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Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:49-50 – Have Salt and Keep Peace

Mark 9:49-50 – Have Salt and Keep Peace

|| Matthew 5:13;[1] Luke 14:34

MK9:49 “For everyone will be salted with fire.[2] MK9:50 Salt is excellent![3] But if the salt ever lose its saltiness[4] what will it ever season? Continue to have ‘salt’ in yourselves and continue to be peaceable among one another.”[5]

[1] Matthew 5:13: For details see notes in Nazarene Commentary 2000 on Matthew.

[2] ‘Everyone will be salted with fire’: The phrase is connected to the previous warning about stumbling. It is likely Jesus alludes to Leviticus 2:13:

“‘And every offering of your grain offering you will season with salt; and you must not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be missing upon your grain offering. Along with every offering of yours you will present salt.” [NWT] [Ezra 6:9]

Any sacrifice a disciple makes must be seasoned with salt otherwise it is not acceptable to God. A “sacrifice of praise” or charity must also be delivered in such a way that it is tasteful to the hearer. [Colossians 4:6; Hebrews 13:15-17; James 3:12] Salt may also have something to do with judgment. [Judges 9:45; Ezekiel 43:24] Though the phrase is considered unsupported by older manuscripts some versions contain, “and every sacrifice shall be salted with salt.”]

[3] Salt is excellent: Or, fine, good, good thing. Salt was very valuable and necessary in such hot climates. It was even used as an exchange for labor or things.

[4] If the salt ever lose its saltiness: That is its tastefulness or preservative qualities.

[5] Continue to be peaceable among one another: The salt is associated with peaceful relations with others. The apostles have been arguing about superiority and this did not lead to peaceful relations. This matter of “salt” may go all the way back to that Jewish exorcist who was expelling demons in the name of Jesus. Who knows what the apostles said to him when they forbid him to continue what he was doing. It is not like these self-righteous, self-important individuals said things they should not.

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Preceding

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:1-8 – The Transfiguration

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:9-13 – Elijah Has Come

Matthew 12:22-30 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: the Charge of Demonism

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:14-24 – Help Me Where I Need Faith

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:25-29 – Why Could We Not Expel It?

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:30-32 – Foretells Resurrection

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:33-37 – Who is Greater?

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:38-42 – Those Not Against Us Are For Us

Mark 9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Mark 9:43-48 – The Offending Hand, Foot, or Eye

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:13-16 Salt and Light shining bright

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Additional reading

  1. Light and Salt – Parables of Influence
  2. Today’s thought “You shall not join hands with …” (February 13)

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Related

  1. Mark 9: 38-50: Blunt Words from Jesus
  2. Salt and Light :: Communion Liturgy
  3. Darkness and Light
  4. Light
  5. Let Your Light So Shine
  6. How to Steal God’s Heart
  7. The Sacrifice of Praise
  8. Sacrifices of Praise
  9. Praise and Worship from the Bible: What is it?
  10. Obedient praise
  11. Dance Before the Lord!

Matthew 21:12-14 – From a den of thieves to a house of prayer

In Jesus time we could already find temples where money was handled. Those who wanted to exchange money could go for that to the temple. Though God had not let build temples for worldly actions like exchanging money, selling and buying.

“12  And Jesus entered the temple and cast out all those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the moneychangers and the seats of those who were selling doves. 13 And He *said to them, “It is written, ’MY HOUSE SHALL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER’; but you are making it a ROBBERS’ DEN.” 14 And the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them.” (Mt 21:12-14 NAS)

John’s Gospel records a similar cleansing of the temple at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry (John 2:13–17).

“13 And the Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 And He found in the temple those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the moneychangers seated. 15 And He made a scourge of cords, and drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen; and He poured out the coins of the moneychangers, and overturned their tables; 16 and to those who were selling the doves He said, “Take these things away; stop making My Father’s house a house of merchandise.” 17 His disciples remembered that it was written, “ZEAL FOR THY HOUSE WILL CONSUME ME.”” (Joh 2:13-17 NAS)

Because being around the same festival (the passover – 14-22 Nisan) both writers could have been writing about the same event. But it can well be that John spoke of an earlier incident. It is commonly supposed that Jesus observed three Passovers in Jerusalem  — one recorded in Luke 6:, another in John 6:4, and the last one on the night before he was crucified, John 11:55. By John we also find Jesus who went up to Jerusalem and found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting.

John also says something about the temperament of Jesus. Jesus was not at all pleased with what went on in what should be a House of God. Annoyed with what he saw, Jesus in a burst of rage, made a scourge of cords, and cast all out of the temple, both the sheep and the oxen; and he poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew their tables and the seats of them that sold the doves. For Jesus it was clear that a Temple for God should not be a house of merchandise. His disciples also remembered that it was written,

“For zeal for Thy house has consumed me, And the reproaches of those who reproach Thee have fallen on me.” (Ps 69:9 NAS)

Interpreters have proposed two explanations:

(1) there was only one cleansing, but John narrated the action at the beginning for thematic/theological purposes, while the Synoptic Gospels narrate the actual historical chronology;

(2) there were indeed two similar but distinctly different temple cleansings. The differences of detail seem to indicate the latter, for while the initial action is similar, Jesus’ statement (Matt. 21:13) and the challenge from the Jewish leaders (vv. 15–16) are entirely different from what John records.
In addition, John places the event so early in his Gospel that it would be difficult to think he wanted readers to take it as anything but an event that happened early in Jesus’ ministry. Thus Jesus cleansed the temple at the beginning as a warning, and at the end of his ministry as a statement of judgment on the leadership of Israel.

You could wonder why the first cleansing had no success at all. But that indicates how the gaining of money was more important than keeping the temple only for worship.

This incident Matthew is talking about, is placed on the Monday morning, when they were come out from Bethany, by the evangelist Mark (Mark 11:12–19).

“12  And on the next day, when they had departed from Bethany, He became hungry. 13 And seeing at a distance a fig tree in leaf, He went to see if perhaps He would find anything on it; and when He came to it, He found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. 14 And He answered and said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again!” And His disciples were listening. 15 And they *came to Jerusalem. And He entered the temple and began to cast out those who were buying and selling in the temple, and overturned the tables of the moneychangers and the seats of those who were selling doves; 16 and He would not permit anyone to carry goods through the temple. 17 And He began to teach and say to them, “Is it not written, ’MY HOUSE SHALL BE CALLED A HOUSE OF PRAYER FOR ALL THE NATIONS’? But you have made it a ROBBERS’ DEN.” 18 And the chief priests and the scribes heard this, and began seeking how to destroy Him; for they were afraid of Him, for all the multitude was astonished at His teaching. 19 And whenever evening came, they would go out of the city.” (Mr 11:12-19 NAS)

Jesus wanted nobody to carry a vessel through the temple or doing business. After his outburst of anger Jesus taught those around him that it was written,

  My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations.

referring to what his heavenly Father, the God of Israel had told His people

“Even those I will bring to My holy mountain, And make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be acceptable on My altar; For My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.”” (Isa 56:7 NAS)

Therefore what would be acceptable in the Temple or God’s House are burnt offerings and people their sacrifices brought to the altar. All had to understand that the house of Jehovah God shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples. (Isa 56:7)

“A house of prayer for all peoples” indicates that first of all it had to be a place where people of all nations should be able to come in to pray. Jesus indicated that within the temple there is no place for a sort of market where commercial activity would take place.

In Matthew 21:13 Jesus compares the temple and its keepers to a den of robbers. Thieves often used caves to store their ill-gotten wealth and to plot future crimes. A temple for God does not have to be a place of secret actions, nor for worldly activities. It should be a place where people come without fear nor hesitation to gather in unity, to express their faith and for worshipping God. Everything belongs already to God, so people should know they can not tempt Him with money nor worldly sacrifices.

God allowed people to bring burnt offerings and sacrifices, but any sacrifice of a wicked person is an abomination to Jehovah God.

“The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD, But the prayer of the upright is His delight.” (Pr 15:8 NAS)

God is willing to incline His ear for those who come in honesty to His House (the temple) (Ps 10:17) where pepole also could come to confess their sins to one another, and could gather to pray for one another, so that they might be healed. This with the knowledge that the effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much. (Jas 5:16)

Also today we should wonder what is acceptable to be done in a House of prayer, be it called a synagogue, temple, prayer hall, kingdom hall, church hall, or simply church. We can find a lot of churches where financial activities take place. When you go and visit places have a look into many churches and see how they have stalls for selling things and often also have a lot of statues of people (called saints) with underneath a collecting box. In many churches we not only can see such sculptures of human beings but also of gods, like Jesus (the son of God – for many god the son) and God the Father, which is against God His commandments.

“’Cursed is the man who makes an idol or a molten image, an abomination to the LORD, the work of the hands of the craftsman, and sets it up in secret.’ And all the people shall answer and say, ’Amen.’” (De 27:15 NAS)

All going to such a House of prayer should know that God looks down at the earth and sees all people, knowing what goes on in their heart. All should be aware that everything which goes in against the commandments of God is an abomination in His eyes and considered evil. (Exodus 20:4-5; Deuteronomy 4:15-19; Acts 17:29; Proverbs 15:29; 1 Samuel16:7; 1 Peter 3:12; 1 John 3:22). When people live according God’s Will He is willing to listen to them, at any moment, but in a House of prayer they can find a special place to be in contact with their God.

“and whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do the things that are pleasing in His sight.” (1Jo 3:22 NAS)

In Jesus ‘ time but also later, as well as today, we can find pepole misusing their prime location, taking advantage of people’s religiosity to over-charge and cheat. In many places of worship and of pilgrimage we can find people deliberate making misuse of religion for personal gain. Look for example to Lourdes a.o. so called ‘sacred places’ and notice the whole ‘circus market’.

Jesus wants to see an atmosphere of pure, God-centred worship, free of man-centred worldly distractions. The House of God should be a place to gather to study the Word of God, to meditate and to pray. The Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed, but Jesus had already given a sign that in each person there was a place for a temple.

Today we do not have to go up on the mountain, nor to Jerusalem,to worship the Father. As true worshippers we can go to any place where nothing is against the Will of God to worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father seeks such to be his worshippers.

“21 Jesus *said to her, “Woman, believe Me, an hour is coming when neither in this mountain, nor in Jerusalem, shall you worship the Father. 22 “You worship that which you do not know; we worship that which we know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 “But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers shall worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers.” (Joh 4:21-23 NAS)

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Preceding

Matthew 12:1-8 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Something Greater than the Temple

Matthew 21:1-3 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Sent Ahead for a Donkey

Matthew 21:4-5 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Your King Is Coming upon a Donkey

Matthew 21:6-9 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Blessed the One Coming in God’s Name!

Matthew 21:10-11 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Who Is This?

Matthew 21:12-14 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Temple Cleansed

Good or bad preacher

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Additional reading

  1. Today’s thought “Cleansing of the leper under the Law” (March 7)
  2. Memorizing wonderfully 13 Elija, Elisha, Mordecai, Job, chariots and a house for God
  3. Memorizing wonderfully 20 Mountain and Kingdom of God
  4. Having a small church mentality

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Further related

  1. He Was Moved with Compassion
  2. Watch Well Thy Faith
  3. How Many Christians Are Abusing the Label?
  4. The House of God
  5. House of God The house of God reaches upwards to meet with the cloudy firmament
  6. 5 – The House of God
  7. In the house of God
  8. Cornerstone
  9. This is a House of Prayer
  10. The Proper Place – I Timothy 2 – Part 1
  11. Church at Sardis-2 ‘Of whose house are we?’
  12. Of His House
  13. Today’s Theme Song: House of God
  14. I Miss Reverence
  15. Why You Must Be Glad when You’re Invited to church
  16. God’s Holiness
  17. The Church
  18. Welcome to the house of God

Matthew 18:7-11 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Danger of Stumbling-blocks

Matthew 18:7-11 – The Danger of Stumbling-blocks

|| Mark 9:37, 42; Luke 9:48; Luke 17:1, 2

MT18:7 “Woe to the world’s inevitable stumbling-blocks![1] But, woe to the person who causes the stumbling![2] MT18:8 So, if your hand or foot[3] scandalizes[4] you – cut it off and hurl it away[5] from you. Better to enter Life maimed[6] rather than be thrown into everlasting fire[7] with two hands and two feet! MT18:9 Also, if your eye[8] causes you scandal, remove it and hurl it away from you. Better to enter Life with only one eye rather than be hurled into Gehenna’s[9] fire with two eyes! MT18:10 Watch[10] that you never despise[11] one of these ‘little ones’. For I tell you that their angels in heaven[12] always look upon the face[13] of my heavenly Father.” MT18:11 [[“For the Son of Humankind came to save what was lost.”]][14]

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[1] Woe to the world’s inevitable stumbling-blocks: The Greek for “stumbling-blocks” is SCANDALON. Or, KJV: woe unto the world because of offenses; ASV: occasions of stumbling; RSV: temptations to sin; KNX: hurt done to consciences; WMS: influences to do wrong. Research the words world or KOSMOS for notes.

[2] Causes the stumbling: Research the word scandal for notes. What may cause “stumbling”? See Matthew 16:23 for an example. Compare 1 Samuel 25:31; Ezekiel 7:19, 20; 14:3, 4; Romans 14:13; 1 Corinthians 8:9; Revelation 2:14. Many will quote Psalm 119:165 here but it is wise to discern the meaning.

[3] Hand or foot: Eve’s foot took her to the Tree and her hand reached out for its Fruit (Genesis 3:5, 6). Touch must be avoided if the object is desirable (1 Corinthians 7:1; James 1:14, 15). The feet must avoid those places that can cause scandal (Psalm 119:59, 101; Proverbs 1:16; Proverbs 4:26, 27; Proverbs 5:5; Proverbs 19:2; Romans 3:15). The word “your” is in the singular and so the Nazarene speaks to one person in the group.

[4] Scandalizes: This is closest to the Greek word. The English “scandal” is from a Greek root to “snare” and may mean: offends, shocks, disgraces; and, that slanderous gossip caused by such an offense. Research scandal for more notes.

[5] Cut it off and hurl it away: The absurdum is famous. The very imagery of people cutting off limbs and gouging out eyes is powerful and yet almost humorous for it is clearly not to be taken literally. The lesson is to remove the movement in the direction of the desire, by foot or touch. Avoid those situations and circumstances that will create scandal. See notes on Matthew 5:29. Compare and meditate upon Colossians 3:5.

[6] Better to enter Life maimed: The idea is not to be taken literally but is a contrast so simple anyone can grasp the point: any sacrifice is worth attaining “Life.” Mark 9:47 adds, “… into the kingdom of God.” “Life” here is existence in the Father’s Kingdom (see notes on Matthew 13:43).

[7] Into everlasting fire: Or, KJV: everlasting fire; ASV: eternal fire; RHM: age-abiding fire. We believe the metaphors continue as Gehenna is a symbol of destruction without end. Research the words HADES or GEHENNA for notes elsewhere. See notes on Matthew 25:41, 46.

[8] Your eye: It is the eye that desires. To Eve the Tree was “desirable to look upon.” The Proverbs counsels the young and inexperienced to be careful at what the eyes behold (Proverbs 4:25). Read and meditate upon 1 John 2:15-17. It is not called “a wandering eye” for nothing. The eye is the engine of coveting.

[9] Gehenna’s: Research the word GEHENNA and HADES for notes on the subject.

[10] Watch: The Greek is OPATE from the root for “eye.” There is a good way to use the eyes. Or, KJV: take heed; KNX: see to it; WMS: be careful not to look.

[11] Never despise: Or, KJV: despise not; KNX: treat one… with contempt; WMS: look with scorn. Our attitude toward others in the spiritual association bears on our own everlasting welfare.

[12] Their angels in heaven: At once frightening, and again comforting, to know powerful angelic creatures are aware of the treatment (or even attitude) on the part of the politically ambitious toward the humblest member of the Christian faith. Compare Psalm 34:7 and Hebrews 1:14. Note: it is the “little ones” who have angels in heaven.

[13] Always look upon the face: Or, KJV: always behold the face; RHM: continually behold; WMS: have uninterrupted access to. Consider the visions in Daniel 7 and Revelation 4 (Luke 1:19).

[14] [[…]]: Now recognized as not adequately supported by some manuscripts (D, W, Vg, Syc,p, Arm add; א, B, Sys omit).

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Preceding

Nazarene Commentary Matthew 5:27-30 – 2. The Nazarene’s Commentary on Exodus 20:14

Matthew 11:2-6 Encouragement for John and Reproach for cities 2 Imprisoned Baptist Encouraged

Matthew 18:1-6 – The Nazarene’s Commentary: Children and Stumbling

Paying vows to Jehovah God

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Additional reading

  1. It´s not how you fall, but how you standup
  2. Temptation in matrimony

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Further reading

  1. Stumbling
  2. Doubtful disputations – spiritual wickedness

Meaning of Sacrifice

“Without shedding of blood there is no remission of sins.”

The doctrine of atonement involved in this scriptural principle is one of the most important and in some respects one of the most difficult of all the primary truths connected with the Gospel. Nowhere else is it so easy for men to get out of their depth, and there is no other subject that proves so tempting.

There is certainly danger that vital truths affecting the sacrifice of Christ may be called in question or may be obscured by wrong teaching on this subject. There is far more danger that a destructive strife of words should arise through men getting out of their mental depth in an effort to measure the mind of God. Dr. Thomas once remarked that the elementary truths regarding redemption were few and simple and no reason could be given for them beyond “the fact that God wills them”. If a candidate for baptism revealed a sound knowledge of these simple truths and of this simple explanation of them, we should not dare to “forbid water”. Suppose that having rendered a satisfactory confession of faith on all other first principles the candidate said:

“I believe that God required a perfect sacrifice before He could forgive sin, and that He provided the One capable of rendering that sacrifice. He sent forth His Son, the Lord Jesus, made of a woman, made in all points like his brethren, tempted in all points as we are, but by virtue of his divine parentage so superior to us morally that he was able to render the perfect sacrifice required and thus to secure redemption for himself from sin-stricken human nature and both forgiveness and redemption for those who come to God through him in the way appointed.”

Should we dare to forbid baptism because the candidate was unable to explain why God required a perfect sacrifice, or why He demanded the shedding of blood before sins could be remitted?

If we are quite agreed that an understanding of these simple elements is sufficient for one to enter the Covenant, surely it is a tragedy if brethren become divided simply through the effort to see further. It may be even worse than a tragedy, for it sometimes leads to destructive strife in which extremes act and re-act upon each other, the disputants getting further and further out of their depth, while the vital duties of life are neglected. We would not suggest for a moment that being agreed on the simple and elementary truths we should be content to go no further. Certainly we must push on and gain all the knowledge of divine things that is possible. Discussion of such matters may be very helpful if conducted by brethren who have grasped the more elementary teaching of the Word regarding human conduct. This, however, is certainly a subject in which we do well to be swift to hear and slow to speak; we may venture to suggest, still slower to write. So much sin lies at the door of the man who invented printing.

It may be helpful to take note of the main causes that have led brethren astray when they have tried to probe deeply into the doctrine of atonement. We may then be on our guard at least against these particular dangers.

One cause has been through the tendency to confuse the shadow with the substance. Brethren have reasoned that the types of the law suggested such and such necessities and the sacrifice of Christ had to conform. The truth is, of course, exactly the other way. The work of Christ was the very central feature of the divine purpose and all the shadows of the law had to conform to it. The Apostle in writing to the Hebrews, truly reasons from the types forward to Christ, but he makes it plain that Christ is the substance. We recognize the writings of the Apostles as of precisely the same authority as the Old Testament Scriptures. We do well therefore to take their plainest language as our guide and see that our understanding of types and symbols falls into line.

A second cause of confusion is the tendency to seek an explanation according to a human conception of logic and legality. Many years ago we had to point out that while human laws might often have effects far removed from the intention of the law makers, this could never be the case with the laws of God. We cannot recognize any distinction between the divine law and the divine will. When God makes a law it is the expression of His will for the time to which it applies, and it is made with a full knowledge of all its effects (see Acts 15 : 18).

“that have been known for ages.” (Acts 15:18 NIV)

We can hardly suppose that any brother would ever dispute this proposition; but some have reasoned as if they never thought of such an idea. We do well therefore to remind each other of this simple truth, which forbids us to make any distinction between legal necessities and the divine will.

A third cause of confusion has been through the persistent use of phrases that are sometimes misleading. Some staunch brethren in upholding the truth that Christ bore our sin-stricken nature have used language suggestive of an automatic cleansing by death. We could easily have rival camps in this matter, disputants on each side being totally unconscious of the ambiguity of their own language but too acutely conscious of the worst interpretations that could be put on the language of opponents.

Earnest brethren and sisters, anxious to hold the truth, have sometimes been perplexed and almost distracted in the strife of words, beyond their power to understand. The havoc that such strife may cause is perhaps best illustrated by the fact that one of the most capable men we ever had among us, in his efforts for legal logic ended by teaching justification for sin without faith, and we were all slow to realize the full enormity of the position. I well remember the surprise and even consternation of one of his supporters when he was first shown this feature of the case.

Even now there is the same disposition towards legal reasoning regarding types and shadows with the clear principles of Scripture neglected. Although disputants would deny the charge, it is a fact that some of them persistently lose sight of the fact that all things in God’s dealings with this world centre round Christ. The reason that all things under the law were cleansed by the offering of blood, was that all things in the age to come will be through the sacrifice of Christ. In reasoning with Jews it might be necessary to invert the argument, but we who are privileged to know the substance of God’s great purpose must never lose sight of it.

What is the literal truth revealed in the New Testament as to the meaning of sacrifice? It is that God forgives sins and offers eternal life on the basis of the perfect sacrifice effected by Christ in his life and death. Whatever figurative or partly figurative language the Bible may use, this is the real meaning. Washed in his blood, our sins laid upon him, a bearing of our sins in his own body, the purchase of his blood, the ransom, his being delivered for our offences, the just for the unjust-all such expressions must be understood in harmony with the literal truth that God forgives. Transgressions of the divine law can only be put away by the forgiveness and forbearance of God. Physical uncleanness of nature can only be put away by the power of God. The sacrifice of Christ is the divinely appointed basis in which God in mercy and forbearance offers forgiveness and redemption to sinners (Rom. 3 : 23-4, 4 : 7; Eph. 1 : 7; Col. 1 : 14; 1 John 1 : 9, 2 : 12).

“for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,” (Romans 3:23 NIV)

“”Blessed are they whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.” (Romans 4:7 NIV)

“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace” (Ephesians 1:7 NIV)

“in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.” (Colossians 1:14 NIV)

“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9 NIV)

“I write to you, dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name.” (1 John 2:12 NIV)

If we desire to probe further and ask the question why did God require such a sacrifice as the basis of the forgiveness offered to humanity, we shall never find any answer through the various interpretations of the law or by talk of the penalty due to sin. Divine law is simply an expression of divine will. It was not the will of God that man should sin, but it was the will of God that man should be a free agent and that death should be the wage of sin. It was the will of God that the human race having been defiled by sin should have no access to His holy presence except on the basis of a perfect sacrifice.

And it is the will of God that we should respond to the gracious invitation and be saved on the basis He has provided (1 Thess. 5 : 9). If we ask why God required such a sacrifice, we must seek a moral explanation. It is no answer to quote the law which expresses His will.

“For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.” (1 Thessalonians 5:9 NIV)

Guided by Scripture we can find a moral explanation that satisfies every demand that the intelligence can make. The perfect sacrifice was required that the flesh might be effectively repudiated, that sin might be conquered and condemned, that the righteousness and holiness of God might be declared, and that sinful man should be humbled without a particle of ground for boasting being left to him (Rom. 3 : 23-27, 8:3; Eph. 2 : 1-9).

“23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. 25 God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— 26 he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus. 27 Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of observing the law? No, but on that of faith.” (Romans 3:23-27 NIV)

“For what the law was powerless to do in that it was weakened by the sinful nature, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful man to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in sinful man,” (Romans 8:3 NIV)

“1  As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our sinful nature and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature objects of wrath. 4  But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no-one can boast.” (Ephesians 2:1-9 NIV)

God made it clear even in ancient times that humanity could not approach to Him at all except with humble faith and on the basis of blood shedding. He gave a law that emphasized the sinfulness and helplessness of His people (Rom. 8 : 15, 5 : 20).

“For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father.”” (Romans 8:15 NIV)

“through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.” (Romans 5:2 NIV)

He made it clear that when sins were put away by sacrifice they were really forgiven (Lev. 4 : 20, 26, 31, 35).

“and do with this bull just as he did with the bull for the sin offering. In this way the priest will make atonement for them, and they will be forgiven.” (Leviticus 4:20 NIV)

“He shall burn all the fat on the altar as he burned the fat of the fellowship offering. In this way the priest will make atonement for the man’s sin, and he will be forgiven.” (Leviticus 4:26 NIV)

“He shall remove all the fat, just as the fat is removed from the fellowship offering, and the priest shall burn it on the altar as an aroma pleasing to the LORD. In this way the priest will make atonement for him, and he will be forgiven.” (Leviticus 4:31 NIV)

“He shall remove all the fat, just as the fat is removed from the lamb of the fellowship offering, and the priest shall burn it on the altar on top of the offerings made to the LORD by fire. In this way the priest will make atonement for him for the sin he has committed, and he will be forgiven.” (Leviticus 4:35 NIV)

He promised a deliverer who should “make an end of sin”, and “bring in everlasting righteousness” (Dan. 9). When the fullness of time was come He revealed that scheme of love into which even the angels had desired to look. He made selection of a virgin of the house of Israel and produced from her one who should be strong for the great work required. So the flesh was repudiated even in the birth of Christ, sin was conquered and condemned in every act of his life, and finally he freely rendered the last obedience even unto death that he might be raised from the dead to immortality and glory as the captain of our salvation-made perfect through suffering (Heb. 2 : 10).

“In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering.” (Hebrews 2:10 NIV)

To him much was given and of him much was required. The lights and shadows inseparable from the formation of a character needed to be intense in the probation of our great Captain. He worked out his perfection and salvation by the strength God gave him, and thus through him God opened the way of life for us. Here is the sin nature that had produced only helpless sinners, controlled, condemned and finally put away by the strong Son of God in his perfect obedience of life and death. On this basis humanity can approach the holiness of the Creator and men of faith though sinners can be exalted to the divine. On this basis of the sin nature conquered, repudiated and condemned by the one God made strong for Himself, God forgives. That is the real meaning of atonement.

It is hardly possible to imagine anyone who had ever caught even the most fleeting glimpse of this vision turning back to the pitiful speculations of men as to supposed legal necessities. There are those in the world who think that the real body of Christ never rose, but remains eternally dead as the price due to God or the punishment due to sin! It would be difficult to make any comment on such an idea while preserving the language of decorum. The brethren are doubtless proof against such monstrous teaching. Let them keep far from the narrow reasoning that leads in that direction. The New Testament describes the sacrifice of Christ in plain and literal language. Let us interpret all figures and symbols by reference to the plain statements. God-who knows the end from the beginning, who does according to His will, but who “cannot deny Himself” God provided the means for condemning and overcoming sins on the basis of which He with much forbearance forgives those who please Him by their faith.

Much controversy has been caused by the question as to whether Christ offered for his own cleansing. It has been largely a war of words, due on the one hand to a fear of saying or subscribing to anything derogatory to Christ and on the other hand perhaps a tendency to relapse into the old exaggeration of “original sin”. There ought not to be a minute’s difficulty in dealing with the question and securing agreement.

When we speak of “sin” in the flesh we use the phrase just as the Apostle used it in Romans 7. Obviously it is a derived or secondary sense of the word, for the primary meaning of sin is transgression of divine law. It is a similar extension of meaning to that of the word “death” for poison when they said, “there is death in the pot”. The Apostle speaks of a law in his members which wars against the laws of God and leads to transgression. He calls this physical weakness “sin” in the flesh or “sin” that dwelleth in me. It is the diabolos in human nature, the natural desires of the flesh which, if they are allowed to “conceive”, “bring forth sin”. We need not argue as to whether there is such a law. We all know it only too well. We are born with it and if we give way to any sin we correspondingly strengthen the evil desire in that direction and thus make “sin” in the flesh more active. To suppose that an extraordinarily pure and righteous man would feel this weakness less than others is a huge mistake. The truth is the other way. It is the thoroughly fleshly man who is unconscious of the sinful law in his members and who probably would not understand what the Apostle meant. The man with the highest ideals and the most spiritual mind will feel the struggle most. To suggest that Christ was tempted in all points as we are and yet without this law of sin in his members is to proclaim a complete contradiction. It is like saying, “Except that he was not tempted at all!” Suggestions from without are no temptation to us if they do not appeal to something within. Christ bore just this same denied nature that we bear or he could not have been tempted as we are and therefore could not have condemned and conquered sin. Christ bore this quality in the flesh, but he never allowed it to conceive even to the point of sinful thought. Therein was the most terrific struggle and the most portentous victory of all human experience. It is easy to understand that with his ideals, and his standards of rectitude, the weakness of the flesh would be so distressing that even the most startling language of the Psalms is comprehensible.

Now whether we take the plain language of the Apostles (Heb. 9 : 12; 10 : 20) or the prophecies and types of the law, the teaching is that all things were to be cleansed by the perfect sacrifice and that no one of Adam’s race should have access to the Most Holy place except on the basis of that sacrifice (Lev. 16 : 2-14 note seven times of sprinkling). Some have caused confusion by arguing whether Christ’s offering for himself was “only a matter of obedience to God” or whether it was something more. What do they mean? Obedience to God is carrying out the will of God. What can be required beyond this? Surely we are all agreed that Christ, “the beloved son“, “the servant in whom God delighted”, and the one who “always did his Father’s will“, needed no forgiveness. Surely we are also agreed that he needed cleansing from the sin-stricken nature in which he wrestled with and’ conquered the diabolos. There could be no forgiveness for personal sinners except on the basis of the perfect sacrifice, for this was the will of God. There could be no cleansing and immortalizing, no entry into the Most Holy by any of Adam’s race except on the basis of the same perfect sacrifice, for that also was the will of God. Christ came to do God’s will, he was obedient in all things even unto death, and so with his own blood-in other words, on the basis of his perfect offering-he entered the Most Holy “having obtained eternal redemption.”

The truth is that when brethren who are agreed as to these fundamentals still argue and suspect each other of being “unsound”, they are really in their minds raising that old question of many years ago,

“Supposing Christ had been the only one to be saved, would he still have had to die a sacrificial death?”

Everyone ought to have learned long ago that this question is not legitimate. It is asking,

“If the will of God had been totally different in one direction, would it have remained the same in another closely related matter?”

There is only one proper answer to such a question. No one knows what the will of God would have been if His purpose had been other than it is, and only a presumptuous man would claim to know.

We have to do with the purpose of God as it is and as it is revealed to us. These truths are so simple and withal so beautiful that unless brethren insist on a misleading form of words making for strife, there should be no difficulty in agreeing.

The will of God determines everything. It was the will of God that none of our sin-stricken race should enter His holy presence except on the basis of the most complete repudiation of the flesh involved in a perfect obedience even unto death. He provided the strength necessary for this great work and it was for this purpose that Christ was born. Thus through the blood of the everlasting Covenant he was brought again from the dead. With his own blood he entered the Most Holy place, having obtained eternal redemption, and we, if we are faithful, can stand at last “washed from our sins in his blood” and covered with his righteousness. All these figures meaning that God accepts, forgives and cleanses His people on the basis of the perfect life and death of His Anointed Son.

– Islip Collyer

+

Preceding articles

Doopsel en bloedvergieten ter vergeving

With child and righteousness greater than the law

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Vrai Dieu donne Sa Parole pour obtenir la sagesse

 

 

Psaumes 19 :1 Les cieux proclament la gloire de Dieu*+ ; et l’œuvre de ses mains, l’étendue l’annonce+.

Exode 20: 1-3: 1 Alors Dieu prononça toutes ces paroles*, en disant+ : “ Je suis Jéhovah ton Dieu*+, qui t’ai fait sortir du pays d’Égypte, de la maison des esclaves+. Tu ne dois pas avoir d’autres dieux*+ contre ma face*.

 Isaïe 7 :7: “ ‘ Voici ce qu’a dit le Souverain Seigneur Jéhovah : “ Cela ne tiendra pas, cela n’aura pas lieu+.

Jérémie 19 Oui, je leur ferai manger la chair de leurs fils et la chair de leurs filles ; et ils mangeront chacun la chair de son semblable, par suite de la détresse et par suite de l’angoisse dont les enserreront leurs ennemis et ceux qui cherchent leur âme+. ” ’

Jean 14: 10: 10 Ne crois-tu pas que je suis en union avec le Père et que le Père est en union avec moi+ ? Les choses que je vous dis, je ne les dis pas en tirant [ce que j’annonce] de mon propre fonds* ; mais le Père qui demeure en union avec moi fait ses œuvres+.

Éphésiens 6: 17: 17 En outre, acceptez le casque+ du salut, et l’épée+ de l’esprit+, c’est-à-dire la parole de Dieu+,

Exode 3Puis il dit : “ Je suis le Dieu de ton père*, le Dieu d’Abraham, le Dieu d’Isaac et le Dieu de Jacob+. ” Alors Moïse se cacha le visage, car il avait peur de regarder le [vrai] Dieu*.

1 Jean 5 :2020 Mais nous savons que le Fils de Dieu est venu+ et qu’il nous a donné l’intelligence*+ pour que nous parvenions à connaître le véritable+. Et nous sommes en union+ avec le véritable, par le moyen de son Fils Jésus Christ. C’est là le vrai+ Dieu et la vie éternelle+.

Révélation 4 :11:11 “ Tu es digne, Jéhovah*, oui notre Dieu, de recevoir la gloire+ et l’honneur+ et la puissance+, parce que tu as créé toutes choses+, et à cause de ta volonté+ elles ont existé et ont été créées+. ”

Exode 6 :Dieu* parla encore à Moïse et lui dit : “ Je suis Jéhovah+.

Job 22:13-14:13 Et pourtant tu as dit : ‘ Qu’est-ce que Dieu* peut bien savoir ? Peut-il juger à travers l’obscurité épaisse ? 14 Les nuages sont pour lui une cachette, de sorte qu’il ne voit pas ; il marche sur la voûte du ciel. ’

Nehémia 9 : 5-6: Puis les Lévites Yéshoua, Qadmiel, Bani, Hashabnia, Shérébia, Hodia, Shebania [et] Pethahia dirent : “ Levez-vous, bénissez+ Jéhovah votre Dieu depuis des temps indéfinis [et] pour des temps indéfinis+. Et qu’ils bénissent ton nom glorieux+ qui est élevé au-dessus de toute bénédiction et louange. “ Tu es Jéhovah, toi seul+ ; c’est toi qui as fait les cieux+, [oui] le ciel des cieux, et toute leur armée+, la terre+ et tout ce qui est sur elle+, les mers+ et tout ce qui s’y trouve+ ; et tu les gardes tous en vie ; et l’armée+ des cieux se prosterne devant toi.

Psaumes 50: 7-17:  “ Écoute, ô mon peuple, je veux parler+ ; ô Israël, je veux témoigner contre toi*+. Je suis Dieu, ton Dieu+ Ce n’est pas pour tes sacrifices que je te reprends+ ni [pour] tes holocaustes [qui sont] devant moi constamment+ Je ne veux pas prendre de ta maison un taureau+ ni de tes enclos des boucs. 10 Car tous les animaux sauvages de la forêt m’appartiennent+, les bêtes sur mille montagnes+. 11 Je connais bien toutes les créatures ailées des montagnes+, et avec moi sont les foules d’animaux de la campagne+. 12 Si j’avais faim, je ne te le dirais pas ; car il m’appartient, le sol productif*+ et sa plénitude+. 13 Vais-je manger la chair des puissants [taureaux]+,et le sang des boucs, vais-je le boire+ ? 14 Offre à Dieu, pour ton sacrifice, l’action de grâces+, et acquitte-toi de tes vœux envers le Très-Haut+ ; 15 et appelle-moi au jour de la détresse+. Je te délivrerai et tu me glorifieras+. ” 16 Mais au méchant Dieu devra dire+ : “ De quel droit énumères-tu mes prescriptions+ et portes-tu mon alliance* dans ta bouche+ ? 17 En effet, toi, tu as haï la discipline+, et sans cesse tu jettes mes paroles derrière toi+.

Éphésiens 4:1111 Et il a donné certains comme apôtres+, certains comme prophètes+, certains comme évangélisateurs*+, certains comme bergers et enseignants+,

1 Corinthiens 2: 1,9-10, 14-16: Moi donc, quand je suis venu chez vous, frères, je ne suis pas venu avec outrance* de langage+ ou de sagesse vous annoncer le saint secret+ de Dieu. Mais comme c’est écrit : “ L’œil ne les a pas vues, et l’oreille ne les a pas entendues, et elles n’ont pas été conçues dans le cœur de l’homme, les choses que Dieu a préparées pour ceux qui l’aiment+. ” 10 Car c’est à nous que Dieu les a révélées+ grâce à son esprit+, car l’esprit+ scrute toutes choses, même les choses profondes+ de Dieu.14 Mais l’homme physique* ne reçoit pas les choses de l’esprit de Dieu, car elles sont une sottise pour lui ; et il ne peut pas parvenir à [les] connaître+, parce que c’est spirituellement qu’on les examine. 15 Cependant, l’homme spirituel*+ examine réellement toutes choses, mais lui-même n’est examiné+ par personne. 16 Car “ qui est parvenu à connaître la pensée de Jéhovah*+, pour l’instruire+ ” ? Mais nous, nous avons la pensée+ de Christ*.

Isaïe 40 :13: 13 Qui a pris les dimensions de l’esprit de Jéhovah, et qui, étant son homme de conseil, peut lui faire connaître quelque chose+ ?

Éphésiens 3:5, 6:Dans d’autres générations, ce [secret]+ n’a pas été porté à la connaissance des fils des hommes comme il a été révélé maintenant+ à ses saints apôtres et prophètes+ par [l’]esprit, à savoir que des gens des nations devaient être cohéritiers et comembres du corps+ et avoir part avec nous à la promesse*+ en union avec Christ Jésus par le moyen de la bonne nouvelle.

Colossiens 2:2afin que leur cœur soit consolé+ [et] qu’ils soient harmonieusement unis ensemble dans l’amour+ et pour toute la richesse de la pleine certitude de [leur] intelligence+, pour une connaissance exacte du saint secret de Dieu, c’est-à-dire Christ*+.

Proverbes 23: Ne parle pas aux oreilles d’un homme stupide+, car il méprisera tes paroles avisées+.

2 Samuel 23:2: C’est l’esprit de Jéhovah qui a parlé par moi+, et sa parole* a été sur ma langue+.

Actes 1:1616 “ Hommes, frères, il fallait que s’accomplisse [cette parole de] l’Écriture+, que l’esprit saint+ avait dite d’avance par la bouche de David au sujet de Judas+, qui est devenu le guide de ceux qui ont arrêté Jésus+,

Actes 28:25:25 Et comme ils étaient en désaccord les uns avec les autres, ils s’en allaient, tandis que Paul faisait cette seule observation: “ C’est avec raison que l’esprit saint a parlé à vos ancêtres par l’intermédiaire d’Isaïe le prophète,

1 Pierre 1 :11: 11 Ils s’efforçaient de découvrir* quelle époque particulière+ ou quelle sorte d’[époque] indiquait, au sujet de Christ+, l’esprit+ qui était en eux*, quand il attestait d’avance les souffrances [réservées] à Christ+ et les gloires+ qui devaient suivre celles-ci.

2 Pierre 1:21:21 Car la prophétie n’a jamais été apportée par la volonté de l’homme+, mais des hommes ont parlé de la part de Dieu+, comme ils étaient portés par [l’]esprit saint+.

Jean 14:2626 Mais l’assistant*, l’esprit saint, que le Père enverra en mon nom, celui-là* vous enseignera toutes choses et vous rappellera toutes les choses que je vous ai dites+.

2 Timothée 3: 16 Toute Écriture est inspirée de Dieu*+ et utile pour enseigner+, pour reprendre+, pour remettre les choses en ordre*+, pour discipliner+ dans la justice, 17 pour que l’homme de Dieu soit pleinement qualifié+, parfaitement équipé* pour toute œuvre bonne+.

1 Thessaloniciens 2: 13: 13 Oui, voilà pourquoi, nous aussi, nous remercions Dieu constamment+, parce que, quand vous avez reçu la parole de Dieu+ que vous entendiez de nous, vous l’avez acceptée, non comme la parole des hommes+, mais, ainsi qu’elle l’est véritablement, comme la parole de Dieu, laquelle* est aussi à l’œuvre en vous, les croyants+.

Romains 15:4 Car toutes les choses qui ont été écrites jadis ont été écrites+ pour notre instruction+, afin que, grâce à notre endurance+ et à la consolation+ des Écritures, nous ayons l’espérance*+.

1 Corinthiens 10 :1111 Or ces choses leur arrivaient comme exemples*, et elles ont été écrites pour nous avertir+, nous sur qui les fins* des systèmes de choses*+ sont arrivées.

Psaumes 119:49, 50: 49 Souviens-toi de la parole à ton serviteur+, celle que tu m’as fait attendre+ 50 C’est là ma consolation dans mon affliction+, car ta parole m’a gardé en vie+.

Proverbes 4: 7-9: La sagesse est la chose principale+. Acquiers la sagesse ; et avec tout ce que tu acquiers, acquiers l’intelligence+. Tiens-la en haute estime, et elle t’élèvera+. Elle te glorifiera parce que tu l’étreins+. Elle donnera à ta tête une guirlande de charme+ ; elle te fera don d’une couronne de beauté+. ”

Proverbes 15 :14: 14 Le cœur intelligent recherche la connaissance+, mais la bouche des stupides aspire à la sottise+.

Matthieu 13:23: 23 Quant à celui qui a été semé sur la belle terre, c’est celui qui entend la parole et en saisit le sens, qui porte alors du fruit et produit celui-ci cent fois autant, celui-là soixante, l’autre trente+. ”

Hébreux 5 :1414 Mais la nourriture solide est pour les hommes mûrs, pour ceux qui, par l’usage, ont les facultés de perception*+ exercées* à distinguer et le bien et le mal+.

Daniel 1:17: 17 Quant à ces enfants, les quatre, à eux le [vrai] Dieu donna connaissance et perspicacité en toute écriture et sagesse+ ; et Daniel avait de l’intelligence en toutes sortes de visions et de rêves+.

Proverbs 21: 30 Il n’y a ni sagesse, ni discernement, ni conseil en opposition avec Jéhovah+.

Proverbs 19: 21 Nombreux sont les plans dans le cœur de l’homme*+, mais c’est le conseil de Jéhovah qui tiendra+.

2 Timothée 2: 7-10: Pense constamment* à ce que je dis ; le Seigneur, en effet, te donnera du discernement+ en toutes choses. Rappelle-toi que Jésus Christ a été relevé d’entre les morts+ et qu’il était de la semence de David+, selon la bonne nouvelle que je prêche+ ; à propos de laquelle je supporte le mal jusqu’à [porter] des liens+ comme un malfaiteur. Toutefois, la parole de Dieu n’est pas liée+. 10 Voilà pourquoi je continue à endurer toutes choses à cause de ceux qui ont été choisis+, pour qu’eux aussi obtiennent le salut qui est dans l’union avec Christ Jésus, avec la gloire éternelle+.

Jean 17 : Ceci signifie la vie éternelle+ : qu’ils apprennent à te connaître*+, toi, le seul vrai Dieu+, et celui que tu as envoyé, Jésus Christ+.

1 Jean 520 Mais nous savons que le Fils de Dieu est venu+ et qu’il nous a donné l’intelligence*+ pour que nous parvenions à connaître le véritable+. Et nous sommes en union+ avec le véritable, par le moyen de son Fils Jésus Christ. C’est là le vrai+ Dieu et la vie éternelle+.

1 Timothée 2: 2-4: à propos de rois+ et de tous ceux qui sont haut placés+ ; afin que nous puissions continuer à mener une vie calme et paisible dans un parfait attachement à Dieu* et [en toute] dignité+. Cela est beau et agréable+ aux yeux de notre Sauveur, Dieu+, qui veut que toutes sortes d’hommes+ soient sauvés+ et parviennent à une connaissance exacte+ de la vérité+.

*

 


 

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Traduction du Monde Nouveau des Saintes Écritures

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Blog by Abram K-J

Bybelverskille

Hier bestudeer ons die redes vir die verskille in Bybelvertalings.

Michael Bradley - Time Traveler

The official website of Michael Bradley - Author of novels, short stories and poetry involving the past, future, and what may have been.

BIBLE Students DAILY

"Be faithful unto death, and I will give you the crown of life." Revelation 2:10

God's Simple Kindness

God's Word Made Simple

takeaminutedotnet

All the Glory to God

Groen is Gezond

van zaadjes in volle grond tot iets lekkers op het bord

Jesse A. Kelley

A topnotch WordPress.com site

JWUpdate

JW Current Apostate Status and Final Temple Judgment - Web Witnessing Record; The Bethel Apostasy is Prophecy

Sophia's Pockets

Wisdom Withouth Walls

ConquerorShots

Spiritual Shots to Fuel the Conqueror Lifestyle

Examining Watchtower Doctrine

Truth Behind the "Truth"

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