It is an excellent Bible study technique to take special note of the first occurrence of a given word in Scripture. Often many clues to the hidden wisdom of certain concepts can be ferreted out by exploring their first use very carefully. I was reminded of this as I read Luke Chapter One today. Let’s take “Jesus 101” Class together, shall we? You know the textbook – and the tuition is free!

“Regarding the resurrection”…those are Jesus’ words from Matthew 22 verse 31. He taught about resurrection. He taught clearly and succinctly about the pivotal importance of the resurrection of the dead to the faith of those who would be his disciples. Let’s use today’s readings to remind ourselves of this critical teaching which has its roots in the very essence of the Old Testament.

Did you know that following rabbit trails is not always a bad thing? At least when it comes to Bible study. The negative connotation of this idiom is debunked when pursuing the myriad paths of exploring words, phrases and passages inspired by the mind of God. The wonder of God’s word is that every rabbit trail you traverse leads to treasure. And each one is intersected by others, to create a great interconnected web of wisdom, as the trails are investigated.

You might be wondering why I am calling one of the most famous chapters in the Bible, Hebrews 11,”The Hope Chapter” – since its claim to fame is the topic of faith, not hope. This serendipity of Bible study never fails to delight – when subsequent readings of parts of the Bible (we think we know well) morph into new and fascinating territory for exploration.