How does a Christian unit heart and head in service of God?

I think that Christian Hedonism is the answer to this question: “God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him.”[1] I would recommend to everyone this book, Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist because it deals directly with this issue. The solution is to seek satisfaction in God in every part of life: Intellectually, emotionally, economically, ETC. If the thing that makes us happy is Jesus, we will naturally devote all parts of our life for and to him. Head and heart will be united when we see the real joy of knowing Christ. Piper uses the example, and I think it is a biblically appropriate one, of marriage. We get to know our spouse with head knowledge because it gives us joy to do so. It should give us joy to get to know God more in this same way. I think that this idea of pure joy is what Bonhoeffer was missing in the book, the Cost of Discipleship. Bonhoeffer made excellent points about Jesus’ call to radical discipleship; however, he left the reader with a boat and a river to navigate but no paddle.  Christian Hedonism is that paddle.

[1] John Piper, Desiring God: Meditations of a Christian Hedonist (CO Springs, CO: Multnomah Books, 2017).

The Value of the Historical Nature of the Biblical Text.

I would like to talk about the historical principle of Biblical interpretation. It seems to me that the historicity of the scripture is seriously under attack in this age of modern criticism. Andreas and Richard said that “true faith is rooted in a text that reveals not only literary but also a historical reality.”[1] If Bible is talking about literal historical events, and it “reveals historical reality,” that is a death sentence too much of major modern scientific theory.

We can explore this personally. Think of David and Bathsheba, the story has a theological and literally moral, however, the poignant nature of the story is in the fact that it is a historical reality. When someone reads Psalm 51, they can feel David’s tears of repentance. The story comes to life in that it was alive in the first place.

If archaeology did not back up the biblical account it would lead to a problem of reliability. However, archaeology does backup the biblical accounts. Therefore, beyond the fact that historical nature of the text makes it personally relatable, the historical nature of the text proves that it is reliable and that adds another nail in the coffin of the theorist.  Much of the Bible purports to be a record of events. Think of the Exodus account about the Passover and the instruction for the people to make it a “memorial day.”[2] You cannot legitimately have a memorial for a fictitious event. Second, the context of the speaker and the hearer is the only way to have a foundation of understanding the text. If the Bible can be separated from its historical context then anyone can presume any meaning for any part of the text. Fortunately, it cannot be separated from history because it is a actuate account of the history of God’s redemptive plan.

 

 

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[1] Andreas J. Köstenberger and Richard Duane Patterson, Invitation to Biblical Interpretation: Exploring the Hermeneutical Triad of History, Literature, and Theology (Grand Rapids, MI: Kregel Publications, 2011). 97.

[2] The Holy Bible: English Standard Version (Wheaton: Standard Bible Society, 2016), Ex 12:14.

What are my rights?

A rapper that goes by Lecrae once said, “if we fought for our right we would be in hell tonight” What is our right? Lecrae continued “Mere Sinner own nothing but a fears hand”. I often see posts on Facebook about “Achieving your potential”, “The potential inside you”, or “That power you feel, is your potential” These are just the ones from today. These posts are well-meaning but woefully misguided. The only potential we have, the right we are owed, is to create destruction. Everything we do outside Christ will at the very best be burned up and come to naught. Do not be deceived, only those that walk the “I”Less road will ever achieve true success. Lecrae concludes “Eternally worthy, how could I live for less?”. Make no mistake; if you live you less, you will be less. If Christ is not your reason, your reason is death.

Lyrics retrieved from.
https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/lecrae/boasting.html

You only have two choices

No matter the choice in your life you only have two options. Are you buying a car, having a child, or falling in Love? All those realities come down to a choice to serve God or Evil. Will you be Joshua and serve the Lord with your house? Or, will you be Cain and choose Evil?

Compassion

To have true compassion for someone one must choose to feel what they are feeling. To intentionally put one’s self in the other person’s shoes. Christ is a compassionate savior demonstrated by him choosing to feel what we feel. He wept, He was tempted, He bled. He is our example for how to truly have compassion for others.

Do I have what it takes?

I submit that as humans we cannot even go one day without sinning grievously against God. If we cannot even control ourselves enough to be right for just one day, just what hope do we have to exert control over the future? The answer is none. Sweeping the hearts and minds of many today is this “your best life now” and “purpose driven life” way of thinking that is quite abominable and unscriptural. No, you cannot overcome that obstacle that is in your way. You cannot fix it by trying harder, not giving up, or seeing the positive side of things. It is beyond you. It is beyond you so that you will learn to run to Christ and in so doing find your best life and purpose in Him and only Him. Only when you take up the cross daily will you actually live. Only when you lose your life can you find it.

 

The Shepard’s psalm.

 He makes me lie down in green pastures.

He leads me beside still waters.

He restores my soul.

He leads me in paths of righteousness.

I do not fear because of your rod and your staff.

You prepare a table before me.

You anoint my head with oil.

Do you notice a pattern there?

 

Think About That

Success

Success, just what is that? There are dozens of definitions for success like, I am happy, I am wealthy, I have a good family, I have a loving spouse, I have good friends, or I am generally better than I was yesterday. Maybe you define success as a combination of these things. The point is that most of us have a definition for success that if asked we could articulate. So let me ask the question a different way: Christian, what is your definition of success? Friend’s, if your success is based on things that will pass away, cars, money, happiness, earthly relationships, or personal improvement, in the end, all your success will be nothing. I submit to you that the true definition of success is, I served my King today, I ran my race today, I picked up my cross and followed today. These are the only definitions of success that will last. If you define success by anything other than how well you have served the King today then what you have is selfishness and idolatry; which in the end may lead to the eternal opposite of success. – Think About That

Freedom

Freedom, what is it? As Americans, we often think freedom is life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, right? But as Christians we know that earthly freedom does not come without the chains of sin. This means that life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness outside the context of Christ is actually life in the pursuit of being more comfortable within the chains of sin. Real freedom is found in the kingdom of heaven and the kingdom of heaven is only found by selling everything to buy the field. Jesus said that his yoke is easy and his burden is light, that he gives life more abundantly, but he also said that if you want this life, this freedom, you must sell all you have and pick up your cross and follow him. If you want real freedom the only place you will find it is the Cross of Jesus Christ and you cannot have that freedom until that Cross is more precious to you than anything else in the world. What American freedom is holding you back from real freedom today?  – Think About That.