Monthly Archives: November 2012

Key Events in the Progress of the Bible’s Story

(Begin at the bottom and read upward)

THE INAUGURATION OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD ON EARTH

THE GRAND DESTINY OF THE CHURCH, THE BODY OF CHRIST
MATURING OF THE CHURCH, THE BODY OF CHRIST
EMERGENCE OF THE CHURCH, THE BODY OF CHRIST

REJECTION OF THE KING
ASCENSION OF THE KING
RESURRECTION OF THE KING
DEATH OF THE KING
LIFE OF THE KING
BIRTH OF THE KING

RESTORATION OF A REMNANT
EXILE AND END OF THE KINGDOM
FALL OF THE KINGDOM
DECLINE OF THE KINGDOM
GOLDEN ERA OF SOLOMON
RISE AND REIGN OF DAVID
CONQUEST AND SETTLEMENT
MT. SINAI
EXODUS
CALL OF ABRAHAM

(NOAHIC) COVENANT
FLOOD
FALL
CREATION

The Attributes of God

The attributes of God are His essential qualities of being. The several attributes of God   are not component parts of God. Each attribute describes His total being; He is entirely/all of the characteristics ascribed to Him. Therefore, God is more than the sum total of His attributes. The attributes describe equally and without distinction the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

“The attributes of God are those distinguishable characteristics of the divine nature       which are inseparable from the idea of God and which constitute the basis and ground for His various manifestations to His creatures. We call them attributes because we are compelled to attribute them to God as fundamental qualities or powers of His being, in order to give account of certain constant facts in God’s self-revelation . . . . All God’s revelations, therefore, are revelations of Himself in and through His attributes. Our aim must be to determine from God’s words and works what qualities, dispositions, determinations and powers of His otherwise unseen and unsearchable essence He has actually made known   to us; or in other words, what are the revealed attributes of God.” (Emory Bancroft)

Non-moral (Incommunicable) Attributes
Omnipresence / Immensity Holiness
Omniscience Righteousness
Omnipotence Goodness —
Immutability (changeless)

Moral (Communicable Attributes)                                                                                              Mercy
Love                                                                                                                                                    Grace
Truth

The theologians Lewis and Demarest outline God’s attributes like this:
Metaphysically, God is Self-existent

Intellectually, God is                                                                                                            Omniscient
Eternal Faithful
Unchanging Wise
Ethically, God is Holy

Volitionally, God is                                                                                                                            Free
Just                                                                                                                                              Authentic
Merciful                                                                                                                                  Omnipotent
Loving

Emotionally, God detests Evil, but He is                                                                                     Long-suffering
Compassionate

Relationally, the transcendent Divine Being is . . .
—Immanent (present) universally in providential activity
—Immanent (present) with his people in redemptive activity

What Should I Do?

Put aside the deeds of darkness — Romans 13:12-14

Put on the armor of light — Romans 13:13

Behave decently — Romans 13:13
(Honestly, properly, in contrast with
the confused, flagrant, life of pagans)

Do not become weary in well doing —- Galatians 6:9

Let no one deceive you — Ephesians 5:6
(Charm, mislead, delude . . . with empty words)

Do not be anxious about anything — Philippians 4:6,7

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts — Colossians 3:15

Some Notes About Compassion

Humanly speaking, compassion is a psychological and emotional sympathetic response    to others’ distress together with a desire to alleviate their discomfort.

Spiritually, in relation to the biblical gifts of the Spirit, compassion seems to be most closely associated with the gift of helpers (1 Corinthians 12:28), the gift of mercy (Romans 12:8), the gift of aid (Romans 12:8). Each of these gifts is identified in their respective texts as a special equipping for believers by the Holy Spirit.

Helpers — Perhaps this is what is implied in Acts 20:35 “We must help the weak, remembering the words the Lord Jesus himself said: ‘It is more blessed to give than          to receive.” There are always those among us who are especially “needy;” the nature and intensity of the need is not easily defined, but those with this gift seem to be strongly drawn to such persons and situations, and they find themselves fitted and able to relieve  or mollify or satisfy the need they encounter.

Mercy — Merciful acts ought to be performed with cheerfulness. Often those needing merciful attention are in situations of danger or great threat. Consequently, these acts       in the early church (and today as well) exposed the giver to association and possible identification with the circumstances which bought about the persecution or condemnation requiring mercy in the first place. Therefore an element of courage also seems integral to the exercise of this gift.

Aid — Here zeal is called for. Two possibilities exist to understand this gift. First, it is perhaps merely a synonym for the gift of administration/government. Second, it may be an entirely new gift but closely akin to mercy.

The gifts of the Spirit are outlined in four places in the New Testament: Romans 12:3-8;      1 Corinthians 12-14; Ephesians 4:7-13; 1 Peter 4:10-11.
Their purpose has been defined as “distinctive, divinely originated endowments to serve the Triune God for the common benefit of his people, the Church.”

Regarding to giving of comfort in the most generic sense, the passage in
2 Corinthians 1:3-7 is unsurpassed in its instruction:

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of   compassionand the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those   in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows. If we are distressed, it is for your comfort and salvation; if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which produces in you patient endurance of the same sufferings we suffer. And our hope for you is firm, because we know that just as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our comfort.”

Walking in the Dark

Isaiah 50:10 “Who among you fears the Lord
and obeys the word of his servant?
Let him who walks in the dark, who has no light,
Trust in the name of the Lord and rely on his God.”

Malachi 3:16 “They that feared the Lord . . .
—Spoke often with one another
—Feared the Lord
—And thought upon His name.”

God never would send you the darkness
If He felt you could bear the light;
But you would not cling to His guiding hand
If the way were always bright;
And you would not care to walk by faith
Could you always walk by sight.
‘Tis true He has many an anguish
For your sorrowful heart to bear,
And many a cruel thorn-crown
For your tired head to wear;
He knows how few would reach heaven at all
If pain did not guide them there.
So He sends you the blinding darkness,
And the furnace of sevenfold heat;
‘Tis the only way, believe me,
To keep you close to His feet;
For ‘tis always so easy to wander
When our lives are glad and sweet.
Then nestle your hand in your Father’s,
And sing, if you can, as you go:
Your song may cheer some one behind you
Whose courage is sinking low;
And, well, if your lips do quiver—
God will love you better so.

(Anonymous)