Daily Encouragement

October 31 – Jesus calls us brethren!

October 31
Lamentations 4:1-5:22
Hebrews 2:1-18
Psalm 103:1-22
Proverbs 26:23

Lamentations 4:13 – God judges a nation’s religious leaders first. Look how they are described in Lamentations 4:14-15.

Lamentations 5:21 – Jeremiah ends his lament with a plea for God to return – yet he realizes that for Israel it is too late.

Hebrews 2:2 – Almost every time a human encounters an angel, the first angelic words are “Fear not!” Yet if we fear an angel, shall we not fear the maker of the angel? We have not the word of an angelic encounter but the Word of God!

Hebrews 2:4 – What was the purpose of the signs and wonders? To confirm His revelation to man.

Hebrews 2:7 – The back and forth between humans and angels is emphasized here: created lower than the angels, but crowned with glory and honor!

Hebrews 2:16-17 – Jesus took not the nature of angels, but was “made like unto his brethren.” He chose to be like us!

Psalm 103:11 – How great is God’s mercy! In just a few verses (Psalm 103:17) – we’ll see how long is His mercy!

Proverbs 26:23 – We talked about this a while back – a potsherd is a broken piece of pottery. Jesus had a similar thought in Matthew 23:27 when he called the scribes and Pharisees “whited sepulchers.”

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Daily Encouragement

October 30 – The Hebrew Acrostic of Lamentations

October 30 Lamentations 3:1-66 Hebrews 1:1-14 Psalm 102:1-28 Proverbs 26:21-22
Hebrew Alphabet
Lamentations 3:1 – A little bit of “technical analysis” – Lamentations 1, 2, and 4 are Hebrew Acrostics – each verse starts with a different Hebrew letter (Aleph/A, Beit/B, Gimel, Daleth, He, etc…), so each chapter is 22 verses (22 Hebrew letters). Lamentations 3 is 66 verses – the first 3 verses all start with Aleph, the next three verses start with Beit, the next three verses start with Gimel. (Remember that Hebrew is written from right to left). In other words, this is clearly poetic writing. Not narrative (I did this, then he did that). Narratives can explain battles, but poetry can explain pain.
https://www.mechon-mamre.org/p/pt/pt3203.htm
Lamentations 3:2123 – Three chapters in and it seems there is no hope. But there is – in the Lord’s mercy, compassion, and faithfulness! Great is Thy Faithfulness!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EMACCtitfRw First Baptist of Dallas
Lamentations 3:24 – I saw a statistic on the internet – 1 in 3 people who touch alcohol become drunk, but we think we’re ok. 1 in 300,000,000 win the lottery, and we think – could be me! Hope is not the “Wishin and hopin and thinkin and prayin” as a pop singer sang. Biblical Hope is “Confidence in a future event” – and with Jesus – 1 in 1 are pluck-free (John 10:28)! Hope is the theme of the mid-section of Lamentations 3.
  • “my hope is perished” Lamentations 3:18
  • “have I hope” Lamentations 3:21
  • “will I hope in him” Lamentations 3:24
  • “man should…hope” Lamentations 3:26
  • “there may be hope” Lamentations 3:29
Our confidence is that grief is followed by compassion (Lamentations 3:32). Anger is followed by favour (Psalm 30:5). We must, however, acknowledge our sins, accept the punishment (Lamentations 3:39), and radically adjust our ways (Lamentations 3:40). Lamentations 3:53 – Jeremiah isn’t speaking hyperbole – he actually knew what a dungeon was like (Jeremiah 38:6). Lamentations 3:54 – Near drowning is a horrifying experience. Vic Eliason shared how his brother saved him from drowning as a young boy, and Vic never forgot the experience. Let’s look at Biblical references to near drowing:
  • Jeremiah “waters flowed over mine head (Lamentations 3:54)
  • Jonah “waters compassed me about, even to the soul” (Jonah 2:5)
  • Psalmist “the waters are come in unto my soul” (Psalm 69:1)
Lamentations 3:66 – Jeremiah gave up his right to vengeance to God.  Like David, Jeremiah knew he was a sinful man, but God has mercy and will forgive us – and even though we grievously offend our God – He still answers prayers such as David’s prayer that God would turn the counsel of Ahithophel into foolishness (2 Samuel 15:31). Hebrews 1:1 – From E. Schuyler English:
The theme of the Epistle to the Hebrews, the only book of the New Testament in which our Lord is presented in His high priestly office, is the supreme glory of Christ, the Son of God and Son of man. https://www.ttb.org/resources/study-guides/hebrews-study-guide
Hebrews 1:3 – Who is this Son? Agent of Creation (Hebrews 1:2), Brightness of His glory, Image of His person, upholding all things. Upholding is the same idea as “by him all things consist (Colossians 1:17). He holds the universe together! Oh, and he’s so much better than the angels (Hebrews 1:4). This is not the mere brother of Lucifer. This is not the mere spirit creature named Michael. This is not a mere good teacher. Enjoy reading about the greatness of our Savior – the only Son of God! Hebrews 1:14 – Angels are ministers of the heirs of salvation. Who are the heirs? We are! (Galatians 3:29, Romans 8:17, Titus 3:7, 1 Peter 3:7). Yes angels are serving us! Psalm 102:2 – When life is easy we don’t need to call upon God. And if we do accidentally say grace over a meal, we don’t need a speedy answer. We don’t need to bother the Almighty with our insignificant needs. Yet He wants to hear from his children! He has made us heirs of salvation. Fanny Crosby developed this theme – reminding us of our Blessed Assurance!
Blessed Assurance!
Proverbs 26:22 – Sometimes it’s better not to know. Share how reading thru the Bible has been a blessing to you! E-mail us at 2018bible@vcyamerica.org or call and leave a message at 414-885-5370.
Daily Encouragement

October 29 – Habits of Holiness in Psalm 101

October 29
Lamentations 1:1-2:22
Philemon 1:1-25
Psalm 101:1-8
Proverbs 26:20

Lamentations 1:1 – From TTB:

Dr. Alexander Whyte, one of the great expositors of the Word of God of days gone by, has said: “There is nothing like the Lamentations of Jeremiah in the whole world. There has been plenty of sorrow in every age, and in every land, but such another preacher and author, with such a heart for sorrow, has never again been born. Dante comes next to Jeremiah, and we know that Jeremiah was the great exile’s favorite prophet.”

Lamentations 1:12 – From Spurgeon:

I, too, share the sympathetic avarice of Jeremiah’s pity. Do you ask what grief I have and for whose woes I am a mourner? I point you to the cross and to the Man of Sorrows there.

Lamentations 2:7 – The LORD who so detailed the instructions for the altar in Exodus 30 now has cast it off. “He hath fulfilled his word” (Lamentations 2:17).

Philemon 8-9 – Paul begs for love’s sake rather than declaring by his authority as an apostle.

Philemon 12 – Paul continues to put relationships above rights. Requesting not ordering (Philemon 8-9). Relinquishing his friend (Philemon 13). Demonstrating by presumably begging Onesimus to give up his freedom to build a relationship with a brother. This is what Paul had taught previously in 1 Timothy 6:2, specifically about believing masters.

Philemon 21 – According to tradition, Onesimus later became bishop of Ephesus, and was martyred by stoning.

450px-Onesimus_of_Byzantium_(Menologion_of_Basil_II)

Psalm 101:3 – God wants purity in behavior (Psalm 101:2), in heart (Psalm 101:2), in sight (Psalm 101:3), in friends (Psalm 101:4), in speech (Psalm 101:5), in attitude (Psalm 101:5).

Proverbs 26:20 – Let’s cut the fire out!

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Daily Encouragement

October 28 – Meet Baruch’s brother!

October 28
Jeremiah 51:54-52:34
Titus 3:1-15
Psalm 100:1-5
Proverbs 26:18-19

Jeremiah 51:58 – From Ancient History Encyclopedia: “Nebuchadnezzar II (634-562 BCE) built three walls around Babylon at heights of forty feet and so broad at the top that chariots could race around them. The Ishtar Gate in the wall of Nebuchadnezzar II’s Babylon was claimed by some to be greater than any of the listed Wonders of the Ancient World.”

Jeremiah 51:59 – Seraiah is the son of Neriah, son of Maaseiah. Who else is a son of Neriah, son of Maaseiah? Baruch! Yes Baruch’s brother is the “quiet prince” (KJV). Commentaries suggest alternatives but the best guess is he was an “advance man” for the king. Jeremiah was not without connections – and this helps understand Baruch’s concern (Jeremiah 45:5). Baruch was  a man of influence and he had been identified with the apparently treasonous Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 52:30 – So 4,600 people were taken away in three different captivities. The number is not excessively large, but this was the ruling class, the political elite, the “1 percenters” of Judaea.

Jeremiah 52:34 – This chapter provides a recap of the historical events, and this particular recap is also documented also in II Kings 25:27-30, and recorded in the “Jehoiachin Ration Tablet.”

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jehoiachin%27s_Rations_Tablets#/media/File:Jehoiachin_Ration_Tablet.JPG

Titus 3:1-2 – Paul continues with exhortation on relationships, now to our relationship with authority.

Titus 3:4 – Paul identifies Jesus, our Savior, as God.

Titus 3:7 – Paul never got over what the kindness, love, mercy, and grace of Jesus did to him. The chief of sinners (1 Timothy 1:15), less than the least of all saints (Ephesians 3:8), is made an heir of God!

Titus 3:14 – Paul wanted Titus to be fruitful. How can we be fruitful? Thru good works. Careful to maintain good works (Titus 3:8).

Psalm 100:1Sing with Patch the Pirate this Psalm!

Proverbs 26:19 – The one who attacks others and claims “just joking” is not to be trusted.

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Daily Encouragement

October 27 – Proverbs reminds you to Mind Your Own Business

October 27 Jeremiah 51:1-53 Titus 2:1-15 Psalm 99:1-9 Proverbs 26:17 Jeremiah 51:5 – Why is God judging Babylon? Because God isn’t done with Israel! Jeremiah 51:8 – The declaration that Babylon is fallen is repeated in Revelation 18:2 Jeremiah 51:15 – Note the greatness of God’s power, wisdom, and understanding! Jeremiah 51:28 – God is using the Medes to defeat the Babylonians, as he used the Babylonians to defeat the Judeans. Interestingly Jeremiah is prophesying who will destroy Babylon roughly seventy years before it happens! Jeremiah 51:45 – God told His people to surrender to Babylon (Jeremiah 27:11), now He is telling his people to flee Babylon. This is not an example of God changing His mind, but of having different purposes at different times for His people! God is not done with Jerusalem (Jeremiah 51:50) Titus 2:1 – Notice Paul’s theme of the importance of doctrine? Titus 2:2 – Paul has behavioral expectations for elders (Titus 1:5-6) and bishops (Titus 1:7-9), now he covers seniors (Titus 2:2-3), younger people (Titus 2:4-8), and servants (Titus 2:9). Titus 2:10 – Does your behavior adorn the doctrine of God? Titus 2:12 – How can we live up to the behavioral expectations? We have the power from the grace of God that lets us deny ungodliness and lets us live soberly. Titus 2:13 – Are you looking for the Blessed Hope and the Second Coming of Jesus? In the mean time are you walking in freedom from iniquity, and zealous of good works? (Titus 2:14). Remember “peculiar” doesn’t mean weird! Titus 2:15 – Speak, exhort, and rebuke are not synonyms. Speak – proclamation of the boundary line. Exhort is encouraging people to defend the boundary line. Rebuke is confronting people who have not defended the boundary line. Psalm 99:5 – He is Holy. Holiness implies separation. Separated from us because of our iniquities. Yet He is a God that forgives (Psalm 99:8). Proverbs 26:17 – Mind your own business!
https://sweetrains.wordpress.com/2014/05/21/wisdom-wednesday-mind-your-own-business/
Share how reading thru the Bible has been a blessing to you! E-mail us at 2018bible@vcyamerica.org or call and leave a message at 414-885-5370.