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Additional Books and eBooks by the Director

Scripture Workbook:
For Personal Bible Study and Teaching the Bible

Book and eBook by Gary F. Zeolla,
the Director of Darkness to Light ministry

Available Formats


Edition 1.1

Published in December 2016

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Edition 1.0

Published in September 2000

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Description

(Edition 1.1)

   Contents

        Introductory Pages:
        Preface
        Editions Note/ About the Author
        Analytical-Literal Translation
        Notes on this Book
        Abbreviations Used in this Book

Essentials of “the Faith”

Study #1 - The Scriptures on the Scriptures

Study #2 - The Attributes of God

Study #3 - The Trinity

Study #4 - Arguments Against the Trinity

Study #5 - More on the Trinity

Study #6 - The Person and Life of Jesus Christ

Study #7 - Sin, Atonement, and Salvation

Study #8 - The Afterlife

Study #9 - Eternity

Study #10 - Angels and Demons

Study #11- Teaching and Defending the Faith

 

Controversial Theologies

Study #12 - The Sovereignty of God

Study #13 - The Five Points of Calvinism

Study #14 - Arguments Against the Five Points

Study #15 - Questions on Baptism

Study #16 - The Seventh-day Sabbath

Study #17 - Questions for Jehovah’s Witnesses

Study #18 - End-Time Prophecy

 

Ethics

Study #19 - Divorce and Remarriage

Study #20 - Capital Punishment

Study #21 - Christians and the Government

Study #22 - Miscellaneous Subjects

 

Appendixes

#1 - Essentials of “the Faith”

#2 - Darkness to Light’s Confession of Faith
#3 – Current Books by the Author
#4 – Proposed Books by the Author
#5 – Author’s Websites, Newsletters, and Social Sites

 

 

Sample

Preface

 

      This book contains twenty-two individual “Scripture Studies.” Each study focuses on one general area of study. These studies enable individuals to do in-depth, topical studies of the Bible. They are also invaluable to the Bible study teacher preparing lessons for Sunday School or a home Bible study. They can be used for group studies as well.

      The range of topics covered in the different studies is broad, from what the Bible teaches about itself, to what the Bible teaches about divorce and remarriage. Included in each study are hundreds of Scripture references, so there will be no lack of material from which to begin your studies.

      As such, if you’re an individual looking for an aid to improve for your own personal Bible studies, or a Bible study teacher or home group leader looking for help in preparing lessons, this book will be of great benefit.

      The sources for the viewpoints promoted in these Scripture Studies are wide and varied. The ideas are taken from commentaries, study Bibles, theology books, books of various kinds, and most importantly, this writer’s own personal study of the Scriptures.

      The sources for the opposing views presented are publications of groups that promote the ideas and personal conversations this writer has had with members of such groups and adherents to the views.

      Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the Scripture references in these studies. But with the thousands of references presented, it is likely a few “typos” have crept in. If the reader comes across a reference that does not make sense in the context presented, just go onto the next one. There are always plenty of verses listed for each point.

      It is my hope and prayer that God uses these Scripture Studies to help the reader to: 

“...be increasing in [the] grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him [be] the glory both now and to [the] day of [the] age! [fig, to eternity!] So be it!”

(2 Peter 3:18).

 

Editions Note:

      In December 2016, I started going over all of my previously written books. My plan is to proofread each book twice, once via the Microsoft Word files and once via the PDF files I send in to my publisher. As I am doing this proofreading, I am correcting typos, updating the formatting, updating the appendixes, and making other minor changes.

      I am also updating the Scripture quotes to the most recent renderings from my own Analytical-Literal Translation of the Bible. But most of these updates will not be full new editions; more like an Edition 1.1 or 2.1. And that is the case with this book, which was originally published in 2000. That is why this 2016 edition it is labeled Edition 1.1.

      But a full update of this book was published in 2011 and is labeled Second Edition. That book contains 40 Scripture Studies, almost twice as many as this edition, and is two and a half times as long as this edition (505 pages versus 205 pages in the hardcopy versions). Some of the studies are also redesigned and/ or expanded in the Second Edition, with numerous additional Scripture references. But for some reason, most people are still purchasing the First Edition.

      Since I am now publishing books through a different publisher than when the First Edition of this book was published and since people seem to prefer the shorter version, I updated the First Edition and published it through the new publisher. Thus this Edition 1.1 was published in December 2016. But if you’re interested in more and expanded studies, check out the Second Edition.

      Much of the research for this updated edition was done and some of the resources are as found on BibleWorksfor Windows™. Copyright © 1992-2015 BibleWorks, LLC. All rights reserved. BibleWorks was programmed by Michael S. Bushell, Michael D. Tan, and Glenn L. Weaver.  All rights reserved. Version 10. Italics in quotes in originals.

 

About the Author:

      The author has a B.S. in Nutrition Science (Penn State; 1983) and attended Denver Seminary from 1988-1990. He is the translator of the Analytical-Literal Translation of the Bible and the author of numerous Christian and fitness books. He is also a powerlifter, listed on Top 20 All-time open (all ages) ranking lists and holds All-time masters (50-59 age) American and world records.

      Zeolla is the director, webmaster, and primary writer for his four websites: his personal website (www.Zeolla.org), Darkness to Light Christian Ministry (www.Zeolla.org/Christian), Fitness for One and All (www.Zeolla.org/Fitness), Biblical and Constitutional Politics (www.Zeolla.org/Politics). A detailed autobiography is available on the first website.

Excerpts from Studies

The Scriptures on the Scriptures

 

      This first Scripture Study will consider what the Scriptures teach about themselves.

 

The Authority of the Scriptures

 

1) The Scriptures claim to be the very Words of God:

OT: Gen 15:1-4; Exod 20:1; Numb 1:1; 2Sam 23:2; Isa 6:1-8; Jer 1:1-9; 2:1; 13:1-8; 49:34f; Ezek 1:3; 3:16; 38:1; Dan 9:2 (cp. Jer 25:11f); Hos 1:1; 4:1; Joel 1:1; Amos 7:14-17; Jonah 1:1; 3:1-3; Obad 1:1; Micah 1:1; Zeph 1:1; Hag 1:1; 2:1; Zech 1:1,7; 4:6-8.

NT: Matt 5:17f; 15:3-6; 22:29-32,42-45; Acts 3:21; 4:31; 1Thes 2:13; 4:8; Heb 1:1; 2Tim 3:16f; 1Pet 1:25; 2Pet 1:20f; Rev 1:1-3,19; 2:1; 3:22.

2) The Scriptures are the source of truth and knowledge:

OT: 2Sam 7:28; Ps 19:7f; 119:97-104,130; Isa 8:20.

NT: Luke 11:52; 24:25-27; John 5:39,46f; Acts 16:14; 17:11; 18:28; Rom 10:17; 2Tim 2:15; 3:14-17.

3) The Scriptures are verbally inspired:

      “Verbal inspiration” means the very words of Scripture are inspired, not just the thoughts or ideas:

OT: Deut 4:2; 1Ki 8:56; Josh 21:43-45; 23:14; Prov 8:8f; 30:5f; Jer 1:9; 23:30f; 26:2.

NT: Matt 22:31f,41-45; Mark 12:35-37; John 6:63; 10:34f; 11:49-52; 12:47-50; 1Cor 4:6; Gal 3:16; Rev 22:18f.

4) The Scriptures warn not to alter its words and precepts:

OT: Deut 4:2; 12:32; Prov 8:8f; 30:5f; Jer 23:30f; 26:2.

NT: Matt 15:3-9; 1Cor 4:6; Rev 22:18f.

 

The Reliability of the Scriptures

 

1) God promises to preserve His words:

OT: Ps 12:6f; 89:34; Isa 40:8.

NT: Matt 5:18; 24:35; Luke 16:17; 1Pet 1:25.

2) The consistency of the Scriptures:

a. The OT and the NT:

The above references show the consistency of the two Testaments in their teachings about themselves. Other Scripture Studies in this book demonstrate the consistency of the two Testaments on many other topics.

b. Parallels between Jesus’ and Paul’s teachings:

Matt 7:1-5; Rom 2:1/ Matt 10:10; 1Cor 9:14/ Matt 19:8f; 1Cor 7:10-12/ Matt 22:21; Rom 13:7/ Matt 25:40; 1Cor 8:12/ Luke 22:19; 1Cor 11:23-26/ John 8:31-36; Rom 6:15-18.

c. Parallels between Peter’s and Paul’s teachings:

1Pet 2:13f; Rom 13:1-4/ 1Pet 2:18; Eph 6:5-8/ 1Pet 2:22f; 2Cor 5:21/ 1Pet 3:1; 1Cor 7:14; Eph 5:22/ 1Pet 3:3f; 1Tim 2:9/ 1Pet 4:10; Rom 12:6-8.

...

Scripture Study #3

 

The Doctrine of the Trinity:

 

God's Three-in-Oneness

 

I. There is only one true God:

OT: Exod 8:10; Deut 4:35; 6:4; 2Sam 7:22; 1Ki 8:60; Neh 9:6; Ps 18:31; Isa 43:10; 44:6,8; 45:5f,14,18,21; 46:9

NT: John 5:44; 17:3; 1Cor 8:4-5; 1Tim 2:5.

II. The Father is God:

OT: Deut 32:6; Ps 89:26; Isa 63:16; 64:8; Mal 1:6; 2:10

NT: Matt 6:9; John 6:27; Gal 1:1-3; Eph 4:6; 5:20; 6:23; Phil 2:11; 4:20; Col 3:17; Jude 1.

III. The Son is God:

1) Called God or Ascribed Deity:

OT: Gen 19:24; Ps 45:7; Isa 7:14; 9:6; Jer 23:5f; Zech 2:10-3:2; 12:10

NT: Matt 1:22f; John 1:1; 5:18; 20:28; Acts 20:28; Rom 8:9; 9:5; Phil 2:5-9; Col 2:9; 1Tim 3:16; Titus 2:13; Heb 1:3,8f; 2Pet 1:1; 1John 5:20.

2) Spoke and Acted as God:

Omnipresent: Matt 18:20; 28:20; John 1:48; 3:13.

Omniscient: Matt 11:27; 12:25; Mark 2:8; Luke 9:46; 11:17; John 4:16-18.

Foretold the future: Matt 16:21; 24:18f,25; 26:21-25,31-35; Mark 14:30; John 6:64,70f; 21:18f cp. Isa 41:21-23.

Omnipotent: Rev 1:8; 3:7.

Sovereign: Matt 17:24-27; 28:18.

Controlled the weather: Matt 14:32; Mark 4:39-41 cp. Job 38:25-38; Ps 135:7.

Incomprehensible: Matt 11:27.

Holy: Josh 5:13-15 cp. Exod 3:5f; John 8:46.

Gave commandments: Matt 5:27f,31f.

Forgave sin: Mark 2:5-11; Luke 7:47.

Love: Matt 20:28; John 15:13.

3) Ascribed Attributes of God:

Omnipresent: Eph 1:22f; 4:10.

Omniscient: John 2:23-25; 16:30; 21:17.

Omnipotent: Phil 3:20f.

Sovereign: Acts 10:36.

Eternal: Isa 9:6; Mic 5:2; John 1:1; 17:5,24; Col 1:17; Heb 7:3.

Immutable: Heb 1:8-12; 13:8.

Preeminent: Col 1:18 cp. Ps 97:9; 148:13.

Good: John 7:12.

Holy: Matt 26:59f; Mark 4:36-41; Luke 5:1-11; 2Cor 5:21; Heb 4:15; 7:26; Rev 1:17.

Righteous: Luke 23:47; 2Cor 5:21; 1John 2:1.

Just: Zech 9:9.

Wrath: Rev 6:15-17 cp. 11:17f.

Grace, Mercy, and Love: Matt 9:36; 14:14; John 13:1; 1Thes 5:28.

4) Does Acts of God:

Creates and Sustains: Gen 1:1; Isa 44:24; John 44:24; John 1:13; Col 1:16f; Heb 1:2f.

Gives life: Gen 2:7; 1Tim 6:13; John 1:4; 5:21; 11:25; Acts 3:15.

Judges: Ps 96:13; John 5:22f; 2Tim 4:1; Heb 13:4.

Redeems: Ps 130:7f; Isa 43:25; 44:22; Eph 1:7; Titus Heb 9:12-15; 1Pet 1:18f.

Saves: Isa 45:22; Acts 2:21; 4:12; 16:30f; 1Tim 1:15; Heb 12:2.

Fills the hungry soul: Ps 107:9; John 6:48-51.

Calms the storm: Ps 107:29; Matt 8:26.

 ...

Scripture Study #7

 

Sin, Atonement, and Salvation

 

Sin

1) Sin:

      “Any act, attitude, or disposition which fails to completely fulfill or measure up to the standards of God’s righteousness. It may involve an actual transgression of God’s law or failure to live up to His norms” (Erickson, p.152).

In the OT: Exod 20:1-21; Lev 5:17; 6:1-7; 18:1-30; 26:14-46; Numb 32:23; Deut 28:15-68; Ps 38:3-8; 51:4; 90:7-12; Isa 59:2; Jer 2:22; 3:12,3; 5:21-29; Ezek 18:4.

In the NT: Matt 5:17-48; 6:24; 7:21-23; Luke 6:46; 12:2,3; Rom 1:18-32; 6:23; 1Cor 6:9,10; Gal 3:10; 5:19-21; Col 3:5-9; Jam 1:26,27; 4:1-4,17; 1John 1:5,6; 3:4.

2) Original sin:

      “... a hereditary depravity and corruption of our nature, diffused into all parts of the soul, which first makes us liable to God’s wrath, then also brings forth in us those works which Scripture calls ‘works of the flesh’” (Gal 5:19; Calvin, p.251).

In the OT: Gen 3:1-20; 6:5; 8:21; Ps 51:5; 58:3; Jer 16:12; 17:9; Eccl 9:3.

In the NT: Matt 15:19,20; John 3:36; Rom 5:12-21; Eph 2:3; Jam 1:13-15.

3) Every person has sinned:

In the OT: 1Ki 8:46; Ps 53:2,3; 130:3,4; 143:2; Pr 20:9; Eccl 7:20; Isa 53:6; 64:6.

In the NT: Rom 3:10-18,23; Gal 3:22; Jam 3:2; 1John 1:8-10.

4) Other Aspects of Sin:

Breaking our promises is sin: Num 30:2; Deut 23:21-23; Acts 5:1-11.

Breaking our own standards is sin: Matt 7:2; Rom 2:1-3,12-16; 14:23; Jam 2:13.

Unbelief is sin: John 3:17-21; Heb 3:12,16-19; 12:1; Rev 21:8.

Sin enslaves: Prov 5:21-23; John 8:34; Acts 8:23; Rom 6:16-18; 2Pet 2:18,19.

5) Repentance:

      “Repentance is that change of a sinner’s mind which leads him to turn from his evil ways and live.... Man must apprehend sin as unutterably heinous, the Divine law as perfect and inexorable [unchangeable], and himself as coming short or falling below the requirements of a holy God” (Byron DeMent, in Green, p.953).

In the OT: Deut 30:1-3; 1Sam 7:3; Job 42:1-6; Ps 38:17,18; 41:4; 51:1-17; Isa 55:7; Jer 25:5; Ezek 14:6; 18:30-32; 33:11; Jonah 3:4-10.

In the NT: Matt 3:8; 9:13; 21:28-32; Mark 1:14,15; 6:12; Luke 3:7-9; 5:32; 13:1-5; 18:9-14; 24:46,47; Acts 3:19; 8:22; 11:18; 17:30; 20:21; 26:19,20; Rom 2:4; 6:13; 13:12-14; 2Cor 7:9-11; 1Thes 1:9; Heb 6:1; Rev 2:5,16,21-23; 3:19; 9:20,21; 16:9-11.

 

Atonement

 

1) Atonement:

      “Atonement is the term which has come to be widely used to denote the substitutionary work of Christ which culminated in the sacrifice of Calvary.”

Pre-figured in the OT: Gen 3:14,15,21; 4:4,5; 22:6-14; Exod 12:21-23; 29:38,39; Lev 1:3-5; 4:1-7; 5:5-9; 16:11-17; 17:11; Ps 22:14-18; Isa 53:4-12; Zech 12:10.

...

Scripture Study #17

 Questions for Jehovah's Witnesses

 

Note:

      After each question, the answer Jehovah’s Witnesses (JWs) would give is presented first. Below each Scripture reference is how JWs would interpret the verse. After the “BUT” is the reason Darkness to Light ministry disagrees with their interpretation. Then this ministry’s answer is given, followed by Scripture verses and interpretations thereof.

 

Is it Wrong for a Christian to Receive a Blood Transfusion?

 

Yes:

Genesis 9:3-5; Leviticus 17:13,14; Acts 15:28,29:

      Receiving a blood transfusion is the same as eating blood, which is forbidden.

BUT: The premise is not true. Eating is a normal, everyday activity. A blood transfusion is an extraordinary lifesaving medical intervention. Moreover, even if they were equated, when someone’s well-being was at stake, Jesus freely overturned OT ceremonial laws (Matt 12:1-14). In Acts 15, the recommendation was given simply to prevent any undue stress between Jewish and Gentile Christians (cp. Rom 14:1-17); it was not intended to indicate any OT ceremonial laws are still binding.

No:

Matt 15:19,20:

      “eating blood” is never included in any of the lists of sins in the NT (See also 1Cor 6:9,10; Gal 5:19-25; Eph 5:3-7; Col 3:5-9; 1Tim 1:8-11; Rev 21:8).

Mark 7:18-23:

      What comes out of people is what matters to God, not what goes into them.

Colossians 2:13-17:

      Christ fulfilled the “shadows” of OT ceremonial laws and set us free of their requirements!

Acts 10:12-16:

      There are no longer any “unclean foods.”

      However, it is this author’s view that the principles behind the OT laws against eating blood and unclean foods still stand. Blood can be a carrier of toxins, as can unclean meats. They also are unhealthy for other reasons. These issues are addressed in the author’s books Creationist Diet and God-given Foods Eating Plan (see Appendix #3). But in regards to blood transfusions, the possibility of toxins is why blood is always screened before being used for transfusions.

 

Is it Wrong for Christians to Celebrate Birthdays and Holidays?

 

Yes:

Genesis 40:20; Matthew 14:6:

      The Bible records only two birthday celebrations, and something bad happened on each one. This means God disproves of them.

BUT: The conclusion does not follow from the premise. In addition, Pharaoh’s birthday was “good” for the butler (Gen 40:21). And even the baker’s execution was not “bad” if he was guilty of a capital offense. See SS#20 in this regard.

...

Scripture Study #21 

Christians and the Government

 Note:

      After each question, the answer which Darkness to Light Ministry disagrees with is given first. Below each Scripture reference is how “the other side” interprets the verse. After the “BUT” is the reason this ministry disagrees with that interpretation. Then the answer this ministry would give to the question is given, followed by Scripture verses and interpretations thereof.

 

Is it Wrong for Christians to be Involved in the Secular Government?

 

Yes (Jehovah’s Witnesses, Mennonites, and other Anabaptist groups):

 Luke 12:13,14:

      Jesus refused to become involved in governmental matters.

 BUT: The case needed to be taken to the proper, God-ordained authorities (Rom 13:1). Jesus was not in such a position at this time.

 Mark 12:17:

      Believers are to render things to God not “Caesar.”

 BUT: The verse teaches believers are to be involved in both secular and spiritual matters.

 John 17:16:

      Believers are not to be “of the world.”

BUT: What does “the world” mean? In this context, it refers to those who are opposed to God and who try to institute systems contrary to His ways (1John 5:19). Believers are called to be “salt” and “light” to these people and to transform society according to godly principles (Matt 5:13-15). We are promised that our faith is able to “overcome the world” (1John 5:4f).

Acts 5:29:

      Believers are to follow the principle of “It is necessary to be always obedient to God rather than people.”

BUT: We are to obey the government at all times unless it requires something ungodly (Rom 13:2; Dan 6:7-10).

No:

Genesis 9:6,7:

      The institution of the death penalty was given to, and to be carried out by, all peoples (9:9). And execution is a function of the secular government (Rom 13:4).

Genesis 41:3-43; 45:5-8; Acts 7:9,10:

      Joseph was placed in the Egyptian government and used mightily by God in his governmental office.

Nehemiah 2:1-10:

      Nehemiah was an official in the court of King Artaxerxes of Persia and used by God in that capacity.

Esther 4:13,14; 10:3:

      God placed Esther in the court of King Ahasuerus of Persia to work out His purposes. Mordecai was later also in the Persian government.

Daniel 1:1-3:

      Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego were used by God in the Babylonian government.

Luke 1:3:

      Theophilus was most likely a Christian. Luke addresses him with the title “most excellent” which was generally used for governmental officials.

 

  

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The above Preview was updated December 24, 2016.

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