Archive for the 'Difficult Passages' Category

(Posts Archive)

Unforgivable!

Some of the most difficult words of the Bible come from the mouth of Jesus. For example, he is the one who talked about 2 sins, one against God (insulting the Holy Spirit), the other against one another (an unwillingness to forgive), that he called unforgivable. (Luke 11:18; Matthew 6:15) Writing about the unnecessary suffering a misunderstanding […]

Apocalypse has Begun

In everyday usage, the word apocalyptic represents horrific events that preview the end of the world as we know it. When used of the Bible it suggests a cosmic unveiling, intervention and new world order. Normally, we think of apocalyptic events as future. But, according to the Gospel, the greatest of all revelations has already […]

Serious Comedy Then and Now

In the 8th chapter of 2 Kings, there’s a life and death story told in a somewhat comedic way. The king of Aram (present day region of Syria) has been trying to conduct raids on the neighboring nation of Israel. But whenever he would come up with a new plan of attack the prophet Elisha would […]

Why Jonah Ran

Be fair to Jonah. His mission was dangerous. Bearers of bad news had been killed for a lot less, even within the borders of Israel. Imagine hearing, “Go to your enemies. The awful ones.  Tell them that in 40 days the God of Israel is going to destroy them.” Yet when the prophet eventually delivered his message, people as evil as […]

Words in the Night

In the middle of the night, lately, I’ve found myself waking, with some of the same words running through my mind, over and over… and then over and over— as if something deep inside me is trying to reach and grasp something that seems too good to be true, suspended teasingly just beyond my will […]

Behind and Beyond the Veil

Still between Passover and Pentecost, 2015, I’ve spent some time recently in Paul’s 2nd letter to the Corinthians. In chapter 3 he compares and contrasts the glory of the law with the greater glory of the Spirit. A present significance for us is that, as observant Jewish people celebrate the giving of the law on […]

Dark Thoughts

Because there is so much we don’t understand about the eternal purposes of the God of the Bible, he can be read like a self-centered father who plays favorites with this children; a moral monster who takes pleasure in the cruel deaths of his enemies; or a powerful bully who uses his strength to intimidate […]

Why is the Bible Called the Word of God?

This is an important question because there are many voices in the Bible. In its pages we hear our Creator quoted as saying, “Let there be light”, and Satan’s subtle challenge, “Did God really say…?” Between the first words of Genesis and the last words of Revelation we find prophets and poets speaking in their […]

Living Letters

In past conversations we have talked about whether quotes of an inspired Bible remain the Word of God no matter how ungracefully or thoughtlessly they are expressed. We may also have observed together that when the written Scriptures themselves speak of the Word of God they may be referring to, (1)  A direct quote of […]

A Time to Cry

One of the riddles of the kingdom of God is found in Jesus’ words, “Cry now, laugh later”; Laugh now, cry later” (Luke 6:21; Luke 6:25). It was not a new thought. For centuries his people had been singing songs and hearing prophets talk about being deeply troubled by the silence of God before seeing […]