Georgetownrose

…from glory to glory

Archive for the tag “WONDER!”

Always Christmas; Never Winter…

Jesus Christ has come in the flesh! (John 1.14, 1 John 4.1-3) Glory Be to God!

Mine Eyes Have Seen2

Praying you are all staying well amid the frantic flurry of seasonal activity.

For some of you there might have been an empty chair at your table this year. For those who read this for whom that is the case, I am praying that God is showing you how able and ready He is to fill the empty place in your heart with His magnificent love. Many in our country are struggling with loss of home, belongings, livelihoods and loved ones from fire, storms, floods and mass shootings. As I consider the devastation in the wake of these sorrows, I pray that those among the suffering who know the Lord Jesus Christ will demonstrate their hope and faithfulness to trust in the God who provides for our needs in all circumstances and by their quiet and thankful trust, will strengthen and encourage others. I pray that everyone who benefits from all avenues of humanitarian assistance will realize that it is by the mercies and Providence of God that they receive it—and be thankful to Him: for “The LORD giveth and the LORD taketh away; blessed be the Name of the LORD.” (Job 1.21b).

Speaking of Job 1.21b, I took some time off from teaching children’s Sunday School in November, thinking I would have time to just chill out a bit. I felt plenty guilty about asking for some Sundays not to be teaching the children; and I had a sinking feeling in my kishkes (yiddish: inner parts) that the separation would be painful–a new twist on “separation anxiety.” I had no expectation of how busy my heart and soul and mind would be in the stillness. God does some pretty extensive work in a person’s life when she sits down and stops the busy preoccupations with trying to keep up her momentum in ministry. It’s not that I neglect daily time in the Word of God and prayer. Everyone who has known me since I came to faith 30+ years ago knows that the Word of God and prayer are like breathing for me. However, when a time of transition comes to call, it takes some extra time to be prepared for it and to learn courage and discipline to face it and follow through.

One of the aspects of the time of transition was a reluctant and somewhat surprising change in congregations. After 14 years at my church, this change has been painful–increasing my “separation anxiety;” but God is using it to bring about growth in my life.

Be careful what you pray for; I had been praying for growth, and God is answering it “in spades.”

I am learning more and more in this time of transition into a new, larger church body that Christ’s grace is sufficient for me (2 Corinthians 12.9). Those who know me and correspond with me regularly via e-mail know that my signature line most often includes the quote from Scripture: 

I count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Messiah Jesus my Lord, that I may gain Messiah and be found in Him, not having my own righteousness, which is from the law, but that which is through faith in Messiah, the righteousness which is from God by faith; that I may know Him and the power of His resurrection, and the fellowship of His sufferings…”

–Philippians 3.8-10

This time of stillness and transition has been a test as to whether I truly do count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord (Philippians 3.8-10). And it has all come at the advent of the Christmas season…

The Christmas season has always been a challenge for me for a variety of reasons, none of which I can describe to fit the post-modern reader’s tolerance for words. I will summarize by saying I owe it all to the Word of God. My studies in the Word of God this year have changed my Christmases forever; this year I have been mining deeply into the truth of Jesus’ coming in the flesh. As a result, the impact on my mind and heart has made my celebration of the incarnation of Christ impossible to contain in one season of the year. The Scriptures say,

“But will God indeed dwell with men on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of heavens cannot contain You. How much less this temple which I have built!”

–2 Chronicles 6.18.

Well, that’s how I feel about trying to hold the enormity of Messiah’s coming in the flesh to one binge season. The declarations of John 1.14 and 1 John 4.2-3 are greetings that can be shared every day of the entire year. Of course, if you want to say, “Merry Christmas!” along with the words of one or both of those passages, that works, too: because, in Christ it is always Christmas and never winter…

I am praying that the “smorgasbord” of seasonal sensations will not have eclipsed the length, height, depth and breadth of the love of God through His good and perfect Gift of Christ in the flesh.

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Why the Wise Men Really Sought the Babe of Bethlehem…

Here is a link to a message by John MacArthur which exposes the historical background of the magi and the reason they embarked on their quest for the King born in Israel during the times of Roman occupation…

Who Were the Wise Men?

There is also a written transcript to the audio message on the site…

O Come! Let us adore Him!

 

In the Image of God…

..Thought questions from our community study of  “WHEN WORLDS COLLIDE…”

WLA_vanda_1520_Adam_and_Eve

WLA_vanda_1520_Adam_and_Eve Loy Hering [CC BY-SA 2.5 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.5)%5D, via Wikimedia Commons

How does the idea of God’s image reinforce the priority of our knowledge of God as the chief component of a worldview? In this respect, how does the biblical worldview differ from those based on moral relativism or macroevolution?

Ideas have consequences. The consequences of the idea that man is created in the image of God are that there is, indeed, a God who is sovereign and providential in and over all things in the world. Furthermore, such a God-centered, Biblical worldview sees that man is not a grown up germ, but rather that man bears the personal image of God in his being–a dignifying quality of life, with design and purpose. If we retain our knowledge of God in our worldview, then we also are confident in the knowledge that there is absolute truth.

Conversely, the consequences of the idea which refuses to have the God of creation in its thinking, negates the image of God in mankind. Furthermore, a worldview predicated on this idea leads to the shifting of morality at man’s own whim and inclination, and while exalting humanism, it simultaneously devalues the sanctity of human life.

Without the certain knowledge of the God in whom we live and move and have our being, there is a denial that persons are made in the image of God. A humanistic worldview ultimately suffers the loss of the identity of “personhood,” struggles with finding purpose in anything; and its logical end is futility.​


Teaching Children to Develop a Biblical World View

  • Our days began to be numbered; our bodies began to become frail and to decay…
  • We lost our innocence before a holy God…
  • Our knowledge of our purpose in life became darkened…
  • Our memory that we are created in the image of God became darkened…
  • We became adversaries to God’s plan and His good purposes…
  • We gave up our dominion over Satan who is one of the creation over whom we were meant to rule (Romans 1.18-25),,,

  • Did not take away His image from us; we can still learn and work to make life better…
  • Did not take away His Spirit to guide, convict, counsel and correct…
  • Promised One–His Son Jesus–who would come to conquer the power of Satan…

A world view question for everyone:

Psalm 51; Matthew 1.21; 1 Timothy 1.15

Greetings and Blessings at the Feast of Tabernacles…

1890 Holman Bible - Tabernacle with Scripture

Graphic: Public Domain, The Tabernacle in the Wilderness; illustration from the 1890 Holman Bible
http://thebiblerevival.com/clipart/1890holmanbible/color/thetabernacleinthewilderness.jpg
Bible verse added by user

…On this Festival of Our Joy, sending a greeting and blessing to all fellow image bearers of the God of creation…

While you sojourn in this wilderness world in an earthen vessel, may you know the blessing of God’s true presence in Messiah Jesus, our Immanuel, wherever God takes you, whatever God ordains for your life this side of glory…

While you wait for what next unfolds in this wilderness experience, may you rest confidently in the knowledge of the purpose God has breathed into your life in all things…

While you walk through this world of shadows and barren places, may you drink deeply from the wells of the sweet water of salvation in Messiah Jesus…

While you contend boldly with the consequences of life in a fallen vessel, may you embrace walking in the light of the gaze of a holy God bathed in the oil of the joy of the Holy Spirit, clothed in the pure righteousness of Messiah Jesus…

May you know the joy and peace of His Kingdom and Government increasing in your heart and life.

Sukkot – Feast of Tabernacles

L’Chaim b’Yeshua – To LIFE in Jesus!

Pray for Awakening…

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem…” –Psalm 122.6

Greetings on Yom Kippur…

Yom Kippur Image - Fall Feasts on WP

Bible verse added by user

Taking this moment to share in the celebration of our Great Atonement in Messiah Jesus. For all who know the manifold grace of God through His Son, this day is a day of earnest intercession for all who remain in peril of missing the blessing of His forgiveness…

May all who realize the pure righteousness of Messiah imputed to them by God’s grace, remember, rejoice and walk daily as those whose names are written in Heaven…

May all who know the holiness and pure righteousness of the Lord Jesus declare the Truth with boldness and grace in a world which is on an irrevocable course to discover Him who holds the Books of men’s works and the Book of Life…

Yom Kippur – So Great an Atonement

To LIFE in Jesus!

Pray for Awakening…

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem…” –Psalm 122.6

Greetings at the Feast of Trumpets…

trumpets stained glass 3

Feast of Trumpets – Year of Our Lord 2018

The Second Coming of Christ – Ron DiCianni

Taking this special opportunity to share the joy of anticipating the return of Messiah Jesus. For all who realize the holiness of God, this season brings with it expectation and an exquisite mixture of joy and trembling, as we remember what the Lord Jesus’ work will be upon His second coming…

May all who know Him, abandon the shadows and give Him the preeminence in all things this side of glory… not only for this day, but for every day in your life as you wait His return…

May all who know the Lord Jesus declare the Truth with boldness and grace in a world which is on an irrevocable course to meet His holy appearing…

https://georgetownrose.wordpress.com/fall-feasts-of-israel/

To LIFE in Jesus!

Pray for Awakening!

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem…” –Psalm 122.6

 

Natural Theology…

In the last session of course in The History and Overview of Philosophy, there were discussion questions presented to the students. I spent a good deal of time thinking how to answer the question featured here, since I was not immediately certain I could articulate on the basis of the logical necessary being of God. Logical necessary being of God and natural revelation… Here is the question…

Creation: How much can we learn about God from creation?

This is an exciting question.  The painful thing I see in creation is that it seems troubled and put to grief–something my soul recognizes should not be so, unless a terrible event plunged it into trouble and grief. Perhaps I see in this the wrath of the God of all creation, His expressed grief and yet His carefully restrained justice, revealed from heaven against all that mankind thinks and does to deny Him and to exalt man above God–because in the natural, we think we are so very smart; we think we are God. When I look at me–one of the creation–I see that big old “I” problem at the center of SIN… and I am real good at seeing it in others, too…

Then when I look at nature, I think no wonder God sometimes expresses His anger toward us through the elements of creation… Actually, that’s not too far off from what the native Americans or the Incas or the Aztecs realized; the difference is that they responded by worshiping the creation as receptacles of spirit gods, denying the God who is King over all creation…

Nevertheless, I love meditating on the attributes of God which can be known of His Being and character from creation. When I see a thunder cloud advancing in the summer skies, I realize my dependence upon the sovereignty of God to control the natural forces building up inside it; so I see His power to execute wrath and His power to exercise mercy; and these attributes of God are communicated through the mediate medium of His own creation–how He governs the vapors of the firmament for the good or the remaking of the earth beneath…​ summer-clouds

When I see the young fawn grazing in the tall summer ferns along the paths of the Blue Ridge, I observe the providence of God for this creature and I remember His providence in my own life… White-tailed deer (Odocoileus virginianus) fawn, also known as the Virginia deer or simply as the whitetail, in spring ferns at Mount Porte Crayon in West Virginia.

When I see the swells of sea water form only yards away from me as I bob buoyantly in the watery firmament oc waves2beneath skies, I feel and know the power of God to govern the motion of the water as it becomes a wave which can either delight me with its rhythmic movement, carry me in its curl to shore, or overtake me and plunge me tumbling and rolling like so much flotsam, till it releases me both laughing and sputtering and disheveled from the humiliation of its tossing…

I could go on and on and on… I could not in my lifetime realize from nature the Way God has provided as the means of redemption for my rebellion against Him to satisfy His grief and justice… But then, this extraordinary God who IS, revealed His necessary being from creation to my once humanistic heart, and then led me to His Word–37 years ago as time is counted. I have not been the same ever since…

What are you all learning about God from your observations and experiences in creation?

Early Edition…

senior-woman-reading-bible-and-holding-glasses.jpg

Lately, my husband and I have taken to watching a series on television entitled “Early Edition.” The series began airing in 1996 and lasted through 2000.  We enjoyed it 20 years ago, and now that it is airing again on Heroes&Icons TV, we are enjoying it again…

The stories are about Gary Hobson, a Chicago man who was fired from his job as a stockbroker, and then divorced by his wife for being uninteresting.” After starting a new job as the owner of McGinty’s Pub, he begins awaking every morning to the cries of an orange tabby cat at his door. The cat is delivering an unusual newspaper—it’s always tomorrow’s newspaper: hence, “Early Edition.” And it launches Gary into a daily adventure of warning others of deadly danger that awaits them in some location or activity in the city. Invariably his job of declaring the warning becomes a life-and-death mission to save them…

What makes the shows provocative is not so much the ultimate labors Gary undertakes to rescue the people, as his efforts to persuade the smug and the unbelieving that danger awaits them in a specific place at a specific time. His warnings of imminent danger go unheeded and are often rejected as folly by the people whose lives he desires to save…

Here’s another story from another very “early edition.” You could say that it is truly “tomorrow’s newspaper” today…

Beloved, I now write to you this second epistle (in both of which I stir up your pure minds by way of reminder), that you may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us, the apostles of the Lord and Savior, knowing this first: that scoffers will come in the last days, walking according to their own lusts, and saying,

‘Where is the promise of His coming? For since the fathers fell asleep, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.’

For this they willfully forget: that by the word of God the heavens were of old, and the earth standing out of water and in the water, by which the world that then existed perished, being flooded with water. But the heavens and the earth which are now preserved by the same word are reserved for fire until the day of judgment and perdition of ungodly men…The day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat: both the earth and works that are in it will be burned up…”

–2 Peter 3.1-7,10 NKJV

creation beauty

Why did God see fit to awaken me to “tomorrow’s news” today? Certainly to save me from the wrath to come; but not merely for me to absorb all the pleasantries of worldly life while I can, and not so that I can sit at my computer and write pleasant little “feel good” stories to share with those who love lullabies so they can go on sleeping…

Gary Hobson was always questioning why he was getting tomorrow’s newspaper; he was always searching for the source of the “Early Edition” delivered on his doorstep each morning by the orange tabby. The weight of accountability for Gary Hobson was nearly threatening to his own life until he met with the warning of his own death and nearly died saving the lives of two others. After that experience, he began embracing the gift and accountability which arrived at daybreak with the cat’s “meow…”

I know the Giver of the Early Edition on my desk as I write this; and I know His warning to me of the gift and the accountability I have in it…

If I say to the wicked, ‘You shall surely die,’ and you give him no warning, nor speak to warn the wicked from his wicked way, in order to save his life, that wicked person shall die for his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand.”

–Ezekiel 3.18 ESV

Many scoffers will continue to scoff; but perhaps God will use this warning to awaken some from their slumbers to discover that the very God who will bring the wrath to come is also the very God who will save from that same wrath all those who trust in His Son Jesus, the Messiah:

For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures…”

–1 Corinthians 15.3-4 NKJV

This Pale Blue Dot…

…We are often asked to step back and ask, In the midst of this chaos of what has unfolded on this pebble, is there a unifying purpose for all of creation? Can it all be held together by something greater than itself?”

–Tony Reinke, Senior Writer, desiringGod.org

…a link to a wonderful article with a spectacular view.

earth from distant view

“This Pale Blue Dot with Eternal Purpose”

“All authority has been given to Me…”

… for such a time as this… 

Jesus commissions disciples

…Jesus the Risen King

(The Gospel Project for Kids – Fall 2017 Quarter)

For I delivered to you first of all that which I also received: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and that He was buried, and that He rose again the third day according to the Scriptures.” 

1 Corinthians 15.3-4

Bible Passage: Matthew 28.16-20

Jesus commissionsAfter Jesus’ resurrection, He spent 40 days reviewing the things He had taught His disciples about the Kingdom of God…

During those 40 days, Jesus appeared to more than 500 people. Many of them wondered if Jesus would restore the kingdom of Israel

Jesus has always been “about the Father’s business:” to declare and increase the Kingdom of God. He told the 11 disciples to go to a mountain in Galilee where He would meet with them…

On that mountain, the 11 disciples could see all the lands they had traveled with Jesus, stretching for miles and miles below them…

Jesus announced to them that all authority in Heaven and on earth belongs to Him. He told them to go tell this to all the nations.


Jesus is the Risen King because He took up His life again…

To show that He has overcome the corruption of this world…

To show that He has overcome the power of our own Nasty I-SIN heart

To show that He has overcome the power of Satan (Genesis 3.15)…

snake_heel

To show that He has overcome the despairs of death and hell…

empty-tomb

To show that He has taken up again His glory

as King over all.

ChristTheKing4

All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go…and make disciples…and I am with you always…”

–Matthew 28.18-20

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