F.B. Hole

Philippians 4

There are two words in the first verse which direct our thoughts to what has gone before: "Therefore" and "so." We are to stand fast in the Lord therefore, that is, because of, or in view of, what has just been stated. Well, what has been stated? Our heavenly calling, our heavenly citizenship, our expectation of that body of glory, fashioned like unto Christ's in which we shall enter into our heavenly portion. No uncertainty here! And no disappointment when the moment of realization com...

Introduction to 1 Thessalonians

It seems to be generally admitted that this was the first of all Paul's inspired epistles to be written. If any desire confirmation of this they will do well to read the third chapter of the Epistle and then compare it with Acts 17. The Epistle was written just after Timothy had returned from his visit to Thessalonica, paid while Paul was at Athens; and hence when he wrote it the Apostle's labours at Corinth had barely begun and he had not even visited Ephesus. In any event read the ear...

1 Thessalonians 1

They were not formally incorporated as "a church." Had some ceremony been usual the sudden and violent ending of Paul's work in their midst would have precluded it. No, they became the church, that is, the "called-out-ones," of God by the very act of God in calling them out of the world through the Gospel. The Apostle can own them, young converts though they were, as an assembly of God, gathered in the happy knowledge of God as Father, and in subjection to Jesus as their Lord. To know t...

1 Thessalonians 2

In his first chapter the Apostle had alluded to "what manner of men" he and his fellow-workers were among the Thessalonians when they first arrived amongst them with the Gospel, and intimated that the power which had accompanied the message was largely connected with the unblameable character of the messengers. He returns to this subject at the opening of chapter 2. Paul and his friends found at Thessalonica a door opened of the Lord, and they consequently gained a most effectual e...

1 Thessalonians 3

But if Paul had been hindered from coming personally – very likely by the violence of the persecution raised against him by Satan – he had sent Timothy to comfort and encourage them. Here again, in opening chapter 3, we see in Paul the marks of a true father in Christ. He was at Athens, a peculiarly hard and difficult city, a place where more urgently than in most he felt the need of the support and encouragement afforded by like­-minded fellow-labourers, yet would he sacrifice...

2 Timothy 1

In his opening words, presenting his apostleship, Paul strikes a note which is prominent all through this epistle. He is an apostle, not only "by the will of God"-that gave him his authority-but also "according to the promise of life which is in Christ Jesus"-that conferred upon his apostleship an unconquerable character. Nature furnishes us with many illustrations of the extraordinary power of life. Here is a green sapling so tender that an infant could crush it in its tiny fist yet un...

2 Timothy 2

The first verse of our chapter brings before us a third thing that is needful if the truth of God is to be maintained. A good deposit had been entrusted to Timothy. It had been conveyed to him by Paul in an outline of sound words, and was to be kept by the indwelling Holy Spirit, as 2 Tim. 1: 13, 14 have told us. Now to have the truth enshrined in an outline of sound words is good, and yet no such outline can in itself keep the truth alive; for this the Holy Ghost is needed. Apart from ...

Hebrews 6

"Let us go on," is the opening exhortation of our chapter. Movement in the right direction is to mark us. We are to leave "the word of the beginning of Christ," as the marginal reading is, and go on unto "perfection." If we glance back over the last four verses of Hebrews 5 we shall see that the point here is that we ought to grow in our understanding of the faith of Christ. We ought not to be like children staying year after year in the kindergarten, but advance until we assimilate the...

Hebrews 8

Chapter 7 having set before us in full detail the contrast between the temporary priesthood of Aaron and the abiding priesthood of Christ, chapter 8 opens with a summary of the whole matter. In this summary, occupying verses 1 and 2 there are four things which we shall do well to note. Firstly, the Lord Jesus is "such an High Priest," that is such an One as chapter 7 has shown Him to be. We need therefore to refresh our minds as to all those points of contrast which show forth the ...

Hebrews 9

Chapter 8 ends with the ominous words, “ready to vanish away.” Thus it was that the Holy Spirit, who inspired these words, prepared the minds of the Jewish disciples for the disappearance of their venerated religious system, which came to pass within a very few years by the destruction of Jerusalem . The temple being destroyed, the priesthood slain, the sacrifices stopped, Judaism has become but the pale and bloodless shadow of its former self. And in itself, and at its best, it was...
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