Here is a scripture to help you start out this new year fresh.
“Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.” Ephesians 4:26
Although at times you and I may get angry, we should not sin. The way to prevent sin is to deal with “the anger before the sun goes down”.
Here’s my point, as you start out this new year, don’t allow yourself to bring into 2012 anything that is negative (anger, troubles, etc.) from 2011. Let it go. Whatever happened in 2011 that you may be angry, upset or discouraged about, let it go. Do not bring it into this new year (don’t let the sun go down on it). Even though this verse is an excellent tip for married couples, it can also work wonders for us as individuals too.
Apostle Paul got angry (at least once) with Mark, one of the guys in his ministry. He apparently misjudged Mark in Acts 15:37 by not wanting to bring Mark with him on his second journey (Mark did leave Paul’s first journey for a reason know one really knows). Paul talks bad about Mark to his cousin Barnabas. Barnabas didn’t agree with Paul and this disagreement led to a split in Paul’s ministry. Paul went one way and Barnabas the other.
Later on in 2 Tim. 4:11 Paul writes, “Get Mark and bring him with you, for he is very useful to me for ministry.” It looks like Paul had a change of heart because now he wants Mark back. We don’t know exactly what happened except that Paul now wanted Mark back on his team. Some commentators guess that maybe the reason Mark left Paul on the first journey was because Mark was just being rebellious or not willing to pay the price. Others say that it’s possible that Paul was just so on fire and passionate about this ministry that he neglected his team or that maybe he was a little too harsh and hard to work with. Yet others say that Mark just got homesick. We really don’t know the reason why Mark left Paul.
When Paul writes asking for Mark he is in prison knowing that his life may be ending soon. I take it that Paul did not want the sun to go down on his anger (he was pretty upset earlier). Have you ever misjudged someone? Has someone misjudge you? The Word of God says to let it go by not letting “the sun go down while you are still angry”.
You might be thinking, how do I not let the sun go down? Good question, here a are a few suggestions: Ask God to help you. Think before you speak. Forgive yourself, forgive people, build good relationships (by being a good listener) and expect great things. Love your spouse and kids. Say positive things. Stop being negative and expect grace and favor. Expect God to do great things in your life this year as well as in your family’s life.
If you want to take it a step further stay in God’s Word, work hard, mind your own ministry, grow yourself, be creative, be positive and don’t be afraid to ask for help. If you are involved in ministry don’t isolate yourself, be a good team player, be available, teachable, have a good attitude, roll with the punches and smile. If you are not involved in ministry, get involved. Give of your time, talents & treasure to God. Start small but do something.
Be happy on purpose, keep your eyes on the Lord and position yourself to have a great 2012 (by your commitment, faithfulness and excellence). Lastly, while we are talking about starting out this new year fresh, don’t forget to plan, prioritize and to pray.
Don’t bring into 2012 anything negative from your past. Forget about it on purpose. Stop thinking about the bad things that happened to you. Just let it go. Don’t bring it into this new year.
“Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry”.
Who needs another ebook reader? That’s what I thought when I first heard of Vyrso. After a little time I realized that Vyrso is not just another reader. If you like reading (on your Android device or iPad) you will enjoy Vyrso.
What separates Vyrso from other ebook readers is this, “one-touch Bible reference”. In other words if the book you are reading includes a Bible verse, you can tap the scripture and it is opens up for you. With a simple touch, Vyrso shows you the Bible passages that your ebooks reference. This is a wonderful timesaver, allowing you to read the Bible along with your favorite Christian authors’ ebooks. Plus their cross-library search tool helps you find what every ebook in your bookshelf says about a given topic; you can find the quotes and passages you want in no time!
If you are a Logos Bible Software or Biblia.com user, (I’ll review them both later) Vyrso connects all the books in your library, enabling you to make connections you never knew possible. Very nice! You can now integrate all of your Logos Bible study materials with your leisure and personal reading.
Vyrso offers a broad selection of ebooks written by Christians for Christians. The Vyrso experience brings readers the best Christian titles on any mobile device, providing a virtual Christian bookshelf that goes wherever you go. I’ve been using Vyrso for several weeks now and I am enjoying it.
Here’s a video clip that describes how Vyrso works on Android devices. To see the video clip for an iPad click here.
Vyrso has thousands of ebooks to choose from, (many of them free) including genres such as Christian Living, Fiction, Politics, Ministry, Young Adult Fiction, and more.
Visit http://vyrso.com/dg today to download John Piper’s latest ebook, “Holy Ambition” free (available until Dec. 25th, 2011). There are lots of other free books on Vyrso. I just downloaded three free ebooks a couples of days ago, they are: “The Whole Bible Story” by William H. Marty, Marty William H. “Money, Possessions, and Eternity” by Randy Alcorn and “Game Plan for Life: Your Personal Playbook for Success” by Joe Gibbs. Gotta love it! Click here to see what else is available for free.
The Vyrso experience brings readers the best Christian titles on any mobile device, providing a virtual Christian bookshelf that goes wherever you go. Try it out and let me know how you like it.
If you don’t have an Android device or an iPad or iPhone there’s still hope! Just visit: http://www.biblestudytools.com/classics/ to access a free collection of classic Christian works that does not require an eBook reader. Just click on the link and start reading on your computer. The collection includes cherished favorites like John Bunyan‘s Pilgrim’s Progress and landmark Christian works like St. Augustine‘s Confessions and Thomas a Kempis‘s The Imitation of Christ. It also includes more recent classics from theologians like B.B. Warfield and Christian writers like G.K. Chesterton. Enjoy!
If you are looking to get a new Bible, check out the ESV Study Bible. I first picked up a copy from the library to see if I would like it and I’m glad to say it passed the test. I placed an order online and just received my copy a month ago (the burgundy leather edition). All I can say is I’m truly loving it. It’s like having a Bible School at your finger tips (And now for quick commercial: For a real Bible School visit, http://www.VetiOnline.com).
The ESV Study Bible includes 20,000 notes, Over 50 articles, 200-plus charts, over 200 full-color maps, 40 all-new illustrations and 80,000 cross-references in all of its 2,752 pages. The book is so thick that it can probably stop a bullet. You definitely can’t be ashamed of the Gospel carrying this book around. In order to really appreciate everything the ESV Study Bible has to offer you must first take a tour. Here’s a link to several short video clips to introduce you to the ESV Study Bible. To find the best price for the hard cover edition click here.
One of the best things I like about the ESV Study Bible is that it comes with an online version (free to all those who purchase a copy of the print edition). The online version contains all of the references of the print version plus a whole lot more. For a Free Preview of the ESV Online Study Bible click here. You can also purchase the online version by itself for $19.99.
The online version contains all of the reference materials in the print edition with links to the cross-referenced scriptures and notes. You can also create and store personal notes online and to listen to audio recordings of the ESV too.
So there you have it, the best online and onsite study Bible in the entire world. The ESV Study Bible is the most comprehensive study Bible ever created. Just remember that it doesn’t make a difference which version of the Bible you prefer, (ESV, NIV, NKJ, etc.) the best version of the Bible is the one that you actually read.
There are plenty of apps that will let you read the Bible on your phone, but here’s one that let’s you listen to the Bible as well. And it works too! Plus it’s FREE. The dramatic audio is excellent plus it’s available for the iPhone, Andriod and iPad in several languages. All you need to do is to search for Bible.is on your phone.
Bible.is also let’s you listen to the Bible on your computer through this link: http://www.bible.is/ Bible.is can even send you a daily text message with a link to one chapter from New Testament a day. How cool is that? All you need is a cell phone with a data plan. This is great for exercising or when you just want to relax. To get started text “YES” to “Bible (24253).
So check out http://www.bible.is/ If you like to read and listen to the Bible your search is over.
Ever wondered where all the different denominations came from? What the difference is between Lutherans and Baptists? How great would it feel to be the one in your small group who knows the difference between Calvinism and Arminianism?
Click here to download a Free Reformation eChart by Rose Publishing or on the image below.
The Reformation e-Chart explains the 5 points of Calvinism and Arminianism, the 5 solas of the reformation, and 4 important branches of the reformation. It also includes a map and family tree of reformation movements. This is available to Download For One Week Only!
This free e-Chart is taken from the book Rose Book of Bible Charts 2 which includes a five-page illustrated Reformation Time Line showing more than 100 key events and people.
Did you know on October 31, Protestants celebrate Reformation Day? The day almost 500 years ago that Martin Luther posted The 95 Theses in Germany forever changing the landscape of the Western Church and the world. Eager to learn to an more, but turned off by old hard-to-read history books? Rose publishing has a tool for you! Their easy-to-use Reformation Time-line pamphlet shows you visually how the Reformation unfolded in Europe while explaining the thoughts behind the events.
If you really like this type of stuff sign up to Rose publishing’s FREE newsletter and get 9 Free Bible eCharts plus weekly eCharts by email. I’ve been receiving these e-Charts for a few months now and they are very informative. Rose Publishing provides easy-to-use, full-color Bible study pamphlets, maps, charts & timelines. Visit their site here http://www.rose-publishing.com and browse their entire collection for some excellent Bible references.
Mechanics have tools, doctors have tools, and so do students of the Bible.
If you plan to effectively study the Bible you will eventually want to invest in some of the tools that can help you become a good student. One thing to remember is that all tools contain explanations of people and do not provide the authoritative words of God. Bible study tools should be used as immediate helps and not meant to be the end of your investigation. Do not depend solely on the explanations found in your Bible study tools and never replace the Bible with a Bible study tool.
Bible study tools contain lots of information. You will find helpful introductions to each book of the Bible and outlines that show you how books fit together. Bible study tools will include explanatory notes about the text, doctrine, and Christian living.
If you are serious about Bible study get a good study Bible. A few good ones includes the Life Application Study Bible, The ESV Study Bible and The Apologetics Study Bible. I’ll be reviewing the ESV Study Bible soon. You also want to consider getting a good Bible commentary. For more details on choosing a Bible translation click here.
To begin always interact with the Bible text first before consulting with your tools. It’s important to keep in mind that Bible study tools, (commentaries, dictionaries, study Bibles, encyclopedias, concordances, atlas’ etc.) should not be the final word on any portion of scripture. Remember that you are learning how to study the Bible, not learning how to study commentaries.
Whether you read the Bible in book format, on your cell phone or you would rather listen to it, do not stray away from the Bible. One way to stay on track is to begin a Bible reading plan. You can get a good reading plan from BiblePlan.org free. They have reading plans that will help you read the Bible in a year, read Proverbs in a month, read just the words of Jesus, read just the Psalms or Gospels or read a plan that combines the New Testament and Old Testament. Pick a plan that will help you read the Bible systematically.
Here’s my top 15 “web based” Bible Study Tools.
- The Bible (the actual book)
If you really want to take the study of the Bible a little more serious, I recommend using LOGOS.com. (I wrote a short review here). It’s one of the best if not the best Bible Study Software program that I have ever used. It will cost you some money but then again, this program will definitely take you to the next level in your Bible study. The best part is that you can buy the starter program and keep adding resources as you can plus they have a very nice payment plan.
Keep in mind that a lot of the free “web based” Bible commentaries are in the public domain, (in other words, they were written a very long time ago). Public domain Bible tools are also included in many Bible software packages. Using old (19th-century or earlier) resources for Bible study may present valid insights for interpretation, but they should be used with caution, because of their age, and with awareness and acknowledgment of the original date of publication (rather than the date of the reprint or electronic version).
Learn to be passionate about what you are reading in the Bible. After all, they contain the very words of God. While we are talking about being passionate about the Word of God take a look at this short video interview with John Piper. John is the Pastor for Preaching at Bethlehem Baptist Church in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is the author of more than 30 books and more than 25 years of his preaching and teaching is available free at http://www.DesiringGod.org He is being asked, “Where and How Did You Learn to Preach?
If you have a good Bible study resource that you would like to share please click on “Comments”