Feature Article

A New Commandment I Give You

A New Commandment I Give You

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Whenever I write about forgiveness, I try to emphasize the idea that forgiveness is not something we extend because the other person has earned it or deserves it, but because the Lord has commanded it. He commanded it for three reasons. First because the failure to forgive is a sin that interrupts our relationship with Him, second because it’s an opportunity for us to show our gratitude for having been forgiven, and third because by doing so we keep His commandments.

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Wrestling with God

Wrestling With God

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

How a simple wresting match foretold the history of the nation Israel.

That night Jacob got up and took his two wives, his two maidservants and his eleven sons and crossed the ford of the Jabbok. After he had sent them across the stream, he sent over all his possessions. So Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him till daybreak. When the man saw that he could not overpower him, he touched the socket of Jacob’s hip so that his hip was wrenched as he wrestled with the man.

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Popular Posts from the Past

The Covenant Relationship

The Covenant Relationship

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

And Jonathan made a covenant with David because he loved him as himself. Jonathan took off the robe he was wearing and gave it to David, along with his tunic, and even his sword, his bow and his belt. (1 Samuel 18:3-4)

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Previous Feature Articles

The Way It Was Meant To Be

Commentary by Jack Kelley

The Prosperity Gospel teachers are right when they say the Lord intended for us to live abundant lives.  The problem is, they have misrepresented the Lord’s  promise of abundance, turning it into a false teaching where the motive is greed and not gratitude.  Because of this only the teachers themselves are awash in material wealth, while as a group their followers rank 2nd lowest of all American Christians in average income.  (Source: Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life)  The Lord intended for us to be financially secure so we could be generous to a fault, not so we could live a life of excess while ignoring the needs of others.

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The Seven “I AM” Statements In John

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Recently I completely re-vamped a study I had originally written in 2003, entitled “The Seven Miracles In John.”  In it I showed how John selected these seven miracles specifically for their ability to help us believe that Jesus is who He claimed to be, and that by believing we might have eternal life.

In addition to these seven miracles John’s gospel contains seven “I am” statements.  Their focus is on what happens after we become believers.  You can call them part 2 of John’s underlying message to the Church.   In this study, we’ll  look at these seven “I am” statements to see what they’ll tell us.  Here’s the first one.

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Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

Right from the beginning, most informed commentators have predicted that the only logical conclusion to the so-called Middle East Peace process would be war.  Contrary to what our leaders have told us, the Palestinian goal has never been to accept a two state solution.  They’ve already turned that deal down at least twice.  No, the goal has been to eliminate the Jewish state altogether.  As long as they could win concessions at the bargaining table war could be avoided, but the day would obviously come when no more concessions could be given, and the only option would be to go to war for the rest.  That day may have come, and of course the stumbling block is  Jerusalem.

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The Great Pyramid of Giza

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley

The Great Pyramid’s builder knew all the dimensions of Earth and had a command of engineering, astronomy, and mathematics that would be impressive even today. If this guy didn’t have supernatural capability himself, he was certainly assisted by Someone who does. (Note: I first posted this article on Jan 23, 2005. I offer it again as a follow up to the recent article entitled “What’s To Become Of Egypt.”)

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Happy New Year

Commentary by Jack Kelley

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus (Phil 4:4-7).

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A Shepherd’s Story

A Christmas Story by Jack Kelley

In the same region there were some shepherds staying out in the fields and keeping watch over their flock by night. And an angel of the Lord suddenly stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them; and they were terribly frightened.

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Names of Jesus: Immanuel

 “Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” (Matthew 1:23)

It defies logic that the eternal, Son of God stepped down off His Heavenly throne and became the Son of Man, entering our world as a helpless infant. He became flesh and dwelt among us to save us from our sins and allow us to become children of God and dwell with Him forever. (Psalm 23:6) He is Immanuel, God with us. He is with us always, (Matthew 28:20) He will never leave us nor forsake us, (Hebrews 13:5) and we can never flee from His presence. (Psalm 139:7-12)

In the midst of our growing to do lists and our anxieties, God is with us. In our loneliness, God is with us. In our pain and suffering, God is with us. He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows (Isaiah 53:4) He comforts us in all our troubles. (2 Corinthians 1:4) He is our refuge, our strength and our ever present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1) He is forgiving and faithful and delights to show mercy. (Micah 7:18) Our God truly is an awesome God. He is great beyond our comprehension. We put our lives into His hands knowing that He will do a much better job with it than we ever could.

Today as we go about our last minute tasks, let us keep in mind that our God is with us. Instead of anxiety over all there is to do, let’s remember that the only work He requires is to believe in the one He has sent. Once we have entered His rest  everything we do from then on, we do in gratitude. We can do nothing to earn this unmerited favor, and nothing we do can take it away. He is with us. Immanuel. Let us keep this immeasurable truth in our minds today and always, that the creator of the universe, our Savior, is for us and is always with us. Praise be to God! Amen and Amen!

Names of Jesus: The Gate

A Bible Study by Jack Kelley 

Therefore Jesus said again, “Very truly I tell you, I am the gate for the sheep. All who have come before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep have not listened to them. I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture. (John 10:7-9)

There is no way around it, through Jesus only can we be saved.

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Ask A Bible Teacher

Choosing To Sin

Q. I appreciate your site more than you will ever know. I teach a class on Thursday morning in the county prison near my home. I am current using your material on Romans and Psalms.
The inmates really enjoy your articles and teaching. May God continue to bless you and your family.
In my Sunday school class this past Sunday the question was ask “Could Jesus have sinned when He was on earth if He had chosen to?” We are all in agreement that He did not sin, but most of the class believes He was incapable of sinning because He was also God. We all agree He was 100 percent man and 100 percent God. However, I am of the opinion that if He was truly 100 percent man He could have sinned if He had chosen to. Otherwise I could say sure He didn’t sin He was God but I am not a God so He really wasn’t tempted as I am because HE knew He could not Sin.

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Mean Spirited Members

Q. I am a believer who attends a bible teaching church and the people claim to believe also. My problems are some of their actions. I have had some very hurtful things said and done to me and my family by some members and I am treated with Christ like love by others. Please don’t think that I am just being petty, these are things you expect from people of this world, not true believers. My problem is how to deal with the people who seem to be jealous of me because of my talents. All that I have I received from God. They are getting to be a bit much to take but I don’t want to leave my church. Please help.

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Is God A Loving Father Or A Strict Judge?

Q. Having researched the “emerging church” movement, I am left confused regarding the teaching of a ‘man friendly Gospel’ that these churches have adopted. Some theologians believe this is wrong; that God is a Holy God and man in his sinful state is God’s enemy. Also, Psalm 5 says God hates his enemies, but Jesus tells us to love our enemies. Why does He tell us to do this if he doesn’t love them himself? Finally, I have always believed that we mustn’t judge or condemn, yet this seems to suggest a ‘man centered approach’. These same theologians believe that the real Gospel preaches repentance and a making aware of sin; that the only way to God is through the ‘narrow gate’ by living a sacrificial life. I’m not sure what all this means anymore. Is God a loving father, or a strict judge?

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Blessing Those Who Bless Israel

Q. Where in the Bible does it say “if you bless my people I will Bless you.” Our nation has been blessed because we have supported the Jewish people and Israel all these years up to now. If we pressure them to give up more of their land for peace and no longer seem to support them, will God judge us for this action?

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It Is Written

Q. When Jesus was tempted by Satan in the desert our Lord said “it is written”. Where was it written? What was he referring to? I want to thank you for your site, I visit several times a day.

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Was John The Baptist Delerious?

Q. When reading through Matthew, I usually come across this thought in my mind with no answer. I’m hoping you might be able to clarify this.
Matthew 11:2
When John heard in prison what Christ was doing, he sent his disciples to ask him, “Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?”
Matthew 3:14-17
Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to be baptized by John. But John tried to deter him, saying, “I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?”
Jesus replied, “Let it be so now; it is proper for us to do this to fulfill all righteousness.” Then John consented.
As soon as Jesus was baptized, he went up out of the water. At that moment heaven was opened, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him. And a voice from heaven said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased.”
My question:
Why, in Matthew 11:2 does John ask if Jesus is the one to be expected to come when John had already confirmed Jesus’ identity back in Matthew 3? I’m assuming that John is the he in “he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and lighting on him” and that the scripture is chronologically ordered. If this is true (i.e., John saw a miracle during Christ’s baptism), it would only seem that John is at this time, in Matthew 11:2 (when in prison) delirious from being incarcerated (he is no longer thinking straight).

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Whose Wife Is She?

Q. The Pharisees or Sadducees asked Jesus if a woman marries seven brothers after each one of them dies, who will she be with in heaven? He told them they would be in the spirit. Where is that story in the Bible?

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Who Wrote The Revelation?

Q. First I wanted to say thank you for the informative site. I visit daily and enjoy your prophecy studies as well as your other topics.
I had a quick question for you. I’ve heard conflicting stories about the Apostle John from the book of John, and the John that wrote Revelation as to the fact that they where not the same guy! Have you heard this before and is there any truth behind this, if not is there anything in the Bible to tie these books together and to solidify that this is the same person. Thanks for any insight you can give. God Bless you and your family.

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Missing The Point On Tithing

Q. You said in article on the tithe: The Lord views 10% of our increase as belonging to Him. (Leviticus 27:30) Just want to point out that ‘increase’ means what it says, and it doesn’t mean giving 10% of ones entire earnings! Also, God was addressing the bad attitudes of the priests  and it was the priests who with held some of the tithes from the storehouse.
A possible rendering of ‘and this whole nation’, could refer to the tithes that were with held ‘from the whole nation’ –meaning from the people who were intended to benefit from them. I know that tithes in the storehouse were not there just for the benefit of the priests, but also for the poor & destitute who needed a meal, etc.!
So, how can you and so many other preachers/teachers abuse this word by saying the NT demands a tenth of all ones’ earnings, and not just the ‘increase’ as God’s word states? And, how can you say the NT believers are commaned to tithe? Show me one verse in the NT that clearly says so; and don’t send me verses tat I know speak only about offerings! IN fact there’s only 1 NT verse that makes reference to the tithe in Hebrews, about Melchizedek and how Abraham paid tithes through him.

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Knowing God’s Will

Q. I read your site daily and highly respect your opinions and answers. You have given me insights I have not found elsewhere. May God continue to bless your ministry.
I am struggling with knowing God’s will for my life. I was raised a Roman Catholic and fell away from the Lord for most of my life. I blamed God for all the bad things that happened in my life and wasted 30 years not knowing Him. I have been studying the bible for almost two years on my own and recently joined a church (not Roman Catholic) and got baptized. The preacher preaches salvation through Christ.
I have accepted Jesus as my personal Savior and have peace in my life for the first time. I feel guilty because I don’t think I’m doing anything for Him. He said we need to be His hands and feet, but I do not know what He wants me to do with my life.
How do I know what He wants me to do? How do I find my purpose in life? Where can I go to learn what I need to do in order to hear Him? Any information you can give me will be greatly appreciated.
 

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