Archive for May, 2009
Okay, so this is not just a simple question, but rather two questions (each potentially raising many, many other questions):
- What if Adam had just confessed and repented when the Lord came a callin’ in Genesis 3?
- Or, what if, immediately after Eve partook of the fruit, Adam had said, “No thanks, we’re not supposed to. Serpent, get away, and while we’re at it, Eve, why don’t you confess and repent”?
Would the course of human history be different? If so, how?
Last month, my wife and I were fortunate enough to spend time at Bethel Church in Redding, CA at a children’s pastors’ conference. While there and in the days immediately following, I wrote a series of short posts about the trip.
Our first night home, I had a remarkable dream. In my dream, I could see what appeared to be an enormous glass or crystalline train station. However, the “trains” that were zipping in and out were unlike any train I had ever seen. They were like bullet trains, or enormous silver cylindrical bullets.
The destinations of these bullets that were coming and going were not cities, however, they were nations (Israel, China and India were the three that I recall specifically, although there were many others).
The station was no typical train station, either. It was actually more like an airport because the bullet trains whizzed in and out in all directions continually and with amazing speed.
Right about this time, my dream was interrupted by my dog Oliver who needed to be let out. I knew this was a dream I would need to remember, so I desperately prayed for the dream to pick up where it left off.
I couldn’t fall asleep, so I prayed for the interpretation. Now, the interpretation will make little sense to my readers unfamiliar with the goings on of our church (Emmanuel Fellowship Church), but my pastor asked that I write this so that he could link to it from his blog.
The train station is what our prayer center (Sweetwater Prayer Center) was, or has the potential to be, in the spiritual realm. And the bullet trains were the prayers going forth from the prayer center, and those that were returning.
One of our pastor’s goals is that someone from every nation in the world will pray in the Sweetwater Prayer Center. A means by which we can accomplish this goal is for our church members to pray for those nations and pray those leaders here, as well as for our members to go there.
I envisioned every church member praying for a specific nation or nations. I think part of our mission must be to bring sweet water to the nations. At the end of 2 Samuel 12, Joab sends word to King David that he (Joab) had taken the city of Rabbah’s water supply, and that David should come and take the city lest Joab receive the credit.
We need to pray to take water supplies. For a given city or nation it could be the government, for another the education system, for another the actual water supply. In so doing, we can actually replace the stagnant water supplies with fresh, sweet water, and invite King Jesus in to take the nation and receive the credit.
This is not only how we can heal and make disciples of all nations, but keep our rivers, lakes and water supplies full as well.
Just in time for Father’s Day, the official Beauty of the Bible (BOB) Bookstore is up and running thanks to the Amazon Associates affiliate program.
If you are looking for a new Bible, Hebrew resources, gift ideas, or if you want to read any of the books reviewed here on Beauty of the Bible, please click on over to the BOB Bookstore and have a peek.
Admittedly, I wrote this in my newly-saved days, in response to all of the email forwards I was getting. But I thought it was pretty funny then, and I happened across it today, and I still think it’s pretty funny:
The Lord’s House Bill No. 0001
AN ACT of the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY, relating to the distribution, dissemination, and/or duplication of electronic message transmittals (e-mails) the subject of which is, involves, or in any manner relates to the Lord God Almighty, the Son Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, the believers and followers thereof, and/or any combination thereof.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LORD GOD ALMIGHTY THAT:
The HOLY BIBLE, OLD COVENANT and NEW COVENANT, the Books of THE EXODUS, Chapter 20; THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO SAINT MATTHEW, Chapter 34; and THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO SAINT MARK, Chapter 12 are hereby amended as follows:
THE EXODUS, Chapter 20:1. And God spoke all these words:
20:2 “I am the LORD your God, who brought you out of Egypt, out of the land of slavery.
20:3 “You shall have no other gods before me.
20:4 “You shall not make for yourself an idol in the form of anything in heaven above or on the earth beneath or in the waters below.
20:5 You shall not bow down to them or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me,
20:6 but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments.
20:7 “You shall not misuse the name of the LORD your God, for the LORD will not hold anyone guiltless who misuses his name.
20:8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy.
20:9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work,
20:10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your manservant or maidservant, nor your animals, nor the alien within your gates.
20:11 For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea, and all that is in them, but he rested on the seventh day. Therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy.
20:12 “Honor your father and your mother, so that you may live long in the land the LORD your God is giving you.
20:13 “You shall not murder.
20:14 “You shall not commit adultery.
20:15 “You shall not steal.
20:16 “You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
20:17 “You shall not covet your neighbor’s house. You shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his manservant or maidservant, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to your neighbor.”
20:18 “You shall not delete any e-mail you receive concerning me or my kingdom and you shall immediately forward same to all of your neighbors.
20:18 20:19 When the people saw the thunder and lightning and heard the trumpet and saw the mountain in smoke, they trembled with fear. They stayed at a distance Ex 20:19 and said to Moses, “Speak to us yourself and we will listen. But do not have God speak to us or we will die.”
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MATTHEW, Chapter 22:34. Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together.
22:35 One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question:
22:36 “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”
22:37 Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ 22:38 This is the first and greatest commandment.
22:39 And tThe second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’
22:40 And the third is: ‘Forward all e-mails you receive about me and my Father to all your neighbors that you may prove your love.’
22:4022:41 All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two three commandments.”
THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO MARK, Chapter 12:28. One of the teachers of the law came and heard them debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”
12:29 “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one.
12:30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’
12:31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’
12:32 The third is this: ‘Forward all e-mails you receive about me and my father to your neighbors out of love. There is no commandment greater than these.”
12:32 12:33 “Well said, teacher,” the man replied. “You are right in saying that God is one and there is no other but him. 12:33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices.”
If anyone is interested in printing this, here is the pdf file (The Lord’s House Bill).
YOU CAN FORWARD IT TO ALL YOUR FRIENDS, AND ASK THEM TO FORWARD IT TO ALL OF THEIRS.
We have spent several months trying to learn and adapt to the budding taste buds of our 11-month old.
Bananas were and remain a big hit. Sweet potatoes are equally sweet. Squash, carrots, peas, all good. She really loves mixed fruits (blue berries and pears, bananas and anything, etc.). The peach cobbler was absolutely peachy.
We were brave and tried making homemade baby food. The fresh carrots, peas, and avocados were a success; the green beans…not so much. And once she starts in on the beans and rice, it’s hard to get her to stop.
For a snack, Cheerios rule. The Gerber cherry puffs are a close second. I don’t know if Mum Mums were discontinued or if our local grocer just stopped carrying them, but that was a sad day in our house.
But, I think her favorite meal is bread and grape juice (albeit white grape juice). I hope that’s symbolic, or prophetic. Or both.
Last week, I finished reading through Leviticus again. It was only the second time I’ve read through it start to finish. Which is a shame really. I think Leviticus gets a bad rap.
Off and on, I’ve spent a fair amount of time studying the feasts, but I’ve spent very little time on the remainder of Leviticus. The symbolism is unreal. And not that I’m claiming to grasp it all, quite the contrary. But, it’s good stuff.
Suggestion: if anyone is planning to tackle Leviticus any time soon, read the fall feasts for their eschatological significance, and, when reading about the offerings, think about God symbolizing the bull or offering from the herd, Jesus as the lamb or offering from the flock, and, of course, the Holy Spirit as the pigeon or turtle dove offerings.
I would be curious to hear anyone’s thoughts. If you know of any other resources relating to this, I would also be grateful if you would let me know.
Thanks to my blogging buddy Jeff (Scripture Zealot) for alerting us to Mel Lawrenz’ new book I want to Believe, and how bloggers and media types can obtain a free review copy thereof.
My review copy arrived very promptly today (in about a week).
It seems like it will be an interesting read, and it is now on my ever-increasing-to-do list.
I have been contemplating the nature of Christian denominationalism, and it seems to me there are better ways to handle disagreements over doctrine and theology.
Before jumping to label someone a “heretic,” let us remember that even the fathers of the faith had disagreements over fundamental issues. Peter and Paul almost came to blows (probably more than once). How did they deal with this stuff?
They got together at a little meeting we now call the Jerusalem Council and decided issues that effect the Gentile church still today. Not only are the results of that meeting memorialized in scripture, so is the fight.
So, it’s okay to fight over doctrine, theology, how to worship, alcohol or juice, or the color of the carpeting, but we should come together, reach an acceptable resolution, and proceed accordingly.
I think God would honor the results.
My wife will not ever forgive me for this, but since everyone else is showing off their desktop (courtesy of Mark Stevens), I thought I would join in the fun.
This is my desk at my office, not at home (not that it is much better there):
Voyeuristic? Here are some other desktops I’ve seen this morning (if you’re not listed here, please feel free to drop a link to your desktop in the comments):
And a few others I had missed, until now: