Thursday, January 28, 2016

How Is a Choose Your Own Adventure Book Related to Faith, Drifting Further and Further from What God Wants, and That's What You Have to Do to Be Saved! posts

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.  For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.  For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.  The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God.  Romans, Chapter 8, verses 13-16.

Choose Your Own Adventure books were pretty popular at one time.  You would be reading an adventure story and then were given choices.  If you turned to one set of pages listed, the story would end one way and if you turned to some of the other pages listed, it would end totally different ways.
We can live worldly lives of the flesh and have a less than pleasant ending or we can realize where we have gone off-track and turn our lives around to focus on God and what He wants for us.  When we choose to live through the Spirit, we will have eternal life with Jesus in heaven.  Which ending do you choose????


For He saith to Moses, I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.  So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that showeth mercy. Romans, Chapter 9, verses 15-16.

There are religious groups that believe that if they “will” things to happen, “visualize things,” “use the god power within them” or use the “power of positive thinking,” everything will turn out the way they want.
Things might turn out the way they want because Satan uses things like this to work a subtle wedge in their relationship with God.  It’s similar to what happens when people read horoscopes where they start out reading it for fun, but after awhile they become more and more dependant on it.  If things turn out well after a person “wills it,” or uses “the god power within them” or “visualizes” things the way they want, they are much more apt to do this again the next time rather than turn to God, asking Him to provide for their every need.  They don’t even realize they are drifting further and further from what God wants, as evidenced through this Bible verse.


That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.  For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto Salvation.  For the Scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on Him shall not be ashamed.  For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call upon Him.  For whosoever shall call upon the Name of the Lord shall be saved.  Romans, Chapter 10, verses 9-13.

The Bible doesn’t say, “People who do nice things for others,” are saved.  It doesn’t say, “People of only a particular ethnic background,” are saved.  It doesn’t say, “Whoever uses the god-power within them is saved.”  It doesn’t say, “People who believe in God as they understand Him,” are saved.  It doesn’t say, “Whoever thinks positively” or “wills things” is saved.
It does say in verse nine: That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised Him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.”
Pure and simple, that’s what you have to do to be saved!

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Monday, January 25, 2016

Our Faith in Jesus is More of a Determiner of Our Salvation, Glorifying God in the Midst of Extreme Tribulation, and Fortunately for us, Jesus has Made the ultimate Sacrifice

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


For circumcision verily profiteth, if thou keep the Law: but if thou be a breaker of the Law, thy circumcision is made uncircumcision.  Therefore if the uncircumcision keep the righteousness of the Law, shall not his uncircumcision be counted for circumcision?  Romans, Chapter 2, verses 25-26. 
But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.  Romans, Chapter 2, verse 29.

There was a time when people thought that if they were Jewish and followed some basic laws like circumcision, they could do whatever they wanted and were saved because Jews were the chosen people.  This passage clarifies that just being Jewish or following rules like circumcision won’t get us Salvation.
I guess what this all boils down to is, God knows what is in our hearts and whether we live as examples of how Jesus works in our lives or not.  This is going to be more of a determiner of our Salvation than any outward signs like being circumcised or being of a particular ethnic or cultural group.


And not only so, but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience; And patience experience, and experience hope: And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us; For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died for the ungodly.  Romans, Chapter 5, verses 3-6.
Don’t you just admire people who can thank God in the midst of all types of disaster and tribulation?  I remember when I would get frustrated when things didn’t turn out the way I wanted.  My father would tell me that those experiences gave me character.  I think God is telling us the same thing in this passage, as my father used to tell me.  If I’m cursing God when things go wrong, am I being a good example of how Jesus works in my life?
The best example I have ever seen of people glorifying God in the midst of extreme tribulation, next to Job, goes to my aunt and her family who experienced an unusually tragic loss of loved ones.  Some would have been bitter and hateful, but they were examples of their faith to all those who were touched by this loss.  I’m not sure I would have fared as well, but God in His infinite mercy will bless them with The Peace Which Passes All Understanding to survive the pain of their loss.


Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned.  Romans, Chapter 5, verse 12.

Nope, none of us is better or more apt to be saved than another.  We are all sinners.  Adam was the first man that sinned and we have continued to perpetuate that plight.  Fortunately for us, Jesus has made the ultimate sacrifice so we all have the same opportunity for Salvation through our faith in Him.

Here are some related passages:
*Therefore as by the offence of one judgment came upon all men to condemnation: even so by the righteousness of One the free Gift came upon all men unto justification of life.  Romans, Chapter 5, verse 18.
*For the wages of sin is death; but the Gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Romans, Chapter 6, verse 23.
*For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. 
1 Corinthians, Chapter 15, verse 22.

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Thursday, January 21, 2016

God Doesn't Give Us the Right to Judge Others, Be Not Afraid, Laughing at Jokes That Put Down people Who Are Different Posts

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.  For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the Truth in unrighteousness; Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shown it unto them.  For the invisible things of Him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Because that, when they knew God, they glorified Him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened.  Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things.  Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: Who changed the Truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, Who is blessed for ever. Amen.  For this cause God gave them up unto vile affections: for even their women did change the natural use into that which is against nature: And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet.  And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient; Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity whisperers, Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents, Without understanding, covenantbreakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful: Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.  Romans, Chapter 1, verses 17-32.

            Throughout the Bible, God gives us direction for our lives.  He lets us know through the passages which things will lead us in the direction that He wants and which things have the potential to lead us down the wrong paths.  This passage is noteworthy because it mentions a variety of lifestyle and behavior choices that displease God.  Although we are to pay attention to these to make our choices accordingly, God doesn’t give us the right to judge others.
            Who are we to cast the first stone?  I think it’s important to remember: Matthew, Chapter 7, verses 1-2, Judge not, that ye be not judged.  For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again. 
            So, although God gives us guidance, we are not to be rude or hateful to others, regardless of whether their lifestyle, sexual preferences or religious beliefs are different than ours.


Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city.  Acts, Chapter 18, verses 9-10.

I don’t know the exact title, but this must be where they got the idea for the song that includes: Be not afraid, for I am with thee always…This song is very comforting to my daughter who remembers this when she is feeling stressed.


Thou therefore which teachest another, teachest thou not thyself?  thou that preachest a man should not steal, dost thou steal?  Romans, Chapter 2, verse 21.

Actually, there is more that goes with this passage.  I just took out the part that relates to me.  When I was in high school, I was visiting a church one time with my mother.  The sermon was especially interesting.  It talked about a parent who was called to the Police Station because their child had gotten arrested for stealing some pens from a local store.  The thing the parent said to the child was, “Why would you steal pens when I can get all the pens you want from my work?”
We, as Christians, may have double standards just like this parent did.  Sometimes we are examples of negative things without really realizing what we’re doing.  When we are being examples of how God works in our lives, we need to make sure all our actions and words glorify Him.  We have to realize that we are giving others a message whether it’s taking things from work or laughing at jokes that put down people who are different than we are.

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Monday, January 18, 2016

People who Think they Use the "god power" Within Them, Hard to imagine anyone Not Wanting God in Their Corner, They Chose to Believe Some Far-Fetched Story and Worship idols Posts

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


And there they preached the Gospel.  And there sat a certain man at Lystra, impotent in his feet, being a cripple from his mother’s womb, who never had walked: The same heard Paul speak: who steadfastly beholding him, and perceiving that he had faith to be healed.  Said with a loud voice, Stand upright on thy feet.  And he leaped and walked.  And when the people saw what Paul had done, they lifted up their voices, saying in the speech of Lycaonia, The gods are come down to us in the likeness of men.  And they called Barnabas, Jupiter; and Paul, Mercurius, because he was the chief speaker.  Then the priest of Jupiter, which was before their city, brought oxen and garlands unto the gates, and would have done, sacrifice with the people.  Which when the apostles, Barnabas and Paul, heard of, they rent their clothes, and ran in among the people, crying out, And saying, Sirs, why do ye these things?  We also are men of like passions with you, and preach unto you that ye should turn from these vanities unto the living God, which made heaven, and earth, and the sea, and all things that are therein: Who in times past suffered all nations to walk in their own ways.  Nevertheless He left not Himself without witness, in that He did good, and gave us rain from heaven, and fruitful seasons, filling our hearts with food and gladness.  And with these sayings scarce restrained they the people, that they had not done sacrifice unto them.  And there came thither certain Jews from Antioch and Iconium, who persuaded the people, and having stoned Paul, drew him out of the city, supposing he had been dead.  Howbeit, as the disciples stood round about him, he rose up, and came into the city: and the next day he departed with Barnabas to Derbe.  Acts, Chapter 14, verses 7-20.

In some bizarre way, I think I now understand why the Ancient Greeks and Romans believed in the mythical gods for so long.  They must have seen the disciples doing miracles and thought they were gods.  They got so caught up in these mythological gods that they never paid attention to what the disciples were telling them about Jesus and Salvation.
It’s funny how over time man has created elaborate explanations for the things that God has done rather than acknowledge God.  There is a religious group that professes to be Christian but can’t acknowledge God.  They have to have some logical explanation for miracles and other things rather than just believing in Him.  Some groups feel that utilizing the “god power within them,” brings about the desired things in their life.  Others use the “power of positive thinking” and some “visualize” themselves getting the job they desire.  They don’t truly realize that they aren’t giving God the credit when they think that they got the job through the “god power within them.”
When I go for a job interview, I ask God to take care of the things I say and whether I get the job or not, whichever way is His will.  I feel positive that God knows what is best for me and my family, so I am happy whether I get the job or not.  That doesn’t mean I might not be somewhat disappointed if I didn’t get the job, but I only want the job that God thinks is best for my particular situation.
Although God says in the Bible that He dwells within each of us; I don’t think it’s this same “god power” that I hear this group speaking of.  Everything I have read in the Bible, and I have read it from cover to cover 16 plus times, tells us that God wants us to turn to Him in everything, not to the “god power that lies within us” or “to visualize things the way we want them to be.” 
I really have a personal concern, because I worry that some well-meaning people may be led astray.  They may believe what seems convenient or more understandable to them rather than believe in God like the people in this passage who couldn’t believe that the disciples were doing these miracles on God’s behalf.  That defied all logical explanation, so they chose to believe that the disciples were gods instead.


And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying: The same followed Paul and us, and cried, saying, These men are the servants of the Most High God, which show unto us the way of Salvation.  And this did she many days.  But Paul, being grieved, turned and said to the spirit, I command thee in the Name of Jesus Christ to come out of her.  And he came out the same hour.  And when her masters saw that the hope of their gains was gone, they caught Paul and Silas, and drew them into the marketplace unto the rulers.  Acts, Chapter 16, verses 16-19.
I’m going to skip some verses to get to the part where Paul is imprisoned.
And when they had laid many stripes upon them, they cast them into prison, charging the jailer to keep them safely: Who, having received such a charge, thrust them into the inner prison, and made their feet fast in the stocks.  And at midnight Paul and Silas prayed, and sang praises unto God: and the prisoners heard them.  And suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken: and immediately all the doors were opened, and everyone’s bands were loosed.  And the keeper of the prison awaking out of his sleep, and seeing the prison doors open, he drew out his sword, and would have killed himself, supposing that the prisoners had been fled.  But Paul cried with a loud voice, saying, Do thyself no harm: for we are all here.  Then he called for a light, and sprang in, and came trembling, and fell down before Paul and Silas, And brought them out, and said, Sirs, what must I do to be saved?  And they said, Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house.  And they spake unto him the Word of the Lord, and to all that were in his house.  And he took them the same hour of the night, and washed their stripes; and was baptized, he and all his, straightway.  And when he had brought them into his house, he set meat before them, and rejoiced, believing in God with all his house.  And when it was day, the magistrates sent the sergeants, saying, Let those men go.  And the keeper of the prison told this saying to Paul, The magistrates have sent to let you go: now therefore depart, and go in peace.  Acts, Chapter 16, verses 23-36.

There’s more to the story. Paul wouldn’t leave the prison because they had been publicly chastised and the magistrates were trying to secretly let them out.  Paul wanted to be publicly cleared of all the charges, which eventually happened.
This passage makes me think of how perfectly God looks after the people that spread His Word.  I was thinking of Daniel in the lion’s den and how he wasn’t harmed.  It brings to mind lots of others, as well.  Noah and his family were saved from the flood by God letting him know he was to build an ark.  Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego, were not burned in the fiery furnace.  Peter was let out of jail by the angel.  The list of miracles, where God distinctly protects those that are doing His will, goes on and on.  It’s hard for me to imagine that anyone wouldn’t want God in their corner.  I sure do!

They Chose to Believe Some Far-Fetched Story and Worship idols

Then Paul stood in the midst of Mars’ hill, and said, Ye men of Athens, I perceive that in all things ye are too superstitious.  For as I passed by, and beheld your devotions, I found an altar with this inscription, TO THE UNKNOWN GOD. Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.  God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that He is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men’s hands, as though He needed any thing, seeing He giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and bounds of their habitation; That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after Him, and find Him, though He be not far from every one of us: For in Him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also His offspring.  Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device.  Acts, Chapter 17, verses 22-29.

This reminds me of when my mother told me about intercourse and how babies are conceived when I was really young.  I have to admit it’s a pretty strange connection to make with this passage.  
I was very young when my mother explained about babies being conceived.  In fact, I don’t really remember her telling me.  The thing is, she did tell me the truth and not some story, just like Paul told them the truth about God and not some story.
Years later, I heard some really far-fetched explanations from fellow students that didn't make sense to me. Fortunately, I asked my mother to explain?  This really confused her because she had already told me the truth and I had chosen to believe a far-fetched story instead.  Well, it seems very similar here.  Paul told them the truth about God, but they chose to believe some far-fetched story and worship idols made by man’s hands instead.  How sad!

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Thursday, January 14, 2016

Not Taking Undeserved Credit, Does Satan Use Children's Books to Lead People Astray? and Don't Have to be Rich or on the Society Page Posts

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


And Herod was highly displeased with them of Tyre and Sidon: but they came with one accord to him, and having made Blastus the king’s chamberlain their friend, desired peace, because their country was nourished by the king’s country.  And upon a set day Herod, arrayed in royal apparel, sat upon his throne, and made an oration unto them.  And the people gave a shout, saying, It is the voice of a god, and not of a man.  And immediately the angel of the Lord smote him, because he gave not God the glory: and he was eaten of worms, and gave up the ghost.  But the Word of God grew and multiplied.  Acts, Chapter 12, verses 20-24.

This makes me think of times when God gives me a clever idea.  People will sometimes compliment me on them and ask how I came up with the idea.  I’ve found that it’s much better for me to say, “God just had the idea pop into my head,” rather than to take the undeserved credit for it.  This passage reinforces that we are supposed to make sure we always give God the glory instead of using it as an opportunity to add a few more feathers to our cap.


But Elymas the sorcerer (for so is his name by interpretation) withstood them, seeking to turn away the deputy from the faith.  Then Saul, (who also is called Paul,) filled with the Holy Ghost, set his eyes on him, And said, O full of all subtlety and all mischief, thou child of the devil, thou enemy of all Righteousness, wilt thou not cease to pervert the right ways of the Lord?  Acts, Chapter 13, verses 8-10.

If God had this person in the Bible who used sorcery called a “child of the devil,” do you think He would approve of the fascination with the children’s book series that has sorcery as a primary focus?  This series has become so popular that both adults and children are reading them, promoting them to others.  It makes me sad Satan uses children’s books as a subtle way to lead people astray.


Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the Word of God should first have been spoken to you: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles.  For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for Salvation unto the ends of the earth.  And when the Gentiles heard this, they were glad, and glorified the Word of the Lord: and as many as were ordained to eternal life believed.  Acts, Chapter 13, verse 46-48.

There was a time when I was confused because the Bible would talk about the Jews being the promised people.  I wondered how I was going to get to heaven since I’m not Jewish.  But this says Salvation is for all people to the ends of the world, which includes me.  A person just has to believe Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior of all in order to go to heaven.  I’m so thankful!  What a simple request.  I don’t have to be born to royalty.  I don’t have to be rich or on the society page.  I don’t have to look or dress a certain way.  I just have to believe in Jesus.  How much simpler could it get?
If God conveyed this to Peter, do you think He wants us treating different races in an undignified manner?  I don’t think it makes Him happy to know how we have race and social class divisions.  We can personally make a change in how we interact with others and serve as role models at the same time.

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Monday, January 11, 2016

Are We Captivated by People Who Defy Our Ethical Reasoning? God Doesn't Want Us to Put Down Other Cultures, Just an Interesting Tidbit Posts

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


And there was great joy in that city.  But there was a certain man, called Simon, which beforetime in the same city used sorcery, and bewitched the people of Samaria, giving out that himself was some great one: To whom they all gave heed, from the least to the greatest, saying, This man is the great power of god.  And to him they had regard, because that of long time he had bewitched them with sorceries.  But when they believed Philip preaching the things concerning the kingdom of God, and the Name of Jesus Christ, they were baptized, both men and women.  Then Simon himself believed also: and when he was baptized, he continued with Philip, and wondered, beholding the miracles and signs which were done.  Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the Word of God, they sent unto them Peter and John: Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Ghost: (For as yet He was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the Name of the Lord Jesus.)  Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Ghost.  And when Simon saw that through laying on of the apostles’ hands the Holy Ghost was given, he offered them money, Saying, Give me also this power, that on whosoever I lay hands, he may receive the Holy Ghost.  But Peter said unto him, Thy money perish with thee, because thou hast thought that the gift of God may be purchased with money.  Thou hast neither part nor lot in this matter: for thy heart is not right in the sight of God.  Repent therefore of this thy wickedness, and pray God, if perhaps the thought of thine heart may be forgiven thee.  Acts, Chapter 8, verses 8-22.

Some of the things that amaze me in this passage are related to Simon who could use sorcery to get a whole city to be in awe of him and the things he did.  If it was possible then, it makes me wonder if people in power, certain celebrities, religious leaders, etc. do the same thing now.  Are we captivated by particular people who defy all our ethical reasoning? I’m not sure on this one, but it makes me wonder about people in the media or some religions that get rich from people sending in their life savings to them.  This is just something to think about.
Additionally, when Simon saw the power given through the Holy Spirit when they were laying on hands, he wanted it too.  Rather than become committed to his belief in Jesus, doing it the hard way through changing his life, Simon picked the easy way out and thought he could have his cake and eat it too!  He thought he could live his worldly life and buy the gift of the Holy Ghost.  Well, Peter saw right through that plan!
The sad part of all of this is that I somewhat identified with Simon.  Sometimes I’m looking for the easy way out to accomplish God’s Will with the least amount of risk on my part.  I need to be more open to being the person that God wants me to be.


And he [Peter] became very hungry, and would have eaten: but while they made ready, he fell into a trance, And saw heaven opened, and a certain vessel descending unto him, as it had been a great sheet knit at the four corners, and let down to the earth: Wherein were all manner of four footed beasts of the earth, and wild beasts, and creeping things, and fowls of the air, And there came a Voice to him, Rise, Peter; kill, and eat.  But Peter said, Not so, Lord; for I have never eaten any thing that is common or unclean.  And the Voice spake unto him again the second time, What God hath cleansed, that call not thou common.  This was done thrice: and the vessel was received up again into heaven.  Now while Peter doubted in himself what this vision which he had seen should mean, behold the men which were sent from Cornelius had made inquiry for Simon’s house, and stood before the gate. And called and asked whether Simon, which was surnamed Peter, were lodged there.  Acts, Chapter 10, verses 10-18.

When I first read this, I thought it was speaking solely about people formerly not being allowed to eat pork and other foods which had been forbidden in past Bible teachings.  This passage has far-reaching ramifications.  Later on in the same chapter it further clarifies this passage.
And he [Peter] said unto them, Ye know how that it is an unlawful thing for a man that is a Jew to keep company, or come unto one of another nation; but God hath shown me that I should not call any man common or unclean.  Acts, Chapter 10, verses 28. 
It goes on to say: Send therefore to Joppa, and call hither Simon, whose surname is Peter; he is lodged in the house of one Simon a tanner by the sea side: who, when he cometh, shall speak unto thee.  Immediately therefore I sent to thee; and thou hast well done that thou art come.  Now therefore are we all here present before God, to hear all things that are commanded thee of God.  Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every nation he that feareth Him, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with Him.  The Word which God sent unto the children of Israel, preaching peace by Jesus Christ: (He is Lord of all).  Acts Chapter 10, verses 32-36. 
Furthermore it says: And He commanded us to preach unto the people, and to testify that it is He which was ordained of God to be the Judge of the quick and dead.  To Him give all the prophets witness, that through His Name whosoever believeth in Him shall receive remission of sins.  Acts Chapter 10, verses 42-43.
Parts of the passage that I’m quoting are changing the way that Christians think about the social system.  In the past, certain nationalities or cultures were not to associate with others.  God shares His will with Peter through a dream, using food as a comparison.  Previously, certain foods had been considered unclean and not to be eaten just like there had been certain cultures of people who were not to associate with each other.  Through this dream, God says that all the foods are acceptable to Him in the same way that ALL people are His.  God doesn’t want His disciples just to preach to particular types of people or cultures.  Everyone needs to hear the Word of God.
It shows that God didn’t feel any one nationality, culture or race was better than another.  He wants everyone to have Salvation, not just certain people.  I think if this was important to God then, people should live their lives accordingly.
It’s sad to see and hear some supposed Christians talk negatively about people of different ethnic backgrounds.  I don’t think we are being the best example of how God works in our lives when we are putting down different cultures.  I don’t believe God wants us to think we are better than others whether it’s because they have a different ethnic background, different financial status, believe differently, etc.  I think He wants us to be compassionate and supportive of everyone, being an example of how He works in our lives. Click the title of this post to see other related Bible passages.


Then departed Barnabas to Tarsus, for to seek Saul: And when he had found him, he brought him unto Antioch.  And it came to pass, that a whole year they assembled themselves with the church, and taught much people. And the disciples were called Christians first in Antioch.  Acts, Chapter 11, verses 25-26.

I just thought this passage was interesting because it tells about the origin of the term “Christians”.

(Sorry it's not more, but my postings are sections of the book: Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, so readers can get the information in the book for freeThis was just and interesting tidbit of information I found while was reading the Bible cover to cover. Debbie)

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Thursday, January 7, 2016

One of My Bigger Shortcomings, Undaunted by Those Unable or Unwilling to Contribute, and I Have a lot of Room for Growth

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one.  Then the high priest rose up, and all they that were with him, (which is the sect of the Sadducees,) and were filled with indignation, And laid their hands on the apostles, and put them in the common prison.  But the angel of the Lord by night opened the prison doors, and brought them forth, and said, Go, stand and speak in the temple to the people all the Words of this life.  And when they heard that, they entered into the temple early in the morning and taught.  But the high priest came, and they that were with him, and called the council together, and all the senate of the children of Israel, and sent to the prison to have them brought.  But when the officers came, and found them not in the prison, they returned, and told.  Saying, The prison truly found we shut with all safety, and the keepers standing without before the doors: but when we had opened, we found no man within.  Acts, Chapter 5, verses 16-23.

Telling others about Jesus’ death and Resurrection was important enough that God had an angel unlock the jail cell doors these two different times.  If He went to all that trouble, don’t you think He wants me to be more open about sharing my faith with others?  That’s one of my bigger shortcomings!


And to him they agreed: and when they had called the apostles, and beaten them, they commanded that they should not speak in the Name of Jesus, and let them go.  And they departed from the presence of the council, rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His Name.  And daily in the temple, and in every house, they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ.  Acts, Chapter 5, verses 40-42.

My son was committed to raising money for “Jerry’s Kids.”  I tried to encourage my children to be sensitive to the needs of the less fortunate.  This fourth grade student went from house to house all weekend long collecting money.  Undaunted by those who were unable or unwilling to contribute, his determination led him to collect a record amount for this worthy cause.  Earlier, I had suggested that he had done enough and should think of quitting but he wouldn’t give up until he felt he had done his very best for this cause.  I need to be as dedicated to my beliefs, regardless of what others think.


When they heard these things, they were cut to the heart, and they gnashed on him [Stephen] with their teeth.  But he, being full of the Holy Ghost, looked up stedfastly into heaven, and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing on the right hand of God, And said, Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing on the right hand of God.  Then they cried out with a loud voice, and stopped their ears, and ran upon him with one accord, And cast him out of the city, and stoned him: and the witnesses laid down their clothes at a young man’s feet, whose name was Saul.  And they stoned Stephen, calling upon God, and saying, Lord Jesus, receive my spirit.  And he kneeled down and cried with a loud voice, Lord, lay not this sin to their charge.  And when he had said this, he fell asleep.  Acts, Chapter 7, verses 54-60.

I was impressed with how forgiving Stephen is.  They have bitten him and are in the process of stoning him to death, yet he asks God to forgive them.  I have a difficult time forgiving people who have hurt my feelings ten years ago.  Boy, do I ever have a lot of room for growth!

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

Monday, January 4, 2016

I Go Through the Motions of Being a Follower of Christ, Those Who Profess to be the Messengers of God, and This Passage Always Rings too Close to Home

Since Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life, is now on line through individual posts, I am now putting several links together for each post. I found groupings of three posts worked well for anyone interested in using these for a Bible study group.  Debbie Seiling


And all that believed were together, and had all things common; And sold their possessions and goods, and parted them to all men, as every man had need.  And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart.  Praising God, and having favour with all the people.  And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved.  Acts, Chapter 2, verses 44-47.

It’s difficult for me to imagine such total dedication to sharing the Word of God.  That would mean selling my house and giving the money to someone else.  That would mean not having a TV, VCR, furniture, bank account, etc.  Every aspect of my life would be focused on delivering the message of Salvation to others.  It makes me realize what a worldly life I still am leading even though I go through the motions of being a follower of Christ.
When it’s difficult to give up worldly possessions, it seems like they possess your soul!  Definitely something I need to work on, especially since I’m thinking about getting a new computer while I’m editing this rather than focusing on the message that this has for me.  Boy, do I ever need to get my priorities straight!


And he [lame man] gave heed unto them, expecting to receive something of them.  Then Peter said, Silver and gold have I none; but such as I have give I thee: In the Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth rise up and walk.  And he took him by the right hand, and lifted him up: and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength.  And he leaping up stood, and walked, and entered with them into the temple, walking, and leaping, and praising God.  And all the people saw him walking and praising God: And they knew that it was he which sat for alms at the Beautiful gate of the temple: and they were filled with wonder and amazement at that which had happened unto him.  And as the lame man which was healed held Peter and John, all the people ran together unto them in the porch that is called Solomon’s, greatly wondering. And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this? or why look ye so earnestly on us, as though by our own power or holiness we had made this man to walk?  The God of Abraham, and of Isaac, and of Jacob, the God of our fathers, hath gloried His Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied Him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let Him go.  But ye denied the Holy One and the Just, and desired a murderer to be granted unto you, and killed the Prince of Life, whom God hath raised from the dead; whereof we are witnesses.  And His Name through faith in His Name hath made this man strong, whom ye see and know: yea, the faith which is by him hath given him this perfect soundness in the presence of you all.  Acts, Chapter 3, verses 5-16.

In healing the lame man, Peter didn’t take credit for the miracle but made sure that the people focused on this miracle coming from faith in Jesus, not through Peter’s efforts.  When I watch religious shows on TV, I’m appalled at the way some of them focus more on the religious leaders who get paid, than they do on Jesus Christ.  Peter didn’t say “I” healed the lame man through Jesus.  “I” am able to do this miracle through Jesus’ power.  “I” need you to send me money so that “I” can continue these miracles.  Peter gave the total credit to Jesus, no “I’s” or “Me’s”.
Sometimes, I get concerned about those who profess to be the messengers of God, but publicly draw attention to themselves.  If Jesus and His apostles didn’t draw attention to themselves for the miracles they did and didn’t ask people for money, do you think Jesus would approve of those on TV who do?  It’s just something that seems noteworthy as you watch different religious shows that do this.  You need to be able to discern the Will of God.  Trust your instincts.  He will guide you through these.


But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, And kept back part of the price, his wife also being privy to it, and brought a certain part, and laid it at the apostles’ feet.  But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?  Whiles it remained, was it not thine own?  And after it was sold, was it not in thine own power?  Why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart?  thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God.  And Ananias hearing these words fell down, and gave up the ghost: and great fear came on all them that heard these things.  And the young men arose, wound him up, and carried him out, and buried him.  And it was about the space of three hours after, when his wife, not knowing what was done, came in.  And Peter answered unto her, Tell me whether ye sold the land for so much?  And she said, Yea for so much.  Then Peter said unto her, How is it that ye have agreed together to tempt the Spirit of the Lord?  Behold, the feet of them which have buried thy husband are at the door, and shall carry thee out.  Then fell she down straightway at his feet, and yielded up the ghost: and the young men came in, and found her dead, and carrying her forth, buried her by her husband.  And great fear came upon all the church, and upon as many as heard these things.  Acts, Chapter 5, verses 1-11.

I’m very fortunate God that has this story of Ananias and his wife pop in my mind from time to time, especially at times when I’m trying to find an angle to beat the system.  An example would be my planning to have my college daughter come and eat at the breakfast buffet in my hotel when I come to her town to visit.  Since I’ve realized how I was calculating this in my heart, I now go to someone at the hotel and offer to pay for my daughter to join us for breakfast.  It’s not that anyone minded or would have missed the food.  What matters is that I contrived this plan in order to save a few bucks on my daughter’s breakfast and God knows what’s in my heart.  He knows when I’m making up lame excuses for why I’m not going to church on a particular occasion or why the sales person deserved my less than patient response to the store’s policy, etc.
It would be nice if God didn’t need to remind me so often.  That’s not the case.  Satan works in very subtle ways and finds ways to sneak into our lives through our planning and scheming and our making excuses for our choices.  I’m so thankful that God takes the time to remind me.  I don’t ever want to let these subtle things work into my life and slowly lead me astray.  I need to maintain a focus on God and the reminders He puts in my mind (some people call it a conscience), which help to refocus me.

Because this is an example of how I’ve applied this Bible passage to my life, it doesn't necessarily reflect the whole meaning of the passage.

These are other blogs I felt led to create:

This is a connection I've made from this Bible passage. Please share your connections. 
Please click on comments below to share your suggestions. Thanks! Debbie

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