|Vol. 15 No. 3 March 2013||
Almost everyone is familiar with the account of God turning the Nile waters into blood. God did this to show Pharaoh that he was not as powerful as God. He also did it to show that Israel’s God was more powerful than the false Egyptian gods.
There have been theologians and atheists who have tried to convince believers that God really did not turn the Nile into blood. They say this was simply the yearly occurrence when the waters of the Nile turn red, but they are wrong.
The Nile begins to rise about the end of June. It attains its highest point near the end of September. When it first starts rising, it takes on a greenish color and tastes bad. The waters soon turn red in color and stay this way for three or more weeks. The miracle lasted only seven days. While it is red, it is healthy to drink. The fish do not die when it is red. The river does not stink when it is red. The miracle occurred immediately and did not take days or weeks to develop. All of this demonstrates that God indeed performed a miracle on the Nile River through Moses
I am glad that God gave us the Bible so that we can learn about His interaction with man throughout history. I am glad that God loves us. I know you are glad too. Keep reading your Bible. Obey God, and if any of this is hard to understand, ask an adult to help you.
The second epistle of John is a letter penned “unto the elect lady and her children” whom John and others loved in the truth (2 John 1). Although the letter is short in length, it is extensive in commendation and exhortation that reveals to the reader what God desires in His children.
God desires that His children walk in truth and love. John “rejoiced greatly” when he found his fellow Christians walking in truth (2 John 4a). When Christians behave in such a way that emulates the instruction found in the Gospel, there is reason to rejoice (3 John 3-4). It is common for there to be rejoicing when one is baptized into Christ (Acts 8:39; 16:34), but the rejoicing should continue as our fellow Christians remain steadfast in the faith. Walking in truth is not only a reason to rejoice, it is also “a commandment of the Father” (4b). The only way to please God is to obey His commandments, and our obedience is a demonstration of our love for Him (John 14:15; 15:14; 1 John 5:3). Walking in truth is important, but John encouraged lady elect to also walk in love (2 John 5). Specifically, he beseeched them to “love one another.” In order to encourage her, John established the age of the commandment and the definition of love. John insisted that the commandment to “love one another” was not a new commandment (5b) but was one they “heard from the beginning” (6a). Indeed, decades ago, Christ commanded the disciples to love one another (John 13:34-35), and John often reiterated Christ’s instruction (1 John 2:9-10; 3:14; 4:20-21). According to John, the definition of brotherly love is “that we walk after his commandments” (6b). When Christians walk in the commandments of God, they demonstrate their love for God and the brethren (1 John 5:2). It is easy for one to say “I love the brethren,” but if he continually brings sin into the family of God, his words are empty.
God desires that His children protect their reward (7-9). There is always a bountiful supply of false teachers hoping to deceive faithful Christians. During the time this epistle was written, there were some who denied that Christ came in the flesh (John 1:1, 14). Therefore, they must beware of false teachers (7). In order to preserve the accomplishment of their work and protect their reward, they were to “look to” themselves (8a). Christians must engage in introspection to ensure that true Christianity is preserved (Jude 3), and the reward for their labor is protected now and in the life to come (James 1:23; Hebrews 2:1). False teachers, who were discrediting Christ and claiming to have God without the Son, were untruthful (1 John 2:4) and in reality “hath not God” (9a). It is impossible to have the Father without the Son (John 14:6-7); therefore, one must continually abide in the doctrine of Christ to have “both the Father and the Son” (9b).
God desires that His children reject false teachers (10-11). Those who knowingly teach that which is contrary to the doctrine of Christ should not be shown hospitality by Christians. John instructed the elect lady not to receive them into her home or bid them Godspeed. What may seem as a harmless gesture of encouragement actually makes one a “partaker of his evil deeds” (2 John 11). In today’s world, some Christians think it is a noble effort to encourage, promote and have fellowship with denominational leaders in the name of unity and advancement of “Christian principles.” God disagrees.