Fearfully & Wonderfully Made

Is abortion the wrath of God realized in the reality of today, or is it the wrath of man for the unborn? After all, we each have our own perspective on this rather controversial subject. There is literally no one out in the world today who has absolutely no opinion on this subject, even if they were to defer it as a women’s subject for discussion. A non-opinion is an opinion! (A bad opinion, I might add, but it is an opinion!)

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We have been fearfully and wonderfully made by the very hand of God who created each and every one of us. Whether you choose to believe this, or not. Each of us is created in such a way that we are similar, but we are unique in comparison. Yet, we are created in God’s image:

So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. ~Genesis 1:27 NKJV

So, do we infer from this that God makes mistakes? No, not at all! Each of us is the way we are suppose to be, barring any decisions that we ourselves make during the course of our lives…which can be and tend to be the mistakes which we will generally blame on God. Also, we have numerous assaults upon our person while we are growing up, which can also mold our psyche as we mature & develop. Consider the transgenderism dilemma today, the gay issues, the man’s mind in a woman’s body, the “non-binary” and gender fluidity mentality, etc.

Those of us who believe in God, the One True God and Creator of all things, hold to the belief that Moses put forth in the Book of Genesis:

And the Lord God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.  ~Genesis 2:7 NKJV

And the words that King David put forth in order to explain to the reader of his Psalm or to clarify to himself:

For You formed my inward parts; You covered me in my mother’s womb. I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Marvelous are Your works, And that my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed. And in Your book they all were written, The days fashioned for me, When as yet there were none of them. How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; When I awake, I am still with You. ~Psalm 139:13-18 NKJV 

And the words that described how God formed us by the Prophet Jeremiah:

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations.” ~Jeremiah 1:5 NKJV

We were created for a specific purpose! What was that purpose? Good question, although it is a different answer for each person; however, we each have something in common and that is to glorify God! However, we are also given gifts by God in order to a great number of other things. Sing in order to entertain, play an instrument to entertain, the ability to act, the ability to teach or research in order to transpire information or educate others, and so much more…all to the end of glorifying God. Some are doctors and others are nurses. Some are policemen, others are firemen, and still others are EMTs as first responders in order to aid the public and each to the end result of glorifying God. God places at our fingertips a number of qualities in order to aid those around us, both to help them and to glorify God in the long run! Of course, with others it is a long road to find those specific traits and qualities in order to aid others and glorify God. Sometimes it is a short path and other times it is a very long arduous trek, but in the scheme of things it is all well worth it. Moses spoke of such things, at least inferred it in the Book of Exodus:

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

We are each promised, in essence, that we will be given the wisdom, understanding, knowledge, or abilities of workmanship through the Spirit of God in order to carry our our abilities to Glorify God and aid those around us.

So as we move onward, to understand we are fearfully and wonderfully made which infers we have been created for a specific reason. Abortion, on the other hand, is simply, in my opinion, a vehicle for eradicating a perceived mistake. With the advent of removing God from our schools and society, prayer and blessings from our everyday actions and furthermore the destruction of the atomic family (the central core of the American dream, if you will) YOU steer man away from his very central purpose of pleasing and glorifying God and replacing such with the pleasing and feeding the new god of men, government and big business. Now your purpose is to consume (making business happy by buying and spending the money you do not have) and to work hard in order to pay your taxes (thereby, feeding the new god, government, with your money. This blog post, as many others are never meant or intended to be or get political. BUT they are intended to make you think about what you do…to please God or self? How you spend your time…for God or self?

We truly need to get back to focusing on God in our lives, spending our time pleasing and glorifying HIM and not ourselves. Teaching others to do the same. Steering our society into doing the very same in order to get us, as a society, community, and as a country, back on track in order to bring this country back to serving the God that formed it and ourselves, as well!

 

 

As Liz Wheeler mentioned in the video above, where will it end? There is some point in time, or so I hope and pray, where common sense will take hold in the minds of those at the helm. If not, perhaps you or I should become those leaders that refuse to actually lead, if it be God’s will. I tend to be of the mind that if we are to lead that God would place a passion, a desire, or a burden on our heart to do something…despite the fear that we have for doing so. The urge will become far stronger than the fear that is ever-present.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

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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

 

 

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

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…

ten-commandments

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

 

Why We Must Remember the Lord Our God

remember God

And you shall remember that the Lord your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not.~Deuteronomy 8:2 NKJV

Deuteronomy 8 is rather profound in it’s teaching. It was from this chapter of the Old Testament that Jesus replied to the first of the three temptations of the evil one during His time in the desert. Do you remember?

…man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Lord. ~Deuteronomy 8:3 NKJV

Remember what Jesus told the tempting spirit? Read Matthew 4:3-4!

We must know the accomplishments of God and all that He has done in order for us to honor and revere Him. We should be teaching our children these things. But as people move along in life and work harder, more overtime, more children, the spouse gets a job, etc. Man tends to forget the God that Created him. Why? Because man becomes too busy to live, survive, pay bills, pay his taxes, etc. We as the species of man are trained through commercials to spend more than we take in, get loans for those important purchases, such as cars & houses. Why is this? I suspect and believe that in order to kick God out of our lives the government needs to take God’s place. This is done by increasing your burden. How can a government do such a thing? They do so through the increase in taxes, through mandating healthcare, backing corporations which will push their products or the government can push their products through the Commerce Department, and other methods as such.

We have been brought up to have what we want NOW! Cost be damned! Have now, bratspay later, mentality for all. By promoting such a thing throughout our society, money, jobs, positions, etc. become our gods and idols of worship. Children are being taught to desire things NOW. Just recently, I was speaking with someone about an 8 or 9 year old child with a smartphone…call me old fashioned, but kids don’t need them! Children are getting away with murder, comparatively speaking to when I was growing up. Throw a tantrum, your butt was beat red. Not in an abusive way, but a corrective way. Unfortunately, children advocates, teachers and the courts have been taking people to task on this subject. Again, unfortunately, it has gotten to such a point where if you look at your child cross-eyed you could be on the receiving end of litigation.

Teacher Allegedly Banned Students From Wearing Crosses in a Tampa Florida school. Why? Because she noted that they were “gang symbols” and of course it went against her LGBT agenda which she promoted. Sadly, our teachers should only be teaching our children, not indoctrinating them! It is not their place to instill such ideologies in their minds, but rather challenge them to think, critically.

 Another problem in the parenting issue, is the fact that families don’t break bread anymore…you know dine together. “How was your day, today?” And other conversation events. Kids hardly have time for food anymore, because they are so into their computer reality games with 3D visual effects. We as parents have dropped the ball!

We should be praying together, talking together, being more open, teaching our children in the matters of importance. Lets face it…school is not the end all be all of life. They are not preparing our children for the life to come. We have a part in this. We must teach them of the greatness of our God and Creator. We must show them and teach them the morals taught to us through the Bible. Aid them to apply these new found notions. As they grow older, grant them a little leeway with decision making skills.

teach kids to follow

We as parents are our children’s first sight of how God deals with us. YEAH, read that again! As parents, we have a very heavy burden placed squarely upon our shoulders. Our children learn their morals from us, they develop many tasks, which they will carry on into their parenting lives. By how we teach and act toward our kids, we are possessed with the potential of teaching even our children’s children’s children. (Yes, you figured it out…our great-grand-children!) Our children must learn to take a stance against much of this newly founded “trans-” lifestyle choices. You know, such as: Transgender…Transracial…Transabled… Guess what comes next?

We as parents are charged with developing the moral fiber of our children, teachers are to and can help…but they are not to hinder. God passed on to us the mandates that we are to teach our children in all aspects of the Laws of God, the Word of God, the Greatness of God, the Morals that God desires us to follow and stand up for. We have permitted the government to take so many obligations from our shoulders and place these mandates on to the school officials. That is wrong.

We as parents should take back the schools and the local and federal government. NOW HEAR ME & DO NOT MISUNDERSTAND ME! We must do so through the ballot box. We MUST vote each and every voting cycle…like it or not, apathy is what cause a low number of registered voters from showing up at the polls. By following the laws, by forcing a change in the bad laws, and if needs be fire some people. One of my greatest pet peeves is the fact that bad teachers remain on a payroll, just like many bad politicians remain in office. This country was founded upon our rights and liberties…which, through apathy of the American people, have been widdled away at and are dwindling away daily!

There is a US Supreme Court case which states:

…the first official act of this nation declared the foundation of government in these words:  “We hold these truths to be self-evident***.”  While such declaration of principles may not have the force of organic law, or be made the basis of judicial decision as to the limits of right and duty, and while in all cases reference must be had to the organic law of the nation for such limits, yet the latter is but the body and the letter of which the former is the thought and the spirit, and it is always safe to read the letter of the constitution in the spirit of the Declaration of Independence.”  – US Supreme Court, majority opinion; Gulf, Colorado & Sante Fe Railroad Co. v Ellis, 165 U.S. 150, 159-160 (1897)

Think about that for a moment! Our US Supreme Court Justices have been taking away our rights and liberties through a mis-reading and mis-construing the US Constitution and thereby eroding our country and its meaning through opinion and law, not by use of the amending process provided for by the US Constitution itself. But by God’s grace and by realigning ourselves with God and by voting for those who are Godly (which is a tough one, because they all act as godly people until they take office…) We, as a nation…ONE TRUE NATION, need to turn toward God and need to do more praying. But even Israel had failed God time and again, and God forgave them and brought them through some great trials and tribulations.

I hope you enjoyed this little rant on just a few of the reasons we need to remember the Lord our God…if it makes you feel any better…I enjoyed the rant!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

 

Understanding Balaam’s Error

balaams error

Now this is a tough one, to say the least; as there are differing opinions as to what Balaam’s error actually was. It is quite the dilemma in my mind as well, but let us delve into this to see if we cannot come to an understanding of his problem and what he had done wrong in God’s eyes.

Now, I will not insert the full biblical reference, but rather will start off with Numbers 22 and you can refer back to it in the bible. Let’s see if we cannot weave in and out of this menagerie of problems.

Let us face it, we as the species of man have a tendency, perhaps even the habit, of using God’s gifts blessed in our care for our own, meaningless, and even selfish reasons and purposes. We tend to misuse the numerous gifts (the breath of life, our life in general, our work, our abilities to sing, organize, wisely & thriftily spend the resource of money in our care, and many many other known and unknown gifts – but we use them for selfish and meaningless reasons and purposes. That being said, let us move along with Balaam and his dilemma…

As we start out in Numbers 22 we see that Balak son of Zippor saw what Israel had done to his neighbors, the Amorites. Fear set in his mind, and as always in every society when the unknown occurs fear is promoted and preached among the people. This is the only way politicians can get anything done in their own societies.

Voice or no voice, the people can always be brought to the bidding of the leaders. That is easy. All you have to do is to tell them they are being attacked, and denounce the pacifists for lack of patriotism and exposing the country to danger. It works the same in every country. ~Hermann Goring

This seems to be the way that not just the politicians, but also numerous small groups who desire to play the victim while all the time creating the havoc around them. People, mankind , in general, does not do any homework and believes the majority of what he hears in the news or from others. Instead of what they should be doing and that is the use of the brain and God given wisdom which he had received at birth and throughout his maturing years. But we no longer teach our children HOW to think, but rather what to think and to jump on the bandwagon. There was a book published back in 1928: PROPAGANDA By EDWARD L. BERNAYS who was the German Propaganda Minister for Adolf Hitler. Moving on…

Now, Balaam had a great reputation of knowing who was blessed and who was cursed. If he blessed them, they indeed were blessed; if he cursed them, they were indeed cursed. And the bible indeed indicates, in Numbers 22:12 where it states: “you shall not curse the people, for they are blessed.” And God warned him not to go with the leaders sent by Balak to bring Balaam to curse the Israelites. You just cannot get any clearer than that where God stated to him: “You shall not go with them” ~Numbers 22:12. One of the first errors of Balaam was he told the leaders: “Go back to your own country, for the Lord has refused to let me go with you.” ~Numbers 22:13. Which is interpreted to mean in today’s vernacular: “Well, I really, really, really want to go with you, but my Father won’t let me.” Which is an enticement for the other party to help entice you even further into sin. Instead, Balaam should have stated precisely what God stated to him. (1)

Another error accomplished by Balaam was that of falling into a form of greed. Balak sent other leaders, more numerous and more distinguished than the first group. But they offered riches and wealth. And by going was giving into such weakness of man…greed. It indicated to others, or could be inferred by others, that maybe God will change His mind if I go with them and see what Balak sees. (1)

I will reward you handsomely” ~Numbers 22:17 NKJV

Balak sent an offer to Balaam. And by Balaam’s answer, as mentioned, it could be inferred other ways. Meaning, perhaps, that God might just change His mind concerning this invading people and Balaam could obtain some extra money on the side.

Now, I do not know about you but I always had problems discerning the error(s) with respect to the avenging Angel, the donkey, and Balaam. On the cursory view of the matter, everything appeared to be on the up and up, with respect to the mandate of God which is spelled out in verse 20.  And as you read the passage, it still is not spelled out for us. However, we must go by inference with respect to the problem(s) at hand. He is associating and even working with those who are against God’s chosen people. For example, there are those of us (knowingly or unknowingly) who associate with or work with those companies or charities that are blatantly anti-Israel. (3) If we are truly men and women of God we will/would always align with God’s people. We do such things in order to garner support, favor, and acceptability with the secular society. In so doing we are cursing Israel and going against God. We are reminded in the Book of Genesis:

I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” ~Genesis 12:3 NKJV

Matthew Henry’s Commentary spells out quite a bit, in which, the Israelite people’s presence is so that they (Moabites) might come to know the righteousness of the Lord (MHC reference, Micah 6:5 KJV). Balak sent a diplomatic dispatch, of sorts, to Balaam in order to get the Israelites cursed, but you cannot curse that which God has blessed…can you?

God fulfilled His  promise to Israel by showing His displeasure with Balaam by having His angel stand in the way of Balaam, who was protected by his donkey shich he beat three times. It was at that point the Angel was revealed to him. (Numbers 22:21-34 NKJV, (4), MHC ref) We are intended to, and obligated to, follow God’s word, demands of us, requirements, etc. because if we do not we are in sin against God Himself and we will thus separate ourselves from Him!

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 NKJV

We have a tendency to be blinded by our thoughts or our desires that we are unable to see the dangers ahead of us. God will give us some warning signs and some of us will notice and change our direction. Unfortunately, if you are like me you tend to be a bit thick in the head, stubborn, or just oblivious to what is happening and blame it all on Murphy’s Law, until such time as you notice it was God all along trying to get your attention.

murphys-law

Eventually, we all show our true colors in any given situation, that is a fact! For example, when you claim a friendship with someone and say you are there for them, excepting only those times when they truly need you…you know, stuff like that! But getting back to Balaam, when he told the second set of ambassadors to remain the night. The reason this was wrong, as with many of us, is that we tend to think God will change His mind for our benefit, because it is something we desire to do. There is no need to check with God a second time for anything, as His word is final and is the Law. We need to face something…God’s word is final. (2)

I am truly hoping that I ave not confused any of you, and that I was able to aid in your understanding of Balaam. It is quite difficult, at best. I needed to do some extra biblical reading on the subject, myself.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

 

References:

(1) The Error of Balaam

(2) Balaam the prophet of error

(3) Balaam’s Error

(4) Matthew Henry’s Commentary on Balaam

 

 

Our Present Culture of Abomination

Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed; Nor did they know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall among those who fall; At the time I punish them, They shall be cast down,” says the Lord. ~Jeremiah 6:15 NKJV

abomination

As we slowly change, as an individual or as a society, we become more brazen in our acts against God. It is second nature to us, after all look closely at the Book of Genesis and the occurrences within it of man taking advantage of his neighbor & brother. Look closely at our mates taking advantage of our naivete. Look ever-so closely at our brothers not gaining their way an become so enraged at the fact that things tend to come easy to us, in some respects. The jealousy and envious behaviors build up to a spitefulness, anger, or even to a point of murderous rage. Regardless of how harmless any person sees either themselves or others we each have this capacity of disgust, hate, envy, and anger. Consider what is noted of us in the Book of Genesis after the flood waters subsided:

the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth ~Genesis 8:21 NKJV

This verse highlights the promise of God not to destroy man again with flood waters, but also noted an observational fact about what is, in my opinion, both based upon the gift of choice and foolhardy decisions. The gift of choice. It is through this one aspect, combined with anger, joy, love, rage, jealousy, and envy that we could be the most benevolent of creatures on the face of this earth or the opposite extreme where we are the most vile abominations in the sight of God Himself! We choose these paths, due to the mixing of emotions instead of thought and wisdom. Truly a very sad bookmark in the history of man.

Each and every man, woman, and child has the earmarks of this deep, within their very being. It is inherent to our make-up and innate to our very essence, being, and nature. I was recently pondering over my childhood and some things that occurred. I was not a very good kid, within the scheme of things…overall, perhaps, but in the context of certain things…NO! I was that kid, or person, that Paul spoke of Romans 3:10. In fact, I was the very antithesis of such a statement! Sad to admit, but quite true.

Well, enough blathering about such things…it is not all about me. But the point I am making hers is this: Every individual, and inherently each and every society, first walks sin-separatesaway from God because he/she does not think He is paying attention. When that happens, man becomes more brazen and bold in his separation from God by turning toward hedonism and further on with the belief that, “if there is not God then all things are permissible.” We spoke on that briefly in my post Woe To You… (January 23, 2017). As man becomes more and more at ease with his new self and his new immoral habits, life just goes downhill from there. Why? you might ask…well, look at it this way: As we each take on a new habit (good or bad), it slowly or quickly expands in its nature and scope. Man has a nature of indulgence and sinfulness. The further we separate ourselves from God, He becomes a distant memory…almost a joke in some instances. While God wants us to follow Him, naturally and by choice, but man just wants to be set loose — much like a child in a candy or toy store! At some point in time God will place feelers in your path, perhaps signs or warnings, maybe even a neon sign. These, as with the Ninevites, God is sending you a message to come back or else, because judgement is pending against you.

You have two choices at this point: Ignore the message(s) and warning(s) from God OR Pay attention to the sign(s) and warning(s) of God and REPENT and change your ways! In the book of Jonah it is shown that God is a loving and forgiving God, and if YOU sincerely repent of your actions within your heart, God will turn aside from His judgement and never-to-lateremember your sin no more. In fact, as time progressed you will be blessed abundantly! But again, this is the decision you must make while at the crossroads in your life and in your walk with God. The fact that it is never too late is proven in Jonah, because so long as you have breath and you are able to stand and pray and praise…it is never too late! It becomes too late only after you have drawn your final breath! Both Sodom and Gomorrah learned that God would have no more of their sinfulness. Upon the execution of God’s Judgement on both Sodom and Gomorrah…it was now too late for them to repent. In the Book of Jonah, the Ninevites listened to Jonah’s warning from God and they paid attention! And they REPENTED of their actions and deeds! And they turned to God, shunning their evil ways. Historically, their repentance and return to God and His ways lasted about 100+ years, where Nineveh was finally conquered and destroyed. But that is another topic, perhaps for another blog post.

Just remember this…

i-am-one

We each, individually, can do nothing significant…but we can do something! And through groups of like minded individuals we can change whole societies, just by taking that lone step to stand up to our society and dare to challenge it to be something different that what it presently is or is becoming. Regardless of what topic you take where people wanted change to occur they stood up. Even if they were alone! It is irrelevant if you agree with their message, but it is incumbent upon us to change our societies for the better and for the glory of God!

…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; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age…~Matthew 28:19-20 NKJV

We are challenged to make changes through the missions we participate or lead, through our ministries, through our daily lives just by carrying on casual conversations. This is the Great Commission that was conferred upon us by Jesus…that His Father’s will be followed and shown to all in our daily lives. The only way we can change the present turn of events within our society is by forcing society to recognize that God IS watching and judgement IS pending. If your fellow man does not pay attention then you are safe. If you do not warn your fellow man, he will die for his own sins but you are liable for his blood because you and I are obligated to warn our neighbors, brothers, and fellow man.

“Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the house of Israel; therefore hear a word from My mouth, and give them warning from Me: When I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life, that same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at your hand. Yet, if you warn the wicked, and he does not turn from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but you have delivered your soul. “Again, when a righteous man turns from his righteousness and commits iniquity, and I lay a stumbling block before him, he shall die; because you did not give him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he has done shall not be remembered; but his blood I will require at your hand. ~Ezekiel 3:17-20 NKJV

Take the warning of God’s Word…it is there for all to see, but not everyone reads, sees, or understands it!

May God Richly Bless You My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD