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Tag Archives: the Trinity

Things Seen and Unseen

The expression “doubting Thomas” comes from an encounter between Jesus and one of his disciples following his resurrection. Despite having a conversation with Jesus, Thomas wanted more proof, John 20:27. Thomas wanted to see and feel the scars, the holes in Jesus’ hand where He was hung from a cross. In John 20:29, Jesus refers to future Christians who believe without seeing. These individuals will be blessed as each walk by faith, not by sight.

For in [this] hope we were saved. But hope [the object of] which is seen is not hope. For how can one hope for what he already sees? 25 But if we hope for what is still unseen by us, we wait for it with patience and composure. 26 So too the [Holy] Spirit comes to our aid and bears us up in our weakness; for we do not know what prayer to offer nor how to offer it worthily as we ought, but the Spirit Himself goes to meet our supplication and pleads in our behalf with unspeakable yearnings and groanings too deep for utterance, Romans 8:24-26.

The apostle Paul builds upon this concept in a letter to the Church at Rome. Instead of talking about doubt, Paul uses hope as an object of faith. Rather than have the opportunity to see and touch Jesus, future believers must rely on hope to trust first century eyewitnesses who heard the gospel message in person. Faith in what is unseen is made possible via the Holy Spirit which serves as a spiritual counselor, John 16:13.

For it was in Him that all things were created, in heaven and on earth, things seen and things unseen, whether thrones, dominions, rulers, or authorities; all things were created and exist through Him [by His service, intervention] and in and for Him, Colossians 1:16.

In a letter to the Church at Colosse, Paul reinforces this concept. Reflecting upon the Trinity, Paul highlights Jesus’ role in the creation of the heavens and the earth. Although a secular society continues to attack the Bible’s infallibility, this is where your faith is put to the test. During a message about the End Times, Jesus suggests that many people will abandon their faith, Matthew 24:10-13. The next time doubt creeps into your mind, remember that faith is the assurance of what is unseen, Hebrews 11:1.

by Jay Mankus

3G

Cellular technologies began branding 3G in June of 2003. However, it wasn’t until December of 2008 that the first 3G mobile and internet services were launched by Mahanagar Telecom Nigam Limited in India. Unfortunately, this new technology was only available in the cities of Delhi and Mumbai, marketing their product to other metropolitan cities. Eleven years later, 5G has arrived with speeds that range from ~50 Mbit/s to over a gigabit/s.

For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, it is much more [certain], now that we are reconciled, that we shall be saved (daily delivered from sin’s dominion) through His [resurrection] life, Romans 5:10.

If you have a vehicle, you probably have been encouraged to buy an extended warranty. If this seems too expensive, AAA will try to win you over providing a variety of services for an annual fee. Yet, when human beings break down emotionally, physically or spiritually, who do you call? AAA has limits on the numbers of miles for a free tow and cellular services vary depending upon your carrier. If you ever reach this point in life, you do have access to GGG.

Because if you acknowledge and confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and in your heart believe (adhere to, trust in, and rely on the truth) that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart a person believes (adheres to, trusts in, and relies on Christ) and so is justified (declared righteous, acceptable to God), and with the mouth he confesses (declares openly and speaks out freely his faith) and confirms [his] salvation. 11 The Scripture says, No man who believes in Him [who adheres to, relies on, and trusts in Him] will [ever] be put to shame or be disappointed, Romans 10:9-11.

The 3G I am referring to is the Trinity: Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Three personalities in one, each has played a significant role over the course of history on earth. God the Father in the Old Testament, Jesus in the four Gospels and the Holy Spirit following the Day of Pentecost. You don’t need to drive to church to find God. Nor do you need 3G to access this supreme being. Rather, when you realize that there’s only one person who can fill void in your heart, God is waiting for you to let Him into your life, Revelation 3:20. This Christmas is as good a time as ever to do so before the sun sets on your life.

by Jay Mankus

The Expression of Man’s Glory

As someone who pursued civil engineering for a year in college, there is a great sense of accomplishment that comes from completing a project. This satisfaction inspired me to design over 20 golf courses on an old Cad software program. Although I have never been commissioned to design a real golf course, I have images sketched in my mind of what this piece of property will be transformed into when the opportunity arises. Perhaps, this degree of planning explains why God was so pleased with His finished creation on earth.

God said, Let Us [Father, Son, and Holy Spirit] make mankind in Our image, after Our likeness, and let them have complete authority over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, the [tame] beasts, and over all of the earth, and over everything that creeps upon the earth. 27 So God created man in His own image, in the image and likeness of God He created him; male and female He created them, Genesis 1:26-27.

Creation is the action and process of bringing something into existence. Based upon the passage above, the Trinity came together to collaborate on this masterpiece. Genesis one provides a day by day summary of God’s progress of transforming an empty wasteland. Upon bringing life to planet earth and the universe around it, God was filled with a sense of joy. Like putting the finishing touches on a Mona Lisa, Creation was completed in six days. Thus, God rested on the seventh to appreciate what was finished.

For a man ought not to wear anything on his head [in church], for he is the image and [reflected] glory of God [his function of government reflects the majesty of the divine Rule]; but woman is [the expression of] man’s glory (majesty, preeminence), 1 Corinthians 11:7.

While reflecting upon Creation, the apostle Paul uses a couple of interesting terms. The creation of Adam is referred to as the reflected glory of God. Meanwhile, Eve’s formation out of a rib from Adam is described as the expression of man’s glory. While these words would be considered chauvinist today, this is how first century men depicted creation. Instead of getting sidetracked by divisive words, each human being who walks the face of the earth is a precious treasure, a reflection of God’s glory.

by Jay Mankus

The Power of the WORD

The Greek philosopher Heraclitus first used the term Logos 600 years before Jesus’ birth. Heraclitus was searching for a term to designate the divine reason or plan which coordinates a changing universe. As written in the Greek Lexicon, λογόs refers to a word uttered by a living voice that embodies a concept or idea. This is the term that the disciple whom Jesus loved uses in the opening chapter of his gospel.

So shall My word be that goes forth out of My mouth: it shall not return to Me void [without producing any effect, useless], but it shall accomplish that which I please and purpose, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it, Isaiah 55:11.

John gets right to his point in the opening verse, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God.” Unlike any other human being, Jesus resided in heaven prior to being conceived by the Holy Spirit in the womb of Mary. Subsequently, John introduces the concept of the trinity, three personalities within one supreme God. Thus, the creator of the universe came down to earth to bring light to an ever darkening world as a living WORD.

Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action), So that the man of God may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work, 2 Timothy 3:16-17.

In his second letter to a teenage pastor, the apostle Paul explains how the Bible was God inspired over several thousand years. The author of Hebrews refers to this book as living and active, like a double edged sword which allows a soldier to move from a defensive to offensive position in one motion. Isaiah, who was sawed in two for his faith, understood the power of God’s Word as described in the passage above. However, the greatest aspect of the Bible is that each time you open these living pages a new message is received, a fresh perspective on life. As you study the Bible in 2020, may you feel and sense the presence of the power of the WORD.

by Jay Mankus

Six, Six, Six

In biblical numerology, the number 7 is symbolic of perfection, like a complete 7 day week.  Thus, the number 6 refers to being incomplete.  Without a day of rest on the 7th day, a week is imperfect, breaking from God’s design for mankind in Genesis 2:2-3.  Meanwhile, the number 3 indicates wholeness, like the trinity: Father, Son and Holy Ghost.  When you add 3 sevens together, this signifies complete perfection.  On the other hand, 666, also known as the mark of the beast, represents complete imperfection.

Ezekiel 28:11-19 contains a prophecy against the King of Tyre.  Strangely enough, this leader is compared to Lucifer, the angel of song thrown out of heaven by God the Father.  Based upon the account in Genesis 3:1-5 and Matthew 4:1-10, the devil appears to be an imposter, someone trying to imitate the Lord of All.  This masquerade continues today with angelic qualities, described by the apostle Paul in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15.  Although counterfeits have nearly exact features, time will give away their cover.  In the end, this knock off of the Creator of Life will be exposed, but will his victims have time to turn back?

Every decade, another prophet so to speak will claim he or she knows the day when Jesus will return.  Others will swear to be made aware of signs from the Holy Spirit like a modern day John the Baptist.  Their words can be tested, using the Bible as a measuring stick, 1 Thessalonians 5:21-22.  Some may even fall prey to spells cast by these dynamic leaders just as Jesus predicted nearly 2000 years ago, Matthew 24:10-11.  Since everyone is forced to live in the world, the best solution is following the words of Jesus’ baby brother, James 4:7-10.  May this advice serve as a blue print, to protect you from the schemes of the one labeled six, six, six, Ephesians 6:10-11.

by Jay Mankus

Worship + Fasting = Spiritual Insight

The question, “am I in the right place,” is something I often ponder.  At my wit’s end, I turned to the pages of the Bible to find answers to this dilemma.  To my amazement, the words of Acts 13:2-4, jumped off the pages today, putting an equation into my mind: Worship + Fasting = Spiritual Insight.

Worship isn’t a service you attend once a week on Saturday night or Sunday.  Nor is worship a portion of a church service where you sing hymns or modern worship songs.  Rather, worship is an acquired adoration of a living God, where an individual devotes time each day to honor and revere the creator of the heavens and the earth.  As this relationship kindles, lyrics of praise become etched upon their hearts, paying tribute to the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

Fasting is a spiritual practice neglected by many denominations in recent years.  My first encounter with fasting began in high school, by not eating red meat on Friday’s during the Catholic celebration of Lent, prior to Easter.  Authors like Jentezen Franklin have helped me grasp this concept through books like the Fasting Edge.  The notion of fasting can be traced back to Jesus’ words in Matthew 26:41.  By replacing food with prayer for a meal, day, week or month, your body can be strength by a willing Spirit.  Like any type of training, start small and work your way your goal of a day, few days or an entire week.

According to Acts 13:2, something supernatural transpired when worship and fasting were present in Paul and Barnabas’ life.  During a normal Sunday service, the Holy Spirit filled each with spiritual insight.  Prior to this day, their future was unclear.  However, in the midst of these joint acts of faith, God called each to the mission field.  Though cautious initially, the Holy Spirit guided their inaugural journey, leading them to Seleucia and Cyprus, Acts 13:4.  The apostle Paul didn’t just write about faith, Galatians 5:25, he lived it!

Like a teacher becoming a student, are you where God wants you to be or are you resisting a spirit of change?  Since everything else I have tried has failed up to this point, its time for me to try the equation Worship + Fasting.  As I commit to next 3 days to this exercise, I am praying that spiritual insight will follow.  The only thing standing in the way of a modern miracle is weak faith.  Therefore, trust the promises within 2 Peter 1:3-9 to pave the way for blessings and a fruitful life in Christ!

by Jay Mankus

3 Against 1 or Three in One

Where I come from, 3 against 1 isn’t a fair fight.  Yet, every morning, millions of Americans leave the safety of their own home to enter the war zone I call life.  Three invisible forces gang up on individuals daily, assaulting their minds, emotions and will.  Enemy #1 is your own flesh, Romans 8:5, implanting within you a spirit of curiosity, swaying your conscious to experiment with the unknown, Genesis 3:5-6.  Public Enemy #2 is this fallen world, 1 Peter 2:11, using a spirit of persuasion to conform your mind toward the excuse, “well, everybody else is doing it!”  Spiritual Enemy #3 is Lucifer, encouraging a spirit of disobedience within young people, Ephesians 2:2, fixing their hearts on earthly treasures, Matthew 6:21-24.

Watching The Sunset

On the other side of this spectrum, lies an invisible fortress built upon the Logos, the written word of God, prayer, fasting and worship.  The Father created this heavenly castle, sending His Son to inform the masses of its existence, John 14:1-4.  This kingdom does not use brute force, peer pressure or schemes to trick its occupants.  Rather, this paradise involves selflessness, servant-hood and sacrifice, Matthew 20:25-28.  The entrance fee is relatively inexpensive; one might say priceless, John 3:5-8.  Yet, this domain thrives on humility, love and obscurity.  There is only one star, one spotlight and one who is worthy to be praised, 1 Chronicles 16:25.

In the end, the choice is yours, to live for today, joining the 3 forces above or live for eternity?  God established free will so that people might choose love over evil and obedience over sin.  Like the line from A League of Their Own, when Gina Davis tells Tom Hanks, her manager, she’s quitting the team before the World Series.  Hanks replies, “If baseball was easy, everyone would play it.  The fact that baseball is hard; that’s what makes it a great game!”  According to Revelation 3:19-20, God created a special door for his kingdom.  The only handle of this door is located on our side.  Thus, God continues to knock on the door of your heart, yet only you can let Him in.  Today, the Spirit of Jesus has been left behind to guide you once you open this door, John 14:16-17.

by Jay Mankus

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