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15 November 2019

Jesus Reigns Now - (Psalm 110:1)

Jesus, the Davidic King
The Apostle Paul links the exaltation and enthronement of Jesus to his Death and Resurrection, and he does so consistently. Christ achieved the right to rule by his faithful obedience unto death. God vindicated his obedience by raising him from the dead and exalting him to reign supreme over the Cosmos from the Divine Throne (Romans 1:1-4, Philippians 2:6-11).
Jesus already is implementing God’s kingdom and subjugating His enemies. This process continues until the end of the present age when Jesus arrives in glory and defeats the “last enemy,” death. That day will mean nothing less than resurrection from the dead and new creation (1 Corinthians 15:20-28).

11 November 2019

God's Final Word: Jesus - (Hebrews 1:1-3)

Open Bible from Unsplash.com
The epistle to the Hebrews compares what God achieved in Jesus to the provisional and partial revelation of the Mosaic legislation to demonstrate the finality of the revelation given in Jesus Christ. For example, the Author shows the superiority of the Son’s word, ministry, priesthood, and sacrifice over the services, priesthood, and sacrifices of the Levitical system. He does not denigrate God’s past revelations but stresses how much the new revelation surpasses all that preceded it; what was incomplete is now made complete in Jesus.

Paul’s Proposition to the Galatians – (2:15-21)

Paul preaches in Ephesus
In the first two chapters of his letter to the Galatians, the Apostle Paul explained how he received his gospel for the Gentiles by divine revelation, a commission confirmed by the leaders of the Jerusalem church. He also detailed how certain “false brethren had slinked in to spy out our freedom which we have in Christ Jesus”;  an earlier but similar controversy at the church in Antioch (Galatians 2:4-5).
In Antioch, Jewish believers in Jesus infiltrated the assembly to disseminate disruptive teachings, especially the claim that it was inappropriate for Jewish believers to eat with Gentile Christians. If implemented, this policy would prevent Jewish and Gentile believers from participating together in the “Lord’s supper,” let alone other communal meals. The pressure to conform was so great that even Peter and Barnabas were caught up in this disruptive practice (Galatians 2:11-13).

Proclaiming Another Gospel – (Galatians 1:6-12)

Conversion of Saul of Tarsus
The second paragraph marks the start of the body of this letter and an extended section that does not end until Galatians 4:11. It can be summarized as a long rebuke of the Galatian assemblies with warnings that their present course leads inevitably to apostasy. Thus, the sternness of Paul’s language; rather than offer thanksgiving or compliment the Galatians for their faithfulness, he opens with a rebuke, astonishment, and a curse formula, all to stress the depth of his concern and the severe danger posed to the churches of Galatia by the false teachings of “certain men from Jerusalem.”

Rescued from this evil age - (Galatians 1:1-5)

Paul in Antioch
In the first verses of the book of Galatians, Paul declared that his apostleship was from the very same God who raised Jesus from the dead, the one who gave his life in order to “deliver us from this evil age.” The two claims anticipate Paul’s defense of his apostolic calling and his opposition to a group that operated as if the old era was still in full effect.
(Galatians 1:1-5) - “Paul, an apostle — not from men nor through man, but through Jesus Christ, and God the Father who raised him from among the dead, And all the brethren with me; — unto the assemblies of Galatia: Favour unto you and peace, from God our Father and Lord Jesus Christ — Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us out of the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father — Unto whom be the glory unto the ages of ages: Amen!

23 October 2019

Jesus and Food Purity Laws

A New Communion Meal
At one point, Jesus came into conflict with the Jews from Jerusalem about eating food with unwashed hands (Matthew 15:1-20; Mark 7:1-23). They believed doing so rendered a person “common” or “unclean,” that is, ritually impure.  The conclusion Jesus pronounced at the end of this story undermines the religious logic behind such food laws
The Pharisees and Scribes objected to his disciples for “eating with unwashed hands” and confronted Jesus about the matter. In their minds, the disciples had rendered themselves ceremonially unclean.