Posts Tagged Bible

Good Works?

I was just reading the bible this morning, and after completing John, Jesus’ words echoed in my head, as He said in several different ways

“If you love Me, you will keep My commandments” (John 14:15).

It should be very simple to ascertain that when Jesus repeats Himself several times in several different ways, especially in the critical time just before He was betrayed and gave Himself over to be executed, that it is very important.  It is also important to note that moments earlier He said:

“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another, even as I have loved you, that you also love one another.  By this all men will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.” (John 13:34, 35).

I believe that this “new commandment” He gave is to add back the lost frame of love that all the commandments were intended to have from the beginning, and all of these commandments He is referring to should be framed in this same love for one another.

On to my main point.  I decided to head back to Matthew, and read all of Jesus words, searching out what His commandments were, so that I can keep His commandments in the most real and practical way that I understand and have the ability to do.  So I read through “The Beatitudes”, which I have come to understand are more of a section of speaking where Jesus gives the true orientation of God, His kingdom, and His people.  It is not a list of things to do, or I would quickly go find someone to morn, try and find a way to become poor in spirit, or find a situation where I could become persecuted for righteousness, and insulted because of Jesus, and that just does not make sense.  Orientation of the hearers is very important, and so Jesus blesses them with the revelation of the true reality, quite opposing to what they have been shown by the world they lived in at that moment.

The first section that looks to be an actual command is Matthew 5:16, where He says:

“Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven”

So how do I put this into practice?  What good have I done?  What good works?  I have been studying for some time and have learned that God is at work all around us, all of the time.  I am blessed to have been able to see God powerfully at work around me each time He has shown me, and He has sown me several times.  But that is His work, not mine, I did not do it, but I was graced to see it.  I do my best to join Him where ever I see Him at work, but so often those are not public activities, but more of private situations and conversations with random people.  I do help out with the church website for Edmonds Adventist Church (, and I also put the Weekly Sermon Podcast and other special series up online.  I also do this blog, and I do have some mention of God in it, and what ever else comes to mind that I am working through with Him or in life.  I think that is as close to this first commandment that I can get right now.  I am not doing it for myself, at least I do not think that I am.  I really do hope that if someone were to read the things I write, that it will do them some good, maybe bring them to think, and it would be totally cool if people would look to God and thank him for something that they got in any relation to something I did.

On to the point where I turn what I have done to God, for His glory.  I enjoy being able to make available the sermons and special series from Edmonds Adventist Church.  It is a blessing to me to be able to put these things up online knowing that God can use it for His will, if He chooses to do so.  It is exciting, and priceless to hear that God has used some of the things I put online, to change or better someone’s life, where they were able to move forward with God in some way, or forward in life in a good way.  This is one of those “treasures” that no one can steal, it will never rust, and moths will not destroy it.  It is one of those “treasures in heaven”.  It is a blessing to me, and I pray it is a blessing to others.  It is exciting to join God where He is at work, and I do know that He is at work in the Edmonds Adventist Church, that is why I am there.

Keep your eyes open for where God is at work, and then join Him where you find Him working.  It is not easy, it takes a lot of work, time, and willingness to change, but most good things are not easy, and take a lot of time and effort.  The cool thing is, nothing can ever take it away from you, it will never get old, these joys will not need an upgrade in the future in order for them to be of any use, they will never burn up in a fire, and you can never loose them.  It still seems very odd for me to look at things this way, but I would just suggest you try it.

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What is Infallible?

We are the Israelites telling Moses to go up and deal with You…  We want the bible to tell us all truth, but that is not enough, we need You!

We want to believe and tell people that the bible is written practically by Your hand, and is infallible, because we can not bare dealing with uncertainty, or with having to ask for Your help to find the truth.  We are afraid of the uncertain, perhaps we are afraid to talk to you directly.  Maybe we want to feel bigger, so we say these words are perfect and directly written by You through the prophets.  We want to be able to say we have all the answers for you, here read in this book.  But in reality, we do not have all the answers, the book is just written by people who love you and worked with you directly, but they are just imperfect men, and imperfections reflect in the words they write.  Perceptions that the writers had, those were their perceptions, formed by the society they lived in at the time.

Point being, we need YOU God, to be with us through all growth, learning, and reading, yes, even the bible.  That is why some people can memorize word for word, and quote so much from the bible and be empty of truth, because like You said, You yourself are truth.

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Jonathan’s Thoughts on Ephesians

Current mood:refreshed

I am slowly working my way from the beginning of the bible to the end of the bible, and I just finished Ephesians today.  Here are some thoughts that came to mind when reading Ephesians 5 this morning:

Come to understand these ideas of your own heart guided by the Holy Spirit to see that they are good, and so that you do them out of love for God, not simply out of obedience of the rules for the rule’s sake.  Rules and guides passed on from one person to another are but empty without the understanding that the Holy Spirit gives, and just as children grow to become adults, and realize the wisdom behind the rules they were taught, we too must grow in Christ, and gain the understanding, to build our foundation on Him, with his guidance.  Each one of us, if seeking God with all our heart, mind, body, soul, and strength, will find God, and his good will, and we will be guided to do what is good and right in His eyes.  We need but ask, and we shall receive.

I must say I liked Ephesians, it was well written.  There is a lot to be said for being given time alone to think and spend time with God, even if it is in prison.

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Jonathan’s Christian Beginnings

Current mood:calm

Out of nowhere, thoughts come into my head, like a conversation between two people, I think things over in my head, and my ideas and understandings are revised.  Time and time again, as I work through things in my mind, I get these realizations, where I understand something just a little bit better, or something I have been wondering about all of a sudden makes perfect sense.  Just yesterday I was thinking about religion, and how I used to look at it, and how it was the wrong way to look at it.  From my point of view it was passed down to me by family and church as this set of rules, things that I could and could not do.  It also included many things that I had to do if I wanted to be a Christian.  I get the feeling that I am not the only one who had that idea.  Now I have a totally different perspective, and I was thinking about how I had viewed religion in the past, and I realized that was not at all what it was suppose to be.  Now I know it is about having a relationship with God, that is where it begins, that is where it always seems to begin.  Here is a fragment of my thoughts as I jotted them down:

Its not the rules, the rules have nothing to do with it, my perspective changes, my desires change, and I just end up doing what I am impressed is the right thing to do.  It just so happens that the rules are going along with what I am finding is right.  But I have thrown away the rules, walked up to God, and asked him to guide me, that is the only way for me to go.  To throw away these sick twisted dirty rags tainted by man’s hands, and to start over with God.  I do not want a relationship with rules, I want a relationship with God.  Do not let the rules of a given religion or the ways of man taint your view of God, who is perfect and good.

Now I must comment on that, I have held onto many rules, but only the ones where it says in the bible that God gave them to man.  I am not saying that I did not break some of them, because I have, I am far from perfect.  What I am saying is that it is a relationship with God which is the beginning, that is where we need to start.  Following the rules does not come first, they are only a symptom of loving God and developing a relationship with Him.  I do not follow any of these rules because I have to, I choose to follow rules because they are good and right, and I want to follow them.

Also, when I say “I have thrown away the rules”, I am meaning all of the rules put together by various members of the Christian religion that I believe have deviated from God’s good rules and plans he has laid out for us.  I am now moving forward with a sincere interest in searching out God’s plans for us, and the guides he has laid out.  Just as people have done in the bible, I am searching out his decrees and precepts.

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Obi-Wan, You Are My Only Hope!

Current mood:annoyed

I am back in Everett, I have been here since the beginning of this year.  I have met up with old friends, many of them.  Things change, I change, a little bit here and there, over the years it adds up, maybe I am a different person.  I still love and care for people, I still love to have fun, I love to do new things, meet new people.  My values have been strengthened, my direction chosen, I now know what I want, and I know what I do not want.  And ok, maybe I grew up a little tiny bit, but not too much.  I suppose there is one very big thing that has changed, I now have a strong faith in God.  I know that may sound strange to some, it sounds great to others, and there are some that would be scared, or even angry.  Before you take that and think that I no longer do this, or I no longer eat that, try asking me first, because it might surprise you.  Let’s just say I don’t value all of these rules that man made up.  I guess what I am getting at is that in this world that some say is overpopulated, in this city of nearly 100,000, I feel a bit alone.  Don’t get me wrong, I am not crying myself a river, I am just a little annoyed.  Where is everyone?

Well, I have grown tired of humoring my ex-girlfriend’s alternate personality, even though it is a bit amusing.  I am going to get some reading done, I am half way through the bible, and have all but the first chapter of “Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire” to read.

Lord, you are my only hope,
everything else washes away as the sand with the waves.
The things of this world come and go like the pulsing tide.
Lord, let me be content with what you have given me,
nothing matters more than you.

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I Am Not A Caveman, I Just Have Rugged Good Looks

Current mood:annoyed

The other thing that is going on in my life which is sorta big, is that I am learning that the evolution theory is wrong.  There are so many things that while growing up, just did not make sense to me, and now that I am looking around, I am finding out why.  The flood happened, and before it happened, people existed (some very big) as did giant animals and plants, the entire world was beautiful and green even the north and south poles, and humans, animals, and plants are not accidents.  Time, the sun and the elements break down everything, things fall apart, they don’t get better, or accidentally more complexly organized.  Mutations never result in some sort of good thing for a plant or animal, nor does any plant or animal produce a new kind of plant or animal.  Variations exist, but no matter what shape or size a dog is, it is still a dog.  All one has to do is look back in history and find that when scientists come up with big claims about things they can not prove, they are very often wrong, but people of that time still defend the theories to the death.  The world is flat, the sun orbits the earth, and the moon is made of cheese.  Prove the accuracy of carbon dating, as in test it on objects that we already know the age of to gauge its accuracy, then if it is accurate on that object, then you can use it to tell how old some things are, but only to the maximum proven accuracy, nothing more is scientific, it is speculation built on assumption that things in the past are just as they are today, and once again, in the nature of science, I say prove it.  Another thing to ponder is that if you follow the evolution theory, there can not be missing links.  Unless a monkey gives birth to at least 2 humans, or some other animal gives birth to multiple of a completely different type of animal, it can not happen.  There has to be multiple, because otherwise the new type of animal could not propagate its own species, very simple, and just like a monkey and a dog can not have sex and make a monkey-dog, there are boundaries that prevent things like that from happening.  With that idea out of the way, lets go the slowly changing over time, well there you go, no missing links, there would be tons of fossil evidence to support the entire evolutionary chain, a smooth tiny change over billions of years producing billions of different fossils that can be dug up and used to prove evolution, but there are not.  Cave men? Ha, yeah, well take a look around you today, I know of many people that if they found their bones, they would mistake them for cave men too just by their shape, but they are just a little funny looking, still people, nothing weird about variation.  Why do so many people believe in evolution? read grade school and high school text books, you fill find evolution along with many things proven wrong over the years, still being taught to students.  Evolution is dangerous, all you have to do is follow its origins and its supporters, look at what they wrote, and how they used it to justify what they did.  Read Hitler’s hit list found in the book “The Hitler Movement” on page 107, it is based on evolution.  Ok, I started ranting, sorry, but it is really interesting stuff, but people are too busy to go out and dig this information up for themselves, and where does that leave us, directly in the hands of those who provide us with our day to day media, and what we are taught in our schools.  It would be nice if just the facts were taught in school, but evolution, which is a religion which takes so much faith considering it is based on people’s made up ideas which can not be proven, seems to be what the powers that be, want us to learn.  People should not discount God so easily (or at all) just because of some guy who made up a theory, and mixed in a bit of truth to make it believable.

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