Christian and Culture Christianity Theology

The Discovery That Changed My Life V

Again this is a continuing entry so if you haven’t read the previous ones I suggest you begin here.

The Discovery that Changed my Life

In this, the conclusion of my story, I answer the question how should we then give, if tithing isn’t the answer what is?

Christian and Culture Christianity Theology

The Discovery that Changed My Live IV

This is the continuing series I am doing on my exploration of the Tithe. If you wish to read previous entries, and I recommend you do then begin here.

The Discovery that Changed My Live I
The Discovery that Changed My Live II
The Discovery that Changed My Live III

you are ready to continue then please read on…

Christian and Culture Christianity Theology

Fish Sandwiches and Lent

Lent is often approached as a time of fasting; it is amazing I know Lent is coming because every fast food place I see is advertising its fish sandwiches.  It is good to know that we still have an impact on the market place but this season is about so much more than not eating red meat or giving up your favorite snack.

Christianity Emergence Theology

The Discovery that Changed My Life III

I again appreciate all of the comments I have been receiving. I am really taking them all into consideration. Obviously I have determined that the Tithe is not a requirement of the New Covenant church. I believe a Pastor has the right to require anything of his members, that is between him and God, so long as it is not proclaim it is biblical.

I suppose it is my way of respecting the Word of God, if we believe the Bible to be the God’s word then he doesn’t need us adding anything to it even if it is for our own good, that is what the Pharisee’s thought when they burdened the people with their laws.

Speaking of the law, this week considers the many laws of tithing….

Christian and Culture Christianity Family Life Theology

The Discovery that Changed My Life II

If you missed it the first installment can be found at The discovery that changed my life part 1I appreciate everyone that has read my thoughts and commented on them. I hope everyone understands I went through this very carefully over a great deal of time. This study isn’t one I entered into overnight and I have done my best to be faithful to the scriptures.

“Is it worth it?” It was asked, and I would like to answer yes, God’s truth is always worth it, even if it doesn’t go my way. I am the kid who was pissed when I found out I had been lied to about Santa, I want the truth.

Secondly Chris mentions Abraham, well most people consider this the first example of tithing in the Bible so I looked at it very carefully.

Christianity Family Life Theology

The Discovery that Changed my Life.

Many people have been asking me to expound on my understanding of the tithe. So I will attempt to do that here. I have a huge paper in the works but I hurried the last of it and I don’t like it so I am going to do smaller version here a little at a time. I am going to include the intro from my original here to get things started:

From the time I became a Christian I knew that I was to give monetarily to the LORD and when I arrived at Bible College I learned exactly how much I was expected to give. When our pastor asked “What is the tithe?” we responded in unison and in military fashion, “Ten percent of the sanctified gross income.” This was not something to be questioned and apparently there were dire consequences for those who refused God his share. For the past nine years I have been a faithful tither, meaning I gave ten percent off the top to the local church, without fail. I can not say for the most part that I was not living what most would call a blessed lifestyle but I did have my ups and downs.

Christianity Theology

It Happens

It is unfortunate for me and my blog that I am not able to discuss certain things that are taking up a great deal of my life right now. Suffice to say I am going through some rough times and trying to not only make the best of it but see God in all of it. Here is what I can tell:

Recently a lot of things have been going on with my family and how we relate to our church, rumors fly and things happen and it has been rough but not completely without a positive side. Two Sundays ago my wife and I stayed home from church for the first time in years, and no one was sick. We watched a vodcast from Mars Hill, it was about the story of Ruth, which is one of my wife’s favorite books, and it just so happens it was about “God’s hand in your suffering.” It isn’t a sermon a lot of people touch on because bad things in life are normally related to one of two things 1) You have sin in you life, and have brought it upon your self 2) The devil is attacking you.

Some people may have agreed with the first option in our case but I have been in contact with God a great deal as of late and I am sure he would have told me if that was the case and although the devil attacking is always a possibility I don’t think that is the case here either. I just think in an imperfect world where imperfect people are all attempting to reach a perfect God things get a little crappy.
I believe God is sovereign and he is good, which means he will do as he pleases to bring about good, by his terms and not ours. While I don’t go as far as some and profess that God brings calamity in your life in order to teach you a lesson, one must confess that if God is omnipotent and omniscient (all powerful and all knowing) then he does allow things to happen that we would consider bad. But the Bible does say “And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose,” and that I believe.
I am past the point of berating God because of the evil of the world or the stupid parts of my life, I know that like a good Father he knows what is best and if nothing else, I can trust in that even when I can’t see it directly. He’s God and I am not, not that I would want the job I have seen “Bruce Almighty” and it didn’t turn out well.


The Opposite of Jesus

Heb 4:13 — Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are–yet was without sin. 16 Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

I was listening to a message by Pastor Mark Driscol on our way home from West Virginia yesterday and he was discussing Jesus’ role as our Prophet, Priest and King and he brought up this passage. I had never really thought about it in the way I did at that moment, Jesus us able to have sympathy for us on our temptations because he has been through them; yet without sin. I realized I am the exact opposite, I tend to have no sympathy for those whose temptations do not affect me, and sympathize with those who share my struggles.
I have never done drugs and when I hear a sad story involving drug use I guess my thoughts are “Natural selection at work.” Additionally I have never been sympathetic to those who have grown up in church and are desensitized to the Gospel, or stuck in a religious rut. Those very people are the ones who kept me away from Christ by their example so I may begrudge them a little although not intentionally. I know it sounds heartless and may stem from the fact that I have never truly been tempted to do drugs or thankfully to take Jesus for granted, but deep down that is the way I feel. I never examined these feelings before but when I did so in the light of Jesus I realized I am his opposite, not a place I really want to be but I am not sure how exactly to change it.

Christianity Theology

Beauty of Tradition

Over Christmas I attended a Christmas Eve service with my three favorite ladies: my Mom, Heather and Alora. It was Alora’s first Christmas Eve service and although it was to long for the number of children present it was nice to see the other side of the coin in terms of Church Styles. My parents attend St. Johns Lutheran Church which it liturgical in style, meaning the services varies little outside of the sermon and hymns. They use the same responsive readings, confession and creeds every week. For the most part it is not for me but I do enjoy the rich history that accompanies it. It is wondrous to know that when I recite the apostle’s creed I am not only in tune with those believers I am speaking with, but with thousands of believers over almost two millennium. I asked my wife if she ever recited the creeds, but growing up purely Pentecostal I knew the answer before she gave it. In the Pentecostal and more modern Evangelical Protestant movement we tried so hard to rebel against the “tradition” of our Catholic and liturgical brethren we have swung to far to the other side of the spectrum and almost forgotten those core things that hold all denominations of Christianity together, such as the creeds and catechisms.
This is the Apostle’s Creed and it is my creed as well…

I believe in God, the Father almighty,
creator of heaven and earth.

I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord,
who was conceived by the Holy Spirit,
born of the Virgin Mary,
suffered under Pontius Pilate,
was crucified, died, and was buried;
he descended into hell.
On the third day he rose again;
he ascended into heaven,
he is seated at the right hand of the Father,
and he will come to judge the living and the dead.

I believe in the Holy Spirit,
the holy catholic Church,
the communion of saints,
the forgiveness of sins,
the resurrection of the body,
and the life everlasting.

Keep in mind that catholic with a small c means universal and doesn’t reference the Roman Catholic Church, for those of you who would get hung up on such a thing. There are beautiful things in our history that bind us together as brethren and we would do well not to forget them.

Christianity Theology

The Supremacy of Christ and Scripture in a Post-Modern World | TheResurgence

Wow, I have listened to many sermons from Mark Driscoll but this one is one of the greatest I have ever heard. Looking into the new theologies of Post Moderism and comparing them to traditional understandings of scripture. This is one everyone should hear.
The Supremacy of Christ and Scripture in a Post-Modern World | TheResurgence