Joy To The World!

Joy to the World , the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven and nature sing,
And Heaven, and Heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the World, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

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The Difference Between S–t and Shinola

“He doesn’t know s–t from Shinola.”

It’s an old saying that was used to illustrate someone’s lack of understanding.

Shinola was a brand of shoe polish used in the 1950’s, and s–t…well it had a similar color and consistency.

The Apostle Paul was, by all indications, born into a wealthy family. He was well educated and became a respected Pharisee. He had everything going for him.

Paul gave up all those things and decided to follow Jesus. Following Jesus cost Paul his status in the Jewish community, his career, probably his wealth, and it subjected him to repeated physical torture and persecution.

Yet when Paul compared all he gave up to the value of knowing Jesus, he said those things were like “shit.” (Philippians 3:8-10). Perhaps your Bible says “rubbish” or “refuse” or “dung,” but the Greek word used by Paul is “skubalon,” which is the equivalent of the word, shit.

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The King Of The Kingdom (Part II)

Yesterday I blogged on how, by understanding Jesus’ use of the kingdom as a metaphor, we can gain a deeper understanding of how Jesus rules.

Earthly kings are sovereign because they have authority to make law, execute the law and judge those who violate it. King Jesus enjoys the same sovereignty in His kingdom, a kingdom that encompasses both heaven and the earth.

There is “one Lawgiver and Judge” and His name is Jesus. (James 4:12). People often make the mistake of thinking Jesus only judges in heaven, i.e. only after people die. If that were the case though, Jesus would not be sovereign because the kingdom of God encompasses both heaven and earth. Continue reading “The King Of The Kingdom (Part II)”

The King Of The Kingdom (Part I)

In a previous post I wrote that Jesus was using a metaphor in referring to His rule as a kingdom. Metaphors are meant to communicate packages of information by explaining something not known in terms of something known.

Because Jesus was the greatest communicator ever, we must assume He chose the metaphor of the kingdom because it most closely paralleled the nature of His rule. Therefore, by examining earthly kingdoms in conjunction with what the Bible says about the kingdom of God, we can gain a better understanding of how the kingdom of God works.

The first thing that would have come to the minds of a first century audience when Jesus began talking to them about kingdoms would have been kings. The king was the most powerful person in an earthly kingdom and could command the obedience of all persons in the kingdom, even those who did not like him or want to serve him.

Continue reading “The King Of The Kingdom (Part I)”

The Problem Of Guilt

(c)iStockphoto.com/nico_blue

Everyone feels guilty at one time or another.

People feel guilty when they do certain things; others feel that way when they consider their past. Some feel perpetually guilty.

But on a whole we all feel guilty.  Guilt is a feeling that abides in abundance.

Psychologists have struggled with the problem of guilt.

Some have suggested people feel guilty because of repressed sexual desires.

Others say guilt results from fear of separation from one’s mother.  Still others say guilt is simply a social convention necessary to the preservation of an orderly society. Continue reading “The Problem Of Guilt”