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Showing posts from November, 2007

Tough on Mildew!

Back when I was in college, a friend and I used to joke about verses in the Bible that struck us as being very funny. For example:

After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry.(Matthew 4:2, NIV)

Really? He was hungry? After 40 days of fasting? You don't say!

How about this one:

And a young man followed him, with nothing but a linen cloth about his body. And they seized him, but he left the linen cloth and ran away naked (Mark 14:51-52, ESV).

Now that must have been a sight to see! Here's one that my friend pointed out to me:

The LORD will smite you with consumption and with fever and with inflammation and with fiery heat and with the sword and with blight and with mildew, and they will pursue you until you perish (Deuteronomy 28:22, NASB).

This one was very funny to us. The verse almost reads like something from a Monty Python skit. My friend was walking around the room and speaking in a deep, authoritative voice saying, "I will smite thee with MILDEW!!" Somehow…

Choose Your Own Adventure

The Choice to Love
When I was a child, I used to love to read the Choose Your Own Adventure series. For those of you who are unfamiliar with this series, the title is exactly as it sounds. You literally would choose how the story will go. There were several different storylines: you were in the Amazon jungle, or climbing Mount Everest, or on a Deep Sea Adventure. After reading about five pages or so into the story, the reader would be faced with a decision: If you decide to enter the cave, turn to page 19. If you turn back and go for help, turn to page 81. The choice you made determined the outcome of the story.

I have always been very practical, even as a child. So it probably comes as no surprise to you that I used to read ahead to learn the outcome of both choices. Then, whichever scenario provided the best possible outcome would be the decision I would make.

The Christian life is a lot like the Choose Your Own Adventure series, only we cannot skip ahead a few pages to know the outc…

Helper to Every Man, Mother to Every Child

After nearly 15 years of life as a single Christian woman, I am pretty well acquainted with those ministries commonly referred to as "singles groups." My attitude toward many of these groups traditionally has not been very positive. That all changed when I attended my first meeting of Undivided, the singles ministry of Metro Life Church, where I am a currently a member.

My past experience demonstrated to me that church singles groups generally exist for the sole purpose of consoling poor singles who are grieving their singleness. I found, throughout the years, that these groups were largely fellowship-based, heavy on the social interaction, but light on devotions. Most singles, it seemed, were more interested in attending these functions for one reason and one reason alone: to find a spouse. Those who lamented the curse of their present marital status were often met by leadership with these words of comfort: "Look on the bright side! This is a time to focus on yourself!&…

The Power of Silence

Every Woman's Secret Weapon
One of the most profound commands in the Bible directed toward women is the command to be silent. To most, it does not seem profound at all. As someone who subscribes to reformed theology, I can relate to this. Scripture tells us that a natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually appraised (1 Corinthians 2:14). I had been a Christian for 13 years before God opened my eyes to the truths of biblical femininity. Though I was not in the natural, it still took the grace of God for me to see the spiritually appraised wisdom in silence.

Notice that we are commanded to be silent in specific circumstances, namely, our silence is to go hand in hand with submission:

The women are to keep silent in the churches; for they are not permitted to speak, but are to subject themselves, just as the Law also says. (1 Corinthians 14:34)

A woman must quietly receive in…

The Truth About Submission

Leadership in Disguise
No single word has bred more animosity between the sexes than the word submission. Unfortunately, this is most likely due to the fact that both sexes are misinterpreting exactly what that word means, and this is understandable. Sin does that to people.

Most women who misunderstand this word do so because the feminist movement has confused the term submission with oppression. This is because most men who abuse this word are operating under the impression that the term submission means, "She has to do whatever I say." Neither of these assumptions on behalf of men or women come remotely close to what God has in mind.

The verb submit can be defined as follows:

to yield oneself to the power or authority of another: to submit to a conqueror. to allow oneself to be subjected to some kind of treatment: as in chemotherapyto present for the approval, consideration, or decision of another or others: to submit a plan; to submit an application.to state or urge with def…

To Protect and Provide

Defining Love Biblically
This summer, I went on a missions cruise to the Bahamas with The Great News Network and I had the privilege of having dinner one evening with author and speaker Josh McDowell. Josh challenged us by asking, “What is the definition of love?” A few of us tried to give a good definition, but could not adequately define it. Finally, Josh told us this: “Love involves two things: protection and provision.”

Think about it. We are loving others whenever we seek to protect them or to provide for them. Try to think of one loving gesture that does not fall into one or both of these categories. You just can’t do it, can you?

For men, it is easy to see where their role comes into play here. There are countless obvious examples of how men protect and provide for the ones they love. But what about women? Are we not called to protect and provide also, or is this solely the job of the men?

Remember, as Christians, we are all commanded to love one another. If the definition of love …

But He Started It!

In spite of the many men out there who have blamed Eve throughout the ages for the fall of creation, there is sufficient biblical evidence to support the argument that it was actually Adam who “started it:”

The LORD God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it. And the LORD God commanded the man, "You are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die." The LORD God said, "It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him." (Genesis 2:15-18).

Thus, God made Adam completely responsible for keeping that tree off limits. Eve had not even been created yet. She was ignorant of any such directive. And make no mistake – Satan approached Eve on purpose. The devil hates God’s design, so he deliberately perverted it by putting Eve in charge, forcing Adam into submission. And Adam allowed it to happen:

When t…

Helper by Design

Note: After this post was published, it was later discovered that a book exists by the same title. The material in this post is not related to the book, Helper by Design by Elyse Fitzpatrick. However, we plan to read and review that book on this site soon.

One of the things we tend to do as fallen creatures in a fallen world is look for someone to blame for everything that goes wrong, especially in matters concerning the opposite sex. Men like to joke that if it weren't for women, they'd still be in Eden. The female comeback to this is that the reason God made men first is because you always do a rough draft before unveiling your final masterpiece.

While these silly statements are made in jest, I believe there is truth in jest, at least in the idea that these comments signify some real resentment on both sides due to our failure to communicate and understand one another. It also stands to reason that because the Bible portrays God in the masculine gender, I think more often tha…