Today is December 21, 2018

Verse of the Day — Micah 5:2

But as for you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Too little to be among the clans of Judah,
from you One will go forth for Me to be ruler in Israel.


THOUGHT FOR THE DAY

O little town of . . .


MINI BIBLE STUDY FOR THE DAY

The prophet Micah prophesied that Bethlehem Ephrathah would be the Messiah’s birthplace some 700 years before Jesus came to earth. Bethlehem, with its surrounding shepherd fields, is only about five miles due south of Jerusalem. Ephrathah, also called Ephrath (Genesis 35:16-19; 48:7), was an older name for the same area.

Bethlehem was known at the time of Christ for her great herds of sheep. In fact, most of the tens of thousands of sheep used for sacrifice in the Jewish temple each year came from Bethlehem. It’s quite the word picture to visualize that in the midst of all the sheep being born in Bethlehem for sacrifice to cover sins, Jesus was born, as the ultimate sacrifice . . . the Lamb of God.

Bethlehem today is a far cry from the place David and Jesus were born. The city is now located in the Arab-dominated area referred to as the West Bank, which is essentially a separate country from Israel. In a matter of feet you go from beautifully landscaped, immaculately groomed and architecturally rich Jerusalem through a militarily guarded entrance to unmaintained garbage-laden streets with deteriorating buildings. It’s almost hard to believe the God of the universe was born there.

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QUESTION FOR THE DAY

Dear Compass,

I am being told that Jesus and God are the same. I believe that Jesus is God’s son, but not God. My son and I are two separate people/identities, yet we work together for the same cause. I just don’t see how Jesus is God. Why would He pray to himself? It seems that too many people say Jesus is God and they don’t mean it literally. Can you explain?


ANSWER:

Whenever you seek to understand doctrinal issues, it is important to use only the Bible for reference. If God is who He says He is, then He gave us an uncorrupted Bible to study (2 Peter 1:21) just as if He were personally speaking to us (Hebrews 4:12).

for no prophecy was ever made by an act of human will, but men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God. —2 Peter 1:21

For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart. —Hebrews 4:12

The Bible makes it clear that there is only one God.

I am the Lord, and there is no other; Besides Me there is no God . . . —Isaiah 45:5

. . . there is but one God . . . —1 Corinthians 8:6

. . . God is only one. —Galatians 3:20

. . . the only God, . . . —1 Timothy 1:17

You believe that God is one. You do well; —James 2:19

Yet the Bible also presents God as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

  • The Father.

    Do not work for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of Man will give to you, for on Him the Father, God, has set His seal. —John 6:27

    according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, by the sanctifying work of the Spirit, to obey Jesus Christ and be sprinkled with His blood: May grace and peace be yours in the fullest measure. —1 Peter 1:2

  • The Son Jesus Christ.

    He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together. —Colossians 1:17

    and He gave Him authority to execute judgment, because He is the Son of Man. —John 5:27

  • The Holy Spirit.

    But Peter said, “Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to lie to the Holy Spirit and to keep back some of the price of the land? While it remained unsold, did it not remain your own? And after it was sold, was it not under your control? Why is it that you have conceived this deed in your heart? You have not lied to men but to God. —Acts 5:3-4

    For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. —1 Corinthians 2:10

    Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. . . . The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.” —John 3:5, 6, 8.

In Matthew 28:19, all three persons are in one verse:

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

Notice the word name in the phrase in the name of. Name is singular, instead of names, which is plural, even though it is referring to three.

There are several direct and specific references to Jesus being God:

. . . He who has seen Me has seen the Father; —John 14:9

I and the Father are one. —John 10:30

Jesus answered, “before Abraham was born, I am!” —John 8:58

Just as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, even so the Son gives life to whom He is pleased to give it. —John 5:21

No doubt, the Trinity is a difficult-to-grasp doctrine, and the Bible says so:

although He (Jesus) existed in the form of God, did not regard equality with God a thing to be grasped, —Philippians 2:6

So, pray to God that He would give you a peace regarding basing your beliefs solely on scripture, the doctrine of the Trinity, and specifically, that Jesus is God.

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Scripture taken from the New American Standard Bible, copyright The Lockman Foundation 1960, 1962, 1963, 1968, 1971, 1972, 1973, 1975, 1977. Used by permission.

Answers to questions in GML are intended to be supplementary and in the spirit of Proverbs 11:14, 15:22, and 26:26, which calls for believers to seek counsel from more than one person. Therefore, it is not recommended that any decision be based solely on GML’s answer, but rather it be considered one of several counselors when determining a course of action.

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