God’s Election and Free Will
Prepared by Richard W. Darnell, April 2020:
The mention of election or predestination will almost always start a heated discussion if not sustain an energized debate. Perhaps we will never know the full answer to our inquiries about God’s Sovereignty, Election, Predestination, Foreknowledge, Justification, and Glorification until we are in the presence of our Lord, Jesus/Yeshua. Too often we are given the bias of personal opinion as to who our God is and what He does in relation to our world. This opinion frequently describes a Pollyanna God with either being surprised at people’s actions or required to defend His believers from all wrongs or injury. We need to grasp the truth of John 16:33, “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” These words are guarantees. Trouble living in this world is a given. Maturing a relationship with Christ guarantees that we will be with Him beyond this human life. However, His words do not insulate us from the human condition, evil around us, or any of the consequences that living among humans brings to us.
We must learn that God does what God does and it is God’s right, power, authority, and choice to do so. Since God is perfect and holy, whatever God does is perfect and acceptable. The only limitation for God is that all God does is consistent with God’s character, promises, and past (same today, yesterday, and tomorrow).
Romans 8:28-30, And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. For those God foreknew He also predestined to be conformed to the likeness of His son, that He (Son) might be the firstborn among many brothers. And those He predestined, He also called, those He called, He also justified, those He justified, He also glorified. (parenthesis added for clarification)
God’s sovereignty is absolute. Therefore, God may do whatever God chooses to do without any outside coercion or limitation. Whatever God chooses to do is right, holy, and perfect – because God does it. There is no occurrence in this life that does not have either God’s guidance or forbearance. When Satan approached Eve and told her that death would not come to her – but rather, she would become more like God knowing good from evil, Genesis 3:4-5. (note: all scriptural quotes and references are taken from the NIV-New International Version, unless specifically indicated otherwise.) Therefore, at the beginning of life in the garden of Eden mankind (known as Eve and Adam) exercised their free will by choosing to eat from the tree of the knowledge of Good and Evil. God did not then intervene, use persuasion, make a request – nothing.
Where is God When Life Hurts?
When Life becomes uncomfortable and your prayers are not answered as soon as you demanded or expected – What do you do?
When events in Life are mean, violent, and contrary to God’s teaching – but, God does not act – what do you do?
When abuse, violence, or bullying is visited on a child – but God did not act – WHAT do you do?
When you or a family member is diagnosed with a terminal disease – but, God doesn’t answer your prayers – WHAT do you do?
Do we wax sentimental? Do we scream at God and shake our fist in frustration? Do we doubt that God is the God we believe “sets us free?” Is God unfair? Is God silent? Is God hidden?
God, where are you when I call on you for immediate action?
Good News Bible Study
Our First Class will set the foundation for the following objectives:
1.) Who is this “Jesus” (Immanu El/Yeshua) Son of Man and Son of God?
What influence does the Divine have on the human – and vice versa?
2.) What significance, if any, of His being birthed in the city of David (Bethlehem)?
Is the birth city of any importance, if so, what?
3.) In what language were the 4 Gospels originally written? Does it matter?
Start with the assumption that only Luke wrote in Greek? The importance of the language may have an influence on the audience for whom the writing was made.
4.) What importance, if any, does the opening chapter of Matthew begin with the Geneology of Messiah Immanu El (English transliteration Immanuel)?
Compare the Geneology of Matthew and Luke (Lk 3:21-37) note the differences.
5.) Isaiah 7: 14, establishes one birth name of our Savior? Why? Importance?
The meaning of the name given to a child was important to guide their development.
6.) The primary Prophecy for this class will be Isaiah 52:13 thru chapter 53.
7.) The ultimate purpose of the class is to bring a deeper understanding of our Master, King, Savior, and Redeemer to each of us. And, to increase the importance and meaning of our surrender to Him that we may rest “in Him” to live this remarkable life our Abba Father has graciously granted to those of saving faith!
• What is the most important characteristic we are demanded to mature? (cf., James 4:7; John 5: 19-30)
• To Whom was Messiah Emmanuel totally submitted? (Isaiah 7:14)
NOTE: Remember our Saviors roots began before the time of mankind (see, Genesis 1:1; 3:15; 16:all) There are at least 10 Christophanies (pre-incarnation appearances of the Word, John 1:1-3) which is Messiah/Christ to be born later in the flesh. Messiah took on the form of man but not the nature of man. (cf., Hosea 12:3-7)
by Richard W. Darnell
THURSDAY, JULY 18, 2013; by Richard W. Darnell
THE BIBLE IS THE INERRANT WORD FROM GOD
The idea for Christian Bible Study began some 20 plus years ago. I have been a Student of the Bible most of my life. During my late teens and twenties, I found rebellion to be more to my liking than attending church regularly. My family was very disciplined to attend church whenever the doors were open. But, for me, during my early adult years I experienced life from many anti-family perspectives, places, as well as in opposition to my Lord and Savior. A deviation I now deeply regret.
It was this period in my life that brought me great but short lived pleasure and a challenge from me to God. During this time, I questioned whether or not the Bible was and remains the Inerrant Word of God. This was especially true for the Christian Bible in English. A debate about authenticity or accuracy started soon after England’s King James authorized the Bishop, Rasmussen and 45 other committee members to translate the Bishop’s Bible (Roman Catholic) into English in about 1604 A.D. That controversy continues with us today. (We will return to the historical details of the creation of the KJB at a later date. It was the third official translation of Scripture in English.)
However, regardless of the debate and whether they are nothing more than interesting speculation and assumptions should be left up to the individual to ferret out with “knee time with God (better known as prayer time).” 2 Corinthians 3:12-16, confirms that God has fulfilled His promises from Jeremiah 31:31-34 and will remove the veil from our heart and share with us His true meaning of scripture. From that revelation alone we should be comfortable in our faith that the Bible (in English or in any other language) is the inerrant word of God. God directed those who wrote the words given to them (I Timothy 3:16; 2Peter 1:5-10, 20 ) and, I believe, has protected the word at each successive translation since (yes, even those I detest).
Brother, John MacArthur, was the speaker at the Master’s College on this very subject. Brother MacArthur’s research is thorough, complete, and well done. There are 5 videos produced from these lectures and can be viewed at the following link: CLICK HERE
Bible Study Topics materials are frequently searched for and used in the home or church bible studies. We know now that every Christian has an equal opportunity to be taught by God through His Holy Spirit. Too often we slough that off to someone who has a credential (ordination) or is perceived to know more than we. For me, this is very disheartening. I believe each person should engage in their salvation (a guarantee that is coming for all who have saving faith) with fear and trembling (Philippians 2:12-13; 2 Peter 1:5-10). Which admonition does not include giving someone other than yourself the final decision about whether or not you are living and practicing with saving faith. Remember, your eternal destination is yours to seek – no person can do that for you.
When you reach that place of understanding about your personal value to God and His promise to instruct you, then you may go forward without requiring persuasion from any other person and rely only on the Holy Spirit. When you ask, believing you will receive, God through the Holy Spirit will inform you of God’s intention and meaning. There may be a period of doubt, but the truth will win out when you have Saving Faith.
Yours in Christ, Amen
A Short Introduction
The Book of Ezekiel presents the words of God from the prophet Ezekiel (son of Buzi) both a prophet and priest who was exiled, at age 25, from Jerusalem to Babylon with King Jehoiachin in 597 BC by the Babylonian king Nebuchadnezzar (2 Kings 24:8-17). Like his older contemporary Jeremiah, Ezekiel lived through the time of the final destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple in 586 BC and the recorded years of the Babylonian exile. He presents some of the more theologically challenging and dynamic material as among the prophets of the Bible, and some of the most difficult and bizarre passages (scholars say). His literary style is intricate, with striking imagery and extended metaphors. Many of his oracles (words given from God to the messenger/prophet for specific audience[s]) are in prose, unlike the other classical prophets.
Some of his visions border on the apocalyptic (end times prophecy) and may be early and more complete examples of this category. He wrestles with the problems posed by the tragedies of Jerusalem and Temple destruction along with the Babylonian exile. Asking but not answering:
Why did God allow the Temple and Jerusalem to be destroyed?
Why did God allow the people of Israel to be carried away into exile?
What is the future for Israel?
The book of Ezekiel, like similar biblical writings, justifies the tragedy of the Babylonian exile by arguing that it was God’s punishment for the people’s sin and then pointing to God’s mercy in their future restoration (God’s discipline is inferred without further explanation). It contends that God intends to uphold the covenant with Israel—for the sake of the sanctity of His divine name—by restoring a remnant of the people to the land of Israel and the building of a new Temple. This “new Temple” is envisioned in detail at the end of the book (chapters 40-48). The most famous and familiar is Ezekiel (37); the prophecy concerning the valley of the dry bones, which further explains the vision of restoration and, reveals to us something about the mass resurrection of the end times. [NOTE: Ezekiel may not have recognized the full meaning of the prophecies, as some of the prophets did not – including Daniel.]
Ezekiel is both a priest and a prophet. His writings reflect a combination of these aspects of his identity. As a priest of the House of Zadok (Zadok was appointed by Solomon as the high priest of the Jerusalem Temple [1 Kings 2:35]), he calls upon his own background to make his case. He often speaks in terms of purity and impurity, and alludes to the Priestly information in Leviticus (example, Ezekiel 4:4, see Leviticus 10:17; and, Ezekiel 44:28, see Leviticus 21:13). It is no accident that his book ends with an extended detailed description of the new Temple as part of the future restoration. Ezekiel also functions as a visionary prophet or oracle giver, much like Moses, who isolated himself to speak directly with God in the Tent of Meeting during the period of Israel’s wandering in the wilderness (Exodus 33:7-11; 34.29-35; Numbers 7:89).
Ezekiel is keenly aware of his role as a prophet and a watchman for Israel—whose task is to warn them of impending danger. His religious experiences are prophetic, as are his visions, symbolic actions, and oracles. They draw heavily upon Temple imagery and priestly practice, but they are couched in prophetic forms of discourse. His vision of the divine throne chariot or Presence of God in chapter 1 appears to him in Babylonia, but is based upon the features of the Ark of the Covenant that was housed in the Holy of Holies in the Jerusalem Temple. His portrayal of Jerusalem’s destruction in chapter 9 employs elements of priestly sacrifice at the altar, but it is the Temple itself that is destroyed. His vision of the new Temple in Jerusalem resembles the earlier wilderness tabernacle, Solomon’s Temple, and the Second Temple, but it also differs from all of them. *
RABBINIC TRADITION MAINTAINS that the men of the great synagogue, a group of scholars that they believed lived in the early postexilic period, wrote Ezekiel (b. B. Bat. 15a)**. According to a rabbinic tradition, the book’s status was questioned until R. Hananiah ben Hezekiah burned three hundred barrels of oil working nights in his upper chamber to resolve its contradictions with the Torah (b. Shab. 13b; b. !:fag. 1 3a; b. Menafz. 45a; cf., https://books.google.com/books?id=G80UAAAAIAAJ&pg=PA122&lpg=PA122&dq=what+does+b.+shab.+13b+mean&source=bl&ots=YOD0RKN5lc&sig=uUbjrKBR-WdNs_l2ccs6HttgEBE&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwijipfsjo_WAhVq6YMKHZqVBQ4Q6AEIKDAA#v=onepage&q=what%20does%20b.%20shab.%2013b%20mean&f=false). The Mishnah (Jewish oral tradition) advises that Eze. Chapter 1 must not be read before even one person unless they be a sage fully competent in Jewish tradition (m. !:fag. 2.1; ibid.). This is most likely because “mystical traditions” were associated with this text. It is true, Ezekiel’s visions of God later became the basis for the development of early Jewish mysticism in the rabbinic period (6th century AD) and then later with 20th century scholars using the kabbalistic tradition (https://books.google.com/books?isbn=0300176686).
Some modern scholars argue that Ezekiel is an edited book in which various elements, such as the prophecy concerning Gog of Magog (chs 38-39) or the vision of the new Temple (chs 40-48), are, in whole or in part, the products of writers other than Ezekiel, who form a “school of Ezekiel,” namely a group deeply influenced by his writings who continued to write using his style and themes. Although many prophetic books including Isaiah, Jeremiah, Hosea, and Amos show signs of later editing and composition, the case for Ezekiel is less compelling. The book is formulated largely as an autobiographical composition in which God instructs the prophet to speak or act out to Israelite exiles, much as God instructed Moses and Moses instructed Israel. In a few cases there is evidence of later editorial work. For example, the clarification of the date of Ezekiel’s first vision in ch 1:2-3 interrupts the prophet’s autobiographical account with a third-person report of his name and other details. Additionally, the break in the chronological sequence beginning with the initial oracle concerning Egypt in 29.1 and the proliferation of date formulas for the other Egyptian oracles in 29:17; 30:20; 31:1; 32:1; and 32:17 suggest that the oracles concerning Egypt were an independent collection that was later incorporated into the present form of the book. Likewise, the reference to the twenty seventh year in 29:17 disrupts the twenty-year chronological pattern that dominates the rest of the book; this suggests to some that it was altered to account for the failure of Nebuchadnezzar to capture Tyre for some thirteen years (see 26:1). Otherwise, the formulation of the book is well structured, consistent, and appears to have been written by the prophet himself.
Guide to Reading
Rabbinic tradition maintains that Ezekiel begins with judgment and ends in consolation (Babylonian Talmud Bava Batra 14b). Modern scholars generally follow the view that the book falls into three major parts:  oracles of judgment against Jerusalem and Israel (chs 1-24);  oracles of judgment against the nations (chs 25-32);  oracles of restoration for Jerusalem (Judah) and Israel at the center of the world (chs 33-48). This accounts for the broad thematic patterns of the book.
However, Ezekiel is organized in a chronological scheme that is linked to the prophet’s identity as a Zadokite priest. The book begins with Ezekiel’s inaugural vision of the divine throne chariot in which God commissions him to speak as a prophet to Israel (1-3:15). This vision is dated to the fifth day of the fourth month in the thirtieth year, later specified as the fifth year of the exile of King Jehoiachin, 5 Tamuz (Babylonian Calendar), 593 BCE. Apart from the reference to the twenty seventh year in 29:17 and the disruption of the chronological sequence in 29:1, the book proceeds chronologically from the fifth year of Jehoiachin’s exile to the twenty fifth year (40:1) with a series of major sections, each of which begins with its date formula. Each major section is further divided into oracle reports, each introduced with a version of the prophetic word formula, “the word of the Lord came to me.” The result is a twenty-year sequence that begins with Ezekiel’s visions by the Chebar canal in the Babylonian city of Tel Abib (Tel Aviv), and continues with oracles dated to the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple, and finishes with his vision of the new (or, restored) Temple. *
The priests served in the Temple for twenty years, from age thirty to age fifty (see Num. 4:23, 39; but note Num. 8:23-26, which specifies active service for the Levites from the age of twenty-five to the age of fifty). It appears that the book portrays Ezekiel’s career in keeping with the period of active service for a priest. This chronological ordering, where the progression of the oracles are connected to the progress of the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem (597-586 BC), is unique among major prophetic books. Others are not organized chronologically. This ordering, however, compensates for many of the other features of the book, and makes it easier to understand.
Summary of Contents
The structure of the Book includes thirteen major sections depicting his inaugural vision in the fifth year of Jehoiachin’s exile (593 or 592 BC) and culminating with the vision of the restored Temple in the twenty-fifth year (written about 573 BC). (Oracle is the receipt and declaration of the Word from God.)
I. Introduction: Ezekiel’s oracles concerning his inaugural vision 1:1-7:27
II. Ezekiel’s oracles of his vision of God’s departure from the Temple 8:1-19:14
Ill. Ezekiel’s oracles concerning the punishment of Israel 20:1-23:49
IV. Symbolic actions concerning the destruction of Jerusalem
and condemnation of neighboring nations 24:1-25:17
V. Oracles concerning Tyre and its rulers 26:1-28:26
VI. The first oracle concerning Egypt 29:1-16
VII. The second set of oracles concerning Egypt 29:17-30:19
VIII. The first oracle concerning Pharaoh 30:20-26
IX. The second oracle concerning Pharaoh 31:1-18
X. Oracle concerning Pharaoh and Egypt 32:1-16
XI. Final oracle concerning the nations and Ezekiel’s role as watchman 32:17-33:20
XII. Oracles concerning the restoration of Israel 33:21-39:29
XIII. The vision of the restored Temple 40:1-48:35*
- *Please read the vision of the restored or 3d Temple and compare with Revelation 20 and 21 noting similarities and differences. The Temple described may best be appreciated by comparing and noting differences from Exodus 25 – 28 (1st Tabernacle) and Solomon’s Temple (2 Chron. 2-5) and Herod’s 2d Temple (see drawings and descriptions, https://blogs.thegospelcoalition.org/justintaylor/2010/07/13/what-did-the-temple-look-like-in-jesus-time/)
**see (list of ancient sources) at: https://books.google.com/books?id=6P9YEd9lXeAC&lpg=PA297&ots=OGanxGMkPs&dq=What%20is%20b.%20B.%20Bat.%2015a&pg=PA297#v=onepage&q=What%20is%20b.%20B.%20Bat.%2015a&f=false
After resurrection: https://www.ccel.org/
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by Carley Marcouillier
Suicide is a word that often makes people feel uncomfortable for several reasons. For some, it triggers past pain or current fears, while for others, it provokes judgment, concern, and lack of understanding. Many who experience the depth of internal stress have difficulty expressing it for fear of being labeled as weak or emotionally unstable. In other cases, we see family members dismiss the concerns of their loved ones due to the stigma surrounding suicide. Additionally, Christian culture has added more division within this topic by neglecting to provide support for those suffering, thus perpetuating the stigma associated with psychological distress.
The truth is, whether we have little to no personal knowledge of suicide, we as believers need to be informed and prepared to address the reality of pain, both personally and relationally.
For as much as we may not want to admit it, suicidality is increasing within the church family. From pastors to their beloved members, the body of Christ is silently struggling in the name of spiritual maturity.
Unfortunately, the topic of suicide has been a taboo topic within the church for centuries. Starting as early as 452 AD, churches began to condemn suicide and punish those who sought to take their own lives and disgracing the burials of victims of suicide. While we have come a long way over the years, the church has not fully embraced its role to provide non-judgmental support for mental health-related issues.
Question: Is there a Best Life Plan?
By Richard W. Darnell | June 25, 2020
Most of the time, I offer counsel privately. Today’s question could be the most serious for everyone – no matter your current age. Financial survival for a lifetime cannot be left to circumstances and unplanned outcomes. The world system is based on the survival of the fittest, which translates into “you are on your own.”
This means that each person needs a sovereign power that is greater than any of the world’s human-operated governments. Therefore, when you establish a basic financial plan and accept God’s offer to be one of His children (John 1) you will be the most successful in this life and secure for the life after death – which is an eternity.
By Richard W. Darnell | June 22, 2020 [Hebrew: 30 Sivan 5780]
It costs nothing to be kind. The rewards are innumerable. Other people will respond (generally) very positively to one who is kind. Typically, when we are kind (no put-on) we are gentler with our words and certainly our volume. I am not suggesting that we cow down to an aggressive person – on the contrary, pile burning coals on their head with stern kindness. (Proverbs 25:21-22)
Psalm 145:17(TLV)*, reads, “Adonai (God) is righteous in all His ways and kind in all His deeds.” This declares that one of God’s character attributes is kindness in all things. Each breath we take is confirmed proof of this Godly trait. But we cannot always see God’s kindness during sickness, physical or emotional pain, or those difficult moments of human life. However, even in the bleakest moments of human misery, God remains kind and will bring some good from the adversity we experience. Romans 8:28 (TLV) reads, “Now we know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to His purpose.” This scripture is literal and spiritual simultaneously. Literal in that the words may be taken at face value and as combined. Spiritually, these words declare an inalienable right guaranteed to each faithful Christian. No matter how rude, ruthless, hateful, hurtful, violent, mean, or similar occurrence we know we win (Revelation 1-22, all translations). Whether the event results in our death or not, God uses the situation for good for His Faithful servants.
God’s greatest kindness for us is fully contained and confirmed in salvation. We were God’s enemies with no chance of redeeming ourselves and therefore, we were in a hopeless condition with no hope from loss, grief, and eternal anguish. In this condition of hopelessness, God’s mercy was cast upon our Messiah – God’s only begotten Son – who voluntarily yielded to the cruelty resulting in His death on a cross as our substitute. He literally died for me, you, and everyone. Salvation is available to every person born whether they take advantage of God’s gift and acknowledge the full measure of faith given to everyone. All we are asked to do is accept the Son and acknowledge the faith given us by totally, without reservation, trusting our Lord and Savior. This priceless gift of redemption resolved our depravity and made eternal joy our inheritance instead.
Today, when we act with kindness or ease the suffering of others, we act as our Lord and Savior Jesus (Yeshua), who is the image of our heavenly Father. Colossians 1:13-15 (TLV) reads, “He (God) rescued us from the domain of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son whom He loves. In Him (Christ Jesus) we have redemption – the release of sins. He (Christ Jesus) is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation.” [clarification added to “He” and “Him”]. Jesus told disciples that if you have seen me you have seen the Father.
As part of our new identity in Christ Jesus, we are called to put away bitterness, wrath, clamor, slander, and malice because we are now new creatures to which none of these fit. We are now called to be like Christ. Instead of being defensive, overpowering, and demanding, we are called to become kind, compassionate, and forgiving. Ephesians 4:31-32 (TLV) reads, “Get rid of all bitterness and rage and anger and quarreling and slander, along with all malice. Instead, be kind to one another, compassionate, forgiving each other just as God in Messiah also forgave you.”
These words were written from a Roman prison by the Apostle Paul who had every right to be angry and bitter because of his mistreatment, yet he advocated a courteous, compassionate, and forgiving attitude demonstrating that kindness and mercy are better responses in even the worst of circumstances. Being kind is best learned by practicing kindness intentionally. At first, it may seem awkward but soon it will be our standard practice.
With the power of the Holy Spirit living within us, we each have the potential to become a person of compassion. Is there a best way to develop this quality?
First, practice kindness. Be intentional by practicing the rule of Treating others as you like to be treated—courteously and gently (Matthew 7:12). When situations tempt you to respond harshly, see them as God-given opportunities to bless others with kind words and actions. Focus on their needs and not on your right to receive justice or give retribution. The heart of kindness is a humble, Christlike attitude that forgoes personal demands and is blessed in return: “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy” Matthew 5:7. People are often suffering in ways not obvious to us. It seems to me that having a merciful attitude means God will make sure we are treated with kindness/mercy, too.
NEWSFLASH: The most important place to model such an attitude is in our home. When our relationships with family are governed by kindness, your children are more likely to develop this quality and pass it on to future generations. Therefore, pay close attention to your interactions with family members and find ways to ensure that the merciful response is highly valued in your home. Treat your spouse like the best person on the planet – because they are to you.
Second, yield to the Holy Spirit. Galatians 5:22-26 (TLV) reads, “But the fruit of the Rauch (Spirit; or Rauch Hakodesh is Hebrew for Holy Spirit) is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control – against such things, there is no law. How those who belong to the Messiah (Christ) have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Rauch, let us also walk by the Rauch. Let us not become conceited – provoking one another, envying one another.” [Clarifications added]. The “Fruit of the Spirit” is not a natural human quality. Therefore, it requires the work of God’s Holy Spirit within our hearts. When you were saved (obedient to the Gospel), you became a new person who is by the Holy Spirit being changed into the image of Christ (Romans 8:29). Becoming Christlike only can happen when we are walking obediently to the Holy Spirit’s guidance. This requires that we lay aside all the attitudes that do not fit who we are in Christ e.g., selfishness, pride, and critical spirit. When the Holy Spirit is living through us moment by moment, we will be empowered to show mercy through kindness to others regardless of whether we feel they deserve it or not.
Third, pray for kindness. Proverbs 3:3-4 (TLV) reads, “Let kindness and truth never leave you – bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. Then you will gain favor and a good name in the eyes of God and Man.” This is God’s will for all of us; come boldly before His throne and ask Him to help you “put on a heart of compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience” Colossians 3:12. Now watch for opportunities and respond in obedience when you are reminded by the Holy Spirit to be merciful and caring to those around you.
In our world today there is much, too much discord, hatred, and division. There is a tremendous need for kindness and mercy in our society, especially among politicians who continue to be loyal to a political party after winning their election. We need public servants – regardless of the party affiliation. Where did our public servants go? I cannot find them.
We are surrounded by harsh demands and ever-increasing strains on our incomes. God has placed us here as His bright light of truth to shine in a dark and lost world. People notice gentleness, kindness, and forgiving treatment. Therefore, let us make it our ambition to be faithful ambassadors of Christ by blessing others with patience, peace, concern, compassion, and thoughtfulness. Be kind to one another.
Yours in Christ, Richard W. Darnell
A Spirit-filled Believer – called a Christian – is one who is a full-time worker for God. It does not matter at what avocation or profession they are employed. Christian constantly proclaims their faith, allegiance, devotion, and consecration to God. The life they live that others observe is the strongest and most effective witness for or against God that exists on planet earth. So, may it be, AMEN
Definition of prayer:
John Wesley arose each morning at 4:00 A.M. and began the day with at least 4 hours of prayer. He said that prayer is what a Christian (Holy Spirit-filled believer) does and says, whether eating, sleeping, working, or visiting throughout the day. John Wesley (1830). “The works of the Reverend John Wesley” p. 526.
How does my conscience differ from the guidance of the Holy Spirit?
Romans 2:14-15, (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law.
They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times defending them.)
Our conscience functions much like the computer. Computers are programmed to respond in particular ways to specific information. Also, it responds to information based on the commands pre-programmed for it to follow. Therefore, our conscience is subject to the pre-programming that God gave us (moral code) and the subsequent retraining/reprogramming that results in our current conscience – as modified.