Wednesday, September 28, 2011
1) Love is not emotion, but action.
The word "love" which is thrown about so freely in English, has a special meaning in Hebrew. Love in Hebrew is "Ahava" , which is made up of three basic Hebrew letters, . These three letters actually are broken down into two parts: a two letter base or root, , and the first letter, , which is a modifier. The meaning of the two letter base, , is "to give". The letter "aleph" , which precedes these two letters comes to modify the meaning of the base word, "give". The meaning of , is "I give" and also "love". We now see the connection between the two words, "I give" and "love". Love is giving. Not only is love giving, but the actual process of giving develops the very connection between the giver and the receiver. So when it says in the Bible: Love your enemies, we can see this as not an impossible goal, but an attainable one. The emotion love can't be forced, it can't be mimicked. But if we take the Hebrew meaning of love, we can love our enemies by our actions towards them. To act out of love.
2) Love is not conditional, but unconditional.
The people we most often have disagreements with, are the ones we love the most. Have you ever thought about that? Why is that? It's because we have the security that no matter how much
we mess up or hurt the other person, they will still love us. God's love for us is a perfect example of this. If his love was conditional, how many people would end up in heaven? no one. God wants us to follow his example .We are imperfect beings. We must resolve to try our very hardest to love EVERYONE despite there faults.
3) Love is not manipulation, but humility.
If you truly love me, prove it. If you do this, you will have truly earned my love. LIES. Love should not be under pressure, it should not feel like a requirement. Love is putting other people's desires before your own.
1 Corinthians 13: 4-7 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
4) Love is not sex, but service.
Have you ever noticed that in movies married couples are portrayed as never having sex. It's kind of this idea that once your married your life ends. Single people are the ones who have all the dirty fun. The reality is that married people have more sex than single people. Studies have proven it. People nowadays kind of live out the philosophy that women give sex to attain love and men give love to have sex. Extramarital sex is considered normal. Its a self esteem booster, it makes us feel loved or in some cases is used purely for pleasure. Here is the important thing to understand though, love doesn't=sex. Don't get me wrong, sex is a huge part of showing love to your spouse; but it is not the definition of love. There is way more to love than "making love". Love is being a servant to others & to the Lord.
Genesis 3:16 To the woman he said, "I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you."
1 Timothy 2:11-14 “A woman should learn in quietness and full submission. I do not permit a woman to teach or to have authority over a man; she must be silent” But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. For Adam was first formed, then Eve. And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression.
When I read these verses I feel my heart break a little. I find myself asking God "am I not good enough?" Egalitarianism: the belief that we are all completely & utterly equal, it comes as a breath of fresh air to my soul. I feel myself revived, comforted when i hear that women have just as much right as men to leadership. You know what though? I'm not sure. In fact i don't think anyone is sure. That is why it is such a heated debate. Are women capable ? Is this what God's plan truly is for the World ? What verses should we ignore, and which ones should we apply ? These are all concerns for church leaders who seek to do the right thing . Many argue that women & men were created for distinct roles according to there gifts & abilities. The problem is that i can't think of 1 thing a man can't do that a woman can. Except of course, bear a child; but even this comes with a price since new life brings great pain. Even though it takes two to make a baby women who were involved in adultery or got "knocked up" usually bear the weight of the responsibility . So what does this mean ? Are women little more than servants? Does God give more importance to men? I don't think He does, i truly don't. Even though these "restrictions" God places on women are hard to understand and can even be hurtful i trust that God knows what He is doing.
Humility and the fear of the LORD bring wealth and honor and life
God is asking something of us. ALL of us. Humility. To fear the Lord. Until the debate on woman's role in the church is settled (which i don't know if it ever will be) I think it important to humble ourselves and be grateful for the opportunities the Lord has given us. We can get so caught up in ourselves and wanting to be more that we lose sight of what truly is important, and that is serving the Lord. I can see my gifts and abilities as being wasted due to my gender or i can find another way to use my gifts for His glory. As always, God provides an answer. I can be a missionary. Is it not the same thing ? Bringing people to Christ, encouraging and helping them throughout their spiritual journey? Sure, it doesn't come with a title, but titles mean little to God.
Matthew 20:16 "So the last will be first, and the first will be last."
Have you ever asked yourself who was the greatest christian who ever lived? A few names might come to mind: David, Billy Graham, Mother Theresa, Rick Warren. The answer is no one knows. Maybe the greatest christian who ever lived was a little old lady in a pink sweater who sits in the pew all the way in the back and truly rejoices in serving the lord. Maybe there is no such thing as the greatest christian who ever lived.
God calls us to be fishers of men and what better way to do that than to be a missionary? A calling that can be fulfilled in any circumstance, anywhere; even in your own hometown. God knows, maybe i am totally off on this and he will soon reveal that His plan for women is to become leaders in the church. It is not my place to judge if one of you do seek a career in ministry. It's just something to think about, something to consider. Living a life of love, being a servant.
p.s. my opinions may be subject to change as i become more aware & educated. Please pray for me and my struggles with woman's role in the church (and in life) and that i may keep my sight on what is truly important. Feel free to post any opinions or thoughts you may have on the subject !
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
If you are anything like me, you are probably thinking to yourself, Oh my gosh some studly angel came down from heaven and seduced some 16 year old girl & BAM ! out came Hercules. Even though understanding every minor thing about Genesis is a) impossible b) not relevant to our relationship with God, it is still fun to speculate. The important thing to recognize is that God is not concerned with the how but the when. If He does not clarify, He obviously doesn't think it important for us to understand.
3 theories for sons of God :
1) Sons of God actually refers to sons of the line of Seth. Nephelim would refer to the sons of Seth (through whom the line continues) intermixing with the daughters of Cain (who was cursed) creating offspring unsightly to God.
2) Sons of God = angels. In other parts of the Bible (especially in Job) sons of God refers to angels. A man both human & angel would be considered an abomination. This could be another reason for God wanting to wipe out the Earth through the flood, to rid the Earth of such people.
note: a fault with this theory is that angels do not marry ? Do they have specific genders?
3) The third theory is more recent. Actually the first time i heard of it was when i was in Israel and our tour guide ( a seminary professor who majored in O.T. scripture, especially Genesis) stated that he believed sons of God referred to kings of old. Kings in that time were considered pure and were not supposed to mar there purity through unclean women.
Monday, September 26, 2011
At camp this past summer i had the opportunity to listen to an amazing speaker; Jeremy McAllister. This is what he had to say about why he believed that God is the true creator of this world and the one and only king.
1 Peter 3:15-16 . . If someone asks about your Christian hope, always be ready to explain it. But do this in a gentle and respectful way . . .
Question: Why Do I Believe That There Is A God ?
The Eyeball is to amazingly complex to have happened by accident !
- 1 Million Nerve's form and connect in order in the womb
- The eye is the most advanced piece of technology on earth
Even Darwin admits "The eye to this day gives me a cold shudder"
Animals like the Bombadier Beetle and Giraffe had to exist all at once or not at all. They could not have "evolved"
note : the Bombadier Beetle is a beetle that shoots explosives out of its butt. I'm dead serious . Look it up .
Btw. i personally believe in micro-evolution, but that this points to a creator (God)
Romans 1:20 For ever since the world was created, people have seen the earth and sky. Through everything God has made, they can clearly see His invisible qualities, His eternal power and divine nature. So they have no excuse for not knowing God.
I Believe There Is A God Because God's Creation Is Too Complex To Happen Any Other Way
Question: Why Do I Believe That The Bible Is The Word Of God ?
Isaiah 53 was written by a Shepard in the desert, 700 years before Jesus was born and 400 years before crucifixion was even invented .
1 Who has believed our message
and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot,
and like a root out of dry ground.
He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him,
nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
3 He was despised and rejected by mankind,
a man of suffering, and familiar with pain.
Like one from whom people hide their faces
he was despised, and we held him in low esteem.
4 Surely he took up our pain
and bore our suffering,
yet we considered him punished by God,
stricken by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him,
and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray,
each of us has turned to our own way;
and the LORD has laid on him
the iniquity of us all.
7 He was oppressed and afflicted,
yet he did not open his mouth;
he was led like a lamb to the slaughter,
and as a sheep before its shearers is silent,
so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away.
Yet who of his generation protested?
For he was cut off from the land of the living;
for the transgression of my people he was punished.
9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked,
and with the rich in his death,
though he had done no violence,
nor was any deceit in his mouth.
10 Yet it was the LORD’s will to crush him and cause him to suffer,
and though the LORD makes his life an offering for sin,
he will see his offspring and prolong his days,
and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.
11 After he has suffered,
he will see the light of life and be satisfied;
by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many,
and he will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,
and he will divide the spoils with the strong,
because he poured out his life unto death,
and was numbered with the transgressors.
For he bore the sin of many,
and made intercession for the transgressors.
Question: Why do I believe That Jesus Is The Son Of God ?
It is widely accepted that a man named Jesus truly did exist, but what to do with him ? Most people put Jesus into the "Good Teacher" category. Mark 10:17 As Jesus started on his way, a man ran up to him and fell on his knees before him. “Good teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus messed that all up when he called himself God . John 14:6 Jesus answered, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." Once Jesus called himself God he can no longer be a good teacher. He can only be one of three things. Jesus was either a Liar, a Lunatic or he was Lord .
I believe Jesus was Lord !
Mark 8:29 Then he asked them, "But who do you say I am?" Peter replied, "You are the Messiah."