Ask Your Preacher
Does Matt 5:13-16 contradict Matt 6:1-4? I get confused with this one.
Dear Perpendicular Passages,
Matt. 5:13-16 deals with living a godly life that is prepared to glorify God; Matt 6:1-4 deals with living a godly live that is prepared to glorify yourself. Matt 5:16 says that our lights should shine, so men can see our good works and glorify God… that means that we must be giving the glory to God and seeking to bring Him honor, even if that leads to us being persecuted for our beliefs and shunned by others (Matt 5:11-12).
On the other hand, Matt 6:1-4 deals with the man who does what is right only when it brings him praise and popularity. That is the life of a hypocrite. Our service to God must be sincere and honest. The people we are in private need to be the same people we are in public – wholly devoted to Christ.
We were having a discussion at work with regards to which day is the Sabbath day, and what we picked up on Google is that Saturday is the Sabbath day, and if so, we would really like to know why it is now on a Sunday and which verse in the Bible states that Saturday is the Sabbath day. Thanks for your time in educating us in the Word of the Lord.
Dear Weekend Wonderer,
Saturday is the Sabbath day… but Christians don’t have to worry about keeping the Sabbath. The word ‘sabbath’ means ‘rest’. The Sabbath day was a day that the nation of Israel was told to rest, stop working, and make holy to the Lord (Ex 31:15). This rule was so strict that a man was once stoned for collecting firewood on Saturday (Num 15:32-36). However, this was a Jewish command, not a Christian one. The Sabbath was part of the Old Testament law – a law that Christians are no longer under (Gal 3:23-25). We are specifically told not to let anyone bind the Sabbath on us (Col 2:16). Christians worship Christ on the first day of the week – Sunday (Acts 20:7, 1 Cor 16:1-2). If you’d like more information on the difference between the Old Testament and the New Testament, we have a video tutorial on the subject here.
What is the big deal about the word "fool" in Ephesians?
Fool For Thought
Dear Fool For Thought,
We are guessing that you are referring to Eph 5:15-17. Eph 5:15 states that we should walk through life in a wise manner because, as Christians, we should realize that we have a very short time here on earth (Eph 5:16) and that what we do with that time has eternal consequences.
A fool doesn’t listen to instruction (Pr 1:7). A wise man heeds God’s Word (Pr 9:9). A ‘fool’ is a person that cannot or will not learn wisdom or act wisely. Eph 5:15-17 explains that we cannot expect to live foolishly and still end up in heaven.
In the parable of the sower, some were sown on the rocky place. They received it with joy, but after a while, they fell back. Why?
On The Rocks
Dear On The Rocks,
Many times, the burdens that we face when we first begin to obey God are the very hardest. In the parable of the sower, Jesus compared it to seed falling upon different types of soil. The seed is the Word of God, and we are the soil. Sometimes people are rocky soil, and the Word can’t take root because we can’t handle the trials of temptation. Sometimes the soil is full of thorns, and the Word gets choked out by the cares and riches of this life. Sometimes the seed falls beside the road, and the devil snatches the Word from our hearts before we even have a chance to grow. And sometimes, the soil is rich and fertile, and the Word takes root and grows into a mighty plant (Lk 8:11-15).
The rocky soil that you are asking about represents that type of person that gets easily excited at the blessings of Christianity but doesn’t have the deep conviction that is needed when trials come. Christ certainly brings blessings into our life, but the Bible also says that we must be prepared to take up our cross, deny ourselves, and follow Him (Lk 9:23). The apostle Paul said that all Christians will face trials and tribulations (Acts 14:22). The Bible way of life brings great joy, but it also comes with great changes and struggles. Without a deep-seated faith, someone won’t have what it takes to weather those storms of life.
Someone told me that 2 Cor 3:14-17 does away with the seventh day Sabbath. They told me that the veil is the Sabbath which was done away with. What is the real meaning of the text?
Not Buying It
Dear Not Buying It,
2 Cor 3 does teach that the Old Law (which would include keeping the Sabbath) is done away with, but the veil doesn’t represent the Sabbath. The key verse for understanding that the Sabbath is done away with is 2 Cor 3:7 which clarifies that all of the Old Law (even the commands engraved on the stones Moses brought down from God) are no longer applicable. The veil that 2 Cor 3:14-17 refers to is the veil that Moses wore over his face after speaking with God, so the Israelites wouldn’t see the shining of his face fade. Ex 34:33-35 tells us that when Moses came out after speaking to God, his face shone. Moses would cover his face, so the Israelites weren’t discouraged by the fading of that shine.
That veil that Moses wore is a picture of the Old Testament law. The Old Testament law was holy, righteous, and good (Rom 7:12), but it was never intended to last forever. The Old Law was a tutor to lead people to Christ, but now that Christ is here, the Old Law has faded and been replaced by Christ’s New Law (Gal 3:23-25).