Biblical truth standing on its spiritual head to get our eternal attention.
  • .: Welcome :. is devoted to the pursuit of truth, whether plain or paradoxical, whether simple or sublime, or simply absurd yet absolute.

    Our Lord came down from life to suffer death; the Bread came down, to hunger; the Way came down, on the way to weariness; the Fount came down, to thirst. —Augustine, Sermon 78
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    "It is refreshing to see the truth unfold from God's word about this most important subject."
  • Criticizing Preachers

    Posted By on May 27, 2017

    As a preacher, reading the gospels again has been good for me and my feelings: 1) “Some of your sermons are too complicated.” So were some of Jesus’ (John 6:60). 2) “Didn’t you preach that sermon before?” Jesus repeated himself (Matthew 25:14-30; Luke 19:11-27). 3) “Were you talking about me?” Jesus had to do that (Matthew 21:45). 4) “You shouldn’t talk about yourself in your sermons.” Jesus did and people complained about him too (John 8:13). 5) “Some people left because of what you said.” You can picture the sorrow, as Jesus watched some leave (John 6:66). No preacher is Jesus, obviously; we make mistakes and have personal flaws. But before you complain about the preacher, maybe you likewise should read the gospels again.

    Days of the Week Without God

    Posted By on May 27, 2017





    John 1:1-2 – Chiasm

    Posted By on May 20, 2017

    John 1:1-2 – Notice two things: 1) The order of the words in Greek is different than in English which lends itself to an interesting chiasm. 2) While we normally quote just 1:1 as a complete thought, the chiastic order suggests v.2 should be included.

    A – In (the) beginning was the Word

    B – and the Word

    C- was with [the] God

    C’ – and God was

    B’ – the Word.

    A’ – He was in (the) beginning with [the] God.

    NEWS! – Russia Has Banned the Jehovah Witnesses

    Posted By on April 24, 2017

    Russia had banned the Jehovah Witnesses making it illegal. The reason was saying it was guilty of extremism. Not stated by the Russian government is that possibly they viewed the group to be extreme because it was a pacifist group which did not celebrate Russia’s aggressive military actions.

    People often joke about hiding behind the curtains when JW’s knock on the door. However remember Niemöller, a German Protestant “Pastor”, who is perhaps best remembered for this quotation:

    First they came for the Socialists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Socialist.

    Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

    Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
    Because I was not a Jew.

    Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

    Mark 1:15 – Repent then Believe?

    Posted By on April 24, 2017

    One of the arguments made against baptism being the “when” one receives God’s grace is that the “order” of Hear, Believe, Repent, Confess, and Baptism is not set in scripture. For example, Mark 1:15 is cited where repent is listed before believe: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe in the good news (I.e.gospel)”.
    The argument used against that suppostion is just because something is listed first doesn’t mean it literally comes first, such as when people say, “Put on your shoes and socks and let’s go.” If someone literally followed that order then that would be ridiculous!
    However, if we knew that Mark (among others) uses and loves chiasms there is a far better answer:
    A – The time is fulfilled
    B – and the Kingdom of God has come near,
    B’ – Repent
    C’ – and believe in the good news

    Jesus is speaking to Jews who knew daily what repentance was and that being near to God required holiness. If the Kingdom of God is coming near, then God is near. That is an OT concept. They needed to repent.
    Jesus, in speaking to Jews, spoke of an OT prophecy that was being fulfilled in the first century. These Jews needed to believe that prophecy (Isaiah 61:1ff) was nearly fulfilled in their lives.
    The Kingdom of God has always existed because God has always ruled – even despite being rejected (1 Samuel 8:7). What was new was “God” ruling through Jesus which was revealed on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2).
    This is why Jesus said (removing the chiastic order) “The time is fulfilled, believe in the good news; and the kingdom of God has come near so repent.” Properly understood, believe still comes before repent.

    Genesis to the Gospels

    Posted By on April 24, 2017

    On the 6th day God created man. On the 7th He rested. All this after on the 1st day God said let there be light.
    On the 6th day God incarnate died as a man. On the 7th He rested. After this a great light appeared at the tomb as He who is the Light of the world walked out of death.
    The OT is the NT concealed; and the NT is the OT revealed.

    Isaiah 42-53 – The Servant Songs

    Posted By on February 14, 2017

    The Servant Songs of Isaiah
    In studying the Servant Songs there is a definite and surprisng move from brightness to darkness.
    The first sings of God’s pleasure in His Servant and how the Servant will not break a bruised reed (Isa.42:1-4).
    The second has the Servant singing a melancholy song of depression; while questioning His mission. This leads to God then extending the outreach (Isa.49:1-4, esp.v.4). Sadly, He himself is now the bruised reed in danger of breaking.
    The third sings about the physical abuse that comes from the Servant speaking the words of His Master; and yet He will not let the response bring humiliation (Isa.50:4-11). Unexpectedly we see how the increased outward pressure leads to inward strength and resolve.
    The final song is the one singing of finality, of the Servant’s atoning death and rewarding resurrection (Isa.52:13-53:12).
    Did you notice how the songs sing the same tune as the gospels? In fact, Jesus’ church sings even today both in music, and in living the Servant Songs. So if you are living the despondency of verse 2, know strength comes from serving through suffering which leads to blessing.

    Matthew 22:39 – How To Love Your Neighbor As Yourself

    Posted By on February 14, 2017

    Everyone knows the Second Great Command as listed by Jesus and lifted from Leviticus; but do we know how to love others as ourselves? Pragmatically, a Jewish Rabbi focused on “as yourselves”: “Just as we love ourselves despite the faults we know we have, so should we love our neighbors despite the faults we see in them” (Israel Baal Shem Tov). So whether you are married, single and loving it, or looking; know you can celebrate Valentine’s Day every day by loving others as you love yourself – forgivingly.

    Acts 17:1 – An Eugenics Program

    Posted By on February 13, 2017

    Each church needs a eugenics program. Properly defined, eugenics is, “the science of improving a human population by controlled breeding to increase the occurrence of desirable heritable characteristics. Developed largely by Francis Galton as a method of improving the human race, it fell into disfavor only after the perversion of its doctrines by the Nazis.” If you like Star Trek, think, “The Wrath of Khan.” Spiritually defined, this describes a certain group of people in the Bible, who I have to admit, I never really understood their description until now.

    In Acts 17:11, the Bereans are describes as “noble-minded.” This comes from the Greek “eugenes” which literally means noble. Translations which aim for accuracy over literalness translate this as “open-minded” which is the point of Luke. Philip’s translation has “generous-minded” which is based upon nobles having the characteristic of generosity. So why did Luke choose “eugenes” and how does this apply to the Bereans?

    Luke chooses this word as an example of that society and cause and effect. Literally it refers to someone who is of high or noble birth and therefore the effect is one who has the mindset of nobility. Remember to whom this society it was written to, which was not a republican democracy. It was ruled by nobles. They, in theory, ruled for the benefit of the society including making judgments about right and wrong. Think of in Jewish times royalty and elders sitting at the gates (Proverbs 31:8-9,23). In that sense, Freiberg defines it as “as a commendable attitude, open-minded, without prejudice.” In this sense, “Eugenes is used not only for noble birth but also for noble sentiments, character, morals” (

    In this sense of “eugenes,” each church needs to seek for those who are looking for the truthMonday’; and to cultivate being generous of mind about others and the scriptures. As to studying, this means being open-minded and able to make proper judgments based upon God’s evidence. This is how the Bereans were noble-minded. In this sense, the church needs a eugenics program.

    Isaiah 49:4 – Did Jesus Ever Get Depressed?

    Posted By on February 11, 2017

    Did Jesus ever get depressed, despondent, or at least disappointed in His impact on others? Last night we had an enlightening and hopefully uplifting – because misery loves company – time with the 2nd Servant Song (Isaiah 49:1ff). We recalled the many NT passages which gave reality to the first two lines of v.4 which have the servant (Jesus) sharing his woes: But I myself said, “I have labored in vain; I have spent my strength for nothing and futility.” I’ve been there, how about you?
    The good news is God speaks to His Servant promising a greater victory than the apparent failure. I’ll be there too, one day; how about you?