Under Authority

Something to think about.

Under Authority   

8 For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, ‘Go,’ and he goes; and that one, ‘Come,’ and he comes. I say to my servant, ‘Do this,’ and he does it.” Luke 7:8

Under authority, a foreign concept for us today. We are all about rights, self-determination, and individual freedoms it is almost impossible to breach the idea of doing someone else’s will. That is exactly what the centurion is saying. He knows what it is to obey.  Are we under authority? As Christians are we obeying the word and will of God? Are we ready to go when He says go? Are we ready to come when He says come? Are we ready to do what He says when He says do this? Are we under authority? In 1 Samuel 15:22 it says “To obey is better than sacrifice.” We Christians need to obey more sacrifice less. Go when commanded come when called and do when instructed. We need to submit to the authority of Christ in or lives.

 

The City of God

Something to think about.

The City of God

‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:4New International Version (NIV) 

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls, each of the gates made of a single pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, like transparent glass. Revelation 21:21

Here are two references to the city of God. In one we find the ceasing of pain, sorrow, and death, in the other you see the city designed with precious stones.  The promise of God is a place filled with security, love,  peace, and abundance. Is there any other offer that is more appealing? Substantiated by the fact, the fact of the resurrection.  The best the world has to offer does not compare.

 

Unconditional Love

Something to think about.

Unconditional Love 

35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall trouble or hardship or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword? 36 As it is written:

“For your sake we face death all day long;
we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:35-39

I have heard of Gods unconditional love all of my Christian life though I understood it intellectually it wasn’t until I had a grandchild that I actually understood it.

I have a grandchild she is 18 months old, and she does this most amazing thing. She does this all the time, but it is particularly overwhelming when she does it at church. My daughter takes her to the nursery at church for the services. We go to a large church, and we have a separate section for the nursery. They have a double door that leads into the nursery rooms, and they have a double door at the other side for an exit.  So you go in one door and come out the other. Every Sunday my daughter dresses her child in a beautiful dress, and my grandchild looks like the quintessential 18-month-old.  As we wait for them to come out of the double doors from the nursery, we wait with great expectation. They come through the doors, and my grandchild looks for her grandma, and when she spots her, she throws her arms open and runs as fast as her little legs can carry her almost stumbling, squealing with joy, laughing and almost crying with expectation into her grandma’s arms.  Why is that amazing you might ask? When you look at it in context, it is the perfect picture of unconditional love. That little girl comes out of that nursery running to her grandma saying with her body gestures and squeals; I love you, I love you, I love you.  Her Grandma is waiting for her with open arms saying I love you; I love you, I love you. They love each other without reason they love each other because they both exist. There is nothing that little girl can do that will make her grandma love her more, and there is nothing that her grandma can do to make my granddaughter love her more. For this short period of time before life dims this picture of love, it is a perfect demonstration of God’s love for us. The difference is God will always be standing with His arms open wide beckoning us to come into His perfect, loving, protective arms.

 

 

Simplicity

Sometimes to think about.

Simplicity

10 Love does no wrong to a neighbor; therefore love is the fulfilling of the law. Romans 13:3

At times the simplicity of the Bible is overwhelming in is naked and piercing truth.  If you love someone, you will not cause them harm. If you look at the unrest in our society, in our personal relationships. If you look at the pain and sorrow caused in all forms from every spectrum, it is due in large part because of the utter absence of love.

All Scripture

Something to think about.

All Scripture

16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.. 2 Timothy 3:16-17

We have people who question the veracity and the originality of the scriptures. Claiming the written word has been tainted, changed or influenced by transmission, translation and out-and-out conspiracy. All of these accusations are based on an incorrect understanding of God. God who created the universe is capable of maintaining His word intact throughout the generations.  The idea that God inspired people to write His instruction manual and then left it to be changed and manipulated is ludicrous. God’s word “is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,” because He has taken special care to ensure that it has remained unchanged by the passions, ambitions, and manipulations of man. It is Gods word and not mans word as such He will never let the world be without it. God will not allow His divine word to be replaced by a polluted counterfeit production of Man. 

Sharper

Something to think about.

Sharper

12 For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart. Hebrews 4:12

Have you ever wonder why the reaction to the Gospels is sometimes visceral?  Maybe because the word of God cannot be bargained with. It always brings you back to the truth. It is alive and relentless in its exposition of truth. It cuts through the layers of deception and exposes the lies we dilute ourselves with. It lays bare the inconsistencies of our thoughts and points to the one true God.  Maybe because it reveals to ourselves the shallowness of our selfish, sinful intent.

The word of God can also show you His redemptive, restorative grace. It shows you His longsuffering patience. It shows you His amazing love. It shows you the life He offers you. The word of God is the fork in the road with redemption, salvation, grace, love and joy on one side. The other road is the lost life you’ve chosen.

The Lord Bless You

Something to think about.

The Lord Bless You

The LORD bless you and keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. Numbers 6:24-26

This blessing God spoke over Israel through Aaron is uplifting, motivating and generous.  What we seek in this life is contained in the first words of these verses,  “The LORD bless you and keep you.” What I seek in this life is the blessings of God and His protection which is what he has given us as per the first verse. Then He goes beyond that and gives us peace.  God gives us all who call upon Him these blessings, but we have to accept them. If you don’t let go of what you have, you can never receive the blessings God has for you and His blessings are always better.

Number Our Days

Something to think about.

Number Our Days

12 So teach us to number our days

that we may get a heart of wisdom. Psalms 90:12

 
Do you know when you will die? Obviously, the answer to that question is unknown. So this verse at first glance may not make sense. What would be the point in numbering our days? As I get older and realize there are fewer days in front of me than those behind. I now understand this verse.  The point of this verse is to remind us that our days are numbered that our life has an expiration date. From that knowledge, we can then set out to live a life of value, joy, and purpose. Wisdom in this sense refers to making your life count for you, not anyone else, you. Are you living a life of joy, meaning, purpose? It is your life and your days are numbered.

 

Walk With the Wise

Something to think about.

Walk With the Wise

20 Walk with the wise and become wise,

for a companion of fools suffers harm. Proverbs 13:20
 
This appears to be a pretty simple proverb. Associate with wise people, and you will acquire wisdom. That is what it means if you take it at face value. The book Proverbs speaks of wisdom, but it refers to wisdom dispensed by God to man. Yes, wisdom is shared by man but true wisdom comes from our infallible God. So if you want the wisdom of God, seek out those that have received the wisdom of God that you to may receive and declared that which is wise.

The Gospel

Something to think about.

The Gospel

16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek. Romans 1:16
 
We are put down humiliated, teased and denigrated for the gospel of Christ, yet it remains the best and only hope for mankind. No other religion, ideology, philosophy offers salvation to man. Only the gospel of Christ offers us any hope but hope with evidence. The evidence is the resurrection of Christ.