John’s account of the life of John the Baptist, the cousin of Jesus. John the Baptist is mentioned in all 4 Gospels (Matt 5, Mark 1, Luke 3). Apostle John gives one more aspect as he reports on John the Baptist, fitting with his purpose to show that “Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that by believing you may have life in His name” (John 20:31).
Wisdom literature is one of the more difficult genres in the Bible. Though New Testament epistles might be the easiest for us to read and understand today, it's important to keep a balance of all biblical genres in our personal reading and corporate teaching.
When resolving conflict between Christians, these three areas are necessary to consider: identity, growth, and humanity. Anyone in Christ must be viewed from that vantage point; therefore, we must assume that spiritual growth is happening in their life. The Holy Spirit is never dormant.
The occasion for Paul’s writing this and other letters to the Corinthians was to address a sin issue. His secondary purpose was to restore their relationships. All this was for the ultimate purpose of enabling Gospel progress to continue. There is no Gospel progress unless Christians are right with the Lord and each other in the local church.
The only way to minister with integrity is to have relationships continually maintained by God's Word. This must include forgiving those who have offended us.
Psalm 6 meditates on a difficult Christian endeavor: responding while under the disciplinary hand of the Lord. This endeavor is the sole property of people who have been transformed by Jesus into the often-uncomfortable condition of being lifelong learners, lovers, and worshipers. The joy of learning often includes the negative experience of shame, stifling our own pride, and enduring the consequences of our sin.
Displays of spiritual power are found throughout the Bible. Today, people search for spiritual power in many ways and from various sources. Christians seek power in prayer and spiritual warfare. In the salvation era, power must be understood in light of Jesus' bodily resurrection. We must not substitute the historical form of spiritual power for its continuing substance.
When studying narrative or story portions of the Bible, we will not find as many direct commands from God. We draw out spiritual principles from stories, and these are just as authoritative as direct commands.
We have observed several virtues in Abram so far, his spiritual discipline and patient obedience. The next section of narrative show Abram succumbing to temptation. Genesis records God speaking to Abram 7 times, and 3 times of Abram being tempted away from God’s truth. Here is our first principle: A saved person will never be sinless, but in the process of progressive sanctification, they will succeed more than they fail.
After Noah and his family exit the ark, they are granted a new beginning and an opportunity similar to Adam and Eve’s. They step out into a new world and a new era of time. God reaffirms his instructions for humanity and reestablishes his covenant.
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