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Just a Minute

Just a Minute is a collection of brief but meaningful meditations on Scripture. BJU Press has published a book by the same name with 96 of these devotional articles. Each chapter focuses on a Scripture verse or two, blending key facts about context with meditations on the truth of the passage. Find out how taking just a minute each day can change your life!
If you are interested, you can purchase Just A Minute, containing the first 96 printed articles.

Temple Keepers (Just A Minute #121)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are. (1 Corinthians 3:16-17)

What image would appear in a Corinthian mind when told he was a temple?

If we take into consideration the kind of city Corinth was, the answer could be interesting. Because of its strategic location, Corinth became a commercial hub and one of the most important cities of Greece. With a constant flow of foreigners, the many brands of idolatry and cultural perversions mixed together to form a truly pagan population.

For some, the word “temple” would possibly bring up thoughts of luxurious buildings where privileged priests conducted corrupt ceremonies and sanctioned fleshly feasts. Others who had some knowledge of Herod’s masterpiece now known as the “Second Temple” might think of its beauty and grandeur. Just a few of the more studious believers might have their minds drawn to what they knew of the original house of God, born in the heart of David and built by his son Solomon.

This last group would probably be the closest to understanding the concept properly.

Read more: Temple Keepers (Just A Minute #121)

Earthquake Warning (Just A Minute #120)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

(Oddly enough, I wrote this last Tuesday, three days before the earthquake in Japan)

"The words of Amos, who was among the herdmen of Tekoa, which he saw concerning Israel in the days of Uzziah king of Judah, and in the days of Jeroboam the son of Joash king of Israel, two years before the earthquake." (Amos 1:1)

Nobody believed the country shepherd. His job was breeding sheep, not preaching. He had no formal training or any relatives in the ministry.

But one day God placed a burden on his heart and a message began to be imprinted on his soul. As he put things together in his mind he could see the hand of the Lord, even back in his infancy. Why else would his parents have given him a name that meant “burden carrier”?

What he probably could not entirely understand was that as he wrote down the words of Jehovah, he was actually predicting a catastrophic event on the land. Later he would reread his own messages and understand their awful significance.

Read more: Earthquake Warning (Just A Minute #120)

The Morality of Fear (Just A Minute #119)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

Behold, the fear of the Lord, that is wisdom, and to depart from evil is understanding.'" (Job 28:28)

We often think of fear as merely an emotion or a state of anxiety brought on by some dangerous or potentially harmful situation we face. The word itself may stir up frightful memories of the past, and the terror, panic, or paralysis associated with them will be quite unpleasant to recall. If we are prone to struggle with fear, the mental anguish might be a daily and dreaded battle.

In this passage Job has been exploring the source and value of wisdom. He admits that no miner’s pick has ever touched it below the earth’s surface nor has any falcon’s eye seen it from above. Its worth, he says, is more than the rarest jewels or minerals.

However, perhaps the greatest surprise comes at the end of Job’s eloquent essay, when he concludes that the priceless virtue of wisdom is closely related to fear.

Fear?! Isn't this an ugly enemy that should be expelled from our minds whenever possible?

Not according to God.

Read more: The Morality of Fear (Just A Minute #119)

No Reason to Rush (Just A Minute #118)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

Hearken unto me, O Jacob and Israel, my called; I am he; I am the first, I also am the last. . . . For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the LORD will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rereward. . . . I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty. (Isaiah 48:12, 52:12; Rev. 1:8)

There would be no frantic race back to Israel.

The Israelites would return from the Babylonian captivity without fear. In stark contrast to their departure from Egypt 900 years earlier, this exodus would be peaceful. Back then, with the thunderous pounding of Pharoah’s chariot horses getting louder by the minute, their freedom celebrations quickly turned into shrieks of hysteria. In spite of their doubts, God had opened the sea ahead of them and blocked the Egyptians behind them.

This time things were to be different, and with a particular divine attribute being emphasized.

Read more: No Reason to Rush (Just A Minute #118)

All Alone (Just A Minute #117)

Andy Bonikowsky
Written by Andy Bonikowsky

I am clean without transgression, I am innocent; neither is there iniquity in me.
Behold, he findeth occasions against me, he counteth me for his enemy. (Job 33:9-10)

We don’t know if Job actually said these exact words, though it is likely. Whatever the case, Elihu used them to accurately summarize the suffering man’s main argument.

I don’t think Job was claiming sinless perfection. He was a godly, mature man, and it is doubtful he would make such a bold statement. What he did mean is precisely what God said about him in the introduction to the book, that he “was perfect, and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.”

But now he was very confused.

Read more: All Alone (Just A Minute #117)