I remember CS Lewis once making the distinction between motives of possession. A teddybear may belong to a child, but not in every sense. It is his to cuddle and command; but it is not his to tear to pieces if he wishes.
The same principle is true for scripture, it is given to us, and to no one else, with limits to use and ownership. Our position with respect to its author is part if the biblical ethic.
Nonetheless in one biblical literary type, prophecy, it’s as if the rules of hermeneutics have somehow been suspended. We are in need of re-adhering to sound hermeneutics again when it comes to biblical prophecy.
Image courtesy of worradmu / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
I tend to think of biblical figures as heroes. Moses comes out of retirement and starts working at 80, Abraham has a child at 90, Paul faces death all day, and Daniel survives a den of hungry lions. But have you ever thought that they would consider us as heroes? Read the rest of this entry »
I claim to follow Christ, which is something empirical purists would argue. Following is active, merely listening is passive, and very often I find that I am no longer following Christ but merely listening to Him.
It is at those times that I find that God’s efforts to move me on are diametrically opposed to my own efforts to settle down, and His efforts are as relentless as His grace.
It is an act of discipline on His part and of submission on mine to make me into a follower again.
I don’t expect, anymore, that this process will end in this lifetime, because He keeps leading me places that are more unexpected than the last, and because my appetite for sitting never seems to diminish. Read the rest of this entry »
This is an Easter story for little people.
Baba = Father
Mamba = an aggressive and venomous snake from Africa
Umfaan = a small boy
“Umfaan, eat your food slowly, you are not a wild animal.”
“I am a lion, Baba. A wild lion.”
“Ahh, Umfaan, the lion is wild; but there was a time when he was much more polite… and much more wild!”
“When was that Baba?”
“That was a very long time ago, Umfaan; when the animals could speak. Do you want to hear about it?”
“Yes please Baba. I want to hear about when the animals could speak!”
“Well then you need to sit nicely, eat slowly and politely, and I will tell you…” Read the rest of this entry »
It seems pretty clear that something more is going on in the world today. Wars breakout with Twitter support, massive earthquakes are a regular occurrence, storms and floods, tsunamis, tornados, fires and record heat and cold. What’s going on and what should we do about it? Read the rest of this entry »
1 Samuel 17:33-37 “Saul replied, “You are not able to go out against this Philistine and fight him; you are only a boy, and he has been a fighting man from his youth.” But David said to Saul, “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock, I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The LORD who delivered me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will deliver me from the hand of this Philistine.” Saul said to David, “Go, and the LORD be with you.”
David often used his eloquence to successfully defend his contrary position, like Daniel who would come after him (Daniel 1:8-13). Saul could not refuse such an powerful request such convincing determination. However it’s one thing stating the case, doing the job is something completely different. But when a man speaks like this in these kinds of circumstances it is never without a real, underlying courage.
The kind of courage David displayed is the kind we are in desperate need of. Fortitude, CS Lewis calls it; it’s the kind of courage that endures. Read the rest of this entry »
1 Samuel 17:13-15 “Jesse’s three oldest sons had followed Saul to the war: The firstborn was Eliab; the second, Abinadab; and the third, Shammah. David was the youngest. The three oldest followed Saul, but David went back and forth from Saul to tend his father’s sheep at Bethlehem.”
David’s long history in the bible opens at a strange time in Israel. Their very first king, Saul, had turned the fortunes of Israel around, almost destroying the Amalekites in the East, and his son Jonathan had leveled the playing field against the Philistines in the West. But God had rejected Saul as king for his disobedience at his moment of triumph and Israel was now facing a prepared Philistine army, which these young men followed Saul to face.
It’s interesting to note that by the time David faced Goliath as a boy he had already been anointed as replacement king of Israel, but it was to be a further 15 years or more before he actually became king. Read the rest of this entry »