Archive for November, 2011

Multiplied Foot Steps

Posted: November 29, 2011 in Wandering Thoughts

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us most. We ask ourselves, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. “  ~ Maryanne Williamson

i am bombarded daily with the news of collapsing stock markets, bankrupt financial institutions, shameful fraudulent schemes by trusted business and ministry leaders, as well as gloomy economic forecasts. The global economic environment is so turbulent that whole fortunes that have been accumulated over decades are simply wiped out in a matter of hours! i am having to learn to cope in these times. It would be easy to feel helpless and give in to despair. Yet, things are rarely as bad as they appear.

Never underestimate myself… i may lack the technical skills, financial expertise, and the human connections needed to beat the times, yet, my lack is only an illusion, because i have access to an immense source of supernatural resources. i have strength far beyond my capacity to imagine or fathom.

“…For when I am weak [in human strength], then am I [truly] strong (able, powerful in divine strength)” ~ 2 Corinthians 12:10 Amp

No matter what weaknesses i think i may have, no matter what inadequacies or setbacks i’ve encountered, and regardless of whatever disadvantages i may have, the abilities of the infinite God are available to me! God wants to give me His divine strength. It is because of the presence of this Almighty God within me, that i am to never underestimate myself.

The story of the multiplied footsteps…

i recently heard this story from the Old Testament where God simply multiplied the sound of four men’s footsteps and caused them to sound like a mighty army. Can’t say as i have ever heard it before.

Read an excerpt from that story: 2 Kings 7:3-8 Now there were four men with leprosy at the entrance of the city gate. They said to each other, “Why stay here until we die? If we say, “We’ll go into the city’ – the famine is there, and we will die. And if we stay here, we will die. So let’s go over to the camp of the Arameans and surrender. If they spare us, we life; if they kill us, then we die.” At dusk they got up and went to the camp of the Arameans. When they reached the edge of the camp, not a man was there, for the Lord had caused the Arameans to hear the sound of chariots and horses and a great army, so that they said to one another, “Look, the king of Israel has hired the Hittite and Egyptian kings to attack us!” so they got up and fled in the dusk and abandoned their tents and their horses and donkeys. They left the camp as it was and ran for their lives.” The men who had leprosy reached the edge of the camp and entered one of the tents. They ate and drank, and carried away silver, gold and clothes, and went off and hid them. They returned and entered another tent and took some things from it and hid them also.”

  • They were despised outcasts
  • They were physically weak with leprosy
  • They were just four in number.

Yet they took the spoils of the mighty!

How? God made up the difference! God multiplied the sound of their footsteps and caused them to sound like a mighty army.  When their enemies heard them, they took off running. There were thousands of enemy troops running for their lives, scared to death, thinking they were being attacked by a massive army when in fact it was just four people! What happened? God made up the difference.

Never underestimate myself… God makes me seem bigger than i really am.  i can not allow my weaknesses to discourage me from expecting and pursuing God’s will for my life.  He will make me look more powerful, more educated, and wealthier than i really am so that i will create panic in the camp of my enemies and take the spoils of the mighty. God knows how to multiply my influence, strength, talent, and income.  i don’t have to figure it all out; all i have to do is put my trust in Him, and act in faith.

I’ve come to a state in my life where I expect daily miracles without bothering myself with the how?

Personalized – my deepest fear is not that i am inadequate. my deepest fear is that i am powerful beyond measure. It is my light, not my darkness, that frightens me most. i ask myself, ‘Who am I to be brilliant, handsome, talented, and famous?’ Actually, who am i not to be? i am a child of God. my playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that people won’t feel insecure around me. i was born to make manifest the glory of God that is within me.

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Less is More?!!!!

Posted: November 28, 2011 in Wandering Thoughts

Less is more is not a new phrase concept or idea in my life. How can less be more?… let me share just one place where i am as i close out 2011 strong in the Lord and strong in my pursuit. Less of me and more of Him is nothing new either as generations have spoken about it but to me there seems to be little change on a broad basis. i can not be concerned with that, but, i can be concerned with me and so less is more works for me.

Many years ago i had a baked potato business. The details are not important. The fact that at lunch time we were packed is. People would wait in line to get into our 600 square foot building. One day the landlord comes and says, “we will make you a great offer to move you into the space next door,” which is three times the size. “No thank you,” was easy as i was just barely handling what i had at the time. Our success continued and i began doing Murder Mystery dinners in the evenings and again every table would be filled. The second time the landlord came he was even more generous in the offer and it made sense but i still stayed firm in my answer of no. London Oven Eatery became well know and actually provided the food for a television crew and actors of a show called Northern Exposure. On top of that we began doing catering for the cities breakfast meetings. All done within the 600 square feet. When customers came in i could personally greet them and talk with people as they weren’t more than 15 feet away. The the landlord came a third time i can still hear to this day, “i have an offer you can’t refuse.” i didn’t and from the day we opened in the new space, we never filled the tables. It was a deal that i could have and should have refused. Bigger was not better, i could no longer converse with people as they walked nor as they sat at their tables.  Thus “less is more” means a lot to me.

There are biblical grounds for “less is more.” The story is there to be read in 1 Samuel 17, and what a story it is. Oh… it’s not the only place where God used “less is more.”

For today i am just looking at a portion of it, verse 38 to 50. Then Saul outfitted David as a soldier in armor. He put his bronze helmet on his head and belted his sword on him over the armor. Then, David tried to walk but he could hardly budge.

Saul a warrior tried to impose his way to do battle on David and David says, sorry i can’t do this. Not as i can’t do this literally, but as in i can’t do this the way you want me to.  In the next verse he says, less is more.

David told Saul, “I can’t even move with all this stuff on me. I’m not used to this.” And he took it all off.

In verse 40 i get a picture of who David is and what his life is like. David took his shepherd’s staff, selected five smooth stones from the brook, and put them in the pocket of his shepherd’s pack, and with his sling in his hand approached Goliath.

i read the whole chapter so i know this is the same way David prepared for life every day. He was a less is more kinda guy and it worked for him in the past so he thought why do anything different, this is just one more bear, one more lion, one more enemy for God to take care of.

As the Philistine paced back and forth, his shield-bearer in front of him, he noticed David. He took one look down on him and sneered—a mere youngster, apple-cheeked and peach-fuzzed. The Philistine ridiculed David. “Am I a dog that you come after me with a stick?” And he cursed him by his gods. “Come on,” said the Philistine. “I’ll make roadkill of you for the buzzards. I’ll turn you into a tasty morsel for the field mice.” David answered, “You come at me with sword and spear and battle-ax. I come at you in the name of God-of-the-Angel-Armies, the God of Israel’s troops, whom you curse and mock. This very day God is handing you over to me. I’m about to kill you, cut off your head, and serve up your body and the bodies of your Philistine buddies to the crows and coyotes. The whole earth will know that there’s an extraordinary God in Israel. And everyone gathered here will learn that God doesn’t save by means of sword or spear. The battle belongs to God—he’s handing you to us on a platter!”

48-50That roused the Philistine, and he started toward David. David took off from the front line, running toward the Philistine. David reached into his pocket for a stone, slung it, and hit the Philistine hard in the forehead, embedding the stone deeply. The Philistine crashed, facedown in the dirt.That’s how David beat the Philistine—with a sling and a stone. He hit him and killed him. No sword for David!

Just David and Goliath. How about settling a war today with just two people. A sling and a stone. How simple is that for such a huge outcome. In closing i must share a story that was sent to me. It was one of the many confirmations God is sending me about where i am going.

Imagine you take two elephants . . . And you put them in a roomYo u give them plenty to eat and drink and you shut the door on them. Three years later, you come back and open the door. What comes out? Three elephants come out. Mom, Dad, and a baby.” “That’s good. In three years, Mom and Dad elephant have had one baby!

Now, instead of two elephants, let’s pretend you put two rabbits in the room. At the end of three years, when you open the door, you had better run for your life, because millions of rabbits will explode out of that door.

Something that is large and complex is hard to reproduce.

Something that is small and simple multiplies easily.

A “plague” of rabbit churches could transform a nation!

It’s been about a month ago since i asked my 10-year-old grandson among others to do my daily posts while i was away. He asked what to write and i told him not to worry about it, that God would speak to him and he would know what to write.

This is what he posted. Last Wednesday I was hoping for a toy to come in the mail. I got really angry when I saw it wasn’t there. All this made me very disappointed. So for the rest of the night I was very disappointed that it didn’t show up. I went to sleep that night, the next day I went to school like normal. I got picked up by my mom and she had my toy in the car. I was very happy but had made a big deal out of it the day before. All of my anger and disappointment didn’t bring my toy, all it gave me was a bad attitude. That is why you can not let disappointment get to you. God doesn’t like bad attitudes. I prayed about what to say in my blog and God told me to tell you that having a bad attitude doesn’t get you anywhere. It sure didn’t get me anywhere!

What insight! i am really focused on doing life together with Ethan. i have been encouraging him to see and hear God in everyday life. i also have been looking for ways to get him interested in the word and going to the word when he is looking for guidance, direction and boundaries for his life. i was watching a “Green Pasture” (i’ll explain that sometime in the near future) and this is the scripture that was brought to my attention.

Genesis 4:6-7 MSG. God spoke to Cain: “Why this tantrum? Why the sulking? If you do well, won’t you be accepted? And if you don’t do well, sin is lying in wait for you, ready to pounce; it’s out to get you, you’ve got to master it.”

This is great because now i can go back to Ethan and show him this word and he can see how what he said came from God. The red is the word from genesis and the black are Ethan’s words, the blue are my comments.

Last Wednesday I was hoping for a toy to come in the mail.  Time passed. Cain brought an offering to God from the produce of his farm. Abel also brought an offering, but from the firstborn animals of his herd, choice cuts of meat. Cain did not get what he expected. He wanted approval from God but didn’t get it.

I got really angry when I saw it wasn’t there. God liked Abel and his offering, but Cain and his offering didn’t get his approval.

All this made me very disappointed. So for the rest of the night I was very disappointed that it didn’t show up. Cain lost his temper and went into a sulk.

I went to sleep that night, the next day I went to school like normal. I got picked up by my mom and she had my toy in the car. I was very happy but had made a big deal out of it the day before. All of my anger and disappointment didn’t bring my toy, all it gave me was a bad attitude. That is why you can not let disappointment get to you. God doesn’t like bad attitudes. I prayed about what to say in my blog and God told me to tell you that having a bad attitude doesn’t get you anywhere. It sure didn’t get me anywhere!

Cain did not get what Ethan got! God spoke to Cain: “Why this tantrum? Why the sulking? If you do well, won’t you be accepted? God was saying to Cain, this is not about me, this is not a question of Me not accepting you, I DO, but what you did was not well, it was not your best, it was with a wrong attitude so I could not accept what you did, but make no mistake I DO accept you, now learn from this and do better the next time. But also know that, “if you don’t do well,” the result will be the same every time, “sin is lying in wait for you, ready to pounce; it’s out to get you,” James 1:14-15 But every person is tempted when he is drawn away, enticed and baited by his own evil desire (lust, passions). Then the evil desire, when it has conceived, gives birth to sin, and sin, when it is fully matured, brings forth death.

Cain’s story went on to include physical death to his brother and it affected many of those around him. His mother and father did not lose one son the day they lost two. He did not take head to God’s words of tough love.

Here’s the “Take Away” God says, “you’ve got to master it.” i am not sure that Ethan nor i for that matter, have mastered it, but it is what God said i am to do. What does that look like? Well the next time Ethan was faced with the wrong “attitude” i reminded him of his blog and guess what he did? He got it and he changed his attitude before his bad attitude could give birth to sin and that change… ended the opportunity for death to come upon him. What it looks like is found through-out the word but to start i can just look at the words i wrote from James 1:14, drawn away, enticed and baited by his own evil desire (lust, passions).” God says, i’ve got to master it. Thank you Ethan for sharing and speaking God’s words through you to me.

The Beast of the Field

Posted: November 24, 2011 in Wandering Thoughts

The following words are copied from my original post on this subject. Removing the poop from my life; “It’s a work in progress and unfortunately the work is slow and tedious and the result is that i hardly notice the difference in taste and… that’s actually a good thing. i don’t feel as though i made some great sacrifice. i don’t feel as though i am missing anything.”

i gave it no further though until i started getting responses to that particular post. Recently i was meeting with someone and we happened upon the story about the brownies. Out of that conversation i got insight as to my question about getting rid of ALL the poop in my life. i began by reading all of Deuteronomy 7 for perspective. Then i narrowed it down to verses 22 thru 24.

Deuteronomy 7 21-24 So don’t be intimidated by them. God, your God, is among you—God majestic, God awesome. God, your God, will get rid of these nations, bit by bit. You won’t be permitted to wipe them out all at once lest the wild animals take over and overwhelm you. But God, your God, will move them out of your way—he’ll throw them into a huge panic until there’s nothing left of them. He’ll turn their kings over to you and you’ll remove all trace of them under Heaven. Not one person will be able to stand up to you; you’ll put an end to them all.

i then did what i often do and rewrote the verses putting myself and my circumstances into them for a more personal look. 

ed don’t be intimidated by the poop in your life. This has a familiar ring to it, ed i beg you to be patient with the unresolved issues of your heart. The poop is definately an unresolved issue.

ed, God, your God, is with you—God majestic, God awesome.

ed God, your God, will get rid of this poop, bit by bit. i don’t have to… no i am not permitted to wipe out all the poop at once and there is a reason.

You won’t be permitted to wipe it out all at once   The verse is telling the people that they can’t get rid of all the enemy right now, not because they don’t have the ability or the power to do so, but because they don’t have the population to occupy the land physically should they do so, lest the wild animals take over and overwhelm you.

The Canaanites, if destroyed at once, would be so many, that they would lie unburied, which would invite the beasts of the field to come out of their hiding places to feed upon them, and that may lead them to the Israelites. The wild animals would multiply so quickly that they would become the problem. So long as the people occupy the land the wild animals are kept in check.

So…. right now the poop in my life is occupying a place that if left unoccupied, if it were removed all at once would actually be more harmful to me than having it there right now. WOW! NOTE: THIS IS NOT A LONG TERM CONDITION!!

ed God, your God, will move the poop out of your life— Out of a revelation of relationship with the Father, i will have a correct response, the Father will remove the poop out of my life. That makes it more than just modified behavior. It’s heart change!

he’ll throw them into a huge panic until there’s nothing left of them. He’ll turn their kings over to you and you’ll remove all trace of them under Heaven.

Not one person will be able to stand up to you; you’ll put an end to them all. Not one ounce of poop will be able to enter my life; God will put an end to it all.

Closing and summation of Deuteronomy 7. i am in danger if i am having fellowship with the works of the world. Whatever brings me into a snare, brings me under a curse. i am to be constant to my duty, and i cannot question God’s mercy. It is good for the health of my body, to thoroughly surrender the sin in my life. Yet, sin is never totally destroyed so long as i am in this world. In all this the Lord acts according to the counsel of His own will; but that counsel being hid from me, forms no excuse for my laziness and negligence, and is no way the cause. i must not think, that because the deliverance of the church, and the destruction of my enemies, are not done immediately, that they will never be done. God will do His own work in His own way and time; and i am to know that they are always the best. Thus corruption/poop is driven out my heart little by little. This work is carried on gradually; but at length there will be a complete victory. i am also aware that pride, security, and other sins are enemies more dangerous than beasts of the field.

Teco

Posted: November 22, 2011 in Wandering Thoughts

Yes Teco as in electric company Teco. And i know that i posted already but that was really yesterdays. ed’s timing is not always everybody elses, i got that from the Father.

i do not even know where to begin! Today the center is closed but due to the holiday i decided to go in and make sure everything is set as some schedules change and… well some people clean up better than others so i wanted to make sure to cover the others. i then decide to do some administration like paying our electric bills. Two of them had final notices and were to be paid on the 21st or be turned off, yes i now know today is the 22nd not the 21st as i thought. i go ahead and pay the bills online and then call to take care of another matter. After the usual automated process i decided to make an intentional error to get a live person. It worked as planned. Her voice was sweet and she was all about helping me with the several items i needed.  i give her the first account number and sh proceeds to say, “give me a moment.” Then she tells me that there was a disconnect service order on the account and she removed it from both past due accounts. She had pulled up all four of our accounts, on her own and took care of business i didn’t know i need. Then she fixed another item on one of the accounts that may give us a refund of four to five hundred dollars. She gives me the info i needed and it turned out that we awed almost five hundred dollars less that what our statements said because there was some delay in posting credits. i am now at the end of the call and we are current on every account AND… our next bills which are due December 11th are at least $300.00 less than what they have been running so we are good to go for December.

Now get ready, i say to her that this has been the most pleasant phone experience i can remember and i not only thank her but tell her that i appreciate her and she has made this experience memorable. Here it comes…. she says, “Walk into your destiny.” Sir, “Walk into your destiny.” i mustered up all the composure i could and said “i wish i could meet you and tell you what that means to me.” She then said “walk into your destiny because your  never going to be the same, your never going to be the same.”

Is there anything left to say?

P.S. As i’m typing this it occurs to me that Teco brings lights to my life, they are an electric company. If i think of Teco i think of the lights in my home and at the center and everywhere i go. So imagine a woman who works for Teco a company that brings lights to my life shares words that bring light to my spiritual life with words of confirmation.

Poop In The Brownies

Posted: November 22, 2011 in Wandering Thoughts

A father of some teenage children had the family rule that they could not attend PG-13 or R rated movies. His three teens wanted to see a particular popular movie that was playing at local theaters. It was rated PG-13.

The teens interviewed friends and even some members of their family’s church to find out what was offensive in the movie. The teens made a list of pros and cons about the movie to use to convince their dad that they should be allowed to see it. The con’s were that it contained ONLY 3 swear words, the ONLY violence was a building exploding (and you see that on TV all the time they said), and you actually did not “see” the couple in the movie having sex – it was just implied sex, off camera.  The pros were that it was a popular movie – a block buster.  Everyone was seeing it.  If the teens saw the movie then they would not feel left out when their friends discussed it. The movie contained a good story and plot. It had some great adventure and suspense in it. There were some fantastic special effects in this movie. The movie’s stars were some of the most talented actors in Hollywood. It probably would be nominated for several awards.

Many of the members of their Christian church had even seen the movie and said it wasn’t “very bad”.  Therefore, since there were more pros than cons the teens said they were asking their father to reconsider his position on just this ONE movie and let them have permission to go see it.

The father looked at the list and thought for a few minutes. He said he could tell his children had spent some time and thought on this request. He asked if he could have a day to think about it before making his decision. The teens were thrilled thinking; “Now we’ve got him! Our argument is too good! Dad can’t turn us down!”  So, they happily agreed to let him have a day to think about their request.

The next evening the father called in his three teenagers, who were smiling smugly, into the living room. There on the coffee table he had a plate of brownies. The teens were puzzled. The father told his children he had thought about their request and had decided that if they would eat a brownie then he would let them go to the movie.  But just like the movie, the brownies had pros and cons.

The pros were that they were made with the finest chocolate and other good ingredients. They had the added special effect of yummy walnuts in them. The brownies were moist and fresh with wonderful chocolate frosting on top. He had made these fantastic brownies using an award-winning recipe. And best of all, the brownies had been made lovingly by the hand of their own father.

The brownies only had one con. The father had included a little bit of a special ingredient. The brownies also contained just a little bit of dog poop. But he had mixed the dough well – they probably would not even be able to taste the dog poop and he had baked it at 350 degrees so any bacteria or germs from the dog poop had probably been destroyed.

Therefore, if any of his children could stand to eat the brownies which included just a “little bit of poop” and not be effected by it, then he knew they would also be able to see the movie with “just a little bit of smut” and not be effected.

Of course, none of the teens would eat the brownies and the smug smiles had left their faces. Only Dad was smiling smugly as they left the room.

Now when his teenagers ask permission to do something he is opposed to the father just asks, “Would you like me to whip up a batch of my special brownies?”

i heard this story years ago and have shared it often, but recently i began looking for the poop in my life. i have weeded out the poop in what i listen to on radio, i don’t listen to it. i have eliminated the poop in what i read as i have become very selective what i read outside of the word. But… television shows that use innuendos, and not “so bad language”, the suggestive remarks about sex, it’s everywhere are haunting. Much of my television is just for noise. i began to wonder what would my brownies would taste like without any poop? Is that even possible was my first question? The only person who i know who tasted those kind of brownies was Jesus. i have been eating brownies with just a little poop in them so long i don’t know if i would like them any other way and thus comes the lie. Of course i would, i’m sure they would. But what that looks like i’m not quite sure.

BUT… just like radio, and reading what i do know is that i had to change the recipe. It’s a work in progress and unfortunately the work is slow and tedious and the result is that i hardly notice the difference in taste and… that’s actually a good thing. i don’t feel as though i made some great sacrifice. i don’t feel as though i am missing anything. i am just enjoying the taste of brownies with a little less poop in them AND THAT HAS TO BE A GOOD THING!

Righteousness of Faith #4

Posted: November 19, 2011 in Righteousness of Faith

Nathan’s response to David’s confession was both comforting and disturbing. Although he deserved to die for his sins, David would not die because God had taken away his sin (12:13). What a relief these words must have been. But what followed would pierce David through: the son his sin had produced would die. It is David’s response to the death of this son that catches my attention.

Before i go to the story itself, I would like to make a few observations.

This is the first of a number of painful events David will experience as a result of his sin regarding Uriah and Bathsheba. David will suffer the loss of the child conceived through the sinful union of David and Uriah’s wife, Bathsheba. Next, David’s daughter will be raped by one of his sons. In retaliation for Amnon’s sin, Absalom murders him. Later, David’s son, Absalom, will rebel against his father and temporarily take over the throne. In the process, he will sleep with some of David’s concubines, before all Israel, and on the roof of the palace from which David first looked upon Bathsheba. All of these things are directly or indirectly the consequences of David’s sin with Bathsheba.

The tragic death of David’s son is a consequence of David’s sin, but it is not the penalty David deserves for his sin. The penalty for adultery and murder is death, on each count. David deserves to die, on two counts: adultery and murder. But Nathan has made it very clear that David’s sin has been “taken away.” The death of this child is a painful consequence of David’s sin, but it is not punishment for his sin, per se. That punishment has been taken away, borne by the Lord Jesus Christ.

The fast which David observes is a very serious one. In the Hebrew Old Testament, there is a unique way of emphasizing a point. The Hebrew language of the Old Testament repeats the word for emphasis. Thus, when God told Adam that he would “surely die” (Genesis 2:17) He said something like this: “You shall die a death.” Thus, Young’s Literal Translation reads,

“And of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, thou dost not eat of it, for in the day of thine eating of it–dying thou dost die.”

In our text, God uses this doubling method to emphasize the certainty of the child’s death:

“However, because by this deed you have given occasion to the enemies of the LORD to blaspheme, the child also that is born to you shall surely die” (2 Samuel 12:14).

The same doubling is found in verse 16:

David therefore inquired of God for the child; and David fasted and went and lay all night on the ground.

Only in the marginal notes of the KJV do we see the literal rendering, “fasted a fast.” The point is that David’s fasting was not entered into casually. He was dead serious about this fast, for it was a matter of life and death.

Bathsheba is not prominent here, but David. The sin of adultery was David’s doing, while (in my way of reading this story) Bathsheba was a victim. So it is only fitting that it is David who is fasting and praying, pleading with God for the child’s life.

The author changes the way he refers to Bathsheba. In verse 15 he speaks of Bathsheba, the mother of the child who died, as “Uriah’s widow.” In verse 24, there is a very significant change. Here, the author refers to this same woman, the mother of David’s second child Solomon, as “his wife Bathsheba.” Not only has God come to accept this second child, He has come to accept Bathsheba as David’s wife.

The final events of chapter 12 give us a definite sense of closure. David’s sin is to be understood as the exception, rather than the rule in his life:

Because David did what was right in the sight of the LORD, and had not turned aside from anything that He commanded him all the days of his life, except in the case of Uriah the Hittite (1 Kings 15:5).

Chapters 11 and 12 of 2 Samuel are almost parenthetical, then, as they depict this exceptional period in David’s life. This was a time when he was not a “man after God’s heart.” And so we find chapter 11 beginning with a description of Israel going to battle, while David stays at home (11:1). We find verses 26-31 of chapter 12 reporting how David showed up for the war, and when it was won, all Israel returned home to Jerusalem. There is a sense of closure, of finality, here, which I think the author intended us to feel. In addition, we find that our text records the death of Bathsheba’s first son, followed rather quickly by the account of the birth of the second, Solomon, who was to rule on the throne of his father, David.

after seven days the child died.52 David had mourned when Saul and Jonathan died in battle (2 Samuel 1), when Abner was killed by Joab (2 Samuel 3), and even when Nahash the Ammonite king died (2 Samuel 10). His mourning here, however, is not a mourning over the death of his son (for he has not yet died), but is instead the mourning of repentance. David mourns as a sign of his repentance as he beseeches God to spare the life of his son.

Is it right for David to beseech God to spare the life of this child when He has already said that He is going to take the life of the child? I believe the answer is “Yes!” David knew that some prophecies were warnings of what God would do unless men repented.

David found consolation and comfort in the death of the child because he was assured that, although the child could not return to be with him in life, he would go to be with the child in heaven.

While i do not understand righteous faith in the way i would like i do see that i must continue the pursuit and let God take care of the rest.

Righteousness of Faith #3

Posted: November 19, 2011 in Righteousness of Faith

For me the woman with the issue of blood had righteous faith. She makes her way against all the laws to where Jesus is on His way to heal a young girl. In spite of the law she touched the robe of Jesus and His robe of righteousness healed her. i love it that Jesus turns around and looks at her. She now sees the love and grace of Jesus and will never think that she stole the touch of His garment. Righteous faith brings God’s grace. The law will void out my faith. If the woman had followed the law she would never have been healed.

Law or righteous faith? The choice is mine.

What is righteousness? It is an attribute that implies that a person’s actions are justified, and can have the connotation that the person has been “judged” or “reckoned” as leading a life that is pleasing to God.

What is faith? In Christianity faith causes change as it seeks a greater understanding of God. Faith leads to an active life aligned with the ideals and the example of the one being trusted. It sees the mystery of God and his grace and seeks to know and become obedient to God.

Those are the educators words. i would change the definition of faith and say that, “it sees the mystery of God, his Grace and seeks to know Him personally and intimately.

All those definitions leave me with my conclusion that when i walk in Righteous faith God does not see my faults or short comings. Really? What’s the standard? Where are my boundaries? Is it just an issue of the heart? Abraham didn’t totally lie as Sarah was his half-sister. They shared the same father and not mothers so…. i guess that get’s him by? It appears as though Abraham doesn’t struggle with his lie… me, well i struggle with everything. Did Abraham know who he was in relationship to God more than i do, in spite of his junk?

At least with David there is a consequence… that sounds so wrong, as though i am the judge. But in all that David did he gets the title of being a man after God’s own heart. Do i sound jealous? So how did David deal with his decisions?

In the end, i must cast myselves upon the God to whom i have entrusted my soul and my eternal destiny. As Abraham said so long ago, “Shall not the judge of all the earth deal justly?” (Genesis 18:25).

Having said that, i think that David had a remarkable peace about the death of his first child by Bathsheba, a peace which caused those who witnessed it to marvel, and to question David about it.

After becoming King of Israel, things were going very well for David, perhaps too well. He seemed to have the Midas touch — everything he touched turned to gold. God had given him success in all he undertook. Like Israel of old, David appears to momentarily forget that his success was the result of God’s grace, and not a tribute to his efforts alone. The first glimpse of this overconfidence comes in 2 Samuel 7, where David expresses his desire to build a house for God. In response, God reminds David his successes are the manifestations of His grace (7:8-9). He goes on to assure David that there are good things yet in store for Israel, and that these too will be His doing (7:10-11). Having gently rebuked David for supposing that He really needed a “house,” God promised to build David a better “house,” one that is an eternal dynasty:

‘“The LORD also declares to you that the LORD will make a house for you. 12 “When your days are complete and you lie down with your fathers, I will raise up your descendant after you, who will come forth from you, and I will establish his kingdom. 13 “He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever. 14 “I will be a father to him and he will be a son to Me; when he commits iniquity, I will correct him with the rod of men and the strokes of the sons of men, 15 but My lovingkindness shall not depart from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. 16 “Your house and your kingdom shall endure before Me forever; your throne shall be established forever (2 Samuel 7:11b-16).’”

David’s arrogance seems to increase. It is most evident in 2 Samuel 11. Israel is at war with the Ammonites, and in the Spring (the time that kings go to war), David sends his army to besiege Rabbah, the capital city of the Ammonites, where the last of the Ammonite opposition has sought refuge. David does not go to battle with his soldiers, but stays at home in Jerusalem, indulging himself in the good life while his soldiers camp in an open field. David gets up from his bed about the time his soldiers (and others) usually go to bed. As he is strolling on the roof of his palace, David happens to see something that was not meant to be seen — a young woman cleansing herself, most likely a ceremonial cleansing ceremony done in keeping with the law. The woman is beautiful, and David decides that he wants her. He sends messengers to find out who she is. Their answer — that she was Bathsheba, wife of Uriah the Hittite — should have ended the matter, but David had no intention of being deprived of anything he wanted. He sent for the woman and lay with her.

For David, it was all over after that one night of self-indulgence. He did not want another wife; he did not even appear to want an affair, just a night of pleasure. But God had other plans. Bathsheba conceived and eventually sent word to David that she was pregnant. When David’s efforts to deceive Uriah (and the people) into thinking Uriah had fathered this child, he had Uriah killed in battle with the help of Joab. After she had mourned for her husband, David brought Bathsheba into his home, taking her as his wife. Now at last, David hoped, it was over.

David displeased God, however, God would give David no rest or peace until he had come to see his sin for what it was and repented of it. After some period of distress (see Psalm 32:3-4), God sent Nathan to David with a story, a story which deeply upset David. David was furious. He insisted that the rich man who stole the poor man’s pet lamb deserved to die! Nathan then stopped David in his tracks with the words, “You are the man!” (2 Samuel 12:7). As David heard Nathan’s recital of his sin, he broke, declaring to Nathan, “I have sinned against the Lord” (2 Samuel 12:13).

Righteousness of Faith #2

Posted: November 17, 2011 in Righteousness of Faith

A contented mind is the greatest blessing a man can enjoy in this world. Joseph Addison

Then Abraham does it again in Genesis 20 1-18 1NOW ABRAHAM journeyed from there toward the South country (the Negeb) and dwelt between Kadesh and Shur; and he lived temporarily in Gerar. 2And Abraham said of Sarah his wife, She is my sister. And Abimelech king of Gerar sent and took Sarah [into his harem]. 3But God came to Abimelech in a dream by night and said, Behold, you are a dead man (A dead man?) because of the woman whom you have taken [as your own], for she is a man’s wife. STOP AGAIN! Abraham lies and Abimelech is told by God in a dream that he is a dead man. How was he to know? Abraham is righteous by faith…? Shouldn’t there be better conduct when righteous is put together with any one?

4But Abimelech had not come near her, so he said, Lord, will you slay a people who are just and innocent? (GREAT QUESTION?)  5Did not the man tell me, She is my sister? (Go for it make your case!) And she herself said, He is my brother. In integrity of heart and innocency of hands I have done this. 6Then God said to him in the dream, Yes, I know you did this in the integrity of your heart, for it was I Who kept you back and spared you from sinning against Me; therefore I did not give you occasion to touch her. 7So now restore to the man his wife, for he is a prophet… really i though he was a liar? and he will pray for you and you will live… God agrees that Abimelec acted in integrity of heart and innocency of hands but let Abraham pray for him and he was healed.. (Shouldn’t Abimelec pray to deliver Abraham from his sin?) But if you do not restore her [to him], know that you shall surely die, you and all who are yours. 8So Abimelech rose early in the morning and called all his servants and told them all these things; and the men were exceedingly filled with reverence and fear. 9Then Abimelech called Abraham and said to him, What have you done to us? And how have I offended you that you have brought on me and my kingdom a great sin? ( i love this about this man. He goes right to the source.) You have done to me what ought not to be done [to anyone]  10And Abimelech said to Abraham, What did you see [in us] that [justified] you in doing such a thing as this? (Serious conflict resolution.) 11And Abraham said, Because I thought, Surely there is no reverence or fear of God at all in this place, (i guess Abrahms discernment needs a little work.) and they will slay me because of my wife. 12But truly, she is my sister; she is the daughter of my father but not of my mother; and she became my wife. 13When God caused me to wander from my father’s house, I said to her, This kindness you can show me: at every place we stop, say of me, He is my brother. 14Then Abimelech took sheep and oxen and male and female slaves and gave them to Abraham and restored to him Sarah his wife. 15And Abimelech said, Behold, my land is before you; dwell wherever it pleases you.  16And to Sarah he said, Behold, I have given this brother of yours a thousand pieces of silver; see, it is to compensate you [for all that has occurred] and to vindicate your honor before all who are with you; before all men you are cleared and compensated. 17So Abraham prayed to God, and God healed Abimelech and his wife and his female slaves, and they bore children, 18For the Lord had closed fast the wombs of all in Abimelech’s household because of Sarah, Abraham’s wife.

i still don’t get any of this and how Abrahm is righteous in any way. And as for righteous faith… it seems as though Abraham has no faith and is all about working it out on his own and for his own benefit.

Righteousness of Faith #1

Posted: November 17, 2011 in Righteousness of Faith
I lay in the bed at the hospital and said, ‘let’s see what I have left.’ And I could see, I could speak, I could think, I could read. I simply tabulated my blessings, and that gave me a start. Dale Evans

The blessing of Abraham include more than health and wealth. The major blessing of Abraham was righteousness. Christ redeemed me from the curse of the law so that the blessings of Abraham could come on me. The promise of Abraham was that he would be the heir of the world. If i was going to be the heir of the world i would have to own some land. i would also have to be healthy and i would be fairly wealthy as well. It would be hard to be the heir of the world with no place to call home, with no money, and to do it while lying on my back dying from sickness.

Years ago i wrote a song called Abrahams Blessings are Mine. That’s what the word says, “i am his seed,” but the way i was thinking of blessings have not shown themselves? Romans 4:13 says, “For the promise to Abraham or his posterity, that he should inherit the world, did not come through [observing the commands of] the Law but through the righteousness of faith.

Did NOT come through the law BUT THROUGH THE RIGHTEOUSNESS OF FAITH! How have i missed these words for so long. The first verse of my song is, “If you fully obey the Lord your God and you carefully follow His word.” Anotherwards my song says, “if i follow the law.” What i see here is that Abraham’s blessings are not about my obedience. There might be a rewrite of my song coming out of this. Abraham did not get his blessings because he was obedient or had all his stuff in order. Abraham was a liar. He lied about his wife twice. He is not a perfect example of a man keeping the law, but his imperfections did not keep him from being a man of faith.

i’m a little confused about righteous faith when i read Genesis 12:10 Now there was a famine in the land, and Abram went down into Egypt to live temporarily, for the famine in the land was oppressive (intense and grievous). 11And when he was about to enter into Egypt, he said to Sarai his wife, I know that you are beautiful to behold. 12So when the Egyptians see you, they will say, This is his wife; and they will kill me, but they will let you live. (is the following an example of  righteous faith?) 13Say, I beg of you, that you are my sister, (seriously? His sister) so that it may go well with me (sounds like it’s all about him?) for your sake (who’s he trying to convince?) and my life will be spared because of you (this is the bottom line)14And when Abram came into Egypt, the Egyptians saw that the woman was very beautiful. 15The princes of Pharaoh also saw her and commended her to Pharaoh, and she was taken into Pharaoh’s house [harem]. 16And he treated Abram well for her sake; he acquired sheep, oxen, he-donkeys, men servants, maidservants, she-donkeys, and camels. 17But the Lord scourged Pharaoh and his household with serious plagues because of Sarai, Abram’s wife. STOP! This baffles me. Pharaoh did nothing wrong, it was Abraham that lied and Sarai who went along? But Pharaoh gets serious plagues.

18And Pharaoh called Abram and said, What is this that you have done to me? (Pharaoh wants to know why?) Why did you not tell me that she was your wife? 19Why did you say, She is my sister, so that I took her to be my wife? Now then, here is your wife; take her and get away [from here]! 20And Pharaoh commanded his men concerning him, and they brought him on his way with his wife and all that he had. Abraham lies, is the cause for Pharaoh’s sickness, and leaves with more than he came with.

Abraham’s blessings were not just spiritual in Genesis 13: it says Abram was very rich in livestock, in silver, and in gold. Abraham also lived to be 175 years old so his blessings also included physical health, at age 100 God renewed his youth and he bore children. And look at Sarah who at age 65 was desired by Pharaoh to be a part of his harom and then at 90 Abimelech wanted her for his herom, two heathen kings wanted this old woman. Abrahams blessings!