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Acts 16:15- Why Was Lydia Baptized?

"One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul. And after she was baptized, and her household as well, she urged us, saying, 'If you have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come to my house and stay.' And she prevailed upon us." (Acts 16:14-15; ESV) Why was…

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The Suffering Servant- Isaiah 53:8

By oppression and judgment he was taken away; and as for his generation, who considered that he was cut off out of the land of the living, stricken for the transgression of my people? (53:8; ESV) More unjust treatment of the servant is described. A miscarriage of justice is predicted for the suffering servant. The words suggest an improper judicial process. This, again, is a contrast between Israel and the servant. Israel was judgment and destruction was complete justice. However,…

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The Suffering Servant- Isaiah 53:7

He was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth. Like a lamb led to the slaughter and like a sheep silent before her shearers, He did not open His mouth. (53:7; HCSB) The prophecy continues to describe the suffering of the servant sent from God. The servant was oppressed and being afflicted. His life would not be easy. He would endure harsh physical treatment at the hands of others. Yet, in the midst of this mistreatment, he…

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“The Lord Opened Her Heart” – Acts 16:14

  In my studying for Bible class this Sunday morning, I stumbled across Acts 16:14 while reading the ESV: One who heard us was a woman named Lydia, from the city of Thyatira, a seller of purple goods, who was a worshiper of God. The Lord opened her heart to pay attention to what was said by Paul. (ESV) The HCSB also reads similarly. However, this was not the way I remembered the verse from my previous studies. Notice how…

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“Not Under Bondage” – 1 Corinthians 7:15

But if the unbelieving partner separates, let it be so. In such cases the brother or sister is not enslaved. God has called you to peace. (1 Corinthians 7:15; ESV) I really like the ESV translation of 1 Corinthians 7:15. Most translations read, "a brother or sister is not under bondage." The Greek word means, "to enslave, bring under subjection" (NAS Greek). This verse has many difficulties, particularly trying to understand how a believer is not enslaved in such situations.…

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The Purpose of the Lord’s Supper (2)

The Cup This cup is the new covenant in My blood If the bread represents all that we have just described concerning the body of Christ, then what does the cup represent? Too often people make the bread and the cup mean the same things and call to mind the same things. But carefully read this passage and see if the cup is to symbolize the same thing as the bread. Jesus said, “This cup is the new covenant in…

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The Suffering Servant- Isaiah 53:6

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned–every one–to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all. (53:6; ESV) No one is free from the need of the work of the Messiah. All of us have gone down our own path. I like the ESV with the emphasis on “every one” has gone his own way. This is similar to the apostle Paul’s words in Romans 3 that there is no…

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The Suffering Servant- Isaiah 53:5

But He was pierced because of our transgressions, crushed because of our iniquities; punishment for our peace was on Him, and we are healed by His wounds. (53:5; HCSB) Notice the contrast: But he was suffering because of us. The word “pierced” carries the meaning of being pierced through to death. Notice other instances of this word as used by Isaiah, the same Hebrew word in bold: Isa. 22:2 You who are full of shoutings, tumultuous city, exultant town? Your…

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The Purpose of the Lord’s Supper (1)

Just before Jesus was about to be arrested, put on trial, and crucified, He took a moment while in the upper room with His disciples to establish an important reminder. There was little time left for Jesus to give more instructions about what was coming or what would be required of His disciples. Yet with the few moments He had left with the disciples, Jesus instituted the Lord’s Supper. For Jesus to spend one of His last moments of the…

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The Suffering Servant- Isaiah 53:4

Surely He took up our infirmities and carried our diseases; but we in turn regarded Him stricken, struck down by God, and afflicted. (53:4; NIV, NRSV, HCSB mixture) I used a mixture of three translations to get the literally meaning of the prophecy. Most translations read that the servant “bore our griefs” (NASB). The word “bore” means “to lift, to carry.” The reason this is important is because Calvinism has used the word “bore” to mean that Jesus took the…

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