It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home.

Author Unknown

Saturday, August 12, 2006

My Study Notes: Chapter 5 TO LIVE IS CHRIST

The next day…the chief priests and the Pharisees went to Pilate. Sir, they said, we remember that while he was still alive that deceiver said, After three days I will rise again. So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day.

Matthew 27:62-64

There were three groups within the Judism during the time of Paul

Herodians were influential Jews who supported the dynasty of Herod. Scholars think that Herodians were pro-Hellenistic and endorsed Herod’s promotion of Greek thought and customs in Palestine.

The Sadducees were a small group of very wealthy Jewish leaders.

The Pharisees were the largest and most important of the Jewish groups.
As leaders of the synagogues, they exercised great control over the populace. They were religiously conservative, believing in angels and the Resurrection, unlike the Sadducees.

John the Baptist caused the Pharisees a lot of unease. They didn’t like him from the start.

Luke 7:30 says;
But the Pharisees and experts in the law rejected God’s purpose for themselves, because they had not been baptized by John.

Many of the Pharisees disliked Jesus too. He exposed their self-righteous hearts by eating with sinners, and healing on the Sabbath.

When they confronted Jesus with endless debates of Scripture he left them looking foolish.

Nicodemus was a Pharisee and a member of the Jewish ruling council, He came to Jesus obviously representing a number of Pharisees, because John 3 :2 says, “ we know you are a teacher who has come from God.

John 12:42 tells us that many even among the leaders believed in Jesus. They refused to acknowledge that fact because they were afraid they would be put of out the temple.

We all have had an occasion to remain silent when it comes to our belief in Christ, because we are afraid of the disapproval of others. The silent believers were driven by fear.

John 11 tells how the Sanhedrin, the chief judicial council of the Jews, finally concluded that Jesus must die.

The High Priest Caiaphas mouthed one of Scriptures clearest statements of why Christ came to earth. He said it s better ‘that one man die for the people than that the whole nations perish.’ John 11:50

These men were the teachers and classmates of Saul of Tarsus. There were so blinded by self interest that they became willing to betray and murder Jesus, simply because he represented a threat to their power.

To understand the Jewish Pharisee Saul that would one day be the Apostle to the Gentiles, we must realize that evil lived in his heart. The Pharisees did everything in their power to make sure that the life of Jesus was finished.

It was finished except for the one thing that Luke 24:1-6 tells us

On the first day of the week , very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb. They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus. While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them. In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, ‘Why do you look for the living among the dead? He is not here, he has risen’

The work of Calvary is finished. No more payment for sin is necessary. Jesus did it, we can’t earn it or add to it. It is finished, yet we try to add our good works to His salvation.

Philippians 1:6 promises – He who began a good work in your will carry it on to completion until they day of Christ Jesus.

Sometimes , we just need to cooperate with the work He seeks to finish in us.

Next well be taking a look at the journey Saul makes from enemy of the cross to servant of the Lord. We’ll see the power of God change him from inside out.

With God all things are possible. We just have to believe.

Let us continue to offer Him a teachable heart, and let the transformation begin.

‘On Ya’ - ma

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