Category: <span>Personal God</span>

When the details of life toughen, when serving God waxes near impossible, when crushing blows penetrate the consciousness — we approach a strange phenomena — the, insuperable, unattainable, undoable, unrealizable, unsolvable,  place of utter dependency on God — A time and judgement that authoritatively requests, even demands, a relinquishing of all self-help — self reliance, control and power of will and exercise. We die. For all practical purposes — yes we find ourselves impotent, paralyzed. O, happy day. Imagine having all senses inoperable. First we lose hearing, the world stops. Then the eyes go blind — we take a seat. A panic settles in. A sense of smell does not help us now, our discerning taste buds bland out. We reach our hands to touch or feel, we engage emptiness. We cannot speak. But, God’s presence, which had never left us, now gains pre-eminence on the throne of our world. He speaks, He listens,…

The song goes: When we all get to heaven, what a day of rejoicing that will be, When we all see Jesus, we will sing and shout the victory! However, the Supreme joy of that “eternal” future is treasured in a lingering and finite present day earthen vessel. In our current “body of death” we may become apprehensive, worrisome, even fearful of the future. Martyn Lloyd-Jones reminds us of a natural “temperament” which makes us all unique. He says: “The human person is very delicately and finely balanced. Fundamentally, we all have the same general characteristics, but the relative proportions vary tremendously from case to case.” “…we have our own particular characteristics: Our virtues, Our failures, Our weaknesses, Our blemishes. Lloyd-Jones goes on to say, “The fact that you have become a Christian, does not mean that you cease to have to live with yourself.” In keeping with these observations,…

Romans 14:16 teaches:  “Let not then your good be evil spoken of.”   “Hast thou faith? have it to thyself before God. Happy is he that condemns not himself in that thing which he allows.” Romans 14:22 “But let every man prove his own work, and then shall he have rejoicing in himself alone, and not in another.   For every man shall bear his own burden. Galatians 6:4-5 Fellow believers, do you have this kind of confidence?  Before I turn to the burdens of others I must bear my own burden. Is my faith before God? Am I living outside of condemnation? Does my walk before God carry more weight than any other, enough to ignore the evil spoken of me?  What does it mean? Frankly put, do you know who you are? Do you carry with you this identity and set of values into every varying circumstance? In addition, does…

“…Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God amongst the trees of the garden. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou?” Genesis 3:8=9 Have you heard? God talks to sinners. “…And Cain was very wroth, and his countenance fell. And the Lord said unto Cain, Why art thou wroth? and why is thy countenance fallen? Genesis 4:5-6 God talks with angry men. He goes on to say much more to Cain, even after Abel’s slaying. To say it straightforwardly, if God never spoke to sinners, we’re all lost. Often the words are ignored. “…And forthwith he (Judas), came to Jesus, and said, Hail, master; and kissed him. And Jesus said unto him, ‘Friend, wherefore art thou come?’” We know the unfortunate ending for Judas. Matthew 26:49-50 But, Jesus, God incarnate, spoke to an adulteress in John 8: “When…

From an  disturbing article on the meaning of life; New York Times: “when the Hubble space telescoped (sic) pointed to a black spot in the sky about the size of an eraser head for a week it found 30,000 galaxy(sic) over 13 billion years old with many trillions of stars and many many more trillions of inferred planets. (So) how significant are you?  … You are not a unique snowflake, you are not specials (sic), you are just another piece of decaying matters (sic), on the compost pile of this world. Nothing of who you are and what you will do in the short time you are here will matter. Everything short of that realization is vanity. So celebrate life in every moment, admire its wonders, (and) love without reservation.” What? Really? The conclusion does not match the premise! Tim Keller addresses the discrepancy “…given the secular view of the…

“In short, no one can purge him or herself from all faith assumptions, and assume an objective, belief-free, pure openness to objective evidence. Hume There is no “View from nowhere.” “…all reasoning is based on prior faith commitments to which one did not reason.” Heidegger, Wittgenstein, Merleau-Ponty. “…reason depends on the faith that our cognitive senses — our eyes and ears, our minds and memories, are not tricking us.” “…the declaration that science is the only arbiter of truth is not itself a scientific finding, it is a belief.” Evans All quotes taken from “Making Sense of God” by Timothy Keller So? Though a tough truth to swallow, reasoning requires faith. Let’s explore this farther. The Bible attributes to man a bearing-witness conscience. Romans 2:15 etc. A faculty for discerning, it accuses or excuses.  All men have this faculty of passing judgment on their actions. It acts according to the…

Psalm 51:17  The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Proverbs 11:2  When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom. There are no heroes amongst the redeemed. These are just the redeemed, a passive position, implying that some other did the heroic work. Yes Christ, hero, Christ Savior, Christ Redeemer. Heros — “(in mythology and folklore) a person of superhuman qualities and often semidivine origin, in particular one whose exploits were the subject of ancient Greek myths — A person who is admired or idealized for courage, outstanding achievements, or noble qualities — The chief male character in a book, play, or movie, who is typically identified with good qualities, and with whom the reader is expected to sympathize.” Far from heroes, nevertheless, we have been placed in Christ, our hero.  Yes, baptized into…

Abraham’s story with Isaac has always miffed me. Why did God ask the elderly Abe to sacrifice his son? — the son of promise. Is there a mystery to be unveiled or a metaphor to be explained? It doesn’t seem possible that Abraham would comply to this “outrageous” demand of God, not to mention how different God, now, must have appeared to Abe. Was it a test? Yes it was. Was there a lesson to be learned? Yes there was. In a previous episode leading up to chapter 21, Abraham had received a promise from God of a ” son of his old age.” Tired of waiting,  Abe tried to produce the promised child through a handmaid of his wife. Dishonoring God in unbelief, the promised couple, Abe and Sarah, made a mess of things. Ishmael, “God will hear,” represented the anti-promised child. Born in the interim of waiting for…

When I think of a person, fellow human sufferer; I well-up with love and compassion. So also did Jesus Matthew 9:36 tells us, “But when he saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.” And again in Matthew 14:14  “And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick.” Also in Matthew 15:32  “Then Jesus called his disciples unto him, and said, I have compassion on the multitude, because they continue with me now three days, and have nothing to eat: and I will not send them away fasting, lest they faint in the way.” New testament “compassion” was taken from a Greek word relating to our English word “spleen.” Spleen works in a man as a blood filter and also regulates the immune system…

Three notable “darkness” events happened in Bible history. “And the Lord said unto Moses, Stretch out thine hand toward heaven, that there may be darkness over the land of Egypt, even darkness which may be felt. And Moses stretched forth his hand toward heaven; and there was a thick darkness in all the land of Egypt three days.”  Exodus 10:21-22 Next one occurred at the Crucifixion of Christ.  “Now from the sixth hour there was darkness over all the land unto the ninth hour.” Matthew 27:45 A third was predicted by Joel:  “The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the great and the terrible day of the Lord come.”  Joel 2:31 But, God sends encouragement: Isaiah 45:7a teaches  “I form the light, and create darkness.” and Psalm 139:12 adds  “Yea, the darkness hides not from thee; but the night shines as the day: the…