Tuesday, June 06, 2023

Jeremiah and Zechariah and Matthew

Matthew 27:9 Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremy the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty pieces of silver, the price of him that was valued, whom they of the children of Israel did value;

On Saturday am, June 3rd, Pastor Jeff Riddle posted Word Magazine 283, “An error in Matthew 27:9?” This is a nice discussion on what some folks claim is an error in Matthew 27:9 – that the name Jeremiah should be Zechariah instead. Brother Riddle concludes with an explanation and exoneration of Matthew. This video and presentation made me think of a similar explanation that was taught me by a former pastor, an historian and Old Testament scholar. Below I give an excerpt from his book Old Testament in Matthew. This is part of Lesson 48, “A Prophecy Runs Its Course.” Brother J. W. Griffith divides this lesson into three parts: (1) “Jeremiah Begins It” (with reference to Jeremiah 18:1-6; 19:1-2, 10-12), (2) “Zechariah Continues It” (with reference to Zechariah 11:12-13) and (3) “Matthew Proclaims Its Fulfillment” (with reference to Matthew 27:1-10). The explanation incorporates the view of Riddle (a sort of synecdoche or metonymy, I suppose we might call it), additionally seeing that the gospel author Matthew by inspiration created a cento of passages from Jeremiah and Zechariah. Griffith writes:

“Zechariah Continues It, Zech. 11:12-13.”

Prophetic Connections. The reference on which this lesson is based is found in Matthew 27:9-10. It is introduced with the words, ‘Then was fulfilled that which was spoken by Jeremiah the prophet,’ etc. It continues to record the prophecy of Zechariah 11:12-13. Various attempts have been made to explain this seeming mistake. The best seems to be that which has the prophecy beginning with that of Jeremiah, concerning the potter and the wheel and the broken vessel. Some authorities explain that the prophecy of Jeremiah was the first in a scroll which included the prophecy of Zechariah. It was commonly referred to as ‘Jeremiah,’ much as the first five books of the Bible are sometimes called ‘Moses’ and the Psalms ‘David.’

“If it is admitted that Matthew made a mistake in attributing the quotation to Jeremiah the divine inspiration of the Scriptures might be put in doubt. The Jews divided their Scriptures into the Law, Prophets, and Psalms. Several books were included in each of these divisions. Often there were scrolls which might contain one book, or several. The explanation above would account for the fact that Matthew referred to the scroll of ‘Jeremiah,’ including Zechariah. 

“The prophecies of Jeremiah, chapters 18 and 19, contain things clearly pertinent to the events around the Judas Iscariot’s betrayal of Jesus, his subsequent remorse, suicide, and burial. Thus they are clearly joined with what Zechariah prophesied a few hundred years later. The prophecy of the potter’s field had its beginning with Jeremiah and was added to by Zechariah.

“Jeremiah’s prophesying coincided with the fall of Jerusalem and the departure of the Jewish remnant into the captivity of Babylon. This was the early fulfillment of what he had told them about the marred vessel on the potter’s wheel and the broken vessel in the Valley of the son of Hinnom. Zechariah’s prophesying coincided with the return of the Jewish remnant from the Babylonian captivity and their attempts to re-establish themselves in the land of Judah.

“The re-establishment of the Jews was to prepare the land and the people for the birth of Jesus and His ministry. The Jews then living would treat their Messiah badly put Him to death. Zechariah foretold many things about this, some of which have been studied in the foregoing lessons of this book. When the Lord had Matthew to record the ministry and atonement of Jesus, the Son of Man, these prophecies were at another point of fulfillment. Matthew gospel seems to have been directly written for the Jews, and these things from the prophecies of Jeremiah and Zechariah were most pertinent to those things about which he wrote.”

James Wyatt Griffith, Old Testament in Matthew: Volume II, Pasadena, TX: White’s Printing, 1997, pp. 225-226.

Note: Gill, Lightfoot, and other commentators point to Bava Batra and Radak (David Kimchi) describing the Jewish practice of identifying a scroll by the name of the first book in the scroll. For example: “The Sages taught: The order of the books of the Prophets when they are attached together is as follows: Joshua and Judges, Samuel and Kings, Jeremiah and Ezekiel, and Isaiah and the Twelve Prophets.” Bava Batra 14b.8.  Tertullian, who lived around AD 155-225, refers to this verse in his writing Against Marcion (Book IV), mentioning without comment that the event was foretold by Jeremiah. Augustine of Hippo, writing possibly two hundred later in his Harmony of the Gospels, Book III, gives a long, odd (to me), and somewhat tedious explanation of the correctness of the prophet Jeremiah in Matthew 27:9. While I am not sure I even understood some of what Augustine wrote, I agree with his basic premise: “this has been done in accordance with the more secret counsel of that providence of God by which the minds of the evangelists were governed.” It is not an error. Additionally, Matthew does not strictly follow the prophet’s words – that is, as a quote. Rather he follows the prophet’s sense – that is, an allusion to it – which Matthew shows to be fulfilled on this occasion.

Monday, June 05, 2023


And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory. 1Timothy 3:16

No other doctrine is of any greater importance in the understanding of the basis of the salvation of the LORD’s people than that of “justification.”  To be “justified” in the sight of a HOLY GOD is the desire of all who find themselves guilty of sin.  The Greek word which is most often translated as “justify” and “justified” in the KJV, literally means to be “found or rendered as righteous”.  That same word is the root word of the Greek word which is translated as “justification”.  The meaning of this word is “the act of being justified or simply put; acquitted of all crimes”. 

The man who thinks he has no need of “justification” before GOD, is a man who is convinced that he is not a sinner and faces no judgment for any crimes against the LORD of Glory.  Such a man will certainly perish in the natural darkness of his own mind without regard to his dilemma. “The simple pass on, and are punished.” (Proverbs 27:12).

Mike McInnis, excerpt from “Justified by the Justified Justifier”

Sunday, June 04, 2023

Surrounding me in all I do

A little more enduring Watts hymn than the one last week – “The All-seeing God,” in Long Meter, is Isaac Watts’s “First Part” of Psalm CXXXIX (139). It is found beginning on page 365 in The Psalms of David: Imitated in the Language of the New Testament, and Apply’d to the Christian State and Worship. It includes pauses of reflection on the omnipotence, omnipresence, and omniscience of God – in light of which fact these thoughts should “possess my breast.”

1. Lord, thou hast search’d and seen me through,
Thine Eye commands with piercing view.
My rising and my resting Hours,
My Heart and Flesh with all their Powers.

2. My Thoughts, before they are my own,
Are to my God distinctly known;
He knows the Words I mean to speak
E’re from my opening Lips they break.

3. Within thy circling Power I stand;
On every Side I find thy Hand;
Awake, asleep, at home, abroad,
I am surrounded still with God.

4. Amazing Knowledge, vast and great!
What large Extent! what lofty Height!
My Soul with all the Powers I boast,
Is in the boundless Prospect lost.

5. O may these Thoughts possess my Breast,
Where’er I rove, where’er I rest!
Nor let my weaker Passions dare
Consent to Sin, for God is there.

Pause I.

6. Could I so false, so faithless prove,
To quit thy Service and thy love,
Where, Lord, could I thy Presence shun.
Or from thy dreadful Glory run?

7. If up to Heaven I take my flight,
’Tis there thou dwell’st enthroned in Light;
Or dive to Hell, there Vengeance reigns,
And Satan groans beneath thy Chains.

8. If, mounted on a Morning Ray,
I fly beyond the Western Sea,
Thy swifter Hand would first arrive,
And there arrest thy Fugitive.

9. Or should I try to shun thy Sight
Beneath the spreading Veil of Night,
One Glance of Thine, one piercing Ray,
Would kindle Darkness into Day.

10. O may these Thoughts possess my Breast,
Where’er I rove, where’er I rest!
Nor let my weaker passions dare
Consent to Sin, for God is there.


11. The Veil of Night is no disguise,
No Screen from thy All-searching Eyes;
Thy Hand can seize thy Foes as soon
Through Midnight-shades as blazing Noon.

12. Midnight and noon in this agree,
Great God, they’re both alike to Thee;
Not Death can hide what God will spy,
And Hell lies naked to his Eye.

13. O may these Thoughts possess my Breast,
Where’er I rove, where’er I rest!
Nor let my weaker passions dare
Consent to Sin, for God is there.

This psalm has been set with many different tunes. The best-known, at least to me, is Federal Street by Henry Kemble Oliver (1800-1885). He wrote hymns, music, and served as organist in several churches. Oliver served in several civic duties, including as a mayor, a member of the Massachusetts State House of Representatives, as well as Adjutant General and Treasurer of the state of Massachusetts.

In The Sacred Harp (1991 Revision), the tune Akin (472) uses the third stanza of Watts’s Psalm 139.

Saturday, June 03, 2023

Balthasar Hübmaier, and other links

The posting of links does not constitute an endorsement of the sites linked, and not necessarily even agreement with the specific posts linked.

Friday, June 02, 2023

Wiseacres must be meddling

Charles Waters Banks, English Strict & Particular Baptist and long-time editor of The Earthen Vessel, comments on the English revision of the Bible.

The Revised Translation of the Bible has been criticised rather keenly by Dr. Parker, in his City Temple. We certainly tremble for the results. At present we only say two things; first, the spirit, the providence, and the sovereign pleasure of the eternal God, have made our blessed Bible an instrument of life, light, and joy, to many millions of souls; and, in the Lord’s hand, to his own family, it is, and will be, a precious book still. Secondly, as our age is now so preeminently learned, that neither the Bible, nor the Gospel, nor anything else is advanced enough for it, we would pray the true disciples of our Lord Jesus Christ, to purchase all the Bibles they possibly can, and give to every child copies for themselves, and for their children; most earnestly beseeching them to hand them down to future generations; for soon, it may be, our Christ-exalting and truth-unfolding Bible, will cease to be printed. While we can, let us secure as many as we can, and as heir-looms, hand them down to those who come after us.”

The Earthen Vessel and Christian Record for 1871, Volume XXVII, 1871, London: Robert Banks, March 1, 1871, p. 86

“If the Spirit of God does not lead the enlightened mind into God’s meaning of any text, all the revisions of cosmopolitan revisers will do no soul any spiritual good. But wiseacres must be meddling.”

“Mr. John Hazelton, the long-known and beloved minister of Mount Zion, Clerkenwell, delivered a clear and excellent exposition of that precious Scripture in Heh. xiii, 5. ‘For He bath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.’ The Newlv Revised Version reads: ‘I will in no wise fail thee; neither will I, in any wise, forsake thee.’ We love our ‘Authorised Version’ so dearly, that we cannot cordially receive the cooler, quieter, plained-down revision. We listened most intently to Mr. Hazelton’s comprehensive, and thoroughly soul-refreshing, text-analysing discourse.”
The Earthen Vessel and Christian Record for 1882, Volume XXXVIII, 1882, London: Robert Banks, pp. 88, 160.

Wednesday, May 31, 2023

American Baptist Historical Society Digital Collections

The American Baptist Historical Society (ABHS) now has a digital records platform up on the World Wide Web — American Baptist Historical Society Digital Collections.

Materials held in the ABHS archival collections include:

  • African-American Baptist association minutes as early as 1829
  • Correspondence of home and overseas missionaries
  • Local church records
  • Official denominational minutes and publications
  • Personal papers of Baptist leaders
  • Records of the Baptist World Alliance

What is currently available online is only a very small and limited amount, but it is new and growing. In Primary Source (April-June 2023, p. 3), Jenny Manasco reports, “Photos, documents, and audio files will be accessible via the internet. However, what is accessible is but an infinitesimal proportion of what we hold in the archives. We calculate that it would take a full-time employee about 100 years of scanning to digitize what we have. Since we don’t have anyone dedicated full-time to scanning the materials, it may take a little longer than that.”

The site’s url is:

One interesting addition available is the diary of William Shadrach, added 12 April 2023. I am not very familiar with Shadrach. Born in Wales, William Shadrach came to America around 1820. He was ordained in 1828 and early on was an active pastor in the Pittsburgh Baptist Association. Shadrach was one of the founders of the University at Lewisburg, and served as Corresponding Secretary of the American Baptist Publication Society, 1853-1856. The following is an excerpt from his diary.

26 Preached at home enjoyed a refreshing season none baptized. The trial of John Holmes no doubt has thrown a stumblingblock in the way of some. O Lord remove any barrier to the progress of the cause of Christ.

Sketch of the Life of Rev. William Shadrach, D. D., by John Thomas Griffith (Philadelphia, PA: American Baptist Publication Society, for the American Baptist Historical Society, 1915) is available online at HathiTrust.

Tuesday, May 30, 2023

Sheri Klouda, Wade Burleson, SWBTS

Old Southern Baptist news, which I had saved, and decided to save here rather than delete.

Oral and Videotaped Deposition of Dr. Sheri L. Klouda February 26, 2008

Q. All right. Have you talked to Wade Burleson? ... 

A. He called me, I think, in January of 2007 and asked me about the truth with regard to what he had heard about my leaving Southwestern and I told him some of the story, not knowing that he was going to post it on his blog. When he told me that he was in fact going to do that, I objected.

Q. And did he publish any of the stories that you told him that you objected to?

A. He did. That was the first one or that was the one -- that was the one that he -- that told -- he posted it -- he put it on his blog and I’d objected to it and I even told Dr. Patterson about it.

Dr. Sheri Klouda about Her Time at SWBTS under Dr. Paige Patterson

Monday, May 29, 2023

Memorial Day

It is my understanding that Memorial Day is specifically a day for American soldiers who died while serving in the U.S. military services. Nevertheless, for Memorial Day we put flags on graves of all Veterans buried at Holleman Cemetery. Find-A-Grave lists 423 burials. (However, there are a number of unmarked/unknown burials.) Approximately 10% of the known burials are Veterans. We placed flags at the tombs of 44 Veterans. The oldest veteran is Josiah John Holleman who served in the War of 1812. I believe the youngest might be those who served in the Vietnam era, thought there may be some who served after that.

  • W. M. “Punkin” Bane
  • Hubbard Columbus Barlow
  • Harold B. Blanton
  • Al Leon “Goose” Chapman
  • Clifford Lee Chapman
  • William Maderson Chapman
  • Colquitt “Buss” Clark
  • Leon Clark
  • James “Ernie” Forson
  • Charles Elmer Fuller
  • William M. Gardner
  • Daniel Clyde Garrett
  • Robert O. Goeth
  • Gustave Hubbert “Gus” Ham
  • Houston Edward Ham
  • Oscar Lee Ham
  • Audie Holleman
  • Homer Leander Holleman
  • Josiah John Holleman
  • Josiah John “Joe” Holleman Jr.
  • Moody Valentine Holleman
  • William Benjamin “Ben” Holleman
  • Michael Jerry “Mike” Johnson
  • Lacy Allen Koonce
  • Daniel Demp Mashburn
  • Odis Mashburn
  • Ray McGehee
  • Herbert Parsons
  • Elisha Byrd “Shaw” Pruitt
  • Fritz Seligman
  • Elmer James Shepard
  • L. Beryl Shepard
  • Victor Dewitt “Buster” Stephenson
  • Calvin Coolidge Vaughn
  • Charlie Leroy Vaughn
  • John Junior Vaughn
  • Thomas Steven Vaughn
  • William Lewis Vaughn
  • Jonathan E. Whitten
  • Wesley Williams
  • William Fred Woods
  • Bill Moses Woolverton
  • Jim David Woolverton

James Knox Polk “Jim” Scruggs is known to be buried somewhere in this cemetery, is a veteran, but his grave location is unknown. Elisha Pruitt does not have a marker, but is believed buried in the space beside his wife, where we place his flag.

Men from the community I know died in the War between the Northern and Southern states and are buried elsewhere are Jasper Edge, John Alexander Koonce, and maybe others. 

Many believe that his being gassed in World War I was a contributing factor in the death of Homer L. Holleman.

The Word of God is permanent

“The Word of God is permanent. Once God speaks a Word it lasts forever and never passes away.

“That is one reason the prophets and apostles wrote down the Word of God. It is a permanent Word. If it was God’s Word then, it is God’s Word today. And to eternity.”

Grant Castleberry, Capital Community Church, Raleigh, North Carolina