Joke of the Week
This one is so bad that it’s good
A group of chess enthusiasts checked into a hotel and were standing in the lobby discussing their recent tournament victories. After about an hour, the manager came out of the office and asked them to disperse. ”But why?” they asked, as they moved off. ”because,” he said ”I can’t stand chess nuts boasting in an open foyer.”
Pray for mercy
We have some dismal choices to vote for in the presidential race. Christians are not all of the same mind. Pray that the Lord will put the candidate of His choosing in office. Our nation is fast turning its back on God, and we deserve a wicked ruler as punishment, but let us pray for mercy in the form of a better President than we deserve.
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Bible Study: The Parable of the Pearl of Great Value: Matt. 13:45-46
We continue our study of the kingdom parables in Matthew’s gospel. Read Matt. 13:45-46, ponder the Questions, and read the exposition.
- What does the pearl of great value represent?
- What does the merchant represent?
- What do we learn from the fact that the merchant sold all he had to obtain the pearl?B
Exposition of the Parable
This parable teaches the same lesson as the Parable of the Hidden Treasure. The main point is that one must give up all one has to gain the infinitely more valuable kingdom of heaven. The inestimable value of the kingdom of heaven is assumed; the main point is that when one recognizes its value, he or she must forsake all else to obtain a place in the kingdom. This determination to do whatever it takes to be part of the kingdom of heaven is what Jesus spoke of in Matthew 11:12:
“From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of Heaven has been taken by storm and eager men are forcing their way into it. J. B. Phillips New Testament
Included in “all we have” is our own righteousness, which is of the flesh:
If anyone else thinks he has reason for confidence in the flesh, I have more: circumcised on the eighth day, of the people of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to righteousness under the law, blameless. But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ. Philippians 3:4b-8
The apostle Paul, who wrote those words to the Philippians, had learned the lesson of the Parable of the Hidden Treasure and of the Parable of the Pearl of Great Value. Have you?