Bible Study Blog

MISS THE MARK

I went to my daughter’s school awards ceremony a couple of days ago. I was struck by the fact that there was a “B” honor roll, and that there was an honor roll for each semester. Are we really telling kids that they can do less than stellar work for only part of the year and still be on the honor roll? In my school growing up, if you didn’t maintain a straight “A” report card all year long, you didn’t make the honor roll. When did we start telling our children that all they have to do is be slightly above average, and they get honored for that? 

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Love Yourself to Love Others Better

I know some people, me included, that struggle with truly loving themselves. I am not meaning that we hate ourselves. We just struggle with loving ourselves by liking who we are instead of wishing to be something else. Some of us also struggle with loving ourselves by not forgiving ourselves when we make mistakes. Instead we rehash the mistakes over and over, wishing we could go back in time and have a “do-over.” There are also some of us that struggle with loving ourselves because we are afraid that we will end up becoming prideful and start having the worldly self-love of caring about themselves more than we care about anyone else or esteeming oneself above others.

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UNLEARNING THE WORLD

 have often heard it said that the most difficult thing about learning something new is unlearning what we already know in the first place. The willingness to jettison long-held ideas and beliefs, even when confronted with clear evidence to the contrary, is indeed difficult. Why is that?

In the Bible is a story of a man who, though incontrovertible truth of God as the only true and living God was presented to him, his unwillingness to unlearn what he believed to be truth destroyed an entire nation. 

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Stand Tall

 

I know that I have said this many times before, but I will say it again, life is hard sometimes. Maybe hard doesn’t have the punch it should, but I am a Christian blogger, so I will stay with the word “hard.” I don’t know anyone who hasn’t gone through at least one tragedy. In fact many people close to me are going through some type of trial. Some of the trials, on a scale of one to ten, maybe are only at a four, but I have people close to me that are going through trials that are beyond ten, in my opinion.

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MADE TO BE LOVED AND TO LOVE

The Hebrew word used for ‘image’ in Genesis, ‘tselem’, means “resemblance,” or, “representative figure.” In Revelation 1:12-17, there is a description of the resurrected, glorified Jesus Christ. In that description, we see that He has feet, a chest, a head with hair on it, eyes, a voice, hands (the right one is specifically identified), a mouth, and a countenance. Other accounts in Ezekiel and Daniel further show that the “figure” of God is that of what we see when we look at a man.

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God Likes Me

I have turned another year older this week, and I hope that I am a wee bit wiser. When I get close to my birthday, I find myself contemplating the past year. To be honest, since my birthday falls very close to Unleavened Bread, I start introspection at Passover and continue it until my birthday. 

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ENCOURAGING AND BEING ENCOURAGED

During the Days of Unleavened Bread, my wife, daughter, and I had the opportunity to visit with three different congregations, encouraging them, and discussing the meaning of those important days as we celebrated them. We have had the privilege many times to take such trips, with the stated purpose of giving a message of encouragement from the Scriptures, and to fellowship with the brethren.

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Speak No Evil

I have a friend that tries to live his life by the motto, “Speak evil of no one. Speak good of everyone.” It is a very good motto to go by, and it is also Godly. Paul tells Titus, “Remind them to be subject to rulers and authorities, to obey, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to be peaceable, gentle, showing all humility to all men” (Titus 3:1-2, emphasis mine).

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God’s Desire

God desires none to perish (2 Peter 3:9). He desires all to come to repentance and to accept Christ as their Savior. He desires us to love Him with all our heart and soul (Deuteronomy 6:5; Joshua 22:5; Mark 12:30). He desires us to love our neighbor (Leviticus 19:18; Mark 12:31). He also desires us to forgive others (Matthew 6:14-15), to serve (Galatians 5:13), to edify each other (1 Thessalonians 5:11), and many more Godly characteristics.

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I Love To Tell the Story

At a recent Christian Women’s Conference, I had the opportunity to lead the “Get to know you” activities. It is always exciting to bring people together and learn new things about folks you haven’t met before or those you haven’t seen in a long time. The fact that you can get people to become vulnerable and share stories in a place they deem a safe environment is such a freeing experience. When people give a little of themselves, it creates a special bond.

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Are You Neglecting Your Gifts!

Are you using the gifts that God gave you to benefit His word? In the bible God says He’s given each of us a gift that we should use to not only serve one another, but to also serve God & His church! (1 Peter 4:10) Are you using the gifts that God has blessed you with to spread His word? All of us in the church have a gift or a few gifts that God has blessed us with that we can use to grow & spread His word. I guess the biggest question is why God’s people won’t put their gifts in to use for His church/gospel. Why do we give our all at work, but come to services & we’re happy to sit there not really participate?

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THE GIVING AND THE BEING

This coming Sunday evening at sunset, many of us will memorialize the death of our Savior by taking the symbols of the New Testament Passover. We will meet, quietly and reflectively, to review the meaning of these symbols, and participate, by washing one another’s feet (John 13:3-17), eating unleavened bread, and drinking what amounts to a sip of wine (1 Corinthians 11:23-26), to commemorate the killing of Jesus Christ as the perfect, sinless sacrificial Lamb of God (1 Peter 1:19; 1 John 3:5), slain for the sins of mankind (John 1:29; Revelation 5:9).

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“UNFRIENDING” YOUR BROTHER

For those who are on Facebook, we know what it means to “unfriend” someone. On occasion, you will accept someone into your “inner circle” by accepting their friend request, only to find out that they are a person that you have little or nothing in common with. Maybe you knew them in college, but since you saw them last, 20-plus years ago, time and circumstances have led you down different paths.

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There are No What Ifs

I find myself sometimes asking, “What if I had done so and so differently? Where would I be now?” Or “What if such and such didn’t happen?” Basically, I have a tendency to say “what if” as if I could go back and change the present outcome. It is all hypothetical nonsense, really. It also causes me to keep looking backwards instead of watching where I am going, which may cause me to “run” into something or miss out on things right now. The truth is, there are no what ifs, there is only what is.

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A Walk With God

In my morning walk today, thoughts just began to flow and by the end of my walk, I had tears streaming down my face. These tears were a mixture of humbleness and thankfulness, tinged with a bit of sadness and maybe even longing.

Sparked by a blog post and a Facebook post, I had been mulling over thoughts about coming out of a former church organization, the same one these people posted about.

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Two are Better than One

My children wanted to have an unplugged camping trip on our property, meaning no devices, not even a cell phone. They scoped out the spot, planned supplies, put everything together, and set out yesterday to camp. They did have long range walkie-talkies so that I could stay in touch with them. It was so neat watching them go with their backpacks and tents. I am sure it made them feel very grown-up.

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LEANING OUT INTO THE WIND

The smoke stacks at the power plant I worked at were over 600 feet tall. We were building the coal-fired plant and we had to line the inside of both stacks with brick. There was a cable drawn elevator for hauling people, bricks, and mortar that went all the way to the top on the inside of the stack. One of the workers told me, “If you stand out on the edge of the stack on top, the wind is so strong that you can lean out into the wind and not fall.” Visions of what would happen if the wind stopped raced through my mind, but, I guess there was no real danger of that happening in Wyoming. I never tried it because I was not allowed on the elevator. But, crazy as it may seem, I always wanted to. As a young man, I was a risk-taker. It is amazing I have lived as long as I have.

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Growing Your Talents

This past weekend I attended the New Church Lady Women’s Conference in Lindale, TX. I also was given the opportunity to speak during the conference. The conference was great. It was uplifting and edifying. I always enjoy meeting new people and catching up with those that I already know. It is also a blessing to be able to visit and learn from each other. It is a rejuvenation for our Christian walk.

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SHOWING THE FACE OF OUR FATHER

Every boy looks up to his father, and when he is young, wants to be just like him. I believe that is something that God placed into boys. Boys want to be like their father, and girls want to be like their mother. Unfortunately, as boys become young men, and girls become young ladies, all too often they don’t want to emulate their parents. Why is that? Because Satan is trying to destroy the family, and because as humans we are imperfect.

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What’s Your Standard?

It is becoming increasingly obvious that many people seem to have the inability to listen. Unless the news is exaggerating about how people are behaving these days, it seems that a lot of people want to be heard, but they are unwilling to calmly listen to the opposing side. This in turn creates a shouting match of chaos. The real problem is people want others to treat them in a way that they are unwilling to treat others. The idea of, you listen to me only and do not attempt to disagree.

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