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Tag Archives: Word of God

Welcome the Word of God in 2022

If you have children or received any sort of electronic gift for Christmas, you will find instructions enclosed inside. This manual is designed to show you how to put this gift together if not already assembled and how to use it. The best selling book of all time does not contain instructions in the beginning. Rather, the Bible uses history to illustrate how to and how not to live your life. If you’re stuck in a rut or tired of not being able to turn your life around, welcome the Word of God in 2022 to jump start this new year.

So get rid of all uncleanness and the rampant outgrowth of wickedness, and in a humble (gentle, modest) spirit receive and welcome the Word which implanted and rooted [in your hearts] contains the power to save your souls. 22 But be doers of the Word [obey the message], and not merely listeners to it, betraying yourselves [into deception by reasoning contrary to the Truth], James 1:21-22.

According to the passage above, Jesus’ earthly brother made an important connection between the Bible and this spiritual leader. When Joshua took over for Moses to lead Israel into God’s promised land, one of his first commands was to meditate upon God’s Word daily. If this practice results in the spiritual discipline of Bible Study, these truths will become implanted within your mind. Meanwhile, anyone who hungers and thirsts for righteousness will began to develop a heart for God.

For if anyone only listens to the Word without obeying it and being a doer of it, he is like a man who looks carefully at his [own] natural face in a mirror; 24 For he thoughtfully observes himself, and then goes off and promptly forgets what he was like. 25 But he who looks carefully into the faultless law, the [law] of liberty, and is faithful to it and perseveres in looking into it, being not a heedless listener who forgets but an active doer [who obeys], he shall be blessed in his doing (his life of obedience), James 1:23-25.

Yet, whenever you read any book, you have two choices. Are you the type of person who loves plowing through book after book eager to discover the next one? Or do you savor each page, stopping to write down notes as you read so you don’t forget an important insight, lesson or point? At the end of his Sermon on the Mount, Jesus calls his audience to become doers of the Word, not just listeners. Anyone can read the Bible, but those who are convicted to turn their life around will welcome the Word of God in 2022.

by Jay Mankus

What Have You Died For Me Lately?

If the media could only see the foolishness of their standards.  A politician may be the greatest leader in the world only to have their legacy ruined, magnified by a single poor decision broadcasted over and over again.  One professional athlete may be on the verge of being the greatest of all time until one bad performance causes supporters to boo.  Meanwhile, successful business men and women are being fired for a few careless words, sharing their world views on touchy subjects.

It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, Hebrews 6:3-4.

This absurd trend reminds me of what the Bible refers to as the Passion Week.  The week before Jesus’ death on a cross, the masses were.shouting out praises.  “You’re amazing, the best, greatest and wonderful!”  Seven days later, peer pressure turned these cheers into shouts of “crucify Him!”  In other words, what have you done for me lately?   If you haven’t, then you are as good as dead, part of yesterday’s news.

And who have fallen away, to be brought back to repentance. To their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace, Hebrews 6:5.

The author of Hebrews brings up an interesting angle to this discussion.  Essentially, there were Jewish Christians who were perverting God’s grace in the late first century.  Subsequently, Jesus’ death on the cross wasn’t enough to stop their sinful ways.  Rather, grace was a convenient crutch to lean on, a Get Out of Sin free card.  Turning the tables over in regards to their earthly temple, bodies, Hebrews turns up the heat, suggesting each blatant sin is like crucifying Jesus all over again.  Therefore, it’s not what have you died for me lately; Jesus died once and for all, for all sin.  Thus, go now and leave your life of sin.

Jesus straightened up and asked her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” “No one, sir,” she said. “Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared. “Go now and leave your life of sin.” – John 8:10-11

by Jay Mankus

 

Theological Divides

Early in the first century AD, a spirit of jealousy entered into Jewish believers, Acts 15:1-2.  Since the introduction of the covenant of Circumcision in Genesis 17, God had set apart the descendants of Abram as His chosen people.  Thus, the thought of any Gentile receiving the grace of God was foreign, rejected by those who clung to the theology of the Pharisees, Acts 15:5.  Like the Judiazers within Galatia, to become a Christian was to follow in the traditions of the Old Testament, causing even Barnabas to stumble, Galatians 2:11-13.

Today, a new form of Judiazer is present as the elite and misguided perform isogesis, reading their own beliefs into passages of the Bible not supported by the original context.  As a result, heresy’s come and go, confusing the faith of new believers and ticking off others within the body of Christ.  Sects of the pentecostal movement claim salvation is dependent upon speaking in tongues, with hell destined for those who don’t.  Meanwhile, liberalism has allowed a spirit of fear to enter into the pulpit, leading some pastors to become afraid of offending their members with the Word of God.

From my view in the bleachers, another Acts 15 letter needs to occur to straighten out the confusion which exists within 21st century followers of Christ.  Instead of obtaining Psalm 133:1, Satan has poisoned innocent minds, Acts 14:2, leaving behind a wall of theological divides.  May the words of Colossians 3:12-14 serve as an outline, a starting place to tear down these invisible walls.  Pray that Colossians 3:15-17 would become a reality before the church in America becomes a museum like Europe.  Act now to demolish these divisive barriers.

by Jay Mankus

Still Standing

The beginning of Isaiah 40:8 highlights  the fact which occurs every fall, the grass withers becoming dormant until Spring.  As a Christian, sometimes I allow myself to tune out, flipping the off switch, until I feel like being active again.  If we want to be effective, sticking out like a beautiful green grass yard, Christians need to fight off the urge to become dormant as seasons change.

The middle of Isaiah 40:8 illustrates the temporary state of flowers, fading quickly after their full bloom.  As the East Coast enjoys an early Spring, new flowers are popping out of the ground every day, appearing out of nowhere.  While their smell is sweet and beauty breath taking, flowers are fragile.  In a few weeks, these gorgeous flowers will wilt back into the earth, making room for the next perennial to spring to life.  As I reflect on my own life, my energy fades quickly when I trust in my own strength.  However, as I lean on Christ, I am able to go for hours, like a spiritual 5 Hours Energy Drink, Philippians 4:13.

Finally, Isaiah 40:8 ends with a spiritual truth, the Word of God stands forever.  Hebrews 4:12 helps people understand why its important to keep reading the Bible, “its living and active.”  Even if you read a book or the entire Bible every year for the rest of your life, circumstances, situations and times change, giving us a new and fresh perspective.  Although, the media attacks, makes false claims against and twists the truth of the Bible, one champion remains standing, the Word of the Lord!

by Jay Mankus

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