Forerunner: Preparing Christians for the Kingdom of God

May-June 2014
Volume 23, Number 3

Many people torment themselves throughout their lives with the "if onlies": "If only I had more money..." or "If only I could lose a few pounds..." or "If only I had a better job...." People seek satisfaction in wealth, success, family, travel, art--and others through drugs, crime, and sex. But where does real contentment come from? In the book of Ecclesiastes, Solomon provides the answer. (Alamy Images)



Personal from John W. Ritenbaugh
Ecclesiastes and Christian Living (Part Seven):
Contentment

A major theme of the book of Ecclesiastes is satisfaction. In his wisdom, Solomon assiduously sought out the answer to the question, "What brings a person true satisfaction?" John Ritenbaugh proposes that God desires far more for us than mere satisfaction: He wants to give us real contentment, a state that comes only through a relationship with Him.

Ready Answer
Clothing, Wineskins, and Wine

by David C. Grabbe

When we study, it is always a good practice to study a verse or passage in context. The Parable of the Cloth and the Wineskins is a good example of why we should do this, since the parable concludes a much longer narrative. David Grabbe provides an overview of the context and then uses it to draw deeper meaning and application from the parable.

Prophecy Watch
A Tale of Two Complaints (Part One)

by Charles Whitaker

The Bible records at least two complaints uttered by the prophet Jeremiah to God during the chaotic decline and fall of Judah. Charles Whitaker evaluates the first of these two grievances, explaining that it concentrates on the injustice of the prosperity of evil men and on the prophet's dismay at the abuse of the land.

WorldWatch
Japan:
Rising Tensions With China

by Richard T. Ritenbaugh

The history between Japan and China has been punctuated by periods of intense rivalry and hostility, and lately, tensions have ratcheted up once again. Richard Ritenbaugh examines recent events between the two nations, showing that Japanese resistance to changing its self-imposed pacifism is wearing thin.

Bible Study
What Must We Do When We Recognize Our Guilt?

by Martin G. Collins

When we do something against the law or even against our own conscience, guilt is triggered, and we suffer, not just a gut-wrenching emotion, but also a descent into a state of culpability, of sin. Martin Collins instructs the guilty on their response to guilt, recommending taking the proper spiritual steps to remove the guilt through Jesus Christ.



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