Nov 29, 2009

Dependent upon Christ

Dear Corey,

I also don’t have a quote, but I have a story. I was watching Grace as she struggled up the hill above our house. Well, I was doing more than watching, but it reminded me of how we can treat God. She would struggle up the hill, mostly ignoring my help. When she fell, I would pick her up, but then she’d take off again.

This is how some people treat God. He is always with us, watching over us. He helps us in troubled times and He directs us, showing us where to go. When we deny God or His power over one aspect of our lives we “fall” more often. Many times this results in us ending up in the wrong place, arriving at a destination we weren’t planning on going to.

It might not even be apparent to us that we are denying God. We might think we are merely being “independent;” we might not even think that, we’re just thinking, “I can do this.” We can do nothing without God’s help. He walks with us, watching our feeble attempts at obeying Him.

Not to say that God cannot help us unless we let Him. I want to make it clear that this is not what I am saying. Many times God intervenes before we get to that destination we don’t know we’re going to. He does this by many different ways. Through parents, friends, relations, strangers, car problems, etc…God uses everything for His glory.

“For all things work together for good to those who love God.”

We should always strive to become more like Christ, but we do not do this by ourselves. We can only do this with God’s help. I want to encourage you this week to not be independent, but dependent upon Christ.

Your BIC,


Nov 5, 2009


I don't have a quote today because I don't think there is one for this topic. What I want to talk about is interpretations. Too often we get caught up in "traditional" interpretation. What I mean by "traditional" is views that people think have existed for centuries. Many people think that there is only one way to do things. They look at the Bible, especially the New Testament, thinking, "What does this have to tell me?" What i mean is, "What significance does this have for me? What is the Author saying to me?" Part of my schoolwork this year is theology. One of the speakers I am listening to at the moment is Richard Pratt. In one of his lectures, Mr. Pratt talks about the steps that we have to go through as we interpret Scripture. He says there are three steps.

1. Original Meaning (What a passage meant to the original audience)
2. Biblical Elaborations (Passages in Scripture that talk about a different passage)
3. Legitimate Applications (What it means to us today)

Before we look at a passage and determine what it is telling us to do, we must first look at the Bible through a filter composed of the original meaning and Biblical elaborations. Take Genesis 1:1, Pratt says. In order to determine what this means for us today, we can't just tack it to the debate over creation, we first have to understand why Moses wrote this. After figuring this out, we then have to look at the passage, in this case Gen. 1:1, through Biblical Elaborations such as sections from 1 Cor. and other New Testament writings. Now you may be thinking I'm just talking about OT interpretations. In a way, yes and no. Yes, most of the topics in the NT are also present in the OT. I can't think of any book in the Bible, except maybe some of the shorter letters like Jude and the Johns, that don't include passages from the OT to make a point or reinforce a point. But no, because some Biblical Elaborations elaborate NT passages. have you ever wondered why there are four books of the Bible speaking about Christ's ministry? Mr. Pratt says it is because the Lord used each of the writer's personalities to talk about the same thing. In the first four books of the NT, we read the history as told from the viewpoints of a tax-collector, a doctor, the one who is said to be the "one whom Christ loved", and another soldier from the ranks.

Baptism is one of the most controversial topics in the modern church. Should we baptize infants or not? Now I am going to state a few ideas that I cannot take credit for. Some of these points are going to be either exact quotes or close quotes of people like Mr. Pratt, theologians, or my parents, people who have done a lot of study of the Bible. We often look at the Bible through "Americanized" eyes. We think, "None of the NT writers or OT writers speak about the baptism of infants." But now we need to look at the original audience. The writers would not have needed to say "children" or "infants". People bred up with eighth-day circumcision would take it for granted that people like Paul were also talking about infant baptism. Now I'm not going to turn this into a paper on baptism. However, I want to emphasize the fact that we often misinterpret Scripture.

As another quote, "We are in a sense eavesdropping on the letters and works of the OT and NT." But, this is not to say that there is not anything useful for us. All I'm saying is that in order to gather the full meaning from a passage we must first approach it with Biblical eyes, not "Americanized" eyes. May the Lord always give you a clear understanding of His word and may He bless you with the ability to instruct others.
God Bless!

Your Brother in Christ

Nov 3, 2009

The word and the Word

Dear Corey,

“Don’t be rash with your mouth and let not your heart utter anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven and you on earth; therefore let your words be few.” ~Ecc. 5:2

In the verse above, it shows us that we have to guard our tongue and mouth. Paul likens our tongue to a small flame that can kindle a mighty fire. Instead of having to give excuses we should watch what we say first.

“Do not let your mouth cause your flesh to sin, nor say before the messenger of God that it was in error.” ~Ecc. 5:6

We cannot trust excuses to save what we have said. We must watch our tongue (I know this from experience). This week I am going to watch what I say.

Your BIC,


Dear Corey,

“That I may make you know the certainty of the words of truth, that you may answer words of truth.” ~Prov. 22:21

God’s word helps us in three areas that I will list below. The first is that the Bible equips us for evangelism. It helps us get ready to further God’s kingdom. Second, It helps us use the spiritual gifts that God has given us. Paul says that knowing God’s Word makes us ready to use our gifts. Third, it equips us with the knowledge to fight Satan. God’s word is a sharp two-edged sword that allows us to defeat the wickedness of Satan.

“That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him.” ~Eph. 1:17

Your BIC,