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Showing posts from April 14, 2013

Authority

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What is authority? Like so many other words connected with religion, this word is very often misunderstood, misinterpreted, misapplied and misused to justify all sorts of abusive behavior and teachings.
As I compiled a list of uses of this word from throughout the Bible, it started becoming clear to me that like pretty much everything else, there is a true original and there is a counterfeit. Both show up in Scripture and we must have discernment to know the difference between false, abusive types of authority in contrast with God's kind of authority, which like so many other aspects of truth is far less familiar to us.
Like the cartoon above illustrates, our fallen nature tends to interpret most things about God in such darkened ways that we reinforce Satan's insinuations about Him. But all of his deceptions have one purpose – to keep us from knowing the real truth about God that would awaken trust and love in our hearts. As long as Satan can keep us afraid of God he can st…

A New Temptation

What we desperately need are new temptations.
Does that sound strange? Well, maybe that's because we don't understand well enough the real nature of temptation itself. So let me review first what the nature of temptation toward evil looks like from the Bible's perspective. Then I want to explore what a different kind of temptation might look like that could actually act to save us from the evil effects that sin produces in our lives.
Let no one say when he is tempted, "I am being tempted by God"; for God cannot be tempted by evil, and He Himself does not tempt anyone. But each one is tempted when he is carried away and enticed by his own lust. Then when lust has conceived, it gives birth to sin; and when sin is accomplished, it brings forth death. (James 1:13-15)
This is the natural progression of temptation to evil. In addition I have observed over the years that because we were created with the nature of a mirror, temptation itself is designed to exploit that n…

Reacting or Choosing?

Yesterday the news was once again filled with images of carnage and chaos as people's attention was riveted to yet another 'terrorist' event, this time in Boston. Like many others, I found myself drawn into watching the media coverage of this event for some time, though I was deeply suspicious that there is much more going on here than what the media or government will ever allow to become public.
But what bothered me much more and made me quite sober this morning as I was waking up was how this has again affected my thinking processes and the kinds of things that swirl around in my imagination. After getting used to having my imagination more available for the Holy Spirit to share insights with me, most often in the early morning hours, today I found that my imagination seemed bizarre, illogical and erratic, though not necessarily connected to what happened yesterday. Each time I tried to rein it in and focus on seeking God's face as I usually do at that time of day,…