Just a Thought
By Mike Farley
Just a ThoughtMay 29, 2023
Frameworks and Principles
People sometimes ask me “What’s your life verse?” And the truth is I do not have one. Maybe it’s a personality thing, maybe it is because I change translations so much that I have a hard time memorizing verses but I just don’t have one. I do love and have a few principles and frameworks.
This week we address Church Hurt in what might be a different way.
The Decalogue aka The 10 Commandments
There is a lot that can be said about the 10 Commandments. Today I want to look at them a little differently.
1 I am the Lord your God who brought you out of Egypt
2 You shall have no other Gods before me. Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven images.
3 Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain.
4 Remember the Sabbath day and keep it Holy.
5 Honor your father and mother.
6 Thou shalt not murder
7 Thou shalt not commit adultery.
8 Thou shalt not steal (or kidnap?)
9 Thou shall not bear false witness
10 You shall not covet
But Wait There’s More
What is the call? I think the call is reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:19 says, in Christ God was reconciling the world to himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and entrusting to us the message of reconciliation. That means there is more to the call than first thought.
What’s the sitch?
Facts are facts but facts are not always aligned with faith. In Numbers 13 Moses sends spies to check out the promised land by God's command. This is the land the people had been waiting 400 years to enter. This was finally the fulfillment of the promise of God. All they had to do was go in. But when the spies returned, they returned with such a negative report that the congregation cried loudly, and the people wept that night. They should have listened to Caleb and had faith that they could and would be victorious but instead, they stayed in fear.
Something Different About That Man
Peter in the Book of Acts chapter 1 and Peter in the Book of Acts chapter 2 are different people with different focuses and desires.
Same Word Different Definitions
I have been reading and thinking about Romans 8 and specifically 8:28 a fair amount lately and I cannot help but think that God and I have different definitions of the word Good.
We know that all things work together for the good of those who love God, who are called according to his purpose.
Oh Amy, I hear the Song of Your Sadness
Yes the title is from one of my favorite Doctor Who episodes but more importantly it is a reminder that Jesus hears the Song of our Sadness and can understand our pain.
Sinless or Sin Less
A lot of people myself included either beat themselves up or have beaten themselves up because they still fall short. Somehow we have this idea that because we have Jesus and are found in Christ that we should be sinless when really we should be more concerned about sinning less (a little wordplay).
Something Greater – Greater than wisdom
Solomon was considered the wisest of all, but Jesus is greater. His wisdom is beyond. Jesus is the wisdom of God.
Something Greater – Greater than signs
The people demand a sign from Jesus, but He has already done many signs before this. What more could these people want? What does Jesus want?
Something Greater – Greater than the Shadow
The Pharisees are mad at Jesus and His disciples for picking grain on the Sabbath. Jesus responds that something greater than the Temple is here. What does He mean by this? I think this speaks to His lordship over the religion that is devoted to Him.
Talking about demons (kind of)
This week are kind of talking about demons. I say kind of because we have some thoughts and questions from a friend who was reading through Luke 8 and the story of the demon-possessed man and what Jesus did.
Oy with the poodles already!
We are wrapping up our journey through Amos. It has been a wild ride and we are still looking at judgment, but that's not all...
The Sound of Silence
God declares that He will send a new famine on the land, a famine of silence from Him. This is the worst thing imaginable for the people of God. To not hear the voice of God is terrible and frighting. Without God speaking to us, we do not have wisdom, direction, healing, or anything of value in life.
Not what I wanted to hear
In Amos 7 we get this story that is a back-and-forth between God and Amos and then between Amos and Amaziah the priest in Bethel.
Behold my stuff
Amos chapter 6 covers two important topics that are connected. In all of Israel’s sin, they had Pride and Compliancy. They thought themselves something special, they assumed themselves well off. They had a lot of stuff. Before we jump on them and condemn them, we have to ask "do we do that?"
Ain't no rest for the wicked
Hebrews 4 talks about rest for God’s people but no rest for the disobedient. Hebrews 4 and 4:5 is a callback to Psalm 95 and Numbers 14. The idea is this; God has rest for people to enter into but the disobedient do not and cannot enter into that rest.
Not Hide and Seek
God is calling the people to seek Him and do right. The Bible equates seeking God with living and hiding your sins with dying. The people thought that they could do what they like and then bring sacrifices, but God calls them out for this.
The Cow says Moo
I do not think there has ever been a time when calling someone a cow was a compliment. It is not one here either.
Woes and Wows
This week we look at Amos Chapter 3. Israel is being punished because they should know better. God chose them, He loved them tenderly, He cared for them, and they responded with violence and selfishness.
And Justice for all
Here God is judging Judah and Israel. They both have guilt, but their guilt is different from the nations around them because they have the Law of God. They have the statutes of the Lord. This should be exciting!
Like a wrecking ball
No one can escape the judgment or justice of God. All are under His authority and no one gets to claim ignorance.
A new nine week series on Amos
We are going to kick off 2023 with a bang. We will go through a nine-week series looking at the prophet Amos. It's going to be a blast.
Where am I going?
We don't always know where we are going, sometimes we get a little turned around. God will guide our steps. We fear failure, making a wrong choice, or messing up but God is able to keep us. Even if we miss it and make a mistake God is able to keep us from being overwhelmed.
Where are my pants?
Lately the idea that we do not wrestle or fight against flesh and blood but against spiritual forces has been ever present in my mind. I feel like I talk about it a good deal too. This week we will look at the Armor of God even though it does not have pants.
The Hiding Place - A book Wrap Up
This week we are looking at The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom. What an amazing book. My raw and unprepared wrap up of my reading.
Talking about, talking about Jesus
This week we are talking about, talking about Jesus also known as evangelism. What is it, what is our motivation, and how can we do it?
Am I Training or Fighting?
Does it matter if we are training or fighting? Yes, absolutely because if we are being hindered by the enemy then we can pray against that and push into God for victory. However, if it is a situation where God is the one stopping us then we need to submit and seek His will. The type of situation makes all the difference.
Why am I still a little blind?
This week we are looking at two passages and asking why are we still a little blind and what can we do about it?
Why do I struggle with Amnesia?
In the Bible God is continually reminding His people of who they are. He does this so that they and we might remember who we are and in remembering that we can remember who He is.
Wait Crucify Who?
What does self-talk and crucifixion have in common? This week we take a look at that.
Babette ate oatmeal?
I know that Babette ate oatmeal but I have no idea what that means. I do know that we all have questions about God and that He has answers.
What's in a name?
What's in a name, and why is God jealous for His name? What does that even mean? Today we briefly look at that very question.
Who is This?
Jesus' actions in the Bible often cause His disciples to wonder who He is. Throughout the Bible, God does things that go beyond our comprehension and cause us to ask the same question. He does this because He is beyond our full understanding and because He can.