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Why Some Veterans Miss War

7378f62566fda3193f693a7fc150a2b82101a6ce_1600x1200In a provocative 13 minute TED Talk war correspondent Sebastian Junger tries to answer a disturbing question. Why do so many veterans, especially those who served in active duty, miss war?

After 20 years of covering the horrors and inhumanity of the battlefield, Junger found a painful irony—what veterans miss is the opposite of what war stands for. Many vets never experience in their return to civilian life anything like the sense of purpose they found in combat.  In a shared mission, they had put the welfare of their group above their own safety. In effect, Sebastian says, “You’re saying, “I love these other people more than I love myself.”

Over the years, I’ve heard other soldiers say something similar. Instead of trying to defend the politics or national cause of their side, they talk about the importance of being there for one another; having each others back— even to the point of being willing to die for the group. And from time to time, such comments have left me thinking about what it means to be in a greater war in which our purpose also is not just about about trying to defend a principle… or to kill someone.

Even in the differences I find stories like that of Sebastian Junger to be a reminder of what must have been going on in the heart of someone like the Apostle Paul who occasionally referred to his friends as fellow soldiers. It just doesn’t seem natural to be fighting a war of love—in which our Commander in Chief, has already sacrificed his own life for to make peace with his enemy.



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149 Responses to “Why Some Veterans Miss War”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    If one looks to the arts you can see many diverse attempts of artists to capture the full emotions of war of life and of its combatants.

    Life, it is said, is a battlefield and we all involved in the combat of daily living.

    Some try to stay safe hidden away in a bunker, while others are in the front lines where the “rush” of being in the action between life and death occur.

    I am both a combat veteran and a combatant of life and can only speak of my own experiences in both arenas.

    In the few years a person is in the military they will make lifelong friends that transcend other people you may have grown up with and knew for a much longer time.

    The people you are in the military with are often much like you as you both have made a decision to be where you are for very similar reasons.

    We become brothers in arms pitted against a common enemy and our survival depends on the man to your left or right in front or behind you and theirs upon you.

    The experience you have together becomes nothing you will ever experience again in life and is only shared by those standing next to you.

    Only they and you can fully understand what you have experienced.

    Combat, real life and death combat is surreal and while on going there is little or no time to “think” about what is happening, only an instinctive like reaction to it brought on by training and instinct.

    There is no training to get yourself killed, only how to win and by winning, live. But trained to be ready to die at any time.

    I have often told Glenna that combat is exciting and actually thrilling, but there is a lot of thinking about it only after it is over.

    In life everything we thought we knew when we were young changes when we get older our views change as well. Which is one reason most war combatants are teenagers.

    As a veteran at this age, I am glad to have had the experience and while never wanting to go through some of those things again I would in a heartbeat for the survival of my family. The difference being I now I know what death means.

    I think it is because I have experienced real combat that I am drawn to appreciate the history of other wars and their combatants.

    I am just in awe at the idea that men leaned into bullets as if walking into a wind driven rain in the battlefields of the American Civil War, or that they watched as their comrades bodies rotted into skeletons yards away from them as they fought trench warfare in WWI.

    War is hell and no one should ever miss it.


  2. oneg2dblu says:

    Steve… we war time, battle tested, surviving Veteran’s know that we were well trained, well equipped, and battle ready, before things ever got heated.
    We can and do have that same mindset, having each of us been through it, the testing of our faith.
    God alone has placed us in harms way, and brought us through, for His Purposes.
    Remember this, many prayers were going up to heaven from those in the trenches of each battle they faced.
    Our battle today will be no less in need of prayer than any other day when we are tested in our faith.

  3. cbrown says:

    Praise God for today! Let us go forth into the battle united in His Spirit. Amen

  4. poohpity says:

    After listening to that 13 minute talk I came away with the thoughts; Can you imagine just loving your neighbor and experiencing brotherhood rather finding the things that divide, destroy and dehumanize developing the thoughts and attitudes that we have each others backs would do to the world around us. What changes in our churches, neighborhoods, communities and world at large. Our battle is not against flesh and blood(each other) but against the powers of darkness and evil and Jesus over came them all. What a great Commander and Chief we serve under and next to.

  5. SFDBWV says:

    If you make observing life around you a learning experience there are a lot of *things* you learn.

    What you do with what you learn will determine your growth or lack of it.

    In the observation of others there will be people you want to be like and others you do not.

    It is essential for young people to learn the kinds of people to copy behavior after and those to avoid.

    I turned 18, 19, 20, 21 and 22 in the Marine Corps and as soon as I returned to the “world” in February of 1968 I met people who didn’t give a damn that I was a veteran and them that lied about being one.

    The full scope of human psychology lay before me to observe, copy, delete and or ignore.

    What I found was I was content that I had accomplished the things I had in order to put me in that place of going on with my life.

    Some veterans never learned to move on and some blamed every failing they possessed on being a veteran.

    I know what I have done with regards to being a military veteran, I don’t have to prove it or anything else to another. I don’t have nor need a license plate that denotes I am a veteran, I don’t have to wear a cap that says I am a veteran and I don’t want to belong to the VFW or the American Legion.

    I am not condemning those that do, I say go for it and be happy, it is just not my cup of tea.

    I know of one fellow who was punitively discharged from the Army because he got drunk and shot up a Saigon whore house who has used the VA hospital to run to every time he ran afoul of the law for decades and was successful in suing the US government for a quarter million dollars because of his mental condition. Who considers himself a veteran in the same company of other veterans.

    How this all may segue into a fellowship of being a Christian is coming up for further comment from me, but for now I am done for the day as life here goes on.

    49 degrees and cloudy.


  6. poohpity says:

    More taking off our clothes, wrapping a towel around us and washing feet in a servant hood role rather than feelings or superiority or the opposite inadequacy both are causes of infighting.

  7. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    As the child of WWII vets, I only reflect the experiences that woke my dad in the night and the horrible memories that made my mother cry to think of them. Dad and Mom served in the infantry and the medical corps respectively.

    It seems to me the loyalty and affection among fellow soldiers is aptly called “esprit de corps” — translated spirit of the body. This clearly includes the body of Christ.

    It seems to me the professing Christian who quickly bails out when life in the church becomes difficult does not realize that we are called to lay down our lives for one another, just as Jesus laid His life down for whosoever believes in Him. Only in times of genuine persecution do Jesus-followers cohere in that kind of devotion to one another in my opinion.

    In the deceptive quiet of a peaceful existence, we may forget to keep the disciplines that mean the difference between spiritual life and death. Should our peace be shattered by terror or war or disaster, we will need the inner calm of knowing Christ is near to remain true to one another and to our God. As the English said in the blitz, “Keep calm and carry on.” We cannot do it alone.


  8. joycemb says:

    I think that the mission of the early church, ie, spreading the Gospel and encouraging/keeping order in the troops is hard to compare with the mission of soldiers of war and even a blog such as this.

    I don’t really think that brotherhood is possible on a blog where some have their own agenda to prove and even celebrate. I think the best we can do is to be wise and loving as best we can, with our savior’s battle-weary body in sight. It is finished, Jesus said on the cross, but on the earth it will not be finished until Christ returns. Come Lord Jesus.

  9. poohpity says:

    No it is not possible when the spirit leads us to not write something and we do not listen and do it anyway just to be heard even if it benefits no one. It is possible to stop and consider the damage that can happen when diarrhea of the mouth runs into our fingers. We do have the ability to not throw stones, to protect our brothers backs, to treat people how we want o be treated, it is possible and very doable. We do not have to wait until Jesus returns when He now lives in the life of those who believe in Him, those who are submissive to His leading, who follow Him, who live in vital union with Him. It is possible now because He lives. We do not have to wait until the second coming when He has given us everything we need for hope in living in the here and now to show grace, mercy, forgiveness, compassion, gentleness, patience, kindness, joy and self control. It just depends on who’s lead we follow.

  10. jeff1 says:

    If I met another human being who displayed all the virtues you mention Pooh I would believe I had died and went to Heaven. No matter how much I strive I can never be that perfect. I can honestly say there are times when I display some of these virtues but not consistently and I really believe that until God completes His work in me I cannot sustain all of these virtues while in the flesh. This world is becoming more and more alien to me as the battle to be a God fearing person does not get any easier.

  11. foreverblessed says:

    The movie, “Band of brothers” about soldiers in WW2, entering France. This movie had deep impact on my son.
    The closeness of these soldiers, the ties that are strong.

    But should our bonds not be that strong?
    I guess that it is a huge learning process we have to go through.
    Laying aside our differences, and joining hands in our Oneness, that is in Christ:

    We are all part of One Bread- and that is Christ.

    We are His body, and a body has a unity otherwise it would not function.

    there is lots of work to be done in the Body of believers, Christ cannot come back now.

    “I in them and You in Me. May they be brought to complete unity to let the world know that you sent Me and have loved them even as you have loved Me.”

    John 17:23

  12. oneg2dblu says:

    While we are enjoying this unity moment together here, there is another hugely faith building event that has also happened here, it is conflict.
    Wouldn’t you know that, that is exactly where I was led first, not realizing there is more than one verse, or one solution, even though we may now doubt it.
    How can that be you ask?
    Well, I have the answer for you in another 13 minute Ted Talk, which is called, 13 Minute Ted Talk discusses… conflict.
    Check it out.
    It will grow all our current perspectives and show other building possibilities that lie even within conflict.
    I was blessed.
    Be Blessed, Gary

  13. poohpity says:

    Some people create their own storms then get mad when it rains.

  14. cbrown says:

    Somebody in my “church” wrote this and it and it relates to our topic.So When I look at Sandra doing anything now all I can think is “I never thought I would see her do that again.” Every move she makes, every breath she takes (80s flashback) all I can do is thank the Lord that He saved her life on 9-11-15. From that day on, everything she does is a reminder that God is merciful and full of grace.
    I have come to realize that truth more than ever over the last 5 months. Every move we make, every breath we take is a gift from God and a reminder that God is merciful and gracious to us. Truly, all our life is a reminder of His grace. Without His grace, we would all be justifiably dead.
    Prior to this season of refinement by fire, I thought faithfulness to God was wrapped in the package of criticising false teachers. Every sermon and every disciple conversation and most Facebook posts were about false teachers. Such was the act of a man, this man, that found security and power in criticizing that which was wrong RATHER THAN praising Him who is Truth. Criticizing the false doctrine of others puffed me up, but praising Him deflated and humbled me. I chose for years to make myself look good in the name of pointing out all who were contrary to Scripture rather than just praising Jesus.
    God never commanded us to a ministry of tattle telling on false teachers. In fact Jeremiah tells us to ignore them. Jesus and the apostles confronted them, but equating the actions of people in the Bible with the imperative commands in the Bible was the spiritually fatal act of the Pharisees. Such activities defined my life prior to April 3 (date of diagnosis).
    God continues to reveal that which consumes our minds, saturates our conversations and characterizes our Facebook posts is truly our god/God. False teachers, even our efforts to correct them and point them out, can become our idols. Whatever we think on most, talk about most, get passionate about most, are concerned about most, etc is our god/God. I was a man consumed with what others were teaching and doing wrong rather than consumed with all Jesus was doing right.
    God used cancer to rebuke my life’s focus. Do I still see and hear false teachers and doctrine? Yes. Do I talk about them, quote them on Facebook, include them in my conversations or allow them to take any place of attention in my life? NO WAY.
    Jesus is too precious and too worthy of my continual attention and praise. I will still test the spirits as commanded in 1 John, but once they are revealed by the Word as false, they will have none of my attention for Jesus alone deserves all my attention and praise.
    Was I a Pharisee that found pleasure in pointing out false teachers? Yes. But because God is gracious and merciful I am now able to do what I could have never done, namely, praise Him in all things.
    Worthy is the Lamb.”

  15. joycemb says:

    Thank you Chris for a wonderful testimony. I will be praying for your health also. blessings, Joyce

  16. joycemb says:

    I’m sorry Chris I misread. I’m tired. It is Sandra who had cancer, right? Anyway, wonderful testimony and yes the focus should be on Christ rather than on us and our own private battles.

  17. jeff1 says:

    God teaches us a lesson even through false teachers. My father had the wisdom to see through a false teacher and warned me against him. I later discovered my father was right and have learned to discern when someone is preaching from there own heart and not the gospel. I have also discovered that it is God who knows my own heart and has given me an everlasting peace for He has assured me it is by the blood of Christ I am saved from myself and the evil of this world. Knowing I am His gives me peace of mind, if in weakness I should falter, I will never again allow anyone to steal my joy in knowing Christ died for a world that needs Him and that no religion, culture or nation has exclusive rights for He is an inclusive Saviour.

  18. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you very very much Chris, for posting that testimony.
    That was, like Mart put it, a breath of fresh air!

    It is the Holy Spirit that convicts each and every one of us. He will, like He did to Jacob, finally in the end.
    And then we will sing praises together, and thank Him for His Grace.
    Will not that be the way, how unity will come among christians: People who know that they know, that they are redeemed through Jesus Christ, and that the rest of their lives they live in grace, singing praises to God who set them free from everything that hindered them.

    What Maru said, that we learn to stay calm in Christ at all times. This man, who learned his lesson, sees things wrong, but immediately goes back into praising God!
    That we learn to stay focused on Christ, whatever the circumstances. And praise Him.

  19. SFDBWV says:

    Foreverblessed my wife’s Uncle Bob and another fellow from my little town, Charlie Cosner, were in the battle of the Bulge as depicted in the movie “Band of Brothers”. In a twist of irony my Uncle Harold was with General Patton who came to the rescue of these men during that winter of WWII.

    During WWII my little town was the subject of an article in the “Stars and Stripes” to the surprise of some of the fellows from here to see their little home town in their newspaper while on another continent in the midst of war being praised for having sent the most men to the war effort than any other municipality per percentage of population in all of the United States.

    When I dedicated our Veterans Memorial Park a few years ago many of these men were still alive and came to the service from all over the US weeping and very proud to see their names and the names of old friends remembered in stone as the centerpiece of the park.

    About 25 or more years ago a colonel from the West Virginia National Guard came here to look over the possibility of a winter flood potential. During his visit we talked about a lot of things. His family came here from Russia and though we were very different in many areas of life we had a common fellowship in our service to our country, something that makes all veterans “brothers”.

    Is it possible to duplicate this unity of fellowship we see with veterans amongst Christian believers and followers? It is what Jesus wants, but is it what is observed by insiders or outsiders in the observation of the Church today?

    Long enough for now. 46 degrees light rain with the threat of serious rain today through Sunday.


  20. oneg2dblu says:

    cbrown…. so are you totally convinced today, that you were not following the spirit, and that you were not following Christ either, during that period of time when you were pointing out false teachings, teachings which could and do trap even your brothers and sisters in Christ today, according to the scriptures?

    If you feel it was “only the flesh” that was moving in you then, then, I ask you personally, which part of the flesh do you think you are feeding now, or trying to satisfy?

    And, regardless your answer, if you give one, could it be that God actually used you to help others through that which you now blast so strongly as being wrong in others?

    Security and Power, I believe was your stated reasons or position for that which you wrongly desired then.

    So what your flesh was seeking then, it still holds onto today, if you have found security and power in Christ.


    Or has only that misdirected, self-seeking position changed about warning your brothers and sisters about false teaching, leading then to finding what you have now found, power and security in Christ.

    Perhaps, God has helped you find your true faith in all that wrong stuff you did then.

    Wouldn’t that which Paul the Apostle shared with others in the family of God,with all his God-directed warnings of false teaching, also be just as scriptural?

    I wonder, who or what actually changed your old ministry, into this new one you have now?

    Either way my brother, you still do bless us all.

    Just thinking…

  21. SFDBWV says:

    Ok I will get to what has been on my mind since our subject has come up.

    As a veteran of life when all of this is over I am certain that I will not miss cancer, disfigurement, disabilities, insanity, war, starvation, death in its many forms and in the end of all things even hell will be thrown into that grate lake of fire and done away with forever.

    I will regret that I did not do as much as I would have liked to in presenting the Gospel and being a better Christian.

    So when the war between good and evil is over I won’t miss a darn thing and be very happy to just go home.

    I did not miss the Prime Minister of Israel’s speech before the UN yesterday as he shamed them for allowing a nuclear Iran, as Russia/Magog moves into the mix.

    I think time is close.


  22. poohpity says:

    Viv, you said, “If I met another human being who displayed all the virtues you mention Pooh I would believe I had died and went to Heaven.” I do not think it is as important for us to look for those virtues in others as it is to see the measure of them in our own lives.

  23. cbrown says:

    Gary, to clarify, the letter was written 9/26 by a former member of my church. We have been praying for his wife and family and it was a blessing to see how God works in the midst of the storm. Quotation mark was missing at the beginning.”So when I look at Sandra.

  24. poohpity says:

    As brothers/sisters in Christ we are bonded together not to fight each other but our common enemy which are; “against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places”. That enemy sneaks in to rob us of our place in God’s kingdom as it pits us against one and another and tries to separate us from the love of Christ with doubt and deception. God gave us our guarantee of Salvation to shield our minds, faith to protect our hearts, our guard of His truths, shielded with the righteousness of Christ, the ability to spread the Gospel and the Word of God as a weapon not to use against each other but so we know what is true, right and just to battle against the evil forces of this world. Our most valuable Commander and Chief to call upon His name who has won the battle against our enemy to depend on through it all.

  25. jeff1 says:

    Unfortunately Christians are not bonded together and are constantly bickering while evil forces are gaining ground in this world. It is in the heavenly places that we know God has already dominion but the earthly Kingdom has still rulers of darkness that are outwitting many believers who are falsely taught, thankfully we know the end but the battles are still to be fought.

  26. poohpity says:

    Not all Christians bicker and we are bonded in our belief in Jesus Christ. The battles belong to the Lord who willing intercedes on our behalf. We have the freedom to chose how we will act or respond to any given circumstance or person and our attitude in looking for dirt or gold in others. The choice is in our hands. We can blame or make excuses all we want but my responses are my responses, my actions are my actions, my anger is my anger, my bitterness is my bitterness and if I allow them to take over my life then I will suffer the consequences from that choice.

  27. poohpity says:

    Christians are not perfect nor do I expect them to be that is expecting the unattainable but I can show them grace and not pick out every flaw or failure. Quality control was not a gift offered to us to administer in the body of Christ. How can I expect others to do what I know I am incapable of doing?

  28. tracey5tgbtg says:

    From reading the opening comment by Mart, I can see that when lives are on the line in adrenaline charged situations, that people bond together very tightly. I guess that is why Christianity thrives under persecution.

    cbrown – thank you for sharing the testimony from somebody in your church. I have to agree that God wants far more for us to praise Him than to spend our time pointing out false teachers.

    Jesus replied, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”

  29. joycemb says:

    Yes Steve I agree, I too won’t miss a darn thing about this world we are in today. My devotion this morning was Psalm 59, written by David when Saul sent soldiers to watch his house in order to kill him. In the first 15 verses he pours out his feelings about his enemy, but his final 2 verses are priceless:

    16 But as for me, I will sing about your power.
    Each morning I will sing with joy about your unfailing love.
    For you have been my refuge,
    a place of safety when I am in distress.

    O my Strength, to you I sing praises,
    for you, O God, are my refuge,
    the God who shows me unfailing love.

  30. poohpity says:

    Treat others as you want to be treated. If one wants judgement then judge. If one wants to be criticized then criticize. If one wants to be condemned then condemn. If one wants to be shown grace then show grace. If one wants to be forgiven then forgive. If one wants mercy then show mercy. The measure you use will measured back to you and even if it is not given back to you do it anyway because that is what Christ has done for us.

  31. joycemb says:

    Discover the Word was very powerful I thought today. If you get a chance, listen.

  32. joycemb says:

    Mart your last statement: It just doesn’t seem natural to be fighting a war of love—in which our Commander in Chief, has already sacrificed his own life for to make peace with his enemy.

    Thinking about this I think we all at times have trouble with what Love is. Jesus does very plainly speak against certain things, and so did God. So how to define love when we see it encompasses both things that hurt-and things that heal. I Cor 13 describes it and John also says that God IS love. That’s who He is. Yet, I think the difficulties we have such as those between obedience and grace are because we don’t really understand the full meaning of love. Which makes sense really, as God being love makes no sense to us humans. Thus the wars and rumours of wars continue on, both in person and in the world at-large.

    In the OT it was his enemies that were destroyed, along with those who claimed His name but were disobedient. In the NT we gasp at the deaths of Ananias and Sophira and even Judas thinking, how could love allow these followers of Jesus to die for their sins?

    Just my thoughts on a pleasant Friday afternoon. Lets all keep it real but not personal, friends.

  33. street says:

    mart said,”It just doesn’t seem natural to be fighting a war of love—in which our Commander in Chief, has already sacrificed his own life for to make peace with his enemy.”

    seems to me He made peace with sinners and condemned sin at the same time. condemned sin in the flesh comes to mind. there is nothing natural in it other than sinless perfect flesh that was sacrificed for sinners. how much more are we to die to sin and live for Christ since He died for us and now lives as an Eternal High Priest to interceded for the saints. He is for us should we not be for Him?

    our failures keeps us humble. our failures come from pride, ignorance and rebellion. what i just wrote is not true i don’t believe in retribution theology. Jesus is the only person that can make a sinner humble. everything else is deception.

  34. cbrown says:

    Thanks Joyce for the reminder to listen to “Discover the Word” You commented on the “war of love”Romans 7:21-25 addresses this conflict.7:21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. 22 For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; 23 but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. 24 What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death? 25 Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!

    So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature[d] a slave to the law of sin.

  35. joycemb says:

    Street and Chris I understand where you both are coming from and couldn’t agree more! Obedience is our way of offering thanks to God for delivering us from the power of sin. God knows we will sin in the flesh, but has offered a better Way. I believe it takes a regenerated mind-through the power of the Holy Spirit-to want to obey, even though while still in the flesh we do have to deal with it. Reason I must die daily.

    So do we then have a right or obligation even to condemn/criticize others when we ourselves are just regenerated sinners? I think the answer would be no. Jesus said something about this, something about ‘what is it to you’ to Peter I think. Snappy answer there. In other words, don’t mess with your brother’s life, the one I’m planning to die for. As Paul explains in Romans, we all have our tough beginnings, but the end thereof is freedom and thankfulness, not condemnation and dread.

  36. oneg2dblu says:

    I do not think that our opposing voices here, constitutes any war, or ungodly fighting, or any attempt to try to separate us from the Love of Christ.

    Nor do I think opposing positions, held even by the most learned bible scholars, on any biblical terms or meanings, puts us all at risk of losing our faith.

    But, listening to and believing in, and even obeying, any premise of false doctrine, false teaching, or any of Satan’s other minions, that apparently do slip in among us, as they cleverly look like sheep but they are really wolves, is a dangerous and very real scenario or God would not have enlightened so many verses and people about such things.

  37. poohpity says:

    Love seems to be “doing” what is in the best interest of the one loved. That action seems to be how Jesus showed His love for us. Thinking about the welfare of others before ourselves. Isn’t that how the veterans acted during their time of service as they banded together?

  38. oneg2dblu says:

    Wow pooh we posted at the same time.

  39. joycemb says:

    Gary on a personal note here; I watched a CNN special about the sexual abuse of children within a polygamous family. Listening to the victims I was so reminded of my own experience growing up. The brainwashing, deception, abuse etc, etc. After becoming a Christian I was a prime target for legalistic gatherings as it was like ‘home’ and ‘normal’ for me. What has gotten me through and beyond these, though, is not anyone saying, “you’re being falsely taught”, I would not have listened anyway, but what has been my teacher is the Holy Spirit teaching me slowly and gently through scriptures I had been led to misread. How patient and loving God is with us all!!! I think we are all on this same journey somewhere along a continuum of faith.

  40. joycemb says:

    The training the military goes through is a rigorous physical, and mental ‘brain washing’ for the purpose of looking out for each other and banding together for a common cause-the US of America, even to jump on a grenade for the troops if necessary. This is why so many have such a hard time when they leave the military as their ’cause’ has to change. I still don’t see this as how our training as Christ followers into ‘the Body’ goes.

    The way the H.S. has led me all these years is toward holiness in mind, body, and spirit. Not a ‘national’ faith but a personal one.

  41. poohpity says:

    Joyce, have you been through military training? My cousin, her husband, her daughter and son, my dad and my grandpa may disagree with what you say about being brainwashed about having each others backs. Or how about all that Paul went through for his love for the Lord and the body and the purpose of spreading the gospel which was the only thing he boasted in;

    Five times I received from the Jews thirty-nine lashes. 25Three times I was beaten with rods, once I was stoned, three times I was shipwrecked, a night and a day I have spent in the deep. 26I have been on frequent journeys, in dangers from rivers, dangers from robbers, dangers from my countrymen, dangers from the Gentiles, dangers in the city, dangers in the wilderness, dangers on the sea, dangers among false brethren;I have been in labor and hardship, through many sleepless nights, in hunger and thirst, often without food, in cold and exposure. 28Apart from such external things, there is the daily pressure on me of concern for all the churches.

    Paul went through all that because of love and he was not brainwashed.

  42. joycemb says:

    No, I haven’t been through the military but know many who have, that’s all.

  43. joycemb says:

    According to google:
    Brainwash: make (someone) adopt radically different beliefs by using systematic and often forcible pressure.

  44. joycemb says:

    Inscription and service are always voluntary in the Lord’s army.
    For God so loved the world He gave….no coercion or rules/regulations demanded. Only to love one another as He has loved us.

  45. joycemb says:

    And believe in Him.

  46. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… it seems that Paul’s warnings were not meant for you if you would have not listened anyway.
    Thank God that you did listen however to the Holy Spirit though.
    There is no greater voice for learning the word and its truth than the Holy Spirit who is our Helper.
    I say that because we all tend to read what we want to hear, and seemingly gloss over those things we do not.
    But, I may be wrong…

  47. oneg2dblu says:

    He, the Holy Spirit, guides us into all truth.

  48. poohpity says:

    Joyce, gee I thought in the USA joining the military was on a volunteer basis just like coming to the Lord. In Israel it is done on a conscription basis as an obligation to their country for men and women. I guess being surrounded by many who would love to annihilate them off the face of the earth for thousands of years they want the people to be prepared. Just like God prepares us for those who would come against us because of our beliefs. The armor and uniforms are different but due to the same reason from our relationship with God.

  49. joycemb says:

    Well, most troops sent to Vietnam were chosen by lottery using their birthdates, I remember well. I’ve also read that many soldiers in wars within our borders past were conscripted. That’s not my point though, my point is that brainwashing is used to train to conform to military principles and that God does not use the same principles nor train the same way. I’d like to just agree to disagree on this as I think we are probably coming from different perspectives. Have a great evening!

    Gary yes! Thank God for the Holy Spirit, and especially to Jesus who sent Him to us!

  50. remarutho says:

    Dear All —

    Have learned that Vladimir Putin is looked upon as a savior by Bashar al-Assad and his followers in Syria. Even a casual glance at the world map will show how close Russia and its overhead bombers and veteran ground troops are to Israel/Palestine. Very close.

    Just wondering what Assad will ask of his powerful ally as he regains dominion over his own nation — been thinking about the times we live in. Perhaps many are being drawn into the Valley of Decision — har Megiddo. Those who earnestly desire war will be drawn to such a possibility like bees to honey!

    “Put in the sickle, for the harvest is ripe.
    Come, tread for the wine press is full;
    The vats overflow, for their wickedness is great.
    Multitudes, multitudes in the valley of decision!
    For the day of the Lord is near in the valley of decision.” Joel 3:13-14

    God is good.


  51. street says:

    gary said,”I do not think that our opposing voices here, constitutes any war, or ungodly fighting, or any attempt to try to separate us from the Love of Christ.”

    you are incorrect on this one gary. the devil would like nothing better than to break up the unity caused by the Spirit and derail the growth of the church. as for the church shepherds, opposing every conceivable assault over the last 2000 years, of history, is filled with the ones who walked with God and their contemporaries. some were were excommunicated good and bad. not one church father was perfect but their inspired and careful thoughts that were correct were preserved cherished and built upon each succeeding generation. each generation must make the Word of God their own. without the Holy Spirit it would be impossible and futile. i guess this is why devotionals are so popular. we must be careful and alert we are in enemy territory. sometimes it feels more like survival mode than victory mode.

    it would be impossible for you to separate anyone one from God’s love. you may trip them up with sin and sly words, but God will put you in your place. i remember hearing something like this, “God you seduced me, but i let you do it.” God seduces no one each one is lead away by their own heart. beating a dead horse is futile too. your not going anywhere.

  52. jeff1 says:

    My brother-in-law is a member of the select vestry in our church and he showed me statistics for our church attendance. Only 24% of our congregation attend and the biggest majority are in their latter years. The almost 0 attendance is from the 18-30 year olds. Do we really take God seriously when we are young or do we just think we are invincible. It seems as we become more aware of our vulnerability we turn to God. That is perhaps why it is in our darkest places that we reach out to God. It was like that for me after a life of listening to the wrong people I finally realised God was not my enemy, I was. I really had been brainwashed into believing that people in authority knew best and I could trust in their guidance. I have discovered that my children are much more aware than I was when it comes to false teaching. I was told by a catholic woman that it is not only our church attendance is on the decline for the younger Roman Catholic is not attending since the revelations of abuse by Priests and Nuns. I had often been told by Catholics how brutal some of the nuns had been with them. It seems we are products of our time and God has well equipped the younger generation not to be taken in by false teachers, thank goodness. A decline in religion to me, means God is finding other ways of drawing people to him. If a person finds themselves nearer to God in others ways than religion who am I to judge. Church may work for me but it does not work for the majority. God is more interested in drawing people to himself than teaching them religious doctrine that often confuse a person’s walk rather than enlightens.

  53. lovely says:

    Life is a battle. I’ve never been in a physical war but a spiritual one.Serving in Mission is spiritual war & i can relate just some of those experience as being a physical soldier at war, many times the bible do use example of a soldier at war Although it was a short time but its a time of testing. When we came back from war nobody will truly comprehand the cost that you paid and what’s it like to pay your life to fight in the front line. Coming back where you’ve been fighting for them only to hear them say “she is just wasting our money?” Here again there is a greater war that we need to fight ; the good fight of faith 2 Timothy 2:3 You therefore must endure hardship as a good soldier of Jesus Christ. 1 Timothy 1:18 This charge I commit to you, son Timothy, according to the prophecies previously made concerning you, that by them you may wage the good warfare, 19 having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck. I am reminded that i am not truly home yet & there is a battle still to be won. God’s preparing us for the new Heaven & earth where we will judge the earth. But at this point we just have to claim the victory that Christ already won 1 Corinthians 6:2 Do you not know that the saints will judge the world

  54. jeff1 says:

    It is God who equips the saint to judge and it is God who decides whom that saint will be. Israel has the best army in the world by God’s will. God uses whom He has chosen for the purpose He has chosen them but I understand I can suffer loss for my waywardness and have to hope that God will still use me for His purpose. My greatest fear is that because of past failures God would cease to see me fit for service and put me to pasture. While I long for the peace of the world I must realize that it cost God His son and if I am to follow Christ as a faithful servant then it will be costly to me also. My father (God rest him) told me that to suffer for righteousness sake was to be in good company for Christ suffered. My Dad served in the Royal Navy in WW2, and in Palestine, was one of the last of a British peace keeping force to leave it. He rarely talked of his service, only when asked and I never knew a more peace loving man but he believed that it was a privilege to suffer for righteousness sake for it put us in good company, to know God is to walk with God.

    O valiant hearts who to your glory came
    Through dust of conflict and through battle flame;
    Tranquil you lie, your knightly virtue proved,
    Your memory hallowed in the land you loved.

    Proudly you gathered, rank on rank, to war
    As who had heard God’s message from afar;
    All you had hoped for, all you had you gave,
    To save mankind-yourselves you scorned to save.

    Splendid you passed, the great surrender made;
    Into the light that nevermore shall fade;
    Deep your contentment in that blest abode,
    Who wait the last clear trumpet call of God.

    Long years ago, as earth lay dark and still,
    Rose a loud cry upon a lonely hill,
    While in the facility, of our human clay,
    Christ our Redeemer, passed the self same way.

    Still stands His cross from that dread hour to this,
    Like some bright star above the dark abyss;
    Still, through the veil, the Victor’s pitying eyes
    Look down to bless our lesser Calvaries.

    These where His servants, in His steps they trod,
    Following through death the martyred Son of God:
    Victor, He rose; victorious too shall rise
    They who have drunk His cup of sacrifice.

    O risen Lord, O Shepherd of our dead,
    Whose cross has brought them and Whose Staff has led,
    In glorious hope their proud and sorrowing land
    Commits her children to Thy gracious hand.

  55. SFDBWV says:

    Sometimes I need to look up some piece of information on the internet from scratch, so I go to one of the optional search engines and click search.

    The result can be a staggering 2 or more million possible sites, subjects, or answers to my search.

    I almost envy those who simply have accepted Jesus as Lord and need no further explanation or knowledge concerning the matter.

    I say almost because I do enjoy the discovery of so many facets of God and our journey through this life with Him leading the way.

    I read a commentary many years ago about why the author thought Paul used so many references to soldering and such kind words for the Centurions who accompanied him to Rome and looked after him until his execution.

    The author thought since his guards read every word he wrote before allowing them to be sent out that he colored them as some of the good guys and made certain to teach civil obedience to those in authority to the church.

    It makes a little sense if you think about who Paul was talking to in his letters at the time.

    Jesus on the other hand spoke more to a farming society in His references in His teaching and warned that those who live by the sword would die by the sword.

    Last evening Hal Lindsey said the he believes we are living in the end times as evidenced by the headline news. I agree.

    As the voice of the Church we should be trumpeting the call for all to come to Jesus while time remains with all the gusto of the end coming any moment.

    With that thought in mind I suppose I should take my finger off the trigger and use my hands in the service of Christ in the “Signal Corps” instead.

    39 degrees windy and wet.


  56. poohpity says:

    I was wondering if many do not understand the brotherhood/sisterhood of Christ it may because our purposes and goals are unknown? You know like not understanding what we were saved for, in other words what our marching orders are from our Commander and Chief. When we understand what our mission is maybe then one will find the bond we share.

    Together worshiping our Savior, praying for everyone, doing good, reaching the unreachable, feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, housing the homeless, giving water to the thirsty, taking care of the widows and orphans. Working together to bring about good in the world then we work as a team.

    However looking around I see boycotts, bigotry, taking a passage out about judging and that becoming a mission rather than an exception, finger pointing about how others fail to live a “Christian Life” while neglecting how they themselves are not living a “Christian Life”, pushing our beliefs on others rather than drawing them in because our lives look appealing and satisfying.

    So maybe there is a lack of brotherhood/sisterhood because our common purposes and goals are not at all common anymore.

  57. saled says:

    After reading Mart’s post, I thought, “Now I understand Uncle Dick.” Dick served in World War II and that was about all I knew about him except for the fact that he was a drunk. He lived with relatives in the next town over and would drop in to visit my Dad once in awhile. He was actually my father’s uncle, and my great uncle. Conversations with him were very minimal as he was the type of alcoholic that appears to live in a stupor rather than in an agitated state. No one respected him and he was used as an example of how not to live.

    It was after Uncle Dick died that my daughter’s cross country coach gave me a copy of a magazine article written about Dick’s WWII unit. The writer was the squad leader of Dick’s unit who later became both a writer and member of the running community in our state, thus the connection with the coach. When Dick was in the hospital dying, this former squad leader came to visit him and stayed with the coach while he was in the area.

    The article detailed the treacherous movement of troops through the Alps in what were called half-tracks, as well as the hardships of the winter battles. In a handwritten note on the article, the author stated that the driver of his half-track was Uncle Dick.

    After reading Mart’s post and listening to the Ted Talk, I realized that it probably wasn’t the nightmares that drove Dick to drink: it was coming home to a world of few human connections. There were people who took care of him, but he really wasn’t important to them.

    And this reminds me of a study about the cause of addiction that I read recently. The theory is that addiction is not caused by brain chemistry, but by lack of human connections. The author stated that we are wired to be connected, and if the human connection is not there, then we will connect to a substance.

  58. jeff1 says:

    Is it not biblical that there will be a falling away and great division leading up to the end times? God knew this would come to pass so when Jesus returns there will be no more confusion among believers for our roles will be defined for us. Christians will argue with each other but when Christ says, you do it, the response will be very different, its typical human nature when the cat is away the mice will play up.

  59. poohpity says:

    God is never far away but He does not seems to come near to those who do not want Him near. “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” He has left His presence as close as the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. He lives within the believer, we are never alone without His very presence. That is one of His very promises, “For God has said, “I will never fail you. I will never abandon you.”

  60. joycemb says:

    One rejoices in being unfrightened to be open to the healing presence, no matter what one might be or what one might have done.

    Kevin O’Shea

  61. jeff1 says:

    You are making a lot of presumptions when you say God does not seem to come near to those who do not want Him near. I was full of hate when God came near to me, I was not looking to God for the devil had a grip on me. I hated my enemy with a passion and I was not looking to change my heart towards them for it is still a thorn in my side and one that is proving very difficult to remove. Believing in God and His presence does not stop the battle within me, my mind still has unpure thoughts towards my enemies but taking them to God removes my desire to hate but it does not fill me with love for them. It is not a one shoe fits all when it comes to our walk with God, each has their cross to bear but as I have often heard fellow Christians say if you put down everyone’s cross on the floor, you would lift your own, for each of us think we have burdens until we listen to another’s. God has brought me from a hellish place for being filled with hatred is not where I ever want to be again but I have a long way to go to love my enemies and I do believe God will never abandon me in this quest for when hatred consumes you as I was consumed then you are very aware that hell is a very real place to be in. I believe in God allowing me to hate them, He let me see the dark it was for them and in doing that I can now understand they need love and mercy and not condemnation. I can now honestly agree with God even though I struggle with the reality of living with their hatred for us I really do believe God is healing me from hating them back and I like to believe in time He will transform their hearts and minds to do likewise. I disagree that God does not come near to those who do not want Him near, He cares for the wayward too for they are after all in the greatest danger from Satan.

  62. poohpity says:

    God sees a heart. Let me say it another way, God does not seem to force Himself on anyone. It is not presumption at all it is written over and over again in His Word which reveals His character and promises. He stands at the door and knocks as it says in Rev 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me.” Does that sound forceful? He does not knock the door down and push His way in, He seems to wait patiently until we ask or seek.

  63. jeff1 says:

    That would perhaps explain why many people are the way they are they have not asked Him in. I guess I know too many believers who believe they know God so well they don’t need too ask Him into their heart. The problem is that I want God to be a God of love but do I see God as I want to see Him or are my friends correct when they tell me He is a God of Wrath. I have not studied the Bible they have. It seems to me that God can be what ever we want Him to be while I see Him as a God of love another sees Him as a God of Wrath and that is probably why having been brought up in a Church who focused on Christ I prefer to do just that. Resting on what Christ has done gives me peace of mind and I am tired of wars whether physical or spiritual for whether I loose the battle on earth it is Christ who has won the Victory for us. As I see it my enemy could kill me tomorrow but I am still a winner in Christ.

  64. poohpity says:

    Viv, I was not the one who said, “draw near to God and He will draw near to you” that was quote from James but that is what I have learned from experience to be true. I have never believed that one can force anyone to love them so God will not force us to love Him or it would not be a free choice. You are right many people say many things, I guess that is why God wants us to get to know Him personally, one to one.

    Just like people can tell us many things about other people but until we get to know them personally we really do not know them at all. Jesus and God are One in the same. Jesus came to reveal God to us.

  65. oneg2dblu says:

    Seeing a heart, and getting know someone personally, may be a God thing, but, so is recognizing a tree by its fruit.

    We can’t see inside a fellow Christian or a tree, or get to know personally every Christian, or any tree.

    But, we can make a godly judgment about that tree by the fruit it bears, and we are that tree.

  66. oneg2dblu says:

    Trees do not point fingers at other trees, but people do.

    How can we, being as trees, then say things like “they themselves are not living a “Christian Life,” unless we also judge them?

    Is our always judging of others, saying “they” are pointing fingers, not the very fruit others then see in us?

    Double Standard?

  67. oneg2dblu says:

    How easy it is to say to a brother, you are wrong…

  68. poohpity says:

    Trees are blind and go without measuring the production of fruit on their own branches. So it is up to the Gardener to work on that not other trees.

  69. poohpity says:

    It could be equated with people going to visit others and looking at their house seeing all the things that need repairs and cleaning while their own house is dirty and falling down around them.

  70. remarutho says:

    Good Morning BTA Friends —

    The ironies of combat veterans returning to “normal” society include feeling alone and isolated even from family, friends and community they left when they were deployed.

    You wrote about the war reporter, Mart:

    “After 20 years of covering the horrors and inhumanity of the battlefield, Junger found a painful irony—what veterans miss is the opposite of what war stands for.”

    In the midst of flying bullets and IED explosions, the soldier so committed himself to and so loved his fellow warriors that he cannot find any meaningful relationship apart from armed conflict. Life among the uncommitted is unsatisfying. Also, he may be dealing with ptsd or other wounding from the war.

    Those who are sold out to Jesus may, late in history, ignite with love for God so that we are able to be radically and passionately devoted to the work of the Gospel — as a soldier is devoted to his comrades and the mission assigned.

    Or, we may fall short and fail “to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which (we) have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.”

    O Lord God, please give us eyes and hearts to discern the body of Christ!

    47F and clear this morning – Still dark on the West Coast

  71. poohpity says:

    The veterans seem to come home leaving a sense of community only to find the very community they were fighting for not putting any energy into being united but finding all the things that divide. The very one’s they put their life on the line for, fighting each other maybe not with guns, although that could be, but with words which often times are the deadliest weapons.

  72. poohpity says:

    Amen, Maru.

  73. SFDBWV says:

    The weather service this week gave us warnings of a possible hurricane coming our way and so we were all alerted to be prepared for the worse. Thank God it was averted as it went east instead of inland.

    The alerts and warnings though were the right thing to do even though this time nothing as so catastrophic as a hurricane happened.

    The southern east coast though I see has been hit pretty hard and as I have been following the news in South Carolina it made me think about my old Alma matter, Paris Island SC, the U. S. Marine Corps recruit depot (boot camp).

    An island approachable only by bridge or boat at near sea level surrounded by swamp I have to imagine it had to be inundated by this round of flooding.

    When I attended boot camp there the water level of the swamp was just behind our old wooden barracks and the sight of snakes and alligators were a common occurrence.

    Our Drill Instructors often telling us if we wanted to escape or go AWOL, just go ahead and try to make it through the swamp alive.

    Anyway all the flooding centered there in SC made me think of the people there and wonder how this all affected them.

    There being an old saying “Once a Marine always a Marine” reflecting the “esprit de Corps” and comradeship that never leaves a veteran of the USMC.

    Saled I knew many people here in our little world who were like your Uncle Dick from both WWI and WWII. I could write about each one I knew, but their common bond is that they served in foreign wars and never fully recovered from it.

    I also know of many who came home helped rebuild their lives and were valuable assets to all who knew them and to their community.

    Again the great mystery of life; albeit fate, choices or God’s will, we are who we are and where we are in life.

    On our monument of veterans, their names and the wars they served during, they are all alike no distinction between them aside from what branch of service they were in and what war they were in.

    Shouldn’t it be the same for Christians who’s names are written in God’s Book of Life?

    Wet, cold and windy, 45 degrees at 10 am.


  74. joycemb says:

    Good point Steve. In the Kingdom Jesus said the last shall be first. Jesus died to save us, the war is fought and won! Whatever our status in the world the playing field is level at the cross. No winners or losers all the same in Christ.

    This song from the community in Taize, France has been going through my mind:

    “The Kingdom of God is justice and peace, and joy in the Holy Spirit. Come Lord and open in us, the gates of Your Kingdom.”

    It is an all-inclusive Kingdom available, available to love the lost, lonely, forgotten, wounded, disgraced and rejected. May Gods peace be our comfort and place of rest today. Amen

  75. oneg2dblu says:

    All Inclusive Kingdom?

  76. oneg2dblu says:

    I need to do a search on that terminology, is that word found in the word of God?
    That did not take very long, the answer is, it is not there!

  77. joycemb says:

    It is an all-inclusive Kingdom available, available to love the lost, lonely, forgotten, wounded, disgraced and rejected.

  78. joycemb says:

    Jesus talked mostly about those I listed.

  79. joycemb says:

    The Kingdom of God is unlike the military that rejects the lame, mentally unfit and those lacking in stamina.

  80. phpatato says:

    Saled and Steve

    My father served 26 years in the army. He participated in WWII and the Korean Conflict. Growing up, I can only count on one hand stories of what he experienced. Dad simply did not talk about “it”. The Royal Canadian Legion got started as a gathering place for veterans to go so that they could talk about what they experienced. A great many of these vets were ordered not to talk about what they saw and heard once they “got home”. The legion became a place where these vets knew they were free to talk about the horrors they saw, knowing that they were in the company of “family”. They shared a commonship that no one on the outside would understand. Sadly, these stories were, for far too many, told over several pints of beer. It became a watering-hole for vets to escape as it was the only place they were able to talk and be free in doing so. Thankfully for my dad, he knew his peace and comfort could only be found in one source and that source was Jesus Christ.

    As an army brat, I grew up living on military bases. Every family living on that base were strangers, but oddly, we were all family. I could actually feel how close-knit we all were. If I fell and scraped my knee while riding my bike 5 doors down the street, a mother who lived 5 doors down the street would be outside helping me up, putting a band-aid on my scrape, to give me a hug and say it was alright. We were all family. I remember actually feeling scared whenever we went off the base and onto “civvy street” when we went to church or mom needed groceries. It seemed like a big bad world to me. And to me, in reality, it actually was. Life was so very different when we finally had to move to civvy street. I am so thankful that I was able to grow up on the base, where people were stopped at the entrance to the gate, to have credentials checked as to whether you were allowed to proceed or turned back because you weren’t. Today though, guard houses have been dismantled and entry onto the base is a come and go.

    As an army brat, the term “sense of community” was very real.

  81. poohpity says:

    Joyce I understood what you meant by all-inclusive because I read it along with the rest of the sentence in which it was contained, in other words within it’s context. ;-)

  82. joycemb says:

    Wow Pat that’s really interesting.

  83. joycemb says:

    Exactly Pooh. But now I know how to get a rise out of you, Gary. Lol! Push your ‘ bad word culturally’ buttons’. Relax, I didn’t do it on purpose (this time) wink.

  84. joycemb says:

    Dear Gary, you need to get your head out of the world and into the Kingdom. God doesn’t need any cops at the gates. :-)

  85. joycemb says:

    Gate NOT gates.

  86. street says:

    saled said some things that got me thinking. he mentioned a guy riding in a half track. he personally knew the guy driving the half track. i can see why uncle drank he did not know and was not known when returning home. sure he knew a lot more of life but the change was not acceptable to him so he drank. transitions in life are hard. packerd said the greatest knowledge is to know God, second would be knowing the people around us. there is a Kingdom present in this world and is not visible. it will be called out into the presents of Christ very soon. just like when israel was called out of egypt.

    i enjoyed these thoughts and concerns too many to mention. it has been a very gracious and merciful day for me.

    Israel, put your hope in the LORD, for with the LORD is unfailing love and with him is full redemption.

    this gentile waits.

  87. oneg2dblu says:

    Oh you girls… your always pushing the love button with your more than kind words.

    I totally get the context of that all inclusive word.

    “Inclusive,” is all the buzz today, as it permeates the worldly churches, and the ever darkening society we now live in.

    Or, as Joyce says, having one’s head in the world and not the Kingdom.

    Even the military is becoming more inclusive today, but the more inclusive things get in this world, the more the words, God, Christ, or even Christian now offend, and those who use them, often get thrown out, or get their heads cut off.

    Or is that reality, a little too much reality, or seen as being out of context here as well?

  88. oneg2dblu says:

    You are right, no cops needed, as we only need the word of God, which is so clear about who does and who does not get into the Kingdom.
    We all know the exclusionary list, that is listed in the word, don’t we?

  89. joycemb says:

    Well Gary, if we forget I’m sure you’ll remind us!

  90. jeff1 says:

    It seems that some do not see that they have double standards when it comes to what they expect from
    God. When I was wayward God waited patiently for me to come to Him but now I am not to do the same for others who have not come so far in their walk. Am I playing God or following Christ?

  91. street says:

    looks like a bulls eye jeff. the fun part is learning to be salt and light, we just need to step out of the way.

  92. SFDBWV says:

    Pat I can see your life on military posts were a lot like living in a small town as I have. It is a very comfortable place to be, amongst people who share a common life and are genuinely concerned about the welfare of their neighbors. I am sure you missed that after growing up, but hope you found it in your life apart from the military.

    Yes Joyce I am glad you got my point in comparing our veterans to we Christians, all get to share in the glory no matter what part they played in the war.

    I can finally see the moon and stars this morning, what a beautiful sight. 42 degrees and clear.


  93. oneg2dblu says:

    Yes Joyce, I too am glad you get my point.
    I will try to be here to remind us all, there is a part for us to do… beyond having faith alone, and then stepping out of the way.

    James 4:7
    “Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.”

    It seems to me, as we just, “step out of the way,” and all become so much more inclusive/tolerant in our thinking, allowing evil to parade around shinning like it is a light, by holding its love banner high, as we are being swept away with all our coddling, instead of resistance to it.

    Then again, according to the word, the world must get darker, so why would we want to stand in its way?

    So, if I get your context, when we stand with this new darkness, we are then becoming more like the light?

    Double Standard

  94. oneg2dblu says:

    I remember the community effect upon generations of believers who followed the olde, “English Standard Bible…

    Today, we have a newer generation and newer version, “The Double Standard Bible, embraced by the masses, and ever becoming the more inclusive one.

    One step, after another, of stepping out of the way.

    In with the new, then, out with the old.

    Upside down, and backwards.


  95. foreverblessed says:

    Today is the last Great Day, the last day of the Feast of Sukkoth,
    The Feast of Booths, or Tabernacles is 7 days, but then there is an Eighth Day, the Last Great Day,
    Lev 23:33-46
    “On the first day is a day of rest, and the eighth day also is a day of rest.”

    Seven is the holy number belonging to God, but then there is the eighth, the eighth can also be seen as a new start, a new beginning.

    That is the Day when Jesus cried out:
    “On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice:
    If a man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink”

    John 7:37-39

    I used to keep them holy when I was younger, till I found out that the life living in faith in Jesus Christ, you are living in the Rest.

    But Christ was crying with a loud voice!

    Come to Me

    It is this message that we have, we are workers with Jesus, to look for the lost, and tell them the story of Salvation through Christ.
    We are all workers together in this, or often also said as soldiers for Jesus. Only we do not take up the weapons of war, but the weapons of the Holy Spirit.
    Eph 6:10-19
    And my favorite weapon is that of Prayer.
    Prayer warriors we are called.
    “The prayer of a righteous man availeth much ”
    James 5:16
    So the thing I do daily, is to be right IN Christ. Only He is Righteousness in me. Me focusing on Him.
    He is my goal, and my Resting-place is in Him,
    and then pray intercessory prayers for all that He gives me to pray for.

  96. poohpity says:

    I was thinking when it comes to military the groups of soldiers are called different things depending on their function or use like; battalion, corps, company, division, detachment, detail, brigade, etc.. but we together are called; one, the body of Christ. The soldiers have different functions and they work independently of each other but we are to work interdependently with each other under the head which is Christ Jesus. Each part of the body is needed for it to function properly.

    So we can not say that one part is more important than another or that one should not be here or is not useful. I know for myself I have parts that do not function as well as they used to, parts that have been harmed, broken or taken out, others that have been replaced with metal components and they just do not work as well as they used to. The thing that makes all our parts work together for our body to function is when we have Christ as the head.

    Some people try and replace the head thinking they can do a better job, that is when the body breaks down and does not function as well without the One who was meant to guide it. We can not say to the muscle in the left leg that we can do without you or to the sinew in the little toe we do not want you because without those parts the body suffers.

    When the body attacks the body we get things like Lupus, Rheumatoid Arthritis or autoimmune diseases and the body fails to function normally. When we put Christ as the head whether a part may be broken, injured or suffers somehow He makes it all work together for good.

  97. remarutho says:

    Good Morning BTA Friends —

    This morning, Mart, your comment about esprit de corps catches my attention again:

    “Over the years, I’ve heard other soldiers say something similar. Instead of trying to defend the politics or national cause of their side, they talk about the importance of being there for one another; having each others back— even to the point of being willing to die for the group. And from time to time, such comments have left me thinking about what it means to be in a greater war in which our purpose also is not just about about trying to defend a principle… or to kill someone.”

    Defending a principle is not about talking — rather a principle stands when we live by it as I see it — taking constructive action in behalf of that principle.

    The Love of Christ is much greater than any mere principle. It is the foundation of God’s Kingdom. Jesus-followers can only answer questions about this love by loving others (lovable and unlovable) as He has loved us.

    Wimps cannot be so inclusive as to love the unlovable, Brother Gary! Turning the other cheek after being struck takes real courage.

    Joy all day,

  98. joycemb says:

    Maru following your thoughts this morning and others I come to the powerful words of I Cor. 1:24-31

    24 But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles,[f] Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God. 25 This foolish plan of God is wiser than the wisest of human plans, and God’s weakness is stronger than the greatest of human strength.

    26 Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy[g] when God called you. 27 Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. 28 God chose things despised by the world,[h] things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important. 29 As a result, no one can ever boast in the presence of God.

    30 God has united you with Christ Jesus. For our benefit God made him to be wisdom itself. Christ made us right with God; he made us pure and holy, and he freed us from sin. 31 Therefore, as the Scriptures say, “If you want to boast, boast only about the Lord.”

    The OT prophet Malachi says in 4:2 But for you who fear my name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in his wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.

    As Christ-followers we are so blessed to find joy and healing also individually, not just the nations which will come eventually.

    Prayers for us all as we live in the joy and healing God has provided through our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

  99. jeff1 says:

    I cannot expect those of you who do not know me well to believe that I do believe I am in a war with the devil. Gary it is your provocative to trust no word other than God’s word and I too have heard enough false teaching to be sceptical when it comes to those who follow Christ and those who say they follow Him. What we agree on is that Christ is our Saviour but that is where our bond ends for we have been born into different Countries, Cultures and Religions so we are very different people in reality. It is God who does the miraculous in bringing people of all nations together for the good of the Kingdom and I am just one of His many vessels. I am 61 years old so I know myself well enough by now to know my faults both from my own perspective and others who know me well. God knows them too but thankfully God dwells on what I can do for Him and not what I am a failure at and I believe He uses others in the same way. While you Gary demand perfections from everyone God accepts us as we are and in return, with Him beside me, I fight my demons everyday in the sure and certainty that it all finished long ago at Calvary. My enemies are not enemies of God they are believers in Christ, my struggle is not with non-believers it is with people who where falsely taught and since I once believed false teachers myself I am now able to understand how that happened them. In time God brought me to see the error of my ways and I have hope that in time He will bring them to see the error of their ways. I live in hope that they will change their ways but they may not and if not I stand to suffer loss in the present but I do not look at it as loss for I have done the right thing before God I have taken responsibility for my own hating and brought it to God and in doing so it is in His hands to deal with my enemies as He sees fit because I trust His mercy and judgement better than I trust my own. I no longer hate my enemies and who knows some day I may be able to honestly say I love them but I am not there yet but I have accepted my attitude was wrong and I am trying to put it right. I get the impression Gary that you believe I do not try to fight my demons but while I may be ignorant of who my enemies are at times I do try to keep God’s commands but I do not believe I do it perfectly and surely if I did I would end up boastful and proud rather then remaining Christlike, humble and grateful and God does not want His followers to be like that does He!

  100. joycemb says:

    Vivien I do know what it’s like to be at war with the devil. Early on into my walk I was pointed to a Christian therapist who was also doing a lot of exorcisms with people who had been raised in satanic cults where incest and child sacrifice were common. I was not raised in such a culture but my counselor, thinking I was (this was in the 80’s), tried to cast out many demons in me. It didn’t work, however because I was not demon-filled but mentally a mess. The attempted exorcisms left me feeling evil and worse than before as his words he spoke to me (thinking he was talking to demons) left me more wounded than I already was. That said, from then on I battled literal demons that physically attacked me for many, many years. God allowed it, but through it all I learned to see the power that Jesus has over the demonic world. He has ALL power. To this I can attest. Eventually when the battles were over (as God decided) my personal struggles with the demonic ended. Then God led me to work with people who were very involved with the demonic realm and I heard from them more than once that my Jesus was more powerful than any of their spirits. Yet most chose to stay with their worship practices, sadly. The damage to those people is awful, all downhill to where they are not thriving well.

    To this day, Vivien, I can’t watch, read or look at shows about any kind of witchcraft, psychics, etc. The door between this world and that is very thin and opens easily. I’m not saying you have this problem at all Vivien. My point in saying all this is to remember, the battle is the Lords, and He will conquer all our enemies. Whether in the flesh or in the spirit. Whether in the church, the grocery, or the local pub or whatever. Yes the enemy prowls about like a roaring lion seeking to destroy. But God! He is our very present help every minute of the day/night. God bless you in your war. God bless us all!.

  101. jeff1 says:

    Yes Joyce, it is God who has fought and won our battles but what is in my head is in there and I cannot get it out of it. Some days I can forget about it but other days it is very real to me but I was only 15 when the war here started so it is all that I have known in my lifetime and I just need time for God to heal the wounds as do we all who have known war, we are all longing for that perfect peace that surpasses understanding.

  102. joycemb says:

    Viv I have come to the conclusion through the years that those such as you and I and others who are broken in mind and or body are very close to God because of our disabilities. In our weakness He is strong.

  103. joycemb says:

    The peace that passes all understanding is with us here and now. It comes from surrendering everything to Jesus who has fought and won every battle we now encounter, whether daily, hourly or weekly. Come quickly Lord, we need You now.

  104. jeff1 says:

    Yes when I leave it with Him I can move on with my life but when I don’t I get weighted down with worry and concerns that are above my understanding. The battles in this world are complex and require His attention while we are the vessels that He molds for His purpose.

  105. oneg2dblu says:

    Sebastian Junger was a household name where I moved from, Gloucester, Mass. where I lived on the waterfront and in that community where many fisherman lost their lives during that Perfect Storm, that Junger wrote about in his book, and which became a huge movie.
    I was out by the sea wall during that time when 40 foot waves were crashing over the Breakwater at Eastern Point Light, and moving huge blocks of granite, weighing tons, and connected with steel rods, like they were ice cubes in a drink.
    The wind was screaming and so forceful, that we had to hang on to a chainlink fence just to keep our footing.
    To think that the One we worship could just speak all that force into a calm sea, is certainly beyond understanding.
    What a horrific place for your loved one’s to encounter, while they who go down in the sea in ships, do it to support those they love.
    That puts the whole community in a common place of finding God as their only place of peace.
    Peace that surpasses all understanding.

  106. jeff1 says:



    And did those feet in ancient time
    Walk upon England’s mountain green?
    And was the holy Lamb of God
    On England pleasant pastures seen?
    And did the countenance divine
    Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
    And was Jerusalem builded here
    Among those dark satanic mills?

    Bring me my bow of burning gold!
    Bring me my arrows of desire!
    Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold!
    Bring me my chariot of fire!
    I will not cease from mental fight,
    Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
    Till we have build Jerusalem
    In England’s green and pleasant land.

  107. jeff1 says:

    It is perhaps why many find it so difficult to revert to civilian life for the bonds they share last a lifetime and are for their private memories. I am very much against war, it is a necessary evil in my estimation. Three thousand people died in NI before men finally agreed to sign a peace agreement, an agreement that is not working because heads of state put pressure on those who were called to agree it, to do just that. It was not there will to sign it but another’s will. There hearts are not in it for there is a lack of trust among those who signed it. When we lie to people we severe relationships and cause mistrust and pain to all concerned. Trusting people again is difficult for me for once you realize that it is only God you can trust, you realize the difficulties you face in this world are against principles of darkness. The reality hits home I am part of a spiritual war that Jesus has already won!
    I have no idea of the outcome but with Him at the realm I have hope in that His will shall be done and not man’s will which always falls short of God’s. Keep my eyes on you Lord for with you all things are possible!

  108. poohpity says:

    “When the disciples heard this, they were very astonished and said, “Then who can be saved?” And looking at them Jesus said to them, “With people this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.” (Matt 19:25-26) ” Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me.(Phil 4:11-13)

  109. oneg2dblu says:

    In my daily reading of the Chronological Bible, the One Year Bible, my eyes flashed upon this premise found in, Matthew 13:52, “Every teacher of religious law who becomes a disciple in the Kingdom of Heaven is like a homeowner who brings from his storeroom new gems of truth as well as old.”

    Does that mean we Born Again Believers, or Lifelong Disciples, actually can find some things of merit in the gems of the “Old Ten,” which many today seem to wrongly think they have no value to us any longer, saying, We are no longer under them?

    I would say, we should never forget this little gem, “We are however, to be Under Discipline!”

    Be Blessed, Gary

  110. oneg2dblu says:

    My Pastor’s definition of a Christ Follower is, a “Lifelong Learner, Under Discipline.”
    Then he always adds, “Did you get it?”

  111. poohpity says:

    Military are trained in how to protect each other along with tactics to wage war. Christians also are in a learning process not that we ever fully understand or know but we are learning. When I become content with myself in that process knowing I will never have it down perfectly then I learn to be patient with others as they go through the same process. I think the most important part is just knowing it is a process.

  112. poohpity says:

    If the first covenant had been faultless, there would have been no need for a second covenant to replace it. 8 But when God found fault with the people, he said:

    “The day is coming, says the Lord,
    when I will make a new covenant
    with the people of Israel and Judah.
    This covenant will not be like the one
    I made with their ancestors
    when I took them by the hand
    and led them out of the land of Egypt.
    They did not remain faithful to my covenant,
    so I turned my back on them, says the Lord.
    But this is the new covenant I will make
    with the people of Israel on that day,[c] says the Lord:
    I will put my laws in their minds,
    and I will write them on their hearts.
    I will be their God,
    and they will be my people.
    And they will not need to teach their neighbors,
    nor will they need to teach their relatives,[d]
    saying, ‘You should know the Lord.’
    For everyone, from the least to the greatest,
    will know me already.
    And I will forgive their wickedness,
    and I will never again remember their sins.”[e]

    13 When God speaks of a “new” covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and will soon disappear. Heb 8:7-13

  113. jeff1 says:

    I believe God is always teaching me, it is not that I should discard the ten but as advanced in years I will find many who have been brought up with the New Testament and will not resonate with my way of thinking. We are all products of our time and I must not expect another to understand what was not given to Him to understand. His walk is not my walk. I must continuously bring myself before God and in doing so God will give me discernment on others. It is my own heart must be right with God for me to identify the truth and it is in being critically honest with my own heart that I will find the truth. There is prejudices in me that I hang on to that God must remove from me and it is where I falter, my heart tells me one thing, and my head is saying another, not a good place I can tell you, God help me! This is when I wish God would coerce me but I have to trust His will shall be done when I step out of my own way!

  114. poohpity says:

    This is the New Covenant that goes with the new birth in other words our marching orders from our Commander and Chief;

    11 I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete. 12 My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. 16 You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit—fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. 17 This is my command: Love each other. John 15:11-17

  115. jeff1 says:

    While it is His command He does not force me to do it. It is easy to love the lovable but not so easy to love the unlovable and it is human nature to be drawn to those who love you. What do I do with those I find hard to love, I am not sure I have found an answer for I cannot lie and tell God I love them when I do not. I can only hope and pray that someday it will no longer be a struggle for me that my heart and mind will be transformed to His will and not my own. God’s patience shows His love for us while our impatience with others shows our lack of it.

  116. poohpity says:

    It seems one of the hardest battles to fight is between guilt and grace. Chose grace it heals the wounds of brokenness.

  117. joycemb says:

    Jesus wept. The shortest verse in the KJV. It’s good to remember that Jesus was just as human as we all are. Taking the time to weep with those in distress (whether Christian or not) is as much a part of our lives and preaching as it was for Him.

  118. foreverblessed says:

    Together is the army of God!

    What I find difficult here is that Gary twists the meaning of what I write into something that I did not write. I have said it before.

    I feel that as person in the squadron who is not backing you up, but trying to tear down what it is to live a life in faith in Christ.
    That does not feel like a band of brothers.

    I have stated that my Guideline is Jesus Himself, and not the 10. Where as in former years, my guideline was the 10, they were precious to me.
    Now Jesus is precious to me, Psalm 119 talks about living in Jesus, from the Alpha to the Omega, and all steps in between.

    “I am not under the Law, but under Grace”
    these exacts words are out of the bible.

    “I am yet not under no low, I am under the Law of Christ.”

    These are also words out of the bible.

    Now comes Gary and gives it a twist:
    “Does that mean we Born Again Believers, or Lifelong Disciples, actually can find some things of merit in the gems of the “Old Ten,” which many today seem to wrongly think they have no value to us any longer, saying, We are no longer under them? ”

    I did NOT say that I can now break the 10,
    Being under the guidance of Jesus Himself, does that make me a breaker of the 10?
    If the conclusion you make is: Yes,
    then that is your own conclusion, and not mine.
    As Jesus made the commandments, the 10 impossible to keep,(see Matt 5,6 and 7) as even the thought of hate is considered as murder. Without the Holy Spirit in us, we are not able to keep the commandments of God.

    We are of a Spiritual People, who in the Spirit are children of God, we may call God our Father because we are adopted as His children through faith in Christ. Romans 8
    And now Christ is leading each one of us, as He sees fit, so that we may hear the words that He has for me personally. And He gives me the Spirit to be able to keep them too.

    Jeff is talking about loving her enemies, that is way beyond the 10
    Jesus commanded us to love each other as He has loved us.

    And that is way beyond the 10: love the other as you love yourself.

    See, how that life in faith in Jesus is like stepping in a boat, and letting the wind of the Spirit take the lead.

    We are One in Jesus Christ, we all eat from the same Bread, the Bread from heaven, and drink from the same cup, the blood of the New Covenant, which covers the sins of the world.

    Jesus has overcome the world, and we are His soldiers, 1 John 5, lets really believe that He did overcome the world. And live in that surety that He is Conquerer of all that is evil. Evil in us, evil in the world, and that the Light is stronger then the darkness.

    May you be forever blessed!

  119. joycemb says:

    Forever if faith is being tested here, and it is, then rejoice that your name is written in heaven! The enemy of our souls knows scripture well, and is a champion at twisting and causing division. But praise God Jesus has overcome the world, and taken our sins away. As far as the east is from the west. May you also be forever blessed!

  120. joycemb says:

    Just in case anyone feels offended the enemy of our souls is spirit, not human. But he has been known to influence us humans; or try, anyway.

  121. oneg2dblu says:

    Foreverblessed… please chill out, why do you think every thing I post is all about twisting your words?
    I was just sharing what I read this morning and asking a question, not of you, but of a the meaning in mixing of the old and new, because both testaments have value to all Christians, and not just the old geezers of yesteryear, the word of God is written for the moderns of all ages as well.
    His Word never returns void.
    2 Timothy 3:16 “All scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be well-fitted and adequately equipped for all good works.”
    Why would any teacher of the younger generations ever avoid the Old Testament or Ten Commandments, which are the very guidelines for right living?
    Ever after one is Born Again, they are still and always will be the infallible words of God, never changing, ever living, eternal words, for right living.
    I would add those who find them impossible, should also say, nothing is impossible with Christ, and, with His Helper living in us, why would we not be able to overcome, even the world?
    I never thought that Christians would want them removed from anywhere…
    But, I may be wrong, old fashioned, and just a product of yesteryear, where they were once heralded everywhere.
    Imagine that!

  122. oneg2dblu says:

    I will say that this, many in the modern, more inclusive, world we live in, would now also like, “In God We Trust,’ removed from their sight.
    Just a thought…

  123. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… Perhaps our faith is being tested.
    I am not in the group of those who feel that their sins of tomorrow, not yet committed, not yet confessed, and not ever repented for, are already taken away, as far as the East is from the West?
    Am I lacking in my Faith, or in Christ as my Savior, or am I just being real here?
    What if tomorrow, a professing Christian were to also take the mark of the beast, would they still be already forgiven for that, and heaven bound?
    How about if one blasphemes the Holy Spirit?

    I wonder what the Word says about those things?
    Or do they not matter, just like the ten no longer matter, and like any and all sin no longer matters, to those who feel that they are already forgiven?
    “No matter what!”

  124. cbrown says:

    Forever, I am blessed by your posts and some of Gary’s not so much. Keep your eyes on Jesus and when Gary lines up with Jesus good. When he does not or has a self righteous spirit know in whom you believe. PS, I sure would like to write as well as you do!

  125. oneg2dblu says:

    Me too!

  126. jeff1 says:

    I battle with a self righteous spirit too, it is part of growing and I often feel I take one step forward and two steps back. God will use us where we can be used despite of our weaknesses, society shuns us with our disabilities but God still sees a purpose for us. That is why I am contented because I finally realize that God is not out to get me for my mistakes but wants me to let go of the guilt and trust Him. When God corrects me it will be forever, I can scarcely believe it myself that I will be a whole new person without the warts!

  127. joycemb says:

    Gary I guess what I was taught as a fundamentalist is that if a ‘believer’ continually or even once causes a very grievous sin, like murder for instance. They were never really believers in the first place, just walking around like one.

    John did say that believers don’t continually sin. So, the proof is in the pudding I guess. However it’s made.

    So as that still makes sense to my way of reading, I don’t, however, feel that preaching about all the sinful things to stay away from is how Jesus taught. It becomes a ‘rule’ of religion. That I believe is dangerous and causes people, like me, to become highly judgemental and full of dread. That’s not why Jesus came. He came to bring light and life! Yes there is life and light in doing the right things, I agree with that. It’s how the message of the Gospel is preached that makes a difference for me in how peaceful a Christian I am. I was not a peaceful Christian while I was a fundamentalist.

    That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it.

  128. poohpity says:

    Gary, did you notice the words of that 2 Tim 3 passage says, “so that the man of God may be well-fitted and adequately equipped for all good works.”, not to use against or apply to the lives of others. Just wondering if you noticed that? It seems to be for our own training purposes and personal life application.

  129. joycemb says:

    I do believe that if a professing Christian does commit a grievous sing, repentance is their option and Christ is their reward. As for the blasphemy of the HS, well, that’s a total rejection for the gospel, as many Judaizers did. Seeing the miracles but giving the enemy credit for them.

  130. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh… I did notice this, your second part, or your addendum, did not have “any” quotations around them.

    And where does it say that the man of God, following your application, benefits only himself?

  131. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce…Ah yes, the end of all, to any conjecture, any opposing verses, or any thoughts about Eternal Security, the O.S.A.S. universal fail safe, or scapegoat quote, “They were never saved to begin with.”
    Making all things that are hard to swallow, suddenly become more palatable.
    I get it, I just don’t practice it.
    It is not a part of my faith position in Christ.
    Saying that those who believed, never really believed.
    Hey, if that works for you, fine.

  132. poohpity says:

    Gary, read the whole sentence. The scriptures are a mirror into ourselves not a battering ram against others. When one addresses a sin in another, it is done with gentleness and the utmost care for the purposes of restoration not condemnation that is also in the bible but I will let you look that part up. The reason the second part was not in quotation marks cause it was not a quote but a culmination of many other parts. I know you do not understand,yet but hopefully one day. ;-)

  133. poohpity says:

    Ooops It would have been better to say read the verse because it is a whole sentence then the meaning is clearer and the part that is not in the quotation marks is better understood.

  134. joycemb says:

    Gary I was just talking about what I was taught. What I believe? I believe that no one can judge another’s heart. The Bible does say the wheat and tares will grow side by side until the day of final judgement; which is coming up fast in my estimation. I don’t have the black and white lense I used to have regarding who is saved and who isn’t. I’ve seen/heard of plenty who profess Christ yet because of their actions or ways of thinking makes me scratch my head in wonder. I’m learning to just thank God for knowing them and to pray for them as I would for myself; knowing my life/walk with God could just as easily be misunderstood and judged. I feel that from other Christians right now where I live because church attendance is manditory to be known as a Christ follower here. And there’s one verse in the Bible that condemns me and they use it!

    Our job is to preach, not save. Only Jesus can save and I’m not Him. I still think that where church is about do this do that it sets people up to be judgemental. Coming slowly out of my fog. God bless is all!

  135. jeff1 says:

    I live in a religious Country and you echo my thoughts exactly, I have told my brother-in-law who has the attitude if you do not attend Church then you are not a believer in his eyes. I do not believe that is for him to judge for I knew too military men one was coloured and one was white and they both told me they felt nearer to God in nature then they did in Church and I knew both of them well enough that I could see they were sincere. It is not our call how God brings another to the Kingdom it is His and I am thankful for that for I have been deceived enough times by others to be glad not to be judging others.

  136. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh… yes we can always hope that every other person learns what we more learned ones already know.
    How empowering it must feel to dish out that, “some day you be like me,” thinking.

  137. oneg2dblu says:

    Just to say that if another does not make it into the Kingdom of God after being born again, or ever having a new life present, because he was never a believer anyway, is to judge another by some well taught modern doctrinal standard, which does not line up properly with the old Sower, God, who’s seed, the Word of God, which was sown, and which did spring to new life immediately, but later withered.

    Or the seed that did spring to life, but was later choked out by all the other plants also allowed to grow.

    Or, the seed which sprang to new life, but had no good soil for a proper root.

    So, all the seed which was sown, contained life, but that life did not always make it to live to mature fruition.

    But, don’t take my word on that, because, your thinking says, that the seed was never allowed to really come to life to begin with.


  138. joycemb says:

    The parables you mention Gary are talking about the Kingdom. The audience did not understand what Jesus was talking about yet. Even the disciples did not understand what Jesus was talking about in regard to ‘Kingdom’ as they thought He was setting up an earthly kingdom. But since the death and resurrection of Christ we now know and being informed can make our own choice whether to belong or not.

    Matthew Henry said: “It is sad to think how many go away from sermons without the word of grace in their hearts”.

    Grace through Jesus Christ is I believe the key to Kingdom theology. There is no grace in these parables, but there was a reason for it then, so that prophecy would be fulfilled. Just like Judas selling the savior for money. It was prophesied in the OT that these things were going to happen, and they did! Marvelous word of God we love and trust.

    Gary thank you, I am so much enjoying studying scripture with you! It’s great!

  139. poohpity says:

    Gary, it has nothing at all to do with ““some day you be like me,” thinking”. That was not anything I have ever said so the quotation marks were used in error. It has to do with someday you may learn more about God’s grace and how to read what a sentence actually says in the context and not what you think it says.

  140. poohpity says:

    Gary, FYI I would never want anyone to be like me, you have no idea what that would be like and I sure would not think or wish that on anyone. I want others to be who God created them to be, unique.

  141. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh says…
    “I know you do not understand,yet but hopefully one day. ;-)”

    Now there’s a loving, and non-judgmental statement if I ever read one.

    “I know,” infers, that “I” do not know, what you know.

    “Yet,” infers, that “some day” in the future, I will know just like you do now, being that you are the knowing one speaking here, possessing an elevated state of knowledge.

    “Hopefully,” well hopefully, that must be the softer loving part of your statement.

  142. oneg2dblu says:

    joyce… you may consider that, your enjoying the studying of scripture, as my whole reason for being here.

  143. oneg2dblu says:

    pooh says…” I want others to be who God created them to be, unique.”

    Then, why do you not leave others to be their unique self?

    Oh, that’s right, He alone is God, and you are not.

    You say, you can not even help yourself, so then, only God can help you, right?

    So, why worry about the sins of others?

    Because the scripture says, “all our works are like filthy rags.”


    Gary, did you notice the words of that 2 Tim 3 passage says, “so that the man of God may be well-fitted and adequately equipped for all good works.”


  144. joycemb says:

    Gary, are you being snarky? Or, what?

  145. joycemb says:

    Regarding your post at 7:07

  146. oneg2dblu says:

    Joyce… I am not familiar with that word, nor in my dictionary, could you define it more for me by using other terms?
    I do have an “innate sense” about what it may be saying though.

  147. oneg2dblu says:

    I want others to be what God created them to be also, but my definition of that state of being would not be unique, it would be better defined as being, His, as we are already, each of us, unique.
    Just thinking…

  148. joycemb says:

    SNARKY. 1. : crotchety, snappish. : sarcastic, impertinent, or irreverent in tone or manner

  149. joycemb says:

    Gary I like your 7:43 post. As for the 7:07 one I really want to know, as it’s hard for me to really understand without hearing the voice and seeing body language. So if you aren’t being snarky, then you mean just what you said, right? My personal filter is interwoven with doubt and fear, as I’m sure you have heard from me before. That’s why I ask to understand your intent. Thanks

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