged” him to “build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah.” While it is conceivable that recently concocted prophecies were represented to Cyrus as being an authentic prediction from the eighth century, it is far more likely that he was impressed by a genuinely ancient oracle containing his name more than a century before he was born. It is most reasonable to assume that it was this circumstance which convinced him of the reality and power of the God of the Hebrews, and impelled him to take the extraordinary measure of authorizing a mass migration of Yahweh’s worshippers to their ancestral homeland. But at the same time it should be recognized that he also restored some other captive peoples to their native cities (ANET, p. 316), possibly to avoid appearing overly partial to the Jews alone.
Finally, it ought to be observed that a Babylonian standpoint does not really prevail as extensively through Isaiah II as advocates of the two Isaiah theory have maintained. Subsequent to chapter 48, clear allusions to the Exile and Restoration are hard to find. Many of the discourses address themselves to conditions known to have prevailed in Judah in the reign of Manasseh. J. A. Alexander appropriately points out: “How seldom, after all, the book mentions Babylon, the Exile, or the Restoration.… An exact enumeration of all such cases, made for the first time, might surprise one whose previous impressions had all been derived from the sweeping declarations of interpreters and critics.”8 In other words, the advocates of Deutero-Isaiah have attempted to find many allusions to the late sixth-century situation which are really susceptible to quite other interpretations. It is also a fact that the name of Babylon occurs with less frequency in chapters 40–66 than in 1–39. A statistical count shows that there are only four occurrences in the later section (43:14; 47:1; 48:14, 20), but in chapters 1–39 there are nine occurrences, or more than twice as many.
Internal evidence of the composition of Isaiah II in Palestine. A most important criterion for dating ancient documents is found in those references or allusions to contemporary events or surrounding conditions which it may happen to contain. The geographical setting which it presupposes, the kind of plants and animals which it mentions, the climatic conditions which it implies as prevailing in the author’s own environment—all these are important data for determining the place and time for the composition of any document whether ancient or modern. A careful examination of such allusions in Isa. 40–66 points unmistakably to the conclusion that it was composed in Palestine rather than in Babylon. We have already seen that Bernard Duhm, on a rationalistic basis, came to the same conclusion in 1892.
Isaiah 40–66 shows little knowledge of Babylonian geography, but great familiarity with that of Palestine. Thus the trees referred to are not found in Babylonia, but are native to Palestine, such as the cedar, cypress, and oak (cf 41:19, 44:14: “He heweth him down cedars, and taketh the cypress and the oak … he planteth an ash, and the rain doth nourish it”). The writer’s geographical viewpoint is clearly Palestinian. Thus Yahweh is said to send off His decree to Babylon (43:14). Israel is called the seed of Abraham which the Lord has taken from “the ends of the earth” (apparently a reference to Babylonia) in 41:9 and 45:22. The same is true with the phrases “from the east” and “from a far country” as employed in 46:11, and “from thence” rather than “from hence” in 52:11 (“Depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing”)—an exhortation to the future exiles to leave Babylon as soon as the invitation has been given them by the coming deliverer, Cyrus.
The author assumes that the cities of Judah are still standing. Compare 40:9: “Say unto the cities of Judah, Behold your God!” This verse implies that Zion and the other cities of Judah are in actual existence at the time of writing, rather than being uninhabited sites in the wake of Chaldean devastation. The same is true of 62:6: “I have set watchmen upon thy walls, O Jerusalem.” Antisupernaturalists cannot explain this away as an ideal anticipation of cities which are some day to be rebuilt. Such a defense would violate a cardinal maxim of their own, as expressed by Driver, “The prophet speaks always, in the first instance, to his own contemporaries; the message which he brings is intimately related to the circumstances of his own time.… The prophet never abandons his own historical position, but speaks from it.”
It is only to be expected that if the cities are still standing, the Israelites themselves are assumed to be dwelling in Palestine by the author of these prophecies. Thus in 58:6 we read: “Is not this the fast that I have chosen? to loose the bands of wickedness, to undo the heavy burdens, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke?” This would be very strange language to address to a people who were groaning under the bondage of the Chaldeans as a captive people. It is very evident that the Jews are still dwelling in their own land and are competent to hold their own law courts. Only thus would it be possible for corrupt judges to pervert the administration of the law to the disadvantage of the less privileged classes of society.
Evidence for the pre-exilic composition of Isaiah II. We have seen there is no good support for a Babylonian origin of Isaiah II. The internal evidence as it has been detailed above has shown how indefensible was this element in the theory of Deutero-Isaiah, as it was propounded by Doederlein, Eichhorn, and Rosenmueller. More recent scholars tend to regard Isaiah II as having been composed either in Palestine or in the region of Lebanon to the north. They nevertheless insist that chapters 40–66 were composed late, either in the exilic or post-exilic period. It remains to be shown that this theory also fails to account for the data of the internal evidence.
In the first place, many of the same evils which prevailed in the time of the eighth-century Isaiah are evidently still current in the generation of the author of Isaiah II. Note for example Isa. 57:7, “Upon a high and lofty mountain you have made your bed. You also went up there to offer sacrifice.” Bloodshed and violence are denounced in 1:15: “Yea, when ye make many prayers, I will not hear: your hands are full of blood,” and they are still being denounced in 59:3, 7: “For your hands are defiled with blood, and your fingers with iniquity; your lips have spoken lies, your tongue hath muttered perverseness.… Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood.” In both parts of the book, the prophet inveighs against the prevalent falsehood, injustice, and oppression which were practiced in Judah. Compare 10:12 “Woe unto them that decree unrighteous decrees, and that write grievousness which they have prescribed; to turn aside the needy from judgment, and to take away the right from the poor of my people, that widows may be their prey, and that they may rob the fatherless” with 59:4–9, where the indictment is very similar: “None calleth for justice, nor any pleadeth for truth: they trust in vanity, and speak lies; they conceive mischief, and bring forth iniquity.”
Both in Isaiah I and II, a revolting hypocrisy characterizes the religious life of the nation. Compare 29:13: “Forasmuch as this people draw near me with their mouth, and with their lips do honor me, but have removed their heart far from me, and their fear toward me is taught by the precept of men” with 58:2, 4: “Yet they seek me daily, and delight to know my ways, as a nation that did righteousness, and forsook not the ordinance of their God: they ask of me the ordinances of justice; they take delight in approaching to God.… Behold, ye fast for strife and debate, and to smite with the fist of wickedness: ye shall not fast as ye do this day, to make your voice to be heard on high.” Moreover, in both sections of the book the Jews are assumed to be practicing their orgiastic rites in the sacred groves. (In 1:29: “They shall be ashamed of the oaks which they have desired”; and in 57:5: “Ye that inflame yourselves among the oaks, under every green tree,” ASV.)
Although the same types of sin are assumed to be prevalent by the author in both parts of Isaiah, it should be observed that there is a difference. In 40–66 the author refers to an extreme degeneracy and breakdown of morals which accords with no known period of Jewish history so closely as with the age of Manasseh, who “shed innocent blood very much, till he had filled Jerusalem from one end to another” (2 Kings 21:16). One has only to read 2 Kings 21 and Isa. 59 to see the close correspondence. Thus 59:10: “We grope for the wall like the blind, and we grope as if we had no eyes: we stumble at noonday as in the night; we are in desolate places as dead men.” So also verses 13–14: “In transgressing and lying against the Lord, and departing away from our God, speaking oppression and revolt, conceiving and uttering from the heart words of falsehood. And judgment is turned away backward, and justice standeth afar off: for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter.”
A most decisive objection to a post-exilic date for the composition of Isaiah II is to be found in the numerous passages which refer to idolatry as a wide and prevalent evil in Israel. Isaiah 44:9–20 contains a long diatribe against the folly of making graven images for worship, as if this were a major problem in contemporary Judah. This passage cannot be dismissed as a mere challenge to contemporary pagan nations, for there are too many other passages which speak of idolatry being practiced by the author’s own countrymen at that time (cf. 57:4–5, “Against whom do ye sport yourselves?… Enflaming yourselves with idols under every green tree, slaying the children in the valleys under the clifts of the rocks?”).
Not only is ritual prostitution here referred to, but also the sacrificing of babies to Molech and Adrammelech, an infamous practice carried on during the reign of Manasseh in the Valley of the Sons of Hinnom (2 Kings 21:6; 2 Chron. 33:6). And again, Isa. 57:7: “Upon a lofty and high mountain hast thou set thy bed; even thither wentest thou up to offer sacrifice.” This is an obvious allusion to worship in the high places (bāmôt), a type of worship which flourished in the pre-exilic period, but never thereafter. Again, 65:2–4: “I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people … a people that provoke me to my face continually, sacrificing in gardens, and burning incense upon bricks; that sit among the graves, and lodge in the secret places; that eat swine’s flesh, and broth of abominable things is in their vessels” (ASV). In the very last chapter we find that idolatry is still being practiced. In 66:17: “They that sanctify themselves and purify themselves to go unto the gardens, behind one in the midst [or, one asherah], eating swine’s flesh, and the abomination, and the mouse, they shall come to an end together, saith Jehovah” (ASV). Plainly these things represent vicious evils and degenerate pagan abominations which were going on at the time the prophet composed these words.
Let us carefully consider the implications of this prevalence of idolatry in Judah. The hilly or mountainous terrain referred to completely excludes the possibility of idolatrous worship being carried on in Babylonia, which was a flat, alluvial terrain. The types of worship alluded to are precisely those which are described as having been cultivated in the reign of Manasseh. So far as the post-exilic period is concerned, it is agreed by scholars of every persuasion that the returning Jews who resettled Judah from 536 to 450 brought back no idol worship with them. The terrible ordeal of the Babylonian captivity had brought about a complete rejection of graven images on the part of the Jewish remnant. This complete freedom from idolatry in post-exilic Judea is proved beyond all reasonable doubt by the writings of the admittedly post-exilic authors, notably the prophets Haggai, Zechariah, and Malachi, and the historians Ezra and Nehemiah. Many and various were the evils which arose in the Second Commonwealth during the century which elapsed between Zerubbabel and Malachi, and these evils are clearly described and earnestly denounced both by Ezra and Nehemiah. The book of Malachi contains a list of sins into which his countrymen had fallen. Yet none of these suggests the slightest practice of idolatry. There was intermarriage with foreign women of idolatrous background; there was oppression of the poor by the rich; there was desecration of the Sabbath; there was a withholding of tithes—but none of these authors ever mentions the reappearance of idolatry in the land of Judah. There was also acceptance of blemished, defective animals for sacrifice, Mal. 1:12–14. The only possible conclusion to draw is that the worship of graven images there was unknown. Not until the age of Antiochus Epiphanes in the second century B.C. was any real effort made to introduce it once more among the Israelite people. Therefore, in the light of this evidence, it is impossible to hold that Isaiah II was composed at any time after the exile, or indeed after the fall of Jerusalem.
Some Liberal scholars have felt compelled to make slight concessions in this direction and admit the possibility of late pre-exilic strands in Isaiah II. Thus Bentzen notes that “in like manner 63:7–65:25 may be connected with the events of 587 B.C.” W. H. Brownlee likewise comments: “It is not impossible that there are some pre-exilic prophecies among the oracles of Volume II. Note especially 56:9–57:13; 58:1–9 as of possible pre-exilic origin.” It can easily be seen how damaging to the theory of Isaiah II are such admissions as these. If such considerable passages on the basis of their contemporary allusions are to be dated prior to the fall of Jerusalem, the possibility arises that many other sections which do not happen to contain contemporary allusions may also have been of pre-exilic origin. In other words, if portions of these twenty-seven chapters demand a time of composition prior to the downfall of the Jewish monarchy, and there are no other passages which demand an exilic or post-exilic origin (except upon the basis of a philosophic a priori that all fulfilled predictions are vaticinia ex eventu), then the only reasonable deduction to draw is that the entire work was composed prior to 587 B.C. This means that the whole case for Deutero- or Trito-Isaiah falls to the ground, simply on the basis of the internal evidence of the text itself.
Isaiah: Alleged Differences in Language and Style
PROPONENTS OF THE ISAIAH II THEORY affirm that there are very definite and marked contrasts in style between Isaiah I and Isaiah II and that these can be accounted for only by a difference in authorship. The purpose of the ensuing discussion will be to show that the stylistic similarities between the two parts are even more significant than the alleged differences, and that such differences as there are may easily be accounted for by the change in situation which confronted Isaiah in his later years, and also by the maturing of his literary genius. Numerous parallels to this may be pointed out in the history of world literature. Thus in the case of John Milton, we find far more striking dissimilarities between Paradise Lost, which he composed in later years, and the style of L’Allegro or Il Penseroso, which appeared in his earlier period. A similar contrast is observable between his prose works such as Christian Doctrine and Areopagitica. Or, to take an example from German literature, Goethe’s Faust Part II presents striking contrasts in concept, style, and approach as over against Faust Part I. These contrasts are far more obvious than those between Isaiah I and Isaiah II. In his Dictionary of the Bible (p. 339a), Davis points out that in the twenty-five years of Shakespeare’s activity, four distinct periods can be distinguished in his dramatic productions, each period being marked by clear differences in style.
As in the case of Pentateuchal criticism, dissectionists of Isaiah have resorted to lists of rare or unique words or phrases in order to confirm a diversity of authorship. But this type of evidence has to be handled with the greatest care in order to come out to valid results. Mere word lists may prove little or nothing. In the case of the Latin poet Horace, some of the best-known phrases from his Ars Poetica, such as callida junctura, in medias res, and ad unguem, occur nowhere else in the writings of this poet. Yet far from being considered spurious because unique, they are very frequently quoted as examples of Horace’s literary skill. So far as Isaiah is concerned, Nagelsbach points out: “For among the chapters of Isaiah that are acknowledged genuine, there is not a single one which does not contain thoughts and words that are new and peculiar to it alone.”
- The stylistic resemblances between Isaiah I and Isaiah II are numerous and striking. Most distinctive of all is the characteristic title of God which occurs frequently throughout Isaiah and only five times elsewhere in the Old Testament. This title is “the Holy One of Israel” (qeḏôš Yiśrā˓ēʾl), which expresses a central theological emphasis that dominates all the prophecies contained in this book. A statistical count shows that it occurs twelve times in chapters 1–39 and fourteen times in chapters 40–66. Elsewhere in the Old Testament it only occurs in Pss. 71:22; 89:18 and Jer. 50:29; 51:5: Whether or not Isaiah actually invented this title, it became a sort of authoritative seal for all of his writing. Thus it furnishes very strong evidence of the unity of the entire production. The only alternative possible to advocates of the Deutero-Isaiah theory is to assert that the unknown prophet or prophets who contributed to chapters 40–66 were so dominated by the influence and message of the eighth-century Isaiah that they felt constrained to employ his favorite title of God with even greater frequency than he did himself. But such an explanation does not account for the almost complete absence of this title in the writings of other post-exilic authors who certainly could not have been ignorant of the eighth-century Isaiah. Furthermore, this type of evasion appears to savor of circular reasoning: Isaiah II must have been written by a different author from Isaiah I because of the stylistic differences; but where the most striking stylistic similarities are pointed out, these indicate only that the later author was a pupil or imitator of the original author. Thus the facts are made to conform to the theory, rather than deriving the theory from the facts (i.e., from the textual data).
Conservative scholars have pointed out at least forty or fifty sentences or phrases which appear in both parts of Isaiah, and indicate its common authorship. Of these the following are typical:
“For the mouth of Yahweh hath spoken it” (ASV) occurs in 1:20; 40:5; 58:14.
“I act, and who can reverse it?” (43:13, NASB) is very close to “His hand is stretched out, and who shall turn it back?” (14:27).
“And the ransomed of Yahweh shall return, and come with singing unto Zion; and everlasting joy shall be upon their heads” (ASV) occurs in both 35:10 and 51:11.
“Will assemble the outcasts of Israel” (11:12) is very close to “gathereth the outcasts of Israel” in 56:8.
“For Yahweh hath a day of vengeance, a year of recompense for the cause of Zion” (34:8, ASV) greatly resembles 61:2, “to proclaim the year of Yahweh’s favor, and the day of vengeance of our God” (ASV).
“The lion shall eat straw like the ox.… They shall not hurt nor destroy in all my holy mountain” appears both in 11:6–9 and 65:25.
“For in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert” (35:6) is very close to “I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water” (41:18).
“And the Spirit of Yahweh shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding” (11:2, ASV) is quite similar to, “The Spirit of the Lord Yahweh is upon me, because Yahweh has anointed me” (61:1, ASV).
In 35:8 we meet with the figure of the highway of Yahweh which runs through the wilderness or desert; the same thought occurs in 40:3.
“I am full of the burnt-offerings of rams, and the fat of fed beasts.… Your new moons and appointed feasts my soul hateth: they are a trouble unto me; I am weary to bear them” (1:11, 14) is very similar to “Thou hast filled me with the fat of thy sacrifices: but thou hast burdened me with thy sins, thou hast wearied me with thine iniquities” (43:24, ASV).
“In that day will Yahweh of hosts become a crown of glory, and a diadem of beauty, unto the residue of his people” (28:5, ASV) greatly resembles, “Thou shalt also be a crown of beauty in the land of Yahweh, and a royal diadem in the hand of thy God” (63:3, ASV).
Even the use of the imperfect tense of ʾāmar “to say” with Yahweh as subject (rather than the usual perfect tense ʾāmar), namely yōʾmar YHWH (“Yahweh is saying”) is a peculiarity of Isaiah, and occurs both in I and II (cf. E. J. Young, Who Wrote Isaiah? chap. 8).
In view of these and many other parallels which can be cited, it is difficult to see how an unprejudiced observer could fail to be impressed by such numerous instances of resemblance. These distinctive turns of expression which so obviously bear the stamp of originality and yet which occur in both portions of the book indicate that the same author must have composed the entire production.
- It should be pointed out that the literary resemblances of Isaiah II to the eighth-century prophet Micah are numerous and striking. This would hardly be expected of a writer who composed in the sixth or fifth century B.C. Here are some examples:
“For ye shall not go out in haste … for Yahweh will go before you” (Isa. 52:12, ASV); “And their king is passed on before them, and Yahweh at the head of them” (Mic. 2:13, ASV).
“Declare unto my people their transgression, and to the house of Jacob their sins” (Isa. 58:1); “I am full of power … to declare unto Jacob his transgression, and to Israel his sin” (Mic. 3:8).
“They shall bow down to thee with their face toward the earth, and lick up the dust of thy feet; and thou shalt know that I am the Lord” (Isa. 49:23); “They shall lick the dust like a serpent, they shall move out of their holes like worms of the earth: they shall be afraid of the Lord our God” (Mic. 7:17).
“Behold, I have made thee to be a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth; thou shalt thresh the mountains … and shalt make the hills as chaff” (Isa. 41:15–16, ASV); “Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion; for I will make thy horn iron … and thou shalt beat in pieces many peoples” (Mic. 4:13, ASV).
Whether Isaiah was influenced by Micah or Micah by Isaiah is hard to say; quite possibly they were familiar with each other’s preaching. It may also have been that the Holy Spirit moved them both to express God’s message to the same generation in similar terms. At any rate, they express the same general mood and viewpoint, and deal very largely with the same issues. In this connection we might mention Hosea 13:4: “Thou shalt know no god but me, and besides me there is no saviour” (ASV). This sentence appears twice in Isaiah II, in 43:11 and 45:21, thus indicating a close relationship. (Since Hosea was slightly earlier than Isaiah, it is quite possible that the younger prophet deliberately borrowed from the older.)
Isaiah: Alleged Differences in Theological Ideas
It is asserted by the advocates of the two-Isaiah theory that Deutero-Isaiah dwells upon the infiniteness of God and His sovereign relationship toward the heathen nations in a way that is far more developed and emphatic than in Isaiah I. On the other hand, Isaiah II makes no mention of the Messianic King nor of the faithful remnant; rather, the dominating concept is that of the suffering Servant. To these allegations it may be replied that no genuine contradictions have ever been pointed out in the theology of the two sections of Isaiah, nor has any critic ever demonstrated that the new emphases which do appear in chapters 40–66 are not sufficiently accounted for by the changed conditions which occurred in the reign of the wicked and idolatrous Manasseh. Actually there is no doctrine set forth in 40–66 which is not already contained, in germ at least, in 1–39. With the influx of idolatry in the kingdom of Judah and the worship of heathen gods, which became fashionable in Manasseh’s time, a challenge was presented to the true faith that called for just such an emphasis upon the uniqueness and sovereignty of Yahweh as we find in Isa. 40–48. As for the doctrine of the Messiah, the inevitability of judgment upon apostate Israel quite logically led to the development of the doctrine of vicarious atonement, apart from which there could be no reasonable hope for the spiritual survival of the nation. This accounts for the prominence of the concept of the suffering Servant, or the Servant of Yahweh, in Isaiah II.
Key Messianic Prophecies in the Old Testament
|Gen. 3:15||Messiah to reconcile men to God; fully human, born of a woman, He will utterly defeat Satan|
|22:18||He will be of the family of Abraham|
|49:10||He will be of the kingly tribe of Judah|
|Deut. 18:15||He will be a prophet who, like Moses, revealed the word of God|
|Ps. 2:1–2||He will be tried by Gentile rulers and condemned by His own Jewish people|
|16:10||Through resurrection, by the Father, Jesus’ body will not see corruption|
|22:1||He will experience the rejection of the Father at His death|
|22:6–7||He will be mocked at His crucifixion|
|22:22||Christ will glorify God in His church after His resurrection|
|40:6–8||Christ delighted in all the Father’s will|
|69:7–12||Christ would be rejected by men|
|69:21||Christ would drink gall at His crucifixion|
|89:4||Christ will be the eternal seed of David|
|89:26–28||Christ will be God’s eternal son, His unique first born|
|110:1||He will ascend to the right hand of the Father, and be coronated|
|110:4||His priesthood will be eternal, after the manner of Melchizedek|
|132:11||He will be the lineage of David|
|Isa. 7:14||Christ will have a virgin birth; He will be called Immanuel|
|7:15–16||He will grow up in a land dominated by a foreign power|
|9:1–2||He will minister in Galilee|
|9:7||He will be of the line of David, but His kingship will be eternal and He will be the Son of God|
|11:2||He will be anointed with the Holy Spirit|
|11:4||He will minister perfect justice regarding the poor and the meek|
|24:16||Christ will offer salvation to the entire world|
|40:3||He will have a forerunner|
|42:1||Christ will be the great anointed Servant of Yahweh|
|42:2||His ministry will be gentle|
|42:6||Christ will be the fulfillment of God’s covenant|
|49:6||Christ will be a light to the Gentiles|
|52:14||He would be disfigured by the abuses He suffered prior to crucifixion|
|53:4||Christ will bear all our diseases|
|53:5||He will provide atonement for sin|
|53:9||He will be buried in a rich man’s tomb|
|The Father will prolong Christ’s days by resurrecting Him from the dead
|Dan. 9:24||His public ministry to begin in a.d. 26, which would be 483 years after the decree to Ezra to rebuild Jerusalem; 3 1/2 years later (in the middle of the seven year “week”) the Messiah would be crucified while atoning for sin as the “Most Holy” One|
|Mic. 5:2||Jesus would be born in Bethlehem|
|Zech. 9:9||He would enter Jerusalem on a donkey’s colt|
|11:12||Christ would be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver|
|12:10||He would be pierced for our transgressions (Isa. 53:5)|
Much discussion has been devoted to the question of the identity of the Servant of Yahweh, who is referred to in various passages from chapter 41 to 53. Rationalists are compelled by their philosophical presuppositions to deny that the suffering Servant was intended as a prophecy of Jesus Christ. In their search for some more contemporary figure with whom the Servant might be identified, most modern antisupernaturalists resort to the same identification as that favored by modern Judaism that the suffering Servant is equivalent to the Jewish nation. But there can be little doubt that this identification leads to insuperable difficulties in those “Servant songs” which refer to the Messiah. Thus, in Isa. 53:4, 5, 8, 9, this type of exegesis would result in making Israel bear vicariously their own sins; that Israel itself was smitten rather than the Servant; that the nation of Israel did not open its mouth before its judge, and that the whole Jewish race was carried off by a judicial murder and was buried with a certain rich man. Such an interpretation results in self-contradictory nonsense.
The only satisfactory explanation for the Servant concept in Isaiah is that it is of a three-dimensional character. As Delitzsch put it, the Servant may be symbolized by a pyramid. At the base of the pyramid is the Hebrew nation as a whole (as in 41:8 and 42:19). Israel is regarded as God’s uniquely chosen people charged with the responsibility of witnessing to the true God before the heathen nations, and serving as custodians of His Word. At the middle level (43:10), the remnant of true believers in Israel will constitute the redeemed people of God and serve as witnesses to their unspiritual countrymen. At the apex of the pyramid stands a single individual, the Lord Jesus Christ, who is set forth as the true Israel (for apart from Him there could not be a covenant nation of Israel, and from Him the nation derives all its standing before God). It is this Servant who will arise as Redeemer and Deliverer from sin by bearing in His own person the death penalty in the place of sinners. There are four main “Servant Songs.”
Additional Proofs of the Genuineness of Isaiah 40–66
- First of all it should be noted that Jesus ben Sirach (48:22–25) clearly assumes that Isaiah wrote chapters 40–66 of the book of Isaiah. E. J. Young notes, “The tradition of Isaianic authorship appears as early as Ecclesiasticus. In 14:17–25 we read, ‘He [that is, Isaiah] comforted them that mourned in Zion. He showed the things that should be to the end of time and the hidden things before they ever came to pass’.” It is to be observed that the term used for comfort, parakalein, is the same as is used in the LXX of Isa. 40:1 and of 61:1–2. The Hebrew original of Ecclesiasticus uses exactly the same word as Isaiah does, the verb wayyinnahem.
- The New Testament writers clearly regard the author of Isaiah I and Isaiah II to be one and the same. Many of the New Testament quotations could be interpreted as referring to the book merely according to its traditional title, but there are other references which clearly imply the personality of the historic Isaiah himself.
Matthew 12:17–18 quotes Isa. 42:1 as “that which was spoken by Isaiah the prophet.”
Matthew 3:3 quotes Isa. 40:3 as “spoken of by the prophet Isaiah.”
Luke 3:4 quotes Isa. 40:3–5 as “in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet.”
Acts 8:28 states that the Ethiopian eunuch was “reading Isaiah the prophet,” specifically, Isa. 53:7–8. In his conversation with Philip (Acts 8:34) he inquired, “Of whom speaketh the prophet [Isaiah] this, of himself, or of some other man?”
Romans 10:16 quotes Isa. 53:1, stating: “Isaiah saith—”
Romans 10:20 quotes Isa. 65:1, stating: “Isaiah is very bold, and saith—”
The most conclusive New Testament citation is John 12:38–41. Verse 38 quotes Isa. 53:1; verse 40 quotes Isa. 6:9–10. Then the inspired apostle comments in verse 41: “These things said Isaiah, when he saw his glory, and spoke of him.” Obviously it was the same Isaiah who personally beheld the glory of Christ in the temple vision of Isa. 6 who also made the statement in Isa. 53:1: “Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?” If it was not the same author who composed both chapter 6 and chapter 53 (and advocates of the Deutero-Isaiah theory stoutly affirm that it was not), then the inspired apostle himself must have been in error. It therefore follows that advocates of the two-Isaiah theory must by implication concede the existence of errors in the New Testament, even in so vital a matter as the authorship of inspired books of the Old Testament.
- A most formidable difficulty is presented to the Deutero-Isaiah theory by the fact that the author’s name was not preserved. It is quite inconceivable that his name should have been forgotten had he been some individual other than the eighth-century Isaiah himself. By the admission of the Dissectionist Critics themselves, no sublimer passages of prophecy are to be found in the entire Old Testament than are contained in Isaiah II. It is commonly conceded that the author of these passages must be regarded as the greatest of all the Old Testament prophets. How could it have come about that such a preeminent genius should have diminished so rapidly in stature that by the third century B.C. when the Septuagint was translated, his name should have been completely forgotten? The earliest extrabiblical reference we have to the writings of Isaiah is found in Ecclesiasticus 48:17–25 (180 B.C.). Here the author (Jesus ben Sirach) refers to the fact that “he [Isaiah] comforted them that mourned in Zion.… He showed the things that should be to the end of time, and the hidden things before ever they happened” (this last being an allusion to Isa. 48:6). Here the same word for comfort (parakalein) is used as was employed by the Septuagint in translating Isa. 40:1. It is scarcely conceivable that the pupil could have so far surpassed his master and yet remained anonymous. But this is the incredible assumption, hardly to be paralleled in the rest of the world literature, to which the advocates of this divisive theory are driven.
It should be observed in this connection that an almost invariable rule followed by the ancient Hebrews in regard to prophetic writings was that the name of the prophet was essential for the acceptance of any prophetic utterance. This is emphasized by the fact that even so brief a composition as the prophecy of Obadiah bore the name of the author. The Hebrews regarded the identity of the prophet as of utmost importance if his message was to be received as an authoritative declaration of a true spokesman of the Lord. As E. J. Young points out (IOT, p. 205), it is altogether contrary to the genius of biblical teaching to postulate the existence of anonymous writing prophets. And if the shortest, least-gifted of the Minor Prophets was remembered by name in connection with his written messages, it surely follows that the sublimest prophet the nation ever produced should have left his name to posterity. We must therefore conclude that the name of the author of Isa. 40–66 has indeed been preserved and that it was the eighth-century prophet himself.
- The linguistic evidence is altogether adverse to the composition of Isaiah II in Babylon during the sixth century. In the writings of Ezra and Nehemiah, who came from the region of Babylon or from Susa (if not from the Persian centers of Ecbatana and Persepolis), we have a fair sample of the type of Hebrew spoken by Jews who returned from the Exile to Palestine and settled in their homeland during the fifth century. These writings show a certain amount of linguistic intrusion from Aramaic and are sprinkled with Babylonian terms. But there is complete absence of such influence in the language of Isaiah II. It is written in perfectly pure Hebrew, free from any postexilic characteristics and closely resembles the Hebrew of Isaiah I.
- Isaiah 13:1 furnishes serious embarrassment to the theory of an exilic Deutero–Isaiah. Chapter 13 contains a burden of divine judgment upon the city of Babylon, which in Isaiah’s day was a mere subject province under the Assyrian empire. Nevertheless, this opening verse states: “The burden of Babylon, which Isaiah the son of Amoz did see.” This constitutes the clearest affirmation possible that the eighth-century Isaiah foresaw the coming importance of Babylon, her devastation of Palestine, and her ultimate downfall before the onslaughts of the Medes (cf. v. 17). In view of the often repeated argument that Isaiah’s name does not appear in chapters 40–66 and that therefore he is not to be regarded as the author of predictions involving a knowledge of sixth-century events, it is interesting to observe that his name is expressly affixed to this earlier chapter in which such a knowledge is most clearly implied.
It should be noted that chapter 13 occurs in a series of burdens pronounced against foreign nations who posed a threat to Israel (chaps. 13–23). It is quite clear that the eighth-century Isaiah wrote denunciations of this sort, and the language of chapter 13 is altogether similar to that employed in the rest of the chapters in this series. It is only in the interests of salvaging the theory of a Deutero-Isaiah that critics have been compelled to assign a late exilic date to chapter 13. But as E. J. Young points out: “If chapter 13 be denied Isaiah, it is practically impossible to explain its position in the prophecy. Why would a later editor ever have thought that Isaiah had prophesied concerning Babylon?” This point is especially well taken in view of the fact that denunciations of Babylon do occur in other parts of the book (e.g., in chap. 48). It is difficult to see why chapter 13 would have been placed in close proximity to these other denunciations if in point of fact it was not composed at the same time.
- Last, we come to the relationship between Isaiah II and the seventh-century pre-exilic prophets. Zephaniah, Nahum, and Jeremiah contain verses which are so similar to Isaiah II as to point to a possible borrowing by one from the other. Thus in Zeph. 2:15 we read: “This is the joyous city that dwelt carelessly, that said in her heart, I am, and there is none besides me” (ASV). This bears a strong resemblance to Isa. 47:8: “Now therefore hear this, thou that art given to pleasures, that sittest securely, that sayest in thy heart, I am, and there is none else besides me” (ASV). Nahum 1:15 reads: “Behold, upon the mountains the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace!” (ASV). Compare this with Isa. 52:7: “How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace!” (ASV). Jeremiah 31:35 reads: “Thus saith Yahweh … who stirreth up the sea, so that the waves thereof roar; Yahweh of hosts is his name” (ASV). This is very close to Isa. 51:15: “For I am Yahweh thy God, who stirreth up the sea, so that the waters thereof roar; Yahweh of hosts is his name” (ASV).
In comparing such resemblances as these, it might be argued that Isaiah II was borrowing from the seventh-century prophets rather than the other way around, but in the case of Jer. 30:10–11 (which bears a relationship to Isa. 43:1–6), such an explanation is hardly possible. In the Jeremiah passage, the term My Servant (ʾâbdɩ̂) occurs as a Messianic title. Nowhere else does it appear in a Messianic sense in the writings of Jeremiah, and yet it is a frequent term in Isaiah II. There can be no other reasonable conclusion to draw but that Jeremiah did the borrowing and that the Isaiah passage must have been written at an earlier time than his own.
In view of all the foregoing evidence, it may fairly be said that it requires a far greater exercise of credulity to believe that Isa. 40–66 was not written by the historical eighth-century Isaiah than to believe that it was. Judging from the internal evidence alone, even apart from the authority of the New Testament authors, a fair handling of the evidence can only lead to the conclusion that the same author was responsible for both sections and that no part of it was composed as late as the Exile.
 Gleason Archer Jr., A Survey of Old Testament Introduction, 3rd. ed. (Chicago: Moody Press, 1994), 365–390.
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CPH BOOK RECOMMENDATIONS
Andrews has written The Biblical Guide to Avoid the Pitfalls of Sexual Immorality. This tool is for both man and woman, husband and wife, all Christians who will marry one day and those who have been married for some time. The fallen world that we live in is fertile ground for immorality. The grass always seems greener somewhere away from one’s own spouse. Adultery is something everyone should avoid. It destroys more than just marriages, it destroys a person’s life, family and most importantly their relationship with God. Such is the danger of adultery that the Bible strongly warns every man and woman against it. The world that we currently live in is very vile, and sexual morality is no longer a quality that is valued. What can Christians do to stay safe in such an influential world that caters to the fallen flesh? What can help the husband and wife relationship to flourish as they cultivate a love that will survive the immoral world that surrounds them? We might have thought that a book, like God’s Word that is 2,000-3,500 years old would be out of date on such modern issues, but the Bible is ever applicable. The Biblical Guide to Avoid the Pitfalls of Sexual Immorality will give us the biblical answers that we need.
How could Satan, Adam, and Eve have sinned if they were perfect? How much influence does Satan have? How does Satan try to influence you? What do you need to learn about your enemy? How can you overcome Satanic influences? Can Satan know your thoughts? Can Satan control you? How can you overcome Satanic Influences? How does Satan blind the minds of the unbelievers? How you can understand Satan’s battle for the Christian mind. How you can win the battle for the Christian mind. How you can put on the full armor of God? All of these questions and far more are dealt with herein by Andrews.
WHAT IS A MIRACLE? It is an event that goes beyond all known human and natural powers and is generally attributed to some supernatural power. Why should YOU be interested in miracles?
“Miracles, by definition, violate the principles of science.”—RICHARD DAWKINS.
“Belief in miracles is entirely rational. Far from being an embarrassment to religious faith, they are signs of God’s love for, and continuing involvement in, creation.”—ROBERT A. LARMER, PROFESSOR OF PHILOSOPHY.
SHOULD YOU believe in miracles? As we can see from the above quotations, opinions vary considerably. But how could you convincingly answer that question?
Some of YOU may immediately answer, “Yes, I believe.” Others might say, “No, I don’t believe.” Then, there are some who may say, “I don’t know, and I really don’t care! Miracles don’t happen in my life!” Really, why should YOU be interested in miracles? The Bible promises its readers that in the future some miracles far beyond all ever recorded or experienced is going to occur and will affect every living person on earth. Therefore, would it not be worth some of your time and energy to find out whether those promises are reliable? What does God’s Word really teach about miracles of Bible times, after that, our day, and the future?
Andrews, an author of over 100 books, has chosen the 40 most beneficial Proverbs, to give the readers an abundance of wise, inspired counsel to help them acquire understanding and safeguard their heart, “for out of it are the sources of life.” (4:23) GODLY WISDOM SPEAKS sets things straight by turning the readers to Almighty God. Each Proverb is dealt with individually, giving the readers easy to understand access to what the original language really means. This gives the readers what the inspired author meant by the words that he used. After this, the reader is given practical guidance on how those words can be applied for maneuvering through life today. GODLY WISDOM with its instruction and counsel never go out of date.
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 the 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
The role of women within the church has been a heated, ongoing debate. There are two views. We have the equal ministry opportunity for both men and women (egalitarian view) and the ministry roles distinguished by gender (complementarian view). This biblically grounded introduction will acquaint the reader with the biblical view: what does the Bible say about the woman’s role in the church? Both views mention the teachings of the apostle Paul in 1 Timothy 2:12 in order to support their viewpoint. Andrews will furnish the reader with a clear and thorough presentation of the biblical evidence for the woman’s role in the church so we can better understand the biblical viewpoint.
Some of the questions asked and answered in THE YOUNG CHRISTIAN’S SURVIVAL GUIDE are “You claim the Bible is inspired because it says it is, right (2 Tim. 3:16)? Isn’t that circular reasoning?” “You claim the Bible was inspired, but there was no inspired list of which books that is true of. So how can we know which ones to trust?” “With so many different copies of manuscripts that have 400,000+ variants (errors), how can we even know what the Bible says?” “Why can’t the people who wrote the four Gospels get their story straight?” These questions and many more will be asked and answered with reasonable, rational, Scriptural answers.
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 JESUS CHRIST The Great Teacher 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. JESUS CHRIST The Great Teacher will discuss how you can employ all of his teaching methods. What a privilege it is to be a teacher of God’s Word and to share spiritual values that can have long-lasting benefits!
How can you improve your effectiveness as teachers? Essentially, it is by imitating THE APOSTLE PAUL: The Preacher, Teacher, Apologist. 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 APOSTLE PAUL: The Preacher, Teacher, Apologist will discuss how you can employ all of his teaching methods. When it comes to teaching, genuine Christians have a special responsibility. We are commanded to “make disciples of all nations . . . , teaching them.” (Matt. 24:14; 28:19-20; Ac 1:8)
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?
Who wrote the first five books of the Bible? Was it Moses or was it others centuries later? If Moses wrote the first five books of the Bible, then how was his own death and burial written in Deuteronomy Chapter 34? Many mainstream Bible scholars argue that Moses could not have written the Pentateuch since he likely existed many centuries earlier than the development of the Hebrew language. When was the origin of the Hebrew language? Popular scholarship says that if Moses had written the Pentateuch, he would have written in the Egyptian language, not the Hebrew. Moreover, most of the Israelites and other people of the sixteenth century B.C.E. were illiteral, so who could have written the Torah, and for whom would it be written because the people of that period did not read?
Finally, analysis of the first five books demonstrates multiple authors, not just one, which explains the many discrepancies. Multiple authors also explain the many cases of telling of the same story twice, making the same events appear to happen more than once. The modern mainstream scholarship would argue that within the Pentateuch we see such things as preferences for certain words, differences in vocabulary, reoccurring expressions in Deuteronomy that are not found in Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, all evidence for their case for multiple authors.
What does the evidence say? What does archaeology, linguistic analysis, historical studies, textual analysis, and insights from Egyptologists tell us? Again, who wrote the first five books of the Bible? Was it Moses or was it others centuries later? Andrews offers his readers an objective view of the evidence.
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 …
FEMINIST CRITICISM will offer the reader explicitly what the Bible says. Feminist criticism is a form of literary criticism that is based on feminist theories. The worldview of feminism uses feminist principles to interpret the word of God. Biblical feminists argue that they are merely focused on creating equal opportunities to serve. They say that they want the freedom to follow Jesus Christ as he has called them. They assert that they merely want to use the gifts that he has given them in God’s service. Biblical feminists maintain that Scripture clearly states the worth and value of men and women equally when it comes to serving God. Biblical feminists also say that they want to partner with the men when it comes to taking the lead in the church and parenting in the home. They seek mutual submission and subjection in the church leadership and the home headship, not what they perceive to be a male hierarchy. FEMINIST CRITICISM will gently and respectfully address these issues with Scripture.
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.
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? …
INTRODUCTION TO THE TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT is a shortened 321 pages of Andrews and Wilkins 602 page TEXT OF THE NEW TESTAMENT without losing the value of content. The foremost thing the reader is going to learn is that the Greek New Testament that our modern translations are based on is a mirror-like reflection of the original and can be fully trusted. The reader will learn how the New Testament authors made and published their books, the secretaries in antiquity and their materials like Teritus who helped Paul pen the epistle to the Romans, and the book writing process of the New Testament authors and early copyists. The reader will also discover the reading culture of early Christianity and their view of the integrity of the Greek New Testament. The reader will also learn how textual scholars known as paleography determine the age of the manuscripts.
The reader will learn all about the different sources that go into our restoring the Greek New Testament to its original form. Then, Andrews will cover the ancient version, the era of the printed text, and the arrival of the critical text. After that, the reader will be given a lengthy chapter on examples of how the textual scholar determines the correct reading by his looking at the internal and external evidence. Finally, and most importantly, the reader will find out the truth about the supposed 400,000 textual errors within the Greek New Testament manuscripts. The last chapter will be faith-building and enable you to defend the Word of God as inerrant.
THE READING CULTURE OF EARLY CHRISTIANITY provides the reader with the production process of the New Testament books, the publication process, how they were circulated, and to what extent they were used in the early Christian church. It examines the making of the New Testament books, the New Testament secretaries and the material they used, how the early Christians viewed the New Testament books, and the literacy level of the Christians in the first three centuries. It also explores how the gospels went from an oral message to a written record, the accusation that the apostles were uneducated, the inspiration and inerrancy in the writing process of the New Testament books, the trustworthiness of the early Christian copyists, and the claim that the early scribes were predominantly amateurs. Andrews also looks into the early Christian’s use of the codex [book form], how did the spread of early Christianity affect the text of the New Testament, and how was the text impacted by the Roman Empire’s persecution of the early Christians?
The Bible has been under attack since Moses penned the first five books. However, the New Testament has faced criticism like no other time over the 50-70-years. Both friend and foe have challenged the reliability of our New Testament. Self-proclaimed Agnostic textual scholar Dr. Bart D. Ehrman has claimed that there are 400,000+ scribal errors in our Greek New Testament manuscripts. A leading textual scholar, Greek grammarian, and Christian apologist Dr. Daniel B. Wallace has stipulated that this is true. This is of particular interest among all Christians, who have been charged with defending the Word of God. – 1 Peter 3:15.
In this volume, textual scholar Edward D. Andrews offers the churchgoer and textual student a defense against this specific attack on the New Testament. Andrews offers the reader a careful analysis of the relevant evidence, giving his readers logical, reasonable, rational assurances that the New Testament can be trusted more than ever before. He will explain the differences between the older Bible translations and the newer ones. Andrews will explain why we do not need the original manuscripts to have the original Word of God. He will reveal how reliable our manuscripts are, how they survived the elements and the persecution of early Christianity, as well as withstanding careless and even deceitful scribes. Finally, Andrews will deal with the 400,000+ scribal errors in the Greek New Testament manuscripts extensively. The author takes a complicated subject and offers his readers an easy to understand argument for why they can have confidence in the Bible despite various challenges to the trustworthiness of Scripture, offering an insightful, informed, defense of God’s Word.
This fourth edition will be dealing with the Greek text of our New Testament, through the Eyes of Dr. Bart D. Ehrman, in his New York Times bestseller: Misquoting Jesus: The Story Behind Who Changed the Bible and Why (2005). First, in the introduction, we will look into Bart D. Ehrman’s early life and spiritual decline as he moved from being an evangelical conservative Christian to becoming an agnostic skeptic. Second, we will open with chapter one covering the book writing process of the New Testament authors and early Christian scribes. Then, we will spend three lengthy chapters covering the reading culture of early Christianity because of Ehrman’s claim of just how low the literacy rates were in early Christianity. After that, we will take one chapter to investigate the early Christian copyists because of Ehrman’s claim that most of the scribal errors come from the first three centuries. Following this will be one of the most critical chapters examining Ehrman’s claim of 400,000 textual variants [errors] and what impact they have on the integrity of the Greek New Testament. We will then investigate Bible Difficulties and what they mean for the trustworthiness of God’s Word. After that, we will give the reader the fundamentals of some of Ehrman’s complaints, debunking them as we investigate each one throughout seven chapters.
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.
The Bible describes the events that will occur before and after the destruction of Gog of Magog. Who is Gog of Magog mentioned in the book of Ezekiel? Why should we be interested in the prophecy recorded in Daniel chapter 11? Find out in a verse-by-verse explanation of Daniel Chapter 11, as you discover who the kings of the North and the South are from before Jesus’ day throughout the last days. You will benefit from paying attention to Daniel’s prophecy about the battle between the two kings? Taken together, the Bible books of Daniel and Revelation not only identify eight kings but also show the sequence in which they would appear. We can explain those prophecies.
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.
Stella Mae Clark thought she had a wonderful life. She idolized her father, a military man who raised her to love Christ with all of her heart. She had a mother who loved her father and their example of true love gave her the sparkle in her eyes. That is until the unimaginable happens and her life is completely shattered. One decision at the age of sixteen would again turn her world completely upside down. Stella Mae makes the decision to leave her life and her family behind to seek refuge from her painful past. She desperately seeks solace, answers, and for something to fill the aching void within her heart. Just as she thinks she has settled into a new life with Christ, tragedy once again strikes and shatters any hope she had for a normal life. She abandons Christ and turns to a life of sin before it ultimately consumes her and breaks her down. Will it take nearly losing her life to find her way back to God or will her shame and regret keep holding her back? Join Stella Mae on her journey to find meaning and purpose in the midst of all her tragedy as she seeks to find the One her heart has been missing. The story of her past is one of loss, shame, heartbreak, and fear. With the help of those who see her for more than her past, she is able to become the person she always wanted to be and a new creature.
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. …