Death is quite the undertaking. To die when one wants desperately to go on living is the most gruesome kind of labor any of us will ever know. It’s painful and bloody and empties our pockets of the fortune we think is ours. But we must do it.
Paul gives instruction on how to deal with those with “weak faith”. How should we view Christians who are comfortable using their freedom in ways that others are not? Why should we refrain from judging one another? What does it mean that all give an account to God? What does it mean to put a stumbling block in front of your brother?
You will not read articles about how Jesus is a “life coach” that just wants to help you get ahead in life. You will not hear teaching that leaves you with the impression that God is stuck in heaven fretting over the world as he looks down in anxiety, just hoping someone will do enough to get the blessing…
God makes sure that Israel understands why He destroyed certain nations and why He gave them the promised land. Is the Old Testament about works while the New Testament is about grace? What does God mean that people are stubborn and stiff-necked? Is there anything more stubborn than sinners?
We will look at the command to love, in the Law of God. Innumerable, endless, are the books and doctrines produced for the direction of man's conduct. And there is still no limit to the making of books and laws. Note the ecclesiastical and civil regulations, the spiritual orders and stations.
Many children’s Bible Story books put it this way: “People everywhere were bad, but Noah was good.” But Noah was “good” not because he wasn’t “bad,” but because he believed in the good One whom his father had mistaken him for—the promised seed.
Do you remember fairy tales? Tales of magical creatures and far away fantasy lands? They were legends of lore that included dragons, magic, a moral to the story or a hero saving the day. I am a history nut and love the old stuff. I am willing to bet that when you reflect on what are considered to be a fairy tale classics…
If vengeance belongs to God how should we deal with evil? If the church deals in sin and grace how does crime and punishment work? How is the law useful in society? If all authority is from God, what about tyrannical leaders? What does it mean to make no provision for the flesh?
I'm firing on all cylinders when my head hits the pillow. Does that happen to you? I’ll replay my failures from the day, especially the embarrassing ones. I shouldn’t have said that. What was I thinking?Was I too rude to that person? Was that the right response? I hope they didn’t take what I said the wrong way.
Forgiveness. Reconciliation. They are beautiful notions until we have some reconciling and forgiving to do. It is easy to say we believe in forgiveness. Quick is the silver tongue that speaks the, “I forgive you.” Slow are the feet of clay which shamble ever so slowly and cautiously toward the behavior that follows forgiveness.