Thursday, September 29, 2016

Needing a Round Tuit, Pep Talk from Jesus, and Hiding My Light 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 Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.  And He saith unto them, Follow Me and I will make you fishers of men.  And they straightway left their nets, and followed Him.  Matthew, Chapter 4, verses 18-20.

I remember getting a round hot pad called a “Round Tuit.”  It’s a gag gift you give to people who always answer that they will do things when they get “around to it.”  I realize that the disciples didn’t even know Jesus, but when He asked them to be fishers of men, the disciples dropped everything, no questions asked.  In contrast, here I am asking for a “Round Tuit” saying by my actions, “Well, I’m busy right now, God, but I might talk to others about the impact You’ve left on my life when I get around to it.” Click on the post title to read related Bible passages.

And He opened His Mouth, and taught them, saying, Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.  Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.  Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.  Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.  Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.  Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.  Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness’ sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.  Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for My sake.  Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.  Matthew, Chapter 5, verses 2-12.
I picture this as a pep talk with Jesus as the coach of a team of Christians.  He might say something like, “Of course there are teams that get ahead because they do unethical things, and the ones focused on playing a good honest game on earth don’t get ahead.  I know the team takes a hit for playing the game ethically and sometimes gets laughed at.  I know you definitely don’t rake in the big bucks and status the way other players do.  I promise that you will have your compensation in heaven for all your hard work and sacrifice on My behalf.  Your efforts never go unnoticed and will be repaid.  Keep up the good work and don’t let the world get you down!”Click on the post title to read related Bible passages.

Ye are the light of the world.  A city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.  Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick: and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.  Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.  Matthew, Chapter 5, verses 14-16.

I’ve kept my relationship with God hidden under a bushel for most of my life.  I’m not much for walking door to door to talk to strangers about God.  I haven’t done much to try to actively convert people.  I guess writing this book isn’t any big-time “shining” when you think about it.  I’m sharing this information in a low risk fashion.  I need to make more of an attempt to take the risks that God needs me to on His behalf.  I guess I have to start somewhere and this is it.  I will see where God leads me from here.

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, September 26, 2016

Intro, Fable Started It and Pudding Thief 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

Although this book has the potential of being controversial, it is not my intent to offend any person, group or religious belief.  I feel obliged to honestly express how the selected Bible passages have influenced my life and would be negligent, as an author and a Christian, to do anything less.
It’s my desire for readers of all ages and religious backgrounds to find that reading the Bible never becomes outdated and continues to hold personal significance for all types of readers of the new millennium. Click on title to read more. D.S

Would you believe that a fable got me started reading the Bible?  In 1980, someone said something to me about, “god helps him who helps himself,” and referred to it being in the Bible.  I had heard this saying over the years, but realized it contradicted some other things I had read in the Bible.  I looked through the Concordance at the back of my Bible but couldn’t find this passage anywhere.  Perplexed, I decided the only way I would know if it was in the Bible was for me to read it from cover to cover for myself.  Now, this decision wasn’t based solely on my frustration about this quote.  I had a neighbor who quoted different contradictory things from the Bible, as well.  I figured that I needed to read the Bible to see what God really said about the topics the neighbor kept referring to.  I get concerned when people quote passages from the Bible out of context, making them sound the way they want.
Well, it’s twenty-three years later and I have completely read the Bible from cover to cover sixteen plus times.  “God helps him who helps himself,” is not in it anywhere!  Actually, the Bible says that we are supposed to turn to God for our every need, trusting that He will provide for us (paraphrased.)
I was frustrated as I continued to hear people quote this, because I couldn’t figure out where people got it.  Most of the people who used this quote, said it as if they thought it came from the Bible.  Well, I finally have closure on this…after all this time!
I was reading some Aesop’s Fables to my students.  They have to be able to identify the moral of a story for a test they have in the spring.  I decided that I could help them be more successful on the test if I had them identify the morals from Aesop’s Fables.  Well, after reading “Hercules and the Wagoner,” I finally realized where “god helps him who helps himself” came from.  It’s from this fable!  The moral written for this fable is “Self help is the best help” and “Heaven helps those who help themselves.”
When they are talking about god, they aren’t talking about God.  They are talking about the mythological character, Hercules.  I bet most people haven’t the slightest idea that they are quoting a fable instead of the Bible.
This may seem like a trivial thing, but it has been a confusing issue to me for twenty-three years and now it’s resolved!  I feel so relieved and wanted to share this with others.  Actually, this has really worked out well in the long run.  If it hadn’t been for my inability to find this quote in the Bible, I might not have been motivated to read the Bible from cover to cover.  I enjoy reading it so much that I continue to read it from cover to cover again and again.  Every time I read it, I get something new out of it.
Particular passages in the Bible have really influenced my life and have molded my relationship with God.  I felt led to share these with you, since they may have a similar impact on your life, as well.
Whenever someone quotes Bible passages, it’s really good to read them for yourself.  You should read a portion before and after the passage.  This helps you know if people are pulling these passages from the Bible out of context, distorting the meaning by making it sound the way they want.
I use the King James Bible for my quotes which tends to spell things somewhat differently than we do (example: labour for labor).  In order to keep the passages just as they are in the Bible, I use the exact spellings, punctuation, capitalizations or lack thereof in order to not alter the passage.  I do attempt to explain what these passages mean to me, or I describe how they have influenced my life.
I’m not a minister and don’t profess to be one, but I feel that reading the Bible can influence your life, as well.  Will it impact your life in exactly the same way?  Probably not, the Bible is a very personal thing.  If 1,000 different people read the Bible, there would be 1,000 different interpretations.  Every time I read the Bible, passages I have read before often mean something totally different to me, depending on what is going on in my life at the time.  God uses the Bible as a means of communicating His personal message for each and every one of us.
Reading the Bible may seem like a major undertaking for some of you.  Actually, after you get through the “thee’s” and “thou’s,” it’s not as difficult to understand as you might think. A chapter in the Bible isn’t like a chapter in a novel.  A Bible chapter is generally about one to two columns long.  It’s hardly ever longer than a page or two, at most.  I read at least one to two chapters a day for about 10-15 minutes.  It takes me an anywhere from one year to two years to read the Bible from cover to cover, depending on how many chapters I read each day.  It’s so rewarding that you might consider reading it yourself!  The quiet time I have with God each day as I read the Bible, sets a positive tone for my day and my life.
I was just beginning to read the New Testament when I started writing this book.  That’s why the New Testament is written first and the Old Testament is written afterward.  After I finished writing the book, I had thought about cutting and pasting the Old Testament first but realized it wouldn’t work.  As I wrote the book, I made comments about passages and referred back to them at other times.  If I put the Old Testament in the beginning, some of the comments I share with you would be out of sequence.  I am hoping that leaving the book in this order doesn’t cause a problem for anyone.  If it does, I apologize in advance, but still feel this book has many redeeming qualities, more significant than whether the Old Testament is listed first or second.
The passages in italics are from the Bible.  Otherwise, they are my personal comments on how these passages have influenced my life.  I also try to capitalize any reference to God/Jesus out of respect, which makes it easier for you to follow who is speaking or being spoken to.  I may group similar passages from the Bible together so that you have an approximate idea of how many times God stresses a particular topic.  The sheer number of times that God has had something mentioned in the Bible has led me to make changes in my life.  Although you may not relate to these passages in the same ways I have, the reader can be influenced by the Bible in a way that is personally significant to them.

         Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.  And when He had fasted forty days and forty nights, He was afterward an hungered.  And when the tempter came to Him, he said, If Thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread.  But He answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the Mouth of God.  Matthew, Chapter 4, verses 1-4.

When I was a child, I saw a big bowl of my mother’s home-made butterscotch pudding sitting on the kitchen cupboard.  I looked around and couldn’t see anyone, so I sneaked over to the bowl and ran my finger around the side of the bowl.  I ever so carefully got a small amount of pudding on my pudgy finger and licked it off.
I thought I was going to get off “Scott free” but I didn’t realize there were spies about and a bounty on pudding thieves.  After being told the pudding had to be thrown out because I had gotten germs all over it, my consequence was to be sent to my room.  Instead of being remorseful for what I did, my thoughts were, “If I had known the pudding would be thrown out, I would have eaten a whole bunch instead of a little bit.  That would have made my consequence much more worthwhile.”
I gave in to these temptations and lost my perspective of right and wrong and I hadn’t even been fasting for forty days like Jesus.  In fact, I had eaten a filling lunch but still was vulnerable to the lure dangled in front of me.  Now some might think that this isn’t a major sin but don’t realize that Satan works in very subtle ways to get us to rationalize our actions.  He is able to lead us astray without our ever realizing it.  Fortunately for me, Jesus didn’t give in to the temptations for food, status or power that we often fall prey to. Click on the post title to read related Bible passages.

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, September 22, 2016

Are You One of God's Jewels?, Do You Just Blend In? and Additional Info About Blog

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 now we call the proud happy; yea, they that work wickedness are set up; yea, they that tempt God are even delivered.  Then they that feared the Lord spake often one to another: and the Lord hearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for them that feared the Lord, and that thought upon His Name.  And they shall be Mine, saith the Lord of Hosts, in that day when I make up My jewels; and I will spare them, as a man spareth his own son that serveth him.  Then shall ye return, and discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serveth God and him not.  Malachi, Chapter 3, verses 15-18.

I was just talking about how some business people take advantage of the Hispanic workforce.  Management talks behind their backs, talks down to them and takes advantage of them financially, treating them like sub-standard human beings.  Now, these workers may or may not realize that they are being treated poorly, because some of them don’t understand the language.
Do you think we can pull the same thing on God and get away with it?  Think again!  He knows when we have a perfect opportunity to share our belief with others, but we are too embarrassed to mention it.  He knows when we take advantage of others or make fun of them.  He knows when we put work before Him and our families.  He knows when we only turn to Him in dire trouble, but we forget about Him until the next traumatic situation.  He knows when we harbor hatred, jealousy and resentment toward others.
        Although He is very forgiving, God will remember these things, using them to help determine if we are one of His “Jewels” or not.  Are you one of His “Jewels”?  It’s never too late to reassess your actions and to change them around.  Reading this book has given you the opportunity to see things from a different perspective. You have a choice.  You can decide to start reading the Bible on a daily basis or you can ignore what you have read.  I pray that God opens your heart to be willing to do His will. 

For, Behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of Hosts that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.  But unto you that fear My Name shall the Sun of Righteousness arise with healing in His wings; and ye shall go forth, and grow up as calves of the stall.  And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of Hosts.  Malachi, Chapter 4, verses 1-3.

This makes me think of when I’m driving the speed limit and someone in my car gets annoyed.  They tell me that I need to just “blend in” with the others (going the same speed that others are driving, so as to not be noticed).  At times, I let people persuade me to go faster to “blend in” with the flow of traffic, still knowing I’m driving at a speed that’s against the law.
Are we, as Christians, finding ourselves “blending in” with a lifestyle speed of the people we associate with, so our actions go unnoticed?  Do we use God’s Name in vain because everyone else does?  That way we don’t stand out in a crowd as a Christian.  Do we do unethical things at work because everyone else does them?  Well, we are exceeding God’s speed limit for our lives and we know it.  Even if we “blend in” with lifestyles similar to others, we have to make a decision.  Do we want to be one of God’s “Jewels” or just “blend in” with the traffic of lifestyle choices that won’t get us to Heaven?
You have a chance to make a monumental change in your life and to show your commitment to God.  No, you don’t have to shave your head and sell flowers on street corners!  You just have to make a conscious effort to live as an example of God’s influence on your life.  If you listen to the instincts that God gives you instead of listening to the urges of society to “blend in” with the traffic of life, you will attain the ultimate goal of Salvation through Jesus.
I want to, again, explain that I do not profess to be an expert on the Bible.  Read the passages noted and see what God is saying to you through them.  I have read the Bible from cover to cover sixteen plus times now, and every time I read a passage, I get something totally new from of it.  God gave me a feeling that I should share how reading the Bible on a regular basis has positively influenced my life and deepened my relationship with Him, and may do the same for you.
I apologize if I have offended anyone, because that isn’t the intent of this book.  There were times I thought about not writing particular things, not wanting to offend people I care about or for fear of antagonizing the media and the business world.  If I had done that, I would just be “blending in” with the traffic of life instead of genuinely expressing how God has influenced my life.
It is my desire that you will come to relate to the Bible in a way that is personally significant to you.  If nothing else, I hope that this gives you things to think about as you use the instincts that God gives you while reading your Bible.

The whole book: Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life has now been printed and shared on this blog for free. You can read it all, starting at the original post, but it really doesn't need to be read in order to see examples of how a person can relate the Bible to their daily life.
I've grouped three of the original posts into one post. I did this in order to make it easier for people to use it for a free Bible Study and/or have discussions about how others relate particular Bible Passages to their own lives. I will continue to re-post these to provide a free resource for the public. Debra Seiling

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, September 19, 2016

Regretted Wishes, God DOES NOT Condone Abuse, Employers Who Take Advantage of Minority Employees and Are We What's In It for Me Christians? 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

These are the things that ye shall do; Speak ye every man the Truth to his neighbour; execute the judgment of Truth and peace in your gates: And let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his neighbour; and love no false oath: for all these are things that I hate, saith the Lord.  Zechariah, Chapter 8, verses 16-17.

Boy, this makes me think of all the times that I secretly hoped that all of the cheerleaders would get fat.  What a terrible thing to wish on other people.

Yet ye say, Wherefore? Because the Lord hath been witness between thee and the wife of thy youth, against whom thou hast dealt treacherously: yet is she thy companion, and the wife of thy covenant.  And did not He make one?  Yet had He the residue of the Spirit, and wherefore one?  That He might seek a Godly Seed, Therefore take heed to your Spirit, and let none deal treacherously against the wife of his youth.  For the Lord, the God of Israel, saith that He hateth putting away: for one covereth violence with his garment, saith the Lord of Hosts: therefore take heed to your spirit, that ye deal not treacherously.  Malachi, Chapter 2, verses 14-16.

Some people are able to grab a Bible and quote verses out of it to support their abuse of their wives and children.  I want to tell each and every one of you now; God Does Not condone abuse whether it’s physical, sexual, mental or any other type of abuse.  Anyone who thinks God says those behaviors are permissible in the Bible, is twisting things around (pulling passages out of context) to support their criminal and inappropriate behavior!!!  They can possibly hide the abuse from others by trying to justify their actions, but they can’t hide it from God.

And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not Me, saith the Lord of Hosts.  Malachi, Chapter 3, verse 5.

God tells us about lots of lifestyle choices that don’t meet with His approval.  One of the things I was thinking about is the part about not oppressing the hireling in his wages or turning aside the stranger from his right.
I live in an area where there is a large Hispanic population; many coming here directly from Mexico.  I see that business owners take advantage of them and it’s almost a common practice.  The cost of living is high and so are the wages.  The businessmen pay the Hispanic workers sub-standard wages, being able to get away with it because these hard-working people don’t know the system or the language to dispute this.
I remember driving by a construction site on a Sunday evening, about 7:00 p.m.  There were 5-6 Hispanic workers busily digging and installing something at the apartment complex construction site.  I was thinking that the vast majority of people wouldn’t be working on a Sunday night doing physical labor, especially without being paid overtime.  (I highly doubt that these men were even offered any overtime.)
The sad thing is these employees are generally extremely hard workers, but are often treated without the respect they deserve.  Even if we aren’t the people employing them and paying them the extremely low wages, we might be guilty of not paying them the respect and dignity they deserve as God’s people?

Ye have said, It is vain to serve God: and what profit is it that we have kept His ordinance, and that we have walked mournfully before the Lord of Hosts?  Malachi, Chapter 3, verse 14.

Boy! Are we ever an “I-Me” population, looking out for ourselves as a “What’s In It for Me Christian?”  My impression is that God wants unconditional love.  He doesn’t want Christians who are only doing it to look good to other members of society.  He doesn’t want Christians who are doing it to reap the many rewards God gives His followers.  He wants Christians who genuinely love and follow Him and His Word, regardless of the consequences, both positive and negative.
Are we looking at our belief, saying, “Hey, what’s it for me to get up each week and go to church?…to be kind to others?  to take risks to be examples of our faith in the workplace?”  Something to think about!
(Well, this is my last editing before I send this back to the publishers, and I just had to share this with you.  I’ve been telling you throughout this book that I haven’t been taking the risks to share my love for Jesus with others.  I’ve always been afraid they would think that I’m a religious fanatic and back away.  Writing this book has been an extremely eye-opening experience for me, making me much more aware of my weaknesses as a “Self-absorbed Christian.”
Well, about five minutes ago, I was thumbing through the church newsletter while I was munching on something and saw a request.  It was asking for a volunteer to do a Bible Study at a local nursing home.  I surprised myself and decided to act on it right away before I got cold feet.  Unfortunately, the person wasn’t there but I left a message saying that I would be willing to lead the Bible Study and asked that they call me back.
The more I got to thinking about it, I thought this book would probably be ideal to use for the Bible Study.  Nope, I’m not trying to sell more books, although additional sales will help whichever charity I choose to donate the proceeds to.  What I was thinking is that I have this book on my computer.  I could copy several pages each week and enlarge the print to make it easier for the people in the nursing home to read.  We could talk about how they relate to the passages.  Although I haven’t listed every passage in the Bible that relates to a given topic, I occasionally have other passages that support a great many of them.  This may take us off into different directions.
You realize that I’m talking this all out with you, processing it as I write.  I think I like this idea, because I know that the passages I have listed in this book come from the King James Bible.  Then I don’t have to be concerned about which study guide to pick, worrying if another author’s point of view matches my belief in Jesus as my Savior.

I’m starting to get excited about this whole new adventure.  I almost feel a little teary eyed.  When I started this book, I said that I would see where God leads me and within minutes of being finished with the final editing, I read the request in the newsletter.  Not two weeks earlier where I would have thought that I still had too much to do or two months later, when I might have slipped away from my resolve to take more risks.  God had me read it minutes before finishing.  God works that way in my life and can work that way in your life too, if you let Him.  I know you’re a captive audience, but thanks for being here with me as I grow in my relationship with God.  He has positively influenced my life through reading the Bible on a daily basis and He can do this for you too.  Thanks again.  D.S.)

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, September 15, 2016

One True God and It Sure Wasn't the Astrologers, Magicians or Wizards!, The Bible Doesn't Say Our Lives Are Controlled by Fate and Always Wishing for More 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

Daniel answered in the presence of the king, and said, The secret which the king hath demanded cannot the wise men, the astrologers, the magicians, the soothsayers, show unto the king; But there is a God in heaven that revealeth secrets, and maketh known to the king Nebuchadnezzar what shall be in the latter days.  Thy dream, and the visions of thy head upon thy bed, are these… Daniel, Chapter 2, verses 27-28.

You may want to read the rest of the second chapter of Daniel and elsewhere in Daniel to find out what is going to happen in the last days.  It has more to do with symbols of countries that are in power or have fallen at particular times in history.  I don’t truly understand all of that, but I have an uncle who has studied this topic and is very knowledgeable about this.
This passage is included because of the people who turned to fortune tellers, astrologers, magicians, etc.  None of these could interpret the meaning of the king’s dream, but God could.  After Daniel interpreted the dream by trusting the instincts that God gave him, the king realized there is only One True God and it sure wasn’t the astrologers, magicians or wizards!

Do you think God would be pleased that the influences of the astrologers, wizards and magicians have worked their way into our lives through the newspapers, books, TV and the movies we choose?  Are we spending time focusing on something other than the One True God without even realizing it?

God had been telling Jonah to go to Nineveh to tell them to change their ways or they would be destroyed, but Jonah had been reluctant to do it until he was swallowed into the belly of the great fish.  After God saved him, he went to Nineveh to do God’s Will.

And Jonah began to enter into the city a day’s journey, and he cried, and said, Yet forty days, and Nineveh shall be overthrown.  So the people of Nineveh believed God, and proclaimed a fast, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest of them even to the least of them.  For Word came unto the king of Nineveh, and he arose from his throne, and he laid his robe from him, and covered him with sackcloth, and sat in ashes.  And he caused it to be proclaimed and published through Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles, saying, Let neither man nor beast, herd nor flock, taste any thing: let them not feed, nor drink water: But let man and beast be covered with sackcloth, and cry mightily unto God: yea, let them turn every one from his evil way, and from the violence that is in their hands.  Who can tell if God will turn and repent, and turn away from His fierce anger that we perish not?  And God saw their works, that they turned from their evil way; and God repented of the evil that He had said that He would do unto them; and He did it not.  Jonah, Chapter 3, verses 4-10.

Some people believe our lives are controlled by fate and we can’t do anything to change our lives or our fate.  Well, this passage refutes that position.  The people of Nineveh lived the high life and didn’t focus on God.  They turned their lives around after Jonah warned them that they were going to be destroyed and God spared them.
So that means that if we have made some pretty stupid counterproductive choices in our lives, we can apologize to God and turn our actions around.  God will forgive us, too, just like He did for the people who lived in Nineveh.

Here are some related passages:
*Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits: Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; Who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; Who crowneth thee with loving kindness and tender mercies.  Psalm, Chapter 103, verses 2-4.
*The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.  He will not always chide: neither will He keep His anger for ever. He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor regarded us according to our iniquities.  For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is His mercy toward them that fear Him.  As far as the east is from the west, so far hath He removed our transgressions from us.  Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear Him.  Psalm, Chapter 103, verses 8-13.

*But the mercy of the Lord is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear Him, and His righteousness unto children’s children: To such as keep His covenant, and to those that remember His Commandments to do them.  Psalm, Chapter 103, verses 17-18.

Now therefore thus saith the Lord of Hosts; Consider your ways.  Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes.  Thus saith the Lord of Hosts; Consider your ways.  Haggai, Chapter 1, verses 5-7.

This passage makes me think of times when anything I have doesn’t seem like enough.  I have food, but I wish I had better food.  I have clothes, but I wish I had better clothes.  I have friends, but I wish I had “status” friends.  I have a job, but I wish I had a “high level job”.  I have money, but I wish I had more money.

Am I ever grateful for what I have?  I sure wouldn’t want God saying, “Debbie is so ungrateful for all I’ve given her.  If she thinks things are tough now, wait until she sees tough.  I’m wasting my efforts here.  I’ll spend My time helping some other Christian who appreciates what I do more than she does!”  Something for me to think about, what about you?

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

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Taking Advantage of God's Forgiving Nature, Alarmed about Using God's Name in Vain!!!, Putting Faith Off Until the Last Minute 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 He said unto His disciples, Therefore I say unto you, Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat; neither for the body, what ye shall put on.  The life is more than meat, and the body is more than raiment.  Consider the ravens: for they neither sow nor reap; which neither have storehouse nor barn; and God feedeth them: how much more are ye better than the fowls?  And which of you with taking thought can add to his stature one cubit?  If ye then be not able to do that thing which is least, why take ye thought for the rest?  Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  If then God so clothe the grass, which is today in the field, and tomorrow is cast into the oven; how much more will He clothe you, O ye of little faith?  And seek not ye what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink, neither be ye of doubtful mind.  For all these things do the nations of the world seek after: and your Father knoweth that ye have need of these things.  But rather seek ye the kingdom of God; and all these things shall be added unto you.  Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.  Luke, Chapter 12, verses 22-32.
This is one of my favorite passages in the whole Bible.  It has personal significance to me because of my experience with it.  Years ago, I was on a very tight budget.  It was so tight that I had to buy powdered milk in case I didn’t have enough money to have milk for my children’s breakfast.  Now, I know our situation wasn’t as bad as some, but I just want you to know that things were tight and I had to be very careful about my spending.  Now, one of my biggest vices, as I’ve shared, is the need to be in control of my life.
Since things were so tight, I would spend hours making a budget or revising it every time there appeared to be a need.  I lived my life by this budget and tried very hard to not deviate from it.  I spent most of my waking hours trying to plan, scheme and figure out ways to get by through the month.  Then one day, God had me read this particular passage and it totally turned my life and my relationship with God around!
I found out that God didn’t want me spending the vast majority of my time fretting over bills and figuring out ways to make ends meet.  When I was doing that, I was showing that I didn’t trust God to provide for my family’s needs.  I was also wasting a lot of time planning when I could have spent that time reading the Bible, praying or spending time with my family.
It was like I was saying, “God, you know I love you and I think you’re wonderful, but I just don’t think you are going to take good enough care of my family.  I’m going to devise a plan to take care of them, just in case you fail us.”  Well, that isn’t the message I want to be giving God.
I can’t say I don’t ever get caught up in worrying about finances anymore, but quite often God will put the thought of this passage in my mind which helps me refocus.  I need to trust God to take care of my family’s needs and I need to be an example of how God works in my life.
This is a disclaimer of sorts.  This doesn’t mean a person should go out and spend their family’s money on gambling, alcohol, Bingo, possessions, etc. and God will make sure that all their needs are met.  I don’t think He wants us to ever take advantage of Him.
It would be like telling an unemployed relative that he could stay with you for a month or two while he gets back on his feet.  While your relative goes out to look for work every day you tell him, “Don’t worry about cleaning up your room.  I have a little extra time and I’ll take care of it.”  This is a genuine offer and you don’t mind cleaning up the minor things the relative leaves around.
Then the relative starts taking advantage of the fact that he has someone taking care of him.  The relative starts leaving all his clothes on the floor.  He leaves his dirty towels lying around instead of putting them in the hamper.  He leaves his dirty dishes lying on the table.  It’s bad enough that you have to take his dirty dishes to the sink and wash them, but they are hard, crusty and difficult to wash.
To top this all off, the relative is getting used to having someone pay all the bills, cook the meals and clean up after him.  Having a job, getting up early and going to work is looking less and less attractive to him.
Your relative isn’t getting up early in the morning anymore to look for work.  In fact, he seems to be staying in bed later and later every day.  You bring the paper to your relative with some potential jobs circled and find that he has tossed it on the floor with the rest of his dirty clothes, making no attempt to look for work or even call any of the ads you carefully circled.
You aren’t empowering your relative by helping him become the best he can be.  Instead, you realize that you are enabling him and making him dependent on you.  Finally, you recognize that enough is enough and you tell your relative that you aren’t going to be doing things for him anymore.  You notify him that he has to be responsible for himself and if he doesn’t get a job in a certain amount of time or at least make a decent effort; he will be out on his ear.
Well, don’t you think that if we could feel this way, maybe God would get a little upset if we took advantage of Him?  I don’t think He would like it if we spent our money carelessly so that we didn’t have enough for our bills, but relied on Him to pick up all the pieces and work everything out.  So, although I’m saying God will take care of our every need (and He really does, even better than I ever did when I was budgeting so tightly), we still need to be responsible about our finances and choices by not taking advantage of God’s forgiving nature.

Surely Thou wilt slay the wicked, O God; depart from me therefore, ye bloody men, For they speak against Thee wickedly, and Thine enemies take Thy Name in vain.  Psalm, Chapter 139, verses 19-20.
It doesn’t sound to me that God takes it lightly when people curse Him or use His Name inappropriately.  That’s why I am very concerned about people casually using “God” and “Jesus” in their everyday speech.  I don’t think people realize how strongly God feels about it.
All the passages that say we aren’t to profane God’s Name or to use His Name in vain really made me stop and think.  It has become very common these days for people to say “God” or “Jesus,” without really any thought.  You hear people say things like, “God that was a great game!”  “Jesus Christ! I ran out of bread again!”  “Oh, good God, get off your high horse and give me a hand around here.”  
Of course, I can’t mention all the possible ways I’ve heard people use God’s Name inappropriately.  The point of great concern is that these people really aren’t focusing on God when they say these things.  They aren’t praying or genuinely telling other people about God or glorifying Him either.  God states very clearly throughout the Bible that we aren’t supposed to use His Name in vain.
Reading many passages about this in the Bible has caused me to become alarmed about this issue.  I don’t think people realize how often they’re saying “God” or “Jesus,” in their everyday language.  It’s on TV and it’s in the movies.  Almost everyone seems to be doing it, even the little kids and people we respect.  Some people who are doing this consider themselves to be good Christians.  I don’t think these people even know they are using God’s Name in vain or that they are being a poor example of their faith in Jesus.
I realize that some people may not like hearing this.  Most of us like thinking we are pretty good people.  This may hurt our self-perception of the type of Christian we think we are.  I’m hoping that we will get beyond this and become much more aware of the words we choose to use.
Using God’s Name in vain has become just casual slang, like, “Shucks” used to be when I was a kid.  I hope one of the things that you get out of this book is a deeper awareness of this issue.  Listen to people talk.  What if each and every person who used God’s Name in vain as slang was to lose their Salvation?  That would be a pitiful thing. 
Maybe that’s what my job is.  Maybe I’m supposed to make people aware that they are doing this.  Maybe I’m supposed to draw their attention to the possible repercussions of using God’s Name in vain.  I have no idea.  I just know I felt led to write this book and God will take care of the rest!
Fortunately, God is very merciful and will forgive us if we ask Him to, provided we make the necessary changes to only use His Name in ways that glorify Him. Click on the Post title to read some related Bible passages. 

He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard and he came and sought fruit thereon, and found none.  Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard, Behold, these three years I come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and find none: cut it down, why cumbereth it the ground?  And he answering said unto him, Lord, let it alone this year also, till I shall dig about it, and dung it: And if it bear fruit, well: and if not, then after that thou shalt cut it down.  Luke, Chapter 13, verses 6-9.

If a person stole from stores and then said to God, “I’m sorry I am not the Christian You want me to be; please forgive me,” but neglected to try to change anything, God would be patient with him up to a point.  This passage makes me think that there comes a time when God says that He’s given enough chances for the person to change their actions and if they haven’t, then He cuts His losses.
Fortunately for us, God is very forgiving.  If that person finally turns his life around to be the Christian that God wants; all will be forgiven.  God doesn’t want us to put off our faith until the last minute. Click to read additional related Bible passages on this topic.

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, September 12, 2016

Turning Our Act Around, Acting Like Nothing Ever Happened and Going to Great Lengths to Prove Their Faith When It Is Unnecessary 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

Seek ye the LORD while He may be found, call ye upon Him while He is near: Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto the LORD, and He will have mercy upon him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.  Isaiah, Chapter 55, verses 6-7.

It’s amazing, how forgiving God is.  The people had been focusing on astrologers and sorcerers rather than Him, the One True God.  God told them that if they realized that they were wrong and turned their act around, He would forgive them and take care of them.  Such divine forgiveness is something I haven’t always been able to muster.

If people were rude to me, I might be nice to them, but I still remembered that they had been rude to me.  Well, this far surpasses any rudeness or disloyalty we might have to endure.  God is always willing to forgive us if we ask Him and turn our act around by focusing on His will for us.

Behold, ye trust in lying words, that cannot profit.  Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods whom ye know not; And come and stand before Me in this house, which is called by My Name, and say, We are delivered to do all these abominations?  Jeremiah, Chapter 7, verses 8-10.

I realize that we don’t burn incense to idols like Baal, and then go to church, acting like nothing ever happened.  Do we do unethical things at work in order to climb the corporate ladder and then go to church and act like nothing ever happened?  Do we flirt with people other than our spouse and then go to church acting like nothing ever happened?  Do we tell white lies to get ourselves out of financial predicaments with the I.R.S. and then go to church acting like nothing ever happened?  Are we rude and talk hatefully to others, even telemarketers, and then go to church acting like nothing ever happened?
It’s funny how we can waltz into church acting as if we can pull the wool over everyone’s eyes.  Maybe we can pull the wool over the eyes of most, but not God who sees and knows who we are and what we have failed to do.
Consider taking the time to tell God that you haven’t always behaved the way He would want.  Ask Him to forgive you and give you the willingness to be a better Christian in the future.  He will do it if you take the time to ask Him to.

And they built the high places of Baal, which are in the valley of the son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire unto Molech; which I commanded them not, neither came it into My mind, that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.  Jeremiah, Chapter 32, verse 35.

What people are willing to do in the name of their beliefs always seems to amaze me.  Can you imagine how some people were willing to have their children, their own flesh and blood, walk through fire thinking these acts will get them Salvation?  They went to such great lengths when all God asks of us is to believe in Jesus Christ, as our Savior, and try to live as examples of how He works in our lives.  He doesn’t ask that we sacrifice our children, give all our belongings or money away to have Salvation.  His request from us is pretty simple, but I guess it seems too simple for some.
What a shame.  Some people can risk their Salvation by getting led astray by cults or they send some TV evangelist all their money so they can get to heaven but they aren’t turning to God.  All we have to do to get Salvation is underlined in this section.  I like to skip the middlemen and focus directly on God.

Here are some related passages:
*When the LORD thy God shall cut off the nation from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou inquire not after their gods, saying, How did these nations serve their gods? Even so will I do like wise.  Thou shalt not do so unto the LORD thy God: for every abomination to the LORD, which He hateth, have they done unto their gods; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their gods.  What thing soever I command you, observe to do it: thou shalt not add thereto, nor diminish from it.  Deuteronomy, Chapter 12, verses 29-32.

*And when the king of Moab saw that the battle was too sore for him, he took with him seven hundred men that drew swords, to break through even unto the king of Edom: but they could not.  Then he took his eldest son that should have reigned in his stead, and offered him for a burnt offering upon the wall.  And there was great indignation against Israel: and they departed from him, and returned to their own land.  2 Kings, Chapter 3, verses 26-27. 

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, September 8, 2016

Are Extra-Marital Affairs Becoming the Norm?, How Does God Feel About People Who Believe in Using the God Power Within Them? and You Made Your Bed, Now Lie in It 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

Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil, that put darkness for light, and Light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter!  Isaiah, Chapter 5, verse 20.

It’s sad that having extra-marital affairs has almost become a norm in society.  People seem to feel no remorse in doing unethical things in order to climb the ladder of success.  People who have great status and wealth are looked upon more approvingly than those who lead good-Christian lives.  People who live according to their Christian ethics are often ridiculed and aren’t given the same respect as others.  God calls it like He sees it!  When it comes to determining people’s Salvation, no amount of money, status or remarks trying to justify one’s actions are going to buy them entrance into heaven.

Here are some related passages:
*Which justify the wicked for reward, and take away the righteousness of the righteous from him!  Therefore as the fire devoureth the stubble, and the flame consumeth the chaff, so their root shall be as rottenness, and their blossom shall go up as dust: because they have cast away the Law of the LORD of Hosts, and despised the Word of the Holy One of Israel.  Therefore is the anger of the LORD kindled against His people, and He hath stretched forth His hand against them and hath smitten them: and the hills did tremble, and their carcasses were torn in the midst of the streets.  For all this His anger is not turned away, but His hand is stretched out still.  Isaiah, Chapter 5, verses 23-25.
*And they shall teach My people the difference between the Holy and profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.  And in controversy they shall stand in judgment; and they shall judge it according to My judgments: and they shall keep My Laws and My Statutes in all Mine assemblies; and they shall hallow My Sabbaths.  Ezekiel, Chapter 44, verses 23-24.
*Seek good, and not evil, that ye may live: and so the Lord, the God of Hosts, shall be with you, as ye have spoken.  Hate the evil, and love the good, and establish judgment in the gate: it may be that the Lord God of Hosts will be gracious unto the remnant of Joseph.  Amos, Chapter 5, verses 14-15.

*Ye have wearied the LORD with your words.  Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied Him?  When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and He delighteth in them: or, Where is the God of judgment?  Malachi, Chapter 2, verse 17.

How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning!  how art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!  For thou hast said in thine heart, I will ascend into heaven, I will exalt my throne above the stars of God: I will sit also upon the mount of the congregation, in the sides of the north: I will ascend above the heights of the clouds: I will be like the most High.  Yet thou shalt be brought down to hell, to the sides of the pit.  They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man that made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms. That made the world as a wilderness, and destroyed the cities thereof; that opened not the house of his prisoners?  Isaiah, Chapter 14, verses 12-17.

God is condemning Satan’s influence on mankind, especially Babylon.  Now, if God didn’t like that Satan had tried to become like God, don’t you think God would be equally displeased when people professing to be Christians want to have “the god power within them?”  I’m no expert, but through the things I have read in the Bible, God usually gets pretty upset when anyone is arrogant enough to try to gain the power of God.

Stand now with thine enchantments, and with the multitude of thy sorceries, wherein thou hast laboured from thy youth; if so be thou shalt be able to profit, if so be thou mayest prevail.  Thou are wearied in the multitude of thy counsels.  Let now the astrologers the stargazers, and the monthly prognosticators, stand up, and save thee from these things that shall come upon thee.  Behold, they shall be as stubble; the fire shall burn them; they shall not deliver themselves from the power of the flame: there shall not be a coal to warm at, nor fire to sit before it.  Thus shall they be unto thee with whom thou hast laboured, even thy merchants, from thy youth: they shall wander every one to his quarter; none shall save thee.  Isaiah, Chapter 47, verses 12-15.

God seems to be telling the Babylonians (paraphrased), “You made your bed, now lie in it!”  Prior to this, God tried to refocus the Babylonians who were being led astray.  They listened to those with power, the sorcerers and astrologers, etc.  People were paying attention to them instead of to God.  He told them (paraphrased), “When push comes to shove, those people you looked up to are going to hit the road and they won’t be there to protect you.  But then again, you deserve it because you ignored Me when I tried to help you.  I am the Only One who could have saved you.  So, 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

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