Faithful Service : Parable of the Talents

by Keith Sharp | The Parables of the Master | Matthew 24:14-30

The word “For,” with which this parable begins, connects it to the preceding story, the Parable of the Ten Virgins. That parable teaches us to keep watching to be ready for the Lord’s return; this, the Parable of the Talents, teaches us to work to be ready for His return.

…the Parable of the Talents serves as a perfect complement to the Parable of the Ten Virgins. In the preceding story the maidens are pictured as waiting for their lord, in this story, the servants are represented as working for their lord. One stresses the duty of constant alertness, the other the duty of faithful service” (Lightfoot. 172).

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Instrumental Music in the Old Testament

by William J. Stewart

In the search for instrumental music in the Old Testament, one need not go very far. In Genesis 4:21, among the offspring of Cain, we read of Jubal, who is identified as “…the father of all those who play the harp and flute.” Thus, we have the beginning of instrumental music described for us. From this point onward, we find reference to instruments of music in numerous Old Testament passages. These instruments were used for a variety of reasons: calling an assembly together (Numbers 10:1ff), commands in battle (Joshua 6:4), worship of false gods (Daniel 3:5), entertainment or celebration (Genesis 31:27), to give honour to the king (1 Kings 1:34), as a calming agent (1 Samuel 16:23), and in the worship of the God of heaven (Psalm 150). Continue reading

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The Divine Plan of the Ages

Present Truth
“For this reason I will not be negligent to remind you always of these things, though you know and are established in the present truth” (2 peter 1:12).

by Keith Sharp

On July 20, 1969, Neil A. Armstrong, American astronaut, became the first human to set foot on the moon. The plan devised by scientists at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration to get him there was truly remarkable for its technical complexity and accuracy and is indeed a monument to the skill of American technology. Yet, the plan that God devised for the salvation of mankind is as much higher in grandeur than the program devised by NASA, or any other human scheme, “as the heavens are higher than the earth” (Isaiah 55:8-9). What is God’s plan of salvation? Continue reading

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Righteous versus the Ungodly

by Keith Sharp

Psalm 1

  1. Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful;
  2. But his delight is in the law of the LORD, And in His law he meditates day and night.
  3. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.
  4. The ungodly are not so, But are like the chaff which the wind drives away.
  5. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
  6. For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the ungodly shall perish.

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Questions from Nigeria about Being a Musician

Question
Can a Christian be a secular musician as a profession?

Answer
The New Testament command is to labor in order to provide for our material needs and those of others (Ephesians 4:28; 2 Thessalonians 3:10). No particular kind of labor is specified, so it is completely generic as long as it is legal (Romans 13:1) and moral (Ephesians 5:11). Many musical careers involve immorality, such as playing in bars, or false religion, such as playing for a church worship service. Obviously these are wrong (Ephesians 5:11). Continue reading

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Questions from Nigeria about Women

I have some questions that I will like some clarity and biblical position:

Question
The Bible in I cor 14:33-34 says women should learn in silence. Is silence absolute silence?

Answer
First Corinthians 14:34-35 states: Continue reading

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The Real Tragedy

William J. Stewart

On August 20, 2016, Kingston hosted what was no doubt the largest concert in the city’s history, and perhaps the biggest concert in Canadian history. The K-Rock Centre was filled to capacity, with some big names in attendance, including our Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau. An estimated 25,000+ also spilled out into the streets surrounding Springer Market Square, where a Jumbotron and massive speakers gave the outdoor crowd the feel of being part of the event taking place just a few blocks away. In addition to this, the event was live streamed to 400+ venues nationwide: arenas, theme parks, movie theatres, parking lots, restaurants, etc.. In fact, the event could be seen in any house in Canada with a TV or a computer, as it was made available on CBC TV and cbc.ca. Continue reading

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Question about Judas and Jesus

Question

You can’t show Jesus existed. There is no historic record. Judas is the ‘sacrifice’ in the Gospel of Judas, so what does it say about Jesus being sacrificed? It was just a scam to start a new religion.

Answer
Keith Sharp

Of course, the canonical gospels, those accepted by believers in Christ for twenty centuries as the inspired, accurate record of the life of Jesus, present Judas as the evil (John 6:70-71), covetous (John 12:5-6) betrayer of Christ (Matthew 26:14-15, 21-25, 47-50; Mark 14:10-11, 18-21, 43-46; Luke 22:3-6, 21-22, 47-48; John 13:10-11, 18, 21-30; 18:2-5) who subsequently committed suicide (Matthew 27:3-5; Acts 1:16-18) and is lost (Acts 1:25). Continue reading

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Question from Alabama about the Term “Believer”

Question

Is there anywhere in the scriptures that uses the term “believer” and it means something other than someone who has been obedient to God’s word? More specifically “believer” meaning someone who has been baptized? Continue reading

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After Death : The Rich Man and Lazarus

Keith Sharp | Luke 16:19-31

We are studying the story of The Rich Man and Lazarus among the parables, but it is certainly unique as a parable. The Master does not provide a name for any of the characters in His other parables. And His earlier parables compare scenes familiar to His audience with eternal truths, whereas this story is one of the few biblical passages (cf. Revelation 6:9-11) that discusses the state of the dead, information unknown by experience to any living mortal. It is certainly true that the story begins with precisely the same formula, “There was a certain rich man” (verses 1,19), as the parable that immediately precedes it and with which it is connected. “The story seems to be its own message, one that uniquely comes from beyond the grave. We conclude that it is both history and a special sort of parable (cf. R.L. Whiteside, Bible Studies, Vol. 4, p. 424)” (Earnhart. 149). Continue reading

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