The BIBLE VIEW #937 — Christmas

In This Issue:
Where’s My Present?
Giving God What He Gave Us
The Reason for the Season
The First and Last Time He Comes

Volume: 937    December 18, 2023
Theme: Christmas

Where’s My Present? 
Bill Brinkworth

“Happy Bill’s birthday!” welcomed another party-goer.  “Wait until you see what I got you,” as the present was removed from its hiding place behind his back.

“You got me something?  Oh, wow,” was the exclamation as the curly bow was hurriedly ripped from the gift.

As the gift-receiver tore off the wrapping paper, another excited voice gleefully proclaimed on the other side of the room, “And I got you something, too.”

An ecstatic voice shrilled, “For me?” as she received the large, carefully wrapped package.  Several in the celebration gravitated to that part of the room to see what excited her.

The gift-giver smiled as he could tell his thoughtfulness was appreciated.  He watched her carefully remove the packaging tape and responded with the customary, “Happy Bill’s birthday.”

Soon most of the gathering attendees were giving someone a package they produced from hiding places.  The room was filled with sounds of ripping paper and “You shouldn’t have”s.  A surprised couple of “Oh, I didn’t get you anything”s could also be heard scattered about the room.

In all the gift-giving excitement, no one noticed the surprised person enter the room from the stairwell.  He moved from group to group, almost unnoticed.  As he moved to the child admiring her new laptop, she made sure he saw it and outstretched it to him to get a better look.  “Why, it’s a great one,” he remarked.  After he was shown it, she immediately returned to her group and grabbed another package she was handed.

On he drifted to another group on the other side of the room.  “Oh, it’s Bill!” exclaimed the one standing closest to him.  “Happy birthday, Bill.”

After hearing that name, most in the room stopped their gift-giving and opening and turned to the visitor and echoed, “Hello, Bill.” Some greeted him with, “Happy birthday, Bill.” Hands waved at him.  

One “Hey, old man” echoed inside the dining room.  Throughout the room, giggles ensued over that remark.  It was not long until all turned back to their peers and engaged in their party activities.  Bill was once again left to himself.

Soon, the party got back on track, and Bill stood alone.  No one even heard him sadly whisper, “And where’s my present?  It’s my birthday!”

Forgotten at one’s own birthday party would be horrifying and heartbreaking, however, it happens every year.  A day put aside years ago by our Christian-oriented forefathers to remember the birth of Christ is still practiced by most but has lost its true meaning. 

Gifts are given to one another.  Feasts are prepared for those attending family gatherings.  Benevolence is at an all-time high.  Even the least unfortunate are remembered and given something by strangers. 

Festivities are displayed everywhere in the decorations throughout towns and decorations on trees in living rooms.  Unfortunately, like Bill’s party, the purpose of the celebration is often forgotten.  The reason for the Christmas season is to remember the birth of our Saviour, Jesus.  Sadly, He is little remembered or honored.  In some circles, even mention of His name is forbidden.

This year, make your Christmas different.  Ignore the world’s tendency to remove any mention of Christ on the day that was put aside to honor His birth.  Let all know that Jesus is the reason for the season with as many opportunities to say “Merry Christmas” as possible.

Above all, make sure you give the Reason for the season the best gift of all.  No, Christ has no desire for any material present.  He desires your heart, your time, and your devotion.   All year long, give to Him:

  • Your obedience to His Commandments:
    “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” John 14:15
  • The praise He deserves:
    “I will praise the LORD according to his righteousness: and will sing praise to the name of the LORD most high.” Psalms 7:17
  • Your willingness to live for Him:
    “Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.” Psalms 100:2
  • Your love:
    “And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.” Deut. 6:5
    “My son, give me thine heart, and let thine eyes observe my ways.” Pro.  23:26

This year, give the Lord what He wants — you!

“ This year, I did not see one reminder that the Christmas season is about Jesus.  His birth was not remembered in one television program, not in one store, not in any town-wide decorations.  I did not even see one manger scene!  It has happened, at least where I live, that Jesus was banned from His own birth remembrance!  What a sad season Christmas has become!” — Bill Brinkworth

Giving God What He Gave Us
Author Unknown

A little girl told an older friend that she would give her papa a pair of slippers for Christmas.  “Where will you get your money?” asked the friend.

The little girl opened her eyes wide and said, “Why, Father will give me the money.” The friend was silent as he realized the father would buy his own Christmas present.  Even though the father paid for his own present, it still thrilled him to receive his daughter’s gift.

All that we give the Lord is given to us by Him. When we give Him anything, it is, as was the small child, only giving Him something He gave or allowed us to have.  Still, God loves it when we give to Him. Putting God first in our lives thrills Him.
“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.” James 1:17

“The best gift is not under our tree; it was on the tree at Calvary!” — Roy Phillips

The Reason for the Season
Deb McCoy

Christmas is a joyous time of the year,
Displays of decorations, lights, and holiday cheer.
So much commotion and excitement overflows,
And don’t forget the gifts and children’s faces all aglow.

Let’s take a moment and reflect on that very first Christmas night,
The angel had announced the birth of the Savior to bring the world Light.
Born in a dark stable came our most gifted treasure,
Our gratitude and praises no price can we measure.

Celebrating Christmas should be a reflection of selflessness and love,
The window of the soul is illuminated by the Spirit of Christmas sent from above.
This year may peace on Earth and goodwill to men,
Be reflected in each of us time and again.

May you be filled with the joy of this holiday season,
Let it shine in your heart and be reminded of its true reason.
It’s all about Jesus.  What gift will you bring?
Salvation in Christ will make your heart sing.

This Christmas and throughout the coming year.
Discover the riches of this treasure, and may your heart be filled with holiday cheer.
Celebrate Christ this Christmas, and you will find,
Hope and comfort offered to all mankind.

Sign outside a church one month before Christmas: “Come on in, and avoid the Christmas rush.”

The First and Last Time He Comes
Oliver B. Greene

The Lord Jesus Christ, whom we should exalt, especially on Christmas, is not just a baby in a manger.  He is not a character in a children’s story.  He is far more.

  • The first time He came, He came veiled in the form of a child.  The next time He comes, and we believe it will be soon, He will come unveiled, and it will be abundantly and immediately apparent to all the world just who He really is.
  • The first time He came, a star marked His arrival.  The next time He comes, the heavens will roll up like a scroll, and all the stars will fall out of the sky, and He will light it.
  • The first time He came, there was no room for Him.  The next time He comes, the whole world will be unable to contain His glory.
  • The first time He came, only a few attended His arrival — some.  The next time He comes, every eye shall see Him.
  • The first time Jesus came as a baby.  Soon, He will come as Sovereign King and Lord.

“I am the one that is making the list, and I don’t have to check it twice!”
— God

The BIBLE VIEW #936 — Christmas

In This Issue:
Costly Christmas
Prophecies about Christ’s Birth
Jesus’ Birth
The Borrower
Jesus’ Birth: According to Luke 2

 Volume: 936     December 11, 2023
Theme: Christmas

Read the FREE typeset version of this newsletter at (Click on #936).  Use it for your church bulletin inserts or as a ministry handout.

Costly Christmas
Author Unknown

  • It cost Mary and Joseph the comforts of home during a long exile in Egypt to protect the little Babe.
  • It cost mothers in and around Bethlehem the massacre of their babies by the cruel order of Herod (Matthew 2:16).
  • It cost the shepherds the complacency of their shepherds’ lives, as they had to drop their watching of sheep to see the Christ child.
  • It cost the early apostles and the early church persecution and sometimes death.
  • It cost missionaries for Christ untold suffering to spread the Good News that the promised Messiah had come.
  • More than all this, it cost God the Father His only Son.  He sent Him to Earth to save men from Hell.
  • It cost Jesus a life of sacrifice and service.  He died a cruel death.

Is Christmas Too Costly?

  • It is, if all that it means is gift exchanges.
  • It is, if all that it means is tinsel.
  • It is, if all that it means is millions spent on the commercialized Christmas.
  • It is, if all that it means is a holiday.

It Wasn’t Too Costly

  • If it means the hope of the world.
  • If it means the forgiveness of sin
  • If it means peace among men.

“Selfishness makes Christmas a burden.  Love makes it a delight!”

Prophecies about Christ’s Birth
Bill Brinkworth

Long before Christ’s birth, the Bible described His coming.  Here are some of the many prophecies and the approximate dates they were foretold.

  • 1872 B. C. was when it was told He would be of Abraham’s lineage.  Genesis 22:18 
  • 742 B. C. was when Isaiah said the Child would be born of a virgin.
    “Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.” Isaiah 7:14
  • 740 B. C. was when Isaiah foretold that the child would be God in the flesh, amongst His other abilities.
    “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” Isaiah 9:6  Some of this verse  was fulfilled when Christ was born.
  • 740 B. C. was when Hosea said the Child would live in Egypt and be called out of it (Hosea 11:1).  This prophecy was fulfilled in Matthew 2:13-14.
  • 713 B. C. was when it was foretold (Isaiah 11:1) that the child would be of Jesse’s family line.
  • 590 B. C. was when it was said that He would be a descendant of King David.  (Jeremiah 23:5-6)
  • 510 B. C. was when it was prophesied that the Saviour would be born in Bethlehem and of the tribe of Judah.
    “But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.” Micah 5:2   The prophecy was fulfilled in Luke 2:4-7.
  • Psalms 2:7 states He would be the Son of God.  Luke 3:22 tells of the fulfillment of that prophecy.

The birth of Jesus was not an ordinary birth of just any person.  It was a well-planned, special event by God.  The birth of Christ ushered in God’s promise that a Saviour would come, and through belief in Him, anyone could have God’s promise of eternal life.

“Christmas began in the heart of God.  It is complete only when it reaches the heart of man.” — Religious Telescope

Jesus’ Birth
C. H. Spurgeon

We esteem every day alike, but as the season suggests thoughts of Jesus, let us joyfully remember our dear Redeemer’s glorious birth.  Who but He was ever longed for by such a multitude of hearts?  When else did angels indulge in midnight songs, or did God hang a new star in the sky?  To whose cradle did rich and poor make so willing a pilgrimage and offer such hearty and unsought oblations?  Well may Earth rejoice; well may all men cease their labor to celebrate “the great birthday” of Jesus.  Let gladness rule the hour.  Let holy song and sweet music accompany our souls in the raptures of joy.

“Each recurring Christmas gives occasion to emphasize anew the wonderful story of the love of God that led Him to send His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him.”  — H. A. Ironside

The Borrower
Kenneth McKenzie

He borrowed a stable in which to be born;
And later confessed that he had no bed.
He borrowed a basket that bright spring morn;
Sent the people away, their hunger fed.

He borrowed a boat from which to preach
His Father’s love to sinful men;
They stood that day on Galilee’s beach,
Longing to hear his message again.

He borrowed a donkey on which to ride
With royal blessings from on high;
To hear the proud city his name deride,
Scornfully bidding him pass by.

He borrowed a room in which to meet
His friends, the sacred feast to keep of old;
But the towel to dry his disciples’ feet
Was not his nor the holy table His to hold.

He borrowed a cross on which to die,
A ransom from sin, a life laid down.
He borrowed a tomb in which to lie
Yet the great universe was his own.

Jesus’ Birth: According to Luke 2

1 ¶ And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus, that all the world should be taxed.
 2 (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.)
 3 And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
 4 And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David:)
 5 To be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
 6 And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
 7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
 8 ¶ And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
 9 And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
 10 And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
 11 For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
 12 And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
 13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
 14 Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
 15 And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them into heaven, the shepherds said one to another, Let us now go even unto Bethlehem, and see this thing which is come to pass, which the Lord hath made known unto us.
 16 And they came with haste, and found Mary, and Joseph, and the babe lying in a manger.
 17 And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this child.
 18 And all they that heard it wondered at those things which were told them by the shepherds.

The BIBLE VIEW #887 — Christmas

In This Issue:
Was Jesus Born on December 25?
An Opportune Time
Jesus Came Anyway
The First and Last Time He Comes

Volume: 887     December 5, 2022
Theme: Christmas

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Was Jesus Born on December 25?
Rev. Alexander Hislop

Many Christian holidays have their true meanings, and even the time they occurred altered by false religion’s influence.  Christmas, unfortunately, is one of those days.  Although Christ was definitely born on this Earth, and all the Bible says about Him is true, false religions and their effort to get people to accept their false teachings successfully merged their doctrines with those of Christianity.

Here is some of the history behind how December 25th was adopted to be the day of Christ’s birth, according to Rev. Alexander Hislop’s The Two Babylons:

“ … The festivals of [Catholic] Rome are innumerable, but five of the most important may be singled out for elucidation: Christmas day, Lady day, Easter, the Nativity of St. John, and the Feast of the Assumption.  Each and all of these can be proved to be Babylonian.  And first, as to the festival in honour of the birth of Christ, or Christmas.

“… How comes it that the festival was connected with the 25th of December?  There is not a word in the Scriptures about the precise day of His birth or the time of the year when He was born.  What is recorded there implies that at what time His birth took place, it couldnot have been on the 25th of December.

“… At the time that the angel announced His birth to the shepherds of Bethlehem, they were feeding their flocks by night in the open fields.  Now, no doubt, the climate of Palestine is not so severe as the climate of this country; but even there, though the heat of the day be considerable, the cold of the night, from December to February, is very piercing and it was not the custom for the shepherds of Judea to watch their flocks in the open fields laterthan about the end of October.  It is in the last degree incredible that the birth of Christ could have taken place at the end of December.

“… the celebrated Joseph Mede pronounces a very decisive opinion to the same effect. … At the birth of Christ, every woman and child was to go to be taxed at the city whereto they belonged, whither some had long journeys, but the middle of winter was not fitting for such a business, especially for women with child, and children to travel in.  Therefore, Christ could not be born in the depth of winter.  Again, at the time of Christ’s birth, the shepherds lay abroad watching with their flocks in the nighttime; but this was not likely to be in the middle of winter.  And if any shall think the winter wind was not so extreme in these parts, let him remember the words of Christ in the Gospel, ‘… pray ye that your flight be not in the winter … (Mat. 24:20)’.  If the winter was so bad a time to flee in, it seems no fit time for shepherds to lie in the fields, and women and children to travel in.”

 “… Indeed, it is admitted by the most learned and candid writers of all parties that the day of our Lord’s birth cannot be determined and that within the Christian churchno such festival as Christmas was ever heard of till the third century, and that not until the fourth century did it gain much observance.

“… How did the Romish Church fix December the 25th as Christmas day?  Why, thus:

Long before the fourth century, and long before the Christian era itself, a festival was celebrated among the heathen, at that precise time of the year, in honour of the birth of the son of the Babylonian queen of heaven; and it may fairly be presumed that, in order to conciliate the heathen, and to swell the number of the nominal adherents of Christianity, the same festival was adopted by the Roman Church, giving it only the name of Christ.  This tendency on the part of Christians to meet paganism halfway was very early developed, and we find Tertullian, even in his day, about the year 230 AD, bitterly lamenting the inconsistency of the disciples of Christ in this respect and contrasting it with the strict fidelity of the pagans to their own superstition.

“… Upright men strive to stem the tide, but in spite of all their efforts, the apostasy went on, until the church, with the exception of a small remnant, was submerged under pagan superstition.  That Christmas was originally a pagan festival is beyond all doubt.  The time of the year, and the ceremonies with which it is still celebrated, prove its origin.

“Also, in Egypt, the son of Isis was born at this very time, ‘about the time of the winter solstice.  The very name by which Christmas is popularly known among ourselves — Yule-day — proves at once its pagan and Babylonian origin.  ‘Yule’ is the Chaldean name for an ‘infant’ or ‘little child’;  and as the 25th of December was called by pagan Anglo-Saxons, ‘Yule-day’, or the ‘Child’s day.’  The night that preceded it became known as ‘Mother-night,’ long before (380–362 BC) they came in contact with Christianity.  This sufficiently proves the real reason December 25 was selected.”

“Christmas is a time for ‘giving up’ sin, bad habits, and selfish pleasures.  Christmas is a time for ‘giving in,’ surrendering to Christ and accepting Him as King.  Christmas is a time for ‘giving out,’ real giving and not swapping.”
Author Unknown

An Opportune Time
Oliver B. Greene

Christmas is a depressing time for many people.  An article written by a director of the California Department of Mental Hygiene warned, “The Christmas season is marked by greater emotional stress and more acts of violence than at any other time of the year.”

Christmas is an excuse to get drunk, have a party, get something, give a little, leave work, get out of school, spend money, overeat, and all other excesses.  But, for the real church, Christmas is an excuse for us to exalt Jesus Christ in the face of a world that is at least tuned into His name.

The message of Christmas is that the visible material world is bound to the invisible, spiritual world.” — Author Unknown

Jesus Came Anyway
Oliver B. Greene

Sherwood Wirt captured the mood of that first Christmas in this description, which he wrote in a Christmas card: “The people of that time were being heavily taxed and faced every prospect of a sharp increase to cover expanding military expenses.  The threat of world domination by a cruel, ungodly, power-intoxicated band of men was ever just below the threshold of consciousness.  Moral deterioration had corrupted the upper levels of society and was moving rapidly into the broad base of the populace.  Intense nationalistic feeling was clashing openly with new and sinister forms of imperialism.  Conformity was the spirit of the age.  Government handouts were being used with increasing lavishness to keep the population from rising up and throwing out the leaders.  Interest rates were spiraling upward in the midst of an inflated economy.  External religious observances were considered a political asset, and abnormal emphasis was placed on sports and athletic competition.  Racial tensions were at the breaking point.”

In such a time, and amid such a people, a child was born to a couple who had just signed up for a fresh round of taxation and were soon to become political exiles.  The child born was called, among other things, Immanuel, God with us.

Selfishness makes Christmas a burden; love makes it a delight.”

The First and Last Time He Comes
Oliver B. Greene

The Lord Jesus Christ, whom we exalt especially at Christmas, is not just a baby in a manger.  He is not a character in a children’s story.  He is far more.

  • The first time He came, He came veiled in the form of a child.  The next time He comes, and we believe it will be soon, He will come unveiled, and it will be abundantly and immediately clear to all the world just who He is.
  • The first time He came, a star marked His arrival.  The next time He comes, the whole heavens will roll up like a scroll, and all the stars will fall out of the sky, and He will light it.
  • The first time He came, wise men and shepherds brought Him gifts.  The next time He comes, He will bring rewards for His own.
  • The first time He came, there was no room for Him.  The next time He comes, the whole world will not be able to contain His glory.
  • The first time He came, only a few attended His arrival — some.  The next time He comes, every eye shall see Him.
  • The first time He came as a baby.  Soon He will come as Sovereign King and Lord.

“The hinge of history is on the door of a Bethlehem stable.” 
— Ralph W. Stockman

The BIBLE VIEW #872 — Salvation

In This Issue:
There Are Not Different Ways to Be Saved
How Good Are You?
Christ, Our Captain

Volume: 872     August 22, 2022
Theme:  Salvation

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There Are Not Different Ways to Be Saved
Bill Brinkworth

No matter what anyone thinks or says, there is only one way to Heaven. The Word of God says that Jesus is the only Way (John 14:6).
“Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” John 14:6

We must believe we cannot save ourselves and that our salvation is the gift of God purchased for us by the shed blood of Jesus Christ.  He died in our place for our sins! If we accept that and trust in that way only, then we can have God’s promise of an eternity in Heaven.
“For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8-9

However, many will not accept God’s terms of having an eternity with Him. They want to get there their way.  They trust they will get there by doing what they think is right or what their religion has taught them is the way, even though it is contrary to what the Bible teaches.

Before I was saved, I also had my ideas of how to get to Heaven, and they were just as non-biblical as:

  • “I believe I’m going to Heaven because my grandfather was a preacher….” Well, that is wonderful that he was.  Still, nobody’s righteous living or salvation can earn them Heaven for another. We must have a personal relationship with Jesus and trust Him as our Saviour.
  • “I believe I’m going to Heaven because I’m a good person.” Well, I am sure you are by most people’s standards, but going to Heaven is not measured by human standards. It is measured by God’s commandments, and He says that all are sinners (Romans 3:23)!

    It is not the sins one has committed lately that condemn one’s soul; it is a lifetime of transgressions. One must realize all are born with a sinful flesh incapable of pleasing God unless we allow God to create a new creature in us and save us from Hell.

Before I was saved, I thought my good works would get me to Heaven. Then I wondered, “If good works get one to Heaven, how many do you have to do? Is it 50, 100, or 10,000? Have I done enough?”  That haunting question led me to read the Bible.  After 40+ years of reading the Bible, I have never found the answers to that question because God’s Word never says that goodness will get anyone to Heaven. Salvation is God’s gift to you; it cannot be earned.

  • I believe I’m going to Heaven because I’m an American.” That is good. I am American also, but being born in a “Christian” nation does not get anyone any higher than the tombstone. It is only by trusting Christ as Saviour!
  • I believe I’m going to Heaven because my wife saved me.” That may sound funny to some, but some people who have married a spouse whose example helped alter their lives think that because they are better now, they will go to Heaven. Well, maybe you have a wonderful husband, wife, or parents, but again, we are accountable for ourselves (Romans 14:12, Matthew 13:36), and goodness cannot get us to Heaven!
  • I believe I’m going to Heaven because I’m very religious.” Well, you may be. Unfortunately, some “religious” people try to do more to please God than many true Christians do. However, “religion” cannot save anybody; only trusting what Jesus has done for us will!
  • I belong to a very good church.” Your church may teach biblical doctrine, but joining any church will guarantee no one Heaven. Some “religions” claim that only their religion can save. That is a lie! Only trusting Jesus Christ’s finished work on the Cross can get anyone to Heaven (John 3:3, John 3:16).
  • I don’t believe there is a Heaven, Hell, or God, and I’ll just die like a dog, and that’s it!” Although I always handle that remark politely, the truth of the matter that is a foolish belief!
    “The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.” Psalms 14:1

Too many people try to out guess God and do his thinking for Him. It does not matter what you or I think about obtaining Heaven, but what God says! It is God’s Heaven. He will allow us to go there under His conditions. His way is to accept Christ as our Saviour from eternal punishment (Romans 10:9). His way is the only way.

“Human nature’s way of salvation is, “Do, do, do.” But God’s way of salvation is, “Done, done. It is all done.” You have but to rely by faith on the atonement that Christ accomplished on the Cross.”  — Spurgeon

How Good Are You?
Bill Brinkworth

In the Bible, young David’s foe, Goliath, was a giant warrior.  It is recorded he was “six cubits and a span” tall. One immediately wonders, “How big is a cubit and a span?” 

A cubit is from the tip of one’s middle finger to the tip of the elbow.  Most assume it to be 18 inches.

Others say that it may have been measured by the cubit of the king at the time.  King Saul was a large man, so his cubit could have been 20 inches long.

To make it more confusing, other lengths are attributed to this measurement. The Babylonian cubit is 20.65 to 21.26 inches long. The long Hebrew cubit was 18.36 to 18.9 inches.

The exact size of a span is also questionable.  Its length is derived from the distance from an extended hand’s tip of the thumb to the tip of the little finger.  Most assume it is nine inches.  One can easily see that this is also an unreliable measurement because it depends on whose hand is measured.

Depending on what standard was used, the giant Goliath may have been 9.75 to 11.5 feet tall. One can easily see that a subjective, comparative measurement is not accurate.  Man’s measuring is not always reliable.

Similar measuring is used when one compares his “goodness” with that of another.  “I am not as bad as that adulterer,” or “I’m not as bad as that liar and murderer.”  Who made you the standard for measuring who is naughty or nice?

Ultimately, it is not man’s standards that are accurate or count.  What one may think is good behavior, another may view as poor. Standards on measuring good conduct can change from one person to another and even change several times a day.   What is acceptable in one country may be abhorrent in another. Some behavior accepted today was frowned upon in previous generations.
“For we dare not make ourselves of the number, or compare ourselves with some that commend themselves: but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise.” II Cor. 10:12

Ignored by most, the origin of what defines righteousness and evil is God’s Word, the Bible.  Within its preserved pages, man can read what God says is right and wrong. His opinion never changes and is the only one that ultimately matters. His measurements of behavior have been steadfast throughout human history.

God cuts quickly to the chase.  He makes it quite clear, by His gauge, none are “good.”  As hard as man may try, he is still a sinner, and his efforts in controlling his conduct are only external, temporary, and fall short of what God deems good. 
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” Rom. 3:23
“As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one:” Romans 3:10  Also: Rom. 3:9, Gal. 3:22.

God’s honest judgment of us certainly should change our judging of others.  We are all sinners!

Except for God’s mercy and giving us a way to have our sins forgiven and forgotten, there would be no hope for us to miss Hell.  Forget your opinionated judgments of others and see yourself as God sees you —  a sinner and not “good.”  Your measuring tool of goodness means little.

However, we can be forgiven of our iniquities.  The only way is by trusting that Jesus’ death on the cross is payment for our wickedness.  Then, once cleared of our sins, we can follow God’s scriptural commandments and please our heavenly Father.  Our obedience and deeds are then “good” in His eyes.

“Don’t judge a man because he sins differently than you.  Some may be forgiven of their iniquities, but we are all sinners.”

Christ, Our Captain
Author Unknown

The Highland chief, McGregor, fell wounded by two bullets. Seeing their leader fall, the clan wavered and gave their enemy an advantage. The chieftain, beholding the effects of the disaster, raised himself upon his elbow, and while the blood gushed in streams from his wounds, he cried, “I am not dead, my children.  I am looking to see you do your duty.”

Those words revived the sinking courage of his clansmen to stem the dreadful tide of battle.  The leader’s presence was worth a thousand men.

The Captain of our salvation, Jesus, though slain, yet lives and looks upon his militant followers with unutterable tenderness of affection.  He desires all of us to continue onward and fight the good fight.  Don’t quit!  Onward you must go!

“Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses.” 
I Timothy 6:12

The Bible View #761

Articles in this Bible View: “Not Just A Man,” “He’s Alilve,” “I And My Father Are One,” “Jesus, the Door,” “History’s Most Important Event”
Theme: Jesus

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