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The Gift of a Lump of Dough

Wives Legacy Family (Values)

Source: JOHN MACARTHUR NEW TESTAMENT COMMENTARY: MATTHEW (8-15), p. 373

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Contributed By: Barnett Gushin | Date Posted: 2014-09-19

Scripture: Matthew 13:33

Author: John MacArthur / Barnett Gushin
1

ILLUSTRATION

John MacArthur, in his NT commentary on Matthew, explains the cultural and historical value of a lump of leavened dough to a new bride in ancient times:
 
When a Jewish girl was married, her mother would give her a small piece of leavened dough from a batch baked just before the wedding. From that gift of leaven the bride would bake bread for her own household throughout her married life. That gift, simple as it was, was among the most cherished that the bride received, because it represented the love and blessedness of the household in which she grew up and that would be carried into the household she was about to establish.
 
John MacArthur is the pastor-teacher of Grace Community Church in Sun Valley, California, as well as an author, conference speaker, president of The Master’s College and Seminary, and featured teacher with the Grace to You media ministry.

APPLICATION

As women of God, we not only carry with us a legacy--a lump of leavened dough--from our past, but we are granted the responsibility of passing on our own dough--a legacy of love and grace--in such a way as to impart and permeate the generation to come. 
 
Be careful then to bake the best loaf of bread, hiding away within your own heart and the hearts of your household, the truths and blessings of the Kingdom of God.
 
"Jesus also used this illustration: 'The Kingdom of Heaven is like the yeast a woman used in making bread. Even though she put only a little yeast in three measures of flour, it permeated every part of the dough'" (Matthew 13:33, NLT). 
 
Barnett Gushin

What's Your Favorite Pair Of Shoes?

Christlikeness

Source: preacherpollard.com

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Contributed By: Neal Pollard | Date Posted: 2020-03-08

Scripture: 1 Peter 2:21 ; 1 Corinthians 11:1

Author: Neal Pollard
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ILLUSTRATION

Growing up, I heard my dad preach a sermon comparing different types of shoes to various people’s religious attitudes. You can imagine the application of such shoe types as the slipper, the loafer, the work boot, the Sunday shoe, the combat boot, etc. It was a clever illustration to encourage everyone to live a faithful Christian life and avoid a mentality that hurts the church.

Do you have a favorite kind of shoe? I’d venture to guess that you even have a favorite pair or couple of pairs of shoes. Usually, you’ll find me either in a pair of cowboy boots or in a pair of running shoes. What goes into why you favor a pair of shoes? Quality? Style? Comfort?

APPLICATION

To make a spiritual point by referring to footwear is more ancient than my dad’s efforts to do so. No less than the apostle Paul referred to “having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace” (Eph. 6:15). Indirectly, Isaiah and Paul give attention to this very idea by complimenting the “beautiful feet” of those who bring good news of good things (Isa. 52:7; Rom. 10:15). 

You would think, to borrow dad’s analogy, that some “shoes,” figuratively, shouldn’t be adorned as part of our Christian armor. Flip-flops aren’t good (Jas. 1:8). Neither are skate shoes (Rom. 12:11; Col. 3:23). Camouflage boots can be a liability (Rom. 12:2). It would seem counterproductive for a preacher or teacher to favor tap dancing shoes (2 Tim. 4:3), since our responsibility is to stand firm (Eph. 6:11,13,14). 

Staying with the analogy, some shoes are excellent if used according to their design. Running shoes are essential to running the Christian race (1 Cor. 9:24,26; Heb. 12:1), but not to run in vain (Gal. 2:2; Phil. 2:16), run with sinners to sin (1 Pet. 4:4), or run after false teachers (Luke 17:23). Work boots can be misused in prioritizing occupation and career over the kingdom, but when used in the exercise of our talents and resources to grow the kingdom they are worn well (Mat. 5:16; 9:37-38). 

You get the idea, and you can no doubt add to the analogy with your own ideas. But, spiritually, what is your favorite pair of shoes? John the Baptist suggests that Jesus, like most all others of His day, wore sandals (Mark 1:7). John felt unworthy to even untie them. Yet, Peter, later on, would say “follow in His steps” (1 Pet. 2:21). Jesus’ shoes carried Him to Samaria to minister to the woman at the well. They presumably walked on water. They took Him to Lazarus’ tomb. He doubtless wore them as He ascended the mountain to preach the greatest sermon ever delivered. Was He permitted to wear them as He carried His cross to Calvary? 

We aren’t qualified and worthy to be in His shoes, but, as the song suggests, we must be “trying to walk in the steps of the Savior.” Another hymn avers, “Where He leads me, I will follow.” Our favorite shoes should be the ones revealing the footsteps of Jesus. We follow Him and anyone can follow us (1 Cor. 11:1). They will help us walk in good works (Eph. 2:10), in a worthy manner (Eph. 4:1), in love (Eph. 5:2), and carefully (Eph. 5:15).

The World Celebrated A Full Tomb

Resurrection Easter

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Contributed By: Howard Harden | Date Posted: 2019-10-06

Author: Howard Harden
10

ILLUSTRATION

In 1922, Howard Carter made what is probably the greatest archeological discovery in history. He found the ancient tomb of the Pharaoh, known as Tutankhamun or King Tut. This was significant because, unlike other tombs that had been emptied by grave robbers, this tomb was full of priceless artifacts, as well as the body of King Tut himself.

It took eight years to remove and document the contents of the tomb. The mummified remains and his treasures were sent all over the world. Millions upon millions of people stood in line for hours just to catch a glimpse of a dead king. The whole world celebrated because that tomb was NOT empty. 

APPLICATION

As Christians, we celebrate because of the tomb that WAS empty! When the tomb of Jesus was discovered by women two thousand years ago, they expected to find his body. But instead, an angel said, “He is not here. He is risen!” (Matthew 28:6). 

The empty tomb of Jesus Christ is filled with more reason to celebrate than the full tomb of King Tut!

Living In Glass Houses

Criticism Golden Rule

Contributed By: Neal Pollard | Date Posted: 2019-09-15

Scripture: Matthew 7:12

Author: Charles Panati
2

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