Good coaches emphasize the fundamentals because they are essential for success. At the end of chapter 3, Paul gives a parenthetical reminder to Timothy. If the churches that Timothy oversees at Ephesus are to have spiritual success, they must stay focused on their mission.
From preachers to presidents, good leaders have often praised the value of virtuous mothers. We celebrate motherhood this week because the Bible also honors women. Jewish genealogies did not include women, yet Jesus' mother is mentioned by name in Matthew 1:16. The Bible mentions Mary because she displays several virtues that should characterize all Christians. What can we learn from her godly example?
All Scripture is God’s Word, and is “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16). It’s our natural tendency to apply principles that we know from the New Testament to Old Testament stories. But remember, a text taken out of context leaves just a con. So don’t judge Jacob too harshly. His family did not have the written Bible, but they did have the oral Word of God which they were responsible for.
Our study of the Regeneration section of Genesis continues with the second and third of the patriarchs, Isaac and Jacob. Isaac demonstrated his faith throughout his life by being a submissive perpetuator of the faith. He made mistakes, but he won more spiritual battles than he lost. Lest we read this account from the end of his life and assume he was a failure, remember that Isaac is included in the Great Hall of Faith (see Hebrews 11:20).
Genesis 19 is a hard chapter to understand. It is often misunderstood and misinterpreted as judgment on one particular sin, but it is not. Rather, it should be read as a sub-narrative in Abraham’s story about how God’s people can slip into living like the world.
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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