Ministry of God's Word

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"He that prophesieth speaketh unto men to edification, and exhortation, and comfort." 1Cor 14:3 1 Corinthians 14:3 1 C

edification - strengthen the weak
exhortation - stimulate the weary
comfort - succour the wounded

edification - beautify the people of God
exhortation - build up the church of God
comfort - bind up the sheep of God

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No More's in Hebrews 10

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Believers' Perspective - no more conscience of sins
"For then would they not have ceased to be offered? because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins." Hebrews 10:2

God's Perspective - no more remembrance of sins
"And their sins and iniquities will I remember no more." Hebrews 10:17 (See also Hebrews 8:12)

Christ's Perspective - no more offering of sins
"Now where remission of these is, there is no more offering for sin." Hebrews 10:18

Apostates' Perspective - no more sacrifice of sins
"For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins." Hebrews 10:26

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Faithful Sayings in the Pastorals

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1. Salvation
"This is a faithful saying, and worthy of all acceptation, that Christ Jesus came into the world to save sinners; of whom I am chief." 1 Timothy 1:15

2. Shepherding
"This is a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work." 1 Timothy 3:1

3. Sanctification
"But refuse profane and old wives' fables, and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptation." 1 Timothy 4:7-9

4. Sacrifice
"It is a faithful saying: For if we be dead with Him, we shall also live with Him." 2 Timothy 2:11

5. Service
"This is a faithful saying, and these things I will that thou affirm constantly, that they which have believed in God might be careful to maintain good works. These things are good and profitable unto men." Titus 3:8

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Lovers in the Pastorals

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Lovers of money (1 Timothy 6:10)
Lovers of self (2 Timothy 3:2)
Lovers of pleasures (2 Timothy 3:4)
Lovers of the world (2 Timothy 4:10
Lovers of hospitality and good men (Titus 1:8 )
Lovers of family (Titus 2:4)
Lovers of saints (Philemon 1:7)
Lovers of Christ's appearing (2 Timothy 4:8)
Lovers of God (2 Timothy 3:4)

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Seven Blessedness in Revelation

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1. Observance
"Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand." Rev 1:3

2. Reassurance
"And I heard a voice from heaven saying unto me, Write, Blessed are the dead which die in the Lord from henceforth: Yea, saith the Spirit, that they may rest from their labours; and their works do follow them." Rev 14:13

3. Vigilance
"Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame." Rev 16:15

4. Sustenance
"And he saith unto me, Write, Blessed are they which are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb. And he saith unto me, These are the true sayings of God." Rev 19:9

5. Ascendance
"Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with him a thousand years." Rev 20:6

6. Obedience
"Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book." Rev 22:7

7. Entrance
"Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city." Rev 22:14

Read Part 1, Part 2.

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Christ, First Begotten or Firstborn

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The title "Firstborn" or "First Begotten" is used five times of the Lord Jesus Christ.  It is a special title which denotes priority, position, rank, dignity and honour.  It does not necessarily refer to a beginning by birth but refers always to a manifestation.

1. The Creator of the universe. (Col. 1:15)
2. The Crown of humanity. (Heb 1:6)
3. The Captain of the redeemed. (Rom. 8:29)
4. The Chiefest in the church. (Col. 1:18)
5. The Conqueror of death. (Rev. 1:5)

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The Transfiguration of Christ Part 5

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Read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4.

"And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with Him." Matthew 17:3
"And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Jesus." Mark 9:4
"And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias:" Luke 9:30

Moses is the former of the nation of Israel.
Elijah is the reformer of the nation of Israel.
Christ Jesus is the transformer of the nation of Israel.

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Everlasting Things in Isaiah

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1. Everlasting Burnings (Isa. 33:14)
2. Everlasting Covenant (Isa. 24:5, 55:3, 61:8)
3. Everlasting Excellency (Isa. 60:15)
4. Everlasting God (Isa. 40:28)
5. Everlasting Joy (Isa. 35:10, 51:11, 61:7)
6. Everlasting Kindness (Isa. 54:8)
7. Everlasting Light (Isa. 60:19-20)
8. Everlasting Name (Isa. 56:5, 63:12)
9. Everlasting Salvation (Isa. 45:17)
10. Everlasting Sign (Isa. 55:13)
11. Everlasting Strength (Isa. 26:4)

Related Post : Eternal Things in Hebrews.

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Brief Outline of Jonah

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Jonah 1 Disobedience of Jonah - Storm at sea
Jonah 2 Deliverance of Jonah - Stomach of the great fish
Jonah 3 Declaration of Jonah - Sackcloth of the people
Jonah 4 Displeasure of Jonah - Shadow of the gourd

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Seven Mentions of Grace in Hebrews

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The word "grace" occurs eight times in seven verses of the Epistle to the Hebrews
Hebrews 2:9 - The Grace of God and our Salvation
Hebrews 4:16 - The Throne of Grace and our Succour
Hebrews 10:29 - The Spirit of Grace and our Sanctification
Hebrews 12:15 - The Grace of God and our Strength
Hebrews 12:28 - The Grace of God and our Service
Hebrews 13:9 - The Grace of God and our Stability
Hebrews 13:24 - The Grace of God and Paul's Signature

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Outline of Philemon

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Verse 1-7 : Paul's Greeting and Praise of Philemon
Verse 8-17 : Philemon's Grace and Plea for Onesimus
Verse 18-25 : Onesimus' Guarantee and Pledge of Paul

Key Phrases
"I thank my God" verse 4 - Appreciation
"I beseech thee" verse 10 - Appeal
"I will repay" verse 19 - Assurance

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The Holy Spirit and the Scriptures

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The Old Testament Scriptures were classified into three sections (Law, Prophets and Psalms) by the Lord Jesus Christ. It is interesting to observe how the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews ascribes their authorship to the Holy Spirit of God.

"And He said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the Law of Moses, and in the Prophets, and in the Psalms, concerning Me." Luke 24:44

Law of Moses (Exodus 30:10)
"The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing" Hebrews 9:8

Prophets (Jeremiah 31:33-34)
"Whereof the Holy Ghost also is a witness to us: for after that He had said before, this is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, saith the Lord, I will put my laws into their hearts, and in their minds will I write them; and their sins and iniquities will I remember no more." Hebrews 10:15-17

Psalms (Psalm 95:7-8)
"Wherefore as the Holy Ghost saith, To day if ye will hear His voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation, in the day of temptation in the wilderness" Hebrews 3:7-8

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History and the Son of God

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"God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, Whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by Whom also He made the worlds; Who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high." Hebrews 1:1-3

Before all history, He is the effulgence of Glory and the the image of God.
To the beginning of all history, by Him God made the universe.
Throughout all history, He upholds the universe by the Word of His power.
To the end of all history, He is appointed Heir of all things.
After all history, He is sitting on the right hand of the Majesty on high. (Hebrews 10:12)

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The Transfiguration of Christ Part 4

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Read Part 1, Part 2, Part 3.

"And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with Him." Matthew 17:3
"And there appeared unto them Elias with Moses: and they were talking with Jesus." Mark 9:4
"And, behold, there talked with him two men, which were Moses and Elias:" Luke 9:30

Moses represents the Law and Elijah represents the Prophets. Mark's Gospel presents Elijah before Moses because his Gospel presents Christ as the Servant Prophet.

The Law commands but cannot save.
The Prophets reforms but cannot redeem.
Only Christ can both redeem and save.

The Law has its demands and the Prophets has its promises.
Christ is the fulfilment of the Law (Romans 10:4) and the Prophets (Acts 10:43).

Moses - foreshadow of the Law
Elijah - forecast of the Prophets
Christ Jesus - fullness of redemption

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Three Appearings of Christ

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"For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:" Hebrews 9:24

"For then must He often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the world hath He appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of Himself." Hebrews 9:26

"So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation." Hebrews 9:28

1. Hebrews 9:24 - emphanizō : to shine
- Present (Priest)

2. Hebrews 9:26 - phaneroō : to manifest
- Past (Prophet)

3. Hebrews 9:28 - optomai : to be visible
- Future (King)

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Three Enterings of Christ

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1. Precursor - As our Forerunner
"Whither the Forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec." Hebrews 6:20

2. Propititation - As our Sacrifice
"Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood He entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us." Hebrews 9:12

3. Priest - As our Representative
"For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us:" Hebrews 9:24

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Eternal Things in Hebrews

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1. Eternal Covenant (Hebrews 13:20)
2. Eternal Inheritance (Hebrews 9:15)
3. Eternal Judgment (Hebrews 6:2)
4. Eternal Redemption (Hebrews 9:12)
5. Eternal Salvation (Hebrews 5:9)
6. Eternal Spirit (Hebrews 9:14)

7. Eternal Priesthood (Hebrews 7:28)

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Great Things in Hebrews

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1. Great cloud of witnesses (Hebrews 12:1)
2. Great fight of afflictions (Hebrews 10:32)
3. Great High Priest (Hebrews 4:14)
4. Great man (Hebrews 7:4)
5. Great recompense of reward (Hebrews 10:35)
6. Great Salvation (Hebrews 2:3)
7. Great Shepherd (Hebrews 13:20)

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Better Things in Hebrews

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1. Better Country (Hebrews 11:16)
2. Better Hope (Hebrews 7:19)
3. Better Promises (Hebrews 8:6)
4. Better Resurrection (Hebrews 11:35)
5. Better Sacrifices (Hebrews 9:23)
6. Better Substance (Hebrews 10:34)
7. Better Testament/Covenant (Hebrews 7:22, 8:6)
8. Better Things (Hebrews 6:9, 11:40, 12:24)

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Seven Aspects of the Worthiness of the Son

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"God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by His Son, Whom He hath appointed heir of all things, by Whom also He made the worlds; Who being the brightness of His glory, and the express image of His person, and upholding all things by the word of His power, when He had by Himself purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high." Hebrews 1:1-3

"Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing." Revelation 5:12

1. Riches - Whom He hath appointed heir of all things
2. Wisdom - by Whom also He made the worlds
3. Glory - Who being the brightness of His glory
4. Honour - the express image of His person
5. Strength - upholding all things by the word of His power
6. Blessing - He had by Himself purged our sins
7. Power - sat down on the right hand of the Majesty on high

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How Much More

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A Picture of Prayer
"If a son shall ask bread of any of you that is a father, will he give him a stone? or if he ask a fish, will he for a fish give him a serpent? Or if he shall ask an egg, will he offer him a scorpion? If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children: how much more shall your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to them that ask Him?" Luke 11:11-13

From the human perspective, read about an importunate petitioner and an unwilling provider in Three Friends.
Here from the divine perspective, we have earthly evil providers contrast with the willing heavenly Provider.

Bread (staple), fish (supplement), egg (savoury) sustain and strengthen natural life.
Stone (hard), serpent (harmful), scorpion (hurtful) devastate and destroy life

The Holy Spirit sustains and strengthens spiritual life by His good gifts and graces.

"He that spared not His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, how shall He not with Him also freely give us all things?"
Romans 8:32

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Ask, Seek and Knock

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The Promises of Prayer

"And I say unto you, ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened." Luke 11:9-10

Notice the promise is repeated with the phrase "for every one".

Petition (ask) - Request expressed
Persistence (seek) - Response expected
Perseverance (knock) - Resolve exercised

Notice an increase in energy for the petitioner in each action. Yet there is also an corresponding increase in nearness to the provider.

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Three Loaves

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"And He said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth." Luke 11:5-8

Midnight is a time which portrays events and activities at the crucial hour of the Scripture. It bears a sense of mounting crisis when deadline looms and time is running out.

Lend me
"All we receive from God is lent to us. We are not the owners, but the stewards of God's bounties. We must render an account to Him some day of all that was committed to our trust." August Van Ryn

Three loaves
1. The loaf of faith for the midnight of doubt
2. The loaf of hope for the midnight of despair
3. The loaf of love for the midnight of darkness

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Three Friends

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"And He said unto them, Which of you shall have a friend, and shall go unto him at midnight, and say unto him, Friend, lend me three loaves; For a friend of mine in his journey is come to me, and I have nothing to set before him? And he from within shall answer and say, Trouble me not: the door is now shut, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot rise and give thee. I say unto you, Though he will not rise and give him, because he is his friend, yet because of his importunity he will rise and give him as many as he needeth." Luke 11:5-8

A Parable of Prayer
By continuity, a reluctant friend answers a request
By contrast, how much more a ready and willing God answers our prayers

Three Friends
1. A friend in need
- no rest (sleep needed)
- no food (sustenance needed)
- no cover (shelter needed)

2. A friend indeed (right thing to ask, small trouble to seek, wrong time to knock)
- the necessity to help
- the inability to help
- the possibility for help

3. A friend in bed (who would heed)
- reluctant because of inconvenience
- responded because of importunity

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The Lord's Prayer Part 2

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Read Part 1.

"And He said unto them, When ye pray, say, Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, as in heaven, so in earth. Give us day by day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins; for we also forgive every one that is indebted to us. And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil." Luke 11:2-4

The Pattern of Prayer

Pray as sons - Our Father
Pray as saints - Hallowed be Thy name
Pray as subjects - Thy kingdom come
Pray as servants - Thy will be done
Pray as supplicants - Give us day by day
Pray as sinners - Forgive us our sins
Pray as soldiers - Lead us not into temptation
Pray as sufferers - Deliver us from evil

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Views of the Scripture

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"Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come." 1 Corinthians 10:11

The literal view - all these things happened
The typical view - unto them for ensamples
The spiritual view - they are written for our admonition
The dispensational view - upon whom the ends of the world are come

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The Transfiguration of Christ Part 3

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Read Part 1, Part 2.

"And it came to pass about an eight days after these sayings, He took Peter and John and James, and went up into a mountain to pray. And as He prayed, the fashion of His countenance was altered, and His raiment was white and glistering. And, behold, there talked with Him two men, which were Moses and Elias: who appeared in glory, and spake of His decease which He should accomplish at Jerusalem. But Peter and they that were with Him were heavy with sleep: and when they were awake, they saw His glory, and the two men that stood with Him. And it came to pass, as they departed from Him, Peter said unto Jesus, Master, it is good for us to be here: and let us make three tabernacles; one for Thee, and one for Moses, and one for Elias: not knowing what he said. While he thus spake, there came a cloud, and overshadowed them: and they feared as they entered into the cloud. And there came a voice out of the cloud, saying, This is My beloved Son: hear Him. And when the voice was past, Jesus was found alone. And they kept it close, and told no man in those days any of those things which they had seen." Luke 9:28-36

Peter, John and James - The order of names is different from Matthew's and Mark's accounts. Peter speaks of death, John speaks of resurrection and James speaks of glory.

Moses and Elias spake of His decease
- The decease of Moses was mysterious
- The decease of Elias was miraculous
- The decease of the Lord was not only mysterious and miraculous but was momentous and monumental.

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The Advocacy and Priesthood of Christ

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Advocacy: Christ is the Advocate with the Father (1 John 2:1)
Priesthood : Christ is the High Priest to God (Hebrews 4:14)

Advocacy: Christ is Faithful and Just (1 John 1:9)
Priesthood : Christ is Merciful and Faithful (Hebrews 2:17)

Advocacy: Based on His Death (Romans 5:10, Hebrews 2:9, 1 Peter 3:8, 1 John 2:2)
Priesthood : Based on His Life (Hebrews 7:25)

Advocacy: Past suffering for believers' sins (Hebrews 9:26)
Priesthood : Present sympathy with believers' weaknesses (Hebrews 4:15)

Advocacy: Restores a believer from sin (1 John 1:9)
Priesthood : Keeps a believer from falling (Hebrews 2:18)

Advocacy : Intermittent (1 John 2:1)
Priesthood : Continuous (Hebrews 7:25)

Advocacy : Believers to come humbly before Mercy's Seat
Priesthood : Believers to come boldly before Throne of Grace

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Christ, the Hiding Place

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"Behold, a king shall reign in righteousness, and princes shall rule in judgment. And a man shall be as an hiding place from the wind, and a covert from the tempest; as rivers of water in a dry place, as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land." Isaiah 32:1-2

A king shall reign in righteousness - Christ
wind - cold, tempest - wet, dry place - dry, weary land - heat

Christ, the hiding place
- screen of relief in the cold
- shade of rest in the heat
- shelter of retreat in the wet
- stream of refreshment in the dry

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Starting and Finishing

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"For Demas hath forsaken me, having loved this present world, and is departed unto Thessalonica .... Only Luke is with me. Take Mark, and bring him with thee: for he is profitable to me for the ministry .... Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works." 2 Timothy 4:10,11,14

Luke - began well and ended well
Demas - began well and ended badly
Mark - began badly and ended well
Alexander - began badly and ended badly

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The Lord's Prayer

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"Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen." Matthew 6:9-13

1. Relationship - Our Father which art in heaven
2. Reverence - Hallowed be Thy name
3. Realisation - Thy kingdom come
4. Recognition - Thy will be done in earth
5. Rule - As it is in heaven
6. Reliance - Give us this day our daily bread
7. Remission - And forgive us our debts
8. Reciprocation - As we forgive our debtors
9. Restraint - And lead us not into temptation
10. Rescue - But deliver us from evil
11. Reign - For Thine is the kingdom
12. Right - And the power
13. Radiance - And the glory
14. Result - For ever. Amen

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