Open Bible Class 2011-1st mp3
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Getting to Know your Bible. >> There is a God. He is alive. “By the word of the LORD the heavens were made, and by the breath of his mouth all their host” (Psa 33.6), but he has also provided a written revelation for all mankind—the means by which we can come to know him, follow him, and eventually live with him after death. “Your word,” the psalmist wrote, “is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” (Psa 119.105). The B.I.B.L.E. could accurately be described as Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth.
||110313 Walking in the Footsteps of Biblical Examples.||As we wind down the application portion of our study, one more issue ought to be addressed. When it comes to the examples we find in the New Testament of God's word, what should we look for? When are they binding? How can we discern what details within those examples are incidental and which ones are significant? From time to time, it's helpful to rigorously analyze why one example should rightly be understood to be instructive while another is not. Exercises like this can protect us from concluding that we can't expect to find instruction in examples. They may even equip us to recognize some overlooked instructions in New Testament examples. A Case Study Consider the description of the disciples' assembly in Acts 20:7-8. On the first day of the week, when we were gathered together to break bread, Paul talked with them, intending to depart the next day, and he prolonged his speech until midnight. There were many lamps in the upper room where we were gathered. Luke has preserved quite a few details for us in just these two sentences. > It was the first day of the week. > The disciples were gathered together. > They had gathered together to break bread. > Paul addressed the disciples who were gathered. > He intended to depart the next day. > He prolonged his speech until midnight. > The disciples were gathered in an upper room. > There were many lamps in the upper room. Take the time to carefully think about these details. How should we treat them? How should they be applied today? Should they all be applied? If not, which ones should be applied, and how can we know? Here they are again. Which details continue to carry modern significance?||Free||View In iTunes|
||Clean110327 Wrapping up Getting to Know Your Bible. Week 13||Romans 11:25-36 (ESV) 25 Lest you be wise in your own sight, I want you to understand this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. 26 And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written, “The Deliverer will come from Zion, he will banish ungodliness from Jacob”; 27 “and this will be my covenant with them when I take away their sins.” 28 As regards the gospel, they are enemies of God for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers. 29 For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable. 30 For just as you were at one time disobedient to God but now have received mercy because of their disobedience, 31 so they too have now been disobedient in order that by the mercy shown to you they also may now receive mercy. 32 For God has consigned all to disobedience, that he may have mercy on all. 33 Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! 34 “For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” 35 “Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid?” 36 For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen.||28 3 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110320 How Should We Handle Tradition||How Should We Handle Tradition? When the report of Jesus' miracles spread abroad, Pharisees and scribes from Jerusalem made their way north to the region of Galilee to confront Jesus. They charged that the Lord's disciples neglected to keep the "traditions" of the elders because they did not ceremonially wash their hands before they ate. But Jesus focused on the testers, asking "Why do you break the commandment of God for the sake of your tradition?" (Matt 15.3). This narrative highlights a problem that has troubled followers of Jesus for many centuries—how do we faithfully discern between "the commandments of God" and our own human traditions? Key Terms Defined "Commandment," in the context of Matthew 15, refers to that which has been delivered to mankind via divine revelation. "For God commanded, 'Honor your father and your mother,' and, `Whoever reviles father or mother must surely die.' But you say, 'If anyone tells his father or his mother, "What you would have gained from me is given to God," he need not honor his father.' So for the sake of your tradition you have made void the word of God." (Matt 1 5.4-6) Similar language is used in Luke 23.56, as Luke describes some of the female disciples at the tomb of Jesus. Then they returned and prepared spices and ointments. On the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment. When terms like commandment, law, or the word of God are used in Scripture, they most often inherently represent an obligation that has been imposed by God himself under which human beings are amenable. If I, or you, or anyone else violates those divine edicts, we are guilty of sin.||21 3 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110306 When God Hasn't Said Anything About It||When God Hasn't Said Anything About It Having focused extensively in previous lessons on the nature of God's specific and generic instructions, we turn our attention more fully to the other end of the spectrum. What about those innumerable instances when God hasn't said anything? How should we treat the silence of God? Is it permissive or prohibitive? When God hasn't specifically addressed something in either positive or negative terms, may we faithfully interpret his silence as license to proceed in whatever direction we choose? Granted, we don't read anything in God's revelation to mankind about the yearly observance of Easter, but what's the big deal if we're remembering Jesus? The use of guitars, keyboards and drums in our corporate gatherings of worship can't be specifically authorized using the New Testament, but what's wrong with using them if our praise is enthusiastically directed toward God? May we build whatever we would like to build, fund whatever we would like to fund, solicit in whatever way we would like to solicit, as long as some justifiable good comes as a result of our efforts? As human beings, we can formulate an endless amount of "good reasons." Given enough time and wiggle room, we can justify nearly anything. We can appeal to emotions and reason from past experiences and motivate with inspiring rhetoric, but we are not the ultimate standard of authority. The bedrock principles delivered in Isaiah 55.6-11 continue to resonate throughout the created order: "Seek the LORD while he may be found; call upon him while he is near; let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts; let him return to the LORD, that he may have compassion on him, and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. "For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven and do not return there but water the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it."||28 2 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110227 On the Making of Expedient Judgments||An "expedient" is an appropriate, profitable, advantageous way to accomplish something. Expedients are helpful means to necessary ends. The word expedient is used seven times in the King James Version of the Scriptures. "Nor consider that it is expedient for us, that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation perish not." (John 11.50) "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) Now Caiaphas was he, which gave counsel to the Jews, that it was expedient that one man should die for the people. (John 18.14) All things are lawful unto me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but I will not be brought under the power of any. (1 Cor 6.12) All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not. (1 Cor 10.23) And herein I give my advice: for this is expedient for you, who have begun before, not only to do, but also to be forward a year ago. (2 Cor 8.10) It is not expedient for me doubtless to glory. I will come to visions and revelations of the Lord. (2 Cor 12.1)||28 2 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110220 Applying Heavenly Authority to Everyday Life||As human beings, we understand and apply authoritative instructions using everyday common sense. We learn to do so from a very early age. We may not use distinctive labels or philosophical definitions to describe what we’re doing, but we comprehend and follow the fundamental principles of authority and compliance in thousands upon thousands of actions and reactions over a lifetime of interaction. For example, a father knocks on the bedroom door of his teenage son and communicates clear instructions to him. “Take this $25 and go to Pizza Hut on Main Street. I just called in an order for a sausage pizza, an order of breadsticks, and a Diet Coke. Go straight there, and come straight back home. We’ll have the table set when you get back.” That teenager is now the recipient of very specific instructions that carry the authoritative weight of his father. These instructions, by their very nature, logically rule out millions of other variables. < Can the teenage son take his father’s $25, pick up his girlfriend, and head for the movie theater? No! Why not? His father specifically told him to go to Pizza Hut and spend the money there. Even though his father did not methodically list every possible place his son should not go, the teenager naturally understands something, doesn’t he? To take that $25 and spend it anywhere other than Pizza Hut will be to disobey his father at home. His father’s specific mention of Pizza Hut on Main Street logically rules out every other pizza place, every other restaurant, every other venue, and even every other Pizza Hut other than the Pizza Hut on Main Street.||23 2 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110213 How Does the Bible Direct Us||Consider the foundation we’ve methodically laid thus far in our study. The goal has been to start at basic “ground-level” and gradually build, one layer of understanding upon another. < The Bible is the world’s most precious book. < All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for those who invest in it. < The old law of Moses served a vital role in God’s eternal plan, but on this historical side of the cross, we live under the scope of the new covenant of Jesus Christ. < There are two ultimate sources of authority—heavenly and human. As we handle the New Testament, we’re interacting with heavenly authority. < Based on my ongoing interaction with this heavenly authority, I will function either on the side of “law” or “lawlessness.” I’m encouraged by the Spirit of God to speak and to act as one who will be “judged under the law of liberty” (James 2.12). < There are differing categories of Biblical communication whose context must be appreciated if we are to “accurately handle the word of truth” (2 Tim 2.15). But how, practically speaking, does the Bible direct us? In real-life terms, how do we transition from reading God-breathed words on the printed pages of our Bibles to leading God-approved lives in our own modern context? How can I faithfully interpret his communication to mankind that was delivered thousands of years ago and faithfully apply it to my own individual life? How does God speak to me and direct me at this point in history? Consider six “connective paths” between the Word of God and the human heart.||14 2 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110206 Context, Context, Context||If you've ever tried to buy or sell a house, you've probably heard the most popular mantra in real estate: "Location, location, location." It simply means that identical houses can increase or decrease in value due to their physical location. It's the number one rule in real estate, and it's often the most overlooked. The same sort of thing could be said about our efforts to interpret the Bible: "Location, location, location." Or, another way of putting it is: "Context, context, context." Edwin Crozier illustrates the principle by sharing the opening paragraph of a book entitled Murder at Cory Mansion. A few minutes of stillness lingered at the Cory Mansion, when the night sounds were shattered by a woman's scream and an infant's cry. A few minutes later, as the clock in the hall struck 2:30, a man carrying a black leather handbag slipped quickly from the house, glanced up and down the street, and walked briskly away through the early morning mist. What happened?||11 2 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110130 Of Law and Lawlessness||In the last lesson we briefly referenced Jesus' words in Matthew 7.21-23, but they are worthy of some more in-depth attention at this point in our study. "Not everyone who says to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but the one who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. On that day many will say to me, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and cast out demons in your name, and do many mighty works in your name?' And then will I declare to them, `I never knew you; depart from me, you workers of lawlessness.'" With these words, Jesus establishes a straightforward distinction between "the will of my Father who is in heaven" and "lawlessness." There are image-bearers of God who do the will of the heavenly Father, and there are image-bearers of God who are workers of lawlessness. The first will gain entrance into the kingdom of heaven, and the latter will be told to depart from God. It is vital, therefore, that we understand the difference between the will of our Creator and lawlessness. Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. (Eph 5.15-17)||1 2 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110123 The Bedrock Principle of Authority. mp3||We interact with authority every day. We submit ourselves to authority every day. We depend on authority every day. At the gas pump. In the grocery store. When we look at our watches. As we use our money. When we drive our motor vehicles. As we leave the pharmacy. We expect the fresh fruits and vegetables that we buy to meet a certain standard of cleanliness and quality. We take for granted the fact that the prescriptions our pharmacists fill have been regulated and approved by a governing authority. Every single time we cruise beside someone on the highway or fly by another car on a narrow two-way street, we assume that all involved are going to abide by the regulating standards of lawful authority. Standards of authority have power to teach, reprove, correct and train. When different people with differing ideas and varying histories and conflicting agendas agree to abide under a common standard of authority, unity of mind and purpose is possible. There is potential for peaceful and constructive coexistence. Disagreements can be settled and a clear vision for collective purpose and action in the future can be established.||24 1 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110116 Distinguishing Between the Conenants||Having established that God’s written revelation to mankind is precious and profitable, we move into the realm of application. As we mentioned in Lesson 1, the master plan behind the Bible is rescue. From Genesis to Revelation, God’s book is all about God’s plan to rescue men and women from the ultimate problem of sin. Our responsibility begins with discernment. Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. - Ephesians 5.15-17||19 1 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110109 If It's Breathed-Out By God... mp3||Few passages serve as a better gateway from the words on the printed pages of our Bibles into the realm of practical application than Paul’s encouragement in 2 Timothy 3.14-17. “But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have firmly believed, knowing from whom you learned it and how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work.”||10 1 11||Free||View In iTunes|
||110102 The World's Most Precious Book mp3||The Creator-God had a plan before he ever laid the foundation of the world. His plan involved us—human beings whom he created in his image (Gen 1.27). His will for us is that we would be holy and blameless, as he is holy and blameless (1 Pet 1.14-16). In love he determined to make a way available, despite our rebellion against him, whereby we could be adopted as sons and daughters into his family through the sacrifice of his own Son, Jesus the Christ. You were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand,||3 1 11||Free||View In iTunes|