What The Bible Says

What The Bible Says

“What The Bible Says - Vol. 6 / No. 18”

What The Bible Says

Vol. VI - No. 18 / December 31, 2023


    Melancholy to me sounds like a common garden vegetable, but we all know that to be false. Melancholy is not a vegetable but was made for man by God, and it is something we can possess. In this form it is a noun. It can also be an adjective in that it can be a state of existence that we experience. We know from reading the Genesis account of God’s creation that everything He made was good. In fact, Gen. 1:31 records that “God saw everything that he had made, and indeed it was very good.” So what good is melancholy, you might ask?

    Defined, Melancholy is a feeling of pensive sadness, typically with no obvious cause. Pensive is defined as engaged in, involving, reflecting deep or serious thought. So if melancholy is a feeling of sadness that can bring about deep serious thought, how can it serve us? It can be a good thing, right?

    The writer in Eccl. 7:2 declares that “better to go to the house mourning than the house of feasting, for that is the end of all men; and the living will take it to heart.” If the feeling described here is melancholy, and the living understand and contemplate their destiny, then this feeling God made for man can serve toward his good.

    Have you considered that Elijah in a cave, fleeing Jezebel, saying “I alone am left” as 1 Kings 19:10 records, may have been experiencing melancholy. Possibly also David in Psa. 37:25 when he said, “I have been young and now am old” and many other of his writings would indicate, maybe, this forlorn type of feeling. Or Paul in 2 Tim. 4:6 when he said, “For I am already being poured out as a drink offering.”

    Did Jesus experience melancholy in the garden when he prayed, “O my Father, if this cup cannot pass away from me, unless I drink it, your will be done.”

    If melancholy, to its varying degrees, apply describes the feelings that Elijah, David, Paul and Jesus may have experienced during their lives, then we should not expect to be a stranger to it.

    Deep thoughts of reflection and contemplating serious things can be good for us. But just like our vegetables that we so dearly love, an overindulgence in feelings of pensive sadness should be avoided. Everything that God made is good and are richly given to be enjoyed, 1 Tim. 6:17. This would include melancholy. Phil 4:8 is an encouraging thought for Gods people, “Finally brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” True, Honest, Just, Pure things should dominate our thoughts.

    Be thoughtful, be serious, enjoy deep engaging thoughts of your life and your relationship with God. Obey God while you have opportunity. Stop resisting… —Blind Bartimaeus 23



    Simply believing something does not make it true. Faith involves more than just wanting to believe something is true regardless of the evidence to the contrary. Yet, this is where many people stand in religious matters.

    Some take a non-intellectual approach to Bible faith. They ignore all reason. They are ruled solely by emotions. Their faith is based on whatever feels good to them at the moment. However, it must be realized that God gave us a mind with the ability to think and reason and He expects us to use it. We must use our minds the way God intended and not "leave our brain at the door" as a good preacher friend of mine one time wrote concerning this same matter.

    There are others who would depend completely on rationality. They rely solely on human reasoning. Though we must use our minds to reason things out, it is important that we don't rely too much on rationality or else we might end up rejecting things in the Scriptures because they don't "make sense" to us. "There is a way that seemeth right to a man, but the end thereof is the way of death." (Proverbs 14:12). "O Lord, I know the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps." (Jeremiah 10:23). There must be a balance. While our minds are to dwell on God's word, as we think and reason from the Bible, we must however allow the Bible to have the final say and not what we think.

    Faith is grounded in truth and truth is rational. God's word is truth (John 17:17). God's word, the gospel, is reasonable and not a bunch of myths and fables (2 Peter 1 :16). It is always true no matter whether you or I believe it or accept it. Truth is also objective. If not, there is no difference whatsoever between truth and error or right and wrong. God's word is true and there is no middle ground.

    Faith does not require a complete understanding of everything. Though we are to believe in God, we do not know everything there is about God. "For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord." (Isaiah 55:8). There are many things beyond our comprehension about God but we are still to put our trust in Him. Neither does faith require us to understand why God has done what He has done nor why He requires certain things of us. In Genesis 12, Abraham by faith obeyed God even when he did not know where he was going. His faith did not require him to know everything. People, today, do not obey the gospel because, in their own mind, they don't understand everything about the gospel. I doubt many of us understand everything about our car's engine but that doesn't keep us from driving, does it?

    God has given us enough reason to obey without questioning His reasons. When anyone refuses to be baptized because he doesn't understand why God chose baptism, then he is not demonstrating faith.  —E.R. Hall, Jr.



By swallowing evil words unsaid, no one has ever harmed his stomach.
Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary. It fulfills the same function as pain in the human body. It calls attention to an unhealthy state of things.
Honor is better than honors.
The strongest evidence of love is sacrifice.
There are no traffic jams on the strait and narrow way.


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--- E.R. Hall, Jr. 

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