Weekly Word Definition – Foreigner

A person born in or coming from a country other than one’s own.

The noun Foreigner has 2 senses:

1. a person who comes from a foreign country; someone who does not owe allegiance to your country.

2. someone who is excluded from or is not a member of a group.

What is the difference between Foreigner and alien?
  1. As nouns the difference between foreigner and alien is,
  2. a foreigner is a person from a foreign country.
  3. an alien is a person, animal, plant, or other thing which is from outside the family, group, organization, or territory under consideration.
Who is considered a foreign national?

A foreign national is a person (male or female) that is a legal resident of a country other than the United States. This person may come to the United States throughout the year, whether on vacation or on business, but their primary home is in another country.

Luke 17:17-19 (NKJV)
So Jesus answered and said, “Were there not ten cleansed? But where are the nine?
Were there not any found who returned to give glory to God except this foreigner?”
And He said to him, “Arise, go your way. Your faith has made you well.”

There are people from all over the world that have been promised a place in Heaven. God will not discriminate against anyone who has the faith needed to become a Christian.

Those who desire to go to Heaven must do so through faith in Jesus Christ. Just because we are from the most powerful country in the world today, does not insure us a place in Heaven. Just because we belong to the original church or the largest church in the world does not matter when it comes to going to heaven.

There are no natural citizens in Heaven. There are only foreigners. We cannot buy a place, win a place in Heaven.

Just as the foreigner in verse 19 above, only our faith in Christ will give us a place in Heaven. We are born into this world and people are born into many different countries, however, according to Christ (John chapter 3), we must be born again to go to heaven. We can only reach Heaven through faith and the healing powers of re-birth.

Have a nice day, foreigner.

Weekly Word Definition – Image

A representation of the external form of a person or thing in art.

synonyms: likeness · resemblance · depiction · portrayal · representation · statue

Genesis 1:26 (NKJV)

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

The general impression that a person, organization, or product presents to the public. “she strives to project an image of youth.”

synonyms: public perception · public conception · public impression · persona · profile · face · identity · front · facade · portrayal · depiction

Romans 6:4 (NKJV)

Therefore, we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

To be buried with Christ in Baptism, is to be immersed under the water so that we may imitate the resurrection of Christ. Just as Christ died on the Cross for the sins of the world, we as True Believers are dead to sin and have risen from the waters of baptism a new person. This new person is free from the bondage sin uses to keep us from the life of Christ. This new life is a newness of mind, spirit, and soul.

Romans 8:1 (NKJV)

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.

In this verse of scripture, Paul is using the word flesh to represent the Sin Nature. The sin nature does not walk in the ways of God nor Christianity. The sin nature is the constant urge to do things that are not pleasing to God. To do things that waste the short life span we have and to deprive us of the opportunity to worship God.

When Paul refers to the spirit, he could be referring to the Holy Spirit. When we walk according to the spirit, we are following the guidance of the Holy Spirit that lives in us (John 14:17) The Holy Spirit that comes from God and is part of God.

The sin nature is gone because we are dead to sin, and we have put on the New Man because we now have God living in us and the sin nature was replaced by God’s Divine nature (1 Peter 1:4)

Weekly Word Definition – Disciple

A scholar, sometimes applied to the followers of John the Baptist (Mat 9:14), and of the Pharisees (Mat 22:16), but principally to the followers of Christ. A disciple of Christ is one who

  • (1) believes his doctrine,
  • (2) rests on his sacrifice,
  • (3) imbibes his spirit,
  • (4) imitates his example (Mat 10:24; Luke 14:26, 27, 33; John 6:69).

Illustrated Bible Dictionary: And Treasury of Biblical History, Biography, Geography, Doctrine, and Literature.

Usually a substantive (μαθητής, mathētés, “a learner,” from manthánō, “to learn”; Latin discipulus, “a scholar”): The word is found in the Bible only in the Gospels and Acts. But it is good Greek, in use from Herodotus down, and always means the pupil of someone, in contrast to the master or teacher (διδάσκαλος, didáskalos). Matthew 10:24; Luke 6:40.

  1. In all cases, it implies that the person not only accepts the views of the teacher but that he is also in practice an adherent. The word has several applications. In the widest sense, it refers to those who accept the teachings of anyone, not only in belief but in life. Thus the disciples of John the Baptist (Matthew 9:14; Luke 7:18; John 3:25); also of the Pharisees (Matthew 22:16; Mark 2:18; Luke 5:33); of Moses (John 9:28). But its most common use is to designate the adherents of Jesus.
    1. In the widest sense (Matthew 10:42; Luke 6:17; John 6:66, and often). It is the only name for Christ’s followers in the Gospels. But
    2. especially the Twelve Apostles, even when they are called simply the disciples (Matthew 10:1; Matthew 11:1; Matthew 12:1, et al.). In the Acts, after the death and ascension of Jesus, disciples are those who confess Him as the Messiah, Christians (Acts 6:1-2, 7; Acts 9:36 (feminine, mathétria); Acts 11:26, “The disciples were called Christians”).
    3. Even half-instructed believers who had been baptized only with the baptism of John are disciples (Acts 19:1-4).
  2. We have also the verb, μαθητεύω, mathēteúō, “Jesus’ disciple” (literally, “was discipled to Jesus,” Matthew 27:57);
  3. “Make disciples of all the nations” (the King James Version “teach,” Matthew 28:19); “had made many disciples” (the King James Version “taught many,” Acts 14:21); “every scribe who hath been made a disciple to the kingdom of heaven” (the King James Version “instructed,” Matthew 13:52). The disciple of Christ today may be described in the words of Farrar, as
    1. “one who believes His doctrines,
    2. rests upon His sacrifice,
    3. imbibes His spirit,
    4. imitates His example.”

The Old Testament has neither the term nor the exact idea, though there is a difference between teacher and scholar among David’s singers (1 Chron. 25:8), and among the prophetic guilds the distinction between the rank and file and the leader (1 Samuel 19:20; 2 Kings 6:5). The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

  one who accepts and assists in spreading the doctrines of another: such as

a: Christianity:  one of the twelve in the inner circle of Christ’s followers according to the Gospel accounts

b:  a convinced adherent of a school or individual a disciple of Freud

Capitalized, Christianity:  a member of the Disciples of Christ founded in the U.S. in 1809 that holds the Bible alone to be the rule of faith and practice, usually baptizes by immersion and has a congregational polity Merriam-Webster

Weekly Word Definition – Atonement

The definition of Atonement is as follows:

 The English word for atonement originally meant “at one-ment” or “at one with” like being in harmony with someone and in this case it means to be at one with God through the atonement that was made possible by the substitutionary death of Christ on our behalf.  The Hebrew Word for atonement is “kipur” with the verb form being “kaphar” and means “to cover, purge, make reconciliation” and “to cover with or coat with pitch.”  That last definition is remarkably interesting because the same Hebrew word used for pitch is “kaphar” and that is what the Ark was covered with.  When God commanded Noah to build an Ark to save him, his family, and many of the animals from the coming judgment of the flood, he was commanded to cover the Ark with pitch or “kaphar” which is to cover, make reconciliation with, or to purge.  Since the floodwaters were indicative of the judgment of God on fallen, sinful mankind, it is not ironic that God used the word “kaphar” in telling Noah to cover the Ark with pitch. Thus, the Ark is seen as symbolic of God’s salvation and the atonement or covering from God’s judgment (of the floodwaters) as seen in the pitch that Noah applied to the outside of the Ark whereby God sparred Noah and his family from the judgment of sin by an atoning, reconciling covering or cover that the pitch was known for.  This is indicative of salvation being fully a work of God and not of man (Eph. 2:8-9).

And you shall offer a bull every day as a sin offering for atonement. You shall cleanse the altar when you make atonement for it, and you shall anoint it to sanctify it.

Exodus 29:36 (NKJV)

But this shall be the obligation of the prince regarding the burnt offerings, grain offerings, and drink offerings, at the festivals, the new moons, and the Sabbaths, all the appointed festivals of the house of Israel: he shall provide the sin offerings, grain offerings, the burnt offerings, and the offerings of well-being, to make atonement for the house of Israel.

Ezekiel 45:17 (NRSV)

Through love and faithfulness sin is atoned for; through the fear of the LORD evil is avoided.

Proverbs 16:6 (NIV2011)

Notice the word atonement is only in the Old Testament. Atonement will only cover your sin and they are still there to remind you year after year of the sins in your life.

In the New Testament, through the giving of the blood of Christ, our sins are not covered. Our sins are removed and forgotten by God.

Weekly Word Definition – Betroth

To promise “by one’s truth.” Men and women were betrothed when they were engaged to be married. This usually took place a year or more before marriage. From the time of betrothal, the woman was regarded as the lawful wife of the man to whom she was betrothed (Deut 28:30; Jdg. 14:2, 8; Mat 1:18-21). The term is figuratively employed of the spiritual connection between God and his people (Hos 2:19, 20). Illustrated Bible Dictionary: And Treasury of Biblical History, Biography, Geography, Doctrine, and Literature.

To promise to marry, to give in marriage. Merriam-Webster

On betrothal as a social custom see MARRIAGE. Hosea, in his great parable of the prodigal wife, Of course we know of a greater Teacher’s parable of the Prodigal Son, uses betrothal as the symbol of Yahweh’s pledge of His love and favor to penitent Israel (Hosea 2:19-20). In Exodus 21:8-9 the Revised Version (British and American) renders “espouse” for the “betroth” of the King James Version, the context implying the actual marriage relation. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

Betrothal (also called espousal) is a formal state of engagement to be married.

In Jewish weddings during Talmudic times, the two ceremonies of betrothal (erusin) and wedding usually took place up to a year apart; the bride lived with her parents until the actual marriage ceremony (nissuin), which would take place in a room or tent that the groom had set up for her. Since the Middle Ages the two ceremonies have taken place as a combined ceremony performed in public. The betrothal is now generally part of the Jewish wedding ceremony, accomplished when the groom gives the bride the ring or another object of at least nominal value. As mentioned above, betrothal in Judaism is separate from engagement; breaking a betrothal requires a formal divorce, and violation of betrothal is considered adultery.

Typical steps of a match were the following:

Negotiation of a match, usually done by the couple’s families with bride and groom having varying levels of input, from no input, to veto power, to a fuller voice in the selection of marriage partner.

This is not as widely practiced as it was historically, although it is still common in culturally conservative communities in Israel, India, Africa, and Persian Gulf countries, although most of these have a requirement that the bride be at least allowed veto power.

Negotiation of bride price or dowry

In most cultures evolved from Europe, bride prices or dowries have been reduced to the engagement ring accompanying the marriage contract, while in other cultures, such as those on the Arabian Peninsula, they are still part of negotiating a marriage contract.

Blessing by the parents and clergy. Exchange of Vows and Signing of Contracts Wikipedia

Weekly Word Definition – Sanctification

The definition of Sanctification:

The state of growing in divine grace because of Christian commitment after baptism or conversion (Merriam-Webster)

In the first instance, to sanctify is to regard or declare “Holy” by separating from common usage to the service of God. (Funk & Wagnall’s Bible dictionary)

Hebrews 13:12 (NKJV)

Therefore, Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.

Ephesians 5:26-27 (NRSV)

to make her holy by cleansing her with the washing of water by the word, so as to present the church to himself in splendor, without a spot or wrinkle or anything of the kind, yes, so that she may be holy and without blemish.

Ephesians 4:23-24 (NIV2011)

to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Sanctification is not some magic trick that God uses to keep us in line. It is the act of regeneration that leads to sanctification. Regeneration is the act of studying God’s word to the point of building a good relationship with God through the Holy Spirit.

We are not sanctified by the act of baptism, laying on of hands, or with some class that we attend. Only the Holy Spirit can help us achieve sanctification. Notice I did not say the Holy Spirit would give us sanctification. The Holy Spirit will only lead us and help us to achieve sanctification.

Why do we need sanctification? Without sanctification, we are just another person in the large pool of society. Just another person bound for the inevitable pool of sinners bound for the permanent punishment of the wicked.

To have sanctification is to be part of a small group of Christians that will live with God in Heaven.

Weekly Word Definition – Commend

  1. praise formally or officially. synonyms: praise · compliment · congratulate · applaud · clap · cheer · toast · salute.
  2. present as suitable for approval or acceptance; recommend. synonyms: recommend · suggest · put forward · propose · advance · approve · indorse · advocate · vouch for · speak for · stand up for · champion · support · back · plug · push.
  3. entrust someone or something to. synonyms: entrust · trust · deliver · commit · hand over · give · give over · turn over · consign · assign.
  1. It was God that Created to Universe.
  2. It was God that Created Adam.
  3. It was God that gave us Christianity.
  4. It was God that formed you in your mother’s womb.
  5. It was God that called you to salvation.
  6. It was God that gave you the words to speak today.

Did you ever notice that every word of action above is a “second party word?” If you used all the synonyms above about yourself, people would laugh at you.

If you used the synonyms above about yourself constantly, people would begin to distrust you.

If you used the synonyms above about yourself, people would eventually begin to talk negative about you and your abilities.

The best part of this definition is that the result can be changed.

  • Learn how to do your job well.
  • Let God help you communicate with others.
  • Let God help tell others about your abilities.
  • Depend on God for your daily needs.
  • Praise God in your prayers.
  • Praise God in your communications.

Don’t get me wrong, a person can be financially successful and not be a Christian. However, they are never happy, joyful, or loving. The are cold, selective, and distrustful.

I don’t know about you, but I prefer a Christian who is all the things above. I would also prefer a Christian who could introduce men to their God and recommend a true method of believing in Him. A true method of getting to know Him. A true method of communicating with Him. Let God teach you how to get the money.

Remember this about God.

God is Love.

God gives us His love.

God expects our love.

God expects us to “love one another.”

Weekly Word Definition – Effectual Prayer

Effectual Prayer

Occurs in Authorized Version, Jas 5:16. The Revised Version renders appropriately: “The supplication of a righteous man avails much in its working”, i.e., “it moves the hand of Him who moves the world.” Easton’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Effectual Calling From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Effectual calling (or effective calling) in Calvinist Christian soteriology is a stage in the ordo salutis in which God calls a person to himself. It relates to, but different from external calling, in which a person hears the gospel message.

Wayne Grudem suggests that it is a summons from the King of the universe that has “such power that it brings about the response that it asks for in people’s hearts.” Grudem appeals to the story of Lydia: according to Acts 16:14, “The Lord opened her heart to respond to Paul’s message” (NIV).

Effectual Adjective

(of something inanimate or abstract) successful in producing a desired or intended result; effective.

Synonyms:   effective · successful · efficacious · productive · constructive · fruitful · potent · powerful · worthwhile · helpful · of help · of assistance · beneficial · advantageous · valuable · useful · of use

Society and the Christian Churches all seem to get lost in the word effectual. However, there are two other word there that “we” Christians seem to overlook.

The first word is fervent. It is the next word in the sentence. The word means to be passionate about your prayer. You should want your prayer answered so badly, you are willing to do anything in return.

The second word is righteous. According to this verse of scripture, it is not the person you are praying for that needs to be righteous, it must be you that is righteous.

To be righteous, you must be virtuous and upright. You must be decent and principled.

When and only when you attain this “righteous” state in your heart, you can pray and effectual prayer for your brother or sister in Christ. James 5:16.

Are your prayers effectual? If not, why?

Weekly Word Definition – Eden

Eden – Delight.

(1.) The garden in which our first parents dwelt (Gen 2:8-17). No geographical question has been so much discussed as that bearing on its site. It has been placed in Armenia, in the region west of the Caspian Sea, in Media, near Damascus, in Palestine, in Southern Arabia, and Babylonia. The site must undoubtedly be sought for somewhere along the course of the great streams the Tigris and the Euphrates of Western Asia, in “the land of Shinar” or Babylonia. The region from about lat. 33 degrees 30′ to lat. 31 degrees, which is a very rich and fertile tract, has been by the most competent authorities agreed on as the probable site of Eden. “It is a region where streams abound, where they divide and re-unite, where alone in the Mesopotamian tract can be found the phenomenon of a single river parting into four arms, each of which is or has been a river of consequence.”

Among almost all nations there are traditions of the primitive innocence of our race in the garden of Eden. This was the “golden age” to which the Greeks looked back. Men then lived a “life free from care, and without labour and sorrow. Old age was unknown; the body never lost its vigor; existence was a perpetual feast without a taint of evil. The earth brought forth spontaneously all things that were good in profuse abundance.”

(2.) One of the markets whence the merchants of Tyre obtained richly embroidered stuffs (Ezek 27:23); the same, probably, as that mentioned in (2Ki 19:12; Isa 37:12), as the name of a region conquered by the Assyrians.

(3.) Son of Joah, and one of the Levites who assisted in reforming the public worship of the sanctuary in the time of Hezekiah (2Ch 29:12).

Easton’s Illustrated Bible Dictionary

Definition of Eden

  1. paradise
  2. the garden where according to the account in Genesis Adam and Eve first lived
  3. a place of pristine or abundant natural beauty

Merriam Webster

Having studied all the places listed above, I can see where each of them could be where the “Garden of Eden” had originally been.

I would like you to look at one more idea. This is not based on some post graduate work of some doctoral candidate but on the knowledge of the human heart.

The heart is a fertile place where many loves and ideas are in abundance. The heart will take a subject that is rejected by society, such as marriage is being rejected today in favor of living together with no responsibilities. The heart, on the other hand, can make someone look at marriage as something that is not just full of responsibilities, but also as a place where beauty, feelings and an abundance of joy are also contained.

Living together has no love. You may think love exists until one of the two walks away and abandons the other without warning.

Marriage is built on real love. Everything else is just the gift wrapping. The only place you can get this type of love is from God through your heart.

Sounds like a form of Eden to me.

Weekly Word Definition – Empty

“Empty,” adjective meaning void, etc., as the translation of rēḳām, etc., occurs in the literal sense of “with nothing” (Genesis 31:42; Job 22:9); in 2 Samuel 1:22, it is equivalent to “in vain,” “hungry” (Isaiah 29:8); in some instances the meaning is comparative only; bāḳaḳ, “to gush out,” “to pour out,” “to empty” is used adjectivally (Hosea 10:1, “Israel is an empty vine”; but the Revised Version (British and American) takes the Hebrew word in its original sense of “pouring out,” rendering “Israel is a luxuriant vine”); tohu, “emptiness” (Job 26:7); kenós, “empty” is so translated (Mark 12:3); in Matthew 12:44, the Greek word is scholázō, “to be free,” “unoccupied”; “to empty” (verb) is the translation of bāḳaḳ (Nahum 2:2), of dālal, “to become poor,” etc. (Isaiah 19:6, the English Revised Version “minished,” the American Standard Revised Version “diminished”). The Revised Version (British and American) has “empty” for “vain” (Eph. 5:6), “emptied himself” for “made himself of no reputation” (Phil. 2:7), “emptied out” for “gathered” (2 Kings 22:9; 2 Chron. 34:17, margin “poured out”). The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

  1. Containing nothing; not filled or occupied:
  2. Lacking meaning or sincerity
  3. Having no value or purpose
  4. Hungry

“An empty heart is a lonely place” fill it with the Holy Spirit and you will never again be alone.

I remember back in the early 90’s, I was on my way home to my family after being gone for seven- and one-half months. We had already left our last port (Rota, Spain) and we were not due to pull into port again for another ten days.

In our haste to get out of Spain, we had not taken the time to hand out the mail that was picked up there. That afternoon, there was mail. I had been below decks when the letter came. It was a letter from my Mother-in-law (mom).

I always looked forward to my letters from mom. She always had a way of lifting my spirits, though she never even knew I had a problem.

This time was going to be different. Her letter this time was to tell me she had cancer. She had been battling cancer for several months but had withheld the news to keep me from worrying while I was deployed. She only lasted a few days after I got home. She passed in her sleep.

I wasn’t a Christian at that time. I didn’t have God in my heart, now mom was gone. The person that had kept me sane, lifted me up when I was down, gave me advise when I needed it, and gave me almost as much as my wife. She was gone.

Can you imagine how empty I felt at that moment? Can you imagine having to go through something of this nature without God?

That was the perfect example of “Empty.”