The Bible Study Hour
thinkact_qklktp on 06/14/2024

Friday: Peace with God, Peace with Others

This week I have been working through what Paul is teaching about peacekeeping or peacemaking, and I have stressed that it requires realism, forbearance and active goodness to those who do wrong. But perhaps you have been thinking—I know the thought comes to me—“But I can’t do it. I don’t care if th

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/13/2024

Thursday: Returning Good for Evil

As we continue our study of what it means to "live at peace with everyone,” I want to examine verse 20, which develops a contrast with the thought of taking vengeance into our own hands. "On the contrary," it says, "If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/12/2024

Wednesday: God’s Wrath

"Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God's wrath, for it is written: ‘It is mine to avenge; I will repay,’ says the Lord" (v. 19). We see in this verse that an important point Paul has to make about keeping peace is forbearance. This is categorical teaching. It does not say, "Do not

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/11/2024

Tuesday: Sobering Realism

The first thing we notice about Paul's challenge to Christians to live a life of peace is his sobering realism. He begins, "If it is possible" and "as far as it depends on you..." (v. 18). This way of speaking recognizes two potential sources of difficulty: 1) the behavior of other people may negate

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/10/2024

Monday: Being a Peacemaker

Whenever the subject of peace comes up Christians tend to get a bad rap, because the people discussing it think immediately of realities such as the Crusades of the Middle Ages or Protestants fighting Catholics in Northern Ireland today, or anything similar. We are supposed to be people of peace. Je

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/07/2024

Friday: Desiring to Do What Is Right

In spite of everything I have said this week about America's moral decline and the loss of a fixed moral standard for most people, the real problem is having the will to do what is right even when we know what it is.In spite of everything I have said this week about America’s moral decline and the l

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/06/2024

Thursday: Practical Examples

We live in a trashy culture, worse—a sinful, evil, ugly and perverted culture. It is hard not to be sullied by it. Yet it was no different in Paul's day. The Greek and Roman world of the first century was a slime pit. But in spite of it, Paul says that Christians are to set their minds on good thing

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/05/2024

Wednesday: A Moral and Ethical Foundation

In The Day America Told the Truth there is this sad anecdote. In 1987 a university president was teaching an adult Sunday school class in his local church. It included bankers, business executives and college professors. He asked this question, based on a recent news event: “We hear on the news that

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/04/2024

Tuesday: Pursuing God’s Goal

It is evident that if we are to pursue what is “good,” “true,” “right,” “honest” or “beautiful” in life, there must be something “good,” “true,” “right,” “honest” or “beautiful” to pursue. And this means that there must be absolutes. Otherwise, we would be looking for something that is not there, an

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 06/03/2024

Monday: Believing in Right and Wrong

Not long ago I came across an elaborate poll on the values and conduct of Americans. It appeared as a book called The Day America Told the Truth, and it was described as “the most massive in-depth survey of what Americans really believe that has ever been conducted.”1 The survey was based on a sampl

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/31/2024

Friday: Increasingly Like Christ

We should bless our enemies by showing them empathy and getting along well with them. We should behave in humility, with a willingness to associate with those we think are lower than we are. The trouble with exhortations of this nature, practical as they may be, is that they seem very far beyond us

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/30/2024

Thursday: Blessing Others

Yesterday we talked about prayer as a means for blessing those who persecute us. But there are more ways than that of being a blessing, and Paul discusses these in verses 15 and 16. The way they are written, these verses could apply to Christians as well as to enemies. But since they are bracketed b

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/29/2024

Wednesday: Responding to Persecution

The fact of persecution is well established. If we are Christ's and if we stand for Christ against the world, we will experience it. But now the question is: How we are to respond to persecution? In Romans 12:14 Paul tells us that we are to "bless" our persecutors. We are to "bless” and “not curse."

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/28/2024

Tuesday: The World’s Hatred of Christians

Today we come upon the most radical teaching in Romans 12:14-16. Having spoken of the application of Christian doctrine to the way the individual is to think of himself and of the way he is to think of others within the fellowship of the church, Paul moves on to speak of those who are not yet Christ

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/27/2024

Monday: Costly Discipleship

My good friend Michael Scott Horton has written a book called Made in America, in which he examines the impact of American culture on Christianity, especially evangelical Christianity. The impact comes from a variety of cultural sources, he says, but one of these is our consumerism. In America every

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/24/2024

Friday: Applied Christianity

Did you know that someone who loves is also someone who prays consistently? It's right here in verse 12. A literal translation of this verse might be "and in regard to prayer, continuing." Isn't "continuing" an interesting word to use? We might have expected any one of a number of other words. But P

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/23/2024

Thursday: The Hope of Glory

As we continue to learn about love in Romans 12, verse 12 introduces three more items, and these three go together. This might be paraphrased, “In so far as we have cause to hope, let us be joyful; in so far as we have cause of pain, let us hold out; in so far as the door of prayer is open to us, le

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/22/2024

Wednesday: Spiritual Fervor

In our study of how love functions, we come today to the sentence which reads, "Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord" (v. 11). The word "fervor" (NIV) or "fervent" (KJV) is from a verb meaning "to boil." So a literal translation of this phrase would be: "In resp

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/21/2024

Tuesday: Being a Christian

As we continue our study of how love functions, we come to the second of Paul's dative cases, which is about honor and is closely related to what we studied yesterday about brotherly love. This is why the two ideas are combined in verse 10. A literal translation might be, "And in respect to honor, l

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/20/2024

Monday: God’s New Family

There are times in Bible study when an examination of the Greek text is very helpful. This is not always so, because most Bible translations convey the meaning of the original languages accurately and a person who does not know Greek can get along very well with the English. But sometimes the Greek

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/17/2024

Friday: Showing God’s Love

Today we will look at the section of 1 Corinthians 13 which says that love will endure even when things like prophecies, tongues and the quest for knowledge have ceased. And we’ll see why love is more important even than such enduring things as faith and hope. [Love]…always protects, always trusts,

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/16/2024

Thursday: What Love Does

Today we're continuing our look at Paul's commentary on love from 1 Corinthians 13: “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/14/2024

Tuesday: Two Characteristics

As we talk about the significance of love, we must not get overly sentimental, since love is not some mushy emotion that embraces all, forgives all, forgets all and requires nothing. The danger of an essay like Henry Drummond’s, which we looked at yesterday, is that it encourages just those sentimen

t thinkact_qklktp
thinkact_qklktp on 05/13/2024

Monday: The Preeminent Christian Virtue

After the first two verses of Romans 12, which establish the principles by which sound doctrine is to be applied to godly living, Paul has begun to write about the church. Yet his words are no abstract theologizing. He is thinking of the people who make up the church, and his words have to do first

t thinkact_qklktp