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Author Archives: Jeff Scoggins

About Jeff Scoggins

Jeff Scoggins has served more than 20 years as a pastor, administrator, and missionary. His ministry is devoted to helping everyday Christians discover extraordinary insights into God’s word.

New Book Release: A Simple Guide to Paul’s Epistles

A Simple Guide to Paul's Epistles--Jeff Scoggins

A Simple Guide to Paul’s Epistles–Jeff Scoggins

My new book called A Simple Guide to Paul’s Epistles is now available as an e-book for iPad at iTunes and Google, for Kindle at Amazon, and for Nook at Barnes and Noble. The hardcover edition will arrive in mid January. Stay tuned for more information.

Back Cover Copy:

Do the writings of the Apostle Paul ever cause you to

scratch your head?

Do you ever hear people explain Paul’s theology in a way that

doesn’t fit with the rest of Scripture?

And have you ever wished for

an informal verse-by-verse guide

that walks you through Paul’s epistles from start to finish?

If so, then keep this book handy whenever you read the New Testament. You might use it as a basic reference: look up a passage that puzzles you to find a clear explanation. Or you might red through it as a devotional alongside your Bible.

Few Bible writers have influenced Christian beliefs more than the Apostle Paul. Listen as God’s voice speaks through these timeless letters.

___________________________________________________

A Simple Guide to Paul's Epistles

You Can Understand the Book of Revelation

For more information and to purchase books by Jeff Scoggins visit Skapto Publishing.

Follow Jeff Scoggins on Twitter

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Posted by on December 24, 2014 in Uncategorized

 

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Luke 24:36-53

2/11/2012 V. 36, As the men from Emmaus were relating their story, Jesus appeared among them with the greeting, “Peace be with you.” Jesus always comes bringing peace.

V. 37, The disciples were ready to believe. Indeed, they already believed because in v. 34 they had believed Peter’s story. But when faced with the reality of Jesus, they thought it must be a spirit they were seeing and were actually frightened by it.

V. 38-40, Jesus asked them why their fear and doubt, then presented His hands and feet to them, told them to touch Him. Spirits don’t have flesh and bones.

V. 41, They still couldn’t believe it, but Luke clarifies that’s it was because of their joy, which is a concept we understand. A teenager who has been dreaming of a car for so long can’t believe it when he gets one for his birthday because of his joy. So dad hands him the keys and says go ahead, take it for a ride. Jesus said, “Give me something to eat.” For the disciples this would prove the reality because in their minds a spirit couldn’t do that.

V. 42-43, So they gave Him a piece of broiled fish and He ate it there before them.

V. 44, Once the shock of the moment had calmed, Jesus began to speak to them. He reminded them that everything that had happened He had told them about before His death and that it was the witness that the scriptures bore of Him, in the books of Moses, in the prophets, and in the psalms. The entire OT had predicted exactly what had happened.

V. 45, We don’t know how long Jesus spent doing this, but He then opened the minds of His disciples so that they could understand what had not been revealed to them before. The Spirit chooses when to open things to our minds, and these things had not been revealed to the disciples before.

V. 46, Jesus explained from the scriptures where it was predicted that the Christ would suffer and then rise from the dead on the third day.

V. 47, He explained how atonement had been made for the sins of the world and forgiveness was available to everyone by His death. And now that this had been accomplished, he told them, that this message was to be proclaimed throughout the world beginning in Jerusalem. Probation hadn’t yet closed for Israel. For another three and a half years they could accept Jesus and still be counted as God’s specially chosen people.

V. 48-49, Since the disciples had been eye witnesses to all of this they were to be His special messengers Jesus was giving them the gift the Father had promises, which was the Holy Spirit. But they were to stay right where they were until the power of the Holy Spirit came upon them.

V. 50-51, Finally, Jesus led them out to the Mount of Olives at Bethany. He raised His hands and blessed them and as He did so He was lifted up and taken into heaven.

V. 52, The disciples worshiped Him and then returned to Jerusalem beside themselves with joy.

V. 53, They spent all their time over the next few days praising God.

This brings to an end this devotional study. Find devotional commentaries on other books of the Bible at www.scoggins.biz. Also find information about my book on Revelation.

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Luke 24:28-35

2/10/12 V. 28, When they came to their village Jesus politely didn’t impose Himself but made to go on further, which I’m sure He would have had they not invited Him in. What an incredible discovery they would have missed if they had not been willing to entertain this stranger.

V. 29, Fortunately, they urged Him to come stay with them and Jesus agreed.

V. 30, When they sat down for supper He was the one who took the bread, broke it, and handed it to them. I don’t know if it was customary for the guest to do this or if Jesus took it upon Himself to do it thereby causing them to recognize Him.

V. 31, They did recognize Him, then immediately He disappeared. Jesus was no longer living the part of a human being limited by human limitations. His divinity was taken back up now that He had been enthroned in heaven after His sacrifice. He now appeared to them as God Himself.

V. 32, I wish I could have seen their reaction. Luke, in his classic form, vastly understates the scene as they described the way Jesus had opened their eyes spiritually as He explained the prophecies to them as they had walked along.

V. 33, Normally people didn’t travel at night, but they left for Jerusalem right away, stumbling through the darkness for seven miles to get back to the other disciples. When they finally arrived they found them gathered together, already amazed with Peter’s story.

V. 34, Apparently, Jesus appeared to Simon Peter separately as well. He must have visited Peter while the other two were returning to Jerusalem, otherwise they would have heard about it before they left.

It’s interesting those whom Jesus did not appear to first. Mary and the two from Emmaus got to see Him first while the eleven did not. He was stretching their faith concerning this event. It seems that Peter was the third to see Him. Jesus probably visited Him specifically to affirm that He had not rejected Peter because he denied Jesus at the trial. The disciples hadn’t believed the women or Mary but it seems they did believe Peter. So then, once their faith had grasped what they had not yet seen, then Jesus appears to all of them, excepting Thomas who wasn’t there. Apparently Thomas needed his faith stretched even further.

V. 35, The two from Emmaus then told what had happened to them, confirming Peter’s story, which the the other disciples had already accepted as confirmation.

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Luke 24:13-27

2/9/12 V. 13, It was still Sunday. Jesus had not revealed Himself to anyone except Mary so that he could get to heaven for His enthronement. Then He returned and the second people He revealed Himself to was the men in this story.

They were traveling to Emmaus. It was late in the afternoon.

V. 14-16, As the walked along they talked about all that had happened. As they discussed these things Jesus approached and joined them but they weren’t allowed to recognize Him.

V. 17, Although He knew, Jesus asked them to tell Him what they were discussing so intently. The question brought them up short and they stopped walking. Their faces showed their grief.

V. 18-21, Cleopas answered somewhat amazed that even a stranger didn’t know what had happened that weekend. Jesus asked them to explain and they went on to tell Him about Jesus, how His actions and His words had proved Him to be a prophet of God. But the religious leaders had engineered His death.

They had hoped that He was the Messiah who would redeem Israel. But now it was three days since all this happened. The insinuation was that how could He have been the promised one if this happened to Him?

V. 22-24, They went on to tell Him the women’s story, how they had gone to the tomb and found it empty and how they had seen angels who told them Jesus was alive. Some went to check it out and found the tomb empty as the women had said, but the disciples obviously remained unconvinced.

V. 25, Then it was Jesus’ turn to talk. He must have felt so sorry for all the people who were so spiritually ignorant. We don’t have to be this way! Why don’t you believe what the prophets have said, asked Jesus?

V. 26-27, This was the way it was predicted to be! Christ had to suffer before He could enter His glory. Then Jesus, beginning all the way back with Moses and working His way through all the prophets, He explained to them the things in the scriptures. And they were entranced, we find out later in the story.

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Luke 24:1-12

2/8/12 V. 1, Just as dawn was breaking on Sunday morning the women who loved and followed Jesus returned to the tomb with the burial spices they had prepared. There wasn’t much reason for them to go that early except that they were so grieved over what had happened to Jesus. It’s a fitting picture of their devotion to Jesus.

They wouldn’t have known about the guard around the tomb, which Luke doesn’t talk about. John mentions that they were wondering who would roll the stone away for them. They would have really been concerned and perhaps not even gone to the tomb had they known it had been sealed with Roman seals.

V. 2-4, But they went knowing none of this. When they had arrived they found the stone rolled away already. They went in and not finding the body of the Lord Jesus (the only time the book of Luke refers to Jesus this way) they were perplexed. On top of everything else that had happened to their beloved master now even His body was gone.

Suddenly, though, two men appeared beside them in brilliant clothing.

V. 5-6, The women were terrified and dropped to the ground bowing before them. The angels asked rhetorically why they were looking for someone living among the place of the dead. He isn’t here. He has risen. How the angels must have enjoyed delivering that message! They went on to remind the women that Jesus Himself had told them all about this.

V. 7, The Son of Man was going to be given over to wicked people, be crucified, and on the third day rise again.

V. 8, Then the women recalled Jesus’ words, which is more than can be said of the disciple they told shortly thereafter.

V. 9, They believed the angels and returned and told the eleven and the rest, whoever they were.

V. 10, It was a group of women, among them Mary Magdalene, Joanna, and James’ mother also named Mary.

V. 11, Maybe it was the fact that it was women who bore the message that made the disciple reject the story. Wouldn’t Jesus this news have been given to them first, as Jesus’ especially chosen apostles? If so, then their desire for greatness was still alive and well.

Maybe it wasn’t the fact that it was women but just that the story seemed too fantastic. If so, then their belief in the power of God was still weak.

Whatever the underlying reason the disciples rejected the women’s story as nonsense and refused to believe it.

V. 12, Peter however, gave them the benefit of the doubt. He ran to the tomb to check it out for himself. The tomb would have been tiny, as all were. He bent down and according to John he went into the tomb. He found only the burial cloth there.

He returned “wondering” what had happened. This word is variously translated. NASB translates it “marveling.” It doesn’t necessarily indicate disbelief. It seems that Peter if he didn’t believe as least wasn’t opposed to believing. Indeed, he was ready to believe. He may have been just trying to process the event.

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Luke 23:47-56

2/7/12 In vv. 47-49 four different types of people are represented. And a fifth is represented in Joseph in the next verse.

V. 47, The Centurion: The centurion had been more or less a neutral party. He did executions all the time. He didn’t pass judgment on who was innocent or guilty. He simply trusted the judge with that responsibility. He merely did his job.

When he saw what had happened surrounding Jesus’ death, however, the centurion’s heart changed. He praised God and stated that Jesus had surely been innocent.

V. 48, The Crowds: The crowds had not been so neutral. They had been “drunk” and confused by the religious leaders. They had been caught up in the moment and mob mentality.

When they saw everything surrounding Jesus’ death they were silenced, guilty, even distressed. Beating their breasts is a sign of lament. They had done something very wrong and felt it.

V. 49, Jesus’ Acquaintances: Those that had known Jesus had not participated in the proceedings against Jesus either in His prosecution or His defense. They just stood at a distance watching. They didn’t know what to do. They were grief stricken, confused, stunned, and also afraid that their connection with Jesus could bring them to a similar fate.

Women who Followed Him: The women who had followed Him were in a different category. Like those who knew Jesus they were also grief stricken, confused, stunned, but probably not as afraid as His disciples were. They were more bold, it seems, being unafraid to be connected with Jesus, as we see later with the embalming and coming to the tomb on Sunday morning.

V. 50, Joseph of Arimathea: Joseph was not neutral, though until then he had been secretive concerning his opinion of Jesus. Now Joseph came boldly out in support of Jesus. The very events that caused Jesus’ disciples to fear their connection to Jesus made Joseph unafraid of connecting himself to Jesus. He was, as Luke states, a good and righteous man.

V. 51, He had not agreed with the religious leaders’ plans and actions concerning Jesus.

V. 52, He boldly went to Pilate and asked for the body of Jesus to be turned over to his care, which Pilate granted.

V. 53, He took Jesus down from the cross, wrapped His body in linen and placed it in a tomb where no one had been buried. It was his own tomb, we know from the other gospels.

V. 54-56, It was Friday and the Sabbath hours were quickly approaching. So the women, seeing where Jesus had been laid, hurriedly brought spices and perfumes for the body, but soon had to quit in order to be ready for Sabbath rest.

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized

 

Luke 23:39-46

2/6/12 V. 39, One of the criminals being executed beside Jesus took up the mocking of the rulers. Why? What did he have to gain by it? I suppose just anger from all that was happening to him caused him to vent at anyone he could.

V. 40-41, The other criminal, however, had been watching Jesus and knew that He was innocent. The Holy Spirit softened his heart to the point that he believed who Jesus claimed to be. It’s entirely possible that this man could have been touched by Jesus even before this day somehow.

This criminal stood up for Jesus even while hanging there. “Hasn’t all of this gotten your attention? You’re about to meet your God? Wouldn’t this be a time for repentance? We’re only getting what we deserve, but this man is innocent.”

V. 42, Then showing how much he understood of who Jesus claimed to be he asked Jesus to remember him when He comes in His kingdom. Scholars debate whether this should be translated “in” or “into” because it makes a difference on where the comma goes in the next verse. The strongest and best mss say “in.” In other words, the thief was looking forward to Jesus’ return one day in His kingdom, rather than Jesus coming today into His kingdom.

V. 43, And Jesus replied that he would in fact be with Him in paradise. The NT refers to paradise three times and some scholars say that it refers to different things each time. The first time, here, it refers to the heavenly realm of the dead, the next time, in 2 Cor. 12:2, it refers to God’s dwelling place, and the third time in Rev. 2:7 it refers to the restored Eden predicted in the OT. Scholars are making things unnecessarily complicated, though. It’s easy to understand paradise to refer all to the same thing: Eden restored. That is God’s dwelling place and it is the realm of the righteous at the resurrection.

V. 44, From noon until 3 PM darkness fell over the whole land.

V. 45, The reason for the darkness was that the sun’s light had failed. Critical scholars have a big problem with this, because the sun’s light failing doesn’t really carry the connotation of an eclipse, though some claim it can. And they feel it has to be an eclipse. However, the feast happened on a full moon, which can’t be at the same time as an eclipse. I’m not sure why the big struggle. God has complete power to darken the sun whenever He wants to, just as He could rip the thick, heavy curtain in the temple from top to bottom.

V. 46, Finally, all was finished. All scripture had been fulfilled by Jesus and in Jesus. So He called out, “Father, into your hands I commit my spirit!” It was a final claim to Messiahship by His referencing Ps. 31. Then Jesus died.

 
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Posted by on April 15, 2013 in Uncategorized