“The Adultery Test & the Sovereignty of God” March 4

 

The Adultery Test & the Sovereignty of God - Is there any such thing in the Bible as an "adultery test"? And, if so, what would an Old Testament law about jealousy and possible adultery have to do with us? Read more about the adultery test in today's reading.

Is there any such thing in the Bible as an “adultery test”? And, if so, what would an Old Testament law about jealousy and possible adultery have to do with us? Read more about the adultery test in today’s reading.

 

Today’s Readings:
Numbers 5 & 6
Psalm 30.8-12
Proverbs 11.1-3
Mark 8.22-38

 

The Adultery Test & the Sovereignty of God

 

Numbers 5 & 6:

The Adultery or Jealousy Test

 

Numbers 5 contains a passage that is difficult to understand and, at first glance, seems highly slanted against women, but it’s important to study it in light of God’s sovereignty and in light of other Scripture.

Verses 11-31 describe a ceremony to be performed when a man suspected, but couldn’t prove, his wife had committed adultery. The husband was to bring his wife before the priest along with an offering. The priest would have her stand before the Lord, a important point in all of this. He would ask her under oath whether or not she had been with another man. She was to drink “bitter water” to which had been added dust from the floor of the tabernacle and scrapings from the oath to which she had sworn.

If she was guilty the water would make her extremely sick, but if not, it would have no effect. She would be declared clean, set free, and able to bear children.

 

Remember the Sovereignty of God

 

First, we must remember the purpose of these laws was to maintain purity in the camp. God had determined to dwell with the Israelites and He could not dwell with hidden sin.

Remember, also, that the Sovereign God of the universe oversaw the outcome. He was in control and He knew the guilt or innocence. The same law that condemned a guilty woman also vindicated an innocent one so she didn’t have to live under suspicion.

Matthew Henry in his commentary on the Bible said that even under the law, the Continue reading

“Why does the Bible talk so much about blood?” February 24

 

Animal sacrifices, circumcision, murder, the blood of Christ ... why does the Bible talk so much about BLOOD?Animal sacrifices, circumcision, murder, the blood of Christ … why does the Bible talk so much about BLOOD?

What about the different kinds of laws? Leviticus talks a great deal about the ceremonial laws including the blood sacrifices, but what about the moral laws having to do with sexual sin covered in chapter 18? Why is it one set of laws still applies and another doesn’t?

 

Today’s Readings:
Leviticus 17 & 18
Psalm 27.1-3
Proverbs 10.9
Mark 4.21-41

 

Why does the Bible talk so much about blood?

 

Leviticus 17 & 18:

The Sacrificial Law

 

Blood … blood … blood … why does the Bible talk so much about blood?

When Adam and Eve sinned against Him, God Himself shed the blood of animals and symbolically covered their sins by covering their nakedness with the skins (Gen. 3.21).

When God confronted Cain for murdering his brother, He said, the voice of your brother’s blood cries out to Me from the ground” (Ex. 4.10).

God commanded animal sacrifices to cover the people’s sins and we see here in chapter 17 that He took it very seriously when that blood was offered to demonic gods (vv. 3-4, 7).

God commanded the men of Israel to be circumcised as a sign of the covenant they had with Him (Gen. 17.9-14) … more blood. And not everyone understood; in Exodus 4 Moses’ wife called him a “bloody husband” when her son was circumcised (Ex. 4.25-26).

Then there were commands not to eat meat with the blood, commands to sprinkle blood, and just before the exodus, blood was applied to the frame of the door to protect God’s people (Ex. 12.7, 22).

And the New Testament is full of references to the blood of Christ and its significance. Continue reading

“The Effects of Adultery” February 7

 

The Effects of Adultery - Most of us know someone whose life has been turned upside down by the sin of adultery. Perhaps that is you. While it is not the unforgivable sin, the effect of adultery is often devastating, affecting our relationships with others, even our children, our finances, and our testimonies. But none of those things is the worst consequence.Most of us know someone whose life has been turned upside down by the sin of adultery. Perhaps that is you. While it is not the unforgivable sin, the effect of adultery is often devastating, affecting our relationships with others, even our children, our finances, and our testimonies. But none of those things is the worst consequence.

 

Today’s Readings:
Exodus 25 & 26
Psalm 19.7-14
Proverbs 6.32-35
Matthew 24.1-28

 

The Effects of Adultery

 

Proverbs 6.32-35

Soul Destruction

 

Most of us know someone whose life has been devastated by the sin of adultery. Perhaps that is you. While I have seen many marriages restored and even made better, the journey is hard and in many cases, restoration never happens. Instead, families, children, finances, and testimonies are destroyed.

There are many sins which have the consequences already built in. Thinking we can fool around with any kind of sexual immorality without devastating consequences is like thinking we can jump off a building and not have gravity affect us!

If there is one area where the Bible has strong warnings, it has to do with our relationships, especially the danger of sexual immorality and other inappropriate relationships!

But there is an even greater consequence; that is the effect it has on the person’s relationship with God.

Verse 32 says, “Whoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding and he who does so destroys his own soul.”

Notice the last part of that verse. It says, “… he who does so destroys his own soul.”  Continue reading

“What becomes of the brokenhearted?”+ LINKUP

 

Picking Up the Pieces - Divorce, separation, adulterous or unhealthy relationships and break-ups of every kind ... who hasn't experienced the hurt of losing someone or had the need to call it quits. Maybe you haven't personally, but you probably know someone who has.Welcome to Mondays @ Soul Survival. Each week I feature a book that I consider a valuable resource. This week’s selection is Picking Up the Pieces: Recovering from Broken Relationships by Lou Priolo.

 

Divorce, separation, adulterous or unhealthy relationships and break-ups of every kind … who hasn’t experienced the hurt of losing someone or had the need to break off a relationship.

You may be the one who was deserted by someone who said they would never leave you. Sometimes the pain is worsened by the knowledge that your former spouse committed adultery, emotionally or physically.

Or you may be the one breaking off a relationship that you know needs to end, but the sadness seems unbearable. In some cases, you may be the one who went outside of your marriage, either committing full blown adultery or by getting involved in some other inappropriate relationship. While you know the relationship was wrong, how do you get rid of those “lovin’ feelings”?

Or maybe you haven’t personally experienced that kind of hurt or struggle, but you know someone who has. Lou’s book may be just the answer.

From the introduction:

“Will this ache in my heart ever go away?”

As a professional counselor, I’ve been asked that question a hundred times in dozens of ways. If you are reading this book, chances are that you (or someone you love) have been asking this question, too. When a romantic relationship ends, the confluence of potentially depressing emotions can wreak havoc in the lives of those involved. This is especially true for the person who didn’t want the relationship to end. But for the Christian, there is a very good answer to this oft-asked question.

Yes! Your pain will go away in time.

For a Christian who knows and is willing to do what the Bible says, the heartache will be healed. And the more of God’s Word a person implements, the sooner the anguish will stop. If you are the one who is hurting, there are specific things you can do to ease the pain and help yourself get back to the way you were before the breakup.

This book was originally titled, Losing that Lovin’ Feeling and contains thirty-one short chapters, each one based on a song title, to help you or someone else, “lose those lamentable ‘lovin’ feelings’ as quickly and righteously as possible.”

There are chapters like “How Can I Mend My Broken Heart?,” “How Do Fools Fall in Love?,” “Can’t I Stop Loving You?,” “Why Are You Lonesome Tonight?,” “What Good Comes to the Brokenhearted?,” “Won’t Be Cruel,” and “Someday Your Prince Will Come.” Each one is designed to address some aspect of the strong and painful emotions involved when relationships are broken.  Continue reading

November 13 “The steep & slippery path of sin”

banana peelWatch out if you find yourself looking over the top of the steep and slippery path of sin!

Today’s Readings:
Ezekiel 17 & 18
Psalm 124.1-8
Proverbs 28.21
Hebrews 9.1-28

 

Ezekiel 17 & 18:

Personal accountability

Chapter 18 talks about our personal accountability before God. We will not be able to stand before Him and say, “I did that because of the home I grew up in,” or “I acted like that because of who I was married to,” or “That’s just my personality!”

Neither can we get into heaven because we were brought up in a Christian home or because our parents are Christians. And it is not enough to simply believe “in God.” We must agree with God that we are sinners in need of His forgiveness and grace and turn to Him personally, in faith, and receive His gracious gift of salvation. As Jesus told Nicodemus, “…unless one is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”

 

Psalm 124.1-8:

He is the Way

Verse 8a, “Our help is in the name of the Lord.”

“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under heaven given among men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4.12).

Jesus Christ is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (Jn. 14.6). We cannot be saved through our good works, church involvement, or as I just mentioned, by the fact we were raised in a Christian home or culture. Our salvation must be based on the truth of the gospel and our faith in it (Eph. 2.8-9). Continue reading

March 4 “The law of jealousy – unfair to women?”

What does an Old Testament law about jealousy have to do with us today?

jealousy

Today’s Readings:
Numbers 5 & 6
Psalm 30.8-12
Proverbs 11.1-3
Mark 8.22-38

Numbers 5 & 6:

The adultery or jealousy test

Numbers 5 contains a passage that is difficult to understand and, at first glance, seems highly slanted against women, but it’s important to study it in light of God’s sovereignty and in light of other Scripture.

Verses 11-31 describe a ceremony to be performed when a man suspected, but couldn’t prove, his wife had committed adultery. Continue reading

February 7 “More valuable than gold”

More valuable than gold

What value to you place on God’s Word? Do you see it as valuable? Do your actions back up your claim?

Today’s Readings:
Exodus 25 & 26
Psalm 19:7-14
Proverbs 6:32-35
Matthew 24:1-28

Exodus 25 & 26

Not by chance

The first thing that strikes me as I read the instructions God gave Moses for building the tabernacle, its furniture and implements, is that our God is a God of order and planning. Nothing was made or created by chance! How that flies in the face of the theory of evolution with the premise that life began by chance. The idea that all that we see: the wonder of creation, the intricacies of the human body, the birth of a baby … happened by chance, requires more faith than I have. It requires less faith to believe the truth!

Giving from the heart

The second thing is that those who gave to the building of the tabernacle were to do so willingly and from the heart (25:2). 2 Corinthians 9:7 says that God loves a cheerful giver and Luke 6:38 says that we receive blessings in proportion to our generosity. With God the heart attitude is always the important thing. We are not to give either out of compulsion or with a “what can I get in return” attitude, rather willingly and from the heart. Continue reading

February 5 “A framework for living”

Link

new house construction frame with room

God’s instructions are not intended to limit our freedom. In fact, living by God’s standards actually frees us to live and worship as He intended and in ways that will ultimately bring us the only true peace, joy, and blessedness.

Today’s Readings:
Exodus 21 & 22
Psalm 18:46-50
Proverbs 6:26-29
Matthew 23:1-22

Exodus 21 & 22

A framework for living

Chapter 21:1 says, “Now these are the ordinances which you are to set before them.” The people were given this combination of case-law and commands by which life was to be regulated. These were to be used as a framework for living and for resolving conflicts.

Even though there are cultural conditions addressed here, as you study it you’ll see how much of our law is based on the principles it contains. Our founders understood that for a society to be truly free it had to be regulated by certain moral standards. Continue reading

January 28 “When things get worse”

Upset Young Woman Sitting Alone on Bench Next to Books

Have you ever obeyed God only to have things get worse? What truths can you hang on to when that happens?

Today’s Readings:
Exodus 5 & 6
Psalm 16.7-11
Proverbs 5.7-14
Matthew 18.21-35

Exodus 5 & 6:

Hold on to His promises

Here we see Moses return to Egypt to do what God has told him to do. He has gotten confirmation from Aaron, from the elders and from the people (Ex. 4.27-31). But when he and Aaron go to Pharaoh things don’t turn out so well! In fact, things get worse! Have you ever felt that way? You obey God and things seem to get worse?

You might be thinking, “Well, at least God warned Moses and told him that things would eventually work out.” But hasn’t He told us the same thing, maybe not from a burning bush, but in the pages of Scripture?

Paul said, “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose” (Rom. 8.28), God is saying to us that no matter how things look right now, “I’m working! Trust Me!”

Paul also wrote, “Being confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will complete it until the day of Jesus Christ” (Phil. 1.6). We may not see the big picture, but if we belong to God, He is at work fulfilling His design and purposes in our lives. Continue reading