F.B. Hole

Ephesians 3

Having presented us with this great unfolding of truth, Paul commences to exhort us to walk in a way that shall be worthy of such an exalted vocation. This may be seen if the first verses of chapters 3 and 4 are read together. The whole of chapter 3 excepting verse 1, is a parenthesis, in which he points out how definitely the Lord had entrusted to him the ministry of all this truth-which he calls, "the mystery"-and in which he again puts on record that which he prayed for the Ephesian ...

Ephesians 2

The church is not yet completed, and the saints are here in weakness, but our Head is exalted far above all by the surpassing greatness of divine power, and this exhibits how great is the power that works toward us in life-giving energy. Hence chapter 2 simply opens with, "And you, who were dead in trespasses and sins." God's power has wrought, "in Christ . . . and you." It wrought in Christ when He was dead on account of our trespasses and sins. It wrought in us when we were dead in our...

Ephesians 1

After the opening words of salutation the Apostle goes straight to the heart of his theme in the spirit of a worshipper. We have been blessed in such rich fashion by the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ that He blesses God in return and carries our hearts with him in doing so. The blessings that are ours are characterized by three things. They are spiritual, not material as were Israel's blessings under the old covenant, in such matters as ample food and health and peace under di...

Luke 22

As we commence to read this chapter, we reach the closing scenes of our Lord's life. The Passover was not only a standing witness to Israel's deliverance from Egypt but also a type of the great Sacrifice which was yet to come. Now at last the climax approached, and "Christ our Passover" was to be sacrificed for us precisely at the Passover season. The religious leaders were scheming how they might kill Him in spite of the fact that many of the people viewed Him with favour. Satan ins...

Luke 21

Then He looked up, and here were some of these rich men ostentatiously casting their money into the temple treasury, and amongst them came a poor widow casting in her two mites. We must not allow the break of the chapters to divorce in our minds these opening verses from the closing two of Luke 20. The widow was presumably one of those whose "house" had been devoured, yet instead of repining, she cast her last two mites into the temple treasury. Under these circumstances her gift was tr...

Luke 20

Yet in the precincts of the temple the Lord taught daily during this last week of His life, so it is not surprising that He came into conflict with them. The whole of this chapter is occupied with details of the conflict. The chief priest and scribes began the conflict, and at the end they were left silenced and unmasked. They started by challenging His authority. They were the people in authority there, and to them He was but an upstart "Prophet" from Nazareth. Their question assu...

Luke 19

Only Luke tells us about the conversion of Zacchaeus, which fits in so strikingly with the theme of his Gospel. The publican, though so despised by the leaders of his people, was a fit subject for the grace of the Lord, and he was marked by the faith which is ready to receive it. Zacchaeus had no physical or material needs; his was a case of spiritual need only. The people flung the epithet, "sinner," at him. It was a true epithet, and Zacchaeus knew it, yet it provoked him into an atte...

Luke 18

In speaking the parable, with which this chapter opens, the Lord was continuing the same line of thought, as is shown by His application of the parable in verses 7 and 8. When the kingdom arrives it will mean judgment for the evil-doers, but the days just before its arrival will mean tribulation for saints. Their resource will be prayer. Even an unjust judge will be moved to right the wrongs of a widow, if she is sufficiently importunate; so the saint may continue waiting upon God with ...

Luke 17

The latter part of the previous chapter, verse 14 to the end, was spoken to the Pharisees: at the beginning of this chapter the Lord again addresses His disciples. The rich man had stumbled over his possessions into hell, and now the Lord tells His disciples that, the world being what it is, "offences," or occasions of stumbling are inevitable. The great thing is to avoid being an "offence" to anyone else, to even the least important. The consequences are so serious that anything is bet...

Luke 16

These parables were spoken to the Pharisees but the one that opens this chapter was spoken to the disciples. They were instructed by it as to the position in which men find themselves before God, and the behaviour that befits them in that position. We are stewards, and have been unfaithful in our stewardship. The steward was accused to his master that he had "wasted his goods." This phrase gives us a link with the previous parable, for the younger son had "wasted his substance with r...
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