Philippians 4:8

September 01, 2019 -- Volume 3.36

God’s Forgiveness is Our Guide to Forgive Others
By Joe R. Price

21 Then Peter came to Him and said, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” 22 Jesus said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven” (Matt. 18:21–22, NKJV).

We are impressed by the love, forbearance, and compassion it takes to forgive those who sin against us. Peter may well have thought forgiving his brother seven times went over and beyond the normal expectations of forgiveness. But, Jesus used Peter’s figure as a springboard to explain the limitless nature of genuine forgiveness. His hyperbole of “seventy times seven” is not to be taken literally, but as emphasizing the boundless nature of forgiveness. His lesson is driven home as we contemplate our heavenly Father’s complete (and repeated) forgiveness of our sins. Moved with compassion, God forgives us completely when we seek His mercy (Matt. 18:23-27). Refusing to forgive those who sin against us reveals an unmerciful heart that prompts God’s just anger against us (Matt. 18:28-35). Let us meditate on how God forgives us. He does so promptly, compassionately, lovingly, completely, and repeatedly. We marvel at the depth of God’s compassion for us, at the breadth of His forbearance toward us, and at the magnitude of His love that readily takes us back into His fellowship (1 Jn. 1:9). “For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You” (Psa. 86:5). How we forgive others must imitate God’s forgiveness of us. – Sword Tips, August 20, 2019

Facts About The Bible

The Bible is composed of 66 books. There are 39 books in the Old Testament and 27 in the New Testament. Some 39 or 40 men had a part in the writing of the Bible, from Moses to the apostle John. It took over 1500 years to produce the Bible.

Out of all the men who wrote the books of the Bible, Luke “the beloved physician” (Col. 4:14) was the only Gentile. He penned the gospel of Luke and the book of Acts.

The first section of the Old Testament is called the Pentateuch. It contains the first five books of the Bible (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy). These books, written by Moses, cover the period of time from Creation to the death of Moses, just prior to the entrance of God’s people into the promised land.

The Old Testament contains twelve books of history, from Joshua through Esther. There are five books of poetry: Job, Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, and the Song of Solomon. There are five books of the major prophets: Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel and Daniel. There are 12 minor prophets, from Hosea through Malachi.

The New Testament contains four gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke and John), each telling the story of the life of Christ from different viewpoints. The New Testament has one book of history, the book of Acts, which tells of the establishment of the church and the growth of Christianity in the first century. It also has 21 epistles (Romans through Jude), the majority of which were written by the apostle Paul, and one book of prophecy (the Revelation), penned by John while on Patmos.

The Old Testament was written in Hebrew (with the exception of Daniel 2:4b-7:28 and Ezra 4:8-6:18). The New Testament was written in Greek. – Selected

By John Isaac Edwards

The Bible is the greatest book ever written. It is the only book that tells us from whence we came, why we’re here, and where we’re going.

1) B - BUY IT. The wise man counseled, “Buy the truth, and sell it not...” (Prov. 23:23). We must be willing to pay any cost to have the truth and not part with it at any price.

2) I - INVESTIGATE IT. It would do us no good to buy the Bible, unless we look into its pages. The Lord said, “Search the scriptures: for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me” (Jn. 5:39).

3) B - BELIEVE IT. There would be no reason to buy the Bible and investigate it, if we are not willing to believe it. Without faith, it is impossible to please God (Heb. 11:6).

4) L - LOVE IT. Many to be lost, “because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved” (2 Thess. 2:10).

5) E - EXEMPLIFY IT. Do what the Bible says, be what it makes you, and go where it leads you. James penned, “But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed” (Jas. 1:25). – The Terre Haute Speaker, August 4, 2019

You Can Understand the Bible For Yourself
By Philip Mullins

One of the greatest misconceptions about the Bible is that it is a locked book. The average person is believed to be shut out from comprehending its message. It is thought to be too mysterious, too difficult for the common man or woman to understand.

Nothing could be further from the truth. The apostle Paul was one of the individuals who was chosen to write down the message of Christ for the New Testament. The word of Christ was revealed to Paul by the Holy Spirit. The gospel had been hidden for years like a mystery, but it was now being unveiled for all to see and know. Speaking of the gospel, Paul wrote, “how that by revelation  He made known to me the mystery (as I  wrote before  in  a few  words, by  which  when you read, you may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)”  (Eph. 3:3-4).

The Bible was not written to stump man or frustrate him in any way. Certainly, there are sections of it that are challenging and even parts that leave most of us at a loss as to what it is about. Yet, the vast majority of what is found in the Bible is understandable for anyone.

God’s supreme intelligence makes the Bible understandable. He knows how we reason and communicate, and He has constructed it in such a way that we can comprehend it. It is filled with narrative, illustrations, and colorful language that makes it easier for us to relate to what is being said. Though He is so far above us, God has always been able to connect with man if man was willing to listen.

You don’t have to have some special teacher to unlock the secrets of the Bible for you. You may benefit from another's assistance, but you can read the Bible for yourself. You do, however, have to make an effort and invest some time into studying the Bible in order to understand it. Like learning anything new, you will struggle at first. Yet, if you are committed and stick to it, you will soon begin to see it come together. You will discover that the Bible is fascinating and enlightening. You will find that it is understandable and that it is the word of eternal life (Jn. 6:63). – Collegevue church of Christ Bulletin, April 28, 2019