Saturday, August 19, 2017


The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Church at Corinth
Chapter 2:1-5

1 And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of words, or of wisdom, showing unto you the testimony of God.
2 For I esteemed not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.
3 And I was among you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling.
4 Neither stood my word, and my preaching in the enticing speech of man’s wisdom, but in plain evidence of the Spirit and of power.
5 That your faith should not be in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God.

Cross references:

1 Corinthians 2:1 - 1 Corinthians 1:17
1 Corinthians 2:3 - Acts 18:1; 2 Corinthians 4:7
1 Corinthians 2:4 - 1 Corinthians 1:17; 2 Peter1:16

Brethren:

In the above verses, we read a re-emphasis made by Paul to the Corinthians that he had come only to preach the Gospel of Christ. That Gospel was being simply stated, and without beguiling words that would seduce men's minds, as was done by the Greek philosophers. But with the simplicity of God's wisdom. Said Gospel was that God had redeemed man to Himself by the sacrifice and crucifixion of His only Son; Jesus Christ.


Friday, August 18, 2017


The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Church at Corinth
Chapter 1:30

30 But ye are of him in Christ Jesus, who of God is made unto us wisdom and righteousness, and sanctification, and redemption.

Cross references:
Jeremiah 33:5, 36:16; Philippians 3:9

Brethren:

In yesterday’s reading, it was written that man’s wisdom is nothing compared to the wisdom that is, and from God.

In the verse that precedes today's study, we find that no man should glory in his wisdom, (mankind's), for it brings, and profits us nothing. (Read also Jeremiah 9:23-24)

Today, we read that through Christ Jesus we find the wisdom that is of God. The sacrifice that He made for us, brings us the wisdom, this to say, the revelation, of God's plan for salvation. It brings us righteousness, which is now acceptable to God. For we cannot obtain righteousness on our own. This same righteousness brings us sanctification, thereby setting us apart from the world, and making us inclusive in His coming Kingdom. Finally, all of the above brings to us redemption, that is by His grace and mercy.

The object of the apostle is to show that man of himself possesses no good, that whatever he has comes from God, and from God only through Christ.

Even the good which you possess is granted by God, for it is by and through him that Christ Jesus comes, and all the blessings of the Gospel dispensation. As being the author of that evangelical wisdom which far excels the wisdom of the philosopher and the scribe, and even that legal constitution which is called the wisdom of the Jews, (Read Deuteronomy 4:6). Justification, as procuring for us that remission of sins which the law could not give, (Read Galatians 2:21; Galatians 3:21). As procuring for and working in us, not only an external and relative holiness, as was that of the Jews, but true and eternal holiness, (Read Ephesians 4:24), wrought in us by the Holy Spirit. He is the author of redemption, not from the Egyptian bondage, or Babylonian captivity, but from the servitude of Satan, the dominion of sin and death, and from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the sons of God, or the redemption of the body, (Read Romans 8:21, Romans 8:23).” - Adam Clarke


Thursday, August 17, 2017


The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Church at Corinth
Chapter 1:26-28

26 For brethren, you see your calling, how that not many wise men after the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble are called.
27 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise, and God hath chosen the weak things of the world, to confound the mighty things,
28 And vile things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are.

Cross References

Corinthians 1:26 - John 7:48; Romans 11:48

Editor’s thoughts:

Verse 26 - Consider, this is to say take heed and make note of, that we who are just ordinary are the ones that He sends to bring the Gospel of Christ to the world. Did not our Redeemer choose fishermen and others of lower birth to become His first disciples? (Read Mark 3:13-15;)

Verses 27-28 - For our God has deliberately made these selections to prove to those that would be wise in their own minds, that His wisdom, which descends from above, would be of a better stripe to guide us in all of our affairs.

Two things, however, must be observed here; that he was desirous from the example of the Corinthians to confirm the truth of what he had said: and farther, that he designed to admonish them, that they must be entirely divested of pride, if they duly considered the order of things that the Lord had observed in their calling. To put to shame, says he, the wise and noble, and to bring to naught things that are Both expressions are appropriate, for fortitude and wisdom vanish when they are put to shame, but what has an existence requires to be brought to naught By the choosing of the poor, and the foolish, and the ignoble, he means, that God has preferred them before the great, and the wise, and the noble. For it would not have sufficed, for beating down the arrogance of the flesh, if God had placed them all upon a level. Hence, those who appeared to excel he put in the background, in order that he might thoroughly abase them. That man, however, were an arrant fool, who would infer from this, that God has in this manner abased the glory of the flesh, in order that the great and noble might be shut out from the hope of salvation. There are some foolish persons that make this a pretext for not merely triumphing over the great, as if God had cast them off, but even despising them as far beneath them. Let us, however, bear in mind, that this is said to the Corinthians, who, though they had no great distinction in the world, were nevertheless, even without any occasion, puffed up. God, therefore, by confounding the mighty, and the wise, and the great, does not design to elate with pride the weak, the illiterate, and the abject, but brings down all of them together to one level. Let those, therefore, that are contemptible in the eyes of the world, think thus with themselves: “What modesty is called for on our part, when even those that have high honor in the view of the world have nothing left them?” If the effulgence of the sun is obscured, what must become of the stars? If the light of the stars is extinguished, what must become of opaque objects?” The design of these observations is, that those who have been called by the Lord, while of no estimation in the view of the world, may not abuse these words of Paul by pluming their crests, but, on the contrary, keeping in mind the exhortation.” - John Calvin

Thou standest by faith, be not high-minded, but fear


Wednesday, August 16, 2017

The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Church at Corinth
Chapter 1:18-25

18 For that preaching of the cross is to them that perish, foolishness: but unto us, which are saved, it is the power of God.
19 For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will cast away the understanding of the prudent.
20 Where is the wise? where is the Scribe? where is the disputer of this world? hath not God made the wisdom of this world foolishness?
21 For seeing the world by wisdom knew not God in the wisdom of GOD, it pleased God by the foolishness of preaching to save them that believe:
22 Seeing also that the Jews require a sign, and the Grecians seek after wisdom.
23 But we preach Christ crucified: unto the Jews, even a stumbling block, and unto the Grecians, foolishness:
24 But unto them which are called, both of the Jews and Grecians, we preach Christ, the power of God, and the wisdom of God.
25 For the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

Cross references:

1 Corinthians 1:18 - Romans 1:16
1 Corinthians 1:19 - Isaiah 29:14
1 Corinthians 1:22 - Mattew12:38
1 Corinthians 1:24 - Romans 1:4, Colossians 2:3

Editor’s thoughts:

Brethren:

It is written that the fool has said there is no God and likewise they've said, that God will not see, He will not take notice. (Read Psalm 14:1, 53:1 10:11, 94:7)

This is the vaunted and so called wisdom of mankind. We exalt all our earthly knowledge as if it were something of immense value. Yet for all our knowledge, what have we gained? From it, what does it profit us, if it brings us further away from our Creator?

Take note also, that with Wisdom, God founded the universe by the use of His Word. That word, is so powerful, that it has the capacity to fulfill Itself.

The crucified, and risen Savior, Christ Jesus, seems foolish to those that choose not to believe. To them, I say, please take heed friend, for ALL will come before the throne of God on the Day of Judgment. Beware, and be ready to meet your God.



Tuesday, August 15, 2017


The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Church at Corinth
Chapter 1:17

17 For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the Gospel, not with (A)wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.

Cross references:

1 Corinthians 1:17 - 1 Corinthians 2:2, 4, 13; 2 Peter 1:16

Editor’s thoughts:
Herein above, we find that the verse ends one thought, and begins another.

In the first part, we are reading that which refers to the verses preceding seventeen. Paul speaks upon, what we now call denominations. He declares that he had come openly, not to baptize, but to spread, and teach the Gospel of our Saviour, Christ Jesus. Baptism, the end result of such of preaching. One must first hear, and accept the good news before one can be baptized. Additionally, he left that to others. As we shall read later onward in this epistle, Paul goes on to say that one will plant, another will water, but it will be God that gives increase (Read 1 Corinthians 3:5-9). Likewise, it is written in this same epistle that we are all one body of Christ, each with a different function. (Read 1 Corinthians 12;12-26)

Now, in the second part of this verse, he declares that he speaks plainly and simply. Not with words that might beguile one, but one that speaks with the knowledge based on the message of the cross. That message being; Christ died for our sins in order that God might cleanse our sinful natures, and redeem us unto Himself. We are now covered by His grace, granted mercy, restored to righteousness, (not of our own accord), and returned to His kingdom a clean and new creation.

...his sense is, that baptism was not the chief and principal business he was sent about; this was to be done mostly by those preachers of the word who traveled with him, or followed after him: he was not sent so much about this work, but [instead], to preach the Gospel, for which he was most eminently qualified, had peculiar gifts for the discharge of it, and was greatly useful in it. This was what he was rather sent to do than the other, and this ‘not with wisdom of words’. Scholastic divinity, or the art of disputation. He was not sent with, or to preach, with words of man's wisdom, with human eloquence and oratory, with great swelling words of vanity, but in a plain, humble, modest manner; on which account the false teachers despised him, and endeavored to bring his ministry into contempt with others: but this way and manner of preaching he chose for this reason. [This to say], lest men's ears and fancies should be so tickled and pleased with the eloquence of speech, the elegancy of diction, and accuracy of expression, the cadency of words, and beauty of the oration, with the manner, and not with the matter of preaching, and so the true use, end, and design of the doctrine of a crucified Christ be defeated; or lest the success of the ministry should be attributed to the force of enticing words, and the strength and persuasion of oratory, and not to the energy of divine power attending the doctrine of the cross.”
John Gill - Theologian





Monday, August 14, 2017

The First Epistle of Paul the Apostle to the Church at Corinth
Chapter 1:1-9

1 Paul called to be an Apostle of Jesus Christ, through the will of God, and our brother Sosthenes,
2 Unto the Church of God, which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, Saints by calling, with all that call on the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ in every place, both their Lord, and ours:
3 Grace be with you, and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
4 I thank my God always on your behalf for the grace of God, which is given you in Jesus Christ.
5 That in all things ye are made rich in him in all kind of speech, and in all knowledge:
6 As the testimony of Jesus Christ hath been confirmed in you:
7 So that ye are not destitute of any gift: waiting for the appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ.
8 Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.
9 God is faithful, by whom ye are called unto the fellowship of his son Jesus Christ our Lord.

Cross References:
1 Corinthians 1:2 - Acts 15:9; 1 Thessalonians 4:7
1 Corinthians 1:2 - Romans 1:7; Ephesians 1:1; Col. 1:22; 1 Timothy 1:9; Titus 2:3
1 Corinthians 1:2 - 2 Timothy 1:21
1 Corinthians 1:7 - Titus 2:11; Philippians 3:20
1 Corinthians 1:8 - 1 Thessalonians 3:13; 1 Thessalonians 5:23
1 Corinthians 1:9 - 1 Thessalonians 5:24

Editor’s thoughts:

Verses 2-9 - Brethren, we read today, in our new study, the words "sanctified, called, saints, grace, given, enriched and faithful"

These words are all connected to each other. First, God sanctified us, this to say set us apart from the world and all of its carnality. We are now called saints, as a result of that sanctification. Likewise, we are called to serve Him to the best of our abilities, to be His proxies here upon this temporal plain. (Read 1 Peter 2:9)

Second, it is through this grace, as given unto us by God through the blood of Christ Jesus, that we are now set apart. Therefore, we are God's children, brethren to each other, and to our Lord Jesus to whom we now serve. (Read Romans 7:6)

Third, in this, we become enriched with all things that are handed down to us from God, for as is written, all good gifts come from Him. (Read James 1:17).

Finally, He is faithful to fulfill His promises to us. He is not slack in anything promised, as He has said He will do it, so He shall.
(Read 2 Peter 3:9; 1 John 1:9





Sunday, August 13, 2017



A Discourse On Meekness and Quietness of Spirit
(Abridged)
by Matthew Henry
Edited by R. P. Woitowitz Sr.


But let it be the hidden man of the heart, which consisteth in the incorruption of a meek and quiet spirit, which is before God a thing much set by. - 1 Peter 3:4

Meekness and quietness seem to import much the same thing, but the latter having something of metaphor in it, will illustrate the former, and therefore we shall speak of them distinctly.
 
We must be of a meek spirit. Meekness is easiness of spirit: not a sinful easiness to be debauched, as Ephraim's, who willingly walked after the commandment of the idolatrous princes; nor a simple easiness to be imposed upon and deceived, as Rehoboam's, who, when he was forty years old, is said to be young and tender-hearted; but a gracious easiness to be wrought upon by that which is good, as theirs whose heart of stone is taken away and to whom a heart of flesh is given. Meekness accommodates the soul to every occurrence, and so makes a man easy to himself and to all about him. The Latins call a meek man  mansuetuswhich alludes to the taming and reclaiming of creatures wild by nature, and bringing them to be tractable and familiar. (See James 3:7, 8). Man's corrupt nature has made him like the wild ass used to the wilderness, or the swift dromedary traversing her ways. (See Jeremiah 2:23, 24). But the grace of meekness, when that gets dominion in the soul, alters the temper of it, submits it to management; and now the wolf dwells with the lamb, and the leopard lies down with the kid, and a little child may lead them; for enmities are laid aside, and there is nothing to hurt or destroy. (See Isaiah 11:6, 9)

Meekness may be considered with respect both  to God  and  to our brethren;  it belongs to both the tables of the law, and attends upon the first great commandment, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God; as well as the second, which is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself; though its especial reference is to the latter. (See Matthew 22:36-40)

There is meekness towards God, and it is the easy and quiet submission of the soul to his whole will, according as he is pleased to make it known, whether by his word or by his providence.

It is the  silent submission of the soul to the word of Godthe understanding bowed to every divine truth, and the will to every divine precept; and both without murmuring or disputing. The word is then an "engrafted word," when it is received with meekness, that is, with a sincere willingness to be taught, and desire to learn. Meekness is a grace that cleaves the stock, and holds it open, that the word, as a shoot, may be grafted in; it breaks up the fallow ground, and makes it fit to receive the seed; captivates the high thoughts, and lays the soul like white paper under God's pen. When the dayspring takes hold of the ends of the earth, it is said to be turned as clay to the seal. Job 38:14. Meekness does, in like manner, dispose the soul to admit the rays of divine light, which before it rebelled against; it opens the heart, as Lydia's was opened, and sets us down with Mary at the feet of Christ, the learner's place and posture

The promise of teaching is made to the meek, because they are disposed to learn: "the meek he will teach his way." (See Psalm 86:11, Proverbs 9:9). The word of God is gospel indeed, "good tidings to the meek;" they will entertain it and bid it welcome. The "poor in spirit" are evangelized; and Wisdom's alms are given to those that with meekness wait daily at her gates, and like beggars wait at the posts of her doors. (See Proverbs 8:34). The language of this meekness is that of the child Samuel: "Speak, Lord, for thy servant heareth;" and that of Joshua, who, when he was in that high post of honor, giving command to Israel, and bidding defiance to all their enemies—his breast filled with great and bold thoughts—yet, upon the intimation of a message from heaven, thus submits himself to it: "What saith my Lord unto his servant?" and that of Paul—and it was the first breath of the new man—"Lord, what wilt thou have me to do?" and that of Cornelius: "And now we are all here present before God, to hear all things that are commanded thee of God;" and that of the good man I have read of, who, when he was going to hear the word, used to say, "Now let the word of the Lord come; and if I had six hundred necks, I would bow them all to the authority of it." To receive the word with meekness, is to be delivered into it as into a mould: this seems to be Paul's metaphor in Romans 6:17, that "form of doctrine which was delivered you." Meekness softens the wax, that it may receive the impression of the seal, whether it be for doctrine or reproof, for correction or instruction in righteousness. It opens the ear to discipline, silences objections, and suppresses the risings of the carnal mind against the word; consenting to the law that it is good and esteeming all the precepts concerning all things to be right, even when they give the greatest check to flesh and blood.

There is meekness towards our bretren, towards "all men." (See Titus 3:2). Meekness is especially conversant about the affection of anger: not wholly to extirpate and eradicate from the soul the holy indignation of which the Scriptures speak, for that were to quench a coal which sometimes there is occasion for, even at God's altar, and to blunt the edge even of the spiritual weapons with which we are to carry on our spiritual warfare; but its office is to direct and govern this affection, that we may be angry and not sin. (See Ephesians 4:26).
 
Meekness, in the school of the philosophers, is a virtue consisting in a mean between the extremes of rash excessive anger on the one hand, and a defect of anger on the other; a mean which Aristotle confesses it very hard exactly to gain.
 
Meekness, in the school of Christ, is one of the fruits of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22, 23). It is a grace wrought by the Holy Ghost both as a sanctifier and as a comforter in the hearts of all true believers, teaching and enabling them at all times to keep their passions under the conduct and government of religion and right reason. I observe that it is wrought in the hearts of all true believers, because, though there are some whose natural temper is unhappily sour and harsh, yet wheresoever there is true grace, there is a disposition to strive against, and strength in some measure to conquer such a disposition. And though in this, as in other graces, an absolute sinless perfection cannot be expected in this present state, yet we are to labor after it, and press towards it.
 
More particularly, the work and office of meekness is to enable us prudently to govern our own anger when at any time we are provoked, and patiently to bear the anger of others, that it may not be a provocation to us. The former is its office especially in superiors, the latter in inferiors, and both in equals.
 
Meekness teaches us prudently  to govern our own anger  whenever any thing occurs that is provoking. As it is the work of temperance to moderate our natural appetites in things that are pleasing to sense, so it is the work of meekness to moderate our natural passions against those things that are displeasing to sense, and to guide and govern our resentments. Anger in the soul is like mettle in a horse, good if it be well managed. Now meekness is the bridle, as wisdom is the hand that gives law to it, puts it into the right way, and keeps it in an even, steady, and regular pace; reducing it when it turns aside, preserving it in a due decorum, and restraining it and giving it check when at any time it grows headstrong and outrageous, and threatens mischief to ourselves or others. It must thus be held in, like the horse and mule, with bit and bridle, lest it break the hedge, run over those that stand in its way, or throw the rider himself headlong. It is true of anger, as we say of fire, that it is a good servant but a "bad master;" it is good on the hearth, but bad in the hangings. Meekness keeps it in its place, sets banks to this sea, and says, Hitherto thou shalt come, and no further; here shall thy proud waves be stayed.