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Origins and Outcomes

P1030172In our last post we talked together about how in the 9th century BC, the prophet Elisha counseled the king of Israel not to kill his prisoners of war. As a result, Joram (king of Israel) prepared a feast for the soldiers of Ben-Hadad (king of Aram/Syria) and sent them home. After that, we’re told, that Aramean forces stopped their cross border raids into Israel (2Kings 6:21-23).

One take away we observed is that “the best way to deal with enemies is to make them into friends.” It’s a good thought and practical outcome.

But there’s a problem. The peace was temporary. The next words we read in the unfolding story is, Some time later, however, King Ben-hadad of Aram mustered his entire army and besieged Samaria. As a result, there was a great famine in the city. The siege lasted so long that a donkey’s head sold for eighty pieces of silver, and a cup of dove’s dung sold for five pieces of silver” (2 Kings 6:24-25).

That isn’t the worst of it, the record of Israel goes on to say that things got so bad that starving mothers began cannibalizing their own children.

What happened? How could a moment of high ground move us so precipitously into events that are even difficult to talk about so many years later?

Seems to me that the answer to this question helps us to understand that the Bible is more than an ancient compilations of practical moral lessons.

In this case the supernatural displays and wisdom of Elijah and Elisha were meant to show what happens when a “messenger nation” stops relying on its God. The problem was not that the Aramean people were a nasty group of violent people. It was that the king and people of Israel were no longer acting as if their hope and life were found in the God who had rescued their ancestors from the slave yards of Egypt.

Israel had been called by God to do what Elisha was now called to do— show the neighbors at home and across the border what it means to live from the hand and security of the God who made us for himself.

Ancient Israel and the present Church of Christ have a similar role. The difference is that our crucified and resurrected Savior points to a God who is, as it turns out, far more loving, humble, and merciful than the people of Israel thought he was.

What we see in Jesus is the God of Genesis, and the God of Elisha. But he’s no longer asking us to live by the law of Moses to reveal the heart and ways of God to the world. He’s asking us instead to live in the Spirit of Christ (Gal 5) in the face of our enemy— regardless of whether, in the short run, it seems to work or not.

Seems to me that the implications are important for followers of Christ in any age. Hasn’t it always been a challenge to live by the spirit of Christ in the presence of legalistic religious leaders— and economies that are wired to someone’s material excess and political strength— rather than to the Christ-like Spirit of our God?


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74 Responses to “Origins and Outcomes”

  1. Mart DeHaan says:

    Because I’m posting later than usual today, am copying Jeff1’s comment on the previous post from earlier this morning.

    jeff1 says:
    March 16, 2016 at 5:05 am (Edit)
    Violence is the consequences of just the opposite putting our earthly country before our citizenship in Christ’s kingdom.

    Why has this beloved Country of mine seen so much violence because the people here cannot agree to share it. No matter which side you come from it comes down to territory.

    The animal instinct is great in man when it comes to what he believes he should own. Whose ancestors arrived first and worked the land?

    Oh yes, I can say I put Christ first but let anyone try to take my home from me and see who I put first!

    As I have heard it so often said from men of wisdom, I come into this world with nothing and I go out of it with nothing and in between I am taking care of what God give me to take care of.

    I talk like earth is just my temporary home but find me a man who acts like it is!

    Christ died on the Cross to save mankind from himself, I only have to look at the state of the world to see that His sacrifice was not in vain.

    I must agree with God, I am a sinner saved by grace, full stop, no buts, as my son says he is fed up listening to my excuses.

  2. SFDBWV says:

    In this subject of showing mercy to our enemy and upsetting his plans of having eradicated us it is remembered that only after his evil plans were thwarted by God could mercy be given.

    Learning from history I recall the finest act of mercy I recall being offered and it was at the end of a horrible deadly war that changed the course of American history.

    At the surrender of the Confederate Army by General Robert E. Lee General Grant simply said for Lee’s army to lay down their arms and go back home.

    President Lincoln offered a reconstruction effort to simply forgive and forget and rebuild a nation.

    I also remember that at the end of World War II the very enemies we fought so hard to defeat were given not only amnesty, but an all-out effort to rebuild their nations by we the victors. Only the worst of the enemy was singled out and executed or imprisoned for their part in the war.

    The enemies of each other during WWII are now allies as a result of mercy and generosity.

    However the world is changing and growing darker every day. Aptly stated by others here is that God is in control of events. He can empower and He can subdue according to His will and desires to be fulfilled.

    Noah was in the ark, not guiding it.

    Not wishing that any be misguided I want to clarify that the cross was Jesus’ purpose, when He said for us to take up “our” cross and follow Him it is meant for us to take up “our” purpose and follow Him.

    His purpose was the cross, our cross is our purpose.

    36 degrees under clear skies this morning in the mountains of West Virginia…Thank you all for your prayers and compassion for my family and me. Praying God blesses you all today.


  3. SFDBWV says:

    Like Mart’s bringing Viv’s post into this subject I took the liberty to do the same with mine.


  4. foreverblessed says:

    What Jeff wrote: I van say I put Christ first, but let anyone try to take my home, and then see who I put first.
    When someone does that, we reactie to our old natural self, we forget that Christ will defend us.
    With taking up our cross, I believe it is meant to put our old self on it, and crucify our old natural inclinations.

    When we are attacked, we go to God, lay the attack at His altar,
    and pray: Lord, have mercy on US

    In the case of Israël, it was because they had left God.
    But we as a Christian group, do we live according to what Jesus instructed? Love your enemies

  5. foreverblessed says:

    What if someone comes to take our home, do we love Him?
    How do we show that love?
    Steve said, they were shown love a f t e r they were defeated.

    Reminds me of saint Maarten, who, when the thief was brought to him that had stolen some if his silver ware, he immediately went to his cupboard, took out some more of his silver ware, gave it to the thief and said:
    “Oh, I meant to give this to him as well”.

    This man, the thief repented, and turned to God.
    His heart was touched because mercy was shown to him before He had repented.

    Let me say this, he repented because of the mercy shown to him

    And I was thinking, do we have stories of christians doing this nowadays?

    St. Maarten had crucified his passion for his earthly possesions, and so he became a mighty channel in saving a lost man.

    And secondly, Maarten was so close to Jesus, he was secured in His love, that he felt loved, even if his earthly possesions were taken away

    If we are attached to Jesus, the Holy Spirit will guide us on the path Jesus has laid out for us.

  6. SFDBWV says:

    Here is the USA we have an old WWI hero, Sargent Alvin York. He has a very similar Christian story in that he had a wild and adventurous youth, but heard the call of Christ and became a Christian.

    He was then drafted into the American Army, but argued his faith prevented him from being a soldier and killing his fellow man.

    It was a preacher and a Christian Officer that shown him how God used men of war to exact His will in matters here on earth.

    Alvin York killed his fellow man, but captured more alive than dead and was decorated by His country for his effort.

    Many a good Christian man died on too many battlefields for the safety and liberty of others for me to forget their sacrifice or belittle their faith because of how some see their duty to Christ and confuse it with the politics of men.

    There is a time for peace and a time for war.

    Jesus stated to Pilate that if His kingdom were of this world His angels would come and fight for Him. God sent angels to come and fight against an enemy to His people time and time again.

    It is always going to be God’s will over our blindness to see it, it is only through very specific circumstances that God opens the eyes of someone to see what it is He wants seen. Otherwise it remains unseen.

    However it does not take special ability to see evil for what it is nor special instruction as to know how to deal with it.

    If you do nothing to prevent evil’s rise you become a part of it.


  7. jeff1 says:

    Evil was defeated at the Cross, who carries on the evil, man carries it on.

    Who starts wars, men, who finishes wars men by fair means or foul.

    God’s way, I do not believe so.

    God work was finished on the Cross. Men carry on as they always have done.

    The faces change because hatred is handed down from one generation to another with dire consequences.

    My mother told me there was no war worse than the war within.

    Who do you trust when brother can no longer trust brother and I am talking of brothers in arms rather than brothers in Christ!

    When do you see your brother in arms as your brother in Christ after you wound him. Why not be his brother before you wound him?

  8. poohpity says:

    The lessons of Jesus no matter the outcome or what happens later is what we follow. Jesus taught to return good for evil, that is the only way to overcome it. If after doing good the other person returns evil for that good so be it but the person doing good can rest in peace knowing they did what the Lord asked.

    Look at how many people say I know this is wrong to say but I am going to say it anyway. They may not suffer the consequences at that time but they will.

    When I am doing the will of God there may not be the outcomes I would chose but I did what God has said was just no matter what anyone else does, says or how they react.

    With the second meeting with the army of the Armenians/Syrians the Lord caused them to hear a vast army attacking and they all left camp and left everything there so the people of Israel ate but not before they had done horrible things (2 Kings 7). They looked again to themselves and their king not to God. The rest of the history of Israel was the same bad lessons repeated over and over trusting their might and minds while not going to the Lord.

    We have not learned from history either before we go to the Lord we try everything on our own and as a last resort then turn to the Lord rather than putting Him first.

  9. SFDBWV says:

    In the Bible story of which we speak at no time ever did God say to open the gates and let the enemy in and have his way…Never.

    We are told to put on the “Armor” of God and to make war with evil spirits. Evil spirits can do nothing until they have the help of evil men.

    Jesus said if someone slaps you on the face (an insult) to offer him the other cheek, at no time did he tell us to allow anyone to kill you if you could prevent it, though he did say many would die for their belief in Him, He never said go ahead and let evil men triumph over good men.

    If any of you think there is no longer evil forces at work in the world then it is not only to God’s will that you are blind.


  10. jeff1 says:

    I agree Pooh, man’s way or no way!

    Steve says, if you do nothing to stop evil’s rise you become a part of it.

    For 30 years here we had military fighting to restore some kind of normality to this Country. In the end the terrorist’s told the Government let us into Government and we will lay down our arms.

    Just this week a Prison Officer died due to his bomb injuries.

    Are these people in Government out for the good of the people and the Country.

    The people of this Country know by their talk and their non action that they are not.

    Man’s way, no thank you, I have had man’s way all my life, and nothing changes because men’s heart don’t change.

    What God’s restores let not man put asunder.

  11. poohpity says:

    Jesus could have prevented evil men from killing Him!

    Of course there are evil forces in this world God told us that and gave us His Armor to stand firm against it but many do not stand firm against it they go along with it.

  12. jeff1 says:

    Intimidation is widespread when it comes to evil men and many will not put their families at risk especially when the authorities can do little to protect them.

    I knew a woman whose husband come from a bad area here and she told me how he told her that as a young boy men would come to his house and tell his father he wanted his sons to come and do some digging and he knew not to ask anymore questions.

    Guerrilla warfare my mother said was the worst kind of war and she was right. When you are on the battlefield you see your enemy but it is very different in the type of war in my Country.

    If I do not trust men it is because I have seen so much of evil, and now only trust God, for His word is truth, and it is His word I believe when He tells me Christ has overcome evil.

  13. SFDBWV says:

    I will say it again and again, all it takes for evil men to triumph is for good men to do nothing!

    The world at large is all too aware of the cowardly murderous actions of the people of Northern Ireland. All in allegiance to their *cause* not their *faith* in Christ. To try and connect Christ to their evil is unfathomably ignorant.

    The Ten Commandments declare it is a sin to *murder* not kill in the effort to protect yourself or your family.

    In point I would suggest no one here would agree that God would order any one to commit sin, yet if killing an evil enemy is sin, then how be it God instructed Israel time and time again to do so.

    I am done with this thread of conversation as it is just becoming silly and I don’t have the time nor energy to defend what I have said.

    I know the realities of living here and now and what would happen if we did not have soldiers and police to protect us from a very evil world. I for one am grateful for them, not suggesting they are somehow not aligned with the will of God because they have to use force in order to do their job. God bless them.


  14. poohpity says:

    No one has said that our warriors are not doing God’s will as they fight in battles by obeying the governments that God has put over us but as we dig a little deeper within our own hearts where evil takes root is in hate, anger, bitterness, unkindness, resentment. (Genesis 6:5; Proverbs 4:23; Matt 15:18-19 NIV; Mark 7:21) So the source is from within our own hearts and then flows outwardly so to condemn what is going all around us and fail to see the condition that is prevalent in our own hearts first is to deny reality and the only cure for that is God’s mercy and grace then after clinging to that that will effect how we behave in the future towards people. Stopping before we are ugly to think about it and then make a choice to turn the other way and do good.

    Through Christ we have been given an alternative to the ways of the world which is when someone is ugly to you be ugly back, return evil for evil, stop forgiving and show no mercy. The ways of Christ says if we are even angry with another it is the same as murder. (Proverbs 10:12, 17:9; 1 Peter 4:7-8 NIV) We have a choice which one we will give in to evil or the ways of Jesus and follow Him but the choice is ours, which do you choose?

  15. jeff1 says:

    I can tell you Steve that there were very good men who lost their lives in defense of this Country so I would not agree with you that good men did nothing.

    I never connected Christ to the evil of men but what I am saying that it is He who has overcome them. They have been murdering and wounding anyone who does not agree with them for a long time and just this week a Prison Officer lost his live.

    Governments are not match for these men, they have tried and failed but they have to meet their maker and that is what I mean by Christ has won because we the law abiding people cannot beat them.

  16. poohpity says:

    If a person truly wants to do good then they will do good no matter if they get it back or not. There are many people who do good and doing that good we know from scripture is not what takes the evil out of this world it just makes living this life here better but it is God who one day takes that evil out and until that day we live looking forward to it by showing grace, mercy, forgiveness and love by doing good.

  17. jeff1 says:

    Yes, Pooh, that is so very true, we cannot stop the evil in the world and that is why I turn to God for my peace and comfort and not to men.

    I do not wish evil on my enemies but what is happening here is what happened throughout history and unless there is a change of hearts then history will again repeat itself.

    If I speak it is because I do not want to see my children and my children’s children living with the same evil I seen.

    I was not brought up like many in my Country to see someone with a different religion as an enemy.

    To me a believer is a believer regardless of how they came to believing and for most in my Country it was inherited.

    The evil that I have seen caused my doubt and turned me away from God and it is only of late that God has let me see that I must persevere and trust Him.

    It has to be in His time because there are reasons that I do not understand but I do understand that it is God who is in control regardless of my wobbles.

  18. poohpity says:

    Smile me too Viv, I really like the term wobbles cause I sure do, do that more than I would like that is why it just brings me to tears about the mercy and grace we are shown and why I embrace it so tightly.

  19. joycemb says:

    Two thoughts come to mind from reading Marts post.
    1. Trusting the enemy once you befriend them.
    2. Living in the moment rather than worrying about what’s going on around us.

    Being a casual friend of an enemy is wise and prudent I think until they have proven themselves to be trustworthy. We can love and bless them, but I’ll keep my door locked as long as is needed to keep safe. Maybe meet in a public place for a while even. That’s being practical I believe.

    Murder has been happening since Cain and Abel. Doesn’t the Bible say that in the end times (since the crucifixion) there would be wars and rumors of wars! The best we can do is to keep our eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith no matter what is going on around us. In that momentary time of being in His presence I find peace and guidance for how to live, along with the comfort of scripture, spiritual songs and writings. It’s moment by moment living in the Spirit. And in the world.
    Blessings, Joyce

  20. jeff1 says:

    There have been many peacemakers throughout time but like my son says every time they overcome a dictator like Hitler, Stalin there is another one to take over.

    This world needs Jesus today as much as it always did but as normal the world is just too blind to see it!

  21. SFDBWV says:

    Today being Saint Patrick’s Day I am surprised it hasn’t been mentioned already as there is fewer stories of how an evil intent boomeranged into an enormous blessing.

    Kidnapped by Irish raiders as a youth and enslaved this good man returned to his enslavers after escaping to bring a nation of people to Christ.

    Well done Patrick, you deserve to be remembered for showing what forgiveness is all about.


  22. joycemb says:

    Isn’t that what all Christians do? Only in our little ways not so much famously. Good reminder Steve thanks.

  23. remarutho says:

    Good Morning Mart & Friends —

    Your question is a good one as we enter the week of Christ’s Passion beginning Palm Sunday. Mart you ask:

    “Hasn’t it always been a challenge to live by the spirit of Christ in the presence of legalistic religious leaders — and economies that are wired to someone’s material excess and political strength — rather than to the Christ-like Spirit of our God(?)”

    Seems to me this is the challenge of the yoke of discipleship Jesus offers us. Material blessings beckon in every advertisement — every “deal” that is offered. God’s calling to detach from the “me first” mind-set continues, because of God’s unending grace. Many look at the prospect and say, “No! Give me the prosperous outcome the world offers!”

    My personal reading plan now has me in the Book of Judges in Scripture. Man, as soon as the judge who led Israel died, the people reverted to the gods of the surrounding peoples! Promises of plenty and easy profit always have been strong influences on the fallen human nature.

    Jesus gave His body to purchase for Himself a people who love and honor Him in every circumstance and temptation. When we have this as our origin and desire — New Life in Him — our outcomes give Him glory here and now.

    Perhaps we are fearful that our “sacrifice” will go unappreciated in the world. No need to fear, it will go unnoticed and unappreciated by all but our Lord and those who love Him.

    Joy all day,

  24. foreverblessed says:

    Yes Maru, thanks!
    Have your mind set on things above, bible verse sonewhere in Col 3:1-20
    The treasures stored in heaven, the gifts from above, peace love joy Gal 5:22
    Christ came so that He could give these gifts from above!
    We are sooooo Rich, so wealthy, if only our eyes could be opened to that, just as Elisha saw the army of angels on the hills surrounding him, and his servant didn’t see it.

    I am volunteer in an old people home, and have seen some on their deathbed, what would earthly wealth do any good then?
    Then it is, have we the assurance of the spiritual life in Christ.
    What could any enemy do to us? We have all the wealth of heaven, we can share it with them!
    But it takes a life relation with Jesus, a sure and confidant existance in Him.

    I know I have to grow into that eternal life yet!
    May God open my eyes to it!

  25. SFDBWV says:

    I could go and gather all of the Bible quotes that support the statement that God never changes and is the same today, tomorrow and yesterday. However I hope most of us will agree with that understanding.

    Humorously I have in the past said I don’t like the over use of those cute little church quotes to counter or cover any situation; as in WWJS and the like.

    Having said that I will quote one to open up my point. Have heard the statement B.I.B.L.E. “Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth.” Ugh!

    Ok moving along, what would you say aside from revealing Jesus of Nazareth to be the promised Messiah and offering us the opportunity of accepting Him as Lord and gaining the salvation of our eternal soul, is the purpose of the Bible?

    Is it to prepare us for a life after our deaths, resurrection’s and dwelling in a promised future of heaven or new earth, or instructions for living on this earth right now?

    Here and now we have to contend with the distractions of sin all around us, whereas in our future place of living there is no distractions nor even any sin to overcome.

    The battle ground it seems to me is right here right now. Seeing that Jesus won the battle over men’s souls, what is it we have to continue to struggle against? Why is there still spiritual warfare?

    In our future place of living there is no need for anything even the sunlight around us is the light from God, no shadows, not even nighttime.

    Here though God stopped feeding the nomadic Israeli’s manna once they arrived at the Promised Land and it was up then to them to feed themselves from the land they were to possess.

    Also God gave them an outline as how to live as a people

    As Christians are we to expect any less or anything any different?

    54 degrees and a mixture of clouds and blue sky; love watching the robins hop around the yard.


  26. narrowpathseeker says:

    Steve….that was a very profound and extremely helpful message. THANK YOU! It is analogous to there being a whole lot more to being a master chef than having some pans, a stove, and a cookbook.

    I haven’t been keeping up but as always, I am praying for you, Matthew, and Glenna and hope all is working out with Crickett(?).

  27. jeff1 says:

    The words of this hymn tell me so much about our Lord, for it means, I can rest with the blessed assurance that He is, always has been, and always will be in control.

    Immortal, invisible God only wise,
    in light inaccessible hid from our eyes,
    most blessed, most glorious, the Ancient of Days,
    almighty, victorious, thy great Name we praise.

    Unresting, unhasting, and silent as light,
    nor wanting, nor wasting, thou rulest in might;
    thy justice like mountains high soaring above
    thy clouds, which are fountains of goodness and love.

    To all life thou givest, to both great and small;
    in all life thou livest, the true life of all;
    we blossom and flouish, like leaves on the tree,
    then wither and perish; but nought changeth thee.

    Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
    thine angels adore thee, all veiling their sight;
    all laud we would render: O help us to see
    ’tis only the splendor of light hideth thee.

  28. poohpity says:

    What does it mean to live in the Spirit of Christ here and now in the face of an enemy?

    Is hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division living in the Spirit of Christ or living in the flesh? I am not talking about being in the military involved in nations fighting nations but what comes from the heart and motives of the people that end up starting the wars between nations. It all begins within the heart of a person. That seems to be what we were held captive to before Christ.

    Living in the Spirit of Christ in the face of an enemy does that mean to no longer satisfy the flesh by hostility, quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, selfish ambition, dissension, division but to stand firm in Christ that does not mean we do not do anything actually quite the opposite that means to pray before we speak which takes self control, rather than reacting to circumstances we take time to think before we act, restoring relationships rather than causing divisions, rather than hostility showing kindness, rather than selfish ambition or living for the praise of people we desire to treat others as Jesus treated us with their best in mind no matter what we receive back, etc..

    Keeping our eyes on the sin that lies within each of us rather than looking for it in others. Think of what the outcomes would be just within each of us and surely that will spill out towards others as well.

  29. narrowpathseeker says:

    I am still smiling, but it seems that a little pity is beginning to slide in for the very vivid transparency of the naked one standing so proudly thinking all are blind and deceived. I am wondering if laughing and smiling about it may be somewhat cruel…it wasn’t intended to be…..it was just the result of much war within from dealing with it all. For now I am going to keep smiling and praying for us all.. Lord please continue to be mercifully patient with us.

  30. jeff1 says:

    Most people know St Patrick as bringing the gospel to Ireland.

    Like everything men distort to their beliefs.

    Over the years St Patrick was celebrated by Roman Catholics but not by Protestants but recently as the celebrations are being made more multi cultured all denominations join in.

    For centuries St Patrick has been used to divide instead of unite people in the gospel.

    A stand up comedian tells jokes like: was St Patrick a catholic or a protestant and answers he was most definitely a catholic for we go to the pub after the parades to celebrate while if he had been a protestant it would have been back to the church hall for tea and tray bakes.

    Yes how men change the origins but God still controls the outcome.

  31. refump says:

    2 jumper cables walked into the bar and ordered a drink. The bartender said l’ll serve you but just don’t start anything.
    Mart said “and economies that are wired to someone’s material excess and political strength— rather than to the Christ-like Spirit of our God?” I have always wondered why the “religious right” have always been associated with republicans & not democrats since democrats espouse socialism which Jesus seem to espouse also. Didn’t Jesus tell the rich young ruler that was asking what he needed to do to be saved to go sell all he has & give to the poor. Didn’t Jesus also hang out with the tax collectors & even recruited some to be his disciples? It is said by many that we should not mix religion and politics, which may be true, but we must not be afraid to mix politics and our faith in Jesus Christ.
    My name is Jon and I approve this message.

  32. poohpity says:

    Religion and politics are wonderful bed fellows but not to be confused with following Jesus. The Pharisees and Sadducees were religious folks and Jesus confronted them continually (Luke 18:9-14 NLT) and James said “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.”(James 1:27 NLT) Politics is the corruption in the world just as most religion is and has been.

    Jesus knew the rich man idolized his wealth and following the Ten commandments but Jesus opened his eyes that there was still one commandment he was not following. I have not read in one place that Jesus ever got mixed into politics other than to tell us through Paul who worked before Christ for both politics and religion that the government has been put into authority over us (Roman 13:1-3 NLT).

  33. poohpity says:

    Everyone must submit to governing authorities. For all authority comes from God, and those in positions of authority have been placed there by God. 2 So anyone who rebels against authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and they will be punished. 3 For the authorities do not strike fear in people who are doing right, but in those who are doing wrong. Would you like to live without fear of the authorities? Do what is right, and they will honor you. 4 The authorities are God’s servants, sent for your good. But if you are doing wrong, of course you should be afraid, for they have the power to punish you. They are God’s servants, sent for the very purpose of punishing those who do what is wrong. 5 So you must submit to them, not only to avoid punishment, but also to keep a clear conscience.

    6 Pay your taxes, too, for these same reasons. For government workers need to be paid. They are serving God in what they do. 7 Give to everyone what you owe them: Pay your taxes and government fees to those who collect them, and give respect and honor to those who are in authority.
    Love Fulfills God’s Requirements

    8 Owe nothing to anyone—except for your obligation to love one another. If you love your neighbor, you will fulfill the requirements of God’s law. 9 For the commandments say, “You must not commit adultery. You must not murder. You must not steal. You must not covet.”[a] These—and other such commandments—are summed up in this one commandment: “Love your neighbor as yourself.”[b] 10 Love does no wrong to others, so love fulfills the requirements of God’s law.

    11 This is all the more urgent, for you know how late it is; time is running out. Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. 12 The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living. 13 Because we belong to the day, we must live decent lives for all to see. Don’t participate in the darkness of wild parties and drunkenness, or in sexual promiscuity and immoral living, or in quarreling and jealousy. 14 Instead, clothe yourself with the presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. And don’t let yourself think about ways to indulge your evil desires.

  34. SFDBWV says:

    I liked you intro joke “Jon”, thanks.

    I have a friend who is a reporter for a local paper and she has a bumper sticker that denotes that she is a “Christian Democrat”. It is always funny because most people today can’t seem to connect the two together, so she tries to *report* that there are democrats who are Christian also.

    For over a hundred years the “Southern Democrats” were the heart and core of southern Christianity and oddly enough a carryover from being members of the Confederacy.

    Politics and religion are without doubt two great generators of powerful emotion and the basis for many arguments whether in church or at the bar.

    We often talk of living with nature and how we love to watch as we go through our days as well as admiring a star filled night sky. While we cannot be alive in this world without being immersed in nature whether we pay any attention to it or not, we equally cannot live in this world without being immersed in the politics of man and not paying attention to it.

    We are effected by both.

    Paul tells us to be good citizens of whatever country we live in. To obey its laws and be an example of Christ in all we do.

    It is an enormous error in judgment to believe that we as Christians should leave the matter of politics to everyone else and we just set on the sidelines, blaming whoever is in a leadership role as being placed there by God.

    It is a “cop-out” and why we have bad leadership, because “good men do nothing” to prevent it.

    We live in this world right now; we have a responsibility to be not only good citizens but good examples of Christ in living a holy life.

    Read the Books of James, 1 Peter, 2 Peter, Titus, in fact read all the Books of Scripture from Acts through Revelation chapters 1-3 and found there are instructions for living, and your reward for doing so.

    Christianity is a religion of living right, not only of dying under the blood of Christ.


  35. jeff1 says:

    Steve says Christianity is a religion of living right, not only of dying under the blood of Christ.

    The Bible shows us that there where many men and women that God used who did not always live right. God can change a man’s/woman’s heart to work to His purpose.

    He can blind a man or enlighten a man and change that man’s direction in life.

    Wise is the man who says I come into the world with nothing and I go out of it with nothing and in between I take care of what God has given me, so help me God.

  36. joycemb says:

    I think ‘right living’ is a long process to learn for some. Those of us to came to know Jesus later in life (30) have a whole lot of wrong living to unlearn. Its not for us to judge anothers’ walk. Some things are genetic and some environmental, yet through the power of God who works in us to will and to do of His good pleasure,(we live to please Him and not ourselves or others even)we have been given the power to overcome those things that are not pleasing to God. Our Daily Bread today talks about this also.

    still in process,

  37. poohpity says:

    “The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” Edmund Burke

    Paul said, “Don’t let evil conquer you, but conquer evil by doing good.” Voting is part of being a good citizen of whatever country one lives in if they have the freedom to vote. Christianity is a relationship with God not a religion actually religions most often impede that relationship because they are based on man’s attempts rather than on trusting or depending on/in God. Which seem to be what has caused what is going on all around us today by trusting and depending on man not God.

    The whole bible repeatedly shows from Genesis all the way through how often man has taken things into their own hands. The problems in the middle east for example are because Abraham and Sarah rather than waiting on God’s provision took matters into their hands and Ismael was born and his descendants are all those who fight against Israel/Isaac today just as God had said would happen.

  38. jeff1 says:

    It may not be for us to judge another’s walk but nevertheless show me a person who doesn’t!

    The last man I knew who did not was my earthly father, probably because he examined himself and found himself wanting.

    It is a person who knows their failings that does not cast a stone at another.

  39. poohpity says:

    Yes Joyce that was a good one today as always.

    With that in regards to our politicians who say they are Christians from either side of the isle that may be but are they still acting like they live in the flesh when they call each others names, belittle each other, have divisions and arguing putting down people with differing views and do not work together for the common good of the people but rather for the party they belong to?

    We had one good mature Christian man running for office on either side of the isle but he was soft spoken, intelligent, thoughtfully considering the issues facing our country but the people did not want him, just goes to show ya don’t it, lol.

  40. SFDBWV says:

    Once again I can exhaust myself by validating what I am about to say by looking up Scripture so for the time being I am just going to share *my* thoughts.

    First of all Viv the idea that we came naked into this world is somewhat correct. Especially when you look at the literal understanding of being born and what you physically possess at the time.

    However God did not design us to be an empty creature. Born along with us are the collective necessities to survive as well as a physical inheritance from our ancestors that not only give us our color and size but also our mannerisms and characteristics that they too possessed.

    In fact it is said we inherit sin.

    When we die most likely we are not naked, but probably clothed in some kind of attire, so even though I get the drift of what you are quoting it isn’t entirely true.

    Jesus taught us not to put too much importance in what we possess here in this world as we cannot take it with us when we die.

    But, He did say for us to amass a treasure in heaven that awaits us.

    So when we leave this earth as Christians we have had our lives as Christians to gather treasure in heaven. I will say on top of this that Jesus is our most valued treasure, but Jesus wasn’t only talking of Himself.

    How do we amass treasure that cannot be stolen or taken from us, safe in heaven? By *living* the good Christian life we are instructed to live here on earth right now.

    By our charity, by our kindnesses, by our efforts to do the work and will of God and especially by and how we treat each other.

    Where do we find instruction as to how to walk the walk and not just talk the talk? From Genesis to Revelation we are shown what is right and what is wrong, what pleases God and what does not.

    So when we die we take a great deal more with us than what we had when born into this world, especially the indwelling of the Holy Spirit which will give us eternal life in Jesus of Nazareth the Christ.

    I hope you don’t think I am splitting hairs that is not why I have taken time to write this. There is just a lot more to see than what initially sounds simple. God went to a lot of trouble to create the world and us. Living here and now for us is very important to God, we cannot dismiss our duty to live it correctly so easily.


  41. poohpity says:

    Viv, This is what Job said, “He said, “I came naked from my mother’s womb, and I will be naked when I leave. The LORD gave me what I had, and the LORD has taken it away. Praise the name of the LORD!” (Job 1:21)

    This is what Solomon said, “Everyone comes naked from their mother’s womb, and as everyone comes, so they depart. They take nothing from their toil that they can carry in their hands.”(Ecclesiastes 5:15)

    This is what Paul said, “For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.” (1 Tim 6:7)

    God created all that we are; Eph 2:9-10 NLT; Isaiah 43:7 for His good purposes but many make a choice to do things their way.

  42. jeff1 says:

    Guess what Pooh, I though you where talking about our politicians for a moment!

    I go to listen to stand up comedy and often think if it were not for politicians they would not have a job but it is only of late that I have discovered how accurate their jokes are.

    It is what we do now instead of crying at their folly for I have discovered that laughter is the best medicine.

    This world is not my home I am just a-passin’ through
    My treasures are laid up some where beyond the blue
    The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door
    And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

    Oh Lord, You know I have no friend like you
    If heaven’s not my home then Lord what will I do?
    The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door

    And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

    I have a loving mother just over in glory land
    And I don’t expect to stop until I shake her hand
    She’s waiting now for me in heaven’s open door
    And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

    Oh Lord, you know I have no friend like you
    If heaven’s not my home then Lord what will I do?
    The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door
    And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

    Just over in glory land we’ll live eternally
    The saints on every hand are shouting victory
    Their songs of sweetest praise drift back from heaven’s shore
    And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

    Oh Lord, you know I have no friend like you
    If heaven’s not my home then Lord what will I do?
    The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door
    And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore

  43. poohpity says:

    Also God used human beings for His purposes even tho they were lairs(Abraham, Jacob), murders (David, Paul), drunks(Noah), adulterers (David), not good parents (David), cowards (Jonah, Elisha, Elijah), doubters (Thomas), deniers (Peter) and the list goes on because no human being is as good as they think they are but God did not seem to expect us to be or He would not have been omniscience, omnipresent, or omnipotent nor would He have made the provision for us from the beginning to send us a Savior.

  44. poohpity says:

    Yes politicians are ripe for the picking here to in the comedy circles.

  45. jeff1 says:

    Steve, if I implied that it was easy to live it correctly then it is definitely not what I have experienced.

    I have to ask myself why I struggle, and my struggle is because I do not understand what God is doing.

    Just because I do not understand what God is doing in the world does not mean I do not trust that He is in control or I would not call myself a follower.

    I have seen enough evil not only in my own Country but in the world to know this world needs God as much as throughout history.

    In this modern world there are few who understand the Bible and that includes myself but my father was an earthly example of a man who knew God and walked the walk.

    It was by not listening to my father that I wandered from the path of righteous and now find it hard to trust anyone.

    There is a song ‘walk a mile in my shoes’ but the truth is we can only walk in our own shoes and if we wander then it is restoring trust that is difficult, not trust in God but trust in myself or other people.

    There comes a time when I am tired of trusting others or my own instincts and it is then that I entrust it to God and find rest for my weary soul.

    There is great peace in God’s silences!

  46. remarutho says:

    Good Morning BTA Friends —

    There is silence and then there’s silence! All things were created to shout praise to God in Christ.

    King David wrote about the silent stars:

    “The heavens are telling of the glory of God;
    And their expanse is declaring the work of His hands.
    Day to day pours forth speech,
    And night to night reveals knowledge.
    There is no speech, nor are there words;
    Their voice is not heard.”

    And, when Jesus rode into the city on a donkey (see photo above), the Pharisees called for silence, not praise:

    “As soon as He was approaching, near the descent of the Mount of Olives, the whole crowd of the disciples began to praise God joyfully with a loud voice for all the miracles which they had seen, shouting:

    “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord;
    Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!”

    Some of the Pharisees in the crowd said to Him, “Teacher, rebuke Your disciples.” But Jesus answered, “I tell you, if these become silent, the stones will cry out!”

    The forces of the world’s economy, government and religion call people to get in line and be quiet. The economy, governance and pure worship of Christ’s Kingdom call us not to submit to a legalistic yoke of slavery. (Galatians 5:1)

    Jesus is restoring the original balance of the cosmos. The outcome of His work is our praise and worship of God and His Messiah in the power of the Holy Spirit.

    Joy all week-end!

  47. poohpity says:

    There are times when I think God is silent but actually it is me who has turned a deaf ear to Him. If he has asked something of me and I do not listen and follow then until I have answered He does not say anything again until I have. It is like Him asking me do you really want to hear from me when I have given you something but you ignore me. It seems to be like any other relationship who wants to talk to someone if they never listen to you, really listen or hear. God seems to know and the minute or second one turns their ear to Him, He speaks. We are already given so many of His Words but not many seem to care.

  48. poohpity says:

    I just read ODB and it is saying something similar about listening to God.

  49. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    Mart, you say concerning “What is the problem with trying to make enemies into friends?” —

    “The problem was not that the Aramean people were a nasty group of violent people. It was that the king and people of Israel were no longer acting as if their hope and life were found in the God who had rescued their ancestors from the slave yards of Egypt.”

    We must ponder this spiritual condition of the whole nation of Israel — because it applies to nations today. In places other than the wealthy 1/3 nations, the Good News is reaching the peoples and the response is faith. Yet, nations — democratic and dictator-controlled — have turned their (our) backs on God.

    I cannot see how the nations will finally listen to God. Time is running out. We have before us the prospect of continuing to tell the story of God’s love — without any assurance that we will see fruit. Joy is found in our own life in Christ, as Dave Brannon says (today’s ODB). We need the encouragement of our faith community where the Gospel is honored and taught.

    Philippians 1:27-30


  50. SFDBWV says:

    Reading Mart’s comments over and over again I have to say it is interesting that we give legalistic leaders a hard time for being legalistic while giving an example of what happens when we don’t obey as a people.

    Ahab and Jezebel were leading the people of Israel away from God by not obeying God’s instruction. The people suffered as a result. Yet we are told that 7 thousand people out of all of Israel still would not bow to Baal. Certainly in a minority did they not also suffer from the results of the nation’s poor leadership as well? Or were they protected by God as a result of the choices of their hearts?

    Are we to believe that God puts evil leaders in place just to show what happens when we have evil leaders?

    That the suffering of people from the results of having evil leadership is somehow God’s will?

    Something in my heart tells me there is something wrong with that kind of thinking.

    From the beginning God said choose you whom you will serve, life or death, blessings or cursing’s.

    We have a say in our destiny as a person and as a nation. Make sure your choices align with God’s life instructions or suffer the consequences. Don’t complain and don’t blame God when things go bad from wrong choices.

    30 degrees with a beautiful 5 inch snow cover. One of those snows that cover every branch and limb outlining everything in a white coating.


  51. jeff1 says:

    I can only speak for myself but as a person I have always had the need to belong.

    Heaven is my home but earth is where I live out my life.

    I was born and bred British and to this day see myself as British.

    I could choose to be Irish but since I have suffered and seen the suffering of the British by the Irish I cannot truthfully say I am proud to be Irish.

    I do not understand all the history between England and Ireland but I do know the consequences of the hatred handed down by each generation.

    I have learned that you do not have to have evil leadership to have bad leadership and my father warned me of my folly of following the wrong leaders.

    That is because my father had seen so much more of the world than I had and was by far the more intelligent person.

    I have often heard it said that there are two kinds of everything and I have found that to be so.

    There are good and bad leaders, good and bad religious leaders, good and bad people.

    The difficulty for myself is discerning who is who because having made bad choices in the past, I am reluctant to trust my own understanding in the future.

    When it comes to making choices on leaders I now tend to listen to someone like my father that understands those matters better than I do but in this modern world I am finding that it is becoming more difficult to find a person like that.

    I watched a drama on Sir Winston Churchill’s life and his latter years.

    I noted that he was in very bad health and his family had wanted him to quit politics after a severe stroke which left him immobile and with speech difficulties.

    He said it was too important for the Country and peace in Europe for him to go at that time and after months of nursing he went back to complete his work. He had to go against the wishes of his family to do so.

    He put duty before his personal health and family relationships because he was a statesman and one of the better ones.

    Those who make a difference in the world do so at a cost not known to many of us.

    I was delighted to see that he not only lasted another 18 months in office but then retired to the Countryside to live out his life and I was even more delighted to hear it was another 10 years.

    God’s will, I believe so!

  52. poohpity says:

    Does God put evil leaders in place or do we put them in place because we have chosen not to follow God? Most of what goes on around us seems to be a result of our own choices and will. Can God use anything to bring good out of it, I believe yes.

    God never wanted Israel to have kings, they wanted them because all the countries around them had a king and the wanted to be like them and then they suffered the consequences of such choices.

    1 Sam 8:4-9 ” Finally, all the elders of Israel met at Ramah to discuss the matter with Samuel. 5 “Look,” they told him, “you are now old, and your sons are not like you. Give us a king to judge us like all the other nations have.”

    6 Samuel was displeased with their request and went to the Lord for guidance. 7 “Do everything they say to you,” the Lord replied, “for they are rejecting me, not you. They don’t want me to be their king any longer. 8 Ever since I brought them from Egypt they have continually abandoned me and followed other gods. And now they are giving you the same treatment. 9 Do as they ask, but solemnly warn them about the way a king will reign over them.”

  53. poohpity says:

    The seven thousand left that God was referring to when talking to Elijah I believe God was speaking of prophets/priests left that still served God that is in 1 Kings 19

  54. poohpity says:

    The USA made a choice to be different not to have a king or queen that reined their whole life but to have a president that only has 4-8 years to mess up our country until another one is voted in. People here usually vote on the letter by their name which has turned into corrupt system now and not the person but the original founders thought enough ahead to have checks and balances in that rein by having the other two branches.

  55. SFDBWV says:

    Viv in my opinion you have spoken very wisely. Thank you for sharing.

    Yes pooh when we reject God’s leadership we get what we ask for.


  56. remarutho says:

    Good Morning All —

    Since we have “grazed” far afield from the original scenario where Elisha had an opportunity to guide the Israelite ruler (Ahab? Ahaziah?) — it is safe to say that Jesus-followers can expect to be disappointed or even persecuted by the political regimes under which we live.

    Steve, you reason that:

    “Are we to believe that God puts evil leaders in place just to show what happens when we have evil leaders?
    That the suffering of people from the results of having evil leadership is somehow God’s will?
    Something in my heart tells me there is something wrong with that kind of thinking.”

    The majority of kings who ruled the Northern Kingdom of Israel were evil — Ahab being the poster child for evil rulers. His tenure was about 19-20 years I think. Ahaziah ruled very briefly, then the nation was saddled with Jehoram a while. After that, God had Jehu anointed to wipe out the line of Ahab and Jezebel from Israel, as I understand it.

    The over-arching reality is that a nation “under God” has a self-awareness of God’s presence and God’s leading. The further a nation strays from upholding God and the moral standards of godliness, the greater the assurance that social and ethical standards will go south in that political system.

    I tremble as I apply the wisdom of Biblical stories to the current political situation in many of the modern nations. We surely must pray for mercy along with the justice that is due!

    Blessed Palm Sunday!
    Joyous 1st Day of Spring!

    50F with light rain here

  57. remarutho says:

    Just to give the topic a nod, is the USA a messenger nation? We have assumed so for many generations.

    Are we now extending mercy, justice and grace in the love of God to one another and to allies and enemies alike?


  58. poohpity says:

    Maru, how have we grazed far afield from the original scenario? Wasn’t it talking about following everything else and not living to follow God with the consequences of each.

  59. poohpity says:

    Hence origins and outcomes.

  60. oneg2dblu says:

    Next weekend the churches in the USA will be packed to overflowing, as those who think there is some truth in them, by their coming to church on the High Holy Days, attending both Easter and Christmas, thinking they are, good to go Christians for the rest of their year.

    Reaping and Sowing is a natural principle founded on truth, whether you like it or not, it is a natural consequence.

    And although you can make your truth out to be different than God’s truth, you will reap what you sow.

    As Charles Stanley so wittingly says,
    “Obey God and leave all the Consequences to Him!”

  61. jeff1 says:

    Gary post 9.03 am

    Am I any different to those people as I do have some truth in me but I do not have the whole truth!

    Are you not making presumptions about these people? You do not know what these people are thinking; they may be disappointed in themselves for all you know!

    You make obeying God out to be so black and white but the reality is very different to that.

    The man who let his sons dig a hole even though he knew it was wrong did so out of concern for his family because he had a gun held to his head.

    Some people have to make tough decisions and whether I would do the same or not is not the point, for it is not for me to judge their decision but leave it with God.

  62. joycemb says:

    Psalm 103:13 The Lord is like a father to his children,
    tender and compassionate to those who fear him.14
    For he knows how weak we are;
    he remembers we are only dust.

    I learned to fear God when He saved me from my sins. I was a regular church attender in a mainline denomination that did not really talk about salvation but believed that baptism ensured heaven. I was saved during a Lenten service when God revealed to me personally His great love for me, love that forgave me for my sins because of Jesus death on the cross. I later found out that the Church within the church (a group of born-again believers) had been praying for the rest of us. Several others were saved during that time. Be praying for visitors and others in your church who need salvation-or don’t even know they need salvation. The rewards reaped are eternal!

    blessed Palm Sunday all!

  63. SFDBWV says:

    Yes indeed we reap (outcome) what we sew (origin).

    Many years ago while at an Easter Sunrise Service I heard a preacher say from the pulpit it must be Easter to see so many people in church.

    I was offended by his lack of sensitivity, my spirit was offended by his attempt to sound cute at the expense of someone there in the audience because it was Easter and they wanted to be there “in remembrance” of Jesus.

    Gary whether you accept it or not, we are not all that far apart in our understanding of our faith. I did not give my account of Easter church service in contrast to your comment only adding a memory as a result of it. Please don’t feel offended that is not my intention.

    I join with you Maru in being deeply troubled by events in our country and all over the globe. While it may be exciting to think the end is near it is also very troubling.

    Wondering what it is that breaks my heart to think that all that has went on before me, all of the people, all of their stories of life and death of happiness and tragedy of sacrifice and deep love is slipping away into the echoes of time.

    That judgment comes in spite of the efforts of so many to prevent it.

    Jesus wept over Jerusalem and I find myself weeping over a mixture of what could have been as well.

    Finding a small piece of comfort in this little Pearl; “Thou tellest my wanderings: put thou tears into thy bottle: are they not in thy book?” Psalms 56:8 KJV

    All is remembered by God and kept in His book even our tears are kept in His heart. Justice won’t just be about judgement, but also about the healing of every broken heart, something only God can do.

    Only God can absorb all of the bitterness this world has produced and give us no remembrance of it forever.


  64. poohpity says:

    Many people who attend church only on Easter or Christmas start attending church all year to grow in a relationship with God and for worshiping with others. But sad are those who attend church all year but still live as Pharisees(moral police) or as if they are still part of the world and not new creations in Christ never growing in their relationship with God at all. Church attendance does make one a Christian any more than sitting in a garage makes one a car.

  65. jeff1 says:

    I believe that is what God will do Steve he will erase the bad memories and replace them with new ones.

    When I look around me today at my Country men I see so many wounded by the past and if they are not broken then they are bitter.

    The truth is I would rather be broken than bitter for I have seen what bitterness does to a person.

    If I am broken bread God can use me, but when men harden their hearts, they justify doing all sorts of things that is just not right, but they blind themselves to that, and I do not believe they do it intentionally but many have been brought up in difficult circumstances and I do not believe they know of any other way.

    If you cannot bring out the best in a person then try not to bring out the worst in them for there but for the grace of God go I.

  66. street says:

    dear friends thanks for praying. surgery seems to have gone well and i am doing better than i thought and not so well in daily activities.

    had been visiting since the 19, surgery was 14. thanks mart for the last two post. i have been several places with them. thanks for Galatians 5. Light!

    maru and steve were chatting about,”“Are we to believe that God puts evil leaders in place just to show what happens when we have evil leaders?
    That the suffering of people from the results of having evil leadership is somehow God’s will?
    Something in my heart tells me there is something wrong with that kind of thinking.”

    thinking of northern israel’s kings. they were all evil, none were good, no not one.
    the southern kingdom was worse than her sitter in the north if i read my Bible right. so what are we to make of some of the kings of judah who are spoken of as good kings. while i write this i remember Jesus words that “ONLY GOD IS GOOD.” Psalm 32:2
    How blessed is the man to whom the Lord does not impute iniquity,
    And in whose spirit there is no deceit!

    thinking governments are of the natural order of things because of man’s rebellion against his King. God told samual right when He said they were not rejecting him, but rejecting God. look for Him in the wilderness and don’t stop! He promised to lead you though it. in away it is a dating process and we know of only two possible outcomes.

  67. oneg2dblu says:

    jeff1… sorry you found offense in my true statement.

    I’m sure others have as well.

    Yes, of course, I should not judge others by their fruit,
    just as you should not have just now judged me by mine.

    But, I truly feel sorry for those who only attend twice a year.

    Yes, per chance many could be saved because of attending a church, “even just once.”

    But that is not a true biblical definition of any daily relationship with the Lord, or the showing of fruit in keeping with the Spirit either.

    To me, perhaps now standing alone, I still feel that attending church twice a year does not really constitute any real daily relationship with the Lord, or with the saints, or with the Word, nor does attending church every day assure anyone of their salvation, because, Salvation is not based on any churches attendance record, or any report card.

    But of course, that would just be the way I think, while others here may find their truth is closer to a, “Once in a lifetime is more than Enough.”

    My pastor was just saying how blessed we are today, that many can watch church on the internet, and for some that is all they can really do.

    But, nothing compares to being in the presence of the saints, worshiping together in one accord, in one setting, in one place, and we call it, doing church.

    If you have not ever been there, then you can not know what we are talking about, but we who do know, also know there is much truth in our being there, and sharing together.

    Just thinking…

  68. poohpity says:

    Gary which statement that you said in that 9:03 comment was what is consider truth? lol If we reap what we sow then what place does the Cross have in that statement of what you consider truth? NONE! The Cross has no place in we reap what we sow. We reap what we did not sow; forgiveness, mercy and grace. John 4:37-38 NIV Now that is truth.

  69. poohpity says:

    It would be wise to consider if something is really truth or just someone’s perspective.

  70. poohpity says:

    I am hesitant but I have a prayer request for my son who was diagnosed with the H1N1 virus would you please left him up in prayer. There is no medication he can take for it since it is a virus. Thank you

  71. pepper08 says:

    Jesus sent his disciples out like lambs among wolves. They would have to be careful. (Luke 10). We to should stay alert at all times and face opposition with love and gentleness. The question of following Jesus and living in the Spirit reminds me of the parable of the prodigal son that came back home. The Father saw him and ran to him and greeted him and placed a robe on him. (Isaiah 61:10) says he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness. ( Robe= God’s righteousness not ours). He then placed a ring upon his finger. (Esther 8:8) says “for no document written in the king’s name and sealed with his ring can be revoked. (Ring=authority). Then the Father placed sandals upon his feet. (Ruth 4:7) (Now in earlier times in Israel, for the redemption and transfer of property to become final, one party took off his sandal and gave it to the other. This was the method of legalizing transactions in Israel. (Sandals=confirmed). Three spiritual gifts the Father gives his children who accept his son for who he is and what he does. When the Father sees us he sees a resemblance to Jesus. So, times wasting. Spread the good news.

  72. pepper08 says:

    For the son of poohpity and family. I lift your family up in prayer.
    Father, thank you for this new day. Thank you for allowing us
    to enter into another day filled with your love,
    grace, and mercy. Father we thank you that you are not
    Limited by time. We thank you that you can do all things
    Whenever you want to do them in our lives. We step in
    Faith trusting and believing that you are moving on
    our behalf. Father, we cross the threshold of Spring
    with expectancy. Expecting your word to come to pass
    in our lives. Father we thank you that we will walk in
    another level of your anointing. We shall trust you
    wholly and completely. We shall wait on you. We
    shall see total healing come to pass in our lives.
    Healing physically, mentally, and spiritually.
    Father, thank you for allowing us to have this
    moment, this day, to say thank you and to reflect
    who you are in the earth. Father, we are
    grabbing hold of your unchanging hand.
    We are grabbing hold to your word.
    We are committing every part of our lives
    to you in Jesus name. amen.

  73. remarutho says:

    Good Evening All —

    So glad you came through your procedure well, Street. May your healing be swift and complete. We pray in Jesus’ name.

    Praying for your son also, Pooh. Flu is an ordeal. Praying for his healing as well — and your comfort in the Holy Spirit.

    Mentioned I have been reading through Judges the past week. It was a wild and woolly time! By grace humanity survived. Am reading the Book of Ruth today — and realizing Naomi’s family lived through famine, sudden death and deep poverty — all during those same evil days of the Judges. Somehow, they showed one another respect and grace, despite national and international upheaval.

    With God’s lovingkindness is our point of origin, we may live out what St. Peter taught us:

    “Who is there to harm you if you prove zealous for what is good? But even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed. And do not fear their intimidation, and do not be troubled, but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence…”

    Blessings at Holy Week,

  74. jeff1 says:

    Perhaps I live too much in the past but I recall as a child that gentleness and reverence but today I do not see it in very many.

    Although it is true that mental illness ran in my family I do not believe that living in a violent society for 30+ years would have done much to help it!

    I am like so many a product of my time and it was living in them that made me realize that it is God who overcomes evil and not men.

    As I have said before men overcome evil only to see it rise again but God’s way of peace is what I long for and I do not believe I will find it this side of heaven!

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