Spreading the Word (Not What you Think)

(Psst. It’s not by sharing verses on Facebook.)

Seriously, it’s a pet peeve of mine, when all people do is share verses on Facebook instead of actually talking about what the Bible is saying. Like, yeah, verses are great, but you have to understand them and their application.

And you can’t share God’s Word with other people by just repeating it like a parrot.¬† It will mean absolutely nothing to non-believers. They don’t read verses and think “Wow! That’s so amazing. God is great. My life is changed.” No, they challenge them. And if all you can do is give them more verses instead answering the question in a practical way, you will never reach anyone.

It’s different if you’re dealing with a Christian. If THEY won’t accept verses in context then something is wrong with their faith or their perspective on things. It’s God’s answer book to us. As a Christian, you either believe all of the Bible or you don’t. You can’t pick and choose.

With that being said, my mom and I read John 4: 27-42 today. It was Jesus finishing up with the Samaritan woman at the well and how he changed the lives of all these Samaritans. Pretty awesome stuff.

Jesus said that His first priority was to do the Will of God, always. He denied himself food and rest in order to talk to people about God.

He foretold the revival/conversion in Samaria, which was pretty epic since it was the Samaritans He was talking about.

A cool thing that people don’t seem to realize is that Jesus knew everything about this adulterous, sinful woman and still loved her. He’s like that with us. No matter what you’ve done in your past, God loves you and is ready to forgive you, You just have to ask and repent.

Jesus delighted in His work more than anything in the world. He loved it more than taking care of himself. Jesus got so excited about telling people about God that His disciples couldn’t help but get excited with Him.

Near the end of this passage He used a metaphor of harvest time for spreading the Word of God, which is why I started out my blog post the way I did. By using this little metaphor, He told the disciples that they shouldn’t be waiting for a harvest time to come. It was harvest time now. He was telling them not to wait to tell people about God, that you can do it anytime and the best time is now.

Also, when reaping the harvest, everyone must do His share. If you don’t do the work, you don’t get the benefits. No free stuff. Work.

Now, I don’t believe that works get you to Heaven, but Jesus said there was a reward in heaven for people who spread His word, so obviously it’s important. You can’t rely on others to do your part though. You have to get out for yourself and share the Word. You have to do more than parroting Scripture, however. Jesus didn’t do that. It made it relevant, applicable. We have to do the same.

As always, I pray that I am in the right to say this, but I believe God has put these issues on my heart for a reason. I have felt led to blog about sharing the Word, and my Bible study this morning was conveniently on that exact topic, so it seems like this is what God wants me to talk about.

Please consider the words I have said and let God change your heart if it needs to be.

Adultery and Living Water

The Samaritan Woman at the Well. John 4: 4-26

First of all, to all the people who have tried to use this against me, Jesus pointed out the woman’s sin almost right off the bat.

He told her how she was sinning.

Ok, let me start at the beginning. A Samaritan and a Jew walk up to a well. No, this isn’t the start of a bad joke I promise. The Jew talks to the Samaritan, which is crazy, because Jews just don’t do that. It’s “below them.”

She can tell He is a Jew and is super confused. She talks to Him anyway.

Jesus asks for a drink of water and she asks how a Jew could ask for anything from a Samaritan.

Jesus replied by saying that if she knew who she was talking to, she would’ve asked for water back, the kind that completely satisfies your thirst.

I like how Jesus really drew people in with the way he spoke. He was all mysterious and wise and weird, and it made people ask more questions, get involved in the discussion. He was a very talented speaker.

So, then He explains how this water quenches all thirst and the woman’s like, ‘well give me some so I don’t have to haul water all the time. It’s messing up my back.’

Jesus replies with ‘go get your husband and come back.’

I imagine this made the woman a little fidgety, if she had any clue at all who she was talking to. She admits that she has no husband.

Jesus tells her she was right the say that because she has had, in fact, FIVE husbands (no way all those men died) and pointed out that she was living in adultery.

If you don’t believe divorce and remarriage is adultery then read Romans 7:2 and Matthew 5:32. I can give a couple more references if you still don’t believe the Bible.

This. Is. Important. He tells her straight up that she is an adulterous woman. There was no sugarcoating, no super-sweet “I love you but you really shouldn’t be doing this…”

NO

Jesus was like, “You’re living in sin. Cut it out.”

She realized He must be a prophet and He starts telling her that the Samaritans are wrong in worshipping what they do not know and that soon people will worship in spirit and in truth.

A couple things to point out here. First, historically Samaritans worshipped idols AND had a fear of the Lord. They tried to mesh their culture with the Jews’ and cover all the bases. But it doesn’t work that way.

Believe it or not, that’s happening in today’s world, the modern day Church. People pick and choose what they want to keep from the Bible (mostly verses out of context and a supposed “faith”) but at the same time they worship the world and it’s idols, such as science and the word of people instead of God’s Word.

Jesus said people must worship in spirit and truth. Several times the Bible refers to the Word of God as truth. Seriously, take the Bible seriously. It is super important!

I realize that I need to work on the part where I show people how God can fix things, but the first step is pointing out the wrong, the sin. Warning against it. Trying to steer other Christians clear of it.

I do NOT see many Christians doing that at all. I know this theme pops up a lot in my blog, but I’m very passionate about it. Really, what’s more important than trying to lead people closer to Christ?

I pray that people don’t only challenge my words, but that they make people think. It seems like too many people just want to argue with me and don’t actually take the time to consider that what I say might actually be right. Don’t count me out just because I’m young. Maybe I’m still clinging to a scrap of child-like faith that others have already discarded as juvenile.

I try my hardest to take the Word of God seriously, literally, and I look to it for answers. I don’t know a better source for answers. Please, fellow Christians, instead of arguing with me right off the bat, pray about it, read the Bible on the subject, and then see if there is really something that I’m doing incorrectly.

Thank you so much for reading!

Back to the Rosin

Dance starts back up today!

After an insanely long break it’s back to the hardwood, metal bars, and oh-so-glorious rosin.

Tonight I get to teach the first class of the semester and I’m looking forward to it.

I bought 95 new songs, I have some new experience under my belt and I am feeling prepared. New leotards don’t hurt either ūüėČ

I honestly don’t know if I’m looking forward to teaching or actually dancing more. I love both so much. I love working and seeing improvement in myself, but seeing improvement in the girls I teach is very rewarding too.

I have mixed feelings about the upcoming show, but hopefully it’ll be great.¬†It’ll at least be cute.

I thank God so much for my dance family and the opportunities I get with it. I am so blessed by ballet.

For my lovely dancers reading this, can’t wait to see you this week! Love you all!

Flipping Tables

One of my favorite parts of the Bible: when Jesus got angry.

I’m actually going to start with¬† John 2:1-11, which is¬† Jesus turning water into wine. That was his first miracle. Also look at John 7:6.

An important point is that Jesus knew when He was supposed to do things. He said it wasn’t His time to perform his first miracle. That being said, I don’t really know why he did it if it wasn’t His time, but He must’ve had a reason.

Yay, now it’s time for flipping tables! Read John 2:12-25. It’s awesome. It makes me happy.

Jesus went and cleansed the Temple because a bunch of idiots were turning it into a business. Jesus walked in, saw all this happening, and made a whip.

He made a whip.

He didn’t walk through calmly saying “You really shouldn’t be doing this, friends, but if you feel like it’s the way you were born, or if you just love everyone, it’s ok.”

No. He went through driving people out with a whip and flipping their money changing tables over. He yelled at them to get out because His father’s temple was not a place of business. He had some really awesome righteous anger.

Jesus was not meek. He was not always gentle and kind. I do not know why people paint him that way. He took action, he was aggressive, he was physical..

One of the verses says something about zeal for his Father’s house consuming Him. The Greek word for zeal translates into jealousy. He was jealous for His father’s house because it was not what it was meant to be. It had become taken over by the world. It was no longer a place of reverence. People were changing money and selling doves.

This brings me to a concern about today’s mega churches. A lot of the times they have coffee shops, stores, something. They are selling things in their church, and I don’t know how they justify that.

I think it’s ok if it’s a fundraiser, but if people are getting paid to work it or it pays for a pastor’s salary or something, it’s a business and it’s wrong. It’s just plain disrespectful.

One more point to draw from His actions was that he spoke out against what they were doing wrong, not against them as people. He didn’t attack anyone personally. I strive to do that in my blog and I think I do a decent job of it. I speak out against sin without involving a certain people group as best I can.

If you look from Jesus CONVERTING water to wine and then CLEANSING the Temple right after, you see what He does in us. After we convert, we are cleansed, we are renewed. Jesus has wonderful power, let Him work it in you.

Beatitudes (Bee-Attitudes)

At least I’m pretty sure that’s how you say it. Not an expert.

Today we read Matthew 5:1-12, which lists the blessings. It’s counterpart, starting at Luke 6:20, also lists the warnings, the “woe to you”s. I won’t be talking about those today though.

The first one talks about the poor in spirit. What on earth does that mean? As far as I can tell it’s talking about being humble in your faith, not being spiritually arrogant.

The next says how those who mourn will be comforted, the kind of comforting that can only be found in God.

These verse are really pretty self-explanatory, I hope you take the time to read them.

Blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth. Meek does not mean quiet. It’s more like humble and gentle. But NOT silent. This is important. We still need to speak up, but remain humble before the Lord.

If you hunger and thirst for righteousness, you will be filled. We must seek God first, and if we really do that, we will be rewarded.

If we are merciful, we will get mercy back. This is a difficult one. We have to forgive to be forgiven.

Those with a pure heart will see God. Before you get too panicked about how pure you’re heart is, remember that we are, or can be, purified through Jesus Christ.

This next one is a tad bit confusing. It says that the peacemakers will be called the Sons of God. However, peacemakers does not mean ‘appeasing everybody’. In 1 Corinthians 14:33 it uses peace as an antonym for confusion, so my understanding is that peacemakers create clarity more than appeasement.

A point to make about that is that Christians who misuse scripture create confusion. I try my best not to do this and hopefully I don’t, but we all need to be careful.

The last is that those who are persecuted for righteousness will be rewarded. Read 1 Peter 3:14. You don’t get persecuted if you never speak up.

The last two verse are about that subject as well and are pretty self-explanatory. A couple good verses to go with those are 1 Peter 4:14-16.

I hope you enjoyed my installment on the Beatitudes.

Fishers of Men and Warning Against Sin

Today we studied Matthew 4: 18-22

In summary, it’s Jesus calling on His first disciples, Simon Peter and his brother Andrew.

These two dudes were minding their own business, fishing with their dad, and Jesus comes along the shore and is like, “Hey guys, want to be fishers of men? Come with me. It’s gonna be epic.”

(I enjoy paraphrasing Jesus’ words. Don’t worry. I’m still respectful.)

Then they just got up and left. Their dad must’ve been so confused.

There must have been something about Jesus that made people want to stick with Him. Think about it. If you just walked to someone already doing something and said, “Hey, you should come follow me.” They would be so weirded out. And they wouldn’t move.

Jesus had to have had this feeling about Him that people knew they could trust, or at least the right people.

Which brings up another question. Why did Jesus need disciples? He could’ve done everything Himself.

Well, Jesus was human. Have you ever gone through a period of your life where you really don’t have any friends? Isn’t it¬†lonely and depressing? Jesus felt sadness and loneliness too. I think part of the reason he had the disciples around Him was for companionship.

However, the biggest reason was probably so that they could continue His work after he died. They were His legacy. They were taught by Him personally so they could carry on after Jesus was gone.

We decided to finish up chapter 4 of Matthew which is about Jesus going through towns and healing people.

What I like about this is that Jesus didn’t keep the power He had to Himself. He helped those that came to Him. I think that’s important. Jesus went to the towns, but he specifically helped and healed those who went to Him. We have to seek His help if we want to get it. You can’t just sit back and wait for God to do all the work.

Also, he raised awareness for Himself and others by doing this. He started building a reputation for Himself.

Which brings up the last portion of Scripture I want to talk about. This isn’t part of my Bible study, but I came across it and it fit my situation perfectly.

Hebrews 3:12-13 AMP
12 [Therefore beware] brethren, take care, lest there be in any one of you a wicked, unbelieving heart [which refuses to cleave to, trust in, and rely on Him], leading you to turn away and desert or stand aloof from the living God.
13 But instead warn (admonish, urge, and encourage) one another every day, as long as it is called Today, that none of you may be hardened [into settled rebellion] by the deceitfulness of sin [by the fraudulence, the stratagem, the trickery which the delusive glamour of his sin may play on him].

And reading this makes me confused as to how fellow Christians can tell me I’m the wrong by speaking out against sin. Where is your Biblical proof that I am in the wrong? Because here is my Biblical proof that I am doing something right.

Sherlock Makes an Observation

I feel like if Sherlock Holmes were to walk into my house and ask me to tell him about my blog, the conversation would go something like this;

“Well, Sherlock, I had a bunch of people tell me to act more like Jesus, since I wasn’t being all fluffy and sugar-coating everything. So I start this Bible study on what it’s like to be like Jesus. And you know, it’s funny, I haven’t gotten a single comment, and these posts are nowhere near as popular as any of my other ones.”

Sherlock would light his pipe and say, “Elementary, my dear blogger. These people don’t actually want you to act like Jesus, they want to accuse you of not acting like Jesus. They don’t want you to take this into consideration, study on it, and show that you’re trying your best. People who have commented things like that simply want to put you down.”

“But, Sherlock, that’s not fair. I’m doing what they asked.”

“Ah, but they wanted you to ignore them so that they could accuse you more later.”

“oh.”

That’s what it feels like people. I’m doing what you asked. I’m getting no support, no arguments, no comments of any kind. Do you care or not? Because I’m trying. And maybe I’m wrong about some of you and your motivations, in which case I’m sorry for the generalization.