The first episode of my new podcast show, broadcast on the Tell Everybody Now internet radio channel. If Jesus has been given all authority in heaven and earth, as he claims in Matthew's Gospel, how should that work out in our national politics? The first session looks at the basis of my theology, that Jesus is king right now and that theonomy will result naturally from many individual conversions.
Recorded late at night drinking tea. Tea for this session: Darjeeling with lemon juice.
Bible passages: Matthew 28:18-end Luke 10 and John 1:8,9.
Theme music: "It Came Upon a Midnight Clear" performed by Kevin MacLeod. (incompetech.com) Licensed under Creative Commons: By Attribution 3.0
Should Christians exercise in order to keep fit? Are they just being vain? On the contrary our bodies are amazing gifts from God. Ephesians 2:10 says, “We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” Certainly, it is a miracle in itself that God designed the human body so that it could run 40,000 miles and more over a lifetime. He has put our bodies together in unimaginable ways. My Heart has beaten 2 trillion times over the last 49 years.
The apostle Paul equates the Christian life to a race we run to “get the prize.” But the prize we seek is an eternal crown that will not tarnish or fade. In 2 Timothy 2:5, Paul says, “Similarly, if anyone competes as an athlete, he does not receive the victor's crown unless he competes according to the rules.” Paul uses an athletic analogy again in 2 Timothy 4:7: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”
He is using the analogy of athletics to show what the faithful Christian life is like - by the way the analogies work in these passages in needs athletics to be regarded as good, if not as important as Spiritual exercise. Paul says as much in 1 Timothy 4:7-8 “Spend your time and energy in training yourself for spiritual fitness. Physical exercise has some value, but spiritual exercise is much more important for it promises a reward in both this life and the next.” It is good and beneficial, then, being physically fit, but it is even more important to be spiritually fit. Spiritual exercises like reading the Bible, praying, surrendering to God, serving others and forgiving others are all important aspects of one’s spiritual fitness program.
A drill sergeant barked out an order to a bunch of recruits: "All you useless idiots, get moving!" All but one obeyed. Angered by his seeming defiance, the sergeant marched up to him and growled, "Well?" The young recruit replied, "There certainly were a lot of them, Sir!"
Humans were created to reflect the moral and personal nature of God.
Then God said, “Let us make mankind in our image, in our likeness." (Genesis 1:27
Sin has distorted us such that the likeness is damaged. However, God called a people to himself, the people of Israel, to live specifically according to his likeness. The only one Israelite who managed to do so was Jesus, who had the very character of God. Jesus represents people to God as well as the inverse, representing God to people. He died a sacrificial death on the cross to heal our distorted character - to save us from sin. By wholly relying on Jesus as our we become acceptable and begin being reformed in his likeness.
He made us accepted in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:6).
We are not unworthy of such love and grace but because Christ has removed the guilt of our sin by paying its penalty on the cross, we know that we are fully accepted by God.
In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight making known to us the mystery of his will, according to his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth.
In him we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to the purpose of him who works all things according to the counsel of his will, so that we who were the first to hope in Christ might be to the praise of his glory. In him you also, when you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and believed in him, were sealed with the promised Holy Spirit, who is the guarantee of our inheritance until we acquire possession of it, to the praise of his glory. (Ephesians 1:7-14).
When a voice in your head barks, "You're a useless idiot!" remember that as you trust in Jesus Christ any mistakes you have made are forgiven and you are being reformed into the likeness of God.