hsssssssssssssssssss

May 31, 2015

full custody

No man is walking closely with Jesus on Monday and on Tuesday gets seduced by a beautiful woman. Adultery (or any other sin) always starts in the mind (Mark 7:20-23). A man begins tolerating lustful thoughts. He secretly looks at pornography. He discretely checks out the sexy women he sees. On the surface, he may be a pastor or church leader. He may be preaching or teaching God’s Word every week. But his Bible study and prayer life are superficial. He isn’t judging his sin and walking in fellowship with Christ. He justifies it, thinking, “I’m just a normal guy. It’s not hurting anyone. Besides, I’d never be unfaithful to my wife.” But, he likes it when women flirt with him. He enjoys hugging them, as sisters in Christ, of course! Satan bides his time until the opportune moment. Then he drops the bait, the man falls, and everyone is shocked.

Reasons we fall;

  We refuse to submit to the hard teachings of Scripture.

We like the idea that man is free to choose his own destiny, but we don’t care for a God who has mercy on some and who hardens others according to His will (Rom. 9:18). So we clip Romans 9 and many other Scriptures from our Bibles. We like a loving and tolerant God, but we don’t care for a holy God who lets us reap what we sow and who visits the iniquity of fathers on children to the third and fourth generation. We like a God who heals us and makes us happy, but we don’t like a God who refines us through trials and hardship.

We do not face up to our pride.

Pride is the most common and troublesome sin that we face. Satan fell when he boasted, “I will make myself like the Most High” (Isa. 14:14). He tempted Eve by appealing to her pride, telling her that she could be like God. Ever since, the human race has been plagued with the sin of thinking too highly of ourselves. This is being fed in our day with the false teaching that we need to build our self-esteem. Scripture no where teaches such a thing. In many places it tells us to clothe ourselves with humility and to regard others as more important than ourselves (1 Pet. 5:5; Phil. 2:3). One clue that we are blind to our pride is when we hear of someone who has sinned and we think, “I could never do such a thing!” “Even though others fall away, I will not!” “Let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall” (1 Cor. 10:12)! “Pride goes before destruction, and a haughty spirit before stumbling” (Prov. 16:18).

We come under satanic attack.

 “Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls about like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour” (1 Pet. 5:8). If a real lion were loose on the streets of our town, we would walk much more carefully than normal! We would be always on the lookout, and probably be armed with a weapon to defend ourselves. And yet we often ignore the adversary of our souls, living as if he did not exist.

We grow spiritually dull and distant.

“Keep watching and praying, that you may not come into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak” Mark 14:38 

Whenever I deal with someone who is having serious problems, I ask about their devotional life. Invariably, it has either turned into an occasional routine, or it has ceased altogether. The person has allowed their first love for Jesus to cool. Your private devotional times with the Lord are the roots that sustain the tree. If a tree lacks deep roots, it may look pretty for a while, but invariably, a storm will hit that topples the tree. If you lack deep roots with the Lord, frequent times where you meet alone with Him to read and meditate on His Word and to commune with Him in prayer, you will fall when the storms of temptation hit.

 We respond to crises in the flesh, not in the Spirit.

When we have been dodging the hard truths of Scripture, we have not judged our pride, we’re under satanic attack, and we’re spiritually dull and distant, we will respond to crises in the flesh, not in God’s Spirit. Something will happen that demands a godly, spiritual response, but we start swinging the sword or we say and do things to deny our faith in Christ. That’s the last bit of air leaking out of our spiritual tires.

We compromise our witness by our words and behavior.

Although Luke is kind to Peter, the other gospels hint that his three denials began small and grew to horrible proportions. He first said to the girl, “I don’t know what you are talking about” (see Mark 14:68). Perhaps as she kept insisting that he had been with Jesus, he gave the response Luke records, “Woman, I do not know Him.” He changed locations, hoping to avoid any other confrontations. But the girl came again and repeated her charge, and was joined by some of the men. Now Peter had to stick with his story, so again he denied that he was one of the disciples: “Man, I am not!” (Luke 22:58). For about an hour he tried to block out his failure by making small talk around the fire. Then the bystanders began to accuse him of being a disciple because of his Galilean accent. At this point, Peter began to curse and swear, insisting that he did not know “this man” (he wouldn’t even utter Jesus’ name; Mark 14:71). At this point, we can’t believe what we see: Peter, the bold apostle, openly denying that he knew his Savior and Lord!

That’s the awful process, how the air leaks out of our tires until we are running on the rims. We would have thought it inconceivable at first, but that’s where we end up when we don’t fix the leaks. 

There’s two sides to every coin, tomorrow we will look more closely at the model God gives us about restoration.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

For those of you that were praying for Barbara, she went home early this morning to be with the Lord.

Thanks to all of you that pray so faithfully for our folks.

lightbulb

WHO WILL PUT OUT THE COUCH

Here’s to my fellow insomniacs, besides PTSD, there’s another reason I have never slept good at night, if the couch catches on fire who will put it out. That was always my job as the oldest child. My father would come home late at night wasted out of his mind and fall asleep on the couch with a cigarette in his mouth or hand, while my mother would be passed out in the bedroom from gin and tranquilizers.

I lost track of how many times the couch caught on fire, what was worse was when I threw a bucket of water on the couch that meant throwing water on a very upset father. So I saved the house from burning down but got punched in the face a few times.

No matter what our past was, God our new father promises to not punch us in the face. When my Chief Master Sergeant led me to the Lord he kept telling me my heavenly father was nothing like my earthly father, that he had good things for me.

We can have peace, sanity and restoration.

John Newton was a wild-living sailor and slave-trader who got saved and became a godly pastor and the author of many hymns, including the beloved, “Amazing Grace.” He said late in his life: “My memory is nearly gone, but I remember two things: that I am a great sinner, and that Christ is a great Savior.”

Even if your past is not as wicked as John Newton’s, you should be growing in your awareness of those two great facts. The longer I am a Christian, the more acutely I am aware of the exceeding wickedness of my own heart. I can identify with the hymn writer, Robert Robinson, who wrote, “Prone to wander, Lord I feel it; prone to leave the God I love.” But, thank God, the more I see my own sinfulness, the more brightly God’s grace shines.

The story of Peter’s denials is recorded in Scripture to underscore these two great facts: the weakness and sinfulness of even the most prominent saints; and, the greatness and abundance of God’s love and grace toward those who fail. For those who are walking with the Lord, this story warns us to take heed lest we fall. For any who have fallen, the story holds out the hope of pardon through God’s abundant grace if you will turn back to Him.

Becoming a Christian is a matter of repentance and faith (Acts 20:21), which are flip sides of the same coin. Repentance means turning to God from sin (1 Thes. 1:9). Faith is trusting what Christ has done to pay for our sins on the cross, rather than trusting our own efforts or good works to save us (Eph. 2:8-10). Just as we cannot turn north without turning our backs on the south, so we cannot turn to a holy God for salvation without turning our backs on any known sin in our lives.

We cannot trust in Christ to save us without repudiating trust in our own efforts to save ourselves.

But the repentance and faith which save us do not put us in a protective bubble so that we are free from all sin until we get to heaven. The Christian life begins with repentance and faith, but it also continues with repentance and faith on a daily basis whenever we sin or when God’s Word opens our eyes to sin that we previously were not aware of. If a person is not walking in repentance and faith, there is reason to doubt whether he truly knows Christ.

There is no such thing as a spiritual blowout; there are only slow leaks. When you examine any spiritual failure, you always discover that there has been a slow spiritual decline. It was probably in secret. We keep up the outer appearances. We continued to look the part of a godly man. But in our heart, we were not judging sin. We give up evaluating our lives in light of Scripture. Slowly the air was leaking out of our spiritual tires, but we didn’t see it until they were flat.

Yet after each stumble God waits patiently for us to remember his mercy, his love and his forgiveness.

Sometime we set our own couches on fire, we are our own worst enemy.

Are you spiritually passed out?

We need to repair the leaks, put out the fires and live godly lives.

Can you do it?

Yes you can.

Send your prayer requests to scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

shout

I HAVE A SECRET

Not really, but I’ve never told this to any one; I love to dance. When my wife and I were dating (two years) we went dancing every Friday and Saturday night. After we got married we would go dancing at the NCO club (military) or the USO.

Shortly afterwards we became Christians in a Pentecostal Holiness movement and dancing along with a host of other things were taboo.

Well I’m coming out of the closet and I’m telling you I love to dance. Three songs send me into a dance frenzy; Taylor Swift “shake it off” and then Meghan Trainor “I’ve got the bass” and then the queen of all dance songs Joss Stone “tell me about it”. Man o man I have to shake my groove thang, shimmie, boogie, shuck and jive, twist and shout, get down, go to funky town.

When I’m at a wedding (that I’m not officiating at) my kids beg my wife, “don’t let him dance in public, mom he goes nuts.” There is no solid evidence that Mark Twain ever said “dance like no one is watching” but hey I have that one down solid, like a brick house, like cheap sunglasses, it’s hammer time (oh no make me stop).

And with that we segue into our devotions;

Ecclesiastes 3 tells us, “For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven … (v. 1)” including “a time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance…. (v. 4)” However, this is what we would call descriptive, not prescriptive, language. In other words, these events and activities happen, but not necessarily all of them in like manner for all people. For one born mute, there might never be “a time to speak (v. 7)” and someone who’s suffered paralysis may never enjoy a dance. Even among “ordinary” people, the balance and distribution of these items varies. Teachers and students both may speak and “keep silence (v. 7)” — however, while learning may take place with both sides quiet, all speaking at once rarely advances education. Furthermore, some of these activities are specialized. One who farms (v. 2) may never engage in tailoring (v. 7) or vice versa. Regarding Jesus, some people of His day may have inferred that He danced from His words and some of His other activities. The marriage at Cana, the site of “the first of his signs, (John 2:11)” where He turned water to wine, likely included dancing as part of the festivities.

Dancing could have happened at some of the other celebrations Jesus attended — we just don’t know for sure.

But since his first miracle was at a wedding and his first miracle was to show us joy, and it was a tradition to dance, I personally believe Jesus danced.

Would I dance at church like I do at home, never going to happen. But I know God wants us to know joy, so shake your groove thang.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

toxic waste

May 28, 2015

3 stooges

Here’s a bible verse you may not be familiar with; “Woe to the worthless shepherd that leaveth the flock” (Zech. 11:17, ASV).

Your Pastor is NOT the Final Authority

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation.” (2 Peter 1:20 KJV)

This doesn’t seem to say what I’m getting at, but bear with me as I delve once again into the original Greek. (I’ve come to hate that phrase, with all the bible apps today any one can learn Greek or Hebrew, does everybody want to no, can it still lead to faulty translating, yes.) In my church growing up, this verse was used for the exact opposite of its true purpose, to get people to listen to their pastor and not try to interpret Scripture on their own. Sure, the verse after this alludes to the divine inspiration of Scripture, but this one at least sets out to protect people from all the whackjobs that come along touting themselves as having divine inspiration too. A better English rendering of it might say “Know this thing to be most important, that no teaching of these writings is for any private party to release.”

That would seem to indicate that what the pastor says the Bible means is a “private interpretation,” and should probably be examined with a grain of salt, as one of our other verses above has suggested.

There are toxic churches, toxic pastors, pulpits filled with hate, pastors that are burned out, misguided and worse.

In chapter five of Ken Blanchard’s book titled, Lead Like Jesus, Blanchard discusses the power of 5 key habits leaders should be practicing (see below):

  • Solitude • Prayer • Study and Application of Scripture • Accepting and Responding to God’s Unconditional Love • Involvement in Supportive Relationships

These are not only great tips for pastors but for everyone else.

 Here is my attempt to encourage you, my pastor-brother: * Refuse to be the Messiah. Jesus already bled for the church. You don’t have to. * Share your boundaries with people and stick to them. If you don’t, people will determine your boundaries for you. * Best you can, develop a team of staff and volunteers, then delegate and entrust the folks and their needs to them. In fact, in a way folks may not understand, you are doing the best for them by doing so. * Do for one what you wish you could do for everyone. * If you get kickback for not being there for everyone, entrust yourself to the Lord. If you want to explain yourself, do so. But don’t feel pressured to explain yourself to everyone. Some people will never be satisfied, no matter what you say or do. So don’t get sucked into that vortex. * As a final straw, if the pressure to always be there is crushing you, and the church has developed a sense of entitlement that expects you to always be there, you might need to consider moving on. But no matter what you do, no matter where you go, that low-grade guilt will remain. Own it, but don’t let it own you.

Ok, now that I’ve wandered all over the place, pray for your pastor, take a pastor out for fun, babysit so the and his wife can have a nice night out, and if you’re in a small church, buy them dinner too.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

patience my @ss

May 27, 2015

praying mom

PATIENCE

 

Patience is admirable quality of life that few people, including Christians, seem to possess. According to God’s Word, our lives are to be characterized by patience, for it is important in developing that mature, stable character which God wants to produce in His people. “Love is patient, love is kind. . .it is not easily angered” (1 Corinthians 13:4,5, NIV).

Patience is the ability to absorb strain and stress without complaint and to be left undisturbed by obstacles, delays, or failures. God allows difficulties, inconveniences, trials, and even suffering to come our way for a specific purpose: they help develop the right attitude for the growth of patience. As the Christian sees these trials working wo this advantage in achieving beneficial, character-building results, the stage is set for the development of a patient spirit. God the Holy Spirit will then be able to produce the fruit of patience in his life. “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy peace, patience. . .” (Galatians 5:22, NIV).

A bit of introspection and analysis on our part in regard to impatience may be revealing and helpful. What makes me impatient?

Am I immature? Am I petty?

“But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil” (Hebrews 5:14, NIV).

Am I selfish, legalistic or demanding? Am I able to make allowances for the mistakes and imperfections in others, remembering that God is still working on them, too?

“. . .Be patient (tolerant) toward all men. See that none render evil for evil unto any man; but ever follow that which is good, both among yourselves, and to all men” (1 Thessalonians 5:14,15, KJV).

Am I easily irked because “someone is getting away with something”?

“Fret not thyself because of evil doers” (Psalm 37:1, KJV).

Am I envious or jealous?

“Be patient and stand firm. Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged” (James 5:8, 9, NIV).

Am I materialistic? Am I dominated by the spirit of this world?

“If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above. . .” (Colossians 3:1, KJV).

Have I really dealt with the “secular mentality”?

“. . .For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances”

(Philippians 4:11, NIV).

Am I insensitive to God’s attempts to deal with me by permitting adverse circumstances, irritations, and stress to buffet me in order that through His grace I might learn to transcend self and grow in love and spiritual stature?

“My brother, count it all joy when ye fall into divers (various) temptations; knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing” (James 1:2-4, KJV).

Because impatience is a characteristic of the “old nature” or “Adamic nature” (Colossians 3:9, 10), the “put-off”, put-on” principle should be practiced. Impatience is a response that must be “unlearned.” Paul says, “But I see another law at work. . .waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin. . .What a wretched man I am. Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God – through Jesus Christ our Lord” (Romans 7:23-25, NIV).

Thus:

I must renounce my impatience – “Put-off.”

I must surrender a little more each day as I claim His power in faith – “Put-off” + “Put-on”. (2 Timothy 1:17, Galatians 2:20.)

I then claim His victory, His love and His patience as the fruit of the Spirit – “Put-on.” (1 Corinthians 13:4,5; Galatians 5:22.)

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.”

                                                                                                                  1 Corinthians 13:4,5, NIV

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.”

                                                                                                                      Galatians 5:22, 23, KJV

“. . .but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; and patience, experience; and experience, hope: and hope maketh not ashamed. . .”                                        Romans 5:3-5, KJV

“I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.” Galatians 2:20, KJV

“Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for he fall and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near. Don’t grumble against each other, brothers, or you will be judged. The Judge is standing at the door.”                                                                                                                      James 5:7,8, NIV

“Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.”                                    Psalm 37:7, KJV

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

I saw Kerra today and she wants to thank everyone for the prayers

We are thankful that the floods and have come and gone and we are safe, pray for the families that still have missing relatives and pray for those that lost everything including their homes

stand up

May 26, 2015

last_nail

I guess my philosophy is this: Everything is wrong until God sets it right.”

CRACK THE CODE

DO YOU KNOW THAT IF YOU TALK ABOUT BEING FAYE OR A THESPIAN OR A TRANSFORMER OR MAGGOTS OR ABOUT MUTTERING YOU CAN LOOSE YOUR WEBSITE?

Khtd and your banned from social media (check your keyboard).

My grandfather was from County Cork, Ireland, and he’s turning in his grave right now, that another country has turned its back on God and is concerned about political correctness over choosing God.

The Word of God should be a laser beam from the pulpit, a beam that penetrates your heart, sears your conscience, exposes sin, and left you crying, “What must I do to be saved?” The answer was always the same: surrender to Christ; get to know God personally; grow to become like Him.

We are forgetting or ignoring the power of the Gospel. We must stop being afraid to speak out, speak up, carry a bible in public, read one at work, give a ready answer to all that ask.

The Holy Spirit begs us to please God and forget the crowd. He implores us to worship God that we might become more like Him.

Before a sinful man can think a right thought of God, there must have been a work of enlightenment done within him; imperfect it may be, but a true work nonetheless, and the secret cause of all desiring and seeking and praying which may follow.

But how will they know if we don’t show them that God loves them and yet their sin is a great gulf that only the Cross of Jesus can bridge.

God said he looked for someone to fill the gap and could not find one.

Ezekiel 22:30King James Version (KJV)

30 And I sought for a man among them that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.

Would he say the same thing about us, is there not still a burning bush that none can put out, is there no longer the voice in the wilderness that cries out, can there not be the voice that says forgive us our sins.

We can only stop the filth and the militant agenda of those who oppose the Gospel by standing up. It can be as simple as wearing a cross, carrying a bible, and saying no to the office party that is bound to be an excuse for drunken lewdness. There is a abusiness here in town that holds its quarterly meetings at a strip club because the meals are so cheap and the boss knows that the few Christians in the bunch are spineless. It was only after me standing in the parking lot after the meeting that these deacons of the church felt ashamed and convicted that they finally said no more.

Where will you make your stand, when will you say no more. When will there be more prayer in your life than television?

As the Gospel song states;

  1. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! ye soldiers of the cross; Lift high His royal banner, it must not suffer loss: From vict’ry unto vict’ry, His army shall He lead, Till every foe is vanquished, and Christ is Lord indeed.

  2. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! The trumpet call obey: Forth to the mighty conflict, in this His glorious day; Ye that are men now serve Him against unnumbered foes; Let courage rise with danger, and strength to strength oppose.

  3. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! Stand in His strength alone, The arm of flesh will fail you, ye dare not trust your own; Put on the gospel armor, and watching unto prayer, Where calls the voice of duty, be never wanting there.

  4. Stand up, stand up for Jesus! the strife will not be long; This day the noise of battle, the next the victor’s song; To him that overcometh a crown of life shall be; He with the King of glory shall reign eternally.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

God Smash

May 25, 2015

the bible

What’s the least popular book of the Bible?

Let’s just get this out of the way: the least popular book of the Bible is not Leviticus. That’s a popular guess, and I understand why (more on that later).

My own guess would have been Second Chronicles (on account of how boring it is). Nope. I was totally wrong on that, too.

Turns out the least-read book of the Bible is about three quarters of the way through your Bible. I imagine most of you have already skimmed to find what it is, but for those of you who are still playing the guessing game, here are a few hints:

  • It’s in the Old Testament.

  • You’d probably have a hard time spelling it on the first try.

  • It’s one of the minor prophets.

  • It’s written for the nation of Edom.

  • It’s only one chapter long.

  • There’s a really, really good chance you’ve never read it.

It’s Obadiah.

Obadiah is the least popular book of the Bible

When I learned this, I was both surprised and not-so-surprised. I was surprised because (as I stated before) I figured it would be one of those books more well-known for being boring or stuffy.

At the same time, I wasn’t surprised. Plenty of Christians have never even heard of Obadiah. Even Jesus, who loved quoting Old Testament books, (that’s a funny statement if you really think about it) doesn’t ever give a nod to Obadiah.

Why is Obadiah the least popular book of the Bible?

I think there are a lot of understandable reasons Obadiah doesn’t get much attention, and I’d like to explore them with you. Before we get into this, you should know that I happen to really like the book. It was a fun one to overview, and although it’s not a super popular piece of Scripture, it’s Scripture nonetheless.

#1: Obadiah is short

It’s the fourth-shortest book of the Bible, and it might not even take up a whole page in your print Bible. It’s only one chapter long, which means there just isn’t as much to draw from.

With other books in the same prophetic genre, you have plenty of material, and a higher chance of content that really resonates with people. By “resonates,” I mean, “seems like the kind of stuff you should use as a life verse.”

For example, Jeremiah covers almost all the content Obadiah does. But he also covers a lot more, including verses about potters and clay, or that one about God having plans for Israel’s future (Je 29:11).

Plus, Obadiah is so brief that if you’ll probably miss it if you’re not looking for it.

#2 Obadiah’s context is a little messy

God is pretty much telling off the little Middle-Eastern nation of Edom. When the kingdom of Judah was attacked, the Edomites didn’t bother to help them out. In fact, they helped Judah’s enemies instead (Ob 8:10).

Hold up. Who’s Edom?

Remember Jacob and Esau, way back in Genesis? Long story short, Jacob schemed Esau out of their father’s blessing. Esau and Jacob eventually kissed (Gn 33:4) and made up, and then went on to have great big families of their own.

Jacob’s family became Israel (which includes Judah). Esau’s family became Edom, a nation just south of Israel (Gn 36:8).

And why is Edom in such big trouble?

As far as God is concerned, Edom should have shown more support of their kin. AfIs there more to this story?

Yup. It’s not like these countries had been pals and Edom just said, “You know what, Judah? We’re gonna sit this one out for now.” They had a colorful, not-too-friendly history.

Edom was a jerk to Israel when they were wandering in the wilderness(Num 20:20–21). Later, Israel pretty much took over Edom and made them a vassal territory.  Suffice it to say these nations have had their squabbles.

And then God comes in and takes Judah’s side, which leads to the next reason people might not like reading Obadiah.

#3 God gets riled

Judah is part of God’s special people: a people called by His name. Edom’s behavior is not OK with God, and He gets mad.

And the things God says when He’s angry just don’t give us the warm fuzzies that some of the Psalms or lines from Jesus do. For example:

“Behold, I will make you small among the nations […]. I will bring you down,” declares the LORD.” (Ob 4, 6)

After all, God had commanded that Israel treat Edom as family (Dt 23:7–8).

Or how about this?

“Will I not on that day,” declares the LORD, “destroy wise men from Edom and understanding from the mountain of Esau? Then your mighty men will be dismayed, O Teman, so that everyone may be cut off from the mountain of Esau by slaughter. Because of violence to your brother Jacob, you will be covered with shame, and you will be cut off forever.” (Ob 8–10)

Or this?

“But the house of Esau will be as stubble. And they will set them on fire and consume them, So that there will be no survivor of the house of Esau.” (Ob 18)

I believe God is just in His judgment and consistent in His character, but I understand why pastors might not bring up Obadiah in their sermons very often. It would take a good bit of time to explain why a loving God would say these things.

#4 It’s already in the part of the Bible most people don’t read

It’s one of the Minor Prophets tucked at the back of the Old Testament, and the only really well-known story from that collection is Jonah.

Seriously: the Minor Prophets are the least-read of the Bible’s major sections. Of the 10 least-read books of the Bible, six are Minor Prophets. That’s probably because there isn’t very much narrative in these 12 books.

That, or your pastor just doesn’t bring them up because they’re tough to pronounce.

#5 Application isn’t easy

The books of Matthew, Romans, and Psalms have plenty of material that can be readily applied to our daily lives. Beloved lines like:

  • “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.” (Mt 5:9)

  • “And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.” (Ro 8:28)

  • “The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want.” (Ps 23)

But Obadiah chiefly dwells on a message of coming judgment for a specific country (Edom) because of their specific actions (siding against Judah) at a specific time (probably Nebuchadnezzar’s siege of Jerusalem). It’s not as easy to pull personal takeaways from Obadiah in devotionals and sermons.

But there are plenty of good reasons to read Obadiah anyway

Sure, there are a lot of factors at play that make Obadiah a lot less popular than other books of the Bible. Still: it’s the inspired word of God, and I can think of a few reasons I enjoy reading and studying it.

#1 God looks out for His own

God disciplines His people, but He still comes to their defense. Consider this: the book of Obadiah is written about the Babylonian conquest of Jerusalem. That’s an event that God brought about for Judah’s punishment!

Even when He’s punishing them, God has Judah’s back. This is the God we serve: a God who is steadfast and faithful to His promises and His people.

#2 God is bringing about His kingdom on earth

The language of Obadiah isn’t just God going off on a tirade against Edom. This isn’t the Lord saying “GOD SMASH” like a green Marvel Avenger**. This is kingdom language.

The day of the Lord draws near on all the nations (Ob 15). The book of Obadiah ends with a statement: “the kingdom will be the Lord’s” (Ob 21). God is bringing about a new kingdom—a righteous, holy kingdom.

#3 It’s short

If you’ve made it this far in this blog post, you’ve covered more than double the length of Obadiah. It’s a three-minute read, tops.

Why not give it a look?

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

purple rain

May 24, 2015

Snoopy_in_a_Rainstorm_by_DewCrystal

Well in my part of the world it’s flooding, since we are on top of the mountain we are safe, we just can’t go anywhere and with two weeks of thunderstorms our dogs haven’t slept much and neither have we. So here is the perfect song. We’ve mentioned this song before, it is simple song but it is always a blessing to sing.

    1. There shall be showers of blessing:

      This is the promise of love;

      There shall be seasons refreshing,

      Sent from the Savior above.

    • Refrain:

      Showers of blessing,

      Showers of blessing we need:

      Mercy-drops round us are falling,

      But for the showers we plead.

  1. There shall be showers of blessing,

    Precious reviving again;

    Over the hills and the valleys,

    Sound of abundance of rain.

  2. There shall be showers of blessing;

    Send them upon us, O Lord;

    Grant to us now a refreshing,

    Come, and now honor Thy Word.

  3. There shall be showers of blessing:

    Oh, that today they might fall,

    Now as to God we’re confessing,

    Now as on Jesus we call!

  4. There shall be showers of blessing,

    If we but trust and obey;

    There shall be seasons refreshing,

    If we let God have His way.

After a 5 year drought this is a blessing.

You know where I’m going with this, God chooses the times and the season of blessings and the desert wanderings. If you are spiritually dry pray for a spiritual rain. His Word promises us times of refreshing.

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

think

May 23, 2015

Exploding head

                                                                 CONSCIENCE

 

  1. Keep a clear conscience.

1 Peter 3:15-16. In your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander.

  1. Keep a clear conscience before God and men.

Acts 24:16. I strive always to keep my conscience clear before God and man.

  1. Hold to the truth of the faith.

1 Tim. 3:9. The [deacons] must keep hold of the deep truths of the faith with a clear conscience.

  1. A conscience can be seared.

1 Tim. 4:2. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.

  1. You can have a clear conscience and rest in the heart.

Prov. 3:21-26. My son, preserve sound judgment and discernment, do not let them out of your sight; they will be life for you, an ornament to grace your neck. Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble; when you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.

  1. Christ will give you a clear conscience.

Heb. 9:14. How much more, then, will the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself unblemished to God, cleanse our consciences from acts that lead to death, so that we may serve the living God.

  1. A guilty conscience can be cleansed.

Heb. 10:22. Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and have our bodies washed with pure water.

Short list, God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com

Pray for Kerra, she is doing much better but is having financial problems

Pray for Bob L. pancreatic cancer

Pray for sarah, who is getting married tomorrow and for Paul the dad who will definitely cry.

Pray for John S. lymphoma stage 4

Pray for Barbara, that someone will stand in the gap and protect her (it’s a long story) pray for the elderly, the bible says a nation will be judged on how we treat the elderly.

fasting

May 22, 2015

marshmallow

FASTING

Fasting, like so many other things in Scripture, is a physical symbol of spiritual reality. The withholding of food from the body is of no spiritual value unless it is done deliberately when we desire nothing but to seek God.

Type of fast:

Absolute fast: no food or drink

Normal fast: limited time

Partial fast: limited diet

BIBLICAL PERSPECTIVE

“I have esteemed the word of his mouth more than necessary food” (Job 23:12).

COUNSEL

The Bible clearly states that one should fast, but a problem arises when we ask the question, “Why?” One’s motivation is extremely important (1 Cor. 4:5).

Jesus tells us that the hypocrites fast to show other people that they are fasting (Matt. 6:16). As Christians we are called to fast for spiritual purposes in secret (Matt. 6:18).

Fasting is a response to God – he speaks; we stop and give him our attention. Unless we are responding from the heart to a word from God, our fasting may be motivated by self-interest.

The motives for fasting are spoken of in Isaiah 58:6,7. The results of a chosen fast of God are shown in Isaiah 58:8. Principally the motives acceptable to God are those where one’s desire is to seek the Lord and intercede for a person or situation. The results are personally edifying as well as beneficial to whom or whatever the fast was for.

Pardon the pun, but this is just food for thought!

God bless from scumlikeuschurch@gmail.com