Category Archives: Old Testament
Furthermore, I have seen under the sun that in the place of justice there is wickedness and in the place of righteousness there is wickedness.
If you are an astute political observer, you cannot help but become frustrated and angry at the current political scene. Minority groups of all sorts manipulate an entire nation based upon perverted and selfish personal agendas. Politicians abuse their power in the most egregious manners; some of those minority groups hold politicians under their thumbs to assure that their selfish political agendas will be inflicted upon the masses. I am sure that you may experience the same frustrations as I. This is just one example of the injustices that seem to be rampant in our country. How are we as Christians to respond to such injustice? We must trust God to provide the justice we need. Read the rest of this entry
Long life is in her right hand; In her left hand are riches and honor.
Our text takes us to two benefits of wisdom. Many other benefits of wisdom exist, but the two specifically mentioned by our text are long life and riches and honor. In many cultures, the right hand is a sign of honor and the left hand of dishonor. In light of the use of both hands in our text, we cannot deduce that one hand is more honorable that the other. The point of the proverbs is that both blessings of wisdom are excellent in nature and not to be preferred one over the other. What does our text mean for us today? Be concerned with how well you live for God. Read the rest of this entry
Or like a miscarriage which is discarded, I would not be, As infants that never saw light.
Our text tells us of another man who wished he were dead. Except for Christ, no other man in human history suffered more than Job. Job lost everything he had within a matter of minutes. He lost his considerable wealth and a large family (with the exception of his wife). To compound his problems, his wife became bitter about life. Job lost his health to wallow in a horrible physical misery. The first words Job speaks to his friends are words of despair. He cursed the day he was born.
The message of Job is that of trust. Through the extreme situation of Job, we learn that no matter what God allows into our lives, whether good or evil, we can trust God. This means that we must be alive if we are to demonstrate to others the goodness of God in our lives and our trust in Him. The lesson we learn from Job’s desire for death is life is worth living. Read the rest of this entry
After him Nehemiah the son of Azbuk, official of half the district of Beth-zur, made repairs as far as a point opposite the tombs of David, and as far as the artificial pool and the house of the mighty men.
The Book of Nehemiah tells us of a man who was an excellent leader very much like an orchestra conductor. Nehemiah was deeply committed and involved in the work and issues at stake. He even knew how to develop other leaders. For this reason, religious books on the topic of leadership often go to Nehemiah. We see in our text one of the men whom Nehemiah developed as a leader. This man held a position of prominence, and he was personally involved in the work. The man’s name was Nehemiah, but he was not the Nehemiah who led the rebuilding of Jerusalem’s walls. Nehemiah was working for a cause much greater than himself. We learn one valuable lesson from the second and lesser Nehemiah. Leadership means involvement in the work. Read the rest of this entry
He made chains in the inner sanctuary and placed them on the tops of the pillars; and he made one hundred pomegranates and placed them on the chains.
As we study Old Testament history, we see pillars play significant roles. Jacob and Laban used pillars as a promise to God that neither man would trust the other. A pillar of fire led the Israelites through the wilderness. The church is called the pillar and ground of the truth1. God honors Christians as pillars in the temple of God in heaven2. When we read our text, we find that two pillars play a prominent part in worship in Solomon’s Temple. These two pillars were known by name as Jachin and Boaz. We will learn that the message of Jachin and Boaz is simple. We must trust God establish our service for the Lord in His strength. Read the rest of this entry
The sons of Jehoiakim were Jeconiah his son, Zedekiah his son.
Our text takes us to a genealogy which lists the end of a dynasty. Our text tells us of the last kings in the line of David. What does our text mean for us today? Why should we even care about the lists of names? The genealogies of the Bible are important to today’s Christians. We learn from the genealogies that God is concerned about fulfilling His promises, your family, and your worship. Read the rest of this entry
He said, “Thus says the LORD, ‘Make this valley full of trenches.’
The people in our text badly needed something to defeat an enemy. They desperately needed water in order to survive. The area where they were was not suitable to receive the water they so desperately needed. They went to a prophet to get advice, and the prophet told them to dig ditches. Digging ditches was not a likely method to defeat an enemy, let alone to find water, but the Lord commanded that ditches be dug. The lesson we will learn from our text is when we obey God, we may expect God’s blessings. Read the rest of this entry
Then two women who were harlots came to the king and stood before him.
What is common sense? Common sense is basically practical reasoning. It is the ability to see things as they really are and doing something reasonable about those things. We could substitute the idea of common sense with the word wisdom. Wisdom is the ability to take what you know of something and apply it to your actions. A person who is good at working with wood can be considered wise in the area of woodworking. A person who is great with mechanical things would be considered wise in the area of mechanics. Each person takes what he knows of his trade and applies it to his work. When we think of wisdom in the spiritual sense, wisdom is taking what we know of God and applying it to our lives. Read the rest of this entry
But her husband went with her, weeping as he went, and followed her as far as Bahurim. Then Abner said to him, “Go, return.” So he returned.
We have all been placed in no win situations. We have all been asked to do things or have been given responsibilities, and we had no choice because someone manipulated us and the situation. We felt like puppets. 2 Samuel 3 tells us an interesting story about people who placed an innocent victim in the middle of circumstances beyond her control. Michal became a pawn to broker a political deal. The people around Michal used and manipulated her to gain advantage for themselves. We have all been manipulated at one time or another, and we have either manipulated someone else or we have at least been tempted to manipulate a circumstance for our advantage. Manipulation is always purely self-centered, having no place in a believer’s life. The believer is called to serve others as he would serve himself, and manipulation has no place in the second half of the great commandment. The lesson we learn from our text is very simple. Do not use people to gain personal advantage. Read the rest of this entry
Then Eli called Samuel and said, “Samuel, my son.” And he said, “Here I am.”
We as human beings have a problem with our hearing. In other words, we hear what we want to hear. Wives often think that their husbands have selective hearing. The husband hears only certain things his wife says. Children also have selective hearing. They can hear you silently scoop ice cream, but they cannot hear you tell them to do their chores. Read the rest of this entry