March 4, 2014 Leave a comment
God's Word, Applied!
February 19, 2014 Leave a comment
NOTE: Originally posted on August 1, 2012
Olympic athletes sacrifice so much. Everything they do is directed toward the single goal of winning a medal. They completely amend their diets. They dedicate hours and hours to training. They forego all sorts of things they enjoy — television, movies, family events, vacations — all for the sake of their goal. They uproot their very lives to move to a place where they can obtain better training. They sacrifice just about everything — all for the sake of a trinket.
In 1 Corinthians the apostle Paul compares the dedication of athletes to the dedication of Christians.
“Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one receives the prize? So run that you may obtain it. Every athlete exercises self-control in all things. They do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.” — 1 Corinthians 9:24-25
If an athlete can exercise self-control in all things for the sake of something that will eventually turn to dust, why can’t Christians seem to exercise an equal amount of self-control and dedication for the sake of something that is priceless and eternal?
January 27, 2014 1 Comment
This morning I heard about a woman who wrote an article entitled, “I Look Down on Young Women with Husbands and Kids and I’m Not Sorry.” This drew my attention because it is a direct attack on my wife, Peggy. From a strictly financial/market perspective I will say this: The kind of care and home management my wife provides our family is simply unavailable on the market. I could not find the services she provides anywhere. And, if I could find them, I certainly could not afford them. There is simply no substitute for the love and care of a stay-at-home mom. None.
So, when I heard about this little gem of an article, I thought I might respond. Turns out others already have. I’ll simply refer you to a response by Matt Walsh entitled, “Stay-at-home moms: You don’t owe the world an explanation.“
And, if his response is not enough, I submit to you the Word of God certainly is…
An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
The heart of her husband trusts in her, and he will have no lack of gain.
She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life.
She seeks wool and flax, and works with willing hands.
She is like the ships of the merchant; she brings her food from afar.
She rises while it is yet night and provides food for her household and portions for her maidens.
She considers a field and buys it; with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
She dresses herself with strength and makes her arms strong.
She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
She puts her hands to the distaff, and her hands hold the spindle.
She opens her hand to the poor and reaches out her hands to the needy.
She is not afraid of snow for her household, for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
She makes bed coverings for herself; her clothing is fine linen and purple.
Her husband is known in the gates when he sits among the elders of the land.
She makes linen garments and sells them; she delivers sashes to the merchant.
Strength and dignity are her clothing, and she laughs at the time to come.
She opens her mouth with wisdom, and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
She looks well to the ways of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children rise up and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women have done excellently, but you surpass them all.”
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands, and let her works praise her in the gates. — Proverbs 31:10-31
Never forget, stay-at-home moms, what the world regards as wisdom is foolishness before God. You are likely assaulted daily with messages prompting you to get a “real job.” It is foolishness. You have entered into one of the most noble and most valuable of all professions.
God’s Word trumps it all.
December 23, 2013 Leave a comment
In Luke chapter 12: 35-48 Jesus tells a parable about men waiting for their master to return home from the wedding feast. The men are to be ready to open the door for their master when he knocks — regardless of the time of day.
Peter asks if the parable is just for the disciples or for everyone.
Jesus answers by describing the actions of a wise manager who portions out food to the household at the proper time. Such a manager is blessed when his master finds him behaving so. Jesus then contrasts the wise manager to one who, with disregard to the return of his master, mistreats the other servants and eats and drinks until he is gorged and drunk. This kind of manager does not fair well upon the master’s return.
Jesus concludes the parable this way…
“From everyone who has been given much, much will be required…”
Everyone who is a member of the household of God is expected to serve the master with the gifts he or she has been given. And, the ones who have been given much are expected to serve more.
Dear believer: Our God-given talents and abilities have been given to us by God. They are His and are to be used for His purposes. In the west we have been blessed by God with financial wealth on a scale the world has never before seen. This is a fact and it begs some questions…
Those are uncomfortable questions, aren’t they?
Consider this: It is not unusual for churches in the United States to spend millions of dollars on building programs. Did you know that it costs about $5,000 to build a very simple meeting hall for believers in Ethiopia? Do the math — the money used to build a church building in the U.S. that costs $7 million could build 1,400 meeting halls in Ethiopia.
These kinds of facts force me to ask myself which is more important…
These questions are not merely speculative. They represent real needs of real brothers and sisters in Ethiopia and India. Dave Black, a professor of New Testament and Greek at Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary, has been engaged in missions in these two areas of the world and constantly challenges the readers of his blog to become involved in missions. He has pointed out that it takes $420 a year to support one full-time native missionary compared to the $50,000 it takes to support a western missionary.
It is easily within our power to financially support indigenous missionaries (like Ram Mohan).
If you are interested in supporting missions in this way, contact Joel Bradsher via e-mail at email@example.com.
As Brother Dave Black has pointed out on his blog… “Folks, this approach just makes sense.”
December 20, 2013 Leave a comment
There are a variety of news stories floating around highlighting what is considered to be the “war on Christmas.” You know, the stories that spark outrage over secular culture taking Christ out of Christmas. The initial reaction among many in the Christian community is to fight it out with the forces of secularism by getting in their face and wishing them a “Merry CHRISTmas” whether they like it or not.
But is this really the attitude Jesus would have us exhibit in His name?
Lee Shelton doesn’t think so. In fact, he makes a compelling case that getting “up in arms” over the use of the word “Christmas” is exactly the wrong reaction…