Women Embracing Faith

Thinking Through the Bible

THINKING UPSIDE DOWN January 26, 2009

Filed under: Family Life,Teaching Tips — womenembracingfaith @ 7:55 pm
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caption id=”attachment_234″ align=”alignnone” width=”225″ caption=”John William “]John William [/caption]

Brandt and John

Brandt and John

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Grandchildren sure light up my life. They remind us of God’s infinite ability to create. Each child is, of course, entirely unique, but also a reminder of the families’ genes from which he comes.
He is our creator; we are the clay, not the potter who molds it. Remembering that principle makes all the difference in how we live. These three boys remind us all of that everyday!

Isaiah used this Creator principle to rebuke the citizens of Jerusalem 2700 years ago:

“Ah, you who hide deep from the LORD your counsel, whose deeds are in the dark, and who say, ‘Who sees us? Who knows us?”
You turn things upside down! Shall the potter be regarded as the clay, that the thing made should say of its maker, ‘He did not make me’; or the thing formed say of him who formed it, ‘He has no understanding’? (Isaiah 29:15-16)

Probably the most important thing to teach little children is a regard for God as their Creator. Do all you can to instill it early because that view of God leads to reverence and awe. All of our earth and what we can see of the universe screams it. And that screaming will be a reminder to them the rest of their lives not to turn things upside down
thinking they are in charge and God has nothing to do with their daily lives.
Of course, upside down thinking has lots of repercussions for you as well. Are you approaching God with reverence, respect, and a biblical fear? In that awesome day of His judgment (or your physical death), are you righteous enough or perfect enough to enter His holy and pure presence? Why should He let you into His courtyard? Upside down thinking has all kind of answers–even to believing there is no life after death.

“It (

righteousness, perfect life) will be counted to us who believe in Him who raised from the dead Jesus our Lord, who was delivered up for our trespasses and raised for our justification” (Romans 4 :24-25).
We have to ask the right questions to think correctly about spiritual things. The question is not: Do I talk to God? Or to use a currently popular way of putting it: Do I have a personal relationship with God?
The real question is: Since God is just and perfectly holy, how can I even think about entering His presence? Who am I to claim to have a personal relationship with the Creator of the universe? The books of Isaiah and Romans have the answers. Read them, asking the right questions! I will come along beside you and help.

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Feeling God’s Sadness:Isaiah 1 September 27, 2008

Filed under: Isaiah — womenembracingfaith @ 3:35 am
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Babies are so endearing. Such consumers of our time and money. Wonder why God gives them to us?

“‘I have nourished and brought up children,

And they have rebelled against Me;

The ox knows its owner

And the donkey its master’s crib;

But Israel does not know,

My people do not consider.

Alas, sinful nation,

A people laden with iniquity,

A brood of evildoers,

Children who are corrupters!

They have forsaken the Lord,..'” Isaiah 1:2-4

God is giving a very painful evaluation of the people who are called by His name–specifically those of Judah and its capital, Jerusalem, around 740 BC.  Most of the first part of Isaiah is a call to the Northern Kingdom of Israel to repent before the Assyrians destroy them.  But, this passage is directed toward the Southern Kingdom, Judah, whom Assyria would never conquer.  However, this passage could be applied to anyone who claims to be in relationship with God yet continues living her life her way. Or, by implication, it could be applied to any Christian church tolerating evil and corruption.

Rebellious children break parents’ hearts. After all we do and sacrifice for them! We can all relate to His pain and sorrow.

But in this case, it is the Sovereign God of the Universe who is speaking to Judah, a small insignificant nation claiming to be special to Him. Even the ox and the donkey–noted to be dumb– know who their Master is, who owns them. But this rebellious people don’t even think about that! That’s pretty arrogant, isn’t it? But, God is sorry for them.  “Alas..” They are carrying a heavy load because of their sin and corruption and rejection. They have turned their backs on their rightful Master.

What Bible themes help us apply this passage?

One of the themes is God’s Faithfulness To His People While Remaining Holy and Just. He keeps His promises to them. He will never leave them or forsake them. His compassion and patience stretch to the heavens!

Yet, another theme warns: He will not always look the other way, appearing to tolerate sin. He is Holy, distinct from others because He is perfect and just. God’s compassion is sure. It is most seen in Jesus Christ. He is our righteousness. He satisfied God’s justice.  He covered our sin.

With these themes in the back of our minds as we read this passage, we can apply them to ourselves.

Do you call yourself God’s child? Then don’t be burdened down by your sins. Throw them off and run back to your Father like the Prodigal Son in Luke 15. Your Father will throw a party! There will be joy, gladness, hope.

God gives us children so, as we raise them, we can learn something about His character, especially His love and compassion. They are created “for His own glory,” –to display what our Savior is really like. Children help us understand how God feels.  “I have nourished and brought up children and they have rebelled against me.” No one wants that feeling.

 Has your church been tolerating evil and corruption by not practicing church discipline?  These biblical principles and this particular passage urge us to turn from our sins and follow the Lord Jesus Christ both individually and corporately.

 

It Is Fun To Be a Grandparent! September 25, 2008

Filed under: Family Life — womenembracingfaith @ 1:48 am
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Brandt, John-John, and Benjamin playing.

Brandt, John-John, and Benjamin playing.

 

Summer at the Beach

Filed under: Family Life — womenembracingfaith @ 1:39 am
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John William at the beach!
John William at the beach.