Saturday, October 27, 2007

Goodbye Elisheva

You know….blogging isn’t for everyone, and my good friend Elisheva has found it necessary to abandon her blog.

Rather than totally leave her content to wander the blogosphere aimlessly I asked her if I could take over Got Bible?

Luckily, she consented. I’ve always loved studying the Bible and the study of the ancient world has always intrigued me along with the architecture of cathedrals and Biblical art through the ages.

I’ll be continuing many of the same features as before and will begin some new ones as well including reaching out to other bloggers writing about religion. There are many great sites out there.

I’ve already begun the rebuilding of this site by creating three columns, and will soon be adding more links and images.

At this point I’m not sure who might be a regular reader of this site, but I didn’t want to begin posting without first identifying myself and why I was suddenly posting at this site.

I’m an educator and my main focus is American History. I post daily at my main site, History Is Elementary. I also run the Georgia Blog Carnival and post regarding Georgia History at Georgia On My Mind. I write about U.S. presidents at American Presidents.

Stay tuned…….

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Wordless: Verse 24

This painting is by William Blake and is called Elohim Creating Adam. It was painted in 1794. I thought it was a great go along with this quote someone sent me....Sure God created man before woman. But then you always make a rough draft before the final masterpiece.
Find more wordless images here

Monday, October 15, 2007

What Is God Really Like?

Quick, open another window and zip on over to Google/images. Enter the word God in the search box and look at the images that come up, or just look at both of the images I have embedded in this post.

Do you see how they are all different? One of the ministers at my church the other day preached on this very thing…how we all have a different image of God. He quoted The Knowlege of the Holy by A.W. Tozier when he said the image that comes to our minds when we attempt to see God reveals the most important thing about us.

Tozier goes on to say:

Always the most revealing thing about the Church is her idea of God, just as her most significant message is what she says about Him or leaves unsaid, for her silence is often more eloquent than her speech. She can never escape the self-disclosure of her witness concerning God.

Were we able to extract from any man a complete answer to the question,”What comes into your mind when you think about God?” we might predict with certainty the spiritual future of that man. Were we able to know exactly what our most influential religious leaders think of God today, we might be able with some precision to foretell where the Church will stand tomorrow.

Without doubt, the mightiest thought the mind can entertain is the thought of God, and the weightiest word in any language is its word for God. Thought and speech are God’s gifts to creatures made in His image; these are intimately associated with Him and impossible apart from Him. It is highly significant that the first word was the Word: ”And the Word was with God, and the Word was God.” [John 1:1] We may speak because God spoke. In Him word and idea are indivisible.

God’s nature is most certainly revealed in scripture. We are told in James 1:17…Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. The God that guided Moses, the God that gave wisdom to Solomon, and the God that gave His son is the same God leading and guiding me today.

God is omnipresent which means He is everywhere at all times. God can be seen throughout the universe, in all living things, and in all humans all in the same instant. No matter where go go God is already there. Psalm 139:7 and 8 tells us… Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence? If I go up to the heavens, you are there; If I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

God is omnipotent meaning He has unlimited power and authority including conquering sin and death. Matthew 19:26 tells us…Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

God is omnicient in that He is all knowing. His knowledge, awareness, and perception is unlimited. Psalm 147:5 explains…Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.

There are those that argue any attempt to understand the power of God can actually take away some of his power. However, this argument is flawed. Understanding how a lightening bolt travels to the Earth or what circumstances must be present to feel an Earthquake does not diminish the power of those occurances. While we may discover basic natural principals such as the DNA code or the possible causes for genetic defects many also have many unknowns.

Getting to know God should be the highest priority of our life. Proverbs 1:7 states…The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise widsom and discipline. Proverbs 1:9 goes further…They will be a garland to grace your head and a chain to adorn your neck.

That being said, however, God wants us to known him. He does not want us to merely create an image that is appealing to us. He wants us to be in His word and really understand Him.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

13 Facts Concerning First Chronicles

1. Like 1st and 2nd Kings 1st and 2nd Chronicles was also at one time one text. It was first divided by Greek translators in the second century B.C.

2. The english title comes from Chronicon, the name given by the Latin translator Jerome. The original Greek name of the text was “Events of the Days”.

3. The text answers important questions for the Israelites once they returned to Israel from their captivity.

4. In order to answer many questions such as….Did they still fit into God’s plan? Were the promises of God still applicable to them? What religious and political institutions were important? and What lessons from the past could they learn from to keep from making the same mistakes?.....a concise history was needed. Chronicles was that history.

5. The long genealogies at the beginning of Chronicles show that God cares for persons as individuals.

6. Salvation is taught in Chronicles in David’s psalm of Thankgiving when the ark of the covenant was finally moved into a tent in chapter 16. The painting with this post is King David. It was painted by Domenico Zampier in the 1500s.

7. Family lines are given in the text to show the Messianic promise of a son of David to rule over Israel.

8. The events in Chronicles occurred during David’s reign (about 1010-970 B.C.)

9. The author is unknown, however, many scholars think Ezra wrote it about 450 B.C.

10. Some of the themes of Chronicles are Davidic Dynasty, temple, blessing of obedience, and punishment of disobedience.

11. The phrase “all Israel” is repeated througout the text because the author was attempting to emphasize to his initial audience that they were God’s people.

12. One of the most striking characteristics of Chronicles is the variety of name lists. Some lists are geneologies, some are lists of warriors, the devisions of the Levites, the divisions of the Priests, musicians, gatekeepers, and secular officials.

13. There are two major divisions in the text. Chapters 1-9 are the genealogies and chapters 10-29 discuss David’s reign.

You can join Thursday Thirteen here

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Wordless 23

This image is taken from a Florentine Bible dating back to the 1470s

Other wordless images can be seen here

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Found in the Bible: The Water Cycle

1. Evaporation-Psalm 135:7---the text states He causes the clouds to rise from the ends of the earth. He makes lightning for the rain and brings the wind from the storehouses.

2. Precipitation-Job 36: 27-28---the text states For He makes waterdrops evaporate they distill the rain into its mist, which the clouds pour out and shower abundantly on mankind.

3. Condensation-This process of the water cycle is referenced in two places
Job 26:8---the text states He enfolds the waters in His clouds, yet the clouds do not burst beneath their weight. The other reference is Job 37:11---the text states He saturates clouds with moisture; He scatters His lightning through them.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

13 Things Concerning 2nd Kings

1. We need to remember that 1st Kings and 2nd Kings once existed as a single text.

2. The author is known but many believe it may have been Jeremiah around 560 B.C.

3. The text reminds us that the Northern Kingdom never had a righteous king. Idol worship contined even though prophets such as Elisha taught otherwise. As punishment God sends the people into permanent dispersion.

4. The Southern Kingdom was a bit better with rightous events during the reign of Hezekiah and Josiah, however, God also sent the Southern Kingdom into exile.

5. God’s Kingdom plan was never in jeopardy simply because the Israelites were sent into exile. The promise of a kingdom existed in the Davidic line. A temporal kingdom and temple was never the goal.

6. The book centers on the ministry of Elisha in chapters 2-8.

7. Two major sieges of Jerusalem are discussed-----the first by Sennacherib of Assyria (701 B.C.) where God intervened (chapter 19). The second seige was by Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon around 586 B.C. (chapter 25) which tells the story about the destruction of the city and Solomon’s temple.

8. There are three main sections of the text…..Elisha’s ministry (chapters 1-8); the later period of the divided monarchy (chapters 9-17); and the period of Judah alone (chapters 18-25).

9. The text can be confusing because details alternative between the Northern and Southern kingdoms.

10. Chapter 17 provides a theological reason for the fall of Israel, but does not tell us any military, political, or economic reasons.

11. The book evaluates people by just one criterion: did they do “right in the Lord’s eyes” or not?

12. Nearly three centuries are covered within 2nd Kings, so it confirms the worldview category of time and place….as history moves forward God’s plan moves forward as well.

13. The story of 2nd Kings is largely one of disloyalty, and God’s “educational program” meant teaching His people that He values faithfulness to Him above all else, even if that means exiling them.

Find other 13s here

Monday, October 1, 2007

Is Everything Really Mentioned in the Bible?

A preacher was telling his congregation that anything they could think of, old or new, was discussed somewhere in the Bible and that the entirety of the human experience could be found there. After the service, he was approached by a woman who said, “Preacher, I don’t believe the Bible mentions PMS.”

The preacher replied that he was sure it must be in there somewhere, and that he would look for it.

The following week after service, the preacher called the woman aside and showed her a passage which read, “And Mary rode Joseph’s ass all the way to Bethlehem.”
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