Philippians 3:1 Finally, my brethren, rejoice in the Lord. For me to write the same things to you is not tedious, but for you it is safe.

Category: Imperative of the Week Posted: 09-22-2017 By: Gerrit Kamp

This verse comes from Paul’s letter to the church in Philippi and is found right in the middle of the letter. Paul commands the readers to rejoice in the Lord. He will repeat this command later, in verse 4:4. 

Philippians 4:4 Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!

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James 3:4 4 Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires.

Category: Imperative of the Week Posted: 09-15-2017 By: Gerrit Kamp

This verse tells us to look at ships. Not because ships in themselves are spiritually all that significant, but because there is something to be learned from them as an example. To make more sense of this, lets look at the surrounding context: 

James 3:2 For we all stumble in many things. If anyone does not stumble in word, he is a perfect man, able also to bridle the whole body. 3 Indeed, we put bits in horses’ mouths that they may obey us, and we turn their whole body. 4 Look also at ships: although they are so large and are driven by fierce winds, they are turned by a very small rudder wherever the pilot desires. 5 Even so the tongue is a little member and boasts great things.

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Jude 1:21 keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

Category: Imperative of the Week Posted: 08-04-2017 By: Gerrit Kamp

We find this verse near the end of the small letter of Jude. The structure of this letter is quite interesting. In the very beginning, Jude (calling himself a bondservant of Jesus Christ and a brother of James, which means he was also a half-brother of Jesus) mentions that while he was very diligent or eager to write about their common salvation, he found it necessary to exhort them to contend for the faith. He then launches into a lengthy description, which is the bulk of the letter, of how evil people will try to destroy the church from the inside out by causing divisions. Then, near the very end, in the light of the situation that the church is in danger from ungodly people in its midst, we find our verse, which is the second half of this complete sentence.

Jude 1:20 But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of God, looking for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life.

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Matthew 6:20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.

Category: Imperative of the Week Posted: 07-28-2017 By: Gerrit Kamp

This is one of the most famous verses of the bible, and simultaneously, one of the most ignored. Christians will read it, nod their head, and continue doing the exact opposite. Let’s first explore the verse and then I will explain why I make this bold and provocative statement.

This verse is found in the middle of Jesus’ longest recorded sermon; the Sermon on the Mount. So far, the emphasis in the Sermon on the Mount has been about God rewarding people. The conclusion of the beatitudes was that you should consider yourself lucky if people persecute you, because that is how they also treated the prophets, and your reward in heaven would be great. He also described who will be small (few rewards) and who will be great (many rewards) in the kingdom of heaven.

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1 Timothy 5:22 Do not lay hands on anyone hastily, nor share in other people’s sins; keep yourself pure.

Category: Imperative of the Week Posted: 07-07-2017 By: Gerrit Kamp

This verse is from Paul’s first letter to Timothy. It comes near the end of the letter, following sections with instructions on how various groups of people (widows, elders) should be treated within the church. 

Let’s first look at the Greek and then at what this verse could mean. Note that there are three verbs in the imperative mood, so there are three commands packed in this one verse. Lay hands, ‘epitithemi cheir’ means just that, to lay or place your hands upon.  Share, ‘koinoneo’ means to participate or have a share of. And keep pure, ‘tereo hagnos’ means to guard, or watch intently, over your holiness or purity. So the translation above (from the NKJV) is pretty good. Other translations all say pretty much the same thing.

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