Ever wonder why the Roman Catholic Church disregards the Bible and refuses to allow their priests to marry? In light of (1 Corinthians 9:3-5 NASB) “(3) My defense to those who examine me is this: (4) Do we not have a right to eat and drink? (5) Do we not have a right to take along a believing wife, even as the rest of the apostles and the brothers of the Lord and Cephas?” and (1 Timothy 3:1-4 NASB) “It is a trustworthy statement: if any man aspires to the office of overseer, it is a fine work he desires to do. (2) An overseer, then, must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, temperate, prudent, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, (3) not addicted to wine or pugnacious, but gentle, peaceable, free from the love of money. (4) He must be one who manages his own household well, keeping his children under control with all dignity” as well as, (1 Timothy 3:12-13 NASB) “Deacons must be husbands of only one wife, and good managers of their children and their own households. (13) For those who have served well as deacons obtain for themselves a high standing and great confidence in the faith that is in Christ Jesus.” It seems pretty clear that marriage is the normative for the leadership of the Church. Not only does it make sense that way, but it also displays the gospel for everyone to see in the Husband and Wife relationship. Even God incarnate, Jesus Christ quoted His own word by referring to Genesis 2:24 in (Matthew 19:1-5 NASB) When Jesus had finished these words, He departed from Galilee and came into the region of Judea beyond the Jordan; (2) and large crowds followed Him, and He healed them there. (3) Some Pharisees came to Jesus, testing Him and asking, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any reason at all?” (4) And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, (5) and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH’?” It seems to me that marriage is a good thing and prescribed in the Bible for men and women. Perhaps the Roman Catholic Church just likes to make up their own doctrines and disregard the Bible? Just saying…
1 Corinthians 8:1-13 NASB (1) Now concerning things sacrificed to idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge makes arrogant, but love edifies. (2) If anyone supposes that he knows anything, he has not yet known as he ought to know; (3) but if anyone loves God, he is known by Him. (4) Therefore concerning the eating of things sacrificed to idols, we know that there is no such thing as an idol in the world, and that there is no God but one. (5) For even if there are so-called gods whether in heaven or on earth, as indeed there are many gods and many lords, (6) yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom are all things and we exist for Him; and one Lord, Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we exist through Him. (7) However not all men have this knowledge; but some, being accustomed to the idol until now, eat food as if it were sacrificed to an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled. (8) But food will not commend us to God; we are neither the worse if we do not eat, nor the better if we do eat. (9) But take care that this liberty of yours does not somehow become a stumbling block to the weak. (10) For if someone sees you, who have knowledge, dining in an idol’s temple, will not his conscience, if he is weak, be strengthened to eat things sacrificed to idols? (11) For through your knowledge he who is weak is ruined, the brother for whose sake Christ died. (12) And so, by sinning against the brethren and wounding their conscience when it is weak, you sin against Christ. (13) Therefore, if food causes my brother to stumble, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause my brother to stumble.
We as Christians have the liberty to go to a group of lost people, like say the Roman Catholics, Jehovah’s Witnesses, LDS/Mormons, SDA Seventh Day Adventists, or Muslims, to sit and share the gospel with them. We just have to be careful to differentiate between their faiths and ours. We have to do it without offending them more than is necessary and it has to be clear to everyone else who is watching including believers and unbelievers. If we don’t make certain to point out our differences it looks to the spectators as if we are acquiescing or giving assent to the aberrant beliefs of the lost. We don’t want people coming away thinking that there is no difference. We don’t want other believers to come away thinking that we agree with the false teachings of these other groups. We also don’t want weaker brothers to start adopting false doctrines because of that misconception. I get it, this does not seem to be speaking to eccumenism, but I think the underlying principle of abusing liberty at the detriment to the weak can apply to eccumenism as well.
Let’s look at the, “Study Bible for Women” in the HCSB translation, personal size edition, from Holman. It comes in a quality leathertouch, (synthetic leather) teal and brown cover . It was a very pleasant surprise to see some actual study aids as opposed to junk food. There is academic quality here. There are some notes on hermeneutics, theology, some original language notes and transliteration help. Most women’s Bibles are pink and have a bunch of Osteen-esque, self help, self-esteem, feel good, prattle in them with little in the way of useful exegesis of scripture or how to apply it today. This study Bible has significant work in it from two established Christian women. Here are short biographies from Holman’s site,
“Dorothy Kelley Patterson is Professor of Theology in Women’s Studies at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. She is a homemaker, popular speaker, and successful writer, editor, and compiler of numerous books including A Handbook for Ministers’ Wives, The Family, BeAttitudes for Women, and Touched by Greatness: Women in the Life of Moses. She is co-editor of the two volume Women’s Evangelical Commentary:Old Testament and New Testament. Her husband Paige is President of Southwester Baptist Theological Seminary.”
“Rhonda Harrington Kelley is President’s wife and Adjunct Professor of Women’s Ministry at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary in New Orleans, Louisiana. She is a frequent speaker for women as well as an author of books including Divine Disciple, Life Lessons for Women of the Bible, and Personal Holiness: A Biblical Study for Developing a Holy Lifestyle. She is co-editor of the three volume Women’s Evangelical Library including Women’s Evangelical Commentary: Old Testament, New Testament, and The Study Bible for Women. Her husband Chuck Kelley is President of New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary.”
There is some of the fluff, don’t get me wrong. It is just kept in its proper place and proportion. I think that women should find this very helpful. However, I am not a woman and am just commenting because I want one like this for men.
Here is what the Publisher has to say about this Bible,
The Study Bible for Women will equip you to reach deep into God’s Word. Perhaps the single most powerful aspect of this Bible are the “threads” of specialized study thoughtfully woven throughout, pointing you to God’s larger story and allowing the Holy Spirit to write His revealed truths on your heart.
In The Study Bible for Women, personal size edition you’ll join a host of other women, all academically trained in the original languages of the Bible and passionate about God’s Word, for an intimately deep dive into Scripture that will equip you to unlock the riches and majesty of His Word, and ignite a passion to mentor others in your life to do the same. The Study Bible for Women includes the full text of the Holman Christian Standard Bible, a clear, contemporary English translation that’s faithful to the original languages of the Bible.
Features include extensive commentary notes, word studies, answers to hard questions, doctrinal notes, Biblical womanhood articles, character profiles, Written on My Heart applications, extensive book introductions, presentation pages, in-text maps, charts & time-lines, full-color maps section and concordance.”
The Bible was shipped in a cardboard box with paper packing material. The Bible was inside a two piece retail box. It arrived undamaged and in good condition. I can’t stress enough that this is not some cheap synthetic leather, nor is it some hard, shiny, pigskin leather you would find on other Bibles in this price range. This is a good quality synthetic cover.
The spine is hot stamped with, “HCSB” at the top, “The Study Bible for Women” orientated horizontally along the spine in the middle, and at the bottom is the Holman logo. The page edges are silver. The pages are white with a faded blue color that becomes more solid as you approach the page edges and perimeter of the page.
The paper is 30 g.s.m. making it pretty opaque. Lighter paper would not have been good. With this weight of paper you don’t have much in the way of ghosting (seeing the text on the backside of the page show through) There are numerous decorative designs throughout. I don’t know what your opinion is of that, but I could do without them. The font used for the main text is 8.5 point in ITC Clearface Standard. (Open-type) This makes it easy on they eyes unless you have bad eyesight. The coloring of the page perimeters could cut down on the contrast of the text to the paper. The paper could be a little brighter white where the text is, but then the perimeter effect would be lost. The text is laid out in a double column, paragraph format with the cross-references on the outside of the page instead of at the bottom or in a center column. Interspersed throughout are other features.
The inside cover is made of paper of the same color and glued down. They did a good job with the corners. There is one ribbon marker and it is matching in color as well. The binding on this Bible is a South Korean, sewn binding. They have been doing a lot of Holman’s bindings and are holding up quite well. This also makes them flexible on top of being durable. Way better than a glued binding.
Even though this is a study Bible, I don’t want you to be afraid that it is a behemoth. (funny right?) For a study Bible this thing is very manageable. In the personal size edition it is even more manageable than its full sized sister. It is just the right size for ladies who don’t want to use a hand-truck to carry their study Bibles to Wednesday night Bible Study. I think it is a very good investment if you are looking for a women’s study Bible that has good content instead of the motivational junk you get pushed on you nowadays.
Make sure to check out all of the pictures I took of this Bible here. There are lots of close-ups.
Shemitahs, blood moons, and apocalypse oh my.
I know some of our more charismatic friends and television sensationalists like John Hagee and Perry Stone have gone coo coo for blood moons. Waiting for the Shemitah to come and go can be nerve wrecking. If the end doesn’t come they will have to make a list of all the big bad scary things that happen during the year to prove their point. It will be the same with the blood moon. The lack of an apocalypse will have to be explained away again. That is the thing with making predictions and going further than what the text of the Bible actually says, you end up explaining things away out of necessity, or run the risk of having your followers leave you for the next doomsayer to fuel their fantasies. I encourage you all to not get, “caught up” in all of the scares. Don’t sell your house and buy a purple sweat suite with nikes and pudding just yet. Let’s just go as far as the Bible says and not make it say things it doesn’t say, mmmkay? There is a reason most credible theologians don’t write tons of commentary on Revelation, or other unfulfilled apocalyptic, prophetic, writings in the Bible. It is one thing to theorize or speculate, it is another to actually teach people that God has given you some personal revelation that makes you the false-prophet du jour. So for the love of God and His word please stop making false claims, stop getting people all upset and scared for no reason other than to profit from their fear.