I would not have you Ignorant …

This phrase can be found (4) times in the KJV Bible translation, and it always points towards a particular topic of discussion, such as not being ignorant of how Satan operates, or how Spiritual Gifts operate. God doesn’t want us un-educated about certain and important topics.

As I pondered a recent conversation with a fellow Christian from my previous Church, I couldn’t help but come back to this phrase. Not in criticism of this brother in Christ, nor of his church, yet they [that church] definitely holds the mentality (taught from the top down) that any opinion contrary to their standard set of beliefs is to be ignored. Just don’t listen they say. Plug your ears and go la la la la la. Thanks but no thanks.

Is that Purposeful Ignorance?

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Are we cherry picking the Scripture?

Are we [Christians] guilty of Cherry Picking Scripture? I think it’s probably true for all of us, each denomination, category or flavor. We know who we are, what line or verse resonates with our ideas, so we sort of…make it…Our Scripture! I even wonder sometimes if we know we are doing it!

Let’s talk about (I hope you comment and participate!) it as we go over a common example to see if we are cherry picking Scripture!

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Traditional

via Daily Prompt: Traditional

Traditional can be so many different things, to different people in different cultures and even different times. It is hard to believe there are communities that exist somewhere in the world who live a traditional life according to their ancestors and culture.

To me, traditional is nostalgic; it’s the past that you want to bring into the present, and hold on to for the future. It’s the allure of what we can only imagine being simpler days. We view the past as a time where black and white had nothing to do with race, but it was all about common sense.

Traditional reminds me of Thanksgiving dinner with all the fixing my dear mother would make. With her gone, we try our best to remember and to make them ourselves so we can keep her tradition alive.

Tradition is the standard by which people lived their lives before we came and muddied up the waters. Traditional family values, traditional marriage, traditional education, traditional religion.

So to me, Traditional is a yesterday we wish we could have every bit as much as we hope for tomorrow.

Out of Context: Matthew 18:20 “Where two or three are gathered together in my name…”

In our series of Out of Context topics, we will talk about the misappropriation of Scriptures used to either garner control or gain material wealth from congregations. Scripture teaches clearly that the Word was not to be used in this fashion, and yet with humanity involved, it seems almost inevitable, past, present, and future.

Today’s topic is Matthew 18:20, often used incorrectly by pastors to push Church attendance or prove that God will only bless you in their buildings, at their appointed service times.

“For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” – Matthew 18:20, KJV

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When it’s Right to be Wrong

Arrogance and ignorance go hand in hand they say. Or, Ignorance is Bliss. I believe the first one, but the second is misleading. It’s somewhat akin to the lie our parents always told us (at least, mine did), “Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me. That’s just not true. Words can cut to the core in irreparable ways, where bumps and bruises fade away quickly.

It’s just too easy to think we are right – justified – in the know. That our opinion is superior to another person. Yet, there is a right time to be wrong, and that is when you have a teachable heart. It’s important to acknowledge when we are wrong. Recently I was asked, “do you not believe … anymore”? I had to admit that no…I didn’t believe that idea anymore, that I had been wrong, grossly wrong.

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Out of Context: Malachi 3:8 Will a Man Rob God

In our series of Out of Context topics, we will talk about the misappropriation of Scriptures used to either garner control or gain material wealth from congregations. Scripture teaches clearly that the Word was not to be used in this fashion, and yet with humanity involved, it seems almost inevitable, past, present, and future.

Today’s topic is Malachi 3:8, often used incorrectly by pastors to collect more money in Tithes plate. When this Scripture is pulled out, generally some bills are due, someone stopped giving offerings (in Churches that track your giving carefully) or they just want more.

 “Will a man rob God? Yet you are robbing Me! But you say, ‘In what way have we robbed You?’ In tithes and offerings [you have withheld].” – Malachi 3:8, AMP

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So you’re a follower, but of whom?

According to a LiveScience article published in November 2011, your propensity to be a leader or a follower is highly genetic. Let’s just say you got the follower gene, how do you make sure you are following the right person or thing?

We’ve all certainly heard the term sheeple, a negative impression describing a people who are either bewitched into following the control of another or who have purposefully given control of themselves to another and are now playing follow the leader, no matter the cost or consequence, requirement or demand.

How can you tell if that’s you, guard yourself against imbalanced control, or allow yourself to be led in a meaningful way?

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Fight for Faith

Fight for Faith – because it is worth it! The simplicity of the Gospel is that Christ, while you and I were yet sinners, died for us. He came in the weakness of flesh to end the battle of the Law for Righteousness (legalism). He took the penalties for our failures and opened the windows of Grace to a people not worthy of His Mercy.

Don’t believe it? Look to the woman of John chapter 8. The ancient Jewish (law) tradition was that a woman caught in adultery was to be stoned – to death. A harsh penalty and the Jews looked to trap the Messiah going against the law, yet in one moment in time, He [Jesus] ended the fight between Law and Grace.

“So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” – John 8:7

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Are you wearing the yoke of Christ, or of Man?

Are you wearing the yoke of Christ or Man? Are your behaviors, actions, performances and thoughts led by the Spirit, or is your yoke man made? Not to compare you with a bull, or an oxen, but Jesus made the reference when He said “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” in Matthew 11:30.

In my journey from legalism I had this revelation/thought and a question formed in my heart. I voiced it to a Christian friend to try the spirit of it, and I got an amen. This question that came to me as I considered the balance between the authority of a man of God and when it crosses the line into dictatorship was this;

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