Tuesday, February 6, 2024

Bible Study about Love: a Chat between Marcy Coate and ChatGPT 3.5

(WebChatGPT Chrome extension installed - web access ON)

I am doing a Bible study of Proverbs 21:21. I am interested to know what Bible scholars have to say about this verse. When it says "Whoever pursues righteousness and love finds life, prosperity and honor" does it mean that the reward for pursuing righteousness and love is life, prosperity and honor, or does it mean something else?

Bible scholars interpret Proverbs 21:21 to convey that the pursuit of righteousness and love leads to a reward of life, prosperity, and honor. The verse emphasizes the positive outcomes of a life devoted to righteousness and compassion, suggesting that such a path is not only morally upright but also brings forth tangible blessings from God.

bibleref.com - What does Proverbs 21:21 mean?

biblehub.com - Proverbs 21:21 - Righteousness and mercy.

So, to paraphrase this verse in modern, informal language, is it safe to say, "If you seek to love and to do good, you will find life, success, and respect"? If not, how would you re-word it?

Yes, that paraphrase accurately captures the essence of Proverbs 21:21. In a more informal tone, one could re-word it as, "If you strive to love and do good, you'll discover a life filled with success and respect."

bibleref.com - What does Proverbs 21:21 mean?

biblehub.com - Proverbs 21:21 He who pursues righteousness and loving...

Are there other Bible verses that convey a similar teaching?

Yes, there are other Bible verses conveying a similar teaching. Matthew 5:6 states, "Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied." Proverbs 15:9 also emphasizes the importance of pursuing righteousness, stating, "The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but he loves him who pursues righteousness."

kingjamesbibleonline.org - BIBLE VERSES LIKE PROVERBS 21:21

openbible.info - Proverbs 21:21 Cross References

biblestudytools.com - Proverbs 21:21 - Whoever pursues righteousness and love

What correlation can we find between Proverbs 21:21 and the "love chapter" (Corinthians 13)?

Proverbs 21:21 encourages the pursuit of righteousness and love, emphasizing a virtuous life. This aligns with Corinthians 13, often referred to as the "love chapter." In Corinthians 13:4-8, love is described as patient, kind, and not self-seeking. The correlation lies in the idea that pursuing righteousness and love, as mentioned in Proverbs 21:21, aligns with the qualities of love outlined in Corinthians 13. Both passages highlight the importance of virtuous living and selfless love.

bibleref.com - What does Proverbs 21:21 mean?

Does Paul go on to mention the rewards of the type of love he describes in Chapter 13 of his letter to the Corinthians?

Yes, in 1 Corinthians 13:13, Paul mentions the enduring qualities of faith, hope, and love. Among these virtues, Paul proclaims love as the greatest. While not explicitly mentioning rewards, the emphasis is on the elevated status of love, highlighting its paramount importance in the Christian life.

linkedin.com - 1 Corinthians 13 (AMPC) “The Love Chapter”

Does he speak of the rewards of love and righteousness later in 1 Corinthians, or in other works that are attributed to him?

While 1 Corinthians 13 emphasizes the supremacy of love, Paul does not explicitly elaborate on the rewards of love and righteousness in that chapter. However, in other parts of the New Testament, such as 2 Timothy 4:8, Paul mentions the "crown of righteousness" as a reward for those who have loved Christ's appearing. Additionally, the concept of rewards for believers is discussed in various passages, including 1 Corinthians 3:14 and Revelation 22:12. These verses suggest that believers may receive rewards for their faithfulness and righteous living, but the specific details are not extensively elaborated in Paul's writings.

davidjeremiah.blog - What Kind of Rewards Will Believers Receive in Heaven?

gotquestions.org - What are the five heavenly crowns that believers can receive?

What about other New Testament writers? Or is love a theme that is proposed mainly by Paul?

Love is a pervasive theme throughout the New Testament and is not exclusive to Paul. Various New Testament writers, including John, James, and Peter, emphasize the importance of love in different contexts. The Gospel of John, for instance, highlights Jesus' teachings on love, such as the command to love one another (John 13:34-35). James addresses the royal law of love in James 2:8, while Peter underscores the significance of love in building unity among believers (1 Peter 4:8). Love is a central theme that transcends individual authors, resonating across different books of the New Testament.

religion-online.org - Chapter 3: Love in the New Testament

bibleproject.com - Love in the Bible | Resource Guide with Videos & More

Please list the teachings of Jesus about love.

Love Your Neighbor: Jesus emphasized the importance of loving one's neighbor, even extending love to enemies (Matthew 5:43-48; Luke 10:25-37).

The Greatest Commandment: Jesus highlighted the supreme importance of love in the commandment to love God with all one's heart, soul, and mind, and to love one's neighbor as oneself (Matthew 22:36-40).

Golden Rule: Jesus introduced the Golden Rule, encouraging others to treat people the way they want to be treated, encapsulating the essence of love (Matthew 7:12).

Self-Sacrificial Love: Jesus exemplified self-sacrificial love, teaching that there is no greater love than laying down one's life for others (John 15:13).

Love as a Mark of Discipleship: Jesus emphasized that love for one another would be a distinctive mark of His disciples, demonstrating their connection to Him (John 13:34-35).

Forgiving Love: Jesus taught the importance of forgiving others as an expression of love, linking forgiveness to God's forgiveness of individuals (Matthew 6:14-15).

Love for God and Others: In summarizing the Law, Jesus reiterated the call to love God and love one's neighbor as oneself (Mark 12:28-34).

RE:quest - What did Jesus teach about love?

Holy Hen House - 6 Things Jesus Said About Love

The Hutchinson News - Jesus teaches us how to love like God loves

Bart Ehrman Blog - Jesus' Teachings on Love and Salvation

Now please list the teachings of the apostles on these same themes, using these 7 teachings of Jesus as categories to classify them.


Love Your Neighbor

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles echoed Jesus' emphasis on loving neighbors. For example, in Romans 13:10, Paul asserts that love is the fulfillment of the law.

The Greatest Commandment

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles reinforced the centrality of love in fulfilling the commandments. In Galatians 5:14, Paul states, "For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'"

Golden Rule

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles reiterated the principle of treating others as you want to be treated. James, the brother of Jesus, speaks of the royal law of love in James 2:8.

Self-Sacrificial Love

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles expanded on self-sacrificial love. Paul, in Ephesians 5:2, encourages believers to "walk in the way of love, just as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us."

Love as a Mark of Discipleship

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles highlighted love as a distinguishing mark of discipleship. John, in 1 John 4:7, emphasizes that love is from God, and everyone who loves is born of God.

Forgiving Love

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles addressed forgiveness as an expression of love. Paul, in Colossians 3:13, instructs believers to forgive as the Lord forgave them.

Love for God and Others

Apostolic Teaching: The apostles reaffirmed the dual commandment of loving God and others. John, in 1 John 4:21, underscores that those who love God must also love their brothers and sisters.

LifeWay - Sermon: How to Show Love and Respect to Others - John 13.

Wikipedia - Righteousness

Merriam-Webster - Righteous Definition & Meaning

In a sense, I think that love and doing good, are not only things that we should do, but they are somehow also their own rewards. For example, people who work with the poor or disabled, to show them love, describe their experiences as joyful.

The act of showing love and doing good is often its own reward, especially when working with the poor or disabled. Many individuals who engage in such compassionate work describe their experiences as joyful. The intrinsic satisfaction derived from helping others, witnessing positive impacts, and fostering connections contributes to a profound sense of fulfillment. The joy experienced in these acts of kindness reflects the profound impact that love and altruism can have on both the giver and the recipient.

The Joy of Serving the Poor

Effects of Happiness on People with Disabilities

Living Well with a Disability

Employment, Housing, Poverty and the Disability Community

A Place for Joy: Supporting a Home for Children with...

Poverty, Livelihoods, and Social Benefits

I remember reading in the Bible about opposite actions (doing evil, seeking riches, etc.) being described as "sowing to the wind" or as "vain". Can you list some of those?

In the Bible, the concept of "sowing to the wind" or engaging in vain pursuits is often associated with negative consequences. Here are some verses that convey this idea:

Hosea 8:7 (KJV): "For they have sown the wind, and they shall reap the whirlwind: it hath no stalk: the bud shall yield no meal: if so be it yield, the strangers shall swallow it up."

Galatians 6:7 (ESV): "Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap."

Proverbs 11:18 (NIV): "A wicked person earns deceptive wages, but the one who sows righteousness reaps a sure reward."

Proverbs 22:8 (NLT): "Those who plant injustice will harvest disaster, and their reign of terror will come to an end."

Ecclesiastes 5:10 (NIV): "Whoever loves money never has enough; whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income. This too is meaningless."

James 4:3 (NIV): "When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures."

These verses caution against negative actions such as injustice, wickedness, love of money, and wrong motives, emphasizing the principle of reaping what is sown.

Hosea 8:7 - BibleStudyTools

Galatians 6:7 - BibleStudyTools

Proverbs 11:18 - BibleStudyTools

Proverbs 22:8 - BibleStudyTools

Ecclesiastes 5:10 - BibleStudyTools

James 4:3 - GotQuestions

So, rather than seeking riches, glory, honor, etc. (no reward), we should live a life of love and service (reward = life, prosperity, honor). Correct?

Yes, that's correct. According to biblical teachings, prioritizing a life of love and service rather than seeking riches, glory, and honor for oneself is emphasized. The idea is that living a selfless and altruistic life not only aligns with God's commandments but also brings intrinsic rewards, including a meaningful and prosperous life along with honor. This contrasts with the notion that solely pursuing material wealth or personal glory yields no lasting reward.

Bible Verses about Selflessness - BibleStudyTools

25 Best Bible Verses About Serving Others - BibleStudyTools

30 Bible verses about God's call to love others - World Vision

49 Bible Verses about Serving Others - BibleLyfe

40 Inspiring Bible Verses About Love - Compassion UK

What Does the Bible Say About Reward? - OpenBible

It seems counterintuitive, but that concept has been proven again and again. I have heard many testimonies of people who have sought fame and fortune, only to find emptiness inside of them. Instead, when they decided to dedicate themselves to serving others, they found joy and happiness.

Absolutely, the counterintuitive nature of finding joy and happiness through serving others instead of seeking fame and fortune is a recurring theme in both personal testimonies and psychological research. Many individuals who have pursued material success often report feeling unfulfilled and empty. On the contrary, those who have dedicated themselves to serving others and contributing to a greater cause often experience a profound sense of joy and purpose.

This aligns with the idea that intrinsic goals, such as helping others and contributing to society, are more fulfilling and lead to greater well-being compared to extrinsic goals like fame and wealth. Research suggests that the pursuit of intrinsic goals is associated with sustained happiness and a sense of accomplishment.

The Psychological Mindset of Being Famous - Saybrook University

Experiencing Happiness in Helping Others - Becoming Minimalist

Fame and fortune is no fast track to happiness - ACU Impact

To Be Happy, Hide From the Spotlight - The Atlantic

Thursday, October 26, 2023

Sunday, October 22, 2023

Bible Journaling Pack from Everything Mom Store


Sometimes you just want black & white stickers (or ephemera)
for Bible journaling. These are cute. They have little flowers you
can color with your colored pencils or markers, for a little art therapy
while you're doing your Bible study and reflection, or just some quiet
time while the kids are napping or at school. These are great to print
on cardstock (use as ephemera) or sticker paper (adhere to your planner
or Bible journal pages. I especially love the "fill in the blanks" option for
moments when I am not feeling particularly creative. Prompts are great!


Pretty "My Notes on the Bible" Printable Ephemera Kit


I'm so in love with the colors and style of this Bible Ephemera kit from
The Apple of His Eye. For some reason this reminds me so much of
Amity Bloom's style, which I absolutely adore. Warning: these colors
and this theme are addicting! I can't stop buying kits that look like this!

If you want to use these as ephemera for tucking into your Bible or into
pockets that you create, I recommend printing these on cardstock, You
could also print them on sticker paper if you want to adhere them to a
page in your Bible journal, etc.

Monday, February 21, 2022

Love Hop 2022 - Part 4: Finishing the Journal

This is Part 4 (final part) of my contribution to the 2022 Love Hop,
in collaboration with "That's Just Penny" groups on Facebook. 
I finish decorating the journal and show how to make shakers from
CD sleeves (CD envelopes)

In this video I finish the journal that we started in Part 1, and that we continued to work on in Parts 2 & 3.

The journal pages for the Love Hop are available in these 2 Facebook Groups:

  Junk Journal Corner by That's Just Penny

  Art Bible Journaling Printables by That's Just Penny

Mystery of the Banned Blog: a Facebook Misunderstanding

Here is a video about my post that Facebook banned, and why I believe it happened. You can read the banned post here