MIME-Version: 1.0 Date: Tue, 28 May 1996 08:23:59 +-200 Reply-To: Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel
Sender: Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel From: Teus Benschop Subject: ChrExp, The Scriptures opened, 85 To: Multiple recipients of list CHR-EXP Status: U Contents ---------------------------------------------------------------------- 1. Matthew 9:34 - The Gergesenes bid Jesus depart 2. Romans 13:13,14 - A godly man's conduct 3. Proverbs 17:5 - The poor and his Maker 1. Matthew 9:34 - The Gergesenes bid Jesus depart ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Matthew 9:34 They besought Him that He would depart out of their coasts. The longer you think of this text, the more astonished you become. How was it ever possible that they besought Jesus to depart out of their lands? With this request they rejected the Saviour of the world! Moreover, they rejected the Saviour that came in their country to preach there. How is that possible? Why were they so foolish? When Jesus was come into the country of the Gergesenes, two people possessed with devils met Him. They were coming out of the tombs, and were exceeding fierce, so that no man might pass by that way. When they saw Jesus, they cried out: "What have we to do with Thee, Jesus, Thou Son of God?" These were not words of the two possessed, although it was their mouths that spoke them. These were not words of men, but of the devils themselves. "Are Thou come hither to torment us before the time?" They knew that once their time would come, that they would be tormented for ever and ever. But they feared that Jesus had come now, to torment them before that appointed time. The two men possessed with devils came to Jesus. And there was a good way off from them a herd of many swine feeding. They fed on a hill, as the other gospels witness. According to Josephus, book 17, chap. 13, the Gergesenes lived after the order of the Greeks, and therefore we are not surprised to meet swine there. When Jesus commanded the devils to go out these men, the devils besought Him that they might go into those swine. They said: "If Thou cast us out, suffer us to go away into the herd of swine". Swine were unclean beasts, according to the law. Devils, being unclean too, asked to go into those swine. Unclean searches company of unclean, as we see here. When they had besought to go into the swine, Jesus said to them: "Go". Then the demons left the men, and went into the herd of swine. And what happened? The whole herd of swine ran violently down a steep place into the see, and perished in the waters. And they that kept them fled, and went their ways into the city, and told everything; and also what was befallen to the possessed of the devils. Instead that they rejoiced greatly that some possessed were delivered, they complained about the loss of the unclean swine. Instead of rejoicing over the removal of the unclean spirits, they mourned for the loss of the unclean beasts. When the people heard it, the whole city came out to meet Jesus, and when they saw Him, they besought Him that He would depart out of their coasts. They showed that they cared not about the lives of the two men possessed, but that they were upside-down of the loss of their income. Rather then seeking for life, they sought their money. They loved their income, and, since Jesus was of another attitude, they bid Him leave. Jesus left them. Now wonder then, since they lived as swine, that Christ does not abide there, but the devils. The same you find in our times. Rather then going to church whenever possible, to hear the Word of God, the people choose their money, and bid Jesus leave. And when they have some free time, rather then praying and reading Scriptures and doing well to the people, they spend it in idle things, or in pleasures. They bid Christ, and the Holy Ghost leave, because they care not for Them; they love themselves and the world. When they hear one is converted to God, and delivered from the snares of satan, instead of rejoicing greatly (as the angels in heaven do) they grieve for the loss. No wonder then that God will leave them, and return not. In our text we read that they bid Jesus leave. "And, behold, the whole city came out to meet Jesus: and when they saw him, they besought him that he would depart out of their coasts." After Jesus left them, according to their wish, he went to another place. "And he entered into a ship, and passed over, and came into his own city. And, behold, they brought to him a man sick of the palsy, lying on a bed: and Jesus seeing their faith said unto the sick of the palsy; Son, be of good cheer; thy sins be forgiven thee." So, Jesus leaving the Gergesenes, comes into his own city. There they bring to him a sick man. Jesus, seeing their faith, says to the sick man that his sins are forgiven. Let then the Gergesenes have their swine, but this man has a treasure laid up in heaven. His sins are forgiven, but the Gergesenes will bear their own sins. If then the country of the Gergesenes throws Jesus out, there will be another country where they will gladly accept Him. Likewise, when one church begins to apostate and fall away from the truth, or fall back in Jewish ceremonies, then Jesus leaves them, and plants His church elsewhere. Do you not bring forth fruit? Then the tree of you will be hewn down and rooted out. And God will plant His church elsewhere, namely there where they will bring forth much useful fruit. 2. Romans 13:13,14 - A godly man's conduct ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Romans 13:13,14 Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. Let us live honestly. That is, let us walk godly in the sight of God, and let us also live honestly in the sight of men. Let us have our conversation among the gentiles honestly, so that they see our works and glorify God because of them. Those that are not of Christ and only profess His name say: "It doesn't matter what I do among men; for God is my Judge, and not the people. I care not for their opinion about me". These are the ungodly, but those that really are of Christ, keep their conversation honest among the people. They indeed have God as their Judge, but in addition to this, they should live honestly among men. Let us, therefore, live honestly. Let us live honestly, as in the day. The night of sin has passed. The darkness of ignorance wherein we lived formerly, is brightened up by the saving knowledge of Christ, through God's grace. Let us then live honestly, as in the day. We are no longer in the night. In the night, no man can see us. Therefore, many, while they are in the night of sins, do their own will, and do whatever they like. Being in the night, they think none sees them. Having nobody that warns them, or closing their eyes and ears for the truth, they live as in the night; in uncleanness, in theft, in slander, in anger. But let us live honestly, not as in the night, but as in the day. This conduct becomes those that are of Christ, and to whom the saving grace of God has appeared. Let we live as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness. The apostle mentions rioting and drunkenness, wherein we should not walk. First rioting. The rioting people, in those times, formed a nocturnal and riotous procession of half drunken and frolicsome fellows, who after supper parade through the streets with torches and music in honour of Bacchus or some other deity, and sing and play before houses of male and female friends. So, generally, those are rioting that go to feasts and drinking parties, which are protracted till late at night, and indulge in revelry. Let we therefore take heed, lest we join in those greedy and indecent meals. Let us, therefore, not live in profusion and in playfulness, and in dance, and in several sorts of thoughtlessness. Secondly, the apostle mentions drunkenness. It is written: "Woe unto [them that are] mighty to drink wine, and men of strength to mingle strong drink." Isa. 5:22. Let us therefore not be mighty to drink wine to our own and our neighbour's hurt, lest God's woe comes down on us. Several that say they believe in Christ, excessively booze wine and strong drink. But let us forsake that. Besides not walking in rioting and drunkenness, let us also walk "not in chambering and wantonness", says the apostle. Generally, adultery and whoredom is committed in the bedrooms. Let us therefore not play the whore, nor fornicate. Let us also not walk in wantonness. That is, let us forsake the horny playfulness, and forsake every kind of impurity and lewdness. These are works of darkness. But, being children of the day, let us not walk in these nightly and dark works. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; "not in strife and envying", Paul continues. For, "if ye bite and devour one another, take heed that ye be not consumed one of another." Gal 5:15. Let us not do as the armies of enemies of Israel did in former days. They helped one another into death, and Israel stood by looking and rejoicing in the God of their salvation. "For the children of Ammon and Moab stood up against the inhabitants of mount Seir, utterly to slay and destroy [them]: and when they had made an end of the inhabitants of Seir, every one helped to destroy another." 2 Chron 20:23. Let us, having this and many such verses, for warning examples, not walk in strife and envying, lest we help the congregation of the Lord into destruction. These are works of darkness, but we, as in the day, let us live in unity and love. Instead of all these evil things, let us do something else. Let's not walk in strife, "but put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ", says the Word. We should put on Jesus Christ. This putting on means that we should put Him on like one puts on his garments and equipment and weapons. When we go out to our work, we put on our garments. When the soldier goes out to fight for his fatherland, he puts on his weapons. Let us put on Christ, because we should go out to our work. Let we put on Christ's virtues, because we have a fight, not with flesh and blood, but with the evil spirits and with darkness and sin. "Put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ". How? How may we put on Him? Put ye on Christ our Lord through faith, accepting His righteousness, and imitating all His virtues. Instead of clothing your body with all sorts of vain outward apparel, cloth your body and soul with Christ's virtues. Instead of adorning yourself with gold and other perishing metals, adorn your body and soul with good works - with faith - with Christ's righteousness. "For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ." Gal 3:27. The believers once have put on Christ. Let them continue in the way the once have taken. Put on the Lord Jesus Christ, "and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof". Make not provision for the flesh, that is, make no provision for the body. With this is not forbidden to make provision for the necessary things for the body, as some clothing, food, drink, medicine, and other things necessary for the maintenance of the body. For, all this is recommended. "No man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church." Eph 5:29. But when it is said that we should not make provision for the flesh, it is added: "to fulfil the lusts thereof". So, do not fulfil the evil lusts of the flesh, and don't make provision for that. "But I keep under my body, and bring [it] into subjection." 1 Cor 9:27. Fulfil not the desires of the body, which tend to excess, pride, greediness and lewdness. Subject your body, and make no provision for it to fulfil the lusts of it. "For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world. And the world passeth away, and the lust thereof: but he that doeth the will of God abideth for ever." 1 John 2:16,17. Let us walk honestly, as in the day; not in rioting and drunkenness, not in chambering and wantonness, not in strife and envying. But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof. 3. Proverbs 17:5 - The poor and his Maker ---------------------------------------------------------------------- Whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker. Proverbs 17:5 In the beginning God created heaven and earth. He also made the beasts of the field. At the end, He made man, according to His Own image. God not only made Adam, the first man, but also Eve. He also gave them children. Every child that is born, is made by God. Not only the well- formed and healthy people are made by God, but, according to our text, also the poor are made by Him. It pleased God to make men as they are now. It pleases Him to make some men rich, and some others poor. It is His will. This is the reason that, "whoso mocketh the poor reproacheth his Maker". It pleases God to make the poor, and should we then mock those people? Poor men are often neglected. We honour the rich and lick their boots. But who is there that honours the poor, since they also are made by God their Maker? It may be that we not openly mock them, being held back by some decency. But many of us, though they say no word, yet mock the poor in their heart. Whoso mocks the poor reproaches his Maker. He dishonours God, Who created the poor. He dishonours God, Who exercises the people with poverty. The poor, having no help of the people, rely on God. Will God not be very angry with you, when you mock the poor? For, you not only mock the poor (which in itself is reprehensible), but also his Maker. ---------------------------------------------------------------------- firstname.lastname@example.org "A Christian explanation of the Scriptures to Israel" Institute Practical Bible-education http://www.iclnet.org/pub/resources/text/ipb-e/ipbe-home.html Written by Teus Benschop -- email@example.com ---------------------------------------------------------------------- file: /pub/resources/text/ipb-e/so: s-open-085.txt .