With 2013 right around the corner, this seemed to be the best time to look back at 2012. Earlier this year, I wrapped up my lengthy series of posts on Genesis with this post: The Darkest Ages Of Human History - Summary of Genesis 4-11. This post marked a major milestone for this blog (after all, I wrote the first post in the series all the way back in 2010: Cain and Abel: Two Routes).
After the Genesis series, I returned to the book of Matthew with the post: Jesus' Flight To Egypt: The Command From The Angel - Matthew 2:13-15. Throughout the year, I posted quotes and ended up getting midway through Matthew 4.
In 2013 you can expect to see more of the same: quotes and Scripture posts (including new posts on Matthew). You can also expect to see some posts popping up about memorization and Greek, along with (perhaps) some other surprises.
Also, if you have never read Jonathan Edwards' resolutions, I encourage you to take a look at this post I made at this time last year: Jonathan Edwards' Resolutions.
As always, if there is a topic that you would look to see a post about, feel free to leave a comment with your suggestion or send an email.
Monday, December 31, 2012
Saturday, December 29, 2012
Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, "All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me." Then Jesus said to him, "Be gone, Satan! For it is written,Jesus stands on a high mountain. There, in every direction, he can see all the works of man: the buildings, the palaces, the monuments—everything. All the kingdoms of the world and all their glory lie before Him.
"'You shall worship the Lord your God
and him only shall you serve.'"
Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him. (Matthew 4:8-11)
No doubt, it was a passing and fading glory that lay before our Saviour. Yet still, it was an enticing glory— a glory that has enticed people of every age. For how many people, both kings and peasants, have made the glory of this world their pursuit? Its joys and its splendors— its riches and its crowns. Such things are a temptation to fallen people, for what person is there who has not at some time wished to say as Nebuchadnezzar did, "Is not this great Babylon, which I have built by my mighty power as a royal residence and for the glory of my majesty?" (Daniel 4:30).
The devil, speaking to Jesus, sets the enticements of this world before Him, saying, “All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me.” The First Adam fell to Satan’s lies. Satan left that scene victorious, but he wins no such victory on this occasion. The Second Adam cannot be enticed. Our Saviour, as on the previous two occasions, pulls out His sword of truth. His weapon is Scripture, quoting it, He proclaims, "You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve."
The surest way to defend yourself from any temptation is with the sword of the Scriptures. Don’t settle for a dull weapon. Though you may be successful using some other method to combat temptation for a time, nothing compares to the potency and power of the sword of truth. Should we not imitate our Saviour in how he faced temptation?
Sometimes the Scriptures will not make the devil or temptation immediately depart. Notice that our Saviour used His sword three times before the tempter departed. Do not be discouraged, then, when temptation continues to attack. Continue wielding the sword of truth, and though the fight may be long—though it may last your entire life—you will emerge a victor.
Matthew says that after the third temptation the devil left. Luke adds farther that the "devil departed from him until an opportune time" (Luke 4:13). If the Saviour could not entirely escape temptation in this life when clothed with flesh, should we expect to? Yet notice that God knows just what to provide His servants when they need it. After Jesus' great trial, angels come to minister to Him. And with that, the real truth of Psalm 91— the very same text Satan had twisted earlier— was demonstrated. Just as the text says, "For he will command his angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways" (Psalm 91:11).
Coming down from the mountain, Jesus surely must have known that one day He would come down from a place much higher. On that day, He would reach out and claim everything to be rightfully His. Everything on that day would be made new, and the corrupted glory of the kingdoms of this world would pass away. But the time for that had not yet come. For He had come to do the will of His Father. The time of judgment had not yet come. Our Saviour had not come to judge, but to save.
Saturday, December 22, 2012
You shall never be a fool if you follow Christ, except in the estimation of fools—and who wishes to be wise in a fool’s esteem?~Charles Spurgeon (The Fourfold Treasure 991)
Saturday, December 15, 2012
When enraged at the loud rejoicings of His disciples and the people, the Pharisees called upon the Lord Jesus to reprove them, He uttered the following significant and ever memorable words: "I tell you that if these should hold their peace, the stones would immediately cry out." The Lord, in these words, could not have more clearly evinced His inmost conviction of the invaluable blessing the world enjoyed in Him, and the object of His mission. For what else do they imply than that "I am such a Saviour and bring you such aid, and offer you such felicity, that if it produced no exultation and rejoicing among mankind, the Almighty would animate the lifeless creation to celebrate His love and compassion!” The Lord, in these words, gives us also the assurance, that earth shall never be silent concerning Him and His salvation; for should Israel and Christendom be silent, He would animate the sons of the desert, the dead heathen world, to sing hosannas to Him.~F. W. Krummacher (The Suffering Saviour, Chapter 3)
This quote was taken from Samuel Jackson's translation of F. W. Krummacher's book The Suffering Saviour: Meditations On The Last Days Of Christ.
Saturday, December 08, 2012
The most flaming affections can quickly cool in the heart of man. His love is like fire in the hearth - it blazes, flickers, and then goes out. But God's love is like fire in the sun. It never fails. In the creature, love is like the waters of a river, rising and falling again; in God, like the waters of the sea, which is always full and knows no ebb or flow. Nothing can destroy or change His love where He has sent it; and neither can it be corrupted or conquered.~William Gurnall (The Christian in Complete Armour Volume 2, Chapter 1, Part 2).
This quote was taken from the book The Christian in Complete Armour Volume 2 - A modernized abridgement of the Puritan Classic by William Gurnall, published by Banner Of Truth.
Saturday, December 01, 2012
Take every word as spoken to yourselves. When the word thunders against sin, think thus: "God means my sins;" when it presseth any duty, "God intends me in this." Many put off Scripture from themselves, as if it only concerned those who lived in the time when it was written; but if you intend to profit by the word, bring it home to yourselves; a medicine will do no good, unless it be applied."~Thomas Watson ("How We May Read the Scriptures with Most Spiritual Profit")