A very amazing read . . . enjoy . . .
I saw this question on another Blog, and as I started to answer it I realized that the answer is different at different stages of each Christian’s journey in life. I can only offer my experience, because I can recommend it with sincerity . . .
My life isn’t perfect, as I know that no one’s is. At 60, I have been living with several illnesses that are not going away in this life. I did my best to ignore them for almost twenty years, and worked with full knowledge for about ten years. I have degenerative spine disease (5 major surgeries), and all of the arthritis’s (Rheumatoid is primary and caused dual knee replacement a few Thanksgivings ago, Osteo, and Fibro without the Depression – lucky me to be so blessed). For many years, I awoke at 3 a.m., and then would take my meds and soak in the tub to fight the morning stiffness in all my joints. It was there in that very much alone time that I prayed every day, and often write or read. Spending time alone with the Lord at the beginning of each day balanced me, and made life so much sweeter.
As a child I had felt the presence of the Holy Spirit long before I truly understood. The years came and went and each one with such blessings, I would cry when thinking on them. Of course there was the usual mixture of vinegar and honey so I would know the difference, but everything always worked out for the best – I never lost my joy in life. I was raised with the saying, “good things come to those that wait.” I began the marriage of my dreams at age 45.
As the fall years are flying by, I find that I think of the Lord so many times each day that my morning prayers with the Lord became my life’s 24/7 prayer with the Lord. I still say little formal prayers for loved ones and ones I don’t even know very well, when the situation is in need of special prayer. But my walk with the Lord is never ceasing, and I guess I owe this comfortable state with the Lord to unwavering faith, and finally understanding the scriptures.
You may wonder how this happens. I have sat here and pondered that question. I think it is because I have never become desensitized. I am a mature person that laughs every day – a lot. I am very well read, but do not read sex or violence that exists just for the sake of sex and violence. Therefore, I also don’t watch television or movies with those themes, and I don’t surround myself with people who are living senseless lives. Good and evil do exist, and both are bigger than each of us. We draw to ourselves that which we become, and what we become is a choice. We can either strive to live our imperfect lives as a journey with the Lord, or we strive to do it on our own without the Lord. Doing our best for God, is living our lives with Him every hour of every day – not as a burden, or a badge of honor, but as a constant awareness within us. Because of my choice I am never alone, are you?
FROM MY FB: The first is my response to the email I received from the White House – wrap your head in duck tape before you read the White House Letter after my response . . .
MY EMAIL BACK TO THE WHITE HOUSE:
This is so wrong. Our fathers, grandfathers, and forefathers are turning over in their graves so they cannot see the end of the America they loved. I opened the attachment twice to copy it and the letter to everyone I know to send emails supporting our First and Second Amendment rights. I pray that just because I opened it you will not put me on a list of supporters.
Thank you for your time,
THIS IS THE LETTER I RECEIVED VIA EMAIL YESTERDAY ON WHITE HOUSE LETTERHEAD (Yes, I am on their mailing list, how else am I to know what they are up to?):
Hello, all —
For the first time since the 1990s, Congress might be on track to pass legislation aimed at reducing gun violence in the United States. And it’s because folks in Washington are starting to understand that the rest of the country isn’t going to sit by and let them ignore this issue. Your voices are the reason we have a chance to win this debate. The American people expect and demand a yes or no vote.
But this is a critical moment. It’s been almost four months since the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, thousands more Americans have died at the hands of gun violence, and time is on the side of those who would prefer that we do nothing.
We want to make sure that your voices are impossible to ignore. So we’re asking people from all over the country to speak out online in concert — all at the same time. Will you join us?
Pledge to speak out about the need to reduce gun violence.
It’s easy to participate. Over the next few days, anyone can sign up to tweet or share a message to Facebook. Through that time, we’ll gather up as many people as we can. Then we’ll make sure that all these individual messages get posted together in the same moment for maximum effect.
That wave of social media will get seen by millions and millions of people.
We’re talking about common-sense reforms. Like the idea that any of us who want to buy a gun should have to go through a background check first — which 90 percent of Americans support.
So let’s make sure that there’s absolutely no confusion about the public consensus.
Pledge to speak out with us, and then forward this email to your family and friends:
[I DELETED THE LINK, FOR I WILL NOT ADVERTISE IT!!!]
Deputy Senior Advisor
The White House
[When you open their link . . . this is the message they want anti-gun people to TWEET and put on FACEBOOK. There are two buttons for you to click on for that purpose & a copy also goes to the White House for their propaganda. For they will not be putting the PRO-GUN messages the rest of us TWEET AND PUT ON FB, which means they are not listening to the American Majority.]
THIS IS THE MESSAGE THEY WANT ANTI-GUN PEOPLE TO DO:
[I DELETED THE HASHTAG SO I WILL NOT BE ADVERTISING THE LINK]
“I support common-sense steps to reduce gun violence. Share this if you agree:”
My voice and support will be heard via:
You will allow XXXXXXXXXXX to share this message once on your behalf, along with other supporters. If the goal is not reached, no message will be shared. Opt out
© 2004-2013 by WEBCommentary(tm), All Rights Reserved
It seems to me that Nuclear Brinkmanship is a dangerous game, and ignoring direct threats is foolish. As the game escalates, perhaps the enemy could not back down without losing face. The North Korean leader is young and may not have the wisdom needed for his leadership job. While the right hand is playing this nuclear Brinkmanship game, Americans have developed a bad habit of not watching the left hand. It would be interesting to know just what President Obama, General Dempsey (and the other Joint Chiefs), and Heaven Forbid Mr. Kerry think of these threats. As most Americans have, I have thought on 9/11/01 much – I believe America probably ignored threats, because they thought they were preposterous, and that turned out to be disastrous.
WMD – Over the decades there are so many weapons activities that have never been explained, it would be impossible with absolute certainty to say just exactly what any nation has and doesn’t have. A few examples – missing Russian suitcase nukes – OR – the contents of the long string of semi-trucks leaving Iraq during the days we were threatening to invade – OR – the two ships that left Iraq while we were telling the whole world we were going to invade Iraq (something about these two ships that left Iraq and were silent running way out in the ocean – and we never heard what became of them). Yes, I know that was redundant in part . . . did I ever tell you all the things we saw Iraq doing on the television, and heard about from guests on talk radio, while we were announcing what we were going to do for days on end??!! We also hear about the technology that has been leaked to our enemies – what about the leaks that have not yet been discovered? The bottom line with WMD is that it is impossible to know with any certainty what an enemy does or doesn’t have. Our small enemies are friends with our big enemies – and our big enemies have all manner of WMD
My point is that we should never ignore a direct threat, and while the threat is a nuclear threat, an enemy could be preparing to do something different (like Chemical Warfare) instead. There is no honor among our enemies. To the lay person, it would seem that American troops are not only the only troops following the Geneva Convention rules – but also the primary ones held to those rules. Our enemy chops off American’s heads and the world does not cry – not even a whimper. If we so much as put underwear on a prisoner’s head, and perhaps water board a handful of the enemy with information that could prevent the deaths of thousands, and America is crucified in the court of world opinion.
The fact that we have not closed our porous borders would make our leaders (all leaders since 9/11) complicit should an attack come inside America because of porous borders. Millions of American citizens have been screaming to close our borders for twelve years, and have been ignored. Because of our much publicized, crooked-to the-bone, government and because of our raunchy entertainment pushed and paid for by the enemies within, much of the world has come to hate us. The American’s life was once the dream that the world’s oppressed prayed for. The real America is still what the oppressed around the world should hope for, but that side of America is not seen around the world. Unfortunately, those enemies without and within, seek to destroy the America that I love. Once again, I think we have every reason to believe direct threats, and our government ignoring them is just more of the failure of “leading from behind” – because they want the destruction to come to us. “Leading from behind” is an oxymoron – any resemblance to actual people who believe this crap is not intended.
Americans are praying daily to God for peaceful resolutions with our enemies of all ilk. Sadly, there are those in our own government who wish to call praying Americans some kind of possible terrorist – even though our primary activity is praying – the most peaceful pro-active activity known to mankind.
I saw the wishbone my husband had cleaned and left to dry in the kitchen. It came from a chicken I roasted a couple of days ago. I remembered something . . . and started looking for the first wishbone we pulled . . . what are the odds? It is kind of amazing . . . so did we both get our wish? or neither? That was almost 18 years ago . . . I am pretty sure we got our wishes.
The President is determined to get gun control passed. Listening to Glenn Beck, I looked up some statistics . . .Someone on the left explain this to me . . . I am asked TO NOT JUDGE all Muslims, because only 7% of American Muslims are openly radical, and terrorist activity against America is primarily from radical Muslims. BUT . . . I am asked TO JUDGE NEGATIVELY all American Gun owners, who are given their rights by our Constitution’s 2nd Amendment, and given their individual mandate to their LIFE, LIBERTY, and Pursuit Of Happiness, because less than 2% of Americans have committed criminal acts with a gun. WHY IS THERE A DOUBLE STANDARD IN AMERICA AGAINST AMERICAN CITIZENS?
Jesus was no wimp. We were just reminded of that on Easter. However, you could argue that Jesus would approve of our American ideal of equal justice under the law . . . except if we were all with Jesus, we would have no need of the law. It isn’t the ideal of social justice via socialism or communism that should scare you if Jesus would be your King on earth today. I assure you that Hitler, Mao, Stalin, etc. were not Christians, nor were they remotely good men. I am amazed when looking at current polls in America how many ignorant people really do seem to want socialism and even Communism . . . surely they know that the Racists or Dictators who would be our leaders would be exact opposite of Jesus. Utopia is only possible in Heaven. The world I see via my internet and television is nothing like heaven.
This is the Companion piece to the actual Commentary – Please read 2nd
The first thing one must do in Bible study, is to determine who is talking / writing, who is being talked/written to, and why? The small book of Titus is in the Pauline Epistles and today it is directed to the Christian / Gentiles / Non-Jewish. Paul is Titus’ mentor. Paul is writing to Titus whom Paul left in Crete to find church leaders, and to instruct them.
So our verses are not taken out of context, it is helpful to read the first five verses in Titus, as follows: : Titus 1:1-5 “Paul, a servant of God, and an apostle of Jesus Christ, according to the faith of God’s elect, and the acknowledging of the truth which is after godliness; In hope of eternal life, which God, that cannot lie, promised before the world began; But hath in due times manifested his word through preaching, which is committed unto me according to the commandment of God our Saviour; To Titus, [mine] own son after the common faith: Grace, mercy, [and] peace, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ our Saviour. For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:” (KJV)
The Verses for Comparison were at the end of an excellent commentary I read this morning, but used the New English Bible for a closing statement. Being confused, I decided to do a comparison:
Titus 2:11 – 14 “For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, (KJV)
Titus 2:11 – 14 “For the grace of God has dawned upon the world with healing for all mankind; (NEB)
The words – For the grace of God that bringeth salvation
changed to – For the grace of God . . . with healing for all mankind;
The theological definition of “salvation” is deliverance from the power and penalty of sin; redemption.
In looking up definition for “healing” there was no theological definition. The synonyms and antonyms make me certain that healing and salvation are not synonymous. [I.e. Synonyms 1. See cure. 2. compose, soothe. 3. purge, disinfect. Antonyms 1, 2. irritate. 3. soil, infect.]
The words – hath appeared to all men
changed to – has dawned upon the world
Appeared to all men means ‘to come into the sight of all men.”
The word dawned . . . Synonyms 1. daybreak, sunrise. 5. appear, occur, break. Antonyms 1. sunset.
Dawned is a very weak replacemen word for appeared, which is a very clear word in its universal meaning. Why exchange a weak word, for one very strong in meaning.
Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, (KJV)
and by it we are disciplined to renounce godless ways and worldly desires, and live a life of temperance, honesty, and godliness (NEB)
The word – teaching
changed to – disciplined,
Teaching is a positive process of a teacher passing on knowledge to others.
Disciplined brings other types of definitions to mine – and often negative definitions are visualized when hearing the word disciplined: systematic training in obedience to regulations and authority; or the state of improved behavior, resulting from such training or conditions; or punishment or chastisement.
The words – ungodliness and worldly lusts
changed to – godless ways and wordly desires,
The only difference here is subtle, in that lust and desire can be synonyms; however, if the lust or desire is not defined at first blush most people see a preconceived meaning of the two words. Lust, without a qualifier, is almost always thought of as a bad thing. Desire, without a qualifier, is usually associated with one’s heart’s desire which could be as innocent as wanting to find a good spouse, and to have a family.
The words – live soberly, righteously, and godly
changed to – live a life of temperance, honesty, and godliness
Soberly vs. temperance: Soberly means quiet and serious demeanor, or not intoxicated. Temperance means abstinence from alcohol, or self-restraint in action or statement. Soberly usually speaks more to the permanent nature of a person. Temperance usually speaks more to the behavior of a person in specific situations. Of course because of the 18th Amendment that prohibited the manufacture, transportation and sale of intoxicating liquors, and the 21st Amendment which reversed the 18th, we will tend to relate temperance with the restraint of drinking alcoholic beverages.
Righteously vs. honesty: Righteous living means moral and virtuous. Honest means truthful and sincere. These are both good words, but in meaning, honest cannot replace the word righteous and envelope the entire meaning of righteous.
Godly vs. Godliness: Godly means to conform to the laws of God. Godliness is having a religious character. The difference is minimal.
in this present world; (KJV)
in the present age, (NEB)
The words – present world
changed to – present age
The world is the earth, humankind; the human race; humanity.
Present age represents an era.
Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Savior Jesus Christ; (KJV)
looking forward to the happy fulfillment in our hope when the splendor of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus will appear. (NEB)
The words – Looking for that blessed hope
changed to – looking forward to the happy fulfillment in our hope,
“Looking for that blessed hope”, makes the Christian different from non-believers. On a daily basis we do think on good things, and at the top of that list is knowing we will meet the Lord one day. The Prospect of Death has “no sting” for us because of our blessed hope of either being raptured by the Lord in our lifetime, or the eternal life that will follow earthly death.
“Looking forward to the happy fulfillment in our hope”, is too casual a statement for what it is we are actually looking forward to.
The words – and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ
changed to – when the splendor of our great God and Savior Christ Jesus will appear.
There isn’t much difference in these two statements splendor certainly describes the Lord. I prefer glorious because that is what our existence is all about – we exist in Christ for His glory.
Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. (KJV)
He it is who sacrificed Himself for us, to set us free from all wickedness, and to make us a pure people marked out for His own, eager to do good.” (NEB)
The words – Who gave himself for us,
changed to – He it is who sacrificed Himself for us,
When the meanings are basically the same, one must ponder why change the words at all.
The words – that he might redeem us from all iniquity,
changed to = to set us free from all wickedness,
The meaning of why Jesus / our Lord came to us here in His Creation was to solve the problem of redemption. The words redeem and redemption in our Lord’s human purpose is the very core of defining why he came. Changing the wording to anything other than redemption is cheating the reader of the reminder of the story of redemption.
The words – and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
changed to – and to make us a pure people marked out for His own, eager to do good.
It is his work of redemption which is the grace the Lord gives us thereby we are “uncommon” (peculiar) people compared to people who do not choose to accept the Lord’s gift of salvation. Because we are filled with the Lord’s Holy Spirit, our souls are changed, and it shows in our natural zeal to have a propensity for good works.
Redemption does not make us pure – but we are counted as pure by the work of the cross and by our free will, we choose to believe in the Gospel regarding Jesus Christ. Being counted for pure is a gift we do not earn with our good works; it is given only by our belief. Because the “mark of the beast” is such a common phrase, I would never use it to describe the grace the Lord gives us when we believe. We are His by the choice of our free will. Eager to do good could describe our attitude toward playing a sport, learning in a school class . . . “eager to do good” just isn’t a wonderful enough phrase to describe what happens to us when we accept Christ into our lives.
I was wondering if the tenth verse should have been included at the beginning of the quote:
Titus 2:10 “Not purloining, but shewing all good fidelity; that they may adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things.
And also wondering if the verse was left out on purpose.
In the American Patriot’s Bible there are listed the elements of the American people that made our republic thrive and grow. America experienced God’s providence and bounty when American’s were still a thriving Christian majority – – – Oh, wait! There is still a Christian majority in the United States of America. If you include the small percentage of the “other” who simply do not think it is any of your business what faith they practice, Christians in America are 85% of the population. How can this be true in a nation that is glorifying fornication to the extent of pornography on our televisions, and teaching children in our schools ‘How To’s’ that I would be horrified to have to type out for edification? I am sure every adult who is reading my words can fill in what I have not typed.
When my father attended public school, in New Jersey, he was exposed to subjects not taught in today’s American public schools. Economics is an excellent example of a class we might not see in our schools today. Our children would benefit from the knowledge regarding such an important subject to every household and every nook and cranny of our badly Super-Sized Government. The King James Version of the Holy Bible is the most important example of what is missing in America’s public education. It is ludicrous to say that the First Amendment requires a “separation of church and state.” It isn’t there. I only need to make one statement to convince you that our founding fathers did not leave their faith at the front door of government each morning. The founders held Christian church services in the building that Congress was housed in. We need to ask ourselves why we have abandoned the very Judeo-Christian values and morals which built a great nation, and provided the greatest security and growth for American families and communities as the world has never seen before.
Giving credit to Dr. Richard Glee, and The Patriot’s Bible those basic American elements were:
The Dignity of Human Life – Exodus 20:13, Matthew 22:39
The Traditional Monogamous Family – Genesis 2:23, 24, Matthew 19:5
A National Work Ethic – 2 Thessalonians 3:10
The Right to a God-Centered Education – Ephesians 6:4
The Abrahamic Covenant – Genesis 12:1-3, Galatians 3:7
Common Decency – Matthew 22:39
Our Personal Accountability to God – Hebrews 9:27
Because of these common beliefs and practices, the American population was very much ‘the land of the free and the home of the brave,” not to mention the most productive nation in history. America’s dilemma is that she (the population) wants the ability to sin, and call it good. How did Americans come to believe that God was extremely tolerant in the sin department? The Bible says what it means in plain English. There are reasons the enemy within America has pushed so hard to defy logic in our courts. Their goal was to transform America from the great Christian republic of her founding. We have heard all of the horror stories regarding past and present administrations, congress, judges, and their policies which have hacked away at the foundation of our republic for decades. We The People sent every crooked politician to Washington; with a few exceptions of actual wide spread voter fraud. What is happening in Washington is just a mirror image of what is going on in America from coast to coast.
There is no Christian doctrine save God’s doctrine.
When Jesus talked of the scriptures, at that time in history, he was quoting the Greek Septuagint translated by 70 scholars from the Hebrew. As far as the world is concerned, the single most important event in pre-modern history was the translation of the Holy Bible to English. Once again a whole bevy of scholars had to agree on the translation from Greek & Hebrew to English. It was nothing short of a miraculous achievement. I am certain that the Holy Spirit moved through a lot of translators in both major translations. Modern day scholars give the critique of The King James translation to be excellent, with a few exceptions. One example of a translation that is considered to be an error from the Hebrew is In Exodus 20:13 “thou shalt not kill” is better translated “thou shalt not murder.” A few Bibles such as The King James Version in the American Patriot’s Bible reflects these few translations that have been discussed at length among the scholars.
How did America’s Christianity, and our government become so completely discombobulated? We would be wise to adopt the following John Adams quote as our guide for national health, “We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other.”
Our virtues and morality come from our Christianity. If our Christianity is broken, then the America that our troops from Valley Forge to Afghanistan have died for is broken to the core. I searched my soul for the reasons our Christianity is so broken. For there to be so much sex and violence in even our children’s entertainment, is a huge symptom of a broken faith.
The first piece of this puzzle is so obvious it is amazing that Christians have not sought to solve it. Every non-denominational church that I have visited has had its roots in a specific denomination, and its services did not change – only the name did in an effort to increase their congregations. Where do you find justification for denominations in the Bible? I have searched and searched, and do not find any instructions for hundreds of denominations consisting of what is supposed to be The Body of Christ. Every Christian should understand the exact same experience when they read the Bible. The fact of the denominations dividing, and subdividing, in America for over two centuries, should tell us how errant Americans have been regarding their Christian faith. There should be one church, the True Church, The Body of Christ as is described of the gentiles in the Pauline Epistles. Period.
What is just as bewildering is the second piece of the puzzle. There are over 900 English translations of the Christian Holy Bible. Our Christian Holy Bible is the combined Old Testament and the New Testament. I am being very specific in my words here so there is no misunderstanding. If you want to conquer any group of people, all you have to do is divide them, confound, and confuse them. How did we let this happen to us? Man in his arrogance thought he could convince others that the Bible needed man’s “interpreting.” Man in his arrogance actually believed it was his job to change the words, which changes the meanings of the words. There are warnings in the Bible for changing the words, and for teachers who have sway over innocent minds and lead them astray.
The founders stated that only a moral nation could truly produce a society of free citizens. The reasoning for this is because only a moral citizenry is able to govern themselves as free citizens. Today, our laws are changing before our eyes, and becoming laws that are designed to condemn innocent citizens – preparing us for Fascists or a dictator to control us. This awful phenomenon happens when a moral nation degenerates itself to a Godless, immoral nation. I ask you to pray with me today and every day for a miracle. It would surely be an awesome miracle if America’s Christians . . . were to come together in the True Church as The Body of Christ . . . and, “If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” (2Chronicles 7:14) Whose laws will we follow? Are we determined to be lazy citizens and follow man’s endless laws that our lawyers cannot consistently interpret, and are often designed to injure the best among us? Will we remember who we are, and once again follow God’s laws, which are unchanging and in the Bible most Americans trusted for generations?
I received a very good commentary, written by a pastor, from a friend of mine. At the end of the commentary was a scripture from the “New English Bible.” I decided to compare that scripture to the King James Bible. My comparison resulted in identifying many meaning changes. Even if the change is subtle, as in some of the changes, it is still a change from the King James Version. This comparison is in the “Man or God? Companion Study” (listed as a separate item on my blog list). The Bible verses I have been comparing come from The King James Bible (KJV) and the New English Bible (NEB) as follows: Titus 2:11-14