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 117 times

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 131 times

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 116 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

Light out of Darkness – Conclusion

June 30th, 2018 Viewed 115 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 97 times

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 71 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 74 times, 1 so far today

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

Light out of Darkness

June 26th, 2018 Viewed 88 times

Introduction

When I say C.S. Lewis, many of you would think of the Chronicles of Narnia, and I could blame you because it will soon feel like we’re the ones with 100 years of winter! But Lewis wrote more than these famous children’s books. He also wrote a science fiction space trilogy, and the first book is entitled Out of the Silent Planet.

Like Narnia, these books have allusions to Christianity. The main character, Ransom, travels to the planet Mars where one of the pieces of information that he learns as he’s wandering around is that Earth is called the Silent Planet. This is because Earth had turned evil and rebelled against the ruler of the Universe. Communication with it had become non-existent.

When man fell and cursed Earth, the Earth became bent. Another way to put this is that the Earth went dark, no longer in harmony with its Creator, and without the Creator’s intervention it would be doomed to destruction. With this background, John enters the scene to tell us about that Light that shined out of the darkness.

photo by: Kevin M. Gill

He Did What Was Right – Things That We Keep Inside

June 22nd, 2018 Viewed 80 times

Some kings left idols

What do we leave in our lives?

As you think over these words, is there something in your life that you know shouldn’t be there? Is there something you should get right with a brother? What are you waiting for?

It was easier to leave them there than it was to clean them out. We believe it to be easier to let a sin stay there, and it may be now, but… compared to the effect it will have on our life, is it worth it?

Some kings did right only when right influence was present.

What are you like when you are not at church? What are you like when that godly person isn’t around?

Even David, the standard didn’t do everything right! He had not kept the feast of tabernacles– Nehemiah 8:13-18. They observed it, but did not go out in booths.

If the Bible was still being written, what would God’s comments be about your life? I pray that you’d be mentioned as one that loved the Lord– if you need to have a personal relationship with Him, please see me or a deacon here today. After that, would He say that you did which was right, but…? What would that list look like? Or would He say that you follow Him perfectly?

photo by: jeansman

He Did What Was Right – Even the Good Kings Failed

June 21st, 2018 Viewed 84 times

Some did evil and were punished

When looking back over the kings, even the Good Kings failed. Two were punished with leprosy. David lost control of his kingdom while feeling Absolom. Hezekiah was told that because he showed all of the palace and temple riches to the Babylonians that they would all be gone.

Did you notice?

Some did right, but…

They did like their fathers– they got rid of different levels of sin, but God’s standard was perfection, and they fell short. Many did not remove the the high places. Some were confronted about different things– of which the good ones made it right.

When you think about your life, how do you think you are doing? We have a tendency to compare our lives to those that are doing more open sins, but what is our thought life like? Galatians 6:3 states that a man who thinks that he is something when he is nothing fools himself. It goes on and instructs us to examine our works. We should evaluate how we are doing with God’s Word– His standard, nothing else.

photo by: jeansman

MInTheGap

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