Truly, I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
On a Sunday night of a rather busy and tiring weekend, after my wife and I had finished some pizza and wine, I decided I had enough of the day. My wife was engaged in her social media while I just vegged out in front of the TV, aimlessly wondering the channels.
I searched the usual channels but as is normally the case, nothing of any interest was on. I decided to start at the beginning and work my way through every channel at my disposal.
I quickly skimmed through the major networks followed by some of the local stations. Next up on the dial were the kid channels. As I passed through this section of programming, there it was, a piece of my childhood, Walt Disney’s Pinocchio. Continue reading
For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.
I read this verse and wrote it down. I know it meant something to me but I wasn’t quite clear on how to explain it.
I struggled with the second half, “and with the mouth one confesses and is saved.”
The reason for my confused feelings towards this second half was “with the mouth” or talk.
Talk is cheap. Continue reading
For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things..
In verse 17 Paul writes:
For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, “The righteous shall live by faith.”
The righteous shall live by faith. So very hard to do. Continue reading
If the dough offered as first fruits is holy, so is the whole lump, and if the root is holy, so are the branches.
I took some time to read commentaries by biblical scholars and theologians in regards to this verse. All of them seemed to deal with civilizations, tribes, congregations, etc.. They were all saying this verse could refer to the church, meaning Christ was the first fruit, the root, thus making the early Christian church holy. Some of them also referred to the Jews, going back to Abraham as being the first fruit. And some referred to the Gentiles, who through their acceptance of Christ were the first fruit and were made holy.
I took this on a more personal level, which is how I tend to treat the whole Bible. Continue reading
See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil. If you obey the commandments of the Lord your God that I command you today, by loving the Lord your God, by walking in his ways, and by keeping his commandments and his statutes and his rules, then you shall live and multiply, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land that you are entering to take possession of it. But if your heart turns away, and you will not hear, but are drawn away to worship other gods and serve them, I declare to you today, that you shall surely perish. You shall not live long in the land that you are going over the Jordan to enter and possess. I call heaven and earth to witness against you today, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and curse. Therefore choose life, that you and your offspring may live, loving the Lord your God, obeying his voice and holding fast to him, for he is your life and length of days, that you may dwell in the land that the Lord swore to your fathers, to Abraham, to Isaac, and to Jacob, to give them.
These six verses are what follows the verses I wrote about in my previous post It Is In Our Hearts. In verse 11 through 14 Moses tells the people of Israel that the word of God is very near. It is in your heart and in your mouth.
In verses 15 through 20 Moses continues by letting the Israelites know how simple life really is. Continue reading
Therefore because you trample on the poor
and you exact taxes of grain from him,
you have built houses of hewn stone,
but you shall not dwell in them;
you have planted pleasant vineyards,
but you shall not drink their wine.
For I know how many are your transgressions
and how great are your sins—
you who afflict the righteous, who take a bribe,
and turn aside the needy in the gate.
Amos is talking about the rulers and high priests of his time but he could walk through a time portal, emerge on the other side today and utter these same words. These verses would be as true today as they were when they were written. Continue reading
There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.
I liked this verse and I wrote it down as a subject for a post. So today I thought it was time to write my post about this verse.
First I thought I would review some commentaries from Biblical scholars to get another point of view on this verse, even though I already had my gut take on it.
All the commentaries had basically the same theme. It was, we are all equal with the caveat, as long as we are “Christians”. They were saying no matter what race or sex or social status, as long as you accept Christ as your savior you’re OK.
Now that was not my gut reaction to this verse. Continue reading