Jordan River

February 17, 2016

In preparing for our mid-week Bible study tonight (Life of Christ) I came across a photo of the River Jordan I took back in Sept. 2011.

Jordan River. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

Jordan River. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

This is where the Jordan continues its flow just south of the Sea of Galilee.

Some of my other posts and photos of the Jordan River may be seen by clicking here and here.

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Hazor, One of Solomon’s Fortress Cities

February 13, 2016

1 Kings 9:15 reads, “Now this is the account of the forced labor which King Solomon levied to build the house of the LORD, his own house, the Millo, the wall of Jerusalem, Hazor, Megiddo, and Gezer.

During the time of pre-conquest Canaanite occupation, “Hazor formerly was the head of all these kingdoms” (Josh. 11:10), a reference to the city states of northern Canaan. It was located on the strategic Via Maris. This is a view of the tel:

Tel Hazor, one of the cities Solomon fortified. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

Tel Hazor, one of the cities Solomon fortified. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

I have previously written on Hazor here.

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Jesus and the Money-changers

February 10, 2016

John records the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, including this visit to Jerusalem for Passover:

The Passover of the Jews was near, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. And He found in the temple those who were selling oxen and sheep and doves, and the money changers seated at their tables. And He made a scourge of cords, and drove them all out of the temple, with the sheep and the oxen; and He poured out the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables; and to those who were selling the doves He said, “Take these things away; stop making My Father’s house a place of business.” (John 2:13-16).

It is noteworthy that Jesus both began (above text) and concluded (Matt. 21:12-13) His ministry by cleansing the temple (hieros), “My Father’s house,” of its abuses–of its being turned into a “house of merchandise.”

I’ve thought of these biblical texts when walking through Old Jerusalem and seeing signs such as this one:

Money-changers in Jerusalem. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

Money-changers in Jerusalem. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

Money-changers were:

bankers who exchanged one nation’s currency, or one size of coin, for another. These people provided a convenience, charging a fee (often exorbitant) for their services. Some moneychangers operated in the temple area (the Court of the Gentiles), because all money given to the Temple had to be in the Tyrian silver coin. According to Exodus 30:11–16, every Israelite 20 years old or older was required to pay an annual tax of a half-shekel into the treasury of the sanctuary (Nelson’s New Illustrated Bible Dictionary).

Note the location is the hieros (temple area with its spacious courts, John 2:14-15) and not the naos, or sanctuary, where only the priests could go.
What do you think Jesus might do if He were to walk among “modern churches” today? (I know the church in the biblical sense is not the physical church building/meeting place, but rather is the people of God).

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His Eternal Power and Deity

February 6, 2016

Paul observed that God’s invisible attributes, his everlasting power and deity, are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made (Rom.1:20). This is true “since the creation of the world” (ibid.). Several years ago Jonathan Perz paired a text in Psalm 36 with one of my photos. Many of the psalms make reference to God’s power and glory as seen in the creation.

God's Handiwork in Norway. Photo by Leon Mauldin.

God’s Handiwork in Norway. Photo by Leon Mauldin.