|Posted by LEKokko on January 23, 2018 at 10:40 AM||comments (0)|
Faith Week 1 of 4
Memory verse Matthew 6:24 “Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow ill worry about itself. Each day has enough troubles of its own.” NIV
It is natural to worry about the future. But, when we do that, we are robbing ourselves of God’s blessing.
In psychology, there is a practice called mindfulness. It is used with those of us that deal with depression. It basically says to keep our minds on the here and now, not the past or future.
In applying this to believers, you could replace mindfulness with the word faith.
By concentrating on today, we can enjoy the blessings God has showered us with. We are healthy (in most cases), we have a roof over our heads (when so many do not), we have enough food (while others are starving), and the list can go on.
As a practice, list all the blessings you have today.
|Posted by LEKokko on January 23, 2018 at 10:15 AM||comments (0)|
Romans Bible Study Week 1
Romans is one of my favorite books. Paul wrote to those Christians who moved/lived in Roman.
Paul states in verse 1 that he was called to be an apostle. Jesus sought out Paul, and not the other way around. In like manner, we are all called by God to be followers as alluded to in verse 6 “And you also are among those Gentiles who are called to belong to Jesus Christ.”
He reports how he lifts them up in prayer.in verse 9-10a “God, whom I serve in my spirit in preaching the Gospel of his Son, is my witness how I constantly I remember you in my prayers at all times. . . “ We should also be prating for our brothers and sisters in Christ. Also, I may be in error in this, but, I believe there needed to be at least two witnesses for a matter to be considered true. Here it is God and Paul.
Verse 16 is one of my favorite verses. “For I am not ashamed of the gospel, because it is the power of God that brings salvation to everyone who believes, first the Jew then the Gentile. V17 “For in it the gospel of righteousness of God is revealed – a righteousness that is by faith from first to last, just as it is written: ‘The righteous will live by faith’.”
Belief in faith brings salvation. We can also see the order is Jew first then Gentile. The Jews are still God’s chosen. The gospel (or good news) of God’s offer of righteousness is shown. I once hear the righteousness is right living.
Paul then quotes Habakkuk 2:4 “See, the enemy is puffed up; his desires are not upright-but the righteous person will live by his faithfulness.”
Next week Romans 1:18-32
|Posted by LEKokko on January 21, 2018 at 1:40 PM||comments (0)|
Sunday January 21, 2018
James First Lesson (James 1:1-12)
I am using James Guidelines for a Happy Christian Life, by John MacAcArther, Thomas Nelson (publisher), 2007
As a reminder, I use the NIV Bible.
The author of this Book is James the half brother of Jesus. It was written to the Jews who had fled because of the persecutions inflected on them.
A bodybuilder knows that to achieve the shape he wants he must push his body beyond what is comfortable. A writer knows in order to get better you must fail. Rejections come much more frequently than acceptance.
James tells the scattered people that in their trials they will become stronger in their faith. But, he also warns that if we ask for something (strength) and we are not confident our prayer will be answered, it will not.
In today’s world, it is difficult to live a life wholly dedicated to God. There is so many distractions that tend to slowly drive a wedge in our faith. Pretty soon you are glancing at your watch during your prayer time, or at church – after all the Super Bowl is on. We are not giving God the 100% He is due. We literally owe our lives to Him.
Valeen Schnurr, a victim of the Columbine massacre and a Christian, professed her believe in God before being shot. How many of us, in that situation would do the same? Or the Christians in the Middle East being beheaded for their faith? These are, of course extremes. We may never have our faith tested to that degree, but we are tested daily. Just take a moment of situations in your day when you had the opportunity witness or to care for someone as Christ would have done – did you?
|Posted by LEKokko on January 15, 2018 at 12:40 AM||comments (0)|
“What is truth?” Pilate uttered these words. (John 18:38).
Over the next blogs, I am going to examine this topic. We will look at the truth about God, Jesus, Creation, and others.
I will be using a book my oldest son gave me some time ago, I Don’t Have Enough Faith to Be an Atheist, by Norman L. Geisler and Frank Turek – Crossway 2004.
When Pilate asked his question, he didn’t wait for Jesus to answer. Why? He either didn’t want to know or was afraid to know. Are we much different today? Do we seek the truth?
One characteristic held of truth is it is the same for everyone. In other words, truth is truth. For example 2 + 2 = 4 is a true statement. But is that a true statement? After all, doesn’t an evolutionist’s view of the truth about how we got here different than a creationist’s?
The answer is of course yes. But has the truth changed or just a belief? In Return of the Jedi, Luke discovers that Darth Vader is his father. This after being told by Obi-Wan that his father was dead. When Luke questions him about it, Obi-Wan says, “Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to depend greatly on our own point of view.”
The two had differing understandings, or beliefs. For Obi-Wan, death meant the good, and for Luke, it was physical death.
Some “truths” are presented using self-defeating logic where the conclusion is used to try and explain the truth. An example is seen in Star Trek I, Mudd to destroy the android Norman.
KIRK: "Everything Harry tells you is a lie. Remember that! Everything Harry tells you is a lie!"
MUDD: "Now listen to this carefully, Norman: I AM LYING!"
NORMAN: "You say you are lying, but if everything you say is a lie then you are telling the truth, but you cannot tell the truth because everything you say is a lie, but... you lie, you tell the truth, but you cannot for you l... Illogical! Illogical! Please explain! You are Human! Only Humans can explain their behavior! Please explain!"
We see this in evolutionist’s logic about how we got here. We came from ooze. That begs the question, well where did that ooze come from? This self-defeating logic can be traced back even to The Big Bang.
One of my favorite quotes from the movie, God’s Not Dead is "If there is no God, everything is permitted." The Apostle Paul, writing to the Romans said, “Indeed, I would not have known what sin was except through the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, ‘Do Not Covet’) Romans 7:7).
We know by nature that murder is wrong, without being taught. Paul again writes, “For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. (Indeed, when gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law since they show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts. . . ) (Romans 2:13-15).
To be continued