dreamstime l_12205274_opt

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

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…

Read More...

Felixstowe Talk…

 

Lorna Price the first torch bearer on day 11 on Anglesey (BBC News) 

Progress of the Olympic Torch

8,000 people will carry the flame on its 8,000 mile, 70-day journey around the UK to the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games on 27 July.

In its 10 week relay the Olympic torch will travel around 8,000 miles pass through 1,018 places and be carried by 8,000 torch bearers;  flying by zip wire from the Tyne Bridge, ascending Snowdon by rail and crossing Loch Ness on its journey around the UK.

On the last day of the 70-day relay it will travel down the River Thames to Olympic Park for the opening ceremony of the Olympic Games.

The first Olympic Games occurred around 776 BC in ancient Greece. The Apostle Paul knew about them and to what lengths athletes would go to win. Four cities in Greece held games and so there was a possibility to see one almost every year. People came not only from Greece but from distant countries to enjoy the Games and the accompanying festivities. Although Paul is probably referring to the Isthmian Games celebrated near Corinth, they were all very similar with more or less the same events; that is leaping, running, throwing the discus, boxing, and wrestling,

Running was one of the most popular events and the competitors first put themselves through tough training sessions. In those days soldiers needed to be swift and agile in attack and retreat, which was why running was considered to be a valuable skill. Pre race training and discipline was intense as victory in the Games was a great honour.

Paul appears to use the Games analogy several times in his letters. He speaks of treating life as a long distance race which all must complete to gain the prize (1Co 9:26 ; Php 2:16; Php 3:14 ), he writes of running with a purpose and boxing with skill (1Co 9:26),  ‘fighting the good fight’of faith (2Ti 4:7). He also appears to present an image of the disciples before a cheering home crowd (who have all triumphed in their races), stripping down to remove all that would slow them down- just as the Christians must remove anything which might hold them back as they strive for a place in the Kingdom of God on earth.  Heb 12:1 ¶  Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us.

Finally, as he contemplates the end of his long life of faith, when he has undoubtedly run the race set before him with patience, he can say with confidence.

2Ti 4:7  I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:

2Ti 4:8  Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day.

 Here is another reference to the Games, for the winners did receive a crown , and although it was only a laurel wreath or similar it was greatly coveted. However, the crown which Paul had striven for would be one which would never fade away. In 1Co 9:25, speaking of the runners in a race, he writes ’And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible, in other words the reward of everlasting life which the Lord Jesus Christ will give to the faithful at his return.

Of course, Paul is only using the analogy of a race to encourage his readers to train their characters to achieve their ‘personal best’. They were to ‘take up the cross’ and faithfully try with all their heart to serve and be like The Lord Jesus Christ. So Paul is saying, keep your eye on the finishing post, the goal, because all who complete the course will be granted an incorruptible crown, not a wreath of leaves which will soon disintegrate. As we have already seen, when writing to Timothy, Paul at the end of his life Paul speaks of this  when writing to Timothy. He says that a crown of life has been laid up for him, but not only him ‘but unto all them also that love his appearing.’ (2Ti 4:8)

A new winner is crowned

Black and white headshot of Benjamin Netanyahu

 

On the subject of winning a crown, in the news this week, there is one such champion , who has won the race for control of Israel and been granted a ‘crown’ and that is the Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu.

This week's Time Magazine cover crowns Binyamin Netanyahu, "King Bibi", and declares, "He's conquered Israel. " By "conquering Israel", the cover is referring to the recent move Netanyahu has made, bringing the Kadima party into the coalition, making his government much more stable.

The Time article states, "Netanyahu is poised to become the longest-serving Israeli Prime Minister since David Ben-Gurion, the founding father of Israel, He has no national rival. His approval rating, roughly 50%, is at an all-time high. At a moment when incumbents around the world are being shunted aside, he is triumphant."

Netanyahu's response to the current Time cover, "I can tell you one thing,” he quipped, “Israel will remain a democracy, not become a monarchy."

The Throne of Israel to be restored

Netanyahu is correct in asserting that he is not a king and that Israel today is not a monarchy. But he is wrong in implying that this will always be the case. When Israel was still a young nation, they demanded a King and God first gave them Saul, who was the people’s choice and let them down and then David, who was described as a man after God’s own heart (Acts 13:22). To King David, God made an agreement or Covenant which can be found in 2 Samuel 7. It spoke of David’s son but although his son Solomon inherited David’s throne; the covenant was reserved for David’s greater son, the Lord Jesus Christ. 2 Samuel 7 12 – 14 states, "And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will stablish the throne of his kingdom for ever. I will be his father, and he shall be my son..." Even though this would take place after the death of King David, verse 16 goes on to say: "And thine house and thy kingdom shall be established for ever before thee: thy throne shall be established for ever." This therefore requires the resurrection of David from the grave.

Solomon ruled well over David’s Kingdom but complete fulfilment of these promises must wait for the return of Christ who is the ultimate ‘son of David and also Son of God’. The writer to the Hebrews quotes Psalm 2 and applies it to Christ, (Hebrews 1:5) "For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?"

This fits in with the words of the great angel Gabriel to Mary, recorded in Luke 1:31-33.
"And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end."
From these passages it is plain that the promises made to David have fulfilment in the Messiah, as confirmed by the letter to the Hebrews and that Jesus the Messiah will at some future will sit upon the throne of David and rule as King over the twelve tribes of Jacob, for ever.

Psalm 110 contains the Divine Oath, upon which the everlasting kingship and priesthood of the Messiah rests. In this Psalm it states that the Messiah would remain in heaven at the right hand of God, "until", he would return and reign in the midst of his enemies and subdue them.

"The LORD said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool. The LORD shall send the rod of thy strength out of Zion: rule thou in the midst of thine enemies." (Psalm 110:1,2)

The Lord Jesus Christ himself, spoke of the restoration or regeneration of the throne of Israel and enlarged this Covenant promising special places to the 12 apostles, who would judge the 12 tribes of Israel. Matthew 19:28,

"And Jesus said unto them, Verily I say unto you, That ye which have followed me, in the regeneration when the Son of man shall sit in the throne of his glory, ye also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel."

As Jesus himself has promised to return to earth and rule over the whole earth as King from Jerusalem, Netanyahu is right in saying that he is no King. That privilege must await the return of Christ. In the meantime, like the athletes preparing for the Olympics, those who believe in Christ must first qualify for the race by repenting, believing and being baptised. Then all their energies should be spent on running the race of life with eyes fixed on the prize of eternal life and the crown of righteousness which the Lord Jesus, at his return, will bestow to all who have run in faith.

 

 

 Acknowledgements: www.bbc.co.uk  and http://www.time.com/time/covers/


 

 


 

Search site