JULY 14

Proverbs 14:13: "Even in laughter
[sometimes when a person appears to be happy and having fun] the heart is sorrowful [full of grief]; and the end of that mirth [laughter, cheerfulness--referring, in this case, to the person's true, hidden feelings] is heaviness [sadness]."

According to Pastor Jim Delany of Salem Bible Church, "Solomon's point in this proverb is that laughter isn't always what it seems." In his commentary, he says, "Solomon observed that often times people attempt to cover up their deep inner grief with the outward appearance of laughter" and that "clowns [and comedians, too] are often very sad people."

Pastor Delany says "the very thing we try to block out [in public] [i.e., sorrow] is GOOD for us!" That's because:

" God uses sorrow to get our attention… to cause us to look to Him… to stop and think…
" God uses sorrow to strengthen the inner man. It is in a time of grief that we take the time to reflect upon life… on the important things…
" This sorrow and sober reflection often leads to repentance… a change of mind followed by a turning in the right direction.
" People are much more likely to think soberly about the real issues of life at a funeral than at a party."

The commentary ends with:

" So there is no point in covering up sorrow… or pretending to be always happy.
" If you are going through a period of grief or sorrow… let God USE that period for good in your life."

If you want to read more of the commentary, here's the link: www.salembible.org/proverbs-index/proverbs-14-index/proverbs-14_13/.

JULY 13

Romans 6:6
[In a letter to the saints (born-again Christians) in Rome, the apostle Paul wrote]: "Knowing this, that our old man [our sinful and corrupt nature] is crucified [put to death, as if on the cross] with him [Jesus], [so] that the body of sin might be destroyed [become inoperative and powerless], [and so] that henceforth [from now on, after salvation] we should not serve [be a slave to or be controlled by] sin [personified (likened to a person)--as a master]."

This is true for all people who are saved, or born again.

JULY 12

James 1:13-15 - We Shouldn't Blame God for Our Temptation and Sin

Verse 13: "Let no man
[person] say when he [or she] is tempted [to sin], I am tempted of [by] God: for God cannot be tempted with [to do] evil [things], neither tempteth he any man [or woman or child] [to do wrong]:"

Verse 14: "But every man
[person] is tempted, when he [or she] is drawn away of [lured by] his [or her] own lust [intense desire for something], and [is] enticed [seduced, persuaded to do evil, led astray by promises of pleasure or profit]."

Verse 15: "Then when lust hath conceived
[taken over, meaning that when a desire is indulged in an improper manner, as with adultery and fornication (sex outside of marriage), gluttony (eating too much), greed (desiring to be rich), covetousness (wanting what someone else has), etc.], it bringeth forth [results in] sin: and sin, when it is finished [committed, especially when repeated and continued], bringeth forth death [or destruction, meaning it will ruin your life]."

According to one Bible commentator, in reference to verse 13, "…  he [God] tempted Abraham [in a good way], to try his faith, love, and obedience to him; he tempted the Israelites in the wilderness, to try them and humble them, and prove what was in their hearts; and he tempted Job, and tried his faith and patience; and so he tempts [in a good way] and tries all his righteous ones, by afflictions, more or less: but he never tempts [in a bad way] or solicits them to sin …"

(Source for above quote: https://www.studylight.org/commentary/james/1-13.html, "John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible")

JULY 11

1 John 5:7: "For there are three
[persons] that bear record [witness] in heaven [to the fact that Jesus is the Son of God], [they include] the Father [God the Father], the Word [Jesus Christ--the Son], and the Holy Ghost [Holy Spirit]: and these three are one [i.e., one God, meaning that the Godhead (or Trinity) consists of three separate and equal persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) with distinct personalities]."

JULY 8-10

Mark 1:14-15: "Now after
[the day] that John [the Baptist] was put in prison [by King Herod], Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel [good news] of the kingdom of God [referring to the Messiah's upcoming reign on earth], And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand [drawing near, approaching]: repent ye [Jesus was speaking to the nation of Israel--see note below*], and believe the gospel [good news, the meaning of which was understood by the Jews but not explained by Jesus--see note below*]."
_________________________

*Like many people, you may have thought that the above verse is saying that we need to repent in order to be saved. However, according to Pastor Jim Delany of Salem Bible Church, "This was NOT a message of individual salvation, but of national repentance."

Pastor Delany explains what he meant by that statement in his excellent article entitled "The Gospel of the Kingdom: What is the Gospel of the Kingdom?" (www.salembible.org/the-gospel-of-the-kingdom/). Here are some excerpts:

"4.) While Peter & the other disciples preached a 'gospel', it is clear that the content of that message was NOT: that Jesus died for your sins and rose again. Nor was it even that Jesus was GOING to die for your sins!

"* At that point they did not expect Jesus to die. They expected that He would establish the Kingdom and reign forever!"
_____

"3.) This gospel was never explained to the disciples. They were simply told to go out and preach it. (Matt.10:1-7) The disciples announced this good news to the people without explanation."
_____

"B.) This Message Needed No Explanation

"1.) How did the Jews know what this 'good news' of the Kingdom meant? How were they to understand the CONTENT of the good news if it was not explained to them??? They didn't NEED any explanation. They had been waiting for this message to come for over 400 years!

"2.) Mal.4:5-6 - The last message of the Old Testament told the Jews to be expecting: an Elijah-like prophet to come to Israel and TURN hearts in a right direction!

"3.) They were expecting someone to come an tell them to: 'turn around'… change your mind… repent! That is exactly what John [the Baptist] & Jesus did.

"4.) Mal.3:1 - They were expecting a: 'messenger' to come with a message! This messenger would tell the people to TURN to God… repent… and he would prepare the way for the Messiah/King. This is exactly what John [the Baptist] did."
_____

"i. The very last word of God in the Old Testament was a reminder to wait and watch and be ready for this Elijah-like prophet to come on the scene and TURN the people back to God… a message of national repentance to prepare the people for the coming King & the theocratic Kingdom - God ruling on earth - the Kingdom of heaven on earth - thy kingdom come! (Mal.4:5-6)"
_____

"C.) John 1:19-23 - The King's Forerunner: John [the Baptist] said that he was the voice of one crying in the wilderness, announcing the coming of the Messiah-King, and was calling on the nation to prepare for the coming of the King and His Kingdom. The Jews understood that. This is what their most noteworthy prophet had told them to expect! (Cf. Isa.40:3)

"1. In his day, the Jews understood what he meant. In our day, the problem is one of reading NT [New Testament] truth back into the OT [Old Testament]. That is always dangerous.

"a. When John [the Baptist] & Jesus spoke of their message as a 'gospel', it did not have Christian meaning, but a Jewish meaning!

"b. It had nothing to do with the death, burial, & resurrection of Christ!

"c. The Christian church, the NT [New Testament] revelation was still a mystery. There was no possible way the people to whom they preached would have understood the term 'gospel' as we do, after the cross.

"d. They understood what God had revealed up to that point. The Christian church and Christian doctrine were not yet revealed."
_____

"6. This message, calling the nation of Israel exclusively to repent and obey His commands is clearly NOT the same message as the gospel of God's grace, calling on individuals to believe that Jesus died and rose again and if they believe they will receive eternal life!"
_____

"IV. Relationship To Lordship salvation

"A. Lordship salvation views the teachings of Jesus to Israel as equal to God's plan of salvation for the world today.

"B. They view the ministry of Christ (& even the OT [Old Testament] prophets!) as a gospel ministry virtually the same as a Christian missionary.

"1. Yes, Jesus did tell individual men how to be saved.

"2. BUT, His main ministry was to Israel to confirm the covenants made with their fathers. (Rom.15:8)

"3. The Sermon on the Mount is NOT the plan of salvation! …

"4 When Jesus said, 'Follow me and I will make you fishers of men', that is not the plan of salvation! Men are not saved by 'following' but by 'believing.'
_____

"C. As a result of that kind of thinking: They emphasize 'repentance' and a 'turning from sin' as a pre-requisite for salvation

"Lordship people call upon men to 'stop sinning' before they can receive Christ. That is backwards. A man must BELIEVE and be saved before he is ever ABLE to stop sinning!

"Interesting note: the purpose of the gospel of John is to teach men what we must do in order to obtain eternal life. While the words 'faith' and 'believe' occur throughout that gospel, yet the term 'repent' does not appear even once!"

* * * * *

J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton seem to agree with Pastor Delany on the meaning of verse 15. You can read their commentary here, https://www.studylight.org/commentary/mark/1-15.html, under the heading "The Fourfold Gospel."

In addition, if you're confused about lordship salvation or want to know more about it, you may want to read Pastor Delany's article entitled "Introduction to Lordship Salvation: Is It Another Gospel?" Here's the link: www.salembible.org/lordship-salvation/.

JULY 7

Matthew 5:14-16 - Letting Our Spiritual Lights Shine
During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said to his disciples:

Verses 14-15: "Ye [born-again Christians] are the [spiritual] light of the world. [That's because, by spreading the gospel, we enlighten people's minds, just as the sun illuminates the earth by shining on it.] A city that is set [situated] on an hill [or mountain] cannot be hid [hidden]. Neither do men light a candle [or turn on a lamp], and put it under a bushel [a large container (about two gallons), like those used for measuring dry goods, such as grains and peas], but on a candlestick; and it [the candle or lamp] giveth light unto all that are in the house."

Verse 16: "Let your light
[Christian conduct] so shine before men [people], that they may see your good works, and glorify [honor, praise, worship, and obey] your Father which is in heaven [God]."

In his commentary on verse 16, Albert Barnes, in part:

"We learn here:

"1.that religion, if it exists, cannot be concealed.

"2.that where it is not manifest in the life, it does not exist.

"3.that 'professors' of religion, who live like other people, give evidence that they have never been truly converted.

"4.that to attempt to conceal or hide our Christian knowledge or experience is to betray our trust, injure the cause of piety, and to render our lives useless. And,

"5.that good actions will be seen, and will lead people to honor God. If we have no other way of doing good - if we are poor, and unlearned, and unknown yet we may do good by our lives. No sincere and humble Christian lives in vain. The feeblest light at midnight is of use."

(Source: https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/matthew-5.html, "Verse 16")

JULY 5-6

Titus 3:5-7 - We're Saved Through Faith, Not Works
In this letter, the apostle Paul is writing to born-again Christians:

Verse 5: "Not by works of righteousness [not through good works, or because of the good things] which we have done, but according to his mercy [kindness and compassion] he [God the Father] saved us [from hell and the lake of fire], by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost [i.e., through spiritual rebirth, or the process of being 'born again,' whereby we are cleansed from sin and become new 'creatures' (2 Corinthians 5:17--see below*)];"

Verse 6: "Which
[referring to the Holy Ghost, or Holy Spirit] he [God the Father] shed [poured out, like rainwater] on us abundantly [plentifully, indicating a daily 'renewing of the Holy Ghost'] through Jesus Christ [the Son of God, who is also] our Saviour;"

Verse 7: "
[God saved us so] That being justified [freed from sin, declared righteous] by his grace, we should be made heirs [of his, which means we should be adopted into the family of God] according to the hope of [having] eternal [never-ending] life [in heaven]."

Some Bible commentators think that the phrase by the washing of regeneration in verse 5 refers to baptism, but others do not. This is what Peter Pett said in his commentary:

"'Not by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,'

"And this work of salvation which He has wrought in us if we are Christians, was not because of any works that we had done in righteousness. It was not deserved in any way. It simply resulted from His compassion and mercy. And it was through 'the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit'. This does not mean that it was outwardly through baptism and inwardly through the Holy Spirit. That is totally to misunderstand the picture. (How we love to bring baptism in when water is mentioned as though water was never used for anything else. Even in a context like this we still have to keep God under our control). It is a picture drawn from the Old Testament where the coming of the Holy Spirit was likened to the pouring out of rain from above, washing the earth and regenerating it … And the result was to be life and fruitfulness. It was to be the renewal of the Holy Spirit which had been so long awaited.

"Alternately the washing of regeneration may have in mind the Old Testament examples of the washing away of sin (not defilement) … where it is a picture of the removal of sin, not of a ritual washing. The new birth washed away all their old sins and their old ways … and they became new creatures in Christ Jesus … In this case the regeneration is seen in terms of the positive removal of their sin, not of ritual washing.

"All the Gospels emphasise that it was a prime ministry of Jesus, to drench men in the Holy Spirit … And it is this work of Jesus that Paul is describing here, a work that began while He was on earth … continued in the Upper Room … flowered at Pentecost … and has gone on ever since, a work that takes place in men and women when they hear the Gospel and truly believe …

"In fact baptism is never described as 'washing' (Acts 22:16, the only possible exception, is debatable). It is always seen as an indicator of life from the dead through the Holy Spirit. Nor did ritual washings in the Old Testament ever cleanse ('you shall not be clean until the evening' was the constant refrain). They simply washed away earthly defilement so that men could then reach out to God, and Peter makes clear that that is not what baptism is all about … What baptism does of course signify is the working of the Holy Spirit, picturing it in terms of the heavenly rain. The Christian is baptised as a picture of what has happened to him, and as an act of his resulting total commitment to Christ as his Lord."

Note: Most references in the above quote have been omitted.

(Source for quoted material: https://www.studylight.org/commentary/titus/3-5.html, "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible")
_________________________

*2 Corinthians 5:17: "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."

JULY 4

Galatians 5:1
[In a letter to the Christian churches in Galatia, warning them to beware of false teachers, the apostle Paul wrote]: "Stand fast [be firm and unwavering] therefore in the liberty [freedom] [of the gospel (referring to salvation)] wherewith [by which] Christ [Jesus] hath made us free [from religious rites and ceremonies], and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage [meaning, in this case, don't go back to being a slave to Jewish ceremonial law]."

Dictionary.com's definition of yoke: a wooden crosspiece that is fastened over the necks of two animals and attached to the plow or cart that they are to pull.

JULY 1-3

Matthew 6:25-33 - If You Are Born Again, God Will Supply Your Basic Needs
During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said to his disciples (and--via the Bible--to all Christians):

Verse 25: "Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life [don't worry about the necessities of life], what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on [wear]. Is not the life more [valuable] than meat [food], and the body [more valuable] than raiment [clothing]?"

Verse 26: "Behold
[look at, observe, consider] the fowls of the air [the birds]: for they sow not [they don't plant or scatter seeds], neither do they reap [harvest crops], nor [do they] gather [the crops] into barns; yet your heavenly Father [God] feedeth [feeds] them. Are ye not much better [more important] than they [are]?"

Verse 27: "Which of you by taking thought
[by worrying] can add one cubit [the length of a forearm--about 18 inches] unto his [or her] stature [height*]?"

Verses 28-30: "And why take ye thought for
[why do you worry about] raiment [clothing]? Consider the lilies of the field [wildflowers], how they grow; they toil not [they don't work], neither do they spin [make yarn or thread by twisting fibers of wool, cotton, etc.]: And yet I say unto you, That even [King] Solomon in all his glory [splendor (i.e., while wearing his finest royal robes)] was not arrayed [clothed, dressed] like one of these [beautiful flowers]. Wherefore, if God so clothe [dress] the grass of the field [such as wheat], which to day is [alive and growing], and to morrow is cast [thrown or inserted] into the oven [and baked into bread], shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?"

Verses 31-33: "Therefore take no thought
[don't worry] [about the things that you need], saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal [with what] shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles [non-Jews] seek:) for your heavenly Father [God] knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God [heaven], and his [God's] righteousness [in other words, make sure that you are saved, or 'born again']; and all these things [i.e., food and clothing] shall be added unto you."
_________________________

*According to some commentaries, stature can also mean age in the Bible, so if that applies to this verse, it means there is nothing that man can do to increase the length of his life.


Previous Verses
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JULY 14

Proverbs 14:13: "Even in laughter
[sometimes when a person appears to be happy and having fun] the heart is sorrowful [full of grief]; and the end of that mirth [laughter, cheerfulness--referring, in this case, to the person's true, hidden feelings] is heaviness [sadness]."

According to Pastor Jim Delany of Salem Bible Church, "Solomon's point in this proverb is that laughter isn't always what it seems." In his commentary, he says, "Solomon observed that often times people attempt to cover up their deep inner grief with the outward appearance of laughter" and that "clowns [and comedians, too] are often very sad people."

Pastor Delany says "the very thing we try to block out [in public] [i.e., sorrow] is GOOD for us!" That's because:

" God uses sorrow to get our attention… to cause us to look to Him… to stop and think…
" God uses sorrow to strengthen the inner man. It is in a time of grief that we take the time to reflect upon life… on the important things…
" This sorrow and sober reflection often leads to repentance… a change of mind followed by a turning in the right direction.
" People are much more likely to think soberly about the real issues of life at a funeral than at a party."

The commentary ends with:

" So there is no point in covering up sorrow… or pretending to be always happy.
" If you are going through a period of grief or sorrow… let God USE that period for good in your life."

If you want to read more of the commentary, here's the link: www.salembible.org/proverbs-index/proverbs-14-index/proverbs-14_13/.

JULY 13

Romans 6:6
[In a letter to the saints (born-again Christians) in Rome, the apostle Paul wrote]: "Knowing this, that our old man [our sinful and corrupt nature] is crucified [put to death, as if on the cross] with him [Jesus], [so] that the body of sin might be destroyed [become inoperative and powerless], [and so] that henceforth [from now on, after salvation] we should not serve [be a slave to or be controlled by] sin [personified (likened to a person)--as a master]."

This is true for all people who are saved, or born again.

JULY 12

James 1:13-15 - We Shouldn't Blame God for Our Temptation and Sin

Verse 13: "Let no man
[person] say when he [or she] is tempted [to sin], I am tempted of [by] God: for God cannot be tempted with [to do] evil [things], neither tempteth he any man [or woman or child] [to do wrong]:"

Verse 14: "But every man
[person] is tempted, when he [or she] is drawn away of [lured by] his [or her] own lust [intense desire for something], and [is] enticed [seduced, persuaded to do evil, led astray by promises of pleasure or profit]."

Verse 15: "Then when lust hath conceived
[taken over, meaning that when a desire is indulged in an improper manner, as with adultery and fornication (sex outside of marriage), gluttony (eating too much), greed (desiring to be rich), covetousness (wanting what someone else has), etc.], it bringeth forth [results in] sin: and sin, when it is finished [committed, especially when repeated and continued], bringeth forth death [or destruction, meaning it will ruin your life]."

According to one Bible commentator, in reference to verse 13, "…  he [God] tempted Abraham [in a good way], to try his faith, love, and obedience to him; he tempted the Israelites in the wilderness, to try them and humble them, and prove what was in their hearts; and he tempted Job, and tried his faith and patience; and so he tempts [in a good way] and tries all his righteous ones, by afflictions, more or less: but he never tempts [in a bad way] or solicits them to sin …"

(Source for above quote: https://www.studylight.org/commentary/james/1-13.html, "John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible")

JULY 11

1 John 5:7: "For there are three
[persons] that bear record [witness] in heaven [to the fact that Jesus is the Son of God], [they include] the Father [God the Father], the Word [Jesus Christ--the Son], and the Holy Ghost [Holy Spirit]: and these three are one [i.e., one God, meaning that the Godhead (or Trinity) consists of three separate and equal persons (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) with distinct personalities]."

JULY 8-10

Mark 1:14-15: "Now after
[the day] that John [the Baptist] was put in prison [by King Herod], Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel [good news] of the kingdom of God [referring to the Messiah's upcoming reign on earth], And saying, The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand [drawing near, approaching]: repent ye [Jesus was speaking to the nation of Israel--see note below*], and believe the gospel [good news, the meaning of which was understood by the Jews but not explained by Jesus--see note below*]."
_________________________

*Like many people, you may have thought that the above verse is saying that we need to repent in order to be saved. However, according to Pastor Jim Delany of Salem Bible Church, "This was NOT a message of individual salvation, but of national repentance."

Pastor Delany explains what he meant by that statement in his excellent article entitled "The Gospel of the Kingdom: What is the Gospel of the Kingdom?" (www.salembible.org/the-gospel-of-the-kingdom/). Here are some excerpts:

"4.) While Peter & the other disciples preached a 'gospel', it is clear that the content of that message was NOT: that Jesus died for your sins and rose again. Nor was it even that Jesus was GOING to die for your sins!

"* At that point they did not expect Jesus to die. They expected that He would establish the Kingdom and reign forever!"
_____

"3.) This gospel was never explained to the disciples. They were simply told to go out and preach it. (Matt.10:1-7) The disciples announced this good news to the people without explanation."
_____

"B.) This Message Needed No Explanation

"1.) How did the Jews know what this 'good news' of the Kingdom meant? How were they to understand the CONTENT of the good news if it was not explained to them??? They didn't NEED any explanation. They had been waiting for this message to come for over 400 years!

"2.) Mal.4:5-6 - The last message of the Old Testament told the Jews to be expecting: an Elijah-like prophet to come to Israel and TURN hearts in a right direction!

"3.) They were expecting someone to come an tell them to: 'turn around'… change your mind… repent! That is exactly what John [the Baptist] & Jesus did.

"4.) Mal.3:1 - They were expecting a: 'messenger' to come with a message! This messenger would tell the people to TURN to God… repent… and he would prepare the way for the Messiah/King. This is exactly what John [the Baptist] did."
_____

"i. The very last word of God in the Old Testament was a reminder to wait and watch and be ready for this Elijah-like prophet to come on the scene and TURN the people back to God… a message of national repentance to prepare the people for the coming King & the theocratic Kingdom - God ruling on earth - the Kingdom of heaven on earth - thy kingdom come! (Mal.4:5-6)"
_____

"C.) John 1:19-23 - The King's Forerunner: John [the Baptist] said that he was the voice of one crying in the wilderness, announcing the coming of the Messiah-King, and was calling on the nation to prepare for the coming of the King and His Kingdom. The Jews understood that. This is what their most noteworthy prophet had told them to expect! (Cf. Isa.40:3)

"1. In his day, the Jews understood what he meant. In our day, the problem is one of reading NT [New Testament] truth back into the OT [Old Testament]. That is always dangerous.

"a. When John [the Baptist] & Jesus spoke of their message as a 'gospel', it did not have Christian meaning, but a Jewish meaning!

"b. It had nothing to do with the death, burial, & resurrection of Christ!

"c. The Christian church, the NT [New Testament] revelation was still a mystery. There was no possible way the people to whom they preached would have understood the term 'gospel' as we do, after the cross.

"d. They understood what God had revealed up to that point. The Christian church and Christian doctrine were not yet revealed."
_____

"6. This message, calling the nation of Israel exclusively to repent and obey His commands is clearly NOT the same message as the gospel of God's grace, calling on individuals to believe that Jesus died and rose again and if they believe they will receive eternal life!"
_____

"IV. Relationship To Lordship salvation

"A. Lordship salvation views the teachings of Jesus to Israel as equal to God's plan of salvation for the world today.

"B. They view the ministry of Christ (& even the OT [Old Testament] prophets!) as a gospel ministry virtually the same as a Christian missionary.

"1. Yes, Jesus did tell individual men how to be saved.

"2. BUT, His main ministry was to Israel to confirm the covenants made with their fathers. (Rom.15:8)

"3. The Sermon on the Mount is NOT the plan of salvation! …

"4 When Jesus said, 'Follow me and I will make you fishers of men', that is not the plan of salvation! Men are not saved by 'following' but by 'believing.'
_____

"C. As a result of that kind of thinking: They emphasize 'repentance' and a 'turning from sin' as a pre-requisite for salvation

"Lordship people call upon men to 'stop sinning' before they can receive Christ. That is backwards. A man must BELIEVE and be saved before he is ever ABLE to stop sinning!

"Interesting note: the purpose of the gospel of John is to teach men what we must do in order to obtain eternal life. While the words 'faith' and 'believe' occur throughout that gospel, yet the term 'repent' does not appear even once!"

* * * * *

J. W. McGarvey and Philip Y. Pendleton seem to agree with Pastor Delany on the meaning of verse 15. You can read their commentary here, https://www.studylight.org/commentary/mark/1-15.html, under the heading "The Fourfold Gospel."

In addition, if you're confused about lordship salvation or want to know more about it, you may want to read Pastor Delany's article entitled "Introduction to Lordship Salvation: Is It Another Gospel?" Here's the link: www.salembible.org/lordship-salvation/.

JULY 7

Matthew 5:14-16 - Letting Our Spiritual Lights Shine
During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said to his disciples:

Verses 14-15: "Ye [born-again Christians] are the [spiritual] light of the world. [That's because, by spreading the gospel, we enlighten people's minds, just as the sun illuminates the earth by shining on it.] A city that is set [situated] on an hill [or mountain] cannot be hid [hidden]. Neither do men light a candle [or turn on a lamp], and put it under a bushel [a large container (about two gallons), like those used for measuring dry goods, such as grains and peas], but on a candlestick; and it [the candle or lamp] giveth light unto all that are in the house."

Verse 16: "Let your light
[Christian conduct] so shine before men [people], that they may see your good works, and glorify [honor, praise, worship, and obey] your Father which is in heaven [God]."

In his commentary on verse 16, Albert Barnes, in part:

"We learn here:

"1.that religion, if it exists, cannot be concealed.

"2.that where it is not manifest in the life, it does not exist.

"3.that 'professors' of religion, who live like other people, give evidence that they have never been truly converted.

"4.that to attempt to conceal or hide our Christian knowledge or experience is to betray our trust, injure the cause of piety, and to render our lives useless. And,

"5.that good actions will be seen, and will lead people to honor God. If we have no other way of doing good - if we are poor, and unlearned, and unknown yet we may do good by our lives. No sincere and humble Christian lives in vain. The feeblest light at midnight is of use."

(Source: https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/matthew-5.html, "Verse 16")

JULY 5-6

Titus 3:5-7 - We're Saved Through Faith, Not Works
In this letter, the apostle Paul is writing to born-again Christians:

Verse 5: "Not by works of righteousness [not through good works, or because of the good things] which we have done, but according to his mercy [kindness and compassion] he [God the Father] saved us [from hell and the lake of fire], by the washing of regeneration, and renewing of the Holy Ghost [i.e., through spiritual rebirth, or the process of being 'born again,' whereby we are cleansed from sin and become new 'creatures' (2 Corinthians 5:17--see below*)];"

Verse 6: "Which
[referring to the Holy Ghost, or Holy Spirit] he [God the Father] shed [poured out, like rainwater] on us abundantly [plentifully, indicating a daily 'renewing of the Holy Ghost'] through Jesus Christ [the Son of God, who is also] our Saviour;"

Verse 7: "
[God saved us so] That being justified [freed from sin, declared righteous] by his grace, we should be made heirs [of his, which means we should be adopted into the family of God] according to the hope of [having] eternal [never-ending] life [in heaven]."

Some Bible commentators think that the phrase by the washing of regeneration in verse 5 refers to baptism, but others do not. This is what Peter Pett said in his commentary:

"'Not by works done in righteousness, which we did ourselves, but according to his mercy he saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit,'

"And this work of salvation which He has wrought in us if we are Christians, was not because of any works that we had done in righteousness. It was not deserved in any way. It simply resulted from His compassion and mercy. And it was through 'the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit'. This does not mean that it was outwardly through baptism and inwardly through the Holy Spirit. That is totally to misunderstand the picture. (How we love to bring baptism in when water is mentioned as though water was never used for anything else. Even in a context like this we still have to keep God under our control). It is a picture drawn from the Old Testament where the coming of the Holy Spirit was likened to the pouring out of rain from above, washing the earth and regenerating it … And the result was to be life and fruitfulness. It was to be the renewal of the Holy Spirit which had been so long awaited.

"Alternately the washing of regeneration may have in mind the Old Testament examples of the washing away of sin (not defilement) … where it is a picture of the removal of sin, not of a ritual washing. The new birth washed away all their old sins and their old ways … and they became new creatures in Christ Jesus … In this case the regeneration is seen in terms of the positive removal of their sin, not of ritual washing.

"All the Gospels emphasise that it was a prime ministry of Jesus, to drench men in the Holy Spirit … And it is this work of Jesus that Paul is describing here, a work that began while He was on earth … continued in the Upper Room … flowered at Pentecost … and has gone on ever since, a work that takes place in men and women when they hear the Gospel and truly believe …

"In fact baptism is never described as 'washing' (Acts 22:16, the only possible exception, is debatable). It is always seen as an indicator of life from the dead through the Holy Spirit. Nor did ritual washings in the Old Testament ever cleanse ('you shall not be clean until the evening' was the constant refrain). They simply washed away earthly defilement so that men could then reach out to God, and Peter makes clear that that is not what baptism is all about … What baptism does of course signify is the working of the Holy Spirit, picturing it in terms of the heavenly rain. The Christian is baptised as a picture of what has happened to him, and as an act of his resulting total commitment to Christ as his Lord."

Note: Most references in the above quote have been omitted.

(Source for quoted material: https://www.studylight.org/commentary/titus/3-5.html, "Peter Pett's Commentary on the Bible")
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*2 Corinthians 5:17: "Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."

JULY 4

Galatians 5:1
[In a letter to the Christian churches in Galatia, warning them to beware of false teachers, the apostle Paul wrote]: "Stand fast [be firm and unwavering] therefore in the liberty [freedom] [of the gospel (referring to salvation)] wherewith [by which] Christ [Jesus] hath made us free [from religious rites and ceremonies], and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage [meaning, in this case, don't go back to being a slave to Jewish ceremonial law]."

Dictionary.com's definition of yoke: a wooden crosspiece that is fastened over the necks of two animals and attached to the plow or cart that they are to pull.

JULY 1-3

Matthew 6:25-33 - If You Are Born Again, God Will Supply Your Basic Needs
During the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus said to his disciples (and--via the Bible--to all Christians):

Verse 25: "Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life [don't worry about the necessities of life], what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on [wear]. Is not the life more [valuable] than meat [food], and the body [more valuable] than raiment [clothing]?"

Verse 26: "Behold
[look at, observe, consider] the fowls of the air [the birds]: for they sow not [they don't plant or scatter seeds], neither do they reap [harvest crops], nor [do they] gather [the crops] into barns; yet your heavenly Father [God] feedeth [feeds] them. Are ye not much better [more important] than they [are]?"

Verse 27: "Which of you by taking thought
[by worrying] can add one cubit [the length of a forearm--about 18 inches] unto his [or her] stature [height*]?"

Verses 28-30: "And why take ye thought for
[why do you worry about] raiment [clothing]? Consider the lilies of the field [wildflowers], how they grow; they toil not [they don't work], neither do they spin [make yarn or thread by twisting fibers of wool, cotton, etc.]: And yet I say unto you, That even [King] Solomon in all his glory [splendor (i.e., while wearing his finest royal robes)] was not arrayed [clothed, dressed] like one of these [beautiful flowers]. Wherefore, if God so clothe [dress] the grass of the field [such as wheat], which to day is [alive and growing], and to morrow is cast [thrown or inserted] into the oven [and baked into bread], shall he not much more clothe you, O ye of little faith?"

Verses 31-33: "Therefore take no thought
[don't worry] [about the things that you need], saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal [with what] shall we be clothed? (For after all these things do the Gentiles [non-Jews] seek:) for your heavenly Father [God] knoweth that ye have need of all these things. But seek ye first the kingdom of God [heaven], and his [God's] righteousness [in other words, make sure that you are saved, or 'born again']; and all these things [i.e., food and clothing] shall be added unto you."
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*According to some commentaries, stature can also mean age in the Bible, so if that applies to this verse, it means there is nothing that man can do to increase the length of his life.


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