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Showing posts from 2010

The story of Ruth, or is it.

When and who wrote the book of Ruth are not agreed upon, but is it important?

I thought I should know so that I could understand the background of the story better. That, to me, translates to putting flesh and blood on the characters and making them real. Real people have feelings and emotions, and I suspect that Ruth would have had to put some of hers away in order to subject herself to Boaz.

She did not do this out of love for Boaz, if anything it was her love for Naomi.

Ruth put herself willingly into this position (the threshing floor, at his feet) knowing that it was for the greater good, Naomi's and her own. And there was no guarantee that Boaz would or could accept her and the package that she was a part of.

The book of Ruth is not so much about the background (life, death, marriage, and your own sad future in a foriegn land), but about the Kinsman Redeemer.
Suddenly, as I wrote the things above, I saw an image of Christ and the Father as they discussed the need and desi…

Questions I have heard before.

- I had a friend ask me these questions in response to a comment I made about people not voting. This is not the first time I have heard questions of this nature and I am not the great theologian, but I try to think and I am willing to let God answer the question, as he does a more adequate job than I. I put this persons questions in bold type.
- If you live life at all, and try to make a stance for God, then you will have to deal with questions of this nature yourself. I could not answer them in 30 seconds or less, they deserved so much more.
- How do you say to someone, "God is in control" without attempting to define that?
The world looks at what goes on around them and sees an evil, destructive entity with no future hope, and therefore lives for the moment. If you took the time to really ask "who are you?" you would find a God that has and always will be there, consistently for us. What clouds our understanding of God is how deeply embedded our thin…

Trying to understand God's forgiveness

Numbers 14
As I read this I am seeing something that I don't understand.

The twelve spies have come back and ten of them have discouraged the people. Quite the rebellion ensues; a mutiny, falling short of an action plan. And then there is talk of stoning the leadership. No less than murder.

Verse 11 has God responding by saying, “how long will they treat me with contempt?”

Moses intercedes on their behalf (not that they deserved it.)

Look at verse 20. In response to Moses' request God says, “I have forgiven them, as you have asked. Nevertheless – not one of these who saw my glory will enter the promised land.”

Now look at 2Samuel 12:13
David has committed adultery with Bathsheba, had her husband murdered, and now there is a child resulting from his sin. David chooses not to look at what he has done and therefore God sends Nathan the prophet. David responds to Nathan with, “I have sinned against the Lord.” Nathan's response, “the Lord has taken away your sin..., but because you …

How do you know that it was God? - My answer to Joyce

"How do you know that is was God that answered your prayer?"It may be natural to feel challenged when someone asks "how do you know?" I do the same thing, challenging people all the time because people make statements but do not demonstrate a pattern consistent with the statement, or what they say seems so brash that you want to know why they made it. I am not asking a question like that because I am lacking a relationship with the Lord, but I certainly do want to know what theirs is. I recently asked a young man, "how do you know God is real?" I ask myself that question frequently. Why? Because there are times when I get too focused on the world going on around me, and there is very little that the world shows me that gives me hope. In fact, if I focus on the world for very long I do find myself wondering if this life that scripture teaches about is real, and is he coming as He promised. How do you refocus, especially when the voices of doubt and despair…

How do you not know?

1 Corinthians 10:3,4 (NIV) They all ate the same spiritual food and drank the same spiritual drink; for they drank from the spiritual rock that accompanied them, and that rock was Christ.

Here I am, all these years later, with history as my insight, and I am saying "how could they not know?"
Answering my own question, how could they have known? Would I have known and understood?

When Jesus walked along the road to Emmaus, beginning in the law and ending in the prophets, he verbalized to those disciples about who he was, and what would become of him. Beginning in the law and ending in the prophets. That would have covered Genesis through Malachi. Trust me, it was not a dry story. Let me give you an example: In 1 Samuel 30 David and his men have returned to their hometown of Ziklag, after a long battle. They expect their families, a good meal, and some rest. What they find is the city in ruins and their families gone. At this point the men turn on David. How David encoura…

Ponder the word humble for a moment.

Scripture tells us that Moses was the most humble man on the earth.
Have you ever given that any consideration.

Many study and use him as  an example of a great leader. How does one equate greatness with humility?

He was raised in Egyptian royalty; Taught to the highest degree; Expected to be of noble character; And, probably arrogant.

Yes, we should all by now be aware that his Jewish family put him in basket, in a river, and watched him float away in an effort to save his life and in a round about way protect him. A scene which evokes humble beginnings, but that scene apparently produced no deep seeded feelings of rejection and seemed to have been the key to who Moses became.

As I write these things I am sure others will perceive my statements as ignorant or unfounded. I on the other hand am annoyed that church people will not read their Bibles, nor, if they do, apply any logical thought to what they read. I would not be logical for someone, having been raised by Queen V…

Some thoughts on Matthew 1:21. Updated

Matthew 1:21 (WBS)  And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name JESUS: for he shall save his people from their sins.

Let's for the moment say that who He is is irrefutable, this Jesus.
"for he shall save his people from their sins."

Shall is future tense, but when this was spoken his acts of salvation had not yet come. And yet, the word shall also implies a future salvation even yet.

To save is to: Preserve from; rescue; deliver from the power of; prevent; to spare; to hinder from occurrence; to use opportunely, so as not to lose; to reserve from a general admission or account.
Save in Greek is sozo.

The KJV translated sozo as whole 5x's. Could we put in the word whole and have it mean the same thing? for he shall make whole his people from their sins. It does not really work grammatically and yet there is some reality in this reading. If they can use the word healed as representative of salvation, then to make whole would also apply. The real que…

Approved by God? 1 Thessalonians 2:4 (NIV)

1 Thessalonians 2:4 (NIV) On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel. We are not trying to please men but God, who tests our hearts.

"On the contrary, we speak as men approved by God to be entrusted with the gospel."

The KJV version uses the term allowed instead of approved. The word in the Greek is:
dokimazo, and means to test or approve. It can imply an examination.

Vine's NT words says this of dokimazo:
To prove with a view to approval.
In 1Thess 2:4, the Apostle and his fellow-missionaries were "approved of God to be entrusted with the Gospel" (not "allowed," AV). Not permission to preach, but Divine "approval" after Divine testing is intended. See ALLOW, DISCERN, EXAMINE, LIKE, PROVE, REFUSE, TRY.

[ A-3,Verb,G1381, dokimazo ]
signifies "to test, prove, scrutinize," so as "to decide." It is translated "discern" in the AV of Luke 12:56; RV, "interpret" (marg.…

Turning to God from idols. 1 Thessalonians 1:9

1 Thessalonians 1:9 (NIV)  for they themselves report what kind of reception you gave us. They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God,

" turned to God from idols.."
Does anyone notice something about this scene. Paul, the scripture tells us, preached in the Synagogue; Pagans would not have been allowed inside, therefore this had to have been a primarily Jewish audience.
To make the statement "you turned to God from idols" implies in-mass. What were Jews doing worshiping idols? A foolish question, for this had been a problem with the Jews for generations, and guess what, we followers of Christ do it too.

Leviticus 17:7  (NIV)
They must no longer offer any of their sacrifices to the goat idols to whom they prostitute themselves.

Leviticus 26:30  (NIV)
I will destroy your high places, cut down your incense altars and pile your dead bodies on the lifeless forms of your idols, and I will abhor you.

Deuteronomy 32:21  (NIV)
They m…

Jesus who rescues us.

1 Thessalonians 1:10 (NIV)  and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead--Jesus, who rescues us from the coming wrath.

If you have read any of my commentaries on 1 Thessalonians you may have heard this on several occasions; Paul seems to have only spoken to these people on 3 occasions. He did this in the synagogue, therefore the gentiles were effectively excluded from the direct impact of Paul's messages. This is not a put down on Paul, but it means that any effect that the gospel message had on the gentiles was only by assimilation from the Jews that experienced a new life in Christ.

"and to wait for his Son from heaven, whom he raised from the dead -.."
If I sit under some ministry and they preach a revelation from the word that is new to me. Perhaps it has an immediate impact, but my memory is short now and it takes repetition for something to get stuck in my brain, not to mention my spirit, but that is my interpretation.

Why would you wait for s…

Who do you imitate? 1Thessalonians 1:6

1 Thessalonians 1:6 (NIV) You became imitators of us and of the Lord; in spite of severe suffering, you welcomed the message with the joy given by the Holy Spirit.

"You became imitators of us and of the Lord;"
I wish I gave people a life they should imitate. If you were to ask me how I feel about them imitating me, I would say no way.

What do I do that's so bad?
I do not exhibit much faith.
I believe that this attitude comes out of the overbearing religious background of my mother, and having a religious world that expects us all to act Benny Hinn, even though they mock him. Right or wrong the man has a faith in Jesus Christ. If God has a problem with him then God will judge him, not you. I do choose to imitate him.

I do not pray, as I should.
This too is problematic because I living up to man's expectation. What is prayer, but conversation with God. I have these conversations, in my head, all the time. I am aware that scripture tells how and what to pray for, everyth…

Hebrews 13 - How to lessons on life

This is a work in progress, but I wanted to get up what I have so far.
As our men's bible study has slogged through Hebrews, I feel that most have missed the point. I believe that had we done an in depth, serious study of Hebrews, we would have walked away from this book as changed men. That is not to say that men are not changing, for I have heard not only a change in me, but a few others have expressed that there is a need, in their own lives, to invest in God's word.

I understand my need to control my eating habits, (I did not say diet because we are all on a diet, it is just that most of our diets are not good.) but, having knowledge and doing something about it are two different things. I have come to realize that serious study is not the purpose of our men's fellowship. None-the-less, I cannot give up, even though there is no way to keep up with the pace of the group and put the necessary time in on each verse.
One of the men made a statement that chapter 13 of Hebrew…