Author Archives for Cierra Klatt

The Greatness of Forgiveness

November 27, 2017 11:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

What does Matthew 18 teach us about forgiveness? We’re giving you a huge peek inside the renown Preacher’s Commentary because we love what it has to say! THE NATURE OF FORGIVENESS The nature of forgiveness is a most profound aspect of reconciling grace. Forgiveness is never easy; it is hard. It is the most difficult thing in the universe. Forgiveness means that the forgiving person as the innocent one resolves his own wrath over the sin of the guilty one and lets the guilty one go free. To forgive means that one genuinely loves, and this love can move beyond the issue to the person, and that one cares more about the person than about what he or she has done. Forgiveness liberates. Forgiveness frees the person for the options of living. Our refusal to forgive is a power play that limits the offender, that holds the guilty “under one’s thumb,” or power. But such forgiveness is always in relationship, hence the condition of repentance. It is not a package that one accepts and runs away with. It is only known in reconciliation. THE NEED FOR FORGIVENESS Following a sermon which I had preached in a meeting in western Pennsylvania,... View Article


Life Lessons: Ephesians 2:1-22

November 27, 2017 8:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

SITUATION The Ephesians forgot what God did to save them and to make them a part of his Body. OBSERVATION God’s mercy plucks us from the destruction of our countless sins and places us in Jesus Christ’s righteousness. INSPIRATION When I read a verse like Ephesians 2:4, I feel I have discovered God’s roadblock on one’s way to hell—[But God’s mercy is great.] He is so rich in mercy that none need perish, but individuals must come to God in his appointed way. I adore the mercy that had lovingkindness, pity and compassion on me. . . . Let me give you a modern illustration of mercy in action. One day, a Christian named Paul went into a coffee shop, sat on a stool, and ordered his lunch. When he began speaking to the man next to him, he realized that Fred was in deep spiritual need. After sharing the gospel with him, Paul arranged to meet him again. It was at the second meeting that Fred was converted. Then Paul began to disciple him on a one-on-one basis, and Fred grew in grace and in knowledge of the Lord Jesus. But it wasn’t long before Fred learned that he... View Article


When Thankfulness is Hard

November 23, 2017 11:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7 WE HAVE SOMETHING TO BE THANKFUL FOR It’s Thanksgiving — a holiday centered on family, being grateful, and eating lots of food! At an event like this, it isn’t too hard to think of things to be thankful for. Mashed potatoes are totally on my thankfulness list. . . also my aunt’s mac and cheese. Yum, yum, yum. Coming up with something to be thankful for should be even easier for Christians. There’s one huge item at the top of our thankfulness list: our reconciliation with God. Jesus came to earth to die so that we might not only know God, but spend eternity with him in perfection. That’s worth rejoicing over, even if we had nothing else to be thankful for. BUT SOMETIMES IT ISN’T EASY Sometimes I read Philippians 4 and I feel so pumped up, like a football player right before going out on the field. I reminisce over Jesus’ life and the ways God... View Article


Look Inside: Expositor’s Bible Commentary

November 23, 2017 7:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

WHAT IS IT? The Expositor’s Bible Commentary is a Gold Medallion Christian Book Award-winning resource! It is considered a major contribution to the study and understanding of the Scriptures. This 12-volume reference work is a staple for seminary and college libraries. Without a doubt, it provides pastors and Bible students with the comprehensive, scholarly tools needed to exegete, teach, and proclaim the Word. It was compiled between the years of 1976-1992 with 50 different authors contributing. FROM THE AUTHOR One of the best ways to know more about a commentary set is to hear from the author. Here is an introduction from Frank Gaebelein, the main editor: Written primarily by expositors for expositors, [this series] aims to provide preachers, teachers, and students of the Bible with a new and comprehensive commentary on the books of the Old and New Testaments. Its stance is that of a scholarly evangelicalism committed to the divine inspiration, complete trustworthiness, and full authority of the Bible. Its seventy-eight contributors come from the United States, Canada, England, Scotland, Australia, New Zealand, and Switzerland, and from various religious groups, including Anglican, Baptist, Brethren, Free, Independent, Methodist, Nazarene, Presbyterian, and Reformed churches… Whatever else [the Bible] is—the greatest and most beautiful... View Article


Friendship with the Master

November 23, 2017 7:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. — John 15:15 FRIENDSHIP IN ROME In the Roman world, a “friend” was often a political ally who owed one a favor, or a more powerful patron on whom one could depend. But the traditional Greek concept of friendship remained influential even during the apostle Paul’s day. Paul had urged the financially well–off Christians of Corinth to treat Christians in Jerusalem as friends by sharing all things in common. Friends treated one another as “equals” (2 Corinthians 8:13,14). FRIENDSHIP WITH JESUS Jesus said to His disciples: “I have called you friends.” While He was not implying that as His friends they were His equals, He was offering to share with them what belonged to Him. John’s Gospel describes this assurance specifically as the promise of the Spirit sharing Jesus’ words with the disciples, so they would know Jesus’ heart (see John 16:13–15). The intimacy pictured between Jesus and the disciples fits the ancient ideal of friendship, which stressed both loyalty and the sharing... View Article


Which Expositor’s Commentary is Right for Me?

November 23, 2017 7:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

You may have noticed that we have two commentary sets that are nearly identical in title: Expositor’s Bible Commentary (12 Volumes) Expositors Bible Commentary – Revised Series (13 Volumes) The 12-volume set is heavily discounted for our Black Friday sale, which is helpful—if you know what it is and why it will enhance your study of God’s Word. So, this blog post will explain just that: what is the Expositor’s Bible Commentary, what are the differences between the two, and how it will help you study deeper. AUTHORSHIP Both commentary sets have a strong evangelical influence while at the same time drawing from a broad diversity of churches, including Anglican, Baptist, Brethren, Methodist, Nazarene, Presbyterian, and Reformed. The original Expositor’s Bible Commentary was compiled between the years of 1976-1992 with 50 different authors contributing. The Expositor’s Bible Commentary – Revised Series is a 2012 update to the original that includes the work of 56 different authors – 30 of whom are new. CONTENT The original and the revised editions include the following content: Comprehensive introductions Short and precise bibliographies Detailed outlines Insightful expositions of passages and verses Overviews of sections of Scripture to illuminate the big picture Occasional reflections to give... View Article


A Camel Through… What?

November 21, 2017 10:00 am Published by 7 Comments

“Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘Assuredly, I say to you that it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.'” —Matthew 19:23 A CAMEL THROUGH… WHAT? If you’ve read this passage before, you have probably pictured something like this: But the Archaeological Study Bible notes have information on this passage that you have probably NEVER heard. At least, I hadn’t! THE LEGEND OF THE NEEDLE’S EYE GATE “Since the Middle Ages commentators have considered the possibility that Jesus’ statement concerning the ‘eye of a needle’ (Mt 19:24) may have been a reference to certain doors or gates that actually existed in his day. Some homes did in fact have large doors that would allow a fully loaded camel to enter into the courtyard. Since such doors were cumbersome and required great effort to open, there were often smaller doors cut within them, permitting easy passage of people and smaller animals into the house. Some interpreters have argued that this smaller door was the ‘needle’s... View Article


What’s Inside the Archaeological Study Bible?

November 20, 2017 1:00 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

When I first heard about the Archaeological Study Bible, I wasn’t sure what to think.  My initial thought was how could there be an entire Bible devoted to archaeological study?  And honestly, how could a study Bible devoted to archaeological study not be a snoozer? So, I got a copy of the Archaeological Study Bible and began looking through it.  Wow, was I impressed (and wrong)! WHAT MAKES IT GREAT? The Archaeological Study Bible is a great resource.  There are 520 articles covering five main categories: Archaeological Sites Cultural and Historical Notes Ancient Peoples and Lands Reliability of the Bible Ancient Texts and Artifacts. IT’S  ENHANCED! Additionally, our app enriches the Archaeological Study Bible. As you read through your Bible, the Study Center will keep you synced with your reading. If this study Bible has content related to the passage of the Bible you are reading, the Resource Guide will let you know. Here’s an example of an article on the Zealots and Essenes: SO MANY PHOTOS Also included are almost 500 full-color photographs throughout the text.  Here’s two examples: Throughout the text there are detailed charts like this one: At the end of the Archaeological Study Bible there are several maps that help... View Article


NEW! NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible

November 17, 2017 7:00 am Published by 7 Comments

ANSWERS FOR TODAY Have you ever wished that the Bible spoke directly about controversial issues we face today? The NKJV Unapologetic Study Bible hopes to bridge the gap between God’s instruction and today’s questions. But how? The goal of this Bible is to inspire believers to Christlike thought, belief, speech, and action. It is intended to help Christians from all walks of life to live their lives according to biblical principles, using information and encouragement based on a wealth of resources from around the glove and from ancient times up to the present day. Normally, when you have a question about a present-day issue, you have to thumb through your Bible hoping to find a passage that relates somehow. Or, it’s the other way around. Reading the Bible doesn’t always seem to speak to things related to today, and you’re stuck trying to make connections on your own. With this study Bible, you can be pointed in a good direction, without leaving your Bible app. WHAT’S INSIDE? There are eight subject areas covered in this study Bible: Church Corruption Economics Education Family Government Sanctity of Life Virtue Emmanuel A. Kampouris, the publisher of Kairos Journal, wrote this study Bible. The notes... View Article


5 Benefits of the Word Biblical Commentary

November 15, 2017 7:00 am Published by Leave your thoughts

With 61 volumes and 26,000+ pages of content, the Word Biblical Commentary is a hefty commentary series.  With this much content, how do you navigate it all? With the Olive Tree Bible App, you can easily read and study the WBC anywhere.  Here are 5 benefits of using the WBC in the Olive Tree Bible App (Screenshots are from the Mac OS version of the Olive Tree Bible App.  Click on Images for a larger view) 1. RESOURCE GUIDE & SPLIT WINDOW Open your preferred Bible translation in the main window and have the Resource Guide open in the Split Window.  You’ll see relevant Word Biblical Commentary “hits” in the split window. If you prefer to just read one resource at a time, you can open the WBC in the split window. The Olive Tree Bible App also keeps up with the scripture passage you’re reading in the main window with sync scrolling. This means that as you move along in the Bible text, the WBC syncs to exactly where you are in your study.  No more flipping pages back and forth.  No more holding the commentary text open on your desk in one spot, reading through your Bible text, and having to go back and find your place in the commentary. You’ll... View Article