Psalm 119:73 – Help Me, O My Creator

Passage: Psalm 119:73

This verse is found in the middle of the longest chapter in the Bible, Psalm 119. As the editors of the particular Bible in front of me noted in the section heading, Psalm 119 is a collection of “Meditations and Prayers Relating to the Law of God.”

The reader can find much encouragement in peering into the devotional life of this psalmist, and learn much as a worshiper of how he may rightly and reverently worship his God.

The psalmist utters a prayer that exalts God and puts himself in his rightful place–a creature in utter dependence upon his Creator. Continue reading

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Matthew 18:8-9 – Obedience to God Against Sin

Passage: Matthew 18:8-9

The heart of this passage is worship and obedience to God. The hand, foot, and eye are symbols used to represent any stumbling device in the believer’s life. Additionally, these may seem as core, essential, and very important parts of the body–no one would really cut off his own hand or foot, or gouge out his own eye without a good reason!

However, consider when one of those body parts are gangrenous or have been infected with a mass of malignant cancer cells. Unless that part is amputated, the deadly disease would spread to other parts of the body, and the person would eventually die. If you ever meet an amputee or a person blind in one eye, you would be able to see that they can still live and perform daily life functions with some mechanical assistance. This is evidence that the person doesn’t need a seemingly very important body part to live.

Jesus wasn’t just talking about body parts, though. The hand, foot, and eye can represent any sin or thing (situations, people, places, activities, substances, etc) in a believer’s life which cause him to sin. Sometimes, we see things in our lives as important and essential, and as things that we cannot give up. We must cut away those stumbling blocks and obstacles to our worship of God without any hesitation (Hebrews 12:1; Psalm 119:59-60), and trust that what God offers to us is far greater than the passing pleasures of sin (Hebrews 11:25).

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1 Kings 18:21 – If the LORD is God

Passage: 1 Kings 18:21 (Context: 1 Kings 18:17-40)

If. IF?! What does Elijah mean by saying, “If the LORD is God. . .” I mean, isn’t He?

This was the final showdown. An experiment would be performed, and the results would set the facts straight, once and for all. Who is God? Is it Yahweh, the Creator of heaven and earth and the Sovereign benefactor of Israel, or Baal, some piece-of-junk idol? No more being wishy-washy, or as Elijah puts it, “hesitating between two opinions.”

“The ball is in your court,” says Elijah, “You decide.” I think it’s a close one! It’s really hard to tell, because these two contenders look pretty strong for winning the “Who is God?” contest. In one corner of the ring, we have the LORD, who hamstrung Pharaoh’s army, plundered and devastated the Egyptians, and delivered Israel through the sea on dry land, and who did much more; in the other corner, we have Baal, the deaf and mute idol to whom you offer your children as sacrifices and burnt offerings.

Are you KIDDING me?

That the ruler of the universe would stoop down to be measured by deficient human standards and allow Himself to be the subject of an experiment is a humongous slap in the face to us, condemning us of our wickedness. The LORD, the only true God, is the only One who is worthy of worship and has the right to demand it as well (Philippians 2:10-11).

The LORD is God. Truth. Fact. Tautology. Does not need to be proven. It is the basis on which other proofs are made.

Elijah made such a ridiculous and absurd statement in the first place, “If the LORD is God, follow Him,” to show how ridiculous and absurd Israel was. And thousands of years later, I can see us in their situation. God is God, but sometimes we treat Him as God with a little “g,” and we put other gods in our lives, following them. Shame on us.

Since the LORD is God, follow Him.

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Matthew 7:13-27 – Genuine Christianity

Passage: Matthew 7:13-27

This passage is intense. To do it justice, it would have to be presented in more than one entry, and I propose at least four:

  1. Matthew 7:13-14 – Genuine Path
  2. Matthew 7:15-20 – Genuine Fruit
  3. Matthew 7:21-23 – Genuine Discipleship
  4. Matthew 7:24-27 – Genuine Obedience

One cannot approach this passage lightly. Each section or pericope talks about the quality of the characteristic in question belonging to the proclaiming Christian individual, and also the consequence of that. Narrow or broad gate? Good or bad fruit? Doing the will of the Father or doing what you think is the will of the Father, but isn’t? Hearing Jesus’ words and acting on them throughout the rest of your life, or not?

Think carefully, but not without taking action, because there are serious consequences. Life or destruction? Bear good fruit or be cut down and thrown into the fire? Enter the kingdom of heaven or be sorely disappointed, and worse, rejected and denied entrance by its Master? Having your house stand or fall–and a great fall at that?

In future entries we’ll look at each of these sections more closely, but here is some food for thought:

  • When all is said and done, at the end of the day or at the end of your life, what will the Lord say? What has He seen? He sees not as man sees.
  • If there is “bad fruit” in your life (and I know there are not a few in mine), how do you explain that? Are you walking by the Spirit or the flesh (Galatians 3:3)? Are you a child of God, and therefore, a new creature in Christ (2 Corinthians 5:17)?
  • How do I know if I am actually doing the will of the Father, and not just “Christian things” that I think are in His will? Historically, we have proven to be quite the self-deceivers, so we are also at risk of unwittingly adopting a non-gospel in the works-based righteousness (which is no righteousness at all) attitudes like the false teachers and having a false assurance of salvation (Matthew 7:15).
  • Do you really want to see your life and everything you’ve built up come crashing down at the end–for eternity, with no looking back and no reparations?

If you’re not sure about your eternal destiny, or if the pattern of your life doesn’t match the pattern of a regenerate person that Christ outlines in this passage, then I have one word for you: Repentance. With humility approach the throne of grace and be in awe that the merciful Lord Jesus Christ would bestow it upon you, a wretched sinner.

This call to repentance is for myself as much as it is for the reader, which is the whole point of this site: Awe and Reverence. Again, to reiterate its purpose, it is not for me to speak from “up here” to you “down there,” but to speak to myself that I actually am “down there” and that I need to stay “down there,” and the only way “up” is through the Lord Jesus Christ.

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Preface and Welcome

This is the first post, entry, or article on this site. Actualy, it is really the second; the first is the About page, so please check that out (also, to avoid repeating myself). There, I briefly discuss the heart behind this website, why I wanted to start it, and what I hope to accomplish through it.

Comments are turned off because I don’t see the need for it; I am all open to any feedback provided through the Contact page. It could also be a passage request, an encouraging testimony, or prayer request, whatever–if you send it, I will read it and try my best to respond.

To God be all the glory!

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