does mt 4.4 teach perfect preservation?

This is in response to the ongoing conversation in reply to my last post. Kent has given his reasons for teaching that Matthew 4.4 teaches perfect preservation and continual availability of the word of God in every generation. My thesis is that the text teaches no such thing.

First let’s look at the text itself:

Matthew 4:4 But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.

This is a quotation from Dt 8.3:

Deuteronomy 8:3 And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of the LORD doth man live.

What is the point of the passage? It is possible for a NT quotation to be an application of an OT passage, not giving a new meaning exactly, but instead taking the general principle and applying it to a new situation. This doesn’t appear to be the case in this passage.

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two are better than one

By that I mean, marriage is a good idea. I am always mindful of this on those occasions when my wife and I are apart for a significant length of time, like more than a few hours.

Yesterday and today she was off driving our sons to Sea-Tac for their trek back to school. They’ll probably make it back before she gets home, but that is a fact of Island life.

In her absence… well, things haven’t fallen apart, but let’s just say her presence is sorely missed…

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how well did you use your extra second?

From CTV:

And as it turns out, the global economy wasn’t the only thing to slow down in 2008, so too did the Earth’s rotation.

Perhaps you’ve heard already, but 2008 is the longest year in more than a decade. We had a leap day in February and a leap second last night. Did you notice?

More to the point… did you use your extra time well?

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on polemics

I am feeling USA election anxiety today. My loved ones are voting in a state that will likely overwhelmingly support my preferred candidate. Would that their votes could count in a battleground, but such is not the case. We’ll know tonight how it all pans out.

As therapy for my election anxiety, I thought I might do a little meditation on polemics. My postings here could be characterized as polemical, eh?

Dictionary.com gives me these definitions under ‘polemic‘:

–noun
1. a controversial argument, as one against some opinion, doctrine, etc.
2. a person who argues in opposition to another; controversialist.

–adjective
3. Also, po·lem·i·cal. of or pertaining to a polemic; controversial.

Ah, yes, that would be me!

And why would the subjects I post about move me to be polemical? Why wouldn’t I, as a pastor, be more devotional and less polemical? Or maybe, much more devotional? Here is why:

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lessons from leviticus

My commentary on Leviticus by G. J. Wenham has this interesting quote at the beginning of chapter 8:

It comes as a surprise to find the laws in Leviticus suddenly interrupted by a long narrative describing the ordination of Aaron and his sons to the priesthood. We tend to think of Leviticus as a law book, not as a history book. But the reverse is really the truth. Leviticus and the other books of the Pentateuch are basically concerned with the history of God’s people. They deal with the way God brought them out of Egypt, what happened in the wilderness, how God made a covenant with them, how divine worship was established, and the like. The history provides a setting for the laws, not vice versa.

It is not just that the narrative explains when and why certain laws were given. It does that. But the events are often as important as the laws. God’s saving action is just as significant as his word. Biblical revelation is more than the bare communication of truths about God and his will. The Bible affirms that God directed the course of history in order to create a holy people who knew and did his will. [Wenham, Leviticus, p. 129, underlining mine.]

I am currently preaching in chapter 8 for our communion services (first Sunday of the month). It is rather striking to look at Leviticus from this perspective.

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