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Friday, October 11, 2013

Jesus and Joshua, are there parallels?
 paralell.jpgParallel lives are not so much duplication of events, but lenses through which specific events can be focussed.

Joshua is an ancient spy, spiritual and national leader of a nation.

Joshua is a multifaceted individual who used his years on this earth wisely to improve life for many people who for many generations had been leaderless slaves. He followed in the footsteps of a great leader, Moses.

His father was a man named Nun which means fish.

In Hebrew his name was or יְהוֹשֻׁעַ Yĕhôshúa‘ which we translate as Joshua.

In Greek his name would have been Ἰησοῦς or as we translate it Jesus.

His name means “that which is delivered, safe” and in simple terms could be said to be “the savior”.

Joshua was the saviour of ancient Israel. It is interesting the parallels that exist between the life of “Joshua” and the life of God’s son “Jesus”. Their names are similar, Joshua being the Hebrew of the Greek Jesus.

I will be using “Jesus” exclusively for God’s son in this writing.

Jesus was probably a speaker of Aramaic and in Aramaic they would have called Joshua Yūshaʿ ibn Nūn  Joshua son of “fish” and Jesus Yūshaʿ

Yet in reality Joshua and Jesus share a name!

So what did Joshua do?

Well he was a person who crossed over from the Israelite area across the Jordon river into Canaan, the promised land, to find out about the people there and report back. He went with 12 others. When he returned, only he and one other reported the land was capable of meeting the needs of Israel, the others said it was impossible to settle there.

As a result of this investigation, and the failure to follow up on Joshua’s good news, the Israelites were forced to wander in the wilderness for many years before returning to be led by Joshua into the land to take victory and win the land for Israel.

During the time that they were in the wilderness Joshua was a key leader second only to Moses.

Was Joshua right before God? It seems so!

Joshua was the only one who went part of the way up the mountain with Moses to get the commandments of God. Joshua gave the right report on the land they were to go into. He was commander of the battles, and was leader after Moses having being given a special blessingby God “Joshua, no one will be able to stand up against you as long as you live. I will be with you, just as I was with Moses. I will never leave you. I will never desert you” Joshua 1:5

Now let’s see how similar Jesus and Joshua are in parts of the lives.


Joshua leads Israelites in battle and takes the promised land from the Canaanites.

Jesus leads God’s forces in the recovery of the world from sin.


Joshua had to cross the Jordan to get in Canaan.

Jesus has to cross the boundary between heaven and life in our universe to get into this sinful world.


Joshua was leader of Israel (Deuteronomy 1:37-38 Moses says “because of you, the Lord became angry with me also. He said, “You will not enter the land either. But Joshua, the son of Nun, is your helper. Joshua will enter the land. Help him to be brave. Give him hope. He will lead Israel to take the land as their own.)

 Jesus is leader of all who love God on this earth.( Matthew 2:6 quoting Micah says about Jesus “But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah, are by no means least among the rulers of Judah; for out of you will come a ruler who will shepherd my people Israel”)


Joshua’s mission was to establish peace for Israel.

Jesus’ mission is to establish peace for mankind.


Joshua when he was sent into Canaan was part of a 12 man mission. He took people form each tribe. The tribes were represented by gemstones.

Jesus appointed 12 disciples to do his work (I know with Jesus it’s 13 but it’s close isn’t it?) In revelations it talks of the works of the apostles as twelve foundation stones (see Rev 21:12-30) that were gemstones.


There are many similarities between the work of these two men. Yet there are vast differences as well! Jesus was not Joshua, and was God. Joshua was not God, only a man.


Jesus died
at the hands of sinful men.

Joshua died a natural death of old age.


Yet the parallels in their lives speak to us. We need to pay attention to what each did and why.

Do we understand fully the great sacrifice made by Jesus coming across from heaven to a sin filled earth? What hung in the balance? Why did God expose himself to danger and pain in this way?

Jesus’ report to the Godhead was positive. That’s why we have the potential of eternal life if we accept Jesus. Yet it came with a cost. Do we respect that cost?

Many in the world have rejected Jesus message and the world is walking in the wilderness. Many will die in the wilderness because they have not accepted the message. We need to let them know they don’t need to be out there Jesus has made the way and fought the battles so we can have peace.


While Joshua and Jesus lead people, people are expected to contribute to the overall effort. We are to give our hearts minds and soul into Jesus service on this earth so that we can truly experience being with him.

How much will we be doing that today?

I know I will try to as much as I can. I hope it’s the same for you!

Have a wonderful blessed day!
Fri, October 11, 2013 | link          Comments

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Why do Christians want to make money out of God?
 

How to Receive Money From God

Some people believe these techniques can be used to work with God in attracting money.” ~http://m.wikihow.com/Receive-Money-From-God

This and similar sites get me annoyed and frustrated, as they are so misleading and take a horribly manipulative approach to our dealing with our loving God.

Let’s look at some of their advice...

Decide how much money you want. What are you going to use the money for, and why?”

Really?

Since when does a Christian person decide such things for themselves.

Our money is God’s money, our time is His, our activities are His to direct!

Jesus said “Foxes have holes. Birds of the air have nests. But the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” Matthew 8

When Jesus asked a man to follow him once, the conversation went “59 He said to another man, “Follow me.”

But the man replied, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.”

60 Jesus said to him, “Let dead people bury their own dead. You go and tell others about God’s kingdom.”

61 Still another man said, “I will follow you, Lord. But first let me go back and say good-by to my family.”

62 Jesus replied, “Suppose you start to plow and then look back. If you do, you are not fit for service in God’s kingdom.” Luke 9

There is a cost to being a Christian. It’s this...we give our lives to Jesus!

That means our desires are sub-ordinate to His.

We cannot decide how much money we want. We can ask God to provide our needs.

Doesn’t Jesus teach us “So don’t worry. Don’t say, ‘What will we eat?’ Or, ‘What will we drink?’ Or, ‘What will we wear?’ 32 People who are ungodly run after all of those things. Your Father who is in heaven knows that you need them.

33 “But put God’s kingdom first. Do what he wants you to do. Then all of those things will also be given to you.

34 “So don’t worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.”

Next the site says we must “Stay positive and believe that you will receive what you've asked for

Okay! Being positive is good. Believing is good. Trusting God will supply our needs is good. Believing I will get a million $’s because I chose to believe to receive it is stupid.

Next it says “Be receptive. Listen for instructions. You may have no idea how this money will come to you. So listen for the answer. You may hear a song on the radio, or a friend may call with an idea, or an email may come with an instruction... Anything that happens around you may clue you in on an action for you to take.”

Really? Is anything we hear okay? Can I take advice from a song?

God speaks to us in many ways, so we need to be receptive, but the most important aspect is not indicated...check it out.

God’s advice always is in alignment with his nature and his nature is revealed to us by his communication to us via the bible which is the only solid information against which we can test what we hear.

The bible warns is there are many different “voices” competing for our minds and will. We are expected to be wise and careful, not to be swayed.

We will no longer be babies in the faith. We won’t be like ships tossed around by the waves. We won’t be blown here and there by every new teaching. We won’t be blown around by the cleverness and tricks of people who try to hide their evil plans. 15 Instead, we will speak the truth in love. We will grow up into Christ in every way

Okay so it’s easy to get mislead. I have to say that hidden within a collapsed section on the site there is a warning section. It gives advice like...

Don't limit God! Money can come from anywhere, at anytime. You don't have to "deserve" it or "earn" it in ways you may already think.”

Agreed! Fair advice!

If you catch yourself being negative (eg: "oh, that's not enough!") fix your head. What you think and feel are vitally important in working with God on getting money.”

Okay this one is more dubious. We don’t want to be negative, we do want to pray and ask god to help us and look for His advice. We want to keep our emotions and thoughts in line with God’s will, but we also need to know it’s God who looks after us and will help us.

If we focus on God and not our needs he is the one who looks after us.  That is not necessarily gleaned from the advice given.

“Bouncing checks gets you blacklisted by the banks, even if you thought God would give you the money.”

Good advice! Christians should not live in debt if they can possibly avoid it. We should reduce our consumption to try and live within our means. God wants us to be respected and respectful.

Many believe that God provides for those who ask, but only if the need is genuine and the asking is sincere. Seek out advice from God to make sure the money you requested is part of His plan as well as yours.”

The first really, really good advice on this site (at the bottom and hidden)

If you actually want to pay your bills on time, sending a check in the mail for money you don't have in your account is a very poor idea and most likely illegal. Don't spend above your means.”

Again good advice!

When we have needs, we can take them to God. We also need to work to try and fulfill those needs. If God is gracious and provides gifts to help us, we need to graciously accept them and be sure pride does not get in the way. However God is not the lotto or a means to a get rich scheme.

Needs are not wants! We must know the difference. We also need to read our bibles to know Gods nature and understadn his advice. Then we should live our lives in a way pleasing to God out of our love of Him and not compulsion.

Jesus loves us dearly, don’t we think he will want to have the best for us.

Money is sometimes just the opposite, it can be a curse.

Let’s let God have his way in our lives!

Wed, October 9, 2013 | link          Comments

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me.
“Before me no god was formed, nor will there be one after me.”

A god who says this needs to be supreme and sure of their position right?

SearchForwardInTime.jpgThe Christian and Jewish God says just that!

In the bible book written by a prophet (Isaiah) many years ago it says in the 43rd chapter…

Before me no god was formed,
nor will there be one after me.
11 I, even I, am the Lord,
and apart from me there is no savior.
12 I have revealed and saved and proclaimed—
I, and not some foreign god among you.
You are my witnesses,” declares the Lord, “that I am God.
13 Yes, and from ancient days I am he.
No one can deliver out of my hand.
When I act, who can reverse it?”

Arrogant?

When something is true and someone says it, is that person conceited or Arrogant?  If Bill Gates said “I am Rich!” would he be bragging, arrogant, or simply stating a fact?

In his case it’s a fact right?

God the Father states that before Him was no god.

In psalm 90:2 the psalmist says “Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God.”

In Isaiah 57:15 it says “For this is what the high and exalted One says—
    he who lives forever, whose name is holy:
‘I live in a high and holy place,
    but also with the one who is contrite and lowly in spirit,
to revive the spirit of the lowly
    and to revive the heart of the contrite.’

Everlasting and living forever! God also describes himself as “I am”

God has no beginning or end. This is difficult for us to follow as we are such time constrained creatures. How God deals with time is beyond us!

Perhaps he is part of a different time dimension or entered our time dimension when time was created in our Universe. (Even the fact that time was created is mind boggling, yet the scientist say this is a fact!)

I think we can conclude that we simply cannot understand God’s “time” and need to simply accept God is bigger and wider and deeper than we can fit into human perception.

Yet, and here is the amazing part, God choses to live in our hearts and experience what we experience when we become a Christian.

Wow! We have eternity within us!

Isn’t that amazing! Isn’t that even more mindboggling than considering God and time.

Now to really blow our minds, consider this, the God who chooses to live in our hearts does so because he loves us even before we even acknowledge him. In fact he loves us so much he experienced human torture and death to ensure we know the depth of that love.

Wow! What an amazing though to start today with!
Tue, October 8, 2013 | link          Comments

Monday, October 7, 2013

Respect...goes a long way... love goes further!
agape.jpg “Don't rely on someone else for your happiness and self worth. Only you can be responsible for that. If you can't love and respect yourself - no one else will be able to make that happen. Accept who you are - completely; the good and the bad - and make changes as YOU see fit - not because you think someone else wants you to be different.” ~ Stacey Charter

 While Stacy Charter may not apparently be the greatest example of a person with great moral stature, she has a point in this quote of hers.

Respect goes a long way! The Moslem, Christian and Jewish faiths would not exist without respect.

How can we say that?

These are Abrahamic religions, meaning they have their routes in Abraham of the bible. Maybe those who know the story will remember that Abraham could not get his wife pregnant until God enabled them to have a child, a boy. Then God asked Abraham to take his son up a mountain as a sacrifice. (Weird right?...it was a test)

Abraham goes up with the boy and is about to sacrifice him, when God stops it all. The bible reports it this way...

Genesis 22:11-13 (NIRV)

11 But the angel of the Lord called out to him from heaven. He said, “Abraham! Abraham!”

“Here I am,” Abraham replied.

12 “Do not lay a hand on the boy,” he said. “Do not do anything to him. Now I know that you have respect for God. You have not held back from me your son, your only son.”

13 Abraham looked up. There in a bush he saw a ram. It was caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram. He sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son.

It was Abrahams respect for God that changed the course of history. Many million of people were changed by that respect. The world has been greatly influenced by that respect.

Respect is central to God’s relationship with us, and our relationship with others.

Psalm 119:38 says "Keep your promise to me. Then other people will have respect for you."

1 Timothy 3:13 "Those who have served well earn the full respect of others. They also become more sure of their faith in Christ Jesus."

The truth is that Christianity demands we have more than respect for others. Respect can be given when there is a lack of love, but Christians are told to love their neighbours as themselves, and even to love their enemies!

We are called to a higher calling than respect, one of love!

Love engages respect and then takes it forward, overcoming the inadequacies of others and flowing into loving them deeply. It is the a great challenge and we would all fail if it was not that God turns us into super hero’s.

Holy Spirit within us makes us into super lovers. Lovers, who can love in the most extreme of circumstances, if we let God have his way with us.

How deeply do we respect others?

How deeply do we love others?

To what extent today are we going to use our super hero powers to grow respect and love in this world?
Mon, October 7, 2013 | link          Comments


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Rift in Evil

By Ken X Briggs

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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
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  • ISBN: 9781450250894 

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