Prelude, Purpose & Plan

Ought Christians be good citizens? What’s the difference between love of country and idolatry of country? Is paying taxes participation in evil acts by governments?
Let’s understand that Christians are to be good citizens and paying taxes ought not be a moral conflict.
Let’s look at paying tribute to Caesar in Matthew 22:15-22 and its moral dilemmas.

Matthew 22:15-17 A False Dichotomy

In Matthew 22:15-17 Jesus was asked, Is it right to pay taxes”? The real question was, is it obedience to the law of the Bible to pay taxes? It was a trap. What would you have said? A false dilemma or false dichotomy suggests that we may only choose one of two sides. This kind of argument is often used in national politics where it is claimed that one side is totally right and the other totally wrong. Both may be right and wrong. In a false dichotomy truth is always a different option: In a world of moral ambiguity we pay tribute to a corrupt Caesar and to God.

Matthew 22:18 Flattery is a Trap

In Matthew 22:18 Jesus answered insincere flattery rather bluntly. “You hypocrites!” he said. “Why are you trying to trap me?” Obsequious smoke is a trap. Pastor beware! When your new church flatters you, while vilifying the previous pastor, they will soon betray you. If they speak kindly of the previous pastor, they will also treat you with kindness. Schmoozing may seem encouraging, but beware of the ambush. A trap was set for Jesus, “we know how honest you are. You teach the way of God truthfully. You are impartial and don’t play favorites.” (verse 16) Jesus was not fooled by blarney. When we are flattered, look out for the trap.

Matthew 22:19-20 Paying Unjust Taxes

Roman taxation was unjust and excessive. Was paying it right? Jesus answered this difficult question brilliantly. “Whose image and inscription is this?” The poor often lost their lands paying Roman taxes. People did not want to serve another god, Caesar. Would Jesus be branded a traitor to God? Would he be in trouble with the Roman authorities? The tribute coin was probably one labeled “Tiberius Caesar, Divine Augustus Son of Augustus” or “Caesar Augustus son of divinity, Father of his Country,” blasphemous claims which had caused tax revolts. Jesus subverted all human governments by submission to the point of death. That revolution continues today in the hearts of all who believe.
Reference: Horsley, Richard A. Jesus and Empire. Augsburg Fortress 2003

Matthew 22:21 Duties of Citizenship

What is our duty to country? Love of country is part of our duty to love our neighbor. What we must not forget is that, Jesus includes our foreign neighbors in that command. Read the book of Romans. What ought to be a Christian’s duty to country? “Well, then,” he said, “give to Caesar what belongs to Caesar, and give to God what belongs to God.” Jesus was not asked whether it was okay to worship Caesar, but whether it was right to pay taxes. Whether the government is right or wrong, we still owe to the government what belongs to the government and unto God the things that are God's.

Matthew 22:22 They Were Amazed

In Matthew 22:22 we read, His reply amazed them, and they went away.” Jesus sidestepped the moral dilemma presented to him with a practical and brilliant answer. From can we find such wisdom for today? On the one hand, wisdom is found everywhere in life. Wisdom shouts in the streets. She cries out in the public square.” (Proverbs 1:20) On the other hand, it is a gift of God. “For the Lord grants wisdom! From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.” (Proverbs 2:6) “If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking.” (James 1:5)


It is impossible to live and work in this world without being tainted. Jesus’ answer about taxation addressed the practical reality of life in an evil world. We cannot change the whole world. We begin with ourselves, love our neighbors domestic and foreign, and prepare for our part in the day of the Lord’s return.

Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.

God Invites Us

Prelude, Purpose & Plan

What is our response to God’s wedding invitation? What kind of clothing does God require? What are we doing with the opportunity God has placed before us? Let’s see that our invitation to salvation has a twofold responsibility. Let’s look at the Parable of the Wedding Banquet in Matthew 22:1-14.

Matthew 22:1-2 A Royal Wedding

What is the kingdom of heaven like? In Matthew 22:2 Jesus said, “The kingdom of heaven is like a certain king who arranged a marriage for his son.” It has been represented on earth by the Church and Israel. Christianity was originally Jewish. Most Jewish leaders refused the invitation. Most Bible commentators see the marriage allegory as symbolic of salvation for the Church. The marriage feast in ancient times lasted for days. It involved great preparation and expense. Kings of this world and royal weddings can be shallow affairs of families who plundered their country’s wealth. This is an invitation from a self-sacrificing king who died to save his people.

Matthew 22:3 An Invitation

Are we invited by God? In Matthew 22:3 we read a parable about a king who “sent out his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding; and they were not willing to come.” Shocking! How much have we watered down the fear of God? Does it picture God’s invitation to attend church, but we ignore it? Fear means deep reverence and respect and to be afraid. Are we so unafraid to disrespect God? Throughout history, kings were to be feared. Knowing what he wanted was pretty easy to figure out. The invitation was issued politely, but a wise person knows that the king’s wish is a command.

Matthew 22:4 A Banquet

Is God’s kingdom like a party? In Matthew 22:4 a king sent second invitations to a wedding, “See, I have prepared my dinner; my oxen and fatted cattle are killed, and all things are ready. Come to the wedding.” Our wedding is one of life’s best parties, a celebration of a lifelong commitment, legal protection and heaven’s blessing. Marriage was given by God so that a man and a woman might always enjoy each other's companionship, help, support and appropriate expressions of human sexuality. A wedding invitation is to celebrating the start of life’s most important human relationship. Our Christian calling is pictured by an invitation to a grand wedding.

Matthew 22:5 A Rejection

Do people reject God’s invitation? In Matthew 22:5 when a king invited guests to his son’s wedding, “they made light of it and went their ways, one to his own farm, another to his business.” How does God feel after thousands of years of people rejecting his invitation to the greatest celebration of his kingdom? What a discouraging picture is this wedding parable! What could be more important in our lives than paying attention to our Maker’s invitation? What could be more urgent than to rush to his invitation and go to where he is being celebrated? We are invited. A church is near. How could anyone pay no attention?

Matthew 22:6 A Murder

Why kill the person who invited you to a wedding? In Matthew 22:6 several people made light of a king’s wedding invitation and, “the rest seized his servants, treated them spitefully, and killed them.” Opportunity knocks very rarely. Miss it and waste years of our lives looking for a dream situation that may never come along again. We spurn opportunities and miss them. A king offered an opportunity, but people ignored it and mistreated and even killed his messengers. We are invited to the greatest celebration on earth. That celebration takes place every Sunday at a local church. Let’s not abuse those who invite us and let’s not miss out.

Matthew 22:7 An Angry King

Does God ever get angry? In Matthew 22:7 a king’s wedding invitation was refused, his messengers were murdered, and we learn, “when the king heard about it, he was furious. And he sent out his armies, destroyed those murderers, and burned up their city.” Is avoiding church, with obvious exceptions for the sick and elderly, a bad idea? We have a weekly invitation to a heavenly celebration. In the parable the king was very angry with those who refused his invitation. Do we refuse God’s invitation? Is church just a club? The greatest wedding of all history is celebrated. What does God think about our decision to come or not?

Matthew 22:9 An Open Invitation

Are both good and bad people invited to church? In Matthew 22:9-10 we read that because people rejected an invitation to a king’s son’s wedding, the king said, “go into the highways, and as many as you find, invite to the wedding… both bad and good. And the wedding hall was filled with guests.” Is church exclusive? Is there an open welcome to the communion table, both the good and bad? Exclusiveness is self-righteous because it classifies fellow sinners as worse than us. Yet, we can all put on the righteousness of Jesus Christ. Ought not the only criteria for a welcome to communion be our faith in Jesus Christ?

Matthew 22:11-12 A Bad Outfit

What should we wear to Jesus’ wedding? In Matthew 22:11-12 we read about what clothing a king expected, “he saw a man there who did not have on a wedding garment.” What is appropriate clothing? God’s people will be dressed in white in his kingdom, symbolic of the righteousness of the saints. What is that righteousness? We fail the righteousness of obedience to the law, but can have righteousness by faith in Jesus (Romans 1:17; Philippians 3:9). It is a living faith evidenced by good works (James 2:14-26). We enter the kingdom of heaven by faith in Jesus Christ. Is putting on Christ the right wedding clothing?

Matthew 22:13 A Casting Out

What is spiritual wedding clothing? In Matthew 22:13 is a king’s instructions regarding someone wearing inappropriate clothing to a wedding, “Bind him hand and foot, take him away, and cast him into outer darkness; there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.” This is like the wedding supper of Revelation 19:7-10. One is a parable, the other a prophecy. In the prophecy all have proper clothing. John Wesley argued that the parable is about the earthly church. The prophecy is about those saved, in eternity. Spurgeon suggested that we cannot assume the garment, in this context, also pictures righteousness. It could represent disloyalty, refusing to wear the king’s colors.

Matthew 22:14 Called and Chosen

What does it mean to be chosen? In Matthew 22:14 we read, “For many are called, but few are chosen.” Is heaven as a selection process: being invited then chosen? Is being chosen also a process: accepting the invitation then wearing the right clothing? We go to church to learn about this. We must clothe ourselves with Christ (Romans 13:14). When we are baptized we put on Christ (Galatians 3:27). Salvation is only possible in Jesus Christ and those who ultimately refuse him refuse salvation. I say “ultimately” because some may only have an opportunity to even know who Jesus really is later on. But that’s pure speculation.


God invites us to the wedding of His Son. What is our response? Will we choose the right clothing? What are we doing with the opportunity God has placed before us? Let us accept God’s invitation and those He sends with the message. Above all let us wear the right clothing, putting on Jesus every day.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

A Fruitful Life

Prelude, Purpose, Plan

What kind of faith is saving faith? Is saving faith without visible evidence or a faith that produces fruit?
Let’s understand that Christians carry fruit for the kingdom.
Let’s look at the parable of the vineyard in Matthew 21:33-46 and what God requires.

Matthew 21:33 The Vineyard

In Matthew 21:33 Jesus tells a parable that included a winepress to produce wine. In at least six places the Bible calls wine a blessing from God (Numbers 18:12; Judges 9:13; Psalms 104:15; Proverbs 31:6; Ecclesiastes 10:19; Zechariah 10:7) when used responsibly. A vineyard is a considerable investment of time and money, hence the tradition of a security tower. This purposefully exaggerated story points out the sheer idiocy of killing God’s prophets and God’s Son. What did the landowner want? He wanted faithful tenants to “collect his fruit.” The vineyard is God’s kingdom (vs. 43) belonging to “a people who will produce its fruit.”

Matthew 21:38 The Inheritance

In Matthew 21:38 Jesus tells a story of tenant farmers during grape harvest. “But when the vinedressers saw the son, they said among themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and seize his inheritance.’” The problem with tenants not paying their rent is not new. This is far worse. These tenants beat the rent collectors and killed the owner’s son in an effort to take ownership. This is about the murder of Jewish prophets and Jesus. This is about the persecution of anyone who threatens ecclesiastical power bases. When we bury Jesus’ words under vain traditions, are we killing the Son to take ownership of the Church?

Matthew 21:39 The Murder

In Matthew 21:39 we read about tenant farmers hoping to seize the son’s inheritance. “So they took him and cast him out of the vineyard and killed him.” The owner is absent. He has not been seen for a long time. Maybe he will never return. Perhaps they delude themselves that they can get away with this because immediate consequences seem far away. Do we think that we can get away with sin? How many sins in the church are committed because we think that God is a long way off? Do we delude ourselves that God is not looking? He may not immediately act, but God is always looking.

Matthew 21:40 The Owner

In Matthew 21:40 Jesus spoke of ownership of property. “Therefore, when the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those vinedressers?” God is the real owner. The laws of eminent domain, sometimes called compulsory purchase or expropriation, give human governments rights over property. Ultimately God owns our properties. Our tenancy of the earth has not always been good. The property of the kingdom of God is also in human hands. Both Jews and Christians have persecuted God’s messengers and his Son. We too are guilty of disobeying God. As the current tenants in the kingdom of God, what will He say to us when He returns?

Matthew 21:42-44 The Stone

In Matthew 21:42-44 Jesus said that the stone which the builders rejected has now become the cornerstone. A cornerstone is the first stone laid in masonry construction. All other stones are set in reference to it. Our faith is oriented towards Jesus, not the faulty edicts, confessions, canons, and traditions of mere humans. If we fall or stumble at Jesus (1 Peter 2:8) we will be broken, and if He falls on us like grapes at harvest, we would be crushed. Let’s not reject our Rock, “The stone which the builders rejected Has become the chief cornerstone. This was the Lord’s doing, And it is marvelous in our eyes.”

Matthew 21:43 The Kingdom

In Matthew 21:43 Jesus informed certain Jewish leaders that “the kingdom of God will be taken from you and given to a nation bearing the fruits of it.” The kingdom of God is future but also has an important present dimension. The Greek word for kingdom can also be translated as God’s rule. God’s rule is always generous and fair. Jesus’ message was of a kingdom both now and forever. Salvation is for now as well as eternity. God can save us out of our present troubles as well as from death. Being saved means a special relationship with God. We are citizens of heaven when God rules our lives.

Matthew 21:43 The Fruit

In Matthew 21:43 we read that God’s kingdom will be “given to a nation bearing the fruits of it.” This follows the parable of the vineyard, picturing former tenants who killed the servants of God and His own Son. We are all replacement tenants. Our role as the new tenants, is to produce the fruit pictured in that grape harvest. God is not interested in counterfeit fruit, outward pretense, man-made rituals, national conceit or meticulous adherence to the letter of the law. That is the flesh. God wants spiritual fruit, the fruit of repentance (Matthew 3:8), love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and self-control (Galatians 5:22-23).

Matthew 21:45 The Tenants

In Matthew 21:45 we read, “Now when the chief priests and Pharisees heard His parables, they perceived that He was speaking of them.” They are the evil tenants in the parable. Ultimately all of humanity has rejected God. Yet, God persists sending His servants. He even sent his Son but we killed Jesus too. Our civilization rejects the love of the one who created us. Loving the unlovable is difficult and loving those who hate you is almost impossible, except with God. God loves us enough to rescue us from ourselves. Our ways are self-destructive. We are incapable of managing this earthly estate upon which we are God’s tenants.

Matthew 21:45 The Application

The ancient Quadriga helps us see the parable of the tenants in four dimensions. The literal, fleshly meaning is a betrayal by murderous tenants. The spiritual meaning has three parts, an allegory of those who killed the servants of God, a moral of how we should act, and eternal implications. Some would eventually kill the Son of God, and the kingdom would be given to others. Are we evil tenants, who figuratively kill the servants of God, and Jesus by living lives of unrepentant sin? Are we the faithful servants? Are we a faithful people bearing the fruits of the kingdom? Are we among those who are being given the kingdom?


Saving faith is not a dead faith without fruit but a living faith that produces much fruit. God has given his kingdom to a people who will produce its fruit. What fruit is God producing in us?

The Way of Righteousness

Prelude, Purpose & Plan

How do we answer hostile questions about our faith? How do we know where the authority of God resides? Is the authority of God in our lives? What do faith and righteousness have to do with each other?
Let’s explore Jesus’ confrontation with religious leaders over His authority and the parable of the two sons in Matthew 21:23-32.

Matthew 21:23 By What Authority

Jesus’ appearance exposed the abuses of the religious leaders. We are no different. Sin has always pervaded the Church. After Jesus had turned over the tables of the money-changers in the temple and cursed a tree, the chief priests and elders wanted to know, in Matthew 21:23, By what authority are You doing these things? And who gave You this authority? Jesus had no accredited degree, no recognized ordination, no church building and no clerical clothing. Is Jesus handcuffed by denominational authority traditions? Does he operate also outside of such human boundaries? How can we discern between heavenly and human authority? Jesus’ answer was a question and a parable.

Matthew 21:25 From Heaven or from Men

In Matthew 21:25 Jesus answered a question about his authority and asked, The baptism of John—where was it from? From heaven or from men?” Religious leaders chose a political answer. Does heaven’s authority reside in apostolic succession, modes of baptism, worship practices or something else? The Church is a mixture of human and divine authority. Human authority can be an outward show and slavery to church politics rather than heavenly deeds. Many religious leaders have abused others with heavy burdens. Jesus’ focus was not on the authority of men, but acts of freedom and heaven’s rule. We cooperate with faulty human authority for unity, but we submit to heavenly authority.

Matthew 21:27 Neither Will I Tell You

In Matthew 21:27 Jesus answered a deceitful question with a skillful question. After religious leaders evaded answering the question about the authority of John’s baptism, Jesus said, “Neither will I tell you by what authority I do these things.” Is there something about the person who dares to be politically incorrect that is refreshing? While tact is important, so also is honesty. Religious leaders looked for a politically correct answer. The elders were stumped, because they did not want to give the obvious answer. The source of Jesus’ authority was the same as John the Baptist’s, heaven. The implied reply to the Pharisees’ question was contained in Jesus’ question itself.

Matthew 21:29 The “No-Yes” Child

In Matthew 21:29 Jesus gave a parable of a son who initially refused to work for his father, “but afterward he regretted it and went.” Jonah too said no at first. He went to people who are now Christians, most notably the Assyrian Church of the East, an independent church founded by the Apostles Thomas, Bartholomew and Thaddeus. Like the son in the parable, Jonah too said no, then reluctantly obeyed. The “no” child represents those, who have initially said no to God, but reluctantly come. Like Jonah, this too may be a hesitant change as the usual word for repentance is not used, but a word meaning mere regret.

Matthew 21:31 The “Yes-No” Child

In Matthew 21:31 Jesus told religious people, “tax collectors and harlots enter the kingdom of God before you.” The “yes” son in Jesus’ parable represents pious people who, say yes to God then disobey. If even bishops who began life saying yes to God, end up disobeying God, their authority becomes null and void. Who is right? Most churches agree on the essential teachings of Jesus and all churches contain doctrinal error. Only one authority counts, Jesus. Are we in the right place if we obey God, repent and believe? What would Jesus say to us? Have we ignored the way of righteousness even though we have been shown it?

Matthew 21:32 The Way of Righteousness: Repent & Believe

In Matthew 21:32 Jesus criticized religious authorities regarding John the Baptist. They did not “relent and believe him.” All Christians agree that the way of righteousness is through faith in the authority of Jesus. When Jesus spoke of the two sons, one who said yes but did not and the other who said no but changed his mind, he was speaking of the nay-saying of the religious people of this time. They refused their Messiah. Do we likewise doubt Jesus’ authority when we are confronted with it? Do we deny the power and authority of the head of the church? Do we prefer following our own ideas instead of Jesus?

The Way of Righteousness in Practice

Like Jesus, we do not need to be defensive when questioned or attacked about our faith. Go on the offensive. Ask detractors to defend their beliefs. Speak to people's consciences. Know why we believe as we do. Knowing our faith gives us authority. Living our faith puts our detractors to shame. In Revelation 4:10-11 we read that the elders in heaven “cast their crowns before the throne”. That means that they don’t harbor any desire to place their position or power or opinions ahead of Jesus. They said yes to Christ, and they meant it. Whether we have told Jesus yes or no, let’s tell Him yes now and forever.


In the New Testament, living by faith is the way of righteousness. Often the best way to answer hostile questions about our faith is by aggressively asking our attackers questions? Do we know that the authority of God resides in those know and live their faith? Have we said yes to the authority of God in our lives?
Matthew 21:23-32; Jonah 1; Revelation 4:10-11

The Last

Prelude, Purpose, Plan

What kind of life do we lead when we put ourselves first, and others last? What kind of world encourages us to tread all over others and always be first? What would Jesus say about the first and last in society?
Let’s examine the incredible blessing of following Jesus to a life of taking last place so that we can serve others.
Let’s look at Matthew 20:1-16, the parable of the workers in the vineyard and its implications for today.

Matthew 20:1 Wine Industry Parable

Did Jesus promote the wine industry? In Matthew 20:1 Jesus said, For the kingdom of heaven is like a landowner who went out early in the morning to hire laborers for his vineyard.” In an age when refrigeration and pasteurization were unknown, grape juice was commonly preserved as wine. Some try to be more righteous than Jesus. But, the Gospel writers openly wrote about Jesus and wine. Grace is risky. Pharisaic rules remove risk, but also grace. Someone might get drunk, yet Jesus turned water into wine, drank with sinners and used wine as one of the elements of the Lord’s Supper. He even used the grape harvest in parables.

Matthew 20:8 Where Latecomers are First

Why were the latecomers in the parable of the vineyard workers put first? In Matthew 20:8 Jesus spoke of the end of a harvest day, “So when evening had come, the owner of the vineyard said to his steward, ‘Call the laborers and give them their wages, beginning with the last to the first.’” Let’s understand the context. Jesus’ disciples quarreled openly for position. They spurned widows and children who attempted to talk to Jesus. This attitude is not tolerated in God’s kingdom. Those who arrogantly puff themselves up, and look down on others will be last in heaven. The last were put first so the first could learn something.

Matthew 20:9-10 Fair Wages

Are older Christians or older churches more entitled? The parable of the vineyard workers teaches us about this common attitude. In Matthew 20:9-10 we read, when those came who were hired about the eleventh hour, they each received a denarius. But when the first came, they supposed that they would receive more; and they likewise received each a denarius.” How long we have served God does not give us greater entitlements. In heaven there is a Great Reversal. The first will be last and the last first. Let’s not allow position or tenure to delude us into thinking we are better than anyone. They may be our boss in heaven.

Matthew 20:12 Entitlement versus Need

Could the Old Testament law of redistribution, the Jubilee, work today? The super-wealthy would certainly complain. In Matthew 20:12 in the parable of the vineyard workers, the all-day workers complained about equal pay, you made them equal to us who have borne the burden and the heat of the day.” This is a parable of entitlement versus need. Are wealthy people entitled to grossly excessive salaries which they the have power to get but perhaps not the need? Jesus’ subversive parable teaches that the kingdom of heaven is not based upon entitlement, but need. None of us is entitled to heaven, yet we all have need of life after death.

Matthew 20:15 God is Generous

Why did a vintner in Jesus’ parables hire harvesters several times during the day? The only indication why is he saw people who needed work. The farmer paid workers the same whether working all day or only the last hour. He explained in Matthew 20:15, Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with my own things? Or is your eye evil because I am good?” God provides generously for the most needy. Jewish Christians are the same as Gentiles, and the most ancient churches are the same as the newest. “The parable is thus about the goodness... the mercy... of God... The Good (or Generous) Employer.”
Ref: Hagner, D. A. (2002). Vol. 33B: Word Biblical Commentary : Matthew 14-28. Word Biblical Commentary (572). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.

Matthew 20:15 The Evil Eye

What is an evil eye? In Matthew 20:15 Jesus asked, “is your eye evil because I am good?” Friberg explains that an evil eye is an attitude of envy, greed or stinginess. When we want first place or all the best just for ourselves, that is an evil eye. When we believe that others are undeserving of positions because they have not been around as long as we, that is an evil eye. In the kingdom of heaven the first will be last and the last will be first. Human perceptions of what we deserve are not heaven’s. Jesus set the example. Let’s follow Jesus’ example and put ourselves last.
Ref: Friberg, Friberg, Miller, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament. Grand Rapids: Baker Books. 2000.

Matthew 20:16 Lasts who Already are Firsts

Why did Jesus say in Matthew 20:16 that in the kingdom of heaven, “the last will be first, and the first last”? Many so-called little people are big in heaven’s eyes. Why is the janitor the happiest person in the building? Why is the widow the one with the most encouraging word? Why is the wisdom of an old man in a nursing home the greatest thing you have heard all week? Why does the poor farmer out working in his field sing so loudly? Why does the blue collar worker live longer and have a happier marriage than the billionaire? These are great secrets of the kingdom of heaven.


This world is upside down. The arrogant, the narcissistic, the greedy who have chosen first place in this life, have chosen the last place in heaven. The selfless, the generous, the serving who often choose last place in this life, are rewarded with first place in heaven. The Great Reversal is coming. Where will we be?
Ref: Hagner, D. A. (2002). Vol. 33B: Word Biblical Commentary : Matthew 14-28. Word Biblical Commentary (572). Dallas: Word, Incorporated.
Ref: Friberg, Friberg, Miller, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament. Grand Rapids: Baker Books. 2000.
Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.