Business As Usual

Hey there!

Paul said  he was a “slave” (Concordant Literal NT) of Christ Jesus in Romans 1:1 and all those who are called to be Christians are likewise referred to as “slaves” throughout the New Testament. This is the actual meaning of the Greek word ‘doulos’ according to Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance.

In all of history, I am quite sure there have NEVER been any ‘part-time slaves’. A slave is at the beck and call of her or his owner 24/7.

We, then, are to ALWAYS be constantly, consistently and ever presenting ourselves to God and Christ Jesus as our Owners. We may not have any particular task or duty to perform at any given moment, but nonetheless, we present ourselves to Them….24/7.

Even here, we are to be seeking FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness (Matthew 6:33) and to be “hungering and thirsting for righteousness” (Matthew 5:6)….24/7.

Before we were called to be saints, all kinds of activities and concerns were on our ‘to-do list’. We were swamped in dealing with the issues of life and they demanded our undivided attention. Some that got our attention were justified but many were not. We were quite literally ‘slaves’ not only to dealing with these activities and concerns but also to the “law of sin” within our very nature (Romans 7:23-24)….they owned us.

However, there are now new Owners in town!! Our new Owners demand the same UNDIVIDED attention but what a glorious and wonderful change They bring. They can and will enable us to “have life more abundantly” (John 10:10).

There are still those justified activities and concerns we must perform and attend to daily but they are dealt with in a different way. And, they don’t own or control us as before because ALL that we do we deal with  through God and Jesus. Even the “law of sin” within “the body of death” we  now occupy will submit to and be ruled by our new Owners (Romans 7:25, 8:1-3).

Now, this life changing assistance and help throughout each day that we are able to receive from our new Owners does not come by merely having Them in our thoughts during the day. Nor does regimented Bible study, regular church attendance, ‘mechanical prayer’ or any other religious activities, however well meant.

Our Father and our Savior want us to “come to” Them (Matthew 11:28) and “draw near” to Them (James 4:8) and the religious activities mentioned in the previous paragraph do NOT cut the mustard!

At this point,, I always wind up bringing forth the example of Brother Lawrence. He showed us how to “come to” and “draw near” to God and Jesus by actually talking to, beseeching and living for Them moment by moment during the entire day. He did this even during his  most hurried of times. He wrote how it was difficult to do this at first, but after a while, it became second nature to him and he could not imagine living his life any other way.

You can read his entire book free online as set forth in the Category “Practicing The Presence Of God” and you will be amazed and inspired by the SUPERNATURAL relationship he was able to develop with his Owners.

Personally, my moment by moment prayer to Them is “help me Lord” (in whatever I am doing, thinking or saying at the moment) or just “Lord God”….and frequently punctuated with “thank you Father” or “thank you Jesus”. And, at other times, I just freely express myself to Them. The change and results I have experienced are indescribable.

So, let us, with all our being, endeavor not to be like those in Matthew 13:22 and to never go back to ‘business as usual’, as it was before God and Christ Jesus so graciously called us to undeservingly be saints.

All the best, in Him.

Fred

 

 

 

 

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Sanctify Your Food

Hi, there….thought I would pass along to you a little ‘food’ for thought this morning!

I came across a very interesting and beneficial truth this morning while reading 1 Timothy 4:5. I always give thanks at meals just as Jesus did in Matthew 14:19 (and I try not to make it just a ‘ritual’ but really express it from the heart). Going a step further, Paul tells us in verse 5 our food is actually “sanctified” when we “petition” before eating it.

This word “petition” is a different word from the normal Greek word for ‘prayer’ and is used only twice in the New Testament, both in Timothy (the other is 2:1). Its definition is similar to that of ‘prayer’ but it also seems to imply a special request. This is just my opinion but I would take it to mean something like asking that the food be ‘blessed’, in addition to giving thanks for it.

The ‘sanctification’ of the food after making the ‘petition’ is defined by Strong’s Concordance as:

“consecrate things to God”

“to purify”

“to cleanse externally”

So, along with my normal giving of thanks at meals I will be asking God and Christ Jesus to bless it as well.

Until later,

Fred

 

 

Happy Father’s Day!!

Greetings!

On this Father’s Day, we Christians own the bragging rights to having the best Dad in the world….well, okay, the entire creation!! Who else can say, while someone is commenting on a beautiful sunset, “yeah, my Father made that” (through Christ Jesus)!

For us, however, the celebration as being the sons and daughters of our glorious Father (2 Corinthians 6:18) is a daily, evenly hourly, ongoing expression of gratitude….as is the continual praise to our Father as well as to our Lord Jesus Christ who has made all of this possible by His unfathomable, loving sacrifice.

We can truly cry out “Abba! Father!”. (Galatians 4:6)

Under the Strong’s Concordance definition of “Abba”, there is a notation given as to the full meaning of this word at http://biblehub.com/greek/5.htm :

“Abba – “Father,” also used as the term of tender endearment by a beloved child – i.e. in an affectionate, dependent relationship with their father; “daddy,” “papa.”

All you dads have a great Father’s Day!

Until later,

Fred

Modern Young’s Literal Translation

Hi, there! By far, as best as I can determine, the most accurate translations of the Bible available are the Concordant Literal Translation, Rotherham’s Emphasized and Young’s Literal Translation versions (all three are available free at http://www.studybible.info ).

However, all of them can make for ‘stiff’ reading either because of their attempts to be so accurate or , as in the case of Rotherham’s and Young’s, they are written in ‘ole English’ fashion.

There is now a version available called MODERN YOUNG’S LITERAL TRANSLATION which is very ‘readable’  while maintaining excellent accuracy. It is free online at http://www.ao-soft.com/mylt/index.htm and the New Testament version can be purchased at http://www.amazon.com.

Until later.

Fred