A jealous God

Q. What are the sins forbidden in the third commandment?

A. The sins forbidden in the third commandment are, the not using of God’s name as is required; and the abuse of it in an ignorant, vain, irreverent, profane, superstitious or wicked mentioning or otherwise using his titles, attributes, ordinances, or works, by blasphemy, perjury; all sinful cursings, oaths, vows, and lots; violating of our oaths and vows, if lawful; and fulfilling them, if of things unlawful; murmuring and quarrelling at, curious prying into, and misapplying of God’s decrees and providences; misinterpreting, misapplying, or any way perverting the Word, or any part of it; to profane jests, curious or unprofitable questions, vain janglings, or the maintaining of false doctrines; abusing it, the creatures, or anything contained under the name of God, to charms, or sinful lusts and practices; the maligning, scorning, reviling, or any wise opposing of God’s truth, grace, and ways; making profession of religion in hypocrisy, or for sinister ends; being ashamed of it, or a shame to it, by unconformable, unwise, unfruitful, and offensive walking, or backsliding from it.

(Question CXIII of the Westminster Larger Catechism.)

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The name of the LORD

Q. What are the reasons annexed to the second commandment, the more to enforce it?

A. The reasons annexed to the second commandment, the more to enforce it, contained in these words, For I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; and showing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments; are, besides God’s sovereignty over us, and propriety in us, his fervent zeal for his own worship, and his revengeful indignation against all false worship, as being a spiritual whoredom; accounting the breakers of this commandment such as hate him, and threatening to punish them unto divers generations; and esteeming the observers of it such as love him and keep his commandments, and promising mercy to them unto many generations.

Q. Which is the third commandment?

A. The third commandment is, Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain: for the Lord will not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.

Q. What is required in the third commandment?

A. The third commandment requires, That the name of God, his titles, attributes, ordinances, the Word, sacraments, prayer, oaths, vows, lots, his works, and whatsoever else there is whereby he makes himself known, be holily and reverently used in thought, meditation, word, and writing; by an holy profession, and answerable conversation, to the glory of God, and the good of ourselves, and others.

(Questions CX, CXI and CXII of the Westminster Larger Catechism.)

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A fly in the ointment

This week’s phrase is from Ecclesiastes 10:1:

Dead flies cause the ointment of the apothecary to send forth a stinking savour: so doth a little folly him that is in reputation for wisdom and honour.

An tiny imperfection which spoils the whole.

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And our eyes at last shall see Him…

Q. What is the communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death?

A. The communion in glory with Christ, which the members of the invisible church enjoy immediately after death is, in that their souls are then made perfect in holiness, and received into the highest heavens, where they behold the face of God in light and glory, waiting for the full redemption of their bodies, which even in death continue united to Christ, and rest in their graves as in their beds, till at the last day they be again united to their souls. Whereas the souls of the wicked are at their death cast into hell, where they remain in torments and utter darkness, and their bodies kept in their graves, as in their prisons, till the resurrection and judgment of the great day.

(Question LXXXVI of the Westminster Larger Catechism.)

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Eat drink and be merry

This week’s phrase is from Ecclesiastes 8:15:

Then I commended mirth, because a man hath no better thing under the sun, than to eat, and to drink, and to be merry: for that shall abide with him of his labour the days of his life, which God giveth him under the sun.

Enjoy life…

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For everything there is a season

This week’s phrase is from Ecclesiastes 3:1:

To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

The NIV gives a good modern day translation for this one: There is a time for everything…

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There’s nothing new under the sun

This week’s phrase is from Ecclesiastes 1:9:

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

Self-explanatory really – there’s nothing new.

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A soft answer turns away wrath

This week’s phrase is from Proverbs 15:1:

A soft answer turneth away wrath: but grievous words stir up anger.

Speaking gently will not cause another to be angry.

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A two-edged sword

This week’s phrase is from Proverbs 5:4:

But her end is bitter as wormwood, sharp as a twoedged sword.

Double the trouble!

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Woe is me

This week’s phrase is from Psalm 120:5:

Woe is me, that I sojourn in Mesech, that I dwell in the tents of Kedar!

To express a sense of grief.

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At his wits end

This week’s phrase is from Psalm 107:27:

They reel to and fro, and stagger like a drunken man, and are at their wits’ end.

To be perplexed

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Three score and ten

This week’s phrase is from Psalm 90:10:

The days of our years are threescore years and ten; and if by reason of strength they be fourscore years, yet is their strength labour and sorrow; for it is soon cut off, and we fly away.

An idiomatic way to say seventy, generally in relation to the length in years of a persons life.

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From strength to strength

this week’s phrase is from Psalm 84:7:

They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.

To go from a position of strength, to an ever stronger position of strength.

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Bite the dust

This week’s phrase is from Psalm 72:9:

They that dwell in the wilderness shall bow before him; and his enemies shall lick the dust.

To perish, to die.

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Weighed in the balance

This week’s phrase is from Job 31:6:

“Let me be weighed in an even balance, that God may know mine integrity.”

May I be judged.

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