Christmas Verses – The First Coming

This Advent I will list SOME of the verses that relate to the First Coming of Jesus.  There are others and some of them overlap or are repeats.  There are First Coming verses that connect directly to the Cross or some aspect of His life, so I may have not included them or the entire reference.  I did not include many of the “births” of characters in the Bible even though some of them are shadows of Jesus.  I tried to keep close to the number of days that are in Advent, which this year (2017) is twenty-one, there are four Sundays which is one way to count the days for this season.


The Number Sixteen in the Bible

The Number Sixteen in the Bible

Ses (6) and asar or esreh (10) are the Hebrew words that are used to form sixteen (16). The number sixteen is not used in the New Testament.ay_purpi

The majority of the time that “sixteen” is used it is with kings or leaders. Several kings ruled for sixteen years (Ahaz – 2 Ch. 28:1, 2 Kg. 16:2; Jotham – 2 Ch. 27:1and 8, 2 Kg. 15: 33; Jehoash – 2Kgs.13:10) and one began his reign (Uzziah – 2 Kg. 14:21, 2Ch.26:1) at sixteen years of age. In 1 Chronicles 24 the number of leaders in one family was sixteen and who got the sixteenth duty position (chapters 24, 25).

In Joshua 15 and 19 it is associated with towns and villages in Judah and Issachar. The two most interesting times sixteen is used is in Ex. 26: 25, 36: 30 with the silver bases for the west end of the Tabernacle and the number of days that it took to clean the Temple during Hezekiah’s rule (2 Ch. 29:17).

Normally, I would try to make connections with all of these but to me there was nothing clear. The sixteenth letter in the Hebrew alphabet is ayin, which means “eye or spring.” (See the references for further study.) It was in this idea that I found a loose connection. God had His “eye” on those kings and leaders, the Tabernacle, and the cleaning of the Temple. The hebrew4christians website is a good study on the “eye” of God.

Christmas Holly = Holy

God as a Gardener


It’s Christmas, it’s Christmas. Time for holly. These pictures are of the beautiful American holly tree (Ilex opaca) that grows in southeastern United States. This one is in the St. John Church Bible Garden. It is evergreen. These picture were taken on December 12 when the temperature is freezing at night.

Don’t confuse this tree with the holm tree in the Bible. That tree is an evergreen oak (Quercus ilex). Both species take their name from the pointed leaves.


If you want to grow holly trees you need a male and a female. Only the female tree produces the beautiful red berries.


A Christmas carol is The Holly and The Ivy.

Reflection: When I see, or hear, the word holly, I always think of holy. God is holy–pure, just, kind, bright–and I am not. If I were holy, I would want to be like the colors of the holly tree…

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Crucifixion Thirst

Another look at Hyssop. As always well done and very informative.

God as a Gardener

Sorgham from Kibbutz LotanBible References: Mark 15:33-37 and John 19:28-30.

Jesus was crucified at about 9:00 a.m. on Friday morning. At 12 noon, darkness came over the land and remained until about 3:00 p.m. By 3:00 p.m. Jesus was in extreme agony, both physically and mentally. His physical agony was from the effects of the Roman soldiers’ torture, the crown of thorns, and the nails that pierced his hands and feet so that he would hang on the cross. Christ’s mental anguish came from two sources. First, Jesus, who never sinned, had the weight of the world’s sin on his mind; he felt all of mankind’s perversions and violence. Second, the perfect, righteous God could not look at Jesus while Jesus was saturated with the sins of mankind. During the 6 hours Jesus was on the cross, God turned his face away from Jesus.  Jesus was horribly alone for the first time in…

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