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Ipswich Christadelphians

"Prove all things, hold fast what is good" 1Th 5:21

Short articles that give food for thought. Click on the '+' to review articles.

Women in Christ's Genealogy…

Women in Christ's Genealogy…

Women in Christ's Genealogy

  The women in Christ’s line…An extract from the Testimony Magazine, February 2016 There are four women mentioned in the genealogy of Christ as recorded by Matthew. It is suggested that they reflect the life in Christ of a baptised believer. &nbs hab, the harlot. Rahab lived in Jericho in a world so steeped in sin that it had to be totally destroyed. However, she heard of the might of the God of Israel and believed in the way that He had led His people Israel out of Egypt and throug…

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Keep Hanging On!…

Keep Hanging On!…

Keep Hanging On!

Every day we say things which are not to be taken literally. If we’re not feeling well, we might say that “We’re under the weather” or that we “Feel like death”. That’s just a colourful way of expressing our feelings, and everybody understands that. Literaurative? Smetaphors are used which have a quite different meaning when applied literally. We might say that “My heart stopped when I saw it!”, when we really mean that we were very shocked at something we had seen. But…

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The Prophet Isaiah…

The Prophet Isaiah…

Isaiah lived in the times of Uzziah, Ahaz and Hezekiah, kings of Judah – about 740 to 680 BC. This was the period when the Assyrian Empire was growing in power, and Judah was about to be invaded by Sennacherib. Isaiah lived in royal circles (he was a great friend and advisor of King Hezekiah) and had a wife and children in Jerusalem. Isaiah is writing at a time of nations in decline, he is as it were sent at the 11th&n ur to speak to Israel. Basically the book can be divided into 3 rough s…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 5…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 5…

David's input into Solomon's temple This study s designed to highlight a number of different aspects of Bible study, as follows: that Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectual the need to give careful attention to the text the value of comparing Scripture with Scripture the value of building up a picture from various scriptures the value of recording and preserving information found. &n  You will need: Bible with marginal references, concordance or compueriz…

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When the time is right…

When the time is right…

When the time is right

Sometimes things happen just because we are in the right place at the right time. Or, if it is something bad that happens, because we were in the wrong place at that very time. What if we had been born at a different time in the world’s history?&n  you had been born in the Middle Ages, just reading this website (had it been around at the time!) could have cost you your life. Many people were executed just because they wanted to read the Bible for themselves. At that time the Church held the m…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 4…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 4…

  The Promise To David  This study is designed to highlight a number of different aspects of Bible study, as follows: that Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectual the need to give careful attention to the text the value of comparing Scripture with Scripture the value of following up quotations the value of recording and preserving information found. You will need: Bible with marginal references, concordance or computerized Bible There are two ac…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 3…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 3…

Psalm 34 and David’s experiences This study is designed to highlight a number of different aspects of Bible study, as follows: at Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectualtrneed to give careful attention to the texttrimportance of contexttrvalue of comparing Scripture with Scripturetrvalue of recording and preserving information found. will need: &nbs e with marginal references; &nbs ordance or computerised Bible&nbs The title of Psalm 3…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 2…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 2…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 2

  The death of Saul You will need a Bible, a Bible Atlas, a concordance.   Read 1 Samuel 31     This study is designed to highlight the following aspects of Bible study from the list given in Part 1: 1 show that Bible study is not difficult or the preserve of the intellectual show the need to give careful attention to the text reveal the value of knowing Biblical geography highlight the value of recording and preserving information found The Bi…

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Developing Bible Study Skills - 1…

Developing Bible Study Skills - 1…

Introduction This series of short articles is designed to demonstrate, by working through some simple pieces of Bible exposition, that Bible study is not just for the academic. It is hoped that any who read these short expositions will realise, if they have not done so already, that rewarding Bible study is within the grasp of us all. All that will be required to develop your own studies along similar lines will be a Bible, ideally with marginal cross-references; a good concordance or comp…

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Salvation from sin and death…

Salvation from sin and death…

Salvation from sin and death

  Criminal Convictions The original Guildhall at Lichfield probably goes back even further than 1421, the first recorded date. It was known to be the meeting place of the guild of St Mary and St John which was founded in 1387, hence its name the “Guildhall.” And the later use of part of the building as a prison is enough to send a chill down one’s spine. For in the times in question there was little mercy shown to suspected criminals; the only protection from the weather was the bars w…

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The Lamb of God…

The Lamb of God…

The Lamb of God

    It was John the Baptist who first made the connection. He had become a well-known figure in First Century Israel; a priest by birth who had become a reformer instead. Positioning himself by the River Jordan, instead of in the Temple at Jerusalem, he had summoned the nation to renew their vows and to enter into a new spiritual experience. They were to repent of their sins and be baptised in the Jordan. Coming Deliverer But, on his own admission, John was not the centre of the r…

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What's around the corner?…

What's around the corner?…

What's around the corner?

    Have you ever travelled along a twisting and narrow road hoping that there is no other vehicle approaching the same tricky corner at the same time? Or have you walked along a winding path wondering what you are going to see around the corner, hoping that you will get a new insight into how near you are to your journey’s end? rld Events Things that are happening in today’s world are a bit like that for some people. We seem to be turning a corner, but nobody is very sure what…

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One step at a time…

One step at a time…

One step at a time

Climbing steps is easy enough when you are young and fit but not so easy when you’re getting older and a bit stiff. Young people love to race up, partly to show what they can do at their age; older folk have learned that it’s surprising what you can accomplish if you take things one step at a time. r ChallengesLife can present us with some formidable challenges. We might have a crisis with our health, or with that of someone close to us. We could lose our job; have to move home; make…

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Coping with Change…

Coping with Change…

Coping with Change

 This is the time of year in Britain when it might snow. It might or it might not. The weather has been so unpredictable of late − 2012 being almost the wettest year since records began − that anything might happen. Some years it snows heavily; occasionally we get a very severe winter; but it could remain mild. It’s that unpredictability that makes it difficult to plan ahead so that everything carries on much as before, snow or no snow. ck! is well known that a light snowfall c…

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Felixstowe Talk…

Coping with Change

snow phone_box This is the time of year in Britain when it might snow. It might or it might not.

The weather has been so unpredictable of late − 2012 being almost the wettest year since records began − that anything might happen. Some years it snows heavily; occasionally we get a very severe winter; but it could remain mild. It’s that unpredictability that makes it difficult to plan ahead so that everything carries on much as before, snow or no snow.

Gridlock!

It is well known that a light snowfall can bring the UK to a halt as cars slip and slide, power lines go down, schools are shut and children get an unexpected holiday, until it thaws! Countries which experience regular deep snow have all the equipment they need and are practised at clearing snow away. But when snow is irregular and occasional, people are less well prepared.

children enjoy playing in snow

 Yet what is unwelcome to some people – like the Highways Authority – is hugely welcome to others, especially the children who get extra days off school. Look at the youngsters in the picture who are evidently enjoying the opportunity to go slipping and sliding down the road. Others, of course, will be fearful of venturing out in case they fall over, get hypothermia, or worse. For them, the new arrival will be a threat.

snow can be hard on aged and infirm

All Change!

It’s not just snow, of course, which causes such different reactions. Things change all the time and some people welcome it, whilst others resist it or fear it. As we get older, it may be that we get less able to cope which might be why some older people look longingly backwards, to what they perceive to be “the good old days”. It is worth noting, however, that change is a vital part of God’s unfolding purpose, as the Bible makes clear.

When God wanted to choose a people for Himself, through whom He would reveal His gracious purpose for mankind, He chose one man – Abraham – and invited him to journey with Him, in faith (Isaiah 51:2). Abraham responded magnificently and eventually he and his family arrived in Canaan (the land we now know as Israel). Through his son, Isaac, and his grandson, Jacob, Abraham’s family grew. Invited down to Egypt, over a period of time the seventy members of that family became a nation, albeit one in slavery. But change was to come, and very welcome that change was, to some. God had a plan to rescue His people from slavery and to bring them back to the land in which Abraham had once lived. How would they react to the opportunity? How would you have reacted?

Into the Unknown

Egypt might have been a place of bondage and servitude, but as slaves they were quite well fed and housed for the Egyptians needed them to be healthy and able-bodied for the work they were to do! Leaving all that – their homes and belongings, their accustomed diet, their regular hours and their employment – was a challenge. But God so arranged matters, by bringing a series of devastating plagues upon Egypt, that in the end they had no choice: they were told to leave! Thus the Exodus of the Israelites from Egypt began and they set off into the wilderness, guided by God towards a new land.

If you are at all familiar with the Books of Exodus and Numbers, you will know that many of the people left unwillingly and very few of them really believed that God had a viable escape plan. On the brink of their promised inheritance – at a place named Kadesh Barnea − most of them doubted that God could deliver what He had promised and without that belief and trust they were turned back and left to wander aimlessly around the Sinai peninsula.

It was the next generation who entered the land, another series of miraculous events making that possible. Now they could settle down and begin to be a nation among nations. That was another change they had to get used to.

God’s Kingdom

Yet this was only the beginning of a long process recorded in the Old Testament. The infant nation had to fight to survive, with God’s help. He appointed saviours, called Judges, who rescued them, and when they demanded a King like the other nations, God provided one. King after king reigned over His people, for it was God’s Kingdom on earth − with God’s appointed king reigning on God’s throne, over God’s people (1 Chronicles 29:23).

But it didn’t last as long as 500 years, because the nation did not believe that God would do what He promised to do for them. First they went into captivity; then they had a series of overlords, as one world empire succeeded another. All the time they were waiting for a king, but when God sent them one – His Son, the Lord Jesus, born of the virgin Mary – they weren’t ready for that sort of king.

Jesus had come to rule over sin by his perfect obedience to his Father’s will, and he accomplished that brilliantly. Because he triumphed in that way, God raised him from the dead and exalted him to sit at His right hand in heaven. It was all part of God’s gracious purpose, just as the psalmist had predicted:

The Lord said to my Lord, “Sit at My right hand, till I make your enemies your footstool.” The Lord shall send the rod of your strength out of Zion. Rule in the midst of your enemies! (Psalm 110:1–2).

Coming Change

Jesus has been in heaven for nearly 2000 years, working for the good of mankind, to save us from sin and death. Soon he will come, as promised, to establish God’s kingdom on earth once again and this time he will be the one to rule, as the psalmist says, “out of Zion”. For Jerusalem is to be the future capital of a worldwide kingdom that will usher in a marvellous time for mankind – well, for all those who are privileged to be a part of that coming age.

This is our time of opportunity. We need to change our ways and prepare for the great things that are coming, by getting to know God’s purpose and developing a relationship with Jesus, so that we will be ready to meet him when he comes.


 

 

A version of this article was published in Glad Tidings magazine. You can subscribe to receive a free copy of the Glad Tidings magazine each month by clicking on the logo below.

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