MInTheGap

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

The Modern Christian

May 11th, 2018 Viewed 70 times

One of the catalysts of the creation of this nation was the fact that two very divergent belief systems were rising on the European continent.

One of them was the Reformation. Lead by men with famous names like Martin Luther, John Huss, John Calvin, Tyndale and the rest, these men wanted to get the Bible into the hands of the normal people, to let them read the Word of God in their own tongue and to remove from the readings the traditions and false teachings that had spread up in the years since Jesus had left the Earth.

The other was the Enlightenment. This was a strand of people that had taken to science and human understanding to explain those things around them. It was from here that many sought to rationalize the church’s teachings, and it culminated with Charles Darwin’s “On the Origin of the Species” where man had finally found a way to define his existence without the need for God.

While Christians have been battling over whether Evolution as it is taught today is in the Bible or not, what they have somewhat missed is that they have not seen the way that the secularists have shaped the way that we think about our world, and have thereby challenged the Bible and its teachings in such a way that we now attempt to understand our Bible and its commands through a modern and secular lens. This is contrary to what the Word of God teaches us about truth, history and reality.

Closing Thoughts on God’s Will

May 10th, 2018 Viewed 85 times

So, in closing, think on these questions…

  • Do I spend time in the Word so I know where God is going?
  • Do I have some sin in my life that is hindering my ability to know God’s will?
  • Am I currently bearing the weight of sins in the past?
  • Have I confessed them, and begged for mercy in the situation I now see myself faced?
  • How can I best glorify God in a given situation?
  • Do I realize what that sin that have is doing to those that God has placed in my trust?

As a Person and As a Prince

May 9th, 2018 Viewed 64 times

In order to know how to evade his plight, David looked at it the plight in two different ways– as a person and as a prince.

As a person, David clung to the fact that God was merciful, compassionate and just. His unchanging nature condemned David when he was in sin . David could cling to that nature when he was in trouble.David knew that if he put his faith in the Lord, if He trusted in God alone, God would have to get the glory and God would take care of him.

We were created to glorify God. Man, through choosing to take of the fruit of the tree of knowledge of good and evil, chose to be as gods and exalt themselves. This has been what is out of whack since the beginning– as God the Creator / Owner / Sustainer of all life has sought the glory rightfully His and we have sought our own glory. Too often this is the reason that we miss God’s will– because we’re more concerned about ourselves than we are about God getting glory. So God has to take us to a place where we can do nothing but glorify Him.

When Do You Have the Best Handle on God’s Will?

May 8th, 2018 Viewed 57 times

Two Different Times for me

After the situation has come and gone. When I’m looking back we can see with better clarity that truly God was working in the event and that He arranged thing correctly.

The other type of time is when there’s no other thing to do but to turn to Him. Many people down through the ages have had to rely totally on God, and many people that were used mightily of Him were brought low first.

Paul Demonstrates these two

Before Paul could be a servant of the Most High God, he had to become blind and be lead around. He was also given a thorn in the flesh which he asked God to remove three times– which God denied. Paul told us the secret– that God’s power is able to work in our infirmities.

Many years before Paul, David had situations where God’s will and the pursuit of it moved from the academic to the practical. In Psalm 25, David was in a plight, and we learn that from verses 15-19.

Submission to God’s Will

May 4th, 2018 Viewed 94 times

The next concept that we must master when seeking God’s will according to the passage is that of being submissive to that will once it is made known.

In Psalm 25:9, David underscores this point.

Why would God want to respond to a call for His leading when He knows you won’t follow it? J. B. Phillips, who is the author of a commentary on Psalms has this illustration:

A young believer comes to a counselor for guidance as to whether she should marry Sammy. The counselor asks: “Is he a Christian?” She says: “Oh yes. He’s a wonderful Christian. He never goes to church or reads his Bible but he’s a wonderful Christian.” The counselor says “If he’s not a born-again believer God says that you should not marry him. The Bible says you are not to be unequally yoked together with an unbeliever.” But that is not what Maggie wants to hear, so she goes off and marries Sammy anyway. Maggie might be saved herself but she certainly was not submissive to the Word of God. Any guidance in her case is not only useless, it is incriminating.

David Teaches Us God’s Leading

May 3rd, 2018 Viewed 120 times

Who was better equipped than David to teach us about God’s leading? (I guess you could answer “Christ”– being very God Himself, but I mean of the human with the capability to sin variety.)

David’s History

David started out on the fields of his father Jesse. From there he was chosen to be king of Israel, but only after all of his brothers were passed over. From there, he conquered Goliath at God’s leading, and then spent years being chased by Saul. He went into battle and expanded the empire, and even after he sinned and was paying the penalty, the Lord was still leading.

It is obvious that no man can be lead of God without a saving relationship with Him. That’s why Jesus came– so that we could have fellowship with the Father.

Apart from this relationship, we wander in darkness. Ephesians 4:17ff talks about how Gentiles (or those without a relationship with God) walk in blindness, in darkness.

Why are they such? Because they only have their internal feelings to guide them. What is right in their own eyes is what is right to them.

Psalm 25 – Seeking God’s Will Like King David

May 1st, 2018 Viewed 128 times

In Psalm 25 we see David asking for guidance. In the modern day more and more people are seeking God’s will. In a way, this is a puzzling phenomenon– not because we should not want God’s will, but because we seem to have more and more people that don’t seem to know what it is.

How many times is this story true of us or someone we know:

Walter Knight told of an old Scottish woman who went from home to home across the countryside selling thread, buttons, and shoestrings. When she came to an unmarked crossroad, she would toss a stick into the air and go in the direction the stick pointed when it landed.

One day, however, she was seen tossing the stick up several times. “Why do you toss the stick more than once?” someone asked. “Because,” replied the woman, “it keeps pointing to the left, and I want to take the road on the right.” She then dutifully kept throwing the stick into the air until it pointed the way she wanted to go!” (Today in the Word, May, 1989.)

We want a clear sign, and usually we want it in our way. David too was looking for God’s will, and I think we can learn a lot from Psalm 25 about how to go about looking for God’s Will.

Journey with me this week as we look at how we should seek the will of the Lord, like King David.

Discipleship Practiced

April 27th, 2018 Viewed 79 times

What we are doing today?

Lots of modern church practices do not work:

  • It doesn’t work by expecting the Pastor to do all the leading to Christ and discipling.
  • It doesn’t work by attending multiple church services and not growing.

It doesn’t work if people do not live out their faith.

A lot of Christian ministry is based on getting converts. In the 1900s, Evangelists seems more interested in getting people to walk the aisle to count them and their impact than to make disciples. A lot of modern evangelist training focuses heavily on methods of sharing the Gospel in hopes of seeing “people accept Jesus”. It emphasizes “fire insurance” over making disciples. Because of this, the person may not be aware of what they are “signing up” for.

“Discipleship” is often not much more than having someone go through a short book talking about the basics of the faith. It’s almost like initiation into a secret society or club with code words.After  this discipleship class, the new believer is thrown into the main Sunday School classes and Worship Services with people that have had years of training, but the mentoring (in some cases) stops.

How the Biblical Definition Differs

photo by: Chris Yarzab

What Value is Tradition in Reading the Bible?

April 26th, 2018 Viewed 99 times

Typically, those that find themselves not in the Eastern Wing of Christendom (Roman Catholics and the Eastern Orthodox) do not place a lot of emphasis on tradition. In fact, it’s one of the talking points about why those of the Protestant persuasion believe that they are closer to what the Bible actually teaches. And yet, in the article Why Protestants Need to Use Tradition When They Read Their Bibles I find myself agreeing with the overall point– that when we totally divest ourselves of the interpretations and understandings of the saints that have come before us, we may fall prey to errors in our understanding simply because we see the Bible through the culture that we now live in.

photo by: DrGBB

Discipleship Modeled

April 26th, 2018 Viewed 143 times

What does Christian Discipleship look like?

The idea of having disciples or apprentices was not a new one to the time. In fact, our modern forms of education would look foreign and wrong to people who passed on their skills to primarily their children and a few other apprentices. It was very common for parents to teach their sons their trade, and then, if they wanted to learn another one, they would always have their primary trade to fall back upon.

If you were headed in a Spiritual direction, you would learn in Scriptures occurred at the feet of a rabbi. This is what Paul is referring to in Acts 22:3 that his heritage was who he grew up under. This is why it wasn’t unheard of to have Jesus choose disciples, for many learned Rabbis would have disciples that would learn what they knew to follow in their footsteps.

photo by: Chris Yarzab

MInTheGap

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