Dec 042016


The writer of the beloved Christian hymn, AMAZING GRACE, was John Newton. The original title was FAITH’S REVIEW AND EXPECTATION, published in 1779.

Newton led a difficult life as captain of slave ships before his conversion to Christianity in the 1750’s.

The title ascribed to the hymn, “1 Chronicles 17:16–17”, refers to David’s reaction to the prophet Nathan telling him that God intends to maintain his family line forever. Some Christians interpret this as a prediction that Jesus Christ, as a descendant of David, was promised by God as the salvation for all people.

Newton became acutely aware of four things taught in the Bible:

(1) I must realize that in my present condition I am a sinner before God.

“All have sinned, and come short of the glory of God” (Romans 3:23).

“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one” (Romans 3:10).

(2) I cannot save myself from eternal punishment in hell.

“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 6:23).

“As it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27).

(3) Christ has paid for my sins and my punishment with His death on the cross.

“But God commendeth His love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him (Jesus) should not perish, but have everlasting life”
(John 3:16).

(4) I must accept His crucifixion as payment for my sins, personally.

“For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved” (Romans 10:13).

“But as many as received Him (Christ), to them gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name” (John 1:12).

Click on the blue headline link at top to read about the Scripture messages behind the lyrics of “Amazing Grace”.


Nov 272016


The Midrash says, “If Torah had been given in the land of Israel, Israel might have said to the nations of the world: ‘you have no share in it.’ Therefore the Torah was given in the wilderness, ie., in public for all to see; and everyone who wishes to receive it let him come and receive it” [Mekhilta]


“There is a good deal of confusion in our minds when we read on the one hand in Romans 6:14, “You are no longer under law but under grace,” but on the other hand in Romans 3:31, “Do we then overthrow the law by faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law.”

Jesus said in Luke 24:44, “These are my words which I spoke to you . . . that everything written about me in the law of Moses, the prophets, and the psalms must be fulfilled.” … Many in Israel twisted the Mosaic law into legalism. That is, they severed it from its foundation of faith, failed to stress dependence on the Spirit, and thus turned the commandments into a job description for how to earn the wages of salvation.

That is legalism. But there is no Greek word for legalism, so when Paul wanted to refer to this distortion of the Mosaic law, he often used the phrase, “works of law” (e.g., Romans 3:20; Galatians 2:16, 3:2, 5)… sometimes he simply used the word “law,” as when he said, “You are not under law but under grace” (Romans 6:14).

This does not mean: you don’t have to keep the law. It means you are not burdened by it as a job description of how to earn the wages of salvation.”  (John Piper)

For we know that salvation is only through faith in Jesus Christ and not in works of any law (John 6:29).


Click on the blue headline link at top to read a beautiful commentary on the giving of the Law to Moses.



SUNDAY STUDY: The Deception of Self

 God, Jesus Christ, Prayer, Sunday Posts  Comments Off on SUNDAY STUDY: The Deception of Self
Nov 202016


Dying to self means that the things of the old life are put to death, i.e., the sinful ways and lifestyles we once engaged in. “Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires” (Galatians 5:24). Where we once pursued selfish pleasures, we now pursue, with equal passion, that which pleases God.

Dying to self is part of being born again; the old self dies and the new self comes to life (John 3:3–7).

Click the blue headline link at top to read about Satan’s deception to humanity regarding satisfying our “self”-ish desires.


Sunday Study: A LOOK AT HELL

 God, Jesus Christ, Sunday Posts  Comments Off on Sunday Study: A LOOK AT HELL
Nov 132016
Sunday Study: A LOOK AT HELL

A Look at Hell By Pastor Dan   Hell is important. It is important because Jesus taught about it more than all other Biblical authors put together. It is important because it shows how infinitely dependent we are on God for everything. It is important because it unveils the seriousness and danger of living life


SUNDAY STUDY: How Do I Find Fulfillment In Life?

 Bible prophecy, God, Jesus Christ, Sunday Posts  Comments Off on SUNDAY STUDY: How Do I Find Fulfillment In Life?
Nov 062016
SUNDAY STUDY: How Do I Find Fulfillment In Life?

They say life’s greatest questions are : Who am I? Where did I come from? Why am I here? Where am I going? I remember discussing these as a teenager with my friends when we were just beginning to discover philosophy. We delved into abstract and moral implications and we thought we were so wise…


SUNDAY STUDY: The Rich Man and Lazarus

 Bible prophecy, God, Jesus Christ, Sunday Posts  Comments Off on SUNDAY STUDY: The Rich Man and Lazarus
Oct 302016
SUNDAY STUDY: The Rich Man and Lazarus

Death is God’s just consequence for sin. “For the wages of sin is death” (Romans 6:23). Because of sin, everyone has deserved death – eternal separation from God in hell. Jesus, a sinless man, had to die because He is the only one who can pay the penalty for our sins. Sheol (Hebrew)/Hades (Greek)/Hell had two compartments

Oct 232016
SUNDAY POST: Solomon's Temple (Shadows and Patterns)

Author and I have been studying the Book of John again. In Chapter 4, we read of the Samaritan woman meeting Jesus at the well. As the woman’s eyes and mind begin to see and understand that Jesus is telling her things that only a Prophet of God could know about her, she desires to

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