Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Test Post

Test

Marsha's Musings: Who Has the Power? (1 Peter 3:22 KJV)




Who is gone into heaven, and is on the right hand of God; angels and authorities and powers being made subject unto him. (1 Peter 3:22 KJV)

This is speaking of Jesus and the Father. Here we have two persons of the Trinity represented.  God the Son and God the Father. 

Who has the power to make angels, authorities and powers subject to Him? Only God does.  This is comforting to know.  In a day when everything around the world is running amuck, God is in control. He can stop it if He chooses. If He doesn't, He has a plan and reason for it.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Marsha's Musings: Purgatory and Baptismal regeneration?? (1 Peter 3:18-21 KJV)




For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: By which also he went and preached unto the spirits in prison; Which sometime were disobedient, when once the longsuffering of God waited in the days of Noah, while the ark was a preparing, wherein few, that is, eight souls were saved by water. The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ: (1 Peter 3:18-21 KJV)

I have always wondered about this passage that talks about Jesus preaching to the disobedient spirits in prison.  Some like to say this proves there is a second chance...a purgatory of sorts. After some research, it made more sense.

You have to take the verse within the whole context of the section talking about the days of Noah. Christ preached by the Holy Spirit through Noah to the spirits of disobedient people of that time.  They did not repent and they are now "in prison" (Hell). This passage is not saying Christ went to prison and preached to them but rather stating that He preached to them who are now in prison. During the time Noah took to build the ark, God was longsuffering with them, waiting, giving them a chance to repent, preaching to them by the Spirit through Noah. 

We know from the Bible message as a whole that once a person dies without Christ, there are no second chances.  So it makes no sense that Christ would go to "prison" and preach to those who have rejected Him. For what purpose?  

The other error that is often made with this passage is baptismal regeneration...the idea that baptism saves us.  People who put that spin on this are ignoring the fact that it says, "The like figure whereunto even baptism doth also now save us (not the putting away of the filth of the flesh, but the answer of a good conscience toward God,) by the resurrection of Jesus Christ:"

Baptism is a figure symbolizing our salvation just like the ark symbolizes salvation.  We must not read more in to Scripture than what is already there.

The main and most important point of the whole passage is that Christ suffered ONCE for our sins to bring us to God, and that baptism is the answer of a good conscience toward God.  Everything we do should be done with a good conscience toward God.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Marsha's Musings: When You Suffer For Doing Right (1 Peter 3:17-18 KJV)

 


For it is better, if the will of God be so, that ye suffer for well doing, than for evil doing. For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit: (1 Peter 3:17-18 KJV)

I heard this letter read by Pastor Saeed's wife on the radio today. It illustrates this passage related to suffering for well doing.   His letter is so encouraging!  

My Dearest Rebekka Grace,
HAPPY 8th BIRTHDAY! 
You are growing so fast and becoming more beautiful every day. I praise God for His 
faithfulness to me every day as I watch from a distance through the prison walls and
see pictures and hear stories of how you are growing both spiritually and physically. 
Oh how I long to see you.
I know that you question why you have prayed so many times for my return and yet
I am not home yet. Now there is a big WHY In your mind you are asking: WHY Jesus 
isn’t answering your prayers and the prayers of all of the people around the world 
praying for my release and for me to be home with you and our family. 
The answer to the WHY is WHO. WHO is control? LORD JESUS CHRIST is in control.
I desire for you to learn important lessons during these trying times. Lessons that 
you carry now and for the rest of your life. The answer to the WHY is WHO. The 
confusion of “WHY has all of this happened?” and “WHY your prayers are not 
answered yet” is resolved with understanding WHO is in control…LORD JESUS 
CHRIST, our GOD!
God is in control of the whole world and everything that is happening in it is for His 
good purpose, for His glory, and will be worked out for our good (Romans 8:28).
Jesus allows me to be kept here for His glory. He is doing something inside each of 
us and also outside in the world. People die and suffer for their Christian faith all 
over the world and some may wonder why? But you should know the answer of 
WHY is WHO. It is for Jesus. He is worth the price. And He has a plan to be glorified 
through our lives.
I want you to read the book of Habakkuk. He had the same question as you. But see
that the Lord answered him in Habakkuk 2:3, “the vision comes and doesn’t delay on 
time, wait for it.” Mommy and I always had big desires to serve Jesus and had great 
vision to be used for His Kingdom and for His Glory. So today we pay a cost because 
God, who created us, called us to that. 
And so I want you to know that the answer to all of your prayers is that God is in 
control, and He knows better than us what He is doing in our lives and all around 
the world. 
Therefore declare as Daniel and his friends Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego did
in Daniel 3: 17-18! 
17 If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the 
burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. 18 But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will 
we worship the gold image which you have set up.”
And learn and declare as Habakkuk did that even if we do not get the result that we 
are looking for, God is still good and we WILL praise His Holy Name. 
Habakkuk 3:17-19 
17 Though the fig tree may not blossom, Nor fruit be on the vines; Though 
the labor of the olive may fail, And the fields yield no food; Though the flock 
may be cut off from the fold, And there be no herd in the stalls—
18 Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will joy in the God of my salvation.
19 The Lord God is my strength; He will make my feet like deer’s feet, And He 
will make me walk on my high hills.
Then my dear beloved daughter Rebekka Grace, I pray God will bring me back home 
soon. But if not, we will still sing together as Habakkuk did HALLELUJAH, either 
separated by prison walls or together at home.
So, let Daddy hear you sing a loud Hallelujah that I can hear all the way here in the 
prison! 
I am so proud of you my sweet courageous daughter. 
Glory to God forever, Amen. 
Kisses and Blessings,
Daddy
* Written on or around September 10, 2014 – Pastor Saeed wrote this letter to his 
daughter for her 8th Birthday, which was on September 12, 2014. Though in the letter 
Pastor Saeed expresses his fondness for his daughter Rebekka, he has also continually 
expressed the depth of his longing to return home to his wife, Naghmeh, and his sixyear-old
son, Jacob. This is the third birthday of Rebekka’s Pastor Saeed has missed 
while he languishes in an Iranian prison for his faith.


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Marsha's Musings: Do Not Be Afraid of Their Terror (1 Peter 3:13-16 KJV)

And who is he that will harm you, if ye be followers of that which is good? But and if ye suffer for righteousness' sake, happy are ye: and be not afraid of their terror, neither be troubled; But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: and be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you with meekness and fear: Having a good conscience; that, whereas they speak evil of you, as of evildoers, they may be ashamed that falsely accuse your good conversation in Christ. (1 Peter 3:13-16 KJV)

This is so appropriate considering the terror that we are seeing carried out ever day over the Internet, news and other sources all over our world. We live in hostile times.  1 Peter is a book for our times. 

Many Christians and others are being persecuted and martyred because they don't believe the "right" things.  Ultimately, they can not harm us spiritually. Our home is in heaven and God will protect our souls until He takes us there.  We may suffer in this body and even be killed for what we believe, but ultimately, they cannot kill our soul.

We are not to fear their terror.  It can't take our souls from the hand of God. One day, at the judgement, they will be ashamed before God for falsely accusing us as evil doers. Then they will have to deal with the wrath of God.

No, rather than being afraid of their terror, we are told to sanctify the Lord God in our hearts and be ready to give an answer for the hope that we have in meekness and fear (awe and reverence for God). In other words stay close to God...do all that you do with a conscience toward God and don't be surprised if you are met with hostility for it. 

But I say unto you which hear, Love your enemies, do good to them which hate you, Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you. (Luke 6:27-28 KJV)

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Marsha's Musings: God Answers Prayer (1 Peter 3:12 KJV)





For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil. (1 Peter 3:12 KJV)

God hears the prayers of His people, those who are righteous because Christ's righteousness covers them.  When we pray He hears and answers according to His will.  Sometimes He says, "Yes". Sometimes He says, "Wait".  Other times He says, "No".

We Christians often forget, that like an earthly father, God sometimes says "no" or "wait".  We might begin to doubt Him at these times.  

God has a plan and a purpose. Sometimes His plan includes suffering or death as we have seen in the Middle East in recent months. Many of the followers of Jesus in Bible times were killed for their faith.  We don't understand why a loving God would allow such things but we do know what the ultimate outcome will be. And we know that His people who are die no longer suffer but have gone to their reward.

These shall make war with the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them: for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful. (Revelation 17:14 KJV)

The Lamb wins!!!  We know that while the wicked may seem to prevail now, God will overcome them.



Monday, September 22, 2014

Feeling Incapable to Do the Job God Has Called You To?


I found great encouragement in this today.

Marsha's Musings: Pursue Peace. (1 Peter 3:10-11 KJV)



For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. (1 Peter 3:10-11 KJV)

It goes without saying, that life is far more pleasant for everyone when we all seek peace with one another and avoid speaking evil of others.

I remember being a guest at someone's house one day and there was a picture of a gal on the fridge. I don't remember exactly what was said but a friend of the person whose house I was at saw the picture and proceeded to verbally shred the person in the photo. The person whose house I was at chimed right in on the verbal carnage.  I was left standing there speechless and awkward.  None of the women involved are Christians, but it did illustrate to me the opposite of refraining my lips from evil and the opposite of speaking no guile.

When you speak evil of others, it is apt to come back around to the one it is spoken of.  This is not peace seeking.  Rather it has the potential for exploding in your face.   I need to take this scripture to heart and practice it.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Marsha's Musings: You Were Called to This ( 1 Peter 3:8-9 KJV)



Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous: Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. (1 Peter 3:8-9 KJV)

This is really straight forward.  There is not much to be added. But there is one phrase or idea that is repeated twice in 1 Peter, in relation to suffering wrongfully. 

For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: (1 Peter 2:20-21 KJV)

Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. (1 Peter 3:9 KJV)

This idea constantly comes back to my mind whenever I feel like I'm being treated unfairly.  When I start to get upset, the still small voice says, "You were called to this."  

It doesn't make the situation any more pleasant or easy, but it does help me to deal with it a little better if I remember this is what God has called me to.  He has called me to respond, to being treated wrongfully, with grace.  Even if I'm not necessarily treated wrongfully,  but rather taken for granted and I begin to chafe, I am reminded, "You were called to this."

God put me where I am. He put you where you are.  He has called you to be where you are at this moment in life.  That is not to say, that if you are in a physically abusive situation that you enable the abuser by staying there. No, by all means leave the situation! If running for your life is what you have to do, then do it...you are called to this (to run) as well.

Scripture says elsewhere that we are to do all to the glory of God.  We are called to endure being treated wrongfully with patience.  You see, our reward isn't here on earth. Our reward is in heaven waiting for us.  

...an inheritance incorruptible, and undefiled, and that fadeth not away, reserved in heaven for you, (1 Peter 1:4 KJV)

Friday, September 19, 2014

Marsha's Musings: Likewise You Husbands.... (1 Peter 3:7 KJV)



Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. (1 Peter 3:7 KJV)

This word, 'likewise' is interesting.  I noticed that Peter used it when speaking to the wives.  He said, "Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands...."  Then in this passage to the husbands, again, he says, "Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge..."

Likewise means "equally, in the same way.  In the same way as what?  We have to go back to 1 Peter 2 to find that out.  

For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. (1 Peter 2:19-24 KJV)

Wait a minute, Peter!  This is talking about suffering wrongfully!  What does that have to do with the marriage relationship?  Think about it.  When  you bring two fallen human beings together, to live under the same roof, who each have had different upbring, different personalities, different ideas about how things should be done etc, someone at some point is going to feel they are suffering wrongly.  And so Peter says, "Likewise..."  We are to follow Christ's example in committing ourselves to God and being patient while doing good to our spouse.  So Peter says, "Likewise..." to the husband as well as the wife.  It applies equally to both.

Women are different than men.  I don't think I need to go into all the details, but suffice it to say, we are different. Peter tells the men to dwell with them according to knowledge.  Men, learn all you can about how women are different. Learn what a woman's needs are for spiritual leadership, security, tenderness, physcial touch outside the bedroom without sexual strings attached for performance later, notice of her efforts around the house & cooking meals, offers of help from time to time with chores,  etc.

Honor your wife for who she is.  Show your kids, if you have any, what she is worth to you and what she contributes to the family.  Help your kids appreciate their mom.

Peter talks about the woman being the weaker vessel and the women's "lip" movement has really jumped all over that because they want to be considered equal to men in every way.  I'm not sure what the big deal is.  They seem to ignore the physical biological facts.  Women are different than men. Period.  Study any human biology/anatomy book and you will see it.  The female body is different and a little bit weaker than the male counterpart in structure and design. 

The whole bit about the husband being head of the wife in Scripture has nothing to do with him lording it over her, demanding service and generally being a tyrant.  It has everything to do with being a leader in the marriage relationship and being considerate of what the wife feels and thinks and taking her into consideration when making decisions that affect both.  

We are equals in Christ.  We are both heirs together of the grace of life found in Jesus Christ and the husband  is to live with his wife with this knowledge.  

Their prayers will not be hindered when these principles are followed.  If these principles are not followed it leads to difficulties in the relationship and prayers are hindered because there is no agreement.  How can you REALLY pray together if there are underlying issues hindering the relationship?

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Marsha's Musings: Nagging=Taking Responsibility that Belongs to Someone Else (1 Peter 3:1-6 KJV)


Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement. (1 Peter 3:1-6 KJV)

Okay, now Peter has left practical Christian living and has gone to meddling!  At least that is what some of us would think.  This is extremely practical advice, if only it was easy to live by it!

It's way too easy for us women to nag our husbands.  Two ways to know if you are nagging are these:
1. He doesn't listen to you.  He ignores you.
2. He gets agitated with you when you talk.

Ouch!

Basically, Peter is saying that if the husband is not obeying the Word of God, it is not our responsibility to nag him into obeying it.  That will never work.  Basically, when we nag about anything,  it's because we are trying to take responsibility for someone else's actions or lack thereof and we women have far too many things on our plates to take on someone else's responsibilities as well.

Simply put, it's not our responsibility to see that our husband grows spiritually, reads his Bible, prays, attends church and does what he is supposed to do.  These things are his responsibility and our nagging about it will not help.  Well, it might help for the short term just to get you off his back, but the heart issue won't be fixed.

So Peter is telling us that if we live our lives with a conscience toward God, being in subjection to our husband's wishes, with a meek and quiet spirit, trusting God to do His perfect will that the husband may be won by this behavior to be obedient to the Word of God.  

Notice the word may.  It doesn't say he will be won, but that he may be won.  What does this mean?  It means that we are to obey God in this behavior regardless of whether the outcome is favorable to our desires or not.  Our obedience is not to be conditional.  Take responsibility for your actions alone.  Your husband's actions are not your responsibility, so stop trying to make them your responsibility by nagging him.

This passage doesn't apply only to those whose husbands do not obey the word of God.  It applies to all of us who are married.  Even women who have husbands who are the perfect spiritual leaders in the home and that are easy to submit to have problems at times deferring to their husband's wishes and leadership.  We are all prone to nagging at one time or another.  It can be just nagging him as we leaves for work in the morning..."Don't forget the...  Remember to do...  Be sure you get..."  We often treat our husbands like we do the kids.  Yes, we are supposed to be their helpmeet, assisting them to make their life easier as the provider for the household, but we need to find the balance between a friendly reminder and nagging.  We need to find the balance between letting them take responsibility for things and our fear that they might mess up and make us look bad.

Sometimes it's a delicate dance to know when you have left off being helpful and encouraging and gone to nagging.  The key, I think is the quiet and meek spirit.  If you feel the fear building up within that if you don't "remind" him of this or that, that you might be imbarrassed somehow, then you are probably nagging.  If your reminder is simply to help make life a little easier for him and he appreciates the reminder, then you are being a helpmeet.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Marsha's Musings: Justice versus Fairness (1 Peter 2:20-25 KJV)



For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. For even hereunto were ye called: because Christ also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that ye should follow his steps: Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth: Who, when he was reviled, reviled not again; when he suffered, he threatened not; but committed himself to him that judgeth righteously: Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls. (1 Peter 2:20-25 KJV)


Do you ever feel like life is unfair?  Were you in line for a promotion and the boss played favorites and promoted his buddy over you?  Did you marry your highschool sweetheart with dreams of how wonderful married life would be only to find it was less than desirable?  Have you been let go from your job because you are a Christian and refuse to go out and get drunk with your superiors?  Has a friend or family member suffered serious illness or injury at no fault of their's?  Look at the slaughter of Christians and others in the Middle East. Yes, we can say life is unfair from our perspective.

But wait.  If we expect and demand fairness what would that look like?  Was Jesus treated fairly?  No. If life was all fair what affect would that have on our salvation?  As sinners we are all deserving of Hell.  If life were fair that's where we would all go.  But Christ was treated unfairly, from our perspective, so that His people could be saved from Hell.  He took the sins of His people upon Himself and took our punishment to make peace with God the Father on our behalf.  No, it wasn't fair, but it was just.

Justice demands a price be paid for sin.  The price is separation from God. Justice must be served.  It was served on Jesus in our place.  Fairness demands that all be treated equally.  If fairness was the standard, then all would go to heaven, and heaven would be filled with sin and no longer would be heaven and none would be any better off than they are now or all would go to Hell. That would be fair.

So when we think we have been treated unfairly, think about the cross and how "unfairly" Jesus was treated. Praise God this world is not fair!  




Tuesday, September 09, 2014

Thinking about Writing a Book....



I want to write a book on perspective for caregivers.  Here is a screen shot of my brainstorming for this project.


Do you have any thoughts or suggestions?









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Marsha's Musings: Suffering Wrongfully. (1 Peter 2:19-20 KJV)




For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. For what glory is it, if, when ye be buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? but if, when ye do well, and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God. (1 Peter 2:19-20 KJV)

A reminder that Peter wrote during the time of Nero who was bent on destroying Christianity and Christians at any cost.  In this light, what he says is remarkable.  

Watching the news about the cold blooded murders going on in Iraq and Syria as ISIS purges the land of Christians and others not willing to convert to Islam is indeed frightening and many are being persecuted wrongly simply because they have a conscience toward God.  

If this sort of thing came to our soil would we be able to stand and take it patiently if we have done no wrong?  Are we able to take it patiently now, in the job place, if we are treated wrongfully for doing good in God's eyes?  I wonder, would I cave or would I be strong?




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Marsha's Musings: Employee/Employer Relationships. (1 Peter 2:18 KJV)

Servants, be subject to your masters with all fear; not only to the good and gentle, but also to the froward. (1 Peter 2:18 KJV)

Peter moves on from submission to governmental authorities to the servant/master relationship.  Since we here in the USA don't have, as a general rule, servant/master situations, this verse can easily be applied to the employee/employer relationship. 

He is pretty clear that the employee is supposed to do what the boss expects of them in a respectful manner.  The word fear not only implies a certain awe of his position, knowing he could fire you if you don't perform well, but the word fear also means reverence.  Not reverence in the sense of worship, but reverent in the sense of giving your boss due respect.

Peter goes so far as to say we are to treat even the most irritating boss in a submissive respectful manner!  It's been many years since I have been employed outside the home, but I remember when I was employed how the employees talked behind the boss's back.  I dare say that Peter probably includes not only how we treated the boss to his face but also how we talked about him behind his back. This is hard stuff to apply when everyone else around you is degrading the boss. It's all to easy to follow the crowd.

So what about that boss who just doesn't treat you well?  What can you do about that?  There are a number of options you might consider.

1. Changing jobs
2. Respectfully share your grievance with him...maybe he would change something
3. Stay put and stick it out
4.  Use the problem solving chart to figure out your options
In a day when good jobs are scarce, Biblical advice on how we should conduct ourselves is so important. 

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Sunday, September 07, 2014

Marsha's Musings: The Will of God and Intent to Homeschool Forms (1 Peter 2:15-16 KJV)




For so is the will of God, that with well doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men: As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. (1 Peter 2:15-16 KJV)

Ever wonder what God's will is for your life?  Here is one facet of God's will.  It's in the context of the previous verses that say we should submit to governmental authorities.

Here is an example. In my state, homeschoolers are supposed to turn their intent to homeschool form at the district public school office each year before the fifteenth of September.  My son is eighteen years old and for all practical purposes is considered an adult so even though we planned to homeschool an extra year by mutual agreement, I figured it wouldn't be necessary to file my intent because of his age. So I ignored the first notice in July.

Now I have a second notice stating with more urgency that I need to fill out my form or call them to report he graduated.  It kind of got my ire up because at his age I figured it's none of their business! Then after I wrote the devotional thoughts on yesterday's post, it dawned on me that I need to comply. This is God's will for me. On today's to-do list will be a note to take care of that.



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Marsha's Musings: Why is 'Fear God' in the Middle? (1 Peter 2:17 KJV)


Honour all men. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king. (1 Peter 2:17 KJV)

It's interesting that Peter puts 'fear God' in the middle of this verse instead of at the beginning.  If one truly fears God all the rest will fall into place.  But maybe there is good reason for this order.

It was easy to honour other people. It was easy to love other Christians.  But at the time of this writing Nero was in power.  It was very hard to honour someone such as Nero and so I think the exhortation to fear God came at this point in the verse for a very good reason. If you feared God, you would be able to honour Nero.  Notice, he didn't say like him. He said honour him. Just like you can do loving things for some you don't love, you can also honour someone who is dishonorable and whom you dislike.  When you fear God you can do this.

How does this apply to me today?  I have a lot of work to do to honour the present administration.  It's hard to know where to draw the line between disrespect and telling the truth about the occupant of the White House.  Perhaps it has to do with attitude?  When does it cross over from telling the truth about what he is doing to character assassination? These are things I need to ponder.


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Marsha's Musings: Oh, THAT Word (1 Peter 2:13-14 KJV)





Submit yourselves to every ordinance of man for the Lord's sake: whether it be to the king, as supreme; Or unto governors, as unto them that are sent by him for the punishment of evildoers, and for the praise of them that do well. (1 Peter 2:13-14 KJV)

What word raises the hackles of lots of people?  The word is submit. People don't want to submit because they feel it is demeaning.  In a world where everyone scratches a claws their way to the top nobody wants to submit. That means you lose!

And then we have this command to submit to governmental authorities.  Really?  What about corrupt leaders like we have now?  I will answer that later.

The word submit means to arrange under. It's a military term.  The soldiers arrange themselves under the command of their commanding officer.  So in the place of employment the employee works under the direction of the employer, carrying out his orders.  In marriage, the wife arranges herself under the authority of her husband. That's not to say she is a doormat and has no say in the decisions of the household. She just defers to his wishes.  In the place of government, we are to obey the laws that our government has set up.  We submit to the law.

Is there ever a time when not submitting is appropriate?  Yes.  If the leader in authority is asking people to do things that are contrary to Scripture and are morally wrong then we are to appeal to that authority in an effort to get things changed. If there is no change then it is time to resist in that area.  

Good government is set up to maintain order, punish evil doers and encourage those who do well.


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Saturday, September 06, 2014

Marsha's Musings: Two Things Strangers and Pilgrims Should Do (1 Peter 2:11-12 KJV)


Dearly beloved, I beseech you as strangers and pilgrims, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul; Having your conversation honest among the Gentiles: that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation. (1 Peter 2:11-12 KJV)

This world is not my home, I'm just passing through. My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue...

I can't remember the rest of the lyrics but I remember that much and the tune from my childhood. We are strangers and pilgrims in this world and we are just passing through. There are two things we are supposed to do to make our mark in this world.

1. Abstain from fleshly lusts...they war against your soul
2. Let your conversation be honest among unbelievers 

You never know how your actions may influence a nonbeliever. They may call us evil doers now, but who knows, maybe our actions will one day cause them to rethink their position and we will find ourselves rejoicing beside them in heaven one day?!





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Friday, September 05, 2014

Marsha's Musings: 7 Things About Believers In Jesus Christ (1 Peter 2:9-10 KJV)



But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light: Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of God: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy. (1 Peter 2:9-10 KJV)

*chosen
*royal priesthood
*holy nation
*people for his own possession 
*called out of darkness into marvelous light
*God's people
*received mercy

Look at all the descriptions that apply to those of us God has saved!  Does the way that I live match what I am in Christ?