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Thursday, August 1, 2013

Did Jesus bring us a totally new message?

IsaiahScroll.jpg

I don't argue when people say that my message is simple, but I believe Jesus' message was simple.~Joel Osteen

Naïve Christianity! I was reading the book “The Dead Sea Scrolls – Discovery and Meaning, by Hershel Shanks when I came across this statement…

First, Christianity. I suppose that in a sense the Dead Sea Scrolls do undermine a certain kind of what I might call a naïve Christian faith. I remember talking to a great Catholic Dead Sea Scroll scholar, Father Joseph Fitzmyer. He told me that the Scrolls are no threat to the “mature Christian.” But, in a sense, they do undermine what I call a naïve understanding of Christianity. It’s the faith that believes that when Jesus came down he brought with him a new message that stunned his listeners—something unlike anything people had heard before. This view of Christian doctrine is really no longer valid. The scrolls demonstrate very clearly the Jewish soil out of which Christianity grew. Not the message, but the life of Jesus is unique and remains unique in history. But the message has parallels; it has roots in Jewish history.”

 He goes on to discuss how we look back in time and see Jesus from different perspectives. Some as Rabbi(teacher), some as a prophet, some as reformer, others as a revolutionary.

Yet the one thing we really know is that Jesus was totally Jewish, and had a heart to reach those that needed God’s love and offer the key help for this world.

Now Hershel indicates that Jesus was just “a” son of God and becomes a son of God.

This is a perspective that perhaps the Dead Sea scrolls may support, but the Gospel of Luke definitely does not agree with this.

Jesus was born son of God, IS God and always was God.

 John reaffirms Jesus (the Word) is God in the opening of his Gospel…

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made.

I love this gospel (although there are those who say it doesn’t fit) as it clearly speaks against those who would say Jesus was just a man. John was with Jesus through his ministry and clearly says Jesus is God. Not “a” son of God but “God”. Yet he also became man...

14 The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

God and Man! Jesus was our true alien on earth! We don’t need to search the heavens to find an extraterrestrial life form. Jesus was exactly that…and yet not as well.

He was fully man!

He had a message from God for us. He was here for a lifetime to convey that message so we should be careful to say what it was in a sentence or two. Yet the best summary I have found is …

Mark 12:30-31 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.’[a] 31 The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b] There is no commandment greater than these.”

Jesus had a message.

If this is the verse is core, you can judge if it is unique.

It needs to be accepted within the context that Jesus is a true historical man, yet that he is God as well, and that we are to love Him with our full life force.

That’s my view of the message! At least that how I think we need to approach it.

J Not via Naïve Christianity
J
Thu, August 1, 2013 | link          Comments

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Are we willing to have our lives exposed?
movieFilm.JPGWhen you have the paparazzi hiding in the bushes outside your home, the only thing you can control is how you respond publicly~Portia de Rossi

We don’t think that our lives are not public! At least, most of our lives are not public, with people taking photographs every few seconds and following us around tracking everything we do.

Yet, in a different way we are under observation every second of every day!

There is nothing in we ever do that goes un-noticed. Nothing!

Does it not say in proverbs 15:11

“Death and the Grave lie open in front of the Lord.
    So the hearts of mere men certainly lie open to him!”

It is futile to resist” is the Borg saying. As a Christian “It is futile to try and hide” (and I am NOT equating the Borg with God).

In fact as Christian, we should expect our lives to be open books. Jesus indicated at one point...

“People do not light a lamp and then hide it in a jar or put it under a bed. Instead, they put it on a stand. Then those who come in can see its light. 17 What is hidden will be seen. And what is out of sight will be brought into the open and made known.

18 
“So be careful how you listen. If you have something, you will be given more. If you have nothing, even what you think you have will be taken away from you.” Luke 8 16-18

If we have Jesus in our lives, they should be capable of being visible to others without shame.

Jesus makes all things right for those who love and follow him.

We don’t need to fear exposure, simply because our lives are clean, lived in the open, in truth, in love of our fellow man(and woman)kind. We are living sacrifices, but where Jesus has paid the ultimate price already. We are free to live in truth and freedom. Nothing can put us in prison for we are spiritually free.

Let’s live that way today, throwing aside the bondages that evil and darkness would use to scare us, and lifting into the joy and peace of Jesus life in us. Flowing in Holy Spirit and praising our Father in heaven.

Have a wonderful day!
Wed, July 31, 2013 | link          Comments

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Do we work too much?
digging.jpgToo much work and too much energy kill a man just as effectively as too much assorted vice or too much drink ~ Rudyard Kipling

Sometimes we think that by working ourselves hard we will get rewarded and will gain our goals.

Working hard is good, but it is actually God that gives the increase, not our labours alone.

I was pleased to see a girl of nine years of age being honored in the news yesterday.

Carissa Yip at has become the youngest U.S. Chess Expert since the rankings started in 1991[1] yet the most endearing comment in the news was “Carissa is hesitant when asked about her accomplishments, saying she doesn't spend much time thinking about them.”

Humility and gifting don’t often go hand in hand do they?

I guess many of us could have worked at getting to that level for a number of years and would not have been able to achieve like that young girl.

God gives talents to whom he chooses doesn’t he?

To some of us our work is our god.

We labour at it 12 to 14 hours a day and often seven days a week.

When we acheive a level desired, it seems like it took forever and we don’t spend more than a day or two before we strive onwards.

Where are we going?

Having run a company of my own a few years ago, I was continually amazed that people who had good jobs, salaries in the top 10% in the country, and were young with their lives before them, but they still were not content with what they were doing and strived for more.

They demanded we establish a performance measurement system for everyone. I think this was so that they would be compared to others.

Being the owner and boss and having only about 50 employees, I knew each an every one and their abilities. I was able to easily judge how to distribute bonuses each year and never waited until the end of the month or year to let people know where they stood.
Yet people needed to compete!

I always wanted people to have time off on weekends but the nature of the work was sometimes that was not possible.

However it also amazed me how people decided on their own to work weekends.

Why?


In other companies I could understand this...but not mine! Even I lost perspective and worked too much as the years went by!

Is it possible that people have lost contact with life to the extent they think work is life?

God says “Do not put other gods in place of me”

How many of us put work in the place of God?


How about this advice/command from God..

Remember to keep the Sabbath day holy. Do all of your work in six days. But the seventh day is a Sabbath in honor of the Lord your God. Do not do any work on that day. The same command applies to
your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, and your animals. It also applies to any outsiders who live in your cities.”

Over the years countries have discarded this as old fashioned and damaging to the economy, but is it?

Working every day has resulted in a lack of balance in our nations.
We have lost much of the joy of life.


The rewards of life are not material and monetary instead of the joy of family and nature.

Where are we going?

Should we not say...Tell the nations about his glory.
    Tell all people about the wonderful things he has done.
The Lord is great. He is really worthy of praise.
    People should have respect for him as the greatest God of all.
All of the gods of the nations are like their statues.
    They can’t do anything.
    But the Lord made the heavens.

We should work hard when we work. We should give every hour we owe to our employers, but we should also make sure to understand that work is not our master, God is.

He is the one who has said...
“Serving me is easy, and my load is light.” Matthew 11:30

Let’s remember to take some time each day to thank God for his love, to rest in his presence, to consider others and how God would want us to reach out and touch them. Let’s have a day of rest each week. This will give us joy and the work will become easier. 

Have a great day!
Tue, July 30, 2013 | link          Comments

Monday, July 29, 2013

Monday morning Christian activity
ComplexityToSimplicity.jpg“Monday is a great for becoming too busy to die.” ― Roy Station, Trust Me.

The weekend is over and the week starts.

Barbeques, blue sky’s ,friends and free time are submerged in the hustle and bustle of the week.

Our eye’s pop open in the light of the morning sun and our minds start to trudge around to the tasks that awake us don’t they.

Yet, if we are to enjoy our week, if we are to meet it with increased vigour and joy, we cannot trudge into the week.

This is where as a Christian we gain from our morning devotions! Focussing on God brings in a waft of Joy. The words read in the bible lift our spirits and settle us into our week with confidence that God is already ahead of us preparing special task that only we can do.

 I really like the verse that my online bible software gave me this morning.

If I had not taken delight in your law,
    I would have died because of my suffering.
I will never forget your rules.
    You have kept me alive, because I obey them.
Save me, because I belong to you.
    I’ve tried to obey your rules. Psalm 119:92-94

Suffering turns to joy as I reflect on the joys of the past weeks.

Two weeks ago a small deaf and dumb child was healed miraculously by prayer! A friend of mine was the person praying. I love the fact she cannot recall the event without tears of joy. God is good!

I remember praying for a ill man with renal failure, only to have him walk out in the hot sun, up a hill to find me as I worked on a house roof that we were building for people who had no money for a home. He thanked me for praying. I thanked God for doing what I could not do.

This weekend a young teenage person in our care ran away while we were working with others. Climbing in a car she drove out of town and disappeared. We prayed and Sunday she returned. Praise God!

Today is Monday, work is the focus, but superior to that focus I want to keep my eyes on Jesus.

His rules are the guidelines of my life that keep me from harm. Without them I would fall down and hurt myself.

I wonder how your week will be approached.

Have you have read God’s word today? Have you approached the throne of grace and asked for special guidance for your week? Have you felt the love of God in your life?

Have you asked Jesus to save you and develop paths of success in your life?

We are often so slow to try and obey God’s rules! We often fail as we try to do so. Yet God wants to make up for our inadequacies. He wants us to try and in doing the best we can, he extends himself to cover what we cannot do. He loves us into joy and peace that passes understanding.

That’s the way to take on Mondays isn’t it?

With God in our hearts, joy and peace as our comfort and Holy Spirit leading us through the obstacles ahead as we listen to him and chat to God about our daily tasks.

Have a great Monday!
Mon, July 29, 2013 | link          Comments


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Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

  • Published: September, 2010
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This suspense thriller centers on Kiara, a beautiful young woman pursued by a murderous group of people, who relentlessly and ruthlessly hunt her and her sisters. Kiara has no idea why she is being targeted! When Kiara and her family turn to the law for help, this fails. Her pursuers’ powers reach deeply into the political and law enforcement world. Family support for her dwindles when they too have to flee her pursuers. Can Kiara escape the clutches of both the law and dishonest big business? With the media broadcasting that Kiara and friends are dangerous and subversive, can Kiara clear her name and bring her pursuers to justice?

 

 
  

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 RiftInEvil.gifThe town of Zinaville is dropped into a spiral of evil causing a young man and a beautiful but abused woman to launch into an investigation that unveils an evil conspiracy.

A horrific mining accident results in Joshua Robyn's father being killed. Joshua struggles both with himself and his townsfolk as he tries to make sense of an incomprehensible situation. Is it an accident or a murder? Why is there a seeming link to evil? Why is his work environment suddenly threatening? What is the conspiracy about and what are they trying to do? As action moves dramatically from exotic African grasslands to the heart of North America's cities, the plot unfolds and the pace quickens. Will there be time? Why is a beautiful abused young woman in the center of this plot?

Evil tendrils tighten on their lives and the interplay between the visible and invisible world shows opposing forces at work.

Will there be a rift in evil?

Will they be able to stop the evil in time?

 

 

 
Click here to order Rift in Evil (ebook or Paper available)
  • Published: September, 2010
  • Format: Perfect Bound Softcover(B/W)
  • Pages: 208
  • Size: 6x9
  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

Available from Barnes and Noble, Amazon, iUniverse. Chapters

 
  
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