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Showing posts from 2011

Learning to Dance - Reposted

This is the week of the year when people publish their "top tens", reviews, and resolutions.  For the final week of the year I will offer some of my favorite posts - reposted.  Feel My Faith.com has been online a few years now.  It is time to bring some old material back to the top. _______________________ 2 Samuel 6:14 says that “David danced before the LORD with all his might.” If David were a Baptist the Bible would have said he made a casserole before the Lord. If David were Baptist he would not have danced.   I can’t dance. But that’s O.K. because I’m Baptist. Being Baptist takes some of the pressure off people who can’t dance. Baptists are not much for dancing. I have never read the official doctrinal position on dancing, but from everything I have heard said about dancing through the years, I’m pretty sure we’re against it. Honestly, it is not hard being against something you can’t do. Calling your lack of talent sin can actually work to your advantage. I have al

Black Friday - Reposted

This is the week of the year when people publish their "top tens", reviews, and resolutions.  For the final week of the year I will offer some of my favorite posts - reposted.  Feel My Faith.com has been online a few years now.  It is time to bring some old material back to the top. _______________________ The Friday after Thanksgiving is called “Black Friday.” What an ominous name. They say the name is due to the fact that on this day retailers move from profit loss (red) to profit gain (black). While this may be true, I believe the origins of the name are more gothic in nature, more evil and representative of something far more sinister. Black Friday is retail Hell, a day choreographed by demons. I am sure of it. On Black Friday, 11/28/2008 I entered the black soul of retail. My wife took me to Wal-Mart in Fort Oglethorpe, GA at 4:30 a.m. Maybe it is called Black Friday because it is indeed very, very dark at 4:30 a.m. But we were there by invitation, summonsed like s

Cheerleaders and Nuns - Reposted

This is the week of the year when people publish their "top tens", reviews, and resolutions.  For the final week of the year I will offer some of my favorite posts - reposted.  Feel My Faith.com has been online a few years now.  It is time to bring some old material back to the top. _______________________ We once had a daughter who was not much more than a giggly blonde roll of baby. She had no ankles or wrists, just creases where connections with hands and feet should be. One morning as I was slow roasting a pop tart she descended the stairs – stairs she has descended often, as a princess, as Kimberly Locke, as a fashion diva, as a two year old who missed the first step and had a miserable experience with gravity – but at some point during the descents she changed. In five years cataclysmic metamorphosis had progressed so daily that it lulled me to sleep and rendered delusions that I was still the father of a baby girl. The giggly roll of blonde baby had moved

Tales of a First Grade Atheist - Reposted

This is the week of the year when people publish their "top tens", reviews, and resolutions.  For the final week of the year I will offer some of my favorite posts - reposted.  Feel My Faith.com has been online a few years now.  It is time to bring some old material back to the top. _______________________ “If I can’t see God, how can I believe in Him?” I could tell we were progressing past the usual questions of curiosity that we had grown accustomed to for the last six years. You know, the questions designed to make parents squirm. When my wife was pregnant with our second child, I know God laughed. “Daddy, why is my sister in mommy’s belly?” And before I could clear my throat, “Daddy, was I in mommy’s belly?” “How did I get in mommy’s belly?” “Well, um, honey. . .it just. . .you see. . .when a mommy and a daddy. . .” and now that God is laughing, by His grace, in the infinite expanse of time and design, by His predestined purpose, before the worlds were framed,

The History of Herod

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Sermon Title:  The History of Herod Sermon Title:  The Last Days of B.C. Sermon Text:  Matthew 2:1-18 Resources:  Everett Ferguson, Backgrounds of Early Christianity 3 rd . ed. Alfred Edersheim, The Life and Times of Jesus the Messiah 1993 ed. Holman Bible Atlas Eerdman’s Bible Dictionary We have probably read Matthew 2:1-18 countless times at Christmas and simply glossed over the question of the wise men, "Where is he who has been born King of the Jews?"  The Bible says that Herod was troubled by their inquiry, and all of Jerusalem with him?  Why so much trouble? When Judas Maccabee rededicated the Temple in 164 BC he found only enough ceremonially clean oil to light the lamps for one day.  One version of the story is that one lamp miraculously burned for 8 days, thus giving us the 8 days of Hanukah.  Yet, as the priests procured more oil the number of torches they lit each night increased.  Against the darkness of the Jerusalem winter the ever increasing light th

Promises, Principles, Proverbs, and Prophecies

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When interpreting and applying Scripture, it is important to distinguish between promises, principles, proverbs, and prophecies.   The common error is to count most all the Biblical statements regarding what God says He will do, provide, or how He will respond as promises.   For instance, Psalm 37:25 says, “I have been young, and now am old, yet I have not seen the righteous forsaken or his children begging for bread.”   By considering this statement as a promise one may draw the conclusion that God has promised that the righteous will never go hungry or be left to beg for provision of any kind.   Yet when we survey the historical and present experience of many devoted followers of Christ, we quickly realize that many of them have indeed been hungry.   Paul expressed in Phil. 4:12 that he has experienced need and hunger.   In this case Paul does not mention God’s provision, rather he mentions that he responded by learning the principle of contentment. Most glaring for us is that on th

Reflections on Graduating

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I began work on an M.Div in 1995 at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, KY. I finished it this past weekend at The New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. A long, circuitous journey this has been, indeed. Besides my own personal desires to finish the degree two things plagued me that would not allow me to fail. One was a recurring dream, the other a promise. They say that one dreams quite a bit as they sleep; not me. I hear lots of people talk about their dreams. It seems like a lot of fun, sort of like living in a movie, but I just don’t dream with any sort of regularity. I may have one or two dreams in a month that I remember. Yet during the 11 years I was not in seminary I had one particular dream that told the same story in my head, never deviating from the plot, the setting, or the characters. Though I was a thirty something version of me the setting of the dream was always my high school. In my hand was a notebook with a schedule and a week’s worth of a

A Conversation About Suicide

The most read blog post on Feel My Faith is one I wrote in June of 2009 answering the question, "Will I still be married in heaven?"  Many people come to Feel My Faith searching for an answer to this question during a time of pain in the recent loss of their spouse.  While I do not usually republish my response to comments on posts, I have responded to an anonymous question I received last night.  I offer this post hoping that this conversation will be beneficial in many ways.  Hopefully it will lend some perspective on the issue of suicide, especially those, like anonymous who are thinking of suicide as a valid way to end pain and reunite with a loved one.  I hope this post will also prove beneficial to those who are trying to counsel loved ones through times of loss and hopelessness. ___________________ Anonymous (12/14/11), I am sorry to hear of the loss of your wife and certainly understand that you must be suffering from a great deal of pain. While it is not unnatura

Praying for Julia

We just received news that Julia Cobb, daughter of one of our pastors at Ridgecrest (Jonathan and Jenifer) was diagnosed with a fast growing mass on her shoulder.  The family will be traveling to M.D. Anderson in Houston next week for a biopsy.  I would ask that you not only pray for healing, but that those of you in the Ridgecrest family be ready to provide a special offering for the family to help cover these sudden expenses.  As you may imagine, the Cobbs have great faith, but also have the natural fears any parent would experience at a time like this.  If you are a part of our family of faith at Ridgecrest, please be sensitive in speaking to Julia over the next few days.  As a 6 year old she cannot understand all that this means, nor do any of us quite know what all of this means.  Jonathan and Jenifer are trying to stay encouraged around her as to not foster fear in their daughter or her siblings.  As a pastor for 15 years I have seen God give us many gifts of healing.  I have

Getting Your Borrowed Books Back

I have a fairly large library. My policy has always been that you can come to my office and use any of my books, but you can't take any out. Selfish? Maybe, but I have learned over the years that what is borrowed is forever gone. In his book The Swerve , How the World Became Modern Stephen Greenblatt shares how monks once cursed their books to deter humanist book hunters from taking them: "For him that stealeth, or borroweth and returneth not, this book from its owner let it change into a serpent in his hand and rend him. Let him be struck with palsy, and all his members blasted. Let him languish in pain crying aloud for mercy, and let there be no surcease to his agony till he sing in disolution. Let bookworms gnaw his entrails in token of the Worm that dieth not, and when at last he goeth to his final punishment, let the flames of Hell consume him forever." I wonder if the curse works on tools?