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The Vision of Aquinas

During the Middle Ages, Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) became one of the Western Church’s most celebrated defenders of reason, faith, and Scripture.  Yet just three months before his death something happened that caused him to leave unfinished a massive legacy of his life’s work. While reflecting on the broken body and shed blood of his Savior, he reportedly had a vision that caused him to reassess the bulk and value of his carefully reasoned arguments. When his assistant, Reginald, urged him to pick up his pen and get back to his work, he said, “I can write no more. I have seen things that make my writings seem like straw.”

No one knows what Aquinas saw. But his apparent reassessment of what he had amassed in words, logic, and carefully reasoned  arguments may resonate with what many of us are beginning to see in the unlimited and immeasurable wisdom and goodness of our God.

Oh… I want so much to believe… that, in an effort to tell our own story, and to explain the sacred Scriptures entrusted to us— words, reason, and common sense are important— important like the straw that cradled a Son— born to save the world with his broken body and shed blood— and then to give us his Spirit … to show us what is hidden in plain sight—that someday, beyond the fire of all loss and accountability—“at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow [in submission], of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess and openly acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord (sovereign God), to the glory of God the Father.”  Philippians 2:10-11 (Amplified Bible)


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451 Responses to “The Vision of Aquinas”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    “, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams.” Acts 2:17 KJV

    Prophets as God provided for before the coming of our Lord ended with John the Baptist, but prophesy continues within the body of the Church, for the enlightenment and purpose of the Church according to the will of God.

    Not that there is any deeper meaning behind the event Mart has mentioned with regards to Thomas Aquinas and my own, but it made me think of how many times I set here in the morning writing something and after being distracted several times and after reading over my thoughts the meaning behind them, they changed and I seen something different rising up from what I had already wrote. Sometimes even contrary to them, so I delete and go off line.

    There was what I then perceived as an old man I once worked with who had survived being struck with lightning. One day while working with him he told me that during the incident he seen something that he cannot tell anyone about. Something so terrifying to him that he was just counting the days so he can retire and retreat from society.

    I will never know what he seen, but I know the things I have seen over my lifetime and how they both encourage me as well as mystify me.

    Causing me to hold on to what faith God has given me in spite of how things may look, being able to see beyond them with only belief.

    58 degrees wet and cloudy.

    Steve

  2. jeff1 says:

    Through It All

    I’ve had many tears and sorrows,
    I’ve had questions for tomorrow,
    there’s been times I didn’t know right from wrong.
    But in every situation,
    God gave me blessed consolation,
    that my trials come to only make me strong.

    Through it all,
    through it all,
    I’ve learned to trust in Jesus,
    I’ve learned to trust in God.

    Through it all,
    through it all,
    I’ve learned to depend upon His Word.

    I’ve been to lots of places,
    I’ve seen a lot of faces,
    there’s been times I felt so all alone.
    But in my lonely hours,
    yes, those precious lonely hours,
    Jesus lets me know that I was His own

    Through it all,
    through it all,
    I’ve learned to trust in Jesus,
    I’ve learned to trust in God.

    Through it all,
    through it all,
    I’ve learned to depend upon His Word.

    I thank God for the mountains,
    and I thank Him for the valleys,
    I thank Him for the storms He brought me through.
    For if I’d never had a problem,
    I wouldn’t know God could solve them,
    I’d never know what faith in God could do.

  3. SFDBWV says:

    If you make a study or just even pay a little attention to the knowledge we have available to us, you may discover that all of humanity from all throughout history is the same.

    We all have the same common wants, desires, fears, superstitions, and a deep desire to know things. Especially supernatural things.

    We all end up believing in some kind of religion, or just in ourselves.

    We even all have the same dreams as well as nightmares.

    If you look, also all throughout history, there is a similar theme to all religions. Similar but different.

    When Christianity was being introduced to the Greek and Roman population there were very similar threads that helped the pagan populous accept this new religion.

    God, it is written, placed in us from our creation this knowledge of eternity. Evidently so that we would seek Him out.

    It is heart rendering to read Mart’s words saying “Oh…I want so much to believe.”

    It is my belief that when we “want so much to believe” that God shows up and provides us with enough faith to do just that. Not only to believe, but with a yearning to, a desire to, a need to and then the peace of God which passes all understanding gives comfort to our heart.

    As I have said before, some mornings all I can say to God is that I trust Him.
    And some morning He allows me to see His hands on everything in my life.

    Be filled today.

    Steve

  4. jeff1 says:

    I Believe

    I believe for every drop of rain that falls a flower grows
    I believe that somewhere in the darkest night a candle glows
    I believe for everyone who goes astray someone will come to show the way
    I believe, I believe

    I believe above the storm the smallest prayer will still be heard
    I believe that someone in the great somewhere hears every word
    Every time I hear a newborn baby cry or touch a leaf or see the sky
    Then I know why I believe

    Every time I hear a newborn baby cry or touch a leaf or see the sky
    Then I know why I believe (why I believe)

  5. bratimus says:

    Personally came to the conclusion that my spoke words and written words wouldn’t not do God the Father, Christ Jesus the Word of God or the Holy Spirit the Spirit of any justice to God. That is why I’m not a preacher or a bible teacher, don’t like talking that much anyways.

    I will protect the Word of God and watch over all God’s little ones.

    In Christ Jesus name
    Bratimus

  6. Regina says:

    Good Morning, All

    I pray that you and yours are well. BGg, I’m well and family too.

    Welcome back, Mart! Because I saw a new blog topic, I’m trusting the Lord that you are well. I haven’t read the intro topic or any of the comments on the new blog topic yet–though I’m totally looking forward to it–because I need to respond to some comments from the previous blog topic.

    Thank you, Steve, for both of your explanations on Paul’s discussion (by way of the Holy Spirit) concerning women covering their head. Your comment (and the comment(s) of others) helped me to better understand why a woman’s hair and head covering has been a hot button issue for years. And what you shared about the Nazarite vow (for Jesus and Samson) was also interesting. So it appears that some religions/faiths actually put Paul’s teachings into practice and some did not.

    Beloved, forever, pooh, and brat, your comment (or comments) on hair and head coverings were also interesting. And, Beloved, you sharing a bit more interesting info on what married women do with their hair in the Orthodox Jewish community, Muslim practice and Orthodox Christian community (had never heard the term Orthodox Christian before). Am still curious, though, re: the guidelines (if any) for single women—What did they do with their hair (in all cultures) in centuries past? And, by the way, I also laughed out loud at your “Zamperini” taking your mind to “Zucchini”, which made me think of Linguine, Fettucine, Capellini, Tortellini, Rotini, etc. Now I want to go to Italy and try them all! :-)

    Was truly blessed by My Utmost today, so I want to share the entire devo here…

    “Self-consciousness” (by O.C.)

    Come unto Me. — Matthew 11:28

    God means us to live a fully-orbed life in Christ Jesus, but there are times when that life is attacked from the outside, and we tumble into a way of introspection which we thought had gone. Self-consciousness is the first thing that will upset the completeness of the life in God, and self-consciousness continually produces wrestling. Self-consciousness is not sin; it may be produced by a nervous temperament or by a sudden dumping down into new circumstances. It is never God’s will that we should be anything less than absolutely complete in Him. Anything that disturbs rest in Him must be cured at once, and it is not cured by being ignored, but by coming to Jesus Christ. If we come to Him and ask Him to produce Christ-consciousness, He will always do it until we learn to abide in Him.

    Never allow the dividing up of your life in Christ to remain without facing it. Beware of leakage, of the dividing up of your life by the influence of friends or of circumstances; beware of anything that is going to split up your oneness with Him and make you see yourself separately. Nothing is so important as to keep right spiritually. The great solution is the simple one — “Come unto Me.” The depth of our reality, intellectually, morally and spiritually, is tested by these words. In every degree in which we are not real, we will dispute rather than come.

    And I was *especially* blessed by this phenomenal wisdom pearl…

    WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS

    We are only what we are in the dark; all the rest is reputation. What God looks at is what we are in the dark—the imaginations of our minds; the thoughts of our heart; the habits of our bodies; these are the things that mark us in God’s sight.

    Enjoyed reading 1 CORINTHIANS 12, and these two verses stood out the most for me…

    1 Corinthians 12:3; 13 TLB
    But now you are meeting people who claim to speak messages from the Spirit of God. How can you know whether they are really inspired by God or whether they are fakes? Here is the test: no one speaking by the power of the Spirit of God can curse Jesus, and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” and really mean it, unless the Holy Spirit is helping him.

    Wow! I love this spiritual truth and it’s *new* spiritual revelation for me.

    Verse 13
    Each of us is a part of the one body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But the Holy Spirit has fitted us all together into one body. We have been baptized into Christ’s body by the one Spirit, and have all been given that same Holy Spirit.

    These three little words, “some are slaves” stood out the most. I believe verse 13, with special emphasis on those three words, was used in centuries/ages past to legitimize slavery. Alas, no time for discussion on this topic. It can be saved for the next time Mart has to travel.

    Ready for 1 CORINTHIANS 13

    85 degrees under a big, bright, shining star in my neck of the woods…

    Love to all,
    Regina

  7. jeff1 says:

    Unbounded, holy Breath,
    You flood all time and space,
    While we, so here and now,
    Are dust and deep disgrace.

    Refrain:
    Father, Source of all,
    All that we pursue,
    See us, frail and incomplete.
    Our wholeness, Lord, is You.

    All-knowing, mighty God,
    Pure goodness ever near,
    We struggle, small and lost,
    All selfishness and fear.

    What poverty within!
    What unimagined wealth!
    You bless us with this need
    To bless us with Yourself.

  8. Beloved says:

    Isaiah 1:18
    “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.

    I’ve been thinking about this post all day. Aquinas’ revelation of One greater than anything he could write about in human terms stopped him in his tracks so to speak. Is God truly greater than all the devotion we can muster? Even on our best days? Yes of course He is. Solomon ended his days of plenty or blessings as we call them with the reality that everything has its own “time” as far as the life we live here and now, and as any funeral reveals that “you can’t take it with you”. Isaiah had to deliver the message of failure to prick the consciences of Judah and Jerusalem. Which led to the wonderful promises of Isaiah 53 that hope was coming in the form of a God-man that Paul talked about to the Philippians 2:9-11. I guess what I’m trying to say is that no matter what we do or don’t do for the Kingdom I know that when Jesus Christ reveals Himself, as He did Paul and as He did for me, it’s a whole different game* (sorry poor word but that’s all I can come up with for now). Which for me begs the question of just how much control do I really (think) I have over my relationship with Him? If any at all?? I’ll be thinking about this for a long while.

    Street mentioned “repentance” as not being an issue a few days ago and I’ve been thinking about that too.

    Oh something great is stirring here.

  9. jeff1 says:

    “He also predestined” means that God ordained those He chose to become believers. In Romans 8:29-30 we encounter a very strong chain with four linked promises: All those whom God foreknew / chose / favored, He ordained to become believers. All those those whom He ordained to faith, He called (verse 30)

    Why God chooses whom he chooses?
    Therefore, God has mercy on whomever he chooses, and he hardens the heart of whomever he chooses. So then, God has mercy on whom he chooses to have mercy, and he hardens whom he chooses to harden. So then, he has mercy on whom he desires, and he hardens whom he desires.

    What does God did to the people he chose?
    Contemporary English Version. God then accepted the people he had already decided to choose, and he has shared his glory with them. Good News Translation. And so those whom God set apart, he called; and those he called, he put right with himself, and he shared his glory with them.

    Does God Have Mercy on whom he desires?
    So then, God has mercy on whom he chooses to have mercy, and he hardens whom he chooses to harden. So then, he has mercy on whom he desires, and he hardens whom he desires. So then, he shows compassion on whomever he will, and whomever he will, he hardens. Therefore, if God wants to be kind to anyone, he will be.

    Does God choose his servants?
    God Chooses His Servants; You Do Not Choose Yourself. God knows all His chosen servants before He forms them in the womb as He said to His servant Jeremiah. Sanctified means set apart or separated. Jer 1:5: Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; and I ordained you a prophet unto the nations.

    God Chooses His Servants; You Do Not Choose Yourself.

  10. SFDBWV says:

    It is written that for those who proclaim Jesus publicly, Jesus will proclaim publicly to His Father in heaven.

    Mart want’s so desperately to believe that in telling our stories and sharing our understanding of Scripture we are proclaiming Jesus as Lord, our Creator as God being the interactor of our lives and our hope.

    Thank you Mart for the opportunity to do just that.

    44 degrees under a star lit sky.

    Steve

  11. SFDBWV says:

    Thinking about every knee bowing in submission to Jesus, in heaven on earth and under the earth.

    “Every” to me implies all. No one left out, all inclusive.

    In heaven, on earth, and under the earth, to me means everywhere.

    Wondering if “under the earth” means dead and buried or that place where the dead go after death? Or both?

    Steve

  12. Regina says:

    Good Morning, All

    I hope you and yours are well. BGg, I’m well and family too.

    Mart shared, “During the Middle Ages, Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) became one of the Western Church’s most celebrated defenders of reason, faith, and Scripture. Yet just three months before his death something happened that caused him to leave unfinished a massive legacy of his life’s work. While reflecting on the broken body and shed blood of his Savior, he reportedly had a vision that caused him to reassess the bulk and value of his carefully reasoned arguments. When his assistant, Reginald, urged him to pick up his pen and get back to his work, he said, “I can write no more. I have seen things that make my writings seem like straw.”

    I wonder what T.A. saw that made him give up his life’s work? Do visions and dreams make a person just give up? What if everyone just put down the work that the Lord commissioned them to do (on behalf of others) because they saw visions and dreamed (powerful) dreams? Aquinas’ actions don’t make sense.

    My thoughts for now… Getting ready to read the rest of the comments on this blog topic.

    1 CORINTHIANS 13

    78 degrees (feels like 81 degrees) and sunny.

    Love to all,
    Regina

  13. poohpity says:

    It seems like after all the searching and acquiring work of Aquinas trying to explain things through human philosophy, finding reason for the unreasonable, logic for illogical God finally gave Him the answers he was looking for it seems similar to not only Job but also Solomon who both came to the very same conclusions about God.

    Job 40: Then the Lord said to Job,

    2
    “Do you still want to argue with the Almighty?
    You are God’s critic, but do you have the answers?”

    3 Then Job replied to the Lord,

    4
    “I am nothing—how could I ever find the answers?
    I will cover my mouth with my hand.
    5
    I have said too much already.
    I have nothing more to say.”

    Job 42: Then Job replied to the Lord:

    2
    “I know that you can do anything,
    and no one can stop you.
    3
    You asked, ‘Who is this that questions my wisdom with such ignorance?’
    It is I—and I was talking about things I knew nothing about,
    things far too wonderful for me.
    4
    You said, ‘Listen and I will speak!
    I have some questions for you,
    and you must answer them.’
    5
    I had only heard about you before,
    but now I have seen you with my own eyes.

    Ecclesiastes 12: But, my child, let me give you some further advice: Be careful, for writing books is endless, and much study wears you out.

    13 That’s the whole story. Here now is my final conclusion: Fear God and obey his commands, for this is everyone’s duty. 14 God will judge us for everything we do, including every secret thing, whether good or bad.

  14. poohpity says:

    Then Paul came to a similar conclusion in Colossians 2

    And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. 7 Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.

    8 Don’t let anyone capture you with empty philosophies and high-sounding nonsense that come from human thinking and from the spiritual powers of this world, rather than from Christ. 9 For in Christ lives all the fullness of God in a human body. 10 So you also are complete through your union with Christ, who is the head over every ruler and authority.

  15. foreverblessed says:

    It so happened that yesterday morning I had a deep talk about Jesus, and His broken body and she’d blood.
    And the great impact it has on our renewal, our being brought from death to eternal life.
    That it is a great mystery, but a spiritual reality that is so great.
    And then I came home, and saw that the topic had changed:

    “While reflecting on the broken body and shed blood of his Savior, he reportedly had a vision that caused him to reassess the bulk and value of his carefully reasoned arguments. When his assistant, Reginald, urged him to pick up his pen and get back to his work, he said, “I can write no more. I have seen things that make my writings seem like straw.”

    I can write no more….
    Wow.
    I had to meditate on it again and again.
    The Beloved gives this Bible verse:

    Isaiah 1:18

    “Come now, let us reason together, says the LORD: though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red like crimson, they shall become like wool.

    The Cross of Jesus is so great, has such a power over everything that has gone wrong.

    Just stop writing and be amazed.

  16. Beloved says:

    Was Thomas mystified beyond what he could KNOW about himself and the greatness of his sin? Did he see and understand the incredible cost to Jesus’ body mind and Spirit that was given so freely for him and the rest of humankind? I find the easiest thing in the world for me is to deceive myself. Thank God He reaches out to me.

  17. SFDBWV says:

    Yesterday a gentleman (Gary) and his cousin (Danny) came by to visit me about the cemetery. He brought information as well as questions and it was a good, a very good visit.

    I only mention it because of the heart rendering message behind Mart’s thoughts.

    Are our thoughts and life experiences just straw? Or is behind all of the struggles and suffering and weariness of life, is there purpose?

    Gary’s grandparents are buried in our cemetery and since his retirement he and has taken up helping to record the people buried in ours as well as many other small cemeteries. Our cemetery has 1220 known remains and many unknown.

    The thing is that each name was a living person, with all of the things good and bad life offers. They all have a story.

    They all had worth and purpose, not just “straw” but all worth Jesus enduring a tortured death for. According to Him.

    I too want desperately to believe that our lives are important, have meaning and purpose and not just dead grass.

    54 degrees f and clear.

    Steve

  18. poohpity says:

    It seems that at the point of the end of Aquinas’s life he may have looked back and realized there was not much importance on many things except Christ. Not many things have eternal consequences. We do not bring anything to heaven that really matters except our souls the very essence of who we are now that matters to God and the work done for Him.

    1 Cor 3: Because of God’s grace to me, I have laid the foundation like an expert builder. Now others are building on it. But whoever is building on this foundation must be very careful. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one we already have—Jesus Christ.

    12 Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials—gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. 13 But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. 14 If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. 15 But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames.

    16 Don’t you realize that all of you together are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God lives in you? 17 God will destroy anyone who destroys this temple. For God’s temple is holy, and you are that temple.

    18 Stop deceiving yourselves. If you think you are wise by this world’s standards, you need to become a fool to be truly wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. As the Scriptures say,

    “He traps the wise
    in the snare of their own cleverness.”

    20 And again,

    “The Lord knows the thoughts of the wise;
    he knows they are worthless.”

    21 So don’t boast about following a particular human leader. For everything belongs to you— 22 whether Paul or Apollos or Peter, or the world, or life and death, or the present and the future. Everything belongs to you, 23 and you belong to Christ, and Christ belongs to God.

  19. Regina says:

    Good Morning, All

    I pray that you and family are well, and–having received help from God–I’m well and family too.

    Mart wrote, “Yet just three months before his death something happened that caused him (Thomas Aquinas) to leave unfinished a massive legacy of his life’s work. While reflecting on the broken body and shed blood of his Savior, he reportedly had a vision that caused him to reassess the bulk and value of his carefully reasoned arguments. When his assistant, Reginald, urged him to pick up his pen and get back to his work, he said, “I can write no more. I have seen things that make my writings seem like straw.”

    Was thinking about the words, “three months before his death”. Am wondering… What caused Thomas’ death? With just three more months of life, could he have actually finished up with the legacy of his work in such a short period of time? I’m fairly certain that neither he nor Reginald knew that he had such a short time left on earth. So, I’m wondering… Did he see more visions before he died? Then, a Bible verse (that I think Steve shared in one of his comments) came to mind…

    Acts 2:17
    ‘In the last days,’ God said, ‘I will pour out my Holy Spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions and your old men dream dreams.

    Thomas was younger than I am now when he died (he was 49 years old). Am thinking that the cause of his death would have to have been accidental or sickness and/or disease. Penicillin–the first true antibiotic–wasn’t discovered until 1928 (by Alexander Fleming).

    Just finished reading 1 CORINTHIANS 13, TLB, and I ((so)) enjoyed every minute of the reading and was so blessed by that chapter! Then, a thought came to mind–borne out of the fact that *every* verse in this chapter is beautiful–if someone were to ask me or you which chapter in the Bible should (or could) be referred to as “the beautiful chapter”, I think most, if not all, people would say, 1 Corinthians 13!

    All for now getting ready to watch yesterday’s nightly news, clean out my work email, and eat a raisin bran breakfast muffin. Professional development starts up again (for teachers) at my school on Monday. Then, the kiddos will return (all who requested in-person classes) on 9-8-2020. I truly welcome your prayers for the upcoming school year.

    80 degrees (feels like 83) and a sunny sky in my neck of the woods…

    Love to all,
    Regina

  20. Regina says:

    Ready for 1 CORINTHIANS 14! :-)

  21. Beloved says:

    This made me think of Thomas’ revelation; is this what he finally understood?

    From My Utmost
    The statement we so often hear, “Make a decision for Jesus Christ,” places the emphasis on something our Lord never trusted. He never asks us to decide for Him, but to yield to Him— something very different. At the foundation of Jesus Christ’s kingdom is the genuine loveliness of those who are commonplace.

  22. street says:

    thinking of jonah sitting on hill waiting for the destruction of evil.

    did i Hear Jesus Right,” it is finished!”

  23. bubbles says:

    Oooh, Regina. You have inspired me. I am reading through Isaiah right now. I read 1-2 chapters and then I have J Vernon McGee commentary to help. I will pray for you. We are on the same schedule, and we go in person for two weeks of training and getting our rooms set up. The little ones are supposed to come on 9/8 if our governor says we can. He will make the call on Sept. 1. I am holding off on getting dry erase markers and glue sticks until that day because they dry out. If we go out, I don’t want money lost due to markers drying out. Take care. I love everyone here on BTA.

  24. Beloved says:

    2Timothy 1:12EXB
    I am suffering now ·because I tell the Good News [L for this reason], but I am not ashamed, because I know the One in whom I have ·believed [put my trust/faith]. And I am ·sure [convinced; confident] he is able to ·protect [guard; keep safe] what ·he has trusted me with [or I have entrusted with him; L my deposit/entrustment] until that day [C the final day of judgment and reward].

  25. Beloved says:

    Bubbles I used to listen to McGee on the radio in the 8o’s! I learned so much from him. Praying for you and Regina as well as my sister with her 1st graders who missed out on 3 months of kindergarten this spring. She has some at home to teach online and worries how that will work out unless a parent is right there. What a mess things are!!

  26. SFDBWV says:

    For as long as I can remember there have been little cartoon jokes that show an old bearded man setting atop a mountain and someone climbs up in great effort to ask him, “what is the meaning of life?”

    As we reach that place in our lives when we can look back over it and perhaps assess or reflect what we have done with our lives, we too may decide to “write no more”.

    Perhaps we are not pleased with what we see, perhaps “wish” we could go back and fix our mistakes. Maybe we are just tired and say “that’s enough.”

    Too often looking back carries with it regret. Regret can put a break on forward movement. Sometimes looking back allows us to see where we need to do better and then allied with looking forward and merged with “hope” we can move ahead and put the past behind us.

    Looking forward, not to the end of all things, but the renewal of all things.

    Through and by our Lord and Savior Jesus of Nazareth the Christ.

    Steve

  27. poohpity says:

    Maybe the people who climbed that hard climb to the white bearded man on top of the mountain should have asked, “What can I do to make life meaningful?”

    If it is true that Aquinas was searching for the ultimate answer to his question, “Why Is There Anything at All Rather than Nothing Whatsoever?” That would give reason to his actions of not writing anything further if in his vision God gave him the answer. Then Aquinas would have found after all his study to find out that answer just as Solomon found it is all meaningless(straw) except for God.

  28. poohpity says:

    God gives us meaning for life, a purpose and a sense of belonging to it ALL.

  29. poohpity says:

    I should have written the disclaimer; “for me anyway that is what I was given”.

  30. foreverblessed says:

    Thomas Aquinas saw a vision,
    Something about the work of Christ on the Cross, His Blood and His blood and His Body,
    Was broken for us, so that we can become whole.

    A Spiritual work, done by the Spirit,
    The Spirit that was in Christ, when He was in the body, in the flesh, as John says.

    Isaiah 9:1-7
    Commentary by Matthews Henry’s

    ..Those that want the gospel, walk in darkness, and in the utmost danger. But when the gospel comes to any place, to any soul, light comes. Let us earnestly pray that it may shine into our hearts, and make us wise unto salvation. The gospel brings joy with it. Those who would have joy, must expect to go through hard work, as the husbandman, before he has the joy of harvest; and hard conflict, as the soldier, before he divides the spoil. The Jews were delivered from the yoke of many oppressors; this was a shadow of the believer’s deliverance from the yoke of Satan. The cleansing the souls of believers from the power and pollution of sin, would be by the influence of the Holy Spirit, as purifying fire. These great things for the church, shall be done by the Messiah, Emmanuel. The Child is born; it was certain; and the church, before Christ came in the flesh, benefitted by his undertaking. It is a prophecy of him and of his kingdom, which those that waited for the Consolation of Israel read with pleasure. This Child was born for the benefit of us men, of us sinners, of all believers, from the beginning to the end of the world. Justly is he called Wonderful, for he is both God and man. His love is the wonder of angels and glorified saints. He is the Counsellor, for he knew the counsels of God from eternity; and he gives counsel to men, in which he consults our welfare. He is the Wonderful Counsellor; none teaches like him. He is God, the mighty One. Such is the work of the Mediator, that no less power than that of the mighty God could bring it to pass. He is God, one with the Father. As the Prince of Peace, he reconciles us to God; he is the Giver of peace in the heart and conscience; and when his kingdom is fully established, men shall learn war no more. The government shall be upon him; he shall bear the burden of it. Glorious things are spoken of Christ’s government. There is no end to the increase of its peace, for the happiness of its subjects shall last for ever. The exact agreement of this prophecy with the doctrine of the New Testament, shows that Jewish prophets and Christian teachers had the same view of the person and salvation of the Messiah. To what earthly king or kingdom can these words apply? Give then, O Lord, to thy people to know thee by every endearing name, and in every glorious character. Give increase of grace in every heart of thy redeemed upon earth.

    Also, the last paragraph of Mart is in this piece of written work:
    The increase of His Government has no end.

    What Steve mentioned too the other day,
    Every tongue and every knee….

  31. foreverblessed says:

    God bless you all, who go back to school.
    In our area, Monday, all schools start too.
    May God be in the schools, I pray in Jesus’ Name.

  32. street says:

    Psalm 31:10
    For my life is spent with sorrow And my years with sighing; My strength has failed because of my iniquity, And my body has wasted away.

    Matthew 7:14
    For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it.

    Acts 11:18
    When they heard this, they quieted down and glorified God, saying, “Well then, God has granted to the Gentiles also the repentance that leads to life.”

    1 John 3:14
    We know that we have passed out of death into life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love abides in death.

    2 Corinthians 4:12
    So death works in us, but life in you.

    Romans 6:10
    For the death that He died, He died to sin once for all; but the life that He lives, He lives to God.

  33. street says:

    steve said,” Are our thoughts and life experiences just straw? Or is behind all of the struggles and suffering and weariness of life, is there purpose? ”

    thinking of the fairy-tale of turning straw into gold. Rumpelstiltskin was the name of the benefactor that did this to the one in distress. yes a fairy-tale, but where on earth did they get the idea that God could take fallen mankind and make Son’s and Daughters of God out of them? thinking of Genesis 3 and the deception.

    thinking of paul,” 27 For I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole purpose of God.” Acts 20:27

  34. street says:

    it would be a great sin to go climb a mountain in asia and ask the question what is the meaning of life. when Jesus said, “come to Me!”

  35. Beloved says:

    Excerpt from the Biography of Thomas Aquinas

    “ In June 1272, Saint Thomas Aquinas agreed to go to Naples and start a theological studies program for the Dominican house neighboring the university. While he was still writing prolifically, his works began to suffer in quality.
    During the Feast of Saint Nicolas in 1273, Saint Thomas Aquinas had a mystical vision that made writing seem unimportant to him. At mass, he reportedly heard a voice coming from a crucifix that said, “Thou hast written well of me, Thomas; what reward wilt thou have?” to which Saint Thomas Aquinas replied, “None other than thyself, Lord.”
    When Saint Thomas Aquinas’s confessor, Father Reginald of Piperno, urged him to keep writing, he replied, “I can do no more. Such secrets have been revealed to me that all I have written now appears to be of little value.” Saint Thomas Aquinas never wrote again.“

  36. poohpity says:

    1 Cor 1:23, 2:2; Gal 6:14

  37. Regina says:

    Good Afternoon, All

    I hope/pray you and family are well. BGg, I’m well and family too.

    Hmmm? Was thinking… I’ve never read anything written by Thomas Aquinas (guess because I’m a Bible student with no formal education, and he lived many years before my time on the earth), and I’d only vaguely heard of him until Mart chose him for a blog topic. Am wondering, now, if he’s on the same par as Martin Luther. Interestingly enough, Thomas’ life made me more curious about the life and legacy of Martin Luther. Thomas was born before Luther, and Luther lived 13 years longer than T.A.

    Did a tiny bit of research on wiki and discovered that, unlike Thomas–who dismissed his writings after seeing a wondrous vision, which for him was a “pearl of great price–Martin Luther was willing to be excommunicated from the church (Roman Catholic or German?) and condemned as an outlaw in defense of his writings. Was also curious about their personal lives. Aquinas never married–though one could easily surmise that he was married to the church–and had no children. Luther, however, did marry and had 6 children (that’s a lot of children for that time period, and I’m curious about their lives and legacy), but he was very sickly. He had Meniere’s disease, vertigo, fainting spells, tinnitus, and a cataract in one eye.

    Am thinking again about dreams and visions. I can only remember having one or two deeply spiritual dreams–and they were dreams–not visions. So, I read Acts 2:17-18 and (this time) I compared the Acts passage to Joel 2:28-29…

    Acts 2:17-18, TLB
    17) ‘In the last days,’ God said, ‘I will pour out my Holy Spirit upon all mankind, and your sons and daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men dream dreams. 18) Yes, the Holy Spirit shall come upon all my servants, men and women alike, and they shall prophesy.

    Joel 2:28-29, TLB
    28) “After I have poured out my rains again, I will pour out my Spirit upon all of you! Your sons and daughters will prophesy; your old men will dream dreams, and your young men see visions. 29) And I will pour out my Spirit even on your slaves, men and women alike,

    I believe that we’re the generation of believers (in Christ)–any believer who’s alive right now and all who will be born (naturally and spiritually) right up to the 2nd return of our Lord Jesus–who will receive an out pouring of the Holy Spirit.

    bubbles, I’m so glad to know that I inspire you, and thank you for your prayers (I’ll pray for you too)! Thank you also, Beloved, for your prayers. I don’t have a commentary, so I definitely need to consider buying one. And I totally understand your frugality re: school supplies! My motto is “waste not–want not.” We desperately need the supplies (for teachers and students) to last until the end of the school year. And, even though we have to take so many health precautions due to the pandemic, I’m excited about the new school year.

    1 CORINTHIANS 14

    91 degrees (feels like 95 degrees) and plenty of sunshine in my neck of the woods…

    Love to all,
    Regina

  38. Regina says:

    Thank you too, forever, for your prayer(s) on behalf of teachers! ~James 5:16b, NLT “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”

  39. Beloved says:

    Regina there are lots of free commentaries online. Biblegateway and Bible Hub are ones I use to look up stuff.

  40. Regina says:

    Thank you for the info, Beloved, I’ll look for one on Biblegateway. Don’t think I’ve ever used one before.

    Just for a laugh…

    Divine Inspiration (Carol Burnett)

    Before the pandemic, I did shows where the audience asked questions. About 10 years ago, in Texas, a lady said, ‘If you could be a member of the opposite sex for 24 hours, who would you be and what would you do?” And I said a little prayer: Ok, God. Whatever comes out of my mouth is going to be your fault. And out tumbled, “I’d be Osama bin Laden, and I’d kill myself.” The audience went nuts! Lol!

  41. street says:

    18
    “Thus says the Lord,
    ‘Behold, I will restore the fortunes of the tents of Jacob
    And have compassion on his dwelling places;
    And the city will be rebuilt on its ruin,
    And the palace will stand on its rightful place.
    19
    ‘From them will proceed thanksgiving
    And the voice of those who celebrate;
    And I will multiply them and they will not be diminished;
    I will also honor them and they will not be insignificant.
    20
    ‘Their children also will be as formerly,
    And their congregation shall be established before Me;
    And I will punish all their oppressors.
    21
    ‘Their leader shall be one of them,
    And their ruler shall come forth from [q]their midst;
    And I will bring him near and he shall approach Me;
    For who would dare to risk his life to approach Me?’ declares the Lord.
    22
    ‘You shall be My people,
    And I will be your God.’”

    2 And you [a]were dead [b]in your trespasses and sins, 2 in which you formerly walked according to the [c]course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. 3 Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, [d]indulging the desires of the flesh and of the [e]mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. 4 But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, 5 even when we were dead [f]in our transgressions, made us alive together [g]with Christ (by grace you have been saved), 6 and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and [h]that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; 9 not as a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.

  42. street says:

    “Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard,
    And which have not entered the heart of man,
    All that God has prepared for those who love Him.”

    10 [d]For to us God revealed them through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches all things, even the depths of God. 11 For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the spirit of the man which is in him? Even so the thoughts of God no one knows except the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may know the things freely given to us by God, 13 which things we also speak, not in words taught by human wisdom, but in those taught by the Spirit, [e]combining spiritual thoughts with spiritual words.

  43. jeff1 says:

    The work is done, His gift complete,
    For Jesus Christ is all we need.
    He lives the life we long to lead,
    And He is ours and all we need.
    His holy heart now beats within.
    We live and move and love in Him.
    His life is everlasting seed,
    And faith in Christ is all we need.

    When weakness seems our sure defeat,
    Lord Jesus Christ is all we need.
    His sovereign will is power indeed.
    We come to Him for all we need.
    His promise stands forever sure.
    Our Rock is firm, our Hope secure.
    His death and life have guaranteed
    That faith in Christ is all we need.

    This world began, its end will be
    In Him whose Word is all we need.
    He calls His own to just believe
    That Jesus Christ is all we need.
    This world will soon go up in flame.
    Our confidence will be the same,
    For God Himself will be our creed,
    And He is all, and all we need.

  44. jeff1 says:

    I visited the seaside for a few days and met a couple who give me hope as they told me their stories and I observed their relationship with each other I could see that with God anything is possible.

    She was a presbyterian and he was a lapsed catholic (in Northern Ireland that is a rare combination) and at one stage in our conversation he said to me how he wished he could have faith and he reiterated to say I am talking about faith in God and not faith in a religion and I confirmed that I understood what he meant.

    She then engaged with me to say of how he had a difficult life and a daughter with a drug addiction while he interrupted and spoke of how she was such an inspiration to him and had brought him through the most difficult of times.

    God moves in a mysterious way,
    His wonders to perform;
    He plants his footsteps in the sea,
    And rides upon the storm.

    Deep in unfathomable mines
    Of never failing skill;
    He treasures up his bright designs,
    And works His sovereign will.

    Ye fearful saints fresh courage take,
    The clouds ye so much dread
    Are big with mercy, and shall break
    In blessings on your head.

    Judge not the Lord by feeble sense,
    But trust him for his grace;
    Behind a frowning providence,
    He hides a smiling face.

    His purposes will ripen fast,
    Unfolding ev’ry hour;
    The bud may have a bitter taste,
    But sweet will be the flow’r.

    Blind unbelief is sure to err,
    And scan his work in vain;
    God is his own interpreter,
    And he will make it plain.[4]

  45. SFDBWV says:

    Often I have said that I envy the people who can just accept things as they are and live out a simple life, content.

    It seems to be a curse to think we need to figure things out, to understand, to know, why.

    But there it is, curiosity, along with all the rabbit holes it leads us down.

    I became somewhat spoiled working underground in the coal mines, as there in the inky dark in order to see I, like everyone else, wore a cap light to light my way.

    Since my retirement from coal mining I bought a cap light that I have found to be useful in both the dark as well as when I need to see in the daylight in dark places.

    This morning as occurs nearly every morning in the non-winter months when I go out in the back to feed the critters and gather weather information, wearing my cap light, little moths come straight to the light.

    And I am always reminded of the question, ‘why is the moth attracted to the flame?”

    As being a welder, among my other skills, often while welding outside in the dark, a moth would fly straight into the very bright ark of my weld and immediately be incinerated in the intense heat.

    Most anyone who has used a candle, torch or open flame for light has seen this occur. The little moth come closer and closer to the flame until too close and then it is killed.

    I think maybe information like the flame while can be comforting and even hold us in a momentary trance, can also be very dangerous.

    We have to be “ready” or “prepared” for some information or else we may not know how to handle it properly or safely.

    Psalms 119:105 says that the Word of God is like a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

    I think also that unless we are led by the Holy Spirit sometimes what we think we see in the dark path of life, can be misunderstood and lead us to the flame instead of enlightenment.

    Steve

  46. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you Jeff, for telling that wonderful story.
    Together with that song!
    Thanks

    Our God is an awesome God

  47. foreverblessed says:

    Good morning Steve,vwe must have posted simultaneously.

    Reminds me of the verse in Isaiah
    When in the dark, do not put on your own light.

    Meaning to say:
    Wait on the Lord,
    trust in Him,
    He knows what He is doing.

    Or this one from Job:
    Though He slay me, I will yet trust in Him.

    All though after that Job got a little tired of God “slaying him”.
    He said: You are not fair, I have obeyed You, and yet You are against me.
    ( My own wording

  48. plumbape says:

    Hi BTA friends and like family members,
    Had never heard of TA but have been inlighted here!!! thanks for (as always) the commenets, poems and scriptures qoutes! Alot to ponder. Always loves Carol Burrnett show (can anyone say black & white tv lol) Thanks for the reminder. Laugther is a cool balm to the soul yes yes when done appropriatly. Memory being to good for my own good sometimes but not always. Always remember anciously awaiting once a month delivery of BTA. and group used to have 5or6 commentors. wow see some 500 comments at times! God is good ALL the time amen!
    Heard something interesting the other day about Cherakee rose: The story goes thst on the trail of they believed when the elder women cried that these roses sprang up where ever the tears dropped. (not conventional roses) but flowers allthe same. Part Cherokee great grandmother full-blooded lived to 103. maybe unrelated to topic but God is so wonderful.
    The Ape in Indy and side kick Sharon are doing well hope to grow old & die together
    Michael

  49. plumbape says:

    sorry Trail of tears still doing hunt & poke better at it though

  50. bubbles says:

    Regina, are you in the path of one of the hurricanes? The Weather Channel is currently showing one moving into the Texas area. Praying you are safe. Take care.

  51. Beloved says:

    Matt’s last paragraph has me thinking of my story. Like the straw in the manger it seems every aspect of life as the bearer of Gods image holds relevance and importance. We are born without our consent, unlike Jesus. Surely He shows us how to navigate this life. If we are paying attention! It was for Gods good pleasure we live and die-shedding the flesh made for temporary housing- eventually. I have to remember that it was for His pleasure alone He created mankind in order to live among us. Oh how He loves us!

    An old friend posted a thought on FB that we are the sum total of all the heartbreak and pain of our ancestors. I thought how sad; there’s so much more to us with Christ our Brother showing us how to get through life. I would hope my “story” would be rich with nuances of a heavenly intervention- Jesus- at just the right time for reasons overwhelming the pain and suffering of years and centuries even- since Adam and Eve! Our first parents.

    This is my story, this is my song. Praising my Savior all the day long!

  52. Beloved says:

    Ohhh that’s Mart, not Matt.

  53. jeff1 says:

    Beloved says:
    August 23, 2020 at 11:04 pm

    An old friend posted a thought on FB that we are the sum total of all the heartbreak and pain of our ancestors. I thought how sad; there’s so much more to us with Christ our Brother showing us how to get through life.

    Yes, what you say is true yet when I take my eyes of Christ it is quite easy for me to see why your old friend might think this.

    From what I see in my own Province history repeats itself unless we learn from it yet the troubles I lived through lasted for 30 years which tells me we did not learn from our history.

    If I see a generation learning from our history it seems it will be the younger ones who are already showing that they are not allowing the past to interfere with the present and they are showing insight when it comes to being handed down beliefs that have kept many engulfed in the past. They see the unhealthy consequences it has had on those who have failed to see beyond their religion and politics and they are not about to repeat them.

    That makes me hopeful today that God will use this generation and enable them to take this Province out of the dark ages and into the future while I cannot help but think that my generation misspent the opportunities in allowing hatred and violence to take hold by using history to justify tit for tat retribution and rather than learning from history we repeated the mistakes of our ancestors.

    If I trust God today it is because He opened my eyes to see that He does know best and I am just along for the journey.

    Walk with me, Lord! Walk with me!
    Walk with me, Lord! Why don’t you walk with me!
    While I’m on this, this tedious journey,
    I need You, Jesus, to walk with me.

    Be my friend, Lord! Be my friend!
    Be my friend, Lord! Why don’t you be my friend!
    While I’m on this, this tedious journey,
    I need You, Jesus, to be my friend.

    Don’t leave me alone, Lord!
    Don’t leave me alone!
    Don’t leave me alone, Lord!
    Please don’t leave me alone!
    While I’m on this, this tedious journey,
    I need You, Jesus, to walk with me.

    Come on and play it Anthony.

    Oh, walk with me Lord
    Walk with me
    Come on and walk with me Lord
    Why don’t you walk with me
    Hey while I walk this this tedious journey
    Lord I need you Jesus yes I need you Lord to walk with me

  54. SFDBWV says:

    A word of caution, trying to look beyond what you know is impossible, filled with pitfalls and capable only from which you already know.

    I already know why people need God, but I can only provide conjecture as to why God needs people.

    In one of the worst movies I ever seen in my youth was the final scene which was the only redeeming value of the movie.

    The movie, “The Man With the X-ray Eyes”. The scene showed the mad scientist in his last moments of sanity being able to see across the universe to its end and what he seen was an eye looking back at him.

    Was it God, or just his own vision in full circle?

    Be careful what you look for, you just may find it.

    Steve

  55. Beloved says:

    God doesn’t “need” anything or anyone. He is all sufficient in His being. And as we have been thinking about here we found He is just, humble and merciful. And- God is love, John says.

    Genesis1
    26Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness, to rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, and over all the earth itselfd and every creature that crawls upon it.”

    27So God created man in His own image;
    in the image of God He created him;
    male and female He created them.

    31And God looked upon all that He had made, and indeed, it was very good.

  56. Beloved says:

    Proverbs 3:5-6

    Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.

  57. jeff1 says:

    Known Only to Him

    Known only to him are the great hidden secrets
    I’ll fear not the darkness when my flame shall dim
    I know not what the future holds
    But I know who holds the future
    It’s a secret known only to Him

    In this world of fear and doubt
    On my knees I ask the question
    Why a lonely, heavy cross I must bear
    Then he tells me in my prayer
    It’s because I am trustworthy
    He gives me strength far more than my share

    Known only to him are the great hidden secrets
    I’ll fear not the darkness when my flame shall dim
    I know not what the future holds
    But I know who holds the future
    It’s a secret known only to him

  58. poohpity says:

    What good is love if you have no one to share it with? God is love!

    1 John 4: Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. 8 Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love……

    16 So we have come to know and to believe the love that God has for us. God is love, and whoever abides in love abides in God, and God abides in him.

  59. SFDBWV says:

    Couldn’t agree more Joyce, in fact I have Proverbs 3:3-5 KJV up on my kitchen wall.

    No one can disagree as well that God made man and made him in God’s own image, however reading from Genesis 1:1-25 KJV we see that it is written everything God made was “good” until it came to the creation of man, Genesis 1:26 KJV whereas it is no longer written that “He saw it was good.”

    And in Genesis 6:6 KJV we see God repented He made man at all.

    None of this explains why God made man or why He needed him.

    As I stated before any explanation would just be conjecture and my conjecture is that God needed to create man so that Jesus could be born into mankind and show the very deepest nature of God’s sacrificial love.

    You might then ask; show it to whom?
    Maybe another reason for the creation of man?

    Steve

  60. SFDBWV says:

    Sorry that was to be Proverbs 3:5-6 KJV

    Steve

  61. street says:

    mystery vs vision

    to be sure there are a great mysteries….

    the mystery of God

    the mystery of creation

    the mystery of mankind and heavenly beings

    the mystery of the fall

    the mystery of Christ, Redemption,

    the mystery of new birth

    and the mystery of abundant life.

    i don’t think mysteries are to remain if Christ is the light of the world.

    vision, the darkness passing away?
    7
    The grass withers, the flower fades,
    When the breath of the Lord blows upon it;
    Surely the people are grass.
    8
    The grass withers, the flower fades,
    But the word of our God stands forever.

    9
    Get yourself up on a high mountain,
    O Zion, bearer of good news,
    Lift up your voice mightily,
    O Jerusalem, bearer of good news;
    Lift it up, do not fear.
    Say to the cities of Judah,
    “Here is your God!”

    Jesus

  62. Beloved says:

    31And God looked upon all that He had made, and indeed, it was very good.

    Jesus said only God is good. Are Image bearers good by default maybe? Made perfect in Christ who bore all the badness/sin that separated us from God. Restored by way of the cross. Thank you, Jesus, for being obedient to our Fathers will. May we be enabled to seek and follow You today!

  63. Beloved says:

    As I stated before any explanation would just be conjecture and my conjecture is that God needed to create man so that Jesus could be born into mankind and show the very deepest nature of God’s sacrificial love. Steve

    Needed or wanted to create man? Needed to create Jesus to show mankind His love? Or wanted to create man to come and live among us; by His spirit before Christ and with us through Christ Jesus on earth then by His spirit poured out on all men at Pentecost; Christ in us, the hope of glory!

  64. Beloved says:

    Jeremiah 23 22But if they had stood in My council,
    they would have proclaimed My words to My people
    and turned them back
    from their evil ways and deeds.”
    23“Am I only a God nearby,” declares the LORD, “and not a God far away?”

    24“Can a man hide in secret places where I cannot see him?” declares the LORD.

    “Do I not fill the heavens and the earth?” declares the LORD.

    Yes God gets remorseful of mankind when they turn from Him. It’s because of His Holiness; which we have a hard time understanding sometimes. A great mystery which is why I must trust and follow; even and especially when I hurt Him by my arrogance or pride. Which trips me up too often.

  65. Beloved says:

    Ephesians 4:30: “And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption.” In this case the word grieve is used as a verb, meaning: “to cause to feel grief or sorrow.” In other words, the Scripture is exhorting me not to cause the Holy Spirit to feel grief or sorrow as a result of my choices. I grieve the Holy Spirit by not allowing myself to be led by Him, but choosing my own way instead. I grieve the Holy Spirit by not obeying Him.” Pasted

  66. Beloved says:

    Steve, nice talking with you.

  67. poohpity says:

    yes Joyce after God made man He said, “It was VERY good” in Genesis 1:31. Verses 26-31 are the accomplishments of the sixth day, the creation of mankind, sex and food. I have to agree with the VERY good part!!!!

  68. SFDBWV says:

    My apologies to all, I stand corrected God did say everything He made was “good” in Genesis 1:31.

    Steve

  69. Beloved says:

    No apologies needed Steve. We’re all learning😀

  70. Beloved says:

    I’ll bet I’m not the only one who’s read scripture for years and suddenly sees something that was obscured until one day….

  71. Regina says:

    Good Evening, All
    I hope you and yours are doing well. BGg, I’m well and family too.

    Had a long day of online training and classroom organization, so I don’t really have the energy to chat. Just dropped in to say hello. Beloved, I’m not in harm’s way. I don’t live on the border of the Gulf of Mexico. I live in North Texas. We may get some rain depending on the strength of the hurricane, but (usually) that’s about it. Nevertheless, I so appreciate your prayers. Well, just finished eating some cork screw pasta with broccoli, corn and carrots, and I may have the energy to eat a Kind (Honey and Oat) Breakfast Bar (my night time dessert). Then, I’ll polish it off with a big drink of water and 21 minutes of the nightly news. All for now… Good night everyone.

    1 CORINTHIANS 14

    89 degrees under a clear sky…

    Love to all,
    Regina

  72. jeff1 says:

    Though passing through this darkened world,
    We’re children of the Light.
    Though pressured and rejected here,
    We’re precious in Your sight.

    Refrain
    We walk below with hearts above,
    The captives of eternal love.
    But by Your Spirit show us how
    To love You fully here and now.

    The fruit of all Your life and love
    Will come to those who reap.
    With joy, my Lord, we gladly sow
    The lives we cannot keep.

    Through pain and sorrow, grief and death
    We more than overcome.
    We fix our eyes on Jesus Christ,
    Your risen, reigning Son!

  73. Beloved says:

    Feeling disgusted tonight.

    Civil unrest- evangelical leader scandal- COVID in schools- ugh. I’m feeling overwhelmed tonight. But I still cooked supper for some ladies where I live in Jesus name. No matter how disgusted I can still see His beautiful face saying peace, be still.

    Is anyone else resting in and trusting Him tonight?

  74. foreverblessed says:

    Mart gave this topic, about Thomas who had been given a vision of Jesus’ broken body and the shedding of His blood.

    Thomas was so overwhelmed!

    (Beloved, when I am overwhelmed by the bad news around us, I discipline myself to look upon Jesus, and what He has done)

    This is what Jesus has done for us, that broken body and shed blood, was needed for redeeming us, making us whole, sanctifying us!

    Oh, how great His love for us is.
    Thomas was so impressed.
    It reminds me of Thomas, who wanted to see the risen Christ Himself, he wanted to make sure the risen man was the same, as the One who was hung on the Cross, with wounds in His hands, and the spear in His side.
    And when Jesus shows Thomas, Thomas looks at Him, in His eyes:
    My Lord and my God.

    Greatly overwhelmed by the intense love of Jesus.
    That’s our Savior,
    The Lover of our soul.

    John 20:28

  75. foreverblessed says:

    Sorry, Beloved, I may have sound overbearing, you did the same thing as I try to
    do, when being overwhelmed by the sad news.
    It is so good to encourage one another as Christians.
    That’s why I find this topic so encouraging,
    It focusses on the most important thing that ever happened:
    Jesus’ Cross.

    In His resurrection Life we live and have our being.

  76. jeff1 says:

    I have learned to distract myself when I feel overwhelmed by strife and today I am thinking of the couple I met at the seaside whose partnership made an impression that would lead me to see that God was at work in their lives.

    Why is it that God is so much easier to see in the everyday ordinary aspects than He is on the world stage!

    No matter what they tell us
    No matter what they do
    No matter what they teach us
    What we believe is true
    No matter what they call us
    However they attack
    No matter where they take us
    We’ll find our own way back

    I can’t deny what I believe
    I can’t be what I’m not
    I know I’ll love forever

    I know, no matter what
    If only tears were laughter
    If only night was day
    If only prayers were answered

    Then we would hear God say
    No matter what they tell you
    No matter what they do
    No matter what they teach you

    What you believe is true
    And I will keep you safe and strong
    And sheltered from the storm
    No matter where it’s barren

    A dream is being born

    No matter who they follow
    No matter where they lead
    No matter how they judge us
    I’ll be everyone you need

    No matter if the sun don’t shine
    Or if the skies are blue
    No matter what the ending
    My life began with you
    I can’t deny what I believe
    I can’t be what I’m not
    I know, I know
    I know this love’s forever
    That’s all that matters now
    No matter what

  77. poohpity says:

    Did Thomas Aquinas ever share what it was He saw in his vision or are you just assuming? It was while he was reflecting on the broken body and shed blood of his Savior, that he saw his vision but did he ever share what the vision was? He obviously knew before hand about Jesus but still wrote volumes but what God showed him had to have been something he had never thought of or could have imagined before for him to stop him in his tracks and put down his pen in his life’s work. Something to make him realize that all his study, philosophies, logic and reasoning could not compare to what God revealed to him. He seemed to be trying to find answers to things he was not meant to know thus leading his readers astray. BUT GOD!!!! Intervened.

    *****************

    I only get overwhelmed by the things happening in our country when I think I have the ability to do something about it other than pray for God’s help otherwise I am disgusted by those who take for granted the freedoms that living in this country affords us, just as those who claim to know Jesus take for granted His mercy, grace and forgiveness by withholding that from the way they treat others.

    I was quite encouraged and filled with hope after seeing the campaign platform of the RNC for the last two days. How many spoke of their faith in God to lead and the good that has been accomplished because of God’s hand on this country. One Nation Under God! Even when the other side is so opposed to even mentioning His name and wanting it to be taken out of schools, the pledge, the national anthem but support the riots, looting and destruction while trying to close down churches.

    Evil is not even trying to hide it’s self but we know who has overcome evil and taught us to do it by doing good.

  78. poohpity says:

    It seems that Aquinas may have had the same temptation that Adam and Even had in the garden to eat from the Tree of Knowledge so they could be like God.

  79. Beloved says:

    So good to hear others are trusting in and resting in Jesus! It is finished, yes it is!

  80. Beloved says:

    Question: what do you expect from Jesus? What does He give you?

  81. jeff1 says:

    I believe that in order to have peace within myself I must find rest in Christ and that only comes from trusting Him.

    I believe God wants that I should know peace in this world which can be harsh and disturbing.

    He intervenes when He sees me struggle.

    I think it is just as much a modern day problem for people to want to play God rather than listen but God intervenes because He cares that we do not stray from His Ways which are there for our protection and well being and so I thank Him for His rebukes though they can be stinging at the time they bring a peace that surpasses understanding.

    I heard a great voice out of heaven saying
    Behold the tabernacle of God is with man
    He shall dwell within them, they shall be His people
    And Almighty God will be with them
    He shall wipe away all tears from their eyes
    There shall be no more death
    Neither sorrow nor crying, and no more pain
    The former things have all past away
    He that sat upon the throne said
    Behold, I make all things new
    He said unto me, Write these words
    For they are faithful and true
    And it is done, it is done, it is done, it is done
    He is the Alpha and Omega
    The Beginning and the End
    The Son of God, King of Kings
    Lord of Lords, He’s everything
    Messiah, Jehovah, The Prince of Peace, is He
    Son of Man, Seed of Abraham
    Second Person in the Trinity. (Repeat 4 times)
    He is the Alpha and Omega
    The Son of God, the King of Kings
    The Messiah, Jehovah, The Great I Am
    Seed of Abraham
    He is the Alpha and Omega
    The Beginning and the End
    Son of God, King of Kings
    The Lord of Everything
    He is Lord!!

  82. street says:

    forever said Mart gave this topic, about Thomas who had been given a vision of Jesus’ broken body and the shedding of His blood.

    Thomas was so overwhelmed!

    (Beloved, when I am overwhelmed by the bad news around us, I discipline myself to look upon Jesus, and what He has done)

    This is what Jesus has done for us, that broken body and shed blood, was needed for redeeming us, making us whole, sanctifying us!

    when i read this i saw the name thomas and thought of thomas in the upper room on Jesus second visit where he proclaimed my LORD and my GOD. made me think of mary in the garden finding the empty tomb. the difficulty of a missing body is missed sometimes in that a dead body missing caused her great distress. even His body offered hope of a resurrection. the resurrection happen a lot sooner than anyone would have believed or even dreamed. Jesus in His infinite mercy put her distress to rest with one word. “Mary”

    we are called to put and end to darkness by faith, the gift of God. Emmanuel

  83. Beloved says:

    “At all times we should commit everything to Jesus’ faithful hand; then even if life should hang on a thread, and difficulties multiply like the sands of the sea, our soul shall live in safety and delight itself in quiet resting places.” —C.H. Spurgeon

    Amen!

  84. foreverblessed says:

    Yesterday I watched a video of Ravi Zacharias:
    Why I believe in Jesus
    ….
    I was so impressed by his deep faith in Jesus.
    In the video he tells that he talked during a breakfast to the United Nations Ambassadors. He said he had to give a speech and only the last 3 minutes he would tell the most important thing, the Gospel.
    It brought me to tears, that God gave him the words, the setup of the speech, and so powerfully made the point:
    A hill, Calvary, where Jesus died on the Cross
    There all the requirements of evil of the world, justice love and forgiveness are met.

    It is on the Cross, where all is solved.
    By the broken body and she’d blood.
    So if you asked me if I had a guess of what the vision was of Thomas Aquinas, while he was meditating on the broken body and the shed blood?
    While he meditated on the most important point in history,
    The spiritual healing that comes through the Bread of Life, Who is Jesus, Who came to the earth, and became part in our flesh. Flesh if our flesh and bones of our bones, and blood of our blood.
    Only He was God, Emmanuel, God IN man, and His body was on the Cross, broken and His blood was spilled on the ground. The God in flesh, the Life in His blood, on the earth.
    And now given to us who believe in Him.

    If you ask me what I want from Jesus? More faith in Him, more trust.
    That I know that I am in Him and He is in me.
    That He has wrapped me in, from all sides, all my affairs are His. He knows the solutions, He inties all the knots that I have made. I can lay all my worries in His Hands, and leave them there. And happily stand up and walk besides Him!
    And wait as a maiden for her mistress, what to do for today

    Psalm 123:1-2

  85. foreverblessed says:

    What Spurgeon encouraged us to do:
    ( Comment of Beloved,August 26, 11:39pm)
    :The verse of the day of Bible gateway:

    You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in You.

    Isaiah 26:3

    From verse 1:
    We have a strong city;
    God makes salvation
    its walls and ramparts.
    Open the gates
    that the righteous nation may enter,
    the nation that keeps faith.
    You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You.
    Trust in the Lord for ever,
    for the Lord, the Lord, is the Rock eternal.

    We stand on the Rock, that is Jesus, and though we may tremble, the Rock will not move.
    The Rock will be solid and secure.

    God bless you all today!

  86. jeff1 says:

    Will your anchor hold in the storms of life,
    When the clouds unfold their wings of strife?
    When the strong tides lift, and the cables strain,
    Will your anchor drift or firm remain?

    We have an anchor that keeps the soul
    Stedfast and sure while the billows roll,
    Fastened to the Rock which cannot move,
    Grounded firm and deep in the Savior’s love.
    2
    It is safely moored, ’twill the storm withstand,
    For ’tis well secured by the Savior’s hand;
    And the cables passed from His heart to mine,
    Can defy the blast, through strength divine.
    3
    It will firmly hold in the straits of fear,
    When the breakers have told the reef is near;
    Though the tempest rave and the wild winds blow,
    Not an angry wave shall our bark o’erflow.
    4
    It will surely hold in the floods of death,
    When the waters cold chill our latest breath;
    On the rising tide it can never fail,
    While our hopes abide within the veil.

  87. SFDBWV says:

    Reading the lyrics of the song you quoted Viv jarred loose a memory.

    My first wife Rita’s favorite Christian song was “The Anchor Holds” by Ray Boltz.

    I had it played at her funeral.

    “I have journeyed
    Through the long dark night
    Out on the open sea
    By faith alone
    Sight unknown
    And yet His eyes were watching me
    The anchor holds
    Though the ship is battered
    The anchor holds.”

    Thanks
    Steve

  88. plumbape says:

    question, Jeff1 do you make up the poems you post; don’t have a clue (I’m on to something but it sure isn’t a clue!

  89. jeff1 says:

    No, most of them are songs or hymns that I have grown up with.

    I have had the privilege of having been sent to both Sunday School and the Gospel hall in childhood and it was in the Gospel hall I would develop a love of hymns as there were no sermons at it was just singing and prayers.

    Back in the day it was not everyone would send their children to the Gospel hall as churches here were and still are very denominational.

    I can still remember the ladies with their hats and costumes as they were known as then coming to our door at 3pm on a Sunday to collect us.

    There were five sisters but two of them always came for us and so I remember they were called Maudie and Emily.

    They had their own little sewing business and I remember taking clothing to them that needed mending.

    Simpler days which is why I feel blessed to have known them.

  90. poohpity says:

    Yesterday I heard about therapies that consist of only music to help with things such as neurological problems strokes and palsy that brought healing. Music is a wonderful thing for the mind and soul and believe it or not but can also help in math memory. People with alzheimers and dementia remember songs. Maybe that is the reason that God was so quick to create instruments.

  91. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning Deborah, if you remember Mart did an entire subject on the matter of musical therapy some time back.

    I even played music to Matthew while he lay in a coma, 21 years ago.

    His music is still very important to him even to this day.

    Steve

  92. poohpity says:

    Hey Steve if I remember right didn’t Matt play the guitar at one time? I do not remember Mart having a topic on musical therapy but that does not mean it did not happen but at this time since I got very sick a couple of months ago my memory has not been the best any more. I think I have old timers, lol.

  93. SFDBWV says:

    Yes Deb, Matt learned classical guitar music from the age of about 7 up to his teens. He loved to set and play his guitar. One of the sad things taken from him, though he can remember that he did.

    Early on I used to get his guitar down and let him do what he could with one hand, but it soon become to frustrating for him.

    yesterday Matt and I had a doctors visit for a routine check up for him and to look about my current issues. I was surprised to see an old friend come in right behind us, he is 92 years old and it was great to see him.

    Though he told me every day is a living hell for him.

    Getting old is certainly not the golden years,

    We all have a hard time remembering, though when people tell me how good my memory is, they really don’t know how hard sometimes it is to do.

    Matt and I are off to the dentist office in about a half hour, just a routine check up for us both.

    Steve

  94. SFDBWV says:

    Yesterday after Matt and I returned from the dentist office while I was fixing his dinner I heard a sudden, but soft whoosh out in the back yard. I thought at first something had fallen over and I even went out back to look. I saw nothing.

    However just after returning to the kitchen sink I realized what was up.

    What I had heard was the sudden departure of all the birds from the feeder area as the hawk was now perched in the limbs of the rhododendron above the feeding rock.

    He soon hopped down from his perch and began looking around for a meal.

    By now Matt was up at his table eating when I heard a screech from our hawk. Looking out of a side window from our living room I could see him just below the window eating his meal.

    He would every so often make that same softer screech even after finishing off his dinner, before silence came.

    Then after Matt had brushed his teeth and went to the computer a blue Jay began a loud and continuous squawk that went on for more than several minutes.

    When the Blue Jay quit making its noise all of the doves, and other birds returned to the feeding area in mass to feed.

    Such are the trials of life in the natural world as well as how these creatures though different all are connected by the same things and apparently even understand the communications of each other.

    It always reminds me of how much we are like the natural things around us and if we would just slow down, watch and listen maybe we too could learn the things that the “dumbest” beast already knows.

    Knocking us down from the higher perch we place ourselves on and teaching us a little humility.

    69 degrees and humid.

    Steve

  95. SFDBWV says:

    Wednesday we buried the cremains of our friend Mike. Being a veteran I had arranged for the local American legion to hold a ceremony for his burial. His wife Chris told me that Wednesday would have been their 30th wedding anniversary and ask if she could bury her husband on that same day. Having then just one bad day.

    Yesterday a local monument company placed 4 monuments in the cemetery. I had already marked off for them the boundaries for the monuments and went up in the morning to assure they knew where each monument went.

    Yesterday I also ordered some clock mechanism’s for Matt’s “West Virginia” clock. He had made the wooden clock when in high school wood shop. It hangs on our living room wall and he watches it all day long.

    When speaking to the clerk there in Wisconsin she told me of how upsetting things are in the world and how she is a “hugger” and misses that physical contact with other people.

    As we talked I told her that though I sometimes fail I always try whenever I speak with anyone wherever, that I want to leave that person glad they had talked with me. Perhaps leaving a smile on their face.

    I want to believe that beyond accepting Jesus as Lord that in that book God keeps of our lives that what is important to God is how we treat each other in our actions not just our words.

    Jesus the servant, we the servants.

    Steve

  96. poohpity says:

    After watching the four nights of the RNC convention I do not recall the name of our God and His work mentioned so many times before which brought me so much inspiration and hope that God has His hand in all things and such a big stage for people to hear about Him. Hallelujah!

  97. SFDBWV says:

    Very unusual I started mowing with the riding mower down on the corner, when Glenna seen me she insisted on mowing.

    She says she just don’t want me overdoing it, but I think she just don’t like the way I mow…

    Matt and I go to bed at 9pm so watching any of the convention is out of the question. I give Matt the control of TV anyway.

    Around here hope remains that Trump can still win. In fact I have not spoken to one person who agrees with the Democratic Party agenda or their party leaders.

    Even Matt and my doctor is praying Trump wins. He thinks if he doesn’t there is going to be what he classifies as a civil war.
    I think that if Trump wins the liberal left will burn down most cities in America.
    Either way things are very bad.

    Prayer for our country is the only real hope we have.

    Steve

  98. Beloved says:

    I had a dream last night about a hopeless situation that did not end well. Yet my first thought as I awoke was that God is good. So as I did my morning duties I sang out loud God is so good, God is so good, God is so good-He’s so good, to, me. It’s an oldie but goodie as they say. I’ll look for the lyrics.

  99. Beloved says:

    Scripture: 1 Chronicles 16:34

    God Is So Good [.xml]
    Velna A. Ledin, 1933

    God is so good,
    God is so good,
    God is so good,
    He’s so good to me!
    God answers prayer,
    God answers prayer,
    God answers prayer,
    He’s so good to me!
    He cares for me,
    He cares for me,
    He cares for me,
    He’s so good to me!
    I love Him so,
    I love Him so,
    I love Him so,
    He’s so good to me!
    I’ll do His will,
    I’ll do His will,
    I’ll do His will,
    He’s so good to me!
    I praise His name,
    I praise His name,
    I praise His name,
    He’s so good to me!

  100. poohpity says:

    Steve, didn’t you just go to the doc yesterday? Maybe she was just thinking about your welfare and not being critical of the way you mow whatever the reason it was a good thing to help you because you do do a lot in your caring for Matt. You do not need to watch the TV to hear the convention it is all over the computer as well.

  101. SFDBWV says:

    Deb we went to the doctor Wednesday and the dentist Thursday. It is my little joke with Glenna, of course she is worried I do too much. she is a good wife and companion and i love her very much.

    I do pick up on the gist of the convention goings on from both the news and the news on line.

    I had already heard enough from the Democrats back in 1968 while still in the Marine Corps to make me a Republican. Sadly they just get worse and worse. Not the party of the Roosevelts that so many here in WV came to love during the Great Depression and during WWII.

    I did see today where a thousand “militiamen were ready and come defend Kenosha Wisconsin and as a result Facebook has taken their organization off so as to try and disrupt their ability to muster a force when needed.

    Of course Facebook has not done the same to the organizations that have brought civil strife, rioting and looting to Kenosha.

    Matt’s taking over the computer for the rest of the afternoon, see everyone tomorrow.

    Be blessed.
    Steve

  102. jeff1 says:

    1 O Jesus, I have promised
    to serve thee to the end;
    be thou forever near me,
    my Master and my Friend;
    I shall not fear the battle
    if thou art by my side,
    nor wander from the pathway
    if thou wilt be my guide.

    2 O Jesus, thou hast promised
    to all who follow thee,
    that where thou art in glory
    there shall thy servant be;
    and, Jesus, I have promised
    to serve thee to the end;
    O give me grace to follow,
    my Master and my Friend.

    3 O let me feel thee near me!
    The world is ever near;
    I see the sights that dazzle,
    the tempting sounds I hear;
    my foes are ever near me,
    around me and within;
    but Jesus, draw thou nearer,
    and shield my soul from sin.

    4 O let me hear thee speaking
    in accents clear and still,
    above the storms of passion,
    the murmurs of self will.
    O speak to reassure me,
    to hasten or control;
    O speak and make me listen,
    thou guardian of my soul.

  103. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you Jeff, yes keeping our eyes on Jesus.
    Ever since last Wednesday, I have been on the theme: Jesus’ broken body and shed blood.
    It so happened that I had this deep conversion with somebody, about Jesus’ sacrifice, and when I came home, Mart had changed the topic, and talked about the meditating of Aquinas about the broken body and she’d blood.

    This I knew, I have to concentrate on that great Truth: Jesus’ sacrifice is all encompassing

    Whatever happens, the rolling of the ages, the stirring of the nation’s, through the ages.

    And there is some stirring going on, I shudder at what I heard during this RNC convention.
    People can pray to God whatever they can, and then proceed making their opponents black.
    RRP having been president has diminished the role of the US in the world. I do not know that you in America are aware of it, but to the rest of the world, this president has list great influence in the world.
    The shift of power is moving away, and Europe knows it has to be less dependent on America. Major shift has been going on,never since this president cand on. When nations want advice or mediation, they do not call the American president anymore, but Angela Merkel.

    The stirring of the nations.

    But…. Jesus is sitting at the right hand of God.
    And since I have been being immersed in this topic, I am full of that great impact of Jesus.
    The power of His saving that is for all.

  104. foreverblessed says:

    Hebrews 10:12

    But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God;

    ..Instead of these priests standing, offering, and doing over and over again their impotent sacrifices, ‘this Man’ offered His once. That was enough, and for ever. And the token that the one sacrifice was adequate, really could take away sin, would never, through all the rolling ages of the world’s history, lose its efficacy, lies here-He sits at the right hand of God. Brethren, in that session, which the Lord Himself commanded us to believe, is the divine answer and endorsement of the triumphant cry upon the Cross, ‘It is finished,’ and it is God’s last, loudest, and ever- reverberating proclamation to all the world, in all its generations, ‘This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.’

    Alexander MacLaren on Hebrews 10:12

  105. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning Foreverblessed, I hope all is well for you and your family.

    We are having rain this morning and what is the after effects at the edge of the hurricane that devastated Louisiana. No real dangerous weather for us just some rain.

    This subject Mart has opened for our thoughts and discussion is intriguing to me in that it will remain a mystery, as Thomas never divulged what it was he saw and from what I have read here, not even how he saw it.

    Was it a vision, a dream or some event of life that made him see his life’s work as worthless compared to it?

    What was God’s purpose in opening his eyes and even if it was God who provided what he had seen?

    I have heard all my life and several times here that God places leaders where and when He wants in order to produce His will.

    Paul even says we are not to criticize leaders because God has put them in leadership rolls.

    As I look at history there has been horrible events take place that may cause some to question why God would allow such men to lead their countries into such devastation, but then we all wonder why about life’s events and why God allow it?

    Prior to WWI the USA tried to remain a neutral nation keeping out of Europe’s endless wars with each other, but political pressure and perhaps even interference from foreign countries forced us to send our sons and daughters to aid our European allies. Many to their death.

    Because of the reckless and immoral handling of the end of WWI we had WWII where once again the USA sent our sons and daughters to the defense of Europe with another great cost of lives.

    Looking for God in the midst of it can be challenging. However it did produce once again a homeland for the Jew and the reestablishing of the nation of Israel.

    Who knows whether or not all of the destruction of two world wars was to put Israel once again on the international stage in order to bring about the Great Tribulation?

    Many people ask why the USA is not mentioned in the Bible at the end of the age.

    Perhaps because it just isn’t significant in the events played out in Revelation.

    Remembering that some believe the old Roman Empire has a part in the events leading up to Revelation and who is the old Roman Empire except Europe (Western) and Turkey, Russia etc. the Eastern.

    Look beyond faces names and politics, perhaps we too can see something that makes it all fade in comparison.

    Steve

  106. poohpity says:

    Actually since the EU was started it has prompted more countries to go into bankruptcy which is why several want to leave it’s bureaucracy to turn to sovereignty. This President has held countries accountable to pay their fair share in NATO rather than the USA footing the bill for them and holding them to follow through on their commitment to the treaty they signed saying that they would pay 2% of their GDP per the agreement, so it is no wonder they have harsh words to say about Pres Trump. Several countries have taken advantage of our country not only in trade but their protection as well.

    As far as the people of color this President has done more for their community than any Pres in 50 years to help them get jobs, prevent mass incarceration, build up their community housing problems, make sure that their black colleges are funded with no need to ask for help yearly, getting more people off of welfare and giving them hope that the future can be more than to be a slave to the welfare system.

    We live in a Republic that means that each state is responsible for their sovereignty. If anyone pays attention it is the states that are run by the left which over many years has lead to their bankruptcy, high crime rates, high homeless population, not protecting their law enforcement, preventing religious freedoms and just allowing people to move to chaos rather than following and enforcing the laws of the land. They do not allow people with differing opinions to speak and cause riots and destruction when they do. They are right now the biggest threat to our Constitutional freedoms and want our country to look more like the socialist countries that many people have fled from to come here.

  107. poohpity says:

    What has the BLM movement done to help their own people other than killing them even as young as 1 years old or ruin their businesses not many hear about them, the citizens that are law abiding but they do try to protect the rights of criminals but because of the left biased media those black on black crimes do not get the spot light, or the lives lost of tax paying patriots trying to protect their neighbors and the many business they have looted or burned down that belong black people.

    So forever it may be a wise choice to look a little further into the hype that the media portrays and search for facts.

  108. poohpity says:

    It is the DC politicians that has caused anger and hate since they lost the election in 2016 to a person who was not one of the political elite and he promised to reveal the corruption in DC and they have had it in for him ever since. This started before he was even elected to be Pres during his campaign they tried to sabotage him and have ever since then because he is not one of them and does not rely on the money from special interest groups or money from lobbyists so like Pres Obama left the White House with a growth in his net worth of 468% more than when he started. Follow the money of those who want to destroy our country for their own interests. Politics is nasty, corrupt and self serving and usually care nothing for the people of the USA which is why it seems during the DNC they had no one speak that was not a politician or in the entertainment business that is who they cater to, not the people.

  109. Beloved says:

    I’ve been thinking not about Thomas but of what a broken world we have. And how we know more than ever because of internet and television. After reading about how Christians are ministering to the lost in Minneapolis -Piper and others-I was greatly encouraged to remember why we are here this day in 2020. Wars strife rumors —nothing is new that was not predicted by Jesus Himself. Are world events important I ask myself? I’d love to talk to the Christians being incarcerated and worse for their faith in Jesus in some countries this day of 2020.

    Thy kingdom come THY will be done on earth as it is in heaven
    Forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors
    For THINE is the kingdom power and glory forever and ever Amen

  110. Beloved says:

    I don’t think Thomas’s vision had anything to do with politics whether in the realm of religion or government. Just guessing.

  111. SFDBWV says:

    Perhaps #1 of my all-time favorite western movies is “Lonesome Dove” at the very end of the movie after Captain Call (Woodrow) had finished burying his friend Gus, a newspaper reporter told him that he was considered a man of vision.

    Woodrow said sure he is a man of vision alright and he looked back across all the events of the movie and its characters who had died.

    Mistakes, regrets, lost opportunities and lost friends.

    The reporter didn’t get a story either from this man of vision.

    I am going up to the spring after Matt finishes his mid-morning snack and get water.

    I love to tell the story of the spring in the winter of 76-77.

    The spring was the primary source of the town’s water, feeding a large reservoir elevated above town, the reservoir then gravity fed water down into town. The spring box and reservoir built by the Emmons Coal Company about 1918.

    Over the years the municipality added several pumps to the system to keep the lines charged with water pressure all the time.

    However that winter of 76-77 was a brutally cold one and as a result people in the lower end of town would let their water lines run in order to keep them from freezing up. The result being that it kept the reservoir at a very low level and so some people in the higher elevations of town just did not have water, sometimes until 1 or 2 in the morning and then for only a few hours.

    I was a very young Mayor and felt great pressure in order to fix our problem. Running out of options one evening just before dark during that time of evening in the winter when the atmosphere is actually blue with big snowflakes slowly drifting down I was at the spring trying to imagine a way of getting more water into the reservoir.

    When suddenly I just surrendered. I said to God Father I am not Moses, I can’t strike the rock and make water come out, you are going to have to fix this, I can’t.

    I left and drove home.

    Just as I entered my kitchen door the phone rang and I answered it. On the line was someone from the WV State Highway Department. He said to me, Mayor I understand you guys have a water problem there in Bayard. I said yes we do. Whereupon he said to me that he has two tanker trucks available to us and the neighboring city of Thomas is willing to give us water to keep our reservoir filled until the emergency is over if I like.

    I quickly agreed and our emergency was over.

    God was already working out our solution before I had even ask Him for help. The vision I took from this was just that. Whether I can see a way out or not God not only can but is already working out the solution.

    The only thing He may ask of me is to ask, give thanks and recognize His hand upon the matter.

    I think there may be varying kinds of vision.

    Steve

  112. SFDBWV says:

    I should add that in the summer of 77 we put in a new water system and abandoned the old spring as our only source of water.

    Yet many people still get water from the spring as it is far better water than the “safe” treated water we now enjoy.

    Steve

  113. jeff1 says:

    Farther Along

    Tempted and tried we’re oft’ made to wonder
    Why it should be thus all the day long
    While there are others living about us
    Never molested, though in the wrong

    Farther along we’ll know more about it
    Farther along we’ll understand why
    Cheer up my brother live in the sunshine
    We’ll understand it all by and by

    When death has come and taken our loved ones
    Leaving our homes so lonely and drear
    Then do we wonder how others prosper
    Living so wicked year after year

    Farther along we’ll know more about it
    Farther along we’ll understand why
    Cheer up my brother live in the sunshine
    We’ll understand it all by and by

  114. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you very much Steve, for this decent conversation. Thank you very much.

    About a spring:
    Think about a spring of water on a mountain,
    Streaming down, flowing, going down, it has to go down, it cannot stand still.
    That is what Jesus has done, Be has brought salvation, and it started to roll, first with 120 in the upper room, then the added thousands on Pentecost, when the Spirit was given.
    Not stoppable!

    In storms run to Jesus, the best place to be.

    Anyway, your president is tweeting everyday! It is for all the world to see, everyone can read for himself hat he tweets.
    And with every abrasive tweet, he makes America less great.
    I want to warn you about that.

    We can pray for him, that he may find peace in Jesus, and come to serenety.

    The good news is: everything that has gone wrong in Jesus it can be restored, the sins of the one side and the sins of the other side. But looking for peace in Jesus’ power is what we ought to do, not bring fuel to the fire, polarising tweets.
    They also go out into the world, and poison the atmosphere.
    We pray and pray for peace, but in the mean time…

    God have mercy, they do not know what they are doing.
    Open their eyes, that they may see what is going on.

    (Talking about the Roman empire, and the end, as you mentioned east and west Europe, that was interesting, maybe sometime later I will come back on it)

    May God bless you today

  115. jeff1 says:

    Thinking of how the apple does not fall far from the tree as we are not so unlike our first parents when it comes to passing the buck around.

    God’s into restoration and not demolition and the difficulty is in seeing that especially since God is thorough and doesn’t settle for half measures.

    The world may seem broken but if I have learned anything it is that nothing is as it seems when God is in the mix.

    This quote from C. S. Lewis comes to mind:

    Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on; you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace. He intends to come and live in it Himself.”
    ― C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

  116. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning again Foreverblessed. What a difference a day can make, yesterday morning it was rainy hot and humid and this morning 59 degrees f and cool.

    You are very welcome, I find conversing with you always a pleasure.

    In so far as Trump is concerned, let me say that we should remember that he is just a man. Men of action, whether good or bad always make friends and enemies. All depending on which side of the issue they are on.

    Perhaps more on that later. As for now I have fed the critters, had my morning prayers and am ready to relax a little with some coffee and keep Matt company.

    I hope your day is filled with blessings and all your prayers are answered.

    Steve

  117. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning to you as well Viv, I see you posted while I was busy writing and doing my chores before I posted.

    I share with you my hope for your blessings and answered prayers as well.

    Steve

  118. jeff1 says:

    I remember having a conversation with our Rector who said that when he joined the Ministry he was told there would be times he would have to go along with decisions that he may feel opposed to.

    I understand where he is coming from as I have often succumbed to authorities not because I agreed with their findings but because it was instilled in me it was my duty to do so.

    I read this quote from Lord Tennyson and take heart as it seems to me he is on to something here.

    Theirs is not to make reply: Theirs is not to reason why: Theirs is but to do and die. — Alfred Lord Tennyson “ There lives more faith in honest doubt, believe me, than in half the creeds. — Alfred Lord Tennyson

  119. poohpity says:

    I do not recall having a perfect President as of yet and I also am not a fan of the tweets nor of all the speeches but he is one who follows through on his promises unlike politicians and we never have to guess what he is thinking because it is out there and he does take the questions of reporters often unlike our last President. President Trump is unique and it was time for a change. He has accomplished many things since he has been in office. If I pay attention the things I do not like then I miss the positive things that are taking place, blinded and deaf to the good.

  120. SFDBWV says:

    I have to laugh a little as most conservatives like myself want to think Ronald Reagan was the best ever in our generations. Maybe not perfect, but darn close.

    On a serious note, if we accept the statue of mankind in Nebuchadnezzar’s dream as being the governments of man up to the coming Christ as King then things will only get worse in the world of politics until the end.

    Resting between chores.
    Steve

  121. poohpity says:

    I believe that things will continue to get worse up to the 2nd coming of Jesus Christ not just in governments but in the hearts of mankind period. Put on the full armor of God everyday to be prepared for battle against the unseen forces.

  122. jeff1 says:

    When I was young I followed politicians thinking they where going to save Ulster (Northern Ireland) five decades on and those politicians have passed on and I know it is God who weaves together all things for good.

    When my way groweth drear
    Precious Lord, linger near-ear
    When my li-ight is almost gone
    Hear my cry, hear my call
    Hold my ha-and lest I fa-all
    Take my hand, precious Lor-ord
    Lead me on

    Precious Lord, take my hand
    Lead me on, let me sta-and
    I am tired, I’m weak, I am worn
    Through the storm, through the night
    Lead me on to the li-ight
    Take my ha-and, precious Lor-ord
    Lead me home

    When my work is all done
    And my race here is are you-un
    Let me see-ee by the light
    Thou hast shown
    That fair city so bright
    Where the lantern is the li-ight
    Take my ha-and, precious Lor-ord
    Lead me on

    Precious Lord, take my hand
    Lead me on, let me sta-and
    I am tired, I’m weak, I am worn
    Through the storm, through the night
    Lead me on to the li-ight
    Take my ha-and, precious Lor-ord
    Lead me home

  123. Regina says:

    Good Afternoon, All

    I pray that you and yours are well. BGg, I’m well and family too. I wanted to stop by earlier in the week, but, alas, the spirit was willing, but the flesh was so very tired (sigh). So, I’m super glad to have enough energy to chat with you all today. Have enjoyed reading the comments, musing on the songs and reflecting on political views in this blog topic.

    And I believe that we have mused on, reflected on and inquired to our heart’s content… or maybe discontent about the life of Thomas Aquinas. Though while I was writing the first sentence in my second paragraph, another thought came to mind about Thomas Aquinas, and, more specifically, the vision that he had. Am reflecting, now, on what Steve wrote… Indeed, Thomas A. didn’t reveal any details about his vision, so the reader is left to speculate regarding what provoked him to forsake all for his vision “pearl of great price.” Ok, so here’s the thought that came to mind…

    Thomas Aquinas’ life compared to the life of Thomas–Jesus’ disciple.

    Thomas Aquinas + Conscientious Study/Spiritual Writings + vision (pearl of great price) = Forsook all to serve God on another level(?)

    Thomas–Jesus’ disciple + Faithfulness to the Lord + Missed opportunity to see the Lord with the other disciples + Serious doubt that the other disciples had actually seen the Lord (walk through a wall and appear in their midst), Fellowship with Him and eat supper (fish and bread) with Him + Jesus actually coming back to prove to Thomas that the other disciples told him the truth = Thomas’ complete devotion to the Lord for the rest of his life.

    So, in the end, both Thomas-es received a revelation that resulted in a greater level of faith and a deeper level of devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ.

    Will write more in about an hour… Doing laundry right now, and gonna go get some grub in between loads.

    1 CORINTHIANS 14

    98 degrees (feels like 109 degrees) under a sky overflowing with sunshine in my neck of the woods…

    Love to all,
    Regina

  124. Beloved says:

    Psalm 128 1Blessed is every one who fears the Lord,
    Who walks in His ways.

    May all be blessed!

  125. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you for the blessing.
    We do not know what the vision was, but it was awesome….
    But… we can meditate on the broken body and the shed blood of Christ, and we may receive some vision, or more awareness of the nee of that One sacrifice, once for all.

    How can we get rid of the guilt, get rid of the load of our sins, how can we be freed from the claws of evil?
    But by the Sacrifice of Jesus, who redeemed us from the kingdom of darkness.
    Col 1:13-14

    ( I have to pray for your president, pray that he may be freed from the grip that holds him, he needs lots and lots of prayer, and lots are praying, he needs comfort reassurance, he needs to know Jesus saved him, Jesus will hold him,vwhen he surrenders to Him. Sorry, for sounding so like this, but I have warned you about this man. And now I pray…leaving it in the hands of Jesus. Thank you Steve, for that story of giving your load to Jesus, about the water supply)

  126. foreverblessed says:

    “I am not my own, I am bought with a price”

    The price is Jesus broken body and shed blood.
    Here is part of a sermon Alexander MacLaren gave on Hebrews 10:14

    First, then, if we lose ourselves we win ourselves.

    All men admit in theory that a self-centred life is a blunder. Jesus Christ has all moralists and all thoughtful men wholly with Him when He says, ‘He that loveth his life shall lose it; and he that loseth his life shall find it.’ There is no such way of filling a soul with enlargement and blessedness and of evolving new powers and capacities as self-oblivion for some great cause, for some great love, for some great enthusiasm. Many a woman has found herself when she held her child in her arms, and in the self-oblivion which comes from maternal affections and cares has sprung into a loftier new life. Many a heart, of husband and wife, can set its seal to this truth, that the blessedness of love is that it decentralises the soul, and substitutes another aim for the wretched and narrow one that is involved in self-seeking. And even if we do not refer to these sacred heights of maternal or of wedded love, there are many other noble counterpoises to the do-grading influence of self- absorption, which all men recognise and some men practise. Whoever has once tasted the joy and rapture of flinging himself into some great enthusiasm, and has known how much fuller life is when so inspired than in its ordinary forms, needs no words to convince him that the secret of blessedness, elevation, and power, if it is to be put into one great word, must be put into this one, ‘self-oblivion.’

    But whilst all these counterpoises to the love of self are, in their measure and degree, great and noble and blessed, not one of them, nor all of them put together, will so break the fetters from off a prisoned soul and let it out into the large place of utter and glad self-oblivion as the course which our text enjoins upon us when it says: If you wish to forget yourselves, to abandon and lose yourselves, fling yourselves into Christ’s arms, and by faith yield your whole being, will, trust, purposes, aims, everything – yield them all to Him; and when you can say, ‘We are not our own,’ then first will you belong to yourselves and have won your own souls.

    There is nothing except that absolute departure from all reliance upon our own poor powers, and from all making of ourselves our centre and aim in life, which gives us true possession of ourselves. Nothing else is comparable to the talismanic power of trust in Jesus Christ. When thus we lose ourselves in Him we find ourselves, and find Him in ourselves.

    I believe that, at bottom, a life must either spin round on its own axis, self- centred and self-moved, or else it must be drawn by the mass and weight and mystical attractiveness of the great central sun, and swept clean out of its own little path to become a satellite round Him. Then only will it move in music and beauty, and flash back the lustre of an unfading light. Self or God, one or other will be the centre of every human life.

    It is well to be touched with lofty enthusiasms; it is well to conquer self in the eager pursuit of some great thought or large subject of study; it is well to conquer self in the sweetness of domestic love; but through all these there may run a perverting and polluting reference to myself. Affection may become but a subtle prolongation of myself, and study and thought may likewise be tainted, and even in the enthusiasm for a great cause there may mingle much of self-regard; and on the whole there is nothing that will sweep out, and keep out, the seven devils of selfishness except to yield yourselves to God, drawn by His mercies, and say, ‘I am not my own; I am bought with a price.’ Then, and only then, will you belong to yourselves.

  127. jeff1 says:

    My mother was one for ever quoting sayings and as a child I would be baffled as to what they meant whereas now I can form an opinion based on my own observations.

    One of those sayings was ‘One man’s meat is another’s poison,’ and if ever a man fits the cliche then I think it is
    President Trump as to my way of thinking you either love him or hate him and I don’t think he is a man who cares either way.

    He knows his own mind, its why he got where he is today, and when a man is as successful as he is in his personal life then I don’t think he doubts his ability in public life.

    He knows who he appeals to and he doesn’t appear bothered in trying to expand his popularity but to fulfill his promises to his voters.

    If more politicians did the same then voters might just believe that politics actually works.

    That is all voters expect from their politicians that they represent the people they claim to.

    Otherwise they just appear to be canvassing for votes which will keep them in power rather than representing those who share their beliefs and aspirations towards a certain goal.

  128. poohpity says:

    Viv, your assessment is spot on. So many people base opinions on personalities rather than on accomplishments then think they have a clue about another person’s inner spiritual life. God said, ” For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.” We would be wise to do likewise. Pres Trump does his job for no pay and contributes what he would make to various charities and the work he does is to benefit the American people. He had a very successful life as you said and left it behind to be persecuted, harassed and hated while politicians make their money off of the people while telling them it is for their own good, wolves in sheep’s clothing.

  129. poohpity says:

    If one really looks at the things that Aquinas wrote and researched you may certainly ask yourself if he even was a Christian. There are many Catholics who say they are Catholics but do not really know the Lord or claim to be Christians. Although I have no idea about the inner life of Aquinas but with thinking such as:

    “Aquinas argues that truth is a transcendental aspect of being, which means that everything that exists is true. In other words, truth is coextensive with being and convertible with being. Yet truth does not add anything real to being, in the way an accident (color, for example) adds something real to a substance.”

    So it may be no wonder that when God revealed something to him in a vision I can see why he never wrote another word and said his past writings were as straw.

  130. poohpity says:

    If one will take the time to look at the backgrounds of most politicians especially those who have spent their life in politics they have made their money not from working but from doing favors or being bought out or giving government contracts to their friends or those who can scratch their backs but not from an honest days work or building anything or problem solving or making jobs for people. So if when one leaves their political life with a increase of their net worth of 468% how do you think they did that?

  131. Beloved says:

    Oh… I want so much to believe… that, in an effort to tell our own story, and to explain the sacred Scriptures entrusted to us— words, reason, and common sense are important—

    Grace. Grace has been on my mind lately and how everything good- such as the birth of our Savior- is good, like God, and given to us undeserving citizens only through grace. James said every good and perfect gift comes from the Father. Grace is a Great gift.
    I’m guessing Thomas Aquinas would agree.

  132. Beloved says:

    Therefore, let your yes be yes and your no be no. Everything is yes in Christ Jesus.

  133. Beloved says:

    Yes and Amen!

  134. Beloved says:

    2Corinthians4 7 We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure.[a] This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.

    8 We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. 9 We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed. 10 Through suffering, our bodies continue to share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies.

  135. Beloved says:

    Like forever mentioned we meditate on Christ’s suffering and death because as partakers here and now we can empathize. But with knowledge of what’s to come! Everlasting life with God! Amen!

  136. foreverblessed says:

    Hebrews 10:12
    Commentary by Alexander Maclaren

    “There is another remark also to be made, and that is that, according to the full-toned belief of the Christian Church when Jesus Christ in His ascension returned to the Father, from whom He had come, He carried with Him this great difference between His then – that is to say, His present – state, and the pre-incarnate state, viz., that now He has carried into unity with the Father the glorified manhood which He assumed on earth, and there is no difference between the glory which He had with the Father before the world was, and the glory in which He now sits. Humanity is thus gathered into divinity.

    Now, brethren, I am not going to dwell upon these thoughts, for they go far beyond the powers of my speech; but I am bound by my own conceptions of what Christ Himself has taught us, to reiterate that here we have the plainest teaching, founded on His own express statement, that He is participant of divine fellowship, so close as that it is represented either by being in the bosom of the Father, or by sitting at the right hand of God, and that ‘all power is given unto Him in heaven and on earth,’ so as that He is the Administrator of the universe. The hands that were pierced with the nails, and into one of which was thrust, in mockery, the reed for a sceptre, now carry the sceptre of the universe, and He is ‘King of kings and Lord of lords.’ ‘He sitteth at the right hand of the Throne of the Majesty in the heavens.’

    Now all this should have a very strong practical effect upon us. ‘If ye then be risen with Christ, seek the things where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.’ Oh, brethren! if we carried with us day by day into all our difficulties and struggles, and amidst the glittering fascinations and temptations of this earthly life that great thought, and if we kept the heavens open – for we can do so – and keep before our eyes that vision, how small the difficulties, what molehills the mountains, and how void of charm the seducing temptations would then be! Christ seen – like the popular idea of the sunshine streaming down upon a coal fire – puts out the fuliginous flame of earth’s temptations, and dims the kindled brightness of earth’s light. And if we really, and not as a mere dogma, had incorporated this faith into our lives, how different that last moment, and what lies beyond it, would look. I do not know how it may be with others, but to me the conception of eternity is chill and awful and repellent; it seems no blessing to live for ever. But if we people the waste future with the one figure of the living Christ exalted for us, it all becomes different, and, like the sunrise on snowy summits, the chill heights, not to be trodden by human foot, flash up into rosy beauty that draws men’s desires. ‘I go to prepare a place for you’; and He prepares it by being there Himself, for then, then it becomes Home. ‘And if I go to prepare a place for you I will come again, and receive you to Myself, that where I am there ye may be also’ – ‘sitting on My throne, as I overcame, and am sat down with My Father on His throne.’
    ..

    So far this commentary. When I read it, I do get immersed into the great Work of salvation.

  137. foreverblessed says:

    when thinkingl about the broken body and shed blood, I was looking into Hebrews because of the Bible verse that rang in my head,
    “You have prepared a body for Me”

    That brought me to Hebrews 10:5-14
    And reading the commentaries make a vision for me:
    A body was prepared for Jesus, the whole Old Testament we can see how this body was formed through all the ancestors. I remember Steve wrote about all the names mentioned in Gen 11:10-26, that they have a meaning, a spiritual meaning, but all these ancestors had a body, and gave their DNA and their blood, to the next generation.
    Jesus had to have a human body, become part of the human race.
    And here Alexander gives one more meaning to it, not only that the broken body and shed blood us for the healing of the nation’s, but that He brings with His body, humanity into divinity.
    When we are IN Christ, we can become into divinity. All
    Without Him we could not come into His presence.
    But in Him we can.

    “Therefore, let us come boldly to the throne of Grace”
    Where our High Priest is making intercession for us.

    And we can be part of that intercessory work of prayer:
    Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.

    But within the circle of believers, we may do this:

    Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom,
    and as you sing psalms, hymns and spiritual songs
    with gratitude in your hearts to God.
    Col 3:16

  138. jeff1 says:

    We are in Christ Jesus.
    We will not lose heart.
    We will live with courage
    Though the days are hard;
    Pressed but not forsaken,
    Down but not destroyed,
    Knowing what is lasting,
    Drinking deeper joys.

    Present in this body,
    Absent from the Lord,
    Yet we long to please Him,
    Looking to His Word.
    We are growing stronger
    Where He lives within,
    Even as our weakness
    Gives all praise to Him.

    Absent from this body,
    Present with the Lord –
    Eyes have never seen it,
    Ears have never heard;
    Pain and death forever
    Swallowed up in life;
    Standing in His presence,
    Now complete in Christ

  139. poohpity says:

    forever, thank you for sharing the words of someone who has experienced God in his life knowing that nothing he can say will ever capture the full extent of God. Our human minds can not comprehend the fullness of God we just get a very small glimpse of all that He is and as Viv, goes on to say until we are standing in His presence will we be complete in understanding until then we just have our own concept or perception which is very limited by our finite minds. How can the finite know the infinite?

    Maybe that is what God showed Aquinas and what prompted him to consider his writings as straw that when tested by fire will be burned up. I guess to understand any of Aquinas’ writing we have to first find out what exactly it was that he was searching for, obviously God knew, just as He alone knows what is in the heart of man.

  140. poohpity says:

    Oh the unity that could be found in the recognition that we are limited, weak, broken but yet God!

  141. Beloved says:

    1 John5 15 And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him.

  142. Beloved says:

    Forever Maclaren goes deeper into the relationship between us and God in 1John5. It really helped me understand our relationship through Jesus better. Never too old to learn! Or maybe relearn.

  143. Beloved says:

    Limited weak broken, yet, crucified with Christ!

  144. Beloved says:

    It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me.

  145. Beloved says:

    After reading MacLaren’s sermon I thought of the story of the Indian who says it like this: There are two wolves inside of me- whichever one I feed is the one that lives. Or something like that. But the Bible message is that it doesn’t have to be that way. If I die than Christ lives in and works in the world through me. I must die daily.

  146. jeff1 says:

    With light and darkness shifting,
    In many a gust and gale,
    We travel through this vast unknown.
    Our courage begins to fail.
    These weary hearts grow thirsty
    While trudging the endless sands,
    But mercy drops refresh our way.
    We’re crossing Immanuel’s land.

    Yes, Hate has often claimed it.
    Destruction has scarred its soul.
    But Love has come and bought it all.
    The Maker is in control.
    Now life and peace are blooming
    As far as our faith can see,
    Yet all are but His promises,
    The shadows of what will be.

    With joy we travel onward
    Though valleys are just ahead,
    For we are bound for higher ground
    Where beauties unseen are spread.
    This wilderness around us
    Will blossom as Love has planned,
    For where He goes all heaven grows,
    And this is Immanuel’s land.

  147. street says:

    light and darkness shifting,????

    the light from the creation may dim over time and grow cold, but the Light of the World Never Changes, therefore Hope!

  148. street says:

    He carried with Him this great difference between His then – that is to say, His present – state, and the pre-incarnate state, viz., that now He has carried into unity with the Father the glorified manhood which He assumed on earth, and there is no difference between the glory which He had with the Father before the world was, and the glory in which He now sits. Humanity is thus gathered into divinity.

    thinking of the creature with 6 wings in Isaiah. he said the whole earth is filled with the Glory of God! with his face cover i don’t think he was looking at planet earth, but the Lamb that appears before the Thrown as slain in Revelation. amazingly John could stop weeping. someday with our own eyes and yes there will be tears. the creature could not miss this Glory even with his face covered. Father take away the darkness. let them grow side by side lest they damage the harvest.

  149. street says:

    12 For this is our confidence: The testimony of our conscience is that we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you, with God-given sincerity and purity, not by fleshly wisdom but by God’s grace. 13 Now we are writing nothing to you other than what you can read and also understand. I hope you will understand completely— 14 as you have partially understood us—that we are your reason for pride, as you are ours, in the day of our Lord Jesus. 2 Corinthians 1:12-14

    may God’s Word be a reason for joy in this world and in others. i am really glad for the participants and to be apart of this quest for clarity peace and joy in the Lord. may God richly bless you with grace and mercy in Christ Jesus.

  150. Beloved says:

    Humanity is thus gathered into divinity.

    I hadn’t heard this before. I love it.

  151. Beloved says:

    I also really needed to hear it tonight. God always hears and answers my prayers. oh He’s so good to me always!

  152. SFDBWV says:

    If you liked Loreena McKennitt’s “Dark Night of the Soul” you most likely will also like her song, “Dante’s Prayer”.

    A few days ago I had to call “Klockit” and order some new parts for Matthew’s WV clock.

    The lady I spoke with told me she hated the present situation because she is a “hugger” and misses that touch given and received from other human beings.

    At the outset of humanity God recognized man’s need to have companionship. Whereas there is a mystery as to the Being of God the Father and God the Son it is also revealed in the beginning that there in those first moments of creation God was a plural being. Or was accompanied with Another when He said “Let, Us”… Genesis 1:26 KJV

    I think in answer to Mart’s hope that our stories and efforts to figure Scripture out together are important. That the Bible is a story of just that. A story of man and God. Our stories are also our stories of God and us. Of our weaknesses and successes of our desires to know Him and His will for us better.

    I think our stories, our testimonies, are important to God. So important that He keeps them in a book.

    Those pages of our book that we would like to erase or tear out, he covers with the blood of the Lamb and are forgotten.

    62 wet with overnight fog after yesterday’s rain.

    Steve

  153. foreverblessed says:

    Good afternoon Steve, may your day be blessed, and yours too.

    This topic, inspired me, to look for the Broken Body and shed blood,
    The visions that may be given.
    I have one more *vision” that I got from Mclaren’s study on Hebrews 10:14


    ..

    Bible > Commentaries > Hebrews 10:14
    ◄ Hebrews 10:14 ►
    For by one offering he has perfected for ever them that are sanctified.
    Jump to: Alford • Barnes • Bengel • Benson • BI • Calvin • Cambridge • Chrysostom • Clarke • Darby • Ellicott • Expositor’s • Exp Dct • Exp Grk • Gaebelein • GSB • Gill • Gray • Haydock • Hastings • Homiletics • ICC • JFB • Kelly • KJT • Lange • MacLaren • MHC • MHCW • Meyer • Parker • PNT • Poole • Pulpit • Sermon • SCO • TTB • VWS • WES • TSK
    EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
    Ellicott’s Commentary for English Readers
    (14) No repetition of His offering is needed, for by one offering He hath brought all unto “perfection,” and that “for ever.” In Hebrews 7:11 we have read that “perfection” did not come through the Levitical priesthood or through the law (Hebrews 10:19); the object of man’s hopes and of all priestly service has at last been attained, since through the “great High Priest” “we draw nigh to God” (Hebrews 7:19). In this is involved salvation to the uttermost (Hebrews 7:25). The last word of this verse has occurred before, in Hebrews 2:11. As was there explained, it literally means those who are being sanctified, all those who, from age to age, through faith (Hebrews 10:22) receive as their own that which has been procured for all men.
    MacLaren’s Expositions
    Hebrews

    PERFECTED AND BEING SANCTIFIED

    Hebrews 10:14IN the preceding sentence there is another ‘for ever,’ which refers to the sacrifice of Christ, and declares its perpetual efficacy. It is one, the world’s sins are many, but the single sacrifice is more than all of them. It is a past act, but its consequences are eternal, and flow down through all the ages. The text explains wherein consists the perpetual efficacy of Christ’s sacrifice, and the reason why it needs no repetition while the world lasts. It endures for ever, because it has perfected for ever them that are sanctified. Now, in looking at these words, two things are noteworthy. One is the double designation here of the persons whom Christ influences by His offering, in that they are ‘perfected,’ and in that they are ‘sanctified.’ Another is the double aspect of our Lord’s work here set forth in regard to time, in that it is, in the first part of the sentence, spoken of as a past act whose consequences endure – ‘He hath perfected’ – and in the latter part of our text, according to the accurate rendering, it is spoken of as continuous and progressive, as yet incomplete and going on to perfection- For the text ought to read – ‘He hath perfected for ever them that are being sanctified.’ So there you have these two things, the double view of what Christ does, ‘perfects’ and ‘sanctifies,’ and the double view of His ‘work, in that in one aspect it is past and complete, and in another aspect it is running on, continuous, and as yet unfinished.

    I. First, then, look at the twofold aspect of the effect of Christ’s sacrifice.

    By it we are ‘perfected,’ ‘sanctified.’ Now, these two words, so to speak, cover the same facts, but they look at them from two different points of view. One of them looks at the completed Christian character from the human point of view, and the other looks at it from the divine. For, what does ‘perfect’ mean in the New Testament? It means, as many a passage might be quoted to show, ‘mature,’ ‘full grown,’ in opposition to ‘babes in Christ.’ This very Epistle uses the two phrases in that antithesis, but the literal meaning of the word is that which has reached its end, that which has attained what it was meant to be; and, according to the New Testament teaching, a man is perfected when he has all his capabilities and possibilities of progress and goodness and communion with God made into realities and facts in His life, when the bud has flowered, and the flower has fruited, When capacity is developed, privileges enjoyed, duties attended to,. relationships entered into and maintained – when these things have taken place the man is perfect. It is to be observed that there is no reference in the word to any standard outside of human nature. If a man has become all that it is possible for him to be, he is, in the fullest sense, perfect. But Scripture also recognises a relative perfection, as we have already remarked, which consists in a certain maturity of Christian character, and has for its opposite the condition of ‘babes in Christ.’ So Paul exhorts ‘as many as be perfect’ to be ‘thus minded’ – namely, not to count themselves to have apprehended, but to stretch forward to the things which rare before, and to press towards the goal which still gleams far in advance. Consider, now, that other description of a Christian character as

    ‘sanctified.’

    The same set of facts in a man’s nature is thought of in that word, only they are looked at from another point of view. I suppose I do not need to enlarge upon the fact which, however, I am afraid a great many good people do not realise as they should, that the Biblical notion of ‘saint’ and ‘sanctified’ does not begin with character, but with relation, or, if I might put it more plainly, it does not, primarily and to start with, mean righteous, but ‘belonging to God.’ The Old and the New Testament concur in this conception of ‘sanctity,’ or ‘holiness,’ which are the same thing, only one is a Latin word and the other a Teutonic one – namely, that it starts from being consecrated and given up to God, and that out of that consecration will come all manner of righteousness and virtues, beauties of character, and dispositions and deeds which all men own to be ‘lovely… and of good report.’ The saint is, first of all, a man who knows that he belongs to God, and is glad to belong to Him, and then, afterwards, he becomes righteous and pure and radiant, but it all starts with yielding myself to God.

    So the same set of characteristics which in the word ‘perfected’ were considered as fulfilling the idea of manhood, as God has given it to us, are massed in this other word, and considered as being the result of our yielding ourselves to Him. That is to say, no man has reached the end which he was created and adapted to reach, unless he has surrendered himself to God. You never be ‘perfected’ until you are ‘sanctified.’

    You must begin with consecration, and then holiness of character, and beauty of conduct, and purity of heart will all come after that. It is vain to put the cart before the horse, and to try to work at mending your characters, before you have set right your relationship to God. Begin with sanctifying, and you will come to perfecting. That is the New Testament teaching. And there is no way of getting to that perfection except, as we shall see, through the one offering.

    II. In the next place notice here the completed work.

    ‘By one offering He hath “perfected”‘ us, the Christian people of this generation, the Christian people yet to be born into the world, the men that have not yet learned that they belong to Him, but who will learn it some day. Were they all ‘perfected’ eighteen centuries ago? In what sense can that perfecting be said to be a past act? Suppose you take some purifying agent, and throw it in at the headwaters of a river, and it goes down the stream, down and down and down, and by degrees purifies it all If you like to use long- winded words, you can say that ‘potentially’ the river was purified when the precipi-rating agent was flung into it, though its waves were still foul with impurity. Or you can put it into plainer English and say that the past act has its abiding consequences, for there has been thrown into the centre of human history, as it were, that which is amply adequate to the ‘perfecting’ and the ‘sanctifying’ of every soul of the race. And that is what the writer of this Epistle means when he says ‘He hath perfected,’ because that sacrifice, like the precipitating agent that I have spoken about, has been flung into the stream of the world’s history, and has power to make pure as the dew-drop, or as the water that flows from melting ice, every foul-smelling, darkly dyed drop of the filthy stream.

    By one Offering

    So far MacLaren

    The vision: the stream of water where the purifying agent is put into, the spiritual purifying agent, that is because of the broken body and shed blood of Jesus Christ, Who was in heaven, but did not think it below Himself to come down to earth, where a body had been prepared for Him.
    That mystery of purifying agent does into the stream, and through the nation’s, and through the ages it flows, and keep flowing, purifying where hearts are opened to Jesus.

  154. Beloved says:

    I pray daily that God will open hearts to receive Him. It’s by and because of His grace we are not left to our own destruction. Yet God will harden a stubborn heart. If He so chooses. No one gets away with anything that is not His will; stubborn Pharaoh in Egypt is an example. Praying we all don’t harden our hearts to Gods will and ways. He’s not safe- but He is good.

  155. foreverblessed says:

    Sorry about my morning comment, at 8.07
    I wanted only the part copied about the purifying agent, but the whole sermon was copied.
    Now my smartphone is out of business, I am commenting by other means now.

    But this part of the MacLaren sermon on Hebrews 10:14 I wanted to post:
    That the sacrifice of Jesus, that was in the past, is active now today, and forever.
    And the way he described that is made like a vision in my mind: like a stream flowing and purifying

    Alexander MacLaren:

    ‘By one offering He hath “perfected”‘ us, the Christian people of this generation, the Christian people yet to be born into the world, the men that have not yet learned that they belong to Him, but who will learn it some day. Were they all ‘perfected’ eighteen centuries ago? In what sense can that perfecting be said to be a past act? Suppose you take some purifying agent, and throw it in at the headwaters of a river, and it goes down the stream, down and down and down, and by degrees purifies it all If you like to use long- winded words, you can say that ‘potentially’ the river was purified when the precipi-rating agent was flung into it, though its waves were still foul with impurity. Or you can put it into plainer English and say that the past act has its abiding consequences, for there has been thrown into the centre of human history, as it were, that which is amply adequate to the ‘perfecting’ and the ‘sanctifying’ of every soul of the race. And that is what the writer of this Epistle means when he says ‘He hath perfected,’ because that sacrifice, like the precipitating agent that I have spoken about, has been flung into the stream of the world’s history, and has power to make pure as the dew-drop, or as the water that flows from melting ice, every foul-smelling, darkly dyed drop of the filthy stream.

  156. jeff1 says:

    God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    Oh, God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
    And rivers in the desert will I see
    Heaven and Earth will fade but His Word will still remain
    And He will do something new today

    Oh, God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

  157. Beloved says:

    John 1:7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.

    This comes to mind thinking of an ever flowing stream connecting His followers.

  158. street says:

    the first adam a living being

    the second Adam a life giving Spirit.

    one sinned, all made sinners

    one died to make all righteous.

    the stream continues.

    what an agent! it’s not to be a secret, but a joy

    let His peace and joy rest in your heart.

    then i think of putting on armor for battle.

    no worries Jesus Won.

  159. poohpity says:

    I think Aquinas finally came to the same point of realization as Solomon did in Ecclesiastes 5: Do not be hasty to speak, and do not let your heart be hasty to utter a word before God. After all, God is in heaven and you are on earth. So let your words be few. As a dream comes through many cares, so the speech of a fool comes with many words.

  160. Beloved says:

    I’m thinking that neither Aquinas or Solomon were fools. Humble yes.
    A fool says in his heart there is no God.

    For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength. I Cor 1:25

    Been thinking of you Pooh and hoping you’re feeling well these days.

  161. Beloved says:

    Solomon asked for one thing from God- wisdom. And God certainly gave him what he asked. What a man of God He was, just like his father David; a man after Gods own heart! Oh to have a desire for Gods heart like he did.

  162. Beloved says:

    Come to think of it, when we see Jesus we see Gods heart😍

  163. street says:

    mart said…..When the messenger of Christ urges his readers to stand firm against the divisions, arguments, hypocrisy, and enslavement of legal solutions— and to believe that it is for freedom that Christ has made us free—he was not writing like the man he used to be.

    Instead of reasoning like the legal scholar of his earlier days, he describes a way of the Spirit, against which there is no law.

    He must have known that those on the other side of the aisle would accuse him of being lawless, antinomian, heretical, and unbiblical.

    Yet for all of the misunderstandings and misrepresentations that came with his emancipation, this new man in Christ—was willing to suffer— for a reconciling message of a true and better freedom.

    Seems to me that despite our shared aversion to tyranny, the democratic cultures of our churches and nations are alarmingly divided over hypocritically burdensome arguments of rules and laws. Could it be that it’s time to see that there is something so liberating about a way forward in the Spirit of Christ that rises above the slave yards of political, legal, and biblical differences?

    Seems to me that there is something wonderfully urgent about Paul’s New Testament letter to the Galatians that gives us room to breathe.

  164. Beloved says:

    I am reminded of Blake’s Holy Thursday poem. Seems every generation must come to terms with Truth amid politically minded church leaders who ignore the Spirit. By political I mean using religion in a way that relies on worldly thinking rather than the basis of Christ and love joy and peace to precipitate Gods will. Forgetting the true Church was founded by Christ Himself for Himself and not for ourselves. .

  165. foreverblessed says:

    Yes Beloved, that is so true.
    Jesus warned for
    the yeast of the Pharasees – using religieus power
    and the yeast of Herodus – using political power.

    That is so true, we follow Jesus. And following Him is out of free will.
    Nobody can be pushed into Christianity.

    I myself do moan about the fact that the people my country are not Christian anymore, the majority is not Christian.
    But neither do I want a Christian party taking over the power, and forcing this country to be Christian.

    This year it was 400 years the the Mayflower sailed for America. There was a big article about it in a national newspaper.
    The puritans that were on board, were expelled from England, and were given a place to live in my country, in the city of Leiden, ( where Rembrandt was born).
    They were free to live there
    Only….
    The puritans wanted the whole city to live as they did: following God and keeping the Sunday a day of rest. Only the city was not totally resting on the Sunday,
    And they wanted to leave.
    Talking about these Puritans, who wanted a country where everybody is Christian,
    I am Christian, but I do not keep a day holy, so in their eyes I would be violating God’s laws.
    I do not think I would have religieus freedom when the Puritans were in power.

    Actually, following Jesus means the we are part of a heavenly Kingdom,
    Like Jesus, and He was crucified.
    Wow,
    He would rather be crucified than taking over power from the Roman Empire.
    He could have done that.

    But….

    The Kingdom of God is like a seed, a mustard seed.
    Very small, a seed sown in a heart,
    And that heart is changed
    And then another heart,
    And that heart is changed.

    Humble and meek, hearing the whisper of Jesus, talking through the Spirit.

    Slowly but surely.

    Yes Street, Jesus has won!
    Let Him win my heart, it is His!

  166. jeff1 says:

    These words are on a decorative instrument which I have in my bedroom.

    JESUS
    “Your name is ointment poured forth”

    Song of Solomon 1:3

  167. jeff1 says:

    Beloved says:
    September 2, 2020 at 10:39 pm

    Forgetting the true Church was founded by Christ Himself for Himself and not for ourselves.

    Thinking of this happens when I take my eyes of Christ as being raised in a religious country I see now how I was distracted by both my cultural and religious beliefs while my dad warned me against it.

    I had an interesting conversation with my hairdresser who is a Roman Catholic and she was speaking of her disapproval at the younger generation of catholics who were not attending chapel (her defence being you go to worship God, their concern trusting the Clergy) because of the revelations coming to light of their priests being involved in abuse going on for decades. Many are awaiting compensation here who were victims of the abuse.

    It seems God has opened their eyes to the wrongs of their religion and if my mother where still here I can hear her say not before time as she was always critical of the Roman Catholic religion.

    Having said that from my own observations I don’t see my own religion does much for God’s reputation.

    It is not unusual for me to hear protestants say those catholics never leave confession because they have so much to confess and I am thinking of how I am not any different when I attend for Communion to confess my own sins before God.

    Blame is the name of the game as both religious and political leaders often feed their congregations/voters what they want them to believe as it fits their purpose which is to divide and conquer and up to this younger generation they have succeeded in doing just that.

    This quote most often attributed to Abraham Lincoln comes to mind. “You can fool some of the people all of the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can not fool all of the people all of the time.”

    And this quote surely speaks of God given wisdom and not man driven insanity for who in their right mind would think they know better than God.

    [God] will not be used as a convenience. Men or nations who think they can revive the Faith in order to make a good society might just as well think they can use the stairs of heaven as a shortcut to the nearest chemist’s shop.”
    ― C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

  168. SFDBWV says:

    I am a little confused. Did street mean Paul, when he said “Mart”? In his post of September 2 8pm.

    I am guessing so.

    Politics and religion…

    Scripturally the Zealots tried to use Jesus for their political purposes, Jesus got caught up unwillingly in the politics of an occupied country under Roman control. Paul used politics to get to Rome.

    It seems that these two forces are always going to be involved together.

    I think it inevitable that when we invite Jesus into our hearts that our actions should exemplify Him. We should live a holy life.

    However can we completely separate ourselves from the world as the Word tells us to do?

    Whereas we do not live by the “Law” we are to live according to the principals of it, the basics of it. Are we not?

    Those 10 commandments summed up in one under Jesus.

    When Daniel was a captive of Babylonian rule, neither he nor Shadrach, Meshach, or Abed-nego would succumb to the political rule of worshiping as a Babylonian.

    Because Daniel was led by God and was in favor with God, he was placed in a place of rule over the whole of Babylon.

    In the wilderness when the people democratically decided to have a golden calf erected in an effort to return to Egypt, it is a joint effort of religion and politics. Thwarted by Moses when he drew a line in the sand and said choose between god’s (paraphrasing if you will allow me).

    Again in order to be a nation of people we must always choose God in order to be successful and be blessed.

    Any shrewd politician will use this as a leverage to gain power. The proof of whether or not the politician is earnest and honest in their declaration of Christian faith is in the fruit of their efforts. The fruit of their lives.

    And yes they will certainly be a target of unbelievers and especially wolves in sheep’s clothing misusing moral Christian ethics as a means of gaining political power.

    Politically I always have a simple test. Do people who want to represent me agree with abortion on demand or not.

    Any politician who sides with abortion on demand as a woman’s right is no follower of Christ in my sight and not fit to lead.

    Simple as that.

    One more thought. Politically what will be the politics of our society once Jesus returns and sets as King of Kings over the whole of the world?

    Steve

  169. jeff1 says:

    It never fails to astonish me how black and white people think and yet there are grey areas that only God can touch.

    God sees the whole and I do not which is why He knows best.

    As I understand it is sinful to judge another’s motives while it is right to judge their actions.

    When I ask myself why is it sinful to judge another’s motives I see that I cannot see the heart and mind of others and so I must leave to God that which is in His domain.

    As often as not I find I struggle to keep my own heart and mind pleasing to God so mindful of that I am slow to judge another’s intentions.

    When it comes to religion and politics it is a case of having been once bitten, twice shy and I cannot begin to envisage a world where Jesus will rule as I have spent much too long in the darkness of this one and that is down to my own ignorance
    of both God and this world.

  170. bratimus says:

    My thoughts on religion and politics, that they are to sides of the same coin. What I have noticed from both sides of the this coin, is how over the decades of my life that some of the groups of this coin keep removing God or try to remove God.

    And if we know are Bible, that trying to remove God, leads to God getting angry and acting on this anger.

    I know in the United States this is a big problem, and I’m pretty sure do to this removing of God that US citizens not realizing it. Are suffering from a form of Political and Religious PTSD.

    This is why I try to stay out of politics and religion, I don’t want to trigger anything.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  171. poohpity says:

    Yes Bratimus, both politics and religion are man made institutions it seems to gain power and enact oppression however what we have with Jesus is a relationship with the source of real power but a kind of power that offers freedom to make our own choices and does not force His will on anyone. Sort of topsy-turvy to the world’s way of thinking.

  172. poohpity says:

    Jesus stands at the door and knocks waiting to be invited in while religion and politics breaks down the door and pushes their way in whether we like it or not.

  173. jeff1 says:

    I have learned Bratimus that what you say is true and if I had listened to the warnings of my dad I would have saved myself much distress as he knew the foolishness of taking sides on political and religious divides.

    You cannot serve God and man and my dad knew that and it is why he tried to keep me focused on Christ’s teachings and I see now that is why he knew God so well as it was not by chance but by discipline as he had that in abundance.

    Religion serves itself and not God as more often it changes God to fit with the doctrine rather than aligning to God’s truths.

    Its as much an enemy to God as atheism and maybe more so because it goes under the pretence of knowing God when the reality is very different.

    I don’t know that God does get angry or try to force Himself on others but rather waits patiently for them to see the error of their ways knowing there are destructive consequences to not considering His Ways in our lives.

  174. poohpity says:

    Viv, we posted at the same time, with the same message. Seems like the unity of believers at work in our hearts.

  175. Beloved says:

    When I mentioned “ politics” yesterday in reference to the church I was thinking of this:

    Politics – Wikipedia
    · Politics (from Greek: Πολιτικά, politiká, ‘affairs of the cities’) is the set of activities that are associated with making decisions in groups, or other forms of power relations between individuals, such as the distribution of resources or status. … Politics is a multifaceted word.

    (I’ve even seen it played out on a blog)

    Ha ha just thinking of what the church would look like if it went back to using umin and thurin to make decisions!

  176. Beloved says:

    The Urim and Thummim were used at critical moments in the history of God’s people when special divine guidance was needed. The civil leader was expected to make use of this means for all important matters for which he needed direction. Although referred to in ezr 2:63 and Nehemiah 7:65, there is no convincing evidence that the Urim and Thummim were used after the time of David. Baker Bible Dictionary

  177. poohpity says:

    Beloved, now-a-days can people just flip a coin instead of using Urim and Thummim to determine a person’s guilt or innocence or maybe we could just rely on Jesus to be the righteous Judge of guilt or innocence?

  178. Beloved says:

    You’re right!

  179. SFDBWV says:

    Well, I vote I take notice of the political issues and make my choices by the character of those people wanting to have my vote.

    This nation was founded on Christian principals and far too many men and women have died to guarantee my right to vote than for me to ignore my civic responsibilities.

    The United States and our Judean-Christian heritage has been under attack for a long time by evildoers bent on the destruction of not only this country, but the very principals for which it came into being.

    When I was 17 I was willing to die for those principals and now that I am 73 I am still willing to give my life to protect them and perhaps provide them for another generation.

    If good people stand by and allow for evil to take control of their country, then they deserve exactly what they get.

    Good day to all.

    Steve

  180. Beloved says:

    The Urim and Thummim were used at critical moments in the history of God’s people when special divine guidance was needed. Not about guilt or innocence. Jesus determines that!

    I don’t trust character. I’ve seen some of excellent character fool people. But Jesus is never fooled!

  181. Beloved says:

    Casting lots was an interesting practice- this explains what I was thinking about.

    God gave the ancient Israelites the ritual of casting lots as a way to ascertain His will in uncertain matters (Num. 33:54; I Sam. 14:42; I Chron. 24:5). Casting lots is a solemn appeal to God in a doubtful matter. God inspires the process so as to reveal His divine will. This was still practiced in Christ’s time. His disciples cast lots to determine whom God was selecting to replace Judas Iscariot. (See Acts 1:15-26).
    After Pentecost in A.D. 31, the Bible makes no further reference to the casting of lots. The apostles relied upon the Holy Spirit to directly guide them. Please read Acts 2 and John 16:13. You may also wish to read Acts 6:1-8; 13:1-3; 15:19, 28; and 16:6.

  182. Beloved says:

    Steve I believe Street was using his own words to say what Mart said. I recognized it as Marts thoughts.

  183. jeff1 says:

    Steve, there were many good people died or maimed both physically and mentally in Northern Ireland in defence of freedom from tyranny and people still do not trust either politicians or religious leaders because they have not shown good leadership.

    If you spoke to the families of those killed or maimed you would probably find they despair at how little that has been achieved since the onslaught on their loved ones.

    The problem with getting rid of tyrants is that there are others ready and willing to take their place.

    Gods work is slow but sure and that appeals to me more than wars that kill and maim as many innocent victims as they do evil tyrants.

  184. foreverblessed says:

    I so agree Jeff!
    The weapons we have are described in Ephesians 6:13-20

    The most important weapon is: praising God together in unity.
    Praying together in unity.

    And the Sword of the Spirit.

    The sword of the Spirit?!!

    Isn’t that praying ik intercessory prayer?

    Street wrote this some days ago, when I was looking what Beloved had advised to read: Mclaren sermon on 1 John 5.

    .Yet for all of the misunderstandings and misrepresentations that came with his emancipation, this new man in Christ—was willing to suffer— for a reconciling message of a true and better freedom.

    A great weapon is when saints die a martyrs death. When people see that an innocent person is being killed, not fighting back, not retaliating!

    I was reading Utmost if today and the last two days:
    We have surrendered to Jesus, we are His, and we lay down our rights to ourselves to Him, He will defend me, and mine and my country. If they turn to Jesus.

  185. SFDBWV says:

    I already know the answer, but why do you suppose God held the sun still for Joshua? Joshua 10:12-13 KJV

    I don’t for sure know who the subject of Thomas’s vision got tangled up in politics, but very little I know of equals or stirs up passion in people like their position of their faith and of their position of their politics.

    Both have led to the death of millions of people, with no end in sight.

    Even at the end of all things it is death that is used to punish mankind.

    Each one of you sleeps peacefully and safe at night because someone else is willing to put their lives on the line for you.

    You enjoy the benefits of your country because someone else died on some battlefield for you.

    And someone right now is ready to defend you against those who would enslave you or kill you, at the cost of their own lives.

    There is an old saying among battle field combatants that goes like this, “Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.”

    I think I will pass on any further discussion about my patriotism and how I connect the dots about being a good steward for my fellow man.

    66 degrees f and wet after rain all of yesterday and overnight.

    Steve

  186. street says:

    The Vision of Christ

    let it be understood that the crucifixion of Christ put an end to the deception that there is life apart from God.

    let it be understood that the crucifixion of Christ put an end to the deception that you are under the wrath of God. that your sin has been forgiven. for without the shedding of blood/life there is no forgiveness of sin. new life is received in Christ Jesus, the gift of God.

    faith hope and love….when love abides, God is visible on earth and in His children.

    faith …trust

    hope ….God’s Word

    Love….God’s practice/habit/being

  187. poohpity says:

    Foreverblessed, the sword of the Spirit is the word of God not the commentaries from those who read God’s word nor is it our prayers. When we do not know what God’s word says it leads us to come to conclusions or perceptions about what we think it says which is what Aquinas was doing, trying to find answers by applying logic and reasoning to things only God knows, straw. He was not presenting a case for Christ but through philosophies trying to make sense of God. We as human being do not need to defend God we need to be defended by Him which is why we put on His armor. Eph 6:17 NLT

  188. poohpity says:

    It is amazing that people would think they can do what only God has the power to do which is why those who live by the law were never made right in God’s eyes because it was and is impossible for man to do all the right things. Everything we try to do in our own strength is nothing but straw that gets burned up when it is tested by God’s fire.

  189. poohpity says:

    Romans 8: Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. 27 And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

  190. Beloved says:

    Steve, I just saw this on Facebook and made me think of you:

    “We can survive without the professional athlete but not without the American soldier!”

    Thank you for your service!

  191. Beloved says:

    “Oh… I want so much to believe… that, in an effort to tell our own story, and to explain the sacred Scriptures entrusted to us— words, reason, and common sense are important—“
    Well Mart, Lewis agrees with you:

    Every age has its own outlook. It is especially good at seeing certain truths and especially liable to make certain mistakes. We all, therefore, need the books that will correct the characteristic mistakes of our own period. And that means the old books.… Not, of course, that there is any magic about the past. People were no cleverer then than they are now; they made as many mistakes as we. But not the same mistakes. – C. S. Lewis,

  192. street says:

    thinking of the sword of the Spirit. The Holy Spirit convicts the world of sin, which the world denies, and testifies of the Christ, whom the world rejected. words letters on pages become burdens that can not be moved by fingers of man and ring hollow when spoken by man. yet when spoken by the Spirit bring light life and comfort. thinking of the song amazing grace. missing the grace and mercy in the letters and words is to miss the Author. tears can be a great gift if they lead to life.

    been thinking, God is not safe but He is good. thinking He is safe too! and knows how to conform a person to the image of His Son.

  193. Beloved says:

    He is not safe-

    Not to those who deny Him.

  194. Beloved says:

    Though really He can’t be denied as even creation points to Him. But His goodness and goodwill can certainly be rejected.

  195. jeff1 says:

    SFDBWV says:
    September 4, 2020 at 5:34 am

    I already know the answer, but why do you suppose God held the sun still for Joshua? Joshua 10:12-13 KJVOpen in Logos Bible Software (if available)

    I don’t for sure know who the subject of Thomas’s vision got tangled up in politics, but very little I know of equals or stirs up passion in people like their position of their faith and of their position of their politics.

    Both have led to the death of millions of people, with no end in sight.

    Even at the end of all things it is death that is used to punish mankind.

    Each one of you sleeps peacefully and safe at night because someone else is willing to put their lives on the line for you.

    You enjoy the benefits of your country because someone else died on some battlefield for you.

    And someone right now is ready to defend you against those who would enslave you or kill you, at the cost of their own lives.

    There is an old saying among battle field combatants that goes like this, “Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.”

    I think I will pass on any further discussion about my patriotism and how I connect the dots about being a good steward for my fellow man.

    66 degrees f and wet after rain all of yesterday and overnight.

    Steve

    Reading you comments, Steve, perhaps explains why the world is the mess it is in.

    I think its time to give up both faith and politics because I don’t like where it leads.

    We talk of forgiveness but that all it is, talk, nothing changes because men don’t want it to change and you have just proved that by your comments:

    “Praise the Lord and pass the ammunition.”

    If you don’t believe in Christ’s way just say so Steve I am sick of listening to hypocrites who say they follow Christ while secretly wishing for “an eye for an eye”.

    Give me a Christian whose honest enough to admit He doesn’t go along with peaceful measures and I may not agree with him/her but at least I know where I stand with them.

    The world did not get messed up by God but by men and their insistence that they know better than Him but that’s not news to God, is it, the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, does it!

    God isn’t surprised, he wouldn’t have sent Christ to die for this God forsaken world if He was!

  196. Beloved says:

    Thinking again about the safety of God. How safe is a God-sent Son who exclaims “I didn’t come to bring peace but a sword!”

  197. Beloved says:

    Then tells us when he leaves:
    John 14:27 “I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give. So don’t be troubled or afraid.

  198. street says:

    a sword of protection.
    a Champion
    He raises the dead
    He gives eternal life
    He’s gracious and merciful
    Faithful and True
    KING of kings,LORD of lords.

    always wondered if i was a lord or a king?
    thinking of the house of david.

  199. jeff1 says:

    Its God who truly forgives, the rest is just talk and talk is cheap.

  200. Beloved says:

    Sword of protection (Word of God) is to be used offensively. No meek and mild Protector!

  201. Beloved says:

    What are you thinking about the house of David, street?

  202. Beloved says:

    After pouring my heart out to Jesus these words came to mind

    Amazing Grace, how sweet the sound
    That saved a wretch like me
    I once was lost, but now am found
    Was blind but now I see…

  203. foreverblessed says:

    The sword of the Spirit:
    It penetrates the heart.
    Fire
    Fire to cleanse a man, from the inside.
    The thoughts and attitudes of the heart are
    It rightly divides motives of the heart.

    Hebrews 4:12-13

    Indeed Jeff, I do agree with you.
    When do we as christians, really turn and surrender to Jesus?
    Of fo we hinge on two thoughts;
    An eye for an eye
    Or surrendered to Jesus, and wait for His Word
    Through the Spirit.

    I was very very impressed by the ministry of Rees Howell, during WWII, 120 christians came together, and fasted and prayed, somewhere in Wales.
    And during that time, Hitler was losing connection to the evil spirits that guided him, and gave him instructions, as they had done in the beginning of the wat.
    Hitler had list it, and he got insane. The movie: “Die Intergang” shows his last few months. His military man did not follow his instructions anymore, as he ordered that his own people had to be shot at, he did not consider the Germans to be worthy of living.

    Fasting and praying, and waiting for the direction of the Spirit!

    There are some great examples in the Old Testament, good to read:
    Jehoshaphat:
    2 Chron 20:1-30

    Alarmed, Jehoshaphat resolved to enquire of the Lord, and he proclaimed a fast for all Judah.
    The people came together to seek help from the Lord; indeed, they came from every town in Judah to seek .

    This famous line cones from this event:
    “For the battle is not yours, but God’s.”

    Did they hear what God said to them?
    Did God tell them to take a literal sword?

    Have faith in the Lord your God, and you will be upheld.

    If you want to be a christian nation, then this (fasting and praying and waiting for God’s guidance) is what it looks like.
    But alas, lingering on two ways:
    Totally relying on Jesus
    Or.. taking matters in our own hands and taking up the sword of metal.

    I know this is hard stuff.
    Thank you for the remark of Lewis:
    Every generation makes its own faults.
    We as christians have not yet learned to come together on unity and pray and fast and wait on God
    Yet.

  204. foreverblessed says:

    A vision in the bible:

    “..15 When the servant of the man of God got up and went out early the next morning, an army with horses and chariots had surrounded the city. “Oh no, my lord! What shall we do?” the servant asked.

    16 “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.”

    17 And Elisha prayed, “Open his eyes, Lord, so that he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.”

    2 Kings 6:15-17

    Who are we protected by?

    We as christians?

    I talk with christians here, not nationalities, or nations

    Blessed is the nation whose God is for.

    But my nation has left God. Overall.
    And I cannot force them back to the faith by pointing a gun at them.

    Instead I search for what Jesus preached
    What did Jesus preach?
    So much to find in the Gospels
    Matthew 5:1-7:22

  205. jeff1 says:

    Forever, your words are much in agreement with Lewis’s.

    But my nation has left God. Overall.
    And I cannot force them back to the faith by pointing a gun at them.

    [God] will not be used as a convenience. Men or nations who think they can revive the Faith in order to make a good society might just as well think they can use the stairs of heaven as a shortcut to the nearest chemist’s shop.”
    ― C.S. Lewis, The Screwtape Letters

  206. jeff1 says:

    Forever says, We as christians have not yet learned to come together on unity and pray and fast and wait on God
    Yet.

    And what is it that divides us other than what divides Steve and I.

    My dad was just 18 when he would choose to join the Royal Navy and it was more out of need than anything else as the eldest of the family he needed to be earning a living and in wartime it an appealing distraction to the few others available to a working class lad in rural Northern Ireland in the 1940’s.

    During his four years at war he would be engaged in 8 Russian Convoys and I have watched some documentaries that show archives of ships on convoys and the german u boats that would attack them to envisage what my dad would have come through.

    He had an injury to his thumb from an accident he sustained when firing depth charges at enemy submarines.

    He never spoke of his experiences nor did I press him to speak of them because tears would fill his eyes when mentioned.

    Anything I learned of my dad’s war years would come from my mums recollection as she spoke proudly of his dedication to duty.

    When he left the Navy he would continue to serve in the Palestine Police where he did speak to me of his love of that country and its beauty in its resemblance to his own and it seemed he had fonder memories of his service there.

    In his latter years he would be very much a peace seeker having seen the ravages of war it was always a reminder to him that it came at a high price and who among us who have seen the images of it on films can imagine what it was like for those who served on land, sea and air so that we can live in a more civilised world than the one they encountered.

    It is our duty to pursue peace because of what it cost those who have went before us otherwise we fail to finish what they started which was for a better country, town, city, nation for in the end we are not so much different than we are alike in our pursuit of a land that allows us the freedom to be ourselves.

  207. foreverblessed says:

    Yes, Jeff, but there is another side:
    Am I not thankful that the allied forces combined their strength and landed on June 6 1943 on Omaha beach in France???
    All these soldiers, that risked their lives for Europe?
    And these graves, many many a young man had given their lives for our freedom?

    Yes, I am very very thankful!
    Our city was freed by men from Poland.
    And they never got to get back to their own country.
    Their country came under Soviet Regime.

  208. jeff1 says:

    Yes, and I am very very thankful that English soldiers give their lives in freedom of my land.

    So much so that it is the very reason that I submit to the throne of England today.

    In the end my mother was right that one man’s meat is another man’s poison and there is no better land to see that clearly than in divided Ireland.

  209. Beloved says:

    Good morning all.
    This verse from Bible Gateway today:

    Verse of the Day
    Matthew 28:18-20
    And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

    This mandate draws us all together through the one same Holy Spirit. Isn’t that an amazing thing?!!!

  210. bratimus says:

    Just maybe it was revealed that Thomas Aquinas works would be read more then the Bible or turned in a twisted way a Religion in the way man tends to twist things.

    I rather have people seek Christ Jesus first through the Bible guided by the Holy Spirit to live through their faith first.

    Thomas Aquinas works might just have been, just him being guide by the Holy Spirit in his learning of Christ Jesus it might have been just his journey. Sometimes one man or woman journey or guidance to Christ is just their journey that is it.

    This is why I don’t read to many books about or someone else explaining the Bible, it could be just their journey and might not be the same as my journey, might not be the same for all.

    My journey with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit might just just be the same as a handful of people and won’t be the same for the crowd.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  211. Beloved says:

    When the battle lines have been drawn Jesus says

    “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace.
    In this world you will have trouble.
    But take heart!
    I have overcome the world.” John16:33NIV

    Taking refuge in Jesus today tomorrow and forever.

    That’s my story and I’m stickin’ to it, as the saying goes.

  212. Beloved says:

    The troubles on this blog have put me in a depressed mood. Jesus knows our every weakness. I find solice in Him.

    May God bless you with the knowledge of His love and care.

  213. street says:

    Thomas Aquinas works might just have been, just him being guide by the Holy Spirit in his learning of Christ Jesus it might have been just his journey. Sometimes one man or woman journey or guidance to Christ is just their journey that is it.

    Galatians 3:24-25
    Therefore the Law has become our tutor to lead us to Christ, so that we may be justified by faith. But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.

  214. street says:

    This is why I don’t read to many books about or someone else explaining the Bible, it could be just their journey and might not be the same as my journey, might not be the same for all.

    writings are not cannon. yet we are given a helper, The Holy Spirit, to work in a dry valley where living water is made available. let me read and live in this world God has made for me and for His Glory.

    i like reading/learning about other failures so they do not become mine, yet i know they are already mine. looking for an inheritance.

  215. street says:

    always wondered if i was a lord or a king?
    thinking of the house of david.

    beloved these were fragmented thoughts that have come together last night.

    Kings have Sons heirs in this world, usually same DNA
    some by adoption.

    Lord is a name for God that refers to His Eternal self existing state.

    the house of david thought comes from the verse, Zechariah 12:8
    In that day the Lord will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and the one who is feeble among them in that day will be like David, and the house of David will be like God, like the angel of the Lord before them.

    they will be conformed to the image of His Son.

    1 Corinthians 15:43
    it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power;

    2 Corinthians 1:5
    For just as the sufferings of Christ are ours in abundance, so also our comfort is abundant through Christ.

  216. jeff1 says:

    O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder,
    Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;
    I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
    Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

    When through the woods, and forest glades I wander,
    And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees.
    When I look down, from lofty mountain grandeur
    And see the brook, and feel the gentle breeze.

    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

    And when I think, that God, His Son not sparing;
    Sent Him to die, I scarce can take it in;
    That on the Cross, my burden gladly bearing,
    He bled and died to take away my sin.

    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

    When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
    And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
    Then I shall bow, in humble adoration,
    And then proclaim: “My God, how great Thou art!”

    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
    Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
    How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

  217. Beloved says:

    Thank you street

  218. Beloved says:

    Job 38:16 Have you entered into the springs of the sea, or walked in the recesses of the deep?
    Sept. 5
    Spurgeon

    Obedience or Knowledge
    Some things in nature remain a mystery even to the most intelligent and enterprising investigators. Human knowledge has boundaries beyond which it cannot pass. Universal knowledge is for God alone. If this is true in the things that are seen and temporal, I can be certain that it is even more so in spiritual and eternal matters. Why, then, have I been torturing my brain with speculations about divine sovereignty and human responsibility? These deep and dark truths I am no more able to comprehend than to discover the source from which the ocean draws her watery supplies.

    Why am I so curious to know the reason for my Lord’s providences, the motive of His actions, the design of His visitations? Will I ever be able to clasp the sun in my fist or hold the universe in my palm? Yet these are as a drop in a bucket compared with the Lord my God. Do not let me strive to understand the infinite, but spend my strength in love. What I cannot gain by intellect I can possess by affection, and that should be enough for me. I cannot penetrate the heart of the sea, but I can enjoy the healthy breezes that sweep across it, and I can sail over its blue waves with propitious winds.

    If I could enter the springs of the sea, the feat would serve no useful purpose either to myself or to others; it would not save the sinking ship or restore the drowned sailor to his weeping wife and children. Neither would my solving deep mysteries avail me a single whit. The simplest act of obedience to Him is better than the profoundest knowledge. My Lord, I leave the infinite to You and ask You to put far from me a love for the tree of knowledge that would keep me from the tree of life.

  219. street says:

    Luke 9:44
    “Let these words sink into your ears; for the Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men.”

    Luke 23:46
    And Jesus, crying out with a loud voice, said, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” Having said this, He breathed His last.

    John 6:28-30
    28 Therefore they said to Him, “What shall we do, so that we may work the works of God?” 29 Jesus answered and said to them, “This is the work of God, that you believe in Him whom He has sent.” 30 So they said to Him, “What then do You do for a sign, so that we may see, and believe You? What work do You perform?

    12 “This is My commandment, that you love one another, just as I have loved you. 13 Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends. 14 You are My friends if you do what I command you.

  220. jeff1 says:

    Lead me oh Lord, won’t you lead me
    I am tired and I need Thy strength and power
    To guide me over my darkest hour
    For just open my eyes that I may see
    Lead me oh Lord, won’t you lead me

    Lead me, guide me along the way
    For if you lead me I cannot stray
    Or just open my eyes that I may see
    Lead me oh Lord, won’t you lead me
    I am lost if you take your hand from me
    I am blind without try light to see

    Lord just always let me Thy servant be
    Lead me oh Lord, won’t you lead me
    Lead me, guide me along the way
    For if you lead me I cannot stray

    Lord just open my eyes that I may see
    Lead me oh Lord, won’t you lead me

  221. foreverblessed says:

    “..The simplest act of obedience to Him is better than the profoundest knowledge…”

    Yes, I have been thinking about that too!
    To just obey what Jesus taught.
    And see what spiritual truths become clear because of that obedience.

    We have to be made new in heart, slowly, step by step.
    To be changed in heart, to be able to see what Jesus meant.

    Obeying is one step in change:
    That reminds me of Corrie ten Boom, when the Holy Spirit told her to forgive the camp bully.
    She couldn’t, but asked God for help, and when she moved her hands to give the man a handshake, with that movement came the inner change in her heart, the grace of God as a miracle.
    She moved in faith, before she felt it on her heart.

  222. bratimus says:

    To Be True to God and the Way of God, I must be true to who I am, not true to my self.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratumus

  223. poohpity says:

    Exactly brat! When we come to realize how much we have been forgiven as Corrie did it makes acting in faith which we also have been given from God more true to who we are in Christ Jesus. Faith is a gift from God so that when we hear we come to believe. Obedience is an act of the flesh so that one may get credit for their actions while faith is what pleases God because it comes from God and we move, breathe and act in it. Corrie acted on what God did for her because she was true to who she was, a sinner like the camp bully but Corrie had been saved by grace so she shared what she had been given as a gift from God.

  224. SFDBWV says:

    I have pondered what to say to you Viv for a couple days, so here it is.

    It is ok if you feel we are divided, I choose to love you anyway.

    Be blessed

    Steve

  225. Beloved says:

    Lord, help me to remember that I am part of your body and I am your ambassador. What I do matters and has influence and will impact those around me. Help me to never forget that. Amen.

  226. foreverblessed says:

    Job 1:9
    Doesn’t Job fear you for nothing?
    He obeys You, because of what he get out there f it.

    How much stained thinking us there still in us?
    How much do we have to be purified in our mind and hearts?

    May God’s Grace be ever with us, nay His presence sanctify us, in Jesus’ Name I pray.

  227. jeff1 says:

    Steve, you are not alone in your thinking, as a matter of fact you would fit in well in Northern Ireland as religion here dictates ‘an eye for an eye’ and a believer who says otherwise is seen as weak and ignorant of God’s ways.

    I am not claiming to know God better than another Christian; but as did most here I grew up with religion, and it is my opinion that it doesn’t draw non believers to God but does just the opposite in making them run from Him.

    I am thankful for your love, Steve, as without love there is no hope and when I act out of love for another I am obeying God.

    I have missed so many opportunities to obey God that I do understand Thomas Aquinas’s vision in seeing that his writings are like straw.

    When I remember the times I acted without love then I see my life is like straw in comparison to those who practised love throughout their lives.

    In this world I believe God needs warriors just as much as He needs peace makers and I am just tired of the waring seeing as my dad saw world war, I local war and my son served in Afghanistan.

    Wishful thinking on my part to expect that there is no peace without war as it is what makes this world go around.

  228. Beloved says:

    Thinking about Thomas’s discovery that words are cheap. it’s a relationship that is gold. Let those streams of living water flow from the Source to cleanse heal and restore to our original humanity in the garden. Before we fell.

  229. foreverblessed says:

    That was beautiful Steve¡

    To cleanse heal and restore!

    That’s whyJesus had to come, in the flesh, and have a body

    When I left that church, I could not hear the word “obey”
    I had to be healed and restored.
    John uses the word “obey”

  230. Beloved says:

    I happened to come upon a documentary about Tuan in Ireland. Incredibly sad. I thought of your mother, viv. How awful of the church to condemn rather than look to Christ not only for salvation but for healing and restoring to Christ. Incredibly sad. Any church that says obey or else does not know Jesus. Not the Jesus I know, anyway.

  231. jeff1 says:

    Wishful thinking on my part to expect that there is no peace without war as it is what makes this world go around.

    Excuse English as what I should have said:

    Wishful thinking on my part to expect that there is peace without no war as it is what makes this world go around.

  232. poohpity says:

    How is that that when one disagrees with our thinking we have to profess love still as if it goes away? If that love was there to begin with when people disagree there should be a celebration that people are actually thinking for themselves and feel comfortable around us to share those differences.

  233. Beloved says:

    In Christ love is given no matter what. Christ’s love does not need a correct behavior to operate. Yes love doesn’t insist on it’s own way but always the way of humility. It’s not about me it’s about others. Loving others when there is hurt- whether physical or emotional- is the decision of the offended and the triumph of Christ’s!
    But it’s always available because of Jesus in us or because I am in Christ. That living stream that flows from the throne.

  234. Beloved says:

    Lol Love doesn’t follow the structure of a 12 step program- it goes beyond!

  235. jeff1 says:

    I believe that is why we see a younger generation turn away from established religions today as churches have failed to show Christ in His true light.

    If C. S. Lewis is right then God will not be used as a convenience as He raised Christ to set up His Kingdom on earth and all power and authority are given to Him.

  236. street says:

    29 Being then the children of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and “thought” of man. Acts 17:29

    thinking of the name eloheem and the saying not my president. thinking plural, many, God of the many. when not recognized as God, the art and craft of making and idol begins. thoughts hearts and strengths crucified with Christ in order to be raised up/in with Him, conformed to His image. Christ in us the hope of Glory. thinking of paul at the rear of the victory march to the arena and Christ being crucified outside the city. acquainted with sorrow and humility. be of good cheer Christ has overcome the world, a mountain of sin. mount Zion awaits travelers. you where born there.

    Psalm 87:5
    But of Zion it shall be said, “This one and that one were born in her”; And the Most High Himself will establish her.

    Isaiah 54:1
    “Shout for joy, O barren one, you who have borne no child; Break forth into joyful shouting and cry aloud, you who have not travailed; For the sons of the desolate one will be more numerous Than the sons of the married woman,” says the Lord.

    Isaiah 66:8
    “Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Can a land be born in one day? Can a nation be brought forth all at once? As soon as Zion travailed, she also brought forth her sons.

    thinking of the valley of dry bones.

  237. jeff1 says:

    Beloved says:
    September 6, 2020 at 2:46 pm

    My last post was is in relation to yours Beloved.

  238. Beloved says:

    Viv there will always be wars. It’s a childhood dream for there to be no more war. My childhood dream was for all abusers to stop abusing and be loving. I think being the image of God we come equipped with good things (wanting no more war) in our heart and mind. But sin alongside messed it all up. Scripture says there will come a day when God will make all things new; new heavens and a new earth after the final war in the heavens that Revelation Daniel andThessalonians speaks about.

    Meanwhile we are sad angry frustrated and hurting but we hold on to Hope knowing our Creators patience is so all can come to Him because Jesus made it possible! Thinking 💭 f enemies of every ilk imaginable. God bless you Viv you are so very precious to God and to all who know you😍

  239. Beloved says:

    Thank you street I knew using “gold” was inadequate but it slipped right off my fingers.

  240. jeff1 says:

    Yes, our childhood dreams can soon turn to nightmares and reality kicks in.

    Life was never meant to be easy and wars are part of the course but finding God in the little things makes life worth the while as blessings of family and friends bring peace in latter years and God finds a way to comfort and reassure of His presence always in our lives.

    As my confidence in Him grows I find peace in the world whatever the circumstances.

    I am your salvation.
    I am Christ your Lord,
    Crucified and buried,
    Now alive forevermore;
    Crushed for your forgiveness,
    Broken for your sin,
    Risen for your endless joy
    And mighty now within.

    I am your salvation.
    Rest in me today.
    Don’t you know I’m with you
    And I listen as you pray?
    Fear and grief may gather.
    Doubt will do its best.
    Stand and simply trust in Me,
    And I will do the rest.

    Alpha and Omega,
    Ever on the throne –
    All you see will fade and die,
    And I will reign alone.
    I am your salvation.
    I am your reward.
    Boldly lose your life in Me
    And prove that I am Lord.

  241. street says:

    it’s a relationship that is gold.

    in my understanding gold is metaphor for holy.

    Holy dependent and trusting in the One in Whom God sent.

    sermon today was on judgment, 1Cor4;1-5. only Jesus’s judgment actually mattered. paul and james warned us about intellectual assent vs obedience. deceitful heart syndrome it would seem obedience proved our Love for Christ. a shared suffering.

  242. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you Jeff, the song you gave 7.30 pm, I have been saying it out loud this morning.

    Beloved 💟 ( a heart appeared on my screen, and I added it lol)
    talked about the living stream, flowing out of us

    Today’s Utmost talks about that too

    John 4:14 but whoever drinks the water I give him (her) will never thirst.
    Indeed, the water I give him will become a spring of water welling up to eternal life.

    Talking about if the water does not fliw , what is the blockage?
    What blocks it?
    Street often mentions our old human nature.
    And indeed, our old inclinations block it.
    We as christians still have the : eye for an eye mentality.
    That is our old man.
    We have to kill it.
    Retaliation

    My husband often watches movies, and many many a time there is violence.
    We talked about it last night, and came to the conclusion, that it often had to do with “revenge”.
    My husband loves: “once upon a time in the West”

    What is it about:
    Revenge!

    Then Jesus says: forgive
    And we resent it.
    And do not want to do it.
    The perpetrator will come away free.
    He has to suffer, till he sees what suffering hd has afflicted upon the oppressed.
    ( I am talking to christians, not to judges)
    The killing of our old self, is done through the Holy Spirit.

    There was another movie on our tv:
    “A bridge too far”
    About the operation Market Garden in the summer of 1944.
    Also lots of violence. But that has been a real war.

    Talking about that there will always be wars, I believe that the Christian community has to grow up spiritually, and see the real war:

    Praying and fasting
    In unity of the Spirit

    For we wrestle not against flesh and blood…

    The Kingdom of God is like a small seed

  243. foreverblessed says:

    Thankbut I wanted to talk a bit more about about “obedience”
    That word I could not stand to hear, when I left my childhood church, 25 years ago.
    The preaching of obedience , obeying the Old Testament Laws, more than the teachings of Jesus.

    But Moses did say: when He, the Prophet, comes, listen to Him.

    Listening to Jesus.
    His teachings,

    But still we now as christians rather have the 10 commandments and common sense,
    Rather than the teachings of Jesus:

    When your enemy forces you to walk a mile

    We scream: this is outrageous, this is unfair

    Jesus says simply:
    Walk with him two miles.

    Are we really listening to Jesus?
    Or are we reasoning, and using common sense?

    And so nullify the Teaching of Jesus?

    In other words: do we obey what Jesus said?

    There is lots and lots of growth still to be on the Church, and as CS Lewis said,beach generation has its own faults, as a Church, we gave learned a lot in 2000 years.
    But there is still lots more to learn.

  244. foreverblessed says:

    Obedience:
    Jesus Himself obeyed His Father,

    “I have food to eat that you know nothing about
    Then his disciples said to each other: could someone have brought Him food!
    “My food”, said Jesus,
    “Is to do the will of Him Who sent me and to finish His work…

    John 4:32-34

    Doing the will of the Father was good to Jesus, it nourished Him.
    And so is it to us: we are nourished when we do what Jesus asks of us.
    He does not force us, but He asks.

    Oh, that we would hear the still small voice of Jesus.

    Our Lover
    The Lover of our soul.

    It is a love relationship.
    When two young people fall in love, they do things for each other, just because they enjoy to do for the loved one what he asks.
    Your wish is my command.
    The word command is brought alive with it’s true meaning, not the distorted meaning that the Adversary has us made believe:
    The demanding God.

    See Jesus as the Lover of my soul,
    Sit with Him this morning , and watch with Him:
    What will He bring me too today.
    Who will be blessed by Him,busing me as a means, so His living water flows through me
    What is His wish for me?
    That is my command,
    And it will be nourishment for my soul.

    Oh, I thank God, that He had cleansed me from wrong thinking, about obedience.
    And see the spiritual, the gold meaning
    Gold: holy, purified, the dross is melted out of it,candy purity appears

  245. SFDBWV says:

    I have on occasion watched and enjoyed a program on PBS TV called “Brain Games”. It centers on how we are deceived by what we think we see.

    It turns out our brains are wired to be lazy, to take short cuts and to jump to erroneous conclusions.

    So common place is this in all human beings that the producers will provide an optical illusion and ask people along the street what it is they see and everyone makes the same error.

    It has been my life experience that when I have “seen visions” or what I may perceive as an epiphany from God that I share them with others, both in joy and in awe.

    In telling the event my faith is encouraged and bolstered, as well as perhaps encouraging and bolstering the faith of those I share my experience with.

    It is curious that Thomas chose to not tell about what he saw.

    What mistakes in life have you made that you would not only never want another to know about, but would like to erase from your life entirely?

    Today is the beginning of the rest of your life. How will you try and not repeat your old mistakes?

    Be sure of what you see or perceive as they just may be an illusion created from an error in your mind.

    Especially before you speak of it or to another.

    47 degrees f and a crystal clear star lit sky with a waning moon setting in the west.

    Steve

  246. jeff1 says:

    Thank you, Forever, as your comments are always so full of understanding as to what Christ wants, which is my submission to His will, but the song ‘My Way’ comes to mind and Christ takes a back seat.

    If we wonder why society is getting violenter then we only need look at our screens today to see the influences that younger generations are being subjected to that I as a child was not.

    In broadcasting, the watershed is the time of day after which programming aimed towards mature or adult audiences is permitted. It is 9 o’clock here but often viewers are complaining to broadcasting at the violence on shows at an earlier time, shows that I watched as a child except they did not have the violence in them that they show today.

    Awards are given to dramas and actors so it is competitive industry and so it seems the violenter or more dramatic the scenes the greater the viewers so we the audiences are just as much the problem in that we choose to watch them.

    I think we only need to look at the world to see that the teachings of Jesus are not compatible with a competitive world.

    And it is not just the broadcasting arena that is competitive today but in every walk of life including churches which is why so many are turning away from the established churches for if many are seeking escapism today it is from this world and who can blame them, not I for one.

    I recall this song from my dad’s favourite singer as he would play them for us on our drives to the countryside in what I now see as more simpler and care free times.

    Thinking how my mum used to go on at me about wanting to grow up and she would be insistent that childhood is the best days of your life and it is now that I am grown up myself that I get to understand her insistence.

    I believe Bratimus is right in saying that everyone’s journey is very different and perhaps that is why we see God so differently as maturity is different for everyone and for myself I am a slow learner which I put down to my poor understanding of the English language.

    This World Is Not My Home

    This world is not my home
    I’m just a-passing through
    My treasures are laid up
    Somewhere 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 hovering up in Gloryland
    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 Gloryland
    We’ll live eternaly
    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…

  247. poohpity says:

    It could be that Aquinas longed for the edification of men which prompted his writings or philosophies by the questions, reasoning and logic of that which the church held him in high regard. It was not it seems for the edification of God, Jesus or the Holy Spirit but for his own ego. So if in a vision God revealed the true nature of his own heart that it was earthly or worldly then it would reason that he probably would not have shared in humility. God seems to work with us each on a personal level some things are just meant for the person having the vision unless it is pointing people to God. Often we need to compare our visions or dreams with what God’s word says so we are not lead astray and if they prompted people to look at us rather than God it may be it was not from God after all.

    In the bible those who were given visions or dreams, God also told them who to share it with because they were from God for specific people and other times it was for the person having them as God was revealing Himself for that individual’s growth in relation to God. It seems there is a plan and purpose for God revealing things to us but never it seems for our own edification but for His.

  248. poohpity says:

    There seems to be a difference in visions and dreams. Visions seem to happen when a person is awake while dreams well I do not need to explain when they happen, lol. It seems the vision of Aquinas happened while he was awake contemplating the broken body and shed blood of his Savior.

  249. poohpity says:

    Proverbs 2:

    My child,[a] listen to what I say,
    and treasure my commands.
    2
    Tune your ears to wisdom,
    and concentrate on understanding.
    3
    Cry out for insight,
    and ask for understanding.
    4
    Search for them as you would for silver;
    seek them like hidden treasures.
    5
    Then you will understand what it means to fear the Lord,
    and you will gain knowledge of God.
    6
    For the Lord grants wisdom!
    From his mouth come knowledge and understanding.
    7
    He grants a treasure of common sense to the honest.
    He is a shield to those who walk with integrity.
    8
    He guards the paths of the just
    and protects those who are faithful to him.

    9
    Then you will understand what is right, just, and fair,
    and you will find the right way to go.
    10
    For wisdom will enter your heart,
    and knowledge will fill you with joy.
    11
    Wise choices will watch over you.
    Understanding will keep you safe.

  250. Beloved says:

    Regina and Bubbles
    How is school going? Are you relaxing this long weekend? Thinking of you.

    Also thinking of Saled and if she is teaching?

  251. bratimus says:

    To how are minds see things, I go to God through faith in Christ Jesus on how I see things. I’m putting my faith in God to keep me in his hands, keep me under His wing, and try to ignore all the other that might be thrown my way to trip me up, to try to set off my political PTSD.

    Through my years I have learned that sometimes mysteries that God revealed to me, isn’t for everyone to know. When you tell the crowd of an event that is on its way. There are those in the crowd that would try to change it and control it to their advantage, which makes it way worse. People always want to know the outcome, before the coming, and all that has already been written about.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  252. Beloved says:

    Psalm 97 ►
    Berean Study Bible
    Let the Earth Rejoice
    1The LORD reigns, let the earth rejoice;
    let the distant shores be glad.
    2Clouds and darkness surround Him;
    righteousness and justice are His throne’s foundation.
    3Fire goes before Him
    and consumes His foes on every side.
    4His lightning illuminates the world;
    the earth sees and trembles.
    5The mountains melt like wax
    at the presence of the LORD,
    before the Lord of all the earth.
    6The heavens proclaim His righteousness;
    all the peoples see His glory.
    7All worshipers of images are put to shame—
    those who boast in idols.
    Worship Him, all you gods!
    8Zion hears and rejoices,
    and the towns of Judah exult
    because of Your judgments, O LORD.
    9For You, O LORD, are Most High over all the earth;
    You are exalted far above all gods.
    10Hate evil, O you who love the LORD!
    He preserves the souls of His saints;
    He delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
    11Light shinesa on the righteous,
    gladness on the upright in heart.
    12Rejoice in the LORD, you righteous ones,
    and praise His holy name.

  253. jeff1 says:

    I think you are a very very wise man, Bratimus, a man of few words yet with an uncanny insightfulness that knows when to open his mouth and when to keep it shut.

    Words are like weapons they wound sometimes.

    This beautiful song from Cher comes to mind:

    If I could turn back time
    If I could find a way
    I’d take back those words that have hurt you
    And you’d stay

    I don’t know why I did the things I did
    I don’t know why I said the things I said
    Pride’s like a knife, it can cut deep inside
    Words are like weapons, they wound sometimes

    I didn’t really mean to hurt you
    I didn’t wanna see you go
    I know I made you cry, but baby

    If I could turn back time
    If I could find a way
    I’d take back those words that have hurt you
    And you’d stay
    If I could reach the stars
    I’d give ’em all to you
    Then you’d love me, love me
    Like you used to do
    (If I could turn back time)

    My world was shattered, I was torn apart
    Like someone took a knife and drove it deep in my heart
    When you walked out that door
    I swore that I didn’t care
    But I lost every thing, darlin’, then and there

    Too strong to tell you I was sorry
    Too proud to tell you I was wrong
    I know that I was blind, and darlin’

    If I could turn back time
    If I could find a way
    I’d take back those words that have hurt you
    And you’d stay
    If I could reach the stars
    I’d give ’em all to you
    Then you’d love me, love me
    Like you used to do, ohh

    If I could turn back time
    (If I could turn back time)
    If I could turn back time
    (If I could turn back time)
    If I could turn back time, ohh baby

    I didnt really mean to hurt you
    I didn’t wanna see you go
    I know I made you cry
    But ohh

    If I could turn back time
    If I could find a way
    I’d take back those words that have hurt you
    If I could reach the stars
    I’d give them all to you
    Then you’d love me, love me
    Like you used to do

    If I could turn back time
    (Turn back time)
    If I could find a way (Find a way)
    Then maybe, maybe, maybe you’d stay
    (Reach the stars)

  254. street says:

    backgammon….i play this with a computer program and i marvel at the mirth and total frustration this endeavor causes within me. God chooses the outcome before i start. even questioning why i did certain moves that i could have done better. godlyness with contentment is Great Gain. chambers speaks of good better and best, trust in God required.

  255. Beloved says:

    I don’t know if anyone else reads Tabletalk magazine but I have really been enjoying the articles on “time”. God outside of time. Reminded me of the universe as a giant snow globe with God holding it. Still hard to understand timelessness coexisting with time. Gods awesome!

  256. Beloved says:

    Thinking of any game I guess God moves the pieces (players) to His hearts content. Thankful He has a good heart! My Abba ❤️

  257. jeff1 says:

    I think, Beloved, God wants your/my heart to be content if I understand what Street is saying.

    Weak or strong, in need or plenty,
    In the dark of deepest grief,
    Rich or poor, in health or sickness,
    When my pain finds no relief,
    As I pray, You prove it true:
    I can rest content in You.

    Perfect wisdom, perfect power,
    Perfect goodness, perfect love,
    Father, Savior, Friend, and Healer,
    O so near and all above,
    You are joy each moment new!
    Here I rest content in You.

    Father, patient through my struggles,
    Always strong when I am frail,
    True to each and every promise,
    So forgiving when I fail,
    You are good in all You do!
    I rejoice, content in You.

    Money, fame, and pleasures call me.
    Worries threaten every day.
    All their hopes and fears are empty,
    Quickly come, then fade away.
    Other joys are false and few.
    Lord, I rest content in You.

  258. Beloved says:

    I Timothy 1: 6 Of course, godliness with contentment is great gain. 7For we brought nothing into the world, so we cannot carry anything out of it. 8. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with these.

  259. Beloved says:

    Rather I Timothy6:6

  260. poohpity says:

    Is this the twilight zone again to think that God controls the outcome of board games? Surely you are just kidding!! Good grief.

  261. Beloved says:

    Sovereignty of God is the Christian teaching that God is the supreme authority and all things are under His control. … Easton’s Bible Dictionary defines God’s Sovereignty as His “absolute right to do all things according to his own good pleasure.”

  262. foreverblessed says:

    Jesus sits at the right hand of God.
    That is very reassuring knowledge.

    Yesterday I mentioned the violence in movies.
    Today’s Utmost talks about violence,

    About 2 Cor 10:5
    We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

    Determinedly Demolish Some Things. Deliverance from sin is not the same as deliverance from human nature. There are things in human nature, such as prejudices, that the saint can only destroy through sheer neglect. But there are other things that have to be destroyed through violence, that is, through God’s divine strength imparted by His Spirit. There are some things over which we are not to fight, but only to “stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord…” (see Exodus 14:13). But every theory or thought that raises itself up as a fortified barrier “against the knowledge of God” is to be determinedly demolished by drawing on God’s power, not through human effort or by compromise (see 2 Corinthians 10:4).

  263. foreverblessed says:

    I take it, that that talks about my own thoughts, and inclination.
    The “violence” is done in the power of the Holy Spirit. Not through human effort or by compromise
    .

    “In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.”
    Hebrews 12:4
    Not literal blood.
    But, meaning: with great effort
    With prayer and fasting

    Just like when Jesus said why the disciples were unable to help the boy,
    These do not go out, but by prayer and fasting.

    And fasting is meant in not only food, but starving the natural inclinations in ourselves:
    Indignation, rage, depression,
    So “violence” in dealing with everything in ourselves,other is against God’s Kingdom.

    (Beloved, I have had to fight depression myself. And I do , as you do: fight against it in all of our intention drawing on the power of the Spirit: singing Psalms, praising God, filling my mind with the Good News of the Gospel: we are safe in Jesus.And everything is OK
    As Jesus sits at the right hand of God!!!

  264. foreverblessed says:

    A vision:

    Thus, then, there is a life which belongs to God on His throne, a life lifted above the limitations of time, a life communicated by Jesus Christ, as the waters of some land-locked lake may flow down through a sparkling river, a life which consists in fellowship with God, a life which may be, and is, ours, on the simple condition of trusting Him who gives it, and a life which, eternal as it is, and destined to a glory all undreamed of, in that future beyond the grave, is now the possession of every man that puts forth the faith which is its condition. ‘He that believeth hath’-not shall have, in some distant future, but has to-day-’everlasting life,’ verily here and now. And so John lays this upon our hearts, as the ripe fruit of all his experience, and the meaning of all his message to the world, that God revealed in Christ ‘is the true God,’ and as Himself the possessor, is the source for us all, of life eternal.

    MacLaren sermon on 1 John 5

    Violence in the sense of: Positive antidote against depressed thoughts

  265. jeff1 says:

    Forever, what you say helps me to understand my own struggles, for me it is between heart and mind with the heart being willing but having a chemical imbalance which I take medication for causes me a battle in the mind that wars against the heart.

    I find being silent before God or listening to hymns and gospel music, participating in Holy Communion, prayers, singing with other believers and reading or hearing Gospel messages gives me the strength for each day.

    I also find focusing on God’s creation i.e. new born baby, rainbow in the sky, country walks, being in a beautiful garden, watching happy people as a positive effect in helping me to see that God is not far away even when it sometimes feel that way to me.

    It is the little things that help me to see God which is why I focus on them i.e friendships, family reunions, charity work and charity giving, church gatherings and talking with neighbours.

    I think it is true to say the best things in life are free but in a consumer orientated world I can get overwhelmed if I do not keep focus on God and His creation.

    To know God does not change is the Good News for me because of my inconsistency of mind that disrupts my view of God and can steal my peace and joy in Him.

    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 flourish as leaves on the tree,
    And wither and perish—but naught changeth Thee.

    Great Father of glory, pure Father of light,
    Thine angels adore Thee, all veiling their sight;
    All praise we would render; oh, help us to see
    ’Tis only the splendor of light hideth Thee.

  266. SFDBWV says:

    Genesis 6:17 KJV and 2 Peter 3:10-12 KJV are examples of violence from God and all of the conquest of Canaan are examples of God using man in acts of violence as per His will.

    Even His suffering and death on the cross an act of violence God not only allowed, but orchestrated.

    What does it mean to you to read that man was made in the image of God? Genesis 1:27

    Does it mean we have hands and feet, hair and teeth, arms and legs eyes and a heart because God is physically like that? Or is God a spiritual being and so are we as a result of being made in His image.

    Yes an image, a shadow, but like Him.

    Is then violence a part of our nature, because it is a part of God’s nature?

    Revelation is a reckoning, judgement poured out against a rebellious mankind who rejected God. Violence magnified to Biblical proportions.

    Violence is often the last resort in seeking justice or resolution.

    It has been part of my own life experience to see that violence and anger often follow pain and frustration.

    What some may have called “the primal scream”.

    Most people like reading or hearing of stories where the good guy wins the bad guy loses and everyone lives happily ever after.

    In a way that is the story of the Bible from beginning to end.

    Most people like seeing the bad guy get what’s coming to them. Something in them is satisfied when evil is destroyed and good wins out.

    Jesus teaches us not to seek a way of getting even, but of finding a way to forgive.

    It is un-natural and goes against our nature to do so.

    And what makes being a true Christian impossible, without Jesus covering over our inability to do so. With His own violently shed blood.

    53 degrees f under a clear morning sky just beginning to show light in the east.

    Steve

  267. jeff1 says:

    Perhaps that is why there are so many atheists today as even I who have believed in God since childhood cannot get my head around God being both violent and good.

    I won’t try to explain what I cannot understand but forgiving is the most difficult part of the Christian faith and having failed to do it I do not call myself a Christian otherwise I would be doing Christ an injustice.

    I do believe there are people who can forgive and therefor do represent Christ on earth but I have not reached such heights.

    Though I always loved to see the bad guys get their cuppence on television the real world is very different to what you see on screen and has to be lived through and dealt with as it occurs.

    It is in that process that I develop doubts and fears about God but I either continue in faith whatever by doubts or walk away from it.

    The choice is mine as God does not see the need to prove Himself to me so trust Him I will because I haven’t found any human being that I can trust better.

  268. foreverblessed says:

    Jeff, I thought that we call ourselves christians who believe that Jesus is the Son of God.
    You would do Jesus a great disservice, if you do not call yourself a christian.
    It is Jesus Who will give us the forgiveness, as a gift from above,
    If we ask for it.

    We cannot do anything Jesus asks of us, unless He gives us the Spirit.

    But… we have to come as poor fellows to Him:
    I cannot
    But You in me can.

    Blessed are the poor in spirit.
    And you are very blessed in that sense!

    But do not underestimate the great Resurrection Power, that is available for us who believe.

    Faith in Jesus,
    1 John 5:1-21

    What is the victory that has overcome the world
    Even our faith

    Who is it that overcomes the world?
    Only he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God.
    1 John 5:4-5

    Jesus said:
    Take heart, ❤️ I have overcome the world.

    That victory is His, and if we are in Him, if is ours too!

    God bless you

  269. foreverblessed says:

    Again about forgiveness;
    Jesus IN us can forgive

    That is a gift from above.

    But what we can do, ourselves here and now:
    Dealing with the things in our own heart that go against forgiveness:
    That is our own fight! With God’s help

    With God helping us: we can say:
    I do not want revenge
    I do not want him to suffer as much as he made me suffer.

    And then comes in the Teaching of Jesus:
    Bless your enemies!

    And that is a fight.
    When Hebrews 12:4 says: you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood

    Then it means this active taking captive our negative thoughts about our enemy, and fill it with positive thoughts;
    That God may bless them, not because they deserve it, but because they need it.

    They need God’s blessing:
    God knows what went wrong in their lives why they act as enemies.

    God can fix everything because of Jesus’ broken body and shed blood.

    And there we are again at the vision…

    Take heart, I have overcome the world.

    Said Jesus, and there His Passion began.
    Dying on a Cross, and yet saying that He overcame!

    Oh what a Gospel message!

  270. street says:

    violence
    15
    “You were blameless in your ways
    From the day you were created
    Until unrighteousness was found in you.
    16
    “By the abundance of your trade
    [a]You were internally filled with violence,
    And you sinned;
    Therefore I have cast you as profane
    From the mountain of God.
    And I have destroyed you, O [b]covering cherub,
    From the midst of the stones of fire.
    17
    “Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty;
    You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor.
    I cast you to the ground;
    I put you before kings,
    That they may see you.

    Proverbs 3:31
    Do not envy a man of violence And do not choose any of his ways.

    Revelation 18:21
    Then a strong angel took up a stone like a great millstone and threw it into the sea, saying, “So will Babylon, the great city, be thrown down with violence, and will not be found any longer.

    Isaiah 53:7
    He was oppressed and He was afflicted, Yet He did not open His mouth; Like a lamb that is led to slaughter, And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers, So He did not open His mouth.

    Matthew 7:2
    For in the way you judge, you will be judged; and by your standard of measure, it will be measured to you.

    Psalm 99:2
    The Lord is great in Zion, And He is exalted above all the peoples.

    8 Being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death [a]on a cross. 9 For this reason also, God highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, 10 so that at the name of Jesus every knee will bow, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth,

    Psalm 118:19
    Open to me the gates of righteousness; I shall enter through them, I shall give thanks to the Lord.

    Psalm 100:4
    Enter His gates with thanksgiving And His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name.

  271. Beloved says:

    Violence
    It seems to me as Christ followers we are not to DO violence yet receive it as Gods will when it comes. As Jesus did.

    I also pictured a child running into traffic. Two types of violence could happen. 1. An automobile strikes it. 2. A parent rushes in to scoop up the child to save it. There is more to this scenario that could happen but thinking of God the Good and benevolent Parent always has His best interests in mind. Holy holy holy is our God.

  272. poohpity says:

    An Earthquake is violent!

    A storm is violent!

    If Christian people were not to be violent then we would have no one faithful in the police or serving in the military. The is a time and season for everything! Although with law enforcement and the military they usually first strive for a peaceful resolution before any violence comes.

    To me a far as God being violent I consider Him just and sometimes acting on the justness it may involve some type of violence but it is not self serving as most human being are when they act in violence.

  273. Beloved says:

    Viv you brought up forgiveness. I too struggle with this. I’ve had to forgive the same person over and over- more than 70 times I’m afraid. Yet to finally come to the point of complete and total forgiveness felt like laying a heavy sword down. Now I see it sinking slowly into the dust. My own personal battlefield has plenty I’m afraid.

  274. Beloved says:

    repeating what forever posted:

    They need God’s blessing:
    God knows what went wrong in their lives why they act as enemies.

    God can fix everything because of Jesus’ broken body and shed blood.

  275. Beloved says:

    Violence due to wars has always been a discussion with Christians. To fight or not to fight as a follower of Christ? I’ve heard both sides and still don’t know the answer. My husband was forced to fight in Vietnam. Many were. I’m guessing many were/are believers.

  276. street says:

    thinking of Genesis when God kicked them out of the garden to protect them.

    thinking of the son who wished for his inheritance early and went away.

    thinking of the son who returned and the Son Who was sent.

    thinking generosity forgiveness and thanksgiving.

    Luke 16:26
    And beside all this, between us and you there is a great gulf fixed: so that they which would pass from hence to you cannot; neither can they pass to us, that would come from thence.

    13 But now in Christ Jesus you who formerly were far off [a]have been brought near [b]by the blood of Christ. 14 For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one and broke down the [c]barrier of the dividing wall, 15 [d]by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances, so that in Himself He might [e]make the two into one new man, thus establishing peace,

  277. Beloved says:

    15 [d]by abolishing in His flesh the enmity, which is the Law of commandments contained in ordinances,

    Paul learned that keeping the Law perfectly did not bring peace. Union with Christ did it. One flesh, one hope, Victory!

  278. street says:

    1 Samuel 23: 1 Then they told David, saying, “Behold, the Philistines are fighting against Keilah and are plundering the threshing floors.” 2 So David inquired of the Lord, saying, “Shall I go and [a]attack these Philistines?” And the Lord said to David, “Go and [b]attack the Philistines and deliver Keilah.” 3 But David’s men said to him, “Behold, we are afraid here in Judah. How much more then if we go to Keilah against the ranks of the Philistines?” 4 Then David inquired of the Lord once more. And the Lord answered him and said, “Arise, go down to Keilah, for I will give the Philistines into your hand.” 5 So David and his men went to Keilah and fought with the Philistines; and he led away their livestock and struck them with a great slaughter. Thus David delivered the inhabitants of Keilah.

    6 Now it came about, when Abiathar the son of Ahimelech fled to David at Keilah, that he came down with an ephod in his hand. 7 When it was told Saul that David had come to Keilah, Saul said, “God has [c]delivered him into my hand, for he shut himself in by entering a city with double gates and bars.” 8 So Saul summoned all the people for war, to go down to Keilah to besiege David and his men. 9 Now David knew that Saul was plotting evil against him; so he said to Abiathar the priest, “Bring the ephod here.” 10 Then David said, “O Lord God of Israel, Your servant has heard for certain that Saul is seeking to come to Keilah to destroy the city on my account. 11 Will the men of Keilah surrender me into his hand? Will Saul come down just as Your servant has heard? O Lord God of Israel, I pray, tell Your servant.” And the Lord said, “He will come down.” 12 Then David said, “Will the men of Keilah surrender me and my men into the hand of Saul?” And the Lord said, “They will surrender you.” 13 Then David and his men, about six hundred, arose and departed from Keilah, and they went wherever they could go. When it was told Saul that David had escaped from Keilah, he [d]gave up the pursuit. 14 David stayed in the wilderness in the strongholds, and remained in the hill country in the wilderness of Ziph. And Saul sought him every day, but God did not deliver him into his hand.

    thinking God’s knows the outcome of every decisions you make and the ones you don’t make. some outcomes never happen because they were avoided. i guess you could call this free will, but God has told us what is required of us. yes we are in a twilight zone till we are in Christ Jesus.
    Psalm 44:3
    For by their own sword they did not possess the land, And their own arm did not save them, But Your right hand and Your arm and the light of Your presence, For You favored them. Father have mercy on the works of your hand and lead us in the path of righteousness for your name sake.

  279. Beloved says:

    Matthew 11 . 28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

    Just wanted to share this reminder of who Jesus is after thinking about violence today.

  280. foreverblessed says:

    Giving our burden to Jesus…

    The violence is in this:
    Giving it to Him, and as soon as the burden comes back on us, giving it again to Him
    And again
    And again.

    That is the violence

    With forgiveness of somebody that had harmed you in your youth, this can take years and years.
    That’s why in the NT it is do often written
    Persevere!!!

    I was thinking about taking every thought captive;
    There is also violence needed:
    Be adamant to do so.

    For example:
    Last night I was cycling through the neighborhood to the place where the choir rehearsal is. It was a quiet evening, nice weather. And many people were having a stroll outside.
    But…. most of them were women, with long dresses and with hair coverings. In groups of three to four. Many of them.

    And here started the disciplinary thinking:
    I was thinking to myself: “What thoughts do I allow about this?”

    I changed that into another thought;
    “What does Jesus think about this?”

    And then I started to meditate upon Jesus:
    He loves these women.
    He has died for them on the Cross.
    He would love to touch there hearts too.
    And then I was thinking,bid there in this neighborhood a praying christian community, to pray for these women.
    And this morning I knew what Jesus meant me to do:
    Pray for a ministry on that neighborhood.

    And I also realized that if I had dwelt on the thought longer: “this is not our natural culture”, “they are invading us.”
    That, even how minor this thought is, it broods a set of mind that is against God’s Kingdom.
    I am His servant, I am a sojourner here on earth, called to be His, and to walk alongside Him, Jesus.

    How more we walk with Jesus, the sooner we learn to grab a thought that appears in our mind, and throw it out.
    Before it makes a stronghold.

    And bless these people, who I think as of alien to my physical country.

    Keep blessed and eyes fixed on Jesus.

  281. jeff1 says:

    If I think of the violence of war and my dad’s experience though he didn’t speak of the horrors of it he knew he killed men as though your target may be submarines there are human lives on them and so you take up arms you know there are casualties.

    Of course in war like that it is a just playing field as you are just as likely to be killed as kill.

    No guilt in that sort of war as it is dog eat dog.

    My mum would speak of a different type of war and what she would call guerilla war and she would say it was the worst kind of war and being young I was not paying much notice to the rantings of my mum as she so often went of on one and more often than not my dad would say you shouldn’t listen to her and that is because my dad often disapproved at what my mum would fill my head with.

    Wind on to 1969 the start of the troubles here and now I would get a taste of the kind of war my mum spoke of and get to understand why she would say it was the worst kind of war.

    The enemy within your country whose patriotism lies with another land and there is no better place to experience a war like than in divided Ireland.

    You may work alongside them and they seem friendly and show empathy about the bombings and shootings going on around you but secretly they participate either operationally, financially or otherwise in undermining your country to achieve their aims which in our case was to bring our Province under their control and it is done in the name of patriotism and so for them justifies their actions and diminishes any guilt they may feel for those actions because they are convinced there patriotism gives them the right to do so.

    It seems sometimes my mother did understand what she was talking about as after 30 years of this type of war it is difficult to know who are your friends and who are you enemies!

    You learn one big truth about human nature and that is it can be deceptive!

    The problem being that the deceptiveness of one rubs of on another and we all become tainted by it.

    There is only one safe place to run and that is to God for if I have learned anything from the division here is that both sides will retell their stories and when I think about when my husband and I seperated we both had different stories to tell.

    When observing other peoples separations I would say there is his side and her side and then there is the truth.

    How easy the truth gets lost in conflict and so I will look to God today for His truth above all others.

    “The heart is more deceitful than all else And is desperately sick; Who can understand it? Job 31:33-34

    Jeremiah+17:9,Proverbs+16…
    The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?

    Psalm 5:9
    There is nothing reliable in what they say;
    Their inward part is destruction itself.
    Their throat is an open grave;
    They flatter with their tongue.

    Psalm 28:3
    Do not drag me away with the wicked
    And with those who work iniquity,
    Who speak peace with their neighbors,
    While evil is in their hearts

    Psalm 62:4
    They have counseled only to thrust him down from his high position;
    They delight in falsehood;
    They bless with their mouth,
    But inwardly they curse. Selah

    Proverbs 6:14
    Who with perversity in his heart continually devises evil,
    Who spreads strife

    Proverbs 24:12
    If you say, “See, we did not know this,”
    Does He not consider it who weighs the hearts?
    And does He not know it who keeps your soul?
    And will He not render to man according to his work?

    Proverbs 26:23-25
    Like an earthen vessel overlaid with silver dross
    Are burning lips and a wicked heart.
    He who hates disguises it with his lips,
    But he lays up deceit in his heart.
    When he speaks graciously, do not believe him,
    For there are seven abominations in his heart.

  282. Beloved says:

    Forever these have been on my mind also concerning my conduct amongst the citizens where I live as an alien belonging to Christ. I am a citizen by birth of America yet an alien according to Paul.
    (Deuteronomy has lots of commands about how to treat aliens as you probably already know.)

    Peter 2:10-12
    Amplified Bible
    10 Once you were not a people [at all], but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.

    11 Beloved, I urge you as aliens and strangers [in this world] to abstain from the sensual urges [those dishonorable desires] that wage war against the soul. 12 Keep your behavior excellent among the [unsaved] Gentiles [conduct yourself honorably, with graciousness and integrity], so that [a]for whatever reason they may slander you as evildoers, yet by observing your good deeds they may [instead come to] glorify God [b]in the day of visitation [when He looks upon them with mercy].

  283. street says:

    read this on a facebook blog….very powerful truths written upon a heart.

    Whoever wants, be patient, gave me a nostalgic attack and wrote a novel, but this song, right now, inspired me.

    I left long before things really got bad, at the time I couldn’t wait to leave, listening to the xenophobic rhetoric of the deceased me, I was no longer happy with the way my life was progressing at the moment and above all the days to hear it say that being an immigrant you were an M **** I had come to oppress the Venezuelan public, because I said enough! Stay with your pod and I’ll return to my country. I was lucky enough to not have to leave with just a backpack and hope, I was one of the privileged ones I had to stop when I came abroad, even friends already made I got myself!

    What I didn’t know then, was that once you are a migrant, you will be for life, so you return home; the most difficult question to answer is ′′ where are you from?”, what do I answer you? My passport says one thing but my culture and my values another. At Christmas they asked me what we ate in Italy for Christmas… And I know?, for me they are hallacas, pernil and ham bread.

    I did not know that the things I need most here every day are neither people, nor food, nor the sun, nor the beaches but the feeling of belonging, that feeling of ′′ knowing ′′ instinctively that you are spoken when someone makes a reference to popular culture or paraphrase something, you do not remember where you learned it, has always been there; when you scream to someone even the evil that will die, understands you not only the words but the feeling I love you.

    I need the memories that jump through every corner of the Caracas I lived, on Sundays in La Stay with a group of people from all corners of the city, in a space where we were neither rich nor poor nor white nor black , neither Venezuelans nor foreigners, nor sifrinos or anything, we had an interest in common and that was enough; the school ice cream shop (which until 3 years ago was still there! Breakfasts at the bakery with friends I don’t see now 5 years ago, before we go to the barber shop on Saturday morning, because that was our custom.

    Now, almost 12 years later, I have almost everything I wanted when I left, but I didn’t realize I’d want everything I had when I left behind.

    When someone asks me, why I left Venezuela, because because I wanted to, nostalgia hits me now because every time I return to Venezuela I realize that another little piece disappeared, another person went, further, another building a flawless time now it crumbles due to lack of maintenance, every time I go I see more misery, misery that belongs to us, on a large scale that had never been seen I think the Venezuela I remember, no longer exists.

    Then I see things like this video and I remember, that Venezuela are the seas and mountains, medanos, jungle and plain, but above all, we are Venezuelans, passport or heart and this no one takes away from us, all we need is a chance to put it back in its own geographical location.

  284. foreverblessed says:

    O dear, what a heartrending song.
    The feeling of not belonging!

    But they, the immigrants, know that they do not belong.
    But we, who live in our native land, the natural state is that we do belong.
    But the Bible says we are “sojourners”.

    I must meditate on that.
    Meditate more on the things that are above.
    We are seated with Christ in heavenly places, but I sit here on the couch, in the Netherlands.
    But…I can sit still with Jesus, and put the people I will meet tomorrow and Friday, lay them before His feet.

    Street, I had to meditate upon the Bible verses you put together about the dividing wall.
    If they belong like that, wonderful!
    Jesus can take away any dividing gap.
    When the person is repentant, and changes towards Jesus.
    .

  285. foreverblessed says:

    Jeff, that us heartrending too, what you describe!
    A civil war is so devastating!
    To stay at peace, inside, that is quite something!
    Staying close to Jesus, every moment, moment by moment.
    I pray that you may be healed, and your fellow countrymen.

    Blessing a person who has a serpents tongue is hard.

    On the immigrant from Venezuela:
    He/she was saying they had everything they wanted back in their native land!
    Reminds me of gone with the wind. Scarlett finally saw that her husband, who had left her, was all she wanted. Too late

    “Be content with what you have”
    Says Paul somewhere in his letters.

    But we have Jesus,
    He promised to never leave us not forsake us.

  286. street says:

    dividing wall

    dividing spirit

    divided heart

    if God had not been for us……

  287. jeff1 says:

    An undivided heart,
    Seeking only You;
    An undivided life,
    Walking in the truth.
    By Your Holy Spirit,
    Jesus, now renew
    My undivided heart for You.

    When temptation looks my way
    Or when pride has found a place,
    When I’m pressured, help me turn
    And simply pray.

  288. Beloved says:

    Divided

    Praying lately for grace to do His will- remembering also I am Gods will (Chambers) If He can’t breach the divide no one can!

  289. foreverblessed says:

    The bread and wine, nourishment for us:

    Someone posted this yesterday on Utmost
    ..the MSG version of 1 Cor 11:24
    Let me go over with you again exactly what goes on in the Lord’s Supper and why it is so centrally important. I received my instructions from the Master himself and passed them on to you. The Master, Jesus, on the night of his betrayal, took bread. Having given thanks, he broke it and said, This is my body, broken for you. Do this to remember me. After supper, he did the same thing with the cup: This cup is my blood, my new covenant with you. Each time you drink this cup, remember me. What you must solemnly realize is that every time you eat this bread and every time you drink this cup, you reenact in your words and actions the death of the Master. You will be drawn back to this meal again and again until the Master returns. You must never let familiarity breed contempt.

    And the I found in Biblehub, commentary by Cyril
    Mysticism: the bread and wine.
    Eccl 9:7-8
    Go, eat your food with gladness,
    and drink your wine with a joyful heart,
    for now is the time that God favours what you do.
    Always be clothed in white,
    and always anoint your head with oil.

    Food for our spiritual body and drink for our soul.
    The white clothed we receive from Christ when we surrender to Him, and the oil of anointment is (given by) the Holy Spirit

  290. foreverblessed says:

    Dividing wall
    Curtain

    Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus,
    by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain,
    that is His Body,
    and since we have a great Priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts ❤️ sprinkled to cleanse us from a quilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water.

    Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.

    Hebrews 10:19-23

    Don’t you want a clear conscience? O yes I do,
    and a body washed with pure water?

  291. SFDBWV says:

    Reading of Foreverblessed thoughts about her Islamic emigrants as she cycled by reminded me of lots of subject matter. However it comes to me to ask if we can actually “control” our thoughts.

    That is especially thoughts that come from an observation?

    Then there is streets copy of some emigrant from Venezuela. Which I have to admit was difficult to read, because it was confusing.

    While none of this has anything to do with Thomas’s or his vision or his failure to share with us what was to make his life’s work seem worthless to him.

    It does connect us to the humanity we all share.

    The Venezuelan story is an exact example of “The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence”. This person though left their homeland in search of something they thought was better.

    It is easy for me to see why someone left Venezuela with their economic troubles and suffocating political rule, just as it is easy for me to see why people leave Islamic countries because of the harsh religious lifestyle and never ending fatalities from religious violence found in their culture. A religion and culture of death.

    The thing is that we all are searching for a way to be happy, content and at peace.

    The difference being what is it that makes us happy, content and at peace?

    Jesus teaches us to give up our desires and place the “needs” of others in place of our own desires.

    We aren’t told to put another’s desires ahead of our own, but to make their “needs” more important than our own wants.

    Strangely when we enter into that mindset we are at peace with ourselves. Perhaps because we are no longer trying to satisfy an unobtainable goal set for ourselves by ourselves.

    Which may be why Jesus wants us to surrender “self”.

    How we instantly perceive what we observe speaks of something else within us. And I hope to talk some more about that later, but for now this has taken enough of my limited time this morning to write.

    60 f degrees with light fog.

    Steve

  292. foreverblessed says:

    Yes Steve, thinking too about that “green grass” somewhere else.
    As maybe I do too! Longing for Jesus to come, then it will be good.

    I am blind to the fact that Jesus has already come, and lives within me.
    I am already there where I long to be,
    As Jesus is with me now.

    You say: when you serve others above yourself,
    That serving flows out of our being One with Jesus.

    Jesus has bought me with a price, I am His.
    He cares for all my needs….

    So that is why I do not have to serve myself, Jesus does that.
    So I am free to serve others,
    Where Jesus sends me.
    The point us, that I sit still and gear Him speak to me

    (We may not control our thoughts that come in,
    But we can control on what thoughts we dwell on.
    I chose to not dwell on certain thought. It was weird: the thought did not enter!
    It was grabbed BEFORE it entered.
    I must say: that is God’s Grace, His blood changing my heart and mindset.)

    We have entered a New Covenant by the blood of Jesus.
    We are already there
    Seated in the heavenly realms.

    Ohhh, how I long to grasp that faith, and make it an anchor in my soul!

    (So thank you Street for that story of the Venezuelan.)

  293. jeff1 says:

    We will celebrate Holy Communion on 20th September the first since lockdown and I have missed our monthly gatherings as I always feels closer to God after participating in them.

    I know that many have Holy Communion at home but it is my preference while I am physically fit to attend church and share it in the company of other believers.

    The Prayer of Humble Access reminds me that my righteousness comes from Him and so when I have thoughts that make me think too highly of myself I am reminded I am but dust.

    We do not presume to come to this your table,
    merciful Lord,
    trusting in our own righteousness
    but in your manifold and great mercies.
    We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under your table.
    But you are the same Lord,
    whose nature is always to have mercy.
    Grant us, therefore, gracious Lord,
    so to eat the flesh of your dear Son Jesus Christ,
    and to drink his blood,
    that our sinful bodies may be made clean by his body,
    and our souls washed through his most precious blood,
    and that we may evermore dwell in him and he in us. Amen.

    Christ is our peace.
    He has reconciled us to God in one body by the cross.
    We meet in his name and share his peace.

    What a comfort it is on days that I have doubts or fears to remember these words and remind myself my peace is secure in Christ.

    After communion our Post Communion Prayer is a further reminder of who we are in Christ.

    Father of all, we give you thanks and praise,
    that when we were still far off
    you met us in your Son and brought us home.
    Dying and living, he declared your love,
    gave us grace, and opened the gate of glory.
    May we who share Christ’s body live his risen life;
    we who drink his cup bring life to others;
    we whom the Spirit lights give light to the world.
    Keep us firm in the hope you have set before us,
    so we and all your children shall be free,
    and the whole earth live to praise your name;
    through Christ our Lord. Amen.

    Almighty God,
    we thank you for feeding us
    with the spiritual food
    of the body and blood of your Son Jesus Christ.
    Through him we offer you our souls and bodies
    to be a living sacrifice.
    Send us out in the power of your Spirit
    to live and work to your praise and glory. Amen.

    Thank you, Forever, for the Lord’s Supper is central to my faith though I know that my dad was more of the mind of other denominations who participate in the Lord’s Supper three times a year.

  294. Beloved says:

    I need your prayers for wisdom and protection. A few months ago I had a poltergeist in my bedroom that broke a ceramic jewelry box one night then tried to drag me out of my bed a while later. Prayers seemed to expel it. Then suddenly this morning I woke to a gallon water bottle (sealed) in my hall closet leaking and crumpled as if it had been smashed or dropped from a great distance. My cat alerted me to it. Fortunately I had a towel under it as I’ve had leakers before but nothing like this. I’ve been praying more fervently lately for my building so this may just be intimidation as happens at times when there is a shaking going on so to speak. Strangers and aliens comes to mind. I just wanted to share this here as my B Studies aren’t meeting and feeling kind of Aline so please pray for me. God picked a fearful one here to intercede but I know His will is for the salvation of many. I did sense something come into the apt. a couple days ago but tried to ignore it- ha ha ignoring doesn’t work! But God! He is greater than any thing that opposes Him. Blessed be His name!

  295. Beloved says:

    Aline- alone

  296. Beloved says:

    Greater is He that is in me than he who is in the world. Nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. And the LORD stood with him. Be not afraid, I am with you always.

    Thank you God. I know what to do.

  297. SFDBWV says:

    praying for you Joyce…Keep calling upon the name of the Lord and praising Him as you ask to be delivered from this spirit.

    Steve

  298. foreverblessed says:

    Me too! I am praying,
    Do what Steve advised!
    OOrsuding and worshipping Jesus out loud.
    Please pray for me, praying for you, standing on the ladder painting the windows.
    God bless you!

  299. Beloved says:

    Oh yes I’m praying for those praying for me right now! So blessed to have internet friends right now!

  300. poohpity says:

    Beloved, I am confused was there something in your apartment months ago, then you think is there now again or has it been continual? How did it drag you out of bed? Did you share that a month ago when it happened with someone? That alone would have scared the stuff out of me. Praying for you.
    ************

    When we are surrounded by troubled times we tend to look at the storms or troubles rather than looking to Jesus. The very reason for sharing the Lord’s supper, as I see it, is to keep our eyes focused on the Lord. Just as Peter began to sink into discouragement, disillusionment, fear as he looked around at the stormy waters but the minute he called out to the Lord he was lifted to new heights. So whenever we meet together sharing communion by remembering what was done for us can lift us to new heights as well. Sometimes it seems we forget that the Lord is there for us faithfully and take for granted His presence so communion helps us to remember especially when we are surrounded by troubles to get our eyes off of self and unto the Lord.

    I think Aquinas when he was thinking about what Jesus did rather than on what he knew or rationalized God stopped the storms of inquiry and took from his head and made it commune with his heart. All the questions he had posed to know about God left when God confronted him about his motivation for his search. From head knowledge to heart knowledge, experiencing God like a road to Damascus type thing.

  301. Beloved says:

    Thank you Pooh yes it’s happened to me since I was a child. I had no friends only an abuser ever touched me when I was growing up so demons became my “friends”. Yes they have done worse to me but until I was rescued by Jesus I thought it was “normal”. Their touch feels as if they are physical beings but not. Very strong and powerful. Often they come attached to or an object. I had brought something in to my apt. that I knew was iffy but I liked it. Lesson learned. The one that pulled me out of bed was with a wood carving of a crucifix with a skeleton I found in the middle of it later as God revealed it to me. Getting rid of these things is key. The blood of Jesus is so powerful. Jesus death was the key to breaking the bondage and power Satan had over us. But, he’s a “sneaky little devil” as the saying goes. Took a shower, drying the floor and going outside; it’s beautifully sunny out, a little cool but falling. My favorite season! Praying for you also as always. Joyce

  302. Beloved says:

    Fall like not falling

  303. Beloved says:

    Isaiah 6:3
    English Standard Version
    And one called to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!”

  304. jeff1 says:

    Beloved, must be very frightening so prayers that they will leave your presence and you will know Christ’s peace.

    O Jesus, I have promised
    To serve Thee to the end;
    Be Thou forever near me,
    My Master and my Friend;
    I shall not fear the battle
    If Thou art by my side,
    Nor wander from the pathway
    If Thou wilt be my Guide.
    2
    Oh, let me feel Thee near me;
    The world is ever near;
    I see the sights that dazzle,
    The tempting sounds I hear;
    My foes are ever near me,
    Around me and within;
    But, Jesus, draw Thou nearer,
    And shield my soul from sin.
    3
    Oh, let me hear Thee speaking,
    In accents clear and still,
    Above the storms of passion,
    The murmurs of self-will;
    Oh, speak to reassure me,
    To hasten, or control;
    Oh, speak, and make me listen,
    Thou Guardian of my soul.
    4
    O Jesus, Thou hast promised
    To all who follow Thee
    That where Thou art in glory
    There shall Thy servant be;
    And Jesus, I have promised
    To serve Thee to the end;
    Oh, give me grace to follow,
    My Master and my Friend.
    5
    Oh, let me see Thy footmarks,
    And in them plant mine own;
    My hope to follow duly
    Is in Thy strength alone.
    Oh, guide me, call me, draw me,
    Uphold me to the end;
    And then to rest receive me,
    My Savior and my Friend.

  305. poohpity says:

    This blog is like how dominoes fall when someone is misunderstood by the first person then the others fall into the same misunderstanding by listening to the person before them. Street is the person from Venezuela! He was not telling the story of someone else but his own but once forever said he was talking about another immigrant then everyone else followed her lead. Be careful who you listen to and follow! Like I said the twilight zone. That is how rumors and gossip start from just one person misconstruing what another says by their own perception or misunderstanding.

  306. poohpity says:

    Beloved, if the Devil has that much power over you then maybe an exorcism is needed by one who has strong faith who fasts and prays.

  307. Beloved says:

    Beautiful verse, thank you Viv. I’ve been relaxing; my cat also.

  308. Beloved says:

    “to show us what is hidden in plain sight—that someday, beyond the fire of all loss and accountability—“at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow [in submission], of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and that every tongue will confess and openly acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord (sovereign God), to the glory of God the Father.” Philippians 2:10-11Open in Logos Bible Software (if available)”

    Oh yes. Yes yes yes.

    Thank you all for your kind and thoughtful prayers and advice.

  309. jeff1 says:

    Beloved, my neighbour has a cat and when she goes away I feed it for her and she has spoken to me of how stroking the cat has been very therapeutic for her in difficult times.

    I can remember having a cat as a child and when I stroked it it would purr so loudly that it would make me feel so happy inside knowing that she was happy too.

    Cats are very instinctive to danger as I can remember back in the 70’s our cat was hiding under a table and I said to my sister there is something wrong with the cat as she was frightened and meowing disturbingly and no sooner had I said the words I heard the explosion and a bomb had went of near to where we lived though other than damage to property thankfully no one was killed.

    I know your cat will bring you great comfort so cuddle up with her/him and be blessed.

  310. street says:

    “Your heart was lifted up because of your beauty;
    You corrupted your wisdom by reason of your splendor.
    I cast you to the ground;
    I put you before kings,
    That they may see you.

    do you see what i see….

    do you know what i know….

    do you hear what i hear….

    let us bring him silver and gold…..?

    Genesis 3:15
    And I will put enmity Between you and the woman, And between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel.”

    15 And he *said to me, “The waters which you saw where the harlot sits, are peoples and multitudes and nations and tongues. 16 And the ten horns which you saw, and the beast, these will hate the harlot and will make her desolate and naked, and will eat her flesh and will burn her up with fire. 17 For God has put it in their hearts to execute His [a]purpose [b]by having a common purpose, and by giving their kingdom to the beast, until the words of God will be fulfilled.

    Ezekiel 7:18-20
    New American Standard Bible
    18 They will gird themselves with sackcloth and shuddering will overwhelm them; and shame will be on all faces and baldness on all their heads. 19 They will fling their silver into the streets and their gold will become an abhorrent thing; their silver and their gold will not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord. They cannot satisfy their [a]appetite nor can they fill their stomachs, for their iniquity has become an occasion of stumbling.

    The Temple Profaned
    20 They transformed the beauty of His ornaments into pride, and they made the images of their abominations and their detestable things with it; therefore I will make it an abhorrent thing to them.

  311. street says:

    Then there is streets copy of some emigrant from Venezuela. Which I have to admit was difficult to read, because it was confusing.

    steve i think you have understood quite well the dilemma of the immigrant. the temporary world and the longings of man with eternity in the heart. i think the immigrant captured quite well the folly of adulthood and innocents lost. the longing for love and to belong. to cross the the barrier of paradise lost. to have the mountain removed. the Word of the LORD remains. thinking of the songs of accent.

    bless are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisficed.

  312. street says:

    all we need is a chance to put it back in its own geographical location.

    this was not left to chance, but to Christ Jesus.

    20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; 21 for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

    22 “The eye is the lamp of the body; so then if your eye is [a]clear, your whole body will be full of light.

  313. street says:

    This blog is like how dominoes fall when someone is misunderstood by the first person then the others fall into the same misunderstanding by listening to the person before them. Street is the person from Venezuela! He was not telling the story of someone else but his own but once forever said he was talking about another immigrant then everyone else followed her lead. Be careful who you listen to and follow! Like I said the twilight zone. That is how rumors and gossip start from just one person misconstruing what another says by their own perception or misunderstanding.

    no poo i am not from venezuela, but i do know and american missionary that worked in remote area of venezuela before he was kicked out. no poo i have never been to venezuela either. as paul said about his origins, mine of english and german, four generation american, my flesh and blood will pass away but the Word of the Lord remains.

    7 But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. 8 More than that, I count all things to be loss [a]in view of the surpassing value of [b]knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, [c]for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, 9 and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ, the righteousness which comes from God on the basis of faith,

    dear beloved i am praying for you.

  314. foreverblessed says:

    His mercies are new every morning.
    Beloved, may God 🙏 be with you!
    What a courage to share your life, that is really ….what word to describe your past? Terrifying?
    But that would make it like a mountain too high.
    While Jesus said, faith can move a mountain.
    What a testimony.
    I have been to christian conferences, and have heard stories of women who were sexually abused. One of them had multiple person disorder. Her deliverance was a great testimony!
    People around her had fasted together, long and steadfast. And prayed. I have shared it here before.
    Some of these evil spirits are very tough.

    With prayer and fasting.
    That we draw close to Jesus!
    And fast our old man.
    That we are His children, bought with the blood of Jesus.
    Beloved, do you have experience with the blood of Jesus in respect to evil spirits?

    But I pray for you.
    Hang on to Jesus, but I know you do, yet I want to encourage you.
    When Jesus is exalted in us, then they have to leave, eventually.

    Street, thanks, I understood that you shared that Venezuelan story from Facebook.

    May God bless us all!

  315. foreverblessed says:

    Our faith is wavering, but Jesus’ faith is steady


    ..His perfect manhood modifies and perfects His faith. In Him dependence had no relation to a consciousness of sinfulness, as it must have in us, but in Him it had relation to a consciousness of need of a continual derivation of life and power from the Father; His faith being the faith of a perfect manhood, was a perfect faith. Our hands tremble as they hold the telescope that looks into the far-off unseen. His hand was steady. Our faith wavers and is interrupted, an intermittent fountain. His was a perennial flow. His perfect faith issued in perfect results in His life; in a perfect obedience, ‘I do always the things that please Him,’ and in a perfect communion. Like two metal plates of which the surfaces are so true that when you bring them into contact they adhere, that perfect nature of Jesus Christ’s, by the exercise of its perfect faith, clung in unbroken fellowship to the Father – ‘He hath not left me alone, because I do always the things that please Him.’

    From MacLaren on Hebrews 2:11-13

    Verse 14-18
    Since the children have flesh and blood, he too shared in their humanity so that by his death he might destroy him who holds the power of death- that is the devil – and free those who all their lives were held in slavery by their fear of death.
    For surely it is not angels he helps, but Abraham’s descendants. For this reason he had to be made like them, fully human in every way, in order that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in service to God, and that he might make atonement for the sins of the people. Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted.

    Psalm 121:1-2

    A Song of Ascents.
    I will lift up my eyes to the hills— From where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth.

  316. SFDBWV says:

    I have my American genealogy traced back as for the first male ancestor that arrived in Philadelphia PA in 1729. He was from Switzerland and his name was Casper.

    When I think of the world in 1729, I think of the fresh new hope that was made available to people that they could actually go to “The New World” and start a life.

    What a wonderful feeling of hope and freedom that had to be present then for so very many people.

    However leaving the familiar surroundings of home and family had to be a tough decision. One thing that may have helped was the fact that in European culture at the time only the eldest son would inherit the family farm. If they had one. Coming to the new world would mean the opportunity to not only have land, but be independent.

    That hope of freedom and independence from America’s earlier settlers is why there is a United States of America.

    What hope is it that now makes us look to that far off place we may call heaven or heaven on earth?

    They are two different places, but for a thousand years they are to merge somewhat as Jesus rules from Jerusalem here on planet earth.

    What will that new world look like?

    And why does God once again allow for Satan to corrupt it?

    Bringing about that eternal home when we are all finally done with our traveling and settled down.

    Steve

  317. poohpity says:

    My heartfelt apology for misunderstanding street’s story and falsely accusing others of doing it as well. Like I said, the twilight zone, lol.

  318. bratimus says:

    The confusion over the street story is why I don’t go with to many stories of my own. It would be very confusing, a lot of my life story is just between me and God.

    The most important thing to me is to show God’s story, and not to tell my little part in that, I’m just a stage hand to set up to show Christ Jesus the true story.

    As far as God allowing the corruption of, isn’t it that man first allows the the corruption of, through are choice of free will. It wouldn’t be much free will if God stop every bad choice we made, how else will we learn how truly wonderful the gift of free will is from a truly wonderful God.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  319. Beloved says:

    I was not confused about streets story.

    If God is sovereign, do we really have “free will”? Just thinking. How to define “free will”?

    Bratimus I’ve been wondering if you are far away from the fires out west? Horrible news pics.

  320. bratimus says:

    I was last week surround my fires about 40 minutes away in each direction my back is to the ocean. Very smokey, had a
    beautiful orange sky 2 days ago. I have God on my side, so whatever I might be surrounded by God has me!!!!

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  321. street says:

    you can not ascribe corruption to God,Who dwells in un approachable light.

    God is light and in Him there is no darkness. astrophysicist pretty much agree that in the beginning there was only light. then God, separated light from darkness. making it possible for there to be no light, the absence of God.

    thinking about what John said, 1 John 2:15
    Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.

    Luke 14:26 26 “If anyone comes to Me, and does not [n]hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. 27 Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.

    John 15:16
    You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.

    10 So you too, when you do all the things which are commanded you, say, ‘We are unworthy slaves; we have done only that which we ought to have done.’”

  322. Beloved says:

    John 15:16 actually takes a load off my mind. God chose me and I said yes!

  323. jeff1 says:

    “God Is Good All The Time”

    God is good all the time
    He put a song of praise in this heart of mine
    God is good all the time
    Through the darkest night, His light will shine
    God is good, God is good all the time

    God is good all the time
    He put a song of praise in this heart of mine
    God is good all the time
    Through the darkest night, His light will shine
    God is good, God is good all the time

    If you’re walking through the valley
    And there are shadows all around
    Do not fear, He will guide you

    He will keep you safe and sound
    He has promised to never leave you
    Nor forsake you, and His word is true

    God is good all the time
    He put a song of praise in the heart of mine
    God is good all the time
    Through the darkest night, His light will shine
    God is good, God is good all the time

    We were sinners and so unworthy
    Still for us He chose to die
    Filled us with His Holy Spirit

    Now we can stand and testify
    That His love is everlasting
    And His mercies, they will never end

    God is good all the time
    He put a song of praise in this heart of mine
    God is good all the time
    Through the darkest night, His light will shine
    God is good, God is good all the time

    Though I may not understand
    All the plans you have for me
    My life is in your hands
    And through the eyes of faith
    I can clearly see

    God is good all the time
    He put a song of praise in this heart of mine
    God is good all the time
    Through the darkest night, His light will shine
    God is good, God is good all the time

    God is good all the time
    He put a song of praise in the heart of mine
    God is good all the time
    Through the darkest night, His light will shine
    God is good, God is good all the time

  324. foreverblessed says:

    Thanks for the apologies, Pooh.

    Bratimus, so you can always jump onto the sea!!
    No, no joking, but this is serious. I saw a picture of the Golden Gate in totally orange, yesterday in our newspaper.

    About telling your story: the bible is full of stories of people in their walk of life.
    All plain for us to read. I thought that was called testimony.

    How Peter was, we can all read that he denied Jesus. But I thought is was to show how living Jesus is.
    No matter how bad our life has been, no matter how deep it went, Jesus goes deeper. ( The line of Corrie ten Boom)
    The life of Beloved had gone very deep.
    I am still praying!

    It is Jesus!
    Our Saviour!

  325. foreverblessed says:

    To show how Loving Jesus is!
    But He is also living.
    In our testimonies we can show that Jesus is alive, and still saves.

    Psalm 119:41-45
    May your unfailing live come to me, O Lord,
    Your salvation according to your promise;
    Then I will answer the one who taunts me,
    for I trust in your word.
    Do not snatch the word of truth from my mouth,
    for I have put my hope in your laws.
    I will always obey your law, for ever and ever.
    I will walk about in freedom, for I have sought out your precepts.

    The words of Jesus, go over the laws of the old covenant.
    Jesus’ words and the baptism of the Holy Spirit.

    These two bible verses were on the liturgy this week in the protestant churches:
    Psalm 119:41-45
    Matthew 18:15-19

  326. SFDBWV says:

    Thankyou Foreverblessed for you have quite eloquently put into words what Mart’s hope is as of this topic and what I have been saying for years…That our stories have purpose and meaning, they are important and show what living with Jesus in our lives is like.

    Indeed they are our living testimonies.

    Thank you Foreverblessed.

    Steve

  327. jeff1 says:

    Why me Lord?
    What have I ever done?
    To deserve even one
    Of the blessings I’ve known

    Why me Lord?
    What did I ever do?
    That was worth love from You
    And the kindness You’ve shown

    Lord help me, Jesus
    I’ve wasted it
    So help me Jesus
    I know what I am

    Now that I know
    That I’ve needed You
    So help me Jesus
    My soul’s in Your hand

    Try me Lord
    If You think there’s a way
    That I can repay
    What I’ve taken from You

    Maybe Lord
    I could show someone else
    What I’ve been through myself
    On my way back to You

    Lord help me, Jesus
    I’ve wasted it
    So help me Jesus
    I know what I am

    Now that I know
    That I’ve needed You
    So help me Jesus
    My soul’s in Your hand
    Jesus, my soul’s in Your hand

  328. poohpity says:

    I really enjoy that song because it reminds me of my moment by moment need for Jesus. Often times I do so much in my own strength, for my own will, for my own reasons and motivation(straw) that is why it is so important for me to seek the Lord every morning first things, first. That sets the course for my whole day.

  329. poohpity says:

    According to Our Daily Bread today is National Encouragement day the day after 9/11. It would be nice if everyday was a day of encouragement especially now with the whole world in chaos over this invisible virus, all the riots and divisions more importantly the hate towards our fellow man. No one really knows that much about this virus only what they have learned over the past 10 months but to me the worst thing is rather than spreading encouragement people are spreading fear. People are attacking people who try to encourage others by keeping the fear level down and giving them hope.

  330. jeff1 says:

    I think that when I get distracted by the world then I am looking at human failings but when I focus on Christ I renew my strength and hope as God intended.

    He has told me to keep my eyes on Jesus for very good reasons but if I don’t then I will try to do things as I see fit and miss God’s will for He doesn’t force me to comply but waits patiently for my submission.

    Bratimus, there is great wisdom in what you say in seeing that God comes into each of our lives as He sees fit which is why whatever Aquinas’s vision was it only made sense to him for whom it was intended.

    God works in and through our strengths and weaknesses and I cannot demand from Him how He will do that as He is the potter and I am the clay.

    Have Thine Own Way, Lord

    Have Thine own way Lord
    Have Thine own way
    Thou art the potter I am the clay
    Mold me and make me after Thy will
    While I am waiting yielded and still

    Have Thine own way Lord
    Have Thine own way
    Search me and try me Master today
    Whiter than snow Lord wash me just now
    As in Thy presence humbly I bow

    Have Thine own way Lord
    Have Thine own way
    Hold over my being absolute sway
    Filled with Thy spirit till all can see
    Christ only always living in me

  331. Beloved says:

    Spurgeon 9/12
    Big With Mercy

    1I will sing of steadfast love and justice;
    to you, O Lord, I will make music.psalm 101:1

    Faith is triumphant in trial. When reason has her feet fastened in the stocks of the inner prison, faith makes the dungeon walls ring with her happy notes as she cries, “I will sing of steadfast love and justice; to you, O LORD, I will make music.” Faith pulls the dark mask from the face of trouble and discovers the angel beneath. Faith looks up at the cloud and sees that

    “It is big with mercy and will break
    In blessings on her head.”

    There is a subject for song even in the judgments of God toward us. For, first, the trial is not as difficult as it might have been; next, the trouble is not as severe as we deserved; and our affliction is not as crushing as the burden that others have to carry. Faith sees that in her deepest sorrow there is no punishment. There is not a drop of God’s wrath in it; it is all sent in love. Faith finds love gleaming like a jewel on the breast of an angry God. Faith wears her grief “like a badge of honor” and sings of the sweet result of her sorrows, because they work for her spiritual good. Faith says, “For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.”1 So faith rides out in victory, trampling down earthly wisdom and carnal knowledge, and singing songs of triumph where the battle rages.

    All I meet I find assists me
    In my path to heavenly joy:
    Where, though trials now attend me,
    Trials never more annoy.

    Blest there with a weight of glory,
    Still the path I’ll not forget,
    But, exulting, cry, it led me
    To my blessed Savior’s seat.

    1) 2 Corinthians 4:17

  332. Beloved says:

    2Corinthians4 Treasure in Jars of Clay
    7 But we have this treasure in pjars of clay, qto show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are rafflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but snot forsaken; tstruck down, but not destroyed; 10 ualways carrying in the body the death of Jesus, vso that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So wdeath is at work in us, but life in you.
    13 Since we have xthe same spirit of faith according to what has been written, y“I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, 14 knowing that zhe who raised the Lord Jesus awill raise us also with Jesus and bbring us with you into his presence. 15 For cit is all for your sake, so that as dgrace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, eto the glory of God.
    16 So we do not lose heart. fThough our outer self4 is wasting away, gour inner self his being renewed day by day. 17 For ithis light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 jas we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

  333. Beloved says:

    In Christ Alone

    In Christ alone my hope is found
    He is my light, my strength, my song
    This cornerstone, this solid ground
    Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
    What heights of love, what depths of peace
    When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
    My comforter, my all in all
    Here in the love of Christ I stand

    In Christ alone, Who took on flesh
    Fullness of God in helpless babe
    This gift of love and righteousness
    Scorned by the ones He came to save
    ‘Til on that cross as Jesus died
    The wrath of God was satisfied
    For every sin on Him was laid
    Here in the death of Christ I live

    There in the ground His body lay
    Light of the world by darkness slain
    Then bursting forth in glorious day
    Up from the grave He rose again
    And as He stands in victory
    Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
    For I am His and He is mine
    Bought with the precious blood of Christ

    No guilt in life, no fear in death
    This is the pow’r of Christ in me
    From life’s first cry to final breath
    Jesus commands my destiny
    No pow’r of hell, no scheme of man
    Can ever pluck me from His hand
    ‘Til He returns or calls me home
    Here in the pow’r of Christ I’ll stand
    No pow’r of hell, no scheme of man
    Can ever pluck me from His hand
    ‘Til He returns or calls me home
    Here in the pow’r of Christ I’ll stand

  334. Beloved says:

    By Faith
    Song by Keith Getty

    By faith we see the hand of God
    In the light of creation’s grand design
    In the lives of those who prove His faithfulness
    Who walk by faith and not by sight

    By faith our fathers roamed the earth
    With the power of His promise in their hearts
    Of a holy city built by God’s own hand
    A place where peace and justice reign

    We will stand as children of the promise
    We will fix our eyes on Him our soul’s reward
    Till the race is finished and the work is done
    We’ll walk by faith and not by sight

    By faith the prophets saw a day
    When the longed-for Messiah would appear
    With the power to break the chains of sin and death
    And rise triumphant from the grave

    By faith the church was called to go
    In the power of the Spirit to the lost
    To deliver captives and to preach good news
    In every corner of the earth
    We will stand…

    By faith this mountain shall be moved
    And the power of the gospel shall prevail
    For we know in Christ all things are possible
    For all who call upon His name

    We will stand as children of the promise
    We will fix our eyes on Him our soul’s reward
    Till the race is finished and the work is done
    We’ll walk by faith and not by sight

  335. foreverblessed says:

    Thanks Beloved, you know how to encourage where , on Whom we can put our trust!
    Great!
    Great songs great bible verses!

    When I was on doing the chores yesterday, I had to think about this:

    Or again, how can anyone enter a strong man’s house and carry off his possessions unless he first ties up the strong man?
    Then he can rob the house.
    Matthew 12:29

    Jesus has bound the strong man!

  336. poohpity says:

    I was thinking that the thief is the enemy that comes into the strong man’s house and binds him up with discouragement, lack of faith/doubt, etc. when the strong man relies on his own strength and not on the Lord for protection and safety. We are the House of the Lord when Christ lives in us and He breaks the ties that bind us to worldly thinking and the flesh. So doesn’t Jesus bind the enemy not the owner of the house, the strong man and frees him from the ties that hold him down so the enemy can steal from the house which is our hearts and minds from things that hold us captive?

  337. poohpity says:

    In regards to Aquinas it could be what he was writing about that held him captive and it seems in his vision God freed him so he no longer needed the bondage of that enemy; his carefully reasoned arguments about God. Jesus breaks the chains that bind us to open us up to a whole new life and way to look at things.

  338. Beloved says:

    Binding the strong man (or spirit).

    24 Can the prey be taken from the mighty,
    or the captives of a tyrant be rescued?
    25 For thus says the Lord:
    “Even the captives of the mighty shall be taken,
    and the prey of the tyrant be rescued,
    for I will contend with those who contend with you,
    and I will save your children.
    26 I will make your oppressors eat their own flesh,
    and they shall be drunk with their own blood as with wine.
    Then all flesh shall know
    that I am the Lord your Savior,
    and your Redeemer, the Mighty One of Jacob.”

    This morning the LORD showed me how to pray. That those in my building who worship evil should be silenced and bound . I’ve never been much of an offensive pray-er before but in order for redemption of souls they must be willing to lay down their “armor” and become vulnerable. So many here love the Stephen King and other horror novels. Stories from the pit of hell. I have no plans or desire to move. I can only imagine the things done behind closed doors. Praying Jesus will enter in and dispel the darkness.

  339. Beloved says:

    127 Unless the Lord builds the house,
    those who build it labor in vain.
    Unless the Lord (B)watches over the city,
    the watchman stays awake in vain.
    2 It is in vain that you rise up early
    and go late to rest,
    eating the bread of anxious (C)toil;
    for he gives to his (D)beloved (E)sleep.

  340. Beloved says:

    Hardened hearts
    Praying God would soften hearts He and themselves have hardened. Including areas of hardness in my own heart. In Jesus name, Amen

  341. jeff1 says:

    1 My God in whom are all the springs,
    Of boundless love, and grace unknown,
    Hide me beneath thy spreading wings,
    Till the dark cloud is overblown.

    2 Up to the heav’ns I send my cry,
    The Lord will my desires perform;
    He sends his angel from the sky,
    And saves me from the threat’ning storm.

    3 Be thou exalted, O my God,
    Above the heav’ns where angels dwell;
    Thy pow’r on earth be known abroad,
    And land to land thy wonders tell.

    4 My heart is fix’d; my song shall raise
    Immortal honours to thy name;
    Awake, my tongue, to sound his praise,
    My tongue, the glory of my frame.

    5 High o’er the earth his mercy reigns,
    And reaches to the utmost sky;
    His truth to endless years remains,
    When lower worlds dissolve and die.

    6 Be thou exalted, O my God,
    Above the heav’ns, where angels dwell;
    Thy pow’r on earth be known abroad,
    And land to land thy wonders tell.

  342. Regina says:

    Good Evening, All

    I hope/pray you and yours are well. BGg, I’m well and my family too.

    Beloved, I can’t speak for bubbles or saled, but school is going really good for me. The teachers in my ISD are hanging tough with all of the online learning that we have to grasp as quickly as we can. Because the COVID death rate is (still) so high in my state, my district is 100 percent online for the first four weeks of school. So, all of the students who (at their parents request) need “in person” learning (with the exception of the SPED students) won’t be able to come to the school campus until October 6, 2020.

    I’ve missed chatting with you all, and I’m glad I’m rested enough to (at least) drop by and say hello. I read all of the comments on this blog topic, and, I’ve (said this before and it deserves repeating) learned so much from you all.

    I wanted to take the Word of God to work with me (I love meditating on God’s Word), so I ordered a new devotional (Psalm 23) from ODB ministries. I absolutely love it, and I want to share a couple of excerpts with yall:

    An unknown author wrote this poem for retirees…

    “Since I have retired from life’s competition
    Each day is filled with complete repetition.
    I get up each morning and dust off my wits,
    Go pick up the paper and read the obits.
    If my name isn’t there, I know I’m not dead,
    I get a good breakfast and go back to bed.”

    Want to share one more excerpt that I found extremely interesting… Beloved, you mentioned something about being lonely, and I thought of you when I finished reading this chapter. I hope it’s ministry for you.

    “That Elusive “One Thing” (David Roper)

    Something keeps calling to us: something familiar and yet far away, something we cannot name. It fills us with a vague sense of discontent, a “wanting” for something we cannot identify. “You don’t know what it is you want,” mused Mark Twain, “but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so much.”
    The wanting draws us on, promising us that satisfaction and happiness lie just ahead, filling us with restlessness, and keeping us on the move. Yet when we arrive we cannot rest. That’s why we enjoy the quest, but not the conquest; the hunt, but not the kill; and that’s why finishing can be almost unbearable.
    The world intensifies our restlessness. Advertisements entice us to buy this, spend that, and to borrow against tomorrow so we can have what we want today. Generous incentives, rebates, markdowns, sales packages, and good deals urge us on, creating desires that we never knew we had.
    The more we have, the more we want. Like a child who has opened a dozen gifts, we think more about what we didn’t get that about what we did. “Is this all there is?” we ask. “Isn’t there something more?” It’s not that we’re greedy; it’s just that something has been promised that we’ve not yet received.
    Sex is not the solution, no matter what we’re told. In the 1960s, the social comments of Mr. Natural, Robert Crum’s combination guru and dirty old man, enlivened the pages of campus newspapers. In one segment Mr. Natural and his student sidekick watch a mini-skirted woman walk by. “Is sex the answer, Mr. Natural?’ asks the young man. “No, my boy,” Mr. Natural replies, “Sex is the question.”
    Indeed it is. Despite the information glut and all the propaganda in its favor, sex remains a great mystery. Our relentless pursuit of happiness through “good sex” verifies the Rolling Stones’ old maxim: “I can’t get no satisfaction.” What sensual enjoyment remains is little more than a momentary refuge from misery.
    It’s ironic: the act which, more than any other, ought to assauge loneliness only intensifies it. Where is this great sex that is everywhere advertised but nowhere delivered? Where is the romance and intimacy for which we long? Tina Turner belts out her poignant creed: “What’s love got to do with it?” Eventually we too learn to get along without the complication of love.
    Friendships don’t satisfy. At least they don’t touch the deeper currents of life and love for which we long. “Even with the loved around me, still my heart says I am lonely,” sighs some forgotten poet. Where is the human tenderness we seek–the readiness to love and accept? When we ask our friends to take away our loneliness we force on them a burden too heavy for anyone to bear. They let us down or go away and we go looking for someone else to curse with our demands. We are very difficult people. All we want is boundless love.
    Parents never come through—especially fathers. For some the term “father” brings only blighted memories. To them it means all they’ve longed for and missed out on in life. Even those of us who had good fathers often felt they weren’t what we wanted or needed them to be. We grew up trying to win their approval yet never receiving the validation we sought. “There is never enough father,” Robert Bly laments.
    As I stood beside my father’s casket a few years ago, my wife, Carolyn, speaking in her quiet wisdom, said to me, “It’s too late, isn’t it?”
    Exactly. Too late to gain his approval. A line from one of Len Deighton’s books came to mind: “Do we never shed the tyranny of our father’s love?”
    Education yields only fragmentary results. We do time in various institutions, taking soundings here and there, but we never get to the bottom of things. There’s so much labor in learning, so much to know that we cannot know. “I tasted wisdom,” said one philosopher, “but it was far from me.” That’s the silent conclusion of everyone who matriculates. Perhaps that’s why there’s so much melancholy on campuses.”

    Steve, “Dante’s Prayer’ (by Loreena McKennit) is SO *beautiful*, I listened to it three or four times. Absolutely loved it!

    Will try to write more later or will hope to chat with you all next weekend.

    83 degrees (feels like 87 degrees) and almost dusk in my neck of the woods…

    1 CORINTHIANS 14

    Love to all,
    Regina

  343. Beloved says:

    About being lonely

    I just tried to log in using facial recognition and it said it didn’t recognize my face!!! Story of my life, lol. God knows me though. Always and forever. Thank you Jesus for rescuing me from loneliness sadness grief depression anxiety and everything that once separated me from You, and especially my sins. Blessed assurance Jesus is mine and I am His beloved daughter.

  344. Beloved says:

    Regina your book reminded me of what Solomon said “ Vanity vanity all is vanity” . It’s so true nothing satisfies but temporarily because everything created is in constant flux. Nothing is static but God our creator. And His Truth, which always has always existed.

  345. foreverblessed says:

    Thanks for coming by Regina, that poem on retires is hilarious.
    You are back to work, and have enough to do.
    May God bless you and your pupils and families.

    Selah

    Just to stand still at that prayer, that word works!

    Wonderful song Jeff,fro last night, would like to learn it by heart.
    God reigns!
    Jesus sits at the right hand of the Father, after He was raised from the dead.

    Since Mart had this topic, of the body and blood if Jesus, I have been searching for this.
    What is the essence of the body and the blood?
    The deliverance of evil spirits, the blood of Jesus is essential.

    It was quite a thing that Beloved mentioned this haunting in her building. The blood of Christ protects. I remember someone on this blog talked about that the Holy Spirit gave her instructions: covering the house by the blood of Jesus, to protect it. ( That was years ago).

    With the fall of men, we became a prey for the evil one. Unprotected.
    “For He has rescued us from the dominion of darkness…”
    Col 1:13
    You could say: we were in the house of the evil strong man
    held captive.
    Jesus came, and took the strong man, so He could plunder the house: meaning Jesus rescued us out of his house.

    “The reason the Son of God appeared was to destroy the devil’s work….”
    1 John 3:8

    And now we are …” Brought into the Kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption (through His blood), the forgiveness of sins.”
    Col 1:13

    But there are also spiritual uncleanness in ourselves.

  346. foreverblessed says:

    In ourselves there is a war to be won, the war in the Spirit, into the deepest places, step by step.

    And there the blood of Jesus is needed in the same way, as in clearing an apartment.
    Each and everyone of us has his own demons to conquer,
    Each in his own way gas gone astray
    Isaiah 53:6
    We all like sheep, gave gone astray, each of us to his own way…..
    and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all”

    The meaning of the body and blood of Jesus, is right here in front of me now, when my bible is open on Isaiah 53:1-12

    But He was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities, the punishment ( chastisement) that brought us peace was upon Him, and by His wounds we are healed.
    Isaiah 53:5

    Meditating on that great message!
    The power of the cross.

  347. foreverblessed says:

    Beloved, I am praying with you for your apartment dwellers, if that is a good name for them.

    This verse cought my eye, for this what God asked you to do:

    “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
    Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.
    You will s
    eek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart ❤️
    I will be found by you, declares the Lord,
    and will bring you back from captivity.

    And there I am back to the fact that Jesus came to hind the strong man, that held us captive.
    (Since the fall of man, where you talked do much about, Steve,in years past)

    But the Good News is:
    “So, if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.”

    John 8:36

  348. SFDBWV says:

    It is an interesting picture in the dark night sky this morning. There is a light fog hovering over he town that obliterates seeing the stars, yet the only thing visible is the moon which is only a sliver that looks like a smile with the planet Jupiter off to is right

    like a smile with one bright star to accompany it.

    57 degrees f and comfortable.

    Steve

  349. foreverblessed says:

    Dear Steve, good morning!

    I just logged in to comment a little that I had searched, this morning.
    It is just a side note. But I knew nothing about Thomas Aquinas, and have looked into it.

    Thomas Aquinas used the reasoning of Aristoteles to explain the Lord’s Supper, the bread and wine.

    Aristoteles: He made a distinction between the essential and accidental propertis of a thing.
    He used the name Accident and substance (or essence)
    For example:
    A chair can be made of wood and or metal, but this is accidental to its being used as a chair.
    The essence of the the chair is that it holds you, that is the Substance of a thing.
    Accidence is that it is of wood or metal.

    Catholic theologians such as Thomas Aquinas have employed the Aristotelian concepts of substance and accident in articulating the theology of the Eucharist, particularly the transubstantiation of bread and wine into body and blood. According to this tradition, the accidents (or species) of the appearance of bread and wine do not change, but the substance changes from bread and wine to the Body and Blood of Christ.

    (I got this from wikipedia “äccident (philosophy)”)

    So to put it in my own words:
    The bread and wine are made of bread and wine,

    but the essence of it is that it feeds us spiritually with the body of Jesus and the blood of Jesus.

    LOL, tht is totally my own explanation to what is to me a mystery.

    And when the bible says that something is a mystery, I get that the meaning of that is being made more and more plain to a disciple of Jesus.
    The meaning gets deeper and deeper.

    Consequently:
    So there will be a difference in understanding between the one disciple and the other.
    The mystery is between the believer and Jesus Christ.

    So my explanation is what has been revealed to me now, as to my stand on where I am at the moment.

    The Lords Supper, years ago, I just believed it only to be a remembrance, we remember the Lord’s death till He comes.
    In the years that passed by, I slowly saw that there was a mystereous feeding of my soul, by partaking in the bread and wine.
    I do not believe that the wine and bread literally become Jesus, at the prayer of the pastor. But that there is something happening to us, that I know for sure.

    eI am just sharing how I see it today.
    Do not take offense at this, you may believe as you do.

    A mystery is not something any human can lay upon another human.
    It is the work of the Spirit.

  350. foreverblessed says:

    The manner upon I came on this reasoning of Aristoteles (written in the Dutch manner)
    Because I read on biblehub, 1 Cor 11:23-27
    scrolling down after the bible passage are comments, one of them was from:
    Marten Luther
    First Principles of the Reformation
    Concerning the Lords Supper

    Marten Luther is against Thomas’ explanation bout the bread and wine.
    I do not see exactly what Marten Luther himself believes, it looks like, he believes in the literal transsubstantiation.
    But Marten Luther disagrees the use of an ancient Philosopher to explain something that is of the christian faith:
    Let the Holy Spirit explain it to a believing human heart.

    What Marthe Luther also says:
    To the simple believer, who puts his faith in Jesus, and believes His Word:
    Take, eat this is My body
    Drink, this is My blood

    That believer is safe in Jesus’s hands, he will not be condemned because he believed not exactly as some church has made a doctrine of it.

  351. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning once again to you Foreverblessed and all of our friends on BTA.

    In regards to what you Foreverblessed have brought forward concerning Thomas, Catholicism and Marten Luther I am reminded that all of us both Christian and secular alike are always searching for answers. Never really being satisfied with the answer we already have before us.

    Personally I find great wisdom in many examples of life and corroborating testimonies in the writings of both great philosophers as well as the simplest of people whereas our faith is concerned.

    Where it is written in the Psalms that God is everywhere, why then would we be surprised to find Him and His wisdom everywhere we look.

    I have often used the expression that science proves the existence of God. That History proves that man cannot govern himself.

    That in no way takes away from my faith in God nor the Scriptures saying that I see evidence of God in science. It is quite easy for me to say man can’t govern himself, just look at history and today’s newspapers.

    Looking at the history of Christianity and then how it grew from its beginning to what it has become today, there seems to be a lot of unnecessary additions man has included that just were never there at the beginnings.

    We seem to over think and complicate the simple, while omitting the essential in the process.

    The simpler the better.

    “All who call upon the name of the Lord are saved.”

    Simple enough.

    A cool 58 degrees well after sunup.

    Steve

  352. poohpity says:

    Steve, you said, “We seem to over think and complicate the simple, while omitting the essential in the process.” WOW is that ever true!

  353. foreverblessed says:

    Yes, it is perfectly alright to look for more wisdom, and understanding.

    That the Lord’s Supper is food for my soul,
    That is an insight I gained along my path walking as a disciple of Jesus.

    That Jesus said in Scripture:
    My food is to do the will of My Father.

    It never said anything to me, till some years ago:
    Doing the will of God is also good for our soul!

    How is that?!

    I am looking forward to the prayer of Beloved for her neighbors in the apartment. And I add mine to them.
    Hearing stories of other christians gives insight in how God may work. And encourages us in our faith!

    What has the blood of Jesus to do with protection against unclean spirits?
    There is a relevance….
    It is one of the many workings of the blood of Jesus.

  354. SFDBWV says:

    “The life is in the blood”
    God

    Steve

  355. jeff1 says:

    We call on Him whenever storm clouds gather
    We call on Him to light our darkest day
    Why must it be that only when we’re lonely
    And hopes are dim, we call on Him

    Why don’t we call on Him before we lose our way
    To count our blessings and thank Him while we may

    We call on Him when no one else will answer
    We ask of Him a reason to go on
    When our cup of joy becomes a cup of sorrow
    Filled to the brim, we call on Him

    Why don’t we call on Him before we lose our way
    To count our blessings and thank Him while we may

  356. Beloved says:

    Life is in the blood. Being a formerly active charismatic I have heard and used many ways to pray using the blood of Jesus. I was never “possessed” but oppressed by demons. No green gunk coming out of my throat or writhing and scary voice. Just intense fear (spirit) then incredible peace when Jesus showed up as others prayed when I was newer in the faith. I learned the more attention you give them the more they like it. Putting on the armor of God I learned is more than enough for each day. It doesn’t chase the critters away though.
    Think I’ll do a word study from scripture. I do like the Lion of Judah channel on YouTube for doing spiritual warfare as well as Reformed teachers for sound theology. Not sure what the Reformed teaching is on spirits. Maybe street can point me to some info.

  357. street says:

    3 Then the word of the Lord came by Haggai the prophet, saying, 4 “Is it time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses while this house lies desolate?” 5 Now therefore, thus says the Lord of hosts, “[b]Consider your ways! 6 You have sown much, but [c]harvest little; you eat, but there is not enough to be satisfied; you drink, but there is [d]not enough to become drunk; you put on clothing, but no one is warm enough; and he who earns, earns wages to put into a purse with holes.”

    7 Thus says the Lord of hosts, “[e]Consider your ways! 8 Go up to the [f]mountains, bring wood and rebuild the [g]temple, that I may be pleased with it and be glorified,” says the Lord. 9 “You look for much, but behold, it comes to little; when you bring it home, I blow it away. Why?” declares the Lord of hosts, “Because of My house which lies desolate, while each of you runs to his own house.

    27 All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.

    28 “Come to Me, all [a]who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

  358. poohpity says:

    1 Cor 3: Stop deceiving yourselves. If you think you are wise by this world’s standards, you need to become a fool to be truly wise. 19 For the wisdom of this world is foolishness to God. As the Scriptures say,“He traps the wise in the snare of their own cleverness.” 20 And again, “The LORD knows the thoughts of the wise; he knows they are worthless.”.

    1 Cor 1: So where does this leave the philosophers, the scholars, and the world’s brilliant debaters? God has made the wisdom of this world look foolish.

    Mart had a few topics on the thinking of the spiritual world is topsy turvey or upside down compared to worldly thinking.

    Proverbs 3: Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
    6
    in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.

    7
    Do not be wise in your own eyes;
    fear the Lord and shun evil.
    8
    This will bring health to your body
    and nourishment to your bones.

    Pretty simple to me!

  359. street says:

    16 Then those who [a]feared the Lord spoke to one another, and the Lord gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who [b]fear the Lord and who esteem His name. 17 “They will be Mine,” says the Lord of hosts, “on the day that I [a]prepare My [b]own possession, and I will [c]spare them as a man [d]spares his own son who serves him.” 18 So you will again distinguish between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him. Malachi 3:16-18

    28
    “For they are a nation [a]lacking in counsel,
    And there is no understanding in them.
    29
    “Would that they were wise, that they understood this,
    That they would discern their [b]future!
    30
    “How could one chase a thousand,
    And two put ten thousand to flight,
    Unless their Rock had sold them,
    And the Lord had given them up?
    Deuteronomy 32:28-30

    yes we were sold for nothing, yet we were redeemed by a life giving Spirit. may He be Exalted and Praised above all forever.

  360. street says:

    23 But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on [a]God’s interests, but man’s.”

    24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 25 For whoever wishes to save his [b]life will lose it; but whoever loses his [c]life for My sake will find it.

  361. jeff1 says:

    I was warned about dabbling in a world that I have no understanding of but oh the foolishness of youth I decided I would ignore such warnings.

    I would soon find that those who warned me against such practices had wisdom that I lacked at the time.

    I would very soon hear of the death of a young girl who became unwell having dwelled too deep into such practices.

    That taught me that there is knowledge that is good for me and other not so as it can disturb my mind.

    That was the end of my dabblings in realms that may do me more damage than good.

    Much later on I would be warned again against delving into realms that God did not intend me to and from a source that I knew was sound.

    The message I am receiving is loud and clear don’t go looking for trouble as more often than not I find it usually finds me such are the normalities of this world.

  362. Beloved says:

    Thank you friends for wading in to this with me! I love you all😍

    This from Tabletalk:
    Coram Deo

    Many believers have questions about the demonic such as “Can a Christian be demon possessed?” The fact that Satan is not equal in power to God helps us understand that though the devil is mighty, He is still subject to the Lord’s sovereign control. God’s omnipotent care for His children means that believers cannot be possessed by demons and that no scheme of the evil one will result in his ultimate victory over God’s people. Safe in the hands of Jesus, we need not fear anything Satan can throw at us.

    John 10:22–30
    Romans 8:31–39

  363. jeff1 says:

    Beloved, I didn’t just have questions I was experimenting until I learned of what happened to another girl and that awoke me to the fact that those who give me warnings were right and that it was dangerous practise.

    I am thankful that I was given good advice at an early age and it has stuck with me.

    I think Job helps us understand how satan is subject to God’s sovereign control and gives us contentment in knowing we will see his demise.

    I had a very frightening experience during a psychotic episode when my friend prayed and had me say the Lord’s prayer so I know something of what it is like to have a demonic attack.

    God protects us no matter what as you say.

  364. jeff1 says:

    Need has called us back to You,
    Back to what is always true.
    All we have is only due
    To Your goodness and Your mercy.

    Need has crushed our hearts again,
    Pain we cannot comprehend.
    All our proud delusions end,
    Loving Father, in Your mercy!

    Blind with grief, we ask You why
    Till we see You lifted high,
    Groaning, giving as You die.
    We are silent. Christ, have mercy!

    Need has blessed us once again,
    Love we cannot comprehend.
    Savior, Sovereign, Father, Friend,
    We are resting in Your mercy.

  365. Beloved says:

    Viv the LORDS prayer is very comforting and I use it almost daily. It’s rich with knowledge and wisdom of who God is and how to fellowship with Him.

    My mother taught me how to use the Ouija board and I later used it in drama club in school. I had so much to unlearn and learn walking with Jesus. I can say for certain that even in my darkest hours He rescued me. I recall reading of the disciples on the boat with Jesus asleep when the storm struck.

    23 Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. 24 Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. 25 The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”
    26 He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.
    27 The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”

    I am not really surprised anymore as I am so very grateful and blessed when the storm is over.
    John 3:36
    He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life: and he that believeth not the Son shall not see life; but the wrath of God abideth on him.
    So thankful that I believe in Jesus Christ!

  366. Beloved says:

    Bratimus I am very concerned for you because of the fires. May God hide you and your household in the shelter of His wings from the firey tempest. In Jesus’s name. Amen

  367. foreverblessed says:

    He that believeth on the Son hath everlasting life:

    So reassuring!
    What can keep us away from believing Jesus?
    It is so good to focus on who He is.
    Especially in trying times, like wildfires.
    God bless you Bratimus.
    ( We even here in Europe have an orange glaze in the evening sky, that comes from the fires in California, weather experts say.

  368. foreverblessed says:

    Hebrews 1:1-4

    In the past God spoke to our ancestors through the prophets at many times and in various ways, 2 but in these last days he has spoken to us by his Son, whom he appointed heir of all things, and through whom also he made the universe. 3 The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word. After he had provided purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty in heaven. 4 So he became as much superior to the angels as the name he has inherited is superior to theirs.

    Jesus is superior to all.
    And He is Lord of our heart, if we have asked Him to be, and if we gave denounced all past lords in our lives
    (Denouncing things/ people we were attached to in our old life, is the theme of Utmost today)

  369. jeff1 says:

    Thinking today of how God knows me better than I know myself and reveals to me accordingly which is why I believe that Aquinas did not speak of his vision because it was a revelation for him alone.

    I think of when I dismissed my earthly dad’s Godly wisdom for those more educated, sophisticated and powerful’s wisdom.

    At the time I said to myself and what would my dad know compared to those men and so I was not ready to receive God’s truths but wind on fifty years and I now see the difference in Godly and worldly wisdom.

    That gives me hope for others who are as I was blinded to God’s ways because He never gives up teaching when I am open to listening.

    “Open The Eyes Of My Heart”

    Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
    Open the eyes of my heart
    I want to see You
    I want to see You

    Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
    Open the eyes of my heart
    I want to see You
    I want to see You

    To see You high and lifted up
    Shinin’ in the light of Your glory
    Pour out Your power and love
    As we sing holy, holy, holy

    Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
    Open the eyes of my heart
    I want to see You
    I want to see You

    Open the eyes of my heart, Lord
    Open the eyes of my heart
    I want to see You
    I want to see You

    To see You high and lifted up
    Shinin’ in the light of Your glory
    Pour out Your power and love
    As we sing holy, holy, holy

    [Repeat two more times]

    Holy, holy, holy
    We cry holy, holy, holy
    You are holy, holy, holy
    I want to see you

    Holy, holy, holy
    Holy, holy, holy
    You are holy, holy, holy
    I want to see you

    Holy, holy, holy
    Holy, holy, holy
    Holy, holy, holy,
    I want to see you

    [Repeat five more times]

  370. foreverblessed says:

    Gave= Have denounced

    Have we denounced former idols?
    It gives great freedom, a feeling of lightness.
    I went to a christian conference, years ago, “christian be free”, and there we were taken to our past life, each one in his own life.
    My own life,I was part of a fundamentalistic church, and I have denounced its leader. And I denounced spirits of religiosity,
    I declared that Jesus was Lord over my heart.
    Many examples were given that could have gone wrong. Having had illicit sex is also one of them. Denounce it, even if it was against your will, sexual spirits can enter. Even when it was not your own fault, but you have to get rid of them.
    Denounce them.

    Having been to a spiritual session, inviting spirits, is also one of them, denounce the act,
    Speak out that Jesus is now your Lord.

    The immense freedom, afterwards, and the joyful worshipping of Jesus together, was wonderful.

    But…even if you do not do that, relentlessly worshipping Jesus, praising Him, filling our mind with His Word, does the same, unclean spirits cannot stand where Jesus lives. Albeit it takes awhile that our she being, body mind and Spirit are taken in possession by Jesus. It does not happen all at once.
    It is like Israel, that was baptized in the water, wandered through the desert, and came to the promised land:
    They had to take possesion of it, step by step, with God fighting for them.

    A spiritual warfare, to take our body mind and spirit and be freed from anything that goes against Jesus.
    Ephesians 6:10-20

  371. jeff1 says:

    Thank you, Forever, so very encouraging and makes me think of this hymn.

    Fight the good fight with all thy might,
    Christ is thy strength and Christ thy right;
    lay hold on life, and it shall be
    thy joy and crown eternally.

    Run the straight race, through God’s good grace,
    lift up thine eyes and seek his face;
    life with its way before us lies,
    Christ is the path and Christ the prize.

    Cast care aside, lean on thy Guide;
    his boundless mercy will provide;
    trust, and thy trusting soul shall prove
    Christ is its life and Christ its love.

    Faint not nor fear, his arms are near;
    he changeth not, and thou art dear;
    only believe, and thou shalt see
    that Christ is all in all to the

  372. foreverblessed says:

    That is a beautiful song!
    I write it on paper and take it with me outside, doing the painting job!
    And fill my mind with Jesus, and Who He is for me!
    No one else
    He is Superior!

  373. jeff1 says:

    1 Lead on, O King eternal,
    the day of march has come;
    henceforth in fields of conquest
    your tents will be our home.
    Through days of preparation
    your grace has made us strong;
    and now, O King eternal,
    we lift our battle song.

    2 Lead on, O King eternal,
    till sin’s fierce war shall cease,
    and holiness shall whisper
    the sweet amen of peace.
    For not with swords’ loud clashing
    or roll of stirring drums
    with deeds of love and mercy
    the heavenly kingdom comes.

    3 Lead on, O King eternal;
    we follow, not with fears,
    for gladness breaks like morning
    where’er your face appears.
    Your cross is lifted o’er us,
    we journey in its light;
    the crown awaits the conquest;
    lead on, O God of might.

  374. poohpity says:

    Sometimes people can take their relationship with the Lord and confuse it with mysticism. The difference in mysticism and a relationship is that Jesus is real not like a lucky charm or ritual or some other magic to be used to get a desired effect. It is like comparing reality to some type of deception by way of traditions which is often found in the Catholic churches like saying so many “Hail Mary’s” or “Our Fathers” for penance or having to go through a Priest to talk with God. It is similar to idol worship which is often an opening for the enemy.

  375. jeff1 says:

    I think that is why we see so many of the younger generation find it difficult to know what to believe as everyone has gone their own way.

    Though they may not be turning to God they are not believing what they are being told.

    I worked with a Roman Catholic girl who told me that she made sure she was not alone in the room with their priest because she did not like how he came so close to her when in conversation with her but she also admitted that she dare not say that to her parents as they would not believe such a thing of him so great insight from a 16 year old.

    Its getting to be a complex world but that’s no surprise to God.

    One more step along the world I go,
    One more step along the world I go,
    From the old things to the new,
    Keep me traveling along with you:

    Chorus
    And it’s from the old I travel to the new;
    Keep me traveling along with you.

    Verse 2
    Round the corners of the world I turn,
    More and more about the world I learn;
    All the new things that I see
    You’ll be looking at along with me:

    Chorus
    And it’s from the old I travel to the new;
    Keep me traveling along with you.

    Verse 3
    As I travel through the bad and good,
    Keep me traveling the way I should;
    Where I see no way to go
    You’ll be telling me the way, I know:

    Chorus
    And it’s from the old I travel to the new;
    Keep me traveling along with you.

    Verse 4
    Give me courage when the world is rough,
    Keep me loving though the world is tough;
    Leap and sing in all I do,
    Keep me traveling along with you:

    Chorus
    And it’s from the old I travel to the new;
    Keep me traveling along with you.

    Verse 5
    You are older than the world can be,
    You are younger than the life in me;
    Ever old and ever new,
    Keep me traveling along with you:

    Chorus
    And it’s from the old I travel to the new;
    Keep me traveling along with you.

  376. Beloved says:

    Forever you reminded me of a dream I had recently where I was running from a fire and was told to not take anything but run! But I HAD to pick up my New Testament with Psalms Bible and stuff it into my pocket knowing I would always need Gods Word even if I had nothing else. I love that you are taking words of encouragement on your ladder! I used to write verses and put on my car dash and on my work computer and mailbox at work. It is living and active!!! Words put to music help me a lot to remember and recite Gods Word. Alive and active, yes He is!!

  377. Beloved says:

    Proximity To God
    Spurgeon 9/15
    Psalm 148:14He has raised up a horn for his people,
    praise for all his saints,
    for the people of Israel who are near to him.
    Praise the Lord!

    Distance and separation were marks of the old covenant. When God appeared even to His servant Moses, He said, “Do not come near; take your sandals off your feet”;1 and when He revealed Himself on Mount Sinai to His own chosen and separated people, one of the first commands was, “You shall set limits for the people all around.”2 In the sacred worship of the tabernacle and the temple, the thought of distance was always prominent. The majority of the people did not even enter the outer court. Into the inner court none but the priests might dare to intrude, while into the innermost place, or the holy of holies, the high priest entered but only once in the year. It was as if the Lord in those early ages was teaching man that sin was so utterly loathsome to Him that He must treat men as lepers put outside the camp; and when He came closest to them, He still made them feel the extent of the separation between a holy God and an impure sinner.

    When the Gospel came, we were placed on quite another footing. The word “Go” was replaced with “Come”; distance was replaced with nearness, and we who previously were far away were brought near by the blood of Jesus Christ. Incarnate Deity has no fire wall around it. “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”3 is the joyful proclamation of God as He appears in human flesh. He no longer teaches the leper his leprosy by setting him at a distance, but by Himself suffering the penalty of the leper’s defilement.

    What a state of safety and privilege is this proximity to God through Jesus! Do you know it by experience? If you know it, are you living in the power of it? This closeness is wonderful, and yet it is to be followed by a greater nearness still, when it shall be said, “The dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people.”4 Lord, haste the day!

    1) Exodus 3:5
    2) Exodus 19:12
    3) Matthew 11:28
    4) Revelation 21:3

  378. Beloved says:

    “Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.”

  379. SFDBWV says:

    Clearly a first for me that no one posted for an entire day on BTA.

    Odd in that people seldom have nothing to say.

    In danger of being rhetorical, it is my belief that the story of Thomas is simply a segue into stating that our views, our stories, our lives have meaning and in spite of Thomas’s saying his were as straw our lives were worth Jesus going to the cross for.

    It is written that God gave us life so that we could live to the fullest.

    It is also mentioned there books that God keeps. Our journey through this world is one of them and because of Jesus’ sacrifice and promises the book of life also contains our names.

    Just don’t get caught up in the technicalities of what you believe Scripture to say. Be kind to one another, show love and never try to play the game of upstaging another by way of Scripture. Thinking you know more and trying to show it off.

    Showing love takes care of showing off by never letting it rise up.

    I’ve been very busy of late but never too busy for my friends, whenever and wherever they might need me.

    Matt and I got up this morning at 2:30 am. He could not sleep and so we just got up and started our day a little earlier than normal.

    It is a little warmer this morning at 44 degrees, yesterday it was 36. Frost will soon be here and I do hope it takes care of the grass as I tire of cutting it every few days.

    Blessing all around today for you all.

    Steve

  380. foreverblessed says:

    Dear Steve, thank you for your blessing.
    Yesterday I did not take the time to comment, there is this painting job, and the weather is exceptionally fine to do so now. We have here an extra gift of summer.
    Thanks for your prayers for me. I had a reluctance to go on the ladder, and it had gone, thanks yo the Grace of God

    Thanks Steve for the advice not to upstage others by:
    “I know it better” what the bible says, this has been a trap for me, and I am still fighting it.

    Having the song written on paper,
    Fight the fight, I was seeing that with more effort I can grasp this trap.

    Be blessed today, and may God bless each and everyone you come in contact with!

  381. foreverblessed says:

    Yes, “the straw” of our lives and our efforts.
    God goes see it! I agree Steve.
    Had to think about Jacob, a lot of his former life was “straw”
    Till he came to Pniel…
    Genesis 32:22-32
    God calls him Israel
    “Because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome”
    God did not disagree with the struggle, He admires it, when we search and search, with all our hearts,

    God leading Jacob all his ways, to Laban and back.
    God leading Jacob, and I shall try again to explain,
    He stabds for the Holy Spirit
    And Jacob stabds for the self-willed man.
    Jacob, who worked according to his own will, thinking it was Today will, in a way it was: the blessing would go to Jacob, but with deceit and great effort Jacob worked it out himself.
    He stands for me, Jacob does, for the fundamentalistic christian, who sets before him the law of God, ad in the 10 commandments, and works according to that, and ruling everybody around him/her, even his whole nation, to live according to the 10 commandments. And so is struggling like Jacob did.
    Thinking it is God’s way, and yet doing it out if his own will.

    Like the oldest son.
    And I was like that.
    The youngest son went astray, and led a sinful indulgent life. To abhorrence of the oldest son, je would never live to pleasure.

    And yet the younger son came to the full eye in eye personal rekation with Jesus.

    And so the oldest son will too!
    Because God the Holy Spirit will guide him there, to his Pniel.
    And there he will surrender his will to Jesus.
    And his will will become God’s will.
    Or can you write it the other way;
    God’s will will become my will.

  382. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning Foreverblessed, your comments reminded me that in the Bible brick was made with straw.

    Somewhere in my thoughts that connects.

    Combining the straw of our lives with the rock of our salvation we become a part of that same Cornerstone that binds and solidifies our faith.

    We are quickened by the process.

    Thanks for the returned blessing and for saying hello.

    Steve

  383. poohpity says:

    Yesterday we had our prayer group then I had to get ready to go to my heart doctor. Several tests then make an appointment to schedule a cardioversion which is just a medical name for shocking my heart so it will return to a sinus rhythm which is just a regular heart beat instead of the Afib I have been having for the last 4 months after my virus. I had to be on blood thinners for a while before she could do that procedure. But I did not find that the doctor was a show off because she knew more than the physician’s assistant and was the one who had to decide and do the procedure. I should have known she was just showing off because she spent more time in studying, learning and practicing medicine.

    That reminds me of the three friends of Job. Job had a close relationship with God while it seems the friends knew about God but did not really know Him or experience Him in their lives, so they talked about things that were not true of God like Job had to have sinned for the afflictions that happened to Job.

    To me I am glad to hear when people share about what they have learned or experienced with God but if you read anything Aquinas wrote I think you will find that human reasoning, questioning God, logic and just plain old philosophy was what he was into not taking by faith what the scriptures did actually say, that is what he seemed to call straw=human understanding and reasoning. But it is just like the bible one would have to actually read some of the stuff Aquinas wrote to know how it could be considered straw.

    But isn’t that exactly what happens when people are accused of being a show off when in fact it is just because maybe they have spent more time getting closer to God and learning more about Him. Would someone be a show off if when doing math problem they needed more than basic math skills to solve the problem but needed algebra so someone who knows algebra helps out, are they being a show off?

    It is a blessing to me when others have a better understanding of different things than I do. If it wasn’t a blessing we would never need teachers and they are not showing off what they have taken the time to learn(John 14:26). Sadly many try to teach without having ever taken the time to learn first what they are trying to teach. That is like going to the receptionist to get medical advise rather than going to the doctor.

  384. Beloved says:

    Steve, do others make you feel insecure by quoting scripture? You assume some think they are better than others. Right?

  385. street says:

    Isaiah 33:18-20
    18
    Your heart will meditate on terror:
    “Where is he who counts?
    Where is he who weighs?
    Where is he who counts the towers?”
    19
    You will no longer see a fierce people,
    A people of [a]unintelligible speech [b]which no one comprehends,
    Of a stammering tongue [c]which no one understands.
    20
    Look upon Zion, the city of our appointed feasts;
    Your eyes will see Jerusalem, an undisturbed habitation,
    A tent which will not be folded;
    Its stakes will never be pulled up,
    Nor any of its cords be torn apart.

  386. street says:

    1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 [a]He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not [b]comprehend it.

    3 Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. 4 God saw that the light was good; and God separated the light from the darkness. 5 God called the light day, and the darkness He called night. And there was evening and there was morning, one day.

    Acts 2:20
    ‘The sun will be turned into darkness And the moon into blood, Before the great and glorious day of the Lord shall come.

    John 8:12
    Then Jesus again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.”

  387. Beloved says:

    I am so encouraged today by Isaiah33.
    MacLaren says:
    If there is in any life a gap, that is a prophecy that God will fill it. If there is anything in your circumstances in regard to which you often feel sadly, and are sometimes tempted to feel bitterly, how much stronger and more fully equipped you would be, if it were otherwise, be sure that in God there is that which can supply the want, and that the consciousness of the want is a merciful summons to seek its supply from and in Him. If there is a breach in the encircling wall of your defences, God has made it in order that He Himself, and not an enemy, may enter your lives and hearts. ‘In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne,’ and it did not matter though that mortal king was dead, for the true King was thereby revealed as living for ever, just as when the summer foliage, fluttering and green, drops from the tree, the sturdy stem and the strong branches are made the more visible. Our felt deficiencies are doors by which God may come in. Do you sometimes feel as if you would be better if you had easier worldly circumstances? Is your health precarious and feeble? Have you to walk a solitary path through this world, and does your heart often ache for companionship? You can have all your heart’s desire fulfilled in deepest reality in God, in the same way that that riverless city had Jehovah for ‘a place of broad rivers and streams.’

  388. Beloved says:

    Jerusalem is the “riverless city” referred to by Isaiah.

  389. Beloved says:

    President Trump is coming to our small town of 15,000 tomorrow. A protest involving 1,500 is planned downtown. He will be at the airport. Praying for peace and not property damage as almost happened last April. Several cops are Christians so we are blessed with prayer covering problems most don’t even know about. Also 9 of our firefighters are on their way to the Slater fire in SW Oregon to help. Praying for their safety also and praying for Bratimus and household.

  390. SFDBWV says:

    Joyce I love Scripture, it speaks to me in the most intimate of ways. The mystery of our particular religion is to me no mystery at all.

    Remembering that God exists in a seven fold Spirit he is present in our lives in a three part entity; The Father, The Son and The Holy Spirit.

    God speaks into me something He wants me to understand at a time I am ready to understand it and even though I may not know when that time is or what it is He knows.

    And so He speaks into me that which I need to know for His purpose and use, not necessarily for mine.

    I hold the written Word of God as something Holy and special.

    Sadly I have learned across my life that people misuse the Word.

    Why that is, is found in the litany of moral misgivings found in people.

    Have you never encountered a religious snob? Someone who speaks to you as if you are just not as holy as they think they are? Someone who has a very good recollection of Scripture, but somehow misses the heart of it?

    They don’t make me feel insecure, they make me disgusted.

    Don’t read too much into my view of the misuse of Scripture, it is after all, my view not yours.

    In most churches there is a separation between Sunday school and the worship service.

    In life there is as well.

    I hope this helps answer your question, or statement, to me.

    Steve

  391. poohpity says:

    I guess the thing that makes us holy is that we as believers are set apart and listen to the teaching and leading of the Holy Spirit who guides us by the scripture which repeatedly shows us we have nothing to boast about because we are all sinners saved by the grace of God. So the only difference in Sunday School and the Worship service is the amount of people in each but both teach God’s word, sadly a lot of people do not go to either one but think it is their job to judge or measure those who do by their own standards not by God’s which shows worldly thinking rather than paying attention to guidance and leading of the Holy Spirit.

    Yes there is a separation between Sunday School and the Worship service it usually is about 30 to 45 minutes. Both are lead by people who have the gift of teaching and are familiar with the scriptures, hopefully they do not use them to prove their own point but point people to the Lord. Again as it happens some of those teaching may not be grounded in God’s word as they lead others to think they are but as we are warned by scripture for us to be grounded in it ourselves so we will not be lead astray or deceived by false teaching.

  392. Beloved says:

    Steve no I have never encountered a religious snob as you put it. I’ve seen plenty who misunderstand scripture, many, as I have myself. The Holiness of Gods Word does not change, for me, anyway. I’ve seen religious people look down their noses at me but have learned to look at them through God given eyes of grace and mercy. Perhaps your disgust will turn to pity and praise to God for His enduring grace and with it the hope that in His time He makes all things new!! Even a sin sick heart. He did that for me. Oh He is wonderful!!
    Love in Christ to you and all today,
    Joyce

  393. Beloved says:

    A Jehovahs Witness called me randomly yesterday. I explained the differences in our theological positions to her then excused myself, reminded by scripture that says we are not to even entertain a false teacher.

  394. poohpity says:

    Our Pastor reminds us often that the use of scripture as a window to look at others is a misuse but when they are used as a mirror of self reflection as to how we are each doing according to God’s word is a proper why to read them. When used as a mirror many of us will come to a point of recognition of how short we fall of what God had intended and get a fuller grasp of the forgiveness, grace and mercy that God has gifted us with not because of us but because of who God is. Coming to the point of humbly walking with God.

  395. poohpity says:

    With self reflection we undrstand the importance of the straw “Oh… I want so much to believe… that, in an effort to tell our own story, and to explain the sacred Scriptures entrusted to us— words, reason, and common sense are important— important like the straw that cradled a Son”.

  396. jeff1 says:

    Unfortunately I have heard Scripture misused and have been told of people of different denominations arguing about it in the workplace which I think is shocking.

    It seems when we take our focus off Christ then disagreements follow and distracts from the message of the Gospel.

    Scripture can teach and rebuke but if a person decides they already know better their not open to learning.

  397. Beloved says:

    Love covers a multitude of sins. Love is unshockable – Gods love.

  398. poohpity says:

    Disagreements and arguments have plagued the church from the very beginning even among the disciples read what happened between Paul and Peter;

    Gal 2: But when Peter came to Antioch, I had to oppose him to his face, for what he did was very wrong. 12 When he first arrived, he ate with the Gentile believers, who were not circumcised. But afterward, when some friends of James came, Peter wouldn’t eat with the Gentiles anymore. He was afraid of criticism from these people who insisted on the necessity of circumcision. 13 As a result, other Jewish believers followed Peter’s hypocrisy, and even Barnabas was led astray by their hypocrisy.

    14 When I saw that they were not following the truth of the gospel message, I said to Peter in front of all the others, “Since you, a Jew by birth, have discarded the Jewish laws and are living like a Gentile, why are you now trying to make these Gentiles follow the Jewish traditions?”

    If you have time read that whole chapter so what we experience now in relation to other believers is nothing new but what is so surprising that in spite of all that God still loves us beyond measure and seems to continue in the process of transforming our hearts and minds. Roman 12:2 NLT

  399. poohpity says:

    Romans 12:2 NLT

  400. Beloved says:

    12 He was afraid of criticism from these people who insisted on the necessity of circumcision.

    Peter was afraid of criticism! Even after Jesus made him head of the Church after denying he knew Him. Seems that once Jesus chooses us we can’t escape! He will use us no matter how we feel.

  401. jeff1 says:

    Peter was afraid of criticism! Even after Jesus made him head of the Church after denying he knew Him. Seems that once Jesus chooses us we can’t escape! He will use us no matter how we feel.

    This song comes to mind.

    God Will Make a Way

    God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
    And rivers in the desert will I see
    Heaven and Earth will fade but His word will still remain
    And He will do something new today

    Oh, God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
    And rivers in the desert will I see
    Heaven and Earth will fade but His word will still remain
    And He will do something new today

    Oh, God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

  402. Beloved says:

    The Vision of Aquinas

    Be Thou My Vision
    Be Thou my Vision, O Lord of my heart
    Naught be all else to me, save that Thou art
    Thou my best Thought, by day or by night
    Waking or sleeping, Thy presence my light
    Be Thou my Wisdom, and Thou my true Word
    I ever with Thee and Thou with me, Lord
    Thou my great Father, I Thy true son
    Thou in me dwelling, and I with Thee one
    Riches I heed not, nor man’s empty praise
    Thou mine Inheritance, now and always
    Thou and Thou only, first in my heart
    High King of Heaven, my Treasure Thou art
    High King of Heaven, my victory won
    May I reach Heaven’s joys, O bright Heav’n’s Sun
    Heart of my own heart, whate’er befall
    Still be my Vision, O Ruler of all.

  403. jeff1 says:

    We plow the fields, and scatter

    We plow the fields, and scatter
    the good seed on the land,
    but it is fed and watered
    by God’s almighty hand;
    he sends the snow in winter,
    the warmth to swell the grain,
    the breezes and the sunshine,
    and soft refreshing rain.
    Refrain:
    All good gifts around us
    are sent from heaven above,
    then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
    for all his love.

    He only is the Maker
    of all things near and far;
    he paints the wayside flower,
    he lights the evening star;
    the winds and waves obey him,
    by him the birds are fed;
    much more to us, his children,
    he gives our daily bread.
    Refrain:
    All good gifts around us
    are sent from heaven above,
    then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
    for all his love.

    We thank thee, then, O Father,
    for all things bright and good,
    the seed time and the harvest,
    our life, our health, and food;
    no gifts have we to offer,
    for all thy love imparts,
    and, what thou most desirest,
    our humble, thankful hearts.
    Refrain:
    All good gifts around us
    are sent from heaven above,
    then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
    for all his love.

  404. cbrown says:

    Good afternoon. Have been blessed reading the posts the last several days. “The Daily Bread” today was also an encouragement. Volunteers are still not allowed to go into the prisons here so I am praying that the inmates will look to God for their help. “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God,to those who are called according to His purpose.” NASB Love Chris

  405. SFDBWV says:

    Yes Chris Our Daily Bread Ministries has uplifted and encouraged me ever since I stumbled onto them over 20 years ago. With their daily devotionals and videos.

    I continue to get little devotionals on line every morning and I find them very “spot on”. Some mornings just exactly what I need to hear.

    They do a really good job there at ODB Ministries and I appreciate them.

    Yesterday’s Bible Project was exceptionally good as well.

    As for your not being able to go to Prison in order to minister to inmates, the whole matter of how that and how hospitals and an over reaching government are mishandling the matter of dealing with this new virus.

    Guards and prison administration comes and goes every day in and out of the prisons, just like nurses, doctors and administration do at the hospitals, even janitors are allowed to come and go, but they continue to force loved ones outside while their loved one is left alone without support, comfort and an advocate.

    Your being able to volunteer would be no different than any of the other people who go in and out of the prison everyday.

    There is evil at the base of this corona virus issue and it strikes at the foundation of western civilization at every level.

    Praying for deliverance.

    Steve

  406. poohpity says:

    Taken from our daily bread for today sounds so much like what has happened in our country over the last three years plus;

    “After Charles Simeon (1759–1836) was named the minister of Holy Trinity Church in Cambridge, England, he faced years of opposition. As most in the congregation had wanted the associate minister to be appointed rather than Simeon, they spread rumors about him and rejected his ministry—even at times locking him out of the church. But Simeon, who desired to be filled by God’s Spirit, sought to cope with the gossip by creating some principles to live by. One was never to believe rumors unless they were absolutely true and another was “always to believe, that if the other side were heard, a very different account would be given of the matter.”

  407. jeff1 says:

    If I learned anything about conflict either war or otherwise it is that the truth gets easily lost and I cannot trust my own recollection any more than I can trust the oppositions.

    While it is right to make moral judgements it is wrong to make a condemning, despising judgement – where we say we are superior and someone else is inferior.

    I have struggled with this as it is easy to cross the line when you are angry and despairing at the wrongs of others be they other believers or not! However, I see that to pass judgement on your brother like this is to pass judgement on myself i.e. I reap what I sow!

    God wants me to make a moral judgement to keep me from falling into the same sin as another but in Romans 14:10 I am reminded that God is the just judge of all.

    10 Why do you pass judgment on your brother? Or you, why do you despise your brother? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God;

    for it is written,

    1“As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me,

    and every tongue shall confess2 to God.”

    12 So then each of us will give an account of himself to God.

  408. jeff1 says:

    O golden day, when light shall break,
    And dawn’s bright glories shall unfold,
    When He Who knows the path I take
    Shall ope for me the gates of gold!
    Earth’s little while will soon be past,
    My pilgrim song will soon be o’er,
    The grace that saves shall time outlast,
    And be my theme on yonder shore.

    Refrain:
    Then I shall know as I am known,
    And stand complete before the throne;
    Then I shall see my Savior’s face,
    And all my song be saving grace.

    Life’s upward way, a narrow path,
    Leads on to that fair dwelling place,
    Where, safe from sin, and storm, and wrath,
    They live who trust redeeming grace.
    Sing, sing, my heart, along the way,
    The grace that saves will keep and guide
    Till breaks the glorious crowning day,
    And I shall cross to yonder side.

    I dimly see my journey’s end,
    But well I know Who guideth me;
    I follow Him, that wondrous Friend,
    Whose matchless love is full and free.
    And when with Him I enter in,
    And all the way look back to trace,
    The conqu’ror’s palm I then shall win,
    Through Christ and His redeeming grace.

  409. Beloved says:

    Matthew 46:50 For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother and sister and mother.”

  410. Beloved says:

    Matthew 12:46-50

  411. Beloved says:

    Disclaimer*
    I am not passing judgement or using scripture as a weapon. I thought of “brothers” when Viv brought it up as I asked myself, Who is my brother? Thinking further about this I confess I do not do Gods will perfectly but as best I can. Often with the prayer that God will enable me to do what I don’t really want to do.

    Had another close encounter with a spirit in my living room yesterday. I detest these things but remembered what Spurgeon said as to why bad things happen; for God to show He is more powerful than evil. Maybe my faith has been waining a bit as I struggle to understand when there is no answer as to why I have been abandoned by my children- still living, and my closest friends -who died last year. Maybe God has chosen me, like Job, to remind the devil who I belong to and that I will not renounce Him no matter what? 70 years maybe another 10-15? I’m so thankful blessed and grateful He chose me before I was born to be His!

    Stay wrapped in His arms friends, and be forever- blessed!

  412. jeff1 says:

    “Lead Me To The Rock”

    When my heart is overwhelmed
    And my eyes are blind to You
    And the pain of life is just too heavy to bear

    And then the mountains seems so high
    And my faith’s too weak to climb
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I

    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I
    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I

    When my life is hit with fear
    And I fight to hide the tears
    And I wrestle in my heart to know what to do

    Lord, I’m welling up inside
    But I know You hear my cry
    Jesus, lead me to the rock that is higher than I

    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I
    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I

    You are the rock and there is no other
    A tower of strength, You are my shelter
    Lord, You are my hope eternal
    You are the rock that is higher than I

    You are the rock and there is no other, oh
    A tower of strength, You are my shelter
    Lord, You are my hope eternal
    You are the rock that is higher than I

    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, oh
    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, oh

    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, oh
    Lead me to the rock, lead me to the rock
    Lead me to the rock that is higher than I, oh

  413. poohpity says:

    As I read the book of James the half brother of Jesus, he reminds us of how deadly the tongue can be. We see the fires within the states along the coast and the damage that fire causes loss of life, property and nature I can better understand his reasoning. He says the tongue is a deadly weapon like a fire. Several other places I am reminded of the damage of gossip, false rumors, slander (name calling) and lies they are all equated with the flesh or the world.

    Jesus said, “I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15 I do not ask that you take them out of the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.”

    So I pause before I speak and ask myself is what I am about to say true, right or encouraging? Do I resemble more of what I am accusing others of but am I blinded to see it in me that is why it seems so plain to see in others? Do I measure myself with the same critique as I do others?

    I see all around those very things but no sharing of ideas and heaven forbid if anyone disagrees then all hell breaks loose. It seems our society has grown away from sharing ideas to just attacking those who do think differently. Was reminded what Ginsberg said about her relationship with Scalia we think differently but it is not taken as a personal attack but a way of discovering new things.

  414. jeff1 says:

    This world is challenging and tests our faith and beliefs.

    The reality being that religions, colour of skin, class or other divides us.

    Silence can seem the better option as the difficulty with democracy is that everyone has an opinion and thinks theirs is better than another’s or even an experts.

    In the midst of chaos it can be hard to find God’s presence and all the more reason for seeking it above all other.

  415. Beloved says:

    2 Chronicles 7:14 (ESV)
    14 if my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

  416. street says:

    12 For our [a]proud confidence is this: the testimony of our conscience, that in holiness and godly sincerity, not in fleshly wisdom but in the grace of God, we have conducted ourselves in the world, and especially toward you. 13 For we write nothing else to you than what you read and understand, and I hope you will understand until the end; 14 just as you also partially did understand us, that we are your reason to be proud as you also are ours, in the day of our Lord Jesus.

  417. Beloved says:

    Revelation 12: 10And I heard a loud voice in heaven saying:

    “Now have come the salvation and the power
    and the kingdom of our God,
    and the authority of His Christ.
    For the accuser of our brothers has been thrown down—
    he who accuses them day and night before our God.
    11They have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb
    and by the word of their testimony.
    And they did not love their lives
    so as to shy away from death.
    12Therefore rejoice, O heavens,
    and you who dwell in them!
    But woe to the earth and the sea;
    with great fury the devil has come down to you,
    knowing he has only a short time.”

  418. foreverblessed says:

    Good morning everyone, beloved of Jesus.

    I was away for a long weekend.
    It is so good to impress on our minds and hearts that Jesus is Lord and sits at the right hand of God. All us well, God has everything in His Hands.
    I have to tell myself that, and repeat it.

    Today I read in Utmost, about Jesus being our ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord’.
    John 13:13
    The explanation is so good to me. He talks about the love relation, the intimacy, that makes obedience a normal thing, it us as a reflex. Not as a Master who is above the pupil, but a loving connection.
    Our understanding of obedience is tainted, is spoiled by the fall. Bug even the Son talks about obedience to the Father, and that is not negative, but a natural outflow of a loving relation.
    Anyway, I thought to share it here,bad we often have discussions on the word obedience.
    It is useless to talk about obedience when our undersranding is still tainted by sin.
    Living in a loving relation with Jesus, His blood and His broken body will purify us by and by.

  419. foreverblessed says:

    And then we will see that the word obedience is not something that is demanded.
    But as long as we not understand fully, it is still better to obey, meaning just to do what Jesus says, and asking Him to give us the power to do so, then not doing what Jesus said.

  420. foreverblessed says:

    One more thing and then I’ll be of. I thought to share it, from Utmost today, it is so reassuring for me:

    Having a master and teacher means that there is someone who knows me better than I know myself, who is closer than a friend, and who understands the remotest depths of my heart and is able to satisfy them fully. It means having someone who has made me secure in the knowledge that he has met and solved all the doubts, uncertainties, and problems in my mind. To have a master and teacher is this and nothing less— “…for One is your Teacher, the Christ…” (Matthew 23:8).

  421. jeff1 says:

    1 Don’t forget that Jesus, in His boundless love,
    Ever watches o’er you, from His throne above;
    That His loving kindness follows where you stray,
    Don’t forget that Jesus thinks of you today.

    Refrain:
    Don’t forget that Jesus thinks of you,
    Don’t forget His love so strong and true,
    Don’t forget He hears you when you pray,
    Don’t forget that Jesus thinks of you today.

    2 Don’t forget that Jesus is the Friend you need,
    With the Bread of Life your hungry soul would feed;
    Don’t forget the nail-pierc’d hands on Calvary,
    Don’t forget that Jesus died to make you free.
    [Refrain]

    3 Don’t forget that Jesus knows your ev’ry care,
    Knows the heavy burdens that you daily bear,
    That His gentle hand will kindly lead the way,
    Don’t forget that Jesus thinks of you today.
    [Refrain]

  422. poohpity says:

    Very good point forever about obedience it really gave me something to think about and ruminate on.

  423. Beloved says:

    Thank you street and forever for your wise counsel about dealing with the enemy. I watched Spurgeon teaching called “Deliver Us From Evil” on YouTube and it all clicked for me. The wrong teaching I had years ago by one who said he was led to work with the spirit world I see now had little understanding of the power of the blood of Christ. Also it was shown to me I have been lazy about prayer and should not ignore the enemy as I prefer to do being rather timid- like Timothy- in these matters. Being taught as a child to never speak my mind carries over in my prayer life. I must be stronger and not fearful! I can’t let depression rule me! God bless you both today and always,
    Joyce

  424. Beloved says:

    And they have conquered him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, for they loved not their lives even unto death. Rev 12:11

  425. poohpity says:

    Oh Beloved, you have never on here stopped from speaking your mind even if it was not understanding what someone else says but you sure do voice your opinion loudly that is even when someone is not your enemy but it still never stopped you from jumping on abusively. So do that against your enemy spirit. I do not think I would ever think of you as timid, antagonistic but not timid.

  426. Beloved says:

    The blood of the Lamb has power over every foe. Not I.

  427. Beloved says:

    Jesus blood cleanses me from all my sins.

  428. Beloved says:

    as well as the accusations of the enemy.

  429. Beloved says:

    Therefore, get thee behind me, Satan.

  430. Beloved says:

    antagonistic
    1Showing or feeling active opposition or hostility toward someone or something.

    Yes, I am always antagonist toward evil. Pooh unless I address you by name please do not address what I don’t write to you. We will get along much better and make everyone’s day easier.

  431. Beloved says:

    Sometimes I wish God would master and control me to make me do what He wants, but He will not. And at other times I wish He would leave me alone, and He does not.

    #myutmost
    utmost.org

    So true.

  432. foreverblessed says:

    Yes, that struck me too!

    But because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. Therefore he us able to save completely those who come to God through him,
    because he always lives to intercede for them.
    Hebrews 7:24-25

  433. foreverblessed says:

    In our walk with Jesus, it starts out with Him as our Savior, Healer. He always remains so, but He is also our Lord and Teacher.
    In the beginning I was comforted very very much.

    Blessed are the poor in spirit….
    when I came to Jesus, when I felt lost

    The Holy Spirit is our Comforter.
    That when I was falsely accused, or maybe rightly accused, I would cry out to God, and I was comforted.
    Blessed are those who mourn….

    But there was a time when the Word of God came to me in a different way:
    It was more like a “do this”…
    And the issue was:
    My enemies…
    God had comforted me, He had protected me from their attacks.
    But there came a time I was exposed to them.
    And God showed me the way: “Bless them”

    It was like a thing I had to obey. Obedience
    But I had seen God working with me, and I understood that God was also doing a work in my enemies, and that it took more time than 20 years.
    I saw God was working and that He lured me into the blessing thing.
    Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness…

    To be more like Jesus, “Who is always interceding” as the scripture says, that now I was interceding too:
    “God forgive them for they do not know what they are doing”.

    People that act as enemies have issues, they need the freeing of spiritual bonds, that bind them, they cannot do but what they are inclined to do, bound by spiritual forces that have captivated them.
    Just as all of us have been bound in our own specific way.
    ” We all like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way…
    and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all.
    Isa 53:6

    There we go again:
    The body of Jesus and His blood

  434. jeff1 says:

    No one knows what Aquinas saw. But his apparent reassessment of what he had amassed in words, logic, and carefully reasoned arguments may resonate with what many of us are beginning to see in the unlimited and immeasurable wisdom and goodness of our God.

    From reflecting on Mart’s and your last comments Forever I see that God knows us better than we know ourselves and why Christ had to suffer and die for us.

    We are not so different from our forefathers or each other when we take the time to reflect on our behaviours, words and inclinations to go our own way.

    I may think I know God but on reflection I see that my knowing Him pales in comparison to how He knows me and loves me anyway.

    What incredible understanding from C.S. Lewis coupled with his gift with words.

    And out of that hopeless attempt has come nearly all that we call human history—money, poverty, ambition, war, prostitution, classes, empires, slavery—the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.
    C. S. Lewis

  435. poohpity says:

    Yes C.S. Lewis was right when we go to anything else but God to make us happy. That includes the evil spirits one buys off of the store shelf that cloud our judgement and fog our minds.(Eph 5:18 NLT)

    Beloved, your replies to my comment is proof of exactly what I was saying.

  436. poohpity says:

    forever, yes obedience can be a nine letter word or it can be what shows us our inability in our own strength to please God by thinking we can be obedient to all He has taught us. Jesus put it simply love God and love others which we often deceive ourselves if we think we can even obey that without help. It takes divine intervention with the help of the Holy Spirit within us which is the secret that has been revealed to us for God’s glory.

    Col 1: God has given me the responsibility of serving his church by proclaiming his entire message to you. 26 This message was kept secret for centuries and generations past, but now it has been revealed to God’s people. 27 For God wanted them to know that the riches and glory of Christ are for you Gentiles, too. And this is the secret: Christ lives in you. This gives you assurance of sharing his glory.

  437. poohpity says:

    So it is not about what we are able to do(obedience) but what God has done for us and in us.

  438. poohpity says:

    John 6:29 NLT

  439. Beloved says:

    Beautiful fall day with temps in the low 70’s and blue sky, with some haze from the fires out west. Still thinking and praying for bratimus.

    For the beauty of the earth,
    For the beauty of the skies,
    For the Love which from our birth
    Over and around us lies:
    Christ, our God, to Thee we raise
    This our Sacrifice of Praise.

    For the beauty of each hour
    Of the day and of the night,
    Hill and vale, and tree and flower,
    Sun and moon and stars of light:
    Christ, our God, to Thee we raise
    This our Sacrifice of Praise.

    For the joy of ear and eye,
    For the heart and brain’s delight,
    For the mystic harmony
    Linking sense to sound and sight:
    Christ, our God, to Thee we raise
    This our Sacrifice of Praise.

    Thanks and praise to God our Father and our LORD and Savior Jesus Christ.

  440. Beloved says:

    For the Love which from our birth
    Over and around us lies:
    Christ, our God, to Thee we raise
    This our Sacrifice of Praise.

    It is easy to forget when times are tough that we are constantly surrounded by Gods love. Maybe that’s what Aquinas saw? Would be a beautiful vision, indeed.

  441. SFDBWV says:

    After thinking about it a little it is no wonder that Thomas never divulged what his vision was. This was after all during the “Dark Ages” and people who had a conflict or what may even seem like a conflict with the power in Rome were burned to death at the stake.

    Michelangelo also destroyed a great deal of his art for the same reason.

    The whole of the Bible are stories about people and their encounters with God.

    Why would such a practice end with the Book of Jude?

    Your stories, my stories our adventure apart and together are still stories about people’s encounter with God.

    Don’t think that what Thomas seen stopped him from telling his story, I think fear of reprisal from the earthly run church did.

    We have had several days of 26 degree mornings, though today it is 46 as I write now. Winter is coming as Fall is upon us.

    Steve

  442. poohpity says:

    Steve wasn’t it Aquinas himself who said, “I can write no more. I have seen things that make my writings seem like straw.” that says to me it was nothing that stopped him from writing but himself knowing that straw is one of those things that burns up when tested by fire, the fire of importance for God’s glory.

    1 Cor 3: Anyone who builds on that foundation may use a variety of materials—gold, silver, jewels, wood, hay, or straw. 13 But on the judgment day, fire will reveal what kind of work each builder has done. The fire will show if a person’s work has any value. 14 If the work survives, that builder will receive a reward. 15 But if the work is burned up, the builder will suffer great loss. The builder will be saved, but like someone barely escaping through a wall of flames.

  443. poohpity says:

    Was Aquinas writing for his own glory or for the glory of God?

  444. poohpity says:

    From what I have read from Aquinas he did not write about his experiences with God but about well reasoned arguments or philosophies or logic about trying to fit God into the box of his own thinking. It seems the only experience he had with God was the vision God gave him when he stopped all the other writing.

  445. SFDBWV says:

    Pooh all of the people in Scripture who had a vision told of it.

    People since share what God shows them for the glory of God and the enlightenment of fellow believers.

    Whatever Tommy seen he kept to himself, because in the dark ages it was very dangerous to have visions that didn’t glorify the church in Rome.

    And of course trying to guess what he saw remains a guess.

    Steve

  446. Beloved says:

    I just read some of Thomas’ writing and his background. I think this is interesting copied from St. Catherine’s School:

    Q. I’ve heard that St. Thomas Aquinas (feast day, January 28) had a vision near the end of his life that showed him his work was just “straw.” What does this mean?

    A. On the feast of St. Nicholas, 1273, while celebrating Mass, St. Thomas received a revelation from God that caused him to stop writing, leaving his brilliant lifelong work, Summa Theologiae, unfinished. He told his secretary: “The end of my labors has come. All I have written appears to be as so much straw after the things that have been revealed to me.”

    When his friend begged him to finish writing, Thomas insisted: “I can write no more. I have seen things that make my writings like straw.” The saint died three months later.

    We have no reason to believe that Thomas’s vision was a retraction of what he had written. If so, he would not have been named a Doctor of the Church, and Pope Leo XIII would not have later urged the Church to study his works. In fact, on an earlier occasion, the saint had reported that Jesus had said to him in another vision, “You have written well of Me, Thomas.”

    Most interpreters agree it’s more likely that St. Thomas had a vision of heaven’s glory that day. Compared to what he saw, everything else seems worthless, no matter how magnificent it might be.

  447. poohpity says:

    Steve, it would seem that most who shared their visions and prophetic visions in scripture were told to do so by God. They were about future events or to open the eyes and ears to what was going on around them at the time of the vision so that people would turn from what they were doing(repenting) and turn or return to God. You know scripture well so would you not agree?

  448. foreverblessed says:

    Good morning this day God’s Grace is new again.
    And Jesus is still sitting at God’s right hand.

    From Utmost today.
    I thought it to be very good, it binds together the grace and obedience issue.

    Our Lord’s teaching can be summed up in this: the relationship that He demands for us is an impossible one unless He has done a supernatural work in us. Jesus Christ demands that His disciple does not allow even the slightest trace of resentment in his heart when faced with tyranny and injustice. No amount of enthusiasm will ever stand up to the strain that Jesus Christ will put upon His servant. Only one thing will bear the strain, and that is a personal relationship with Jesus Christ Himself— a relationship that has been examined, purified, and tested until only one purpose remains and I can truly say, “I am here for God to send me where He will.” Everything else may become blurred, but this relationship with Jesus Christ must never be.

    The Sermon on the Mount is not some unattainable goal; it is a statement of what will happen in me when Jesus Christ has changed my nature by putting His own nature in me. Jesus Christ is the only One who can fulfill the Sermon on the Mount.

    If we are to be disciples of Jesus, we must be made disciples supernaturally. And as long as we consciously maintain the determined purpose to be His disciples, we can be sure that we are not disciples. Jesus says, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you…” (John 15:16). That is the way the grace of God begins. It is a constraint we can never escape; we can disobey it, but we can never start it or produce it ourselves. We are drawn to God by a work of His supernatural grace, and we can never trace back to find where the work began. Our Lord’s making of a disciple is supernatural. He does not build on any natural capacity of ours at all. God does not ask us to do the things that are naturally easy for us— He only asks us to do the things that we are perfectly fit to do through His grace, and that is where the cross we must bear will always come.

  449. foreverblessed says:

    A lot of work needs to be done in our christian hearts, not to have any resentment against tyranny.
    A work deep in our hearts, there comes the mystical working of the broken body and shed blood of our dear Lord, Jesus.
    It is a profound work.

    Chambers talks about Jesus “demanding” from us. Other wording would be: set before us.
    Just like Jesus says: No one can follow Me, unless he takes up his cross.
    Do we call that a demand, or a condition?
    Having our old man crucified makes it easier not to have resentment against tyranny.
    Consider Paul, who was stoned in Turkey, he just stands up, and goes on preaching the Gospel.

    Thank you for sharing about Thomas. It very well could be a vision of his parting and being with Jesus.
    As Paul had such a vision and was not allowed to talk about it.

  450. SFDBWV says:

    Deborah and others, whereas Scripture is uniquely different not every person’s visions recorded there was meant as a proclamation to the people from God.

    Some are recorded as occurring along with their particular story, as part of the story.

    Nebuchadnezzar had a dream he wanted explanation and as it turns out by way of Daniel, God’s vision given to the king was explained.

    When Ananias was sent to heal Paul, it wasn’t a proclamation it was instruction meant for the healing of Paul.

    Whereas the Bible is filled with such stories so is the continued life of mankind and God.

    He remains the same.

    There are libraries of books written by men and women that further the relationship God has with His believers who have had visions, or dreams or some form of an epiphany from God meant for their particular situation and the encouragement of His Church.

    Our life stories are a continuation of the Book of Acts and will remain so right up through the events in Revelation unto the end.

    Thomas’s story was simply a segue for Mart to say that our life stories have value and worth, no matter why Thomas decided to quit writing.

    Of course this is how I see it, you and others may see it differently and that’s ok.

    44 degrees and cloudy.

    Steve

  451. jeff1 says:

    Thomas’s story was simply a segue for Mart to say that our life stories have value and worth, no matter why Thomas decided to quit writing.

    Of course this is how I see it, you and others may see it differently and that’s ok.

    Sometimes God’s revelations are relevant to me personally and so it is likely that the same could be said for Thomas’s story.

    I cannot limit God is what I learn from this as He is the living God who still works in and through us.

    In the modern world I believe it can be much harder to see God work, but as I see this, that is just my lack of understanding and my own ignorance of God and not necessarily a sign of God’s absence.

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