John 4

j4.jpgGreetings!  The Samaritans were half-breed Jews who came about during the time when Israel and Judah were exiled to Babylon.  The Jews hated them, and the feelings were mutual.  For Jesus to talk to a woman in public, let a lone a Samaritan woman, was almost scandalous. 

Jesus knows her heart and mind and gently gets to her real need.  She does what we all tend to do: Shifts the subject when things get uncomfortable. 

But what does she do when she discovers who He is?  She runs to tell people!  Did she know everything about Jesus?  No, but she knew enough to tell others what she was aware of.  We should do the same.

Jesus Talks With a Samaritan Woman

4     The Pharisees heard that Jesus was gaining and baptizing more disciples than John, 2 although in fact it was not Jesus who baptized, but his disciples. 3 When the Lord learned of this, he left Judea and went back once more to Galilee.

4 Now he had to go through Samaria. 5 So he came to a town in Samaria called Sychar, near the plot of ground Jacob had given to his son Joseph. 6 Jacob’s well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about the sixth hour.

7 When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, “Will you give me a drink?” 8 (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.)

9 The Samaritan woman said to him, “You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?” (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.)

10 Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”

11 “Sir,” the woman said, “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water? 12 Are you greater than our father Jacob, who gave us the well and drank from it himself, as did also his sons and his flocks and herds?”

13 Jesus answered, “Everyone who drinks this water will be thirsty again, 14 but whoever drinks the water I give him will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”

15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”

16 He told her, “Go, call your husband and come back.”

17 “I have no husband,” she replied.

Jesus said to her, “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.”

19 “Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. 20 Our fathers worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”

21 Jesus declared, “Believe me, woman, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. 22 You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. 23 Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. 24 God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”

25 The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.”

26 Then Jesus declared, “I who speak to you am he.”

We “must worship in spirit and in truth.”  Both are vital.  Sound theology is important.  We can’t just go on feelings.

The Disciples Rejoin Jesus

27 Just then his disciples returned and were surprised to find him talking with a woman. But no one asked, “What do you want?” or “Why are you talking with her?”

28 Then, leaving her water jar, the woman went back to the town and said to the people, 29 “Come, see a man who told me everything I ever did. Could this be the Christ?” 30 They came out of the town and made their way toward him.

31 Meanwhile his disciples urged him, “Rabbi, eat something.”

32 But he said to them, “I have food to eat that you know nothing about.”

33 Then his disciples said to each other, “Could someone have brought him food?”

34 “My food,” said Jesus, “is to do the will of him who sent me and to finish his work. 35 Do you not say, ‘Four months more and then the harvest’? I tell you, open your eyes and look at the fields! They are ripe for harvest. 36 Even now the reaper draws his wages, even now he harvests the crop for eternal life, so that the sower and the reaper may be glad together. 37 Thus the saying ‘One sows and another reaps’ is true. 38 I sent you to reap what you have not worked for. Others have done the hard work, and you have reaped the benefits of their labor.”

39 Many of the Samaritans from that town believed in him because of the woman’s testimony, “He told me everything I ever did.” 40 So when the Samaritans came to him, they urged him to stay with them, and he stayed two days. 41 And because of his words many more became believers.

42 They said to the woman, “We no longer believe just because of what you said; now we have heard for ourselves, and we know that this man really is the Savior of the world.”

Yes, Jesus really is the Savior of the world.  Forget all the movies with heroes who save the world from physical destruction.  Jesus is the real Savior.

Jesus Heals the Official’s Son

43 After the two days he left for Galilee. 44 (Now Jesus himself had pointed out that a prophet has no honor in his own country.) 45 When he arrived in Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him. They had seen all that he had done in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, for they also had been there.

46 Once more he visited Cana in Galilee, where he had turned the water into wine. And there was a certain royal official whose son lay sick at Capernaum. 47 When this man heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and begged him to come and heal his son, who was close to death.

48 “Unless you people see miraculous signs and wonders,” Jesus told him, “you will never believe.”

49 The royal official said, “Sir, come down before my child dies.”

50 Jesus replied, “You may go. Your son will live.”

The man took Jesus at his word and departed. 51 While he was still on the way, his servants met him with the news that his boy was living. 52 When he inquired as to the time when his son got better, they said to him, “The fever left him yesterday at the seventh hour.”

53 Then the father realized that this was the exact time at which Jesus had said to him, “Your son will live.” So he and all his household believed.

54 This was the second miraculous sign that Jesus performed, having come from Judea to Galilee.

What a powerful miracle.  Jesus showed that He didn’t even have to be present to perform it.  He knew everything about the situation.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.


John 3


This is where the phrase “born again” typically comes from.  Jesus is emphasizing that we are born spiritually dead and need to be born spiritually to have eternal life.

Verse 16 is one of the most famous in the Bible.  It is a simple and unique summary of the Gospel.  Yet even it clearly notes that Jesus is the only way to salvation.  “Whoever believes in him shall not perish” means that whoever does not believe in him will perish.  Of course, “belief” isn’t just intellectual acknowledgement that He exists, it is trusting in him and following him as Lord.   If people would just keep reading to verse 18 they would see this more clearly.

Jesus Teaches Nicodemus

3     Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a member of the Jewish ruling council. 2 He came to Jesus at night and said, “Rabbi, we know you are a teacher who has come from God. For no one could perform the miraculous signs you are doing if God were not with him.”

3 In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.

4 “How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!”

5 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. 6 Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit. 7 You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”

9 “How can this be?” Nicodemus asked.

10 “You are Israel’s teacher,” said Jesus, “and do you not understand these things? 11 I tell you the truth, we speak of what we know, and we testify to what we have seen, but still you people do not accept our testimony. 12 I have spoken to you of earthly things and you do not believe; how then will you believe if I speak of heavenly things? 13 No one has ever gone into heaven except the one who came from heaven—the Son of Man. 14 Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, 15 that everyone who believes in him may have eternal life.  

16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because he has not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but men loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what he has done has been done through God.”

John the Baptist’s Testimony About Jesus

22 After this, Jesus and his disciples went out into the Judean countryside, where he spent some time with them, and baptized. 23 Now John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water, and people were constantly coming to be baptized. 24 (This was before John was put in prison.) 25 An argument developed between some of John’s disciples and a certain Jew over the matter of ceremonial washing. 26 They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—well, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.”

27 To this John replied, “A man can receive only what is given him from heaven. 28 You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Christ but am sent ahead of him.’ 29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. 30 He must become greater; I must become less.

 John the Baptist was so humble.  If only we had his attutide every day, that we must become less and Jesus must become greater in importance to us and the world.

31 “The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks as one from the earth. The one who comes from heaven is above all. 32 He testifies to what he has seen and heard, but no one accepts his testimony. 33 The man who has accepted it has certified that God is truthful. 34 For the one whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God gives the Spirit without limit. 35 The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in his hands. 36 Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him.”

V. 36 states again that if you reject Jesus you will remain under God’s wrath.  How can so many church leaders miss this?  How can they preach that there are other paths to God? 

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

John 2


This includes the famous water-to-wine passage.  It was a lot of wine – probably 150 gallons or so.  Some people try to claim that it was just unfermented grape juice, but that is highly unlikely.  I’m not a drinker, and I despise most of the marketing around alcohol and the problems it causes, but the Bible does not prohibit any alcohol consumption.  It teaches that we shouldn’t get drunk, we should obey laws and we shouldn’t tempt others with our drinking.

Was Jesus rude to his mother in v. 4?  I doubt it.  I picture him saying that with a grin.

This is the first of eight miracles highlighted by John, showing Jesus’ control over nature, life, healing and more.  We have heard this story so many times that it is easy to lose the majesty of it.  Try to imagine being one of the disciples or servants who witnessed this miracle, and consider what they would have thought.

Jesus Changes Water to Wine

2     On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, 2 and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. 3 When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.”

4 “Dear woman, why do you involve me?” Jesus replied. “My time has not yet come.”

5 His mother said to the servants, “Do whatever he tells you.”

6 Nearby stood six stone water jars, the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing, each holding from twenty to thirty gallons.

7 Jesus said to the servants, “Fill the jars with water”; so they filled them to the brim.

8 Then he told them, “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet.”

They did so, 9 and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine. He did not realize where it had come from, though the servants who had drawn the water knew. Then he called the bridegroom aside 10 and said, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”

11 This, the first of his miraculous signs, Jesus performed at Cana in Galilee. He thus revealed his glory, and his disciples put their faith in him.

Jesus Clears the Temple

12 After this he went down to Capernaum with his mother and brothers and his disciples. There they stayed for a few days.

13 When it was almost time for the Jewish Passover, Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 In the temple courts he found men selling cattle, sheep and doves, and others sitting at tables exchanging money. 15 So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple area, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables. 16 To those who sold doves he said, “Get these out of here! How dare you turn my Father’s house into a market!”

17 His disciples remembered that it is written: “Zeal for your house will consume me.”

18 Then the Jews demanded of him, “What miraculous sign can you show us to prove your authority to do all this?”

19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and I will raise it again in three days.”

20 The Jews replied, “It has taken forty-six years to build this temple, and you are going to raise it in three days?” 21 But the temple he had spoken of was his body. 22 After he was raised from the dead, his disciples recalled what he had said. Then they believed the Scripture and the words that Jesus had spoken.

23 Now while he was in Jerusalem at the Passover Feast, many people saw the miraculous signs he was doing and believed in his name. 24 But Jesus would not entrust himself to them, for he knew all men. 25 He did not need man’s testimony about man, for he knew what was in a man.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

The Gospel of John was not necessarily written chronologically.  This clearing of the temple may have come at the end of Jesus’ ministry as recorded in other Gospels, or He may have done it more than once.

Men had tried to control the Jewish religion and profit from the sacrificial system.  This is not what God had in mind.  Jesus had a righteous zeal and anger and it was demonstrated here.  He was not the “Jesus meek and mild” as He is often portrayed.  He was meek and mild in the good sense, but not in a wimpy way.

Jesus had authority over the temple because He is God.

John 1

j1.jpgGreetings!  This is one of my all-time favorite chapters. 

Read verse 14 before reading verse 1.  The “Word” is Jesus.  Verse 1 is a carefully written presentation of his deity – that is, Jesus is God, a member of the Trinity.  He created the world.  He was not created. 

The Jehovah’s Witness’ translation of the Bible falsely inserts “a” in front of God at the end of verse 1, so that it reads, “the Word was a God.”  But this is simply not there in the original.  It was added to change the Bible to match their theology.


The Word Became Flesh

1     In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning.

3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of men. 5 The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood it.

Jesus brings life.  We are spiritually dead and He is the only way to salvation.  We are in the dark and do not understand it until He shines his light in our lives.

6 There came a man who was sent from God; his name was John. 7 He came as a witness to testify concerning that light, so that through him all men might believe. 8 He himself was not the light; he came only as a witness to the light. 9 The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.

The John referred to in v. 6 is John the Baptist, not John the disciple and author of this book.

10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

This begins the theme of being born again spiritually (more on that in chapter 3).  He gives us this right; we don’t earn it.

Jesus was a Jew who came first to the Jews as the predicted Messiah, but they rejected him.

V. 12 notes that we become children of God.  Despite what people say, we are not all children of God. 

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

We should all strive for the perfect balance of grace and truth that Jesus has.  He never lied and was bold in proclaiming the truth, yet He has limitless grace for those who repent and believe (i.e., trust and follow) him.

15 John testifies concerning him. He cries out, saying, “This was he of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’” 16 From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No one has ever seen God, but God the One and Only, who is at the Father’s side, has made him known.

John the Baptist Denies Being the Christ

19 Now this was John’s testimony when the Jews of Jerusalem sent priests and Levites to ask him who he was. 20 He did not fail to confess, but confessed freely, “I am not the Christ.”

21 They asked him, “Then who are you? Are you Elijah?”

He said, “I am not.”

“Are you the Prophet?”

He answered, “No.”

22 Finally they said, “Who are you? Give us an answer to take back to those who sent us. What do you say about yourself?”

23 John replied in the words of Isaiah the prophet, “I am the voice of one calling in the desert, ‘Make straight the way for the Lord.’”

24 Now some Pharisees who had been sent 25 questioned him, “Why then do you baptize if you are not the Christ, nor Elijah, nor the Prophet?”

26 “I baptize with water,” John replied, “but among you stands one you do not know. 27 He is the one who comes after me, the thongs of whose sandals I am not worthy to untie.”

28 This all happened at Bethany on the other side of the Jordan, where John was baptizing.

Jesus the Lamb of God

29 The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him and said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world! 30 This is the one I meant when I said, ‘A man who comes after me has surpassed me because he was before me.’ 31 I myself did not know him, but the reason I came baptizing with water was that he might be revealed to Israel.”

32 Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. 33 I would not have known him, except that the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is he who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ 34 I have seen and I testify that this is the Son of God.”

V. 29 is a clear declaration of Jesus; purpose: To be the sacrifice that would take away our sins!

Jesus’ First Disciples

35 The next day John was there again with two of his disciples. 36 When he saw Jesus passing by, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God!”

37 When the two disciples heard him say this, they followed Jesus. 38 Turning around, Jesus saw them following and asked, “What do you want?”

They said, “Rabbi” (which means Teacher), “where are you staying?”

39 “Come,” he replied, “and you will see.”

So they went and saw where he was staying, and spent that day with him. It was about the tenth hour.

40 Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, was one of the two who heard what John had said and who had followed Jesus. 41 The first thing Andrew did was to find his brother Simon and tell him, “We have found the Messiah” (that is, the Christ). 42 And he brought him to Jesus.

Andrew was humble and loving.  Once he met Jesus he wanted to bring others to him.  I pray that we have the same passion to point others to Jesus.

Jesus looked at him and said, “You are Simon son of John. You will be called Cephas” (which, when translated, is Peter).

Jesus Calls Philip and Nathanael

43 The next day Jesus decided to leave for Galilee. Finding Philip, he said to him, “Follow me.”

44 Philip, like Andrew and Peter, was from the town of Bethsaida. 45 Philip found Nathanael and told him, “We have found the one Moses wrote about in the Law, and about whom the prophets also wrote—Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph.”

46 “Nazareth! Can anything good come from there?” Nathanael asked.

“Come and see,” said Philip.

47 When Jesus saw Nathanael approaching, he said of him, “Here is a true Israelite, in whom there is nothing false.”

48 “How do you know me?” Nathanael asked.

Jesus answered, “I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you.”

49 Then Nathanael declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the King of Israel.”

50 Jesus said, “You believe because I told you I saw you under the fig tree. You shall see greater things than that.” 51 He then added, “I tell you the truth, you shall see heaven open, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.”

The text doesn’t fill in the details, but it seems that Nathanael might have had some sort of supernatural experience under the fig tree or he realized there was no way Jesus could have known he was there without being omniscient.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Introduction to the Gospel of John


The Gospel of John is one of the most famous books in the Bible.  You could do whole sermons on literally hundreds of individual verses.  It will be hard not to over-comment on this series!  Most people have heard of John 3:16 but there is so much more to it than that.   

I used to not care for this book very much.  But the more I’ve studied it the more I like it.  It has so much great content and is beautifully written.  It has a different style than the synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark and Luke) but no contradictions to them.

Some liberal scholars insist that this Gospel wasn’t written by John and was written 100 years after the resurrection, but the evidence does not support that view.  It was already being quoted by church leaders before that time. 

Nearly half of the book covers the week before the crucifixion and resurrection.

John weaves in accounts of 8 miracles that highlight different aspects of Jesus’ deity and ministry, starting with turning water to wine at the Cana wedding feast.   It includes the raising of Lazarus from the dead, many direct claims to Jesus being God, extended and heating confrontations of the Pharisees, and much more.

See The Gospel of John Movie for an overview of my favorite Bible movie.  It is a word-for-word presentation of this book.  It has excellent acting and production values.

Proverbs 22


22     A good name is more desirable than great riches;

to be esteemed is better than silver or gold.

It is amazing and a bit scary how quickly you can lose a good name.  Even a lifetime of achievement and good works can be ruined with a careless decision. 

2 Rich and poor have this in common:

The Lord is the Maker of them all.

3 A prudent man sees danger and takes refuge,

but the simple keep going and suffer for it.

I am writing this just a few days after Hurricane Ike hit Texas, so this was timely! 

4 Humility and the fear of the Lord

bring wealth and honor and life.

5 In the paths of the wicked lie thorns and snares,

but he who guards his soul stays far from them.

In the New Testament Paul says that “bad company corrupts good character.”  I didn’t believe this as a kid but looking back I see how true it is.  But it can impact adults as well.  We need to take the message of the Gospel out into the world, but our core should be a solid group of authentic Christians who hold us accountable. 

6 Train a child in the way he should go,

and when he is old he will not turn from it.

That is a famous verse about parenting.  It typically seems to be interpreted as “teach your kids the right things, then they’ll go off and be wild, then they’ll return to God.”  I also heard an interesting interpretation that it was about looking at your child as an individual, with the emphasis on the “he” (i.e., Train a child in the way he should go . . .”

Regardless, it is clear that teaching God’s way is always the best way.

7 The rich rule over the poor,

and the borrower is servant to the lender.

Excessive debt has destroyed so many marriages and lives.  I highly encourage people to use ministries like Crown Financial or Dave Ramsey to learn good money management practices and get out of debt.  You can’t serve the Lord to your full potential if you are always stressed about debt and wasting money on interest payments.

8 He who sows wickedness reaps trouble,

and the rod of his fury will be destroyed.

9 A generous man will himself be blessed,

for he shares his food with the poor.

10 Drive out the mocker, and out goes strife;

quarrels and insults are ended.

11 He who loves a pure heart and whose speech is gracious

will have the king for his friend.

12 The eyes of the Lord keep watch over knowledge,

but he frustrates the words of the unfaithful.

13 The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside!”

or, “I will be murdered in the streets!”

14 The mouth of an adulteress is a deep pit;

he who is under the Lord’s wrath will fall into it.

That is an interesting verse – it seems to say that the encounter with the adulteress is a punishment.

15 Folly is bound up in the heart of a child,

but the rod of discipline will drive it far from him.

Children are not born good.  They are cute, but selfish, prideful, covetous, etc.  They need to have bad habits driven from them. 

16 He who oppresses the poor to increase his wealth

and he who gives gifts to the rich—both come to poverty.

Sayings of the Wise

17 Pay attention and listen to the sayings of the wise;

apply your heart to what I teach,

18 for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart

and have all of them ready on your lips.

19 So that your trust may be in the Lord,

I teach you today, even you.

20 Have I not written thirty sayings for you,

sayings of counsel and knowledge,

21 teaching you true and reliable words,

so that you can give sound answers

to him who sent you?

22 Do not exploit the poor because they are poor

and do not crush the needy in court,

23 for the Lord will take up their case

and will plunder those who plunder them.

24 Do not make friends with a hot-tempered man,

do not associate with one easily angered,

25 or you may learn his ways

and get yourself ensnared.

26 Do not be a man who strikes hands in pledge

or puts up security for debts;

27 if you lack the means to pay,

your very bed will be snatched from under you.

This is simple: Don’t co-sign loans for someone else unless you plan to pay the debt.  If the professional lenders think the person is a bad credit risk, who are you to disagree with them? 

28 Do not move an ancient boundary stone

set up by your forefathers.

29 Do you see a man skilled in his work?

He will serve before kings;

he will not serve before obscure men.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.

Psalm 60

ps60.jpgGreetings!  This Psalm has some information about the reign of King David that isn’t included in the books of Samuel or Chronicles. 

God can use many means to bring us to him. 

Psalm 60

1 You have rejected us, O God, and burst forth upon us;

you have been angry—now restore us!

2 You have shaken the land and torn it open;

mend its fractures, for it is quaking.

3 You have shown your people desperate times;

you have given us wine that makes us stagger.

4 But for those who fear you, you have raised a banner

to be unfurled against the bow. Selah

5 Save us and help us with your right hand,

that those you love may be delivered.

6 God has spoken from his sanctuary:

“In triumph I will parcel out Shechem

and measure off the Valley of Succoth.

7 Gilead is mine, and Manasseh is mine;

Ephraim is my helmet, Judah my scepter.

God is in control of all things.  He either makes things happen or lets them happen for his good and ultimate purpose.  Some people don’t like to hear or believe that.  They think that God can’t be all-powerful and all-loving or He wouldn’t let bad things happen.  But each of us does evil things.  If God vanquished all evil at noon today then at 12:01 we’d all be gone.

8 Moab is my washbasin,

upon Edom I toss my sandal;

over Philistia I shout in triumph.”

9 Who will bring me to the fortified city?

Who will lead me to Edom?

10 Is it not you, O God, you who have rejected us

and no longer go out with our armies?

11 Give us aid against the enemy,

for the help of man is worthless.

12 With God we will gain the victory,

and he will trample down our enemies.

The Holy Bible : New International Version. 1996, c1984. Grand Rapids: Zondervan.