Day 71~ Titus 1-3

There is one thing Paul repeatedly says, but Christians today don’t quite know how to put it into practice.   “Warn a divisive person once, and then warn him a second time.  After that, have nothing to do with him.” (3:10) This verse stood out to me because I have heard Paul (and Peter) use this same warning several times in other letters, but have kind'a ignored them.  Now, I'm realizing, I need to think about it; I can't ignore it any longer... “I urge you brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions. Keep away from them.” (Rom. 16:17) “…you must not associate with anyone who calls himself a brother but is sexually immoral,…With such a man do not even eat.” (1 Cor. 5:11) “…we command you, brothers, to keep away from every brother who is idle and does not live according to the teaching you received from us.” (2 Thess. 3:14) “have nothing to do with them.” (2 Tim. 3:5) “If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not take him into your h

Day 70~ 2 Tim 1-4

“Avoid godless chatter because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly.”  (2:16) I think this verse stuck out to me today because I commented yesterday on how Paul had told  Timothy to “train yourself to be godly”.  He had said the way to that training was to be “brought up in the truths of the faith and of the good teaching” that they were following. (1 Tim. 4:6) So now today we are learning how important it is to keep up with the godly training and to guard it with the help of the Holy Spirit who lives in you.” (2 Tim 1:14) Why do we have to guard it? Because, “Some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.” (1 Tim. 4:1)  😲 Paul was probably speaking as a first hand witness to what becomes of people who engage in godless chatter. Picture it, Phygelus and Hermogenes were working with Paul.  They had been helping Paul in his ministry, maybe setting up home groups to discuss this new religion. But as Paul was making

Day 69~ 1 Tim. 4-6

“For physical training has some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” (4:8) I think that verse stuck out to me because it convicted me a little bit.  I had to ask my self, which do I spend more of my time on, training for godliness or working out?  They both have value, but Paul clearly says one is more important than the other. Our culture, not surprising, has put the emphasis on the physical training.  And boy do we have options! Jazzercise, step classes, aerobics, Zumba, kick boxing, Pilates, strength training, the elliptical, spinning, boot camp, cross-fit, not to mention good ‘ol, running, swimming, rowing, tennis and every other type of sport. They are all good, but the question is, are we, as Christians spending an equal amount or greater amount of time doing the thing that is more valuable?  There are as many different types of Bible studies as there are types of exercises.  The variety is th

Day 68~ 1 Timothy 1-3

There are passages in the Bible that I may not like, but that doesn’t mean I can change the meaning to make it fit what I do like.  Today we come to one of those verses, “I do not permit a woman to teach or have authority over a man; she must be silent.” (2:12) A lot of Christians today have a problem with this advise Paul gives to Timothy in regards to a woman’s role in the church. So, much so, they ignore it.  I find the ground very shaky when one chooses to disregard one passage of scripture as being culturally irrelevant, yet the next verse they choose as relevant and adhere to the teaching.  Isn’t that called a “Cafeteria Christian”? What do I mean by shaky ground?….Well…Paul says to Timothy, that he gives “this instruction (the whole letter he is writing) that you may fight the good fight holding on to the faith and a good conscience.  Some have rejected these (instructions) and so have shipwrecked their faith.”(1:19)   How can rejecting one little verse shipwreck

Day 67~ 2 Thess. 1-3

“They perish because they refused to love the truth and so be saved.” (2 Thess. 2:10) You might find this odd, but I take some consolation from this verse.  No, it’s not for vindictive reasons against my enemies!  On the contrary, it actually helps me deal with the fact that some people I know and love will perish or be “punished with everlasting destruction” (1:9).  It also helps me reconcile the thought of “eternal damnation” for those who I think never heard the gospel.   First, remember that Jesus said he was “the way, the truth , the light” (John 14:6).  So according to this verse, people will perish because they refuse to love Jesus and so be saved. I often think, “Oh, if only the gospel was presented better to them…then they would get it!”  or, “I wish myself and other Christians were better examples of Christ, then they would want what we have! That would get them to accept Jesus!”  Boy, do I take on a lot of responsibility for other peoples decisions!! 🙄 This ve

Day 66~ Thess. 2-5

“You are witnesses, and so is God, of how holy, righteous and blameless we were among you who believed.” (1 Thess. 2:10) I was in a Bible study once when the question was asked, “Can you think of a person who you can look to as an example of living a transformed, Christ-like life?”  The room looked a little dismayed….they were reflecting on all their relationships trying to think of one who was holy, righteous and blameless.  They were coming up blank.  No one fit the bill.  Do you think Paul was perfect and because of his perfection he then had the credibility to preach the gospel?….. …..I don’t think so….he was still human.  He still asked for prayer from others so that he could proclaim the gospel clearly (Col.4:4), and he got into sharp disagreements with believers (Acts 15:39 & Gal. 2:11). Well, he may not have been perfect, but he knew that Jesus Christ lived in him (2 Cor. 13:5), so he trusted that Jesus had already made him holy, righteous and blameless.  He

Day 65~ Col. 3- 1 Thess.1

“They tell how you turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God, and to wait for his Son from heaven…” (1 Thess.1:9) This one sentence describes the three marks of true conversion (as stated by my commentary). 1.) Turning from idols. We learned what “idols” would entail from our reading in Colossians- sexual immorality, impurity, lust evil desires and greed. (Col. 3:5) 2.) Serving God. We saw how to do that in Col. 3:23. 3.) Waiting for Christ to return.  This verse stood out to me because of point #3.  I just commented 2 days ago (Day 63) on Paul speaking about “eagerly waiting for the Lord Jesus Christ” (Phil 3:20).  According to Paul, waiting for Christ to return can help us stand firm in our faith.  Now we see Paul, this time to the Thessalonians, pointing out that these believers  are “waiting for His return”, like it’s a hallmark sign of a true believer….. I think that's interesting....I never really thought about "eagerly waiting" C