Calling evil good, and good evil

Shakespeare put the question, “What’s in a name?”

I choose my flower varieties on their own merits — appearance, ease of culture, hardiness, taste, etcetera. However, while putting together a design for a renovated flower bed, it became apparent that some of the gorgeous members of the new color collection had some very questionable names. Continue reading “Calling evil good, and good evil”

No Matter What Happens

Humans tend to justify their lack of faith in Christ or their obedience to God by blaming unfavorable circumstances. Sometimes, people may blame God himself. The one-talent man blamed his master for being hard and inflexible. Adam blamed Eve, whom God gave to him, and Eve blamed the serpent.

The mind works expertly to find reasons why faith isn’t viable or why obedience is too hard, complicated, or impossible.

The apostle Paul heads off this tendency when writing to the Philippians. He knows, like most good missionaries, that his absence might provide an excuse for the converts to let up on efforts to serve God. Continue reading “No Matter What Happens”

Rise Up O Men of God

“Rise up O men of God!
Have done with lesser things;
Give heart and mind and soul and strength
To serve the king of kings.”
(William P. Merrill)

When beginning a study of the biblical role of women in the church, it is easy to assume that the issue revolves around questions such as what leadership role can women take on: can they lead singing? Preach? Become elders?

But I am convinced that this is not the pressing issue in the church at all. The real issue is the leadership of men in the church. Are men called on to lead in the church? If so, where are they? Why are they not taking the lead? Continue reading “Rise Up O Men of God”

Excuses, excuses

When we catch up with Moses in Exodus 3, forty more years have gone by. Moses is now eighty years old and a shepherd for his father-in-law.

Although Moses seems to have forgotten what he already knew, that God would use him to deliver Israel from Egyptian slavery (see Acts 7:24-25), God had not forgotten. God spoke to Moses from a bush that was burning but not burning up. The message God had for Moses was simple: now was the time for him to go and deliver the Israelites from slavery. Continue reading “Excuses, excuses”