The Big Bang & “Let There Be Light”

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We all have our opinions on the Big Bang and on God, as well as, the Bible. Since this is my blog…these are my opinions. [No arrogance, just a statement of fact.] I found the movie “GOD’S NOT DEAD” to be an interesting movie. While in some cases the movie had good arguments, although much of the demeanor of the Professor was out of sorts, in my opinion, with respect to his power and position. But the movie showed some interesting arguments and their responses. That said, let us move on.

So let’s look at theoretical physicist and Nobel Prize winner Steven Weinberg’s description of what the big bang would have looked like. And since he’s an atheist, we can be sure there isn’t any believer bias in his description.

“In the beginning there was an explosion, and in three minutes, 98% of the matter there is or ever will be was produced. We had a universe.” [On-screen animation of the big bang]

For 2,500 years most scientists agreed with Aristotle on the idea of a steady-state universe—that the universe has always existed with no beginning and no end. But the Bible disagreed. In the 1920s, Belgian astronomer Georges Lemaitre, a theist, who was actually also . . .He said that the entire universe, jumping into existence in a trillionth of a trillionth of a second, out of nothingness in an unimaginably intense flash of light, is how he would expect the universe to respond if God were to actually utter the command in Genesis 1:3, “Let there be light.” In other words, the origin of the universe unfolded exactly how one would expect after reading Genesis, and for 2,500 years the Bible had it right, and science had it wrong.

You see, in the real world we never see things jumping into existence out of nothingness, but atheists will make one small exception to this rule; mainly the universe and everything in it. ~God’s Not Dead Revisited, by Roger Patterson on August 5, 2014, 

While during the advent of the atheist in philosophy and science movement was running strong, back as early as the 1950’s, within the academic circles…there seems to be a resurgence of Christians within both science and philosophy.

Then God said, “Let there be light”; and there was light. And God saw the light, that it was good; and God divided the light from the darkness.” ~Genesis 1:3-4 NKJV

IF God exists, as the Christian believes Him to exist (i.e., outside of time, space, and matter), then to say “that (you choose the miracle that God accomplished) is impossible!”  Is a bit ironic. Yet, as an atheist, you choose to believe that all things came from nothing while proposing that you cannot create something from nothing (the First law of Thermodynamics.) Up to the Big Bang nothing existed, is one such assumption. However, the Christian is not saying that something is coming from nothing, but that God created something by His word. If God does in-fact exist outside of time, space and matter, then does He not have command over such things? Especially if He created all things?

There are also arguments as to what illuminated the world after God created it on the First Day. Well, let’s look at the Biblical text:

This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all.” ~1John 1:5 NKJV

If God is Light, then wouldn’t it make sense that He illuminated the world prior to the Fourth Day?

The city had no need of the sun or of the moon to shine in it, for the glory of God illuminated it. The Lamb is its light.” ~Revelation 21:23 NKJV

IF God is “Light” and the Lamb is “Light” and the Lamb is Jesus; therefore, Jesus and God are one and the same, and that initial light that was mentioned in the Bible prior to the creation of the Sun and the Moon was the Light that God and Jesus illuminated across the vastness of this planet OR it was the light that was created from the explosion due to the Big Bang. Personally I will lean toward the light being illuminated from God and Jesus; however, I would posit if not so, then the Big Bang was created by God. Also, consider this…if the world was already created, what need was there for the Big Bang explosion?

As a general scientific principle, it is undesirable to depend crucially on what is unobservable to explain what is observable, as happens frequently in Big Bang cosmology.  — Halton Christian Arp

The funny thing is, in my opinion, when you see such a thing as the Big Bang, or observe such a happening, that you are indeed observing God at work. A miracle, if you will, as it is something that defies the natural laws of physics and yet it is apparent that it has happened, sometime in our past.

We, as theists or atheists, can argue the points over and over again. The problem being that neither will budge due to the fact that each has a position. Whether that position is based upon indoctrinated information or based upon researched information is a key concern. My position is based upon researched information and studied facts. Do I argue my points well…that is up to you to decide. However, I do leave to you to decide for yourselves by challenging my words. You research and study the points made and decide for yourselves, do not rely on me or others to think for you.

People, primarily atheists, complain that Christians are ignorant of the facts. Well, to a certain extent they are right in that. But not the way they think. Christians, more often than not, are ignorant and remain ignorant because they rely on the indoctrinated information of their parents. Quite honestly, Christians have an obligation, if not a mandate, to study the word and the facts of the matter in order to answer anyone who asks them to respond to the “…reason for the hope that is in them!

While I may not argue well, I do believe I can hold my own. I do study and read, rather voraciously. At any given time I have roughly over one hundred ideas for blog writing ideas. I bid you Godspeed my friends and happy reading and studying!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy

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…the way, the truth, and the life…

There is but one way to enter in to heaven, and that is through Jesus the Christ!

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Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” ~John 14:6 NKJV

In the words of Dr. Michael Licona, or some variation as I recall, “If there is a true religion, then I owe it my allegiance. If there is the one true God, then I owe Him my true allegiance.”

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Now, there are great reasons to believe that Jesus is the true Son of the Living God. The historical aspect, archaeological aspect, textual reliance and other witness accounts, perhaps the witness accounts of those who are extra-biblical and non-Christians. Perhaps, in comparing the numerous different religions is enough for you and the claims. What of the numerous documentaries comparing Christ to those perceived and asserted other gods, which were supposedly risen from the dead in the same exact way and so on. Unfortunately, if you do the homework and make the comparisons yourself you will find that those assertions are false.

  • If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then why did not the Sanhedrin show His dead and mutilated body to the people?
  • If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then why did the Apostles preach the resurrection message to the people in Jerusalem? (Where the punishment was certain death by stoning.)
  • If Jesus did not rise from the dead, then why did the Apostles die cruel and inhumane deaths without denying their Lord and Savior?
  • There are those who believe in the “Swoon Theory,” but there is too much to discredit such a belief.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ, for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.~Romans 1:16 NKJV

So, what is salvation? According to Matt Slick, CARM.org, “Salvation is being saved from the righteous judgment of God upon the sinner…All who have sinned against God are under the judgment of God.  This judgment is known as damnation where God condemns to eternal hell all those who have offended Him by breaking His Law.” One allegorical representation of the weight of sin upon our soul is:

A Chinese evangelist was once preaching on salvation and the weight of sin. A heckler did what hecklers do best, attempt to shame or embarrass  the evangelist. The response was epic: “If you have a corpse lying in his coffin, will he feel a hundred pound weight on his chest any more than a fifty pound weight?” ~ROMANS, vol. 1, pg. 170, David Grey Barnhouse, (1989)

We are warned by the Apostle Paul for the benefit of our souls that, “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23 NKJV) And at the same time we are promised eternal life being the gift of God, His gift of Salvation through His grace! All we have to do is ask for it and freely receive it. It is that simple, but people do not trust free or simple things. By considering the previously mentioned allegorical representation of sin upon our souls, this statement by the Apostle Paul should help solidify the matter. Our hearts should be weighted down AND we should be looking for the EXIT sign to get out of the cage/prison which we have cornered ourselves into, through every means of deceit, trickery, lying, deciding, etc. YES, we decided our way into a corner and must decide our way out of that very same corner. The decision should be easy and the solution is even easier! Accepting Jesus Christ as your Lord and Savior, believing He is the Son of the Living God, that He died on the cross for our sins, that He rose from the dead, and ascended into heaven.

It is easy to accept, but rather hard to believe, isn’t it? That is why we must seek for ourselves…researching and studying the word of God. Because we were mandated to:

‘You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ ~Matthew 22:37-40 NKJV

Which means we are to love God all our essence and being and by loving Him with all our mind, we are to love Him NOT with blind faith but rather with well informed, studied and researched faith. Loving Him with all our logic and reason! Many people, not just Atheists, believe that to believe in God we give up our reason and logic for blind faith upon the word of the bible alone. That is just not true at all!

God destined us to determine for ourselves through free will to guide our own paths. That includes turning off the primrose path by making mistakes and sinning, because God desired us all to love and honor Him with all of our heart by our free will choice. We will never be perfect, until God makes us so. But we must keep living the life as though we can be perfect by modeling the life of Jesus the Christ. By ascribing ourselves to the word of God and by living our lives accordingly. Not by the law, as presented in the Old Testament, but according to the simple teachings of Christ as presented by His Apostles & Disciples. Those words in the New Testament give a great representation of who Christ was and how He lived. If we use Jesus as the model, how could we go wrong?

Two final caveats:

  1. If the Apostle Paul was changed so dramatically on the road to Damascus from a Christian hating and torturing Jew to become one of Jesus’ greatest Evangelists and Apologists…how can we doubt such a change? How can we doubt such a drastic and dramatic change?
  2. The deaths of the Apostles were gruesome and heinous, to say the least. But no one recanted their faith or belief that Jesus was, in fact, the One True Son of the Living God, the Messiah, whom the Jews had been awaiting. That is another factoid which we must keep in mind. (Consider when the Watergate Scandal was plaguing the Nixon Administration each each of the major players involved made a plea deal and received felony indictments. Each turned on their master.) It defies logic and reason to discount their sincerity!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

Some other things you may enjoy from great teachers:

Is Jesus the Only Way? Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4

Is Jesus the only way to be saved? (CARM)

We Have Been Warned: A House Divided Cannot Stand!

Then one was brought to Him who was demon-possessed, blind and mute; and He healed him, so that the blind and[e] mute man both spoke and saw. And all the multitudes were amazed and said, “Could this be the Son of David?” Now when the Pharisees heard it they said, “This fellow does not cast out demons except by Beelzebub, the ruler of the demons.” But Jesus knew their thoughts, and said to them: “Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and every city or house divided against itself will not stand. If Satan casts out Satan, he is divided against himself. How then will his kingdom stand? And if I cast out demons by Beelzebub, by whom do your sons cast them out? Therefore they shall be your judges. But if I cast out demons by the Spirit of God, surely the kingdom of God has come upon you. ~Matthew 12:22-28 NKJV

house divided

Antifa, White Supremacy, Neo-Nazis, Black Lives Matter, KKK, etc. Each is bred from absolute hatred. It is very difficult to keep religious sentiment and politics separated. Even our Founding Fathers believed that our religion is what guided us in our daily lives. The House Divided answer from Jesus to the Pharisees was spot on in His day, as well as ours! Just look into the stories, and be honest…look at the background stories as well. As there are two sides to every story, problem, and fiasco. One side will shut down the other with name calling and character assassinations and will play the victim card. While the other side if-youre-explainingis defending themselves from a slanderous assertion without any proof, whatever; they have already lost the battle! There is a political mantra, of sorts: “If you’re explaining, you’re losing!” ~President Ronald Reagan

As it was said on many conservative radio shows this past week, it is not about the statues because most people have seen those statues throughout their lives and have not given them one thought before this movement! Much like Charles Barkley, according to the Chicago Sun Times article. People just seem to want to be wrapped up in all of this anger as though it will accomplish something constructive…which it will not. President Trump asked how many statues will come down, when will it stop?? Though he took much heat for saying this, wrongfully so in my opinion because this was a valid question! The Republican & Democratic parties are dividing the population. These special interest groups (KKK, White Supremacy, BLM, Antifa, LGTBQ, NRA, AFL-CIO, the government [state or federal], our representation in government, and the list goes on and on…) Each group has their own individual agenda. We as people are stuck in the middle…between the clowns and jokers…that just seemed to fit right here! lol

We as people, the species of man, must take all  the available information and think for ourselves. The problem is that we are led by the nose in our education not to think but follow. And if we do not follow as we were instructed to, then we are shamed into following. This is a page out of the NAZI propaganda play book, which many groups are using to get their way. And your representatives and all other sort of politicians are going to yield to the squeaky wheel (so-to-say). Because all those squeaky wheels vote, and if he/she bends to their will they are potential voters to place him/her back into the office from which they will retire and bilk them for the rest of their tax paying lives! [I try to stay away from politics in this blog, as much as possible, but there are times where I am forced to explain through example.]

So long as all Americans allow themselves to be divided over issued, as such, we will no longer be Americans as a whole! We will be black, white, yellow, red, brown, olive, and other variation colored skinned people who happen to reside within the confines of the country known as these United States of America. It is sad…very sad, but true to point! Until we put God first and truly come to terms with what truly matters as concerns for this country and truly concern ourselves with the needs of this country and not our wants…this country will fall!

The top reasons a country declines and falls from power:

  1. The citizenry to realize they can vote themselves emoluments from state coffers.
  2. The overstretching and reaching of the military in relation to the actual threats against the nation.
  3. The weakening of the monetary system.

[The synopsis of The Rise and Fall of the Great Powers by Paul Kennedy, as best as I can recall as it has been ten years or more since I last read it.]

Sadly, I suspect, this nation will fall, as all nations of power do, because most are too busy being distracted by the divisions in our midst as opposed to dealing with the actual problems at hand. All too many will attack your/our nature because the dividers want something for themselves. Whether they be politicians, a special interest group, or someone who believes they are entitled to your earnings so they can sit home and watch MacGyver re-runs. The sky is the limit as to who may be the actual problem…but most assuredly, you will see one aspect of the problem if you, and I, would simply look into the mirror! Put God First in your life and look to how you can help your neighbor. Is this not the teaching of Jesus?

But when the Pharisees heard that He had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. Then one of them, a lawyer, asked Him a question, testing Him, and saying, “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

THE ONLY way we can fix this nation in a political sense, in a racial sense, in a human sense, in a legal sense, and in an equality sense…is to rest our souls, our very livelihood on Jesus, following HIS ways and the mandates of HIS Father! We were once a thriving nation, which was a beacon of hope for all other nations. Yet, now, we have unfortunately become nothing more than a target and another Aristocratic & Authoritarian nation on the face of this earth. Is is too late to change our path? I do not believe we have gone beyond the point of no return, as of yet…but we are coming close!

You must remember that YOUR religion is but a guidance to you, the Bible is our manual for this life we live in. Just because we may accept a position in government, we do not check our beliefs and morals at the door! Those tenets are what guide us to make the right decisions we have been chosen to make for the good of this nation, for the good of our community, etc. By making the decision(s) we are guided to make, we are not forcing our religion upon anyone…as you had been placed in to the position in order to make the decision you made. The only way to unite a people is through faith in God. And through that faith we can unify in one common goal. Salvation is accomplished one lost soul at a time, and God’s desire is that all come to the knowledge of the truth!

Always keep in your mind and your heart: A House Divided Cannot Stand! And serve the ONE who desires all to be saved. Serve Him with all your heart and seek out all those potential opportunities to talk to others. We have a Christian Veterinarian who gives a leader statement, either people he serves bite at it or they do not. This is how he ministers to those he serves. Everyone has their own way of doing it.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

How Big is Too Big?

Have you ever wondered if a church could be, or get, too big? I often wonder and also have many opinions on such a subject. Let’s explore the notion, together…

I’ve always had the notion that we were to expand the church, teach others the way which is directly out of the bible, and then as Jesus did with His followers – send them on their way to start up new parishes, churches, and other congregations; but at what point is it considered to be too big? Do we even know the answer to this? Can we answer this?

You have the small town churches which can be very nominal, as low as 25. Unless they are held out of someone’s home, I don’t really see how such is sustainable, but they do exist. Then you can work your way up to the Mega-Church of today which can house up to 2,000 people for services. Then you can move your way up to the Super-Mega-Churches where they are able to gather inordinate numbers of people (16,000-18,000-20,000-22,000-23,000-43,000). In essence, stadium sized gatherings. Did God foretell and predict these numbers? I believe He did.

What gets in the way of all this is man’s pride, arrogance, and selfish motivations. Jesus was the prime example of a church leader: He was kind, generous, giving, faithful, servant of all, always willing to answer questions in just the right way that left you wondering and wanting more. Jesus was angered at just the right moment and was soft & compassionate at the right moment. Jesus taught before few, as well as, Jesus taught before thousands. It is not the numbers that truly bothers me any more, but in the way the teacher addresses  the masses. To teach with such ambiguous platitudes, or perhaps to teach with such a command of the biblical text, but yet the heart of what you teach is not included in you own life…these are the problems which tear men down from the pulpit.

Some people like the really big churches. They just feel more at home in them, almost getting lost among the rabble. There are those of us who prefer to enter smaller venues, a more quaint setting. It tends to be more calming and more conducive to a learning atmosphere. Then, again, there are others who prefer to enter into a mid-sized venue. Who is right?

Jesus said, If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” ~John 8:31-32 NIV

Believe it or not, it is about comfort zone boundaries, what are yours? Just because someone can handle a bigger or smaller venue than yourself…don’t knock it, it is a God thing! God can work in all sorts of venues. Though, we each may have our own preferences, God can work in any venue at any time at any calling. The only ones that limit God’s output is the lack of faith of man himself. Man has always been a limiting factor in God’s plan. Whether it is because of his lack of repentance (Matthew 11:20, Luke 10:13) or due to a lack of faith (Matthew 13:58, Mark 6:5).

Now we have another problem that arises among this and that is the rising star among the church, itself…the pastor. At times you have one that is wise, frugal, and humble; and at other times you have others who are swept up by the wellspring of power, pomp and circumstance, not to mention greed. Is it wrong for man, a pastor, to make money off his preaching? I believe it is perfectly adequate to do so, but it must be within the stringent guidelines of the bible by not being a braggart, showy, flashy, or arrogant. I am certain there are other traits, but these are the ones that pop in mind rather quickly while writing. This was one of the greatest reasons why I admired Reverend Billy Graham. He was all that I described and more. With respect to his business associations he limited his income, many of the books he wrote all proceeds were donated, and he was still well provided for by God. He could be a model, though he himself would remind us that he was imperfect. He spoke to stadiums and coliseums filled with thousands, tens of thousands, even hundreds of thousands of people who sought the will of God. And his dream was just to preach the word of God, which he did both often and very well! Many of his crusades are preserved and can be found on YouTube. But that is enough on Mr. Graham.

Our truest and greatest model for preaching and leading is that of Jesus Himself! He was our savior, our rock of salvation, our shield and our two-edged sword to be used against all evil. He is our intermediary to Our God and Father of all! It is by His name that we can do all things because it is through Him that we are strengthened to accomplish all things! In the name of JESUS! He is the basis upon which our faith is founded and upon which it grows!

Long story – short…WE follow Jesus and the words laid down in the bible, not any pastor, priest, reverend, or minister! If the words spoken do not conform to those of the bible, he is not a messenger of God; also known as, a false prophet. The words of the bible are a life line to us from God, a dictate if you will. We are to follow God alone and His true representatives. Not some charlatan or wizard of words, but a man of God. You must ask yourself a few questions and answer them prior to joining a new congregation:

1. Is this a church where my family will be regularly fed by God’s Word?

2. Is this a church where I am convinced the care of my soul will be a priority?

3. Is this a church where my family will experience meaningful Christian fellowship and accountability?

4. Is this a church where I can serve God’s people and use my gifts for its benefit?

You may have other questions, but these are ones that I thought of and trolled off of the net. There are some web-sites which have a list as long as 41, or more questions…I think that is a bit absurd and over-thinking of a situation. You can search even further and determine for yourselves what you truly need from a church family and a church home. But I would implore you to do your due diligence! Do your homework and do not just follow any pastor willy-nilly. There are many great speakers that portray men of God, but there few ethical, honorable men of God who are great speakers. Choose carefully and wisely!

And there are many large super-mega-churches, but are they truly teaching the word of God? OR are they just using God’s words? There are just as many smaller God fearing congregations with less than 50-100 people in them as there are over 2,000 people congregations. Again, choose carefully and wisely! Take your time and ask questions. Get to know and feel the church community.

Once you find the church community, next you should move onto finding a bible study group, but that’s another topic. Although, it is more about comfort and feel.

May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

In Mourning at the Murphy’s

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Our loyal friend Bernie was truly in bad shape. He contracted, or developed, Pancreatitis at the age of 5. Thought we would have to put him down by the age of 6, because of that fact. But he was truly a trooper and fought on in life. Just prior to turning 10 years old, he developed a cough and began to go into liver failure, potentially had Cushing’s Disease, which probably exacerbated all of his other problems. At eleven o’clock, Sunday, October 9th, 2016 he was first injected with a sedative to induce sleeping and then the final injection to end his pain.

He was a loyal, fun-loving dog, who would take over your whole life and had this tendency bernies-ballto jump up on the bed and rest his head on your arm or chest. And yes, being a Boxer he was 100 pounds, so it was no easy feat to handle…but he was family…like our very own child! We cried rivers of tears because he was removed from our lives. Something that happens to each and every one of us! Life is something that no one gets our alive. Of course, when we got home from the vet’s office, we found his ball right where he left it…dogs never seem to pick up after themselves, do they? But it was just another subtle reminder he was no longer with us.

bernies-lookingOne of the last pictures of him looking off into the distance. As though, he and Akyra (our other Boxer, which we thought we would lose earlier in the summer; see also Have you ever…) were looking off into the great abyss to view his travel plans. Ahhhh, the imagination of man. It truly keeps you guessing, doesn’t it? But it is almost like she was also saying that it was “alright” for him to move on without her. Knowing that he had so many problems going on for so long.

You may be wondering why I am blathering on about my family’s relationship to a dog, a pet – referring to hims as a child. Well, I am getting to that…

In the Book of Jonah, Jonah 4 to be exact, where God prepared a plant to yield some shade for Jonah as he laid in wait for the Ninevietes to renege on their repentance to God, because he hated them. But Jonah gained a fondness for the plant. Much like man of our day gains a fondness and love for a pet. Even though they are less than a man in the eyes of God, but they are created all for His glory and His goodness. But there is a purpose for pets and plants to be in our lives and they work to God’s ultimate purpose in teaching us that our fellow man is who is created in God’s image and likeness. That being said, man is who has a soul which can be redeemed through the grace of God and salvation in Jesus Christ.

In your pain, as in my own, God can teach us great things in order to further our understanding, as well as, show that our loyalties are wrongly placed, or that we need to fulfill His plan in another manner. Just as Jonah learned by wishing his own death due to the loss of the plant which the Lord had prepared (see Jonah 4:6). Just food for thought for those out there who are going through the same pain as both my wife and I.

And just for your information I do believe that all animals, created by God will go to heaven, below are a few passages of scripture that, in my opinion, lead me to believe so to be true:

“You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power; for You created all things, and by Your will they exist and were created” (Revelation 4:11, NKJV)

“Everyone who is called by My name, whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him; yes, I have made him” (Isaiah 43:7, NKJV)

“Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind”; and it was so.” (Genesis 1:24 NKJV)

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

Giving Your Best

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Then King David said to Ornan, “No, but I will surely buy it for the full price, for I will not take what is yours for the Lord, nor offer burnt offerings with that which costs me nothing.”~1 Chronicles 21:24

Then the king said to Araunah, “No, but I will surely buy it from you for a price; nor will I offer burnt offerings to the Lord my God with that which costs me nothing.” So David bought the threshing floor and the oxen for fifty shekels of silver.~2 Samuel 24:24

It should cost us something in order to worship God properly. We should always strive to do our absolute best in all we do, even those tasks we hold absolute disdain towards! Because it is a task that God desires us to do, as it will be the preparation for something much bigger!

Think about this for just a little bit…

When we do something for God, anything, it should cost us something, don’t you think? After all, we are to emulate Christ as part of our purpose in this life of ours, but look at what it cost Jesus to follow His Father’s desire and command? It cost Him his life, His human life, in order to placed upon a cross, be crucified as a common thief – and between two thieves, to-boot!

Even though, Jesus was the final sacrifice for all of mankind…He took on all of mankind’s sin and guilt upon himself in order to be that final sacrifice. To be seen as a common thief, to be separated from God because of all that sin, as it was written in the Bible:

But your iniquities have separated you from your God;
And your sins have hidden His face from you,
So that He will not hear. ~Isaiah 59:2

Whether in actuality or in reality, imagine it…that our God and Creator turned His back upon His one and only Son because He was full of sin, just so we could be acceptable to God:

For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. ~2 Corinthians 5:21

justification-by-faithIt is a rather difficult idea, or concept, to truly grasp a hold of…isn’t it? But it is because of this ideology that we must ensure that what we do for God is done at a cost to ourselves. Because God has done so much for us. If we truly accept our full sonship to, and adoption  by, Our God and Father in heaven…everything we do for Him, Jesus, or the Holy Spirit will cost us. Out of obligation, out of love, and out of honor & respect! We have an obligation to do everything that we do in order to bring the glory to God, showing Him that He is, in fact, everything to us!

Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.                   ~1 Corinthians 10:31

I recently read and reviewed the book “RAISE YOUR LINE” by Robert Stevenson. An raise-your-lineexcellent book on the basics of raising one’s own line…that line in the sand you make upon, or to give a challenge (primarily to one’s own self.) Raising the bar in order to raise your self-esteem, control, or power over yourself. In either case, should we no do all that we can to do the best we possibly can…regardless of the circumstances? Once we gave our lives to Christ, we also said we would emulate Him in the very best way possible. We are obligated to do so and as children (adopted into sonship) of the Most High God, the only way we can show ourselves as His son or daughter is by emulating Jesus. The only way we can do such a thing is to read, comprehend, and understand all that His Son had done, believe the words written about Him, and then copy those same actions by living those very same word and actions in our lives. James said it best, the half-brother of Our Lord, Jesus:

Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead. ~James 2:17 (in context read James 2:14-26)

Are we saved by our faith, no that is not what the bible teaches; however, once we have learned the word it is our works & actions that give credence to our faith. The old adage rings true, in this respect:

Actions speak louder than words!

Also, it is through our actions and by our works that others can tell we have truly changed for the better, or the worse. Consider this for a moment, when you turned your life over to Jesus:

  1. Did you decide to give Him YOUR best or worst?
  2. Have you been giving YOUR first-fruits, or YOUR leftovers to the church?
  3. Did you promise to give YOUR whole life over to God, or only part of YOUR life when it was convenient?

I believe you get the point…and do not take this as a personal affront to your character as everyone has struggled with this dilemma at some point in time in their lives.

Remember this that God blesses us daily with life, life anew! A new start to change our bad habits, improper conduct, etc. Will God bless you because you are giving your best? Yes and No. Yes, because you will…if it be His will, grant you another day to make necessary changes or do good as He wills it. No, because He is not in the habit of bribing anyone to do what is right and just in His sight! Remember what happened in the Book of Daniel:

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego answered and said to the king, “O Nebuchadnezzar, we briberyhave no need to answer you in this matter. If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up. ~Daniel 3:16-18

Look at what they said to the king, “…But if not…“meaning that even if God did not deliverBribery1 them from the burning fiery furnace, it didn’t matter to them. God can and will deliver you from all evils, but even if He doesn’t you and I are still obligated to follow His dictates. We shouldn’t expect to receive any special gifts, emoluments, or any other form of what would end up being bribes to do what is expected of His own children! What kind of God would you be serving if you were to be receiving something just because you fulfilled your obligation(s) and accomplished your task(s) that was expected of you? That would be like agreeing to do a job for a set price and then expecting more money because you did the job that you agreed to do in the first place…rather ironic, if you ask me.

Think on that for a bit…

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

Build It And They Will Come..?

Build it and they will come is a mindset that works for baseball fields, theme parks, Disney and scary rides, but the church needs so much more than this mentality!

if-you-build-it-they-will-come

The church being more than just a building…it is the people. Paul told us in no uncertain terms:

“Now you are the body of Christ, and each one of you is a part of it.” ~1Corinthians 12:27

We were also told by Jesus

“For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” ~Matthew 18:20

Which mean that a small gathering can be considered a church, with the clarification that you are together for the sole purpose of being in place in Jesus’ name! In-fact, many churches have grown out of home churches and small bible studies that yearned for the blessing of God and to seek His holy purpose, in order to glorify His holy name!

God will hear us if we pray to Him, He will also answer us if we would just listen to Him and be guided by the Holy Spirit, which He has placed within us. But be aware that God willGods-hand-of-judgment1 separate us from Himself when we sin (Isaiah 59:2), in order to chastise us for our wrong doing. Although, He may not place us into the belly of a great fish as He did Jonah, or place us on a great and hardship filled trek as He did Jacob; though we may be tested as Job was even though we are not upright and righteous as Job was…but we will be tested all throughout our lives. However, there is a greater purpose in all of this because God sees the very beginning of time to the very end of days as one large painting; we on the other hand, only see one small portion of the painting. The purpose may not be recognized by us at any time during the course of our lives, but it will fulfill the grand purpose of God’s glorious plan. But rest assured that you play a part in God’s plans for His kingdom.

Everyone, ultimately, will glorify God in some way. Those condemned to Hell will glorify God’s divine judgement and those who go to heaven will glorify God’s mercy! IF God is real, how would you prefer to glorify God, your Creator???

Just think about that for a few moments…

I believe heaven is very real, and I also believe hell is very real; each is destined to be occupied with those who obey God or disobey Him. You make your choices daily, but how carefully do you concern yourself with those choices you make?

Until the next time, May God Richly Bless You All!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD