Uncategorized

Everything belongs to God.

The preachers of the false gospel of health and wealth, otherwise called prosperity preachers misunderstand, or purposefully mislead people to enrich themselves. True Christians have everything their brothers and sisters have, and as they have need, are provided for, in Christ, by the means He has ordained via their brothers and sisters. Peter asked, and Jesus answered him. Look at this passage from Mark 10, and see if you understand how this is to be.
“28 Peter began to say to Him, “Behold, we have left everything and followed You.”29 Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake,30 except one who will receive one hundred times as much now in the present age⁠—houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions⁠—and in the age to come, eternal life.31 But many who are first will be last, and the last, first.”” Mark 10:28-31 L.S.B. (Legacy Standard Bible)
Do you see it? Wherever you go as a Christian, you will have homes to stay in, food to eat, and family. Don’t miss the part about persecutions. This is our share as well. If you are in Christ, you will suffer for your faith. The promise of eternal life is for the age to come. So you won’t have you name on property deeds, and titles, but you will have what you need, and you will have life eternal. Thank God, and praise Him, our Creator, Master, and Savior.

Uncategorized

A Trend in Movies, and Television?

It seems there is a trend occurring with movies and television programs. I could be wrong. I would like to read what you think in the comments. I’ve noticed that the individual hero archetype is being exchanged for an intentionally diverse and sometimes perverse collective of people. The last few movies I’ve watched, and some of the new shows made by the streaming platforms seem to feature diverse collectives, or teams, working together to overcome the antagonist. The protagonist is being replaced. One example of this that is fresh in my mind is the new Matrix movie. Not only was Neo not the main hero, but he seemed like a pathetic, week, shadow, of his former machine dominating self. I won’t spoil the film for you. If it weren’t for all the people helping him through the story, he’d have never made it to the end. I know, many of you will say, “But, in the original movie he was helped by the team of people on the Nebuchadnezzar,” and you’d be right. The difference is that the story was obviously about him being, “the one,” and he was. In these newer films and programs the focus is more on the collective team, rather than any one individual hero type protagonist.

It seems to me that the shift is intentional. I don’t think the people paying for these movies and shows to be made want people to view themselves as heroes. I think they want us to value the collective instead of an individual who excels. They sell you on the idea that it is in the name of diversity and inclusion, but when everyone is special, no one is. They might say, “It is more realistic that a team would be needed.” To that I say poppycock! These people are doing things that are all based in fantasy, and you are telling me about realism? No, I think there is a more sinister intent behind the scenes. The message is, men are not the future. Light skinned people are over. The virtues of the past, are offensive. We are your replacements, and you’d better role over and take it.

I hope I’m wrong.

Cults · Jehovah's witnesses · Uncategorized

One Reason Why the Jehovah’s Witnesses are not Christian.

Here is one big reason why the Jehovah’s Witnesses are not Christians. They deny the deity of Jesus, and as a consequence the Trinity. They believe he was the archangel Michael, who was transfigured by God the Father into the man Jesus. They believe he was a created being. They believe he was just a man. This is a quote from their website,

“Jesus’ opposers accused him of making himself equal to God. (John 5:18; 10:30-33) However, Jesus never claimed to be on the same level as Almighty God. He said: “The Father is greater than I am.”—John 14:28.

 Jesus’ early followers did not view him as being equal to Almighty God. For example, the apostle Paul wrote that after Jesus was resurrected, God “exalted him [Jesus] to a superior position.” Obviously, Paul did not believe that Jesus was Almighty God. Otherwise, how could God exalt Jesus to a superior position? —Philippians 2:9.

JW.org

Jesus was accused of making Himself equal to God. Why else would these people want to stone Him to death. The one verse of scripture they quote is ridiculous because it proves the opposite point they are trying to make when you simply read a few verses previous, and prior to it.

“…18 For this reason therefore the Jews were seeking all the more to kill Him, because He not only was breaking the Sabbath, but also was calling God His own Father, making Himself equal with God…” John 5:18

All one must do is read John 1 you say? Well the JW’s have their own version of the, ahem… “bible” called the New Word Translation. It isn’t actually a true translation. It is a hack job done by their scripture twisters to make it say what they want it to say. They change John 1 into saying that, “and the Word was a god.” That quote comes from their website where they have their N.W.T. available to read for free. Here is what the Bible really says in John1, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.2 He was in the beginning with God.3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men.5 And the Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overtake it.” John 1:1-5

14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.15 John bore witness about Him and cried out, saying, “This was He of whom I said, ‘He who comes after me has been ahead of me, for He existed before me.’”16 For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace.17 For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.18 No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.” John 1:14-18

Let’s not overlook the fact that Jesus accepted worship from people as God. If He was not God, He would have rebuked them for worshipping Him, or else He would have been guilty of sin.

“And immediately Jesus stretched out His hand and took hold of him, and said to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?”32 And when they got into the boat, the wind stopped.33 And those who were in the boat worshiped Him, saying, “You are truly God’s Son!”34 And when they had crossed over, they came to land at Gennesaret.35 And when the men of that place recognized Him, they sent word into all that surrounding district and brought to Him all who were sick;36 and they were pleading with Him that they might just touch the fringe of His garment; and as many as touched it were cured.” Matthew 14:31-36

This is where the wise men came to Him, “And when they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy.11 And after coming into the house they saw the Child with Mary His mother; and they fell to the ground and worshiped Him. Then, opening their treasures, they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.12 And having been warned in a dream not to return to Herod, the magi departed for their own country by another way.” Matthew 2:10b-12

“8And they left the tomb quickly with fear and great joy and ran to report it to His disciples.9 And behold, Jesus met them and said, “Greetings!” And they came up and took hold of His feet and worshiped Him.” Matthew 28:8-9

“Then He said to Thomas, “Bring your finger here, and see My hands; and bring your hand here and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing.”28 Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”29 Jesus said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are those who did not see, and yet believed.”” John 20:27-29

These sections of scripture should be enough to show that either Jesus was actually God, and so worshipping Him was not a sin, and it was not a sin for Him to accept that worship, or He was a liar, and a sinner for portraying Himself as God and accepting worship as God. The entire Biblical context provided from the beginning of the Old Testament, to the end of the New Testament makes it clear that Jesus is God incarnate. To deny the deity of Christ is to prove that you do not know Him.

We haven’t even addressed the ἐγώ εἰμί (ego eimi) statements Jesus made. When Jesus says, “I am” He is declaring that He is YhVh. It is a direct relation to the proper name of God which God revealed to Moses at the burning bush. For a fuller treatment of this information you can read this article from Dr. James White.

“​1 When Jesus had spoken these words, He went forth with His disciples over the ravine of the Kidron, where there was a garden, in which He entered with His disciples. 2 Now Judas also, who was betraying Him, knew the place, for Jesus had often met there with His disciples. 3  Judas then, having received the Roman cohort and officers from the chief priests and the Pharisees, *came there with lanterns and torches and weapons. 4 So Jesus, knowing all the things that were coming upon Him, went forth and *said to them, “Whom do you seek?” 5 They answered Him, “Jesus the Nazarene.” He *said to them, “I am He.” And Judas also, who was betraying Him, was standing with them. 6 So when He said to them, “I am He,” they drew back and fell to the ground. 7 Therefore He again asked them, “Whom do you seek?” And they said, “Jesus the Nazarene.” 8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am He; so if you seek Me, let these go their way,” 9 to fulfill the word which He spoke, “Of those whom You have given Me I lost not one.” 10 Simon Peter then, having a sword, drew it and struck the high priest’s slave, and cut off his right ear; and the slave’s name was Malchus. 11 So Jesus said to Peter, “Put the sword into the sheath; the cup which the Father has given Me, shall I not drink it?”” John 18:1-11

This is a quote from the MacArthur Study Bible on this last bit of scripture,

“John 18:4–8 Whom do you seek? By twice asking that question (vv. 4 7), to which they replied, “Jesus of Nazareth” (vv. 5 7), Jesus was forcing them to acknowledge that they had no authority to take his disciples. In fact, he demanded that they let the disciples go (v. 8). The force of his demand was established by the power of his words. When he spoke, “I am he” (v. 6), a designation he had used before to declare himself God (8:28 58; cf. 6:35 8:12 10:7 9 11 14 11:25 14:6 15:1 5), they were jolted backward and to the ground (18:6). This power display and the authoritative demand not to take the disciples were of immense significance, as the next verse indicates. John 18:8”

Bible Reviews · Bibles · Uncategorized

A Soapbox Review of the Legacy Standard Bible, (L.S.B.) Handy Size, Edge-Lined, Shamar Goatskin, in Copper Brown with Full Yapp.

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As many of you know, we have been waiting for orders of this edition to ship. Some of us had per-ordered it in August of 2020. The one I ordered finally arrived. I knew what to expect from Jongbloed (Youngblood) as I have reviewed several premium editions over the years passed. All of them were printed and bound by Royal Jongbloed in the Netherlands. This edition did not depart from that standard set by Jongbloed in the past.

This edition was shipped in a cardboard shipping box via the U.S.P.S. The hardcover comes in a bubble envelope. The cowhide paste-down came in a smaller box. The goatskin edition arrived undamaged, and in perfect condition. The Bible was packed along with the Bible Armor carrying case. The package was cushioned with brown paper. The Bible Armor was in a plastic bag. The Bible was bubble wrapped. It was also wrapped with two paper bands, as is usual with premium goatskin edge-lined Bibles. These bands keep the supple leather from becoming deformed, and in the case of a semi, or full, yapp they keep them bent in to the text block. In times past, full yapp covers kept the text block protected. Keep in mind, these Bibles should never be stored vertically on a shelf! Never! When can you store them vertically on a shelf? NEVER! Glad we got that straight.

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The text block is the same one used in the hardcover, and cowhide Bibles. There are two cowhide options. You can purchase the edge-lined, or the case bound edition. The hardcover’s text block does not have rounded corners. It comes with two ribbon markers. The Cowhide Bibles, and the goatskin have rounded corners. They all have rounded spines. The hardcover, and the cowhide paste-down/case bound Bibles have the narrower 1/4” ribbon markers. The two edge-lined editions come with three of the wider 3/8” ribbon markers.

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The covers are dramatically different in tactile experience as well as smell. The edge-lined goatskin of course is the most supple. The paste-down cowhide is comparable to a Cambridge calfsplit leather. The surface is not as glossy and smooth. The leather editions all smell like… leather. What did you expect?

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Each edition comes with head and tail bands that match the covers. The edge-lined ones have five spine hubs. The paste down and hardcover have gold colored foil heat stamped lines where the hubs would have been. All of them have, “Holy Bible, LSB Legacy Standard Bible, Steadfast Bibles,” heat stamped in gold colored foil on their spines. All of them have smyth-sewn spines. They all employ a 9.5 point font, that is line matched. That means that on the page facing you the text is printed directly over the unturned pages text so that the lines of text line up over one another. This helps reduce eye strain while reading, and helps if you are prone to headaches while reading for prolonged periods of time. Since these editions are printed on a cream colored french milled 32 g.s.m. Bible paper as well as having line matching, and modern printing, they are all a pleasure to read regardless of which edition you decide to purchase. From the value of the hardcover to the suppleness of the premium goatskin cover, you’ll enjoy the same text block. This text block is something you have to see. Finding this quality in a $40 Bible is very uncommon.

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The text is in a single column, verse layout. Paragraphs are denoted by the verse number or a letter being bold. There are section headings in bold print. Page numbers are at the top center in read. Chapter numbers are in drop cap style and printed in red. This is a black letter edition. It is a text edition so there are no cross references or study notes. Italics denote English words that do not appear in the original languages, but are implied by them. An asterisk lets you know that the Greek verb was present tense, but rendered with an English past tense in order to conform with modern usage. Personal pronouns referring to God are capitalized where appropriate. Small caps are used when a passage from the OT is being quoted by someone in the NT, or when they are paraphrasing a citation from the OT. Brackets let you know you are looking at text that does not appear in the oldest collections of text, and probably were not in the original autoscripts.

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All but the hardcover had art gilt page edges. For those who do not know what this is, it is a red pigment under the gold colored finish on the page edges. Like many book features today, they are decorative. This was not always the sole purpose of these features in the past. Spine hubs were where the signatures were sewn into cords in the spine. Head and tail bands were where the signatures were tied in. Art gilt page edges kept the moisture of a humid room from penetrating deep into the text block. You get the idea. Much of the decorative features were once functional.

If you have ever purchased a Shuyler Bible from evangelicalbibles.com, a premium E.S.V. or a premium Cambridge edition, you are probably already familiar with the quality of Bibles printed and bound by Jongbloed. If you have not seen, or held one of these editions, you should consider the investment. Expensive Bibles may seem like an extravagant expenditure to you, and they may be, depending on your budget. If you can afford one, it is a good investment. These Bibles will last a very long time if properly cared for. You could foreseeably hand this Bible down to your children, or grandchildren. Think about what it would mean for a believer a couple generations away, to be reading the very same Bible you held in your hands all of those years. They could read your notes, look at your underlines, and understand a connection to you, even though you went on to be with Christ years before they were born. I would love to have something like that from my grandparents.

My subjective opinion is that this Bible is of such similar quality to other Bibles produced by Jongbloed, and the price being comparable, there is no reason not to purchase one. Couple those facts with the fact that I believe the LSB will demonstrate that it is the new champ when it comes to communicating accurately the intended meanings of God the author, and you have a winner. I could go on about the paper, and the printing, and the high quality materials and manufacturing processes, but the real star here is the accuracy of the LSB translation itself. The men at Master’s have done a fine job, and I plan on scrapping all of my other daily use Bibles to replace them with LSB editions as they become available. I am looking forward to a thinline for carrying around, a MacArthur study Bible, and a full cross reference large print. In conclusion, visit 316publishers here, and go buy one that fits your budget, and get to reading!

Don’t forget to look at my flickr albums for these editions for more detailed images.

Hardcover

Cowhide paste-down/casebound

Shamar goatskin edge-lined

Repentance · sanctification · Uncategorized

“The Christian in Complete Armour” by William Gurnall.

image of the christian in complete armour 3 volume set

I’ve been reading, “The Christian in Complete Armour” by William Gurnall from The Banner of Truth Trust. I have to say, it is quite different than what I suspected. This edition is a three volume set of paperback books, and is very affordable. If you are looking for some moving devotional material I highly recommend it. Here is a short excerpt from one of the sections.

“For it is God’s Word which teaches us how to put on Christ and His graces so that we are fitly armed. Never flatter yourself into thinking you can do without this priceless book. We have all known those who content themselves with a profession of Christ and a smattering of gifts and works, and do not wish to know if there is more to the Christian life. They are the ones whose graces freeze when winter winds buffet their souls. But the saint whose faith has been insulated from error by the truth of the gospel will be able to withstand all Satan’s icy blasts.” William Gurnall’s The Christian in Complete Armour from The Banner of Truth Trust. WWW.BannerofTruth.org

Uncategorized

Give Thanks to God, our Creator, Provider, and Savior!

Those of us who are in Christ sometimes think that today is much worse than in the past. We see polarizing messages from all forms of media. The news can be selected by which camp you live in. Government schools indoctrinate children. Social media treats you like a trained chicken tapping a lever for food pellet, or in this case, and endorphin boost. Movies, and music, cooperate with the government schools, and further pervert the minds of the youth against us, against God. They are being taught to reject God, and to treat the idea of being thankful to God as a reminder to an unjust, colonizing past. We know the lies. We want to make others see the truth, but unless God opens their eyes, and makes them able, they will continue to shake their fists, and grit their teeth, as they live raucous lives, and die angry, unfulfilled, and alone. Hell is a long time my friends.

I’m as guilty as the next person. I get angry when I see lies being extolled as the truth. I get angry when young minds are perverted, but do I give thanks? Do you thank God? After all, He provides for us all, even those who hate Him. All the world is stealing His air, robbing His larder, and squandering their days in selfish pursuits of fleshly pleasures. Now, for Christians we should be living in the Spirit. We should be denying the sinful desires of the flesh, but some are so weak that they are barely hanging on by the whites of their finger nails to a ledge of faith that can only confess, “I am yours Lord. Save me!” The world refuses to thank God.

“For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22  Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.” Romans 1:21-23

Let’s not be like those enslaved to the sinful world system that is leading to eternal death. Let’s stand out, and contrast the world system of death, and dying. Let’s show the world what true life, and liberty look like in Christ. We should proclaim all the truths of God. We should let our behavior be consistent with belief in the truths of God. When the world says, “They are too old to be of any good. Let them be euthanized. It is better use of the environmental resources for them to die now.” Let us say, “Dear one, you have lived a life of labor, and love before the Lord. Let me now help you, and care for you, the way you lovingly cared for me as a child. Recount your life’s history to my children, so they might be wiser.”

Abortion, adultery, sexual perversion, idolatry in all of its forms, (planet/environment worship) veganism, (which can be animal worship) hatred in all of its forms, (sectarianism, bigotry based on skin color or nationality, (socially constructed and called racism used for division) political ideology, etc. are all part of the larger world view of death. This world view is founded on lies, and murder.

Satan murdered the human race by his lies, and demonstrated his hatred for God by the murder he worked. “1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Indeed, has God said, ‘You shall not eat from any tree of the garden’?” 2 The woman said to the serpent, “From the fruit of the trees of the garden we may eat; 3 but from the fruit of the tree which is in the middle of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat from it or touch it, or you will die.’” 4  The serpent said to the woman, “You surely will not die! 5 For God knows that in the day you eat from it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.” Genesis 3:1-5”

Jesus said this to the Jews who were trusting in their descendance from Abraham, “39 They answered and said to Him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus *said to them, “If you are Abraham’s children, do the deeds of Abraham. 40 But as it is, you are seeking to kill Me, a man who has told you the truth, which I heard from God; this Abraham did not do. 41 You are doing the deeds of your father.” They said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father: God.” 42 Jesus said to them, “If God were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and have come from God, for I have not even come on My own initiative, but  He sent Me. 43 Why do you not understand  what I am saying? It is because you cannot hear My word. 44 You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies. 45 But because I speak the truth, you do not believe Me. 46 Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me? 47 He who is of God hears the words of God; for this reason you do not hear them, because you are not of God.” John 8:39-47

The world does what their father does. They hate, lie, and murder. They don’t see it that way. They can’t see it that way. When they look at the Church, they see in us, what they are. They accuse us of being, and doing what they themselves are guilty of. Worst of all, they accuse their Creator. He is odious to them. They have enmity with God.

“as it is written,
“THERE IS NONE RIGHTEOUS, NOT EVEN ONE;
11 THERE IS NONE WHO UNDERSTANDS,
THERE IS NONE WHO SEEKS FOR GOD;
12 ALL HAVE TURNED ASIDE, TOGETHER THEY HAVE BECOME USELESS;
THERE IS NONE WHO DOES GOOD,
THERE IS NOT EVEN ONE.”
13 “THEIR THROAT IS AN OPEN GRAVE,
WITH THEIR TONGUES THEY KEEP DECEIVING,”
“THE POISON OF ASPS IS UNDER THEIR LIPS”;
14 “WHOSE MOUTH IS FULL OF CURSING AND BITTERNESS”;
15 “THEIR FEET ARE SWIFT TO SHED BLOOD,
16 DESTRUCTION AND MISERY ARE IN THEIR PATHS,
17 AND THE PATH OF PEACE THEY HAVE NOT KNOWN.”
18 “THERE IS NO FEAR OF GOD BEFORE THEIR EYES.”” Romans 3:10-18

14 But a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised. 15 But he who is spiritual appraises all things, yet he himself is appraised by no one. 16 For WHO HAS KNOWN THE MIND OF THE LORD, THAT HE WILL INSTRUCT HIM? But we have the mind of Christ.” 1 Corinthians 2:14-16

“You adulteresses, do you not know that friendship with the world is hostility toward God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.” James 4:4

What is the alternative to death and dying eternally? It is life, and living eternally. How are we to live knowing that we are surrounded by death, murder, perversion, and lies? We are to be truly alive in Christ. The stark contrast between the two realities is a testimony to God’s goodness, longsuffering, patience, mercy, and grace. We should respond with love, and with truth. We cannot love without being honest.

“We know that we are of God, and that the whole world lies in the power of the evil one. 20 And we know that the Son of God has come, and has given us understanding so that we may know Him who is true; and we are in Him who is true, in His Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God and eternal life.
21  Little children, guard yourselves from idols.” 1 John 5:19-21

6 For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. 7 For one will hardly die for a righteous man; though perhaps for the good man someone would dare even to die. 8 But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Much more then, having now been justified  by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved  by His life. 11  And not only this, but we also exult in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation.” Romans 5:6-11

9 (Now this expression, “He ascended,” what does it mean except that He also had descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is Himself also He who ascended far above all the heavens, so that He might fill all things.) 11 And He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, 12  for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ; 13 until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the  knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ. 14  As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; 15 but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, 16 from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.
The Christian’s Walk
17  So this I say, and affirm together with the Lord, that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, 18 being darkened in their understanding,  excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart; 19 and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness. 20 But you did not learn Christ in this way, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus, 22 that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, 23 and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and put on the new self, which  in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth.
25 Therefore, laying aside falsehood, SPEAK TRUTH EACH ONE of you WITH HIS NEIGHBOR, for we are members of one another. 26  BE ANGRY, AND yet DO NOT SIN; do not let the sun go down on your anger, 27 and do not give the devil an opportunity. 28 He who steals must steal no longer; but rather he must labor, performing with his own hands what is good, so that he will have something to share with one who has need. 29 Let no  unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear. 30  Do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, by whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31  Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. 32  Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
CHAPTER 5
Be Imitators of God
1  Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children; 2 and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God as a fragrant aroma.
3 But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; 4 and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
6  Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them; 8 for you were formerly darkness, but now you are Light in the Lord; walk as children of Light 9 (for the fruit of the Light consists in all goodness and righteousness and truth), 10   trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord. 11  Do not participate in the unfruitful deeds of darkness, but instead even  expose them; 12 for it is disgraceful even to speak of the things which are done by them in secret. 13 But all things become visible when they are exposed by the light, for everything that becomes visible is light. 14 For this reason it says,
“Awake, sleeper,
And arise from the dead,
And Christ will shine on you.”
15 Therefore be careful how you walk, not as unwise men but as wise, 16   making the most of your time, because the days are evil. 17 So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of the Lord is. 18 And do not get drunk with wine, for that is dissipation, but be filled with the Spirit, 19  speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody with your heart to the Lord; 20  always giving thanks for all things in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to  God, even the Father; 21   and be subject to one another in the  fear of Christ.” Ephesians 4:9 – 5:21

The system of true life is of God. Those who have been translated from death to life now live for God’s glory, and that living is their greatest joy, and fulfillment. It is found in God. He is the truth, the life, and the way. He is the one true and living God. Jesus exampled the triune God to us. He lived a perfect, and sinless life. He is our spotless Passover lamb. We have learned to truly love because He has showed us love by way of the cross. There, our precious Savior did bleed, and die. He atoned for our sins, and was resurrected on the third day. He conquered sin and the grave. We should respond with a humbled heart, that repents of sin, and trusts not in its own works, but the justifying work of Jesus our God!

If you are in Christ, you can and should live peaceably with all men, as much as you are able, and demonstrate the love and truth of Jesus. He left us the mission of preaching His good news to all the world, and of making disciples of all men. Let us be about His business of bringing the elect in, and showing true love to the lost, dying, world. Be thankful for God’s plan. Be thankful for His work on the cross. Be thankful for your adoption, and all that entails.

If as a Christian you can find no reason to be thankful this year perhaps it is because you are focused too much on the problems of the world system, and not enough on the glorious Savior? If you are downcast, look up to Him! Fix your gaze on Him! Read His word! Think about the wonderful miracle He has worked in your new birth! Remember it! Remember His mercy, and love! Remember how you came to it! Thank God for all His provisions!

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Remembering Sandra, Part 1

My oldest daughter writes a bit about my mother.

It Is Later Than You Think

It’s November 19, 1945. A gallon of gas runs 21 cents, Harry James, Tony Bennet, and Dinah Shore are top of the pop charts, World War II has just ended, and Sandra Summers (Shumskis) is born. Her mother, the daughter of the wealthy Nacarado family, receives her with great joy. This is her second daughter, and Sandra is a mirror image of her except for her bright blue eyes. These she was given by her father, Bernard Summers (they changed their name from Shumskis), the son of poor Lithuanian immigrants. When they met dancing one night, they fell in love. The Nacarados disowned Lucille for this. She was to marry another well-to-do Italian man, a Catholic of course. Instead, she married this poor nobody whose parents were Russian Orthodox.

I wish I could say she never lived to regret this choice. Sandra told me of the many times her mother…

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A side by side comparison of four translations of Colossians 2.

I made a table, and then converted it into a very large graphic. Then I added a link to the graphic on my Flickr page. You can view the file in its full size by clicking on the image below.

Now, I know many of you are like minded along with me that the differences in these texts are negligible, and don’t have an effect on the intended meaning. Yet, there are some out there who would disagree. I believe they do so out of a misguided devotion to a human tradition known as King James Onlyism. It is one thing to prefer one text over another, but these folks go further and make it into a primary article of faith. In other words, they don’t consider anyone using a different translation other than the 1611 King James to be a Christian. Pretty strange right? Well, it is more common than you might think. The KJVO people would claim that I am ignoring the most meaningful examples of how the other translations have got it wrong. I admit, I’m not going to do a thorough treatment here as many more people have already done so, and their work is readily available for free on the internet. What I am doing is simply asking you to think. For those who claim it must be the KJV, which version of the KJV are you talking about? There have been several editions over time. Usually they insist that it must be the 1611, “Authorized” edition. I think this is quite humorous. Many of them are surprised to find out there are different editions of the KJV, but the ones who insist on the 1611 make me laugh. The 1560 Geneva Bible was the first complete Old and New Testament Bible in English, with chapter and verse numbers to my knowledge. It was translated from the same collection of texts that the 1611 KJV was. Yet, most KJVO people have never heard of the 1560 Geneva Bible. Did you know it was the translation the Pilgrims took with them to America? Well, it was. It sure wasn’t the 1611 KJV lol! There is a reason the Puritans fled England, and Europe in general. It wasn’t because they weren’t locking them up in prison, hanging them, and burning them at the stake for being anabaptists…

Anyhow, enjoy your cult KJVO peeps. Remember, knowing is half the battle! G.I. Joe is there… or something like that.

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Christian, obey your conscience!

We are to seek what is good, and right. We know what we are to seek because God has given us His word. When the government is so corrupt that it insists you accept a lie as the truth, and not only accept it, but repeat it, and act as if it is true, they are requiring you to violate your conscience. If you go along with them, you are guilty of lying, and much more. When they tell you that there are more than two genders, it is a lie. This lie does harm to the people who believe it, their families, their local communities, and the nation. When parents pervert a child into thinking they are a girl instead of a boy, this is child abuse. It will have life long effects. If you go along with the lie, you are complicit in the abuse. You might think you are being polite by not causing drama, or hurt feelings, but the truth is a necessity. God knows the truth of all things, and He is truth. If the government would have you violate your conscience to obey them, and your conscience is captive to God, then you must obey God instead. This by necessity of consequence will bring persecution to your very door. Remember, they crucified our Lord. We can expect no different treatment from a bloody, murderous, and satanic world.