Basics of Bible Interpretation - by Bob Smith

Appendix A. Basic Grammatical Data

Appendix B. Bibliography

1. Books Mentioned in the Text

2. Basic Exegetical Study Books

3. Greek Study Books for the English Reader

4. Greek Study Books for the Greek Reader

5. Hebrew Helps for the English Reader

6. Biblical Introductions and New Testament Harmonies

7. Helps on Figurative Language

8. Helps on Historical and Cultural Backgrounds

9. General Reference Books

10. Commentaries

Appendix C. Study Questions on 2 Timothy by David H. Roper

Appendix D. Sample Outlines

Appendix E. Charts

Appendix A

Basic Grammatical Data

Parts of Speech--Communication through language utilizes words which have been assigned certain functions. This gives us the various types of words which we call the parts of speech.

Noun: names a person, place or thing, e.g. apostle, city, book.

Verb: describes action regarding noun, e.g. read, rejoice, write.

Adjective: describes, limits or qualifies noun, e.g. faithful, great.

Pronoun: used instead of noun, e.g.1, you, he, she, they, it.

Adverb: describes, limits or qualifies verb, e.g. truly, quickly.

Preposition: placed before a noun to relate to other words, e.g. in, to, for, beside, among, with, by.

Conjunction: joins together words, phrases, clauses, e.g. and, but.

These parts of speech are joined together to make a:

Sentence: a group of words expressing a complete thought.

Phrase: a grammatical unit without subject or verb, modifying the sense or the main thought of a clause or sentence.

Clause: consisting of a subject and a predicate expressing the main thought or a dependent or subordinate thought. (More detail on phrases and clauses follows)

Paragraph: containing a block of thought related to one theme.

B. Nouns have Case--(rather a lost feature of English, but not in foreign languages)

Nominative: the subject, e.g. Abraham believed God.

Genitive: possession or description, e.g. the gospel of God.

Dative: indirect object, e.g. preach the gospel to the Gentiles.

Accusative: direct object, e.g. send Timothy.

C. Verbs have:

Person: 1st, 2nd, or 3rd, e.g. I say, you say, he says.

Number: Singular or plural, e.g. I say, we say.

Tense: time relationships

a. Present... I go (or I am going)

b. Past... I went

c. Future... I shall go

d. Present Perfect... I have gone

e. Past Perfect... I had gone

f. Future Perfect... I shall have gone

Voice: relationship of action to subject

a. Active (The subject does the acting) e.g. Timothy taught

b. Passive (The subject is acted upon) e.g. Timothy was taught

Mood: reflecting the attitude of the one acting or speaking

a. Indicative (the mood of declaration) e.g. I will come again.

b. Imperative (the mood of command) e.g. Rejoice always.

c. Subjunctive (the mood of contingency used in conditional clauses, exhortations, and where the outcome is in doubt.) This is almost a lost feature of English, but important in New Testament Greek, e.g. let us go on to maturity.

There are auxiliary verb forms like Participles (verbal adjectives modifying the thought or action of the main verb). They participate in the action, e.g. going, make disciples...teaching them.

D. Consider Clauses

1. There is the main clause, which is a clause that can stand alone and express a complete thought by itself.

2. There are modifying clauses which are subordinate to the main clause and are used to modify, describe or limit the thought of the main clause. Clauses express various forms of modifying thought:

a. CAUSE--because, since, e.g. Matt. 25:40, John 14:19

b. COMPARISON--as, even as, just as, even so, than, e.g. 1 Cor. 4:1, Heb. 4:2, Matt. 23:27, Heb. 1:4

c. Location--where, whence, e.g. Mark 4: 5, Matt. 12:44

d. TIME--before, when, until, while, whenever, e.g. Matt. 19:1, Mark 11:25, John 14:29

e. PURPOSE--that, in order that, that not, lest (aim of the action of the verb) e.g. John 1:7, Matt 7:1, 2 Cor. 1:16, Matt. 6:5

f. RESULT--so, so that, so as to (consequence of the action of the verb) e.g. 1 Cor. 13:2, Mark 1:27, Rom. 15:9 & 7:3

g. EXPLANATION OR CONSENSUS--for, therefore, wherefore, nevertheless, e.g. 2 Pet. 2:4, Phil. 2:9, Rom. 8:1, Heb. 12:1

h. CONDITION--if, e.g. Gal. 5: 18, John 1 :9

E. Notice Prepositional Phrases--Prepositions are generally little words, but they are not without great significance. They express many shades of thought:

1. Direction--up, from, through, out of, into, unto, to, up to, along, down, upon, throughout, beyond, from, around, about, toward.

2. Position--in, by, on, at, among, within, upon, before, over, from, beside, under.

3. Relation--instead of, for, besides, as, for, against, in respect to, after, in the time of, according to, with reference to, after, contrary to, in behalf of, concerning, about, pertaining to.

4. Agency--by, in.

5. Means--through, by means of, with

6. Cause--because of, on account of

7. Association--with

8. Purpose--for the sake of, for the purpose of, for.

Structural Relationships--Also, in our study, it is well to observe some of the other features of language:

1. Look for repeated words, phrases, and ideas which may be a clue to the important thoughts the author had in mind. For example, count the "much more's" in Romans 5.

2. Find relationships between units of expression based on contrast, comparison, repetition, or cause and effect. Look for purpose clauses, usually headed by the words "that," or "in order that." Look for result clauses, usually begun by "so" or "so that" or "in order to."

Here's a pointed example of purpose clauses expressing the aim of the action.

...always carrying about in the body the death (or better, dying) of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. For while we live we are always being given up to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our mortal flesh (2 Cor. 4: 10,11).

The twice-repeated so that the life of Jesus may be manifested in our bodies is clearly the purpose God intends for us.

For more detailed information on grammar consult Braun English Grammar for Language Students, distributed by Ulrick's Books, Inc., 549 East University Avenue, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48104.

Appendix B


1. Books Mentioned in the Text

Stuart Briscoe, All Things Weird and Wonderful (Wheaton: Victor Books, 1977).

Brown, Driver, and Briggs, A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament (New York: Oxford University Press, n.d.).

Eimspahr, Index to Brown, Driver, and Briggs Lexicon (Chicago: Moody Press, n.d.).

E. W. Bullinger, Figures of Speech Used in the Bible (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1968).

Alfred Edersheim, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1962).

Orville J. Nave and S. Maxwell Coder, Nave's Topical Bible (Chicago: Moody Press, 1975).

Aaron Pick, Dictionary of Old Testament Words for English Readers (Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, n.d.).

James Strong, Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible (Waco: Word Books, 1977).

Ray Stedman, The Queen and I (Waco: Word Books, 1978).

Milton S. Terry, Biblical Hermeneutics (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, n.d.).

Thompson's Chain Reference Bible (Indianapolis: B. B. Kirkbride Bible Company, 1934).

R. E. Trench, Notes on the Miracles and Parables of Our Lord (Old Tappan, N.J.: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1953).

Merrill F. Unger, Unger's Bible Dictionary (Chicago: Moody Press, 1957).

W. E. Vine, Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words (Old Tappan, N.J.: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1962).

Oletta Wald, The Joy of Discovery in Bible Study (Minneapolis: Augsburg, 1975)

Fred H. Wight, Manners and Customs of Bible Lands (Chicago: Moody Press, 1953).

A Layman's Guide to Bible Versions and Bible Enjoyment (Philadelphia: Eternity Magazine, 1974).

2. Basic Exegetical Study Books

Yohanan Aharoni and Michael Avi-Yonah, Macmillan Bible Atlas (New York: Macmillan, 1965)

J. D. Douglas, The New Bible Dictionary (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1962).

G. T. Manley, The New Bible Handbook (London: The Inter-Varsity Fellowship, n.d.).

James Strong, Strong's Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible (Waco: Word, 1977).

Merrill F. Unger, Unger's Bible Dictionary (Chicago: Moody Press, 1957).

A good Dictionary of the English language.

3. Greek Study Books for the English Reader

Alfred Marshall, The Interlinear Greek-English New Testament (London: Samuel Bagster and Sons, Ltd., 1959).

Archibald T. Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament (New York: Harper and Row, 1952).

W. E. Vine, Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words (Old Tappan, N.J., 1962).

Kenneth S. Wuest, The Practical Use of the Greek New Testament (Chicago: Moody Press, 1946).

Kenneth S. Wuest, Word Studies from the Greek New Testament for English Readers (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans )

4. Greek Study Books for the Greek Reader

Analytical Greek Lexicon (London: Bagster, n.d.)

W. F. Arndt and F. W. Gingrich, A Greek-English Lexicon: of the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, n.d.).

H. E. Dana and J. R. Mantey, Manual Grammar of the Greek New Testament (New York: Macmillan, 1960).

Englishman's Greek Concordance (London: Bagster, 1903).

E. S. Han, A Parsing Guide to the Greek New Testament (Scottdale, Pa.: Herald Press, 1971) .

Gerhard Kittel and Gerhard Friedrich, Theological Dictionary of the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1974) nine volumes.

William S. LaSor, Handbook of New Testament Greek (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1973).

W. Robertson Nicoll, The Expositor's Greek New Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1961) five volumes.

Joseph H. Thayer, Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament (New York: American Book Co., 1889).

Robert C. Trench, Synonyms of the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1960).

5. Hebrew Helps for the English Reader

G. Johannes Botterweck and Helmer Ringgren, Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1975) .

Brown, Driver, and Briggs, A Hebrew and English Lexicon of the Old Testament (London: Oxford University Press, n.d.).

Eimspahr, Index to Brown, Driver, and Briggs Hebrew Lexicon (Chicago: Moody Press, n.d.).

Carl F. Keil and Franz Delitszch, Commentary on the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, n.d.) ten volumes.

Aaron Pick, Dictionary of Old Testament Words for English Readers (Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications, n.d.).

6. Biblical Introductions and New Testament Harmonies

Donald Guthrie, The New Bible Commentary (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1970).

Roland K. Harrison, Introduction to the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1969).

Archibald T. Robertson, Harmony of the Gospels (New York: Harper and Rowe, 1922).

Merrill C. Tenney, New Testament Survey (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1961).

7. Helps on Figurative Language

E. W. Bullinger, Figures of Speech Used in the Bible (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1968).

G. Campbell Morgan, Parables and Metaphors of Our Lord (Old Tappan, N.J.: Fleming H. Revell Co., 1943).

R. E. Trench, Notes on the Miracles and Parables of Our Lord (Old Tappan, N.J., Fleming H. Revell Co., 1953).

Walter L. Wilson, Dictionary of Bible Types (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1957).

8. Helps on Historical and Cultural Backgrounds

David and Patricia Alexander, Eerdmans' Handbook to the Bible (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1973).

William Barclay, Daily Bible Study series (Philadelphia: Westminster Press, 1960). This series is good on backgrounds but inadequate theologically.

F. F. Bruce, New Testament History (New York: Doubleday and Co., 1972).

Alfred Edersheim, Sketches of Jewish Social Life (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1974).

Everyday Life in Bible Times (Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 1967).

Roland K. Harrison, Old Testament Times (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1969).

Bruce M. Metzger, The New Testament: Its Background, Growth, and Content (New York: Abingdon Cokesbury Press, 1965) .

Merrill C. Tenney, The New Testament Times (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1965).

Merrill F. Unger, Archeology and the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1962).

Merrill F. Unger, Archeology and the Old Testament (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1954).

Howard F. Vos and Charles P. Pfeiffer, Wycliffe Historical Geography of Bible Lands (Chicago: Moody Press, 1967).

9. General Reference Works

James Orr, The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans, 1930). Five volumes.

Merrill C. Tenney, The Zondervan Pictorial Encyclopedia of the Bible (Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House, 1975). Five volumes.

10. Commentaries

It is suggested that the most advantageous way to use commentaries is to seek out the best book you can find at your Christian bookstore on the individual book of the Bible you are studying, using it after you have done your own exegetical study. Then the next time you study or teach that Bible book choose another commentary to augment your own study. This will give you a different author's slant each time you study, and build your library in the process. For example, I used Newell's Romans Verse by Verse (Moody) the first time I studied Romans and found it invaluable. But the next time I studied Romans I used Stifler's The Epistle to the Romans (Moody). The next time through I used Barnhouse's four volume study of Romans, Exposition of Bible Doctrines (Eerdmans).

Each time I did my own independent study, then checked the commentators to see what they had discovered that I had missed. This procedure gives God the first opportunity to instruct my mind and heart, without a human intermediary.

Appendix C

Study Questions on 2 Timothy

by David H. Roper

Introductory Background Study

Read 2 Timothy through twice.

1. What were Paul's circumstances? (Note particularly 4:9-18)

2. What bearing does Paul's situation have on his reason for writing this letter?

3. What can you discern about Timothy's personality from reading this letter?

4. Where was he at the time the letter was written? (There is a clue in the letter).

For additional information on Paul's relationship to Timothy read Acts 16:1-5 and use a concordance to note other passages where Timothy is linked to Paul.

5. What further conclusions can you draw about Timothy?

6. Now look up the entries for Paul and Timothy in a Bible dictionary. What additional facts have you uncovered that you may have overlooked before?

Chapter One

Read Chapter 1 (5-10 times).

1. What are the paragraph divisions in your Bible? Do you agree that the chapter should be divided in this manner? How would you divide the chapter?

2. Verses 1 and 2 are obviously the salutation or introduction to the letter. Salutations to correspondence of the first century generally followed this pattern "A (writer) to B (recipient) greeting." What elements does Paul add that are distinctively Christian? What do these additions tell us about the apostle's ministry?

3. Define (a) Grace (b) Mercy (c) Peace (Use a Bible or English Dictionary). How do they differ?

4. Verses 3-5 contain Paul's word of thanksgiving to God for his friendship with Timothy. What aspects of that relationship caused Paul to give thanks?

5. Read 6-14 again. Note the imperatives (commands). Underscore them in your Bible. The argument in this section revolves around these verbs.

6-14 begins with the clause, "And for this reason..." For what reason? This "reason" is evidently the basis of the commands that follow. What does this fact tell us about the nature of obedience?

6. The first command "kindle afresh" is found in verse 6. What fundamental fact does that metaphor suggest?

7. The "gift of God" referred to in verse 6 is either a spiritual gift (i.e. a divinely given capacity for service, cf. Cor. 12:11; Rom. 12:3-8) or the gift of the Holy Spirit. Which do you think it is? Why? (Use a concordance to see how Paul uses this term. Observe especially the occurrence of this word in the first letter to Timothy. Note also the context of this verse, especially verse 7.)

8. Verse 7 begins with the conjunction "for" indicating that the information in this verse explains the action in verse 6. For what reason then is Timothy to kindle afresh the gift of God.

9. What is the tense of the verb "has (not) given"? What does this tense indicate about the nature of the gift?

10. Define (1) Power (2) Love (3) Discipline (dictionary).

11. The second imperative is found in verse 8. It is stated both negatively ("do not be ashamed") and positively ("join with me in suffering"). Of what was Timothy tempted to be ashamed? Why? (Observe carefully!)

12. Verse 8 begins with another conjunction "Therefore..." indicating the verse states a logical conclusion to the preceding argument. What is the force then of Paul's command? On what basis is Timothy to unashamedly join with Paul in suffering?

13. What relationship does the section 9-11 have to the development of Paul's argument? (At first these verses seem to be disconnected but look again!) Note the phrase "I also suffer...I am not ashamed." Compare with verse 8. This entire section from 8-12 appears to be one unit of thought dealing with shame and suffering, does it not? How does it fit together logically? (Note the occurrence of the term "gospel" in this section. Repeated words or ideas sometimes give you the key to understanding a passage.)

14. What are the elements of the gospel as Paul enumerates them in verses 9 and 10?

15. Verse 12 can be translated in two different ways:

(1) RSV "He is able to guard until that day what has been entrusted to me."

(2) ASV "He is able to guard what I have entrusted to Him until that day."

Both translations are legitimate. The Greek states ambiguously "He is able to guard my commitment until that day."

What is the essential difference in the two translations cited above?

16. What is it that is "entrusted"? Which translation do you consider accurate? Read carefully the immediate context (8-14).

17. The third command is found in verse 13: "Retain the standard of sound words." Compare this translation with other versions What are the "sound words" to which he refers? Is there some thing in the context that will help you understand that phrase?

18. How do you "retain... sound the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus"? What is the meaning of this verse in practical terms?

19. The fourth and final command is found in verse 15, "Guard the treasure." What is the treasure that has been entrusted to Timothy? (Again pay particular attention to the context.)

20. Compare verse 14 with verse 12. What do verses 12 and 14 teach about the nature of human activity? (cp. Phil. 2:13,14)

21. Does verse 14 help you in interpreting the nature of the "gift" in verse 6?

22. Verses 15-18 are a new paragraph. What is the subject of this section?

23. What is the relationship of this paragraph to the one preceding

24. What verb found in verses 15-18 is restated twice in the paragraph 3-14?

25. Who is the subject of the verb in each case?

26. Does this help you to see the relationship of these two paragraphs?

27. What is the region referred to as "Asia" in verse 15? (Refer to a Bible dictionary.)

28. What churches were located there?

29. Why is it significant that "all" had turned away from Paul in Asia?

30. What further information does that give us about Timothy's situation? Compare 2 Timothy 4:16.

31. Who was Onesiphorus? (His name occurs in the New Testament only here and 4:19.)

32. Read the paragraph again for clues to his condition at the time Paul wrote this letter.

33. What do you think happened to him? Why?

34. Now think again! What part does the information contained in verses 15-18 play in Paul's word of encouragement to Timothy?

Chapter Two

Read chapter 2 (5-10 times.)

1. The New American Standard Bible divides the chapter into two paragraphs; 1-13 and 14-26. Do you think this arrangement is valid?

2. Observe the main verbs in chapter 2. You will note again, as in chapter 1, that most of them are commands. Mark the imperatives in your Bible in some conspicuous way.

3. Note that the second word in verse I is the conjunction "therefore." Remember that this term introduces a conclusion or inference (cp. 1:8). The action of the verb is based on some prior fact. On what basis, then, is Timothy to be strong?

4. What further incentive to "be strong" is contained in the verse

5. Why are these two incentives so important in Timothy's case?

6. Verse 2 also begins with a conjunction, "and." What does this connective suggest concerning the action of the two commands in verses one and two?

7. Recall Timothy's nature. What was he naturally inclined to do?

8. How many generations are envisioned in verse 2?

9. What pattern of ministry is established in this verse?

10. What characteristic is Timothy to look for in those to whom he is ministering?

11. Assuming that you "entrust" the truth to one faithful individual each year and equip that person to reach one more each succeeding year and the process continues unbroken for twenty years how many will be reached?

12. The second command in this chapter is found in verse 3, "suffer hardship with me." Read 2:3-13 again. How does Paul develop his argument? Are there any repeated words or ideas that indicate the theme of these verses?

13. Again, what does this teaching suggest about Timothy's natural inclination toward his assignment in Ephesus?

14. Paul uses three illustrative metaphors in this section. What are they and what specific attribute does each one illustrate?

15. Note that in each case there is a responsibility and a reward. What are they?

16. Verse 7 contains a command and a promise that ought to encourage you on in your study!

17. Verse 8 contains another command "Remember Jesus Christ." Why does he insert this statement at this point in the argument?

18. Note the order of the Lord's names. Is this Paul's normal order in this book?

19. (Use a concordance and note occurrences of the names or quickly re-read 2 Timothy.) What does this order suggest about the Lord that would encourage Timothy?

20. What does the designation "descendant of David" add to the argument? Why not "Son of God"?

21. Why is it important to Timothy that he is "risen from the dead"?

22. In verse 9 Paul refers again to his own circumstances. He is imprisoned but the word of God is not, what does he mean?

23. What effect would that statement have on Timothy?

24. According to verse 10, Paul's reason for enduring all things is twofold. The phrase "for this reason" looks back to some fact in verse 10. What is it?

25. The "that" in verse 10 introduces a purpose clause (a purpose clause expresses the aim of the action indicated by the main verb) and supplies a second reason for endurance. What is it?

26. Paul is quoting a portion of an ancient hymn or early liturgical formula in verses 11-13. It is designated "a trustworthy statement" or a word to be believed. How does this hymn develop Paul's argument? What new facts pertaining to suffering hardship are introduced?

27. What incentives and warnings would Timothy receive?

28. And what about us?

29. Note the problem in verses 12 and 13. What is the difference between denying him and proving faithless? (The consequences certainly differ!)

30. The second paragraph in this chapter begins with verse 14. Read verses 14-26 again. What is the theme of this division?

31. How does it differ from 2:1-13?

32. To whom is the reminder and solemn charge in verse 14 addressed (cp. 2:2)?

33. In this paragraph Paul is contrasting two classes of workmen. What are the methods of each class and the results that their methods produce?

34. The crux of this paragraph is verse 15. The approved workman who has no need to be ashamed handles the word of truth accurately. What does that phrase mean? Compare various translations. The Greek actually says "(he) cuts straight to the goal."

35. What is the goal of all biblical instruction? Cp. 2:25; 3:16; 1 Timothy 1:5.

36. Contrast this goal with the results of the disapproved workmen whose methods Paul condemns.

37. Note verse 19. The conjunction "nevertheless" denotes contrast. Paul is contrasting two truths: one found in verse 18, the other in verse 19. What is Paul contrasting?

38. Why would verse 19 particularly encourage Timothy?

39. In verse 19 what two seemingly contradictory principles comprise God's "seal"?

40. To what do the vessels of honor and dishonor correspond in verse 20? (Remember the context!)

41. Note that the New American Standard Bible has placed the word "things" in italics (in verse 21). Most versions use italics to indicate words that are added in the translation to clarify but do not occur in the original language. In this passage the translators want you to know that the pronoun "these" does not refer to the vessels but to something else. Do you agree with their thinking?

42. From what, then, is Timothy to cleanse himself?

43 Verse 22 contains a command to "flee youthful lusts." In English the term lusts almost always refers to sexual matters. The Greek term, however, from which this word is translated means "desires" and is a much broader term referring to almost any sort of strong passion. Now, noting again the context, what are the strong passions that might drive and control young Timothy?

44. What pursuits would serve Timothy better?

45. Define righteousness, faith, love and peace.

46. Are these attributes that Timothy himself should possess or a climate that he should seek in the church?

47. Verse 23 is in contrast with verse 22 ("But"). Does this help you answer the last question?

48. Verses 24-26 provide a look behind the scenes. Why do people oppose the gospel?

49. Who then is the enemy?

50. Does this truth affect your attitude toward those who are in opposition to you?

51. What are the characteristics of God's bondservant?

That's two chapters--now you do the rest!

Appendix D

Sample Outlines

A Song about Man
Psalm 53

A. The Problem Posed v. 1
the folly of godlessness

B. God's Appraisal v. 2, 3
1. He sees v.
2. He judges v. 3

C. God's Question v. 4
Have they no understanding?

D. Man's End--without God v. 5

E. Man's Need v. 6

Compare Psalms 14 and 12, Romans 3:9-18

A Song of Victory
Psalm 60

A. The Desolation of Defeat v. 1-4

1. A sense of rejection by God l

2. Broken defenses. v. 1

3. Insecure footing. l

4. Suffering hard things. v. 2

5. Bewilderment v. 3

B. But--A Plea for Help
Restore us. v. 1
Repair the breaches. v. 2

C. A Ray of Hope v. 4 - 5
1. A rallying point--a banner v. 4
2. A place of deliverance and victory. v. 5

D. God's Word on the Subject v. 6-8
1. Widespread victory declared. v. 6-7
2. Humiliation of the enemy is sure. v. 8

E. But How Can It Be? v. 9-12
1. The enemy forces are imposing. v. 9
2. If God is not with us--we're sunk! v. 10
3 A PRAYER of DEPENDENCE--that does it! v. 11
4. If God Be for Us--Who Can Stand Against Us? v. 12

Compare: Rom. 8:31-39; 2 Cor. 2:14, 3:4-6, 4:7-12, 6:1-10

A Song of Confidence
Psalm 62

A. The Ground of Confidence
1. Salvation from God
2. His character--my rock, my fortress
3. The result--stability, safety

B. The Need for Confidence
1. The character of man
--destructive, unfriendly, lying, deceitful

C. The Source of Hope
1. The SAME GOD of strength and help.
2. My expectation is from Him.
3. So--I remain unshaken
4. In Him--safety and security--I'm with Him!
5. How 'bout you?

D. A False Hope--Man
1. Have you ever weighed your breath?
2. Or counted your money?

E. The Final Word

How do you operate in the light of this?

See 2 Cor. 5:9, Also 1 Cor. 1:23-25; Rom. 1:16; 2 Tim. 1:7; 1 John 4:16-18

A Song of Consolation
Psalm 73

A. A Statement of Fact
God is good to the upright!

B. The Temptation Confronted v. 2-14
Envy of the ungodly. v. 2, 3
1. Their apparent prosperity v. 4-12
2. My pointless purity. v. 13, 14
A clean heart and innocent hands don't pay!

C. The Real Truth v. 15-20
1. Learned in the sanctuary of God. v. 17
a. Where I see their end--slippery places, destroyed, swept away by terrors--a nightmare!

D. True Value Declared
1. I was stupid to think that way.
2. Even when my thoughts are wrong--I'm with you!
a. You hold my hand.
b. You guide me with your counsel.
c. You will receive me into glory.
d. I have you--in heaven.
e. You're all I need on earth.
f. I'm physically failing, but eternally secure in God. v. 26
g. I'm not in the place of those who perish. v. 27
h. My portion--to be near God--my strength and refuge.

That's why I tell about all He does for me!

Secret of a Thankful Heart
Psalm 116

A. The Reason for LOVE V. 1-4
The redeeming grace of God, Who literally "saves our life."

B. The Source of LOVE V. 5, 6
A God Who is:
to keep the simple--save the ones brought low.

C. The Result of Love V. 7-9
1. Rest v. 7, 8
2. A godly walk, abundant life. v. 9

D. The Response of LOVE
1. Keeping the faith.
2. Taking the cup of salvation.
3. Paying our vows.
a. Showing forth life out of death
4. Offering sacrifices of thanksgiving
5. Praising the Lord before everyone

The Prayer of Jehoshaphat
2 Chronicles 20:1-23

I. Background
A. The unholy alliance with Ahab.
B. The crushing defeat at Ramoth-gilead.
The mighty army of Judah defeated--Jehoshaphat escapes with his life
C. Jehoshaphat's rebuke by Jehu, his repentance and reforms.
D. Moab and Ammon attack.

II. Jehoshaphat's Prayer, 2 Chron. 20:3-13
A. Elements of the prayer
1. God's sovereignty over all nations v. 6
2. God's purpose--to give Israel the land. v. 7, 8
3. God's promise to answer their plea for help.
4. God's previous work to spare these enemies.
5. The present dire emergency (Deut. 2) and their helplessness before the enemy. v. 11, 12 We have no might--our eyes are upon thee!
6. The unity of their plea.

III. God's Answer
A. Be not afraid or dismayed--the battle is not yours but God's.
B. They believed the word of God!

IV. The Result
A. Worship and praise.
B. The enemy destroyed himself.
C. Beracah (blessing).

V. The keynote of Jehoshaphat's prayer--Reliance upon God ALONE!
Not friends, counselors, alliances, churches, pastors--all are but "broken reeds" alongside the ALL SUFFICIENT LORD.

We have no might--our eyes are on thee! 20:12

Be not afraid--the battle is the Lord's! 20:15 and 17

Jehoshaphat (Jehovah judges), 2 Chronicles 20

A. Principles of Prayer


1) God's sovereignty.

2) God's purposes.

3 ) God's promise.

4) Our helplessness.

5 ) Our interdependence.

6) It's God's battle--already won!

7) His present word to us.

8) Our place--Reliance on God Alone! Genuine Faith!

B. Typology here:

Who are the enemy forces?

Moab, Ammon, Edomites. All descendants of Esau--Esau pictures the flesh.

God left these people in close proximity to Israel--just as we are constantly confronted with the flesh.

C. How do we deal with the flesh?

1) Remember the victory of the Cross (Rom. 6:6).

2) Pray--by faith claim the victory God promises.

3) Worship--praise the Lord even before the victory is seen.

D. Real Reliance--Dependence Born of Desperation!

1 ) We are POWERLESS--but our eyes are on thee!

2) FEAR NOT--for the battle is not yours but God's!

3) You will not need to fight--stand still and see the victory of the Lord on your behalf!

Brief Summary of Hebrews

I. The Superiority of the Person of Christ 1:1-3

Chapter 1. His deity declared

Chapter 2. His humanity declared
A. Christ greater than prophets
B. Christ greater than angels
C. Christ greater than Moses
D. Christ greater than Joshua

Consider Him...

1. Don't neglect so great salvation!
2. Don't disbelieve--and thus fail to enter into His rest.
3. Be intensely earnest to enter into His Rest--for a) the Word of God reveals our need to our hearts.

b) God knows all about us--we cannot hide.
c) We come to a throne of grace.

II. The Superiority of the Priesthood of Christ 4:14-10:18
A. Christ greater than Aaron 5:1-10:18
Aaron was sinful--Christ is sinless.
Aaronic priests were many--Christ is one.
They died--He lives forever.
They offered animals--He gave Himself.

Christ is the priest of:

Because He is the reality of which the shadow speaks!
The fulfillment of all the types and pictures.

The Appeal
God who spoke in times past--by the prophets--has now spoken IN HIS SON
See that you refuse not Him who speaks!
Don't go back to the old regime--the Law. It points to Christ, our great high priest once the perfect priest and the perfect sacrifice--Who is able to perfect completely those who come to God by Him.

III. The Superiority of Life in Christ
A. Gives boldness, access, nearness, a love relationship, union with Christ as members of His Body
B. Is a Faith relationship with Jesus Christ as the object of faith--the Pioneer/Finisher of our faith.
C. Calls us to Mt. Zion (a place of kingship) not to Mt. Sinai (a place of awesome fear). Calls us to God, and to Jesus, the Mediator of the new covenant.
D. Calls us to a new ALTAR--not the brazen altar of the Temple, but the cross, where the perfect High Priest made the perfect sacrifice--Himself.
E. The Result--The God of peace, who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that Great Shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of an eternal covenant, aims to fully qualify you in every good thing to accomplish His will, to do in us that which is well pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Chapter Headings for Hebrews

1. God speaks--in His Son!

2. The Son Incarnate

3. The Son Over His House

4. The Rest of Faith

5. His Priestly Appointment

6. Two Immutable Things

7. The Change of the Priesthood

8. The Change of the Covenant

9. The Better Sacrifice

10. The Seated Priest

11. The Hall of Fame, Heroes of Faith

12 Mt. Zion--NOT Sinai

13 The Christian's Altar

Application of the Message of Hebrews

God's Purpose--for us:

1. The full assurance of faith. Hebrews 10:22

2. Holding fast our confession of hope. Hebrews 10:23

3 .The exercise of love. Hebrews 10:22-24

Hence, 5 warnings in Hebrews:

1. Pay attention--don't drift--don't neglect so great a salvation. 2:1-3

2. Hear His Voice--don't harden your heart--don't disbelieve.

3. Go on to maturity--don't be a baby forever--don't stop short of receiving your full inheritance. Some have even missed salvation by not going on. 5:11-6: 12

4. Draw near to God in the full assurance of faith--don't reject the person and work of Christ--apart from Him there is only judgment. 10: 17-31

5. Come to Jesus, the Mediator of the new covenant. Don't refuse Him who speaks. The only alternative is the judgment of God. 12: 18-29

For those who are in Christ this book is a message of assurance and security--because of the intercession of our Great High Priest, who ever lives to make intercession for us. Hebrews 7:25 He appeared once to put away sin by the offering of Himself. Hebrews 9:26

He appears now in the presence of God for us.

He shall appear again--apart from the matter of sin--unto salvation (completing that which He has begun in us).

"... He is able to perfect completely those who come unto God by Him..." Hebrews 7:25

For those who have not placed their faith in Christ, Hebrews warns of the peril of their position and exhorts to go on to "the full assurance of faith," by appropriating all that is available in Christ by God's grace.

Appendix E


The following diagrams illustrate some important interpretative premises we do well to heed as we seek to understand God's word.

Interpretative Premises
Chart 1. Context

Chart 2. Setting

Chart 3. Levels of Understanding

The full intent of meaning implanted by God in his revelation of of truth is deeper than our understanding of truth. It is doubtful if anyone fully understands all that God says in his Word. All of us will move to deeper levels of understanding as we grow. Our deeper understanding does not invalidate our previous minimal knowledge.

Conclusion: interpretative dogmatism is unwarranted. We need to grant defenses of our interpretative opinions are unprofitable. We need to grant that our Christian brother may have deeper understanding of the truth than we.

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