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Mark 7
Man's religious traditions circumvent God's law
Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of the heart
Jesus havi...
BIBLE IN FIVE
Pastor Dave Kooyers
Valley Bible Fellowship
Box 433
Boonville CA 95415
http://www.slideshare.net/dkooyers
ww...
Last Time Karma
• “…Breaking bad habit
is not easy, it requires
conscious Karmic
effort for release from
a cycle of negati...
Let’s Read Mark 7:1-13
1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law
14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of th...
What Is “ceremonial washing”?
“ceremonial washing” Sink
by DLK at Western Wall 6-2011
“ceremonial washing” Sink
by DLK at Temple Mount 6-2011
Mark 7:3
“ceremonial washing” Of Hands
Mark 7:3, Wash Their Hands
• Mark 7:3 (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat
unless they carefully wash their hand...
Mark 7:3
“ceremonial washing” Of Hands
• CSB Leviticus 15:11 If the man with the discharge touches
anyone without first ri...
Mark 7:3
“ceremonial washing” Of Hands
• At this point you could shout out, “Praise God
that Jesus fulfilled the Law perfe...
Mark 7:4,
There Are Many Other Things
• Mark 7:4 and when they come from the
market place, they do not eat unless they
cle...
Mark 7:5, According To The Tradition
• Mark 7:5 The Pharisees and the scribes asked Him, "Why
do Your disciples not walk a...
Mark 7:6, Jews Rejected
• Mark 7:6 And He said to them, "Rightly did Isaiah
prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: ...
Mark 7:6,
Rejected Because Of A Heart Condition
• Isaiah 29:13 Then the Lord said, "Because this people
draw near with the...
Mark 7:6, The Church Is Not About
Signs, Wonders, Miracles
• Signs, wonders, miracles, are for judgment on the Jews.
• 1 C...
Let’s Read Mark 7:14-23
1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law
14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and
defilement of t...
Mark 7:19,
The Stomach
• Mark 7:19 because it does
not go into his heart, but
into his stomach, and is
eliminated?" (Thus ...
Mark 7:19, All Foods Clean
• Mark 7:19 …(Thus He declared all foods clean.)
• Don’t bring your bacon to a bar mitzvah, Rom...
Mark 7:21, Thoughts
• Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed
the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts...
Mark 7:21, Envy
• Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart of
men, proceed the evil
thoughts, fornications, thefts, mu...
Mark 7:21, The Problem Of Evil
• Mark 7:21 …the evil thoughts…
• Ravi Zacharias says, “When the question of evil is
raised...
Let’s Read Mark 7:24-30
1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law
14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of t...
Mark 7:21, “The Problem Of Evil”
• Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart
of men, proceed the evil
thoughts, fornica...
Mark 7:21, “The Problem Of Evil”
• Ravi Zacharias makes a very important, valid
point concerning, “The Problem Of Evil” in...
Mark 7:21, “The Problem Of Evil”
• “The Problem Of Evil” rests upon an assumption
of a difference between good and evil, w...
Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre
• Mark 7:24 Jesus got up and went away from
there to the region of Tyre… [Gentile country]
Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre
• Mark 7:24 Jesus got up and went away from
there to the region of Tyre…
Mark
7:24, The
Region Of
Tyre
• Mark 7:24 Jesus got up and
went away from there to the
region of Tyre…
Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre
• Mark 7:24…region of Tyre. And when He had entered a
house…
• God has different ministries,...
Mark 7:27, Gone “to the dogs”
• Mark 7:27 And He was saying to her, "Let the children
be satisfied first, for it is not go...
Let’s Read Mark 7:31-37
1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law
14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of t...
Mark 7:31, To Decapolis
• Mark 7:31 Again
He went out from
the region of
Tyre, and came
through Sidon to
the Sea of
Galile...
Mark 7:31, To
Decapolis
• Mark 7:31
…Tyre, and came
through Sidon to
the Sea of
Galilee, within
the region of
Decapolis.
•...
Mark 7:33, He Touched His Tongue
With The Saliva
• Mark 7:33 Jesus took him aside from the crowd, by
himself, and put His ...
THE
END
• Hikers stand near the top
of a natural rock bridge
on Mt.
Rainier, Washington, May
1963.
PHOTOGRAPH BY BARRY
BIS...
wash their hands
• Utensil Safety
• I accompanied my four-year-old, Matt, to a pre-kindergarten screening
session where th...
Interpretations, Unbelief, Peripheral
Secondary Issues, Lack Of
Training, Poor
Hermeneutics, Ignorance, Pride, Imma
turity...
Mark 5:20, Decapolis
• Mark 5:20 And he went away
and began to proclaim in
Decapolis what great things
Jesus had done for ...
Mark 7, The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are ...
Mark 7, The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are ...
Mark 7, The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are ...
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Mark 7, The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are kosher, thoughts, Tyre, dogs, Decapolis

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Mark 7, The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are kosher, thoughts, Tyre, dogs, Decapolis

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  • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Karma
  • —Linda Economy, Floodwood, Minnesota. Christian Reader, "Kids of the Kingdom.“Leviticus 11:24 'By these, moreover, you will be made unclean: whoever touches their carcasses becomes unclean until evening,
  • —Linda Economy, Floodwood, Minnesota. Christian Reader, "Kids of the Kingdom.“Leviticus 11:24 'By these, moreover, you will be made unclean: whoever touches their carcasses becomes unclean until evening,
  • —Linda Economy, Floodwood, Minnesota. Christian Reader, "Kids of the Kingdom.“Leviticus 11:24 'By these, moreover, you will be made unclean: whoever touches their carcasses becomes unclean until evening,
  • —Linda Economy, Floodwood, Minnesota. Christian Reader, "Kids of the Kingdom."
  • Leviticus 11:24
  • Leviticus 11:24
  • Jeremiah 51:34 Ezekiel 3:3 Jonah 1:17 Mark 7:19 Luke 15:16 1 Corinthians 6:13 Proverbs 13:25, The Stomach
  • Isaiah 55:8 Matthew 9:4 Luke 11:17 Mark 7:21 Romans 2:15 Hebrews 4:12 Genesis 6:5 2 Corinthians 10:5 Psalm 94:11, 139:2 Deuteronomy 15:9, Thought , thoughts
  • Mark 7:21 Romans 1:29 1 Timothy 6:4 Titus 3:3 1 Peter 2:1 Matthew 27:18 Proverbs 23:17, Envy
  • At 3 minutes 40 seconds in, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcZMO7vW0bELet My People Think: Ravi Zacharias at Yale - Part 2
  • Matthew 22:37-39, 19:19 Mark 12:31 Luke 10:27 Romans 13:9 Galatians 5:14 James 2:8, LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF
  • Matthew 22:37-39, 19:19 Mark 12:31 Luke 10:27 Romans 13:9 Galatians 5:14 James 2:8, LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF
  • Ravi Zacharias makes a very important, valid point concerning, “The Problem Of Evil” in;Let My People Think: Ravi Zacharias at Yale - Part 2At 3 minutes 40 seconds in, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcZMO7vW0bE
  • Hikers stand near the top of a natural rock bridge on Mt. Rainier, Washington, May 1963.PHOTOGRAPH BY BARRY BISHOP, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
  • 2 Timothy 2:15 1 Corinthians 3:2-3, 2:10-14 John 12:28-29 Acts 2:42 2 Peter 3:16 Acts 18:24-28 Ephesians  4:30, 4:5 Matt 7:22, So Many Interpretations, Unbelief, Peripheral Secondary Issues, Lack Of Training, Poor Hermeneutics, Ignorance, Pride, Immaturity, TraditionsGotQuestions.org via icontactmail3.comGot Questions Ministries | 6050 Stetson Hills Blvd., #254 | Colorado Springs, CO 80923
  • Tongue, D. H. (1996). Decapolis. In (D. R. W. Wood, I. H. Marshall, A. R. Millard, J. I. Packer, & D. J. Wiseman, Eds.)New Bible dictionary. Leicester, England; Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press.
  • Transcript of "Mark 7, The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are kosher, thoughts, Tyre, dogs, Decapolis"

    1. 1. Mark 7 Man's religious traditions circumvent God's law Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of the heart Jesus having rebuked the Jewish leaders reaches out and heals a Gentile Jesus heals a Gentile deaf and mute man of Tyre The problem of evil, tradition, ceremonial washing of hands, Jews rejected, signs wonders miracles, all foods are kosher, thoughts, Tyre, dogs, Dec apolis An aerial photograph of farmland in Michigan, June 1979.PHOTOGRAPH BY JAMES L. AMOS, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC
    2. 2. BIBLE IN FIVE Pastor Dave Kooyers Valley Bible Fellowship Box 433 Boonville CA 95415 http://www.slideshare.net/dkooyers www.ValleyBibleFellowship.org (707) 895-2325 God bless you as you examine His Word, Your servant in Christ, 2Cor. 4:5, Dave
    3. 3. Last Time Karma • “…Breaking bad habit is not easy, it requires conscious Karmic effort for release from a cycle of negative behaviors…” wikipedia • Logical conclusion; easing someone’s suffering is not good for them.
    4. 4. Let’s Read Mark 7:1-13 1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law 14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of the heart 24–30, Jesus having rebuked the Jewish leaders reaches out and heals a Gentile 31–37, Jesus heals a Gentile man of tire who was deaf and mute
    5. 5. What Is “ceremonial washing”?
    6. 6. “ceremonial washing” Sink by DLK at Western Wall 6-2011
    7. 7. “ceremonial washing” Sink by DLK at Temple Mount 6-2011
    8. 8. Mark 7:3 “ceremonial washing” Of Hands
    9. 9. Mark 7:3, Wash Their Hands • Mark 7:3 (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they carefully wash their hands… • Linda Economy said, under the heading Utensil Safety, “I accompanied my four-year-old, Matt, to a pre-kindergarten screening session where they tested his hearing, eyesight, speech, and motor skills. The last stop was with the school nurse who emphasized the importance of washing hands before meals. "Germs from our hands can get on our food while eating," she explained. "Oh, I don't need to worry about that," Matt assured her. • "We use forks at our house." • Matthew 15:2 "Why do Your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.“ (John 13:9 Deuteronomy 21:6 Leviticus 11:2, 15:11)
    10. 10. Mark 7:3 “ceremonial washing” Of Hands • CSB Leviticus 15:11 If the man with the discharge touches anyone without first rinsing his hands in water, the person who was touched is to wash his clothes and bathe with water, and he will remain unclean until evening. • John 13:9 Simon Peter said to Him, "Lord, then wash not only my feet, but also my hands and my head.“ • Exodus 30:20 when they enter the tent of meeting, they shall wash with water, so that they will not die; or when they approach the altar to minister, by offering up in smoke a fire sacrifice to the LORD. • 85 X’s the Scripture say “wash” • But this “ceremonial washing” is not in Scripture (Lev 22), it is only in the Talmud and Mishna, yet their traditions had superseded the Bible. The cults do it too.
    11. 11. Mark 7:3 “ceremonial washing” Of Hands • At this point you could shout out, “Praise God that Jesus fulfilled the Law perfectly, and I stand in His Holiness not my own. • AMEN!!!
    12. 12. Mark 7:4, There Are Many Other Things • Mark 7:4 and when they come from the market place, they do not eat unless they cleanse themselves; and there are many other things which they have received in order to observe, such as the washing of cups and pitchers and copper pots.)
    13. 13. Mark 7:5, According To The Tradition • Mark 7:5 The Pharisees and the scribes asked Him, "Why do Your disciples not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat their bread with impure hands?“ • They never charge Jesus with not keeping THE LAW, Moses’ Law, or the commandments of Torah, Scripture, etc. • Romans 8:3 For what the Law could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, God did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, 4 in order that the requirement of the Law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit. • Matthew 5:17 "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill.
    14. 14. Mark 7:6, Jews Rejected • Mark 7:6 And He said to them, "Rightly did Isaiah prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: 'THIS PEOPLE HONORS ME WITH THEIR LIPS, BUT THEIR HEART IS FAR AWAY FROM ME. 7 'BUT IN VAIN DO THEY WORSHIP ME, TEACHING AS DOCTRINES THE PRECEPTS OF MEN.‘ 8 "Neglecting the commandment of God, you hold to the tradition of men.“ • Matthew 22:8 "Then he said to his slaves, 'The wedding is ready, but those who were invited were not worthy. • Why not worthy? What’s their problem? • Well 700 years before the Lord said…
    15. 15. Mark 7:6, Rejected Because Of A Heart Condition • Isaiah 29:13 Then the Lord said, "Because this people draw near with their words And honor Me with their lip service, But they remove their hearts far from Me, And their reverence for Me consists of tradition learned by rote, • 14 Therefore behold, I will once again deal marvelously with this people, wondrously marvelous; And the wisdom of their wise men shall perish, And the discernment of their discerning men shall be concealed.“ • Signs, wonders, miracles, and to “deal marvelously” was and is not a blessing, but judgment on the Jews.
    16. 16. Mark 7:6, The Church Is Not About Signs, Wonders, Miracles • Signs, wonders, miracles, are for judgment on the Jews. • 1 Corinthians 1:22 For indeed Jews ask for signs, and Greeks search for wisdom; 23 but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block, and to Gentiles foolishness, • 2 Thessalonians 2:9 that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, • Revelation 13:13 And he performs great signs, so that he even makes fire come down out of heaven to the earth in the presence of men. 14 And he deceives those who dwell on the earth because of the signs… • Revelation 16:14 for they are spirits of demons, performing signs, which go out to the kings of the whole world…
    17. 17. Let’s Read Mark 7:14-23 1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law 14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of the heart 24–30, Jesus having rebuked the Jewish leaders reaches out and heals a Gentile 31–37, Jesus heals a Gentile man of tire who was deaf and mute
    18. 18. Mark 7:19, The Stomach • Mark 7:19 because it does not go into his heart, but into his stomach, and is eliminated?" (Thus He declared all foods clean.) • Acts 10:11-15…Again a voice came to him a second time, "What God has cleansed, no longer consider unholy."
    19. 19. Mark 7:19, All Foods Clean • Mark 7:19 …(Thus He declared all foods clean.) • Don’t bring your bacon to a bar mitzvah, Romans 14:21 It is good not to eat meat or to drink wine, or to do anything by which your brother stumbles. • 1 Corinthians 8:13 Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble. • Don’t let your “traditions of men” keep you from unbelievers; 1 Corinthians 10:27 If one of the unbelievers invites you and you want to go, eat anything that is set before you without asking questions for conscience' sake. • Even meat sacrificed to idols.
    20. 20. Mark 7:21, Thoughts • Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries, • Deuteronomy 15:9 "Beware that there is no base thought in your heart… it will be a sin in you. • 2 Corinthians 10:5 We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ, • Genesis 6:5 Then the LORD saw that the wickedness of man was great on the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. • Each of us leads a secret thought life, an invisible life known only to us- it is not known to others. This secret life is usually very different from the visible you- the you that is known by others. Yet it is the real you, the you that is known by our God. Patrick Morley
    21. 21. Mark 7:21, Envy • Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulteries , 22 deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. • Proverbs 23:17 Do not let your heart envy sinners, But live in the fear of the LORD always. • How can you possess the miseries of envy when you possess in Christ the best of all portions? C. H. Spurgeon
    22. 22. Mark 7:21, The Problem Of Evil • Mark 7:21 …the evil thoughts… • Ravi Zacharias says, “When the question of evil is raised, it is either raised by a person or about persons…which means that the intrinsic worth of personhood is assumed in the question. Can one really make that assumption within a totally naturalistic framework? Isn't it not contrived and extraneous then, the value, ... Every human life is a life of worth and of a life of value…” • DLK adds, “I have never heard anyone complain about the evil of spiders capturing and eating insects, or lions eating gazelles, or ravens stealing eggs. No, evil is a problem only when the image of God, a human, is involved or violated.”
    23. 23. Let’s Read Mark 7:24-30 1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law 14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of the heart 24–30, Jesus having rebuked the Jewish leaders reaches out and heals a Gentile 31–37, Jesus heals a Gentile man of tire who was deaf and mute
    24. 24. Mark 7:21, “The Problem Of Evil” • Mark 7:21 "For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed the evil thoughts, fornications, thefts, murders, adulte ries, 22 deeds of coveting and wickedness, as well as deceit, sensuality, envy, slander, pride and foolishness. • Critics ask, “Why does God allow evil?
    25. 25. Mark 7:21, “The Problem Of Evil” • Ravi Zacharias makes a very important, valid point concerning, “The Problem Of Evil” in; • Let My People Think: Ravi Zacharias at Yale - Part 2 • At 3 minutes 40 seconds in to 4:58, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TcZ MO7vW0bE
    26. 26. Mark 7:21, “The Problem Of Evil” • “The Problem Of Evil” rests upon an assumption of a difference between good and evil, which requires a standard by which to distinguish between good and evil. • The standard cannot be grounded on the choices, will, or thoughts of man, or evil men. • Not by mob rule/might makes right (Hitler), not by mans personal preference (rapists, thieves), not by mans religion (virgin sacrifices, Crusades). • It has to be grounded on the will/Law of the Creator, the Bible.
    27. 27. Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre • Mark 7:24 Jesus got up and went away from there to the region of Tyre… [Gentile country]
    28. 28. Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre • Mark 7:24 Jesus got up and went away from there to the region of Tyre…
    29. 29. Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre • Mark 7:24 Jesus got up and went away from there to the region of Tyre…
    30. 30. Mark 7:24, The Region Of Tyre • Mark 7:24…region of Tyre. And when He had entered a house… • God has different ministries, mission, purposes for different people at different times • Matthew 10:5 These twelve Jesus sent out after instructing them, saying, "Do not go in the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter any city of the Samaritans; 6 but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel… • John 4:9 Therefore the Samaritan woman said to Him, "How is it that You, being a Jew, ask me for a drink since I am a Samaritan woman?" (For Jews have no dealings with Samaritans.)
    31. 31. Mark 7:27, Gone “to the dogs” • Mark 7:27 And He was saying to her, "Let the children be satisfied first, for it is not good to take the children's bread and throw it to the dogs.” • When we say that “this place has gone to the dogs” it’s derogatory. • <2952> κυνάριον kunarion • Meaning: a little dog • Origin: dim. of 2965 … • <2965> κύων (kuon) • Meaning: a dog • Jesus used the diminutive form (a small pet dog, not the big vicious, mongrel dog word usually used for gentiles)
    32. 32. Let’s Read Mark 7:31-37 1-13, Man's religion circumvents God's law 14-23, Jesus teaches about religion and defilement of the heart 24–30, Jesus having rebuked the Jewish leaders reaches out and heals a Gentile 31–37, Jesus heals a Gentile man of tire who was deaf and mute
    33. 33. Mark 7:31, To Decapolis • Mark 7:31 Again He went out from the region of Tyre, and came through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, within the region of Decapolis. • We would say He went through the Golan Heights to Decapolis
    34. 34. Mark 7:31, To Decapolis • Mark 7:31 …Tyre, and came through Sidon to the Sea of Galilee, within the region of Decapolis. • We would say He went through the Golan Heights to Decapolis
    35. 35. Mark 7:33, He Touched His Tongue With The Saliva • Mark 7:33 Jesus took him aside from the crowd, by himself, and put His fingers into his ears, and after spitting, He touched his tongue with the saliva; • Jesus always heals in different ways (maybe He didn’t want false prophet mimics). • Our mission is Matthew 28:19 "Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them… • Mark 16:15 And He said to them, "Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation. • Jesus’ ministry was Matthew 11:5 the BLIND RECEIVE SIGHT and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the POOR HAVE THE GOSPEL PREACHED TO THEM.
    36. 36. THE END • Hikers stand near the top of a natural rock bridge on Mt. Rainier, Washington, May 1963. PHOTOGRAPH BY BARRY BISHOP, NATIONAL
    37. 37. wash their hands • Utensil Safety • I accompanied my four-year-old, Matt, to a pre-kindergarten screening session where they tested his hearing, eyesight, speech, and motor skills. The last stop was with the school nurse who emphasized the importance of washing hands before meals. "Germs from our hands can get on our food while eating," she explained. • "Oh, I don't need to worry about that," Matt assured her. "We use forks at our house." • —Linda Economy, Floodwood, Minnesota. Christian Reader, "Kids of the Kingdom." • Leviticus 11:24 'By these, moreover, you will be made unclean: whoever touches their carcasses becomes unclean until evening, • Leviticus 15:11 'Likewise, whomever the one with the discharge touches without having rinsed his hands in water shall wash his clothes and bathe in water and be unclean until evening. • Matthew 15:2 "Why do Your disciples break the tradition of the elders? For they do not wash their hands when they eat bread.“ • Mark 7:3 (For the Pharisees and all the Jews do not eat unless they carefully wash their hands…
    38. 38. Interpretations, Unbelief, Peripheral Secondary Issues, Lack Of Training, Poor Hermeneutics, Ignorance, Pride, Imma turity, Traditions?GotQuestions.org • GotQuestions.org • Question: "Why are there so many different Christian interpretations? If all Christians have the same Bible, and the same Holy Spirit, should not Christians be able to agree?" Answer: Scripture says there is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism” (Ephesians 4:5). This passage emphasizes the unity that should exist in the body of Christ as we are indwelt by “one Spirit” (verse 4). In verse 3, Paul makes an appeal to humility, meekness, patience, and love—all of which are necessary to preserve unity. According to 1 Corinthians 2:10-13, the Holy Spirit knows the mind of God (verse 11), which He reveals (verse 10) and teaches (verse 13) to those whom He indwells. This activity of the Holy Spirit is called illumination. In a perfect world, every believer would dutifully study the Bible (2 Timothy 2:15) in prayerful dependence upon the Holy Spirit’s illumination. As can be clearly seen, this is not a perfect world. Not everyone who possesses the Holy Spirit actually listens to the Holy Spirit. There are Christians who grieve Him (Ephesians 4:30). Ask any educator—even the best classroom teacher has his share of wayward students who seem to resist learning, no matter what the teacher does. So, one reason different people have different interpretations of the Bible is simply that some do not listen to the Teacher—the Holy Spirit. Following are some other reasons for the wide divergence of beliefs among those who teach the Bible. 1. Unbelief. The fact is that many who claim to be Christians have never been born again. They wear the label of “Christian,” but there has been no true change of heart. Many who do not even believe the Bible to be true presume to teach it. They claim to speak for God yet live in a state of unbelief. Most false interpretations of Scripture come from such sources. It is impossible for an unbeliever to correctly interpret Scripture. “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Corinthians 2:14). An unsaved man cannot understand the truth of the Bible. He has no illumination. Further, even being a pastor or theologian does not guarantee one’s salvation. An example of the chaos created by unbelief is found in John 12:28-29. Jesus prays to the Father, saying, “Father, glorify your name.” The Father responds with an audible voice from heaven, which everyone nearby hears. Notice, however, the difference in interpretation: “The crowd that was there and heard it said it had thundered; others said an angel had spoken to him.” Everyone heard the same thing—an intelligible statement from heaven—yet everyone heard what he wanted to hear. 2. Lack of training. The apostle Peter warns against those who misinterpret the Scriptures. He attributes their spurious teachings in part to the fact that they are “ignorant” (2 Peter 3:16). Timothy is told to “Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth” (2 Timothy 2:15). There is no shortcut to proper biblical interpretation; we are constrained to study. 3. Poor hermeneutics. Much error has been promoted because of a simple failure to apply good hermeneutics (the science of interpreting Scripture). Taking a verse out of its immediate context can do great damage to the intent of the verse. Ignoring the wider context of the chapter and book, or failing to understand the historical/cultural context will also lead to problems. 4. Ignorance of the whole Word of God. Apollos was a powerful and eloquent preacher, but he only knew the baptism of John. He was ignorant of Jesus and His provision of salvation, so his message was incomplete. Aquila and Priscilla took him aside and “explained to him the way of God more adequately” (Acts 18:24-28). After that, Apollos preached Jesus Christ. Some groups and individuals today have an incomplete message because they concentrate on certain passages to the exclusion of others. They fail to compare Scripture with Scripture. 5. Selfishness and pride. Sad to say, many interpretations of the Bible are based on an individual’s own personal biases and pet doctrines. Some people see an opportunity for personal advancement by promoting a “new perspective” on Scripture. (See the description of false teachers in Jude’s epistle.) 6. Failure to mature. When Christians are not maturing as they should, their handling of the Word of God is affected. “I gave you milk, not solid food, for you were not yet ready for it. Indeed, you are still not ready. You are still worldly” (1 Corinthians 3:2-3). An immature Christian is not ready for the “meat” of God’s Word. Note that the proof of the Corinthians’ carnality is a division in their church (verse 4). 7. Undue emphasis on tradition. Some churches claim to believe the Bible, but their interpretation is always filtered through the established traditions of their church. Where tradition and the teaching of the Bible are in conflict, tradition is given precedence. This effectively negates the authority of the Word and grants supremacy to the church leadership. On the essentials, the Bible is abundantly clear. There is nothing ambiguous about the deity of Christ, the reality of heaven and hell, and salvation by grace through faith. On some issues of less importance, however, the teaching of Scripture is less clear, and this naturally leads to different interpretations. For example, we have no direct biblical command governing the frequency of communion or the style of music to use. Honest, sincere Christians can have differing interpretations of the passages concerning these peripheral issues. The important thing is to be dogmatic where Scripture is and to avoid being dogmatic where Scripture is not. Churches should strive to follow the model of the early church in Jerusalem: “They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer” (Acts 2:42). There was unity in the early church because they were steadfast in the apostles’ doctrine. There will be unity in the church again when we get back to the apostles’ doctrine and forego the other doctrines, fads, and gimmicks that have crept into the church.
    39. 39. Mark 5:20, Decapolis • Mark 5:20 And he went away and began to proclaim in Decapolis what great things Jesus had done for him; and everyone was amazed. • DECAPOLIS. A large territory S of the Sea of Galilee, mainly to the E of Jordan, but including Beth- shean to the W. The Greeks had occupied towns like Gadara and Philadelphia as early as 200 bc…. • New Bible dictionary
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