1. Ephesus was the capital of the Roman province of Asia on the west coast of Asia Minor.
  2. The word “LORD” with all capital letters, in the Old Testament represents the actual name of God, which is Yahweh, meaning “I am who I am.”
  3. “The fool has said in his heart, ‘There is no God’…” Psalm 14:1. See also Psalm 10:4 and Psalm 53:1. A fool is “One who is deficient in judgment, sense, or understanding. One who can easily be tricked: dupe.” American Heritage Dictionary of the English Language. (Dell, Third edition, 1994)
  4. The expanse of heaven.
  5. i.e. their message
  6. John 3:16; Romans 3:21-26; Ephesians 1:7
  7. God’s goal for our world is stated in Christ’s prayer in Matthew 6:10, “Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” There is a day coming when the Lord Jesus shall return to earth as King of kings and Lord of lords. At that time all of God’s people will be raised to everlasting life. The wicked will be punished in the second death. And the kingdom of God will be established over all the earth bringing justice, peace and joy. The coming kingdom of God and Christ is the major subject of Bible prophecy: a) The kingdom will be given to Christ by God (Daniel 7:13, 14; Psalm 2:8; Luke 1:32, 33), b) it will be established at Christ’s return (Mt. 25:31; 2 Tim. 4:1); c) it will be established by power and might (Ps. 2:8, 9; 2 Thess. 1:7-10; 2 Thess. 2:8), d) it will replace all earthly governments (Dan. 2:34, 35, 44, 45; 7:14, 27; Rev. 11:15), e) it will be filled with righteousness and blessing (Ps. 72:1-7; Is.11:3-5; Is. 2:4; Ps. 72:3, 7; Is. 35:1, 2, 5, 6; Is. 11:9).
  8. It may have been customary in the time to inscribe the name of a loved one or a sacred city on the palms of the hands as a means of loving remembrance. Manners and Customs of the Bible, James Freeman, editor, (Logos International, Plainfield, New Jersey, 1972), p. 272
  9. Hebrews 6:16-19a, states, “For men indeed swear by the greater, and an oath for confirmation is for them an end of all dispute. Thus God, determining to show moreabundantly to the heirs of promise the immutability of His counsel, confirmed it by an oath, that by two immutable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we might have strong consolation who have fl ed for refuge to lay hold of the hope set before us. This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast.”  God’s promises to us are secured by two immutable things His self and His oath. God can swear by nothing greater. 
  10. Cherubim are angels associated with the glory of God. Two gold images of cherubim adorned the mercy seat of the ark of the covenant (Exodus 25:17-22).
  11. Ephesians 1:13,14; Romans 8:1-9.
  12. Galatians 5:16-23
  13. The seraphim are angelic creatures mentioned only here. They are involved in the worship of God in heaven. They are different from the cherubim, mentioned in Revelation 4:6-8. Their name comes from a verb that means to burn with fi re. This may relate to their appearance or to their role in purification. Fire is often a symbol for purity or purification in the Bible.
  14. Romans 3:21-26; 1 Corinthians 1:30; 2 Corinthians 5:20, 21 
  15. A prior punishment of the wicked happens upon the earth at the time of the Lord’s return (2 Thessalonians 1:6-9). There is also the wrath of God poured out on the earth before the great white throne judgment (Rev. 15-18). 
  16. Psalm 103:8; Exodus 34:6, 7
  17. Psalm 73:11. Asaph describes the thinking of the wicked, who had concluded that God, if He existed, was disengaged from people’s lives. 
  18. The same truth holds for the return of the Lord Jesus Christ. Scoffers question the reality of the Lord Jesus Christ’s return since it has been thousands of years since he ascended to heaven. The apostle Peter tells us that God is not slack concerning the promise of Christ’s return. He is patient, not willing for any sinner to perish in the final judgment (2 Peter 3:1-9)
  19. 1 Corinthians 15:45
  20. Isaiah 53:4-6; John 3:16; 2 Corinthians 5:21 
  21. Genesis 12:1-3
  22. Romans 7:18
  23. “Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good, for His lovingkindness is everlasting.” Psalm 136:1 in the New American Standard Bible.
  24. Luke 15
  25. John 13:35
  26.  When I Survey the Wondrous Cross, Isaac Watts 
  27. John 1:29, 36; Isaiah 53:4-8
  28. Agathos
  29. This quotation is from The New American Standard Bible, (The Lockman Foundation, 1995; pub. Zondervan, Grand Rapids, Michigan, USA). The New King James Version states that “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God…). But all things do not work together for our good. Rather in all things God works for the good of those who love Him. 
  30. See also Matthew 19:26; Isaiah 55:10, 11 
  31. The New American Standard Bible
  32. Other names and titles of God in Scripture are: Elohim—translated “God” indicating the God of creative and governing power (Genesis 1:1, 2:4); Adonai—translated “Lord” and signifi es the one who is the master and owner (Genesis 15:2); Yahweh—translated “LORD.” This is the personal name of God and means “I am who I am” (Genesis 2:4); Yahweh-Jireh—I will provide (Genesis 22:14); Yahweh-Shalom—I am your peace ( Judges 6:24); Yahweh-Rophecka—I heal and give rest (Exodus 15:26); Yahweh- Tzidkenu—I am your righteousness ( Jeremiah 23:6; 33:16); Yahweh-Shammah—I am always there (Ezekiel 48:35); Yahweh-Nissi—I will fi ght for you (Exodus 17:15); Yahweh-M’Kaddesh—I sanctify (Exodus 31:13); Yahweh-Rohi—I am your shepherd (Psalm 23:1).
  33. In geology this balance of the earth is called “isostasy.” This is the study of the force or forces that balance elevated land masses with depressed land masses, so that the earth spins properly in its orbit.
  34. Daniel 3
  35. Philippians 1:6; John 10:27-30; Jude 24, 25
  36. See for example Amos 9:1-4 that describes God’s punishments upon the unbelieving in Israel
  37. Hebrew = sheol meaning the realm of the grave.
  38. Daniel 6
  39. Isaiah 59:2
  40. The “he who is in the world” is the devil, Satan.
  41. Romans 8:9-17
  42. This is not speaking of earning one’s salvation, but rather the living out of one’s faith in the world.
  43. See end note #3 for chapter 7 
  44. In the Old Testament God is called the “Father” of the people of Israel (Isaiah 63:16; 64:8) because He created them as a nation (Deuteronomy 32:6; Jeremiah 3:4. 19).
  45. The process by which we become children of God and God becomes our Father is not a physical one. When we place our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, God puts His Spirit within us. We are born again or born from above (John 3:3, 6, 7). See also James 1:18 and 1 Peter 1:23. Before salvation we are dead in trespasses and sin (Ephesians 2:1). After coming to faith in Christ we experience a new birth by the “washing of regeneration” and the “renewing of the Holy Spirit” (Titus 3:5).
  46. See chapter 4 in “The Gift of the Holy Spirit” (Xlibris Press: www.Xlibris.com, Orders@Xlibris.com, 2006) by this same author.
  47. Hebrews 12:3-11
  48. Romans 8:31-39
  49. See Colossians 1:12-14
  50. See 1 Thessalonians 2:10-12 for an example of this kind of comfort
  51. New American Standard Bible
  52. His companions were Silas and Timothy.
  53. The city was full of statues to the mythological gods.
  54. The Epicureans were disciples of Epicurus (341-270 B.C.). They believed the chief end of mankind was pleasure and happiness. This was achieved by avoiding excesses in life, freedom from pain and by loving other people. They believed that if gods existed they were not concerned or involved with events on Earth. The Stoics were followers of Zeno (334-262 B.C.) and were pantheists and believed the world was ruled by an absolute Purpose or Will. The person who conformed to this purpose would reach perfection. They were rigid in the personal discipline, the Epicureans were not.
  55. Southwest of the Acropolis in Athens was a hill dedicated to the god of war, Ares, or Mars in Latin. This is where hearings were held concerning issues of religion and morals.
  56. In the country of Turkey.
  57. Here are some recommended books on the history of the development of the doctrine of the Trinity: Anthony Buzzard and Charles Hunting, The Doctrine of the Trinity, Christianity’s Self-Inflicted Wound, (International Scholars Publications, 1998, ISBN #1-57309-309-2). Greg Deuble, They never told me this in church! (Restoration Fellowship, 2006, ISBN # 0-9673249-5-5). And, Richard Rubenstein, When Jesus Became God, (Harcourt Brace & Company, 1999, ISBN #0-15-100368-8). Consider also the following quotes: “The Old Testament tells us nothing explicitly or by necessary implication of a Triune God, who is Father, Son and Holy Spirit…There is no evidence that any sacred writer even suspected the existence of a [Trinity] within the Godhead… Even to see in the Old Testament suggestions or foreshadowings or “veiled signs” of the Trinity of persons, is to go beyond the words and intent of the sacred writers.” Edward Fortman, The Triune God, (Baker Book House, 1972), pp. xv, 8, 9. “There is no trace of ‘three divine persons in one’ in the New Testament…No apostle would have dreamed of thinking that there are three divine persons…The mystery of the Trinity proclaimed by the church did not spring from biblical doctrine.” Emil Brunner, Christian Doctrine of God, Dogmatics, (Vol. 1, p. 226). “Christianity derived from Judaism, and Judaism was strictly Unitarian. The road that led from Jerusalem to Nicea was scarcely a straight one. Fourth century Trinitarianism did not reflect accurately early Christian teaching regarding the nature of God; it was on the contrary, a deviation from this teaching.” The Encyclopedia Americana, (1956, Vol. XXVII, p. 294L). “Neither the word Trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as such, appears in the New Testament, nor did Jesus and his followers intend to contradict the Shema in the Old Testament; ‘Hear, O Israel, YHWH [Yahweh] our God is one Lord’ (Deut. 6:4)…the doctrine [of the Trinity] developed gradually over several centuries…By the end of the 4th century the doctrine of the Trinity took substantially the form it has maintained ever since.” The New Encyclopedia Britannica, (Micromedia, 1967, Vol. XX, p. 126). “The formulation ‘one God in three persons’ was not solidly established, certainly not fully assimilated into Christian life and its profession of faith prior to the end of the 4th century…Among the Apostolic Fathers there had been nothing even remotely approaching such a mentality or perspective.” The New Catholic Encyclopedia, (1967, Vol. XIV, p. 299).
  58. See this author’s book Foundations for Faith, (Xlibris Corporation, 2005, ISBN #1-4134-6452-1), Appendix One, concerning John 1:1-3. See also, Buzzard & Hunting, The Doctrine of the Trinity, chapter VIII. And, Graeser, Lynn, and Schoenheit, One God & One Lord (Christian Educational Services, 2000, ISBN # 0-9628971-4-0), Appendices A and N