Archive for the 'Bible verses' Category

25
Aug
12

Jesus and a “Social Gospel”

Over at Huffington Post, Rev. James Martin has “changed” three of Jesus parable to reflect a Gospel that is more palatable for those who don’t feel the need to help the poor and needy because it would only enable them. His re-rendering of Jesus’ parables are quite amusing, but also have the sting of conviction in them.

His three stories are from Mark 2:1-12; Mark 6:30-44; Mark 12:17-31.

06
Dec
11

MMA and Justice

I read an article this morning about a Chicago felon and would-be mugger who attempted his injustice against a trained MMA fighter. Serves this fool right that he got the beating of his life and is now in jail.

This story proves the proverb spoken in Proverbs 21:15 which says,

“When justice is done, it is a joy to the righteous but terror to evildoers.”

31
Oct
11

Creation, Corruption, Rescue, Restoration – Part 3

The story of Cain and Abel tells the greater four-fold story of Scripture which I call Creation, Corruption, Rescue, and Restoration as well. You can read this in Genesis 4. As part of God’s creation, Adam and Eve are having children to fill the earth as God commanded. Their two boys, Cain and Abel bring offerings to worship God. This is a good thing, but God does not accept Cain’s offering though he does accept Abel’s. At this, Cain becomes indignant, and God warn him that Sin was crouching at the door, corruption is within sight. Cain does not heed God’s warning and kills his brother Abel. Corruption brings forth death again. Cain tries to hide his is saying, “Am I my
brother’s keeper?” Abel’s blood cries out for justice, for rescue. Abel’s blood cries out foreshadowing the blood of Jesus that would be spilled in injustice to restore justice. Hebrews 12:24 tells us about this saying, “Jesus, the
mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.” God brings judgment upon Cain and curses him to a life of wandering. But God continues to move toward rescue and restoration. In 4:25-26 we see Adam and Eve have another son, almost as if to replace Abel, and this coincides with a time when men begin to call upon the Lord again.

 

Part One

Part Two

04
Oct
11

What is the bible about?

27
Sep
11

put yourself first

If you spend enough time with someone, eventually they will do something to offend you. The natural tendency is to put yourself first, and focus on the other person’s offense. Yet, for those of us who call ourselves Christians, we must live differently. A great way to think about this is to consider the command of Philippians 2:3-5:

3Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; 4 do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. 5 Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Christ Jesus.

However, there is a time to put yourself first. If you are at odds with someone, if you are in a disagreement or a fight, if you have been offended, this is the time to put yourself first. But, not in the way you may think. Put yourself first by asking, “How have I done wrong?” or “How have I acted in a way opposite of the Gospel and opposite of love?” Sinners tend to respond sinfully when sinned against. Put yourself first and make sure you are properly applying the Gospel in your thoughts, attitudes, words, and action. When we practice forgiveness and help one another grow and learn from our sin, we are living out the Gospel of Jesus. He who died for our sins has promised us resurrection from the consequence of our sin.

We are corrupted by our sin and this extends to our relationships. When (not “if”!) offense comes and we practice Gospel oriented actions, we are acting in a restoring manner, living like we were intended to live. We are those who strive for restoration, not judgment, because this is what Jesus gives us.

26
Sep
11

Creation, Corruption, Rescue, Restoration – Part 2

The first story we encounter in the pages of Scripture is what we might call the “Creation Narrative”. As far as I am concerned, this is Genesis 1-3. You will see the four elements of Creation, Corruption, Rescue and Restoration here in a summary:

Chapter 1 – God creates everything and everything he creates he calls “Good”. In 1:26 Man and Woman are created. They are given dominion and authority over all of the created order. The text is careful to the point of redundancy to make sure we know that Man and Woman are made in God’s own “Image”. They are commanded to be fruitful, subdue the earth, and rule over it. At the end of the 6th day, God looks over everything including Man and Woman and calls it “Very Good”.

Chapter 2 goes back to 1:26-30 and magnifies it do give us more insight and detail. In 2:7-8 God creates the Man and puts him in the garden called Eden. In 2:15-19 we read that God gives man certain commands. He tells him what his role is: to cultivate and keep the garden. He tells him what he must never do: eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. 2:18-23 is about the woman being created. She is said to be man’s helper because man left by himself isn’t a good thing. 2:24 gives us a great verse to read at weddings but it tells us more importantly that once Man and Woman are together, they are one. Then, 2:25 offers us summary and foreshadowing. Even though they were naked, everything was good so there was no shame. God’s created order was just as he intended it to be. Man and Woman lived in the manner in which God intended them to live.

Then Chapter 3 introduces the antagonist, the Serpent. The Serpent deceives the Woman and the Woman and Man together disobey God’s singular command (Remember they are both in the image of God and they are here both corrupting that Image). They eat of the forbidden tree. Suddenly in v7, shame comes upon them and they attempt to hide it. v8-24 then describe the repercussions of Man and Woman’s disobedience. They have corrupted creation. God’s intention for humanity and creation has fallen. Everything is now out of sorts. Man and Woman will have difficulty in relationship to one another, in work, in childbirth because of this corruption. Creation will be resistant to man’s attempt to subdue it and turmoil will result in the created order because of the corruption of sin. Man and Woman experience shame and attempt to hide from God.

But, even in the terrible sorrow that has come with this corruption, there is hope. In 3:15  God says to the Serpent, “And I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your seed and her seed; He shall bruise you on the head, And you shall bruise him on the heel.” The single seed of the woman will step on the head of the Serpent. I understand this to be a primordial reference to the work of Jesus on the cross and in His resurrection. Further pointing to this is 3:21 where God kills animals to cover the shame of Man an Woman’s nakedness. They had previously attempted to cover it with plant leaves, but God requires something more. Death now enters Creation for the first time because of Corruption. But these references in 3:15 and 3:21 are pointing forward to Rescue and Restoration. God will deal with the Serpent through the Seed of the Woman and it will require blood. But, when this happens, humanity and all of Creation will be Restored.

16
Feb
11

Hosea

This past Sunday, I got to preach from the book of Hosea.  If you didn’t get a chance to hear it, check it out here.




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