Sat 28/3/20

Philippians 2:5-11 … THE HUMILIATION AND EXALTATION OF JESUS CHRIST.

Q.1. Why did Paul point the Philippians to the example of Jesus? How did Christ display His humility? – (Phil.2:1-8) =

Q.2. How did God reverse the fortunes of the Saviour? What future plans will God unfold regarding Jesus? – (Phil.2:9-11) =

Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,[a] who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,[b] but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant,[c] being born in the likeness of men. And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. Why did Paul direct the Philippians to the example of Jesus? How did Christ display His humility? – (Phil.2:1-8) = Paul challenged the believers at Philippi to pursue an ‘other’ centred life, by following the example of Jesus (Phil.2:5). He explained about Christ, that – although He existed in the form of God, He did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped but emptied Himself … (Phil.2:6-7). Jesus literally emptied Himself of self, by surrendering the independent exercise of His divine attributes. He was God, but never acted independently. He always acted in submission to His Father. He humbled Himself by becoming a human being, even lower than a servant, then lower still. by dying as a criminal on a cruel cross at the hands of those whom He had made (Phil.2:7-8). He had placed the interests of sinners above His own. The Philippian believers were to follow in His steps (Phil.2:5).

Q.2. How did God reverse the fortunes of the Saviour? What future plans will God unfold regarding Jesus? – (Phil.2:9-11) = As the only sinless Man, it was impossible for Jesus to be held in the grasp of death. Neither was that appropriate, since He is in truth the almighty God! Peter summed it up this way on the Day of Pentecost – 23 this Man, delivered over by the predetermined plan and foreknowledge of God, you nailed to a cross by the hands of godless men and put Him to death. 24 But God raised Him up again, putting an end to the agony of death, since it was impossible for Him to be held in its power (Acts 2:23-24). The Saviour rose, to be acknowledged by believers from generation to generation. However, that is not all: We await a day, predetermined by God when – 10 …  at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and that every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father (Phil.2:10-11). Soon all of heaven and earth will acknowledge Jesus as the Lord of Glory.


(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@oakdenbaptist.org.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009

Fri 27/3/20

Jeremiah 44:1-30 & 45:1-5 … GOD TREATS PEOPLE AND THE NATIONS AS THEY DESERVE.

Q.1. What unfaithful conduct was God going to punish amongst the remaining men and women of Judah? – (Jer.44:1-19) =

Q.2. What prediction and promise did God make regarding Judah and Egypt? – (Jer.44:20-30) =

Q.3. Was God going to treat Baruch in the same way as the remnant of Judah? – (Jer.45:1-5) =

Judgment for Idolatry

44 The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the Judeans who lived in the land of Egypt, at Migdol, at Tahpanhes, at Memphis, and in the land of Pathros, “Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: You have seen all the disaster that I brought upon Jerusalem and upon all the cities of Judah. Behold, this day they are a desolation, and no one dwells in them, because of the evil that they committed, provoking me to anger, in that they went to make offerings and serve other gods that they knew not, neither they, nor you, nor your fathers. Yet I persistently sent to you all my servants the prophets, saying, ‘Oh, do not do this abomination that I hate!’ But they did not listen or incline their ear, to turn from their evil and make no offerings to other gods. Therefore my wrath and my anger were poured out and kindled in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, and they became a waste and a desolation, as at this day. And now thus says the Lord God of hosts, the God of Israel: Why do you commit this great evil against yourselves, to cut off from you man and woman, infant and child, from the midst of Judah, leaving you no remnant? Why do you provoke me to anger with the works of your hands, making offerings to other gods in the land of Egypt where you have come to live, so that you may be cut off and become a curse and a taunt among all the nations of the earth? Have you forgotten the evil of your fathers, the evil of the kings of Judah, the evil of their[a] wives, your own evil, and the evil of your wives, which they committed in the land of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? 10 They have not humbled themselves even to this day, nor have they feared, nor walked in my law and my statutes that I set before you and before your fathers.

11 “Therefore thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will set my face against you for harm, to cut off all Judah. 12 I will take the remnant of Judah who have set their faces to come to the land of Egypt to live, and they shall all be consumed. In the land of Egypt they shall fall; by the sword and by famine they shall be consumed. From the least to the greatest, they shall die by the sword and by famine, and they shall become an oath, a horror, a curse, and a taunt. 13 I will punish those who dwell in the land of Egypt, as I have punished Jerusalem, with the sword, with famine, and with pestilence, 14 so that none of the remnant of Judah who have come to live in the land of Egypt shall escape or survive or return to the land of Judah, to which they desire to return to dwell there. For they shall not return, except some fugitives.”

15 Then all the men who knew that their wives had made offerings to other gods, and all the women who stood by, a great assembly, all the people who lived in Pathros in the land of Egypt, answered Jeremiah: 16 “As for the word that you have spoken to us in the name of the Lord, we will not listen to you. 17 But we will do everything that we have vowed, make offerings to the queen of heaven and pour out drink offerings to her, as we did, both we and our fathers, our kings and our officials, in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem. For then we had plenty of food, and prospered, and saw no disaster. 18 But since we left off making offerings to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her, we have lacked everything and have been consumed by the sword and by famine.” 19 And the women said,[b] “When we made offerings to the queen of heaven and poured out drink offerings to her, was it without our husbands’ approval that we made cakes for her bearing her image and poured out drink offerings to her?”

20 Then Jeremiah said to all the people, men and women, all the people who had given him this answer: 21 “As for the offerings that you offered in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, you and your fathers, your kings and your officials, and the people of the land, did not the Lord remember them? Did it not come into his mind? 22 The Lord could no longer bear your evil deeds and the abominations that you committed. Therefore your land has become a desolation and a waste and a curse, without inhabitant, as it is this day. 23 It is because you made offerings and because you sinned against the Lord and did not obey the voice of the Lord or walk in his law and in his statutes and in his testimonies that this disaster has happened to you, as at this day.”

24 Jeremiah said to all the people and all the women, “Hear the word of the Lord, all you of Judah who are in the land of Egypt. 25 Thus says the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: You and your wives have declared with your mouths, and have fulfilled it with your hands, saying, ‘We will surely perform our vows that we have made, to make offerings to the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings to her.’ Then confirm your vows and perform your vows! 26 Therefore hear the word of the Lord, all you of Judah who dwell in the land of Egypt: Behold, I have sworn by my great name, says the Lord, that my name shall no more be invoked by the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, ‘As the Lord God lives.’ 27 Behold, I am watching over them for disaster and not for good. All the men of Judah who are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by famine, until there is an end of them. 28 And those who escape the sword shall return from the land of Egypt to the land of Judah, few in number; and all the remnant of Judah, who came to the land of Egypt to live, shall know whose word will stand, mine or theirs. 29 This shall be the sign to you, declares the Lord, that I will punish you in this place, in order that you may know that my words will surely stand against you for harm: 30 Thus says the Lord, Behold, I will give Pharaoh Hophra king of Egypt into the hand of his enemies and into the hand of those who seek his life, as I gave Zedekiah king of Judah into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, who was his enemy and sought his life.”

Message to Baruch

45 The word that Jeremiah the prophet spoke to Baruch the son of Neriah, when he wrote these words in a book at the dictation of Jeremiah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: “Thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, to you, O Baruch: You said, ‘Woe is me! For the Lord has added sorrow to my pain. I am weary with my groaning, and I find no rest.’ Thus shall you say to him, Thus says the Lord: Behold, what I have built I am breaking down, and what I have planted I am plucking up—that is, the whole land. And do you seek great things for yourself? Seek them not, for behold, I am bringing disaster upon all flesh, declares the Lord. But I will give you your life as a prize of war in all places to which you may go.”

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. What unfaithful conduct amongst the remaining men and women of Judah was God going to punish? – (Jer.44:1-19) = God delivered a message through Jeremiah – to the Jews living in the land of Egypt … (Jer.44:1). He condemned these fugitives from Judah and stated about them – because of their wickedness which they committed so as to provoke Me to anger by continuing to burn sacrifices and to serve other gods whom they had not known, neither they, you, nor your fathers. Yet I sent you all My servants the prophets, again and again, saying, “Oh, do not do this abominable thing which I hate.” But they did not listen or incline their ears to turn from their wickedness, so as not to burn sacrifices to other gods … but they have not become contrite even to this day, nor have you feared nor walked in My law or My statutes … (Jer.44:3-5, 10). The men and their wives responded to Jeremiah – the message that you have spoken to us in the name of the Lord, we are not going to listen to you! (Jer.44:16). They claimed they were better off – burning sacrifices to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings to her… (Jer.44:18 c.f. Jer.44:15-19). Their idolatry was deliberate and calculating.

Q.2. What prediction and promise did God make regarding Judah and Egypt? – (Jer.44:20-30) = Jeremiah was very certain about the Source of his message. He denounced the Jewish delegation for their idolatry (Jer.44:20-23). With cynicism, he urged them to go ahead and confirm your vows to the queen of heaven (Jer.44:25). Then he added – 26 Nevertheless hear the word of the Lord, all Judah who are living in the land of Egypt, ‘Behold, I have sworn by My great name,’ says the Lord, ‘never shall My name be invoked again by the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, “As the Lord God lives.” 27 Behold, I am watching over them for harm and not for good, and all the men of Judah who are in the land of Egypt will meet their end by the sword and by famine until they are completely gone (Jer.44:26-27). Few would ever return to the land of Judah. Just as Zedekiah had been banished to captivity, so would Pharaoh Hophra, king of Egypt in whom they trusted, be given over to King Nebuchadnezzar.  Furthermore, Jeremiah gave them a sign that they would see this in their own days (Jer.44:28-30).

Q.3. Was God going to treat Baruch in the same way as the remnant of Judah? – (Jer.45:1-5) = Baruch had faithfully supported and written down God’s prophecies given through Jeremiah 18 years previously (Jer.36:1-4, 32).  The people had silenced Baruch. He had felt sorry for himself, and had said – … Ah, woe is me! For the Lord has added sorrow to my pain; I am weary with my groaning and have found no rest (Jer.45:3 c.f. Jer.36:17-18, 26). God understood Baruch’s plight. He told Jeremiah to say – ‘… are you seeking great things for yourself? Do not seek them; for behold, I am going to bring disaster on all flesh,’ declares the Lord, ‘but I will give your life to you as booty in all the places where you may go’ (Jer.45:5). The Lord knows how to care for His own (c.f. Jer.29:11; Heb.6:10).


(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@oakdenbaptist.org.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009

Thurs 26/3/20

Proverbs 15:1-10 … THE WAY TO BLESSING AND TO LOSS AND CONDEMNATION.

Q.1. Why should we watch how we speak? What should we remember before we speak? – (Prov.15:1-4) =

Q.2. How does the reward of the wise compare with the wicked? Does God regard all sacrifices, prayer, and conduct the same? – (Prov.15:5-10) =

A soft answer turns away wrath,
    but a harsh word stirs up anger.
The tongue of the wise commends knowledge,
    but the mouths of fools pour out folly.
The eyes of the Lord are in every place,
    keeping watch on the evil and the good.
A gentle[a] tongue is a tree of life,
    but perverseness in it breaks the spirit.
A fool despises his father’s instruction,
    but whoever heeds reproof is prudent.
In the house of the righteous there is much treasure,
    but trouble befalls the income of the wicked.
The lips of the wise spread knowledge;
    not so the hearts of fools.[b]
The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
    but the prayer of the upright is acceptable to him.
The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord,
    but he loves him who pursues righteousness.
10 There is severe discipline for him who forsakes the way;
    whoever hates reproof will die.

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. Why should we watch how we speak? What should we remember before we speak? – (Prov.15:1-4) = Much damage can be done by the careless use of the tongue – A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up trouble (Prov.15:1). Words can also bless and – the tongue of the wise man makes knowledge beneficial … (Prov.15:2). Words can heal and crush (Prov.15:4). Most importantly, Solomon reminded us that – the eyes of the Lord are in every place watching the evil and the good (Prov.15:3) Jesus reinforced this truth and warned – every careless word that people speak, they shall give an account for it in the day of judgment (Mt.12:36).

Q.2. How does the reward of the wise compare with the wicked? Does God regard all sacrifices, prayer, and conduct the same? – (Prov.15:5-10) = God has placed people in authority  over us, in order to benefit us (Prov.15:5). Solomon observed – Great wealth is in the house of the righteous, but trouble is in the income of the wicked (Prov.15:6 & 10).  God makes a distinction between the righteous and the wicked – the sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but the prayer of the upright is His delight (Prov.15:8). God is does not accept the sacrifices and prayers of the wicked because – the way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but He loves one who pursues righteousness (Prov.15:9).


(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@cityreach.com.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009

Wed 25/3/20

1 Kings 6:1-38 … SOLOMON BUILDS THE HOUSE OF THE LORD.

Q.1. When did Solomon build the temple? What special message did the Lord give to him while he was building the temple? – (1Kgs.6:1-13) =

Q.2. What was to be housed in the inner sanctuary of the temple? How was the Holy of Holies adorned? – (1 Kgs.6:14-22) =

Q.3. Why do you think Solomon overlaid much of the temple with gold? Where and how long did it take to build the temple? – (1 Kgs.6:21-38) =

Solomon Builds the Temple

In the four hundred and eightieth year after the people of Israel came out of the land of Egypt, in the fourth year of Solomon’s reign over Israel, in the month of Ziv, which is the second month, he began to build the house of the Lord. The house that King Solomon built for the Lord was sixty cubits[a] long, twenty cubits wide, and thirty cubits high. The vestibule in front of the nave of the house was twenty cubits long, equal to the width of the house, and ten cubits deep in front of the house. And he made for the house windows with recessed frames.[b] He also built a structure[c] against the wall of the house, running around the walls of the house, both the nave and the inner sanctuary. And he made side chambers all around. The lowest story[d] was five cubits broad, the middle one was six cubits broad, and the third was seven cubits broad. For around the outside of the house he made offsets on the wall in order that the supporting beams should not be inserted into the walls of the house.

When the house was built, it was with stone prepared at the quarry, so that neither hammer nor axe nor any tool of iron was heard in the house while it was being built.

The entrance for the lowest[e] story was on the south side of the house, and one went up by stairs to the middle story, and from the middle story to the third. So he built the house and finished it, and he made the ceiling of the house of beams and planks of cedar. 10 He built the structure against the whole house, five cubits high, and it was joined to the house with timbers of cedar.

11 Now the word of the Lord came to Solomon, 12 “Concerning this house that you are building, if you will walk in my statutes and obey my rules and keep all my commandments and walk in them, then I will establish my word with you, which I spoke to David your father. 13 And I will dwell among the children of Israel and will not forsake my people Israel.”

14 So Solomon built the house and finished it. 15 He lined the walls of the house on the inside with boards of cedar. From the floor of the house to the walls of the ceiling, he covered them on the inside with wood, and he covered the floor of the house with boards of cypress. 16 He built twenty cubits of the rear of the house with boards of cedar from the floor to the walls, and he built this within as an inner sanctuary, as the Most Holy Place. 17 The house, that is, the nave in front of the inner sanctuary, was forty cubits long. 18 The cedar within the house was carved in the form of gourds and open flowers. All was cedar; no stone was seen. 19 The inner sanctuary he prepared in the innermost part of the house, to set there the ark of the covenant of the Lord. 20 The inner sanctuary[f] was twenty cubits long, twenty cubits wide, and twenty cubits high, and he overlaid it with pure gold. He also overlaid[g] an altar of cedar. 21 And Solomon overlaid the inside of the house with pure gold, and he drew chains of gold across, in front of the inner sanctuary, and overlaid it with gold. 22 And he overlaid the whole house with gold, until all the house was finished. Also the whole altar that belonged to the inner sanctuary he overlaid with gold.

23 In the inner sanctuary he made two cherubim of olivewood, each ten cubits high. 24 Five cubits was the length of one wing of the cherub, and five cubits the length of the other wing of the cherub; it was ten cubits from the tip of one wing to the tip of the other. 25 The other cherub also measured ten cubits; both cherubim had the same measure and the same form. 26 The height of one cherub was ten cubits, and so was that of the other cherub. 27 He put the cherubim in the innermost part of the house. And the wings of the cherubim were spread out so that a wing of one touched the one wall, and a wing of the other cherub touched the other wall; their other wings touched each other in the middle of the house. 28 And he overlaid the cherubim with gold.

29 Around all the walls of the house he carved engraved figures of cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, in the inner and outer rooms. 30 The floor of the house he overlaid with gold in the inner and outer rooms.

31 For the entrance to the inner sanctuary he made doors of olivewood; the lintel and the doorposts were five-sided.[h] 32 He covered the two doors of olivewood with carvings of cherubim, palm trees, and open flowers. He overlaid them with gold and spread gold on the cherubim and on the palm trees.

33 So also he made for the entrance to the nave doorposts of olivewood, in the form of a square, 34 and two doors of cypress wood. The two leaves of the one door were folding, and the two leaves of the other door were folding. 35 On them he carved cherubim and palm trees and open flowers, and he overlaid them with gold evenly applied on the carved work. 36 He built the inner court with three courses of cut stone and one course of cedar beams.

37 In the fourth year the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid, in the month of Ziv. 38 And in the eleventh year, in the month of Bul, which is the eighth month, the house was finished in all its parts, and according to all its specifications. He was seven years in building it.

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. When did Solomon build the temple? What special message did the Lord give to him while he was building the temple? – (1Kgs.6:1-13) = Solomon – began to build the house of the Lord … in the four hundred and eightieth year after the sons of Israel came out of the land of Egypt (1 Kgs.6:1). NOTE: This is helpful in calculating the years from the exodus to the third year of Solomon’s reign. The date is corroborated by the apostle Paul, and the LXX (Greek Septuagint version of the Old Testament) that states there were 440 years from the death of Moses to the commencement of the construction of the temple (1 Kgs.6:1 c.f. Deut.34:7; Acts 13:19). We are given the dimensions of the temple (1 Kgs.6:2-10). The builders were careful to comply with God’s instructions about building His house and altar. It was recorded that – the house, while it was being built, was built of stone prepared at the quarry, and there was neither hammer nor axe nor any iron tool heard in the house while it was being built (1 Kgs.6:7 c.f. Exo.20:25). The Word of the Lord came to Solomon before completion. God promised to dwell amongst His people, if they obeyed all God’s commandments  – 12 “Concerning this house which you are building, if you will walk in My statutes and execute My ordinances and keep all My commandments by walking in them, then I will carry out My word with you which I spoke to David your father. 13 I will dwell among the sons of Israel and will not forsake My people Israel (1 Kgs.6:12-13).

Q.2. What was to be housed in the inner sanctuary of the temple? How was the Holy of Holies adorned? – (1 Kgs.6:14-22) = The Most Holy Place was prepared – in order to place there the ark of the covenant of the Lord (1 Kgs.6:19). God had promised to dwell above the mercy seat of the ark, where blood was sprinkled each year by the High Priest on the Day of Atonement (c.f. Exo.25:21-22). Two golden cherubim stood guard over the ark. Solomon – overlaid the inside of the house with pure gold … (1 Kgs.6:21). It was to reflect the glory of the God of Israel.

Q.3. Why do you think Solomon overlaid much of the temple with gold? Where and how long did it take to build the temple? – (1 Kgs.6:21-38) = Gold was the most precious of metals that glowed. It was fitting for much of the temple and its contents to be overlaid by gold, in order to convey the preciousness and glory of God (1 Kgs.6:21-22, 28, 30, 32, 35). Solomon built the temple – in Jerusalem on Mount Moriah, where the Lord had appeared to his father David … on the threshing floor of Ornan the Jebusite (2 Chron.3:1 c.f. Gen.22:2, 11-14). Solomon took 13 years to build his own palace, and 7 years to build the temple of the Lord (1 Kgs.6:38-7:1).


(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@oakdenbaptist.org.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009

Tues 24/3/20

Leviticus 13:29-59 … STOPPING THE SPREAD OF LEPROSY AND MOULDS.

Q.1. How did God put procedures in place to stop the spread of disease? Were all ailments treated the same? (Lev.13:29-46) =

Q.2. What was the point of the guidelines for treating marks and moulds on garments of Israel? – (Lev.13:47-59) =

29 “When a man or woman has a disease on the head or the beard, 30 the priest shall examine the disease. And if it appears deeper than the skin, and the hair in it is yellow and thin, then the priest shall pronounce him unclean. It is an itch, a leprous disease of the head or the beard. 31 And if the priest examines the itching disease and it appears no deeper than the skin and there is no black hair in it, then the priest shall shut up the person with the itching disease for seven days, 32 and on the seventh day the priest shall examine the disease. If the itch has not spread, and there is in it no yellow hair, and the itch appears to be no deeper than the skin, 33 then he shall shave himself, but the itch he shall not shave; and the priest shall shut up the person with the itching disease for another seven days. 34 And on the seventh day the priest shall examine the itch, and if the itch has not spread in the skin and it appears to be no deeper than the skin, then the priest shall pronounce him clean. And he shall wash his clothes and be clean. 35 But if the itch spreads in the skin after his cleansing, 36 then the priest shall examine him, and if the itch has spread in the skin, the priest need not seek for the yellow hair; he is unclean. 37 But if in his eyes the itch is unchanged and black hair has grown in it, the itch is healed and he is clean, and the priest shall pronounce him clean.

38 “When a man or a woman has spots on the skin of the body, white spots, 39 the priest shall look, and if the spots on the skin of the body are of a dull white, it is leukoderma that has broken out in the skin; he is clean.

40 “If a man’s hair falls out from his head, he is bald; he is clean. 41 And if a man’s hair falls out from his forehead, he has baldness of the forehead; he is clean. 42 But if there is on the bald head or the bald forehead a reddish-white diseased area, it is a leprous disease breaking out on his bald head or his bald forehead. 43 Then the priest shall examine him, and if the diseased swelling is reddish-white on his bald head or on his bald forehead, like the appearance of leprous disease in the skin of the body, 44 he is a leprous man, he is unclean. The priest must pronounce him unclean; his disease is on his head.

45 “The leprous person who has the disease shall wear torn clothes and let the hair of his head hang loose, and he shall cover his upper lip[a] and cry out, ‘Unclean, unclean.’ 46 He shall remain unclean as long as he has the disease. He is unclean. He shall live alone. His dwelling shall be outside the camp.

47 “When there is a case of leprous disease in a garment, whether a woolen or a linen garment, 48 in warp or woof of linen or wool, or in a skin or in anything made of skin, 49 if the disease is greenish or reddish in the garment, or in the skin or in the warp or the woof or in any article made of skin, it is a case of leprous disease, and it shall be shown to the priest. 50 And the priest shall examine the disease and shut up that which has the disease for seven days. 51 Then he shall examine the disease on the seventh day. If the disease has spread in the garment, in the warp or the woof, or in the skin, whatever be the use of the skin, the disease is a persistent leprous disease; it is unclean. 52 And he shall burn the garment, or the warp or the woof, the wool or the linen, or any article made of skin that is diseased, for it is a persistent leprous disease. It shall be burned in the fire.

53 “And if the priest examines, and if the disease has not spread in the garment, in the warp or the woof or in any article made of skin, 54 then the priest shall command that they wash the thing in which is the disease, and he shall shut it up for another seven days. 55 And the priest shall examine the diseased thing after it has been washed. And if the appearance of the diseased area has not changed, though the disease has not spread, it is unclean. You shall burn it in the fire, whether the rot is on the back or on the front.

56 “But if the priest examines, and if the diseased area has faded after it has been washed, he shall tear it out of the garment or the skin or the warp or the woof. 57 Then if it appears again in the garment, in the warp or the woof, or in any article made of skin, it is spreading. You shall burn with fire whatever has the disease. 58 But the garment, or the warp or the woof, or any article made of skin from which the disease departs when you have washed it, shall then be washed a second time, and be clean.”

59 This is the law for a case of leprous disease in a garment of wool or linen, either in the warp or the woof, or in any article made of skin, to determine whether it is clean or unclean.

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. How did God put procedures in place to stop the spread of disease? Were all ailments treated the same? (Lev.13:29-46) = The priests were given responsibilities for the religious and medical needs of the people. God gave very specific instructions for treating various ailments and diseases (Leviticus Chapters 13-15). Victims with confirmed leprosy were separated from the rest of the Israelites, and had to live outside the camp – The priest shall surely pronounce him unclean … He shall remain unclean all the days during which he has the infection; he is unclean. He shall live alone; His dwelling shall be outside the camp (Lev.13:44 & 46 c.f. Lev.13:29-31, 40-46). The priests were also given criteria to help them identify other skins abnormalities which were not contagious (Lev.13:38-39). Should a leper see anyone coming near, he was to cry out that he was unclean (Lev.13:45). This was a terrible plight to be in, and illustrated the separation from God that all sinners experience. The story in 2 Kings recorded an incident when God miraculously saved the besieged city of Samaria from the Arameans, by using four lepers who were dwelling outside the city as required by the law (c.f. 2 Kgs.7:1-20).

Q.2. What was the point of the guidelines for treating mildew on garments in Israel? – (Lev.13:47-59) =  Mildew contaminated with leprosy would spread, and cause further disease unless managed properly. The Lord gave the priests clear guidelines on how to treat all garments which were affected by this mildew. If the treatment was unsuccessful, the garments were to be disposed of by burning – This is the law for the mark of leprosy in a garment of wool or linen … or in any article of leather, for pronouncing it clean or unclean (Lev.13:59 c.f. Lev.13:47-59). The priests were God’s agents who had the responsibility of minimising the damage done to His people. What a gracious God He is!   He is Jehovah Rapha – Israel’s Healer (Exo.15:26).


(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@oakdenbaptist.org.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009

Mon 23/3/20

Luke 5:12-26 … JESUS CLAIMS TO BE THE GOD WHO FORGIVES.

Q.1. What does the healing of the leper reveal about Jesus? Did Jesus pursue a healing ministry? – (Lk.5:12-16) =

Q.2. Why did Jesus forgive the healed paralytic? How did the scribes and Pharisees respond to the claim of Jesus? – (Lk.5:17-26) =

Jesus Cleanses a Leper

12 While he was in one of the cities, there came a man full of leprosy.[a] And when he saw Jesus, he fell on his face and begged him, “Lord, if you will, you can make me clean.” 13 And Jesus[b] stretched out his hand and touched him, saying, “I will; be clean.” And immediately the leprosy left him. 14 And he charged him to tell no one, but “go and show yourself to the priest, and make an offering for your cleansing, as Moses commanded, for a proof to them.” 15 But now even more the report about him went abroad, and great crowds gathered to hear him and to be healed of their infirmities. 16 But he would withdraw to desolate places and pray.

Jesus Heals a Paralytic

17 On one of those days, as he was teaching, Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with him to heal.[c] 18 And behold, some men were bringing on a bed a man who was paralyzed, and they were seeking to bring him in and lay him before Jesus, 19 but finding no way to bring him in, because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down with his bed through the tiles into the midst before Jesus. 20 And when he saw their faith, he said, “Man, your sins are forgiven you.” 21 And the scribes and the Pharisees began to question, saying, “Who is this who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins but God alone?” 22 When Jesus perceived their thoughts, he answered them, “Why do you question in your hearts? 23 Which is easier, to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven you,’ or to say, ‘Rise and walk’? 24 But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins”—he said to the man who was paralyzed—“I say to you, rise, pick up your bed and go home.” 25 And immediately he rose up before them and picked up what he had been lying on and went home, glorifying God. 26 And amazement seized them all, and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying, “We have seen extraordinary things today.”

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. What did the healing of the leper reveal about Jesus? Did Jesus pursue a  healing ministry? – (Lk.5:12-16) –  Upon seeing Jesus, the man begged for healing. He was – covered with leprosy … and fell on his face before Jesus and implored Him … Lord, if You are willing, You can make me clean (Lk.5:12).  In spite of doubtlessly being marginalized, this man believed Jesus could heal him of leprosy. Jesus not only healed him … but touched him (Lk.5:13). For years, this man would not have been touched by anyone, apart from other lepers. The incident revealed that Jesus was not just a reckless lawbreaker. He knew what the Scriptures required, and ensured that this was obeyed by the leper (Lk.5:14 c.f. Lev.14:1-10). News of the miracle drew many more  people who were seeking healing. – But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray (Lk.5:16). Jesus was determined to be led by the Father, and to fulfill His greater calling – for the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost (c.f. Lk.19:10).

Q.2. Why did Jesus forgive the healed paralytic? How did the scribes and Pharisees respond to the claim of Jesus? – (Lk.5:17-26) = Luke stated that – the power of the Lord was present for Him to perform healing (Lk.5:17). This was no casual comment. It was  meant to highlight the significance of the incident. Jesus was teaching at the time when the paralysed man was lowered through the roof in front of Him (Lk.5:17-19). Jesus, impressed by the faith of the man’s friends, could have simply healed him, but chose the controversial words – Friend, your sins are forgiven you (Lk.5:20).  The scribes and Pharisees clearly understood the significance of this claim. They were outraged by what they considered to be blasphemy (Lk.5:21). Jesus’ offer of forgiveness would have appeared baseless, unless He could prove it. Anyone could claim to forgive sins. However, a claim to be able to heal would be seen as fraudulent, unless the person actually healed someone. Jesus responded – But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins – He said to the paralytic – I say to you, get up, and pick up your stretcher and go home (Lk.5:24). The man was instantly healed, and straight away gave glory to God, as did all the people, except for the scribes and Pharisees (Lk.5:25-26). Jesus showed to the scribes and Pharisees that He indeed was God in the flesh. His power to heal the paralysed man confirmed His claim that He had the power to forgive sins.


(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@oakdenbaptist.org.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009

Sat 21/3/20

Philippians 1:27-30 & 2:1-4 … PAUL URGES THE PHILIPPIANS TO LIVE IN A WORTHY WAY.

Q.1. How were the Philippians to understand conflict and suffering in their faith journey for Christ? – (Phil.1:27-30) =

Q.2. How are believers to live? Why is it so difficult for us to be likeminded in our pursuit of ministry? – (Phil.2:1-4) =

27 Only let your manner of life be worthy[a] of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of you that you are standing firm in one spirit, with one mind striving side by side for the faith of the gospel, 28 and not frightened in anything by your opponents. This is a clear sign to them of their destruction, but of your salvation, and that from God. 29 For it has been granted to you that for the sake of Christ you should not only believe in him but also suffer for his sake, 30 engaged in the same conflict that you saw I had and now hear that I still have.

Christ’s Example of Humility

So if there is any encouragement in Christ, any comfort from love, any participation in the Spirit, any affection and sympathy, complete my joy by being of the same mind, having the same love, being in full accord and of one mind. Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others.

Suggested Answers:

Q.1. How were the Philippians to understand conflict and suffering in their faith journey for Christ? – (Phil.1:27-30) = Paul had demonstrated how he himself rose above the obstacles in his life of ministry, and also as a prisoner (c.f. Phil.1:12-26). He urged them – only conduct yourselves in a manner worthy of the gospel of Christ … (Phil.1:27). He explained the paradox of trials from the world – … which is a sign of destruction for them, but of salvation for you, and that too, from God (Phil.1:28). In other words, you can avoid opposition by compromise, but it is far better to confirm the reality of your faith by standing true. Like Paul, they had a guaranteed future –  29 For to you it has been granted for Christ’s sake, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for His sake, 30 experiencing the same conflict which you saw in me, and now hear to be in me (Phil.1:29-30). Not even the perfect Saviour was exempted from rejection and suffering, as He told His followers – If the world hates you, you know that it hated Me before it hated you. If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, because of this the world hates you (Jn.15:18-19).

Q.2. How are believers to live? Why is it so difficult for us to be likeminded in our pursuit of ministry? – (Phil.2:1-4) = Selfishness often causes much unhappiness. We have all been given different gifts, personalities, backgrounds and experiences. At times this may make it difficult to maintain harmony and unity. Paul urged the Philippian believers to – … be of the same mind, maintain the same love, be united in spirit, and intent on one purpose (Phil.2:2). However, this does not come naturally or easily.  It is prideful and naïve to think our judgment could not be wrong. It is so easy to think more highly of ourselves than we should. We look after ourselves as top priority (Phil.2:3-4). We must learn to push against our own self-centredness, and become more concerned with the cares,  concerns and interests of others. Paul has given us the Golden Rule in adjustments to others – Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others (Phil.2:3-4). Paul would then go on to show us how …(Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.)

If you have any queries about your readings, check Bible Commentary via sonic light.com  or discuss it with your Real Life Group leader or email paulh@cityreach.com.au

©PaulHoogenraad2009