Thursday, April 27, 2017

It Undermines the Marriage, God's Guidelines for Parents, and Getting Caught Up in Counterproductive Philosophical Discussions 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

Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the Name of our Lord Jesus Christ: Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God: Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and He is the Saviour of the Body.  Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in everything.  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it: That He might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word.  That He might present it to Himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be Holy and without blemish.  So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies.  He that loveth his wife loveth himself.  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church: For we are members of His Body, of His Flesh, and of His Bones.  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.  This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.  Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.  Ephesians, Chapter 5, verses 20-33.

Ease up, now!  I realize that this appears to be a passage that sets the Women’s Movement back 100 years, but it’s not!  This passage isn't about women having the right to vote.  It’s not about women having equal pay for equal jobs.  This passage is about a husband and wife being respectful of each other’s needs and treating each other with the same courtesy and respect that they want.  God put man and woman together to support each other as a UNIT.  The marriage wasn't meant for two totally separate entities to be fighting to maintain their ability to be in control of the other.
When God says that the man is the head of the household doesn’t mean that the man is supposed to arbitrarily make all the decisions regardless of his wife’s opinions, or vice versa.  If the husband and the wife are to be a UNIT, it should involve discussions on decisions, being respectful of each person’s opinion.
If the man is to treat the woman as he would treat his own body and the woman is to do the same, then that means they should be respectful of each other in all matters.  A husband or a wife wouldn’t beat up their own body, so they should not beat up their spouse.  A husband or a wife wouldn’t be calling themselves names or saying put-downs about themselves, so they shouldn’t do it to their spouse-even if it’s funny.  It undermines the marriage.
A husband or a wife wouldn’t be yelling at themselves, so they shouldn’t do it to their spouse.  A husband or a wife wouldn’t deprive themselves of their basic needs, so they shouldn’t do it to their spouse.  A husband or a wife wouldn’t want their spouse to be unfaithful to them, so they shouldn’t do it to their spouse.  A husband or a wife wouldn’t be hateful and unforgiving to themselves and their own faults, so they shouldn’t do it to their spouse.  This passage has nothing to do with the Women’s Movement.  It has only to do with the husband and the wife treating each other with the same respect and support that they would want to get within the marriage.
Here is a related passage:
*And He answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that He which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh?  Wherefore they are no more twain, but one flesh.  What therefore God hath joined together, let not man put asunder.  Matthew, Chapter 19, verses 4-6.

Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.  Honour thy father and mother; which is the first Commandment with promise;  That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.  And ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord.  Ephesians, Chapter 6, verses 1-4.

This passage also goes both ways.  Children are to be respectful of their parents and to obey their rules.  I think all too many parents only focus on this part of the passage.  They forget that they aren’t supposed to provoke their children to wrath; instead they are to nurture them.  This DOES mean that parents are to be supportive of their children, which does NOT mean that they are to raise their children by telling them how stupid they are and how they can’t do anything right.
This DOES mean that parents are to appropriately discipline their children, which does NOT mean that they are to take all their frustrations out on their children, yelling at them, hitting them or sexually abusing them.  This DOES mean that parents are to provide for their children’s physical and emotional needs and well-being, which does NOT mean that they are supposed to ignore their child’s basic needs.  This DOES mean that parents are to nurture their children, which does NOT mean overindulging them with their every wish.  This DOES mean that parents are to set clear and appropriate rules, which does NOT mean being harshly strict with them or being too lenient either.  This DOES mean that it’s reasonable for parents to expect children to do chores as a member of the household, but it does NOT mean that they are to expect their children to do all the household chores, or that the parents do everything for the child so the child never develops a sense of responsibility.
The child, under the appropriate conditions set forth in the Bible, is supposed to obey their parents, but the parent isn't to provoke them to anger and is to nurture them.  In other words, the parents and the children are to work together in mutual respect of one another and of God.

As ye have therefore received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk ye in Him: Rooted and built up in Him, and stablished in the faith, as ye have been taught, abounding therein with thanksgiving.  Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ.  Colossians, Chapter 2: 6-8.

I’m not to get caught up in counterproductive philosophical discussions with other people regarding my faith.  There have been times when I have done this and I began to doubt my own faith or became uncertain about particular issues.
I have found that when I read the Bible, so many things are clarified for me in a way that no person was able to do.  I know these answers come from God and are not some person or group’s philosophical interpretation of the Bible.  My faith becomes vulnerable when I let other people tell me what I should and shouldn't believe and how I should do it.
It’s kind of like a painting.  You spend hours creating a painting and it’s just right for you.  You show it to some friends and they tell you that you should change the painting in a particular way.  You show the painting to an artist and he tells you that you should really change these other aspects of the painting.  Lastly, you show the painting to an art teacher.  He tells you that the painting really should be altered in some totally new way.  By the time you ask all of these different people’s advice, you can’t remember why you painted the painting in that particular fashion and what your original goals for the painting were.  Your mind is so muddled by all these interpretations of the right way to paint that the painting doesn’t seem like the same painting you felt excited about in the beginning.

As an artist, I have found it’s much better when I don’t ask for other people’s opinions and I paint for my own pleasure.  As a Christian, I have found I can’t get involved in other people’s philosophical discussions of how they think religion is supposed to be.  There are millions of different people with millions of different interpretations.  If I get caught up in listening to other people’s opinions, I can get confused and possibly lose my focus on God.  I find it much better to bow out of philosophical discussions and read the Bible on my own and to trust the instincts that God gives 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:

Monday, April 24, 2017

Do You Spend Your Life Feeling Powerless Like Pinocchio?, Was My Loss of Integrity Worth the Ten Cents I Was Saving?, and Holding on to Anger 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

That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; but speaking the Truth in love, may grow up into Him in all things, which is the head, even Christ.  Ephesians, Chapter 4, verses 14-15.

Some people appear to act as if they are marionettes like Pinocchio and others act like real people.  The ones who act like marionettes, similar to Pinocchio, seem to blame everyone else and circumstances for all the things that happen in their lives.  They act as if they are powerless puppets and others are pulling all their marionette strings, controlling their lives.
The ones who seem to be real people realize that they make choices in their lives that impact the things that happen to them.  If things don’t turn out the way they want, they look at the choices they are making and make changes that ultimately turn their lives around.
I think that God wants us, as Christians, to be real people.  Ones who can change our choices if we find our lives aren’t going in the direction that would glorify God.  He doesn’t want us to be marionettes like Pinocchio, being led astray by those who promise the fun and excitement of the worldly life.  He doesn’t want us to feel like we have no control over our choices and are powerless to change our lives.
If you have spent your life feeling powerless like Pinocchio, God is here to cut the strings that bind you and lead you astray.  He can make you the real Christian you want to be.  You can turn to Him to help you make the necessary changes…no strings attached!  (I couldn't resist adding that!)

That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the Spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness.  Wherefore putting away lying, speak every man Truth with his neighbour for we are members one of another.  Ephesians, Chapter 4, verses 22-25.

This passage is basically saying that once you become a Christian, you should start living the life of a Christian, putting away your old sinful behaviors.  It makes me think of a time when I went to the grocery store with coupons in hand; ready to cut my expenses big time!  I remember having a coupon for ten cents off of a particular brand of raisins.  I didn't want that brand of raisins, though.  It probably was considerably more expensive even with the ten cent off coupon.  I ended up getting the cheaper box of raisins, knowing it wasn't the right brand for the coupon.
I rationalized my actions, thinking it was only a dime.  I gave the cashier the ten cent off coupon deliberately mixed in between all my other coupons, hoping she didn’t realize that I had substituted the cheaper brand for the more expensive one.
She told me the total for my groceries and I started writing my check and had to stop.  This situation impacted my life!  The cashier didn’t realize I was lying and was stealing by substituting the cheaper brand of raisins for the coupon I used.  I knew and what was worse, God knew!  Was my loss of integrity worth the ten cents I was saving?  (It’s funny how Satan can sneak up on some of us “Self-righteous Christians,” in very subtle ways.)
I immediately gave her ten cents for the raisins, telling her that I was sorry I had gotten a more expensive brand than the coupon stated.  She told me not to worry about it, it was just a dime.  I told her that I wanted her to take the dime anyway, saying I knew I had taken the wrong raisins and I wouldn’t feel right unless she took the money.  Actually, I thought she would be horrified that I would do such a thing.  I was prepared to be totally embarrassed by the cashier’s reaction because I really deserved it, but it didn’t happen that way.
I didn’t have an obvious consequence for my actions.  It was more the realization that I was lying to God and myself.  I was jeopardizing my Salvation over money.  I’m fortunate that God has this situation pop back in my mind as a reminder from time to time.  It’s especially helpful when I’m a “Looking at the Angles Christian,” figuring out some kind of angle to beat the system or I’m wording things very carefully so that I’m not telling the whole truth in situations, but not exactly telling a lie, either.
I’m very thankful that God gives me a conscience to remind me when I start slipping into old human ways again.

Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath.  Ephesians, Chapter 4, verse 26.

I have always heard this Bible verse used in relation to marriage.  I really believe whole-heartedly that this is good advice for both adults and children.  There have been nights when I have gone to bed frustrated with a family member and then this verse pops into my head.  (I’m so glad God looks after me that way!)  I get back up and work things out with whichever family member I need to.  I get a good night’s sleep, feeling the situation has been peacefully resolved, which sets a good example for the rest of the family.  When we hold onto anger, it eats away at us and doesn't make us very good examples of how God works in our lives.
Here is a related passage:
*Be not hasty in thy spirit to be angry: for anger resteth in the bosom of fools.  Ecclesiastes, Chapter 7, verse 9.

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:

Thursday, April 20, 2017

It's More of an Intellectual Challenge to Find My Very Best Deal, Taking Care of Even the Smallest of My Worries, and God Works Through Us for His Glory 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

That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love.  Ephesians, Chapter 3, verse 17.

I like the mental picture that I get when I think of Christ dwelling in my heart.  I break His heart when I focus on making worldly choices.  I get caught up in looking at all the angles to save a dime, not necessarily because I need to.  It’s more of an intellectual challenge to find my very best deal and it’s exhilarating to find a bargain!
When I go to purchase things, I often look at all the prices that are stamped on the items.  Sometimes they mislabel them, pricing an item considerably lower than all the rest.  I know it must be some type of error but I’ve taken it to the cash register, exhilarated because I have found this great deal.
I try to rationalize it in my mind, saying that it’s the store’s fault for mislabeling things and they have to live up to their error or it is false advertising.  Then I usually get a strong, intense feeling that I’m doing something against my religious principals.  I know that I’m not being a good example of how God works in my life and I generally tell the cashier about the price difference.
I say generally, because writing this has made me aware that I just did this recently and I didn’t draw it to the cashier’s attention.  We were driving through Kansas on the way to see my grandkiddos for Christmas.  I have a very good friend whose daughter collects Wizard of Oz memorabilia.  I saw this figurine I wanted to get for her daughter and I found one that was marked $3.00 less than all the others on the shelf.  I rationalized this by telling myself that it’s from an older shipment that was marked the lower price, thinking the newer ones were marked the higher price.  This time, I never told the cashier.
I feel terrible about this, because I feel like I am being a hypocrite as I write this to you.  It just so happened that I still had the receipt.  I just went to see if it had an address on it, but it didn’t.  Of course, that would have been the chicken way out!  It would have been pretty easy to send this person $3.00 in the mail.  It did have the phone number on the receipt, so I called.
I apologized and wanted her address to send her the money.  (They don’t have mail service for the turnpike businesses.)  When she told me that wasn’t necessary, I explained that I consider myself a Christian and needed to live by my Christian ethics and I hadn’t.  I knew there had been a $3.00 difference in the price of the figurines and hadn’t brought it to her attention.
She told me not to worry about it, but I do—not because of the $3.00.  It bothers me that I could find it so easy to backslide into old worldly ways when I think I’m making great strides at being the person that God wants me to be.
This has been a very humbling experience for me.  Satan can sneak into our lives through very subtle things and I let him do it without even batting an eye!  Fortunately, Jesus dwells in my heart and lets me know when I’m not living the life that He wants.

And to know the love of Christ, which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.  Ephesians, Chapter 3, verse 19.

It truly is difficult to comprehend how God works in our lives.  I remember growing up thinking that God was this distant, glorious being who was there to take care of us when we had important issues.  Now, I have found that if I pray to Him with little things like the key not turning over in the ignition or ask Him to find something I’m looking for, He is there taking care of even the smallest of my worries.

And to know the love of Christ; which passeth knowledge, that ye might be filled with all the fullness of God.  Now unto Him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us.  Unto Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus throughout all ages, world without end.  Amen.  Ephesians, Chapter 3, verses 19-21.

I was concerned that this passage might be one that people who focus on using “the god power within them” might use to support their belief in this erroneous concept.  This passage has listed Colossians, Chapter 1, verse 29 as a cross-reference.  It is really helpful to read this for clarification of what the passage in Ephesians really means.
Whereunto I also labour, striving according to His working, which worketh in me mightily.  Colossians, Chapter 1, verse 29.
These two passages aren’t talking about using “the god power within me” to acquire the things you wish to attain or to accomplish.  What this is talking about, from what I understand, is that God works through us for His glory when we are the examples He wants us to be.  An illustration might be that we are there to support a friend or a co-worker who is at a major turning point in their life.  God was there working through us by our example.  He was there through our support, our comforting words and our telling them of how our faith in God gets us through the tough times.  He works through us in our explanation of the positive impact that God has had on our lives.
Being an instrument that God can use to touch the lives of others is a wonderful experience!  God works through different people in different ways, just like the passage I wrote about earlier that says God gives us each different types of gifts to glorify Him.  (Paraphrased)

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:

Monday, April 17, 2017

I Hate to Think of How Spiteful I Had Been, Because of Drugs, Alcohol, and Counterproductive Choices, and Sometimes I Get a Little Arrogant and Self-Righteous 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

If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.  Let us not be desirous of vain glory, provoking one another, envying one another.  Galatians, Chapter 5, verses 25-26.

In high school, I remember running for Sophomore Secretary.  (I always remember how to spell secretary, because I spelled it incorrectly on every banner I displayed throughout the school.)  My opponent was also a member of the Drill Team.  I had tried out for the Drill Team but wasn't selected.
My envy of my opponent led me to tell others that she really didn't deserve the Sophomore Secretary position that I coveted.  I told them that her other obligations were too time consuming for her to do a good job for the Sophomore Class.
It was a very humbling experience for me when she won the election for Sophomore Secretary.  I hate to think of how spiteful I had been, because I let that position become too important in my life.  I definitely wasn't being a very good example to others.

Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.  For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting.  And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.  As we have therefore opportunity, let us do good unto all men, especially unto them who are of the household of faith.  Galatians, Chapter 6, verses 7-10.

This reminds me of the rock stars who have gotten caught up in all the fame and money and end up has-beens because of drug, alcohol and counterproductive choices they make in their lives.
Then I think of Mother Teresa and all the wonderful, selfless things she did for others during her life.  Although, I wouldn't be the envy of all my neighbors, I would rather work toward having similar attributes as Mother Teresa, with my focus on God’s Will for me rather than living and dying in the fast lane.

In whom we have redemption through His Blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace.  Ephesians, Chapter 1, verse 7.

Sometimes I get a little arrogant and self-righteous and think about the good things that I think I’m doing for others.  Passages like this are very humbling.  They remind me of how Jesus gave His life for us.  That’s why I have my Salvation, not from any things I do to earn it.  The things that we do for others need to be for God, out of love.  They shouldn't be to draw attention to ourselves or for us to become smug, thinking we are good Christians because we do these things.

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:

Thursday, April 13, 2017

The Things Which Are Not Seen Are Eternal, Isn't It Neat That God Makes All of These Decisions on a Personal Basis?, and God Not Wanting to Watch shows with Witchcraft, Demonic or Satanic Themes 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 our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.  2 Corinthians, Chapter 4, verses 17-18.

Sometimes I get caught up in feeling sorry for myself.  When I think of this, my troubles are very insignificant compared to the suffering Jesus went through to save us from our sins.  After I think of all He went through on my behalf, I feel guilty for the petty things I worry about.

Here is a related passage:
*For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.  Isaiah, Chapter 41, verse 13.

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the Law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the Law: for by the works of the Law shall no flesh be justified.  Galatians Chapter 2, verse 16.

There are people who think that if they are good people they will have Salvation, but they don’t actively believe in Jesus Christ.  This doesn’t necessarily mean they have to attend church regularly.  There are some people who attend church regularly that may or may not receive Salvation because of their lifestyle choices.  Attending church isn’t a sole indicator of a person’s belief in Christ.  That is a personal matter between God and them.  Isn’t it neat that God makes all of these decisions on an individual basis?
Anyway, the requirement for Salvation is to believe that Jesus Christ is Savior of all.  Now, this isn’t an isolated thing.  That belief needs to be an active part of our life.  It’s not just something we should think about every six years when a relative dies and you think about them going to heaven to be with God.  It’s supposed to be a daily part of our lives.  That’s what I mean.  This passage is saying that we don’t get Salvation by just following the Law; it’s our faith in Jesus Christ that saves us, but we are still supposed to try to be examples of how Jesus works in our lives.

Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these;  Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies,  Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.  But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no Law.  Galatians, Chapter 5, verses 19-23.

When others react to my not wanting to watch shows with witchcraft, demonic or satanic themes, I feel vindicated when I read this passage.  When it says people who demonstrate those negative choices won’t inherit the kingdom of God, it doesn't sound like God is just mildly annoyed if people do the things listed in this passage.  My desire is to stay committed to what I know God wants rather than to buckle under when I know they disapprove.

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:

Monday, April 10, 2017

South Korea and Reunification...What Does God Want?, Misled by Others Who Profess to Be Followers of God, and God...If You Need Someone to Do a Low-Risk Thing...I'm Your Person 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

1 John 4: 9 In this was manifested the love of God toward us, because that God sent His only begotten Son into the world, that we might live through Him. 10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. 11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

(This is not a part of the book: Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life and was written several years ago after a vacation there.)

Several years ago, we were blessed with the opportunity to visit South Korea. In fact, we just got back on Friday night. That's why I'm up at 3:00 a.m. typing this blog post instead of sleeping. It looks like I'm not back on U.S. time, yet.

While we were in South Korea, my husband and I met many wonderful and very helpful people. We had the opportunity to talk with someone who filled us in on some of the political concerns of South Korea. I was told that there are some young adults in South Korea who are strongly pushing for the reunification with North Korea. Not to mention the financial burden on South Koreans, there is the ethical and moral decisions that they have to debate.

I was told, hopefully I explain it accurately, that their concern is with the well-being of the North Koreans, their brothers, because they are all Korean. Some feel that if they are reunified, then their North Korean brothers would have the same freedoms that they have. They look to the reunification of families when the Berlin Wall was taken down and feel that to not reunify, leaves the North Koreans living in extreme poverty, while the economy in South Korea flourishes.

As an American, I am concerned about the Communist Party of North Korea. It would be nice if all of Korea could reunify and all live together and have democracy and freedom. I get concerned about recent TV reports in the states, of those in South Korea who have subtle connections to North Korea, plotting to overthrow the the South Korean government. What if, instead of all living with freedom, they all lived together in a reunified country with little rights and extreme poverty like the North Koreans? Are the Koreans being too idealistic to think that reunification would provide freedom for everyone? 

What does God want in this situation? I wish I knew, but thought that it might be good to open up Christian dialogue on this topic, so we can all be prayerful for what's best for all Koreans-North and South. Since this is a Christian Blog, I would like to only have comments with a Biblical focus and no hateful comments. Debbie Seiling

But what I do, that I will do, that I may cut off occasion from them which desire occasion; that wherein they glory, they may be found even as we.  For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ.  And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.  Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also be transformed as the ministers of righteousness; whose end shall be according to their works.  2 Corinthians, Chapter 11, verses 12-15.

This passage reminds us to be careful to not be deceived.  There will be people who say they are Christians, proposing beliefs that sound good but will lead many astray.  It goes on to say that Satan transforms himself into a minister of righteousness to mislead people.
I always remember Jim Jones who was a minister years ago.  He took a group of “believers” to JonestownGuyana.  These people must have been very devoted to their “beliefs.”  I’m not sure that if push came to shove that I would leave my home and family to go to another country just because someone told me this is what God wanted me to do.  Anyway, they must have been very dedicated to leave everything and everyone behind.
Jim Jones either convinced or tricked these “believers” into committing suicide when the authorities got too involved.  Well, although these were very committed “believers” who gave up all for their faith in God, it was for nothing.  They gave up all their things, friends, family and lives for a very disturbed minister who led these people to believe he was doing the will of God.  (If you want more details; look up the Jonestown Massacre in Guyana during 1978.)  Did these people find Salvation?  I can’t speak to that, but it’s highly questionable.
We don’t want to find ourselves misled by others who profess to be followers of God.  I think it’s very important for all Christians to check things out in the Bible.  Don’t take things for granted just because someone else says them, whether it’s a minister, a devoted Christian, me, someone on a Christian Channel or Radio Station.  It’s very easy to take a verse or two out of the Bible and make it support just about anything.  That’s considered using the Bible passages out of context.
Reading a chapter before the passage and after the passage is beneficial.  Each chapter is about a page or two.  This gives you a better idea of what the quoted Bible verses really mean.  That’s why I always tell you where I get the Bible passages.  I want you to be able to look them up and verify them.  It’s a very important thing to do.
You need to look at the people who have an influence on your religious life.  What type of lifestyle do they lead?  Are they running in the fast lane?  Are they preaching something that has become very popular or a fad type of belief?  Are they taking too much credit for things rather than keeping the focus on God?  Are they putting an undue emphasis on giving money?  Be cautious about who you give ultimate control of your religious life.  Check things out.  Passages like this one remind me that very dedicated believers can still be misled by others as in the Jonestown Massacre.  It pays to check things out.  It may have a direct impact on your Salvation.

For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me.  And He said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.  Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.  2 Corinthians, Chapter 12, verses 8-10.

This is really from Paul speaking about a vision he had from God.  Even though he asked Jesus to take away his burden, God's reply was, My grace is sufficient for thee: for My strength is made perfect in weakness.
It reminds me of when God asked Moses to talk to the Pharaoh to let God’s people go and for Moses to lead these people to the Promised Land.  Moses told God that he wouldn’t make a very good leader because he wasn’t a good speaker.  God told him not to worry about it because he was the person that God wanted to lead His people. (Paraphrased)
I’m ashamed to say that there have been times when God has led me to be a witness to someone else and I told God through my actions, “That’s not my thing, God.  I’m not the type who is good at confronting people and telling them about You.  Why don’t You save it for someone else from those other religions that don’t mind being embarrassed by going door to door and confronting people?  Now, if You need someone to do a low-risk thing like saying a prayer for someone or giving a little money to the needy, then I’m Your person.”
I need to remember that God will take care of my weaknesses if I let Him, and will provide the strength necessary to do whatever He wants, just like He did for Moses.

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:

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Relying on God to Get Me Through the Tough Times, Concepts and Beliefs Out of Alignment With the Bible May Lead People Astray, and Christians Don't Let Things Get the Best of Them 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

Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.  Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. 
2 Corinthians, Chapter 1, verses 2-4.

There were times in my life when things were not as smooth as they are now.  I was fortunate that I had family members and friends to comfort me and to remind me that God would get me through them…and He did!

For God, who commanded the Light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.  But we have this Treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellency of the power may be of God, and not of us. 2 Corinthians, Chapter 4, verses 6-7.

This is another one of the Bible passages that confirms my focus on God rather than us: “willing” things, using the “power of positive thinking”, “using the god power within me” or “visualizing” things the way you want them to be.  It’s not just someone’s opinion or someone’s philosophy.  God tells us in this passage and throughout the Bible that He wants us to focus on Him.
I think it’s important for you to know that I’m not just giving my opinion, because there is a religious basis for my belief related to passages in the Bible.  It’s very important as a Christian, to check things out.  A lot of different religious beliefs sound really good or plausible.  Some have isolated passages from the Bible to support them.  That’s using the Bible out of context.  I doubt if all who do this mean to be deceitful, but concepts and beliefs out of alignment with the Bible may possibly be leading people astray, no matter how plausible the belief sounds.  Remember to check these things out for yourself.  It’s YOUR Salvation that’s in question!

We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair; Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed.  2 Corinthians, Chapter 4, verses 8-9.

Part of this passage is in a song my church sings.  I like the message that Christians don’t let things get the best of them, because we know God is there on our side.

(I realize this is a short portion of the book, but it's still pretty powerful when you think of it.)

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:

Monday, April 3, 2017

Some Humbling Time to Think About All My Shortcomings, Not What We Look Like On the Outside to Others, Holding One of My Grandmother's Hands As She Passed Away 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 as often as ye eat this Bread, and drink this Cup, ye do show the Lord’s death till He comes.  Wherefore whosoever shall eat this Bread, and drink this Cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the Body and Blood of the Lord.  But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that Bread, and drink of that Cup.  For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s Body.  For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep.  For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.  But when we are judged, we are chastened of the Lord, that we should not be condemned with the world.  1 Corinthians, Chapter 11, verses 26-32.

God wants me to do some self-reflection before I have communion.  It’s important, especially for “Self-righteous Christians” like me, to have some humbling time to think about all my shortcomings.  It doesn’t only mean the major vices.  Some of us get big heads because we don’t think we have those obvious vices that others might have.  We often need to be taken down a notch because we are just as sinful.
We aren’t to think our sins aren’t as great as someone else’s and feel that we are more worthy than they are.  We are just as sinful by the subtle things we allow to creep into our lives.  These keep us from being the Christian that God wants us to be.  Times when we were less than patient and loving with our families, the times we yelled at someone on the freeway, the times we were gossiping with others, etc.
God is saying it is better for us to have periodic reflective time now, judging ourselves rather than continuing to live our sinful, self-righteous lives.  That is preferable to finding out later from God on the Last Day that we didn’t make the “final cut.”  That’s one eye opener I don’t want, so I need to start by making changes in my life today!

Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not charity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.  And though I have the gift of prophecy, and understand all mysteries, and all knowledge; and though I have all faith, so that I could remove mountains, and have not charity, I am nothing.  And though I bestow all my goods to feed the poor and though I give my body to be burned, and have not charity, it profiteth me nothing.  Charity suffereth long, and is kind; charity envieth not; charity vaunteth not itself; is not puffed up, Doth not behave itself unseemly, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil; Rejoiceth not in iniquity, but rejoiceth in the Truth; Beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.  Charity never faileth: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away.  For we know in part, and we prophesy in part.  1 Corinthians, Chapter 13, verses 1-9. 
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.  1 Corinthians, Chapter 13, verse 13.

I love this passage.  It tells me that I can profess to be a good Christian and do all kinds of things that look generous to others.  Unless I live the life of a Christian by being genuinely charitable in my actions, loving my neighbors, my enemies or those that believe differently than I do, then I’m all talk.
There was a song we learned in Vacation Bible School years ago called If You’re a Christian and You Know It.  Well, it says that if you were a Christian then your face would really show it, clap your hands.  I think it should say instead that if you were a Christian, then your life will really show it.  That’s the true indicator of being a Christian, not what we look like on the outside to others.

O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.  Therefore, my beloved brethren be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.  1 Corinthians, Chapter 15, verse 55-58.

I remember when my father and I were in the hospital with each of us -holding one of my grandmother’s hands as she passed away.  She didn’t fight it and she seemed to be at peace with the idea of joining God in heaven.
Here is a related passage:
*Come unto Me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  For My yoke is easy, and My burden is light.  Matthew, Chapter 11, verses 28-30.

(This portion isn't in the book: Bible Passages That Can Influence Your Life. I was holding my grandmother's hand to be a comfort to her and to my father who was holding her other hand as his mother passed away. When she joined God, her hand became relaxed and at peace. She no longer was suffering. She no longer had pain. She was in the comfort of her Heavenly Father.)

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

How to Know Jesus Is God's Son

Christian Overeaters Past and Present Support Link

Christian Overeaters Past and Present Support Link
Read 100s of Christian Overeaters Past and Present Blog Posts and You Tube Videos


Empower Orphans to Raise Their Siblings


A Gift of an Animal Can Change People's Lives