Proverbs 27:17

Proverbs 27:17

Tuesday, July 9, 2024

Bible Study Wednesday at 6:30 PM

Hi everyone,

Sunday's Gospel tells of an ugly birthday banquet that fully displays Herod's tortured psychology; he is fascinated by John the Baptist; he shows off before his guests; he lusts after his stepdaughter; yet throughout, he is deeply afraid.  When he hears about Jesus, it is his continuing guilt that we witness. It may also be the way each of us have acted from cowardice, self-importance, and guilt.  


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Pastor Tim

"God has led you to the desert, and spoken to your Heart."
Mount of Olives Lutheran Church
3546 E. Thomas Rd
Phoenix, AZ 85018
602-956-1620 office

Bible Study for July 14, 2024

Opening Prayer:

Creator of all, we thank you for the opportunity to gather in study. Open our minds and hearts. By the power of the Holy Spirit, unite us in faith, hope, and love. Help us to be faithful to the gospel and to walk humbly with you. Grant us your peace as we grow in wisdom and understanding. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.

Mark 6:14-29 When have you been in a situation where you felt you should speak up for God’s standards in the face of those who did not want to hear the truth?

The story of Jesus’ ministry pauses as Mark turns to describe the end of John the Baptist’s ministry. John’s death is presented as a possible explanation for Jesus’ miraculous powers, but the similarity of John’s and Jesus’ message (a call to repentance) might have contributed to the confusion felt among those who had not encountered the men personally. John was calling the people of Judea and Galilee to repentance, and in the process, he also indicted the ruler Herod Antipas on some serious charges. Antipas and his wife Herodias divorced their spouses and married each other, but Herodias had been married to Antipas’ half-brother, Philip, so Antipas had married his half-brother’s wife while he was still alive. This was a union explicitly forbidden in Leviticus 18:16 and 20:21. Antipas recognized the potential John’s charge had of creating popular resistance to his rule—a rule already rendered unpopular by Antipas’ disregard for Jewish law in other matters. Josephus records that after John’s death, the local population was indignant with Antipas for having John killed, for they regarded him as an honorable and true prophet. John’s fate prefigured the Messiah’s death as well as the persecution that would befall the disciples who were called to witness for God’s truth in a world where it was not welcome by those in power.

Ephesians 1:3-14 What do you think is God’s purpose for you? In this season of your life? 

The letter to the church in Ephesus opens with this expansive paragraph celebrating God’s favor toward the Christian community. The form of the paragraph is that of “blessing” (barakha in Hebrew). Noteworthy in this blessing is the emphasis on God’s “will,” “purpose,” “plan,” and “pleasure,” as well as on the end for which God has “destined” the believers. The author offers an answer to the conundrum of life’s meaning and purpose in this outline of God’s will for humanity. This purpose is summed up in the word grace, which signifies here God’s desire to bring benefit to humankind. Also noteworthy is the repetition of the phrase “to the praise of God’s glory/glorious favor.” In the Greco-Roman world, generosity led naturally and necessarily to the praise of the giver, to the spreading abroad of the virtuous character of the giver by the recipients, and thus to increase the giver’s reputation. To fail to respond to favor was to be ungrateful. Having received so many gifts from God as well as assurance of gifts to come, the believer is obliged to honor God and live in recognition of God’s goodness and generosity

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