- What is the purpose of my life?
- Why do I exist?
- What is the meaning of life?
- Will my life ever amount to anything worthwhile or important?
Welcome to tomthinking.com Sunday, October 21 2018 @ 06:04 AM UTC
Here are nine things Jesus never said:
Have you ever heard someone pray, "Satan, I bind you?" Or perhaps you may have uttered such a thing yourself? I've heard many people use phrases like this in their prayers, and while I don't want to belittle a person's heartfelt cry to God against evil, I can't help but dig into this phrase a little and ask the question, "Is this a biblical way to pray?" Can we really bind Satan or demons or is this a flaw in our theology?
To put it plainly, there is no passage of scripture which tells us that we can bind Satan or a demon from doing harm. Demons can be cast out of a person, but is this the same as binding? What does it mean to bind Satan?
When the various words in the Bible that are translated into bind, bound, or chained (252 instances) are used there is only one instance when it is used about the devil. It is found in Revelation 20:2, which says that an angel, "Seized the dragon, that ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years." This is a specific reference to a period following the Great Tribulation as the millennial reign of Christ begins. Satan is bound for a thousand years so that he may do no harm during the millennial reign of Christ. But his binding is only temporary. In fact, this language suggests that since Satan is bound at the end of the age, that he has not been previously bound.
What is interesting, however, is how the Bible uses the language of binding about who does the binding. Take a brief look at these examples:
There were a lot of answers around the room about spiritual gifts, financial resources, etc. But as I thought about it, it occurred to me that God has given us three areas of life with which we can serve him and take part in the Great Commission. All of us posses these three categories of usefulness, so, if you've wondered what you have in your life to serve God with, here is your answer.
God has given every Christian:
Recently I've watched a few videos about children and families that have been driven from their homes by ISIS in fear of their lives. In the process they have lost everything of value, seen many of their friends and family killed, and they are left destitute, homeless, and nationless with only a refugee tent to shelter them. Yet there is one question that I've never seen anyone on these videos ask.
There are a small number of passages in the Bible where people have asked God, Why did you do this? God's answer to them is that he is sovereign. That's not an emotionally fulfilling answer to the one suffering. But it may be the best answer a suffering person can grapple with.
I had forgiven him. He had done some things against me that were unconscionable. But I told him I forgave him. Meanwhile, deep in the recesses of my heart where I hide all my secrets, I wished for his life to be a explosion of failure and public embarrassment. After all, he hadn't really repented. So I declared forgiveness, but privately imagined a downfall for him that would justify my secret hatred.
I hadn't really forgiven him, had I? There was an important reason why unforgiveness still clung to me. It was because I was powerless to harm him.
Powerlessness Is A Part Of Unforgiveness
America is divided for one, simple, yet profound reason. We no longer believe the same things.
Take the case of John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. Politically they were polar opposites, yet they shared the most basic principles of morality, right and wrong.
In today's America, most on the political left don't believe in an all powerful, benevolent Creator. Most on the right believe in a God, but they don't really live as if he exists and are accountable to him.
Of all of the questions or tools you can use to start a conversation about Jesus and share your faith with someone, this one may be the most useful: "Are you a religious person?"
There are many ways of opening up a faith conversation. Perhaps you've heard these types of questions: Do you go to church? Where are you on your spiritual journey? What do you believe about God? What do you believe about Jesus?
This is a post from a few years ago, but since The Last Jedi has been released I thought to revisit it.
First, let me say that it's just a movie. We shouldn't take our entertainment too seriously. But entertainment does teach us things and it can reinforce our values or oppose our values. Who can deny that most of American entertainment opposes biblical values?
That being said, I enjoy the Star Wars movies. The Star Wars saga is epic in nature and presents a morality play that we can use if properly understood. But that doesn't mean we should just accept the quasi-good/evil scenario that is portrayed in Star Wars. In fact, if you examine the good/evil scenario drawn in the movies and compare it with a biblical view of morality, you can only come away with one conclusion.
The Jedi are bad.
The Jedi aren't as bad as the Sith. And the empire in Star Wars isn't good. But that doesn't mean that the Jedi are good either. They are simply a different form of evil than the Sith. It's like the war in Syria. ISIS is bad, really bad. But in terms of the whole conflict, with the exception of the victims, there are no good guys on any side. Thus it is with Star Wars. The Sith are bad. The empire is bad. But so are the Jedi. From a biblical perspective, they're just a different kind of bad.
Here are several reasons, from George Lucas' epic series and the scripture, why the Jedi, as heroes, are not all they're cracked up to be.