Sunday, December 25, 2016
Wednesday, December 21, 2016
Friday, December 09, 2016
Tuesday, November 29, 2016
The word in the original language generally means “having a strong, passionate emotion.” And when used intransitively is generally translated “jealous.” So, love is not jealous, therefore, God is not jealous. But God says “I am a jealous God.” This is a little confusing.
To put this into perspective, the word for “jealous” in the statement “I am a jealous God:”
· It is only used of God.
· It is only used six times.
· It is only used in the Pentateuch.
· It is only used after Israel leave Egypt.
Israel, during a time of famine, moved to live in Egypt. And they stayed 400 years. The learning, the culture, the philosophy, and the theology of Egypt seeped into Israel. They had upwards of 80 gods. It was alright to serve one, or all of them. And Israel had (unconsciously?) absorbed this concept and attitude. And it affected their practice.
Our Father is not just one god out of many. He is the only, true Creator and Father of All. And God needed to correct this type of thinking. And he used “jealous” to bump Israel out of its lethargic, lazy thinking.
God designed people for a love relationship with him. People thrive best when they flow with their design, and embrace that relationship.
“Jealousy” is generally understood as (a) seeing that somebody has something good, (b) wanting that something for yourself. “Love” is wanting the best for someone. It is the opposite of jealousy.
If God is “jealous”, it is because he wants people to embrace a love relationship with him … for which they have been designed for, for which life is best if they accept that relationship. So God is “jealous”, because he wants our best.
Friday, November 25, 2016
Wednesday, November 16, 2016
- To live in relation to the Creator and Father of All.
- To give allegiance to Jesus Christ.
- To participate in the re-creation of his kingdom by:
- Adding to his family.
- Restoring his design.
- Demonstrating God’s purposes by walking in love and truth with God’s family\community.
Monday, November 07, 2016
- How do I treat their political views?
- How do I discuss their candidates?
- What words do I use to characterize these things?
- How do I talk with other people, ones that I agree with, in this light?
Monday, October 31, 2016
Friday, October 21, 2016
In this passage, Jesus says if we keep connected, and his words remain in us, we can ask for anything we want, and God will grant our requests. Part of bearing fruit is praying, and God answering our prayers. God will listen to us, and do as we ask. But there are two conditions to this promise.
One, remaining connected. We have discussed this quite a bit. Have a practice of focusing and opening your heart to God. Allow God to reach in, healing, loving, and growing what is in our hearts. Allow the Spirit to dismantle sinful, wrong, and hurtful defenses that we erect to deal with painful experiences in life.
Two, keep ahold of Jesus’ words. In part, this means having a practice of receiving input from the Word. Reading. Meditating. And many would say, memorizing. Which is an obvious method of keeping Jesus’ words in us.
People, who practice memorizing Scripture, often testify to being in situations, not knowing what to do, when a passage of Scripture pops into their minds, providing appropriate action. Often, action that is contrary to standard wisdom, but it fits perfectly into this situation. These people say the Spirit can remind us of the most appropriate Scripture passages, if the Scripture is already inside our heads.
But these disciplines are intended to incorporate God’s word into our lives. (Please do not interpret this as, in any way, criticizing, or somehow negating these practices.) We do not want to create a religious practice, but to create an existential experience. The spirit and the Word will make the life of Jesus, our life. We will think the way he does. We will act the way he does. His motives become our motives. His passions become our passions.
So, when we pray, we are, by nature, by habit, seeking to create in the world, the reality God wants to create. We are flowing with God’s will, God’s desire for restoration. We will be motivated to conform ourselves to God’s image. We will desire god to have freedom to move in people’s hearts all over the world. We will want everyone to have a relationship with god, and experience his love. And we will pray to that end.
Wednesday, October 12, 2016
Saturday, October 08, 2016
Wednesday, October 05, 2016
Sunday, October 02, 2016
Tuesday, September 27, 2016
Wednesday, September 21, 2016
- Those who follow Jesus are like sheep. Sheep’s herding instinct is strong enough that they will follow one another right over the edge of the cliff. We all know people who get with the wrong people, and them into all sorts of trouble.
- Jesus loves all people. His heart is to gather all people to himself, and lead them – toward the completion of their design, toward greater joy and fulfillment. And, for those who give him their allegiance, he is actively pursuing this goal.
- Jesus demonstrates he is supremely trustworthy of our faith, when he died to re-establish a relationship with people. He honors his promises, he relationship with people, and his Father’s purposes – to gather a people to be his new family.
- Sheep learn to follow the shepherd. We can learn to follow Jesus. We can hear his voice; we can discern it from all the other voices; we can successfully follow the path that he is leading us on.
- Jesus’ purpose is to create a family, build it strong in love, to love, and to increase it. Scripture says that all peoples, all languages, and all the ends of the earth will be represented in his family. Our purpose is to embrace Jesus’ purpose.
Monday, September 19, 2016
Monday, September 12, 2016
Tuesday, September 06, 2016
Monday, August 29, 2016
Monday, August 22, 2016
- Forgiveness starts with God.
- Transformation starts with God.
- Anointing for service starts with God. (Both the assignment and the enabling come from God.)
Monday, August 08, 2016
Thursday, August 04, 2016
Monday, August 01, 2016
Monday, July 18, 2016
Wednesday, July 13, 2016
- In the same body
- Gets life by the same spirit
- Expects the same future
- Follows the same Lord
- Has the same type of relationship
- Declares the same allegiance
- Are created and empowered by the same Father.