Archive for March, 2012

The Sermon on the Mount – Matthew 5 through 7 – is one of the most well-known and quoted passages in all of Scripture. But what does it mean? Jesus makes some unusual and even startling statements. The following five books help us get a handle on it. Of course there are more than five good books on Matthew 5-7, but these are a good lace to start. Please add your own, too.

  1. The Sermon on the Mount by James Montgomery Boice.
  2. Christian Counter-Culture by John R.W. Stott.
  3. The Sermon on the Mount: An Evangelical Exposition of Matthew 5-7 by D.A. Carson
  4. The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: Matthew 1-7 by John MacArthur. The section on the Sermon on the Mount is contained within a larger commentary, but MacArthur’s actual commentary would be book-length by itself.
  5. The Sermon on the Mount by Daniel Doriani.



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The sons of Issachar supported David before he officially became king of Israel. God had chosen and anointed David as king to replace Saul, but it hadn’t taken place yet. He was a king in waiting.

Nevertheless, thousands upon thousands of his countrymen came to his aid when he was in Hebron, “to turn the kingdom of Saul to him, according to the word of the Lord” (1 Chronicles 12:23). Men of the tribe of Issachar are listed, too: “Of the sons of Issachar, men who understood the times, with knowledge of what Israel should do, their chiefs were two hundred; and all their kinsman were at their command” (1 Chronicles 12:32).

What is noticeable is what’s missing – no “warriors” in the sense of military men. All of the other tribes contributed warriors ready to fight, but the sons of Issachar provided men who had knowledge, insight, and wisdom. They may have been able to fight as well, but it’s interesting that they alone have the designation of understanding the times and of knowing what Israel should do.

The men of Issachar joined the battle – which they fully supported – by giving what they had to the cause. They had wisdom, insight, and knowledge (and probably good minds for military strategy), not to mention a deep knowledge of and trust in God. They may not have been good with a shield and a spear, but they had other skills that were valuable to the king.

What gifts, talents, and abilities has God given you? Use them – whatever they might be – for God’s glory and the building of His kingdom.

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I had the privilege this of preaching on Genesis 2:16-17 this morning. Here is a summary of my sermon in one sentence: In the garden of Eden, God tested Adam’s obedience to Him (and later Eve’s) by making a covenant with him, gave him commands, and announced consequences for disobedience.

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1 Chronicles 11:10-47 is a list of David’s “mighty men.” These men gave David “strong support” (11:10). They were loyal to him, fought for him, and even died for him.

Uriah the Hittite was one of those men, according to verse 41. That’s why what happened to him is so tragic.

2 Samuel 11 records the series of events: David sees a woman bathing and he lusts after her. After discovering that she is the wife of – you guessed it – Uriah the Hittite, he brings her into the palace and they commit adultery with each other. Then David hatches a scheme to do away with Uriah so he can marry Bathsheba in order to cover up her pregnancy. Uriah proved to be more honorable than David – twice – which brought about David’s succesful plan to kill Uriah. The army pulled away from Uriah when they were in battle which lead to his certain death.

This whole “affair” is an example of what sin does. It takes us further than we ever dreamed of going and costs far more than we ever imagined. Sin can bring us to the point of wanting to get rid of someone who is a “strong supporter.” The wages of sin is death (Rom. 6:23) – literally and figuratively.

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