II Samuel 14 Continued

21. And the king said to Joab, “All right, I have granted this thing. Go therefore, bring back the young man Absalom.”

We are not told whether or not the king had Joab called before him, or whether Joab was already present when the woman came. We must always remember that when we read of someone having an audience before the king, we are not at all to think of just two people alone in a room. David is in his governmental center, and such conversations took place while David was holding court. Many, many people would have been attending on him. He was not having a private conversation with this woman, nor would he be likely to have such a conversation with anyone but a wife of his, and even then most of his conversations with his wives were probably in the company of others. So it could be that Joab was right there watching this conversation as a member of his court, though his own part in what was going on was hidden up to this point. Of course, it could also be that the king had Joab called before him to give him this answer. We cannot tell for sure. Certainly Joab was waiting to see what would happen as a result of this interview between his agent and the king, whether he was there present or not. Read the rest of this entry »

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I received the following questions:

I will be changing the way I close prayers from now on. Many people say ‘Jesus Christ’. I would prefer ‘Jesus the Christ’ or put the title first and say ‘Christ Jesus’.

Yodh He Vav He, God gave this name to the Israelites to use. Makes me upset that the vowels from adonay were added by the Sopherim. The Jews read it as adonay and we read it as LORD. Much is lost in the rendering of this word. It seems disrespectful to call GOD by some other name than Yod He Waw He. Why would God give them his name and they say ‘but we will not use it’. The only thing that is good about it is that men today cannot corrupt God’s name.

I think the vowels from Adonai are added because no one else knows what vowels to add. For the longest time the vowel marks, added to every other word in the Hebrew manuscripts, were left off of the Name, until no one knew what they should have been. In modern Hebrew, they mark the Yehovah marks, but again that is just from Adonai, not from any real knowledge of how the name is pronounced. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following questions:

We look forward to the next great dispensation as “the kingdom of God.” If the kingdom should come tomorrow, everyone now living would be in the kingdom (at least briefly). Also many would begin to be resurrected into the kingdom to live during the kingdom.

My questions are: Do we have any idea the criteria for a. eliminating those not fit for the kingdom?

b. being resurrected into the kingdom?

c. being judged on Judgment Day? Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 14

1. So Joab the son of Zeruiah perceived that the king’s heart was concerned about Absalom.

Now when this occurs it is noticed by Joab, who was the son of Zeruiah the king’s sister. Joab, as we know, was the king’s nephew and army commander, having obtained that position through his popularity and bravery more than by the desire of David. Joab realizes that the king misses Absalom, and that his heart is turned toward him and he desires to see him once again.

Notice that he is called “the king” in this chapter, never David. Obviously this is a significant thing that we should take note of. When this happens, we are to consider the position itself, and not so much the man holding it. David as a man may have had his own desires in the matter, but David as king should act in ways that are best for his nation. Here David is spoken of exclusively as king, and not as the man David. We will see how David the king treats his exiled son. Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 13 Continued

20. And Absalom her brother said to her, “Has Amnon your brother been with you? But now hold your peace, my sister. He is your brother; do not take this thing to heart.” So Tamar remained desolate in her brother Absalom’s house.

Her full brother Absalom finds out what happened. We do not read that Tamar told him, though she might have done so. No doubt the gossip has gone around, as Amnon so carelessly allowed it to do. Yet however he learned of it, Absalom now knows, and he speaks to his sister, letting her know that he has heard what Amnon her brother has done. Yet his words of “comfort” are hardly helpful. He merely urges her to keep this thing quiet. It is just your brother, he argues; you should not think it is a big deal. Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 13

1. After this Absalom the son of David had a lovely sister, whose name was Tamar; and Amnon the son of David loved her.

Now the trouble God promised as David’s punishment starts. We will see from where this trouble comes, and it will be even as the LORD said: trouble will come on David out of his own household. When we think of it, this only makes sense. When power and thrones are part of the picture, jealousy and murder and other terrible crimes often follow. All one has to do is look at the history of any longstanding dynasty and one will see that this is so. Moreover, David had made this even more likely in his household by basically having rival families. Since he had multiple wives, he therefore was the father of multiple families: one family with one wife being related to but not the same as another family by another wife. Full siblings can have difficulty enough with each other in a royal court, but with half siblings and rival mothers, things can only get worse. David was setting up his family for chaos by the unwise practice of taking so many wives, completely contrary to the LORD’s command to kings. Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 12 Continued

14. However, because by this deed you have given great occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also who is born to you shall surely die.”

Though the LORD has taken away David’s sin, this does not mean that there will not be consequences. Moreover, these consequences must come because David by this deed has given great occasion to the enemies of Yahweh to blaspheme. That is what the current, Hebrew text reads. Yet this is one of the places where the Sopherim, the self-proclaimed “wise ones,” decided to edit Scripture and changed the text from what it originally read. What Nathan actually told David is that he had greatly blasphemed Yahweh. He had indeed caused Yahweh’s enemies to blaspheme, it is true, for David had been identified with Yahweh as His anointed king and therefore as His representative on earth. Anything he did that was amiss, and particularly something as awful and foul as this, would cause these enemies to speak against Yahweh. Yet it is also true that Yahweh was in relationship with David, and David’s every action reflected his attitude towards the One Who had stooped to work with him and love him as Yahweh had done. For him to shove Yahweh behind his back, to spit on His laws and mock His justice, was not just for David to cause others to blaspheme, but also for him to blaspheme Yahweh himself. Read the rest of this entry »

II Samuel 12

1. Then the LORD sent Nathan to David. And he came to him, and said to him: “There were two men in one city, one rich and the other poor.

In His displeasure, the LORD sends Nathan to David. Nathan is the familiar prophet we already read about in chapter 7. He was the one David sent for when he was thinking about the fact that he lived in a settled house and the ark of God was in a temporary tent. David wanted to build a temple for the LORD. Nathan at first spoke his own thought that David should go ahead, but the LORD quickly straightened him out and sent him back to give David the real message. Now, he is the one whom the LORD sends to rebuke David and express to him His displeasure at his sin. Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question from a reader:

I know that I have heard Mr. Sellers say many times that there were “no secret believers in the Acts period”.

I also have heard him say and write that “In the Acts period every believing Israelite became a mediator in some manner.” (SB017) What I am wondering is where specifically are these ideas coming from? Is it Mark 16:17-18, “and these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues; They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover“? Were the “signs that follow them” what made them manifest to everyone else? Did they walk around with some icon of a cross or a star of David floating around above their heads? I know that is a ridiculous thing to say, of course they didn’t have that, but what was it? What if they weren’t actively performing the miraculous feats listed in Mark 16? Suppose they were just walking down the main street, would all passersby know that they were identified with the Lord Jesus Christ simply by observing them? I think I’m misunderstanding something here, although I don’t doubt or deny the claim that “there were no secret believers in the Acts period.” Read the rest of this entry »

I received the following question:

I am studying the Acts 28 position (coming from a Mid acts position). I am studying all I can about the Acts 28 position. As I first want to study essentials, I want to know more about your vision concerning the unbelievers’ destination. I can’t find this information easily on any of the Acts 28 sites. Can you please inform me more concerning this issue?

Hope you can help me in this?

Thanks for your time and help,

Greetings,

I am happy that you are examining the Acts 28 position. Though you do not say whether or not you are leaning toward it or away from it, I do pray that you will give it a fair consideration in the light of Scripture. Read the rest of this entry »