Hebrews 3:12-19

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, July 26, 2021 0 comments


by Katie Erickson

“See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God” (Hebrews 3:12).

The author of Hebrews has just quoted a portion of Psalm 95 that encourages the reader to follow the ways of God instead of falling into rebellion against God. He continues on that theme as we begin today’s passage of Hebrews 3:12-19.

This passage starts out with a command to see to it that we don’t have a heart that turns away from God. This verb translated here as “turns away” has the idea of a rebellion - purposefully and intentionally turning away from God and rebelling against Him as a lifestyle choice, not just an occasional mistake. It can also mean to abandon, leave, withdraw, or revolt. We are commanded not to abandon, leave, rebel, or revolt against God - but this is what we end up so often doing in our sin.

What should we do instead, to counter that rebellion? “But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called ‘Today,’ so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness” (verse 13). The way to keep our hearts right and pointed toward God is to encourage one another every day. Note that it doesn’t say to encourage each other when you meet weekly on Sunday mornings; encourage one another daily.

The phrase “as long as it is called ‘Today’” adds a sense or urgency to this command. Each day often seems to go by very quickly, especially when looking back. Have you encouraged a fellow believer today? How about yesterday? Is this something we’re making a point to do every single day? This is the only way that we can fight against the natural inclination of our hearts to turn away from God and toward the sinful things of this world that seem to so easily draw us in and deceive us.

How can we encourage each other in this way? “We have come to share in Christ, if indeed we hold our original conviction firmly to the very end” (verse 14). This sharing in Christ can also be translated as participating in Christ together. None of us should be trying to be a Christian alone; we’re all in this together! It is important to hold onto that conviction that we had when we first became followers of Jesus. For some people, that was a dramatic and transformational moment, and we need to keep that conviction in mind and encourage one another to not let it go. For others, like myself, coming to faith has been a gradual lifelong process without one defining moment. But God will still give us moments where we have greater confidence in our faith and what God is doing in and through us than in other moments, so we need to hold onto that conviction to get us through the times where we struggle more.

The author then goes back to a quote from Psalm 95:7-8 in verse 15, the beginning of the quote we looked at last week: “Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion.”

Perhaps he thought that quote needed some more explanation, which he then begins to discuss by asking questions in verses 16-18: “Who were they who heard and rebelled? Were they not all those Moses led out of Egypt? And with whom was he angry for forty years? Was it not with those who sinned, whose bodies perished in the wilderness? And to whom did God swear that they would never enter his rest if not to those who disobeyed?” All of these questions relate to the people of Israel. They were in a great position and relationship with God, and then they chose to give all that up to rebel against God.

The first question is who were they who heard and rebelled? This is answered with a rhetorical question that gives us the answer - those who Moses led out of Egypt, the people of Israel. The second question is who was God angry with for 40 years? Again, the answer is Israel, but given in the form of a descriptive question - those who sinned and died in the wilderness. The third question asks about the ones who disobeyed, and again the answer is Israel, of course.

God did so much for the people of Israel, yet they still chose to go their own way and rebel against Him. The depressing conclusion of this passage is found in verse 19: “So we see that they were not able to enter, because of their unbelief.” This is not just God overreacting and getting mad that they disobeyed Him; this is the inevitable outcome of not believing in God. This is true whether applied to the people of Israel wandering in the wilderness, to the first-century Church, to us today, and everyone in between.

This section of Hebrews is a warning for all followers of God for the consequences of falling away from our faith in Him into unbelief, disobedience, and rebellion. We need to continually be on our guard against this, as it is so easy to do! Our enemy, the devil, is constantly working to deceive us, so we need to be in fellowship with other believers so that we can be encouraged and fight that temptation to wilfully rebel against God.

What are you doing in your life to fight that temptation to rebel against God? How are you encouraging others as you walk in faith to keep fighting the good fight to stay obedient to God? I encourage you this week to work on even small ways to encourage yourself and others to stay on the path of faith and obedience.

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE

The Grand Canyon 5: Glen Canyon

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Friday, July 23, 2021 0 comments


by Charlie Wolcott

On the second day of our trip, we did an early morning guided raft tour of Glen Canyon. Page, Arizona is right on the Arizona/Utah border at Lake Powell (which extends into Utah) and is also where the Grand Canyon officially begins. In the 1930s, a 750-foot dam was in this canyon and the lake was formed as a result. This area is under the guard of Homeland Security. If this dam were to be breached, numerous towns and everything down river would be wiped out. In 1983, a “cavitation” event took place when the dam was filled to the brim and engineers were trying to drain as much water as possible without overflooding everything downstream. But in this event, giant chunks of concrete were being shot out of the overflow spillways about 150 feet. In this picture, you can see a piece of rebar sticking out of the river.

That rebar is attached for a 4000-lb piece of concrete that was shot out from the dam in this event. Fortunately, the engineers were able to save the dam, otherwise, the Grand Canyon would be even grander.

The Colorado River flows out of the Glen Dam at 47 degrees regularly into the Glen Canyon, which is the first 17-mile stretch of the 277-mile long Grand Canyon. A rafting tour company does raft tours along this stretch before the Glen Canyon levels out and Marble Canyon begins at Lees Ferry. Lees Ferry is the only place along the entire stretch of the Grand Canyon where vehicles can get in and out because the surrounding walls are only a couple hundred feet tall, and there is some leveling out on the north side. But there are severe warnings at Lees Ferry that once you pass their markers: there is no going back without either hiking the long way, going the 9- to14-day journey through the rest of the river, or helicoptering out. Marble Canyon begins at this point, which cuts straight through the valley (much like the Little Colorado River Canyon does) and then enters the main Grand Canyon.

Our group of 54 split up among two large rafts, able to hold 30 people each, and each with a raft guide. Our three speakers split up among the two rafts and at various points, our speakers would talk about different formations and observations that we saw. Our raft guides only pointed out several interesting things to note but didn’t say much about how they formed. I’m guessing they really didn’t know. But our speakers did, and they explained the processes that would be required to produce these canyon walls that on average were about 700-1100 feet tall. Keep in mind, this is the SMALLEST part of the Grand Canyon. We did pass through the famous “Horseshoe Bend” which is a 270-degree turning of the river (see picture immediately below).

We also passed by what appeared to be a former ox-bow lake (see picture immediately above). There are two chasms in the wall that circle back and are connected behind what we could see. It looked like another breached dam caused it to drain and from the pictures. You can see where rain would regularly run down and create waterfalls, staining the rocks. Just to get the scale here, that tiny vertical water stain on the left “side canyon” is this up close:

One thing I learned about this canyon is the rock layers this canyon carved through are about 1300 feet above the Kaibab Formation, which is the top layer at the Grand Canyon. So, in terms of the order of rocks, we were above even Red Butte and Cedar Butte, yet due to the huge upwarp, these buttes and the main Grand Canyon itself is higher in elevation except where the river flows through the inner gorge.

What caused Glen Canyon to form? The secular models proudly proclaim the Colorado River carved it. Yet, if that were the case, why don’t we see Glen Canyons, let alone Grand Canyons, in nearly every river? An honest geologist will ask this: “Did the river form the canyon? Or did the canyon form the river?” Water always takes the path of least resistance and flows downhill. It never flows uphill, and if it can go around an obstacle, it will go around it before cutting through it. This is a severe problem in the secular models because the Grand Canyon is carved through the Kaibab Upwarp, and it would easily redirect itself around the upwarp, rather than cutting through it. With Glen Canyon, did the Colorado River cut straight down leaving vertical walls with hardly any erosion debris? Or was the canyon already carved and the Colorado River took the path of least resistance into the canyon?

Horseshoe Bend is a valuable point of contention. Secular geologists will claim that if a dam breach caused the canyon, we should see a straight path. We should not see the bends and meandering that they claim would be the case if a river slowly carved it over millions of years. But is that so? I have seen firsthand that this is not the case. In 2006, El Paso had its “500-year flood.” We had 15 inches of rain in less than 48 hours. It carved up all sorts of stuff, and the west side of El Paso had it the worst, where a brand-new Blockbuster Video store was literally washed off its foundation. But out in the desert, there were canyons carved into the desert sand. They meandered and cut vertical walls, much like the scale of the Grand Canyon or at least Glen/Marble Canyon. It doesn’t take a little water and a lot of time. It takes a LOT of water at high speeds, and it happens in a very short time. So how did Horseshoe Bend form with a 1100-foot wall on the outer curve, and roughly only a 500-foot wall on the inner bend? The best explanation is fast-moving water carved through the path of least resistance. Cavities or cracks in the rocks, perhaps while still soft, would easily enable these twists and turns in the canyon to do its work.

There are two details in these canyons frequently missed by the secular geologists. 1) Lack of debris from erosion on the sides. We have some there, but not millions of years’ worth, and the walls are too vertical for that kind of time to play a role. 2) The side canyons. The secular geologists have no real clue for how the side canyons were cut WITHOUT regular rivers flowing through them. They will have their stories, but they’re pure speculation and frankly, they don’t work in the real world. The Bible give us a mechanism that can explain it all: Noah’s Flood and the aftermath of it. Does the Bible give us all these specific details? No. But it gives an event that fits everything that we see.

Next week, I’ll wrap up this series on why the Grand Canyon is an important item of discussion for Christians to get and understand, and even how the Grand Canyon can be used to either present the Gospel or destroy it. It all hinges on whether you accept Noah’s Flood or not. Stay tuned.

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE

Timestamped Bible Journaling

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Tuesday, July 20, 2021 0 comments


by Eric Hansen

Bible journaling is both one of the best things we can do daily and it’s also very easy to stop without restarting. For me the value was definitely there, but the time and effort it took made it quite easy to give up. The same goes with journaling in general. While the resistance can vary from person to person, one very common reason people quit most things is they don't make time to exert much energy into it.

There's a type of journaling called "interstitial journaling" which is a fancy way of saying "timestamped journaling." So instead of writing prose (like this post) in a journal, you simply write the time and what you want to make note of, typically as a bullet point style list. For example: "06:27 - Writing article for Worldview Warriors about interstitial journaling.”

From the technical side of things, you don't need anything different than journaling by some other means, but this does lend itself toward a more essentialist approach to journaling. If you have paper and a writing tool, you're good to go. If you want to do this digitally then I would highly suggest an outliner like Notion, Obsidian, or Logseq. While it's not in the scope of this article to explain the why, how, etc., I will provide some screenshots of my current setup in Logseq. While some of this will only apply to doing this digitally, the overall concept can be used in any medium.

Set Up

While the basic approach was already given (timestamp - event) there are various ways to make the entries you jot down more useful if you so wish. If you're a visual person, this may be helpful. For paper journaling you can do symbols or some other mark (even highlighters), and for outliners I find the ones I mentioned effectively make hashtags a solid option for this. For example, I have a list of hashtags that I can see what the entry is about at a glance:

These can be placed anywhere in the entry but I tend to try to write entries that flow with the idea. So instead of "did my devotional #🙌Praise," I'll write something such as "did my devotional and the Spirit told me to #🙌Praise #🔥God." The reason I do this is if I want to look back on things I was praying for, it's always good to see how or if the prayer had been resolved. If so, then I can make a note in today's journal about it, and if not, then I remember it's something that requires more prayer.

Journal Entry Example

While not the most profound example, and I'll expand on this in the next section, here is one example of what it looked like at the beginning for me:

All the blank-looking "#" are actual hashtags, just technical issues out of my experience to resolve. The "[[...]]" text is also more for linking ideas and again out of scope of this, but I wanted to explain in brief the differences here.

The idea here is still the same. I just make note of what the current time is of writing my thoughts down and what the thought is. If there are things to expand on, my preference is to sub-point it so my thoughts don't turn into run-on sentences. It also helps me keep my point clear on why I'm writing the event.

Highs and Lows

Now the point of Bible journaling, regardless of how, is to keep a record of how God works in your life. This looks different for everyone as each of our walks is also different. As much as I would love to say that this made me an expert Bible journaler, it is not the case. Each medium has its pros and cons, but I'll focus on the ones that I feel are equal regardless of how you may do this.

Highs

It was very simple, and any complexity that occurred was because of me. I also didn't feel punished for not writing a whole page of praise. If I had an off day or didn't feel like I could write much, then I just made a note of that when the thought came to me.

Seeing the flow of events made me realize the peaks and valleys of my days with emotions, thoughts, productivity, etc. This helped me better plan when I will start my day, learn Korean, read the Bible, and whatever else I wanted to do within the day.

Lows

It's still very easy to complicate things. The more friction we add into something (like visual identifiers), the more taxing it is to follow through on things. This is one thing I will probably stop doing except for possibly the most important. It's nice to be able to see links, correlations, etc., but the more we try to fluff up a simple process, the more convoluted it becomes. This is much like how the moral law from God went from 10 statements to hundreds.

If you don't enjoy journaling now, there's no guarantee this will make journaling fun for you. I’m not saying you shouldn't try it, regardless of how you feel about journaling in a journal. But it should be said that it's not a silver bullet to make recording your adventures with God any more appealing.

It can interrupt your already-structured Bible journaling. If you already have a system that works for you, then this may hurt that. But it could also help it as well. I always err on the side of caution so I put this here instead of as a high.

While I enjoy doing it digitally, I would say it can be a lot more difficult to keep up as well. Even if you are someone with their phone glued to their hip all day, usually it's easier to pull out some paper and a pen to write things down. If you are like me, though, and moving toward a purely digital way of life, then this could just be a small hill for major gain.

Lastly, while not specifically a high or low, I often found it difficult to keep track of any actual answered prayer. I feel if I had discovered this 1-2 years ago when I was in a season of God really working on me, there would be much more to highlight. But, the season I'm in now is actually quite relaxed in the grand scheme.

This isn't something I will stop, as I think the realization of how God impacts my life is important to see in retrospect. It also helps a bit to remember the important details of an event and not just that something happened. I do struggle, though, with writing full paragraphs, which makes the outlining approach this leans toward more suitable for me as well. None of the highs nor lows really sway me to either side of suggesting this style of journaling, though. It offers the ability to have greater insight and more un-fluffed thoughts jotted down, but finding that niche of making it work for you in an effective way is definitely trial and error.

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE

Hebrews 3:7-11

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, July 19, 2021 0 comments


by Katie Erickson

“So, as the Holy Spirit says: ‘Today, if you hear his voice, do not harden your hearts as you did in the rebellion, during the time of testing in the wilderness, where your ancestors tested and tried me, though for forty years they saw what I did. That is why I was angry with that generation; I said, ‘Their hearts are always going astray, and they have not known my ways.’ So I declared on oath in my anger, ‘They shall never enter my rest.’’” -Hebrews 3:7-11

The previous section of chapter 3 discussed Jesus as compared to Moses, and it ended with the phrase: “And we are his house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory” (verse 6). This section ties into that firm foundation, with an Old Testament Scriptural quotation.

The section of Hebrews is basically all a quote from Psalm 95:7-11. For more on the context of Psalm 95, check out this post. While that post focuses more on the first 6 verses of this psalm, here I’ll focus on the last half, which is quoted here by the author of Hebrews. This quote is referring to the time in the nation of Israel’s life when they did not walk in fellowship with God but were disobedient to Him.

This quotation is attributed to the Holy Spirit at this location; later, in Hebrews 4:7, the author of Hebrews mentions it again and attributes it to David. The psalm itself does not have an author’s name attached to it, but considering David wrote so many of the psalms, his authorship is very plausible. Attributing this quote to the Spirit also shows the divine authorship of all of Scripture; human hands wrote the words, but they were inspired by the Holy Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16-17).

The quotation from Psalm 95 starts with the word “today” in verse 7, which is important. The content of this passage is applicable a few thousand years ago when the psalm was written, in the first century when the book of Hebrews was written, and every single day this passage is read. Immediate action is necessary - we must hear God’s voice each and every day!

We must also not harden our hearts. A person having a hardened heart means they are not following God. They are acting in disobedience to Him and following their own ways and desires, just like what Israel did in the wilderness. They rebelled against God often, but this reference in verse 8 is likely a specific reference to the incident in Exodus 17:1-7 where they tested God by demanding water in the wilderness.

The idea of testing God in the Israelites’ wandering in the wilderness continues in verse 9. Israel should have trusted God’s works that they could see, including His deliverance of them out of slavery in Egypt. God is always faithful no matter what, but the Israelites rejected Him for 40 years for that time period. At the time of the writing of the book of Hebrews, it was likely about 40 years since many of the descendants of those first Israelites rejected Jesus when He came to earth as their Messiah.

We often tend to think of God as simply loving, but it is clear from verse 10 that God does get angry. He does not just passively let us sin and become indifferent to it; because His nature is completely opposed to all types of sin, He must get angry at it. In this case, the passage specifically calls out His anger toward the generation of Israelites that was wandering in the wilderness. Their hearts were constantly going astray. The use of “heart” here refers to the whole inner being, the person’s thoughts, feelings, and will. If they really knew God’s ways and really understood His faithfulness and care for them, they would not have acted in such rebellion toward God.

Because of all of that, we see God’s judgment on them in verse 11. The reference to an oath here refers to when the spies returned from their survey into the Promised Land (Numbers 14). It is significant that the Psalmist brings together an incident from early in the wilderness period and one from late in that period. The Israelites rebelled and caused God to be angry at the beginning of the exodus, at the end of the exodus, and often in between.

God made a binding oath out of His wrath at their sin that they should “never enter my rest.” God actively opposes their sin, so He has to do something about it. The word used here is a stronger one than simply saying anger or even wrath, but we don’t really have a stronger word in English for that kind of anger. God is that passionately opposed to sins against Him.

But what does it mean that they should never enter God’s rest? The idea of rest here is a place of blessing where there is no more struggle; there is only relaxation in God’s presence and there is no fear about anything. Some believe this rest in the psalm refers to a physical place, such as entering the Promised Land, or the idea of living under the rule of the Messiah - as Israel had often thought would be political. But, it is more likely that the author intends this rest to refer to a spiritual sense - being in complete peace with God as we will be able to spend eternity.

These words of Psalm 95 were written many centuries before even Jesus walked the earth, but they were still true in the first century and they are still true today. We are commanded to not harden our hearts and rebel against God, but to hear God’s voice. We can look back to Israel’s history and see how their disobedience worked out for them; we are urged not to follow their disobedient example. We are to instead know God’s ways and strive to follow Him with all our hearts.

What are you doing in your life to help you follow the ways of God instead of falling into rebellion against Him? Are you surrounding yourself with people that will encourage you in this struggle that we all face? Or are you giving in to rebellion and letting sin run your life? I encourage you to examine your life this week and determine if you’re listening to God’s voice or hardening your heart to Him.

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE

The Grand Canyon 4: The Missing Layers

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Friday, July 16, 2021 0 comments


by Charlie Wolcott

The Grand Canyon is an utterly breathtaking and amazing sight. But there is something even more amazing than that: the Grand Staircase. As you travel about 150 miles north from the Grand Canyon, you see a much more extensive climb of plateau to plateau than climbing the Grand Canyon itself. From the Vermillion Cliffs in Utah into Zion Canyon and further up to Bryce Canyon, we have a total about 9-11 thousand feet of layers to climb once you get out and away from the Grand Canyon. But it gets much more interesting than that.

The Grand Canyon’s depth is over 5000 feet. There is another 10,000+ feet of layers that should be on top of the canyon. So take twice the depth of the Canyon and add that to the top of the rim. We can’t imagine that. But this butte in the picture above is evidence that these layers extended from Utah to far south beyond the Grand Canyon. Another butte, Red Butte, which is south of the main entrance (my only picture from the bus of that butte is not very good, so I’m not going to share that here) is also evidence of the extension of these layers. I did not get a picture of it, but I noticed while at Desert Point, where Cedar Butte is clearly visible, that far to the north is another butte that takes a good eye to spot.

Now here is what is very interesting of these buttes. They sit ON TOP of the layer I stood on when I took that photo. Yet, I was looking down upon those 900-foot-tall buttes. How is that possible? Simple: The ground we were standing on was uplifted by what we call the “Kaibab Uplift.” That is why the Colorado River starts at only 3000 feet of elevation, but the South Rim is at 7000+ feet and the North Rim is at 8000+ feet. We have a mile of “uplift” in the Colorado Plateau and the Grand Canyon cuts through this uplift, never actually dropping below the main valley surrounding it.

So why point out these buttes? If you have been to the Canyon, you may have noticed there is virtually no mention whatsoever of these two buttes, especially at Desert Point where this picture was taken. Instead of a plaque describing the Cedar Butte (the plaque faces it), there is a memorial of where two planes crashed into each other near that viewpoint. Why would this butte have no mention? Because they are evidence of these layers which we only start to see 70+ miles north extending at least as far as the Canyon and very possibly way south to past Flagstaff. With the exception of these buttes, the 9-11 thousand+ feet of layers are completely MISSING! The buttes are all we have left. The Grand Canyon, as massive as it is, only has about 900 cubic miles missing. The missing Grand Staircase layers account for over 130,000 cubic miles. That means the missing Grand Staircase layers have a volume of 140x that which is missing from the Grand Canyon. And the literature by the Grand Canyon Park makes no mention of these buttes or the missing two miles of layers from the top of the canyon.

There is a critical follow up question. Where are the layers? If the Colorado River carved it all, we can’t find the Grand Canyon debris downriver except for a few small places outside Phoenix or San Diego, but what we have there would hardly fill a dump truck (yes, I am exaggerating, but the fact remains the extreme bulk of the missing rocks are still missing). Let’s again examine the secular claims and the Biblical claims.

The secular claims argue that in the final stages of forming the layers, the entire Colorado Plateau uplifted while under the latest cycle of rising and falling seas. This time, the uplift was so big that it caused the ocean to run off and take off those two miles of sediments with it. This is a concept called “sheet erosion,” where a massive amount of water cleans out a whole sheet of rock layers. Now, what’s amazing is that this sounds exactly like the Flood models. Since the Grand Canyon media does NOT include any of this information, that means the secular models are just now coming to realize this (parks are like textbooks, they are way behind on actual facts). This makes me wonder if the secular and old earth geologists are actually trying to copy notes from the Flood geologists, all the while making mockery of the flood geologists. In the academic world, that’s called plagiarism (this would not be the first time they’ve done it either). The Flood models would call for the rising of the land towards the tail end of the flood and the ocean floors sinking producing the massive and extensive runoff that would carve out those layers and somehow leaving those buttes behind (this could have been a supernatural act). Again, the secularists would never have considered a “catastrophe” like this until Mt. St. Helens forced them to, and Flood Geologists were well on top of things at that point. So why are the secular models looking more and more like the Flood Geologist claims, except without the Flood?

What also stands out to me on these buttes is that they are flat. They’re completely planed off. What natural mechanism has the ability to shave off a mountain like that? Take notice that there are mountains all over the world that are shaved off like this. Only fast-moving water filled with rocks and grains could do that. And what kind of mechanism could produce such fast-moving water? Noah’s Flood. The secularists know this, but despite all the evidence and even the fact that their own models closely resemble what would happen if there was a global flood, they still reject it from being an option. Why is that? Why are so many scientists so hardened and so adamant that there could not be a global flood?

The answer is simple: 2 Peter 3:3-7. They are willingly ignorant of the Flood, proclaiming that all that is happening today is what has happened all in the past, forgetting that the world of Noah’s Day perished by water. It’s intentional. They refuse to recognize the Flood because the Flood was no mere water disaster. It was God’s judgment upon sinful, wicked men. This was a big point we emphasized on this trip. There is such a great beauty to the Grand Canyon, but it’s a monument not merely to catastrophe but to judgment. It was a judgment so severe that God only let one option for salvation to be present: Noah’s Ark. That judgment with one escape is the first clear picture of the Gospel and that our final judgment will not be a mere local event but universal. The entire population will face the final judgment just as the entire population (not just a localized area) faced the judgment of the Flood. If the idea of a global flood was not tied to the Bible and the Gospel, no one would dare question it. Scientists accept a global flood idea on Mars with no water present. Mars’ version of the Grand Canyon, which is far bigger, was obviously cut by water. Yet on earth when 70% of the planet is covered in water, it could not be a global flood? It’s obviously not the science that holding them back.

Next week, I’ll share about the river raft tour through Glen Canyon before I wrap up this series on why we need to understand the important of origins and the Flood.

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE

Get in the Boat or Stay on the Dock

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Wednesday, July 14, 2021 0 comments


by Jason DeZurik

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.” - Philippians 4:6-9

Years ago, a wise man challenged me in my mindset. He said, “You are at a point in your life where you need to choose to either go have an adventure and get in the boat or stay on the dock where it is safe and secure. The boat is about to leave the dock, and you cannot have one foot in the boat and one foot on the dock because you will only get all wet by doing that. What is God calling you to do?”

Like so many people these days, my wife and I wanted to have one foot in the boat and one on the dock. We wanted to have safety and security in material things, like a secure job and a secure paycheck, partly because of the God given responsibility of raising 6 children. Yet, like most, we both desired to go live an adventure and make a difference in this world all the while desiring safety and security in the process.

My friend challenged me to do what God was calling me and my family to do. But he also said, “Your wife needs to be completely on board with this decision. I know of many marriages that have struggled and didn't make it, due to the husband and wife not being on the same page and of the same mindset. You must communicate with your wife about what you believe God is calling you to do. She needs to understand that this journey will be very difficult because most women I know desire safety and security instead of taking risk and adventure.”

He encouraged me to share the vision with her and not dictate to her what we were going to do but to just be as honest as I could be about what “jumping in the boat” could look like. I should share the vision and the excitement of it all but also let her know that this wouldn't be all peaches and cream. Having not taken this journey yet myself yet, I didn't even know how incredibly difficult this would all be, but I did know it would be an adventure. What I have also come to realize is that you should do what God has called you to do no matter what. Jesus is very clear that, “In this world you will have trouble." Let me repeat that, “You will have trouble.” If this really is true, then whether you stay on the dock, where it is safe and secure, or jump in the boat and live God's plan for your life, you will have trouble. So, you might as well go and live the adventure God Almighty has called you to instead of the boring mundane life so many today choose to live out. Why? Because according to Jesus Christ, you are going to have trouble.

The next thing to consider once you have decided to jump in the boat is to get out of the harbor, get past the reef into the deep, dangerous water. Sure, you can get into the boat and think something like, “Hey, look at me, I'm in the boat, woohoo!” and never leave the safety and security of the harbor. This is essentially tricking yourself into thinking you're doing God's will, when in fact He very well may have an even more incredible adventure for you to enjoy. You'll never know until you try. Of course, pray and seek out God's will for your life, doing what He is calling you to do.

Obey His leading. I think one mindset and lie that many people these days seemingly have bought into when following God Almighty is that when things get difficult, they immediately think they are living outside of God's will because doing the will of God should be easy. Well, not exactly. Why? Because according to Jesus Christ, the one so many of us say that we actually follow, you will have trouble in this world. So, when we have struggles, we shouldn't automatically think, “What have I done wrong?” or think to ourselves, “Oh no, the Lord shut that door.” Perhaps Almighty God is allowing this struggle to happen to give you the opportunity to grow and become mature and complete, not lacking anything (James 1:2-4). Perhaps He is allowing this “trouble” to happen so you can learn to rejoice in all things (Philippians 4:4).

Is it possible that you made a “wrong turn” somewhere and are off of God's path for you? Well, sure that is a possibility, but again, God has not left you without guidance. He has given you His Word to guide your life. You also have the counsel of the Holy Spirt. So, after you have prayed to Almighty God for guidance and looked to His Word for direction, if you cannot find something to show you that you are going your way and not God's, perhaps you are on the right path, and God is just allowing this trouble to happen for your own good and for the good of those around you.

With the times we find ourselves in where sex is rampant and so many are seemingly living outside of God's plan for sex, I believe I would be irresponsible not to bring up the following. If while on this journey, you are sensing that you are to do something outside of God's guidance found in His Word or against His law, such as being okay with having sex outside of the bonds of marriage, you and I already know this is not an option if we are truly wanting to follow God Almighty and do His plan for the life He has given to us. Why? Because His Word is very clear that sex outside of marriage is a sin.

Can you and I be forgiven by God if we sin? Of course, we can. He will forgive us if we confess our sin and ask Him to forgive us. Something to consider, though, is that you may still have natural consequences to address from your actions. But you can be forgiven. You can continue on in the boat but at the same time know you might be someplace else now that you are starting this journey again. Of course, this goes with any sin we might find ourselves in, but since sexual sin is so prevalent in our society and even inside of the Church today, I thought this would be a good one for us to consider.

Dear friends, God has given each one of us gifts to be used in the real world. Go use them and have an adventure with God Almighty. Dig into His Word and be guided by the Bible and from the Holy Spirit, our Counselor here on this exciting God ordained journey we find ourselves in. If you think you might be unworthy or have made too many mistakes to be used by God, please know this: I have made many mistakes as well. We all have. That is just one reason why it is such an amazing adventure with God Almighty and choosing His good and right ways to live out. Not only will people see the God of the Bible living in and through you, but God will be using you to advance the Kingdom of God. The Kingdom of God is not a place; the Kingdom of God is a mindset, it is a spiritual awakening, it is a lifestyle. Get in the boat! Go live out the adventure God is calling you to!

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE

Hebrews 3:1-6

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Monday, July 12, 2021 0 comments


by Katie Erickson

“Therefore, holy brothers and sisters, who share in the heavenly calling, fix your thoughts on Jesus, whom we acknowledge as our apostle and high priest. He was faithful to the one who appointed him, just as Moses was faithful in all God’s house. Jesus has been found worthy of greater honor than Moses, just as the builder of a house has greater honor than the house itself. For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything. “Moses was faithful as a servant in all God’s house,” bearing witness to what would be spoken by God in the future. But Christ is faithful as the Son over God’s house. And we are his house, if indeed we hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.” -Hebrews 3:1-6

I know I write this often, but it’s always true: when we see a “therefore” in Scripture, we have to ask what the “therefore” is there for. In this case, it’s referring back to the beginning two chapters of Hebrews. The author has primarily been discussing Jesus - who He is and what He has done to provide the opportunity for salvation for us. The author is continuing here to develop the idea that Jesus is supremely great.

Because of all of that discussion on Jesus, what are we called to do? Fix our thoughts on Jesus! He is so important for our faith and life that He should always be on our minds. He is our apostle - the one God sent to earth to provide for our salvation. He is our high priest - the only one who is worthy to perform the sacrifice necessary for our salvation.

The author then moves to comparing Jesus to Moses. He has already established that Jesus is greater than the angels and greater than any human, so why is this comparison needed? Moses was revered as the most important person in the nation of Israel’s history. He was the one who God chose to lead them out of slavery and almost into the Promised Land. Even though this text says that Moses was faithful, we know that he was not 100% faithful all the time. Moses was still a sinful human being, just like every other human who has ever lived - except Jesus.

The house analogy that we see in this passage helps us put it all into perspective. God built the house, Jesus is the owner of the house, and Moses is a servant in that house. They’re both part of the house - God’s plan for the nation of Israel - but Jesus is greater than Moses. Did Moses do great things to free the nation of Israel from slavery in Egypt? Yes. Did Jesus do even better things by giving up His life for the salvation of all people, in all times and all places? Definitely.

There’s even evidence that God created the world inside this passage. Verse 4 says, “For every house is built by someone, but God is the builder of everything.” Houses do not build themselves, and worlds do not create themselves. There must be someone behind that building/creating, and that someone is God. Of course, God is much greater than any house builder, but this helps provide evidence for God as creator.

But, back to Moses. We see again that Moses was God’s faithful servant. The word used here for “servant” is the only time this word occurs in the New Testament. It does not just refer to any average servant but one who is honored. It’s a servant who is far above a slave in status but still serves the master. Other similar words could be henchman, attendant, companion in arms, or squire. (Personally, I think it’d be fun to call Moses “God’s henchman”!) Moses’ servitude foretold what Jesus would be like - obedient to the Father and providing for salvation for the people, though Jesus fulfilled this perfectly and to a greater extent than Moses.

Interestingly, verse 6 is the first time we see the name “Christ” used in the book of Hebrews. Here, it’s significant that Christ is used instead of the human name Jesus to show the superiority of the person behind the title. Moses was a member, albeit a distinguished one, of the house, whereas Christ is the “Son over God’s house.” Christ has a much higher role in this house than Moses, or any other member, does.

The author found it important to clarify at this point who is a part of this house. The reference to Moses and the exodus from Egypt may lead the reader to believe that only the Jews, Abraham’s descendants, are part of God’s house since they were God’s chosen people for so many generations. But now, because of Jesus and His saving work, all people of God are included in this house! The people of God are those who “hold firmly to our confidence and the hope in which we glory.” But what does that phrase mean?

The word for “confidence” can also mean courage, so we are to hold firmly onto our confidence and our courage. The word translated as “glory” can also mean to boast, but it more specifically means something that a person can boast about, not the actual act of boasting. Instead of being ashamed of our position in God’s house, we should hold onto the confidence that we have a position we can boast about. Our hope is specifically the certain Christian hope that God will fulfill His promises.

How are you holding firmly to your confidence and hope in Christ that you can boast about? Are you living your life in such a manner that shows that Jesus Christ is greater than any other person who has ever lived?

This forum is meant to foster discussion and allow for differing viewpoints to be explored with equal and respectful consideration.  All comments are moderated and any foul language or threatening/abusive comments will not be approved.  Users who engage in threatening or abusive comments which are physically harmful in nature will be reported to the authorities.

READ MORE