Friday, February 24, 2012

I know, I know, but this is funny!

Boredom really isn't the speaker's problem, it's the listener's, but this one is just too good to pass up.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Just a personal update, that's all

1. I am working on updating Mt. Zion's church website.  Soon we will have a smooth, yet informative website.  This is very important as you can imagine.

2. I am excited about teaching Sunday School this weekend on the topic of reaching the lost.  My focus will be on tract distribution, and sermon CD distribution, also.

3. I am excited for the direction our church is taking towards "discipling" new converts and even new comers to Mt. Zion Baptist Church.

4. I am excited about our up-coming Shepherd's Retreat in March.  Lots of vital topics to cover.

5. I am excited about our up-coming teacher's training seminar.  Lots of teacher's do not self-improve, but hopefully, we can change that at Mt. Zion.

6. I am trying hard to finish a book so that I can heartily recommend it in my book recommendation list.  It is a thick read, and I am not sure if I could finish it before the end of Feb.  I want to, so at least I can recommend a book for the month of Feb.

7. William Tyndale is growing up.  He is demonstrating more of his will of course, and he is no doubt much like his mother, hard headed and a bit rebellish. :-)  WOW, am I getting an education on Pro. 22:6  - the key word for me right now is "should" - I am to train him in the way he "should" go, not the way he would go.  Whew! We need your prayers.  Child rearing is like blending fear and joy.  In fact, many of life's experiences is just like that, at least for me.

8. Marcia is such a help to me!  She really is my wonderful blessing.  Okay, enough with the mushy stuff.

9. Bethel Baptist Press and Starr Publications are such a blessing to me.  I am working on another book (certainly a much thicker one, and a totally different topic or type).  I won't say any more than that, for now.

10. Still on twitter.  Some things I like, some things I do not like.  I wish some people were on it Bro. Cloud, Strouse, Brandenburg, Waite, Ross, etc. - and not just get on it, but maintain it, too.

It is for these reasons and more that I couldn't get to my blog in a more substantive way, but I do have a few items I wish to post in the future (like elements of good preaching,  the disappearance of application, aspects of my blog layout, etc.).

P.S.  Marcia and I did get approved by Central Missionary Clearinghouse which we will utilize for our future deputation ministry,  CMC is used by the folks directly sent out by our church, and I certainly intend to follow suit.  NO DATES as of yet.  Lots and lots of things to do before we can get going, but I will blog about that too, eventually.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Gen. 34:1-5 Dinah defiled

1 And Dinah the daughter of Leah, which she bare unto Jacob, went out to see the daughters of the land.
2 And when Shechem the son of Hamor the Hivite, prince of the country, saw her, he took her, and lay with her, and defiled her.
3 And his soul clave unto Dinah the daughter of Jacob, and he loved the damsel, and spake kindly unto the damsel.
4 And Shechem spake unto his father Hamor, saying, Get me this damsel to wife.
5 And Jacob heard that he had defiled Dinah his daughter: now his sons were with his cattle in the field: and Jacob held his peace until they were come.

Matthew Henry rightly observes, “Grace does not run in the blood.”  This chapter unfolds the coming apart of the children of Jacob.  A parent can be spiritually minded, a Christian, a Baptist, a “fundamentalist,” but these convictions are neither hereditary nor genetic.  Just because mom and dad are saved, doesn’t mean that the children are.  Just because parents may be surrendered to God, doesn’t automatically mean that the children have a heart for God.  Shechem, the son of Hamor the Hivite, prince of the country isn’t the only one to blame.  Jacob should have known where his daughter was.  How many parents take interest in knowing where their children are?  Not just physically, but spiritually.  How many parents actually parent their children?  It seems today that children have indeed become our “oppressors” (Isa. 3:12).  But who allowed this to happen?  I will give you one guess, and a clue, it isn’t mama.  Dinah was the only daughter Jacob had.  Dinah was from God, given from Leah to Jacob.  And so is every child a gift from God to his or her parent.  Mom and Dads (especially dads) need to take heed before it’s too late.  There are so many wonderful promises in God’s Word about parenting, but not one of them can be applied, when they are ignored or substituted or explained away.  Trust and obey is God’s ordained way of claiming His promises. 
But Jacob isn’t all to blame.  Dinah was of the age that she should have known better.  She “went out to see the daughter’s of the land” (v.1).  Her curiosity took over her sensibilities.  She was “seen” or noticed by Shechem (v.2).  Perhaps she was dressed immodestly, but I digress.  I tend to think she was dressed modestly, and perhaps that made the prince even more desirous to have her.  If so, her outward dress betrayed her inward condition.  At any rate, Dinah bears part of the blame.
It is never good for Christians to act like Jacob, to take their blessings for granted, and to neglect their solemn duties towards God and the home.  It is never good for Christians to act like Dinah, to live a life of contradiction, destroying the family name, and bringing shame upon the cause of Christ.  May we all be reminded that “grace does not run in the blood.”  What the great Bible commentator (Matthew Henry) said isn’t Scripture, but it reflects the truth from Scripture.

Friday, February 3, 2012

Mark 7:31-37 He has done all things well

31 And again, departing from the coasts of Tyre and Sidon, he came unto the sea of Galilee, through the midst of the coasts of Decapolis.
32 And they bring unto him one that was deaf, and had an impediment in his speech; and they beseech him to put his hand upon him.
33 And he took him aside from the multitude, and put his fingers into his ears, and he spit, and touched his tongue;
34 And looking up to heaven, he sighed, and saith unto him, Ephphatha, that is, Be opened.
35 And straightway his ears were opened, and the string of his tongue was loosed, and he spake plain.
36 And he charged them that they should tell no man: but the more he charged them, so much the more a great deal they published it;
37 And were beyond measure astonished, saying, He hath done all things well: he maketh both the deaf to hear, and the dumb to speak.

     We don’t know who the man was in this account, only his sad condition, he was deaf and had a speech impediment.  But somehow this man’s friends knew enough to take him to the Lord Jesus for they knew that He was a healer.  The Lord took this man aside from the multitude (v.33) and deals with him in private.  Obviously, the Lord did not want to draw attention to His person due to the increased hatred from the religious leaders, who were filled with envy towards Him.  But, God deals with each and every one of us in private, too.  It is admittedly strange that the Lord would put His fingers into the man’s ears, and with spittle would touch the man’s tongue, but the Lord Jesus not just the healer, but also the Creator! (Ex. 4:11).  The Lord must have known that this man needed a tangible sign to assure him that help was on its way.  He couldn’t hear the Master’s blessed voice, but he could feel the Master’s precious touch.  In verse 34 the Lord, while looking up to Heaven (seems to be referring an act of prayer) and sighed (perhaps in sympathy towards the poor man and saddened by the sorry effects of sin and depravity upon nature and mankind).  But then, the Lord speaks a simple command, “Be opened,” and so ends the poor man’s plight.  The miracle was so overwhelming (as you could imagine) and they proclaimed it everywhere (certainly, they didn’t consider the Lord’s charge, and perhaps they were not aware that jealous and corrupt leaders desired the Lord’s demise).  Here in v. 37 is a beautiful and fitting observation:  “He hath done all things well” – and that He most certainly does, all the time.