Words of Life ~ JOY

Not being able in my lifetime, to cover all words that pertain to the life of a Christian, I will continue as the Lord leads in this series Words of Life ~ A to Z  ~ the Ordinary Vocabulary of a Christian.
A few days ago, when I asked a young sister-in-Christ what I could pray for, she spoke this simple word ~ JOY. And so, we will share what the Word of God says about this precious word describing the nature and the fruit of His children.

JOY is recorded 187 times in the Bible. You can find them here. We will only highlight certain references.

There are many ~ too many and varied ~ definitions for joy in Hebrew and Greek for me to list but you can find them here.

In the Old Testament, joy is referred to as the sound of lifting the voice in 1 Chronicles 15:16 as singers with instruments were appointed for worship.

“O come, let us sing unto the Lord: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.” Psalm 95:1

“But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.” Psalm 5:11

“Make a joyful noise unto the Lord, all ye lands.”
Psalm 100:1

Isaiah 35:10 speaks of “the ransomed who return to Zion with songs and everlasting joy and gladness.”

“Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem: for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem.” Isaiah 52:9

Joy from the heart produces rejoicing (1 Chronicles 29:9).

For he shall not much remember the days of his life; because God answereth him in the joy of his heart. Ecclesiastes 5:20

“Be glad in the Lord, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.” Psalm 32:11

Jeremiah 15:16 speaks of God’s Word as the joy and rejoicing of the heart.

True joy has always been associated with the Lord. It is a heavenly gift known only to His people.

“The joy of the Lord is your strength.”  Nehemiah 8:10

“Thou wilt shew me the path of life:
in thy presence is fulness of joy;
at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”
Psalm 16:11

Joy is in the Lord and in His salvation.

“And my soul shall be joyful in the Lord: it shall rejoice in his salvation. Psalm 35:9”

“Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation;
and uphold me with thy free spirit.”
Psalm 51:12

“Therefore with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.” Isaiah 12:3

“I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for he hath clothed me with the garments of salvation, he hath covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decketh himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorneth herself with her jewels.” Isaiah 61:10

“Yet I will rejoice in the Lord,
I will joy in the God of my salvation.”
Habakkuk 3:18

Joy is often learned and experienced more during or after a time of trial. Difficulties are the means of the Lord planting within us the seed of joy that springs up as it is watered by our tears. Joy may never be known except we go through the dark times. Even His chastisement produces the end result of His joy in us.

“For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” Psalm 30:5

“They that sow in tears shall reap in joy.” Psalm 126:5

“The meek and the poor rejoice in the Lord, the Holy One of Israel.” Isaiah 29:19

Jesus promised His disciples they would be sorrowful at His death.
“ye shall be sorrowful, but your sorrow shall be turned into joy.” John 16:20

All of the Lord’s blessings ~ “beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, and the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness are appointed for His people. that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.” Isaiah 61:3

“My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations; James 1:2

Jesus taught that those who are persecuted for the Lord’s sake are to “Rejoice ye in that day, and leap for joy: for, behold, your reward is great in heaven: for in the like manner did their fathers unto the prophets.” Luke 6:23

Paul was “exceeding joyful in all his tribulation.” 2 Corinthians 7:4

Nothing moved Paul, but he was determined to “finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.” Acts 20:24

Paul spoke of the churches in Macedonia ministering to the saints in Jerusalem.

“How that in a great trial of affliction the abundance of their joy and their deep poverty abounded unto the riches of their liberality.” 2 Corinthians 8:2

“Strengthened with all might, according to his glorious power,
unto all patience and longsuffering with joyfulness;”
Colossians 1:11

Hebrews 10:34 speaks of those who “took joyfully the spoiling of your goods, knowing in yourselves that ye have in heaven a better and an enduring substance.”

In Proverbs 12:20 joy is related to peace.

Zephaniah 3:17 speaks of the Lord’s salvation and His rejoicing over His people.

“He will rejoice over thee with joy; he will rest in his love, he will joy over thee with singing.”

I often wondered why Paul listed the fruit of the Spirit in its order ~ love, then joy, then peace. Joy must be the fruit that comes through God’s love for us.

In Matthew 28:8 fear is mixed with great joy.

“Joy shall be in heaven over one sinner that repenteth.” Luke 15:7

John the Baptist’s joy was fulfilled because he was the friend of Jesus, the bridegroom.” John 3:29

Jesus’ joy was promised to His disciples.

“These things have I spoken unto you,
that my joy might remain in you,
and that your joy might be full.”
John 15:11

“Your heart shall rejoice, your joy that no man taketh from you.” John 16:22

“Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full.” John 16:24

“And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. John 17:13

 At His ascension, Jesus’ disciples “worshipped him, and returned to Jerusalem with great joy:” Luke 24:52

Paul spoke of our “joy in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom we have now received the atonement.” Romans 5:11

Our pastor often reminds us of the nature of God’s kingdom.

“For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink;
but righteousness, and peace,
and joy in the Holy Ghost.”
Romans 14:17

“And the disciples were filled with joy, and with the Holy Ghost.” Acts 13:52

“Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.” Romans 15:13

“And ye became followers of us, and of the Lord, having received the word in much affliction, with joy of the Holy Ghost.” 1 Thessalonians 1:6

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace,
longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,”
Galatians 5:22

“The good and faithful servant will enter into the joy of thy lord.” Matthew 25:21

“Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:2

“Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye see him not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory:” 1 Peter 1:8

What a blessed promise of the joy that awaits us in the presence of His glory.

“Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling,
and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory
with exceeding joy,”
Jude 1:24

Dear Father, we praise you that you sent your joy to us in Jesus your Son. Thank you, Jesus, that you sent your Holy Spirit to work this joy in us as proof that we belong to you. Holy Spirit, continue to work your power, bearing the fruit of the life of Christ in us. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Words of Life ~ BREAD

This post follows Food for the Hungry Soul. The most well-known verse with the word BREAD is found in the Old and New Testaments, Jesus in Matthew 4:4 quoting Deuteronomy 8:3. “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.”.

Old Testament H3899
Strong’s Concordance defines BREAD in Hebrew:
lechem, lekh’-em;; food (for man or beast), especially bread, or grain (for making it):—(shew-) bread,
from H3898 lâcham, law-kham’; a primitive root; to feed on; figuratively, to consume; by implication, to battle (as destruction)

God’s Word speaks of bread not only as physical food but anything that is needful ~ something we feed on so as to ward off destruction. Men’s main concern is to satisfy his craving for the body. Not many consider bread for the soul. Only those who seek God and the bread He gives will be fully satisfied in this life and the next.

“I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread” Psalm 37:25

The Psalmist would have been thinking of bread in terms of the righteous whose whole life is dependent on God and His provisions for all things. Paul speaks in these terms in Philippians 4:19

“But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.

“The people asked, and he brought quails, and satisfied them with the bread of heaven.” Psalm 105:40

From the abundance of our provisions, we are to give even to our enemies who are hungry.

If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink:” Proverbs 25:21 (Romans 12:20)

“Cast thy bread upon the waters: for thou shalt find it after many days.” Ecclesiestes 11:1

GEORGE MÜLLER (1805-1898): “Sixty-two years ago I preached a poor, dry, barren sermon with no comfort to myself and, as I imagined, with no comfort to others.  But a long time afterwards I heard of nineteen distinct cases of blessing resulting from that sermon.”

The Lord speaks through Isaiah to His people to hearken diligently to Him, to eat what is good and let their soul delight in fatness (Isaiah 55:2).

“For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither, but watereth the earth, and maketh it bring forth and bud, that it may give seed to the sower, and bread to the eater:” Isaiah 55:10

“Is it not to deal thy bread to the hungry, and that thou bring the poor that are cast out to thy house?” Isaiah 58:7

The Lord speaks through Amos of a famine of His Word.

“Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God,
that I will send a famine in the land,
not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water,
but of hearing the words of the Lord:

Amos 8:11

What greater verse than this from the Old Testament can describe the need for the sustenance of true life. We understand the hunger and thirst that is satisfied only by the words of the Lord. And what a refreshing we come to in the New Testament with the Living Word of God, His Son, Jesus Christ, who gives Himself as that bread of life.

New Testament G740
ártos, ar’-tos; from G142; bread (as raised) or a loaf:

From this Greek definition, it seems that bread was considered as one loaf not to be cut but broken. This would describe the body of Christ given for us in His sacrifice for us and in the communion of the Lord’s Supper and the breaking of bread.

“And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.” Matthew 4:3-4

“Give us this day our daily bread.” Matthew 6:11

Jesus taught His disciples to ask the Father who gives all that we need but to ask for one day’s supply at a time. This prayer keeps us close to Him and dependent daily on Him.
The following sermon is from Ryan McKee in Northern Ireland as he is preaching through the Sermon on the Mount. Give us This Day our Daily Bread

“And his disciples say unto him, Whence should we have so much bread in the wilderness, as to fill so great a multitude?” Matthew 15:33

Jesus satisfies all who come to Him. His life is given to the multitudes with no limitation and with satisfaction for all our needs.

The Living Bread

Let us meditate on the following verses where Jesus speaks of Himself as the true bread from heaven, that comes down from heaven, the bread of God as life to the world, the bread of life, the living bread, the bread that He gives and the results.

Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.” John 6:31-32 (Jesus quoting Psalm 105:40)

For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.  Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.” John 6:33-34

 “And Jesus said unto them,
I am the bread of life:
he that cometh to me shall never hunger;
and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”
John 6:35, 48

“This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.

“I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.” John 6:50-51

“This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.” John 6:58

The Lord’s Supper

And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.” Matthew 26:26

Jesus instituted what would become the practice of those who have accepted Him as their Life. The Apostle Paul speaks of the bread of the Lord’s Supper. Even as Jesus spoke of being the bread of life, the breaking of bread in the Supper is the communion of the members of His body, partakers of that one bread.

“And they continued stedfastly in the apostles’ doctrine and fellowship, and in breaking of bread, and in prayers.” Acts 2:42

“The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ? or we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.” 1 Corinthians 10:16-17

“For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come.” 1 Corinthians 11:26

Jesus used the word bread as symbolic of the doctrine of the Pharisees, even as Paul used it in terms of fruit, both signifying the results of what men produce from their spiritual life. Instead of malice, our fellowship with Christ and each other should be in sincerity and truth.

“How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees? Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.” Matthew 16:11-12

 “Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” 1 Corinthians 5:8

“Now he that ministereth seed to the sower both minister bread for your food, and multiply your seed sown, and increase the fruits of your righteousness;)” 2 Corinthians 9:10

Dear Heavenly Father, your Word speaks and spreads the seed of life, watered by your Holy Spirit. We praise you that you sent the Seed of Life in your Living Word, Jesus Christ, to give us His life ~ abundant life that satisfies every longing. Send your Spirit in power to awaken our need for the bread of your Word. We thank you in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Fran

Words of Life ~ ADVOCATE

Everyone needs a personal advocate. Do you have at least one person who has your interests at heart, one who knows your needs? Do you have someone who can step in, stand up, and speak for you?

We may have many “fair-weather friends” who cheer us on. But how many are actually close enough to know who we are, committed and able to offer a hand when we need it? Who will sacrifice their own agenda, when push comes to shove in our lives?

The word ADVOCATE was not in our original list of Words of Life ~ A to Z ~ the Ordinary Vocabulary of the Christian, but various circumstances in the last few days have brought this word to my mind and heart.

The Lord has been revealing how many advocates He has given Jerry and me. I am Jerry’s closest advocate. We have a son and daughter, our pastor and his wife and family and other members of our church family who know us well and when we have a need. We also have others who intercede for us and would respond if we needed them.

And the Lord has brought other people into our lives who need an advocate. Besides knowing our family and our church family, there are some who cannot fend for themselves. (I will write about these in our next post.)

We know an attorney who is an advocate to secure reimbursement for tragic personal injuries and loss caused by the neglect of others.  His clients are paralyzed or traumatized to the point of needing continued care from medical staff or a close family member. Their cases have settlements in the millions.

Because these usually have no knowledge of how to manage the money that they have received to support them for the remainder of their lives, the attorney, without charge, also counsels the client in how to manage his money.

Such is the advocate we have in Christ, who knows our dire circumstances. We have sustained the nature and sinful life our first parents brought us into by the seduction and deception of the enemy. Without an ADVOCATE, we have no hope of life in this world or the next.

There is only one reference to the word ADVOCATE in the Bible, which is found in the New Testament.

“My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not.
And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father,
Jesus Christ the righteous:”
1 John 2:1

The word ADVOCATE in Greek means paráklētos, par-ak’-lay-tos; which means intercessor, consoler: the same word is used for advocate and comforter.

Paráklētos is the word used for the Comforter in John 14:26

“But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost,
whom the Father will send in my name,
he shall teach you all things,
and bring all things to your remembrance,
whatsoever I have said unto you.”

The word intercessor is found only one time, and that, in the Old Testament.

“And he saw that there was no man, and wondered that there was no intercessor: therefore his arm brought salvation unto him; and his righteousness, it sustained him.” Isaiah 59:16

“Man’s extremity was Christ’s opportunity. There was no one left to save poor fallen manhood, no one who could lift a hand or a finger for our rescue; therefore, Jesus came, and fought, and bled, and died, and conquered on our behalf.” Charles Spurgeon

Before His crucifixion, Jesus promised to send another Comforter to abide with us forever (John 14:16) who would “proceed from the Father and testify” of Jesus (John 15:26).

“Nevertheless I tell you the truth;
It is expedient for you that I go away:

for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you;
but if I depart, I will send him unto you.”
John 16:7

The Holy Spirit is the Comforter, the Spirit of Christ, our ADVOCATE. The Holy Spirit is the power of conviction in our hearts and lives. He intercedes through us to Christ our High Priest who sits at the right hand of God. He pleads our case by the blood of the everlasting covenant on our behalf. Jesus sends the Holy Spirit to comfort us in our times of need and enables us to know the needs of others and to comfort and intercede for them.

As the Holy Spirit reveals the Father’s will for His people, we become ADVOCATES for our brothers and sister in Christ. This is the point of this article. We will elaborate on this last statement in our next post. Please look for it, as it will make a huge difference in your life, bringing you to understand more of what it means to be an ADVOCATE for the family of God.

Dear Father, we praise you that you are the Father of all comfort. We thank you that you sent your Son, the only one capable as an advocate for your people. We are blessed to have the indwelling of your Holy Spirit as our eternal advocate, knowing us better than we know ourselves, able to intercede and to intervene for us. By your Spirit, continue to guide us by the truth of your Word and to be advocates for each other, both physically and spiritually. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

 

 

 

Words of Life ~ BLESS(ed)(ing)

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings
in heavenly places in Christ:”
Ephesians 1:3

If our main purpose in seeking God is to receive a blessing, then our blessing will most likely be in vain. The blessings we seek for ourselves are usually selfish and without substance. True blessings will be returned to the sender from grateful hearts with the fruit of praise unto His name.

“The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” Shorter Catechism

As God’s children, we live under His constant showers of blessings. We are continually blessed even ~ and sometimes more so ~ in our most dire circumstances. Let’s explore this word used extensively in the seasoned Christian’s vocabulary.

Here is the link to the 463 words BLESS, BLESSED, or BLESSING(S) recorded  in the KJV.

Old Testament H1288
bârak, baw-rak’; a primitive root; to kneel; by implication to bless God (as an act of adoration), and (vice-versa) man (as a benefit);

If blessing begins with God, it must mean that He kneels ~ or should we say, He condescends to us ~ in order to bless us. He must, from His height of glory, look down upon us in pity and love. This is itself our blessing ~ that He has any interest in us as mere creatures. This is where our hearts are warmed to receive what He has planned and is willing to pour down upon us.

When we experience His blessings, it becomes our second nature to return the blessing to Him.

The first use of the word BLESS is found in Genesis 1:22 refering to God’s blessing Adam and Eve and His creation, “Be fruitful, and multiply, and fill the waters in the seas, and let fowl multiply in the earth.

In Genesis 2:3,  “God blessed the seventh day, and sanctified it: because that in it he had rested from all his work which God created and made.”

In Genesis 9:1 God blessed Noah and his sons, and said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.”

Genesis 12:2 records God’s blessing for Abraham,“I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:”

Genesis 14:20 is the first record of God being blessed

“And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all.

God blesses Sarah to give her a son in Genesis 17:16

Genesis 27:35 relates to Jacob’s deception in taking away Esau’s blessing.

Genesis 32:26 speaks of Jacob’s wrestling with God. “And he said, I will not let thee go, except thou bless me.”

The following is a well-known blessing we use for others.

“The Lord bless thee, and keep thee:
The Lord make his face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee:
The Lord lift up his countenance upon thee, and give thee peace.”
Numbers 6:24-26  

“Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse;
blessing, if ye obey the commandments of the Lord your God, which I command you this day:” Deuteronomy 11:26-27

The blessing refers to life.

“I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live: Deuteronomy 30:19

One of the most familiar verses shows us in a negative way how a man is blessed. Then the next verse in the positive showing the connection of blessings and delight.

“Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful. But his delight is in the law of the Lord.” Psalm 1:1-2

“Blessed is he whose transgression is forgiven, whose sin is covered.”
Psalm 32:1

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance.Psalm 33:12

“The curse of the Lord is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just.” Proverbs 3:33

“Blessed is every one that feareth the Lord; that walketh in his ways.” Psalm 128:1

 Blessings returned to the Lord

“Blessed be the Lord God, the God of Israel, who only doeth wondrous things.” Psalm 72:18

“Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Psalm 103:1

“The Lord liveth; and blessed be my rock; and let the God of my salvation be exalted.” Psalm 18:46

“I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.” Psalm 145:1

“I will bless the Lord at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.” Psalm 34:1

 The promise of blessing in our obedience of bringing our tithes to Him.

“Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the Lord of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.” Malachi 3:10

New Testament G3107
makários, mak-ar’-ee-os; supremely blest; by extension, fortunate, well off:—blessed, happy(X -ier).

The word in Greek carries with it a greater meaning. We should understand this as relating to the greater blessing we have in Jesus Christ.

The most familiar are the blessings Jesus promised in the Sermon on the Mount ~ commonly called the Beatitudes. He taught that happiness is not based on the physical things of this life but in the spiritual life He came to give.

Blessed are the poor in spirit, they that mourn, hunger and thirst after righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, persecuted for righteousness’ sake and when men shall revile you. The blessings that come after are recorded after each of these.

With the promised blessings is the command for us to bless those that curse us (Matthew 5:44).

Because our Lord has stooped to bless us, we are able to bless others as well as kneel before Him and bless Him for His work in and through us.

Blessings are promised to those who hear the word of God, who keep it, do His commandments, and endure temptation.

 “But he said, Yea rather, blessed are they that hear the word of God, and keep it.” Luke 11:28

“Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.”
Revelation 22:14

“Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.” James 1:12

  Jesus’ last blessing to them before His ascension.

“And he led them out as far as to Bethany, and he lifted up his hands, and blessed them. And it came to pass, while he blessed them, he was parted from them, and carried up into heaven.” Luke 24:50-51

He is the blessed and only Potentate, King of kings and Lord of lords.

“Which in his times he shall shew, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the King of kings, and Lord of lords;” 1 Timothy 6:15

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again unto a lively hope by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,” 1 Peter 1:3

As children of God ~ the blessed people of God living in His abundant mercy and hope ~ let us live daily in obedience to Him.

Dear Father, fill us with the Spirit of Christ today. In humility and reverence to you, let us  experience your blessings flowing through us to others. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.

Words of Life ~ BEGOTTEN

 BEGOTTEN is not a word used every day but one that all Christians should know as it speaks of our birth into the kingdom of God.

The Old Testament has only a few references to this word concerning men who have begotten children. One reference in Psalm 2:7 and repeated in Hebrews 1 relates to God and His Son, our Lord Jesus Christ.

Old Testament H3205
Strong’s Concordance defines begotten yâlad, yaw-lad’ to bear, bring forth, beget, gender, travail

 “I will declare the decree: the Lord hath said unto me,
Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.”
Psalm 2:7

New Testament G3439
monogenḗs,
 mon-og-en-ace’; from G3441 and G1096; single of its kind, only used of only sons or daughters (viewed in relation to their parents; used of Christ, denotes the only begotten son of God

“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth.” John 1:14

No man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.” John 1:18

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” John 3:18

The following references are used by Paul, Peter, and John pertaining to the new birth of all God’s children.

G1080  gennáō, ghen-nah’-o; from a variation of G1085; to procreate (properly, of the father, but by extension of the mother); figuratively, to regenerate:

“For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.” 1 Corinthians 4:15

“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
which according to his abundant mercy hath begotten us again
unto a lively hope by the resurrection
of Jesus Christ from the dead,”

1 Peter 1:3

“Whosoever believeth that Jesus is the Christ is born of God: and every one that loveth him that begat loveth him also that is begotten of him.” 1 John 5:1

“We know that whosoever is born of God sinneth not; but he that is begotten of God keepeth himself, and that wicked one toucheth him not.” 1 John 5:18

John speaks of Jesus being the first begotten of the dead—the first to be raised from the dead; the promise and the means of our salvation (see 1 Peter 1:3 above).

“And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness,
and the first begotten of the dead,
and the prince of the kings of the earth.
Unto him that loved us,
and washed us from our sins in his own blood,”
Revelation 1:5

“In this was manifested the love of God toward us,
because that God sent his only begotten Son into the world,
that we might live through him.”
1 John 4:9

Except Jesus died and was raised from the dead, we would not have become children of God but now have hope of eternal life. Because the Father loved us, He desired us and sired us to be His own. He gave His one child ~ one of a kind ~ to birth many children into His family.

Gracious Father, how blessed we are to call you Father and Jesus our Lord and brother. Because, you draw us to Him and birth us by the power of your Holy Spirit, we desire your continual presence and power to conform us to His image. By the same Word and living hope, keep us close and growing in Christ. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Fran

Image: Google

Words of Life ~ BLOOD

We are blessed again to have Jim from The Domain for Truth post a special Word of Life. Thank you, Jim. You are a precious example and a great teacher of the Life we have in Christ.

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(All Bible verses are from the NASB with Strong’s definitions)

How rich is the theme that leads us to the blood of Christ – the blood of the everlasting covenant through which His people are united in Him for eternity.

There are 392 references to blood in the Bible (KJV) with meanings.

A study of the meaning of blood shows the wonderful grace of God through Jesus Christ.

The Old Testament lays the foundation.  Starting with the book of Genesis, we see the early use of the term blood testifies of the seriousness of sin.

Old Testament H1818
םדָּ dâm, dawm; from H1826; blood (as that which when shed causes death) of man or an animal; by analogy, the juice of the grape; figuratively (especially in the plural) bloodshed (i.e. drops of blood):—blood(-y, -guiltiness), (-thirsty), + innocent

In Genesis 4:10-11 we find what God says the blood of the innocent did after the matter with Cain murdering Abel:

“He said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to Me from the ground.
Now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand.

In the Noahic covenant, God established the penalty of blood for blood.

“Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made man.” Genesis 9:6

Then there is the extended discussion in the Laws of the Old Testament about the sacrificial system which involves blood.  Why is it a bloody matter?

“For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul.” Leviticus 17:11

That is the Old Testament reference from Leviticus the writer of Hebrews uses:

“And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.” Hebrews 9:22

This verse states that without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness. It is fitting imagery given to show blood is needed for physical life – so in the spiritual realm, the blood of Christ is needed for spiritual life.

The blood of Christ is sufficient for the forgiveness of sins; an accomplishment that is multi-faceted.  We will survey some of these aspects below. We can learn much about the order of salvation from tracing the theme of the blood of Christ.

New Testament G129
αἷμα haîma, hah’-ee-mah; blood, literally (of men or animals), figuratively (the juice of grapes) or specially (the atoning blood of Christ); by implication, bloodshed, also kindred:—blood.

The Blood of Christ Justifies 

God is a Holy and Just Judge. In order for us to be saved from hell, Jesus Christ had to pay the penalty for our sins.  Justification is to be declared legally righteous on the basis of what Christ has done.  Yet Romans 5:8-9 teaches that justification is accomplished by the blood of Christ:

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.
Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.”

Verse 8 reveals that God has shown His love to sinners. The means is stated in the second half of the verse – Christ died for us.  Verse 9 unpacks this truth by revealing to us that believers have been justified by His blood.  The effect of being justified by His blood means we are saved from God’s wrath and judgment.  What wonder – that the blood of Christ can declare us legally righteous!

The Blood of Christ Provides Propitiation

Remember Romans 5:9 – the blood of Christ justifies us and therefore we shall be saved from the wrath of God.  To appease the wrath of God against sinners, that is, to have the wrath of God against us satisfied, requires the blood of Christ (Romans 5:9). This is called the doctrine of propitiation.

Those who trust in the atoning work of Christ live in gratitude for His work of grace to and in us.

The Blood of Christ Redeems 

The Bible reveals that as nonbelievers we were at one time slaves to sin.

“For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness.” Romans 6:20

In the New Testament era, the purchase of slaves by a new master was called redemption. God uses this motif to say He has paid the cost to make us His people that we may be servants of righteousness (Romans 8:6).

 “In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace” Ephesians 1:7

Redemption is only through Christ’s blood. This is not because we deserved it. No – the verse makes it clear – it is because of the riches of God’s grace.

This doctrine has implications and practical application for church members.

“Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood.” Acts 20:28

The Blood of Christ Provides Communion with God

When I say the blood of Christ provides communion with God, I mean that the blood of Christ brings us close to God.

“Remember that you were at that time separate from Christ, excluded from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers to the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.
But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ.” Ephesians 2:12-13

Verse 12 explains our condition before we became believers – we were separated and far from God.  But in verse 13 we see the opposite for us as believers.  How are we brought near to God?

By what means? – by the blood of Christ. Knowing what it cost should change how we view our time with God and our worship.

The Blood of Christ Sanctifies

The blood of Christ also washes us and changes us in a practical and ethical way.

“Therefore, Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people through His own blood, suffered outside the gate.” Hebrews 13:12

Christ sanctifies us. That’s amazing, since Christians often think of the Holy Spirit’s sanctification. The truth is that it is both Christ and the Spirit!  Yet what is the means by which Christ sanctifies us? The verse here says, through His own blood.  This is associated with the crucifixion of Christ as the verse references His suffering outside the gate of Jerusalem.

This should change the way we view holiness and sanctification.  It is a privilege to pursue godliness to please God and Christ in light of what Christ has done for us.

The shedding of the blood of Christ is the means God has provided to save us.  Tracing the theme of the blood of Christ reveals the beautiful jewels of Christ’s work of salvation.  His blood has justified us, provided propitiation, redeemed us, draws us near to God, and sanctifies us in Christ, making us His – here, now, and forever.

Have you appreciated these treasured truths of the Gospel to such a point that you are motivated to serve and live for Christ? Let this be our prayer.

“And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb
and because of the word of their testimony,
and they did not love their life even [when faced with death.”
Revelation 12:11

Related Article: A Bloody Crown, A Bloody Cross, A Bloody Sacrifice

 

Words of Life ~ BEAR

We begin in Genesis 4:13 as it relates to punishment. Interestingly and profoundly, God’s Word makes reference to the bearing of our sins, its punishment, and its remedy. As we have highlighted these, let us look personally and take them to heart.

H5375 nâsâʼ, naw-saw’; to lift; in a great variety of applications, literal and figurative, absolute and relativeaccept, advance, bring (forth), burn, carry

“And Cain said unto the Lord, My punishment is greater than I can bear.” Genesis 4:13

 “And Aaron shall bear the names of the children of Israel in the breastplate of judgment upon his heart, when he goeth in unto the holy place, for a memorial before the Lord continually.” Exodus 28:29

Leviticus 10:17 speaks of Aaron eating the sin offering to bear the iniquity of the congregation, to make atonement for them before the Lord. 

“And the goat shall bear upon him all their iniquities unto a land not inhabited: and he shall let go the goat in the wilderness.” Leviticus 16:22

And the Levites shall even bear their iniquity. Ezekiel 44:10

Moses was not able to bear all the people alone. Numbers 11:14

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“And even to your old age I am he;
and even to hoar hairs will I carry you:
I have made, and I will bear;
even I will carry, and will deliver you.:
Isaiah 46:4

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Even he shall build the temple of the Lord;
and he shall bear the glory,
and shall sit and rule upon his throne;
and he shall be a priest upon his throne:
Zechariah 6:13

 That Christ shall bear the glory. Glory is a burden, but not too heavy for him to bear who upholds all things. The cross was his glory, and he bore that; so was the crown an exceeding weight of glory, and he bears that. The government is upon his shoulders, and in it he bears the glory, Isa. 9:6They shall hang upon him all the glory of his Father’s house, Isa. 22:24. It becomes him, and he is par negotio-well able to bear it. The glory of the priesthood and royalty had been divided between the house of Aaron and that of David; but now he alone shall bear all the glory of both. That which he shall bear, which he shall undertake, shall be indeed the glory of Israel; and they must wait for that, and, in prospect of it, must be content in the want of that external glory which they formerly had. He shall bear such a glory as shall make the glory of this latter house greater than that of the former. He shall lift up the glory (so it may be read); the glory of Israel had been thrown down and depressed, but he shall raise it out of the dust. Matthew Henry

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H3205 yâlad, yaw-lad’; a primitive root; to bear young; causatively, to beget; bring forth (children, young),

The following are references to the everlasting covenant established with Abraham; revealed and fulfilled in Jesus.

And God said, Sarah thy wife shall bear thee a son indeed; and thou shalt call his name Isaac: and I will establish my covenant with him for an everlasting covenant, and with his seed after him.” Genesis 17:19

“Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14 (See reference below John 18:37)

H5445 çâbal, saw-bal’; to bear, bear a load, drag oneself along to carry(literally or figuratively), or (reflexively) be burdensome
The same word is used for labor and burden.

In the center of these references is the well-known prophecy from Isaiah of the Son, Immanuel, who would bear the iniquities of His people.

“He shall see of the travail of his soul,
and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge
shall my righteous servant justify many;
for he shall bear their iniquities.”
Isaiah 53:11

H6030 ʻânâh, aw-naw’; to answer, respond, testify, speak, shout the same word is used for answer and answered

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour.” Exodus 20:16

H5201 nâṭar, naw-tar’; a primitive root; to guard; figuratively, to cherish (anger):—bear grudge, keep(-er), reserve.

Leviticus 19:18 commands us not to bear any grudge but to love thy neighbour as thyself.

H4910 mâshal, maw-shal’;  to rule:—(have, make to have) dominion, governor, reign, (bear, cause to, have) rule(-ing, -r), have power.

Proverbs 12:24 relates to the diligent who shall bear rule.

New Testament

G3140 martyreō mar-too-reh’-o to be a witness, to bear witness, i.e. to affirm that one has seen or heard or experienced something, or that he knows it because taught by divine revelation or inspiration

 “The same came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe.” John 1:7

“There is another that beareth witness of me; and I know that the witness which he witnesseth of me is true.” John 5:32

“To this end was I born, and for this cause
came I into the world,

that I should bear witness unto the truth.
Every one that is of the truth heareth my voice.”
John 18:37

“For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one. And there are three that bear witness in earth, the Spirit, and the water, and the blood: and these three agree in one.” 1 John 5:7-8

G5342 pherō  fe’-rō; to bear i.e. bring forth, produce; endure

“Abide in me, and I in you.
As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself,
except it abide in the vine;
no more can ye, except ye abide in me.”
John 15:4

 “Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach.” Hebrews 13:13

 G941 bastazōbä-stä’-zō  perhaps remotely derived from the base of G939 (through the idea of removal); to lift, literally or figuratively (endure, declare, sustain, receive, etc.) The same word is used for bare, bearing and borne

 “And whosoever doth not bear his cross,
and come after me, cannot be my disciple.
Luke 14:27

Must Jesus bear the cross alone and all the world go free?
No, there’s a cross for all His own, and there’s a cross for me.

“I have yet many things to say unto you, but ye cannot bear them now.” John 16:12

the strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, Romans 15:1 

“Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.” Galatians 6:2

Paul said, “… for I bear in my body the marks of the Lord Jesus.”Galatians 6:17

G2592 karpophoréō, kar-pof-or-eh’-o; from G2593; to be fertile (literally or figuratively):—be (bear, bring forth) fruit(-ful).

 “seed in good ground beareth fruit.” Matthew 13:23

G3114 makrothyméō ,mak-roth-oo-meh’-o; from the same as G3116; to be long-spirited, i.e. (objectively) forbearing or (subjectively) patient

“And shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him, though he bear long with them?” Luke 18:7

G4828 symmartyréō, soom-mar-too-reh’-o; from G4862 and G3140; to testify jointly, i.e. corroborate by (concurrent) evidence:—

“The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit,
that we are the children of God:”
Romans 8:16

 G5297 hypophérō, hoop-of-er’-o; from G5259 and G5342; to bear from underneath, i.e. (figuratively) to undergo hardship:—endure

 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” 1 Corinthians 10:13

G4722 stégō, steg’-o; from G4721; to roof over, i.e. (figuratively) to cover with silence (endure patiently)

“Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:7

G5409 phoréō, for-eh’-o; from G5411; to have a burden, i.e. (by analogy) to wear as clothing or a constant accompaniment:—bear, wear,

“And as we have borne the image of the earthy,
we shall also bear the image of the heavenly.
1 Corinthians 15:49

G4064 periphérō, per-ee-fer’-o; from G4012 and G5342; to convey around, i.e. transport hither and thither: (carry) about

 “Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.” 2 Corinthians 4;10

G399 anaphérō, an-af-er’-o; from G303 and G5342; to take up (literally or figuratively):—bear, bring (carry, lead) up, offer (up).

“So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many;
and unto them that look for him
shall he appear the second time
without sin unto salvation.”
Hebrews 9:28

From the beginning, God brings us through His Word to see man’s need for a Savior. We are led to His promises and His provision for redemption, forgiveness, and restoration through Jesus, Lord and Savior to those whose sins He has borne on the cross.

Gracious Father of heaven, earth, and all life ~ we praise you for planning for our salvation before the world began, showing us our need and how you have reconciled us to yourself by putting all our sins upon Jesus. How true that only He, the spotless Lamb, could bear our sins, and only He is able to bear the glory. No wonder the disciples could not bear all when He was here. Thank you for eternity when we will be able to receive all you have planned for us. In Jesus’ name, I pray.
Fran