Tuesday, December 21, 2010

You give them something to eat -- Denles ustedes mismos de comer

This morning in my daily Bible reading, one of the passages I read was Luke 9, which tells the story of the feeding of the five thousand, the only miracle (apart from Christ's resurrection) that is recounted in all four canonical gospels. One thing that has drawn my attention many times, and really jumped out at me today, was verse 13:

     He replied, “You give them something to eat.”

The disciples were expecting Jesus to send the crowds away so they could buy food in the neighboring towns. But Jesus told His apostles to feed them. Once the disciples brought the five loaves and 2 small fish from their provisions, Jesus multiplied it so that everyone ate their fill. But Jesus didn't make the food appear out of nothing, nor did He turn stones into bread. He took what the disciples brought and made it more than sufficient.

When I come upon someone who is spiritually hungry and thirsty, what do I do? Do I just tell them to read the Bible, give them the number of pastor they can call, suggest they pick up the latest Christian best-seller, or encourage them to go to church next Sunday? Or do I take the time to really listen to them, and then do I give them something to eat? Do I make room in my schedule to share spiritual food with them?

But if I'm going to give them something to eat, I have to have food that I can share. For me to feed others, I have to regularly visit the storehouse of God's Word, and I have to be producing spiritual fruit that will nourish others. If I haven't been consistently collecting food through prayer and Bible study, I won't have anything to share with those who are hungry. But if I have something stored up and am willing to share it, presenting it to Jesus so He can use it, the Master will multiply it to meet the need of the hungry soul.

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Esta mañana en mi lectura Bíblica diaria, uno del los pasajes que leí fue Lucas 9, que cuenta la historia de la alimentación de los cinco mil, el único milagro (aparte de la resurrección de Cristo) que se recuenta en los cuatro evangelios canónicos. Un punto que me ha llamado la atención muchas veces, y que realmente se saltó de la página hoy, fue el versículo 13:

     "Denles ustedes mismos de comer" les dijo Jesús.

Los discípulos esperaban que Jesús enviara las multitudes a los pueblos cercanos para que comprasen algo de comer. Pero Jesús les dijo a sus apóstoles que les alimentaran. Cuando los discíuplos trajeron los cinco panes y dos pescaditos que había en sus provisiones, Jesús lo multiplicó hasta que todos se saciaron. Pero Jesús no creó la comida de la nada, y tampoco convirtió piedras en pan. Él tomó lo que trajeron los discípulos y lo hizo más que suficiente.

Cuando me encuentro con alguien que tiene hambre y sed espiritual, ¿qué hago? ¿Simplemente les digo que lean la Biblia, les doy el número de un pastor que pueden llamar, sugiero que compren el nuevo libro cristiano de más ventas, o les animo a asistir a la iglesia el siguiente domingo? ¿O tomo el tiempo para realmente escucharles, y después les doy yo algo de comer? ¿Hago espacio en mi agenda para compartir alimento espiritual con ellos?
Pero si les voy a dar algo de comer, primero tengo que tener comida que puedo compartir. Para que yo alimente a otros, tengo que visitar regularmente el almacén de la Palabra de Dios, y tengo que estar produciendo fruto espiritual que pueda nutrir a los demás. Si no he estado consistentemente colectando comida a través de la oración y estudio de la Palabra, no tendré nada para compartir con los hambrientos. Pero si tengo algo almacenado y estoy dispuesto a compartirlo, presentandolo a Jesús para que Él lo use, el Maestro lo multiplicará para saciar el alma hambrienta.

Monday, December 20, 2010

NLT Giveaway

I wanted to fill you in on an exciting contest that is currently being run and sponsored by the New Living Translation. We’re highlighting three ministries, Wycliffe Bible Translators, Oasis International, and The Dream Center, (click on the link to learn more details about these ministries) and by voting for one of these ministries you’ll be entered to win one of many prizes.


To enter, visit the NLT Facebook page by clicking here.

There are several levels of prizes you can win, here are the details:

With the Give the Word Bible Contest and Giveaway:

• Ministries win: Each time the NLT Facebook Page reaches a fan count milestone, votes will be tallied and the three ministries will receive cash donations from the New Living Translation and Tyndale House Publishers.

• Everyone wins: Everyone who enters on the Bible Contest website wins a free download of Matthew West reading the Christmas story.

• Daily NLT Study Bible winners: Vote on the NLT Facebook page and you will be entered to win two NLT Study Bibles—one to keep and one to give away. A new winner will be chosen every day.

• Weekly Give the Word Locally winners: Tell us about a deserving local ministry on the NLT Bible Contest website and they could win five NLT Study Bibles and $250 worth of NLT products.

• One Grand Prize winner will enjoy a unique trip customized just for them and their family (or three guests of their choice), to Wycliffe Bible Translators world headquarters and the WordSpring Discovery Center where they will experience firsthand the exciting world of Bible translation. The Grand Prize winner could also choose to donate the value of the trip--$2000--to Wycliffe instead.

Friday, July 30, 2010

When Good Snakes Become Bad Snakes

Shortly after a group of us from North Little Rock First Assembly returned from a trip to Southeast Asia in February 1997, Alton Garrison, our pastor at that time (now Assistant General Superintendent of the Assemblies of God) preached a sermon entitled "When Good Snakes Become Bad Snakes." A couple of months ago, I read the same passages Brother Garrison used in my Bible reading, and decided to write my own messsage, using his title.

This message was delivered on Sunday, June 27, at Centro Cristiano Hispano in Little Rock. It was presented in English and Spanish, but because of technical issues, the MP3 audio did not record properly. My apologies to my Spanish-speaking readers.

Debido a problemos técnicos, el audio de este mensaje no se grabó cuando fue predicado. No he tenido tiempo para escribir la traducción, así que pido disculpas a mis lectores hispano-hablantes.

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Go and Make Disciples

This past Sunday morning I was asked to fill the pulpit at Centro Cristiano Hispano for missions Sunday while Pastor Molina and his family are in Colombia. I took the classic missions text, Matthew 28:19-20, and focused on the words make disciples, emphasizing that conversion isn't the goal -- discipleship is.

You can listen to the audio here (right-click and Save Target As to download)
       or copy this URL and paste in your browser
http://www.foxrunimages.com/media/2010-06-06-MakeDisciples.mp3

Monday, May 17, 2010

Bilingual sermon: Letter to the Church in Laodicea -- Carta a la Iglesia de Laodicea

This is the first time I've had an audio post on the blog. I was given the opportunity to preach yesterday morning at Centro Cristiano Hispano in Little Rock. Following is a link to the MP3 file of my message in English and Spanish.  I hope it's a blessing to you.

Sermon Audio

Esta es la primera vez que pongo audio en este blog. Ayer me dieron la oportunidad de predicar en el servicio de la mañana en Centro Cristiano Hispano de Little Rock. El enlace arriba es para el archivo de audio MP3 de mi mensaje. Espero que sea de bendición para su vida.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Three Steps to God's Will -- Tres Pasos Hacia la Voluntad de Dios

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.   1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

People are all the time talking about trying to find God's will for their lives. To hear some people talk, you'd think the will of God was some well-guarded secret kept in a vault somewhere, that only a select few have the code to open it. I think where most of us go wrong in seeking God's will is that we want Him to give us a 5-year plan with progress markers every six months.

I think the will of God is not supposed to be that complicated. We're supposed to have simple, childlike faith in our heavenly Father. When I was growing up, I didn't need my parents to tell me everything that was coming in the next year, 3 years, or 5 years. I just needed to know, "What am I supposed to do today?"

This verse gives us three basic steps for doing the will of God. I don't mean basic as in simplistic. because they're not always easy. I mean basic as being the base, the foundation.

Be joyful always

As followers of Christ, our lives should be marked by joy, which is part of the fruit of the Spirit that will be exhibited in those who are born again. Even when we're going through hard times, we can display the joy that comes from knowing who we are in Christ, and knowing the future glory that is awaiting us.

Pray continually

This step is key. It's impossible to know what God wants us to be doing if we're not communicating with Him. When we submit our desires and plans to God's desires and plans, we can trust that His divine providence is aligning our circumstances so that we will naturally do His will as we walk by His side along the road of life. In the garden, man was created to have communion with God. That was his original purpose. So when we maintain a continual channel of communication through prayer to our Father, we will be fulfilling God's initial will for humankind.

Give thanks in all circumstances

I don't think there's anything that bothers me more than a whiney Christian. Someone who has had their sins forgiven and been granted eternal life should be thankful. We so easily forget how blessed we are, and only see the negative things in our lives. Instead of showing gratitude that we have food to eat and money to pay for it, we gripe about it not being cooked just right, or not being as good as the last time we ate there. Instead of being thankful that we can freely gather to worship God in a church building, we complain about it being too hot or too cold, or too loud or too crowded.

Now I'm not saying we shouldn't bring these issues to the attention of the waiter or the person who controls the thermostat or the sound system. If there's a problem, they need to be made aware so they can improve (I certainly want to know how I can do things better). But we should address the issue with the responsible person, then let it go without continuing to complain. Next time your steak isn't cooked just the way you ordered it, think about the kids in the slums of Calcutta who dig through garbage cans behind restaurant looking for anything to take the edge off their hunger.

I've heard Christian students complain about how they are persecuted at school by other kids that make fun of them for their beliefs. And they talk about how hard it is to face that. What a contrast to the early church. In Acts 5, the Sanhedrin, the Jewish ruling council, had the apostles flogged, and then ordered them not to speak any more in the name of Jesus. Then Peter, James, John, and the gang went back and had a pity party about how badly they were treated. Right? No! The Bible describes them as "rejoicing because they had been counted worthy of suffering disgrace for the Name."

So what is God's will for your life? For my life?

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances. I believe that if we do these three things that are commanded of all believers, God will see to it that His specific will for each of us is accomplished.
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Estén siempre alegres, oren sin cesar, den gracias a Dios en toda situación, porque esta es su voluntad para ustedes en Cristo Jesús. 1 Tesalonicenses 5:16-18

Hay gente siempre hablando de encontrar la voluntad de Dios para su vida. Escuchando a algunos, pensarías que la voluntad de Dios es un secreto bien guardado en una boveda en algún lado, y que son muy pocos los que tienen la clave para abrirla. Yo creo que el lugar donde la mayoría de nosotros nos equivocamos en buscar la voluntad de Dios es que queremos que El nos dé un plan de 5 años con marcadores de progreso cada seis meses.

Yo creo que la voluntad de Dios no debe de estar tan complicado. Debemos de tener una fe sencilla, como la de un niño, en nuestro Padre celestial. Cuando yo estaba creciendo, no necesitaba que mis padres me dijeran todo lo que iba a pasar en el próximo año, o tres, o cinco. Sólo necesitaba saber, "¿Qué debo de hacer hoy?"

Este versículo nos da tres pasos básicos para hacer la voluntad de Dios. Y con básicos no quiero decir simples, porque no siempre son fáciles. Digo básicos en el sentido de ser la base, o los cimientos.

Estén siempre alegres

Como seguidores de Cristo, nuestras vidas deben de estar marcadas por gozo, que es parte del fruto del Espíritu que se mostrará en todos los que hayan nacido de nuevo. Aún cuando estemos pasando por tiempos difíciles, podemos demostrar el gozo que procede de saber quienes somos en Cristo, y la futura gloria que nos está esperando.

Oren sin cesar

Este paso es clave. Es imposible saber qué es lo que Dios quiere que hagamos si no estamos en communicación con Él. Cuando sometemos nuestros deseos y planes a los deseos y planes de Dios, podemos confiar que su providencia divina está alineando nuestras circunstancias para que naturalmente hagamos su voluntad mientres que caminemos a Su lado por el camino de la vida. En el huerto de Edén, el hombre fue creado para tener comunión con Dios. Eso fue su propósito original. Así que cuando mantenemos un canal abierto de comunicación con nuestro Padre a través de la oración, estaremos cumpliendo la primera voluntad de Dios para la humanidad.
Den gracias a Dios en toda situación

No hay nada que me molesta más que un Cristiano quejón. Alguien a quien se le hayan perdonado sus pecados, y se le haya dado la vida eterna, debe de estar agradecido. Que tan fácil se nos olvida lo bendecidos que somos, y solamente vemos las coas negativas en nuestras vidas. En lugar de demostrar gratitud que tenemos comida sobre la mesa, y el dinero con que pagarla, nos quejamos porque no está cocida precisamente a nuestro gusto, y porque no está tan sabrosa como la última vez que fuimos a ese restaurant. En lugar de dar gracias que podemos reunirnos con libertad para adorar a Dios en el templo, nos quejamos porque está demasido frío o caliente, o el sonido está demasiado fuerte, o está demasiado lleno y nos tenemos que sentar apretados.

Entiende, no estoy diciendo que no debemos informar al mesero, o a la persona encargada del clima del edificio, o al técnico de sonido, que hay un problema. Si hay algún problema, necesitan saberlo para que pueden remediarlo. Pero debemos de tratar el asunto con la persona indicada, y dejarlo en sus manos sin seguir quejando. La próxima vez que tu bistéc no está cocido justo como lo pediste, piensa en los niños de los barrios de Calcutta, que buscan en los basureros detrás de los restaurantes por cualquier cosa que les apaque la hambre un poquito.

He escuchado a estudiantes Cristianos quejarse de como son perseguidos en la escuela por otros niños que se burlan de ellos por su fe. Y hablan de que tan difícil es enfrentar eso. Que contraste con la iglesia primitiva. En Hechos 5, el Sanhedrín, el concilio gobernante de los Judíos, mandó azotar a los apóstoles, y les ordenó no hablar más en el nombre de Jesús. Entonces Pedro, Jacobo, Juan, y los demás regresaron a su lugar y se la pasaron sentiendo lástima por como los habían tratado. ¿Correcto? No. La Biblia los describe como "llenos de gozo por haber sido considerados dignos de sufrir afrentas por causa del Nombre."

Entonces, ¿Cuál es la voluntad de Dios para tu vida? ¿Para la mía?

Estén siempre alegres, oren sin cesar, den gracias a Dios en toda situación. Yo creo que si hacemos estas tres cosas que son requeridos de todo creyente, Dios se va a encargar de que se realize la voluntad específica que tiene para cada una de nuestras vidas.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

First Things First -- Lo Primero, Primero

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Matthew 6:33

This verse comes near the end of a passage where Jesus is telling His disciples that they shouldn't worry about temporal needs. He talks about how the birds don't plant or harvest, yet God provides food for them. And aren't the disciples worth more than the birds? Jesus tells His followers that the pagans live for clothes, food, houses, and land. But Christ-followers don't have to be preoccupied with those issues, because their heavenly Father knows what they need, and like any good father, He will take care of them.

Jesus says, rather, that His disciples should seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness. How do we do that? Where is the kingdom of God, and how do we seek it? Are we supposed to get out a map and look for the directions to Godlandia?

Every kingdom has a king, a sovereign, who rules over it. So the kingdom of God is that realm where God is in control.

Now, we all know that God is in ultimate control of the universe. So in one sense the whole of creation is God's kingdom. But I don't believe this verse is talking about the Creator's reign over his physical creation.

I think in this verse, seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness means seeking to submit myself to God's rule over my life, and seeking to follow His righteous ways. Looking to be part of God's kingdom, His dominion, by living life under His reign following His rules.

When we are living in that kind of obedience, then our King takes care of providing for the daily necessities of His subjects, whom He adopts as His children.

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Más bien, busquen primeramente el reino de Dios y su justicia, y todas estas cosas les serán añadidas. Mateo 6:33

Este versículo viene cerca del final de un pasaje donde Jesús está diciendo a sus discípulos que no deben de preocuparse por sus necesidades temporales. Habla de como los pájaros ni siembran ni cosechan, sin embargo Dios provee alimento para ellos. ¿Y no son los discípulos más importantes que los pájaros? Jesús dice a sus seguidores que los paganos viven por ropa, comida, casas, y terrenos. Pero seguidores de Cristo no tienen qe preocuparse en esos asuntos, porque su amoroso Padres celestial sabe lo que necesitan, y como todo buen padre, cuidará de ellos.

En cambio, Jesús dice que sus discípulos deben de buscar primeramente el reino de Dios y Su justicia. ¿Cómo hacemos eso? ¿Dónde está el reino de Dios, y como lo podemos buscar? ¿Debemos sacar un mapa y buscar las direcciones para llegar a Dioslandia?

Todo reino tiene un rey, un soberano, quien reina sobre ello. Así que el reino de Dios es aquel reino donde Dios tiene el control.

Ahora, sabemos que Dios tiene control de todo el universo. Así que en un sentido, toda la creación es el reino de Dios. Pero no creo que este versículo está hablando del reino de Dios sobrea su creación física.

Pienso que, en este versículo, buscar el reino de Dios y Su justicia significa buscar someterme al reinado de Dios sobre mi vida, y buscar seguir sus caminos justos. Buscar ser parte del reino de Dios, Su dominio, a través de vivir la vida bajo Su reinado y siguiendo Sus reglas.

Cuando estamos viviendo ese tipo de obediencia, entonces nuestro Rey se encarga de proveer por las necesidades diarias de Sus sujetos, los cuales ha adoptado como Sus hijos.

Friday, April 2, 2010

I Can Handle It -- Puedo Soportarlo

I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13

You've probably heard the conversations.

"I'm going to have the high score in the basketball game."
"But you never get more than 2 minutes of playing time. You're third string."
"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."

"I'm going to be President of the United States some day."
"That's a long shot."
"I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength."

I could create dozens of such exchanges, but you get the picture. Philippians 4:13 is probably one of the most mis-quoted verses in the Bible. Instead of giving it the meaning that its context gives it, people use it as a power of positive thinking one-liner.

We have to remember that chapter and verse numbers are not part of the original manuscripts written under divine inspiration. They were added in the early 13th Century to make it easier to refer to a particular passage. So to understand the real meaning of this verse, we need to read it in its context.

"I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength."

Looking at the entire passage that this verse is a part of, we find that the real meaning of this verse is not "I can do anything I set my mind to, because Jesus gives me the power to do it," but rather, "I can handle any situation life throws at me because Christ is the source of my strength." If Paul was in financial difficulty, he could deal with it because Christ gave him the strength to trust God for provision. If things were going well, Paul could rejoice in it without getting puffed up, because recognizing his strength came from Christ kept him humble.

Like Paul, we can be content in any circumstance because we know that God is working all things together for our good, and God will not let anything come our way that He won't give us the ability to handle. When we are listening to the Holy Spirit and letting Him direct our steps, there is nothing that can come our way that we won't be able to deal with through the strength that comes from being in Christ.

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Todo lo puedo en Cristo que me fortalece. Filipenses 4:13

A lo mejor has escuchado las conversaciones.

"Voy a lograr la apuntación más alta en el partido de baloncesto."
"Ni siquiera te da el entrenador 2 minutos en la cancha. Estás en la última línea del equipo."
"Todo lo puedo en Cristo que me fortalece."

"Algún día voy a ser presidente de los Estados Unidos."
"Pero no naciste en este país. No calificas."
"Todo lo puedo en Cristo que me fortalece."

Podría yo inventar docenas de ejemplos parecidos, pero creo que ya agarraste la idea. Filipenses 4:13 es probablemente uno de los versículos bíblicos que se usa equivocadamente con más frecuencia. En lugar de darle el significado que tiene en su contexto, la gente lo usa como una mantra del poder del pensamiento positivo.

Tenemos que recordar que los números de capítulos y versículos no son parte de los documentos originales escritos bajo la inspiración del Espíritu Santo. Fuero agregados en el siglo trece para hacerlo más fácil encontrar un pasaje específico. Para entender el verdadero significado de este versículo, necesitamos leerlo en su contexto.

"Me alegro muchísimo en el Señor de que al fin hayan vuelto a interesarse en mí. Claro está que tenían interés, sólo que no habían tenido la oportunidad de demostrarlo. No digo esto porque esté necesitado, pues he aprendido a estar satisfecho en cualquier situación en que me encuentre. Sé lo que es vivir en la pobreza, y lo que es vivir en la abundancia. He aprendido a vivir en todas y cada una de las circunstancias, tanto a quedar saciado como a pasar hambre, a tener de sobra como a sufrir escasez. Todo lo puedo en Cristo que me fortalece."
Mirando el pasage entero de lo cual este versículo es parte, encontramos que su verdadero significado no es, "Puedo hacer cualquier cosa que propongo en mi mente, porque Cristo me dará el poder para hacerlo," sino que, "Puedo soportar cualquier situación que la vida me presenta porque Cristo es la fuente de mi fuerza." Si Pablo estaba en dificultades financieras, lo podía aguantar porque Jesucristo le daba la fuerza para confiar en la provisión de Dios. Si las cosas iban bien, Pablo podía regocijar sin inflarse el ego, porque reconocer que su fuerza venía de Cristo lo mantenía humilde.

Como Pable, podemos estar contentos en toda circunstancia porque sabemos que Dios está obrando todas la cosas para nuestro bien, y Dios no va permitir que nos venga algo sin primero darnos la capacidad para aguantarlo. Cuando estamos escuchando al Espíritu Santo and dejamos que El dirija nuestor pasos, no hay nada que nos pueda pasar que no vamos a poder sobrevivir a través de la fuerza que viene por estar en Cristo Jesús.

Friday, February 12, 2010

The Great Commandment -- El Gran Mandamiento

Jesus replied: " 'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.' This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: 'Love your neighbor as yourself.' ” Matthew 22:37-39

Love the Lord your God with all your heart…

The heart has to do with desire. When we love someone with all our heart, that person is the object of our strongest desires. The same applies with loving God with all our heart. We want to be with Him all the time. We want to make Him happy. We want what He wants; His desires become our desires.

…and with all your soul…

I think of the soul as having to do with our essence. The Spanish NIV uses the word for “being” instead of the word for “soul.” So we’re talking about the core of who we are – not just our emotions, not just our intellect, but what is really at the center of our being – our will. When we don’t feel emotional love, when we can’t find a rationale to love, we love out of sheer will because God merits our love.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Be Strong and Courageous -- Sé Fuerte y Valiente

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9

This one really hits me where I live. I’m a pretty rational guy. My favorite TV character growing up was Mr. Spock on the original Star Trek series. In my second grade school picture I even had the blue Starfleet uniform shirt like Spock wore. Logic. Reason. That’s my game.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Fly Like an Eagle - Volar Como una Aguila

But those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:31)

It’s so easy to get caught up in the busy-ness and concerns of our jobs, family activities, studies, and ministry responsibilities. It’s easy to lose our focus, and instead of keeping our eyes on the goal, which is Jesus, we end up looking at our circumstances. Like Peter, when we take our eyes off the Saviour and rely on our own abilities and understanding, we feel like we’re drowning.

Friday, January 22, 2010

If my people -- Si mi pueblo

2 Chronicles 7:14
If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

First off, let me start by saying that we have to be careful how we apply Old Testatment promises given to national Israel to modern-day situations. I’ve heard of people seeing a house they would like to buy, and walking all around the yard because they believe that “every place the sole of their foot touches” will be theirs. That was a promise to the nation of Israel as they were carrying out the God-ordered occupation of the Promised Land. It isn’t a prescription for a ritual we are supposed to perform to get the house (or even the church property) we desire. It was not a command for all time, like “you shall not have any gods before me” is. It was a specific instruction for a specific people group at a specific point in history.

2 Chronicles 7:14, on the other hand, does have modern application. We just have to be cautious in how we interpret and apply it.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

For God so loved -- Porque tanto amó Dios

John 3:16
For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

It's kind of hard to say anything new or fresh about what for most people is the first Bible verse they ever learned. So instead of trynig to be innovative or profound, I just want to break this verse down and look at each phrase.

For God so loved the world
God isn't some angry old man up in the sky waiting to throw lightning bolts at us when we mess up.

that he gave
True love gives. You can give without loving (out of a sense of obligation or guilt), but you can't love without giving. He's a loving God.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Trust in the Lord -- Confia en el Señor

Proverbs 3:5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and lean not on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make your paths straight.

My paraphrase:
Put your total trust and confidence in God,
and don’t put too much stock in your own limited perspective.
In everything you do, do it God’s way,
and he’ll smooth out the bumps in the road.

Hopefully this will help me blog more consistently / Ojalá esto me ayudará a escribir con más frecuencia

My home church is in a series called “10 for Life”, where we’re working through 10 key scriptures that every Christian should know by memory and what their implications are for our daily walk. I plan on using each week’s verse as a jumping-off point for a blog post. You can find out more about the series at http://www.tenforlife.com/ or http://www.scripturefight.com/.

La iglesia principal a la cual asisto está en una serie llamada “10 por Vida” en la cual estamos estudiando y memorizando diez pasajes claves de la Biblia que cada cristiano debe de saber. Mi plan es usar el versículo de cada semana como un punto de embarcación para escribir este blog. Puedes aprender más de la serie en http://www.tenforlife.com/ o http://www.scripturefight.com/ .