Character

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I was reading several articles on-line concerning character and character traits. Many interesting ideas, but quite valid and handy, in my opinion. We each have our own beliefs about what are good character traits that we should possess; perhaps even desire. As we grow older we find that we needed many different traits, but failed to realize such and also failed to instill them as good habits. They say, “Youth is wasted on all the wrong people.” I tend to agree with that and believe it even stronger now, while in my youth challenged state. Perhaps, I can learn something new in my elderly status…or, perhaps, I am simply reminding myself that in this respect I must live vicariously through others who happen to be far more youthful than I.

Character traits are those things that make you stand out to a crowd of people. It is what you might deem to be a bright yellow highlighting of you among the rabble of black and white words on a page…helping you become noticeable to others, in order to stand out for memory’s sake. For instance: being on-time for an interview is a character trait a business seeks in it’s new hires; thinking fast on your feet or in less than optimal circumstances is another trait others seek; courtesy and chivalry are other traits that people desire to see in others that they come in contact with; kindness toward others and toward animals;..and the list can go on,  etc.

In order to better ourselves, we need to assess our present character traits and decide if they need to be better than they are presently, or if we must replace some traits with other traits. We each go through this at some point in time, thus allowing us to expand our horizons and better ourselves! Not just for our own sake, but for the sake of humanity and the betterment of society. God tugs at our heart from time to time insisting that we better ourselves; unfortunately, in God’s eye, we have a plethora of changes that need to be made!

In 1726, at the age of 20, Benjamin Franklin created a system to develop his character. In his autobiographytp, Franklin listed his thirteen virtues.  Benjamin Franklin spent one week on each trait, then switched to the next one in the list. Upon completion of each on the list (i.e., 13 traits in 13 weeks,) he would start the list all over again. In one year’s time you can go through the list 4 times. While these are not necessarily the only traits within the context of the bible, but Benjamin Franklin  found them to be the best ones for himself. But, in this respect, we each must find such a path for ourselves, because we each handle things differently than others. In fact, some of us may have a longer list of virtues to create as character traits we desire to possess, other might have a shorter list.

Good character traits can be learned, as they are simply good habits of an outward and caring nature toward others. In the blog post of “God’s Ten Commandments versus Jesus’ Two Commandments“, on May 8th, 2017, I had explained about Jesus’ Two Commandments to us, explaining the nature of such commands. Their simplicity is what makes them so great! In essence, we love God by our outward show of love toward Him. Which is done by our actions of honoring His commandments, showing our gratefulness by giving our tithes and offerings, by also treating our fellow neighbors with love and honoring our word that we may give when we strike a deal or bargain. The simplicity of Jesus’ words in Matthew 22:37-40 are as such:

Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”

We are witnessing, in present day, the demise of character within the millennial community; as well as within society as a whole. The majority of millennials are under the belief that all things should be handed to them, even when they have lost the battle or election. They believe the government owes them something (a job, free education, free healthcare, etc.) They have been taught, indoctrinated really, to believe and understand facts that don’t exist in our history. We are also witnessing the demise of American history, soon to be revised within the history books…a sad chapter in our future history books. Think about this for a bit…Robert E. Lee’s monument is being removed, Jefferson Davis’ monument is being removes, Confederate monuments are being removed, and the Ten Commandments monument was removed by order of the US Supreme Court. This sanitizing of our history, good or bad as it may have been, is a purposeful destruction of what actually happened in our history. This will at some point in time, should I gamble on this,  be scrubbed from the history books in favor of a more likeable historical write-up?

The sad truth is this, character is built upon all of the good and the bad, together! We are human and thus we make mistakes. If we are smart, we will learn from those GeorgeSantayanaQuote1mistakes and use those weaknesses in order to become stronger and wiser. History, good or bad, is there to remind us where we did things right and those things we did wrong. By remembering history, we are reminded never to let such bad things ever happen again. Unfortunately, we as humans are a stupid race and if we are not reminded from time to time of our mistakes…we will repeat them! Sadly, yes we will.

Character is built as you are growing up by watching your parents. As your relationship with your parents wane away your character is developed partially by your peers and your heroes.

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Character is something we build up over the years. It is, for the most part, trial and error. But if we are wise, or shall I say if we grow in wisdom, our character traits of our older age will be better than when we were growing up and maturing. There is one place I believe you can truly gain the wiser wisdom to learn from and that is the Bible and the text within that cumulative set of writings. Based upon the wisdom and writings of over 50 authors, written over the span one thousand five hundred years. And if you think about it, our thoughts are not original in the least. Though the technology may change, the basis of most, if not all, thoughts is not original to us. They are synthetic changes on something that has happened in the past.

In order to change the society in which we live, for the better, we must first ourselves possess the character traits and leadership traits to lead other to make all of the necessary changes. Prayers is our starting point…on our knees in reverence to God seeking His will to accomplish His greatest good. We as Christians, must take on the roles to necessary to accomplish what must be done. Such as: Teaching and education positions, leadership and political position, law enforcement and first responder positions, etc. We need to stop cow-towing down to these other people of other faiths, or non-faiths if you will, and stand up for the will of God and to become know as lovers of Jesus.

What will you be known best for by all your fiends? I would like to be known as a person who loves God and a sharer of the faith! What about you??

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

God’s Ten Commandments versus Jesus’ Two Commandments

What are the differences? How can the “supposed” Son of God change the commands of God? Or, did He change them??? Let us look into this, it has always been on my mind and have not researched or even sought an answer…

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So, it is agreed, for the sake of this discussion that God did give to Moses, His servant, the Ten Commandments for Israel to adhere to and follow all the days of their lives and they were first given in Exodus 20:1-17 NKJV.

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And Jesus came along and gave us the Greatest Commandment in Matthew 22:36-40 NKJV, which is derived from Deuteronomy 6:1-3 NKJV.

Consider, for a moment or two, that there was a reason that Jesus simplified that which was already simple. How so, you might ask? Well, let’s take a good look:  The Jews were reminded that the Lord God lead them out of Egypt and the land of bondage.And the Sabbath was/is on a Saturday.

It is my contention that the Ten Commandments were, specifically geared toward the Jewish people, the very chosen people of God, Himself! Whereas, the modified Greatest Commandment was aimed toward the Jews but moreso in preparation for the Gentiles to adopted into the family of God.

As Christians, or sons and daughters who are adopted into the family of God (adoptive Jews, so to say) we were not lead from Egypt, we celebrate the Lord’s day on Sunday as it was the day upon which Jesus rose from the dead. Also, under the laws work was very specifically defined, such as walking beyond straight from one’s home to the synagogue was considered labor and other things as such. Jesus called out the Sanhedrin and Pharisees on such hypocrisies.

The Lord gave the Jews the land of milk and honey, i.e. Israel. While all of this world is the Lord’s, and everything therein…the land we live on was not given to us as the land (nation of Israel) was given to the Jews. While we can debate upon this matter, to a certain extent, we have not had to battle to maintain our land in our possessions as the Jewish people continue to do.

As I do think it a moot point that Jesus made the Lord simplified the Commandments which we are to live by, in that you either love God or you do not. Can we agree on that point, at least?

Let’s look at the Greatest Commandment which Jesus simplified for us:

“Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” Jesus said to him, “‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like it: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.”~Matthew 22:36-40 NKJV

  • First of all, Jesus stated that “You shall love the Lord“, which makes these two commands individualistic and personal. Meaning they are demanded of each and every one of us who follow the Christ. No if’s, and’s, or but’s. We are to do so by choice, not by force
    • We are to love Him “with all our heart“, which means we are to be sincere in our love toward God. After all, God can see our hearts and therefore love is the first and great thing that we should devote to him.
    • We are to love Him “with all our soul“, which means the soul must be engaged for him, and all things carried out toward and for Him and for His glory.
    • We are to love Him “with all our mind“, which means God gave us a mind with which to think things out and to reason with. That said, we must glorify God with our power of thought and reason. We must use our minds to learn all we can of God and to pass that on towards others; thereby, to mentor and disciple others.
    • To love God as the One True and Only God and Creator of all, is the greatest test of all. After all, do you truly believe such a thing? And do you truly show your love toward God? Only you can answer such a question and you know that God can see your heart.
    • You love the Lord God when you honor Him, when you hold Him in the highest esteem because you know & believe that He created you and placed the breath of life in your nostrils. You honor God when you place nothing else before yourself in order to worship or love as your creator.
    • If you honor God daily, is there a necessity to have a special day? Good question, and each of us will have an opinion on such a subject. However, it cannot hurt to honor God on Sundays, despite your honoring Him everyday. Every day which you wake and rise with the breath of life in you…is, after all, a day of the Lord…is it not??

Some people make each concept (heart, soul, & mind) to denote one and the same thing, to love him with all our powers; others differentiate each term; the heart, soul, and mind, are the will, affections, and understanding. Our love of God must be a sincere love, and not in word and tongue only, as theirs is who say they love him, but their hearts are not with him. In my opinion, the Lord Jesus inferred that each term should be understood on their own merit(s) and as the sum of their merit(s), together. It is always wise to look at them from every angle possible, as God did grant us a mind to reason with.

  • Secondly, Jesus commanded us to …love your neighbor as yourself.” Sound familiar? It ought to, that pesky Golden Rule that we were taught as children. To love one’s neighbor as one’s self we need to follow last five of the ten commandments:
    • Honoring our parents, while not our neighbors but they are those over us who are commanded to rear us up in the word of God and teach us all His ways. We are instructed to hold those in high regard who are our elders.
    • Murder, adultery, stealing, false witnessing, and coveting – these each affect those around us, our neighbors, friends, etc. We would not appreciate any of these things happening to us; therefore, we are not to treat others so heinously! Our civil society is based upon these things; in fact, our laws are based upon these things. You honor and glorify God when you love your neighbor as yourself.

Is one set of commandments any better than the other? No, I don’t think so. But the commandments from Jesus were the true cumulative effect of all the Old Testament Laws and words of the prophets brought together in one paragraph.

I hope you found this interesting and helpful. My prayer is that we all can affect change in society through our changes toward how we treat our neighbors. Godspeed to you all!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

How do I start reading the Bible?

I was speaking with a co-worker the other day and invited them to our church’s Easter service. She has been in Christianity since she was a child but recently started reading the bible. We have been talking, off and on, for years concerning Christianity, the bible, Jesus, God, etc. So I thought this might be a good addition to the Prodigal’s Sons Ministry posts for those new to the reading of the bible. I found this article which describes quite a bit of what I desired to say. [ORIGINAL ARTICLE]

A lot of people would like to become more familiar with the Bible’s characters, readingstories and message. That’s a worthy ambition, but where do you begin? Many would-be readers are paralyzed by the sheer size of the Bible and by not knowing where to start.

Here’s a Good Question from a reader: I’d like to start reading the Bible, but it feels like a massive undertaking. I’m not even sure what the Bible is or how it’s laid out. Is there a good way to start?

First, it’s important realize that the Bible is not an ordinary book that reads smoothly from cover to cover. It’s actually a library, or collection, of books written by different authors in several languages over several thousand years. But it’s a readable library, and you can get through it. Its books are “shelved” by type and topic, just as in a public library: history, the Law, the Prophets, poems and wisdom literature, eyewitness accounts of Jesus (the Gospels), collections of letters, and mind-blowing apocalyptic descriptions of the past, present and future. What a treasure trove to explore!

We talked to Bob Grahmann, Ph.D., InterVarsity’s Link Director. For years, he has taught students in the U.S. and Eastern Europe how to get into the Bible and mine the truths it contains. “If you’re digging in for the first time,” he says, “start with the Gospel of Mark, and then go on to John.”

Why start in the New Testament? Bob replies, “Martin Luther said that the Bible is the ‘cradle of Christ.’ All biblical history and prophecy ultimately point to Jesus. The book of Mark is quick and fast-paced, while John focuses on the things Jesus claimed about himself. Mark tells about what Jesus did, while John tells about what Jesus said. In John are some of the simplest and clearest passages, such as John 3:16, but also some of the deepest and most profound passages. It appeals to students and is worthy of study.”

Keep reading

When you’ve read through John, simply go on to the next book, Acts. This is Luke’s sequel to his account of Jesus, picking up the story at the point of Christ’s ascension. In this action-packed book we learn how the early church got started and how the gospel spread throughout the Roman Empire. “Students are into community,” says Bob, “and Acts is about community—with all of its ups and downs.” Understanding the letters of Paul, Peter and others that follow in the Bible will be much easier once you’ve read Acts. You’ll have a better feel for who the recipients of those letters were.

Next move on to Romans. “This is completely different—a letter that introduces us to the Apostle Paul and the Christian faith. Paul describes the basic teachings of the Christian faith in one book, and it’s all about God’s grace.

[ORIGINAL ARTICLE – read more…]

Mix-N-Match Jesus…the American Way…Right?

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America, land of the free and home of the brave! You can say and believe anything! And it is even better if you can get others to believe the same. America! The home of the right to freedom of speech and religion. But can all that freedom be the undoing of America???

<based upon Challenge or Chapter #6 the case for the real Jesus – 73%>

We are presently, worldwide and not just in America, where we create our own Mix-n-Match Jesus! Think about that for a moment…just consider the facts:

  1. How many sects of Christianity exist in the world today? Latest numbers indicate in excess of 40,000 separate and distinct denominations of Christianity throughout the world. And what, you may ask, does it take to have a “separate and distinctly different denomination”? Just one tenet, just one word change within a tenet or doctrine…Yes, that is all it takes! Comparatively speaking it doesn’t make it much different but due to that one change it makes it more “unique,” if you will.
  2. Some denominations believe in drinking in moderation, as depicted in the bible. Other denominations are quite the opposite where drinking is prohibited because you MAY cause a brother or a sister to stumble in their walk with God. (As is inferred by the writings of the Apostle Paul and the Prophet Ezekiel.) Of course, other denominations have opposing views about marriage, snakes, dancing, and the list goes on and on.
  3. Some believers acknowledge Jesus as being White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestan, Others see Him as a white southern boy with a rebel heart, Others see Him as the Pope (but on a much grander scale), others see Him as a Black man, others as Oriental, and of course now there is the crowd that sees Jesus as not a man but a woman, a queer, a homosexual, or even a transgender person. And let us not forget the ever popular Kanye West’s Book of Yezus! (And I am certain this is not an all inclusive look into the ideologies of all denominations!)

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According to Lee Strobel in his book “The Case for the Real Jesus: A Journalist Investigates Current Attacks on the Identity of Christ”we are, essentially, living in a world of do-it-yourself spirituality. Man reads of God and His commandments, moral doctrines & tenets, laws, etc. And since mankind does not like the way things are, he has to change them for his own good. Because once man changes it, it will make everyone else feel better about themselves. And why does man do this..?..he does this to garner support from others so they too can feel good about themselves. And lo and behold, a new religion is born, a new denomination of Christianity arises. Man seems to think that God is too strict and since mankind as a whole ‘feels’ so bad about himself, which is not good in the eyes of his fellow man. His fellow man changes a few things so his fellow man can feel better about himself. There you have it. A new religion, a new denomination, and a new 501(c)3 Non-profit Organization is born into the world, in order to collect millions from it’s followers.

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If you are tired of feeling bad about yourself…you don’t have to repent and change your ways. NO! You can just become a member of a new organization which says all you want to believe about God…no need in paying attention to what the bible ACTUALLY says about God…it is all about interpretation and sleight of hand! Voilà you have become a new man, or woman, in the eyes of your fellow man in the name of God (the one he fashioned after the desires of your heart!) You may as well have accomplished a lobotomy on yourself.

What is it that I have heard over the years about people’s personal beliefs about God:

  1. God doesn’t really send people to hell.
  2. If God is all good, why is there evil?
  3. God promised me…
  4. God could not possibly exist because there is evil, hate, murder, war, etc.
  5. God is the basis of a religion that judges, why can’t I just be a good person?

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But what most people fail to realize is that God created man to live by His rules and commandments and His word. But as man comes to a point of reality in his own life where God does not quickly and swiftly correct and chastise him for his wrong doing, man becomes bolder and bolder in his actions against God and His will. This separating man from God, man increasingly becomes a god in his own right and in his own mind. All things are permissible when you either believe you are god, or there is no god/God. And we see this truism through the biblical texts of Sodom & Gomorrah, Jonah, the trials of King David, Gideon, Joshua, and others. Man forgets that quick and swift judgment of God is not the same as man’s quick and swift judgment. God can judge you up until your last breath, allowing you the ability to change your evil ways, or after your final breath and grant you eternal judgment; on the other hand, man intends “quick and swift judgment” to mean right after your iniquity is perpetrated, or soon thereafter.

Consider, I implore you, to take God at His word and understand His word. This can only be done through continual lifelong reading and studying. This is a lifelong commitment. And when you read and study the Word of God, you must make it a point to study, and research, the culture and understanding of the words written. And after a time when you have gotten comfortable with that aspect of God’s Word, you might even consider a deeper understanding through the study and research of the Greek, Aramaic, Syriac, and Hebrew writings. By leaning such you will deeply enrich your understanding and the intended meanings of the written Word. An added dimension, if you will.

As a word of warning, do not give in to your base desires to create a mix-n-match Jesus and/or God, but study and research so you will enhance your true understanding of God, God’s meaning of life, and God’s purpose for you in this life. Seek Him and He will be found by YOU!

May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

 

The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.

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Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”~Exodus 14:13-4 NIV

In this passage, I truly like and appreciate the narrative of the NIV Bible! Man, by nature needs to see in order to believe the supernatural and the miracle. As a Christian, and as a Jew, we are called to believe in order for the supernatural and the miracle to transpire and occur. Man limits himself through his skeptical attitudes and absolute lack of faith in the power of God. In fact, man further limits his potential blessings by not researching for himself, or herself, but blindly following the words of others because they sound very authoritative on any particular point or matter on the dogma or doctrines of the church or the tenets espouse within the bible.

Everyone gets so hung up on the infallibility issue with respect to the Word of God. Are we saying that they were perfect men? By no means! David was an adulterer, murderer, liar, and a cover-up artist. Adam could not keep one simple command. Moses disobeyed God’s command. Isaiah ran away from the queen because he feared her threats, despite the proofs God had shown. Matthew was a Tax Collector (they were considered scum by all the respectable Jews in the community.) Saul of Tarsus (the Apostle Paul) was a hunter and killer of all those who followed “the Way.” Peter denied the Christ in order to save his own skin, despite his vehement denial of such an assertion by the Christ, himself. All of the Apostles hid behind closed doors after Jesus’ crucifixion and let the women go to check on the tomb; this all occurred in a cultural time-frame where women’s words were meaningless. But yet their words, initially, are a testament that show the the tomb was emptied.

So if you are a person with questionable faith, low faith, or even no faith…you are, without a doubt, among great company! All men, women, and children waver in their faith at some point in time in their lives, or at every turn on their journey. Everyone is different and handles problems differently. Like anything else, faith is just like your mind or a muscle, where it becomes stronger with use, trial, error, and yes – even failure at times! Your childhood heroes, whether they are basketball players – baseball players – football players – hockey players – wrestlers – etc. and so on…are all failures! Now, think about that for a few moments!!!

Yes, they are all failures. Why do I say this? Because all of those hoops they made, ‘Hail Mary’ passes completed, home-runs made, goals accomplished, or the pins of a lifetime against all the odds…those all came into being because of grueling training where each and every one of them sought to better themselves, accomplish a dream, and to be the absolute best that they could possibly be. Failure occurred 70 or more percent of the time, and yes it was usually more than 70% failure. But each and every one of those childhood heroes of yours stuck with the practice because deep down they knew they could and would get better, in due time!

Well guess what? Your faith works much the same way, in that, while things are going wrong – your faith dictates to you through your heart to not just look at what is happening and become discouraged…but rather, look at the Word of God and seek out His promises for His followers! What did He promise you and me?

  • Never promised an easy life, but did promise an eternal life in His glory!
  • Never promised you a life of wealth and luxury, but a life of hard work and inheritance (physical wealth or spiritual wealth…it is different for all).
  • Yes, there are a number of Millionaires & Billionaires, but there is no promise that you will be wealthy or rich; however, there are various forms of wealth, also this may be a test of your covetousness, eh?
  • You are not promised to be a hero, a great man/woman, nor perfect; BUT you were given the promise that you would be held high in God’s eye by taking every task and treating it as though YOU worked for God Himself as opposed to your boss. (read Colossians 3:22-4:1)

The Word of God says that He has your back, consider taking that to heart! Consider the present trial and tribulation as being a test or learning situation. Perhaps, just perhaps, you had need of learning something very specific, or if you are like me (Irish, a man, and hard headed, lol) you just might take a little longer to learn some of the basic things that ‘other’ people have a tendency to learn a bit quicker…hmmmmm…

I am very partial to this Psalm of David, because it was something that was strongly impressed upon me while in prayer. While I delayed, hemmed and hawed on fulfilling His command, or demand, of me. Something really simple, but me being the lazy person I tend to be and possess few skills or talents (if you will.) All I was to do was to build a simple prayer bench for myself, nothing extravagant. I looked for plans, ideas, and layouts. Then once that was done start cutting the wood, get the screws, and pre-drill, then put it together. Shouldn’t have taken more than a day in real people’s time…several months later, it still was not complete. I just hunkered down and did the work to finish it. But that is not the end…I disobeyed what God told be to do. When God tells you to do something then YOU NEED TO DO IT, NOW! Stop playing around, when YOUR Creator asks or demands something of you…JUST DO IT!

God the Help of Those Who Seek Him

A Song of Ascents.

I will lift up my eyes to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.

He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;
The Lord is your shade at your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
Nor the moon by night.

The Lord shall preserve you from all evil;
He shall preserve your soul.
The Lord shall preserve your going out and your coming in
From this time forth, and even forevermore.

~Psalm 121 NKJV

According to Matthew Henry’s Commentary (MHC):

Some call this the soldier’s psalm, and think it was penned in the camp, when David was hazarding his life in the high places of the field, and thus trusted God to cover his head in the day of battle. Others call it the traveller’s psalm (for there is nothing in it of military dangers) and think David penned it when he was going abroad, and designed it pro vehiculo—for the carriage, for a good man’s convoy and companion in a journey or voyage. But we need not thus appropriate it; wherever we are, at home or abroad, we are exposed to danger more than we are aware of; and this psalm directs and encourages us to repose ourselves and our confidence in God, and by faith to put ourselves under his protection and commit ourselves to his care, which we must do, with an entire resignation and satisfaction, in singing this psalm.

We are theoretically at the doorstep of fear daily, if you read the Psalm and its basic meaning by MHC. We could potentially be killed  by any number of possibilities, or by others, or by any freak accident on the road while on our way to work, or to the store. But we are to look to God, look up to Him because 1) He created us, 2) He supplies all out help and assistance, and 3) He promises to preserve  us from all evil by preserving our soul for all eternity.

Just as the miracles of the Israelite’s occurred while escaping the Egyptians, similar miracles could happen to protect you daily. Unfortunately, it is the problem of the lack of faith of man that Jesus was unable to perform miracles in His own hometown.

Just remember: The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.

May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

The Betrayal of Jesus

betrayed1Ultimately, why did God create people knowing full well they were going to hell? This is an age old question. Whether you agree, or disagree, with the assessment is completely up to you.

The Son of Man indeed goes just as it is written of Him, but woe to that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! It would have been good for that man if he had not been born. ~Matthew 26:24 NKJV

Jesus said to him, “If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me.” ~ John 21:22 NKJV

Jesus’ betrayal was predicted, foretold, foreseen, etc. at many points of time within the Old Testament. While there are many other prophecies about Jesus, we are more interested in the time-frame of His betrayal:

Prophecies
OT Scripture NT Fulfillment
1. Messiah would be betrayed. Psalm 41:9
Zechariah 11:12-13
Luke 22:47-48
Matthew 26:14-16
2. Messiah’s price money would be used to buy a potter’s field. Zechariah 11:12-13 Matthew 27:9-10
3. Messiah would be falsely accused. Psalm 35:11 Mark 14:57-58
4. Messiah would be silent before his accusers. Isaiah 53:7 Mark 15:4-5

While we won’t be discussing these prophecies, specifically, our over all discussion will be to discuss the underlying question as to why did God create people knowing full well they were going to hell? In short, if Jesus was not betrayed by someone close to Him, how would the scriptures be fulfilled? More importantly, how would we be truly saved by the blood of the Son of God? His blood had to be spilled upon us in order to do the job of salvation properly. The reason I say that is because the blood of the sacrifice was to be sprinkled on the altar, but would also be used to wash the intended person, or people, to be cleansed.

John, to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace to you and peace from Him who is and who was and who is to come, and from the seven Spirits who are before His throne, and from Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler over the kings of the earth. To Him who loved us and washed us from our sins in His own blood, and has made us kings and priests to His God and Father, to Him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.~Revelation 1:4-6 NKJV

Now, Judas Iscariot was a tool to accomplish a specific task. He was intended to get close to Jesus and to betray Him for the salvation of all mankind. Jesus even had the argument with His own disciples according to the Apostle John:

Jesus said to him, “If I will that he remain till I come, what is that to you? You follow Me.”~John 21:22 NKJV

Jesus reminded them that if He desired it for him to remain till He came again, what was it to them? They were to follow Jesus, regardless of what happened to anyone else! The more any of us look at the situation, Jesus was a forgiving man. The most forgiving man on the face of this earth. And if He chose to forgive Judas for his betrayal, that should not shock anyone at all…because He (Jesus) always did the most gracious thing for men and women around Him.

If it were not Judas, would it not have been someone else?

We each have our part to play, and we should take our part seriously! Although, we are not called to betray the living God, but we are commissioned to share the message of Jesus Christ to all others around us. This is our charge:

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations… ~Matthew 28:19-20 NKJV

We each don’t evangelize in the exact same way, but in the end we each find a way to get that message across to our subject. And in the end, it is not us but the Holy Spirit who truly drives the message home in their hearts.

As it was once explained to me that we can make no such argument that will turn a person to the Lord on their own. There is nothing we can individually do where they will change their mind or heart. It is all God and the Holy Spirit who coddles and changes one’s mind, by softening it. There is nothing that we can say so perfectly in order for another to see the error of their own way. God does all of that!

The other problem with man is his innate ability of choice to do, or not do, something, anything. God will not steal that away from either of us, because God did not want to create drones that would blindly follow Him. That is why I always see this as the greatest gift and the greatest curse on man. Because man inherently finds a way to stand in the way of God’s great blessings for us by making the wrong choice. <ha-ha> much like Murphy’s Law!

Will man ever evolve to the point where he will seek to do God’s good will? By making that one good choice? Accomplishing that one good deed? Or will he fulfill his own hedonistic desires if he were to be left on his own?

I know what I believe and I also know what I hope…all I can do is pray for all of mankind, as a whole! What about you?

May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

Woe To You…

Matthew 23:13 “But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”


This is a message to pastors everywhere! Seek the anointing of God that your flock shall not be lost on account of you. And also to all the people, everywhere, for we are the light of guidance for all the unsaved to see the way of God…God’s most perfect way. Seek God’s anointing and guidance. However, we each tend to go too far in our own decisions and our actions and with that bad habit we go beyond the boundaries of God’s ways. So, woe to you and beware of your actions!

“Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil.~Ephesians 4:26-27 NKJV

We are to walk in God’s ways, live by God’s rules, be forgiving of others (no matter their transgression against us), be loving of ALL our neighbors, and we are to be that guiding light by which our neighbors, our unbelieving friends, and those we come in contact daily (yes, they too, are our neighbors!) It is only through constant and never ending prayer, reading the word, following and applying those very same words within the Bible.

In order for others to be captivated by our actions, our actions must have changed in some way, shape, or form. Man has this horrible problem with starting and not finishing because it is too hard. Being good is hard, especially if you’ve been doing what was wrong all your life. Just like any bad habit that you, or I, have attempted to break…it is very difficult to accomplish. But you need to remember that God is with you every step of the way. If you need to complain about how tough a time you are having…God’s ear is just a shout and a prayer away from you.

It is sad to admit this, but I get angry all the time. Yes, I do; and sometimes I sin in my anger…more than likely…all the time. Why? Well, that really isn’t relevant because I can come up with all sorts of excuses which are meaningless. The fact is, I know that it is wrong to get angry over the majority of things that I do; and therefore, I believe I am sinning when I get angry. After all it is foolhardy, don’t you think?

Some of the worst sins we can commit are based in our anger. We become skewed in our reason as to what is reasonable, what is right, and what is just. When we walk away from the Word of God, we skew our perception toward the wrong…this is automatic. Why, you ask? Because we, by casting aside God, begin to follow a trail hard to recover from where wrong is the new right.

“If there is no God…then everything is permitted…” ~Fyodor Dostoevsky, The Brothers Karamazov

Без бога-то и без будущей жизни? Ведь это, стало быть, теперь всё позволено, всё можно делать?’ ‘А ты и не знал?'” (The original Russian)

Though the sentiment is true to secularistic and athiestic thought, there are also Christians who maintain that all things are permissible as a Christian and as a follower of Christ.  Just simply by misreading or misinterpreting the writing of the Apostle Paul:

All things are lawful for me, but not all things are helpful; all things are lawful for me, but not all things edify. Let no one seek his own, but each one the other’s well-being.~1Corinthians 10:23-24 NKJV

Everyone seems to read what they want to read and hear what they want to hear, and to heck with the actual facts before you…yes, I include Christians in that statement!

We are all warned because we are all called by God to follow Him. That being said, we are also called to the priesthood of God, to minister the Word of God to all of mankind (remember the Great Commission?) Our purpose, as mentioned in previous blogs, is to glorify God in all that we do. We are to do the best we can possibly do, with every fiber of our body, mind and spirit!

Just thinking how lax I tend to be, it is a wonder that anyone gets into heaven. The more I place thought toward the subject, a great number of Christians will be surprised as to their final resting spot! Many believe they are saved from the pit of hell because they proclaimed Jesus as King and the Lord and Savior over their lives…but then turn to do some of the most despicable things which God would not approve. ‘

God judges our hearts, based upon what is in them and what we do with our time, our efforts, our charitableness, etc. Are we giving because we want to or because we are suppose to? Are we following ritualistic beliefs, or are we praying what is in our hearts? I could go on and on with this list, but like beating a dead dog…what exactly is the use???

God desires us to follow Jesus freely and without reservation. Breaking the habits of old, yes, they do come into play here–we tend to put off til tomorrow what we should have done yesterday, more than likely…last week or last year, even!

My friends you are forewarned! WOE to YOU! We each sin and we each tend to follow the wrong path at times, but God tugs at your heart to get back on track! REPENT of what you did and move back onto the narrow and rarely followed path of God’s righteousness!

Only God can SAVE us, ’tis true! Only God will judge us by the content of our heart, ’tis also true! Unless many of us do not change our directions and begin to walk the path that God laid out before us (namely, the one written on the pages of the Bible), then we do not stand a chance of gaining entry into heaven…despite our affirmations. God wants us to live the bible in our heart of hearts, and walk the walk, as well as – talk the talk!

Can I challenge y’all to live the life set out in the Bible? It is not easy, due to all of the bad habits we must break…but I believe in my heart of hearts that it is well worth it!

Brothers & Sisters —

May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD