Archives For Discipleship

One of the most challenging aspects of Spanish grammar is understanding the many different uses of the pronoun se. Using several grammar books and the search capabilities of BibleWorks 10, I have compiled several examples of seven different uses of se in the Bible.

Reflexive Se

R60 Numbers 30:3 Mas la mujer, cuando hiciere voto a Jehová, y se ligare con obligación

KJV Numbers 30:3 If a woman also vow a vow unto the LORD, and bind herself by a bond

R60 Luke 16:19 Había un hombre rico, que se vestía de púrpura y de lino fino

KJV Luke 16:19 There was a certain rich man, which was clothed in purple and fine linen

R60 Revelation 18:7 Cuanto ella se ha glorificado

KJV Revelation 18:7 How much she hath glorified herself

 

Process Se1

R60 Matthew 25:5 Y tardándose el esposo, cabecearon todas y se durmieron.

KJV Matthew 25:5 While the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept.

R60 Acts 11:21 Y la mano del Señor estaba con ellos, y gran número creyó y se convirtió al Señor.

KJV Acts 11:21 And the hand of the Lord was with them: and a great number believed, and turned unto the Lord.

R60 1 Peter 1:24 La hierba se seca, y la flor se cae;

KJV 1 Peter 1:24 The grass withereth, and the flower thereof falleth away:

 

Impersonal Se

R60 Ecclesiastes 6:10 Respecto de lo que es, ya ha mucho que tiene nombre, y se sabe que es hombre.

KJV Ecclesiastes 6:10 That which hath been is named already, and it is known that it is man:

R60 Isaiah 45:24 Y se dirá de mí: Ciertamente en Jehová está la justicia y la fuerza;

KJV Isaiah 45:24 Surely, shall one say, in the LORD have I righteousness and strength:

 

Passive Se

R60 Ecclesiastes 7:21 Tampoco apliques tu corazón a todas las cosas que se hablan

KJV Ecclesiastes 7:21 Also take no heed unto all words that are spoken;

R60 Matthew 10:29 ¿No se venden dos pajarillos por un cuarto?

KJV Matthew 10:29 Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing?

 

Indirect Object Pronoun Se

R60 Genesis 38:18 Entonces Judá dijo: ¿Qué prenda te daré? Ella respondió: Tu sello, tu cordón, y tu báculo que tienes en tu mano. Y él se [‘to her’] los [‘them’] dio.

KJV Genesis 38:18 And he said, What pledge shall I give thee? And she said, Thy signet, and thy bracelets, and thy staff that is in thine hand. And he gave it her.

R60 2 Kings 10:7 Cuando las cartas llegaron a ellos, tomaron a los hijos del rey, y degollaron a los setenta varones, y pusieron sus cabezas en canastas, y se [‘to him’] las [‘them’ = the heads] enviaron a Jezreel.

KJV 2 Kings 10:7 And it came to pass, when the letter came to them, that they took the king’s sons, and slew seventy persons, and put their heads in baskets, and sent him them to Jezreel. 

R60 Mark 9:19 Y respondiendo él, les dijo: ¡Oh generación incrédula! ¿Hasta cuándo he de estar con vosotros? ¿Hasta cuándo os he de soportar? Traédmelo. 20 Y se [‘to him’] lo [‘him’] trajeron;

KJV Mark 9:19 He answereth him, and saith, O faithless generation, how long shall I be with you? how long shall I suffer you? bring him unto me. 20 And they brought him unto him:

R60 John 2:8 Entonces les dijo: Sacad ahora, y llevadlo al maestresala. Y se [‘to him’] lo [‘it’ = the wine] llevaron.

KJV John 2:8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.

R60 Acts 7:4 Entonces salió de la tierra de los caldeos y habitó en Harán; y de allí, muerto su padre, Dios le trasladó a esta tierra, en la cual vosotros habitáis ahora. 5 Y no le dio herencia en ella, ni aun para asentar un pie; pero le prometió que se [‘to him’] la [‘it’ = the land] daría en posesión

KJV Acts 7:4 Then came he out of the land of the Chaldaeans, and dwelt in Charran: and from thence, when his father was dead, he removed him into this land, wherein ye now dwell. 5 And he gave him none inheritance in it, no, not so much as to set his foot on: yet he promised that he would give it to him for a possession

 

Reciprocal Se

R60 2 Kings 14:11 Pero Amasías no escuchó; por lo cual subió Joás rey de Israel, y se [‘each other’] vieron las caras él y Amasías rey de Judá, en Bet-semes, que es de Judá.

KJV 2 Kings 14:11 But Amaziah would not hear. Therefore Jehoash king of Israel went up; and he and Amaziah king of Judah looked one another in the face at Bethshemesh, which belongeth to Judah. 

R60 Psalm 85:10 La misericordia y la verdad se encontraron; La justicia y la paz se [‘each other’] besaron.

KJV Psalm 85:10 Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

 

Unplanned or Unexpected Occurrence/ “No-Fault” Se2

R60 Deuteronomy 22:3 Así harás con su asno, así harás también con su vestido, y lo mismo harás con toda cosa de tu hermano que se le perdiere y tú la hallares;

KJV Deuteronomy 22:3 In like manner shalt thou do with his ass; and so shalt thou do with his raiment; and with all lost thing of thy brother’s, which he hath lost, and thou hast found

R60 Isaiah 5:27 No habrá entre ellos cansado, ni quien tropiece; ninguno se dormirá, ni le tomará sueño; a ninguno se le desatará el cinto de los lomos, ni se le romperá la correa de sus sandalias.

KJV Isaiah 5:27 None shall be weary nor stumble among them; none shall slumber nor sleep; neither shall the girdle of their loins be loosed, nor the latchet of their shoes be broken:

R60 Acts 12:7 Y las cadenas se le cayeron de las manos.

KJV Acts 12:7 And his chains fell off from his hands.


1 “The Process Se” (Pasajes Lengua Quinta Edición, 241).

2 “No-Fault” Se Constructions The passive se construction is also used with a group of Spanish verbs to indicate unplanned or unexpected occurrences” (Pasajes Lengua Quinta Edición, 270).

Tertullian, a Latin Church Father, wrote about how the believers in his day cared for the poor with money that they gave regularly. He specifies that money was used “to support and bury poor people.”

Chapter XXXIX.

I shall at once go on, then, to exhibit the peculiarities of the Christian society, that, as I have refuted the evil charged against it, I may point out its positive good.131 We are a body knit together as such by a common religious profession, by unity of discipline, and by the bond of a common hope. We meet together as an assembly and congregation, that, offering up prayer to God as with united force, we may wrestle with Him in our supplications. This violence God delights in. We pray, too, for the emperors, for their ministers and for all in authority, for the welfare of the world, for the prevalence of peace, for the delay of the final consummation.132 We assemble to read our sacred writings, if any peculiarity of the times makes either forewarning or reminiscence needful.133 However it be in that respect, with the sacred words we nourish our faith, we animate our hope, we make our confidence more stedfast; and no less by inculcations of God’s precepts we confirm good habits. In the same place also exhortations are made, rebukes and sacred censures are administered. For with a great gravity is the work of judging carried on among us, as befits those who feel assured that they are in the sight of God; and you have the most notable example of judgment to come when any one has sinned so grievously as to require his severance from us in prayer, in the congregation and in all sacred intercourse. The tried men of our elders preside over us, obtaining that honour not by purchase, but by established character. There is no buying and selling of any sort in the things of God. Though we have our treasure-chest, it is not made up of purchase-money, as of a religion that has its price. On the monthly day,134 if he likes, each puts in a small donation; but only if it be his pleasure, and only if he be able: for there is no compulsion; all is voluntary. These gifts are, as it were, piety’s deposit fund.  For they are not taken thence and spent on feasts, and drinking-bouts, and eating-houses, but to support and bury poor people, to supply the wants of boys and girls destitute of means and parents, and of old persons confined now to the house; such, too, as have suffered shipwreck; and if there happen to be any in the mines, or banished to the islands, or shut up in the prisons, for nothing but their fidelity to the cause of God’s Church, they become the nurslings of their confession. But it is mainly the deeds of a love so noble that lead many to put a brand upon us. See, they say, how they love one135another, for themselves are animated by mutual hatred; how they are ready even to die for one another, for they themselves will sooner put to death.

—ANF03. Latin Christianity: Its Founder, Tertullian; http://www.ccel.org/ccel/schaff/anf03.iv.iii.xxxix.html; accessed 3/26/19, 8:05 pm; bold and underlining added to the original

As the followers of Jesus Christ in our day, we should display our love for our brethren by setting aside money in our churches specifically to help with burial costs for our needy brethren in our churches so that as many as possible of them may have a proper burial at the end of their earthly lives.

I recently analyzed every chapter of the Bible in the KJV for how many words there were per verse in the chapter. Based on that analysis, I compiled the top 30 Bible chapters by words per verse in two categories: (1) Most Words per Verse; and (2) Fewest Words per Verse.

The charts below show the top 10 chapters in both categories. My chart, Top 30 Bible Chapters by Words Per Verse, presents the data for all 30 top chapters in each category.

Most Words per Verse

Most Words Per Verse
Chapter Words Verses Words/Verse
1 Jer 40 681 16 42.56
2 Ezr 3 547 13 42.08
3 2 Ki 7 824 20 41.20
4 1 Chr 28 864 21 41.14
5 Ezr 9 617 15 41.13
6 Jer 44 1228 30 40.93
7 Lam 2 883 22 40.14
8 2 Ki 23 1477 37 39.92
9 Jos 22 1321 34 38.85
10 1 Sam 29 421 11 38.27

 

Fewest Words per Verse

Fewest Words Per Verse
Chapter Words Verses Words/Verse
1 1 Chr 8 491 40 12.28
2 1 Chr 1 683 54 12.65
3 Ps 120 92 7 13.14
4 Ps 114 106 8 13.25
5 Lam 3 876 66 13.27
6 Lam 5 296 22 13.45
7 Ps 136 353 26 13.58
8 Ps 119 2445 176 13.89
9 Ps 105 632 45 14.04
10 Prov 2 309 22 14.05

 

Discussion

Unsurprisingly, the top 30 chapters in the Bible with the most words per verse are all in the OT. In fact, the top 158 chapters with the most words per verse are all in the OT. These findings confirm the general perception that the OT is harder to read than the NT because of more words per verse in the chapters of the OT.

I was surprised to find, however, that all but one of the top 30 chapters in the Bible with the fewest words per verse were also in the OT. Moreover, only two NT chapters rank in the top 100 Bible chapters with the fewest words per verse.

Using some advanced capabilities of BibleWorks 10 and Excel, I discovered today that the ten* longest verses (by the number of words) in the Bible are all in the Old Testament.

Book Words
1 Esther 8:9 90
2 Jeremiah 21:7 83
3 Ezekiel 46:9 81
4 Joshua 8:33 80
2 Chronicles 2:14 80
Jeremiah 44:12 80
Ezekiel 48:21 80
5 2 Kings 16:15 79
6 Daniel 5:23 78
7 Jeremiah 33:11 77
Daniel 4:23 77
8 1 Samuel 29:4 75
2 Kings 1:6 75
Ezra 3:8 75
Esther 3:12 75
Ezekiel 45:7 75
9 Esther 4:11 74
Ezekiel 43:11 74
10 Deuteronomy 13:5 73
1 Kings 2:5 73
2 Kings 6:32 73
1 Chronicles 29:2 73

*Because many verses have equal numbers of words, this list actually has 22 verses.

Verse ranks and word totals are for the KJV.

The longest verse in the NT is Revelation 20:4, which has 68 words and ranks as the 42nd longest verse in the Bible.

The early Christian writers aimed no polemic at the nobler art music or the folk music of their day. Had they been opposed to it, they would no doubt have spoken against it. Their denunciations of music were not general; rather, they were aimed at a few well-defined targets: the music of the popular public spectacles, the music associated with voluptuous banqueting, the music associated with pagan weddings, and the music of pagan religious rites and festivities. As we have already seen, they were not alone in their denunciations. They joined their voices with those of pagan Romans who were painfully aware of the decay of their civilization.

—Calvin R. Stapert, A New Song for an Old World: Musical Thought in the Early Church, 145

At least 21 verses in Scripture record instances of shouting directly connected with singing or playing musical instruments. These passages relate instances of divine, angelic, and human shouting.

Divine Shouting

One passage clearly records an instance of divine shouting connected directly to music.

Psalm 47:5 God is gone up with a shout, the LORD with the sound of a trumpet.

Angelic Shouting

Not only does Scripture record divine shouting connected directly to music, but also it records angelic shouting connected directly with music.

Job 38:7 When the morning stars sang together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

Human Shouting

In addition to passages recording divine and angelic shouting directly connected with music, many passages record human shouting directly connected with music. All the major sections of the OT contain at least one such passage.

The Law

Exodus 32:17 And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said unto Moses, There is a noise of war in the camp. 18 And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

Historical Books

2 Sam. 6:15 So David and all the house of Israel brought up the ark of the LORD with shouting, and with the sound of the trumpet.

1 Chr. 15:28 Thus all Israel brought up the ark of the covenant of the LORD with shouting, and with sound of the cornet, and with trumpets, and with cymbals, making a noise with psalteries and harps.

2 Chr. 15:14 And they sware unto the LORD with a loud voice, and with shouting, and with trumpets, and with cornets.

Ezr. 3:11 And they sang together by course in praising and giving thanks unto the LORD; because he is good, for his mercy endureth for ever toward Israel. And all the people shouted with a great shout, when they praised the LORD, because the foundation of the house of the LORD was laid.

Ezr. 3:12 But many of the priests and Levites and chief of the fathers, who were ancient men, that had seen the first house, when the foundation of this house was laid before their eyes, wept with a loud voice; and many shouted aloud for joy:

Ezr. 3:13 So that the people could not discern the noise of the shout of joy from the noise of the weeping of the people: for the people shouted with a loud shout, and the noise was heard afar off.

Poetry or Wisdom Books

Ps. 5:11 But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.

Ps. 32:11 Be glad in the LORD, and rejoice, ye righteous: and shout for joy, all ye that are upright in heart.

Ps. 35:27 Let them shout for joy, and be glad, that favour my righteous cause: yea, let them say continually, Let the LORD be magnified, which hath pleasure in the prosperity of his servant.

Ps. 47:1 <To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah.> O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.

Ps. 65:13 The pastures are clothed with flocks; the valleys also are covered over with corn; they shout for joy, they also sing.

Ps. 132:9 Let thy priests be clothed with righteousness; and let thy saints shout for joy.

Ps. 132:16 I will also clothe her priests with salvation: and her saints shall shout aloud for joy.

The Prophets

Isa. 12:6 Cry out and shout, thou inhabitant of Zion: for great is the Holy One of Israel in the midst of thee.

Isa. 42:11 Let the wilderness and the cities thereof lift up their voice, the villages that Kedar doth inhabit: let the inhabitants of the rock sing, let them shout from the top of the mountains.

Isa. 44:23 Sing, O ye heavens; for the LORD hath done it: shout, ye lower parts of the earth: break forth into singing, ye mountains, O forest, and every tree therein: for the LORD hath redeemed Jacob, and glorified himself in Israel.

Jer. 31:7 For thus saith the LORD; Sing with gladness for Jacob, and shout among the chief of the nations: publish ye, praise ye, and say, O LORD, save thy people, the remnant of Israel.

Zeph. 3:14 Sing, O daughter of Zion; shout, O Israel; be glad and rejoice with all the heart, O daughter of Jerusalem.

Application

This wealth of biblical data shows the musical importance of shouting. Commands of worldwide scope (Ps. 47:1; Is. 44:23) especially highlight that importance.

Not everyone can sing well, but almost everyone who can speak can shout. Given that Scripture plainly teaches the musical importance of shouting for every believer (Ps. 5:11, 32:11, 35:27), churches would do well to add regular corporate shouting of praise to God (cf. Ezra 3:11) to their other musical worship activities.

 

 

 

Profoundly dangerous teaching about music from an influential writer on the subject:

Because true Christianity cannot be thought of apart from new creation, there should be no kind of music, however radical, however new, however strange, that is out of place in Christian worship, as long as it is faithfully offered. And no Christian, truly living by faith, should ever turn his or her back on and refuse to offer a musical piece simply because it is too radical.

—Harold M. Best, Music Through the Eyes of Faith, 154

A large group of people who virulently hate God gather in a remote location to curse God corporately for an extended period. Their blasphemous activities include the use of lots of musical instruments.

This group uses melodies in songs written by and known only to the people who attend the event. The instrumental music played throughout the event to accompany the singing is all new music written specifically for the event.

A Secret Recording

At some distance from the event, some animal researchers happen to hear the loud musical sounds emanating from the gathering. Fearing for their personal safety, the researchers do not want the large group to discover their presence.

The researchers have with them state of the art audio equipment. They use it secretly from a distance to record the musical activities of the blasphemers. Because of the distance involved, the equipment cannot pick up any of the lyrics of the songs. The equipment only records the composite sound from a distance of the singing accompanied by the musical instruments.

The researchers do not know anything about the nature of the group or why they have gathered. They cannot hear any of the words the people sing, but they are able to tell that the group is singing.

What Should We Think?

From a human standpoint, what are we to think of the morality of the composite sound that the researchers record? Anyone who would hear that recording of the composite sound would not know anything about either the words being sung or the instrumental music accompanying it. Would that composite sound recording, therefore, be an amoral musical recording for any people who hear it?

God, angels, and demons, however, would know exactly all that the group did and and sang on this occasion. Because of their full knowledge about the event, would that recording still be an amoral recording simply because it is a recording of composite sound of humanly unknown and unknowable lyrics sung to musical accompaniment that is humanly unknown and unknowable?

Exodus 32 is an important passage in Scripture on the subject of worship. I recently engaged in a lengthy online discussion on Sharper Iron concerning that passage: “How Does God Want Christians to Profit concerning Worship from Exodus 32:17-20.”

I then conducted a follow-up poll on the question: “Is Exodus 32:17-18 divine revelation about worship music?

Respondents chose from 7 answers: “Yes, for sure; Probably; Maybe; Not sure; Probably not; No; or, Absolutely not.”

Poll Results

The results of the poll were shocking. Out of 22 respondents, 3 voted “No” and 14 voted “Absolutely not.” Only 2 people voted “Yes, for sure” and 1 voted “Probably.”1

Poll Analysis

Are the majority of the responses in this poll the correct view about Exodus 32:17-18? A careful analysis of the passage and of other relevant passages answers that question decisively.

Undeniably, Exodus 32:17-18 is divine revelation that has been given by inspiration of the Spirit:

Exodus 32:17 And when Joshua heard the noise of the people as they shouted, he said unto Moses, There is a noise of war in the camp. 18 And he said, It is not the voice of them that shout for mastery, neither is it the voice of them that cry for being overcome: but the noise of them that sing do I hear.

Because verse 18 mentions singing explicitly, these verses are undeniably divine revelation about music. The only question that remains is whether these verses are divine revelation about worship music.

Exodus 32:5 shows that what took place in the Golden Calf Incident (GCI) took place on an occasion that was supposed to have been a feast to the Lord, which would have been a divinely ordained occasion of corporate worship (cf. John 12:20). In addition, apostolic citation of Exodus 32:6 in 1 Corinthians 10:7 decisively shows that the GCI was an occasion of worship because it says that they were idolaters on that occasion:

1 Corinthians 10:7 Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.

1 Corinthians 10:7 μηδὲ εἰδωλολάτραι γίνεσθε, καθώς τινες αὐτῶν· ὡς γέγραπται, Ἐκάθισεν ὁ λαὸς φαγεῖν καὶ πιεῖν, καὶ ἀνέστησαν παίζειν.

Furthermore, Paul specifies that their idolatrous worship extended to their eating and drinking what had been offered to the idol and to their subsequent playing. The Greek verb παίζειν that is rendered “to play” in this statement is used in the LXX to signify singing and playing of musical instruments:

1 Chr. 13:8 And David and all Israel played before God with all their might, and with singing, and with harps, and with psalteries, and with timbrels, and with cymbals, and with trumpets.

1 Chr. 13:8 καὶ Δαυιδ καὶ πᾶς Ισραηλ παίζοντες ἐναντίον τοῦ θεοῦ ἐν πάσῃ δυνάμει καὶ ἐν ψαλτῳδοῖς καὶ ἐν κινύραις καὶ ἐν νάβλαις ἐν τυμπάνοις καὶ ἐν κυμβάλοις καὶ ἐν σάλπιγξιν

This biblical data justifies holding that the idolatrous worship in the GCI included their singing.

Conclusion

In spite of the prevailing view to the contrary that is held by most of the respondents to this poll, a careful handling of Exodus 32:17-18 shows that it is definitively divine revelation concerning worship music.


Notes

1 One of the people who responded to this poll on SI conducted the same poll in a closed Facebook group of fundamentalist pastors. He found that 24 of the 30 pastors said that Exodus 32:17-18 is not divine revelation about worship music. If anything, his results are more shocking than mine are because of the nature of the group that he polled.

A professional CCM musician recently made the following revealing comment to an online article about CCM:

I’m a professional musician who has and does work with some of the most well known CCM artists. I’ve done tours, recorded on their albums , etc.. I can tell you first hand that it’s about the bottomline, not Jesus. The hypocrisy is rampant. And I will say many are not believers. I was on a tour bus one year with a well known act and I was mocked for reading my bible. I was yelled at by the drummer for calling out heretics on TBN. Many musicians like myself who work in the CCM market are not believers. They all call themselves Christian’s, but their words and actions betray them. And the biblical ignorance is beyond breathtaking. There ate [sic] true believers players and artists alike, but far and few between.

This article provides telling information about CCM. The comments are especially informative.