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Posts tagged ‘Love God’

Christians, secularism, morals and values

Our western society has been under much pressure lately. Many could see that humans are hard- and soft-wired towards co-operation as much as competition. One may wonder if there is such a thing as the common good of society, shared morals and values, and that individuals need common rules for living together and contributing to the overall health of their society. {A relentlessly upbeat take on citizenship: My Review of Belonging: The Paradox of Citizenship}

After a long time that people had it very easy, they now come tested again. They once again have to become aware that

Nothing is easy, all goes slowly, we carry time as a very heavy burden, but little by little we see clearly and advance… Living spiritual life — as opposed to religious life — is very difficult because spiritual life happens within whereas religion comes from outside oneself. {Advancing in spiritual life}

Though today many seem to forget that the religious life, coming from outside, when forced to some some one has no value and is just an empty box. Religion has to be chosen by the person himself or herself. For adults it is the own choice to belong to a certain religion. For an adult it is also the own choice how they live that religion. The best can this be seen in West Europe were lots of people say they are Catholic but where the majority does not live up to Catholic rules, and where even more than 90% even does not belief all the Catholic dogma‘s and do not affirm to the Catholic sacraments. they have come to an age where they made themselves a religion for their own. But they also should come to see that there are others who sincerely belief in God and want to serve that God (Allah, the Elohim Hashem Jehovah) to their best efforts.

Several people have lots of questions of life and death and want to have something to hold an and look for some spirituality. This spirituality is different than the religiosity.

Spiritual life, although it has a unique goal throughout the world which is the Union of All that is the Creator and all creatures, takes place in a wide variation of form and thought, because there is a constant rapport between spiritual life which is unique with the variable environment of the moment. {Advancing in spiritual life}

People have looked for different ways to come to see, meet and have a relationship with each other and with that Creator of the universe. Thousands of forms have been found to bring themselves to higher spheres and to try to make contact with the inner self and with creation and Creator. Lots of techniques found day light for humans to find ways to bring their body and soul in unison.  Many techniques are daily used by people all over the world to keep their body and soul healthy and to become a human which is in balance.

That balance is brought in danger by many factors and mostly by the impacts from outside world.

Man and woman in swimsuits, ca. 1910; she is exiting a bathing machine

At the beginning of the 21st century man in the West clearly has a troubled mind about tohorah or ritual purity, modesty, personality, self-expression, freedom or liberty, morals and values. Living in a place where the population in previous years was brought up under Judeo Christian values, those values seem long forgotten, and some, like the French some have chosen to oblige totally different moral values.

France’s Burkini Ban

Under the pressure of Islamic terrorists, people in the West have gotten such a fear which seems to trouble their mind so much they can not think straight any more. So, many suddenly start looking to see danger everywhere, even in women wearing certain clothes.

Normally you would think we are living in a multicultural society where it should be possible that

We do not need to like or love our fellow citizens. But we have to respect them and engage with them. {A relentlessly upbeat take on citizenship: My Review of Belonging: The Paradox of Citizenship}

At the moment the world shows that respect is totally gone. There does seem to be no respect at all for people who have chosen an other way of thinking and living than theirs. It looks like today everybody has to agree with the same and has to be cut from the same cloth or has to be the same buffoon.

Lots of people are not willing any more to think about certain matters or to do some more research about certain things, to come to know more about it. Everything seems to be of the same cut and everybody is tarred with the same brush.

Take for example Islamic people living here in the West. Lots of people consider them a danger for our society because they hear a lot about those Islamic terrorists and have recently seen that those fundamentalist Muslims created havoc in our own regions killing many citizens.  Lots of people do forget they also killed many Muslims, Jews, atheists, Christians and other believers and that they really have nothing to do with the real Islam. They also do not seem to know that in the East even Sunni‘s came to fight against those so called Sunni Muslims of Daesh.

Women wearing hijab

In Europe we may find today a very big issue about Muslim faith, they way those people cloth, namely the hijab (headscarf) or turban, burka (full body cloak) or burqa and burkini or burqini becoming the symbol of Islam and all that there is about Islam. It has come so far that we see that a garment now defines Islam. But only a name could make them afraid to and have them saying a bukhara (Bukhoro or Bokhara) should be forbidden though then we shall not be able to eat any Bukhara Chutney (Plum Sauce) any more.

A cloth, has become Islam. The issue is that modesty and virtue have been reduced to the abundance or lack of abundance of a garment. And that indeed is a shame. {Tell me I’m wrong about the hijab  + Maniza Naqvi is wrong on so many levels about the hijab}

For us still the idea exist that the Ummah or Muslim community is still much too silent and does not show enough the world that those terrorists are misusing the name of Allah and are not real Islam.

It does not help when we in the West hear about maltreated women in the East. A Saudi 17-year old teenager making the decision to leave her family during a vacation in Turkey this summer; a 20-year old Muslim woman ran away from her family in Saudi in 2014; Hind Al-Otaibi escaping her abusive father who raped and injured her; Sahar Al-Sharif, attempting to escape domestic violence and her abusive brothers by getting married; all Saudi women who are not criminals, but people who have simply made a conscious decision to live! Who can blame them and who can say they have caused any harm? But why should they, when coming to the West put their faith aside and come to cloth themselves like Western people, who in their eyes do have low morals and not good ethics?

Strangely enough it are on those aspects they and western Muslim women become judged, as so called being without good morals and without good values. Today those values in France seem of a totally different sort as the ones in the previous century when they made a fuss when a short or skirt was not long enough or when too much bare skin was visible. Today several French people want to see as much as naked skin as possible though they forbid full nudity because than the excitement is taken away. For them clothing has to be spicy and seducing, otherwise it is not acceptable. That seems to be the moral and ethic attitude of the majority of French people today.

That modesty and virtue have been reduced to the abundance or lack of abundance of a garment for many does not seem to be a problem, but they want to see in the way women prefer to cloth, their inability to make their own proper choice. When women are not clothed like some of the youngsters prefer today they are considered not old fashioned, but are considered to being oppressed.

People also have becoming very narrow-minded thinkers (or would we not better say non-thinkers) limiting their own thoughts not wanting to go against the mainstream.

One of the biggest mistakes people make when talking about Muslim women, rather than talking to Muslim women, is to assume that Muslim women are all the same, think the same, to ignore the diversity of thought, experience, opinion. {Tell me I’m Wrong About the Hijab by Maniza Naqvi}

All Muslims are lumped. For the majority of Europeans they are all the same, from the same wet jar. Many of French or other Europeans, even do not come to see the difference between hijab, burka and burkini. They condemn and reject it without logic thinking and without good fundamental thought.

In case those people, who call themselves Christian, but adhere a trinity, do not want to come up for those women who love God more than man, real Christians, who love only One True God, should speak for those other lovers of God (Allah) and who have chosen to cover their body for God.

Real Christians should show that world which thinks it has good morals, that her morals have become polluted and reprehensible. They should show the world that it are not such good morals when man wants to exploit women as a sex object.

We as Christians should show the world that lovers of God should follow the rules of God and should respect each others and their own body. In the same way we should know that we have to be careful not to tempt others or to bring others to wrong thoughts about our body. We also should consider our body to be holy, i.e. set apart for God and for the one who intensely love and want to share our life with. This means that we should have the right to keep our own body to that person or persons who we want to share our body with or would not mind being seen in our natural skin.

We also should respect those women who want to go so far to cover a lot of their body. We also should show the world that we ought to respect those women for their choice of reserving their bodies just for their beloved.

For some it may look like those women are oppressed by their husband, but did they ever thought it might be the strong women their own choice to believe in certain values which may be much higher than the present values of the world?

Jews, Christians and Muslims should be lovers of God and as such prefer to keep to the Law of God much more than to the preferences of the majority of the world, who have abandoned God. Real lovers of God should know that the world its secularism, does not have to mean they have to follow in all the world their liberties.

Real lovers of God should always have in mind that the Law of God should be on the first place. That Divine Law is part or should be part of the Judeo Christian values our Western world should be keeping to, but many have gotten wrong ideas about those values, because they do not know their Scriptures any more.

It is up to lovers of God to come up for other lovers of God and to show those who have gone astray or do not know God to show the Way to God.

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Preceding article: Secularism in France becoming dangerous for freedom of religion

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Find also to read about the burqini or burkini:

  1. Women’s Groups Say Gender Equality is a Must for Sustainable Development
  2. Gender connections
  3. Gender equality and women’s rights in the post-2015 agenda
  4. What is Racism??
  5. Is Europe going to become a dictatorial bastion
  6. On French beach French police forces woman to undress in public
  7. Women in France running with naked bosom all right but with covered bosom penalised
  8. France and the Burkini
  9. French showing to the whole world their fear and weaknesses
  10. Pew Research: How People in Muslim Countries Believe Women Should Dress
  11. Allowing dress code according liberty of religion
  12. The Dress Code for Women in the Quran
  13. Meditating Muslimah on “hijab to be a religious obligation”
  14. Coverings Worn by Muslim Women
  15. Does Banning Face Veils Help Us Fight Terrorism?
  16. Islamism Rises from Europe’s Secularism
  17. You are what you wear
  18. Where’s the Outrage Over Nun Beachwear? – The Daily Beast
  19. Not limiting others but sharing peace with all
  20. What we don’t say about the refugee crisis?
  21. A charter for a truly free world and why we need it
  22. When will it stop
  23. ‘I try to keep my hate in check. If you can’t hate, you can’t love.’
  24. Meditating Muslimah on “hijab to be a religious obligation”
  25. Silence, devotion, Salafists, quietists, weaponry, bombings, books, writers and terrorists
  26. Are people willing to take the responsibility for others
  27. Colour-blindness and road code
  28. Man’s own fault and the choice to flee from fear
  29. Lovers of God, seekers and lovers of truth

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Further of interest

  1. Religious Dress in Catholicism
  2. ISIS is Islamic, but most of Islam is not ISIS
  3. What if this existence is not real?
  4. The Dark Side is Strong with this One
  5. The More Things Change . . .
  6. What not to wear
  7. How Much Cover is Too Much, or Too Little? The French bathing suit controversy as represented in original source material
  8. What Not To Wear: A Short History Of Regulating Female Dress From Ancient Sparta To The Burkini
  9. Tell me what you wear
  10. Burkini Ban: Nice
  11. France’s Burkini Ban
  12. The reason you aren’t succeeding as a woman? Thats because you bleed apparently.
  13. Reviewing Channel 4’s Investigation into ISIS Sympathisers
  14. Should France launch air strikes against ISIS after Friday’s attack?
  15. The Islamic State responds to Pope Francis: “We are making a religious war, and we hate you
  16. ISIS tells the Socialist Pope that the Islamic State is in a war against the infidels approved by Allah.
  17. ISIS Responds to Pope Francis: This IS a Religious War and WE HATE YOU
  18. I Stand with Humanity ! I Stand against Terrorism #PrayforParis
  19. The Written Stuff vs.The Not Written Stuff: Sex Education From An Islamic Perspective Part I
  20. Is the Woman in Hijab oppressed? Who is a free woman ?
  21. What Hijab Means to me, Hashtag #Hijabtome
  22. Why I never wore a Hijab so far?
  23. At what point does a ban become a chance to publicly humiliate?
  24. And the Debate about Burkini Ban continues #burkiniban
  25. The Swimsuit Issue
  26. Stripped Down Make-up and Full Cover Suits.
  27. Nawaz: Both Sides Are Wrong in the Burkini Wars – The Daily Beast
  28. Burkini ban overturned
  29. What a lot of Berk(a)s
  30. I got 99 problems and the burkini is one of them…really?
  31. Bombs in a burkini?
  32. Bretons bathe fully clothed as Muslim asked to leave beach
  33. My Burkini and I
  34. This is why.
  35. The Story In A Rug
  36. You’ve Got to BurKining Me!
  37. Ramadan Kareem!
  38. Requiem
  39. What Can You Learn Through Someone Or Something Shivered? — Michael J. Fite
  40. Finding yourself
  41. Beauty Eclipsed: Day 8 – Focus inward
  42. Beauty Eclipsed #9: Surface vs Core
  43. A Journey From Being Alone To Alone
  44. Own, Apologize, Repair: Coming Back to Integrity
  45. Counter-Activism…or… Subverting Democracy
  46. The world in trouble
  47. i know why the caged bird shrieks…
  48. Darkness
  49. What do we do?
  50. The New Testament Church Part 2
  51. Peace
  52. De-Stress Your Mind & Body
  53. Let a young woman accept as a life companion only one who posseses pure,manly traits of character,one who is diligent,aspiring,one who loves and fear God.
  54. Why I wear the iron maiden: One woman on dressing modestly in everyday life
  55. Turn away from companions who will lead you in wrong paths.
  56. How legitimate is Christian Head-covering?
  57. Misnomer
  58. Why We Are Not Meant To Live Our Lives Naked
  59. There Is No Biblical Reason Why Women Can’t Go Topless?
  60. Power Of Happiness
  61. Being Grateful and Being Sorry—Are You Humble Enough To Do Both?
  62. …make this gift count.

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Signs of the the last days when difficult times will come

 

“The prudent sees the evil and hides himself, But the naive go on, and are punished for it.” (Proverbs 22:3 NAS)

“1  But realize this, that in the last days difficult times will come. 2 For men will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, revilers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, 4 treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God; 5 holding to a form of godliness, although they have denied its power; and avoid such men as these.” (2 Timothy 3:1-5 NAS)

“But evil men and impostors will proceed [from bad] to worse, deceiving and being deceived.” (2 Timothy 3:13 NAS)

“3  Know this first of all, that in the last days mockers will come with [their] mocking, following after their own lusts, 4 and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For [ever] since the fathers fell asleep, all continues just as it was from the beginning of creation.”” (2 Peter 3:3-4 NAS)

“Therefore, beloved, since you look for these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, spotless and blameless,” (2 Peter 3:14 NAS)

“17 You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard lest, being carried away by the error of unprincipled men, you fall from your own steadfastness, 18 but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him [be] the glory, both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.” (2 Peter 3:17-18 NAS)

“And as He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things be, and what [will be] the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?”” (Matthew 24:3 NAS)

“”For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes.” (Matthew 24:7 NAS)

“10 “And at that time many will fall away and will deliver up one another and hate one another. 11 “And many false prophets will arise, and will mislead many. 12 “And because lawlessness is increased, most people’s love will grow cold. 13 “But the one who endures to the end, he shall be saved. 14 “And this gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world for a witness to all the nations, and then the end shall come. 15 “Therefore when you see the ABOMINATION OF DESOLATION which was spoken of through Daniel the prophet, standing in the holy place (let the reader understand), 16 then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains;” (Matthew 24:10-16 NAS)

“for then there will be a great tribulation, such as has not occurred since the beginning of the world until now, nor ever shall.” (Matthew 24:21 NAS)

“30 and then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in the sky, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the SON OF MAN COMING ON THE CLOUDS OF THE SKY with power and great glory. 31 “And He will send forth His angels with A GREAT TRUMPET and THEY WILL GATHER TOGETHER His elect from the four winds, from one end of the sky to the other.” (Matthew 24:30-31 NAS)

“33 even so you too, when you see all these things, recognize that He is near, [right] at the door. 34 “Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.” (Matthew 24:33-34 NAS)

“37 “For the coming of the Son of Man will be just like the days of Noah. 38 “For as in those days which were before the flood they were eating and drinking, they were marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, 39 and they did not understand until the flood came and took them all away; so shall the coming of the Son of Man be. 40 “Then there shall be two men in the field; one will be taken, and one will be left. 41 “Two women [will be] grinding at the mill; one will be taken, and one will be left.” (Matthew 24:37-41 NAS)

“45 “Who then is the faithful and sensible slave whom his master put in charge of his household to give them their food at the proper time? 46 “Blessed is that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes. 47 “Truly I say to you, that he will put him in charge of all his possessions. 48 “But if that evil slave says in his heart, ‘My master is not coming for a long time,’ 49 and shall begin to beat his fellow slaves and eat and drink with drunkards; 50 the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect [him] and at an hour which he does not know, 51 and shall cut him in pieces and assign him a place with the hypocrites; weeping shall be there and the gnashing of teeth.” (Matthew 24:45-51 NAS)

“31  “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory, and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne. 32 “And all the nations will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats;” (Matthew 25:31-32 NAS)

“3 And as He was sitting on the Mount of Olives opposite the temple, Peter and James and John and Andrew were questioning Him privately, 4 “Tell us, when will these things be, and what [will be] the sign when all these things are going to be fulfilled?”” (Mark 13:3-4 NAS)

“”For nation will arise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; there will be earthquakes in various places; there will [also] be famines. These things are [merely] the beginning of birth pangs.” (Mark 13:8 NAS)

“”And the gospel must first be preached to all the nations.” (Mark 13:10 NAS)

“21 “And then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ’; or, ‘Behold, [He is] there’; do not believe [him;] 22 for false Christs and false prophets will arise, and will show signs and wonders, in order, if possible, to lead the elect astray.” (Mark 13:21-22 NAS)

“”Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all these things take place.” (Mark 13:30 NAS)

“32 “But of that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but the Father [alone.] 33 “Take heed, keep on the alert; for you do not know when the [appointed] time is.” (Mark 13:32-33 NAS)

“5  And while some were talking about the temple, that it was adorned with beautiful stones and votive gifts, He said, 6 “[As for] these things which you are looking at, the days will come in which there will not be left one stone upon another which will not be torn down.” 7 And they questioned Him, saying, “Teacher, when therefore will these things be? And what [will be] the sign when these things are about to take place?”” (Luke 21:5-7 NAS)

“11 and there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. 12 “But before all these things, they will lay their hands on you and will persecute you, delivering you to the synagogues and prisons, bringing you before kings and governors for My name’s sake. 13 “It will lead to an opportunity for your testimony. 14 “So make up your minds not to prepare beforehand to defend yourselves; 15 for I will give you utterance and wisdom which none of your opponents will be able to resist or refute. 16 “But you will be delivered up even by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and they will put [some] of you to death, 17 and you will be hated by all on account of My name.” (Luke 21:11-17 NAS)

“”But when you see Jerusalem surrounded by armies, then recognize that her desolation is at hand.” (Luke 21:20 NAS)

“”And there will be signs in sun and moon and stars, and upon the earth dismay among nations, in perplexity at the roaring of the sea and the waves,” (Luke 21:25 NAS)

“31 “Even so you, too, when you see these things happening, recognize that the kingdom of God is near. 32 “Truly I say to you, this generation will not pass away until all things take place. 33 “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will not pass away. 34 “Be on guard, that your hearts may not be weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life, and that day come on you suddenly like a trap; 35 for it will come upon all those who dwell on the face of all the earth. 36 “But keep on the alert at all times, praying in order that you may have strength to escape all these things that are about to take place, and to stand before the Son of Man.”” (Luke 21:31-36 NAS)

“He established the earth upon its foundations, So that it will not totter forever and ever.” (Psalms 104:5 NAS)

“A generation goes and a generation comes, But the earth remains forever.” (Ecclesiastes 1:4 NAS)

“teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”” (Matthew 28:20 NAS)

“The righteous will inherit the land, And dwell in it forever.” (Psalms 37:29 NAS)

“For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” (Romans 6:23 NAS)

“29 Jesus said, “Truly I say to you, there is no one who has left house or brothers or sisters or mother or father or children or farms, for My sake and for the gospel’s sake, 30 but that he shall receive a hundred times as much now in the present age, houses and brothers and sisters and mothers and children and farms, along with persecutions; and in the age to come, eternal life.” (Mark 10:29-30 NAS)

“3  Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4 to [obtain] an inheritance [which is] imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, 5 who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.” (1 Peter 1:3-5 NAS)

“The end of all things is at hand; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober [spirit] for the purpose of prayer.” (1 Peter 4:7 NAS)

“so then let us not sleep as others do, but let us be alert and sober.” (1 Thessalonians 5:6 NAS)

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File:54 Mark’s Gospel R. predictions and warnings image 2 of 2. predictions of the end-time. Borcht.png

Predictions of the end-time. Borcht. In the Bowyer Bible in Bolton Museum, England. Print 3900. From “An Illustrated Commentary on the Gospel of Mark” by Phillip Medhurst. Section R. predictions and warnings. Mark 13:1-37.

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Praying is surrendering in all circumstances

When you don't get what you askedPatience and self-control

It takes patience and self-control to trudge through difficult times, and it requires from us some faith in that what is promised to us in the very old days.

With praying we can ask but also say thank you and give praise. When everything goes right it is easy to forget God or it may also be easy to say thanks to God for times of health and prosperity. But when things go wrong or we do have a lot of problems it might be more difficult to say thanks to God. Though it is not so easy to thank God for our times of trials, storms, and adversity, we are called to give thanks in All circumstances.

Praying to God is also giving Him our heart and showing Him that we do have faith in His intentions and purpose.

Growing closer by surrendering

In our faith life we do have to grow closer to the Most High Elohim. We can do that by regular intensive study of His Word. In the Bible we can find lots of prayers which we can see as examples but which we also can use as prayers to Jehovah. In good but also in bad times we should decide to praise Him in the midst of happy moments, our bad moments, our pains and sorrows. We should not see it as a sacrifice of praise but as a gift of surrender to the One Who we do love and Who offered us the Grace of Salvation.

In this world where not many do love God it might well be that we do need some courage to show our gratitude and love for God. When we do surrender to the Divine Creator, The Elohim Hashem Jehovah this will give our heavenly Father much joy and probably cause the enemy much discomfort. Our relationship and our conversation with God will also serve as a quiet witness to those all around us.

“We ought to give thanks for all fortune:
if it is good, because it is good,
if bad, because it works in us patience,
humility and the contempt of this world and the hope of our eternal country.”
~C.S. Lewis        

When we surrender to Christ and to his heavenly Father the peace of Christ will always greet us if we lift up our needs in prayer, like Jesus did also to his heavenly Father. God loves us so much that he gave His only begotten son, who showed so much love for the world that he gave his body. Jesus restored the relationship between God and His creation so that we now all can come up to Him as His children. When we are prepared to give ourself in His Hands than peace that transcends all understanding shall be available for us as for every child of God. It is never withheld or out of reach. This peace comes when we surrender our challenges and submit to God’s plan, trusting Him to equip us for every obstacle.

Intimacy with God

When we pray we are prepared to want to experience intimacy with God. To be able to do that we do have to free our mind of our daily  ‘besognes” or worries. Our mind which is so often too preoccupied with all that is going on around us we do have to liberate from those problems and thoughts that haunt us.

When we purposely draw near to God with the hopes of Him drawing near to and speaking to us, we have to remember the primary way God speaks to us. He primarily speaks to us through His Word. That Word was brought to us by men of God, His prophets of which Jesus is the most important prophet and Master Teacher. When Jesus taught His disciples to pray, “Give us this day our daily bread…” He was not teaching them to pray for food or provision. He was teaching them to meditate on the scriptures — the Word of his heavenly Father, the Only One God, to Whom Jesus gave all honour, prayed and learned us to pray to.

Chose to associate with who

To be able to come closer to God we do have to be careful with whom we do want to associate. The people who surround us shall influence us. They also shall cause that we take on a certain attitude, therefore it is important which friends we choose. Avoiding bad people who can influence us in a bad way we can show our good sides to others and be an example for God to attract other lovers of God. Together we can unite to take time to talk about God and His Word and to praise Him in unity.
When you try to go on the right path to come in a good relationship with the Most High, try to clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.

Leaving the past

In case in the past we did do a lot of bad things we should regret them but not linger with them any more. Leave what happened in the past for what it was. Try to change for the good wherever you can, but that what not can be changed any more or turned back, have pity for it, but continue your way in the good sense. Try to put it away by talking with God about it and demanding pardon. For that what you regret god is willing to give forgiveness. It is not just running away from the past like nothing happened, but it is taking on the right attitude to take on, continue your way in a better direction.

Loving God you should make an end to your old life and build up a new life. By trying to set your self apart from the world, i.e. becoming a saint the first on the list of your concerns should be sharing the love Christ had for you with others. As love is patient you should show patience for yourself and for others, forgiving others for what they did wrong to you and praying for them, showing God you forgive them and you feel with them. when you take on the right attitude to others who wrong you, you shall be able to cure more sins than by wanting to bring condemnation. When you are angry or even mad at some one try to take a moment with God, asking Him for advice, giving Him the ability to help you to do the right thing. You may be angry but do not sin. Always remember that your struggles develop your strengths. We also should always remember that the words we use and the tone in which we use are going to define our but also other’s life. They will speak life or death to ourself but also to our children and their children. Therefore it is important that we balance our thoughts and choose our words rightly. Do not be afraid to ask help to God to find the right words to use. God can give us grace even when we are stressed and overwhelmed, that our children never take the below from our words.

Habits, attitude, action and reaction

Mary Magdalene, in a dramatic 19th-century pop...

Mary Magdalene, in a dramatic 19th-century popular image of penitence painted by Ary Scheffer. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We should know that we as creatures of habit, we continually return to what we know. For lots of people the unknown frightens them. Though that we do know is not always the safe place. Sometimes, that is a place of discomfort or sadness or frustration. Sometimes, it is the easy place to be, or the one that keeps us financially stable or under the radar. Sometimes it is not that a situation can’t be changed; it is more that we lack the courage to make change happen. There is risk involved.

Often we can see what is happening but do not dare to react. Often we are afraid for reactions of others. As Christians we should know what is good and what is bad and should dare to speak for what is going wrong. But the way we are going to react is very important and for this we can counsel God first in prayer. Though perhaps there can be lots of things outside ourselves which we can not control, but our inner self, our own being we should be able to control and let it to be guided by God’s Wisdom.

Taking on Christ’s attitude

Always remember that the ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands when everything goes all right and when you feel comfortable. It is when problems arise that mostly the character of a person comes into the light. In times of problems, challenge and controversy, you have to have self-control and be a worthy follower of Christ, willing to take on his attitude in such circumstances. If you feel you can not tackle it on your own, than is the time ripe to take up prayer. Inner conflict are often the termites of disobedience, so than it is high time to show obedience to God and show your love to His other creatures, not sowing bad things but good things of which you later shall have no regret.

Giving time to the Most Important One

Spending time with God is special whether if “feels” intimate or not and whether I get goosebumps or not. It’s simply great to spend time with the Most High Lord of the lord of lords! In your prayers God always should be your hope.

You can spend time with God with your actions as well with your words.

Switching off your autopilot you can be with your mind with God from the moment you are awake. When standing up, washing yourself, you can take a moment to stop in your mind for a second, while your autopilot does the daily actions, you let your spirit wander into the Hands of God. When you eat your meal, you can savour it, thinking about the taste, texture even temperature, and take time to enjoy that what God gives you daily. On your route to work/school you can look up at the sky, feel the sun, the wind on your face, take time as it were to smell the flowers (metaphorically or in reality if at all possible).

Also at work you can take moments of meditation or prayer. At your desk, take a few deep breaths, then try and notice a few (e.g.five) things you can hear, see and touch and five body sensations you are experiencing. This is one perfect way to de-stress.

Moments for you and God

Several times in the day you should take a moment for yourself and to stretch in a quite space, taking note on how it makes your body feel, where the tension is in your body which you can focus on and breathe into.

Perhaps you think you will loose a lot of precious time that way. But it isn’t. You shall be able to recharge. These moments of meditation and prayer aren’t meant to last a long time,

30 seconds can sometimes be all it takes. Of course if you want to spend a bit longer doing it, by all means do so! {6 Ways to be More Mindful}

You shall not always be able to succeed to have a good meditation or a good chat with the Higher Being. Taking time for yourself and in that time daring to put yourself away from the busy world is not easy. when you feel not happy with your previous meditation session or prayer time, do not find an excuse than to have further delays. Take it as

when you have blown your planned diet or abandoned your exercise routine; when you have ventured down a path that feels like a waste of your time, energy, and talents; when you feel you have betrayed yourself in some way by not following through on your higher intentions; whenever you veer off course or are derailed by some setback, rather than mercilessly beat yourself up about it, rather than bludgeon yourself with self-criticism that only leaves you depressed and demoralized, you can recognize the fact that you’ve wandered from your desired path, identify what happened (and what you might do differently the next time, if it’s yours to do), and then take the opportunity to gently and lovingly collect yourself, redirect yourself, and…

Begin again. {Begin Again}

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serenity-prayer

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Preceding articles:

  1. Our openness to being approachable
  2. Natural inclinations and Praying and asking
  3. Always rejoicing Praying constantly Giving thanks for everything
  4. Psalm 66 HRV
  5. Psalm 66 OJB
  6. Praying and acts of meditation without ceasing

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Additional reading:

  1. The business of this life
  2. People Seeking for God 2 Human interpretations
  3. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  4. God should be your hope
  5. God is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him
  6. Looking for True Spirituality 8 Measuring Up
  7. Philosophy hand in hand with spirituality
  8. Fragments from the Book of Job #6: chapters 38-42
  9. Getting fate in your change to positiveness
  10. A Story of the Soldier and a Spider
  11. Running away from the past
  12. Walking alone?
  13. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  14. Control your destiny or somebody else will
  15. Malefactors becoming your master
  16. Control and change
  17. Know Who goes with us and don’t try to control life
  18. Wednesday Talk: Favorite Scripture: Rejoice always
  19. Tapping into God’s Strength by Waiting on Him
  20. God is the strength of my heart
  21. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  22. Clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience
  23. A man who cannot forgive others
  24. The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands
  25. Patience is the ability to count down before blasting off
  26. Your struggles develop your strengths
  27. Be ye angry and sin not
  28. He who smiles rather than rages is always the stronger
  29. Unconditional love
  30. Love will cure more sins than condemnation
  31. Careful what you sow, it might grow
  32. Guard well within yourself that treasure, kindness
  33. Angry but not sinning
  34. Kindness
  35. Be kinder than necessary
  36. A treasure which can give me everything I need
  37. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #1 Kings Faith
  38. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #2 Calling upon the Name of God
  39. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #6 Words to feed and communicate
  40. Trusting, Faith, Calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #9 Prayer #7 Reason to pray
  41. God is my refuge and my fortress in Him I will trust

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Find also to read:

  1. Serenity. Courage. Wisdom.
  2. Do you want your direction to be more clear?
  3. 6 Ways to be More Mindful
  4. Benefits of Meditation ☮
  5. In Search of the Winter Sun
  6. Work with Thoughts
  7. It Sounds Very Simple!
  8. Begin Again
  9. Inside My Head
  10. The Understanding of Dee and Meditation
  11. The Spiritual Treatment of Anxiety
  12. A Prayer for Starting Over
  13. A Prayer for New Beginnings
  14. Self Discipline

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  • Growing Closer to Christ Through Our Afflictions (faithinspires.wordpress.com)
    Afflictions don’t just attack our belief and faith in God. They are also meant ti distract us from God’s way, and his work. This is true even if our “work” for God is as simple as our example to those around us. Consider these words from noted Christian Author Joyce Meyers, ” The only way to repay the devil for hurt and devastation in our personal lives is to aggressively and vehemently do the works of Jesus.” In this short quote Meyers points out again that the source of our afflictions is the Devil. There’s an old saying “ Success is the best revenge. “ This is also what she is saying. The best way to combat the afflictions in our lives, is to succeed in our walk with Christ. Now I’m am not saying this will necessarily be easy. In fact the value in what I am saying lies in the fact that it will likely be hard and require significant effort !So when afflictions and struggles wage against you, first of all pray ! The more it hurts the harder you should pray. Seek the support of other like minded Christians. Do something for Christ no matter how small it may seem. Fight back with Christ and God himself as allies.
  • When Prayer Comes Hard (rosemccormickbrandon.wordpress.com)
    Often when a Christian expresses a need that deeply troubles them, another believer will say something like, “Just prayer about,” or “Just trust God.” It happens too when a person has been violated, lied about or hurt by the actions of another person. Someone will pipe up with this solution: “Just forgive and let it go.”To pray is always right. The same is true about trusting God and forgiving others. The problem is that prayer comes hard sometimes. And trust is not always the issue – a person may trust God completely but be weighed down with the turbulence of a life-altering event. As for forgiveness, it doesn’t roll out of the heart as easily as it rolls off the tongue.
  • A Prayer Of Faith (christianmotivations.weebly.com)
    This statement of faith cannot be argued away: every prayer of faith will be answered by God. It is very important to learn to apply the Word of God when you pray, because the Word is spirit and life. God’s Word is the truth and will never fail. God watches over His Word to ensure that His promises come to pass. When you pray according to the Word of God, your prayers are in line with the will of God.
  • Prayer Part 4 – Our Personal Intercessor (pastortyrus.com)
    Did you know we carry a personal intercessor with us everywhere we go? We have a helper that “helpeth our infirmities” The message bible version of the same verse says, “Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans.” Well how about that?!?!
  • 8 Things Jesus Never said (bryanpattersonfaithworks.wordpress.com)
    Jesus said a lot of things throughout the Bible, but there are also a lot of things he didn’t. Here are eight things Jesus never said (From chururchleaders.com).
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    Jesus never promises fame or fortune, yet these are also not things he opposes if used for his glory. If your reasoning for seeking a relationship with God is materially focused, you may want to evaluate what god you’re really yearning for.
  • Praying for our worldwide family (csmonitor.com)
    In order to pray, we need to first let go of any feelings of hopelessness, which lead thought away from the understanding that God is omnipresent divine Love, and that we are all God’s offspring, created spiritually in His likeness. When we turn away from the sense that God is anything other than a loving protector, we are open to understanding that God is powerful enough to provide for the needs of His creation! Praying this way – by choosing to keep our thoughts centered on the understanding of God’s omnipotence, omnipresence, and goodness – we are able to meet challenges both near and far.
  • Listen: The Attributes of God: Is God a “He”? (The Reasons to Believe #91 with Daniel Whyte III) (blackchristiannews.com)
    God has been under attack in the world almost since the beginning of time, but He and those who believe in Him are under attack more now than ever before. Atheism is increasing and atheists are becoming more vocal. This podcast is an ongoing debate response to such people as Richard Dawkins, Bill Maher and others who don’t believe in God and who preach atheism to the world. This podcast is also designed to equip Christians to do what the Holy Scriptures command, and that is to, “earnestly contend for the faith” and to “be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh us a reason of the hope that is in us”. But more importantly, this broadcast/podcast is designed to give you a reason to believe in God and His Son Jesus Christ.
  • DAY 18 Power to Heal and Deliver (cutpaste.typepad.com)
    As much as I want God to heal, it’s not up to me. God is the healer. My job is to give him the opportunity to heal by offering to pray for every sick person I come in contact with.  What I will be held accountable for is not how many were healed but how many I was obedient to pray for.
  • Banking on God’s Promises (witnesswell.net)
    “Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for not being like a busy parent who says, “Don’t ask – don’t knock – I’m too busy to be bothered!” Today I pray for those who don’t know Jesus – I pray they will begin to ask, search, and knock.  Use Christian friends to introduce them to the truths of Your Word – may their eyes be open. Draw them into a sincere faith in the real You and may they find and experience the wonders of You through Your Word. LORD, I’m banking on Your promise to open the door when they knock. Thanks you! I come before You in Jesus’ name”
  • I Sing Praises, Because There is a Name I Can Call On….Regardless of My Need (brandinicolejm.wordpress.com)
    Just like we have first names, God’s first name is Yahweh or Jehovah. The Hebrew word means “I Am” and comes from the verb which means “to be” or “to exist.” As we speak to one another on a first name basis, we should have a desire to be on a first name basis with God. It is when we seek Him out (regardless of our flaws, weaknesses and shortcomings) with a level of transparency and honesty that God shares with us His last name.

Words to push and pull

Words to bring message

As a preacher we need to use words to get people to the subject where we want them. In the United States of America we can find many mega churches where lots of words are brought in a whirlwind show. Several preachers throw up hell and torment, others promise heaven on earth in material wealth in this lifetime.

Jesus called his followers to bring the Word of God about salvation. Jesus brought the Good News of the Kingdom of God. His apostles continued to bring that message of hope and we should do likewise.

To bring that important message of hope we should also push people to take the Torah seriously, and to go and spend more time looking in to the Holy Scriptures. When we preach it should not be our own words lying on the foreground, but the Words of God should have the place of honour. We should pull in those who are willing to listen to us, by not taking ourself too seriously. Relativism is very important in life, also for the preacher.

Renewed platform

English: Street Preacher holds sign that reads...

Street Preacher holds sign that reads “Discover forgiveness for all your sin and eternal life in the Living Jesus” in Times Square, New York. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Today we can have our words resound via the internet. Now it is possible to distribute biblical study materials without traditional costs. The modern media can be a vehicle for exegetical and expositional articles. {Exegetical articles are concerned with laying bare the various layers of meaning in a text without regard to the application of this information to the ecclesia. Expositional articles are exegetical and in addition show how the textual material is relevant to the ecclesia.} Devotional and homiletical material also can be presented like articles relating to prophecy, to current affairs.  Would it not be easy to find such things on one place? Well, the renewed “Stepping toes” would love to do that, and is also looking for writers to do so. The website would like to become a platform where the news is presented of the teaching efforts of many who have Jehovah God as their God and Jesus (Jeshua) as their Master teacher. Aside of the religious news they would not mind to place doctrinal and apologetic articles as well. but they want to show an open-mindedness to the faith and do believe everybody can be in a different stage of believes in his life and can have different opinions about certain matters. Those differences can be interesting to look at; Instead of criticising the other idea, ‘Stepping toes‘ would love to see it possible that people of different opinion can come peacefully together and listen to each others various opinions about same matters. “Stepping toes” would love to see people taking up their Bibles and to check what the Word of God is telling. We do have to compare our thoughts with the thoughts of others and with the Word of God as presented in the Holy Scriptures.

Chances to grow spiritually

In case we do want to grow we do need Bible Study. We do need the Word of God looked at from different angels. We should be willing to listen to the different viewpoints, encountering many frames of reference. We should be willing to question our own ideas, or our own understanding of certain passages in the Holy Scriptures. By looking at different interpretations we can see what the possibilities are and where we or others go wrong in the interpretation. Only by giving the opportunity to have new material or new insights to be presented we shall give ourselves and others the opportunity to grow in the faith.

Studying the Bible is not looking at the Bible only to see and hear what you want to see or hear. It is opening your mind to have it fed with several ways of looking at the world, and by the need of taking time to think about what is said in the most holy of books.

We should meditate in the Bible day and night, to run your mind with the Holy Spirit, willing to give space in your mind and in your heart for the Spirit of God as your Life Power. We may not only concentrate on one part of the Guide of God. He has given us the Books of books, the Old and New Testament. The old testament gives us more insight about God’s personality. The New Testament tells us about the son of God, what we should do in our life and which way we do have to go in life. It also gives us a look at the development of the first ecclesiae.

Reading regularly the many books we should use the “observation, interpretation and application” techniques beginning with an outline — this process can and should take hours as it is slow but provides for a deeper love for God and His promises and a new respect for His holiness.

Helping each other

“Stepping toes” would love to give help so that we do not to wrestle through the scripture on our own. If we don’t understand something or a word, we should research it and see if it takes us into a deeper understanding of Who God is. This research we do not have to do alone. There are many people studying the Bible, if they only wanted to share a little bit more their findings. On “Stepping toes” such findings can be presented. There only have to be more writers be willing to join such a platform where people might have different opinions. Most people only want to be with and hear only like minded people. In the love for God and in the love for Christ, Bible-students like some Christdadelphians do believe we should share our understandings with others who are also part of the Body of Christ.

English: The Bible

The Bible (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When you need an encouraging word, or you’re in a negative environment, it’s good to know that you can find life (plus healing and health) in God’s Word. Sharing those words and findings with others give you the opportunity to help others also to find a better life. Out of love for the neighbour we should share our findings from Bible study. The Bible is such a huge work of inspiration and knowledge that it may demand more than just a few hours to get a grip of it. By sharing ideas about it we can help each other to get more knowledge much quicker. So out of love we should be happy when we are asked to give our opinion and to share our knowledge with others.

For us there should be no more important skill than handling our Bible with understanding and accuracy. There’s no greater joy than digging into and discovering biblical truth on your own, but it may be a great asset when others are willing to help in the process of exploration.

The unregenerate man may understand a little bit about the history in the Bible, he may understand a few of the words in the Bible but he’ll never have a Biblical knowledge in the sense that it works out in his living. He may get some head knowledge by reading and understanding and studying to a certain degree, but it’ll never be the real kind of knowledge that the Bible talks about because it never works out in his life.

Stimulating each other

Getting together with different people can stimulate each-other to sincerely look into the bible. Having the knowledge that we can be in a circle of people committed to reading the Bible, willing to share their knowledge, we ourselves might feel more comparably and easier to share our thoughts.

All of us have the Ketuvim, the third and final section of the Tanakh (Hebrew Bible), after Torah (instruction) and Nevi’im (prophets) which provide us with the necessary knowledge to go through this life. Even the American novelist Thomas Wolfe recognised:

“[O]f all I have ever seen or learned, that book seems to me the noblest, the wisest, and the most powerful expression of man’s life upon this earth — and also the highest flower of poetry, eloquence, and truth. I am not given to dogmatic judgments in the matter of literary creation, but if I had to make one I could say that Ecclesiastes is the greatest single piece of writing I have ever known, and the wisdom expressed in it the most lasting and profound.” {Christianson 2007, p. 70.}

The title of the book Ecclesiastes in Hebrew Koheleth, meaning “Gatherer“, but traditionally translated as “Teacher” or “Preacher” brings also to the task a Christian should do, namely gathering, learning, teaching and preaching, using all the Wisdom the Word of God provides. Keeping it to yourself would be a selfish attitude and not in accordance with the commandments of Christ.

Actions of men

Koheleth introduces himself as “son of David, king in Jerusalem,” perhaps implying that he is Solomon, proclaims all the actions of man to be inherently hevel, meaning “vain”, “futile”, “empty”, “meaningless”, “temporary”, “transitory”, “fleeting,” or “mere breath,” as the lives of both wise and foolish men end in death. But we can make something of our life by following Christ Jesus and taking up the task he has given his followers. Going out into the world and gathering or meeting with like-minded people, pulling and pushing each other to look and to find the way to enter the Kingdom of God.

By sharing ideas with each other we can help each other to encounter life in light of how and Who we know God to be and will expose His promises in clear ways.

Koheleth reminds the reader that wisdom has its limitations and is not man’s main concern. Koheleth reports what he planned, did, experienced and thought. His journey to knowledge is, in the end, incomplete, and the reader is not only to hear Koheleth’s wisdom, but to observe his journey towards understanding and acceptance of life’s frustrations and uncertainties: the journey itself is important.

A journey to make together

We also have a journey of which we can tell about our experiences, so that others may learn from it. In such a way “Stepping toes” also wants to tell stories of what other people underwent, what happens in this world in which we do have to find means to live in. All those stories should be able to give a picture of where we stand at the moment and where we are going to.

Lots of Christians should start to look further than their little corner, their own church community and should meet other Christians and be willing to discuss in a peaceful way about the Way (the way we do have to live, what we do have to do to enter the Kingdom of God). We can not hide ourselves in our little cocoon and not worry about what is going on in the world. We should be interested in what is going on in the world around us and should be interested to help out where we can.

God does not want a passive life in this world, but He wants us to be active practitioners of love for our neighbours. Showing interest in others is one way of showing your love. Sharing the Word of God with others is one of the most important tasks to prove our faith in God.

Lets do it! Lets go out and share our Biblical knowledge. Witness in the Name of the One and Only One God of gods, Jehovah.

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Please do find Stepping Toes:

  1. Stepping Toes, a site which possibly can upset someone
  2. About Stepping toes
  3. Aim of Stepping toes site

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Additional reading:

  1. Bible Word of God, inspired and infallible
  2. Bible a guide – Bijbel als gids
  3. Bible for you and for life
  4. Trusting, Faith, calling and Ascribing to Jehovah #3 Voice of God #5 To meditate and Transform
  5. Words must be weighed, not counted
  6. Hope for the future
  7. God is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him
  8. No prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation
  9. The Spirit of God brings love, hope and freedom
  10. A learning process for each of us
  11. Following Jesus’ Footsteps
  12. Being Christian – Following Jesus Christ
  13. The Involvement of true discipleship
  14. Life and attitude of a Christian
  15. Jesus Christ being dispatched as the Figurehead of a Religion
  16. Parts of the body of Christ
  17. The task given to us to love each other
  18. Reasons to come to gether
  19. Meeting – Vergadering
  20. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  21. What makes a consecrated Christian
  22. Love for each other attracting others
  23. Testify of the things heard
  24. Witnessing Glad Tidings
  25. Bringing Good News into the world
  26. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  27. Church sent into the world
  28. Blogging for Jesus…
  29. How should we preach?
  30. Who are you going to reach out to today
  31. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  32. Holland Week of billing
  33. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  34. Trying to get the youth inspired
  35. When discouraged facing opposition

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  • Preachers of L.A. Dressed to Impress, But Is Jesus Pleased? (revthechristianlife.wordpress.com)
    After the response to my blog “Why ‘Preachers of LA’ Won’t Turn Out Well for Rock-Star Pastors” I wanted to continue the discussion about our perception and mindset in regards to preachers and wealth.First, let’s establish that being a pastor is a 24-hour-a-day, seven-days-a-week job. You never know when the phone will ring and you are faced with another crisis that you must minister a church member through.
  • Strange Fire Conference: Preachers or Witch Doctors? (challies.com)
    Pentecostalism’s visit to Africa did not primarily emphasize the preaching and teaching component of the “man of God.” Now the “man of God” is primarily seen as the deliverer. Preaching has lost emphasis. It has become motivational platitudes followed by shouting and chanting.The same thing can be seen in America on popular TV channels, but with different colored skin and nicer buildings. There are biblical quotes tossed about followed by a demon possessed, crazy and maddened looking preacher.
  • Is there a Sacred and Secular divide? (paulajayne.wordpress.com)
    Can a true Follower of Jesus Christ be secular? To answer this we need to know what the words means; The word Sacred means to be Holy, dedicated to a deity (God), and the word secular means to have no regard for deity or religion.Now we believe that as a True Christian we are made Holy through the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross, we are set apart and dedicated to God. So can we as a Christian be secular? I would suggest not!Can a sacred Christian work in a secular environment? Yes, in fact this is what Jesus intended. It is only a few who are called to work in the Church environment and their role is to equip the Christian to do works of Ministry in their everyday life (see Ephesians 4:11-12)
  • Word Power (holdingforthhisword.wordpress.com)
    God Almighty reveals to us the importance of His Word, the Bible, in a number of verses in the epistles in the New Testament.
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    Within the church today man’s word is replacing God’s Word in the heart and lives of His children and those who profess to believe in Him.  The situation is dire.  The church is floundering and failing.  It has lost its mooring and direction because it has rejected God’s Word and replaced it with the empty worthless doctrine of man.

      For My people have committed two evils:  They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, And hewn themselves cisterns-broken cisterns that can hold no water.  Jeremiah 2:13

    When we reject God’s Word in favor of man’s teaching what does that say about us?  It says that we fear man rather than God and would rather please men than God.  We have a serious choice to make that has eternal consequences; will we fill our hearts and minds with the living Word of the Living God, or will we feed upon the dry, lifeless, empty sawdust of man’s opinions and theories that have no ability to build us up on our most holy faith, but instead lead us away from God and trap us in the deceitful schemes of our enemy, the devil.  Truthfully, the word we prefer says volumes about our eternal destination.  If we see God use His Word in our lives as outlined in the Scriptures and we willingly yield to His truth we give evidence of salvation.  We see the implanted Word that is able to save our souls operative in our lives.

  • Why Are So Many Churches Hearing So Little of the Bible from Their Preachers? (blackchristiannews.com)
    “It is well and good for the preacher to base his sermon on the Bible, but he better get to something relevant pretty quickly, or we start mentally to check out.” That stunningly clear sentence reflects one of the most amazing, tragic, and lamentable characteristics of contemporary Christianity: an impatience with the Word of God.
  • church oh church1 (ozyikhiedwardblog.wordpress.com)
    Ok the word “Church” comes originally from the Greek word,”Kyriakos-kyriakon”.meaning properly,”belonging to the lord”,in lay man’s terms,property of God,ok that has not justified the organised buildings. Yet?! Somehow later on,another Greek word “Ecclesia”from “ek”meaning “out from” and “kaleo” meaning “to call”.so “Ecclesia” means properly,”people called out”.so in lay man’s terms,”Ecclesia” means “people separated from others”..ok the history of “Ecclesia”
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    What did the New Covenant writers mean when they used the word “Ecclesia” to describe a Christian body of people?? We can safely denote that they intended to convey the original Greek meaning of the word:”A body of Christian called out of Roman and Judean systems of Government,to live under a seperate civil mentality,”a politically autonomous body of Christians,under no other King but Yeshua,under no other civil laws,than that of Yeshua.
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    To be the ideal model of “Ecclesia”,we Christians must form ourselves into actual communities,albeit in this times only mentally,under the guidance of God’s annointed leader Jesus. Called out and seperated in mentality(Kyriakos)from the World’s ways,with no other than Jesus as our ruler and King! In other words “Ecclesias”
  • John Calvin’s use of Secondary Sources (reformedreader.wordpress.com)
    Though Calvin had a love for the primary source texts, evident especially in his use of Greek and Hebrew in his preaching and commenting, he was no lone-wolf, attempting exegesis without reference to the exegetical labors of others.  He was one who saw the value of consulting both primary and secondary sources.
  • The Mystery of Being In Christ: A Review of Paul and Union with Christ (marccortez.com)
    We struggle to understand  what it means to be “in christ” because that is a complex concept combining at least four key aspects: union, participation, identification, and incorporation. An adequate understanding of being “in Christ” will not try to encompass that entire concept under any one of those aspects, but will allow all four to inform us. So, rather than see these four as different ways that Paul uses “in Christ” language, Campbell suggests that all four together define what it means for a believer to be in Christ. It is our union-participation-identification-incorporation in him.
  • Could I Get a Side of Truth with That? (crsstlk.wordpress.com)
    relativism makes “truth” become completely based upon your own ideas, biases, culture and experiences. You decide who or what “God” is (or if you even want one or not) and make your own standard for what “good” is and what “sin” is and eventually end up serving (or worshiping) yourself, with “self” as the center whether you admit it or not.
  • TD Jakes Disses Preachers Of LA (4umf.com)
    The premiere of Oxygen’s controversial docu-series, Preachers Of L.A., may have pulled in a record 1.1 million viewers, but one of the most influential Christian pastors in America, Bishop T.D. Jakes, holds a very low opinion of it.
    On Sunday morning, October 13 at the Potter’s House in Dallas, TX, Jakes dissed the reality show, calling it “junk” and distancing himself from the stars’ blinged-out images and flamboyance.
    “Now, I know you been watching that junk on TV,” Jakes said, criticizing Preachers Of L.A. amid a plea for congregants and online viewers to sow a financial seed into his local ministry.

Good or bad preacher

Ups and downs

Everybody in the world has his or her ups and downs, good and bad days. A pastor, minister or a person of God is not exempt from the problems of this earth, the illnesses nor bad feelings.

As human being we like to compare ourselves to others and also often want to know what others think of us. Many of us want a big following and lots of friends. But would that big amount of friends be a good sign or mean that we are on the right track?

Those who are willing to bring forwards the Word of God also would like to have enough people who listen at them. Who would not like a lot of people listening to what you have to tell? A preacher is no different and is nothing without people listening. And we do agree we are just as human like any body else and would love to have some feedback and see that people enjoy what we have to offer to them.

Personal gain

Those teaching or in the “preaching sector” being in it for the money, have chosen the wrong profession. Though we do agree we can see several mega churches which seem to flourish. Religiously sensitive people who prefer not to turn from their sin are willing to pay to hear preachers teach that all God requires of you is to be religiously sensitive, not to turn from your sin. In certain countries teachers claim that people can buy themselves free of the punishment of sin. By giving money to the church, those teachers claim, the believers would be set free and could have a much better life. Often the preachers want the people to believe that how more they give to the church how better their life will be.

This clearly should be a sign for the believer to know he is not in a House of God, but in the house of the wicked. We should look at those preachers as the insubordinate, unruly and vain talkers and deceivers of souls, like the apostles encountered already in their time. Also by the Jews, the men of the circumcision, such preachers could be found. For gifts or for money their mouths were expedient to stop. They were teaching things which they ought not for the sake of filthy lucre. It has been of all times that there where preachers who did  like to go for their own profit and did not mind to subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for dishonest gain. Such persons we should recognise as false teachers and we should rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith; not giving heed to Jewish or Christian fables and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.

“10 For there are many rebellious people, mere talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision group. 11 They must be silenced, because they are ruining whole households by teaching things they ought not to teach—and that for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 Even one of their own prophets has said, “Cretans are always liars, evil brutes, lazy gluttons.” 13 This testimony is true. Therefore, rebuke them sharply, so that they will be sound in the faith 14 and will pay no attention to Jewish myths or to the commands of those who reject the truth.” (Titus 1:10-14 NIV)

False apostles and boasters

The apostle Paul warned already for such  false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. (2 Corinthians 11:13) He also gave the advice to look out if those preaching were people of sound mind, blameless, the husband of one wife, having faithful children not accused of riot or unruly, having charity out of a pure heart, with a good conscience and with faith unfeigned.

“5 The goal of this command is love, which comes from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. 6 Some have wandered away from these and turned to meaningless talk.” (1 Timothy 1:5-6 NIV)

God does not like empty boasters of knowledge, rights, and particular privileges; all noise, empty parade, and no work. For sure those who are willing or saying they want to or work for God, should be of the right attitude. Specious pretensions should not find any place in the heart of a preacher or of somebody willing to work in the church community. It is not because they can be handy man putting words together, playing by good words and fair speeches that they will necessary bring the Word of God. We should be on the lookout that it are not a multiply of words which deceive the hearts of the simple.

Being there for each other

English: Jewish Children with their Teacher in...

Jewish Children with
their Teacher in Samarkand. Early color photograph from Russia, created
by Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii as part of his work to document
the Russian Empire from 1909 to 1915. (Photo credit:
Wikipedia)

The one who likes to preach and have people in front of him he has to take care of,  knows that when he is a pastor of a flock he is like a teacher having to really love his students, willing to ensure that each one knows how uniquely talented he or she is and how we all have our reason to be here on this planet and to be a child of God. As a child of God every person has his  or her own speciality and those in charge of the ecclesia or community should try to see and nurture the potential in each member of the community.

As a preacher it is the task as like a teacher to care deeply about the meanings and purposes of the flock or members of the community their lives. We should be there for each one individually as a beacon in the dark see.  At all time we should be ready to be there for them who need us. We always should be willing to help them see the connections between their powerful talents and their callings and their futures.

Popularity trap

Today we can fall in the trap of the taste of popularity. Several churches around us do everything to be the most popular in their region. As believer in the Word of God, we should wonder if the aim by such churches is to grow to further the Word of God or to be a church which can bring enough money in the till for the pastor to survive on it or even to bring more wealth to that church than necessarily so.

In the postmodern age the church no longer enjoys a prevalent role in society and may look as something “passé”. We would tell lies if we would say we would not be interested in the growth of our church. We as preachers and leaders want our churches to grow and flourish through programs, curriculum, and outreach efforts. Many of us do also their best to reach as many people as possible. Lots of us are very limited in the means to attract people. Many preachers do not have an own church to preach in. Are those than the bad preachers? No. Are those the less fortunate preachers? Not necessarily so.

Church attendance in the industrialised countries is on the decline. Most of the people in the wealthy world are not interested in God. but there is one of the functions laid in front of the preacher or teacher. We do have to get people back to God. We should show those around us how important it is to have God in our life.

Ambiguity

A Boris on Rob Fairbanks his The Drum discussing a book by the editor of the Missional Church, Darrel L Guder, looks at life full of ambiguities we can have to face, because it is shaped by its context as the gospel reshapes the context.

In Ambiguity In the Church Fairbanks writes:

While ambiguity can cause stress, I’d like to argue that it is God’s tool to keep us on our toes. Instead of approaching the question of “are we reaching our culture?” as a reactionary instinct to a church crisis, I’d like to offer that we approach the issue as an opportunity to seek God. You see, the cause of ambiguity, and therefore many church problems, is not the lack of love for God or decline in spirituality (although this may sometimes be the case). The cause, as Guder puts it, is the dynamic “interaction between the gospel and all human cultures.” These cultures are always changing and need constant re-engagement by the church. In other words, ambiguity should be to the church as potholes are to the streets department (to contextualize it to the great City of Spokane). This is our business. As we move through ambiguity, we must seek God and the power of His Spirit to contextualize the message of the gospel and proclaim Jesus.

According to Darrell L. Guder in his book,Missional Church, the real issues in the current crises of the Christian church are spiritual and theological. Many have forgotten that the core of the church needs to flow from God and not as such from one or the other denominational organisation, be it the Papal instructors from Rome or the Tract and Bible Society from Pennsylvania.

Servant of the Master Teacher

We all should remember the task the Master Teacher Jeshua (Jesus Christ) has given those who are willing to follow him. Those who claim to be Christian should first of all be followers of Christ Jesus and try to do that what Jesus asked them to do. Secondly they also should take an example of their Master and try to step in his footsteps willing to become like him.

When you look for a good church, a good minister or good pastor you should look if in that place where you want to find God you can find the message of Christ and you find people trying to get the character of Jesus. The character of us individually and the character of us, collectively as a family, should clearly show positive results of the teachings of Christ and should show that it is a family of God. It was individual character and values that caused the first century church to grow rapidly during the Roman Empire’s pagan culture of many gods and emperor worship.

Lesslie Newbigin writes in Missionary Theologian:

Just because of the total dominance of European culture in the ecumenical movement there has seldom been any awareness among Western theologians of the extent to which their own theologies have been the result of a failure to challenge the assumptions of their own culture, and because theologians of the younger churches have been compelled to adopt this culture as the precondition of participation in the ecumenical movement they have not been in a position to present the really sharp challenge which should be addressed to the theologies of the Western churches.

In the religious world we have seen that the big accent went to what theologians had to say. Many forgot the Word that they had received and which was handed down from one generation to the other. Lots of priests, ministers, pastors or just the majority of clergymen where taken by the books of worldly people instead putting all their attention to the Holy Scriptures, the Book of books god has given humanity to find everything out.

Gospel Communication

It is truly the communication of the gospel which should conquer the hearts. And we should know that the right or the good preacher can be noticed in the willingness of him to submit himself to that Word of God and to let that Word of God speak for itself. The main focus in a service should be on that Word of God and not on the words of speaker such and so.

Preachers are not called to preach what’s popular according to the polls. They should concentrate on the Plan of God and may bring that in view by showing people the relation of what is going on and what God has in mind for our future. What happens today can be compared to previous happenings recalled in the Holy Scriptures. But the one speaking in front of the community is not called to preach merely moral exhortations or history lessons or social commentaries. We are called to preach the Word of God to the church of God and to everyone in His creation. This is how God brings life. Each person . . . is flawed and has faults and has sinned against God. And the terrible thing about our fallen natures is that we are greedy for ways to justify our sins against God. Every single one of us wants to know how we can defend ourselves from God’s charges. Therefore, we are in desperate need to hear God’s Word brought honestly to us, so that we don’t just hear what we want to hear but rather what God has actually said.

Serious word or entertainment

That what God has actually said must be brought forward. In the ecclesia everybody should come aware of what is written in the most Holy Book of Books. In case not much is read in the Bible at a service or in church, the visitor should wonder if in that church enough place is given to the Word of God. A tendency in churches today is that because people want to be entertained the church leadership is willing to oblige. If the people want more music and drama, many churches are willing give it and even to cut back on the time given to reading fragments of the Bible and on the time spent for the sermon or exhortation. Today music and drama will win hands down over preaching in many of our churches.

Holding on

When we look for a church we should look for the love of that word of life (Philippians 2:16). The great task of the preacher is to “hold out the word of life” to people who need it. The preacher willing to put himself aside for enabling that Word of God to resound in the church is the good preacher. Perhaps he may not be the best talker, the best preacher and not be the best entertainer, what is important is that he is a man of God and behaves like it.

Jehovah witnesses convention hall or Kingdom-hall in Varkaudessa

As a man of God he shall show love for God His Creation and shall respect all creations, no matter which believe they may have. We should listen very carefully how the preacher talks about others or how that church looks at other churches or treats other denominations. Do they bring hate talk or do they enjoy making the others look like devils? On the internet we can find hundreds of websites who spit on non-triniarian denominations like the Jehovah Witnesses (JW), the Bible Students (BS) and Christadelphians (Cd). Often many lies are told about those denominations and people are made afraid to encounter people from those denominations or to let others know they had already met such people.

Peterborough Cd Hall

Peterborough Christadelphian Hall

We would advice any person who has heard weird ideas about the JW, BS, or Cd, to go and look for themselves at their websites and to visit their kingdom halls, their a places of worship, prayer meeting-rooms or ecclesia buildings. It is not by a church-building with a classical tower that you shall be able to find the right preacher or right church. Church can be made in any sort of place. Any public room can be a place where people come to gather in the name of Christ, and there God will be with them. In church you should find people who love Jehovah, the Only One God, and who keep to His commandments and as such do not pray in front of portraits or statues, bow down for pictures and pray not to death people are saints, but direct their words to the Most High, Elohim Hashem Jehovah.

Watchdogs

We must be on our guard that we are not taken in by lies just because we hear them over and over again. We must also make sure that we ourselves are not guilty of trying to convince others of something that is not true by the use of repetition. We must be careful not having the Blind leading the blind. In the religious world there are many rebuking what is false but who not focus their teaching toward sound doctrine. Stemming from a pedestal of moralistic pride, Watchdog Preachers harp on everything that is wrong with the world. By those so called “Watchdog preachers” you shall  be able to find many who from their websites and from the pulpit spit on other denominations and try to picture those other denominations as awful as possible. For many it looks like a sport to find denominations which they can pull down. They would love to shoot down the ones in charge of that ghastly denomination. The preachers who love to show their dread and whose words are full of horror, should show you those are not people with love for the others in their heart.

When you encounter a website or when you do come in a church where you only hear remarks about others, you should question this. Those only telling their sheep where the poisoned food is, we often do not find them looking in their own bosom. Such Watchdog preachers rarely expound on the pure spiritual food of God’s word. Mostly they are more concerned to blacken others good name, to bring a misinterpretation of other denominations, to enjoy the slander and to run down the reputation of others. In the Body of Christ such malignant speaker when targeting other genuine Christians whose theology or philosophy of ministry does not exactly match up to theirs. Such a dogmatic approach makes the congregation sceptical of (at best) or judgemental toward (worst) anyone outside their camp. This also would make it more difficult for anybody with their previous background of an other denomination to have no conflicts after some time in that new camp of the Watchdog preacher.

All right, All good teachers

On the other hand having preachers who find everything is all right and everything can be done, it is also not good. Not everything is good ion the world. Not everything can be right. We live in a world of right and wrong, where not everything should be fully black and white. There may be shades of grey. While the Watchdog preacher may spit on those from outside he perhaps forgets to look what happens really in his own circles and like the “It’s All Good” Preachers he can look over the faults or wrong things which can happen in their own community.

Anybody in a Christian community always should listen carefully to and look at what others do and say in the community. When something happens which would not be according the teachings of Christ he or she should let the others know. The elder or preacher should exhort the people of the community and should help them to stay on the right track. But he also when he would be saying which could be wrong should be made aware of it. Perhaps it can be a misinterpretation or misunderstanding, but it is important that everything what is shared in the church community is according to the Biblical teachings.

Searching God’s Word

the word of God

The word of God (Photo credit: jangkwee)

Every teacher has to address false winds of doctrine. He himself should not only look to others that that preach according to the Holy Scriptures, but he also should always make enough effort to check that everything he says in the community is according to the Bible. He also best uses the Bible to let it speak in the meeting. The better teacher is that one who is willing to show others where in the Holy Scriptures is written that what he says it claims to say. A good teacher should not be afraid of the best handbook which God provided for him. We should be proud of it and use it as much as we can.

The good teacher or preacher is the one who understand that God is the Best Teacher and that His Word is the best way to bring the thought over to people.

Criticism and evaluation

Those who think the elder, pastor or minister may not criticise too much what is happening in the world should wonder if it is not our responsibility to look at the world and to take position in it. A “It’s All Good” Preacher may fail to critique current issues that need to be addressed and their congregation may never learn how to compare and contrast a secular worldview with a biblical one. Over time their congregation views current popular culture values as their source of authority in addition to (or instead of) the Bible. This results in over synthesizing and over-assimilating the unbiblical values of the culture.

In the past times admonition, warnings, and judgements were proclaimed, and so was good news — of victories, deliverance, and blessings — as well as praises to Jehovah God. (1Chronicles 16:23; Isaiah 41:27; 52:7) Many prophets like Jesus acted like an official herald, alerting their listeners to their Sovereign God’s activity, to a time of opportunity and decision. It was not only the ‘Good Newsshow’ which the prophets brought.

Comparison and attitude

When you are looking for a church you have to see and hear what is done and said in that church and should compare it to the Biblical texts and checking if what is preached is also be done or lived by.

Studying the Bible together in each others house or in a small space

As a preacher you should aim to live according to the commandments of God and to bring the Word of God in all its forms. You should try to do your uttermost best but should know that being a good preacher in the eyes of god does not necessarily mean that you will be a good preacher in the eyes of men.

You will notice when you look around that some people will believe the things said while other listeners would not believe. (Acts of the apostles 28:24) As a preacher it shall require patience and trust in God, who is the One who calls. Those coming in a Christian meeting should see if the Word of God gets the first place. Real Christian preaching should be based on God’s Word, making people to think about the essence of that Word and giving the community an opportunity to study that Word and to bring it in practice. Studying the Bible requires a response of some kind. It is vigorous, dynamic, and above all, it presents an issue on which people must take sides.

Man of God

Having a person of God, willing to serve the Only One God, Creator of heaven and earth, shall make that others look in vain to him or out of jealousy and out of anger others, also other preachers, will oppose him. Like  Jews stirred up the devout and honourable women and the chief men of the city, and raised persecution against Paul and Barnabas, (Acts of the apostles 13:50) teachers of ‘high position’ or noted people in the civil community, will oppose those men of God. Also good preachers will find that others will hate them and  be filled with envy, speaking  against those things which were spoken honestly from the heart in love with God. The other denominations contradicting and blaspheming the ones who dare to keep to the teachings of the Bible and withholding any form of tradition. The  unbelieving so called Christians shall like the unbelieving Jews stir up the Gentiles and plant evil in their minds against the brethren. (Acts 14:2) Therefore a teacher or preacher following the Word of God should not be afraid or wondering if he is doing right keeping on the track of God, when an assault is made both by the gentiles and also the preachers of other denominations, with their rulers. The preacher willing to be a man of God should know that when he places God His Word in the first place, he an the brethren he can show God’s Purpose, becoming followers of the churches of God in the world which are in Christ Jesus, remembering the suffering of the first Christians, for you also have suffered like things from your own countrymen, even as they have from the Jews. (1 Thessalonians 2:14)

Going out in the world

Going from house to house witnessing for Jehovah God – Lisboa, Portugal

A brother or sister in Christ, following the task Jesus has given: to go out in the world and to teach the Gospel of the Good News. When Jesus sent out his early disciples to preach, he directed them: “Into whatever city or village you enter, search out who in it is deserving.” (Matthew 10:7, 11-14) A good teacher, preacher or elder can stimulate the ones in the congregation to keep going around telling the Word of God. The good preacher can persuade the listeners around him to continue in the grace of God, and is not afraid to personally dispute in the synagogue with the Jews, on the net with the other preachers who oppose him, and with the devout persons, and in the marketplace daily with those who met with him to discuss the Word of God. (Acts 17:17). But we should also know that such ‘searching out’ would reasonably include going to the people’s homes, where “deserving” persons would heed the message and where disciples even would be able to find lodging for the night if necessary. (Luke 9:1-6).

Place to meet

All people should know that there is no requirement of a special church building, but that any place can be a house for God. We as preachers should not be ashamed we do not have our own church building and do perhaps have to meet in small places not of our own, to discuss the Word of God. As the first followers of Christ came together in their own houses we also as brethren and sisters in Christ and as interested people in the Word of God, should share our houses with those who are willing to learn about that Word of God. Any private house is worthy to become a place where people can meet to read in the Holy Scriptures and to talk about the Wishes of God. A preacher should be happy when he can find such a house as a house-church, where he can enter and say first, ‘May this house have peace.’ (Luke 10:1-7) Than to make it a place where people can gather in peace and share the love of God between each other.

Presenting a place where holiness and expression of worship can come from inside shall foster a small community rich in spirit. With that fire going in the few their heart the preacher as well as the followers should be pleased because it will be a much higher treasure than what those people, present in a mega church, perhaps can find. Having not only a preacher committing himself to the trustworthy creator, but all present offering themselves to God, shows where the right preacher is working.

Action and reaction

As a person present in the community, but also as preacher you should know that some may become active opposers of the Kingdom message. (Acts of the apostles 13:50; 18:5, 6) We all should know that it is quite possible that some will listen for a time, but eventually will turn their back for various reasons. (John 6:65, 66) Not those disappointing happenings should get our minds in distress, but we should find joy in those, even when it are just a few, who will accept the good news and act upon it. (Acts 17:11; Luke 8:15). We should be pleased when we can find a growing amount of people willing to do the Will of God.

All of the community should go out and tell the world about the work Jesus has done for all of us. It is the task of the leaders to guide such a preaching work. At such occasions the good preacher should provide counsel on such superintending ministry. The good teacher shall always be reminding the ones of the community of our important task to bring the Word of God to all people all over the world. He shall not be afraid of telling about the biblical orders or commandments, charging them before God as witness, observing the commandments and becoming doers of the Word.

A place of peace and clean pure words

In the place where God shall be able to be found it will be the preacher with the elders who shall take care that people can peacefully come together not to fight about words, a thing of no usefulness at all because it overturns those listening. They shall take care that all members of the gathering will be willing to give their share to the community and will do their utmost, to present themselves approved to God, a workman with nothing to be ashamed of, handling the word of the truth aright.

The good preacher shall shun empty speeches that violate what is holy; for they will advance to more and more ungodliness, and their word will spread like gangrene. The good preacher shall do his utmost best to use the Word of God to proof what we should know and how to keep all believing the right things.

Small but strong and upright, belonging to God

It is better to have the solid foundation of God staying standing strong in a small community than having a mega church where many people may have a lot of fun but do not really learn much about God His Word. The good or right church, or the best community or ecclesia is the one which is looking for God His Will.

The pleasure for the pastor should be that he can see that the flock is listening to God and having this seal: “Jehovah knows those who belong to him,” and: “Let everyone naming the name of Jehovah renounce unrighteousness.”

“14  Keep reminding them of these things. Warn them before God against quarrelling about words; it is of no value, and only ruins those who listen. 15 Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. 16 Avoid godless chatter, because those who indulge in it will become more and more ungodly. 17 Their teaching will spread like gangrene. Among them are Hymenaeus and Philetus, 18 who have wandered away from the truth. They say that the resurrection has already taken place, and they destroy the faith of some. 19  Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness.”” (2 Timothy 2:14-19 NIV)

Every preacher, pastor, minister or elder should be willing to give himself totally in the hands of God. Those people in charge of a church-community should make sure that their flock will gather regularly to hear from God.

When we have been hearing all sorts of messages all week long; when we come together with like minded brethren and sisters we all should take time to hear a message from God His Word and to feel how we all can be united under Christ as children of Jehovah God. As important as it is for the people in the gathering to have time to express themselves to God, it is more important that they hear God express Himself to them; that they be fed from His Word; that they be instructed in the ways of God’s kingdom; that they be effectively strengthened by His might in their inner beings to be salt and light to the world in which God has placed them and to have their joint training for the kingdom.

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Of interest:

  1. Does God Exist?
  2. Creator of heaven and earth and everything around יהוה
  3. The truth is very plain to see and God can be clearly seen
  4. God is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him
  5. Only One God
  6. God is One
  7. יהוה , YHWH and Love: Four-letter words
  8. God should be your hope
  9. Faith
  10. Faith a commitment to the promises of Christ and to to the demands of Christ
  11. God receives us on the basis of our faith
  12. Belief of the things that God has promised
  13. Fearing the right person
  14. Getting to know the Truth
  15. How to look for and how to handle the Truth
  16. Eternal Word that tells everything
  17. Bric-a-brac of the Bible
  18. The World framed by the Word of God
  19. Bible word of God, inspired and infallible
  20. True riches
  21. To mean, to think, outing your opinion, conviction, belief – Menen, mening, overtuiging, opinie, geloof
  22. Meeting – Vergadering
  23. Congregate, to gather, to meet
  24. Commit your self to the trustworthy creator
  25. Holiness and expression of worship coming from inside
  26. Doctrine and Conduct Cause and Effect
  27. Parish, local church community – Parochie, plaatselijke kerkgemeenschap
  28. The Church, Body of Christ and remnant Israel synonymous
  29. Built on or Belonging to Jewish tradition #4 Mozaic and Noachide laws
  30. Many churches
  31. Was Jesus Religious
  32. How is it that Christ pleased God so perfectly?
  33. Called Christian
  34. Follower of Jesus part of a cult or a Christian
  35. Casual Christians
  36. Breathing to teach
  37. Manifests for believers #1 Sex abuse setting fire to the powder
  38. Manifests for believers #2 Changing celibacy requirement
  39. Manifests for believers #3 Catholic versus Protestant
  40. Manifests for believers #5 Christian Union
  41. Making church
  42. Charles Taze Russell never claimed to have found a new religion, or a new church.
  43. Judaism & Catholicism Universal ‘churches’
  44. Synagogue, Church or Ecclesia for the Christian
  45. Those who call the Christadelphians a cult
  46. Uncovering the Foundations of Faith
  47. What’s church for, anyway?
  48. Rebirth and belonging to a church
  49. Commitment to Christian unity
  50. United people under Christ
  51. Exceptionalism and Restricting Laws
  52. An ecclesia in your neighborhood
  53. Intentions of an Ecclesia
  54. Hello America and atheists
  55. Engaging the enemy
  56. Six Reasons Young Christians Leave Church
  57. Knowing where to go to
  58. Looking to the East and the West for Truth
  59. Love and cultivate that which is pure
  60. The business of this life
  61. Church sent into the world
  62. Democratic principles for the church of today
  63. Sociological changes to be taken serious by the church
  64. People who know how to pray to move God to take hold of our affairs in a mighty way
  65. Church is a Hospital for sinners
  66. Reflection for today: hating your brother
  67. Kill the messenger
  68. The truest greatness lies in being kind
  69. Don’t let anyone move you off the foundation of your faith
  70. Tenderness and kindness are not signs of weakness and despair
  71. Faith is a pipeline
  72. Faith and trial
  73. A Living Faith #1 Substance of things hoped for
  74. A Living Faith #2 State of your faith
  75. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  76. A Living Faith #4 Effort
  77. A Living Faith #5 Perseverance
  78. A Living Faith #6 Sacrifice
  79. A Living Faith #7 Prayer
  80. A Living Faith #8 Change
  81. A Living Faith #9 Prayer
  82. A Living Faith #10: Our manner of Life #2
  83. Aim High: Examples of Godly Characters to follow
  84. Solving all the problems that come to us
  85. Being Justified by faith
  86. Preventing us from going window-shopping in prayer
  87. Be Honest
  88. Kindness
  89. Walking in love by faith, not by sight
  90. Let me keep to “first importance” things
  91. Bearing fruit
  92. Living in faith
  93. Feed Your Faith Daily
  94. He who kneels before God can stand before anyone!
  95. Man’s plans prevailed by God’s purpose
  96. Who are you going to reach out to today
  97. Don’t Envy the World
  98. The first on the list of the concerns of the saint
  99. Character transformed by the influence of our fellowships
  100. Let us meet in any suitable place
  101. An ecclesia in your neighborhood

++

Readings from other groups and denominations:

  1. Does the method of preaching from house to house have its basis in the Scriptures?
    Some religions have acknowledged the Christian obligation to preach in public places and from house to house, although this is often left to a limited group of missionaries or clergy to fulfill… not every member.
  2. What is the “Good News of the Kingdom”? Who is Preaching it? And What Does “For a Witness to all the Nations” Mean? (Mt. 24:14)
    Telling us what will mark the last days, Jesus went on to say: “Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; and there will be great earthquakes, and in one place after another pestilences and food shortages; and there will be fearful sights and from heaven great signs.” (Luke 21:10, 11) Jesus also said: “This good news of the kingdom will be preached in all the inhabited earth for a witness to all the nations; and then the end will come.”(Matthew 24:14)
    +
    Jesus did not specifically say that every man, woman and child on earth will have the good news directly preached to in the last days. He said that the good news will be preached in all of the Earth for a witness to all of the nations. This means that every nation will have the good news preached in it to some extent.
  3. Following Jesus’ Footsteps
    We love and cherish our heavenly father Jehovah; we are committed to sharing the ‘good news’ of God’s kingdom, the same as Jesus.
  4. How Is Our Kingdom-Preaching Work Organized?
    We try to contact people at their homes. Jesus trained his disciples to preach the good news from house to house. (Matthew 10:11-13; Acts 5:42; 20:20) Those first-century evangelizers were assigned preaching 31specific territories in which to preach. (Matthew 10:5, 6;2 Corinthians 10:13) Similarly today, our preaching work is well-organized, and each congregation is given an assigned area to cover. This enables us to fulfill Jesus’ command to “preach to the people and to give a thorough witness.”—Acts 10:42.
  5. Preach the word, be at it urgently
    When you consider what stands to be gained or lost as a result of our preaching, you probably feel an urgent need to speak to others about the good news. (Rom. 10:13, 14)
  6. Bearing thorough witness concerning the kingdom of God and by using persuasion with them concerning Jesus
    Was Paul disheartened because not everyone accepted the good news? By no means! Acts 28:30, 31 tells us: “He remained for an entire two years in his own hired house, and he would kindly receive all those who came in to him, preaching the kingdom of God to them.” w12 1/15 2:18-20
  7. As you go, preach, saying, “The kingdom of the heavens has drawn near.”
    Jesus warned his apostles that many would oppose their Kingdom-preaching work. (Matt. 10:16-23) An especially painful form of opposition is experienced when family members reject the Kingdom message. (Matt. 10:34-36) Does this mean that happiness is out of reach for Christ’s followers who live in religiously divided households? Not at all!
  8. Preaching with zeal and urgency vital to keeping on the watch.
    no chain could silence the zealous apostle! Paul continued to find ways to bear witness. After three days, Paul summoned the principal men of the Jews in order to give them a witness. Then, on a chosen day, he gave an even greater witness.—Acts 28:17, 23, 24.w12 1/15 2:17, 18

+++

Additional reading about House-churches:

  1. An organic church
    By “organic church,” I mean a non-traditional church that is born out of spiritual life instead of constructed by human institutions and held together by religious programs. Organic church life is a grass roots experience that is marked by face-to-face community, every-member functioning, open-participatory meetings (opposed to pastor-to-pew services), non-hierarchical leadership, and the centrality and supremacy of Jesus Christ as the functional Leader and Head of the gathering.
    Put another way, organic church life is the “experience” of the Body of Christ. In its purest form, it’s the fellowship of the Triune God brought to earth and experienced by human beings.
  2. The House Church Movement: Learning from the Past – Pioneering for the Future
  3. Why house church
    Many people today are catching the vision of what the church is meant to be as she throws off the hindrances and becomes the Spirit-filled movement of Believers she is destined for. They are catching the vision for living life 24/7, with and for God without one moment or place being more holy than another. It is a vision of every believer contributing to one another through the spiritual gifts that reside in each one.
    +
    Perhaps the most significant case for house churches is that they can be easily started and multiplied. God’s clear desire is for the earth to be filled with the “knowledge of the glory of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea” (Habakkuk 2:14). Rather than build buildings and organizations that require tremendous time, finances, and energy to reproduce, The Kingdom of God multiplies organically: one seed produces fruit, that produces more seed that produces more fruit. The principle of multiplication is far more powerful than we realize. Take a look at any forest and realize how much is accomplished through natural reproductive processes without any human aid at all.
  4. Are You in the Wilderness?
    So many Christians I meet today, whether in person, on social networks, or through emails, tell me that they are living in a spiritual wilderness. They feel alone, spiritually isolated, and they don’t have too many Christian friends that they are experiencing a rich and full fellowship in Christ with.
    Some of them attend a church on Sunday morning, yet still, they are living in the desert and they know it.
  5. Church in the Home? Or at Home in the Church?
    what we do in our own houses, our relationships with our families, with our sons, daughters, with our wives, we should bring all of it into the church. We should act as if these people are really our own brothers, sisters, mothers and fathers, because that is what they really are.
  6. A Hundred Mothers, Brothers…Intimate Relationships
    true “house church” is bringing the home into our church life, not bringing our church into the homes. It’s very superficial to just bring our big building into little buildings, but never change anything in the heart.
  7. Time to Listen and Change
    The books of the Bible were written across continents. The letters and relationships are across years and across cities, countries and continents. Not a single book in the Bible is about only one local assembly. The point is, that even across the miles and the continents, we need each other. God’s call to us today is that we begin to live that way and involve ourselves in each other’s lives. Are we to admonish one another on Sunday only? No, daily. Why? So that we won’t be hardened and deceived. That’s in the Bible. Be called alongside one another daily so that we won’t be hardened and deceived. Whether we are old or young, single or married, ten children or two children, teenager or toddler—who are my mothers, brothers and sisters? We need each other, because you have gifts I don’t have.
  8. House Church Central
    All of the churches in the New Testament era were small assemblies that met in homes. While setting up institutional forms of “church” may or may not provide a way to honor God, the movement toward the institution and the human authority that tends to accompany hierarchical institutional structure are not theologically neutral.
  9. Thoroughly Biblical Church
    When they came together in their houses their corporate worship and sharing together was completely open and spontaneous (I Corinthians 14v26 describes the proceedings as, “…each one has…”), with no one leading from the front. The early believers didn’t have anything that even approximated a church service.
    As part of these proceedings they ate the Lord’s Supper as a full meal, indeed as their main meal of the day, commonly referring to it as the love-feast.
    They understood each church to be an extended family unit (the idea of churches being institutions or organizations would have been totally alien to them), and practiced non-hierarchical plural male leadership that had arisen from within the church they would subsequently lead. This indigenous eldership (elder, pastor/ shepherd, bishop/overseer being synonymous terms in the New Testament) sought to lead consensually wherever possible, and was understood to be purely functional and not in any way positional.
  10. Devonport House Church ->
    About House Church
    House church is an informal term for a group of Christians gathering regularly or spontaneously in a home instead of a building dedicated to the purpose. Another term with the same meaning is “home church”.
    Some groups meet like this because they lack a conventional church building; but these are not normally regarded as house churches. Others meet in homes because they prefer to meet informally, or because they believe meeting in a home is the true pattern set in the first century and intended by Christ. Some, perhaps, meet in homes for several of these reasons.
    House churches should not be confused with cell churches. A house church is not normally part of a larger, overseeing organization, although the group may associate informally with other Christians and house churches in networks reflecting equality rather than hierarchy. Those who meet in house churches regard themselves as belonging to the worldwide Church, but are self-governing and independent, generally without formal relationships with established “institutional” churches.
    Some house churches have a conventional leadership structure, others have none.
  11. The House Church Movement, the perfect church
    Thousands of Christians are now meeting in simple House Churches in the United States. They have “dropped out” of institutionalized religion and prefer to worship Jesus in biblical authenticity and simplicity – just like the early Christians did.
    +
    From living rooms to coffee shops, offices to parking lots, under trees and secretly underground (in oppressive countries), these new expressions of the Body of Christ are rapidly multiplying around the world. In recent years, Christian researchers and secular media alike have taken notice of the dramatic transformation within Christianity.
  12. House Church Basics — Pt. 3: Missional Church
    One of the hallmarks of the house church movement is that it seeks to be what the church, in fact, is: missional. Jesus went everywhere proclaiming and demonstrating the reality, love, and power of the Kingdom (healing the brokenhearted, setting captives free, proclaiming God’s acceptance, etc.) The church (the people of God) goes and does the same.
    This means that church, first of all, needs to transition from being a “come and see” place to a “go and be with the lost” movement.
  13. Inspired by Cuban Christians
    They have very little money, limited transportation, limited communication, no freedom of speech, no freedom of assembly, no church buildings in which to minister, and the knowledge that they are constantly being watched. The Christian work is primarily through house churches and word of mouth.
    Yet what passion; what joy; and what commitment to the Lord. They are sacrificing for the Lord in ways that would make most American Christians embarrassed.
  14. China cracks down on house church groups again
    The church tried to hold services in the open air after it was evicted from a rented space as the landlord was pressured to not renew the lease, China Aid said.
    +
    Underground church members are routinely sent to labor camps where abuse and persecution is reported even as they languish in the camps without trial.
  • Thoughts Concerning the Preacher (fromthepreacherspc.org)
    There is usually a lot of confusion in most congregations of the Lord’s church concerning the work of the preacher. Many have their own ideas, some have no real idea, and others have the wrong idea about the preacher’s job. To help the church and the preacher have a better working relationship, consider the following thoughts.
  • What if Modern Preachers Preached What Jesus was Preaching? (holyspiritactivism.wordpress.com) wonders what would happen if certain preachers did what Jesus preached according to the Bible.
  • A Plea for Sharp and Polished Preachers… (pastorkemp.com)
    It is very easy to become so preoccupied with the work of the ministry that we fail to remain hidden for long periods of time with God.  It is seldom those hectic busy moments that are always clamoring for our time and attention where we are sharpen and polished by God—that only occurs when we are close to the “flesh-killing” presence of Almighty God.
  • In Have You Seen the Viral Videos of the ‘Pint-Sized Preachers’ Yet? (theblaze.com) you can see how children can be exploited and which impression some people have about “teaching” and “preaching” and what certain people do call a “sermon”.
    +Are you ready for National Geographic’s “Pint-Sized Preachers?” The new hour-long documentary explores the lives of three kid preachers who give their all to spread Jesus Christ’s message.While some believe that these children are being exploited my overly fervent parents, others see them as a beacon of hope. This latter group believes that, despite their youth, God has chosen to speak through them.

    The bizarre part (and there are some very intriguingly odd pieces to this puzzle)? One of the three — 4-year-old Kanon Tipton — is barely out of diapers, yet he delivers fiery sermons and inspires faith in those who listen.

  • Cotton Candy Preaching (fromthepreacherspc.org)
    Is it worse to teach in the Lord’s church false doctrine or to teach simple pleasant truths from God’s word? In answer to this question most people would quickly say that false doctrine would be the worst thing of all to teach. But consider this, what if we only taught concerning the loving story of Ruth, or about benevolence, or about the need for loving families, or about the need to feel good about ourselves? Now these are topics that we should be concerned about and are issues of interest, and should be taught. But, can a Christian survive spiritually solely on this kind of diet? Can a child of God mature and be grounded in the faith solely on these kinds of meals? The answer is no!
    +
    Many preach to please men and tickle their ears with what they like to hear. Paul said, “For do I now persuade men, or God? Or do I seek to please men? For if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ” (Gal. 1:10). Paul warned Timothy about people who have “itching ears” and warned that such people will gather around those who will scratch their ears by teaching lies (2 Tim. 4:3-4). The whole counsel of God must be preached, regardless of how it is received (Acts 20:26-27)! The truth is truth and must be preached! I didn’t write the book (Bible) and have no right to “water it down” to please men.
  • More Expository Preaching Please! (watumishiwaneno.wordpress.com)
    • Humanity seeking Self-Praise- All men uniting to build a tower whose top reaches the heavens with one aim of making a name for themselves!

    This is what man-made religion does; seeking glory and praise for man instead of giving praise and glory to God.

  • 10 Scriptures In The Bible That ‘Prosperity Preachers’ Choose To Ignore! (endtimereport.net)
    On one so called ‘Christian’ channel this evening, a prosperity pimp is selling potential “salvations” for 5 of your “loved ones”  in return for a financial donation. On another, a (proven) fraud is offering his “miracle mixture” and on another a so-called ‘financial preacher’ is manipulating the viewer to hurry up and send in a $58 ‘seed’ for a “triple blessing.”No mention of Jesus or any solid Bible teaching or call for repentance, just a manipulative call for your hard-earned cash! Welcome to perhaps 50% or more of Christian programming today (unfortunately).
  • Thinking over my life (mysecretlifewithyou.wordpress.com)
    People are really interested in just reaching the masses, and not everyone has issues and so we don’t have to talk about everything, but wouldn’t it be comforting to have someone talk to you in your situation.  I’m grateful that I’ve heard some great preachers in my life that have brought healing to my heart, but the majority of people I know in my church are about pretense and appearance.  I do it to, I smile when I don’t want to…. I shake hands and clap backs, and act like I’m happy, because being unhappy means I don’t have faith and I don’t believe God can handle my situation.

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