A time of war, And a time of peace. 

Everything Has Its Time

To everything there is a season,
A time for every purpose under heaven:

A time to be born,
    And a time to die;
A time to plant,
    And a time to pluck what is planted;
A time to kill,
    And a time to heal;
A time to break down,
    And a time to build up;
A time to weep,
    And a time to laugh;
A time to mourn,
    And a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones,
    And a time to gather stones;
A time to embrace,
     And a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to gain,
And a time to lose;
A time to keep,
And a time to throw away;
A time to tear,
And a time to sew;
A time to keep silence,
And a time to speak;
A time to love,
And a time to hate;
A time of war,
And a time of peace.

As written in this wise set of verses in Ecclesiastes, “To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose under heaven…” Everything has a season & a purpose to occur. There is a time for everything under the sun and under heaven. It was once explained to me that without having infinite knowledge, we cannot know everything; hence, there may be a reason for everything and every occurrence but because of our lack of knowledge and inability to see the future and the past – the true reason for something happening might not be known or knowable for 10 years, 100 or even 1000 years, from now. Is this to mean that we are to understand that a person died for a reason that we cannot possibly know for 10, 100, or 1000 years from now? Not necessarily, but God does desire that each and every one of His creation be saved  and know the truth!

For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth. ~1Timothy 2:3-4 NKJV

We see  throughout the biblical text that there are times for everything to happen, war, peach, birth, death, suffering joy, anger, forgiveness, etc. Each and everything occurs in it’s appropriate time. God uses man’s fellow man to chastise him or his enemy (i.e., war.) At other times we are called to protect or defend the weak (also a form of military action.) However, these actions can be personal, or individual. Meaning You, or I, may be called to defend someone who is weaker than we.

Defend the poor and fatherless;
Do justice to the afflicted and needy.
Deliver the poor and needy;
Free them from the hand of the wicked.

~Psalm 82:3-4 NKJV

We can also see it this way as described by Paul, the Apostle:

And we urge you, brethren, to recognize those who labor among you, and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love for their work’s sake. Be at peace among yourselves. Now we exhort you, brethren, warn those who are unruly, comfort the fainthearted, uphold the weak, be patient with all. See that no one renders evil for evil to anyone, but always pursue what is good both for yourselves and for all.~1 Thessalonians 5:12-15 NKJV

We are called to aid those who cannot help themselves. Sometimes we are the only one available to help a person. Help with a word of caution, or a word to build them up; admonish them, or guide them. We sometimes can help with but a word. Be wise in how you speak to others. This is why we study the bible and the doctrines within. Because with those words we speak we can be either the starter of war, or we can be the diffuser of chaos and calm things down. Words have started many a war in days long gone by. Now-a-days, that is not as big of a problem. Although, on a more individual level a word can be the difference between a friendship or a fight. There is a time for such things and we each learn from our misguided steps in any direction. At least we hope to learn from our mistakes and misguided notions, but that is not always the case!

He who has knowledge spares his words,
And a man of understanding is of a calm spirit.

~Proverbs 17:27 NKJV

It pays to be a man of wisdom and of great learning; however, the greatest of learning comes from our experiences from our past actions, both good and bad. Often we learn good decision making skills from the bad decisions from our past. It is quite the conundrum.

Often, our warriors have a battle waged within their hearts and minds, which is called PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) or with a TBI (Traumatic Brain Injury.) Each possess it’s own problems and their individual discussions are best left to those who are either those who have experienced the problems or are medical persons with the technical learning and expertise with those injuries. There are a great many other problems out there which touch on these subjects, but for brevity I will leave it there.

While there is a time for all things, that does not necessarily mean that those things are good for all that are involved. It has been said that if everyone in the world saw the true cost of war, there would be no more war.

War is hell and those that must bear the brunt of the loss, are often not seen and not always acknowledged. We send our sons and daughters off to war and those that return as cargo destroy us; but there are those who return less than what they were, because they cannot come to terms with the fact that they survived and their buddies did not…many of whom, sadly, commit suicide.

War is a terrible thing, but do we have the infinite knowledge required to truly and definitively say that it was an unjust war? We must take solace in the knowledge that God used our children for some greater purpose. That our sons and daughters are in a better place that no longer has sorrow or pain. And that all their tears have been wiped away.

It is my belief that so long as man populates this world, there will be war and killing. Man, while he has the desire for peace, he also has the affinity for troubles and problems. As we grow older, hopefully wiser, we seek something better. We will always need someone to go in and keep the peace or finish the war, internationally or domestically. So, support your troops and military, support your police (state, county, & city). There are bad people, but remember not all are bad!

We all need support from others at any given point in time, they need it always! God uses all of us and God uses them for His divine purpose and plan.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

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The Information Age Just Ain’t What It’s Cracked Up To Be

information-overload1

For in much wisdom is much grief, And he who increases knowledge increases sorrow. ~Ecclesiastes 1:18 NKJV

For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow. ~Ecclesiastes 1:18 KJV

For with much wisdom comes much sorrow; the more knowledge, the more grief. ~Ecclesiastes 1:18 NIV

With the advent of Bulletin Board systems back in the 1990s and the increased speed and power of the internet, globally speaking, information is at a premium and at times can be highly questionable. Between the internet and the various search engines, 24/7 news channels, mind numbing television, documentaries, and the list goes on and on with some 1000 channels or more. Our biggest problem, in my opinion, is that we fail to properly filter out what we do not need.

The human brain produces approximately 70,000 thoughts on an average day. There are 86,400 seconds in a 24 hour day. That means we have a different thought every 1.2 seconds.

So, as we focus on certain things, we block out, filter out, or otherwise delete other thoughts going on in our minds at any given time. How much happier are you now, right now, with all this extra information? You are probably overwhelmed as I am. It is almost depressing the more one thinks about it all. To one degree we are smarter with some added information; on the other hand, though, we are inundated with a plethora of unnecessary information which does not add to our abilities to make a decision concerning one particular subject. That is because we are forced to sift through all of the added information that we have in order to make that particular decision. Why is that? Because your brain is a tremendous computer, created by God, which strives to find the answer(s) to your every question and problem. Everything you place before it it is searched and your brain sifts through all you know, all you have access to, and then develops more questions that will aid you in finding the answer to your original problem.

information-overload3

There are those, blessed I might add, with the innate ability to “multi-task” a plethora of tasks. This is great for them, but there are those of us who become befuddled with too many tasks bouncing around in our heads. To make matters worse, we take that work home with us, because if we do not think it out we will somehow get things all cocked up the next day when we try to continue on with such a task. I like so many hate to fail and more-so hate to be uncharted waters, so-to-say. Can we learn these greatly needed abilities…yes, we can. But the lack of comfort as a norm is not for some of us. We are each destined for something grand, on our scale but rather minuscule on God’s scale. Though, regardless of how you look at it…you will glorify God as He wills it! As mentioned in another post, God will fill you with the Spirit and will endow you with all the necessary abilities that you need in order to accomplish the task that God has given you to accomplish. Reading throughout the bible you will note that God gave each individual all the abilities and knowledge they needed to do just as He desired of them!

And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship ~Exodus 31:3 NKJV

So, when God is in control there is very little you need to worry or concern yourself about…because God has your back! But when we each do what we want in order to accomplish things on our own, we more or less, shun God from our task and things tend to get messy.

Lately, I have had a series of dreams, weird as it may be for me. Some I remember in the morning and write them down. After I wake I try to write down what I remember of the dream and then research and pray for it’s interpretation. Some of the interpretation I can get from books and encyclopedias on dreams, but other aspects of dreams must be inspired by God’s Holy Spirit. Why? Because it is from God, the best explanation can come from God. Consider in the Book of Daniel where the King was hell bent on killing all the wise men of the land because they could neither tell him his dream nor could they interpret it. Daniel answered the king, “there is a God in heaven who reveals secrets, and He has made known to King Nebuchadnezzar what will be in the latter days...” (Daniel 2:28 MKJV; see Daniel 2 for the entire transcript) But there are those I cannot remember which really gets me. Why, you ask? Because it was one of those dreams that woke me in a sweat and concerned me. It is one of those dreams that you would swear that it was something significant. I still await on God’s making aware to me what happened in that dream that is so hard to remember. It just seems to me that it is so key to understanding some of the other dreams I’ve had, or potentially answering some of my questions that I have posed to God. Just a feeling of mine, but it makes sense to me; will you understand? Some of you perhaps you will, others will not, and others will say “he’s off his rocker.”

Never steer away from the guidance of God! God will lead you if you will let Him. BUT you must be willing to give up that control you have over your own life! It is then where God, upon your prayerful request, will lead you through any one of a number of possible venues which will help you see what you must do in order to glorify Him.

Be prayerful, my friends! Be prayerful!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

Pre-judgement, Judgement, & Post-judgement

guiltyHave you ever said something, or made judgement upon another, and then thought yourself to be the fool? YEAH, that is me, I am guilty! Go ahead, throw your stones…I did it!

Man is the only animal who seems to be able to judge others and clear themselves of any wrong doing, even though it be the same exact crime against God!

raised hands

Yeah, go ahead…raise your hands in agreement to that one, too! Man is, by his nature sinful and therefore, hypocritical! We talk out of both sides of our mouths and skirt the truth with ourselves, all of the time! Don’t worry about a thing, if any of you won’t raise your hands in agreement over this…there are plenty who will gladly chastise me, while at the same time they are doing the same things as I.

Let us look into the past week with Joel Osteen and the Hurricane Harvey debacle.

While there are plenty of videos of news, and others, tearing at Joel Osteen’s church and ministry; many are failing to realize that Lakewood Church had rising waters in the basement. Also, I watched several videos defending Joel Osteen because what would happen if someone was injured on their way to get to Lakewood Church, or died? Or perhaps, if they got to the church and they closed the doors as they got there? What would the ramifications of that be.

We all, each and every one of us, has a problem with judgement of others. Just nod your heads in agreement! Especially without all of the facts at hand. And in this day and age of half truths, and partial sporadic news reports…thereby, coining the phrase “fake news.” We tend to be quite a bit more outraged at those with all the money and power. Now I don’t necessarily agree with Joel Osteen, nor his methods of preaching, but his judgement in THIS case happens to be spot on. Tyler Perry, a man for whom I have  a great respect for, has gone to Joel Osteen’s defense.

While we each, and yes I do mean all of you as well as I, tend to judge others based upon the perception of evidence at hand. However, if you will pay close attention, most of the perceived evidence out there is truly just an accusation or an assertion that is without any proof or evidence, at all! Sadly, but that is how this whole victimhood thing works. We, the species of man, are a sad creature. As we tend to do all we can to demean our fellow man in order for us to feel better about ourselves!

There are a number of scripture passages which target the fool and the wise, with respect to our speech. However, this one seems to hit home for me:

Proverbs 29:20

Do you see a man who is hasty in his words? There is more hope for a fool than for him.

Yeah, that is me…the man who is hasty in his words. Yeah, that is right…fools will have a better time than I! I work on it daily, but I also fail God daily in both little an great ways!

The only thing that keeps me going is the fact that King David who was “Apple of God’s eye.” King David requested and prayed to God to aid him to be maintained in such a status in Psalm 17:8 where he wrote:

Keep me as the apple of Your eye;
Hide me under the shadow of Your wings

We must remember that King David, despite his sinfulness and behavior, he was always contrite before God when he was called out on the carpet by his prophet. He sought God’s forgiveness and always sought his Lord’s guidance to be healed from his haughtiness and sinfulness and sinful ways. God chastised him, as any father would do to his own son. And then he was back to a clean slate, once again. What we see here is that God is the God of the second chances, as coined by Dr. J. Vernon McGee. Where God will use us after redeeming us from our sin(s). And more importantly, He will use us as well as the Gentiles, because Jesus paved the way for them also!

…the word of the Lord came to Jonah the second time… ~Jonah 3:1 NKJV

Or is He the God of the Jews only? Is He not also the God of the Gentiles? Yes, of the Gentiles also ~Romans 3:29 NKJV

God has given me far more than 2 chances, I would submit to everyone out there that each of us have been given dozens of chances. And we will receive many more chance before we draw our final breath.

Let’s face it, we all judge others. Whether in our minds and thoughts, outwardly in our reactions or in our verbiage toward them, or perhaps we show our disdain toward others in our posts on social media or other opinionated sites.  Consider the people of WalMart on Facebook, or other demeaning sites. We should treat everyone with a certain modicum of respect as well as understanding. We are called to be patient with all people! To treat the lowly with respect, as though they were rich…give no one an overtly specialized attention.

As I have said all throughout this post, I am as guilty, if not more so, than any. But by God’s grace I will overcome my lowly actions and rule over my sinful desires and urges to judge others, to gossip (which is a form of judgemental speech toward another.)

Just remembering that in order to change something in your life, you must become aware of your wrong actions. This is your warning…pay attention and change your ways, my friends!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

 

Stereotyping Others

stereotype

“Teacher,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we told him to stop, because he was not one of us.” “Do not stop him,” Jesus said. “For no one who does a miracle in my name can in the next moment say anything bad about me, for whoever is not against us is for us. Truly I tell you, anyone who gives you a cup of water in my name because you belong to the Messiah will certainly not lose their reward. ~Mark 9:38-41 NIV

“Master,” said John, “we saw someone driving out demons in your name and we tried to stop him, because he is not one of us.” “Do not stop him,” Jesus said, “for whoever is not against you is for you.” ~Luke 9:49-50 NIV

This should tell us that we are not to stereotype our brothers and sisters in Christ. We each separately have a gift to share or aid in the glorifying of Jesus and fulfilling God’s purpose in our lives. Though Mark and Luke were not direct Apostles and followers of Jesus, they had access to Apostles that were directly following Christ. Mark was mentored by the Apostle Peter and Luke was mentored by the Apostle Paul; and if that is not good enough for you, Luke was with the Apostle Paul when he met with the Apostles. We should feel quite comfortable learning from each Apostle and accepting of the historicity of the words presented by each forefather of the Christian faith. So, both of these accounts have the authority of research and knowledge of those who witnessed and followed Jesus.

While we disagree with those who profess another faith, yet they follow Christ…who are we to stereotype or compare them to others who may be preaching heretical teachings or pushing  heretical doctrines which are not promoted in the biblical text? Should we not leave certain matters to God’s judgement and follow the path in which we teach God’s mighty and glorious word? Is that not our primary purpose?

Do not misunderstand me, there are times that we must, absolutely must, stop heretical teachings in their tracks and stand up against the perpetrators of such nonsense and false teachings! We are all called into the priesthood, so-to-say:

…you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. ~1 Peter 2:5 NIV

“…because you were slain, and with your blood you purchased for God persons from every tribe and language and people and nation. You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth.” ~Revelation 5:9-10 NIV

Our purpose is to glorify God and be priests of the One True and Living God! And how is it that we accomplish such a thing?? Study of the word. Study of theology. Study and memorization of scriptures. Study on subjects of evangelizing and apologetics, as well as logic. Study on the subject concerning the proofs of God’s existence and those subjects related to the life of Jesus, reading as much as we can by our forefathers within the Christian community. For example, I may not agree with the doctrines of any particular church, or faith, but their forefathers within the church may have written a treasure trove of information on the understanding of any particular subject which we are studying at that moment. Do not cast aside something written by a man of our past just because he was a member of, part of the history of, a particular church or theology. It is up to us to read and learn as much as possible, and by God’s understanding and discerning Spirit we must decide for ourselves if the information is worthy to be used and remembered.

Use it or Lose It ImageWe are called to serve God! I imagine there is no simpler way to put it. God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are our Master. Notice I did not say Masters, because we are speaking of the Trinity…but that is for another blog posting! And we are called to serve with our gift(s) that God has provided us. Some of us have but one gift and there are others who have been blessed with more than one gift to use. Some are blessed with a gift and another is given to replace that gift to further serve to His Glory! Our problem is that many of us do not pay attention to what our gift(s) is/are and if not used to glorify Him, they subside and wane away.

I would like to think that my Gift is writing, but sometimes I wonder. But I believe I am fulfilling my purpose as a person called to the royal priesthood. There are times you just aren’t certain that you have what it takes to fulfill God’s purpose in your life until you start doing that thing which is tugging at your heart’s strings. There may be something else that I will be lead to do another time down the road, who is to say? Until then, I will continue to accomplish my writing, blogging, and posting and pray I am accomplishing God’s will and that I glorify Him in all that I do…despite all of my failures in His eyes.

Instead of stereotyping people, we should take this to heart where Jesus said:

Why don’t you judge for yourselves what is right? ~ Luke 12:57 NIV

The only person we should comparing to anyone or to anything is ourselves! We should compare ourselves to the words of God and the actions Jesus had taken. As Jesus had been our Godly example of how to act.

I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you. ~John 13:15 NIV

If we compare ourselves to another, what makes us think that he or she is doing what is right in God’s sight? Of course, we can compare ourselves to Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, etc. we have the possibility that we are fairing better than they, in God’s sight. But where in the bible does it say that only these people do not go to heaven? And in one theological frame of reference, noting the book of James, sins being equal before God (being repulsive and abhorrent) we are separated from God when we sin; regardless of how we sin!

compare yourself

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

Even God Gives Sarcasm When Necessary

“Where is the way to the dwelling of light? And darkness, where is its place, That you may take it to its territory, That you may know the paths to its home? Do you know it, because you were born then, Or because the number of your days is great? ~Job 38:19-Job 38:21 NKJV

sarcasm

Sarcasm is not original to you or I, but did not God prod even at Job in that time while chastising him? Since we tend to understand God and all of His glorious words in human terms (anthropomorphic) then God’s speech and chastisement can also, in a sense, be anthropomorphized. Consider what was written in the Reformation Study Bible commentary on Job 38:21:

Knowest thou it, because thou wast then born? – This may either be a question, or it may be spoken ironically. According to the former mode of rendering it, it is the same as asking Job whether he had lived long enough to understand where the abode of light was, or whether he had an existence when it was created, and knew where its home was appointed. According to the latter mode, it is keen sarcasm. “Thou must know all this, for thou art so old. Thou hast had an opportunity of observing all this, for thou hast lived through all these changes, and observed all the works of God.” This latter method of interpreting it is adopted by Umbreit, Herder, Noyes, Rosenmuller, and Wemyss. The former, however, seems much better to accord with the connection, and with the dignity and character of the speaker. It is not desirable to represent God as speaking in the language of irony and sarcasm unless the rules of interpretation imperatively demand it.

Unfortunately, we as humans and the species of man do not throw out sarcasm sarcasm-freeor irony toward another in the chastising process in order to teach our underlings or peers a lesson; at least most of us do not. We normally do so in order to be wiseacres! We do so to demean and to make fun of what they did and to humiliate them. In such a process, we do not teach anything of value but how to humiliate another person. THAT is the message that comes across. I can look back at my time in the military and see how both myself and others did such things. Even at my present job, it is quite the same! Now-a-days, we each wear these badge of “sarcasm” and “irony” as badges of honor. As though we have gone through the Great War of Sarcasm & Irony and survived. But it is not such as a true veteran who had survived a war, we simply survived the war & battle of words that were thrust our way. Sounds much like the Snowflake Wars of recent battles held on college & university campuses by those who are harmed by words of free speech with which they tend to disagree and fight the good fight in order to stop such abuses of free spech on their college campus! [Yes, THAT drivel was sarcasm!]

However, even though you or I are being sarcastic, our point can be transmitted to the one we desire to make understand our opinion or our point. Well, God did so with Job in this particular point in Job’s life. It was both sarcastic and quite telling of that point which God was attempting to get across to Job. God was quite straight forward about the point, don’t you think? He asked, “Do you know it, because you were born then, Or because the number of your days is great?” No matter what we think we know as the species of man, we are quite finite in our understanding. Think about that…no matter how much I learn I always know that I don’t know everything! (Although, I do not admit this to my wife. lol) But looking at it all, we have a very finite understanding, in that, we know what we have learned in the past and what we are leaning now. Unfortunately, we don’t know everything to an absolute certitude! We do not have experiential knowledge of all things present, past and future. God on the other hand, has an all encompassing knowledge of what has happened, what is happening, and all that will happen.

The eyes of the Lord are in every place, Keeping watch on the evil and the good. ~Proverbs 15:3 NKJV

Does God have eyes? No, because God is a spirit. But God created man’s eyes and we anthropomorphized the eye of man to God that we could understand such a thing, better. Is God able to be everywhere? He is a spirit, the bible says that God is omnipotent, omnipresent, and omniscient, and the bible says that God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow! So, why wouldn’t I believe that God can do all of these things? You do the reading, studying, and the research. What are the answers you come up with??? God makes sense where no sense can be made, in my humble opinion.

Consider this:

  • What exactly did Charles Darwin prove? Did he, in fact, prove that evolution was a fact? IMO no, he proved, theoretically, that it was possible…but did not prove so in a laboratory.
  • What did Einstein prove? Did he, in fact, prove that the speed of light was attainable? IMO, no, he proved theoretically that it was a possibility. As of yet, no one has proven such to be physically possible.
  • Has science proven that earth is millions, or billions, or years old? IMO, no, if you accept their assumptions which are part of their calculations in order for them to work…they have only proven, theoretically, that the earth may be that old.
  • Has science proven the creation of the first life on earth? No they haven’t. They have only posited proofs, postulated and theories but have not proven such creation in a laboratory.

Do not misunderstand me, I am not anti-science, nor are any of the Christian community. And Christianity does not teach anything of the such, God uses the sciences to much. Many of the sciences actually prove much of the bible (archeology, astronomy, anthropology, biology, geology, etc.) The problem is that many scientists tend to lean toward atheism and many people desire to push such an agenda where there is not God.

Sometimes I think that there is much sarcasm within the sciences, but that could be an entire blog on it’s own. Well, sorry that I was all over the place on this one…and that was not sarcastic! But an admission of guilt.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

Salt is Good

“Everyone will be salted with fire. “Salt is good, but if it loses its saltiness, how can you make it salty again? Have salt among yourselves, and be at peace with each other.”” ~Mark 9:49-50 NIV

Jesus-salt

WE, as Christians, are the salt for the lost souls within this world to help them find their way back to God, through Christ! We are their light just as Jesus is our light; much like the lighthouse is the aid to the ships of the sea, so they can find their way…we too are the exact same for the lost souls within this world of ours.

A Chinese girl said, “Salt makes you thirsty.” DO stop and think that over. “Ye are the salt of the earth.” Do YOU make anyone thirsty for Christ? You never will be merely separating from something. But you will be separating unto Christ. ~Expositions of Bible Doctrines Taking the Epistle to the Romans as a Point of Departure, Volume 1, page 16, by Donald Grey Barnhouse (emphasis mine)

This is precisely what we are to do, make people thirst for God’s life giving and eternal life word! We can do this through passion and desire, it can be done through will but not through sheer will, as we must be able to show a caring, love, and compassion in our message(s) toward those with whom we speak the message of Christ.

Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving; meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains, that I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak. ~Colossians 4:2-4 NKJV

If anyone speaks, let him speak as the oracles of God. If anyone ministers, let him do it as with the ability which God supplies, that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the dominion forever and ever. Amen. ~1 Peter 4:11 NKJV

We are, in essence, slaves to Christ. Like it, or not, it is by our choice. Why? (You ask) Well, we have chosen to believe (through reason, wisdom, research, study, etc.) that Christ truly is “…the way, the truth, and the life…”  We did not make this decision flippantly, nor without forethought, this decision was truly one of the greatest decisions in our lives. And without a doubt was the greatest decision that weighed on our minds and hearts! Are we promised to be wealthy? Have an easy life? Have a gorgeous wife? A husband that has the physique of Adonis? No, on all accounts. We are promised eternal life. We are promised trials and tribulations. We are promised rain and shine like everyone else. We are promised both good and adversity, just like everyone else, as well. So, why did we make such a decision? Because in all of the religions out there, one must be right and the others must be wrong. By reason and logic, this must be true. That religion or faith which is true deserves my allegiance!

Check out the Grids and Charts at CARM.org

This is the greatest reason why we, as Christians, must understand why we believe that which we believe. And not only must we understand why we believe what we believe, but what other faiths believe. It is at that point that we can have a discussion, thereby defending our position.

And every offering of your grain offering you shall season with salt; you shall not allow the salt of the covenant of your God to be lacking from your grain offering. With all your offerings you shall offer salt. ~Leviticus 2:3 NKJV

Every time we speak to someone about Christ and the words of God toward another, we too must season with salt. We must flavor our words that are more palpable for others to digest. The words we speak are of God, but others must gain help in understanding them. That is the flavoring we give to other. Consider when Jesus was asked about why he spoke to the people in parables:

He answered and said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. For whoever has, to him more will be given, and he will have abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him. Therefore I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. ~Matthew 13:11-13 NKJV

This was the salt that Jesus added. You either got it or you did not. On the other hand, if you did not get it, did you seek to understand it? The salt is the flavoring that makes you desire or passionate for more and to understand. That is why we walk the earth, to be used as servants of the Most High God and Creator of All. We speak His words and help others understand. That is one of our purposes; the other purpose is to glorify our Creator in all we do!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

Sometimes God Wakes Us To Learn Something Amazing

Mordecai Discovers a Plot

19 When virgins were gathered together a second time, Mordecai sat within the king’s gate. 20 Now Esther had not revealed her family and her people, just as Mordecai had charged her, for Esther obeyed the command of Mordecai as when she was brought up by him.

21 In those days, while Mordecai sat within the king’s gate, two of the king’s eunuchs, Bigthan and Teresh, doorkeepers, became furious and sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus. 22 So the matter became known to Mordecai, who told Queen Esther, and Esther informed the king in Mordecai’s name. 23 And when an inquiry was made into the matter, it was confirmed, and both were hanged on a gallows; and it was written in the book of the chronicles in the presence of the king. ~Esther 2:19-23 NKJV

mordeci discovers plot

The King Honors Mordecai

king honors modeciThat night the king could not sleep. So one was commanded to bring the book of the records of the chronicles; and they were read before the king. And it was found written that Mordecai had told of Bigthana and Teresh, two of the king’s eunuchs, the doorkeepers who had sought to lay hands on King Ahasuerus.~Esther 6 NKJV

We all do it, you know it! We all have those times where something just wakes us up out of the blue, early in the morning. Sometimes it is for no reason at all, but something just tugs at us the wrong way. We just want to sleep, but cannot do so. So, at some point in time, amidst the tossing and turning in your bed, we get up and out of bed. Sometimes we hear a voice in our heads or hearts, other times we have a drive to do something specific, sometimes generally.

In 1 Samuel 3, we find just such a thing with the Prophet Samuel as a boy. But Samuel was guided by Eli. Though it took a little bit, Eli caught on with what was happening and urged the young boy to answer the call of God. God acts differently amidst differing circumstances. He called the boy Samuel while trying to sleep. He also awoke King Xerxes (as mentioned above) in the midst of his sleep, awakened him and had guided him to read the Persian history, thus reminding him who it was that saved his life.

God works in mysterious ways

Sometimes when we wake in those unexpected ways we are called to simply pray to our God. We need that prayer time in order to discover what is truly tugging at our heart. I do believe God speaks to us; unfortunately we are so hardhearted and stubborn that we cannot recognize what is happening. It truly is a heart thing with us. Perhaps we are to just say as the Prophet Samuel stated, Speak, for Your servant hears.”  Sometimes THAT is all it takes!

As mentioned so many times before we need to be more compliant to God’s will in our lives, much like the Islamic faith. Meaning not that we must be radical Jihadists with terror being our main weapon, but that God MUST be the most important things in our lives! Remember what Jesus said,

Christ Brings Division

34 “Do not think that I came to bring peace on earth. I did not come to bring peace but a sword. 35 For I have come to ‘set a man against his father, a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law’; 36 and ‘a man’s enemies will be those of his own household.’[e] 37 He who loves father or mother more than Me is not worthy of Me. And he who loves son or daughter more than Me is not worthy of Me. 38 And he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me. 39 He who finds his life will lose it, and he who loses his life for My sake will find it. ~Matthew 10 NKJV

We are not meant to follow the pack, or the gang; we are intended to follow God and His perfect way. We are intended to read, understand, and study the Word of God, the Bible. We are mandated to, in the words of Jesus:

‘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.’…”~Matthew 22:37-40 NKJV

Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you…” ~Matthew 28:19-20 NKJV

bible_read_meNow, how can we “…love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind…”? First you must understand and know the biblical truths and you learn that through reading and studying; it is a life’s task, for certain. We must pray, honor and rejoice over the blessings we have received, and yes even the travesties. Because God has given us, both the righteous and the unrighteous, an even footing, “for He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” And the Prophet Job reminded us:

…Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” ~Job 2:10 NKJV

So, to truly honor God, our Creator, we must learn and apply His Word in our bible_readlives (yes, DAILY!) and to rejoice in all things that come our way, both good and bad. Because each situation, both good and bad, is meant to better us in some way, fashion, or form. Just as battle tempers a man’s courage under fire so also do these situation help temper our minds, hearts and souls to good things and travesties.

As we become better Christians we will also find ourselves called outward into the world to share God’s Son, Jesus, and His Word with all others out in the world in which we live. This will come with time and ease, because you will find, or better yet you will better notice all the opportunities that allow you to share the Gospel with all others along your path(s) in this life.

Although, there is another aspect to this sharing the Gospel thing, as we grow we are also called to teach, lead and minister; part of the “…royal priesthood…

…For You were slain, And have redeemed us to God by Your blood Out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, And have made us kings and priests to our God; And we shall reign on the earth.” ~Revelation 5:9-10 NKJV

We are all called to be ministers of God’s Word for all the world to hear his promises, but we also have to do our part by reading…it all starts there which is the beginning of faith!

 So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. ~Romans 10:17 NKJV

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Philippian Church and told them:

Only let your conduct be worthy of the gospel of Christ, so that whether I come and see you or am absent, I may hear of your affairs, that you stand fast in one spirit, with one mind striving together for the faith of the gospel, and not in any way terrified by your adversaries, which is to them a proof of perdition, but to you of salvation, and that from God.~Philippians 1:27-28 NKJV

got-faithOur faith is built up by the word, our faith is based upon the word, but not just on the word, but also on sound logic and reason as well as research. We make a claim based upon historical facts. And those facts won’t become known to you until you read and study the word and then see what the world of the various sciences has to say as well. We, as Christians, claim truth is our basis, but truth is based upon history, the sciences, philosophy, as well as other various areas of study.

So, read well, my friends! Research well, my friends! And reason well, my friends!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD