You can be sure that the story of Daniel in the lion’s den found in Daniel 6:1-28 will make it to just about every children’s Bible that has ever been or will be published. Funny The funny thing about that is this – the story is not really just a children’s story. Instead it is one of the great stories of the Bible that forces us to examine our own loyalty and faithfulness to God. It might have been an extreme test that God allowed Daniel to endure – and while he proved to be faithful, how would you go at being in Daniel’s position?
David is one of the key characters in the unfolding story of the Scriptures. We can often forget that huge responsibilities and pressures were placed upon his shoulders in his role as King over Israel and Judah. One of those pressures was simply maintaining the stability of his kingdom – especially when it threatened, at times, to crumble from within. Psalm 63:1-11 records David’s feelings in one of those crisis times and shows us what it is we need the most in life – regardless of whether our circumstances are good or bad.
When the two travelers on the road to Emmaus met with Jesus, as recorded in Luke 24:13-35, they were downcast and disconsolate. They were men without hope. Jesus, whom they had known and had put their hope in, was dead. While they had heard rumours of Him being alive, this all must have sounded so fanciful. Strange. But when a stranger met them on the road and opened the Scriptures to them, all that changed! Jesus fixed their fallen-apart world and hope was renewed again!
This Easter will certainly be one to remember. One like we’ve never had before. With all this extra time, it is a perfect opportunity to re-visit the foundations of our faith, to go back to the cross and think about what happened to Jesus and what He completed for us there. It really was an amazing day…but coming to Christ in repentance and faith could also prove to be your greatest day!
*This message quotes extensively from an article written by Andrew Lansdown. You can find the original article here. May it help us all to grasp the wonder of God’s grace to us in Christ.
The story of Jonah is one of the most well-known in the Scriptures. It’s not everybody that gets swallowed by a huge fish and lives to tell the tale. Talk about socially isolating! But what was Jonah doing in that ‘tight spot’ and what does a ‘socially isolating’ Jonah teach us? This message on Jonah 2:1-10, examines Jonah’s prayer and what we can learn from it.
There’s something about the story of Joseph in the Old Testament that is so fascinating and insightful. In Genesis 39:1-23, the Scriptures tell us about what might be the lowest spot in Joseph’s bright life. And yet, when his story is taken as a vital part of the outworking of Genesis 3:15 in God’s plan of salvation, the story of Joseph is far more than the story of a ‘dreamer’ with a ‘coloured coat’, but of a man who points us all to Jesus and who shows us God’s purpose in suffering is that we become more like Him.
When Paul brought up the topic of wisdom in 1 Corinthians 2:16-3:4, he was not introducing a new topic. Chapter 1 has told us much about God’s wisdom which is found in the preaching of Christ crucified. The sad case was, that at Corinth, the church had opted for earthly wisdom and this had begun to show itself in the disorder and division that Paul has been addressing.
After telling the Corinthians that they could not boast in men, nor in their position in the world before God called them, and that the gospel message was ‘weak and foolish’ in the eyes of the world, in 1 Corinthians 2:1-5, Paul went on to write that he too was ‘weak and foolish’. His preaching at Corinth was not a demonstration of his skill or wisdom, but of the power of God who saves ‘foolish’ people through the ‘foolish’ message of the cross.
The Church at Corinth was in crisis. Divisions over personalities were fuelled by the cult of pride. While some distance away from them when we wrote his letter, 1 Corinthians 1:18-31 reflects just how close Paul was to these wayward believers. Having established that being united to Christ should mean the death of all divisions, Paul now explains what the world calls ‘foolish’ (that is the preaching of the cross) is nothing but the express wisdom of God.
The text of 1 Corinthians 1:10-17 tells of the report that the Apostle Paul heard from ‘Chloe’s people’ about the state of the church at Corinth. They were a church divided. The issue was playing favourites with people. Some preferred Paul, others Apollos, others Peter and still others – Jesus! At the root of this problem of division was pride and at the centre of the solution Paul outlined was the principle – that when we look to Jesus and Him crucified, there is no room for pride and boasting, for in Christ and Him alone, their is true unity.