1 Samuel 24:4 (KJV) Sincere Counsel

1 Samuel 24:4 (KJV)
And the men of David said unto him, Behold the day of which the LORD said unto thee, Behold, I will deliver thine enemy into thine hand, that thou mayest do to him as it shall seem good unto thee. Then David arose, and cut off the skirt of Saul’s robe privily.

These were good men and they were sincere. Their advice to David seemed consistent with the promises of God and it seemed like their advice is justified in that Saul could have been killed here.

David knew better.

There is a difference between what seems to be consistent with the Bible and what is the Bible. We are to heed the Bible completely. We are under no such obligation with the advice of our companions, no matter how sincere and well meaning they are and no matter how much like the Word of God their counsel may seem to be.

Ultimately we, like David, are responsible for just two things:

  • Obedience to the Word of God
  • Worship according to the dictates of our own conscience.

 

 

To my reader:
In order to worship God according to the dictates of our own conscience we must have exercised that conscience through study of the Word of God. How is your personal Bible study going? I would love to hear from you. Leave comments below.

 

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

1 Samuel 24:4 (KJV) Sincere Counsel

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Hebrews 9:24 Today’s Place for Worship

Hebrews 9:24
For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:

 

Someone challenged me the other day and said that I could not prove that Jesus left Judaism. I offer this verse as proof to the contrary.

 

The Bible says Christ did not enter into those holy places made by men, but into heaven itself. The passage goes on to tell us that all those man made structures were to prefigure that which is real in heaven. They were not real in and of themselves – ever.

 

But we are not in heaven, someone will argue. That is true. Today we have a new place to worship in; a place not constructed by the hands of man but built by Christ Himself. He promised He would build His church. That’s not a building of wood or stone. His building is made up of men and women who:

  • have professed faith in Christ
  • been baptized by immersion as a sign of their faith and
  • committed themselves together in union for His cause

 

That’s a Baptist Church!

 

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2007.

Hebrews 9:24 We Worship Today in a Baptist Church

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Is a Divorced Man Qualified for Church Office?

1 Timothy 3:2 KJV
A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;

 

1 Timothy 3:12 KJV
Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.

 

While I am certain I am unable to settle the issue once and for all, I chose today to settle it in my own mind. “Is a man who is divorced breaking the command of the Bible to pastor a church?” I therefore read every commentary I had at my disposal (eighteen in all). Virtually every one of them that had any commentary at all on this subject agreed that the subject was not polygamy (more than one wife at a time – an argument used frequently to admit men who are disqualified by divorce into the pastorate). Several of them do not employ the word “divorce” so I left them out of this compilation. Below are the words of Bible students of a century or more ago. I do not, of course, endorse all that they say on every subject but only reference them to make the point that the most common agreement is that this command of Paul was given for the purpose of reversing the common practice of the day of divorce and remarriage.[1]

 

Some of the most wonderful Christians I know have been divorced and remarried. I believe these fine people are to be treated with dignity, respect and, in many cases, honor. They are not second class Christians in any respect of the word. But we have to obey the Bible no matter what our mistakes have been. The Bible very clearly commands that those men who have been divorced and remarried not serve in the capacity of either of the church offices: pastor or deacon.

 

John Gill (1690-1771)
“…to be understood…in a literal sense of his conjugal estate; though this rule does not make it necessary that he should have a wife; or that he should not marry, or not have married a second wife, after the death of the first; only if he marries or is married, that he should have but one wife at a time; so that this rule excludes all such persons from being elders, or pastors, or overseers of churches, that were “polygamists”; who had more wives than one at a time, or had divorced their wives, and not for adultery, and had married others. Now polygamy and divorces had very much obtained among the Jews; nor could the believing Jews be easily and at once brought off of them. And though they were not lawful nor to be allowed of in any; yet they were especially unbecoming and scandalous in officers of churches.”

 

Philip Schaff, Popular Commentary of the New Testament, (1879-1890)
“A third explanation is, perhaps, more satisfactory. The most prominent fact in the social life both of Jews and Greeks at this period was the frequency of divorce. This, as we know, Jewish teachers, for the most part, sanctioned on even trifling grounds (Matthew 5:31-32; Matthew 19:3-9). The apostle, taking up the law which Christ had laid down, infers that any breach of that law (even in the one case which made marriage after divorce just permissible) would at least so far diminish a man’s claim to respect as to disqualify him for office. This case would, of course, be included in the more general rule of the second interpretation, but the phrase ‘the husband of one wife’ has a more special emphasis thus applied. St. Paul would not recognise the repudiated wife as having forfeited her claim to that title, and some, at least, of its rights.”

Adam Clarke (1715-1832)
“The apostle’s meaning appears to be this: that he should not be a man who has divorced his wife and married another “

 

Vincent’s Word Studies (1886)
“Is the injunction aimed (a) at immoralities respecting marriage – concubinage, etc., or (b) at polygamy, or (c) at remarriage after death or divorce? The last is probably meant.”

 

Peoples New Testament Commentary (1891)
“A married man, and having only one wife. In those loose times of divorce, men might be converted who had successively several wives. Divorce for unscriptural reasons would not free a man from his first, lawful wife. Hence the limitation to those who had only one living wife.”

 

Matthew Henry (1662-1714)
“He must be the husband of one wife; not having given a bill of divorce to one, and then taken another, or not having many wives at once, as at that time was too common both among Jews and Gentiles, especially among the Gentiles.”

 

Expositors Bible Commentary (1887-1896)
“Far more worthy of consideration is the view that what is aimed at in both cases is not polygamy, but divorce. Divorce, as we know from abundant evidence, was very frequent both among the Jews and the Romans in the first century of the Christian era. Among the former it provoked the special condemnation of Christ; and one of the many influences which Christianity had upon Roman law was to diminish the facilities for divorce. According to Jewish practice the husband could obtain a divorce for very trivial reasons; and in the time of St. Paul Jewish women sometimes took the initiative. According to Roman practice either husband or wife could obtain a divorce very easily. Abundant instances are on record, and that in the case of people of high character, such as Cicero. After the divorce either of the parties could marry again; and often enough both of them did so; therefore in the Roman Empire in St. Paul’s day there must have been plenty of persons of both sexes who had been divorced once or twice and had married again. There is nothing improbable in the supposition that quite a sufficient number of such persons had been converted to Christianity to make it worth while to legislate respecting them. They might be admitted to baptism; but they must not be admitted to an official position in the Church.

[1] The emphasis in bold and italics in each of the quotes is my own.

 

For this and more than 3000 earlier Daily Visits with God visit Marvin McKenzie’s blogger page. There you will find daily visits going back to 2007.

1 Timothy 3:2 divorced pastors

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