Lesson From Structure: How a passage says is as important as what a passage says. Psalm 139 is a great illustration of this rule of Bible interpretation.
In December of 2017 I presented this study at the Grapevine, TX Preacher's Study. The material presented is the culmination of about two years worth of study and research and yet it merely introduces one of Matthew's greatest themes. I pray this study will provoke bible students to re-examine familiar territory and also encourage them to never lose sight of the forest for all the trees. If you are interested in more studies along this line, be sure to check out our Matthew Study material.
A special thanks to Christian Landmark for making this and other video recordings available.
The story found in 2 Kings 2:23-25 of an angry prophet, two she bears, and forty-two mauled children is one that has puzzled Bible readers. Recently a young man asked me about the meaning of the story, and all I could provide was when one mistreats a prophet of God he mistreats God Himself for you cannot separate God from His prophet. While I still believe that to be a true concept, I no longer believe it is the main thrust of the story.
The trial of Stephen is a pivotal moment in the Book of Acts and contains one of the greatest sermons ever preached by man. Stephen's trial echoes that of Christ's and has a similar effect on the early church. Within Stephen's sermon is contained the history of Israel in nutshell form and God's history of redemption on brilliant display. Stephen's sermon ends in the same place where Peter's sermon ended on the Day of Pentecost, and though the people were again cut to the heart, mass conversions were not the result. The third witness to Jerusalem climaxed in tragedy, yet with a divine ovation, as the gospel began its outward expansion to the ends of the earth.
The audio sermon below was recorded in November of 2016 and contains a sermon that I have preached only once. I am looking forward to giving it again next Lord's Day and hope the boldness of Stephen will rekindle the fire of conviction in the hearts of God's children as it has mine.
One of the unique features of Old Testament poetry (and sometime prose) is heavy use of parallelism. Hebrew parallelism generally presents itself in one of the following three formats:
First, there is what is known as a straight line parallelism or an AA, BB, pattern of parallelism in which consecutive lines parallel each other and help interpret one another. For example, Psalm 44:1:
What is the #1 enemy of unity? How is the creation mandate fulfilled in the Church? In what way does Acts 2 portray a reversal of Babel and the original division of languages? We hope the following audio sermon provides the answers to these questions and more.
The book of Acts should be considered the second volume in a two-volume set. This point is often overlooked due to the arrangement of the New Testament cannon wherein the Gospel of John is placed between the two volumes.
Consider the following points:
Here is a free PDF version of Brother Ron Courter's helpful study on the book of Ecclesiastes. If you get a chance, drop him a line to thank him for his work and making it available.
All my life I have heard the story of the crucifixion taught and assumed I had an accurate understanding of the suffering Christ endured. I was surprised to learn that some of what I thought I knew was actually false. I encourage you to take some time and consider the following presentation with an open mind. May we ever strive to fully appreciate the incredible price that was payed at Calvary for our redemption and live a life of gratitude as an expression of thanks.
Life is tough. Sometimes it doesn’t make sense. For a while things roll along just fine, and then out of nowhere tragedy follows tragedy. Life overwhelms.
One preacher put it this way. “Cheer up! Things could always get worse. So, sure enough, I cheered up and things got worse!”
is an evangelist of the Church of Christ in Arlington, Texas.