Thursday, January 20, 2011

What was so important about Acts 15:20?

At first thought, if you've read it before, it doesn't seem like it stands out. But there is a huge interpretive key in Acts 15:20. What should Gentile believers in Jesus do in relation to the Law of Moses? The early church council interpretive key was to hold them to pre-Law standards. While the 'strangled meat and from blood in meat' stopping comment by James seems random, it certainly is not. If you go to the book of Genesis, before the Law was given in chapter 9, you'll find that God made all meat available for man to eat, except not to eat it with its lifeblood still in it. That's not the main thing I want to weigh in on though, but the fact that they leap back previous to the giving of the actual Jewish Law, to the early days with Noah and his family. Just as Paul leaps pre-Law to say that Abraham the patriarch was justified by faith, faith allowed him to have God's righteousness simply credited to his account (chapter 15 Genesis). If you are wondering how to handle the Law as a Gentile Christian, you've got a strong indicator from the way the early church did as well in Acts 15:20. Just some thoughts on understanding your Bible...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Housing Markets

I suspect that a link to Bloomberg news about housing starts being low is due to the fact that a huge generation is retiring or seeking to retire (thus saving and selling), and an interested but smaller following generation or two is not able to eat up the surplus. Why build which is expensive when you can buy one of the many lower priced homes? For a link to the news article click here. This is a socio-economic factor dealing with population, choices by age, and unemployment numbers still being higher than they should be.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Watching God's Provision Unfold

It has been amazing the past six months watching how God provides and stretches faith. In my life, seeking to plant a new church for a growing area, it is a God-send and yet a challenge to see my faith have to grow. There are days when you have to apply seriously the day has enough of its own concerns, and trust Jesus to work out the needs being met with church provision. The bigger the challenge, even with some unanswered "how" to get there questions, have resulted in bigger returns on what God is able to do in my understanding. It would be easy to sit back and watch others grow in this way, in a comfortable pew somewhere that no real promptings have to be dealt with, but getting into the action has forced me in ways I could not predict to wrestle with assurance of God's interest in seeing us grow, and get confirmation in this assurance of God's working, of how God is good and brings things at the perfect timing showing His wisdom.

There has also been a great boost to my awareness of how God uses many advisors to strengthen a person's successful working in an area. The lone ranger pastor idea seems so far from relevant, almost absurb now. Not just any advisors will do though. Every Joe and Jane has an opinion and would love to give you advice. That's not what I'm talking about. I mean talking to people who have been there in the thick of action, who have grown in their walk with Jesus Christ through things that take increased faith for the kingdom, and can share wisdom with you that is still smoking because its so hot off the press. It's been amazing to see how much more there is to learn from competent coaches in areas I thought I knew something about, or was unaware of the need for more. SO being stretched is a good thing when it comes to this thrill ride known as church planting. I just pray that God is greatly blessed and His name is honored among people who are His and grow in their love for Him through the work, or who are just getting to know Him for the first time. May it be in great measure for kingdom benefit! Soli Deo Gloria.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Discipleship

When it comes to Christianity, we can never lose touch with the fact that we are all to be disciples of Christ. We are discipled through relationships and we make disciples through relationships, focusing on the news of and reminder of the facts of the faith. These facts including assurance of salvation, the work of the Holy Spirit, and similar themes. An interesting blog, especially for those interested in the topic of discipleship is listed below:

Right here.

Blessings,
David