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Friday, November 10, 2006

". . . being dead, yet speaketh." Bible

My wife saw a quote from a previous post of mine, which said this:

"I am constantly struck by the strangeness of reading works that seem addressed, personally and intimately, to me, and yet were written by people who crumbled to dust long ago." (source)

She told me that she wanted to know some of the statements that seem addressed to me. In other words, who speaks to me, though dead? (Hebrews 11:4, KJV, says "By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous, God testifying of his gifts: and by it he being dead yet speaketh.")

So, here's the first installment, my top ten, as it were, quotations from the Bible. All quotations are from the ESV. (I am grateful that this version of the Bible is available on the web, and that they allow use in blogs, provided the version is cited as I have done -- with a link like the previous sentence, and links to specific passages.)

I have already posted about the significance of some of my choices. To read about why I think the first three choices speak to me, and are important, as relating to a view of science, see here.

Genesis 1:1 In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth. (See also this post, about why a doctrine of origins is important.)

Psalm 19:1 The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above [text note: "expanse"] proclaims his handiwork.
2 Day to day pours out speech,
and night to night reveals knowledge. (See also this post, about not seeing God revealed in nature.)

Colossians 1:15 He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. 16 For by him [Text note: by means of; or in. Text notes give possible alternate readings.] all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. 17 And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.

Psalm 84:11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
the Lord bestows favor and honor.
No good thing does he withhold
from those who walk uprightly. (See also this post, about the title of this blog.)

Matthew 22:35 And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” 37 And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. 38 This is the great and first commandment. 39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. 40 On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”

Philippians 2:3 Do nothing from rivalry or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus [Text note: "which was also in Christ Jesus"] 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped, 7 but made himself nothing, taking the form of a servant, [Text note: "bondservant"] being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross. 9 Therefore God has highly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, 11 and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Philippians 4:8 Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.

Hebrews 7:25 Consequently, he is able to save to the uttermost [Text note: Or at all times (that is, completely)] those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them.
26 For it was indeed fitting that we should have such a high priest, holy, innocent, unstained, separated from sinners, and exalted above the heavens. 27 He has no need, like those high priests, to offer sacrifices daily, first for his own sins and then for those of the people, since he did this once for all when he offered up himself. 28 For the law appoints men in their weakness as high priests, but the word of the oath, which came later than the law, appoints a Son who has been made perfect forever.

Hebrews 11:3 By faith we understand that the universe was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was not made out of things that are visible. (See also this post, on the significance of this verse. This verse is featured at the top of this blog.)

1 John 1:1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— 2 the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us— 3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And we are writing these things so that our [text note: "your"] joy may be complete. 5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

This was a fair amount of work, but, I believe, it was more than worth it. I thank my wife for the suggestion. This one is goes into my list of "Important (I think) posts," (See near top right of this page).

I recognize that there are serious dangers in such an exercise, the main one, I suppose, being that one who does it might ignore other Bible passages.

Thanks for reading.

If any of you would like to produce a similar compilation, I would appreciate hearing about it in a comment, but that, of course, is up to you. Thanks in advance.

In the second installment of a series of three, I posted some important quotations from three of my favorite dead authors of fantastic (and other) literature, C. S. Lewis, George MacDonald, and J. R. R. Tolkien. In the third, and, I believe, last, I posted some important quotations from scientists, including Darwin, Newton, Einstein, Copernicus, and Watson and Crick.

* * * * *

Added July 3, 2007, an eleventh passage:

Psalm 136:4 to him who alone does great wonders,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
5 to him who by understanding made the heavens,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
6 to him who spread out the earth above the waters,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
7 to him who made the great lights,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
8 the sun to rule over the day,
for his steadfast love endures forever;
9 the moon and stars to rule over the night,
for his steadfast love endures forever;

Thanks for reading!


Anonymous said...

Thank you for the inspiration. God bless you for your hard work.

Martin LaBar said...

Thank you, whoever you are. It was a pleasure doing this.