Wednesday, September 20, 2006


Reading through the Gospel of John and his epistles', you can't help but notice his infatuation with the word "abide". Check that. One can't help but notice Jesus' usage of the word "abide" and John's recording of it.

Abiding. Not a word used in every day common circles in interaction in today's world, but used by Jesus continually in John, especially chapters 14-16. This word abide, in the original language, Greek (Gk. meno), has a very strong meaning. To abide can mean "to not depart", "to endure", "to await for", or may favorite..."to remain as one, not to become another or different." I like this definition because Jesus, when he talks of abiding, is really trying to drive home a point. He uses the word countless times in these three chapters in John.

Again, abiding. What does this mean to you as a Believer? I think context here is huge. Jesus uses this word to describe His relationship with Father and how our relationship should be with Him. He definitely makes it clear that abiding is something we need to be accountable for..He does His part, I promise you that. Jesus completely abides in the Father. He uses the word abide in a way that it has already happened or is perpetually taking place (i.e. The Trinity). Therefore, he urges His followers to do the same with Him. He wants the same relationship with His followers as He has with Father...he loves us that much, He wants to show us what that looks like. "To become as one" as the Greek says..Jesus wants to become as one with us.

Why is this concept so important? Why is it crucial to our Walk? I think it is because the word abide seems to indicate that when one is practicing it separation isn't is set! We need that! And finally, as Jesus finishes using this type of rhetoric He moves right into a discourse of the coming rejection and persecution. He knows He will need the Father when His time for suffering comes, and He knows we will need Him when our time comes. It is no coincidence that Jesus talks about abiding and then jumps right into hardships that will come...We must and have to...abide!

Monday, September 11, 2006


The NFL started this week. I love football and miss it already since I've been "here". I even have my brother taping some games to me and sending them over even though they will be really outdated by the time they arrive. So, today since I couldn't watch the games, I scoped out all the box scores and tried to get a feel for how they went. I love it and miss it.

When people ask me why I enjoy sports so much, I usually respond that it's an escape for me. "It gets me away from reality for a while, gives me space." I began to realize that I say this phrase a lot though. I say it concerning many things. Sports. Weightlifting. Fantasy Sports (and lots of 'em!). Hours at Starbucks and/or Barnes & Noble. Carrie Underwood. Sitting in my room meditating instead of going out. Reading. Listening to my MP3 player. Internet use.

Escape-ism. I have begun to realize that this is an issue for me. I used to think that I needed this time, but the fact is, I am almost escaping my whole day away sometimes. What am I running from? I have no idea. Why am I sharing this? Another good question. But whatever I'm running from, I'm tired of running from it. I share this as a confession and a way of not trying to escape....again......

Sunday, September 03, 2006

The 5th Commandment

"What is that doing here?" what I originally recall my brain saying as I read in Exodus 20. It didn't make sense to me. Seminary taught me to read the Bible and look for patterns and/or themes in various texts and lists. So, to me, the 5th commandment is out of place. Let me show you what I mean.

The first four commandments are obvious (a future post on the 4th commandment to come shortly). They deal with relations between God and His people. Not to have other gods before Him, to not serve idols, to not take the Lord's name in vain, and to honor the Sabbath. Then number five comes along. Ok, a transition, moving from relations with God to man, to relations between mankind with each other...That's ok, except that the transition seems out of place to me.

First of all, the rest of the commandments are all imperatives said in a negative fashion. "Do not do" this and that...the 5th commandment isn't. In fact, the 5th commandment is also the only commandment that comes with a blessing. Amazing! So, what is this command:

Honor your father and your mother.

Obviously since this is a commandment it is important, but the verbage and placement of this commandment seems to stress its importance. It is the first commandment regarding our relationhips with one another, and that is important. In fact, Proverbs highlights this relationship as well saying that "a wise son makes his father glad, but a foolish son is the grief of his mother" (Prov. 10:1)..also see Prov. 4:1, 15:20, 17:6, 17:21, 17:25, 20:20, 23:24, and 29:3.

The practical application. In my opinion, this commandment is a lost treasure. In America honoring father and mother is not vital, but it is to God. I remember many times in which I failed honoring my mother and her life and her work.

The 5th commandment: May God write on our hearts the importance of this command.