Category Archives: JUST ASKING / CURIOUS QUESTIONS

Can you explain, “Standing against the blood of thy neighbour?”

CAN YOU EXPLAIN, “STANDING AGAINST THE BLOOD OF THY NEIGHBOUR?”

by Shawn Brasseaux

This is in reference to the second part of Leviticus 19:16: “Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour: I am the LORD.” In order to ascertain the second half, we simply look to the first half.


A “talebearer” is a gossiper—one who bears (carries, as in a courier) tales or stories meant to harm someone’s reputation. Personal information, secrets, and even outright fabrications (lies) may be involved. Throughout the Book of Proverbs, the LORD repeatedly spoke of talebearing or gossiping in a negative light:

  • Proverbs 11:13: “A talebearer revealeth secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit concealeth the matter.”
  • Proverbs 18:8: “The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.”
  • Proverbs 20:19: “He that goeth about as a talebearer revealeth secrets: therefore meddle not with him that flattereth with his lips.”
  • Proverbs 26:20: “Where no wood is, there the fire goeth out: so where there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.”
  • Proverbs 26:22: “The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.”

If God were to enforce the first part of Leviticus 19:16 today, hardly any newspapers, social-media accounts, and television networks would be operational! Actually, if the second part of Leviticus 19:16 were followed today, a great many courtrooms around the world would be permanently shuttered too!

An insightful cross-reference to Leviticus 19:16 is Exodus 20:16, the Ninth Commandment: “Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbour” (cf. Deuteronomy 5:20). While this can be broadly interpreted as “do not lie,” a more specific application is “do not lie during court proceedings.” One example of this sin is how two false witnesses—whom idolatrous Queen Jezebel conscripted—lied about Naboth for the express purpose of condemning him to death so King Ahab could take possession of Naboth’s vineyard (1 Kings 21:1-29). The most famous case, however, involved two false witnesses fabricating testimony during Jesus’ trial to put Him to death (Matthew 26:57-68; Mark 14:53-65; cf. Luke 23:1-5; John 18:28-32).

Let us go back to Leviticus 19:16: “Thou shalt not go up and down as a talebearer among thy people: neither shalt thou stand against the blood of thy neighbour: I am the LORD.” The “blood” of the neighbor being shed is certainly literal, but we can also see a figurative aspect too. Recall “character assassination” is not the actual taking of a physical life, but rather the destruction of one’s reputation. Likewise, false testimony in court may not lead to the death of the defendant, but he or she may lose his societal status because of gossip. If someone was guilty, any witnesses to the crime were to come into the courtroom to speak the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. However, if all the witnesses had to contribute to the case was hearsay, gossip, rumors; they were to keep their mouths shut and their bodies out of the court proceedings! Otherwise, the Law of Moses would be broken—and, in the case of capital punishment, an innocent life lost. Here, guiltless blood would literally be shed. At the very least, someone’s good name would be tarnished.

“Thou shalt not raise a false report: put not thine hand with the wicked to be an unrighteous witness” (Exodus 23:1). Furthermore, in Deuteronomy 19:15-21, the LORD gave the following instructions as to how the deal with any false witnesses: “[15] One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established. [16] If a false witness rise up against any man to testify against him that which is wrong; [17] Then both the men, between whom the controversy is, shall stand before the LORD, before the priests and the judges, which shall be in those days; [18] And the judges shall make diligent inquisition: and, behold, if the witness be a false witness, and hath testified falsely against his brother; [19] Then shall ye do unto him, as he had thought to have done unto his brother: so shalt thou put the evil away from among you. [20] And those which remain shall hear, and fear, and shall henceforth commit no more any such evil among you. [21] And thine eye shall not pity; but life shall go for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot.

Again, if these passages were obeyed today, it would be (literally) quite difficult to find a perjurer!

Also see:
» Is Matthew 26:59-61 contradictory?
» “Thou shalt not kill” or “Thou shalt not murder?”
» Are denominationalists deliberately lying?
» What is Paul’s “lie” in Romans 3:7?

Can you define “paramours?”

CAN YOU DEFINE “PARAMOURS?”

by Shawn Brasseaux

The word appears only once in the King James Bible: “For she doted upon their paramours, whose flesh is as the flesh of asses, and whose issue is like the issue of horses” (Ezekiel 23:20). If we start at the beginning, the concept will become clearer. In this context, the LORD rebukes idolatrous Samaria (Northern Kingdom, Israel) and idolatrous Jerusalem (Southern Kingdom, Judah).

Read the opening seven verses of the chapter: “[1] The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying, [2] Son of man, there were two women, the daughters of one mother: [3] And they committed whoredoms in Egypt; they committed whoredoms in their youth: there were their breasts pressed, and there they bruised the teats of their virginity. [4] And the names of them were Aholah the elder, and Aholibah her sister: and they were mine, and they bare sons and daughters. Thus were their names; Samaria is Aholah, and Jerusalem Aholibah. [5] And Aholah played the harlot when she was mine; and she doted on her lovers, on the Assyrians her neighbours, [6] Which were clothed with blue, captains and rulers, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding upon horses. [7] Thus she committed her whoredoms with them, with all them that were the chosen men of Assyria, and with all on whom she doted: with all their idols she defiled herself.”

“Aholah”—Samaria, Israel’s northern 10 tribes—became more and more involved with heathen Assyrian religion. These pagan gods distracted her from the JEHOVAH God of her patriarchs Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob: her behavior was just like a wife cheating on her husband (cf. Exodus 20:1-3; Exodus 34:10-17; Jeremiah 31:32; Hosea 1:1-2; et cetera). Verse 5 above describes this in the following terms: “And Aholah played the harlot when she was mine; and she doted on her lovers, on the Assyrians her neighbours,….” These Assyrian deities and common citizens are her illicit lovers, after whom she lusts most intensely!

“Aholibah”—Jerusalem, capital of Judah’s southern two tribes—becomes the focus of verse 11 onward: “[11] And when her sister Aholibah saw this, she was more corrupt in her inordinate love than she, and in her whoredoms more than her sister in her whoredoms. [12] She doted upon the Assyrians her neighbours, captains and rulers clothed most gorgeously, horsemen riding upon horses, all of them desirable young men…. [17] And the Babylonians came to her into the bed of love, and they defiled her with their whoredom, and she was polluted with them, and her mind was alienated from them. [18] So she discovered her whoredoms, and discovered her nakedness: then my mind was alienated from her, like as my mind was alienated from her sister. [19] Yet she multiplied her whoredoms, in calling to remembrance the days of her youth, wherein she had played the harlot in the land of Egypt. [20] For she doted upon their paramours, whose flesh is as the flesh of asses, and whose issue is like the issue of horses….

“[22] Therefore, O Aholibah, thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will raise up thy lovers against thee, from whom thy mind is alienated, and I will bring them against thee on every side; [23] The Babylonians, and all the Chaldeans, Pekod, and Shoa, and Koa, and all the Assyrians with them: all of them desirable young men, captains and rulers, great lords and renowned, all of them riding upon horses. [24] And they shall come against thee with chariots, wagons, and wheels, and with an assembly of people, which shall set against thee buckler and shield and helmet round about: and I will set judgment before them, and they shall judge thee according to their judgments…. [29] And they shall deal with thee hatefully, and shall take away all thy labour, and shall leave thee naked and bare: and the nakedness of thy whoredoms shall be discovered, both thy lewdness and thy whoredoms. [30] I will do these things unto thee, because thou hast gone a whoring after the heathen, and because thou art polluted with their idols.

As Samaria had lovers upon whom she doted, so Jerusalem had lovers whom she adored—the “paramours” of Ezekiel 23:20. Both had intimate relations with the very idols of the Gentiles! Our English word “paramour” is borrowed from Old French (literally, “by or through love”). “For she doted upon their paramours, whose flesh is as the flesh of asses, and whose issue is like the issue of horses.” God likens these idolaters to donkeys and horses, an insult most terrible! As history reports, He took their Gentile “lovers” and turned them into their oppressors.

Also see:
»
What are “teraphim?”
» “Thou that abhorrest idols, dost thou commit sacrilege?”
» What are “groves?”

What is “dropsy” in Luke 14:2?

WHAT IS “DROPSY” IN LUKE 14:2?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Read in Luke 14:1-6, as found in the King James Bible: “[1] And it came to pass, as he [Jesus Christ] went into the house of one of the chief Pharisees to eat bread on the sabbath day, that they watched him. [2] And, behold, there was a certain man before him which had the dropsy. [3] And Jesus answering spake unto the lawyers and Pharisees, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath day? [4] And they held their peace. And he took him, and healed him, and let him go; [5] And answered them, saying, Which of you shall have an ass or an ox fallen into a pit, and will not straightway pull him out on the sabbath day? [6] And they could not answer him again to these things.”

Present in this passage is a man suffering from “dropsy.” What exactly is this? The term is a shortening of “hydropsy” (Greek, “hudropikos,” “watery looking”). Better known as edema today, this is swelling due to excess fluid in the body. It can be a symptom of cancer or diseases of the kidney, liver, or heart. Either the body overproduces fluid or cannot drain it, leading to unsightly, bloated limbs whose movements are limited and awkward. In the ancient world, untreated dropsy was, eventually, always fatal. The dropsical man represents lumbering Israel with all her ugly religious excesses, enjoying a counterfeit life (abundant “water” that cripples her!) but not moving “gracefully” (because she prefers her works instead of God’s grace). Sin and false teaching have disabled her, rendered her spiritually ill. Yet, the Lord deliberately heals the dropsical man on the Sabbath Day, so as to show Israel He can take care of her sin problem and bring her into a right relationship with Him (New Covenant blessings and Kingdom glory). See our “Sabbath Day” study linked below.

Saints, please remember us in your monthly giving—these websites do cost money to run! 🙂 You can donate securely here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux, or email me at arcministries@gmail.com. Do not forget about Bible Q&A booklets for sale at https://arcgraceministries.org/in-print/booklets-bible-q-a/. Thanks to all who give to and pray for us! By the way, ministry emails have really been backed up this year. I am handling them as much as humanly possible. Thanks for your patience. 🙂

Also see:
» Why did Jesus Christ heal on the Sabbath day?
» What is “palsy?”
» What is “the bloody flux?”
» What is “the burning ague?”
» What is “scurvy?”
» What is a “wen?”
» What is “the botch of Egypt?”

What does “Anathema Maranatha” mean in 1 Corinthians 16:22?

WHAT DOES “ANATHEMA MARANATHA” MEAN IN 1 CORINTHIANS 16:22?

by Shawn Brasseaux

The Apostle Paul, near the conclusion of this epistle, wrote, “If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema Maranatha” (1 Corinthians 16:22). What does “Anathema Maranatha” mean?

Firstly, “Anathema” is Greek; “Maranatha” is Aramaic (Hebrew with some Gentile/Babylonian influence). These were two of the many languages the Apostle Paul spoke. Secondly, by searching the Epistle of 1 Corinthians, we can gather clues to stitch together a Scriptural definition of “Anathema Maranatha.”

“ANATHEMA”

This Greek word appears six times in the Textus Receptus (the basis for our King James New Testament). Once it was rendered, “We have bound ourselves under a great curse” (Acts 23:14, Paul’s enemies vehemently determined to take his life). Four times, it was translated “accursed” (Romans 9:3; 1 Corinthians 12:3; Galatians 1:8-9). Once, in 1 Corinthians 16:22, it was left untranslated—“anathema” (the verse now under discussion).

Galatians 1:8-9 is helpful here: “But though we, or an angel from heaven, preach any other gospel unto you than that which we have preached unto you, let him be accursed [anathema]. As we said before, so say I now again, If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed [anathema].” The language is strong here, but it is warranted because false teachers have slipped into the Galatian churches under the guise of “Christianity.” God the Holy Spirit thunders here in this Epistle, “Let those false teachers be excommunicated, excluded, removed!” The Galatian Christians were to have nothing further to do with these denominationalists, for these religious traditionalists were using the Law of Moses to corrupt the Grace of God. Thousands of church leaders are guilty of this same practice, and we would do well to apply Galatians 1:8-9 to them too! See also Romans 16:17-20, 1 Timothy 6:3-5, 2 Timothy 3:1-5, and Titus 3:9-11.

When we come to 1 Corinthians 16:22, which is actually just before Galatians chapter 1, it should not be difficult to discern what “Anathema” means. The idea is “banned, removed, expelled.” Considering the mentality and lifestyles of the Corinthian Christians, we can easily surmise false teachers have corrupted them too. Read 1 and 2 Corinthians to behold the worst bunch of Christians you will ever see in Scripture! Greek philosophers, legalists (just as in Galatia), and other proponents of bad doctrine have defiled the saints at Corinth. Paul’s two epistles to Corinth are designed to bring these saints back to the truth, to mature them in the faith, that they be no more fleshly or worldly. One of Paul’s closing remarks in 1 Corinthians is found in 16:22: “If any man love not the Lord Jesus Christ, let him be Anathema….” Those who do not love the Lord Jesus Christ—especially those who do not love His doctrine communicated through Paul—are to be isolated or detached from the Corinthian assembly. Any heretics, any apostates, any unbelievers, or even any Christians acting like unbelievers, are to be expelled—lest the assembly become even more depraved and further ensnared in Satan’s policy of evil. Read 1 Corinthians 5:1-13, with special emphasis on verse 2 and verses 7-13. “Therefore put away [divorce, separate] from among yourselves that wicked person.”

“MARANATHA”

Some have contended the Aramaic (and transliterated into Greek) phrase “Maran atha” means (and can only mean), “The Lord has come.” They thus have Paul referring to Jesus’ earthly ministry in 1 Corinthians 16:22 (the present perfect, an action already completed). Others claim the intended tense is simple future: “The Lord will come.” Here, Paul would be speaking of Jesus’ return (something imminent). When writing “Maranatha,” is Paul speaking of a previous coming of Christ or a future one?

Personally, again, this author would view 1 Corinthians 16:22 in light of what has already come before in the Epistle. Read chapter 1, verses 7-8: “So that ye come behind in no gift; waiting for the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall also confirm you unto the end, that ye may be blameless in the day of our Lord Jesus Christ.” Would this be Christ’s earthly ministry, something that has already happened? Of course not! Paul is writing to the Corinthians a few decades after Calvary; Christ’s earthly ministry is long over. They are awaiting Jesus’ return, the Rapture, “the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and… our gathering together unto him” (2 Thessalonians 2:1). Based on 1 Corinthians 1:7-8, we would take “Maranatha” to mean a future coming of Christ not a past coming.

CONCLUSION

“Anathema Maranatha” simply means, “withdraw or separate from all who love not the Lord Jesus Christ, for that same Lord Jesus Christ is coming.” These saints would certainly not want to be fellowshipping with “questionable characters” when their Saviour came back, would they? “Let your moderation [self-control, reasonableness] be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand” (Philippians 4:5). In other words, live like the Lord is returning in the next few seconds! The nation Israel was given basically the same instructions in light of Christ’s Second Coming to end Daniel’s 70th Week (see Matthew 24:42-51; Mark 13:33-37; Luke 12:35-48). Whether the prophetic program (Israel) or the mystery program (us, the Church the Body of Christ), all saints should be conducting themselves according to God’s words to them, ready to meet their Saviour whenever He appears, doing what He left them to do, when He does return! (And, remember, “Maranatha!,” the Lord is coming back!)

SUPPLEMENTAL: WHY LEAVE IT UNTRANSLATED?

The King James scholars are not here for us to ask them why they left these words untranslated, but it may be a case of euphony. “Anathema Maranatha” is a memorable word combination that sounds pleasant to the ears, is it not? Once you understand its meaning, you never forget it. May we thus be careful to remember to keep our distance from those who do not love the Lord Jesus Christ (especially His words to us, the Dispensation of Grace, Paul’s epistles of Romans through Philemon), for that same Lord Jesus Christ is coming again and we want Him to find us pure in doctrine and lifestyle!

Also see:
» What does “Lord of Sabaoth” mean?
» What does God mean, “I am Alpha and Omega?”
» Why does Daniel 5:25 say “Upharsin” but Daniel 5:28 say “Peres?”

Can you define “carriage” in the King James Bible?

CAN YOU DEFINE “CARRIAGE” IN THE KING JAMES BIBLE?

by Shawn Brasseaux

In the Authorized Version, the word “carriage” is found five times:

  • Judges 18:21: “So they turned and departed, and put the little ones and the cattle and the carriage before them.”
  • 1 Samuel 17:22: “And David left his carriage in the hand of the keeper of the carriage, and ran into the army, and came and saluted his brethren.”
  • Isaiah 10:28: “He is come to Aiath, he is passed to Migron; at Michmash he hath laid up his carriages:….”
  • Isaiah 46:1: “Bel boweth down, Nebo stoopeth, their idols were upon the beasts, and upon the cattle: your carriages were heavy loaden; they are a burden to the weary beast.”
  • Acts 21:15: “And after those days we took up our carriages, and went up to Jerusalem.”

When we see this word in the Holy Scriptures, we should think beyond something like a wagon, buggy, cart, or coach. The idea is not a vehicle carrying people, but rather people carrying goods. “Carriage” in the King James Bible is that which is carried—luggage, baggage, suitcases, trunks, and/or their contents (treasures, weapons, clothes, and other supplies). We must remember the Authorized Version King James Bible was produced in England, as clearly reflected here. According to The Oxford English Dictionary, “carriage” in British English means, “the conveying of items or merchandise from one place to another.” (Which is basically what we have just used Bible verses to teach.)

Also see:
» Is “corn” a mistake in the King James Bible?
» Why does the King James Bible say “nephews” instead of “grandchildren” in 1 Timothy 5:4?
» Is the King James word “borrow” a “mistranslation” in Exodus 3:22?
» Is “rooms” a King James Bible mistake in Matthew 23:6?
» What does “under colour” mean in Acts 27:30?

Can you explain Habakkuk 2:2?

CAN YOU EXPLAIN HABAKKUK 2:2?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Let us consider Habakkuk chapter 2: “[2] And the LORD answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. [3] For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry.” Can you explain, “make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it?” Yes!

The LORD God directs the Prophet Habakkuk to write on “tables”—that is, stone tablets or plaques—what he sees in a vision. His words are to be “plain,” distinctly engraved and therefore easy to understand. We want to focus, however, on the rest of verse 2, that which seems less clear. Why is the reader said to “run?”

Here are three common explanations:

  1. The message is so clear anyone running by the “tables” could easily read and understand it.
  2. The message is so simple the reader can run and proclaim to others what he has learned from the “tables.”
  3. The message is so clear the reader can “run his eye” over the “tables” with ease.

Frankly, none of these views does the verse justice. A better way to expound the passage is this: “Habakkuk should write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that the reader be able to understand and quickly (speedily—‘run’ as in rapid movement) adjust his thinking and behavior accordingly.” In other words, God’s words motivate whoever reads them to conform to that Divine revelation. “I will run the way of thy [the LORD’S] commandments, when thou shalt enlarge my heart” (Psalm 119:32). See also verse 59: “I thought on my ways, and turned my feet unto thy [the LORD’S] testimonies.” Unless the language of the Scriptures is clear enough to introduce spiritual light, God’s Word will profit no one, so Habakkuk was commanded to be plain in his message. It was urgent that his audience reform their minds and ways!

Also see:
» Should ministers study Scripture to prepare for teaching?
» Must we follow along in the Bible?
» I have trusted Christ, so why do I see things in Scripture I have never noticed before?
» Is it normal for me to be “too busy” for daily Bible reading?

Can you explain, “Let your loins be girded,” in Luke 12:35?

CAN YOU EXPLAIN, “LET YOUR LOINS BE GIRDED,” IN LUKE 12:35?

by Shawn Brasseaux

Let your loins be girded about, and your lights burning; And ye yourselves like unto men that wait for their lord, when he will return from the wedding; that when he cometh and knocketh, they may open unto him immediately” (Luke 12:35-36). In what sense are their “loins” to be “girded about?”

In Bible days, the Jews wore outer garments similar to robes. A belt or sash—a girdle—was used to fasten the garment closer to the body. Otherwise, being loose, it would flap about and hinder physical movement (preventing work, running, and so on). For example, “And the hand of the LORD was on Elijah; and he girded up his loins, and ran before Ahab to the entrance of Jezreel” (1 Kings 18:46). Unless his outer garment were tucked in, Elijah would not have been an agile runner. To physically gird up the loins (hips, groin, waist) meant to take a material belt and tightly secure the clothes to the flesh and blood body. In the case of Luke 12:35, the command is figurative and spiritual, applying to the inner man. Be ready to act internally! The girdle here is truth, sound Bible doctrine, what will keep Israel thinking properly as she awaits Jesus’ Second Coming. Her mind and heart (spirit and soul) should be “tied down,” not wandering about!

A similar exhortation, also concerning Christ’s return, is found in 1 Peter chapter 1: “[13] Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind, be sober, and hope to the end for the grace that is to be brought unto you at the revelation of Jesus Christ; [14] As obedient children, not fashioning yourselves according to the former lusts in your ignorance: [15] But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; [16] Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.” Even we in the Dispensation of Grace are instructed, “…having your loins girt about with truth” (Ephesians 6:14). Whether in the prophetic program (Israel’s Little Flock), or the mystery program (us, the Church the Body of Christ), the renewed mind should always guide and motivate the saints (Romans 12:1-2; Ephesians 4:20-24; Colossians 3:10). If the loins of our mind are not secured according to sound Bible doctrine, we will drift about with false doctrine and become disoriented, thereby being rendered unfit for God’s ministry (but quite helpful to Satan’s!).

Also see:
» Can you explain, “We are in the world, but not of the world?”
» Why did Jesus tell Israel they do not know the date of His return?
» Does doctrine really matter?

Whose are the “words” of 1 Samuel 3:19?

WHOSE ARE THE “WORDS” OF 1 SAMUEL 3:19?

by Shawn Brasseaux

First, let us read the verse about which we have the question: “And Samuel grew, and the LORD was with him, and did let none of his words fall to the ground.” Since there are two male individuals here—Samuel and the LORD—the expression “his words” is rather ambiguous. Is it Samuel not letting the words of the LORD (that is, the Scriptures) fall to the ground? Or, is it the LORD not letting the words of Samuel (that is, his preaching) fall to the ground? What does “fall to the ground” imply anyway?

Verse 20 seems to resolve the matter for us: “And all Israel from Dan even to Beersheba knew that Samuel was established to be a prophet of the LORD.” If Samuel were a prophet of the LORD, he needed authentication or validation—namely, his prophecies fulfilled. He took in God’s words (especially the Law of Moses) and subsequently preached in accordance with them. That is to say, God let none of Samuel’s prophetic words fall to the ground. All of Samuel’s prophecies came true (they were not trampled on the ground or considered worthless). Accordingly, everyone within the borders of Israel—from Dan (northernmost) to Beersheba (southernmost)— recognized Samuel as God’s spokesman! Thus was the LORD’S promise to the evil Priest Eli fulfilled. Whereas he and his idolatrous sons were banned from the priesthood, Samuel was a faithful minister in their stead (cf. 1 Samuel 2:27-36).

Also see:
» How did Eli honor his sons more than he honor God?
» Why does Peter start with Samuel in Acts 3:24?
» Was the Apostle Paul a false prophet?
» How do we identify false teachers?

What does “skin for skin” mean in Job 2:4?

WHAT DOES “SKIN FOR SKIN” MEAN IN JOB 2:4?

by Shawn Brasseaux

“And Satan answered the LORD, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life” (Job 2:4). What exactly was the Devil communicating here?

To begin, it helps to establish some background, as found in chapter 1 of Job. Job is a righteous and prosperous Jew, living in the time between the Books of Genesis and Exodus. Satan desires to attack him, and does so after obtaining the LORD’S permission. Although Job cannot be harmed physically, he loses his family and possessions: his oxen and asses are stolen, the fire of God comes down and kills his sheep, his camels are stolen, and even all seven of his sons and all three of his daughters die. Only a handful of his hundreds of servants remain alive. Job does not curse or slander God, but rather blesses Him (Job 1:20-22).

In chapter 2, Satan again stands before God. Read verses 3-5: “[3] And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause. [4] And Satan answered the LORD, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life. [5] But put forth thine hand now, and touch his bone and his flesh, and he will curse thee to thy face.” According to Satan, Job should suffer more so the “real” him can be exposed. While Job has not railed against God, if he himself should experience bodily pain, then God’s “righteous” man will be shown to be a hypocrite. (Satan’s mind is perverted, but what else do we expect?!)

At this point, we have encountered that unique expression again, “skin for skin” (Job 2:4). The entire verse is, “And Satan answered the LORD, and said, Skin for skin, yea, all that a man hath will he give for his life.” Paraphrased, Satan replies to the LORD, “The only reason Job has not yet cursed You yet is because he himself is still alive and healthy. He is willing to give up the skin of his children, animals, and servants, that he perish not.” In other words, Job is allegedly insensitive or callous. To say it yet another way, “Job’s children, servants, and animals died, but he himself remains untouched, which is why he does not curse You, God! Those are unsubstantial losses to him, so they do not move him to the point of revealing his ‘true’ self. However, let his physical body suffer—then he will blaspheme against You and You will finally see the ‘real’ Job!”

Even today, we use English phrases such as, “He will save his own skin” or “She saved his skin.” These are descriptions of rescues from dangers or difficulties concerning the physical (flesh and blood) body, the syntactical structure being related to Satan’s wording.

Saints, please remember us in your monthly giving—these websites do cost money to run! 🙂 You can donate securely here: https://www.paypal.me/ShawnBrasseaux, or email me at arcministries@gmail.com. Do not forget about Bible Q&A booklets for sale at https://arcgraceministries.org/in-print/booklets-bible-q-a/. Thanks to all who give to and pray for us! By the way, ministry emails have really been backed up this year. I am handling them as much as humanly possible. Thanks for your patience. 🙂

Also see:
» Does God chasten us when we sin?
» Is God chastening me?
» Why does God let Satan exist?
» Where in the Bible did God give Satan domain over the Earth?

Can you explain the “single” eye and the “evil” eye?

CAN YOU EXPLAIN THE “SINGLE” EYE AND THE “EVIL” EYE?

by Shawn Brasseaux

We find this contrast twice in Scripture:

  • Matthew 6:22-23: “[22] The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light. [23] But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!”
  • Luke 11:34-36: “[34] The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness. [35] Take heed therefore that the light which is in thee be not darkness. [36] If thy whole body therefore be full of light, having no part dark, the whole shall be full of light, as when the bright shining of a candle doth give thee light.”

The “light” can be understood as a lamp. Through the physical eye, the physical body is aware of its surroundings. If we take this and apply it to the spiritual realm, we understand the spiritual eye allows the spiritual body to be aware of its environment. The “single eye” refers to a clear eye that has one image in view as opposed to double vision. It is good because it sees reality instead of an illusion. The single eye sees truth. On the other hand, the “evil eye” is the bad or deceived eye. It is not focused on one image but a combination of images, which is nothing but error, fleshliness (carnality), and worldliness. Such vision—as in the physical world, so in the spiritual world—will lead to confusion and disorientation.

We find two other references to the “evil eye” in Scripture. One is Matthew 20:15: “Is it not lawful for me to do what I will with mine own? Is thine eye evil, because I am good?” The other is Mark 7:22, the “evil eye” being one of the sins proceeding from man’s wicked heart: “Thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lasciviousness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness:….” If you read the context of the Matthew verse, you will see the “evil eye” refers to materialism (greediness, envy). Also, see Matthew 6:19-34, which is the context of the verse cited at the beginning of this study. It too issues the following warning: no one can serve God and mammon (wealth deified or idolized).

By mentioning the “single” eye and the “evil” eye, the Lord Jesus Christ advises Israel to receive the spiritual light He is providing them during His earthly ministry. Remember, “Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path…. The entrance of thy words giveth light; it giveth understanding unto the simple” (Psalm 119:105,130). However, apostate Israel is in unbelief, and is content to be in spiritual darkness. Satan’s evil world system has distracted them from the truth, God’s words to them. They refuse to hear, see, and believe. This is applicable not only to the nation Israel as a whole, but also individual Jews who reject Jesus as Messiah/Christ. They failed to appreciate Him because they were not thinking properly. Consequently, they murdered Him on Calvary’s cross!

While not written to or about us, the doctrine contained herein is transdispensational. It is true in any and every age, for Satan’s policy of evil is always designed to sidetrack people from listening to and believing God’s revelation to them. Brethren, may we have a “single” eye in this the Dispensation of the Grace of God—rightly dividing the Word of Truth (2 Timothy 2:15), understanding the Apostle Paul is Jesus Christ’s spokesman to us (Romans 11:13), heeding and trusting Romans through Philemon. Otherwise, we have an “evil” eye…and darkness…and confusion…and disorientation…and Christendom (Christendumb)!

Also see:
» What is the “madness” of Luke 6:11?

» What is a “lunatick?”
» How did Israel manipulate Moses to murder Messiah?
» If they were fulfilling Bible prophecy, how are Christ’s murderers culpable of wrongdoing?
» Who was more responsible for Jesus’ death—the Jews or the Romans?
» How could Israel welcome Messiah on Palm Sunday but then demand His death later that week?