According to some Christian outlooks we were made for another world. Perhaps, rather, we were made for this world to recreate, reclaim, redeem, and renew unto God's future aspiration by the power of His Spirit. - R.E. Slater
Secularization theory has been massively falsified. We don't live in an age of secularity. We live in an age of explosive, pervasive religiosity... an age of religious pluralism. - Peter L. Berger
Exploring the edge of life and faith in a post-everything world. - Todd Littleton
I don't need another reason to believe, your love is all around for me to see. – anon
Thou art our need; and in giving us more of thyself thou givest us all. - Khalil Gibran, Prayer XXIII
Be careful what you pretend to be. You become what you pretend to be. - Kurt Vonnegut
Religious beliefs, far from being primary, are often shaped and adjusted by our social goals. - Jim Forest
People, even more than things, need to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone. – anon
Certainly God's love has made fools of us all. - R.E. Slater
An apocalyptic Christian faith doesn't wait for Jesus to come, but for Jesus to become in our midst. - R.E. Slater
Christian belief in God begins with the cross and resurrection of Jesus, not with rational apologetics. - Eberhard Jüngel, Jürgen Moltmann
Our knowledge of God is through the 'I-Thou' encounter, not in finding God at the end of a syllogism or argument. There is a grave danger in any Christian treatment of God as an object. The God of Jesus Christ and Scripture is irreducibly subject and never made as an object, a force, a power, or a principle that can be manipulated. - Emil Brunner
Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh means "I will be that who I have yet to become." - God (Ex 3.14)
Our job is to love others without stopping to inquire whether or not they are worthy. - Thomas Merton
The church is God's world-changing social experiment of bringing unlikes and differents to the Eucharist/Communion table to share life with one another as a new kind of family. When this happens we show to the world what love, justice, peace, reconciliation, and life together is designed by God to be. The church is God's show-and-tell for the world to see how God wants us to live as a blended, global, polypluralistic family united with one will, by one Lord, and baptized by one Spirit. – anon
The cross that is planted at the heart of the history of the world cannot be uprooted. - Jacques Ellul
The Unity in whose loving presence the universe unfolds is inside each person as a call to welcome the stranger, protect animals and the earth, respect the dignity of each person, think new thoughts, and help bring about ecological civilizations. - John Cobb & Farhan A. Shah
If you board the wrong train it is of no use running along the corridors of the train in the other direction. - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
God's justice is restorative rather than punitive; His discipline is merciful rather than punishing; His power is made perfect in weakness; and His grace is sufficient for all. – anon
Our little [biblical] systems have their day; they have their day and cease to be. They are but broken lights of Thee, and Thou, O God art more than they. - Alfred Lord Tennyson

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Men of God, How Clear is Your Mirror?

How often we seem to fail to be God-lights for the God whose is love; we are admonished to know the truth, to strive for the truth, to speak truth to one another... but we are also admonished to love one another fervently, in our reproof and rebukes to edify, to uplift, to seek peace, to live love.  Hard words for those who are Spirit-filled and breathe out so many un-spirit like words and thoughts and actions.  Paul concludes with the statement "Be Ye Men" - real men strive to love, speak love, and know love.  May God help us all to be truer lights for him and relect all of his holy Personage.

1 If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned,[a] but have not love, I gain nothing.

4 Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant 5 or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; 6 it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. 7 Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.

8 Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. 9 For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. 11When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. 12 For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.

13 So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

ps - for those who are on the battlelines of faith, remember that you are not alone, and that your brethren are your friends, not your enemy.  It is Satan who would have us be divided among ourselves and to minimalize our witness as God-lights.  And by God's Spirit do we not only fight the devil, but this wicked world and the wickedness of our sin within.  So be at peace with the house of God whose family you are a part of for we have enough enemies about us in this half-life twilight of our eternal existence.

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Overview of Study Bibles

From BibleGateway.com is a helpful link giving the entire Bible on one page for a quick and easy lookup of Bible verses.

http://www.biblegateway.com/versions/English-Standard-Version-ESV-Bible/#booklist
You may pick whatever version of Scripture you wish but the ESV (English Standard Version) is my preferred study bible at present, having used the NASB (New American Study Bible) through bible college and seminary; and the standard KJV (King James Version) in my "pre-birth/pre-revolutionary" days of Christianity.

Here's the Wikipedia link for a fuller discussion of the ESV:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_Standard_Version


And the ESV home site with John Piper's recommendation and the Standard Bible Society's mission statement:

http://www.esv.org/

I wanted a study bible which was both literal and idiomatic and for the present the ESV is the guide for me. My NASB was perfect but getting dated and the NIV (New International Version) lost too much in the translation and gave me shaded subjective viewpoints (still, I thought the OT side of the NIV more helpful than the NT side, but hey! the OT is in Hebrew which is a lot less specific as a language than the Koinonia Greek of the NT!).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Koinonia

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Old_Testament

I had studied Attic Greek ahead of Koinonia Greek and had become at-home with it before learning the Hebrew language in all its forms and beauty. For those looking for the actual manuscripts of the OT & NT Scriptures try these books which I used in sem (you'll want the hardcover edition for the Hebrew bible because of the many pages it will have in the volume):

The Greek New Testament With Greek-english Dictionary
by B. Aland (Editor), K. Aland (Editor), J. Karavidopoulos (Editor),
B. M. Metzger (Editor), C. M. Martini (Editor)

http://www.amazon.com/reader/1598561693?_encoding=UTF8&ref_=sib%5Fdp%5Fpt#noop

Biblia Hebraica Stuttgartensia (Hebrew Edition)
by Karl Elliger (Editor), Willhelm Rudolph (Editor)

http://www.amazon.com/Biblia-Hebraica-Stuttgartensia-Hebrew-Elliger/dp/1598561634/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1254888436&sr=1-4

(Don't forget a good lexicon and concordance to use with these tools for word studies)

Jesus My Savior - He is Life, He is Light

1 John 1 (English Standard Version)

The Word of Life

1 That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we looked upon and have touched with our hands, concerning the word of life - 2 the life was made manifest, and we have seen it, and testify to it and proclaim to you the eternal life, which was with the Father and was made manifest to us - 3 that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you too may have fellowship with us; and indeed our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. 4 And we are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.


Walking in the Light

5 This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say we have fellowship with him while we walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. 8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10If we say we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.