The Bridal Gift

In Genesis 24, we find Abraham’s steward going out to find a wife for his son Issac. Derek Prince helps us understand the context of the story:

  1. In the middle east you always give a gift with a marriage proposal. If you accept the gift, you accept the marriage; if you turn down the gift, you refuse the marriage to the person.
  2. Camels can carry a lot of stuff, and the steward took 10 camels loaded down with gifts, for the bride he sought for his master. He said, ‘May the one who draws water for me, and offers to water my camels, be the one chosen to be bride.
  3. Camels drink 40 gallons of water each, and drawing water takes a lot of strength. On top of being in a hot desert area, Rebekah knew that it would take her most of the evening to water the camels, and she still offered it as a service of hospitality to the stranger.

Read the passage here, or skip it to continue commentary:

Genesis 24 – Abraham… said to the senior servant in his household, the one in charge of all that he had… “I want you to swear by the Lord, that you will get a wife for my son Isaac from my home territory… the servant left, taking with him ten of his master’s camels loaded with all kinds of good things from his master. He set out for Aram Naharaim and made his way to the town of Nahor and had the camels kneel down near the well outside the town; it was toward evening, the time the women go out to draw water. Then he prayed, “Lord, God of my master Abraham, make me successful today, and show kindness to my master Abraham. See, I am standing beside this spring, and the daughters of the townspeople are coming out to draw water. May it be that when I say to a young woman, ‘Please let down your jar that I may have a drink,’ and she says, ‘Drink, and I’ll water your camels too’—let her be the one you have chosen for your servant Isaac. By this I will know that you have shown kindness to my master.” Before he had finished praying, Rebekah came out with her jar on her shoulder… The woman was very beautiful, a virgin; no man had ever slept with her. She went down to the spring, filled her jar and came up again. The servant hurried to meet her and said, “Please give me a little water from your jar.” “Drink, my lord,” she said, and quickly lowered the jar to her hands and gave him a drink. After she had given him a drink, she said, “I’ll draw water for your camels too, until they have had enough to drink.” So she quickly emptied her jar into the trough, ran back to the well to draw more water, and drew enough for all his camels. 21Without saying a word, the man watched her closely to learn whether or not the Lord had made his journey successful. 22When the camels had finished drinking, the man took out a gold nose ring weighing a beka and two gold bracelets weighing ten shekels… Then the servant brought out gold and silver jewelry and articles of clothing and gave them to Rebekah; he also gave costly gifts to her brother and to her mother… So they sent their sister Rebekah on her way, along with her nurse and Abraham’s servant and his men… So the servant took Rebekah and left.

This is a story of faith in action, and a prophetic story pointing to a larger picture. Over, and over again, we see in the Bible that God (represented by Abraham) is looking for a bride (represented by Rebekah) for His son Jesus (represented by Issac).

Revelations 19:7-9 – For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready. Fine linen, bright and clean, was given her to wear.” (Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.) Then the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!” And he added, “These are the true words of God.”

If Rebekah was given so many riches to become the bride of Issac, how much more richly will God bless us to become the bride of Christ? The Holy Spirit (represented by the unnamed steward), sent from God, is looking for the bride of Christ right now. The Spirit is the gift, and He brings many more gifts when He is welcomed. If we turn down the gift of the Spirit, we turn down the marriage to Jesus.

Our character is the key factor in receiving the gifts that the Spirit has to offer from God, much like Rebekah’s character was what made her stand out as the chosen bride. Whether tongues, encouragement, prophesy, administration, etc–Our character helps us receive and protect the gifts given through the Spirit of God. When we accept Christ, we receive His Spirit. The Spirit lives in us, much like a man joined to his bride in marriage. Since the Spirit is already inside of you, so are the gifts the Spirit possesses. However, gifts can lie dormant for years. It just depends on what you want to do with them. When will you bring your gifts out of storage and start putting them on display? Invest what you have so that you can gain even more. Grow the gifts inside of you.

Matt. 7:11 – If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!

The gifts are not to be feared, but cherished. They ARE God after all.

People seem so scared of the gift of tongues, or the gift of prophecy… but the gift of faith–that’s scary. That’s where you trust God to come through, faithful to His promises, even though everything in your life seems to be displaying the opposite. That’s when you do whatever He told you to, even though it seems to make the least amount of sense.

Heb. 11:6 – Without faith it is impossible to please God

Faith is a gift of the Spirit & God says you can’t please Him without it. What then should we think of the other gifts of the Spirit?

1 Cor. 14:1 – Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit

God never said things wouldn’t appear scary:

Mark 6:49-51 – Shortly before dawn he went out to them, walking on the lake… when they saw him walking on the lake, they thought he was a ghost. They cried out, because they all saw him and were terrified. Immediately he spoke to them and said, “Take courage! It is I. Don’t be afraid.” Then he climbed into the boat with them, and the wind died down. They were completely amazed

but He does say 150 times, ‘Fear Not.’

Is. 41:10 – do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you

And that’s the purpose of gifts. They are not given to scare us (though they may at times from our misunderstanding), but for our strengthening, encouraging and comfort (1Cor.14:3-4). The disciples were scared for a moment, but Jesus immediately said, ‘Take courage.’ He immediately comforted them from the fear of the waves, storm, and the way He came to them. So, don’t let it scare you if He comes to you through gifts, because when He comes it is to comfort you. If you are like the disciples, and have fear because you don’t understand a way in which the Lord operates, then search out the explanation in His word and ask Him to show you personally:

1 Cor. 12:1-11 – Now about the gifts of the Spirit, brothers and sisters, I do not want you to be uninformed. 2 You know that when you were pagans, somehow or other you were influenced and led astray to mute idols. 3 Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit. 4 There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. 5 There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. 6 There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in everyone it is the same God at work. 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message of wisdom, to another a message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.

John 4:24 – God is spirit

2 Cor. 3:17 – the Lord is the Spirit

Do not reject the gift of God Himself, and do not reject any gift that He sees fit to give you. Every gift is to help and prosper you.

Jer. 29:11 – For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.


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Empty

‘Bottomless pit’ and ‘well’, in the following verses, are the same word in the Greek language: phrear. This is one of several word denoted as ‘Hell’ in the Greek language. Hell, then, can be a state of the heart…

– Rev. 9:2 – He opened the bottomless pit, and smoke went up out of the pit, like the smoke of a great furnace; and the sun and the air were darkened by the smoke of the pit.

– John 4:11-12 – “Sir,” the woman said, “you have nothing to draw with and the well is deep. Where can you get this living water?

In context with the rest of the story, the woman at the well was basically saying, ‘I am an empty, bottomless pit’. I have a hole that I can’t fill. I cannot get enough husbands, or boyfriends, to fill this hole in me. How then can I draw water up to quench my thirst?

– Eccl. 12:8 (MSG) – It’s all smoke, nothing but smoke.

Smoke chokes you out and burns your eyes. It dulls the senses. It wants you to flee in discomfort instead of putting out the fire at its source. It doesn’t want you to have an endless source of water to squelch its flames.

The smoke isn’t the fire; it’s only what the fire produced. I lot of times we try to treat symptoms instead of curing the illness. God is the healer. This woman’s symptom was that she felt like she had to have a man in her life. The root issue was something else. It might have been that she had not received love from her father, or that she never finished grieving over the loss of her first husband. Whatever the case, Satan loves to throw up the smoke screen and try to confuse us. He knows that if we can’t see to put out the fire, that he can continue to burn us out till there is nothing left.

– John 4:25-26 – The woman said, “I know that Messiah” (called Christ) “is coming. When he comes, he will explain everything to us.” 26Then Jesus declared, “I, the one speaking to you—I am he.”

She had heard of Jesus, but now she’s met Jesus. Jesus turns your bottomless pit into a spring of water. He doesn’t just give you one drink in your need, but provides a lifetime of provision for you. He is the living water and the only way to put out the flame at its source. If you have a bottomless pit that you can’t fill, ask Jesus to come meet with you and give you a spring of water, welling up to eternal life.

– 1 Cor. 3:20 – The Master sees through the smoke screens

– Rom. 8:27 (MSG) – He knows us far better than we know ourselves

– Rom. 8:1 – there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus

When you can’t see through all the smoke, ask Him to show you and snuff out the flame. Notice that Jesus didn’t condemn this woman. The woman didn’t lie to Him about her sin. God honors your honesty, even when you know that you are doing something wrong. He won’t condemn you for being honest and asking for His help. He came to explain everything to us. He wants you to know your own heart and understand what it is you really need.

James 1:5 – But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach; and it will be given to him.

Jesus isn’t just a well of water. Jesus is a spring of water welling up.  You don’t have to do the work of drawing up the water for yourself when you have Jesus. Just get in His presence.

Listen to this worship song on the subject: Jeremy Camp “Empty Me”

The Single Narrative


The Bible, which means the book, is a single narrative that points to one person. 66 books written over the span of human history, and they all stay consistent; Christ, the Word of God, who never changes.

Jesus is Alive!

If you believe Jesus is alive today, then you have to believe that He is still healing and raising the dead today. Otherwise, you believe that His character is inconsistent, and you’ve rejected the Word that says: “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever (Heb.13:8).”

The Bible says we are the body of Christ, and the Spirit of Jesus lives in us. If you believe these scriptures, then you should understand that the gifts of the Spirit (1Cor.12) are still active today. Otherwise the Spirit, who is God, is inconsistent as well.

“God is Spirit (John4:24)” and He is our “Father, who does not change (James1:17).” “Do you not know that you are God’s temple and that God’s Spirit dwells in you (1 Cor.3:16)?” “To each person has been given the ability to manifest the Spirit for the common good (1Cor.12:7).”

“Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things (John 14:12).” Not because we are greater than Jesus, but because He is alive inside of each of us, instead of being constrained to just one physical body.

Look closer. He lives in you. – Rafiki

He Lives In You // Lion King

Reflection - Lion King

– 1 Cor. 13:12 – Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.

The gifts are our puzzling reflection of Christ. The gifts exist until His return when we see him with perfect clarity.

Anxiety & Depression – Distorted Thinking Patterns

crazyMany of us have distorting thinking patterns. We haven’t yet renewed our minds. We have stinkin’ thinkin’ that keeps us in anxiety, depression, negativity, and sickness.

Below are 10 types of distorted thinking patterns.

Negative feelings come from negative thinking, so by monitoring your feelings you will eventually be able to figure out which thoughts and beliefs trigger your anxiety. The first step is to identify the trigger. Most people have thought these ways their whole lives, but God says, ‘Take every thought captive to make it obedient to Christ (2Cor.10:5).’ Put your thoughts on trial, convict them, and reprogram them with God’s Word. The mind set on the Spirit brings life and peace. ‘Let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on the new nature created to be like God–truly righteous and holy (Eph.4:21-24).’ Your thinking is vital to your spiritual life as breathing is to your physical life.


Distorted thinking patterns:

think1. ‘What if’ thinking

What if I lose my job? What if I lose my home? What if my children get hooked on drugs? What if my spouse is cheating on me?

‘What if’ thinking breeds anxiety and fear. Sometimes this even turns into a self fulfilling prophecy. If you treat someone like they are cheating on you, they might eventually just start doing so. If you focus on ‘what if’, your fear grows. If you focus on God’s Word, your fear goes. Learn to replace ‘what if’ with what God’s Word says: God always causes me to triumph. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. If God be for me, who can be against me?

2. Catastrophizing

worryThe mind magnifies unpleasant events and transforms them into something more awful, terrible, or horrible than they really are. Making a mountain out of a molehill. It’s like spending $10 dollars on a 2¢ problem.

Like pouring lighter fluid on a flame, they use extreme words like hopeless, terrible, unbearable, devastating. These words fuel the anxiety. The only way to put out the fire is to eliminate inflammatory words from your vocabulary and replace them with more practical, realistic, and less emotionally charged words, such as unfortunate, inconvenient, or difficult.  Stop the drama. I choose faith-building words because ‘we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God (Rom.8:28)’. Practice this pattern of thinking until it becomes automatic, making it a habit and mind-set.

3. Habitually expecting the worst outcome

worryThey usually think if something can go wrong it will, and it will happen to me. ‘My boss didn’t acknowledge me today, so I’m sure she hates me and will probably fire me.’ ‘My husband is late for dinner, I’m sure he is having an affair.’

Realize that when you repeatedly think about something, you create the potential for these thoughts to become self-fulling. Especially if you treat someone as if they are already doing what you fear, it makes them more likely to go ahead and do it. Instead of expecting the worst possible outcome, begin to expect something good to happen to you. Confess God’s Word, ‘No evil will befall my family or me, nor will any plague come newer my dwelling (Ps.91:10).’ Expect God to do something good, and your faith will release a blessing.

4. Leaping to conclusions

needsThey mistakingly believe that they know what another person is thinking without having any facts to support it. They repeatedly and habitually make negative assumptions that fuel depression and anxiety.

You walk in a restaurant and find two friends eating lunch; you see them whisper and immediately assume they have abandoned your friendship and are badmouthing you.

Begin to identify when you are jumping to conclusions. Challenge yourself to expect the best of the other person. Instead of becoming anxious about things you don’t even know are real, determine to wait until you have more information before drawing a conclusion. ‘I am ever ready to expect the best of every person (1Cor.13:7).’

5. Black and white thinking 

perfectionismYou can’t see grey. You are probably a perfectionist that thinks their work is flawless or worthless. You see average as complete failure. You think first place is the only winning spot and every thing else is a loser.

This distortional thought pattern sets you up for failure, disappointment, depression, and anxiety. You will work endless hours to make something perfect, or will procrastinate and never finish because if it’s not perfect, you feel worthless. Also, if you struggle with perfectionism, you will need to watch that you don’t fall into the trap of comparisons. ‘Learn to be content with whatever you have (Phil.4:11).’ Quit focusing on what you don’t have, and start thanking God for what you do have. Choose to love yourself, forgive yourself, and accept yourself unconditionally, even if you make a mistake.

6. Unenforceable rules

nowTrapping in anxiety, they make rigid rules about what should, must, or ought to be done, and tries to put people in a box. The more unrealistic and unenforceable the rules are, the greater the disappointment. ‘They should stop cutting me off in traffic.’ Situations, people, and society aren’t usually going to turn out in your favor. The only should statement you need is ‘I should practice mercy and forgiveness’. ‘Love keeps no records of wrongs’, so I throw out my record-keeping book. Eliminate should statements and use I would like to or I prefer.

7. Labeling

‘Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me’ is absolutely false. We need to eliminate labeling words from our vocabulary, such as idiot, loser, klutz, failure, stupid, pathetic, pitiful, jerk. Labels destroy self-esteem, self-worth, and as a result many never accept love. ‘Life and death are in the power of the tongue.’ Choose to see yourself and others the way God sees them. He calls me ‘the apple of His eye,’ ‘His beloved,’ ‘His child’.

8. Negative Filter

capableThis person usually discounts all information that is positive. They discredit compliments. They remember mainly criticisms and negative information. They focus on the bad while the good slips away. These ‘pit thinkers’ usually overgeneralize, taking one bad circumstance and believing its it the trend of how your life will proceed. They use words like always and never. ‘I will always be like this.’ ‘I will never change.’ Stop using absolute words that set you up for failure. Try to enjoy the next compliment you receive. Practice eating the meat and spitting out the bones. Remember that God Himself forgives and forgets our failures. ‘Think about those things that are true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, virtuous, and praiseworthy (Phil.4:8).’ Filter the news, tv shows, music you listen to. If anything falls short of every criterion, refuse to watch, think, or speak it.

9. Emotional reasoning

graceThis person feels like their feelings are facts. If they feel hopeless about an exam, they might not even show up to take it. They give up because their emotions make them feel defeated. The healthy thinker separates emotions from their overall self-worth. They realize that despite how they are feeling, they can change the outcome of the situation.

Realize that negative feelings are a sign that you are thinking negative, depressing thoughts. You need to immediately tune in to the thoughts or beliefs that are at the root of the emotion and simply change the channel of your mind to the one of gratitude. I will not be influenced by my emotions or feelings, because ‘the just shall live by faith (Heb.10:38).’ ‘Let us not weary in doing well: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not (Gal.6:9).’

10. The blame game

Many are stuck in a trap of blaming others or God. This creates a vicious circle of thinking and feelings that leads to anger, resentment, bitterness, depression, and anxiety. People with a victim mentality fit within this group of faulty thinkers. They feel like everything bad that happens to them is someone else’s fault. Blame locks you into the past; it prevents you from examining yourself, recognizing, and removing thought patterns and mind-sets that continue to sabotage your life. Learn to take responsibility for yourself, forgive yourself and others, and refuse to blame anyone. Forgiveness is a choice not a feeling. ‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy.’ Refuse to rehash any hurt or pain.


mistakeTestimony: I remember when I started trying to reprogram my mind. Every single thought I had was negative. I put a list of these 10 concepts on my dashboard, and memorized them. I started pinpointing them and trying to refuse the negative thoughts. In the beginning I could hardly keep out a negative thought for a whole second. Just like any goal, you have to do some work. Lifting weights will wear you out, but the next time you go, you are stronger. You can work your way up to 2 seconds without negativity. Maybe you can start to think one positive thought; try to convince yourself that it is true. At least believe that God’s Word is true and quote those over yourself. Keep going! It’s been a year, or two, and I am completely changed. I can’t stand hearing a single negative comment. After coming out from under nearly 25 years of negativity, I truly have a distaste for it. I am free, positive, and know God’s plan for me is good. I can see myself through His eyes, and I can see bad situations through His eyes. IT. IS. SO. WORTH. IT. Don’t give up.

distorted thinking

healthy thinking


Worship: Emma, by Jason Upton: Trusting The Angels

facePrayer: God, thank you for creating us and saying ‘It is good’. Restore us back to our factory settings. Help us once again submit our will, ways, and thinking to your ways which bring health and wholeness. Thank you for being the great physician, our healer, and therapist. Thank you Spirit for being our counselor and teacher. Thank you Jesus for setting the example and giving us authority. Help us take dominion over our own minds and submit them to your kingdom instead of this world which bring such distorted thinking. Everything out from under your authority is in rebellion and chaos. We want to overcome the enemies of anxiety and depression. Go to this generation now and tear down the spirits exalted above it. Let the knowledge of you cover the earth as the sea. Stay the death angel and deliver your people from their slavery; free their minds. Bring them out of bondage. Let this generation x, that the world thought would be the dog, rise to be the head and not the tail. Bring transformation to their minds, and to the world. Wrap them up in a cocoon of your Words and see them through this transformation where they will no longer crawl, but sprout wings, in Jesus name, Amen.


For more on this topic get the book:

Bible Cure for Anxiety

Free Will to Homosexuals!

I would like to repent on behalf of Christians, to every gay and lesbian:

Christians sinned when they pointed out and exalted one sin above another. God says sin is sin, and every Christian who hurt you has sinned. I’m sorry for the pain it caused you. May God forgive us for hurting you, and for disobeying Him. God called us to love (respect) you, and Christians failed to do that for way too long. I would like to repent on the behalf of believers for not showing love to you in the same way God showed love to us. Gossip, pointing fingers, judging others, and singling out is sin. God asked us not to give into sin; we stood against homosexuality as He asked, but not in the way that He asked. We failed to keep from judging, harassing, name calling, and disrespecting you. I’m sorry for the pain and shame this has caused you. I hope God shows you how much you mean to Him. I hope you see that no person is without sin, especially Christians. Christianity was never meant to be based on human efforts to get to God. We cannot save ourselves by obeying the law, because we all have sin. Christianity was meant to be falling in love with God, because God loved us while we were still sinners, and nothing we do can separate us from His love. Jesus saved us while we were still sinners; He didn’t come down here a condemn us all, like Christians have done to you. Christians did a terrible job of portraying God, who is Love, to you. They did not portray Love at all. It is by grace that God saved us, not by our own ability to follow a whole heap of laws. You do not have to earn God’s Love! He loves you as you are. I ask God to bless you, heal your heart, and bring true Love to you by revealing His true nature – not this sick portrait that Christians have painted for you. God wants you to have a choice. He outlined the choices for us – the blessings and repercussions for each choice – but  He asks us to choose life because He wants us to have the best life possible. Regardless, He never takes away our right to choose for ourselves. He will never disrespect you by forcing you to do anything. May you live in freedom, make your own choices, and see which path leads to Life and Love; and may you be healed from every pain that Christians caused. I am truly sorry for not loving you in the correct manner.

Turning to Love for you,
a christian


I would like to challenge every Christian reading this to follow the way of Love, and repentance. We are the BODY of Christ; we are one. We are responsible for the actions of each person who calls themselves a follower. Please share this, and let’s take on the responsibility of our actions in true repentance before God and man.


1John1:8-10-to say we have no sin is to deceive ourselves. Confess your sin and He is faithful to forgive; James5:16-confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed; James2:10-whoever breaks one law is guilty of breaking it all; Eph.2:8-saved by grace, not by works; Rom.12:5-we are the body of Christ and each member belongs to the others; Gen.2:9-God put 2 trees in Eden; Deut.30:19-I have given you a choice, now choose life and blessings; 1 Cor.6:9-11-homosexuality is sin; Rom.1:26-27-gay and lesbian is wrong and harms your own body; Lev.20:13-homosexuality is sin and harms your own body; Rom.3:23-all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God; John8:7-11-let the one without sin be the first to throw the stone. They all left. Jesus said I don’t condemn you either, now go leave your life of sin; Rom.8:1-no condemnation for those in Christ; 1Cor.13:4,5,7-Love is kind. Love does not dishonor (disrespect) others. Love protects; 1John4:8-Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love

If a christian did not love you, they did not know God at all; but you can know God right now. He loves you and cares deeply for you. He does not want you to feel condemned. Every person has sinned, and ever person can come to God:

Rom. 8:5 – But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Meditation

Meditation is practiced in many religions, such as Sahaja Yoga, Transcendental Meditation, Buddhism, Hinduism, and many others. Their traditional basis of meditation is the act of clearing the mind; emptying the mind is the goal. The Bible is expressly against this! The Bible teaches meditation and encourages it, but it is meant to be the exact opposite of the other religions. The Bible says we should never empty our minds, but that we should fill them with the Word of God (Jesus).

– Jos. 1:8 – Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

– Gen. 23:63 – He (Isaac) went out to the field one evening to meditate, and as he looked up, he saw camels approaching.

Here we see two of the founding fathers of Judaism, and Christianity, meditating. Just as we see Joshua say: meditate on the Book of the Law day and night and let it ever be on your lips, the new testament also says:

– Matt. 12:44-45 – When it (an impure spiritarrives, it finds the house unoccupied, swept clean and put in order. Then it goes and takes with it seven other spirits more wicked than itself, and they go in and live there. And the final condition of that person is worse than the first.

The house refers to the mind, or the body. We know that we are supposed to be the temple of the Holy Spirit. The Spirit of God was supposed to always be in the temple. God should always be on our minds! This verse shows us that it is in the emptying of our mind that a perverse spirit can enter. This is why we do not meditate the same way as other religions. Emptying the mind allows the enemy in. Filling the mind with Christ, the word of God, fills us to the brim with the Spirit of God. We are to be the temple of the Spirit.

– Eph. 5:18 – be filled with the Holy Spirit

– 1 Cor. 6:19 – Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?

When we choose to follow God’s plan for meditation we see many results. Joshua already told us that meditating on the word helps us live by the word and stay in obedience to Christ. He also said that we will prosper and succeed in our lives by doing so. David, another forefather, repeats the principle:

– Ps. 1:1-3 – Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers.

– Col. 3:16 – Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.

Dwell:
1. live in; reside; lodge; stay
2. think, speak, or write at length about

We can keep the word of God in our hearts and minds by: 1)reading it and taking it in like daily food, 2)thinking about it all day (dwelling, or chewing, on it), 3)singing it in worship to God, 4)talking about it in our conversations and teaching it to others, 5)praying it back to God to remind Him of His promises.

– Heb. 4:12 – For the word of God is alive and active.

– Gen. 1:3 – And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.

The word has power. We bring that power into our lives when we dwell on it.

– Ps. 119:130 – The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple.

– Col. 2:3 – Christ, in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.

The word gives us wisdom and understanding; it is Christ, the Word of God, that gives us the knowledge of who God is, and how to live our lives in a fulfilling manner.

– Matt. 4:4 – Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.'”

The word nourishes us; it gives us health and life.

– Is. 55:10 – As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.

–  Heb. 6:7-8 – Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God. But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed

The word helps us grow and develop; it satisfies our needs and produces good fruit.

– 1 John 2:14 – … I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one.

The word strengthens us; it gives us the power to overcome.

– Eph. 5:25-26 – Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself up for her, so that He might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word

The word cleans us; it purifies our hearts and minds.

– Acts 20:32 – Now I commit you to God and to the word of his grace, which can build you up and give you an inheritance among all those who are sanctified.

The word encourages us; it gives us hope, life, and builds us up, giving us the riches of inheritance.

– 2 Tim. 3:16 – All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

The word teaches us and helps us see when we are in the wrong; it shows us how to live righteously and equips us to do good works.

– John 16:13 – But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come.

– John 14:26 – But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.

The word, and the Spirit of God, shows us the truth about God; it teaches and reminds us, as we need it, of everything Christ, the Word, says.

– Is. 59:21 – My Spirit, who is on you, will not depart from you, and my words that I have put in your mouth will always be on your lips

Living a life before God, in a state of constant meditation on who He is, is the best way to live your life. It gives you success, prosperity, wisdom, understanding, power, growth, nourishment, strength, encouragement, equipping, hope, correction, purification, health, fulfilling life, and brings forth a bountiful harvest from our labor. It invites God to participate in every part of our lives, and walk with us as He did with man in Eden.


– John 1:1-5,9-14 – In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it… The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

Christ, the Word of God, dwell in me!
 Make your home, and stay.
Remind me of the love you are,
 Each and every day!

Meditate on that!


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Biblical Contradictions

I hate gossip, but so often we believe the gossip about God instead of getting to know Him for ourselves. People hear something they don’t like and it begins to act like a barrier keeping them from wanting to know who God really is. We can’t always believe what we hear. We need to get to know Him for ourselves in order to make an educated judgement about Him. Just because one Christian (or group) believes something, doesn’t make it right. With the coming of the internet, biblical research is at its heyday. Searching for one specific word takes seconds instead of a year of research. Where doctrines in the past might have been looking at one scripture and not another similar one, now we can look at all of them; where they could have been missing the full story, we now have full access.

And so, we interpret the Bible with the Bible; we get to know God in the context of God. Not taking any preconceived doctrines (gossip) to heart until we know Him fully and personally. People like to say that the Bible has contradictions, but if you are only going to look at it on a surface level, then yeah, it will look that way. Scriptures can seem contradictory if we don’t dig a little deeper to look for all the pieces. And what’s the point of starting a puzzle if you know you are missing pieces? God has put everything we need in His word. When we find contradictions, it is an invitation to dig deeper and get to know Him better. ‘For its the glory of kings to search out a matter’ (Prov.25:2).


Example Contradiction #1:

– Gen. 3:9 – ‘Every moving thing that lives shall be food for you

– Deut. 14:8 – ‘The pig is unclean for you; You shall not eat any of their flesh’

If we stop here, we will get confused because a pig is a moving thing… so can we eat it or not? However, the Bible says, ‘God is not a God of disorder but of peace’ (1 Cor. 14:33), so if we read those two scriptures, and do not have peace about them, we can guarantee we’ve yet to find the truth. When we keep searching, we find our resolve:

– 1 Cor. 10:23-31 – “I have the right to do anything,” you say—but not everything is beneficial…30If I take part in the meal with thankfulness, why am I denounced because of something I thank God for? 31So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.

– Deut. 4:40 – If you obey all the decrees and commands I am giving you today, all will be well with you and your children. I am giving you these instructions so you will enjoy a long life

Now I’m not in a spirit of confusion, but in the Spirit of peace. I can see that He said we can eat anything, but that not all of it is beneficial for me or nutritious for my body. In order to sustain my health, I should follow his guidelines.

I often talk to my friends about what I’m reading because talking about it helps me understand it better. This friend did not like the idea of giving up bacon, and I don’t either! In fact, we had just eaten a meal wrapped in it! They pointed out the fact that some dietitians think its healthy to eat shrimp, pork, and other things that God calls unclean. But there is always a difference of opinions on earth… some say dark chocolate is good for you, then next year they say its bad. Make up your mind! And that’s the point I tried to make. We don’t know it all, and our opinions change as we learn more. If we believe God made everything, knows everything, and has our best interest at heart, then I should have no problem trusting his ‘opinion’ over a humans, who hasn’t come to a complete understanding of it all.

Example Contradiction #2:

Some people may think God wants to hide things from us. They read, ‘It is the glory of God to conceal a matter’ (Prov. 25:2) and they stop there. One of the acts of the flesh is defined as ‘suspicion or assumption’. We can guarantee that assumption will lead us the wrong way. The suspicion, that God meant He didn’t want us to know something, could make us quit looking. When we choose to do away with suspicion, and act in the fruits of the Spirit, we start to find other parts of the puzzle, leading to the truth:

1 Tim. 2:4 – God desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth

James 1:5 – If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you

Prov. 8:17 – I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me.

One of my friends set up this elaborate scavenger hunt for his girlfriend. Each clue was a beautifully written poem giving her clues to the next item. She ran into people along the path that encouraged her and spurred her on, until she finally made it to the end of the hunt where her beloved presented her with his love, a proposal for marriage, and a wedding ring. I’m sure along the way there was mud, a little confusion, joy in the puzzle, excitement about what lies ahead and what she’d already received. He knew some people would distract her, or turn her away, so he went ahead of her and prepared their hearts, and they came into unity to help! I think of their story when I read this verse, and how God loves it when we seek him out. He guarantees us that we will find him, and all good things, if we follow the path.

– 1 Cor. 2:7-16 – we declare God’s wisdom, a mystery that has been hidden and that God destined for our glory before time began… these are the things God has revealed to us by his Spirit. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. 11For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. 12What we have received is not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand what God has freely given us… we have the mind of Christ.

– 1 Cor. 6:19 – Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God?

If we have the Spirit of God, the mind of Christ, then all knowledge is accessible for us. God, the creator of everything, has given us access to his mind… the mind of the all-knowing. If all mankind truly sought him out over the ages we would have been living on Mars long ago and dreamed of even bigger things.