When the Bible says “God saw” or refers to “God’s eyes” what do you think that means? Is God like we are. I had an opportunity for a short devotion this Sunday at my church and decide to look into the “Eyes of God.” Notably, I posted about Habakkuk 1:13 years ago here. That is […]
I planned to go out witnessing the first Saturday of 2012. My initial plan was to go to my normal fishing spot, downtown Columbus. There is plenty of foot traffic in the “bar district” to provide a lot of opportunity to distribute tracts and get into witnessing encounters. But last night, as I was on […]
Ok, this is a bit off the beaten path, but tonight during the adult prayer meeting, it was my privilege to work with the children. Normally I preach for 30-40 minutes (they are a great practice audience), but since they already sat through Pastor Cuenin’s “Wednesday mini,” I figured I’d cut them a break. We […]
Romans 5:12: What a great verse to hold in your heart! What does Paul mean by “one man sin entered into the world?” This is a reference to Adam’s sin in Genesis 3:6-7. Adam’s sin in Genesis 3 provides the foundation for the reason we live in a sin cursed world and need a redeemer in a first place. Dear Christian, do not throw this away! In the spirit of “modernity,” many have found it necessary to avoid drawing on and trusting the supernatural, particularly creation. Some will say, “It doesn’t matter what I believe about creation, if I have Jesus, that’s all that matters.” God forbid. It does matter. Your view of creation is a reflection of, or rather a manifestation of, your view of scripture itself. And the same author who said “In the beginning,” (Gen 1:1, John 1:!) also said “I am the way, the truth and the life” (John 14:6). That author is the Holy Spirit; and His authority is absolute and trustworthy. If you don’t believe Genesis 1-3, tell me, at what point do you start believing?
There are (at least) 2 definitions for fear that we must understand. The first definition, the one used in the verses above that describe a proper fear of God, implies reverence. The word used in 2 Tim 1:7 is a different word. This word has more to do with the cowardice and timidity that people often have out of a desire for SELF-preservation. Let me be clear. God DID GIVE us the SPIRIT OF FEAR and AWE and REVERENCE OF HIM. If you have this, it is from HIM. What God has not given us is the spirit of cowardice that Paul was warning Timothy of in 2 Timothy. If you read the 2 letters to Timothy, you will see that Timothy struggled with the fear of men. He feared persecution for the gospel; I also infer that he was even afraid of some of his own church members’ opinion of him and “his youth.” (1 Tim 4:12)
What a simple verse, truly! But as always, God’s text is packed with meaning, and in this case, utterly under attack for centuries now. Sadly, it is professing Christians who have likely done the most damage with attempts to put meaning here that is not inherent in the text. Notice I did not call those attempts “well-intentioned,” as a truly well-intentioned attempt at interpreting the Bible will start with a biblical worldview and a belief that scripture is the ultimate authority.
But what is the gospel, truly? If it is to be translated as “good news,” isn’t there to be some relation to a provision for the man hearing it for it to be good news? I mean, to approach another and tell them you have good news, and then relate your car insurance savings…well, it’s clear that’s not necessarily good news to the hearer! Of course the good news must be good to the hearer as well, in some cases whether he knows/believes it or not.