Archive for the ‘1-2 Thessalonians’ Category

Life From the Dead Or the Valley of Dry Bones   7 comments

Life from the Dead

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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Ezek. 37, 1-10

Israel’s condition here seen in a vision; fittingly illustrates the sinner’s spiritual condition.

I.

“Dry bones,” devoid of spiritual life.  Figure is not too strong.  Men are powerless to move Godward if life to themselves–are “very dry,” devoid of life.

II.

“Can these bones live?”  Is there any hope for a poor lost sinner?  Yes.  “The dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God and they that hear shall live.”  (Jno. 5, 21 & 25-26)  “He [is] able to save to the uttermost.”  (Heb. 7, 25)  No case is hopeless.

III.

Means to be used:

(1)  “Prophesy.”  “O ye dry bones, hear ye the word of the Lord” (v. 4).  “Preach the word” (2 Tim. 4, 2).  It pleaseth God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe” (1 Cor. 1, 21).  “The word of God is quick and powerful,” etc. (Heb. 4, 12).

(2)  Prayer for the Spirit to impart life.  “Come, O breath, and breathe upon these slain” (v. 9).  “Grieve not the Spirit” (Eph. 4, 30).  “Quench not the Spirit” (1 Thes. 5, 19).  We need his power to awaken and save sinful souls.

IV.

God waits to be gracious.  How concerned he is about our salvation.

Let us look with much prayer for his saving power.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

“Abstain From Evil.”   1 comment

Abstain from Evil

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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EDITOR’S COMMENT:

I am honest person, one with no poker face.  That said, I have lied from time to time.  I have been polite and dishonest when being honest would have been rude and created a needless and awkward social situation.  I have gone along with what dementia patients have said contrary to reality.  To have done otherwise would have been to create an unnecessary argument, which the patient would have forgotten soon anyway.  And no, that dress does not make any woman look fat.

A timeless moral standard in dealing with other people is seek the best for that person.  Thus we ought never to create trouble for them.  Much lying casts blame onto innocent people, hence the great portion of fault with such dishonesty.  And, of course, if one lies often, how are the rest of us to know when he or she is telling the truth?  That is a valid point also.

As I wrote, I have no poker face, thus my default status is honesty.  That is the best default policy when dealing with a person in his or her right mind.  That said, the entire truth is not always necessary and proper.  And I suspect, given my absence of a poker face, that my socially polite white lies have been transparent.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

APRIL 22, 2014 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF GENE BRITTON, EPISCOPAL PRIEST

THE FEAST OF CESAR CHAVEZ, LABOR UNION LEADER

THE FEAST OF CHARLES HAMILTON HOUSTON, ATTORNEY

THE FEAST OF SAINT FIDELIS OF SIGMARINGEN, CAPUCHIN FRIAR AND MARTYR

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1 Thes. 5, 22

I.

To fall a victim of evil is the world’s greatest tragedy.  Man was created for high and holy things.  Evil overthrows God’s good designs for man and brings in utter confusion and destruction.  One should thoughtfully determine to avoid it in all its forms.

II.

Avoid a flippant attitude of mind.  It drives away sober, sound thinking and encourages the fool in his folly.

III.

Flee irreverence.  Do not forget that God is holy and we should reverence him.  Never take his name in vain, nor smile when another does.  Profanity is extremely censurable.  There can be no excuse for it.  It plunges one headlong toward destruction, and makes his return difficult.  Would you say it if you knew it were your last utterance?

IV.

Refuse to tell lies.  You have to live with yourself.  A liar is a hurtful, unwholesome companion.  Speak the truth.  Be true.   Let men know your word is your bond.  A simple truth can place error in a very embarrassing position.  Truth is ennobling always.  Resist evil and be spared its blighting curse.

“Cleave to that which is good.”  In so doing there is great reward.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

The Enrichment of Life   8 comments

Enrichment of Life

Above:  The Original Document

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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EDITOR’S NOTE:

I have had to reconstruct some text due to the fraying of the page at the right margin.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

FEBRUARY 3, 2014 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT NICHOLAS KASATKIN, ORTHODOX ARCHBISHOP OF ALL JAPAN

THE FEAST OF SAINT ANSKAR, ROMAN CATHOLIC ARCHBISHOP OF HAMBURG-BREMEN

THE FEAST OF GIOVANNI PIERLUIGI DA PALESTRINA, COMPOSER

THE FEAST OF MILLARD FULLER, FOUNDER OF HABITAT FOR HUMANITY

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1 Cor. 1, 5

see 2 Cor. 8, 7; Rom. 11, 33; Eph. 3, 8; Col. 1, 27

I.

A pastor’s pleasure that his people receive grace from Christ.  He (Christ) came “that they might have live…abundantly.”  “What a wonderful change in my life has been wrought.”

II.

Paul thankful for their enrichment:

1.  In utterance, or speech, knowing what to teach.  Evil thoughts and utterance–charitable conversation no longer given place. But kindness, charitable, brotherly spirit holds sway.  “Love suffereth long and is kind…thinketh no evil.”  “Let the words…and meditations…be acceptable.”–Psalm 19

2.  “In all knowledge of God’s will.”  He opens our eyes to see what once was mysterious and dark.  Now “we behold worldly things in his law.”  The Spirit illumines his word as we study it.  “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path” (Psalm 119,  105).    Religious literature a great blessing.

Such a life increasing in understanding and love more and more.  Paul prayed to this end.  “The Lord make you to increase and abound in love” (1 Thes. 3).  See also 1 Thes. 4, 10:  “We beseech you that ye increase in love more and more.”

III.

The riches of Christ Jesus are unsearchable.  “The riches of grace in Christ Jesus are better than gold.”  They are for us as we press on to appropriate them and so be thereby constantly enriched in our experience.

Let us not fail to grow in grace constantly.  Who does not want to know more of him and extend the greater blessing to others?

More love to thee, O Christ and to all men.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

Christ’s Victory and Ours   14 comments

Christ's Victory and Ours

Above:  Part of the Original Text

Image Source = Kenneth Randolph Taylor

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Acts 2, 24

1 Cor. 15, 57

1 Jno. 5, 4

I.

The death & resurrection of Jesus were in God’s plan.  That he should die for man was necessary to salvation & God willed it.  But to consumate that plan he must live to carry it on.

II.

Hence God raised him up.  It was part of the plan & due to God’s direct intervention.  Acts 3, 15; Rom. 4, 24; 2 Cor. 4, 14; Eph. 1, 20; Col. 2, 12b; 1 Thes. 1. 10; Heb. 13, 20; 1 Peter 1, 21; & text = 10 times it is affirmed.

He was not to be [the] loser in the struggle but victor.  Life is stronger than death.  He submitted to it only to redeem us.  He arose no longer subject to death.  Death was vanquished by him; it is subject to his power.  “Have the keys to death.”–Rev. 1, 18

III.

He lives to give us victory over sin.  By his grace we may resist the devil, “overcome” him.  “He is able to succour them what they are tempted.”  Heb. 2, 18  “To him that overcometh.”  The plan of salvation wrought out by Christ is no failure.  The “gospel is the power of God unto salvation,” see Jude 24.

IV.  

He will give us victory over death.  We too, shall have our Easter morning–Jno. 5, 28.  “All that are in the grace shall come forth.”

Our resurrection body is to be fashioned after his, a spiritual body–Phils. 3, 21.

Redemption is completed in our resurrection and glorification.

Victory!!  “Death is swallowed up in victory”–1 Cor. 15, 54.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

1 Thessalonians   1 comment

1 Thessalonians

Above:  The Book Heading from The New Revised Standard Version:  Catholic Edition (1993)

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Chapter 1:

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2014/01/12/christs-victory-and-ours/

Chapter 3:

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2013/05/27/the-heart-established-by-love/

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/love-the-all-important-thing/

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/the-enrichment-of-life/

Chapter 4:

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2013/05/22/love-the-all-important-thing/

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/the-enrichment-of-life/

Chapter 5:

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2013/04/28/quench-not-the-spirit/

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2014/04/22/abstain-from-evil/

https://taylorfamilypoems.wordpress.com/2014/04/26/life-from-the-dead-or-the-valley-of-dry-bones/

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Brotherly Love Proof of Our Discipleship   4 comments

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EDITOR’S COMMENT:

The Revised Version of 1881, which many have long since forgotten, was part of my great-grandfather’s preaching library.

I, being both a history nerd and one fascinated by the sequence of English Bible translations, know about such things readily.

KENNETH RANDOLPH TAYLOR

JULY 11, 2013 COMMON ERA

THE FEAST OF SAINT BENEDICT OF NURSIA, FATHER OF WESTERN ROMANTICISM

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Jno. 13, 35

1.  Jesus, “having loved his own,…loved them unto the end,” or uttermost (Ch. 13, 1).  So great was his love that he gave himself for them.  Love bound his heart to them and them to him.

2.  “His own” are like him, love him and each other as he loved him.  Discipleship is a question not of external relation but of similarity of character.  No matter what else we have or do, if we have not love we are nothing.  “When he shall be made manifest we shall be like him.”

(a)  “If a man say, I love God and hateth his brother, he is a liar” (1 Jno. 4, 20).  Love to God and man is one and the same thing and same act.

(b)  “We know we have passed out of death unto life because we love the brethren.”  His children love each other and what He loves.  See also Phils. 2, 3 & 2 Thes. 1, 3 (Revised Version).

3.  By this shall men know we are His disciples, seeing we have His Spirit and live a life above the power of this world.  How beautiful is this tie that binds our hearts in Christian love.  This is the “old commandment” he gives us which is ever new.  “Let us not love in word, neither with the tongue; but in deed and truth.”  Then to wash one another’s feet will be easy for us and a joy.

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT

The Heart Established By Love   1 comment

1 Thes. 3, 12-13

He writes to Christians–those who in some measure love God.  He prays for an increase of love.

1.  Love is the one all-inclusive grace.  “The greatest is love.”   No religion where there is no love and no one can become holier than to love supremely.  It is the only grace adequate to the demands of the Christian love.

2.  Hence he prays that they may increase in love.  Though rich in experience they need more love–a recognition of greater needs.  This is Paul’s doctrine of growth in grace.

3.  Love is both subjective and objective.  It is a disposition or experience of the heart.  Not something assumed, to be put on as a cloak, but a real disposition of the soul.  The fruit of the Spirit within & not the pretensions of a hypocrite.  It is objective.  Who loves, loves men. Who does not love men does not love at all.  Impossible in experience & unknown to Holy Spirit to love God and not to love men.  Hence he prays their love may abound–overflow toward men, even as his love toward them.

4.  That they may be established by love unblamable in holiness.  That life may measure up to the required standard of heart & deed.

5.  The means is not the effort, but yielding to the Spirit of love to bear his fruit of love.  “More love to God & man.”

GEORGE WASHINGTON BARRETT