Monday, March 9, 2015

Faith Is Important

 What ever we ask for in prayer we should do in faith.
  Faith is not a hope for or something added on to make the request holy.
  In Hebrews, one of the epistles located in the Bible, we are told faith is needed to get things done. All the eleventh chapter is packed with people of faith.
   Faith has a paradox to it . We are believing on the basis of what God has said that we have what we ask for. It is not a magic formula. We need faith because life is messy and God is mysterious. We come to realize that faith  is often confusing
   God tells us to ask and believe when we pray. When we trust and obey that is when faith happens.
    Therefore, faith is a process not a product. It is journey.
    Faith is important because God is important. God is not absent. God wants to provide for His followers.
     Sometimes God waits before answering. Faith is needed to beleive that He hears and He is willing to provide your request. But you have to make the request.
    If you are a parent you no doubt want to provide all needs of your child. But you are waiting for the child to request the need before you release the answer. God may be like that also. He has what you need but He will not force the provision on you if you don't request it.
    Let me know how you are enjoying these posts.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Let's Talk About Deacons

 You hear about deacons if you are in the church. No matter what type or branding of church you belong to, there may be a deacon board or just a group of deacons.
  Just what is a deacon?
  That is simple. A deacon is a helper. A table waiter. He pops up in the book of Acts, the sixth chapter.  There was a disagreement in the new church over ther serving of the new Jews, the group of new believers in Christ. They were saying they weren't getting their proper amount of attention or food.
  So James and the apostles got together and said, "It is not right we serve tables. We are called to give you the word of God and to pray for you. You select spiritual people, seven men, and let them take over the office."
   Deacons today are to do the business of care for the church and meet the needs of the people. They are to allow the pastor, who has been called to lead, to do his study and preaching.
  They are to free up the pastor from doing mundane things. Not that a deacon is less in the body but are important to the proper running of the congregation.
   But they are not the people called to run the church. They are called to help the church function.

Further In And Higher Up-

 The title of this post is a phrase used by C.S. Lewis in his Chronicles of Narnia series. It meant to get to know a deeper truth better.
  For us when we study the Bible we are going further in and higher up.
   God wants to communicate and He has done that through the Bible. Those 66 books are a unit and are God allowing us to see Him.
    We, like gold hunters, must dig and pan out what is there.
     We do that through the right study techniques. I have discussed this earlier in this blog and you will have to do a bit of hunting through the table on contents.
     What ever you do and how ever you do it, you will need a good Bible translation. That you can find at  the book store I recommend. Just click on the colored words in the last sentence and you will be taken there.
       With this translation ( We don't have the orogianl manuscripts, but these translations found at the store are fine to use) you will also need a notepad to jot down insights to the reading you are doing.
   As you read you will be asking, what is this passage saying? To whom is it addressed? (Hint, we are not the primary people being addressed.)  Who is speaking?  Why is it here?  Are there other places this incident is spoken of?
    Of course you will be using Bible aids as you explore. You will need a Bible history book, a concordance, a writing instrument to write with.
   Much prayer is called for. Wait for the answer. You might not get the exact meaning. You may need to ask your pastor or gifted teacher in the fellowship to help you.. 
    Once again let me say you are digging. A good study will take time.
   Don't be afraid to mark your Bible. There may be passages you want to memorize. Please do so.. This will make it easier for God to speak to you. He only speaks what the Bible speaks since it is what He has revealed to us about Himself. He does not and has never spoken outside what is already written in the Bible. He is not revealing new truth. Be careful of people who tell you otherwise.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Prayers May Be Answered

  Have you even had times when you have wondered--is God even listening to my prayers? Does He even incline his ear to my requests and answered them?
  That is a few questions. And the Bible infers the answer to the last two by what it does say.
   I consider the Bible to be God's communication with us humans in the revealing of Himself. All through the first half of the Bible He reveals Himself as a person who hears prayer and answers prayer of those who are in a relationship with Him.
   He gave a son to Hannah when she asked. He saved Lot form Sodom when Abraham asked Sodom to be spared if ten righteous people could be found. Only Lot was found.
   He heard Jesus when Jesus prayed. He hears us also according to 1John 5:14. "And this is the confidence that we have toward Him, that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us.' (esv)
 It is my contention that our asking is what is being referred to here as God's will.
 this promise is only for Christians. I define a Christian as one who has a relationship with God through Jesus Christ. It is a family relationship.
  As for belief, this is where faith steps in. For without faith it is impossible to please God. Faith says that God exists and is one who rewards those who are His.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Is It Possible For A Christian To Be Sexual

   Is it possible for a Christian to be sexual?
  What a subject.
   I would like to discuss if it is possible for a Christian to be homosexual and still a Christian. Or to push the envelope more, a transsexual.   Let me push the envelope a bit here. Let me bring in a discussion something that most Christian seem not to touch.
   This post is not for the eyes of youngsters. It should be discussed, but it is not necessary that it be read by,-- say, people under eighteen.
  So that makes it a college age posting.
   You can read it in some Christian magazines. I have seen it in CT. Articles written by authors who claim to be both Christians and gay.
     Yes, Jesus died for all mankind. Male, female, gay. And by extension, transsexuals. No one is beyond the redemption provided by the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
     Next step. Okay. he died for all. But would we want a be lead by a known gay person?
    The Bible, which is our authority, written by God using men ( he needed the hands of his creation to record His Words) states that God created them male and female. I don't read God creating anything gay as we define gay in the twenty first century. It was the effects of sin that caused human kind to mutate into gay and transsexual.
      God loves the whole world. Male, female, gay, transsexual.
      Jesus died for the whole world, male, female, transsexual.
      Yes. It is possible for a transsexual to have confessed his sin and accept Jesus as his personal savior and on his way to heaven when he dies.
       Yes, it is possible for a Christian to be gay.
       Is it what God would want? No. He wants all people to be the sex He created them. But HE understands sin and the destruction it has caused.
        Please feel free to comment and let us discuss this.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Prayer's Pipe Line

Open The Pipeline

   Maybe I handled this issue earlier in a post a few months ago. This is the issue of prayer getting to the throne of God to be answered.
   Of course we know that God hears the prayers of most everyone. Maybe not the muslim who is deep in his belief system. Not the Jehovah's Witness. Not the Mormon. Not the person who has no connection to God through the new birth.
    Sin blocks our prayers from getting to heaven to the throne room. Sin has to be removed or the prayer just hits the blockage and like a pool ball goes elsewhere. But not to God.
     The death of Jesus on the cross and the resurrection three days later and the ascension opened up the pipe line of prayer. Now it was possible for the prayer of a child of God to get to heaven, to the throne room ,and be heard.
   The connection was now there for the prayer to go up and the answer to come down.
    That is prayer's pipe line. Nothing we can do to keep it open. That is one of the gifts of God granted freely to His people.
    Of course on our end we need to keep confessing so that we can be assured of being heard and assured of getting an answer.. But we have nothing to do with the pipeline. That is already set. When we confess it is like using a Drano solution to keep the pipe clear.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Seeking For Meaning

   On Sunday I heard that the other person I was thinking to add to this blog as an author has decided to start off with another organization. He is no longer available to blog with me. So it is just a one person blog.
  I wasn't always a Christian. Before I was I belonged to the Roman Catholic Church. A Roman Catholic has all the facts but the final step, that of asking Jesus alone to save them from the penalty of sin and give them assurance of going to heaven when they die.. that part is missing.
   If belonging to the right group (There is none) and believing my security was in man and good works which I have done to get me to heaven, than I would have been okay. There would have been no reason for the resurrection.
   Yes. It was the resurrection that sealed the truth. Not the death alone. A dead person has never been able to save another.
    I was born a Roman Catholic. It wasn't something that I chose. I was educated in a Catholic environment through grade school.. And still my paternal grandmother said "if only you had stayed you would have understood." when it came to, what?
   Salvation is not in a church group.
    When I was twenty one and away at school , this was when I got hold of a Bible and read it for myself. I wanted to know what it said, not what a priest said it said.   About this time the Vietnam war was still going on. My brother was killed in that war. He was so young.
   I realized that young people died not just the elderly. And If I were to die, where would I spend eternity? And how could I be sure?
   I sought answers. I was seeking for meaning.
   Now, being a Roman Catholic is not all bad. The facts were all there. The application was not. Not the way that will draw you to seek answers outside the church.  Nor would my saying a Roman Catholic have made the truth apparent to me as my paternal grandmother was no doubt trying to say.
    A personal encounter with Jesus Christ and the resurrected Savior who took the penalty for my sins.. which was eternal separation from God, was needed.