HOPE DEFINED

The view from the top floor of the Crestwood Cancer Institute in Huntsville, Alabama

 
ELECTION RETURNS UPSET BUT DEPLORABLE COLLEGE RULES

This morning we are at Dr. Dang’s Office, here is the view from the Clearview Institute. We have been coming here over a decade, but today, following The election of Donald Trump as President, my heart is singing with hope. [Hope is defined as to expect or confide, trust.] Having a theist as President is gloriously better than an atheist. (Do we know this yet?)

We both voted this time. And even though it was mid morning when we voted, the line was long. A good turnout, but a new process of electronic recognizing, recording of drivers licenses was used. Still, voting in the nearby church building was smoothly run and very peaceful. [Oh, Viv has a blood problem similar to what I had. She is being healed like I was.]

I have got to hear Hillary’s concession speech. (watching) What a graceous lady is she! A veritable act of God. I am so proud of our country. We can rest assured that, a new cabinet, and a republican congress will come to the aid of our country. (As soon as I was alerted in my spirit to google her speech, there she was, live.)

. . .

The sun is setting just now with a deep red glow on the horizon. I am reminded of our prayers having been answered, all our hearts are going to sleep much better tonight. The news media is falling all over itself having to admit the polling that predicted Hillary would win, is broken. Broken if it was done mathematically, like machines don’t lie. LOL

NEW OPPORTUNITY FOR THIS MINISTRY

I have been contacted by email concerning an interest of mine. I was asked to participate on a Christian book publisher panel. An ‘Insider Panel’ they call this. I was given a series of questions to test my knowledge of theology: My understanding of biblical principles that Christian authors create stories from. I am willing to read book proposals.

I have said things like I hold no church office, I’m a college graduate, and willing to take what they offer for the service. The big plus is the editorial experience as well as learning to listen for godly insight. This is all about God and his call in my life. Just the fact that our loving Lord is alive and active for my professional existance for him is encouraging.

Here is an example: The Wycliffe Bible Translators went into collaboration with Christian Muslim groups to produce a new translation of the New Testament. The wording in question by Eric Barger (.com) claims they ‘Yank Father and Jesus as Son of God.’  You can see his website and read their mission statement at this link. Even using Allah as reference to Messiah. 

FAILURE TO TRANSLATE CORRECTLY IS THE ISSUE

This brings up a whole bag of worms. My solution is to research anything said about this from the Roman Catholic Church. The reason for this is not only to discern the usage of the New Testiment Greek, but also, the attempts of Church tradition to define by both Arabic and Hebrew translations, to compare them. Who knows? Scholars may be right (as they often are).

SOME BACKGROUND

“An Arabic version of the Hebrew Bible was made in the tenth century by. Saadia ha Gaon. Only its Pentateuch, Minor Prophets, Isaias, Psalms, and Job have been preserved. In 1671 an Arabic Bible was published at Rome under the direction of Sergius Risi, Archbishop of Damascus. It appeared in numerous later editions. A mutilated reprint of it (London, 1822) was circulated by the Bible Society. To offset this Protestant influence, complete Arabic versions were issued both by the Dominicans at Mossul (1875-8) and the Jesuits at Beirut (1876-8).

“Carshuni (Karshuni) Version.—This is an Arabic version made in Syriac characters for Syrian Christians chiefly of Mesopotamia, Aleppo, and adjacent parts. A New Testament in Carshuni characters containing in two columns the Syriac Peschitto and the Arabic of the Codex of Erpenius was published at Rome (1703) for the Maronites of Lebanon. A Bible Society edition appeared at Paris (1827). [catholicanswers.com]

THE WYCLIFFE DEFENCE

The Wycliffe translation of the text in question is made according to the usage. “Matthew 28:19,” says Michael Carl, “refers to the Father as Allah, which is not doctrinally correct.” Allah means, God according to the Wikipedia article that gives us the history and edymology. Remember, a new language version is supposed to be in the most common, current usage.

Wycliffe consulted Mary Lederleitner seeking the best way to understand the truth about “the Father“:  “Whether or not one believes using the most common term in a receptor language — the familial terms for God — is the only acceptable translation, or there are times when other not so common terms can apply. 

“The titles are preserved in a way that does not tell incorrect meanings — fathers produce sons physically, which is not applicable spiritually as truer usage. The source of the problem is found in the Koran (Qur’an). It explicitly condemns either the Trinity or the Sonship of Christ.” [refer to: An Nisa, Surah  4:171] (note, the context is 4:163-172)

SOME IDIOMS ARE IDIOTIC

After reading the context of the Surah passage referenced above, like reading the Book of Mormon, I’m convinced only of some misguided authority who had to give a biased book report that must honor (what’s his name) who is not god. To say his name means you have to bless it, is religious. To try to please Islamic authorities in telling the Gospel is oxymoronic.


THE QUAGMIRE OF BIBLE INTERPRETATION IS HOLY SPIRIT WORK

The intercessory prayers of the saints is a church solution to such quagmires. Para ministries like Wychliffe Bible Translators are stuck to have to face attacks that the devil can throw at them. Only the church can have authority for the holy tradition that formed the original canon of Scripture in the first place. (See The intercession of the Saints).

The concept that is playing out here is like inviting neighborhood children to have some ice cream in the local church kitchen which seems appealing. Then, within such a sanctified (blessed) environment, God is able to help reach their hearts with desire and reasonable words. A seed is sown in hearts that enables the Truth to usurp closed minds.

Sure prayer and proper scholastic preparation is important, but the authority of the church over the forming of words is critical. Compromise is not sought here, as concensus with a majority and eventual, mutual agreement. We can only approach the truth as the spectacle it is. It is unique but universal. And more, it is alive and capable of convicting.

TRANSCENDING CULTURAL CONFLICTS

“Religious organizations have a major impact on inter-communal and international conflicts. During the Cold War, religious as well as ethnic and nationalist conflicts were relatively neglected in the study of international relations and peace research. After the implosion of the communist block, the escalation of nationalist violence was a surprise. 

“Some expect an escalation of religious conflicts as well. Despite an increase in the attention to the religious dimension of conflicts, it remains an under-researched field. There is no useful typology of religious conflicts; no serious study of the impact of religious organizations on conflict behavior; no comparative research of peace-making and peace-building efforts of different religious organizations.” Said Luc Reychler in his Religion and Conflict article with the International Journal of Peace Studies:

“The world cannot survive without a new global ethic, and religions play a major role, as parties in violent conflicts, as passive bystanders and as active peace-makers and peace-builders. Hans Küngs‘ thesis that there cannot be world peace without a religious peace is right. 

“Representing two thirds of the world population, religions have a major responsibility in creating a constructive conflict culture. They will have to end conflicts fueled by religion, stop being passive bystanders and organize themselves to provide more effective peace services. Religions and religious organisations have an untapped and under-used integrative power potential. 

“To assess this potential and to understand which factors enhance or inhibit joint peace ventures between the Christian religions, but also between the prophetic religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam), the Indian religions (Hinduism and Buddhism) and the Chinese wisdom religions, is an urgent research challenge.”
I am personally encouraged by the conclusion of this scholar from George Mason University. My view of our world ordering itself into peaceful relations has to be left completely in God’s hands. But, as we know about creation science; God made everything, man was formed in God’s image and likeness — yet given a law that he could not keep. Sin was so created.

HERE IS THE ONLY MESSAGE OF HOPE

With our humanity so caught up in sin, which is separation from God, only one world solution has been provided: Namely the Person of the living Word, Jesus. As the Messiah-Christ, Jesus is our sacrifice for sin that Father God accepts. [The conclusion here is the Good News post of mine that can take you down the Roman Road. Read it and agree.]

Tonight, we are snug in our home with the heat turned on for the first time. Watching the violent reactions of young Democrats on the news is sad, but I prayed with my new pastor yesterday agreeing the protests will be peaceful, God willing and the creeks don’t rise. (Wife was up till 3 am, but I was exercising my hope in trusting for the miracle to happen.)

On that note, we must end this. Please pray for my new involvement with Christian Book Insider Panel. God bless you.

Charles Bundschu

Tweet me: @wordlifejournal

ASSURANCE

HOW TO KNOW GOD AND THAT HE IS DELIVERING YOU

The prophet Daniel at 85, reading Jeremiah, and writing Chapter 9. (plaintruth.org, 1975)

The message last Sunday at Saddleback Church was one of the best authoritative sermons on prayer I’ve ever heard. I get to receive Pastor Rick Warren’s excellent presentations with their Saddleback App. The reception is dependant upon the weather, and my faith in hearing the Holy Spirit impress me with a leading to attend. 

Also, Friday, at our favorite craft store, I saw Anne Graham Lotz’ book, The Daniel Prayer, ‘Prayer that moves heaven and changes nations’, describes her experience using the same text. Her story is something we want to read! Her personal stories we can easily relate with, knowing and loving her. [I linked it to Amazon.com, so you might see it too.]

My past most recent post on prayer by pastor Rick was in August also about the prophet Daniel at age 15. Last Sunday was about Daniel at age 85. (WordPress.com link) Seventy years were significant because of the period Israel was actually in exile under Babylonian rule. [Link is for ‘Overcoming Impossible Demands, 8-26-16]

My question this week was, how did Daniel know about the limit of 70 years? “He was acquainted with Jeremiah . . .”

(I looked in my chronological bible and found where Jeremiah’s prophecy was written in Jerusalem and given to Daniel before Nebuchadnezzar captured them and brought them both to Babylon. . .a study text and context for another time.)

SIX POINTS TO HEAR FROM GOD

(gospelherald.com)

Jeremiah chapter 9, we can find six clues to learn how to get answers from our Heavenly Father:

1. LET GOD SPEAK TO YOU (LISTEN)

Texts: Daniel 9:1,2 (John 15:7, Jeremiah 29:10-12; James 4:2) “In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, of Median descent, who was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans— in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, understood from the books the number of years which, according to the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet, must pass before the desolations [which had been] pronounced on Jerusalem would end; and it was seventy years.”

“God always makes the first move. We pray because he gave us his promises. I learn from God’s word. The apostle John tells us about God’s blank check. The context of Daniel 9 is the Torah that says, “If you stay connected to me, and my words stay in your mind, ask anything. (A blank check)” Pastor Rick said.

[“34 Days of seeking God” is Saddleback’s teaching for next year. Sign up by November 21. Six thousand have signed up with Pastor Tom’s (Holliday) Daily Hope.]

“When you pray, God will listen. Two factors apply, our praying, and God’s timing. Man’s responsibility and recognizing God’s sovereignty. [How do we know we are waiting on God, or He is waiting on us?] We have not because we ask not.”

2. FOCUS YOUR ATTENTION ON GOD

Text: Daniel 9:3 (Amos 5:4, Proverbs 8:17; Jeremiah 29:13, #unshakablelife, Hebrews 11:6, Hosea 5:15-6:1, Luke 12:31) 

So I directed my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes.”(AMP)

“So I gave my attention to God. (NIV) I turned my face to God–seeking Him, find Him, He is #unshakable.” Rick told of how when his wife calls him, he physically has to turn his face toward her, and she knows she has his attention. And he put both hands flat on the sides of his face, and slowly turned his head, as if forcing it to turn. (Audience laughed.)

3. EXPRESS YOUR DESIRES WITH EMOTION

Text: Daniel 9:3b, (Jeremian 50:4b-5a) “3 So I directed my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes.”

“God feels very deeply for you–only look at the cross. . .express all your feelings! Emotionally means anger, sadness, happiness, joyfulness–earnestly pleading–loudly, intense; I poured out my heart, baring my soul, I cried out to God!” Ask the way home. . .[don’t tweet, weep!]

4. DEMONSTRATE YOUR SERIOUSNESS

Text: Daniel 9:3c, “So I directed my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes. Even for 34 days to Monday of Thanksgiving Week–fast, wear rough clothes, put ash on your face.”

5. BE THANKFUL FOR GOD’S ANSWER

Text: Daniel 9:4-9 “I prayed to the Lord my God and confessed and said, 

“O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps His covenant and extends lovingkindness toward those who love Him and keep His commandments, we have sinned and committed wrong, and have behaved wickedly and have rebelled, turning away from Your commandments and ordinances. 

“Further, we have not listened to and heeded Your servants the prophets, who spoke in Your name to our kings, our princes and our fathers, and to all the people of the land. 

“Righteousness belongs to You, O Lord, but to us confusion and open shame, as it is this day—to the men of Judah, to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to all Israel, those who are nearby and those who are far away, in all the countries to which You have driven them, because of the treacherous acts of unfaithfulness which they have committed against You.

“O Lord, to us belong confusion and open shame—to our kings, to our princes, and to our fathers—because we have sinned against You. To the Lord our God belong mercy and lovingkindness and forgiveness, for we have rebelled against Him.”

6. HUMBLY CONFESS SIN TO OPEN WINDOW (OF HEAVEN)

Text: Daniel 9:10,  “And we have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God by walking in His laws which He set before us through His servants the prophets.”

Daniel 9:13-14, 16, 18 “Just as it is written in the Law of Moses, all this tragedy has come on us. Yet we have not wholeheartedly begged for forgiveness and sought the favor of the Lord our God by turning from our wickedness and paying attention to and placing value in Your truth.

“Therefore the Lord has kept the tragedy ready and has brought it on us, for the Lord our God is uncompromisingly righteous and openly just in all His works which He does—He keeps His word; and we have not obeyed His voice. O Lord, in accordance with all Your righteous and just acts, please let Your anger and Your wrath turn away from Your city Jerusalem, Your holy mountain. 

“Because of our sins and the wickedness of our fathers, Jerusalem and Your people have become an object of scorn and a contemptuous byword to all who are around us. 

“O my God, incline Your ear and hear; open Your eyes and look at our desolations and the city which is called by Your name; for we are not presenting our supplications before You because of our own merits and righteousness, but because of Your great mercy and compassion.”

 “No pride, but humble confession–humility opens the windows of heaven.  Admit: Spiritual adultery . . . That we ignored You . . . We kept on sinning . . . We sought all nation’s desires.” Pastor said.

CONCLUSION

2 Chronicles 7:14 Promise: The context is prayer God will answer — all elements of Daniel’s prayer included. Pastor prayed for all the church, and then all the church (audience) is led in prayer for our nation.

 “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 I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”

(charisma news.com)

Today, as we were riding to the Earth Fare store, where we were to fill up our water bottles (our water run) I heard these words in my spirit: “If the prayer of a ministry is given to you, and you receive it and pray its words; then you are partnering with them and their mission, and need to openly subscribe and support that ministry.” 

I remembered to record that word, go to their website and subscribe. [Ransomed Heart Ministries]

If you have gotten anything from this humble post, (my notes are sketchy, except for the texts are accurate) Be obedient to God in this posting. He is real. God is really good! You can trust him completely. He wants to show himself perfectly toward you, if you will let him.

Bless you,

Charles 

@wordlifejournal

Expanded Daily Prayer, Promised Soil Blog

TRANSITIONING

The reverse side of the Patriot Crucifix


A crucifix designed for patriotic prayers of Catholic faith


THE PROCESS OF TRANSITIONING IS THE BUSINESS OF THE GOVERNMENT AND THE CHURCH

Last week, our neighborhood lost a grandmother who recently moved here from the northern Midwest just to be with local family members who might help her with transitioning to her eternal resting place. When I met her, wife and I were told basically her long bout with cancer was winding down. Her grandson is another neighbor across the street, a short walk away; I was able to friend him online with LinkedIn.

[Also last week, our country elected a prime candidate to become President. A real answer to prayer! But with it has come extreme  division. Where we live in Alabama, there is rejoicing! But where I hail from in California, there is yelling and screaming of protestors. I believe God called me to leave my home, and dwell in His ‘promised land’. . .]

The neighborly relationship we were given, was short-lived because of her poor health, but it made us both think, what a positive attitude she had. She, Mary is her name, wanted nothing more than to get ready to depart. There was nothing for us to do, really. The sister, friend, and grandchildren, (their parent(s)), were all there to help the process along.

Mary was Catholic, while her children were faithful to a local inter-denominational fellowship, not unlike our own. We are inactive members of the large and growing Family Worship Center, here in North Alabama. We find God’s Christian Faith capturing our attention with the online church. The quality of television viewing, like sports, far exceeds attending.

HAVE YOU NOTICED THE GROWING CATHOLIC TV MINISTRY?

I realize that the Lord has prepared us to be a neighbor here, but it has taken years to get to know our neighbors. It is sad but understandable, as we are leasing the property, while the larger lots are occupied by families that have been here forever. We old folks are transitioning, [dying off] and this is the normal way of life: To do this with grace — mercifully.

We lost the patriarch next door over ten years ago. His sons live next door, and in his wife’s house. The gentleman who transitioned next was the owner of the next house. I did meet them both briefly. The owner of our house is easily ten years older than me. He should be transitioning next. Why do I keep saying this? It is a big event and takes a lifetime to get ready.

The word transition was mentioned to me by none other than Mother Mary Angelica of the Eternal Word Telivision Network (EWTN) out of Birmingham, Alabama. She was highly educated in the Catholic University system and earned her doctorate of Sacred Theology. The Lord led her to develop EWTN. I did hear her one day explain that Christians don’t die, they transition.

MY STUDY OF THEOLOGY OPENED THE CATHOLIC CHURCH DOOR FOR ME

“Mary Immaculate was officially declared the patroness of the United States in 1847. For more than 150 years, Catholics throughout the land have placed themselves and all their hopes, dreams and concerns under the special patronage of the holy Mother of God, whose Immaculate Conception is venerated by the piety of the faithful.”(Catholicdoor.com)

“With the new USA Rosary, we hope Americans far and wide will be strengthened in their resolve to be ever more faithful followers of Jesus, while praying a rosary for the United States of America… Antique silver finish with red and blue enamel on the front of the Crucifix, with a portion of the Pledge Of Allegiance, “One Nation Under God”, inscribed on the reverse side.

” The Centerpiece, also in antique silver finish, presents an image of Our Lady, with a map of the U.S. behind Her. The reverse side presents an inscription of Psalm 33:12. The Hail Mary beads are heavy antique copper-finished medals, with an image of the Immaculate Conception on one side and each state’s individual abbreviation on the other side. The Our Father bead medals present the Miraculous Medal in antique finish.”

At $40.00, that item of religious faith sells like breakfast specials!

THE EUTHANASIA PREVENTION EFFORTS

image

Trends in data for Oregon 1997-2011 Death with Dignity Act (alexschadenberg.blogspot)

Legalized suicide is on the rise. Here is a graph to show how its popularity has grown.

Human beings have choices for exiting their cruel world: 1) Become Catholic [Christian] live to a ripe old age and leave in a civilized manner, or 2) move to Oregon and pay less to take the death pill [legalized euthanasia], or 3) go to the Philippines where they will nail you to your own cross and make you be more understanding of what your life cost Christ. . .let’s see the last first. . .

I cannot even try to explain this, other than a cult movement or heresy. Here is the link so we can read the news bulletin: Public, live, and real crucifixions in the Philippines (Islands). Question, if someone you don’t know, and could care less about, died for you — and a friend told you he was a sinless Jewish rabbi called to redeem the world — even you . . .

You would think about it, and read up on it, to confirm it actually happened; then, you might be convinced that in accordance to Jewish custom, the death of God’s own Son was prophecied and processed as consistently with the well documented law (Torah). You might choose to be a believer — but you would know you don’t need crucifixion!

God’s death by hanging on a Roman cross was planned and pulled off, as an ordained act of the holy Trinity. It took a team of One God in three Persons to redeem the world of original sin. [note, see Genesis 3, Biblegateway.com]. . . So great a love can convince the whole world this redemption is truly available . . . One believer reaching one unbeliever at a time.

NO ADDITIONAL CRUCIFIXIONS NECESSARY!

If you did check out the Genesis 3 link, (last paragraph) you have just seen the source of the Old Covenant record (Torah) about creation. But to help us understand what it means for present day circumstances, also look here at the best online source unbiased commentary, see The Fall of Man.

(Adam and Eve and a female serpent, at the Notre Dame de Paris, Wikipedia.com)

As a result of the fall, those unbelievers who are separated from our loving Father, even if purely due to optional choice–nobody can be forced to believe the Good News is really an offer of personal redemption and genuine deliverance from destruction and eternal punishment for rejecting the Sovereign Creator’s plan that was made before creation.

THEN WHAT OPTION DOES MAN HAVE OTHER THAN REDEMPTION?

The Euthanasia Prevention efforts in Canada and Oregon, are attempting to help the liberal humanist (secular) following to enable life to be ended naturally (linked here as, catholicinsight.com) And Physicians Alliance Againsr Euthanasia (www.vps-npv.ca) The choice to die is suicide. Anyone is free to choose to end his life. But it is morally wrong.

WHY SUICIDE IS WRONG?

The Philosophy of suicide is an interesting read. I wish to link it here for a general comparison because the reasons for with the reasons against is a valid and convincing perspective. Basically, it is emotionally motivated, selfish, and immoral. Especially when liberals deny the sacredness of life, their relative moralism begins to break down. (en.wikipedia.org)

FINALLY, THE CONCEPT OF HUMAN LIFE IS SACRED

The death of a Christian is the best way to transition. Why this is is explained most authentically by holy Scripture. Let me show just three, Psalms 139:14-16; 2Corinthians 5:21; Romans 3:10, 23; 5:8; 6:23; 8:1; and 10:8-10,13.

CONTEMPLATING AMERICA

– HOW TO PRAY FOR AMERICA

“If we think of the gospel as applying only to our eternal destiny, we are short-changing the death of Christ in a dramatic way. According to St. Paul, the gospel isn’t only for the lost; the gospel is also for the saved. It’s not only for when you die but also for every day of your life. In fact, the only way someone can truly live the kind of life Jesus intended is to understand that the gospel is for your past, present, and future. It’s the means by which you are saved, are made holy, and are preserved until the end.” (Romans 15:19) [From Matt Chandler, The Explicit Gospel]

Reviewing last week’s post, which has had a great rave response, (thanks Mom) I would like to openly admit this blog is not mine, but (Father) Frank’s. If you have seen his book, A Worthy Rock, you may have a feel for his insight. I only write what I hear from him. The worldview tweek was about converting a Muslim to become a Catholic Christian, which IS miraculous!

Today, after a long ride over the Appalachian foothills, here in Huntsville, Alabama, I have given up on writing you about prayer. This is something totally different, better. “This is Christian Mysticism” Said Lisa Garr, interviewing David Frenette. “‘It’s about deepening your experience with God.’ Says Fr. David Steindl-Rast, OSB, a Catholic Benedictine monk.”

INCARNATIONAL CONTEMPLATION

picture credit: blog.adw.org

“Father Thomas Keating, Trappist monk, [MA, Transpersonal Counseling Psychology] entered the Order of Cistercians of the Strict Observance, OCSO, in Valley Falls, Rhode Island, in January, 1944. He was appointed Superior of St. Benedict’s Monastery, Snowmass, Colorado, in 1958, and was elected abbot of St. Joseph’s Abbey, Spencer, Massachusetts, in 1961. He returned to Snowmass after retiring as abbot of Spencer in 1981, where he established a program of ten-day intensive retreats in the practice of Centering Prayer, a contemporary form of the Christian contemplative tradition.” She said.

“In 1984, Fr. Thomas Keating along with Gustave Reininger and Edward Bednar, co-founded Contemplative Outreach, Ltd., an international, ecumenical spiritual network that teaches the practice of Centering Prayer and Lectio Divina, a method of prayer drawn from the Christian contemplative tradition. Contemplative Outreach provides a support system for those on the contemplative path through a wide variety of resources, workshops, and retreats.”

BACK TO THE FUTURE MEDITATION

“The Lord called them away from fishing and pointed them to their future . . . to a deeper love.” The above peaceful photo comes from Bishop Charles Pope, and his Community in Mission, ‘Creating a culture of encounter’. Also, Matt Chandler’s The Explicit Gospel, includes, “personal and cosmic levels of meditation.” (LifeWay.com)

So I just took a nap, laying down in the warm fall sunshine with cool breezes and turned on my favorite sacred music stream. The Latin chant was playing and instantly brought tears to my eyes. It is so beautiful to me. Let me try to post YouTube here. Have you heard this? O Nata lux de lumine, O Light born of Light, ‘Jesus redeemer of the world . . .’

“WHERE CHARITY AND LOVE ARE, GOD IS”

Now, this morning, dressed and resting before church, the beautiful Ubi caritas et amor is being played. Wow. I just had an   idea-vision. What if our government believed in washing each other’s feet while in session–so everyone would have to be there? How humbling is that? God would be present at congressional sessions. Strife would leave, as the choir sings . . .

CHURCH TODAY IS DIFFERENT – About Trump in prophecy!

I just followed a more positive path today listening to a dramatic documentary called, Trump: Coming Landslide Ancient Prophecy 2016 narrated by a conspiracy rockstar named Trey Smith. I have linked it here with his strong conclusion of the prayers that are taken out of context, that of 2 Chronicles 7:14, and 14:7, that many think can apply to our present . . .

‘2 Chronicles 14:7 “Now is the time to do it, while the Lord is blessing us with peace because of our obedience to him,” he told his people. “Let us build and fortify cities now, with walls, towers, gates, and bars.” So they went ahead with these projects very successfully.’ [credit: YouTube, Casper McCloud, for editing-in several actual live, prophetic events: Trump is a Cyrus type.]

I agree about prophecy, that it is a spiritual gift, that is to be most desired and sought after, and that “the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. God is not the author of confusion.” (1Corinthians 14:30-33) But, I cannot agree how prophecy is used so dramatically with sound effects and hyper-emphatic, hand gestures. This is just not in God’s power.

PRAY FOR GOD TO DO HIS WILL IN MEN’S HEARTS

The use of bible texts in conspiracy theory is consistent with the trend of the Donald Trump following. If you willingly hear this prophecy presentation, consider how such an edited video is designed to make a certain effective political point. Does your spirit discern God in this? Or can a sense of grave truth be missing. [God speaks from his timeless eternal word.]

After some thought and periods of meditation, oh, and that debate last night, I am feeling somewhat confident that our loving Heavenly Father knows his will is already in place for our nation. Only a few more weeks to go . . . Trust God!

A landslide isn’t necessary. But the gentle giant compared to a little happy woman is a no-brainer to me. [Please see the below linked article, ‘How to pray for America.’]

May the Lord bless and keep you dear friend.

Charles

@wordlifejournal

[Pray for America]

WORLDVIEW TWEEK

Abdullah II bin Al-Hussein, king of Jordan, was interviewed Sunday on 60 Minutes, Wikipedia

DISCERNING THE PROMISE OF OUR NATION’S FUTURE

Understanding differences in philosophical humanity is knowledge worth knowing; especially, when a national election hangs in the balance. Can anyone tell how many worldviews exist in the world? The thought came to me Sunday night during 60 Minutes interview with the king of Jordan, a sovereign country in the Middle East. Then yesterday, when the conversion from Muslim to Christian caught my attention. That is called a worldview tweek we can apply here..

King Abdulah appeared to be a man who understands his worldview as a monarch of an Islamic state. “There are around 1.6 billion Muslims in the world, comprising over 23% of the world’s population. But, the radical, Jihadist  movement is only 2% of Islam. [Islam, ‘submission’, is the religion, while Muslim, ‘believer in Allah’, is the person following Islam.](Google.com)

“Jihad is a worldwide movement against unbelievers — in Muhammad, who began the Islamic religion — or radical intolerance of any other worldview.” King Abdullah said, confident that he is safe in his worldview. The Islamic worldview is his worldview, but the worldviews of the world are not the same. . .as we can define here as Theism.

I managed to do some research to find the best answer — this is not difficult. I learned they are as few as fingers on your hand [– although a division may exist whether right or left]. The king of Jordan represents the same worldview as does Israel, and the Vatican, and every Christian because all are theists — although worship different gods, but agree one — single supreme being exists. The worldviews: Naturalism, Pantheism, Theism, Spiritism, and Pluralism — simple. (Dennis McCallum, Tyndale, tgcresourses.com)

THE BIG PICTURE

Professor Carol Hill says, “By ‘worldview’ I mean the basic way of interpreting things and events that pervades a culture so thoroughly that it becomes a culture’s concept of reality — what is good, what is important, what is sacred, what is real. Worldview is more than culture, even though the distinction between the two can sometimes be subtle. It extends to perceptions of time and space, of happiness and well-being. The beliefs, values, and behaviors of a culture stem directly from its worldview.” (University of Glasgow, Scotland, http://www.gla.ac.uk)

A good definition is worth a thousand words. According to the Dr. Hill’s definition, each of the five worldviews are further broken into categories in common that help complete the comparison of concepts: i.e. God plus truth equals reality, etc..

OUR FOCUS TODAY IS A COMING ELECTION

We are not electing a king, or a queen, but probably greater — the top leader of the free world. King Abdullah was appointed by his dying father, since he was the crown prince. In just a few weeks we citizens will elect one of the two candidates that have earned their place. They are vastly different, and the consequences of choosing wrongly is huge. One represents theism, while the other represents atheism, naturalism (modernism) or pluralism (postmodernism). 

So, with this little research, how can our country be changed for the better? My conclusion is prayer. Only God can enable a person to wakeup to revealed knowledge and understanding — to see the error of his way — and stop, turn around, and begin their new and improved direction . . . And not just prayer with words, but prayer of the heart, even ecstatic prayer.

“The dialogical character of prayer is most fully realized in the so-called passive or mystical prayer, in which the divine motion is in the foreground of consciousness and divine love stirs the heart, and the loving majesty of God manifests itself in infused contemplation. Though the prayer is called passive, man is not purely passive in it. On the contrary, one is never so completely and utterly active as when God moves him by the graces of mystical prayer. But in this mystical experience the “divine partner in the dialogue” is in the foreground rather than the human response. In mystical prayer, the soul experiences the life in grace and from grace as a gift of divine love. It is the experience of faith in its most exalted realization.” (Bernard Haring, Christian contemplation, Wikipedia)

LEARNING CONTEMPLATIVE PRAYER

To begin with, I thought a logical conclusion might be made from learning the complexity of worldviews, but no longer. Now we hear of dialogical character of prayer is a level above what we are doing. Most worldviews, or half, have prayers; the theists, and the pantheists. But the naturalists (modernist) and the pluralists (postmodernist) don’t — and cannot pray.

The reality of Christian prayer is that it changes things. 

“Don’t allow discouragement over unanswered prayer to cause you to doubt that God has heard you. If you have received Jesus, and pray in his name, then God hears you and something is happening whether you see it or not. In fact, every time you pray, you are advancing God’s purposes for you. Without prayer, the full purpose God has for you can’t happen.” [Stormie Omartian, 7 Prayers that will change your life forever, Christianitytoday.com (confession, salvation, release, submission, praise, promise, and blessing.)]

ONLY GOD CAN CHANGE THE ATHEIST HEART  

All the worldview issues of our nation can be humbly placed in the Father’s hands. As followers of Jesus Christ, we are kings and priests by faith in his word and his will. We live to please the Father, and to grow closer to him and his church. If it is his will that our nation is led into an atheistic government, then, so be it. The end will just come sooner.

When King Abdullah was asked his opinion of the progress of his nation, he said. “We have 160,000 children in school, unemployment under 50%, over 9 million unemployed, the world has a stake in the Jordanian economy. We call the Jihadists outlaws — a sect that splintered from Islam in the first century. Only 2% of Islam are jihadist.

“Refugees are stranded. Jordan endures because the price of failure is much too high. We understand worldview differences. We pride ourselves with confidence, of who we are in our reality, and our struggle keeps us united to thrive.” (He was in military uniform as a major general, while the troops yelled, “Long live the king!” “Long live the king!“)

A SECULAR MUSLIM IS CONVERTED TO CATHOLICISM – The Tweek

“Glancing at life’s rear-view mirror, there is always a temptation to impose more cohesion on one’s thoughts than they possessed at the time. I’m no doubt doing that now. But if I were to boil down my worldview as a young man, before I came to the faith, to a single idea, it would be this: man’s place in the world is unsettled; we are homeless.” -Solrab Ahmari, My Journey from Tehran to Rome

There is hope for Muslims to see the light. A young secular Muslim from Iran, Sohrab Ahmari, a Wall Street Journal editor, is reported, by the Catholic Herald this week, to have become a Christian. You can read the testimonial here, which explains his Philosophy college major, understanding his worldview needed tweeking, and why Catholicism was his choice.

An atheist is like my father was, he lived a long rewarding, moral life as an atheist. He learned it from his father, who learned from his father. So, when he died, he went to be with his fathers. I was unable to influence him otherwise. Our federal government is set in it’s atheisic worldview too. When God changes our government, through a miraculous election of a conservative theist, he will get all the glory for it.

The king of Jordan is in the perfect time and place for his own powerful revelation from Elohim God (not Allah). We can pray for him just like we are praying for Israel and Jerusalem. Peace! King Abdulah is well educated and very close to realizing that his reality needs a tweek. Just as editor Ahmari discovered Jesus is King of kings, so can king Abdulah.

May Adonai bless and keep you,

Charles

@wordlifejournal

Please consider former posts about prayer:

ETERNAL REST 

Video

img_0503

“Introit and Kyrie” by YouTube and chant blog.blogspot.com

AN APPEAL TO HEAVEN

A quality music video linked here

The lyrics of this beautiful video describe  an ancient mass or Requiem (Missa pro defunctis) of which is a long 13th century hymn Dies Irae (by Thomas of Celano) interpreted. A requiem mass, the words are fixed and are set to the Gregorian chant but instead of Miserere nobis, ‘Have mercy on us’, Give them rest is used,  [“Dona eis requiem“]. (Sung beautifully in Latin.)

Text: Psalm 37:7-9 Rest in the Lord; wait patiently for him to act. Don’t be envious of evil men who prosper. Stop your anger! Turn off your wrath. Don’t fret and worry—it only leads to harm. For the wicked shall be destroyed, but those who trust the Lord shall be given every blessing. (Biblegateway.com/Message)

[You may ask, Charles, why is this so significant to you now? And I have to admit, that following last week’s study of the great mysteries of the church–which we all need to know, to receive the Gospel properly–my graceful wakeup was only to share the beauty. Heaven is calling! Can we even imagine heavenly beauty? And don’t we want everyone to .be there?]

Requiem Aeturnum

“Eternal rest give unto them, O Lord

And let perpetual light shine upon them

A hymn, O God, becometh Thee in Zion

And a vow shall be paid to thee in Jerusalem

Hear my prayer

All flesh shall come before you

Eternal rest give unto the dead, O Lord

And let perpetual light shine upon them

Eternal rest give unto them, O Lord

And let perpetual light shine upon them.

Short choral requiem mass, hymnary.org

Kylie Eleison

Lord, have mercy on us.

Christ, have mercy on us.

Lord, have mercy on us.

Dies Irae

[Today, talking over coffee, Viv (wife) shared with me about her friends’ husbands passed away so differently. One called her as usual to catch up, usually monthly, and said as an aside, ‘Oh, Charles is dead.’ Viv asked, ‘When?’ And her friend told her that ‘It was two weeks ago.’ ‘Why didn’t you tell me sooner?’ Viv asked.  ‘I didn’t feel I needed to.’ . . . Another friend called her in the very hour of her husband’s death, and Viv said she was sitting there looking at his still warm body. In both instances, the deaths were expected and planned for, but the friend known longest, was not the closest.]

This day, this day of wrath

shall consume the world in ashes,

as foretold by David and the Sibyl.

What trembling there will be

When the judge shall come

to weigh everything strictly!

The trumpet, scattering its awful sound

Across the graves of all lands

Summons all before the throne.

Death and nature shall be stunned

When mankind arises

To render account before the judge.

The written book shall be brought

In which all is contained

Whereby the world shall be judged

When the judge takes his seat

all that is hidden shall appear

Nothing will remain unavenged.

What shall I, a wretch, say then?

To which protector shall I appeal

When even the just man is barely safe?

[This summer, I read in a newspaper that both parents of six children were killed in a tragic accident locally. My heart was stopped to make note of their names even to lift up to God, who is the Author and Finisher of all life. I am concerned enough to understand something about such an event. With Him there are no accidents. Both parents are in heaven.]

King of awful majesty

You freely save those worthy of salvation

Save me, found of pity

Remember, gentle Jesus

that I am the reason for your time on earth,

do not cast me out on that day

Seeking me, you sank down wearily,

you saved me by enduring the cross,

such travail must not be in vain.

Righteous judge of vengeance,

award the gift of forgiveness

before the day of reckoning.

I groan as one guilty,

my face blushes with guilt;

spare the suppliant, O God.

Thou who didst absolve Mary [Magdalen]

and heard the prayer of the thief

hast given me hope, too.

//

INTERMISSION (View of the throne here)

//

My prayers are not worthy,

but Thou, O good one, show mercy,

lest I burn in everlasting fire,

Give me a place among the sheep,

and separate me from the goats,

placing me on Thy right hand.

When the damned are confounded

and consigned to keen flames,

call me with the blessed.

I pray, suppliant and kneeling,

a heart as contrite as ashes;

take Thou my ending into Thy care.

That day is one of weeping,

on which shall rise again from the ashes

the guilty man, to be judged.

Therefore spare this one, O God,

merciful Lord Jesus:

Give them rest. Amen.

 

//
Domine Jesu (Offertorium)

Lord Jesus Christ, king of glory,

deliver the souls of all the faithful departed

from the pains of Hell

and the bottomless pit.

Deliver them from the jaws of the lion,

lest hell engulf them,

lest they be plunged into darkness;

but let the holy standard-bearer Michael

lead them into the holy light,

as once you promised to Abraham

and to his seed.

Lord, in praise we offer you

Sacrifices and prayers,

accept them on behalf of those

who we remember this day:

Lord, make them pass

from death to life,

as once you promised to Abraham

and to his seed.

//

Sanctus

Holy, holy, holy

Lord God of hosts!

Heaven and earth are full of your glory.

Hosanna in the highest!

//

Benedictus

Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord.

Hosanna in the highest!

//

Angus Dei

O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world,

Grant them rest.

O Lamb of God, that takest away the sins of the world,

Grant them eternal rest.

[Another summer event involved the drowning death of a high school dancing team member. She participated in a recreational activity where the team launched a number of individual boats, kaiaks, for an expedition along a local river. Somehow the young woman was lost, was capsized and drowned. A prayer vigil was made for the family and friends.]

Lux aeterna

Let everlasting light shine on them, O Lord

with your saints for ever:

for you art merciful.

Eternal rest grant them, O Lord;

and let perpetual light shine upon them.

With your saints for ever

for Thou art merciful.

//
Libera Me (Responsory)

Deliver me, O Lord, from eternal death

on that awful day

when the heavens and earth shall be shaken

and you shall come to judge the world by fire.

I am seized with fear and trembling

until the trial is at hand and the wrath to come:

when the heavens and earth shall be shaken.”

(credit: Requiem Web, Google)

//__________________//

[I heard this prayer chanted by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir listening to their streaming app when napping, I instantly sat up and began to research the meaning of the prayer. Wow, I heard a friend’s blog about death and felt I might comment. . .but there were no words.

Do we really know what we face in death? Here is a clearer picture. I can pray this and share this.

The last post of our theology401 blog, was also inspired by last things. Called, The Four Forces of Eternal Nature, it became the hub of all 59 posts preceding it. And dated a year ago, 9-22-15, it will be featured by my Facebook wall this week.] (Hub indexes were completed.)

The value of this material is a great deal more than than casual social blogs-stuff. But because my days are getting short, When you hear that I have passed, you can know I have been processed up. And this may well not be our last prayer.]

May Adonai bless and keep you. (In the spirit of this prayer)

Charles

@wordlifejournal Tweet me here!

TEAM PRAYER

GENERATING PERSONAL SOCIAL MEDIA CONNECTIONS FOR CHURCH COMMUNITY SUPPORT

[Photo credit Wikipedia, Sergei Frolov]


(How much prayer can a prayer team pray if a prayer team could be team prayers?)

GETTING STARTED

This week is unique, God has given me a job through my devoted wife that has turned out to be a treasure. Our day’s inspirations seemed to collide. She with her restoring of our home’s wall hangings, and my leading to research ‘dimensions of prayer’.

So she came into my coffee hour all smiles and showing me the frame of Martin Wiscombe’s flower-poster renderings that has begun to peel up.

“I have a project for you!” She said.

And I thought at first, oh-oh, what has she done now — but because of her light attitude, I was accepting and open to helping her. The pair of prints are something we found in one of the many Sample House stores in Dallas Ft. Worth, when we had the resources to invest in such things. (Pastor Rick Warren, recently touched on marriage relationship-concerns to fix.)

 Martin Wiscombe still life that matches the two we have only frames differ

These pictures have hung significantly in the dining room corner over a chest of drawers used for serving and storage of plates and pots — for the entire 15 years we’ve been here in Alabama — everything else seemed to get moved around.
MEANWHILE BACK TO MY INSPIRATION

I had heard from God what I thought was original. ‘Look up dimension of prayer‘ which is what I was reading about, and got the point of it well enough that I might take the frame and go to my workbench in the shed, thinking, ‘There are seven dimensions of prayer, according to James 5:13-16.‘ (walterbright.org)

I was all set to meditate on God’s Word, while working a restoration of a valuable frame. [If I think like a monk and work like a monk, then I must learn to pray like a monk.]

Last week’s post was an effort to chrystalize pastor Rick Warren’s sermon because God spoke to me about prayer, powerfully. ‘Find 4 people who are available to pray with you.’ (In the sense that I don’t have them yet.)

So I selected them and did message them, but got only two to respond. My thoughts were thankful for the one of the four as I entered the shed, opening both doors. Then, I turned to the frame rework. (one plus one out of four is not bad. It is a start.)

I tried Goo gone, carborator solvent, and gasoline on the glued covering, and nothing worked like I had hoped this might be easy. Then I wipped out my trusty Leatherneck Wave (knife-tool) and started scraping. It was slow but it worked. Then I began to meditate on the prayer ‘dimensions’. [This knife-tool blade is surgical steel and I am alert to maintaining its sharpness.]

The first dimension is praise.‘ I thought as I scraped. By the time I thought through all seven, I had scraped off the paper on the back of the frame. Well, okay, this was going to take all day. But I noticed something unusual . . .

Scraping through the paper, and scraping off the adhesive, there remained an ebony black wood that was not phased by my scraping. My knife was sharp and it took an under-scraping to clear up the character of the base wood. It is hard enough to resist any scratching. And the grain is very faint. So I looked it up on Google with my phone . . . and learned, it is an African Blackwood: Rare and very hard.

I felt instantly this project was well worth the effort to rework-restoration. Only my hands are tender for the excessive use of elbow grease (Scraping with a vertical sharp edge, back and forth, at a pace quick enough to produce a reasonable rate of progress. Also my thoughts of dimensional prayer were easily reviewed again and again.

JAMES 5:13-16 MESSAGE VERSION

This version of my text is the easiest reading from what I think is the best paraphrased translation. Let me explain how my mind came to thinking of this. Personally, I have a weak left eye. It was a birth defect that was corrected somewhat when I was six. This makes me unable to have depth perception. So I see everything in only two dimensions not three.

Applying spacial concept into a spiritual concept is not perfect, but helps understanding somewhat. A third dimension of prayer cannot exist without the first two. Two dimensional prayer is thanksgiving and praise (verse 13) with authority (verse 14a) , this gets us into the gate and into God’s court. (Psalms 100:4) [Authority is Scripture plus Church tradition, and is the source of the next dimension.]

THREE DIMENSIONAL PRAYER

Notice the text explains, “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders (ordained leaders) of the church, and let them pray over him, ANOINTING him with oil in the name (Authority) of the Lord.” [verse 14]

Dimensions of praise . . . authority . . .  and anointing, all three are foundational to the church ministry.

And this is only three dimensional! God and his church are involved here . . . so far. What is missing is explained as stepping into the “Twilight zone” — as the fourth and fifth dimensions.  Healing requires these: Faith and confession.

THE FOURTH AND FIFTH DIMENSION

And the prayer of FAITH shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he has committed sins they will be forgiven him.” [verse 15] and, “CONFESS your faults one to another and pray for one another, that you may be healed . . .“[verse 16a]

This text tells us how the depth perception of three dimensions of prayer is focusing on provisions needed. The purpose of our spiritual life is able to become clearer, we are called to do something. Prayer is focused powerfully, like a beam of cleansing. Like a surgeon’s scalpel, to cut out the bad and show forth the good . . . to refinish and reveal quality.

OUR OBJECTIVE – THE WORK OF RIGHTEOUSNESS

The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.” (verse 16b NAS)

We can conclude with this. The last two dimensions we are talking about is work and righteousness. Since we already understand how this is God’s work — the ‘finished work of the cross’, getting ourselves right with God always includes dealing with sin. Jesus prayed using minimum words of command and sin or evil departed. Jesus’ Church is the same.

My greatest sins have occurred with family relationships. My wife sees me differently than I see myself. I write what I believe God the Holy Spirit is saying. Being obedient to God is key here. It is not the same for everyone. My pride has to step back for a while. But my wife has her own opinions, she is not always in agreement. [Is this not uncommon?]

“Where there is love there is no labor.” (Benedictine Sisters, novena to the Holy Spirit, day 3)

THE CHURCH’S BETROTHED HUSBAND MODEL

“One reason [that someone’s husband is flawed and his wife seeks his transformation] is the function of prayer in the relationship between Christ and his Church. A wife relates to her husband the way the church should relate to Christ. The church prays to Christ–or to God the Father through Christ.” Said John Piper, author of This Momentary Marriage.

“When the church prays to her Husband, she asks him to do things a certain way. If we are sick, we ask him for healing. If we are hungry, we ask for our daily bread. If we are lost we ask for directions. And so on. Since we believe in the absolute sovereignty of Christ, to govern all things, this means we look at the present situation that he has ordained, and we ask him to change it.

“I am only drawing out an analogy here, not an exact comparison. The church never confronts Jesus with his imperfections. He has no imperfections. But we do seek from him changes in the situation he has brought about. That is what petitionary prayer is. So wives on this analogy, will ask their husbands to change some ways he is doing things.”  (US Copyright fair use credit Crossway.org)

My marriage is not yet a prayer team, as you may assume; but with professor Piper’s contribution here, there is hope we each can learn team prayer principles. I needed to understand the analogy, because I don’t have to feel threatened. And, my wife can know her prayers are church sanctioned. She is praying for me to become more considerate and loving.

REWORK A PEALING FRAME TO REVEAL DIVINE CHARACTER

The work of prayer happens because of faith and confession. Do you desire to pray? I recommend for you to commit to praying up to a tithe (tenth) of your day. But that may not work for you. It is no sacrifice if it doesn’t cost you something. I have asked for the Lord to show me how to do it, an hour at waking, an hour before nap, and half-hour at bedtime.

As I became open to learn the Rosary, and associated Novenas (Latin for nine, prayer for nine days). The next development was to seek who is the patron saint for those I learn needs focused prayer. This has built an extensive prayerlist which includes family, relatives (younger ones), friends, followers, pastors, priests, sisters, government leaders, and journalists.

[“No person is greater than his prayer life.” Leonard Ravenhill]

Bottom line: a team prayer describes a work within a person’s heart. To be able to humbly kneel and consistently say the words God shows you to pray for those he shows you to pray for. To begin this, requires a simple commitment. As St. Ignatius of Loyola, patron saint of prayer warriors, prayed, Suscipe (Latin, Receive); thankfully trusting for the best:

“Dearest Lord, teach me to be generous; teach me to serve You as You deserve; to give and not to count the cost, to fight and not to heed the wounds, to toil and not to seek for rest, to labor and not to ask for reward save that of knowing I am doing your will.” (Catholic.org/prayers)

Until next time, may the Lord bless and keep you,

Charles

Please tweet me @wordlifejournal

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