Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Bible: 66 books, 66 sentences; 66 summaries

God created everything and promised hope for man.
Moses led the Israelites out of Egypt, and revealed His law.
God revealed the priestly duties of the Levites.
Moses took a census of the the Israelites.
The Israelites wandered in the wilderness for forty years.
Joshua led the Israelites into the Promised Land.
God appointed Judges over the Israelites.
Ruth leaves her home and marries Boaz.
Samuel grows up in the temple and is prophet who anoints King Saul.
King Saul is replaced by David.
Solomon is King, Elijah is a prophet.
The kingdom of Israel is divided and the nation falls.
There are genealogies of kings.
The Israelites are exiled to Babylon and the Temple is destroyed.
Ezra was a prophet who led repentance, return and the rebuilding of the Temple.
Nehemiah was a prophet who led reconstruction, reestablished morality and revived true worship.
God used Esther who was the queen to save His people.
Job suffered righteously, questioned God, and learned about His sovereignty.
David and others praise God with poetry and music.
Wisdom takes center stage in the sayings of King Solomon.
Life is revealed to be temporary, devoid of truth and meaningless without God.
Poetry about  love, marriage and sex.
Prediction of salvation through a suffering Messiah.
Prophecy of judgement for Israel’s idolatry.
Jeremiah laments Israel’s exile and destruction.
Prophecies on the ruin and future restoration of the people of Israel.
The blessings of God are on an exiled Hebrew who interprets dreams and has apocalyptic visions.
A faithful man and an adulterous woman’s marriage serve as a metaphor for God’s faithful love of His idolatrous people.
Locusts and judgement precede physical, spiritual and national restoration of Israel.
Condemnation of Israel’s deep-rooted corruption, neglect of God's Word, idolatry, and greed; judgement is near.
God promises to deliver Zion in the last days.
Jonah runs from God, is swallowed by a fish for 3 days, and ends up doing what God said anyway.
Condemnation of false prophets, priests and leaders who are exploiting and misleading the people of Israel.
A call to Ninevites to once again repent, and encouragement to Judah not to despair.
A conversation with God about the reason for suffering.
A reminder that though God is patient and merciful he will righteously judge those who ignore His commands.
A warning to be courageous and act in accordance with God’s commands and His promises.
Salvation is available to all, but accepted only by some; God is sovereign over all things, including nature.
In spite of people’s sin, God’s love for His people does not end; tithe.
Jesus’ birth, ministry, death, resurrection, commission and ascension.
Jesus and the 12 disciples do ministry.
History of Jesus’s life and teachings.
Jesus as the incarnation of God’s word and the promise of Life through Jesus.
History of the Holy Spirit working in the early church, through the apostles and Paul’s missionary journeys.
Paul writes a letter to Rome about the basic theology of salvation.
Paul writes a letter to Corinth about how the church should conduct themselves, especially concerning the development of Christlike character.
Paul writes another letter to Corinth explaining that their time on earth is temporary and they must live with eternity in mind, giving generously to the poor.
Paul writes a letter to Galatia preaching against the perversion of the Gospel of grace by legalists, and encourages works of holiness through the Holy Spirit.
Paul writes a letter to Ephesus to explain Christ’s intentions for His church, especially unity, and prays that they would know the dimensions of God’s love and grace.
Paul writes a letter to Philippi to encourage them to stand firm in the face of persecution, to be joyful and humble, to have no anxiety and to know nothing is impossible with God.
Paul writes a letter to Colosse condemning false teaching, exhorting the Christians to model their households after the Gospel.
Paul writes a letter to Thessalonica to encourage new converts who faced persecution, to instruct them on godly living, and to give them assurance of salvation through Christ.
Paul writes another letter to Thessalonica to encourage the believers, to remind them of the Gospel implications for Christ’s return and how they should live.
Paul writes a letter to Timothy to warn him against false teachings, to instruct him on the administrative structure of the local church, and to elaborate Gospel implications for different groups of people.
Paul writes another letter to Timothy to exhort him to guard, persevere with, keep preaching, and suffer for the Gospel.
Paul writes a letter to Titus which summarizes Christian doctrine, lists qualifications for elders, and describes the obligations and motives of Christians.
Paul writes a letter to Philemon concerning Philemon’s slave named Onesimus who was who ran away and met Paul and converted to Christianity.
An anonymous letter concerning the sufficiency of grace through Christ who is supreme, and it serves as a warning not to ignore the offer of salvation.
James wrote a letter to Jewish Christians providing practical wisdom for how to live out their beliefs.
Peter writes a letter to the church, alluding to Old Testament events, calling the Christians exiles and foreigners, but he also exhorts them to suffer like Christ and to be holy and live in such a way as to exude an attractive hope.
Peter writes another letter to the church instructing them on how to deal with false teachers and evil men within the church by growing in Christ, recognizing the characteristics of the wolves in sheeps clothing, and being watchful for Christ’s return.
John writes a letter to believers, refuting Gnosticism by reminding them to love one another like God loves them, sacrificially and love God by obeying His law.
John writes another letter warning the believers to be discerning in whom they support, so as to not accidentally support a false teacher.
John writes another letter emphasizing the truth, love and peace of the Gospel; also it is a warning to do good rather than evil.
Jude writes a letter condemning licentiousness and calling true believers to persevere in doing good and living by the Holy Spirit.
John writes a letter prophesying about the apocalyptic events to come which include the rise of the Anti-Christ, the Armageddon war, the final judgement, and the two eternal outcomes for the souls of all people, Heaven and Hell.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

The Kingdom Values Project

Does the Gospel inform your beliefs?
Do your priorities reflect the values of God's Kingdom?

I am going to compile 2 lists:
The values of God's people and the values of American people.
There will probably be overlap, but it will be incredibly illuminating how stark some values will contrast.
I will blog weekly about how some values from the lists connect and disconnect.

God calls us to do the impractical. America says do whatever is convenient.
God says invest in eternity. America says save up here on earth.
God calls us to take dangerous risks. America says pursue comfort and security at all costs.
God offers us peace and joy. America says pursue empty, temporary pleasures in the name of happiness.

If we are to be in the world, but not of the world, we must know what being of the world looks like.
We must recognize the patterns we will  not conform to.
We must be holy because God is holy.

If you are interested in this idea, help me by contributing to the lists as we build them.
This is so exciting.
I want to share this project with everybody I know.
Follow it on Facebook:

Friday, June 1, 2012

Woke up this morning with my mind on Jesus

During my last week in Chicago, I had some great quiet time reading some scripture and praying on the back porch overlooking the garden, and I wrote these poems as a reflection of God's beauty shown to me through nature.

Imago Dei
I am a tree rooted in grace
I will not wither
I am the morning sun, rising
Each day God renews me

He lifts me up
I am a lamb, feasting in the verdant fields
I am filled to abundance
I am the garden; God is in me
I am a bird who soars
My wings are hope
I am the soil in Spring
Seeds sprout and from me grows new life
I am the image of God
His creation, His very nature
I am a squirrel gathering
I am the ant laboring
My work is not in vain
I am a cloud, shaped and moved
By a fresh wind
None see where it goes
I will go for it
I am the toil, the workmanship of God
His eternal poem
He etched me into the universe
He formed me and breathes His life into me
I am the image of God
His Creation, His very nature

A Psalm of Praise

Your Word shines forth like the sun
It is a lamp for my feet
Before me there is never darkness
Nothing illuminates my life like Your Truth
Nor does anything blaze brighter than Your Law
In me you draw out compassion and charity
For You are the wellspring of Life
My way is You, the narrow Way
You are a shepherd, you lie down at the gate
And none pass through to harm me
You call my name and lead me
I am nourished at the sound of Your voice
Wolves gather on our right
And thieves gather on our left
But You will protect me from those
Who would harm and deceive
Who would tear me to pieces or steal me away
When I wander, You seek me
When I stumble, You correct my path
When I fall, You carry me
Lord there is none like You
Worthy of all praise