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Jul 29, 2016

JEREMIAH 17-18:
One catches so clearly how trapped Jeremiah was in the time of God’s judgment, and how hot God’s anger was against Judah. Jeremiah’s audience would not have appreciated him telling them where the Lord said they could ‘go’! No wonder he so often weeps and cries out in despair. God’s verdict in 15:2, which shows his sovereign choices, is repeated in Revelation:

15:1 Then the Lord said to me, “Even if Moses and Samuel were standing here pleading with me, I would not show these people any mercy. Make them go away; make them get out of my sight. 2 When they ask you where they should go, tell them that I have said:

Some are doomed to die by disease—
that's where they will go!
Others are doomed to die in war—
that's where they will go!
Some are doomed to die of starvation—
that's where they will go!
Others are doomed to be taken away as prisoners—
that's where they will go!

Translation note:
6 [They are like bushes//He is like a bush] in the desert, which [grow//grows] in the dry wasteland, on salty ground where nothing else grows. Nothing good ever happens to [them//him].

PSALM 146:
This is the first of five Hallelujah psalms. In the GNT, ‘hallelujah’ is translated, “Praise the Lord.”

1CORINTHIANS 3:
The topic of this chapter is still related to that verse from Jeremiah that Paul quoted about boasting, but only boasting about knowing the Lord. And this chapter builds on what Paul has just said about wisdom, as he moves into discussing how to think about different Christian leaders.

Translation notes:
1 As a matter of fact, my friends, I could not talk to you as I talk to people who have the Spirit; I had to talk to you as though you belonged to this world, as children in the Christian _faith_.
[I just want to point out that here I don’t feel the need to translate ‘faith’ as ‘way of believing’. Since there is a modifying word, ‘faith’ is no longer fuzzy. The literal is “infants in Christ.”]
16 Surely you know that you are [included in building up] God's temple and that God's Spirit lives in you!
17 God will destroy anyone who destroys God's temple. For God's temple is holy, and [we— all of God’s people//you yourselves] are his temple.
[Translations in English often fail to make clear that ‘you’ in Greek is plural here. The Corinthians as a group are being built into the temple of God— as Paul says in Ephesians 2. It seems a bit more natural or complete in English for Paul to include himself in the body of Christ, so it is possible to use ‘we’ and a modifying phrase, as I have suggested above. There is another verse we will soon read in 2Corinthians where Paul says that we each individually are a sanctuary/temple of the Holy Spirit.]
21 No one, then, should boast about what human beings can do.  [(Implicit info:) Because of being joined as one with Christ,] Actually everything belongs to you:
22  [So that includes] Paul [and] Apollos, and Peter; this world, life and death, the present and the future—all these are yours,