What the Bible Says About Casting Lots

Soldiers casting lots

The practice of casting lots is found primarily in the Old Testament, though there are a few instances in which it was done in the New Testament. It is a practice that will often provoke questions in the mind of Bible students. The Bible says little about the specifics of the practice, so it is not possible for us to satisfy every question one might have with an answer from the Scriptures. However, let us consider what the Bible does tell us about the practice.
Continue Reading

Is Divine Revelation Ongoing Today?

Looking toward heaven

For this reason, I, Paul, the prisoner of Christ Jesus for the sake of you Gentiles—if indeed you have heard of the stewardship of God’s grace which was given to me for you; that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in brief” (Ephesians 3:1-3).

Paul told the Ephesians about the mystery he received by revelation. He was referring to divine revelation – a message that came from God. As an apostle (Ephesians 1:1), the Holy Spirit guided him “into all the truth” (John 16:13) so that he could say, “The things which I write to you are the Lord’s commandment” (1 Corinthians 14:37).

Does this type of divine revelation still occur today? Many people claim to receive messages directly from heaven. But does God reveal His will directly to people today like He did with Paul and others? It is important that we know the answer to that question. So let us consider it here.
Continue Reading

When Will the Lord Return?

ClockThe “end times” are an intriguing topic to many people. They wonder what will happen and speculate about when the end will be. Throughout the years, some have even tried to predict the date of Christ’s return; yet every one of these dates has come and gone. This is not a sign that the end of the world will not happen, just that there are false prophets who erroneously claim to know the “secret things” of God (Deuteronomy 29:29).

The Scriptures do not provide us with a date for the Lord’s return, nor are we given signs to look for that will signal that the end is approaching. However, the New Testament certainly provides a description for when the Lord will return. So in this article, we will use the Bible to answer this question: When will the Lord return?
Continue Reading

Introducing Jesus

Jesus – Sermon on the Mount

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1).

And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).

The gospel of John was written to teach people about Jesus. The first chapter introduces Jesus to us. We learn of Him through the various words and phrases used to describe the Lord, some of which are found in the verses above. The opening chapter of John is a good place to go to learn, be reminded, or teach others about Jesus. Let us briefly consider some of the ways in which Jesus is described in these verses.
Continue Reading

Presuming to Know the Mind of God

Man Under Rainbow

In writing to the church at Corinth, Paul described the unfolding of God’s scheme of redemption as the revelation of a mystery that was previously hidden.

For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God” (1 Corinthians 2:10-12).

Paul explained that the only way for man to know the mind of God is for the Holy Spirit to reveal it. Today, that revelation is found in the Scriptures (2 Timothy 3:16). It is not only erroneous but also dangerous to the fate of our eternal souls to go beyond the Scriptures and presume to know the mind of God. Let us notice how we may, if we are not careful, be guilty of this.
Continue Reading

Making Wise Investments (Part 5): A Counterfeit Spirituality

Making Wise Investments (Part 5): A Counterfeit Spirituality

When the Lord addressed the church at Laodicea, He condemned them for practicing a spirituality that was not of the Lord, but was counterfeit. Therefore, He advised these brethren who thought they needed nothing to buy certain things from him so that they might have a real spirituality.

I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot; I wish that you were cold or hot. So because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, and have become wealthy, and have need of nothing,’ and you do not know that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked, I advise you to buy from Me gold refined by fire so that you may become rich, and white garments so that you may clothe yourself, and that the shame of your nakedness will not be revealed; and eye salve to anoint your eyes so that you may see” (Revelation 3:15-18).

Continue Reading

Declare All That You See (9/9)

Thought from today’s Bible reading from Ezekiel 40-41.

In the visions of God He brought me into the land of Israel and set me on a very high mountain, and on it to the south there was a structure like a city. So He brought me there; and behold, there was a man whose appearance was like the appearance of bronze, with a line of flax and a measuring rod in his hand; and he was standing in the gateway. The man said to me, ‘Son of man, see with your eyes, hear with your ears, and give attention to all that I am going to show you; for you have been brought here in order to show it to you. Declare to the house of Israel all that you see’” (Ezekiel 40:2-4).

After being introduced to this man with a measuring rod in a vision, Ezekiel sees him measure the temple area, is given the specific measurements, and is expected to “declare to the house of Israel all that [he] sees.” There are some lessons in here for preachers of today:
Continue Reading