Thursday, February 26, 2009

Random Bible Question

I finally finished 2 Kings today, but I have a question.

In 2 Kings 24:14 we see that "King Nebuchadnezzar took ten thousand captives from Jerusalem, including all the princes and the best of the soldiers, craftsmen, and smiths. So only the poorest people were left in the land."

In that same chapter, verse 20, we see that "the Lord, in his anger, finally banished the people of Jerusalem and Judah from his presence and sent them into exile."

Then Chapter 25 opens with Jerusalem under siege and verse 21 says, in part, "So the people of Judah were sent into exile from their land."

Then, in verse 26, after the assassination of Zedekiah, "All the people of Judah, from the least to the greatest, as well as the army commanders, fled in panic to Egypt."

My question is, how can Judah be exiled so many times? I understand that not everyone left because it says the poor stuck around, but the rest doesn't make sense to me. I ask because I could see how a non-believer would read this and say, "Hey, this is inconsistent. It keeps telling us they were exiled at different times, under different kings, by different people. If God is all-knowing, and this is His Word, it has to be consistent. They were either exiled at point X or point Y, but not points X, Y, and Z because it never says that they returned between those periods."

Ok. The end. Answers welcomed!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Music Video Time!

Over here, Bill posted a worship video. It's awesome! You should definitely go check it out. When it comes to songs, I'm all about the words. Music is just an added bonus. Before I got turned onto Christian music, I listened almost exclusively to country music because I found the lyrics and stories very life-like. I still listen to country every now and then, but I just can't get away from good Christian music. Some might consider it corny or ridiculous, but I am spoken to through songs. Too bad I have no musical talent of my own . . .

Anyways, I'm posting this video by Casting Crowns. The song is Voice of Truth. This was the best edition I could find online. The live versions were incomplete, but like I said, I'm all about the words. This song has always meant a lot to me. When I lived in D.C., I used to play it every day before I got out of my truck and went to work. Still, today when I hear it, I pause and think about how NOTHING can defeat me if I am with Christ. This song literally takes me to another place (which is kinda scary if I'm driving). It's almost like God flips on the "worship" switch inside of me when I hear it regardless of what I'm doing, where I'm at, or who I'm with.

Here it is. Just close your eyes and listen.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Being Held in High Esteem

Our Men's Bible study group is going through Daniel. We are almost through! Last night we studied chapter 10. In verses 11 and 19 Daniel is talking to someone (Pre-incarnate Jesus, God, and angel, I don't know). Daniel is referred to as "highly esteemed" (NIV) by this being. I can't help but think about what it must be like to be considered highly esteemed by God. There is no recorded sin of Daniel in the Bible. (No, I'm not saying he never sinned.) I'm just saying that he was one of the strongest men of faith in the Bible. He was never afraid or ashamed to pray. He was willing to do whatever it took to serve God. You can't help but read about him and think "WOW!"

I guess I am just wondering, what does it take to be "highly esteemed"? How can I be looked upon with as much favor as Daniel? How can I be so in love with God that the angels talk about me and my faithfulness? I don't know that there is an answer, or that it is even possible. However, I hope that when I am old I can look back at my body of work here on earth and know that God holds my efforts in high esteem.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Fathering Generations

I been reading through 1 and 2 Kings and have realized that the Bible has a lot to tell us about being a father. That shouldn't be surprising since God is our Father and men are to be the head of the household (sorry feminists).

Through 1 and 2 Kings there are many instances where the Lord saves Judah simply because David was faithful even though David had been dead for generations. There are also several instances where kings worshiped false idols just like their fathers did when they reigned. We also find lots of proverbs regarding how to discipline and raise children. The point is that actions of the father have a habit of filtering down to children who then send them down to their children and on and on.

I wonder what the world would look like if fathers turned to the Bible for guidance instead of the world, Dr. Phil, Oprah or a self-help book or class. Always the pessimist, I wonder what the world will look like in 50 years when my generation has grandchildren that have learned how to act from customs passed down from today.

P.S. I REALLY hope got isn't preparing me for fatherhood; at least not in the short-run!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

What Do You Do After Sin?

When you sin, and you know you are sinning, yet continue to do so, what is the correct proceeding for getting back with God? Do you run immediately to Him? I want to say yes, but I would feel like a super hypocrite. It would be like getting drunk and then driving to an AA meeting. Or do you wait until the memory of the sin has dissipated a bit, so you can concentrate on God and not what you have done wrong?

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Financial Crisis: Go Away!

It's been a while, but I've been uber busy. Anyways . . .

Regarding the current situation in the nation, I'm not gonna lie, I'm scared. I don't know if I'll have a job 3 months from now. I'm no longer single, so it's not just me I have to worry about. My wife works at a small private high school, so if things get real bad, the entire school could be expendable. (Why pay to send your kid to school when they can get a public education for free?) Needless to say, I'm a bit worried.

I have faith in God. I really do. As a matter of fact, my faith couldn't be stronger. But if my school loans get called in and I'm unemployed, bad times will be ahead. I know I'm not alone. This guy is on an unwanted, unpaid vacation and this guy is trying to sell his house.

I know I shouldn't worry. It does no good. I also know God will provide, but I can't help the fact that things are rough for a lot of people. I don't want to be one of those people. I've been in school my entire life. I have little money and few assets. Wiggle room is not something I have a lot of.