Read The Fine Print!

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READ THE FINE PRINT

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the Lord God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”

The woman said to the serpent, “We may eat fruit from the trees in the garden, but God did say, ‘You must not eat fruit from the tree that is in the middle of the garden, and you must not touch it, or you will die.’”

“You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman. “For God knows that when you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
Genesis 3:1-5

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In the narrative of Eve’s temptation, usually we assume that part of Satan’s lie was in telling Eve that she would ‘become like God.’ And we can begin to use this verse as a denunciation of the fact that we are not in fact gods, nor should we be compared to God in any way.

But unfortunately, I think that this line of argument misses the point altogether about what this verse is actually trying to say.

I say this because when God re-enters the narrative and learns of the fallen state of Eve, and Adam, among the things He says, He includes something pretty interesting.

And the Lord God said, “The man has now become like one of us, knowing good and evil. He must not be allowed to reach out his hand and take also from the tree of life and eat, and live forever.”
Genesis 3:22

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God is actually confirming that this portion of Satan’s temptation was I’m fact true.

In some way, mankind had become like God. Except, mankind clearly did not receive what they believed this to mean. We have not become like God in the sense of His power, His wisdom, His sovereignty, His omniscience, His omnipresence, or His immutability. So what then does it mean to become like God in knowing good and evil?

I think that in order to understand this, we need to fully comprehend the dichotomy between God and Satan. You see, in the Christian worldview, God and Satan are not polar opposites like the Ying and Yang of some popular beliefs. God alone is the only eternally existent One who is good.

Sure, people can do some pretty good things from time to time. But maybe half the reason why we feel the need to celebrate it is because we know how rare it is for human beings to be anything close to intrinsically good – all the time.

Yet the God of the Bible is a God who is described exactly like that. Every choice He makes, everything that He purposes, every thought in His heart – is absolutely pure and perfect.

Likewise, anything God creates therefore is also good.

But also in this worldview contains the free will that God gives to His creation so that they may serve Him out of the same genuine love He had for them, rather than on account of some sort of robotic pre-programming. If free will did not exist, neither would real love.

However, when we do not function in the way we were created to function, or in other words, if we do not do the good in which we were created to do, this is what the Bible calls sin. And all sin is in fact a sort of ‘falling short’ of the perfection of the God created order in which this world was created to function in.

Satan is a good example of the heights from which one can fall from their God-created perfection in that he was created with both wisdom and brilliant beauty. But rather than use these gifts to glorify the One who made him, Satan instead used his wisdom and beauty to seduce others after himself rather than God. Satan desired the worship that is due to the sole Creator of the universe alone.

This is where he initially fell short of the glory for which he was created, and by doing so, he is now forever disconnected from the life of the One who alone has the power to restore all perfection. But Satan, being cut off from all true light and life, and now darkened in his reasoning due to this, actually looks to subvert God’s authority by the very same rebellion which has now caused all of humanity to fall short of God’s intended perfection for them as well.

And herein lies a clue to what it means to know ‘good and evil’ and become ‘like God.’

To become like God in knowing good and evil because by the eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil means that we have now fallen prey to a fixed moral state – but instead of having a fixed moral state of good, like God, we instead have one that much like Satan, also resists and rebels against God.

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We only begin to understand this revelation in the New Testament after the Apostle Paul makes a scathing indictment against all humanity when he says:

As it is written:

“There is no one righteous, not even one;

there is no one who understands;
there is no one who seeks God.
All have turned away,
they have together become worthless;
there is no one who does good,
not even one.”
“Their throats are open graves;
their tongues practice deceit.”
“The poison of vipers is on their lips.”
“Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.”
“Their feet are swift to shed blood;
ruin and misery mark their ways,
and the way of peace they do not know.”
“There is no fear of God before their eyes.
Romans 3:10-18


Even the Apostle Paul, though he tried with all his strength and religious zeal in all of his own human effort to live for God in pure and perfect good found that:


For
I do not do the good I want to do, 

but the evil I do not want to do – this I keep on doing.
Romans 7:19

This fixed moral state in our attempts to be like God has proven futile and powerless to accomplish any self accomplished righteousness like the false religions of the world lay claim to. Some may still actually live in the delusion that they are in fact accomplishing it; but those who are of a more sane disposition can clearly and truthfully see, that NONE OF US is anywhere close to the perfection that we’d all like to be. (Notwithstanding, of course, those whose bar for righteousness is way too low – which is why God gave us ‘His’ law, so we could understand the terms under which we fall short.)So Satan was in fact telling the truth that we would become like God in that we would also have a fixed moral state, and the Mosaic Law bears witness to it, but he forgot to mention that the fixed moral state we would have would be like his, and all that falls short of the perfection we were created to be.

And life and eternity would be utterly desolate and meaningless if God gave no thought but to leave us as we are.

Instead, the Gospels inform us that He wrapped Himself in human flesh; left the throne of Heavenly Glory, and entered into a sin-infected world where He lived a sinless life in perfect obedience to the Father. Fulfilling every prophecy of the Messiah at his first coming, and by offering Himself on the cross, at the very hands of the creation He had created, He demonstrated the immeasurable love He indeed has for each and every one of us, even though we in our darkened, imperfect, starkly visioned glasses, can barely even see the glory of the One who gave everything to deliver us from this body destined to death and hell for it’s useless imperfection.Which is why when the Apostle Paul understood this despairing condition, was so full of hope that he said:

Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!
Romans 7:25

Breathe that in for a few moments.

Let the immense weight of that truth wash over you for more than a few seconds.

Meditate and give it the chance to reach deeply into your soul and imagine the immeasurable joy that a verse like that should impart into your life.

And this is why it is written:

There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, for in Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life has set you free from the law of sin and death.
Romans 8:1-2

Are you beginning to see why it’s called the Good News?

God’s Holy Spirit comes to live in us by believing His Son has done what we could never accomplish, and accounts to us all righteousness so that we may be found worthy to stand before Him by His grace!

When grace really reaches the depths of our hearts, surely we’ll never be the same again!

So if you’re feeling the full weight of your own insufficiency and inadequacy in your life today, let me introduce you to a love beyond comprehension.

Which is why I implore you,

Trust ♔ Jesus!

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Is Justice Possible?

IS JUSTICE POSSIBLE?

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The Lord has told you what is good, and this is what he requires of you: to do justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God
Micah 6:8

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I reclined in the barber chair getting my hair faded as I listened to the barber just a few chairs over exhaust his frustration over a recent situation concerning his car.

Apparently, he had taken his car to the mechanic to get the codes checked and removed and heard that if his service charges were in excess of $450.00, he could simply ask for a conditional pass, just pay the $105.00 fee, and be on his way.

As he sat in the auto shop’s waiting room, the mechanic returned from the back to inform the barber that the machine was showing five codes and that he needed to pay an additional $25.00 per code to have them removed.

He openly expressed to us all at this point that he inwardly already believed that the mechanic was out to rob him, so he really struggled to keep himself composed as he asked how this was possible.

The mechanic informed him that there was a coil-pack for the spark plug that needed to be replaced and that it was $90 for that alone.

Aggravated, he called his friend who he knew worked at an auto parts store, then left to get the part from him and returned, still playing along from what he described, but believing that he was being duped and was intent to show the mechanic up. So he insisted that when the mechanic replaced the coil, that he absolutely must keep the old one for him so that he could see it.

Something occurred at this point in their discussion that resulted in a shouting match between the barber and the mechanic. Whether it was simply the offence of being constantly accused by the barber, or just the mere attitude of their dealings, whatever it was, the mechanic refused to work on the car any further and refunded the $200 he had already taken, at the barber’s request.

As I sat that day listening to the retelling of the events from the barber point of view, he included far more information about the story itself than anyone would normally be privy to in such a case.

When I considered his words, I found myself unable to clearly identify if he was in fact the victim here for a number of reasons:

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First of all, the mechanic was not present to give us his account of the events that had recently taken place. For all we know, the entire story could’ve been fabricated and we are only privy to the angry barber’s version of the events. From his attitude and a number of comments he made, it seemed like he was out to make the mechanic look like the worst person ever. This is a very common tactic used in all realms of debate from the political arena’s right down to malicious gossips. Discredit, discredit, discredit! It’s usually largely relied upon by those who want to divert others away from the real truth of a matter, but also just to exhaust anger and frustration. 

Secondly, both before, after, and even during the telling of the story, the barber continually made references to money and his love and desire for it. There had been a recent lottery winning on the news and he was commenting of all the things he would do if he had won. This could lead to him easily misinterpreting the events due to his propensity towards maybe wanting to save money and looking for a way out of the expense. This is also a common bias that we don’t readily acknowledge in the way we interpret events. What motives do we have for something working out a certain way?

Thirdly, someone in the barber shop was inquisitive enough to ask the question, ‘how much did it cost for the part in comparison when you got it from your friend?’ I noticed however that at first, the barber hesitated to answer. Then he took another minute, which came across like he didn’t want to say, but then he finally said $30. Strangely though, he immediately moved right along to his ranting about other parts of the account. This was most suspicious because this detail would’ve probably served as one of the best indicators that the account was in fact true if he could prove in some small way that the mechanic was at least dishonest in part, but the barber didn’t seem to see the importance in it. He didn’t mention it himself, and quickly brushed over it when mention of it did come up.

Forth, he now identified that the mechanic was white (the barber being black) as he began to tell a side story to which he found a correlation between this and another occasion from the past when a man had tried to take his deposit for a business deal gone wrong. “The mechanic was also white, and when they look at me, they don’t see anything but my skin” he said. At this point it revealed a deeply seeded and racially charged hurt embedded in his heart where I could now see how his entire account could be called in to question. This small seemingly unrelated statement actually worked against his case by revealing a very serious bias in how he interpreted any dealings with people of the opposite colour due to this hurt. This also could’ve explain the negative attitude he had as he described the account, and it definitely seemed like he walked in to the mechanic shop that day with a chip on his shoulder already anticipating the worst.

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Trying to give him the benefit of the doubt, I recalled a very wise proverb which teaches not to draw early conclusions:

In a lawsuit the first to speak always seems right, until someone comes forward and cross-examines.
Proverbs 18:17

It was here that the startling reality of just how impossible it can actually be to determine true justice came rising up to the surface when I asked myself a very simple question:

What if he’s telling the truth?

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I then began to consider all of the evidence that he had provided against himself in reverse:

4. What if even despite his racially charged comments and hurts from the past, he still managed to correctly interpret the events just as he accounted them and the mechanic was out to screw him? Should he not receive justice?

3. And what if the reason why he stumbled when asked the comparative cost question was simply because it was not the focus of his thoughts and he just isn’t one of those sharp witted guys who are so quick to reply like others? Should that mean that his testimony be deemed invalid?

2. And what if his references to his love of money are very much real, but were not a factor in how he interpreted the events because after all, he did take the time to drive all the way over to the mechanic, and even to go purchase the part. Surely he knew that spending money was going to be involved on this occasion. Should his thriftiness be construed as guilt?

1. And lastly, what if he lacked the cardinal virtues of others to be able to adequately present himself, his case, or his recollections in a clear and concise manner so as to properly convey the details to others? What if he always had bad mannerisms or wasn’t an eloquent speaker? Should he be denied justice on account of his education, upbringing, or lack of virtuous behaviour?

Is that Justice?

Upon a closer look, it turns out that justice is far more elusive than the simplistic ways with which we have often liked to treat it when we make our literally ‘black and white’ statements favouring our favourites, embracing our biases, and disregarding the real work of pursuing the merciful heart of the God of all justice.

As the people of God – those who lay claim to His Name and are quick to quote His Word – we should be a people who are deeply concerned with seeking merciful justice for all people – not just those who are self important, popular, or from whom we might have some advantage in agreeing with.

For in neglecting to seek mercy-filled justice for others, we too might one day find that the salvation we most dearly depend upon – the merciful justice of God that we deserved that was instead placed upon our blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ – is also withheld from us.

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In Matthew 18, Jesus once told a parable of a man whose exceedingly great debt was cancelled when he pleaded for mercy from the King, only to then go out and beat his own servant who owed him nothing even close to the same amount he had just been forgiven.

When the King heard about it, he called his servant before him once again:

“You wicked servant,” he said, “I cancelled all that debt of yours because you begged me to. Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?”

In anger his Master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all that he owed.

Matthew 18:32-35

Jesus concluded the parable by saying this:

“This is how my Heavenly father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.”

Matthew 18:35

In essence, Jesus is saying “how could someone who was forgiven so much, if you are indeed a recipient of God’s forgiveness, then go out and cast judgment instead of mercy over others? In seeking the heart of justice we must first recognize that all true justice begins with God. 

But even though we are speaking this way, dearly beloved friends, in your case we are confident of things that are better and that accompany salvation.

Which is why I implore you,

Trust ♔ Jesus!

Up In Smoke…

UP IN SMOKE

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I was thinking back to when I was once wrapped up in the world of drug use when I recalled hearing various defences from self-professed Christian who used marijuana who even used the Bible to support their use of it.

“It’s all natural” they would say.

But after actually reading the Bible, I realized that I couldn’t agree more!

Only, I think that what we each mean, are actually two different things.

You see, In Genesis 2, when God places man in the Garden of Eden, He says to him:

“You are free to eat from any TREE in the garden; but you must not eat from the TREE of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die”

Genesis 2:15

God’s intention in His original design was that humanity would receive their sustenance from the fruit of the TREES.

However, in Genesis 3, when God revealed the CURSE upon mankind due to eating the fruit of the ‘one tree’ that He admonished them not to eat of – the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, He says:

Cursed is the ground because of you. Through painful toil you will eat if it all the days of your life. It will produce thorns and thistles for you, and you will eat the plants of the field. By the sweat of your brow you will eat your food until you return to the ground.

Genesis 3:17-19

Did anyone catch that?

Getting your sustenance from the PLANTS was actually part of the CURSE.

Eating the fruit of the TREES was God’s original intention and BLESSING.

In the same way that the curse is the very reason why the natural man now finds work painful and can’t do it with the same joy we once had in our labours like we did before the fall, getting our sustenance from plants is also part of the curse of a fallen nature; the ways of the ‘natural‘ man, not the born-again ‘spiritual‘ man.

But since we know that the law is spiritual, and eating or drinking does not in fact bring us any closer to God who has purchased us by the blood of His own Son through His brutal death on the cross, and resurrected us to life through His resurrection power living in us, the spiritual man now reconciled to God can experience all the benefits of that perfect relationship with God once again.

But by rejecting God’s Son, those still under the curse will still seek the sort of consolation that plants offer, while those who have been redeemed will once again find their enjoyment in eternally lasting fruit… The fruit of the Holy Spirit!

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But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self control.

Galatians 5:22-23

Sure, someone might argue that ‘all things are lawful,’ but remember that not everything is beneficial.

So the next time someone offers you mere leaves… Remind them that Christ died to bring you something far better… A life bearing fruit, pleasing to Him!

Trust ♔ Jesus!

Servants of Light – by Raymond Mowla

COMING THIS MAY!

Servants of Light

by Raymond Mowla

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After thirty long years of searching for the truth about God, Raymond Mowla, a former Muslim, was confronted with a supernatural experience with the Holy Spirit in November of 2012 that left him completely undone and willing to embrace God in the face of Jesus Christ. Learning to navigate this new life in Christ, Raymond now shares his journey five years after the cross, a path that has brought challenges and changes to his religious identity, his social identity, and his ideas about ministry.

Raymond’s story reminds us that there’s still a God who is very much alive and active in the business of salvation and whose Word still goes forth with the power to transform hearts, even today.

“I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your impurities and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors; you will be my people, and I will be your God.”
Ezekiel 36:24-28

 

Trust ♔ Jesus!

The Person & Work of the Holy Spirit

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“Sir,” the woman said, “I can see that you are a prophet. Our ancestors worshiped on this mountain, but you Jews claim that the place where we must worship is in Jerusalem.”

“Woman,” Jesus replied, “believe me, a time is coming when you will worship the Father neither on this mountain nor in Jerusalem. You Samaritans worship what you do not know; we worship what we do know, for salvation is from the Jews. Yet a time is coming and has now come when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and in truth, for they are the kind of worshipers the Father seeks. God is spirit, and his worshipers must worship in spirit and in truth.”
John 4:19-24

We all know the story right? Probably heard it preached a thousand times and so I understand why it becomes really easy to accept that we’ve probably got it all figured out already, and so we brush right over this story and move onto the next verse in our reading. The Spirit must mean the Holy Spirit, and truth must mean the teachings of Jesus, right?

And while that seems logical to surmise if we only consider the verse independent of the rest of the chapter, or even the rest of the Gospel of John, I think that we should remember to stop for a moment to take inventory of who is writing here, and consider more closely what he might be saying.

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I remember as a child growing up that my parents had these grand house parties and all of my relatives would attend.

When my dad was cooking in preparation for our guests, I always wanted to be in the kitchen cooking with him.

When my dad started playing the music on his cool professional stereo system, I wanted to play the music with him.

And even when the night progressed and my dad finally got out onto the floor and began to bust a move, I wanted to dance along just like him also!

I mention all of this because only when we understand our human nature as children long before the influences of the world, our hurts and bitterness, and our bad experiences jade our souls, do we begin to see that God has placed us in the design of families in order for us to learn something very important about how He desires for us to relate to Him later on in a life with spiritual maturity.

I also point these things out because I think that in our methodology for reading the Scriptures, we have sometimes imposed upon the writers original intention an interpretations of things where we have assumed far more than has ever been made known to us.

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For example, as I read the opening verse again, I realized that this is not the first place where the writer John uses the word ‘Truth’ in this gospel. Back three chapters in verse 1:14 is his very first usage where he says:

The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.
John 1:14

So the first thing that we can faithfully assert is that whatever ‘Truth’ is to John, it would seem that Jesus was full of it.

The second time the word truth is used by John is just a few verses later when he says:

For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ
John 1:17

So the second thing that we can faithfully assert is that whatever this “truth” was that Jesus was full of, it was not the Law of Moses, because in this verse John asserts that the Law came through ‘Moses’, not Jesus, but that this ‘Truth’ that was coming into the world, was coming only by way of Jesus himself.

Now the third time that we see the word ‘Truth’ used by John is in the third chapter when he says this:

Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.
John 3:20-21

From the way that John now uses the word Truth in this chapter, we begin to see that this ‘Truth’ that he spoke of would be active in accomplishing something incredibly profound and contrary to our natural human inclinations in the lives of those who encountered it. It seems that whereas people who previously did not know this Truth would avoid transparently acknowledging their most intimate shortcomings, failures, and sin for the most part before God, their interaction with this ‘Truth’ spoken of would somehow transform them to be contrastingly compelled to now not only acknowledge but also forsake all of these things with candor and honesty.

So when Jesus says in chapter 14:

I am the way the truth and the life.
John 14:6

It would be fair to say that he was speaking by the same Spirit that leads men to declare the truth. And this is relevant because John also says:

When he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.
John 16:13

To recap, here is my first conclusion:

Truth, then, is not so much informational in Scripture as it is personified – or rather, a person.

So if Jesus told the woman at the well that the true worshippers would worship in “spirit and in truth,” then the Holy Spirit part of the equation is not the ‘spirit’ part, but it’s actually the ‘Truth’ part.

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So, this begs the question: what then does Jesus mean to worship God in ‘Spirit’?

To understand this part, we’d need to now look at a few more instances where the word ‘Spirit’ is used by John, prior to Jesus’ discourse with the woman at the well.

The first mention of ‘The Spirit’ is back in Chapter one and used in this way:

Then John gave this testimony: “I saw the Spirit come down from heaven as a dove and remain on him. And I myself did not know him, but the one who sent me to baptize with water told me, ‘The man on whom you see the Spirit come down and remain is the one who will baptize with the Holy Spirit.’ I have seen and I testify that this is God’s Chosen One.”
John 1:32-34

So now John is asserting that Jesus alone is the only one who can perform this action: to ‘baptize someone with the Holy Spirit.’ And that he is performing this action on account of having the Spirit come down like a dove and remain on him.

Coming down is the description of an action

Baptizing others is the description of an action.

The next mentions of the Spirit are in chapter three where we learn that:

Jesus answered, “Very truly I tell you, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless they are born of water and the Spirit.
John 3:5

Entering is another action word.


Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit gives birth to spirit.
John 3:6

Giving birth – again, action words.

The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”
John 3:8

Moving around from place to place – more action words.

So in essence, John’s Gospel has thoroughly captured Jesus explaining in various ways how a person is moved about by the spirit to various actions, AND speaks at various times by the Spirit of truth. And when we understand that the Holy Spirit is God, then a person who lives their entire life both filled with, and then submitting themselves to be led by Him into action, and used by Him as a mouthpiece to speak forth His truth, has not only paid God the greatest Fatherly compliment by saying in effect ‘I want to be just like you’ but has also accomplished the greatest possible devotion in worship of God, because it says that we truly see Him as worthy to be followed.

It’s no coincidence then why men and women who have a poor relationship with their earthly fathers usually end up holding very distorted views of God and do not want to follow him.

Earthly fathers were given by God with intentionality in His design to show forth an example of the sort of relationship we as human beings are intended to move on from in a natural sense with our earthly father to experience in dependence upon as an adult with our Heavenly Father.

So if we had a poor example and experience through our earthly Father, we can subconsciously not even realize that we are believing erroneous things about our Heavenly Father.

That’s why sometimes even those who profess to know Him and read His Word consistently can mistakenly interpret His character through the lens of their own bad experiences, and that is usually when you will find poor examples of God’s love even amidst some church attendees.

Exceedingly blessed are we that God sent His only begotten Son to reveal to us what the love of the perfect Father is truly like so that in the face of Christ, not only do we find forgiveness where we fall short, but we all have the opportunity to learn the truth of our God who is:

Merciful – Just – Peace-filled – Loving – Full of Grace and Truth
and worthy of all true worship!

 

Which is why I implore you,

 

 

Trust ♔ Jesus!

 

 

 

 

 

Interesting Historical Facts

INTERESTING HISTORICAL FACTS

How the gold has lost its luster, the fine gold become dull! The sacred gems are scattered at every street corner.

How the precious children of Zion, once worth their weight in gold, are now considered as pots of clay, the work of a potter’s hands!

Even jackals offer their breasts to nurse their young, but my people have become heartless like ostriches in the desert.

Because of thirst the infant’s tongue sticks to the roof of its mouth; the children beg for bread, but no one gives it to them. 

Lamentations 4:1-4
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According to Herodotus (Histories 2.2 484 B.C.) Pharaoh Psammetichus I, wanted to determine the oldest nation and establish the world’s original language. For this purpose, he ordered two children be taken from their families to be raised up in seclusion by a shepherd, forbidding him to let them hear a single word, and charging him to report the children’s first utterance. After two years, the shepherd reported that on entering their chamber, the children came up to him, extending their hands, calling “bekos.”

Upon enquiry, the pharaoh discovered that this was the Phrygian word for “wheat bread”, after which the Egyptians conceded that the Phrygian nation was older than theirs.

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Although I don’t think that the children’s utterance is evidence of the first or oldest language, I think it does give evidence for every child’s true and deepest inward need…

The Bread of life!

If you want the absolute best for your children, I implore you, teach them to:

Trust ♔ Jesus!

Held Down Secure

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HELD DOWN SECURE

Fearing that we would be dashed against the rocks, they dropped four anchors from the stern and prayed for daylight.
Acts 27:29

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Pastor/Missionary Andrew Murray once described these four anchors in the storm in this way:

Anchor 1. Say, He brought me here. It is by His will I am in this strait place and in that fact I will rest.

Anchor 2. He will keep me here in His love and give me grace to behave as His child.

Anchor 3. Then He will make the trial a blessing, teaching me the lessons He intends for me to learn.

Anchor 4. In His good time He can bring me out again – how and when He knows. So let me say, I am (a.) here by God’s appointment, (b.) in His keeping, (c.) under His training, (d.) for His time.

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No matter the storm you might be facing, consider the words of Paul Gerhardt:

Although to make God falter

The powers of hell combine
One jot they cannot alter
Of His all-wise design
All projects and volition
Of His eternal mind
Despite all opposition
Their due fulfillment find.

TrustJesus!