Author: Matt Sherro

The Tower of Babel

The Tower of Babel

Genesis 11:1-9 (NLT)

11 At one time all the people of the world spoke the same language and used the same words. As the people migrated to the east, they found a plain in the land of Babylonia[a] and settled there.

They began saying to each other, “Let’s make bricks and harden them with fire.” (In this region bricks were used instead of stone, and tar was used for mortar.)Then they said, “Come, let’s build a great city for ourselves with a tower that reaches into the sky. This will make us famous and keep us from being scattered all over the world.”

But the Lord came down to look at the city and the tower the people were building. “Look!” he said. “The people are united, and they all speak the same language. After this, nothing they set out to do will be impossible for them!Come, let’s go down and confuse the people with different languages. Then they won’t be able to understand each other.”

In that way, the Lord scattered them all over the world, and they stopped building the city. That is why the city was called Babel,[b] because that is where the Lordconfused the people with different languages. In this way he scattered them all over the world.

Footnotes:

  1. 11:2 Hebrew Shinar.
  2. 11:9 Or Babylon. Babel sounds like a Hebrew term that means “confusion.”
Using NLT in Bible Study

Using NLT in Bible Study

Since we have decided to make the NLT a main translation, I wanted to share some helpful tips on using NLT in Bible study and getting the most from your time…

 

  1. Always read in a word for word translation first. I admit this may pose a challenge but when you get to step 2 and beyond it will make sense. If you do not have a 2nd Bible, you will find Bible Gateway or Bible Hub to be very helpful. I like to use either ESV or NASB 1st.
  2. Read your selected text a 2nd time in NLT and note any differences you find. Don’t be surprised if your NLT sounds different; it should. It should also feel easier to understand.
  3. Read any footnotes (not study Bible commentary). Footnotes will help you understand why your NLT says what it does. There will be alternate translations and perhaps some context provided.
  4. Look for any references that may have been provided. Scripture always helps you understand Scripture so you will want to look for cross-references.
  5. Consult your resources. Here are a few of the resources I use to understand and interpret Scripture: IVP Bible Background Commentary, MacArthur New Testament Commentary and Study Bible, Guzik’s Commentary (studylight.org), Matthew Henry’s Commentary.

 

Lastly, put your notes together to form your interpretation of Scripture. Pay special attention to anything the text directly or indirectly requires you to do.

 

More will come, Beloved, but for now this is a good start.

Metanoia/Metanoeo/Metamelomai (Repentance/I repent)

Metanoia/Metanoeo/Metamelomai (Repentance/I repent)

This weeks Word Wealth is a triple play looking at repenance, which is the core of the Christian Life…

metanoia (repentance)

Original Word: μετάνοια, ας, ἡ
Part of Speech: Noun, Feminine
Transliteration: metanoia
Phonetic Spelling: (met-an’-oy-ah)
Short Definition: repentance, a change of mind
Definition: repentance, a change of mind, change in the inner man.

 

Here is the verb form:

metanoeó: to change one’s mind or purpose

Original Word: μετανοέω
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: metanoeó
Phonetic Spelling: (met-an-o-eh’-o)
Short Definition: I repent, change my mind
Definition: I repent, change my mind, change the inner man (particularly with reference to acceptance of the will of God), repent.

 

There are 22 occurrences of metanoia and 34 occurrences of metanoeo in the New Testament for a total of no less than 66 mentions of repentance.

 

Looking to Easton’s Bible Dictionary, we learn:

“There are three Greek words used in the New Testament to denote repentance.

(1.) The verb metamelomai is used of a change of mind, such as to produce regret or even remorse on account of sin, but not necessarily a change of heart. This word is used with reference to the repentance of Judas (Matthew 27:3).

(2.) Metanoeo, meaning to change one’s mind and purpose, as the result of after knowledge. This verb, with (3) the cognate noun metanoia, is used of true repentance, a change of mind and purpose and life, to which remission of sin is promised.

Evangelical repentance consists of (1) a true sense of one’s own guilt and sinfulness; (2) an apprehension of God’s mercy in Christ; (3) an actual hatred of sin (Psalm 119:128Job 42:5, 6; 2 Corinthians 7:10) and turning from it to God; and (4) a persistent endeavour after a holy life in a walking with God in the way of his commandments.

The true penitent is conscious of guilt (Psalm 51:4, 9), of pollution (51:5, 7, 10), and of helplessness (51:11109:21, 22). Thus he apprehends himself to be just what God has always seen him to be and declares him to be. But repentance comprehends not only such a sense of sin, but also an apprehension of mercy, without which there can be no true repentance (Psalm 51:1130:4).”

 

Further, ATS Bible Dictionary teaches us:

Repentance

A change of mind, accompanied with regret and sorrow for something done, and an earnest wish that it was undone. Such was the repentance of Juda, Matthew 27:3; and so it is said that Esau found “no place of repentance” in his father Isaac, although he sought it with tears, Hebrews 12:17; that is, Isaac would not change what he had done, and revoke the blessing given to Jacob, Genesis 27:1-46. God is sometimes said to “repent” of something he had done, Genesis 6:6 Jonah 3:9,10; not that he could wish it undone, but that in his providence such a change of course took place as among men would be ascribed to a change of mind. But the true gospel repentance, or “repentance unto life,” is sorrow for sin, grief for having committed it, and a turning away from it with abhorrence, accompanied with sincere endeavors, in reliance on God’s grace and the influences of the Holy Spirit, to live in humble and holy obedience to the commands and will of God. This is that repentance which always accompanies true faith, and to which is promised the free forgiveness of sin through the merits of Jesus Christ, Matthew 4:17 Acts 3:19 11:18 20:12.”

 

 

For additional study, see http://biblehub.com/thayers/3341.htm

On Choosing NLT

On Choosing NLT

Over the last couple years, I have made overtures to change the main translation that I use, and, after talking with several readers of this site, and consulting with my pastor, I have chosen to post all Scripture from the NLT, moving forward. We came to this conclusion for a few reasons:

  • Translated into the English a 6th grade student would use, the NLT is far and away the easiest to understand of the major English translations.
  • Outside the United States (Where most of my readers are located) the NLT is in a statistical dead heat with the NIV in terms of availability. It is vitally important to have a Bible that is accessible to the audience.
  • Faithfully accurate: Because the NLT uses a thought for thought style of translation, the original intent is easily captured.
  • Discipleship results: I do a lot of one-to-one ministry and I am regularly told by disciples that passages make more sense in the NLT, an “I get it now” experience is common.

You will note that these are not “fancy” or sophisticated theological reasons. They are more on the practical side. I still study in a word for word translation but for the purposes of ministering to the faithful brethren, I have found NLT to be the most helpful choice.

Grace to you. May you fall in love with the Word all over again.

 

God Confirms His Covenant

God Confirms His Covenant

Genesis 9:1-17 (NLT)

Then God blessed Noah and his sons and told them, “Be fruitful and multiply. Fill the earth. All the animals of the earth, all the birds of the sky, all the small animals that scurry along the ground, and all the fish in the sea will look on you with fear and terror. I have placed them in your power. I have given them to you for food, just as I have given you grain and vegetables. But you must never eat any meat that still has the lifeblood in it.

“And I will require the blood of anyone who takes another person’s life. If a wild animal kills a person, it must die. And anyone who murders a fellow human must die. If anyone takes a human life, that person’s life will also be taken by human hands. For God made human beings[a] in his own image. Now be fruitful and multiply, and repopulate the earth.”

Then God told Noah and his sons, “I hereby confirm my covenant with you and your descendants, 10 and with all the animals that were on the boat with you—the birds, the livestock, and all the wild animals—every living creature on earth. 11 Yes, I am confirming my covenant with you. Never again will floodwaters kill all living creatures; never again will a flood destroy the earth.”

12 Then God said, “I am giving you a sign of my covenant with you and with all living creatures, for all generations to come. 13 I have placed my rainbow in the clouds. It is the sign of my covenant with you and with all the earth. 14 When I send clouds over the earth, the rainbow will appear in the clouds, 15 and I will remember my covenant with you and with all living creatures. Never again will the floodwaters destroy all life. 16 When I see the rainbow in the clouds, I will remember the eternal covenant between God and every living creature on earth.” 17 Then God said to Noah, “Yes, this rainbow is the sign of the covenant I am confirming with all the creatures on earth.”

Footnotes:

  1. 9:6 Or man; Hebrew reads ha-adam.
The Inductive Three

The Inductive Three

First up in our series on Methodologies of Bible Study are what I call the Inductive Three. These are the three questions at the heart of Inductive Study and indeed, are foundational to expository teaching. They are:

  • What does it say?
  • What does it mean?
  • What do I need to do about it (Sometimes phrased as how does it apply to my life)?

Each of these questions provides critical information for understanding the Bible and growing in the knowledge of the Lord Jesus.

Let’s look at some ways to dig into the Bible using each of the three questions…

 

What does it say?

  • Read the selected portion of Scripture twice. On the second time through, make note of any words or phrases you do not understand.
  • Identify what is happening in the text.
  • Attempt to paraphrase the text.
  • Mark key words and phrases: A key word is one that is essential to the text. Key words and phrases are repeated in order to convey the author’s point or purpose for writing.
  • Make lists: Making lists can be one of the most enlightening things you do as you study. Lists reveal truths and highlight important concepts.
  • Watch for contrasts and comparisons: Contrasts and comparisons paint word pictures to make it easier to remember what you’ve
  • Mark terms of conclusion: Words such as therefore, thus and for this reason indicate that a conclusion or summary is being made.

 

What does it mean?

  • Remember that context rules: The word “context” means that which goes with the text. If you lay the solid foundation of observation, you will be prepared to consider each verse in light of the surrounding verses, the book in which it is found, and the entire Word of God. Ask yourself: Is my interpretation of this passage of Scripture consistent with the theme, purpose, and structure of the book in which it is found? Is it consistent with other Scripture about the same subject? Am I considering the historic and cultural context? Never take a Scripture out of its context to make it say what you want it to say. Discover what the author is saying; don’t add to his meaning.
  • Always seek the full counsel of the Word of God: When you know God’s Word thoroughly, you will not accept a teaching simply because someone has used one or two isolated verses to support it. As you read the Bible more extensively, you will be able to discern whether a teaching is biblical or not. Saturate yourself in the Word of God; it is your safeguard against wrong doctrine.
  • Remember that Scripture will never contradict Scripture: The best interpretation of Scripture is Scripture. Remember, all Scripture is inspired by God. It is God breathed; therefore, Scripture will never contradict itself.
  • Don’t base your convictions on an obscure passage of scripture: An obscure passage is one in which the meaning is not easily understood. Because they are difficult to understand they should not be used as a basis for establishing doctrine.
  • Interpret Scripture literally: God spoke to us that we might know truth. Therefore, take away the Word of God at face value – in it’s natural, normal sense. Look for the clear teaching of Scripture, not a hidden meaning.
  • Look for the single meaning of the passage: Always try to understand what the author had in mind when you interpret a portion of the Bible. Don’t twist verses to support a meaning that is not clearly taught. Unless the author indicates that there is another meaning to what he says, let the passage speak for itself.

 

What do I do about what the text says?

  • Look for whether or not the text demands a specific answer.
  • Ask yourself, “If the author was speaking face to face with me, what would he expect my response to be?”
  • Take any action the Scripture requires
  • Ask the Holy Spirit to guide you into what He expects from you in response to His revealed truth.
Sin, Destruction and Recreation (Story of Noah) Genesis 6-8

Sin, Destruction and Recreation (Story of Noah) Genesis 6-8

Increasing Corruption on Earth

When man began to multiply on the face of the land and daughters were born to them, the sons of God saw that the daughters of man were attractive. And they took as their wives any they chose. Then the Lord said, “My Spirit shall not abide in[a] man forever, for he is flesh: his days shall be 120 years.” The Nephilim[b] were on the earth in those days, and also afterward, when the sons of God came in to the daughters of man and they bore children to them. These were the mighty men who were of old, the men of renown.

The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lordregretted that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him to his heart. So the Lord said, “I will blot out man whom I have created from the face of the land, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens, for I am sorry that I have made them.” But Noah found favor in the eyes of the Lord.

Noah and the Flood

These are the generations of Noah. Noah was a righteous man, blameless in his generation. Noah walked with God. 10 And Noah had three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

11 Now the earth was corrupt in God’s sight, and the earth was filled with violence.12 And God saw the earth, and behold, it was corrupt, for all flesh had corrupted their way on the earth. 13 And God said to Noah, “I have determined to make an end of all flesh,[c] for the earth is filled with violence through them. Behold, I will destroy them with the earth. 14 Make yourself an ark of gopher wood.[d] Make rooms in the ark, and cover it inside and out with pitch. 15 This is how you are to make it: the length of the ark 300 cubits,[e] its breadth 50 cubits, and its height 30 cubits. 16 Make a roof[f] for the ark, and finish it to a cubit above, and set the door of the ark in its side. Make it with lower, second, and third decks. 17 For behold, I will bring a flood of waters upon the earth to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life under heaven. Everything that is on the earth shall die. 18 But I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall come into the ark, you, your sons, your wife, and your sons’ wives with you. 19 And of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every sort into the ark to keep them alive with you. They shall be male and female. 20 Of the birds according to their kinds, and of the animals according to their kinds, of every creeping thing of the ground, according to its kind, two of every sort shall come in to you to keep them alive. 21 Also take with you every sort of food that is eaten, and store it up. It shall serve as food for you and for them.”22 Noah did this; he did all that God commanded him.

Then the Lord said to Noah, “Go into the ark, you and all your household, for I have seen that you are righteous before me in this generation. Take with you seven pairs of all clean animals,[g] the male and his mate, and a pair of the animals that are not clean, the male and his mate, and seven pairs[h] of the birds of the heavens also, male and female, to keep their offspring alive on the face of all the earth. For in seven days I will send rain on the earth forty days and forty nights, and every living thing[i] that I have made I will blot out from the face of the ground.”And Noah did all that the Lord had commanded him.

Noah was six hundred years old when the flood of waters came upon the earth.And Noah and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him went into the ark to escape the waters of the flood. Of clean animals, and of animals that are not clean, and of birds, and of everything that creeps on the ground, two and two, male and female, went into the ark with Noah, as God had commanded Noah. 10 And after seven days the waters of the flood came upon the earth.

11 In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, on the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep burst forth, and the windows of the heavens were opened. 12 And rain fell upon the earth forty days and forty nights. 13 On the very same day Noah and his sons, Shem and Ham and Japheth, and Noah’s wife and the three wives of his sons with them entered the ark, 14 they and every beast, according to its kind, and all the livestock according to their kinds, and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth, according to its kind, and every bird, according to its kind, every winged creature.15 They went into the ark with Noah, two and two of all flesh in which there was the breath of life. 16 And those that entered, male and female of all flesh, went in as God had commanded him. And the Lord shut him in.

17 The flood continued forty days on the earth. The waters increased and bore up the ark, and it rose high above the earth. 18 The waters prevailed and increased greatly on the earth, and the ark floated on the face of the waters. 19 And the waters prevailed so mightily on the earth that all the high mountains under the whole heaven were covered. 20 The waters prevailed above the mountains, covering them fifteen cubits[j] deep. 21 And all flesh died that moved on the earth, birds, livestock, beasts, all swarming creatures that swarm on the earth, and all mankind. 22 Everything on the dry land in whose nostrils was the breath of life died. 23 He blotted out every living thing that was on the face of the ground, man and animals and creeping things and birds of the heavens. They were blotted out from the earth. Only Noah was left, and those who were with him in the ark. 24 And the waters prevailed on the earth 150 days.

The Flood Subsides

But God remembered Noah and all the beasts and all the livestock that were with him in the ark. And God made a wind blow over the earth, and the waters subsided. The fountains of the deep and the windows of the heavens were closed, the rain from the heavens was restrained, and the waters receded from the earth continually. At the end of 150 days the waters had abated, and in the seventh month, on the seventeenth day of the month, the ark came to rest on the mountains of Ararat. And the waters continued to abate until the tenth month; in the tenth month, on the first day of the month, the tops of the mountains were seen.

At the end of forty days Noah opened the window of the ark that he had madeand sent forth a raven. It went to and fro until the waters were dried up from the earth. Then he sent forth a dove from him, to see if the waters had subsided from the face of the ground. But the dove found no place to set her foot, and she returned to him to the ark, for the waters were still on the face of the whole earth. So he put out his hand and took her and brought her into the ark with him. 10 He waited another seven days, and again he sent forth the dove out of the ark. 11 And the dove came back to him in the evening, and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth.12 Then he waited another seven days and sent forth the dove, and she did not return to him anymore.

13 In the six hundred and first year, in the first month, the first day of the month, the waters were dried from off the earth. And Noah removed the covering of the ark and looked, and behold, the face of the ground was dry. 14 In the second month, on the twenty-seventh day of the month, the earth had dried out. 15 Then God said to Noah, 16 “Go out from the ark, you and your wife, and your sons and your sons’ wives with you. 17 Bring out with you every living thing that is with you of all flesh—birds and animals and every creeping thing that creeps on the earth—that they may swarm on the earth, and be fruitful and multiply on the earth.” 18 So Noah went out, and his sons and his wife and his sons’ wives with him. 19 Every beast, every creeping thing, and every bird, everything that moves on the earth, went out by families from the ark.

God’s Covenant with Noah

20 Then Noah built an altar to the Lord and took some of every clean animal and some of every clean bird and offered burnt offerings on the altar. 21 And when the Lord smelled the pleasing aroma, the Lord said in his heart, “I will never again curse[k] the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth. Neither will I ever again strike down every living creature as I have done.22 While the earth remains, seedtime and harvest, cold and heat, summer and winter, day and night, shall not cease.”

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 6:3 Or My Spirit shall not contend with
  2. Genesis 6:4 Or giants
  3. Genesis 6:13 Hebrew The end of all flesh has come before me
  4. Genesis 6:14 An unknown kind of tree; transliterated from Hebrew
  5. Genesis 6:15 A cubit was about 18 inches or 45 centimeters
  6. Genesis 6:16 Or skylight
  7. Genesis 7:2 Or seven of each kind of clean animal
  8. Genesis 7:3 Or seven of each kind
  9. Genesis 7:4 Hebrew all existence; also verse 23
  10. Genesis 7:20 A cubit was about 18 inches or 45 centimeters
  11. Genesis 8:21 Or dishonor
NLT Select Reference Bible

NLT Select Reference Bible

This review was from 2015 but was “lost” as a result of a server failure. It has been recovered and is being shared again for your enjoyment.

 

 

NLT Select Reference Bible Review

On a recent trip to the Philippines, I was invited to take another look at the NLT. While there, the opportunity to review the Tyndale NLT Select Reference Bible was opened to me. The experience of both was, to put it mildly, a most unexpected pleasure.

(A quick disclosure and we will get into the review: Tyndale House Publishers provided a black goatskin NLT Select Reference Bible at no charge in exchange for an honest review. I was not required to provide positive feedback.)

Let’s begin with some official remarks from Tyndale House Publishers:

“The New Living Translation is an authoritative Bible translation rendered faithfully into today’s English from the ancient texts by 90 leading Bible scholars. The NLT’s scholarship and clarity breathe life into even the most difficult-to-understand Bible passages—but even more powerful are stories of how people’s lives are changing as the words speak directly to their hearts.

The NLT translators set out to render the message of the original texts of Scripture into clear, contemporary English. The result was a Bible that is faithful to the ancient texts and eminently readable.”

Now the official product description which can be found at http://www.tyndale.com/Tyndale-Select-NLT-Select-Reference-Edition/9781496404749#.VkAXaYSMCCQ

 

Tyndale Select Bibles are the highest quality bindings available in the New Living Translation. Select Reference Editions are the premier Bibles in the Tyndale Select line. Select Reference Editions deliver God’s enduring word in a fresh, yet timeless, reading experience. Each full-grain leather Bible is meticulously handcrafted with excellence, and Smyth-sewn with the greatest of care to ensure durability, flexibility, and a lay-flat binding.

Handsome editions are available in black or brown full-grain goatskin leather. Goatskin leather covers are edge-lined to maximize the suppleness for a luxuriously soft leather Bible that is a pleasure to hold. Other premium features of the goatskin leather edition include perimeter stitching, two ribbon markers, a gold foil frame around the inside cover, and luxurious art-gilded page edges, revealing red under gold gilding.

The attractive single-column interior of the Select Reference Edition makes this Bible enjoyable to read. The line-over-line setting and top-quality paper maximizes the brightness of the page and minimizes show-through for optimal readability. Other premium interior features include the generous 8.75 font, spacious margins, and over 40,000 cross references. Printed, bound, and meticulously handcrafted at Jongbloed’s premier bindery in the Netherlands, Select Reference Editions are Tyndale’s finest-quality Bibles available in the New Living Translation

Now on to my review:

The Translation

The New Living Translation is, technically, classified as a Dynamic Equivalence Translation but in more common language we would call it a meaning based translation. Much to my surprise, I find myself liking meaning based translations more and more as I grow in ministry.

The NLT was originally intended to be an update to Ken Taylor’s Living Bible Paraphrase of the American Standard Version. However, Tyndale House felt a new translation would be better. (You can read all the details at the Tyndale website). It is translated at a middle school reading level there by making comprehension of the Bible more accessible to a wide audience.

Many of my “conservative” colleagues do not seem to like the NLT, not that I understand why. I can think of nearly a dozen people whose first time reading the entire Bible was in the NLT; I think that is part of the reason for my growing fondness of the NLT. NLT actually holds a special place in my heart because it is the Bible Christ used to draw my wife unto Himself for redemption.

Cover Material

This Bible is available in both goatskin and calfskin, both of which will last you a lifetime. A reader had asked, with regard to another Bible, if goatskin is better than calfskin. Technically speaking, the answer to that would be yes. However, in choosing a Bible, either one is considered to be a premium cover material.

As mentioned earlier, the edition being reviewed, here, is the black goatskin. I have read the reviews from several colleagues and have not seen mention of what kind of goatskin we are using. I will assume (dangerous, I know) that we are being treated to highland goatskin since this is bound by the master craftsmen at Royal Jongbloed in the Netherlands. It is as glorious to the touch as anything I have ever felt. There is a pronounced grain, meaning you can feel the “bumps” in the skin which I much prefer to ironed hides.

Binding

The binding is hand bound and smyth sewn so that the book itself lays flat when opened to any section. Jongbloed has a distinctive spine hinge that is a little stiff when the book first comes out of the box. A number of my colleagues do not like this feature but I, actually, think it makes the Bible a little more special. There is a feeling, when you take a Jongbloed bound Bible out of the box for the first time, that this Bible was crafted just for you by a master artisan and when you get to “break it in” it makes the experience all the more personal. To be sure, the spine loosens up rather quickly and the stiffness becomes no bother.

Why Cover and Binding Matters

For most of my readers, and indeed Christians all over the world, all that they have available is a single Bible, and said Bible might well be the only Bible they have for their entire life and ministry. Cover and Binding should be in your top two deciding factors because they determine how long you will be able to utilize your Bible. As an example, I have a Bible that has been in my family for over 50 years and aside from some scuffs where the Bible was dropped, it is as good today as it was the day it came out of the box. For lifelong use, you want to choose a sewn binding and the highest quality leather that you can find.

What comes in the box?

Aside from the glorious Bible, which is protectively wrapped in black paper, you will find a double sided insert from Tyndale. One one side, there are Bible Care Instructions. This seems like such an obvious inclusion, but you would be surprised at just how many Bibles do not come with this in the box and, as a consequence, how many people damage the spine on their Bibles. On the second side is a little snippet about the design and then the guarantee information. Like all premium Bibles, this is guaranteed for life against failure due to a defective manufacturing process.

The Text Block

Layout

This is a single column paragraph format of which I am, normally, not a fan. However, this time it really works. With no disrespect intend to the Sacred Writ, this feels more like a normal piece of literature. You can easily get lost in the moment while doing your daily reading and take in much larger chunks of the Bible.

References are in the outer margin and I have mixed feelings about this. On the one hand, I am glad to see that the placement was carefully thought out so that the text is not broken up. On the other hand, this is one Bible that screams for a margin wide enough to notate.

The inner margin, often called the gutter, is better in this Bible than in most of the other Bibles on the market today. It is sufficiently large enough to not have the text block curl into it which would cause difficulty reading.

Font, Coloration, Readability

This is the only area where I have a gripe, but it is a legitimate one. The 8.75 font size will be difficult for some to read. I have found that a 9-9.5 font size is the sweet spot. While I can easily read this Bible in most circumstances, a low light setting, such as the one on my bedside table can pose problems.

This is a complete black letter text. I know that red-letter editions have their fans but I do not mind a black letter text. The choice to go completely black letter ensures that if you were to take this into the pulpit you would have an easier time reading it and it also ensures that if you use other colors to annotate, you will have distinctive coloration for your eyes to fixate on.

Paper

The paper is, from what I have read, Indopaque paper with 28gsm and 79% opacity. In English, that simply means that you don’t have that pesky ghosting effect nor will you have bleed through.

In daily use

This Bible has been with me every day since it arrived approximately two and a half weeks ago. It has gone into and out of my laptop bag several times a day, come to church with me, done my daily reading before bed, done some supplemental reading on my lunch break and even found its way into conversations with others.

The NLT Select Reference Bible was quite a surprise to me; with the exception of wide margins, it brought everything I could want into a Bible. There are 40,000 cross references (Scripture interprets Scripture) a 119-page concordance/dictionary combo for study aids, and the NLT itself.

Overall thoughts

I have a confession to make: I did not expect to like this Bible. Sure it is a premium edition and it hits on all my key points. However, previous to my trip to the Philippines, I had more or less dismissed the NLT off hand as being more of a paraphrase. Then, while overseas, reality came along and slapped the taste out of my mouth. I read the NLT again (like it was the first time) and I got excited. Yes, it’s translated to be easy to read but that is part of its charm. You get a very easy to understand translation that doesn’t just invite you to read the Bible but instead invites you to fall in love with the Bible all over again.

Had Tyndale asked my opinion in advance, I might have suggested verse-by-verse for the layout but that might then cause it to lose its attractiveness. I would sum up my thoughts this way: NLT, read it again for the first time.

 

 

Word Wealth: Sanctification

Word Wealth: Sanctification

This week’s Word Wealth is Sanctification
hagiazó: to make holy, consecrate, sanctify

Original Word: ἁγιάζω
Part of Speech: Verb
Transliteration: hagiazó
Phonetic Spelling: (hag-ee-ad’-zo)
Short Definition: I make holy, sanctify
Definition: I make holy, treat as holy, set apart as holy, sanctify, hallow, purify.

Thayer teaches us that sancification is

to purify internally by reformation of soul: John 17:17, 19(through knowledge of the truth, cf. John 8:32); 1 Thessalonians 5:23; 1 Corinthians 1:2 (ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ in the fellowship of Christ, the Holy One); Romans 15:16 (ἐν πνεύματι ἁγίῳimbued with the Holy Spirit, the divine source of holiness); Jude 1:1 (L T Tr WH ἠγαπημένοις (which see)); Revelation 22:11. In general, Christians are called ἡγιασμένοι (cf. Deuteronomy 33:3), as those who, freed from the impurity of wickedness, have been brought near to God by their faith and sanctity, Acts 20:32; Acts 26:18. In 1 Corinthians 7:14ἁγιάζεσθαι is used in a peculiar sense of those who, although not Christians themselves, are yet, by marriage with a Christian, withdrawn from the contamination of heathen impiety and brought under the saving influence of the Holy Spirit displaying itself among Christians; cf. Neander at the passage.

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The First Murder (Genesis 4)

The First Murder (Genesis 4)

Now Adam knew Eve his wife, and she conceived and bore Cain, saying, “I have gotten[a] a man with the help of the Lord.” And again, she bore his brother Abel. Now Abel was a keeper of sheep, and Cain a worker of the ground. In the course of time Cain brought to the Lord an offering of the fruit of the ground, and Abel also brought of the firstborn of his flock and of their fat portions. And the Lord had regard for Abel and his offering, but for Cain and his offering he had no regard. So Cain was very angry, and his face fell. The Lord said to Cain, “Why are you angry, and why has your face fallen? If you do well, will you not be accepted?[b] And if you do not do well, sin is crouching at the door. Its desire is contrary to[c] you, but you must rule over it.”

Cain spoke to Abel his brother.[d] And when they were in the field, Cain rose up against his brother Abel and killed him. Then the Lord said to Cain, “Where is Abel your brother?” He said, “I do not know; am I my brother’s keeper?” 10 And the Lord said, “What have you done? The voice of your brother’s blood is crying to me from the ground. 11 And now you are cursed from the ground, which has opened its mouth to receive your brother’s blood from your hand. 12 When you work the ground, it shall no longer yield to you its strength. You shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth.” 13 Cain said to the Lord, “My punishment is greater than I can bear.[e] 14 Behold, you have driven me today away from the ground, and from your face I shall be hidden. I shall be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.” 15 Then the Lord said to him, “Not so! If anyone kills Cain, vengeance shall be taken on him sevenfold.” And the Lord put a mark on Cain, lest any who found him should attack him. 16 Then Cain went away from the presence of the Lord and settled in the land of Nod,[f] east of Eden.

17 Cain knew his wife, and she conceived and bore Enoch. When he built a city, he called the name of the city after the name of his son, Enoch. 18 To Enoch was born Irad, and Irad fathered Mehujael, and Mehujael fathered Methushael, and Methushael fathered Lamech. 19 And Lamech took two wives. The name of the one was Adah, and the name of the other Zillah. 20 Adah bore Jabal; he was the father of those who dwell in tents and have livestock. 21 His brother’s name was Jubal; he was the father of all those who play the lyre and pipe. 22 Zillah also bore Tubal-cain; he was the forger of all instruments of bronze and iron. The sister of Tubal-cain was Naamah.

23 Lamech said to his wives:

“Adah and Zillah, hear my voice;
    you wives of Lamech, listen to what I say:
I have killed a man for wounding me,
    a young man for striking me.
24 If Cain’s revenge is sevenfold,
    then Lamech’s is seventy-sevenfold.”

25 And Adam knew his wife again, and she bore a son and called his name Seth, for she said, “God has appointed[g] for me another offspring instead of Abel, for Cain killed him.” 26 To Seth also a son was born, and he called his name Enosh. At that time people began to call upon the name of the Lord.

Footnotes:

  1. Genesis 4:1 Cain sounds like the Hebrew for gotten
  2. Genesis 4:7 Hebrew will there not be a lifting up [of your face]?
  3. Genesis 4:7 Or is toward
  4. Genesis 4:8 Hebrew; Samaritan, Septuagint, Syriac, Vulgate add Let us go out to the field
  5. Genesis 4:13 Or My guilt is too great to bear
  6. Genesis 4:16 Nod means wandering
  7. Genesis 4:25 Seth sounds like the Hebrew for he appointed