Brother Jeff's Message
My bulletin article last week began with a reference to Genesis 3:11. Instead of Genesis, it should have been Exodus 3:11! Thank you to those who caught my mistake and my apologies to all. Just Sunday I was talking with the high school class about the importance of comparing the scriptures with what people say about the Bible. What the Bible says is important. It is truth. It is absolute. Jesus prayed in John 17:17 saying, “Sanctify them with truth; thy word is truth.” With an open heart to the word of God we can find the answers to all the major questions in life. To be sure we may not like the answer and often there are those who reject the answers, but they are none the less there for our instruction. The first part of 2 Peter 1:3 says, “His divine power has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness” and 1Timothy 4:7-8 admonishes us, “Have nothing to do with irreverent, silly myths. Rather train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.” The Bible holds the answers!
In Matthew chapter 2 (and it is Matthew I double checked), the magi arrived in Jerusalem from the east asking the whereabouts of the new recently born King of the Jews. The Bible says in verse 3, Herod and all Jerusalem was troubled over this news. I can understand Herod’s concern. History tells us he was a suspicious and somewhat paranoid man. With a new king in the neighborhood, it is not surprising he would be concerned, despite the new king’s young age. It is interesting though how he began to research this new information. Verse four tells us he gathered the chief priests and the scribes and asked them where this young man was to be born. It makes perfect sense to go to the source and they immediately answered him telling him, “In Bethlehem of Judea” (Matthew 2:5). They quoted as proof of their answer what was written by the prophet Micah! These men knew the scripture and Herod knew them well enough to send the magi to Bethlehem with instructions to find the child and report back to him. Don’t miss the implication, Herod trusted the Scripture. One may argue he didn’t really trust the scripture but was just protecting his throne but that argument runs into trouble when you try to explain why Herod only ordered the death of two year old males in Bethlehem and not the entire region. My point is this, if an unbeliever like Herod knew he could trust the scriptures, how much more should we as believers put our faith in them and live by them? Ponder this, do our actions determine our faith or does our faith determine our actions?