MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.

We Need to Be Faithful in the Wilderness

July 6th, 2018 Viewed 64 times, 1 so far today

As the children of Israel were poised to enter the promised land, God charged Joshua in what he should do in the process of retaking the land. This would not be one battle and done, as there were many city states within the area and he would have to defeat one after the other, but God commanded him to get moving and before telling him to be strong and courageous he told him that he needed to meditate day and night in the word of the Lord so that he could do according to what was written in it.

We need to be faithful in the wilderness so that when the time comes we will be mighty when we are called to action!

photo by: mypubliclands

Christian Growth Happens in the Mundane

July 5th, 2018 Viewed 78 times, 1 so far today

Dr. Jim Berg wrote that stress shows our true character, like a tea bag placed in hot water.

I would like to add that the mundane also shows our character, because it is itself stressful. The Bible teaches that it often takes time to see God’s will for our life.

Abraham waited 25 years between the time that God promised Abraham to be a great nation and when Isaac was born. Moses took 40 years in the wilderness before he was ready to lead the children of Israel, at the age of 80. Joseph spent a long time as a slave of Potiphar and then in Pharaoh’s prison before seeing the vision he had come true.

It was 400 years from Malachi to John the Baptist!

Jesus waited 30+ years before starting his ministry. He has left, and will one-day return, but it has been close to 2000 years!

photo by: mypubliclands

Righteousness is Tested in the Mundane

July 4th, 2018 Viewed 73 times

From the moment they left Goshen to the time when they first got to the Promised Land and sent the spies in was over a year. I don’t know that I can even fathom taking a trip where the destination was a year away!

God provided abundantly for their clothes did not wear out, and their shoes did not wear out. Yet even with this provision, time hurt their testimony.

Exodus 16 – 2 months and 15 days have passed

It has been that long since the plagues and the deliverance through the Red Sea. The Red Sea was firmly in the rear-view mirror, the supplies that they had brought out of Egypt were low, and there were many people to feed. The children of Israel started to grumble (vs 2)

God hears the complaints and offers a solution. He provides manna in the morning and quail at night, with the condition that they only pick up enough for a day. They would always have all they could want/need. Yet some still fail by gathering too much.

photo by: mypubliclands

Life is Lived in the Mundane

July 3rd, 2018 Viewed 66 times

Exodus 12:40-41 – The Israelites had spent years in 430 years in Egypt. From the time of Joseph to the time of Moses, while the Pharaoh knew Joseph, the children of Israel were treated fairly, but then they were treated as slaves.

Think again through 400 years…

If the average person lives to 70, that is almost 6 generations that lived in Egypt. Each of these generations lived, married, had children, worked in Egypt doing shepherding and then working as slaves! How easy would it be to forget God, the promised land, or the promises made to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob?

This was before the law, before the feasts and Passover. The only decree was circumcision, and they knew to keep their line pure (which would have been helped by Egyptian distain of them).

photo by: mypubliclands

This Week’s Verses are Matthew 5:16 and Matthew 6:33 #VersesForTheWeek

July 2nd, 2018 Viewed 75 times

Here they are in KJV:

Matthew 5:16 – Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
Matthew 6:33 -But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

And ESV:

Matthew 5:16 -In the same way, let your light shine before others, so that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven.
Matthew 6:33 – But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Through the Wilderness

July 1st, 2018 Viewed 72 times

Vietnam, Korea, Kennedy Assassination, Watergate, Challenger, 9/11. Every generation lives through events that mark them. Where people remember where they were and what was going on. The colors are vivid, the emotions real, and they have dramatic impact on our lives.

Yet someday, these events will find their way into history books that our children or grandchildren will read about and it will be reduced to the key facts, some dates, and a high-level interpretation spun by whomever is writing the text book.

I believe that we often approach the history books of the Bible in a sanitized way—thinking of them as facts and figures, highlighting the high points and low points, and seeing things that occurred over longer periods of time happening over short periods of time because of their proximity on the page. It makes us lose sight of the fact that life was lived and causes us to judge people differently than if we had lived through the same thing.

Journey back with me to the Old Testament, as we go Through the Wilderness and see how what the children of Israel endured and did reflects our own patterns and behaviors today.

photo by: mypubliclands

Light out of Darkness – Conclusion

June 30th, 2018 Viewed 85 times

Conclusion

As we walk away from these first few verses of the book of John’s Gospel, let us marvel anew about who Jesus is. He is God, who came in the flesh to dwell among us. He is God, the one who Created all things. He is God, the light that came into the darkness and lights the way to salvation.

May we be worthy to carry that light into the darkest places, the places where the truth needs to be heard, and to share that light so others may see and glorify Him.

photo by: Kevin M. Gill

Light out of Darkness – The Gospel of John is Not About John

June 29th, 2018 Viewed 76 times, 1 so far today

The Gospel of John is not about John

Each of the four gospels is geared toward a specific audience.

  1. Matthew – Christ as King
  2. Mark – Christ as Servant
  3. Luke – Christ as Man

Written between 85 and 95 AD, John’s book is the most theological of the bunch, written to teach us that Jesus is God. The focus of the book is not on the author. He’s an eyewitness and the beloved disciple.

photo by: Kevin M. Gill

Light out of Darkness – Jesus is the Word

June 28th, 2018 Viewed 59 times

He is the Eternal Word

He existed with God at the beginning, not because He was created then, but because He is eternal. The word “was” in the first verse in the imperfect tense, which focuses on continual existence in past time. In contrast with the aorist tense in v. 3 talking about something that happened once in the past.

This echoes Jesus very claim about Himself (John 8:48-58). In response to the Jews asking about Jesus casting out a demon, Jesus said that Abraham would have rejoiced to see His day. When they challenge Him, He responds with “before Abraham was, I AM.”

John is here, telling us exactly who the Word was. There is no clearer verse than this on the Divinity of Jesus. This verse had to be rewritten the Jehovah Witness bible to say was “a god” because they do not believe Jesus is God. The fact that Jesus was God makes it so that the eternal punishment of our sin could be paid. Only the blood of the Eternal Son of God could pay the eternal price of the sin of mankind. Only God could fulfill the entire law.

photo by: Kevin M. Gill

Light out of Darkness – Jesus is the Light of the World

June 27th, 2018 Viewed 58 times

Jesus is the Light of the World

John begins the book by taking us back to the very beginning

Genesis 1:2 – God creates light out of darkness

“God created light to serve as a boundary to darkness. Here light is not only instantly linked to God’s presence but also institutes time and order over the chaos of the formless void. God creates a functioning, orderly environment for people, and the creation of stars gives humanity seasons and cycles of time by which to order their lives. The link of light with the Creator also acts as a symbolic tie between light and life. If light symbolizes God’s presence, and God is the author of life, then surely where God is, life abounds.” – Lexham Bible Dictionary

Light is created before the current orbs of light we have in the sky. John is making a statement about who Jesus is by tying Him to the Creation and calling Him the light.

Darkness is not an equal to the light, it cannot comprehend or overcome the light (vs 4). The darkness is beholden to the light. The light and the darkness are not equal powers. Walking in the light is equated to walking in God’s purposes. Those that walk in darkness have seen a great light (Isaiah 9:2). Light is also linked to concepts of wisdom, understanding and character.

If God’s presence is light and life, then opposition to Him brings darkness and death. If condemnation and death are spoken of as darkness, then salvation from these evils is also spoken in terms of light. Thus also God Himself … becomes a light leading a person out of darkness, toward salvation. The tone of confidence that pervades the [Old Testament Scripture] demonstrates that there is no doubt that God’s presence as light will conquer and even eliminate the darkness. Old Testament prophesies of the ultimate restoration of God’s people are full of the language of light and dawn.

This ties into various Prophecies…

Isaiah 60:1-3 – Darkness shall cover the earth, but light will shine forth such that the Gentiles shall come to your light.

The light will shine out of the darkness and it will be so bright that it will make you bright and the Gentiles bright.

Ezekiel 43:2, 5 – God’s glory will shine in the east and His glory will be seen.

Ezekiel is in Babylonian captivity at the time. The light of God’s glory in Jerusalem is seen from there.

In New Testament times teaching was often layered and calling back to previous things that people would have known growing up

While the words of the opening of the Gospel of John are powerful in themselves, John means something more.John is calling forth the prophecies of the Light coming forth out of darkness to tell us something about this Word that became flesh and dwelt among us.The readers of John’s Gospel would know that John was saying that Jesus is

  • God
  • Salvation
  • Hope
  • The Promised One

John the Baptist

John the Apostle wants to make sure that we make a distinction between John the Baptist and Jesus. John’s light is not of His own, he is witness to the light. He is like the moon, reflecting the light.

Our job as believers is to reflect the light, because we are not the light:

  • No matter how smart we are
  • No matter how successful we are by the world’s standards
  • No matter the size of the people that listen to us
  • No matter the size of our Facebook followers

We are simply servants who are trying to show others salvation and the Master. We are witnesses to the Light, trying to share that Light with others.

photo by: Kevin M. Gill

MInTheGap

Standing in the Gap in a Society that's Warring with God.