Several years ago I found myself at odds with someone. This individual had spoken severely to our daughter, and I confronted this person with the truth—but in anger, and I failed to speak truth in love.
Later, I tried to get together and talk it through. I knew I needed to ask for forgiveness for how I said what I said. But those in authority asked me to leave it alone until later. Although I tried to comply at first, I felt miserable keeping quiet. I came to realize I needed to ask forgiveness, no matter what.
The only way I felt I could honor both the Lord and those in authority came by writing a letter and asking for forgiveness. I never heard back from the individual, nor did I expect to or need to. But I needed to do my part. I needed to reach out.
But it was tough.
I once led a church small group where I had fallen behind in preparation. To buy some time, I asked each participant to purchase a certain book, read the first chapter, and we would discuss it. Big mistake.
We sailed through the first part of the chapter until we slammed into a wall. A theological wall. This well-known author took potshots at a theological position we held as a church.
What was my mistake? I hadn’t read the book before.
Here’s what happened.
While Google Maps does a good job with directions to the Grand Canyon, it also works in the Holy Land where Jesus walked. I have plotted the sites of my upcoming tour of through Jesus’ life.
The map shows the locations of all the sites we’ll explore on our upcoming tour to the Holy Land in October of 2015.
Just click on any site—either in the list or on the map itself—and up pops a window with a picture and an explanation of the itinerary.
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE MAP!
I hope you’ll check out all the info about the tour and plan to join us!
I’m excited to teach at the Marathon Adult Fellowship at Stonebriar Community Church on the subject of “Waiting on God with Joseph.” Cathy and I attend this class each Sunday and enjoy the fellowship and the teaching of Dr. Stanley Toussaint.
Join us if you can!
||November 9, 2014
||10:45 am - 12:00 pm
||Marathon Adult Fellowship at Stonebriar Community Church
||Waiting on God with Joseph
Marathon Adult Fellowship
Stonebriar Community Church
||4801 Legendary Drive
Frisco, TX 75034
You can listen to the teaching here after the date.
How do we know what books of the Old Testament were truly inspired? Although we might take it for granted, the contents of the Old Testament canon have been debated for a long time.
(Photo: By Naval History & Heritage Command from Washington, DC, USA. CC-BY-2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
The term canon is from a Greek word that means a “rule or “standard,” and it came to represent truth revealed in Scripture.1 For different Christians in different churches, however, the canon represented different books.
- Some people held that the canon extended to encompass all the books read in the church for edification, which would include what is known as the Apocrypha and sometimes even the Pseudepigrapha (a collection of anonymous, apocalyptic writings).
- Others held that the canon represented simply the Jewish Bible, which corresponds to the Protestant Bible of today.2
- In 1546, when the Council of Trent made a formal statement that all who did not accept selected Apocryphal writings should be condemned, Protestants responded with an equally resolute voice.
This disagreement continues. However, it is an issue that needs resolution, for as the theologian Roger Beckwith aptly states, “With no canon there is no Bible.”3
So, how do we know what books go in our Old Testament?
Maxwell Leadership Bible (Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 2014)
When I first began reading through this Bible, I thought the content would show itself as simple rehash from Maxwell’s other books. Well, if it is, it’s amazingly relevant.
Seeing these truths in the context of Scripture gives them a better framework for application than they might find in any other book.
My goal in creating this Leadership Bible is to enable you to raise the “lid” on your own effectiveness. I want you to reach your potential in Christ! To become more Christlike you need to think and act more like a leader. You must become a person of influence.
Scattered throughout are lessons of leadership, which are often only lessons of character that every Christian should aspire to.
Jesus said, “I am the gate.” In using this metaphor, the Lord drew upon a practice shepherds did that they still do today.
Using either a rock wall or a cave, the shepherd leads his sheep into the pen with a narrow opening of rocks for passage. The pen offers shelter and security for his flock. By staying in the narrow gap, the shepherd serves as the “gate”—the only way in or out of pen.
I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. He will come in and go out, and find pasture. —John 10:9–10
Jesus also drew upon the occasion to show that once a person is saved, he or she can never lose that salvation:
My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and the Father are one. —John 10:27–30
What a comforting promise from one who is no less than God!
Resurrection is not just consolation—it is restoration. We get it all back—the love, the loved ones, the goods, the beauties of this life—but in new, unimaginable degrees of glory and joy and strength.
Anyone who wants a taste of the environs the Hebrews experienced during their wilderness wanderings needs to visit southern Israel. Here you can see far.
For instance, in the southern Wildernesses of Paran and Zin the ground is composed of flint and sharp rocks, gravel, and soil with deep cracks.
- Here the Hebrews wandered for four long decades (Numbers 10:12; 12:16).
- From here Moses sent the spies out to check out the Promised Land (Numbers 13:1-3).
- Four centuries earlier, this wilderness saw Hagar and Ishmael after they left Abraham (Genesis 21:20-21).
This wilderness area of southern Israel lets you see far—in more ways than one.
I’m excited to lead an upcoming tour to the Holy Land which will focus exclusively on the life of Jesus. This will be an exclusive, one-bus tour, seeing sites that average tours to Israel don’t get to see—around a theme most never get to experience first-hand. Click for more information.
I hope you’ll join Cathy and me for this trip of a lifetime.