Philippians (Program #19) – The Excellency of the Knowledge of Christ
The apostle Paul was one who was very knowledgeable about the law of the Old Testament. He had years of first hand experience with the law and what it was to live under the law. Yet he also became fully acquainted with Christ. The book of Philippians gives us a unique comparison of these two levels of spiritual experience from one who is fully qualified to make such a comparison.
Philippians (Program #17) – The Three Positive Aspects of the Believers vs the Three Negative Aspects of the Religious Judaizers
“Bewares of the dogs.” No, we are not talking about the warning sign on your neighbour’s gate. We are talking about the apostle Paul’s warning at the beginning of Philippians chapter 3. Paul was warning the Philippians of the Judaizers, the Jewish leaders who were troubling the believers in Christ. We are in for an enlightening message today.
We are at the beginning of chapter 3 in our life study in Philippians. There is a background to this chapter, the Epistle to the Philippians was written when Paul received material supply from the believers in Philippi. Through Epaphroditus they had sent the supply to take care of Paul’s need during his imprisonment. After receiving their gift, Paul wrote them this Epistle.
Philippians (Program #3) – Paul’s Suffering for the Gospel and His Enjoyment of Grace
Through out the ages many people had suffered for the sake of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Among these the apostle Paul stand prominently. In fact in many of his Epistles they are specific references and even details regarding not only his suffering but also the suffering we may experience as well. Philippians gives us such an account not just the suffering because of his willingness to preach the gospel in a general way.
Today on our life study of the Bible we will see Paul as an example not just of suffering but as one who also had the enjoyment of grace under suffering and the high gospel for which he had suffered.
This phrase” enjoyment of grace under suffering”, almost sounds like kind of contradiction to our natural ear…
Ephesians (Program #11) – The New Testament Believers to the Praise of God’s Glory
Three times in the first chapter of Ephesians, the apostle Paul uses an expression like “to the praise of His glory”. The first time in verse 6, the praise is offered by us – the believers – as the issue of our sonship. The second mention, however, in verse 12 also deals with our sonship but the praise is not offered by us but rather it is the angels even the creation itself that joins in praise to God because of what He has accomplished in us – His sons. Now, not just sons in name and position but sons of God in life and nature.
Ephesians (Program #9) – To Head Up All Things in Christ (1)
The book of Ephesians presents the highest view in the entire New Testament. The apostle Paul identifies the focus of this book in the very first chapter when he says, “Making known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, Unto to the economy of the fullness of the times, to head up all things in Christ, the things in the heavens and the things on the earth, in Him;” (Ephesians 1:9-10) This is not a book about improved behavior, how to raise our children or even how to have a successful marriage; yet in one sense, it’s on all these things. But fundamentally this book is altogether dealing with God’s eternal purpose which is according to His good pleasure and on how He is working in the world situation without and more specifically on how He is working within us to bring this purpose into reality.
If we take three simple words from the New Testament like ‘praise, glory and grace’, we may feel quite comfortable that we understand what they mean. But the apostle Paul in Ephesians 1 links them together in one verse, verse 6 “To the praise of the glory of His grace, with which He graced us in the Beloved;” How about now? Do you feel that your understanding is adequate according to the divine revelation especially when you put this verse in it’s context; that is, as the issue of our being predestinated unto sonship in verse 5? Well, Ephesians is rich, high and mysterious because it is written from the viewpoint of God in the heavenlies. And from that point of view, ‘praise, glory and grace’ flowing out of our sonship are not simple at all but marvelous.
Ephesians (Program #2) – Three Aspects of Well Speaking
Of all that God possesses and does on the earth, the single most important thing to Him is the church. In fact, the church is the unique subject and perhaps the highest book in the New Testament Paul’s epistle to the Ephesians. But if you were asked, “what is the church?” How would you answer? Well that is what we want to see today – “What is the church?” not from our perspective but from God’s perspective.
Galatians (Program #44) – Walking by the Spirit as Sons of God (1)
Galatians, much like the book of Romans, reveals God’s salvation to us in a most dynamic and marvelous way. We are saved by faith, through grace and fully according to the operation of the Spirit and not by the works of law. But the revelation of the New Testament and of these books especially does not stop here. There is a goal to this salvation, a wonderful goal, that should become our goal as well. This was the deep burden of the apostle Paul in Galatians.
Galatians (Program #6) – Paul’s Faithfulness and Peter’s Unfaithfulness to the Truth of the Gospel
The New Testament book of Galatians reveals much about the Gospel of Grace and the freedom that believers have in Christ. But if we read it carefully, we will also see a marvelous pattern for all believers; the living and manner of the Apostle Paul. This epistle shows us one who was bold and faithful to the truth, yet humble and careful before the Lord to preserve the oneness of the Body of Christ without ever falling into politics. Stay with us for this enlightening life study of the Bible.
Zechariah (Program #14) – The Prophecies of Encouragement (5)
Any careful consideration of the history of God’s people, Israel, reveals that for much of that history, Israel has suffered. Paul, even spoke in Romans, of Israel’s heart being hardened until the age of the Gentiles will be fulfilled. We know that, that fulfillment is complete at the Lord’s second coming, so what about Israel after that time? Well the prophet Zechariah is full of encouraging prophecies concerning the eventual household salvation of Israel at the Lord’s return especially in chapter 12. Listen to Zechariah in one of the sweetest verses in all of Scripture: “And I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and of supplications; and they will look upon Me, whom they pierced; and they will wail over Him with wailing as for an only son and cry bitterly over Him with bitter crying as for a firstborn son.”