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Author Topic: Christ's Ways  (Read 6696 times)

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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #351 on: January 03, 2020, 08:18:14 am »
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2Tim 2:16 . . Avoid worldly, empty chatter; for it will lead to further impiety.

The Greek word for "worldly" refers to heathenism, i.e. secular.

What he's talking about there are bull sessions wherein untrained people discussing the Bible haven't a clue what they're talking about; and their perpetual deliberations-- consisting of sophistry, conjecture, theory, and personal opinions --never get to the bottom of anything.

Well, the Bible isn't meant to be learned by means of discussion; it's meant to be learned by instruction, taught by someone especially enabled by God for that purpose. (Eph 4:11-14)

"Are all teachers?" (1Cor 12:29)

The answer to that is a great big NO.

Some years ago I was invited to a home Bible study. Before considering his invitation; I asked the man if his group was led by a competent Bible teacher. He said: No; we don't have a teacher. The group teaches itself. In other words: we speak as the Spirit leads us to speak.

They say iron sharpeneth iron. But that doesn't work when both irons are soft. That's why files are hardened and tempered. Well; that man's group lacked a file, so to speak; so I declined.


NOTE: We're always being pressured by well-meaning ministers to share our faith with the outside world every chance we get. I highly recommend exercising some sanctified common sense in that pursuit lest you get yourself into a discussion with feral brutes whose sole intent is to discredit Christianity.

"Do not give dogs what is sacred; do not throw your pearls to pigs. If you do, they may trample them under their feet, and then turn and tear you to pieces." (Matt 7:6)

Be cautious out there. Gauge the listeners carefully before you speak.
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« Last Edit: January 03, 2020, 08:53:46 am by Olde Tymer »

Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #352 on: January 04, 2020, 07:55:01 am »
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2Tim 2:19 . . Let everyone who names the name of The Lord abstain from wickedness.

The wickedness he's talking about in this particular instance regards unskilled use of the Bible; and sophistry, conjecture, semantic double speak, wild-eyed posits, theories, flimsy science, and lines of spiritual rhetoric that sound very convincing but are nevertheless quite spurious.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #353 on: January 05, 2020, 09:27:16 am »
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2Tim 2:22 . . Flee from youthful lusts, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, with those who call on The Lord from a pure heart.

Hippies pursued love and peace but failed because they could obtain neither except by means of promiscuity and mood-enhancing drugs like marijuana and LSD.

A "pure" heart is one that's unadulterated; in other words: it's not an amalgam of good and bad; viz: it's a heart that's whole-heartedly devoted to pleasing God rather than half-hearted.

Righteousness, Love, Peace, and Purity are all blessing-worthy attributes.

"Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness" (Matt 5:6)

"Blessed are the compassionate" (Matt 5:7)

"Blessed are the pure in heart" (Matt 5:8)

"Blessed are the peaceable" (Matt 5:9)

The Greek word for "blessed" means fortunate. In other words; people lacking those attributes are unfortunate; i.e. in a regrettable spiritual condition.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #354 on: January 06, 2020, 08:30:22 am »
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2Tim 2:23 . . Refuse foolish and ignorant speculations, knowing that they produce debating.

Not all speculation is forbidden; only the kind that's absurd and uneducated; i.e. way out in the Kuiper Belt, so to speak.

I seriously doubt that 2Tim 2:23 is addressing one's IQ, but rather, the propensity of some to shoot from the lip without really knowing what they're talking about and/or having the slightest basis for their perspective.

So; if Christians are to refuse foolish and ignorant speculations, then they really ought to avoid spouting their own too.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #355 on: January 07, 2020, 07:06:04 am »
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2Tim 2:24a . . The Lord's bond-servant must not be quarrelsome

Sometimes it's best to follow Han Solo's advice and "let the Wookie win one". In other words; when one is wise; two are happy. Be the wise one and pick your fights carefully. Don't expend your energies on hot button topics; they'll just lead to anger, frustration, demeaning comments, and flaming remarks.

Especially avoid getting into discussions with obtuse individuals driven by a rather annoying propensity to challenge everything you say simply because they thrive on perpetual debating that never gets to the bottom of anything.

Another thing: Do you really have to be right all the time? People are entitled to a second opinion so let them have one. It's good diplomacy; which can be defined as skill in handling affairs without arousing hostility, i.e. tact.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #356 on: January 08, 2020, 08:36:34 am »
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2Tim 2:24b-26 . . The Lord's servant must . . be kind to all, apt to teach, patient when wronged, with gentleness correcting those who are in opposition, if perhaps God may grant them a change of heart leading to the knowledge of the truth, and they may come to their senses and escape from the snare of the Devil, having been held captive by him to do his will.

The all in "be kind to all" really should be taken to mean all in Christian congregations rather than all in the world. The reason being, according to Eph 4:11-16, Christ doesn't dispense his servants for the world's benefit, rather, for his body's benefit.

For the above reason; Sunday school teachers need to treat the people in church who oppose them with the same sympathy and consideration as they would patients in a mental hospital who lack the faculties to know what they're doing and/or to think for themselves; hence the instructions to be kind, gentle, and patient; because according to the last words in that passage, those folks are entangled in a bit of spiritual difficulty not easily overcome.
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« Last Edit: January 08, 2020, 08:38:58 am by Olde Tymer »

Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #357 on: January 09, 2020, 08:10:10 am »
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2Tim 3:12-15 . .You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them; and that from childhood you have known the sacred writings which are able to give you the wisdom that leads to salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

The "sacred writings" upon which Timothy cut his teeth are of course the Old Testament's collection; which Paul affirms is useful to Christians.

"Whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction that we, through patience and the encouragement of the scriptures, might have hope." (Rom 15:4)


NOTE: The Greek word for "hope" in that passage is elpis (el-pece') which means: to anticipate (usually with pleasure and confidence). In other words: elpis hope doesn't entail crossing your fingers and praying for the best while in the back of your mind dreading the worst. No; elpis hope entails having something to look forward to with the bold unreserved expectation of obtaining it.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #358 on: January 10, 2020, 08:53:27 am »
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2Tim 4:1-2 . . I solemnly charge you in the presence of God and of Christ Jesus-- who is to judge the living and the dead, and by His appearing and His kingdom --preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience and instruction.

Preaching and teaching are areas where pastors must take the reins. They can't wait until their boards take a vote on it. No, the pastor's vote is the only one that counts because left to themselves, congregations (and boards) are just like any other flock of dim-witted sheep: they're prone to wander.

"For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but wanting to have their ears rubbed, they will accumulate for themselves teachers in accordance with their own desires; and will turn away their ears from the truth, and will turn aside to fiction." (2Tim 4:3-4)

Once somebody adopts an error for themselves as the God's truth, they like to hear it reinforced, over and over again so they feel good about themselves rather than feeling like a fool for thinking a certain way.

That mindset is very difficult to correct. So, like it's said; the best remedy is prevention; hence the instruction to "preach the word' lest by preaching something else a pastor's congregation gets their heads full of wrong ideas, and from then on they tune out everything that opposes those ideas and/or fails to reinforce them.
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« Last Edit: January 10, 2020, 09:05:23 am by Olde Tymer »

Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #359 on: January 11, 2020, 08:05:12 am »
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2Tim 4:5a . . Be discreet

Webster's defines "discreet" as: using good judgment, caution, and prudence.

Human nature can be so inconsistent. Though most adults have fairly good judgment, they oftentimes do things that are contrary to their better judgment and make foolish choices (especially on Black Friday) because they don't always use their heads but instead yield to their feelings; and everybody knows that one's feelings, by and large, are mostly incoherent.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #360 on: January 12, 2020, 08:05:04 am »
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2Tim 4:5b . . endure hardship

Some of the aspects of hardship are adversity, mischance, misfortune; danger, hazard, peril; affliction, trial, tribulation; drudgery, toil, travail; discomfort, and distress. Feelings of isolation and loneliness are a part of that too. Nobody really cares to sympathize with somebody when they're at the top of the food chain. Pastors comfort others, but who comforts the pastors? Hardly anybody; though maybe his wife; if she's the type.

The lives of Christ's pastors are not supposed to be a piece of cake. If they're doing their jobs in a way that pleases The Lord, pastors will have some struggles. Hardship comes with the turf; it's a given when Christ's pastors serve him faithfully and effectively.

The reason being that a pastor is essentially a shepherd. Well; according to Jacob, that job was a rough career path back in the day.

"Thus I was: by day the heat consumed me, and the frost by night, and my sleep fled from my eyes." (Gen 31:40)

Part of the reason that tending sheep was rough in Jacob's day is because a shepherd was essentially a security guard, constantly keeping an eye out for rustlers and predators. That part alone was a 24-7 task; not to mention monitoring the herd so none of them wandered off; as sheep are prone to do. It's no wonder Jacob lost a lot of sleep outside in the fields; and when you throw in exposure to the elements; a shepherd's life was really not one to be desired.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #361 on: January 13, 2020, 07:46:14 am »
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2Tim 4:5c . . do the work of an evangelist

The  koiné  Greek word for "evangelist" is euaggelistes (yoo-ang-ghel-is-tace') which means: a preacher of the gospel.

Here in America, we typically think of evangelists as guys like Billy Graham and Louis Palau. But according to Paul, pastors are supposed to be evangelists within the walls of their own churches rather than on the road.

My ex-Catholic wife begged and cajoled her Catholic father to accompany her to a Baptist church back in the 1970's before we met. On that particular Sunday, of all days, the pastor spoke about money; especially giving it to support his church and its programs.

My father-in-law was disgusted, and commented afterwards: Baptists are no different than Catholics; all they care about is money. He never went back. Had that pastor spoken about Christ instead of money, my father-in-law might have returned.

The same goes for tongue services, political activism, and people dancing with rattlesnakes, shouting, shrieking, rolling on the floor and fainting in the aisles. That kind of stuff is entertaining but certainly not conducive to fulfilling Christ's command to go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. (Matt 28:18-20)

Sunday morning services are a mission field right here at home. A sharp pastor will make sure that visitors leave his church with a full hour of real gospel preaching to think about.

Paul described pastoral evangelism as: fulfilling their ministry. (2Tim 4:5)
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #362 on: January 14, 2020, 07:24:24 am »
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Titus 2:2 . . Older men are to be temperate, dignified, sensible, sound in faith, in love, in perseverance.

The koiné Greek word for "older men" is presbutes (pres-boo'-tace) which means: an old man. Presbutes is different than presbuteros, which refers to church officers; e.g. deacons (1Tim 5:17).

I used to get my watches serviced by an aging repairman at a local mall until the day finally came when I could no longer tolerate his manners. He was around seventy-five years old, cantankerous as can be, and perpetually cross. I often felt like asking him if he ever gave any thought to his future. You know, heaven is a place of peace. A hateful man like that repairman would not only never fit in there, but it wouldn't be fair to the others to permit him in their world.

"Cantankerous" can be defined as: habitually ill-humored, irritable, disagreeable, bearish, cankered, cranky, cross-grained, dour, morose, sour; crabby, cross, crusty, huffy, petulant, prickly, snappish; dyspeptic, ill-conditioned, thin-skinned, complaining, and ill-natured.

A Christian man in old age really ought to be a sweet, mellow guy: a pal and a big brother for the younger ones rather than somebody they'd prefer do the world a favor by stepping in front of a bus.
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Olde Tymer

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Re: Christ's Ways
« Reply #363 on: January 15, 2020, 08:32:03 am »
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Titus 2:3-5 . . The aged women likewise, that they be in behavior as becomes holiness: not traducers, not given to much wine, teachers of right; that they may train the young women to be sensible, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, and subordinate to their own husbands; that the word of God not be dishonored.

Traducers are particularly ugly human beings; especially the kind that misrepresent their own friends and say things about them that their friends would never approve; thus needlessly disparaging their friends' reputations save for the pure pleasure of having something to say about somebody.

Traducers aren't regular gossips, no, they're malicious gossips. Webster's defines malice as: a deep-seated, often unexplainable desire to see another suffer. In other words, traducers like to hurt people for no reason other than that it's gratifying. One could hardly characterize malicious gossips as either good or discreet.

Too many women in America have been trained for marriage by militant feminism. Far from teaching younger women to respect their husbands, feminism teaches the younger women to stand up to their husbands; and rather than be keepers at home, feminism has them out seeking means to compete with men and break the so-called glass ceiling; and rather than love their children, feminism has them dominating their offspring in a home-life society structured on divisions of labor, command and control, tyranny, and regimentation. Those behaviors certainly can never be categorized as honoring the word of God.

The biggest road block to feminism-trained women becoming true disciples is The Lord's gender. You see, at the heart of women's hostility towards men is the drive to be independent of males. Yet the very lord and master of Christianity, the supreme male in the universe; demands death to a woman's self interests, and subordination to His monarchy.

"If you want to be my follower you must love me more than your own father and mother, wife and children brothers and sisters-- yes, more than your own life. And you cannot be my disciple if you do take up your own cross and follow me." (Luke 14:26)

In The Lord's era, crosses were for executions. So when he told his disciples to "take up their own cross" it meant stifling their own way; viz: it was a call to abandon self interests, and comply with their Master's wishes.

"Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-- this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is-- His good, pleasing and perfect will." (Rom 12:1-2)

That mandate runs 180° counter to modern feminism's self-aggrandizing attitude that homemaking is oppressive and demeaning to women, and that respect for one's husband is somehow abusive; which is obviously an attitude that vilifies the word of God instead of honoring it.

Christian marriage and motherhood are not for militant females; no, marriage and motherhood are for grown-up, mature, emotionally stable women; and I'm not talking about years of life; no, even some 35 and 40 year-old women often fall short of being grown-up. Their association with men is on no higher a level now than when they were the 17 year-old, self-absorbed assertive brats they were in high school.
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« Last Edit: January 15, 2020, 08:39:07 am by Olde Tymer »

 

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