Proverbs 19:11

A Most Notable Verse

The discretion of a man deferreth his anger;

and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.



A man’s discretion makes him slow to anger,

And it is his glory to overlook a transgression.



A person’s insight gives him patience,

and his virtue is to overlook an offense.



A person’s discretion makes him slow to anger,

and it is to his credit that he ignores an offence.



A person’s wisdom makes him slow to anger,

and it is his glory to overlook an offense.



The learning of a man is known by patience

and his glory is to pass over wrongs.


While reading my daily proverb, this verse fell hard on my mind. Our family sometimes fail to follow the principles within. On our drive home from Stoneboro Camp meeting in Pennsylvania this week, we failed it miserably.

The things that struck my heart in this verse can be divided into four parts. They are as follows:

  1. The discretion of man . . .
  2. deferreth his anger . . .
  3. And it is his glory . . .
  4. to pass over a transgression.

1. The discretion of man . . .

Discretion in Hebrew, Sekel, שֵׂ֫כֶל, means ‘prudence’ and ‘insight.’ Its root, Sakal, שָׂכַל, means to be circumspect: cautious; prudent; watchful on all sides; examining carefully all circumstances that may affect an outcome, or a measure that should be adopted. ~ Webster

Discretion is an experiential word. This means that man has experience and knowledge of anger’s effects. Either through his own response to others’ transgressions or by observing those who have been angered by others.

Discretion is a quality of wisdom. It is a gift from God described in the oldest book in the bible. The book of Job.

But where shall wisdom be found?

and where is the place of understanding? 

God understandeth the way thereof,

and he knoweth the place thereof. 

And unto man he said,

Behold, the fear of the Lord,

that is wisdom;

and to depart from evil is understanding.

Job 28:12, 28

Interestingly, all things good found in man are corralled within his obedience to God.  

A man who has discretion is a man who lives within Godly principles and reflects God’s discretion toward us. The following 3 verses give brief guidelines to biblical discretion.

But I tell you, love your enemies

and pray for those who persecute you,

Matthew 5:44


Be kind and tender-hearted to one another,

forgiving each other just as in Christ God forgave you.

Ephesians 4:32


Bear with each other

and forgive any complaint you may have

against one another.

Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Colossians 3:13


Discretion and deferring anger is a natural outcome of love as noted by long suffering and patience. 

2. deferreth his anger . . .

Deferring anger has some immediate and longterm benefits.

Arak, אָרַך, to delay; means to endure an offense with the intention of postponing anger to a future time. When we do this, it allows us to hand over to God our personal judgment and corresponding response. 

When we give our heart to God, we also give him the reigns of our emotions. He knows best how to deal with transgression in His own time and judgment.


do not go on passing judgment before the time,

but wait until the Lord comes

who will both bring to light

the things hidden in the darkness

and disclose the motives of men’s hearts;

and then each man’s praise will come to him from God.

~ 1 Corinthians 4:5

When we defer our anger toward others, we not only avoid causing them to be offended with our (ungodly) response, we also withhold from them our internal thought processes and feelings.

A transgressor can use our indiscretion (immediate anger) and trample under foot the thoughts and intentions of our heart, tearing them to pieces. Discretion helps us further develop Godly wisdom through such times and experiences (refer to Matthew 7:6).

God has given us protective measures in His word. It is our responsibility to utilize these measures of Godly wisdom and grace.

3. And it is his glory . . .

Tipharah, תִּפְאָרָה, refers to beauty and glory. This word is rooted in paar, פָּאַר, which means to glorify or beautify. It is an act being done to us.

Beauty is reflective of fine adornment like the adornment of fine linen that God clothes His saints.

Glory is in reference to honor or rank, it also applies to apparel that covers the high priest. These are all symbolic references of how God honors his saints. 

God may give us a little glory in this world and touch our soul during prayer or worship in response to faithful obedience.

But I really believe that the glory described here refers to a more complete glory given to those who eagerly wait for their adoption as sons and the redemption of their bodies. 

4. to pass over a transgression.

The last part of the verse is a principle that Jesus and the apostles repeat over and over again in scripture . . . 

The first part of the word, abar, עָבַר, literally means to alienate, to pass by, or pass through. When we pass by or through something, we may feel its effect (like the wind), but it does not become a part of us.  

To overlook also includes al, עַל, describing a position: up, above, or over. Like the spirit of God that moved over the waters considering the darkness that was upon the face of the deep (in Genesis 1:2), we too are to pass over the darkness we experience when others transgress against us.

To overlooking implies hope that forgiveness brings. Consider how many times you have sinned against God and how graciously He forgave you in His long-suffering, and unwillingness that any should perish (2 Peter 3:9).

When we overlook and forgive those who wrong us, hope and grace is provided them by our actions.

A person who knows Godly discretion is one who knows how to rule his spirit (Proverbs 16:32).

Who knows where the end of your love toward others may lead? 

As James, the brother of Jesus Christ, taught us in his epistle, the path of righteousness is paved by deferring anger.

Wherefore, my beloved brethren,

let every man be swift to hear,

slow to speak, slow to wrath:

For the wrath of man worketh

not the righteousness of God.

~ James 1:19

Practicing Proverbs 19:11 leads to the righteousness of God, which belongs to those who are of full age, able to discern both good and evil. 

Put on therefore, as the elect of God,

holy and beloved,

bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind,

meekness, longsuffering;

Forbearing one another,

and forgiving one another,

if any man have a quarrel against any:

even as Christ forgave you, so also do ye.

And above all these things put on charity

~ Colossians 3:12-14a

Put on love in all you do.

John 3:16, Part II

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.“ 

This is the second part in a two part series. We will only address the meaning of the word believe since it incorporates many ideas that need a concentrated focus.

To Believe

There are two very important questions to ask here. What is the criteria to believe (in Jesus) and what happens if we fail to meet the criteria to believe?

Believe in the Greek – πιστεύω pisteuó (pist-yoo’-o) it is a verb and means to entrust: to think to be true; to be persuaded of; to credit, to place confidence in. Another way of saying it is: everyone who believes, every believing person, or everyone believing;

In this context, it is generally accepted that it is a present active participle and implies the necessity of a continuous action. A continuous, active belief is the condition necessary for us to have eternal life. But what does this mean?

The Short Answer: Believing is putting your faith in the atoning work of Jesus, living for, and growing in God as best as you can in all the light you have: a complete and active commitment, continuing in the righteousness and  Love of God. 

The Long Answer

We know that if we continue in something we get better at it; in short we grow and begin to perfect whatever we are doing. Likewise, God expects your faith and knowledge to grow. So should you.

About the word faith: Many times in scripture “faith” is used interchangeably with the word believe.

So if I say faith or belief/believe/believing, I am referring to the general concept of the continuous act of putting our trust Jesus as noted in John 3:16.

Belief, its Meaning

When we believe in Jesus it is not merely acknowledging His gospel is true. Its putting our faith into action and placing our life into Jesus’ hands. 

In Genesis, God told Abraham to do this exact same thing. Remember, Abraham is the father of the children of promise (those who have been saved). This call of his faith is highly symbolic and applies spiritually to those who receive the promise.

Take your son, your only son,

whom you love, Isaac,

and go to the region of Moriah.

Sacrifice him there as a burnt offering

on a mountain I will show you.

~  Genesis 22:2

The children of the promise are to sacrifice to God those things most sacred to them. We are to even sacrifice our life for Him. Abraham was to sacrifice the most precious fruit of his life by dedicating it (his son) to God.

I beseech you therefore, brethren,

by the mercies of God,

that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice,

holy, acceptable unto God,

which is your reasonable service.

~ Romans 12:1

Giving our life to God is considered our reasonable service. This begs the question, what may be considered unreasonable service? The next verse points us in the right direction.

Do not conform to the pattern of this world,

but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.

~ Romans 12:1

Those who choose to believe in Jesus must provide a service that is not conformed to the world, given over to the pleasures it offers. Because when we do, we fail to remain obedient to our calling and fall into sins of disobedience. The Apostle John explains this more concisely: 

My dear children,

I am writing this to you

so that you will not sin.

But those who obey God’s word

truly show how completely they love him.

That is how we know we are living in him.

Those who say they live in God

should live their lives as Jesus did.

Do not love this world

nor the things it offers you,

for when you love the world,

you do not have the love of the Father in you.

For the world offers only a craving

for physical pleasure,

a craving for everything we see,

and pride in our achievements and possessions.

These are not from the Father,

but are from this world.

So you must remain faithful

to what you have been taught from the beginning.  

~ 1 John 2:1, 5-6, 15-16, 24

Jesus’ Clear Examples

Jesus showed us four examples of the gospel’s effect on people’s lives. We will look closely at each one in order to understand what can happen to those who hear the gospel and fail to believe, those who believe for while yet do not remain faithful as John (and other apostles) warned, and those who continuously believe, building their faith through active trust and obedience.

The following are four classes of people and the results of their choices to act upon their belief (or faith). There are 3 possible outcomes for those who hear the word of God.

Let us review Jesus’ words found in Luke Chapter 8 below.

1. The Seed along the Path

A farmer went out to sow his seed.

As he was scattering the seed,

some fell along the path;

it was trampled on,

and the birds ate it up. (verse 5). 

*(A farmer is someone who preaches truth. The seed is the word of God).

Those along the path are the ones who hear,

and then the devil comes

and takes away the word from their hearts,

so that they may not believe and be saved.

(verse 12)

This first group are people who hear God’s word, they may feel moved in their heart, feel the Holy Spirit prompting them, but do not take the step and act to believe in their heart and trust in God’s word.

Many hear the word of God and just like seed on the path, His word is near, waiting to be planted in their hard, world trodden heart, but Satan comes along and steals the word out of their heart. This can happen many ways. Usually current worldly distractions lead them away and through the fruits of their continued sin God’s word and the prompting of the Holy Ghost is washed away. This person will perish in hell never receiving the work of God in their hearts.

2. The Rocky Ground

 Some fell on rocky ground, and when it came up,

the plants withered because they had no moisture.

(verse 6)

Those on the rocky ground

are the ones who receive the word with joy

when they hear it, but they have no root.

They believe for a while,

but in the time of testing they fall away. 

(verse 13)

This second group are people who hear the word of God. They are convicted of sin, repent, and receive God into their hearts.

Their faith was soon tested (as it always is), and rather than being nurtured up developing strength, holiness, and perfection, their faith (or belief) remained in a heart that was fragile, carnal, and undeveloped in the ways of righteousness. Continuing in this heart-state kept them weak and led them away to perdition.

We must take a firm hold of the word of God, growing in grace daily, putting away all things contrary to His nature.

Unfortunately, those who don’t develop the seed God plants in their hearts will believe in vain if they continue in a state that facilitates falling away. 

Now, brothers and sisters,

I want to remind you of the gospel

I preached to you, which you received

and on which you have taken your stand.

By this gospel you are saved,

if you hold firmly to the word

I preached to you.

Otherwise, you have believed in vain.

~ I Corinthians 15:1-2

Paul reinforces this principle about rocky ground, and encourages us to hold firm, to pull out the rocks of the world out of our hearts, in order to nurture our faith until it is strong, tested, and proven.

Those who God considers elect are those who hold firm in what they believe. We must stand firm on all the principles of God’s until the end. When Paul uses the words “you have believed,” it has the same connotation as John 3:16: He wants them to remain in an active and continuous saving belief.

Just prior to this, Paul told the Corinthians that they are saved. Properly, this means that they have been delivered out of danger and into safety. This is principally God rescuing believers from the penalty and power of sin – and into His provisions (safety).

~ HELPS Word-studies

As we actively and faithfully believe, we are being delivered from our previous acts of sin and its wages. Full deliverance is contingent upon our continued obedience until death (or the coming of Jesus).

Remember, if you believe, Jesus is delivering you from the penalty of sin, from having to commit any more sin against Him because it’s sin’s power over us has been vanquished. This is why we must persist, continuing to live out our faith in Him.

No longer are we to sin but to obey the same command that Jesus gave to the forgiven adulteress; Go and sin no more.

We know that our old sinful selves

were crucified with Christ

so that sin might lose its power in our lives.

We are no longer slaves to sin.

For when we died with Christ

we were set free from the power of sin.

And since we died with Christ,

we know we will also live with him.

We are sure of this

because Christ was raised from the dead,

and he will never die again.

Death no longer has any power over him.

When he died,

he died once to break the power of sin.

But now that he lives,

he lives for the glory of God.

So you also should consider yourselves

to be dead to the power of sin

and alive to God through Christ Jesus.

~ Romans 6:6-11 NLT

Once we believe, we begin to grow. We must remain in Him and allow Him to change our rocky soil. No grapes grow where there is no vine or husbandman. No vine grows where there is no nutritious soil. The seed has been planted in many hearts, yet only to whither on the vine.

Sin stops us from growing, destroys our connection to God, and leads to death.

I am the vine; you are the branches.

Whoever abides in me and I in him,

he it is that bears much fruit,

for apart from me you can do nothing.

If anyone does not abide in me

he is thrown away like a branch and withers;

and the branches are gathered,

thrown into the fire, and burned.

~ John 15:5-6


No one who is born of God

will continue to sin,

because God’s seed remains in them;

they cannot go on sinning,

because they have been born of God.

~ 1 John 3:9 NIV


But now you are free from the power of sin

and have become slaves of God.

Now you do those things

that lead to holiness

and result in eternal life.

~ Romans 6:22 NLT

3. The Thorny Ground

 Other seed fell among thorns,

which grew up with it and choked the plants. 

(verse 7)

The seed that fell among thorns stands for those who hear,

but as they go on their way

they are choked by life’s worries, riches and pleasures,

and they do not mature

(verse 14)

This passage is interesting because the words “grew up with it” indicate that the people believed, put their faith in God, and were growing in Christ but they do not mature. At the same time they were believing in Him, they were also engaging in worrying, gaining wealth, and enjoying many forms of worldly pleasures or getting lost in recreational activities. 

This is the most troubling verse of all to me because most of Christianity envelops more time and thought in life’s worldly distractions than consecrating their life as living sacrifices, developing a noble and pure heart, which is the only reasonable service a Christian should do.

Jesus is saying that we need to be single-minded: not divided by a heart partaking in the things of this world and of Christ. A Christian should be markedly different focusing on God in daily living, acting, thinking, and all their intentions.

There is no keeping up with the Jones in the Christian life. We are to be completely free from those things that so easily entangle a carnal heart.

He gave himself for us to set us free

from every kind of lawlessness

and to purify for himself a people

who are truly his, eager to do good.

~ Titus 2:14 NET


Come close to God,

and God will come close to you.

Wash your hands, you sinners;

purify your hearts, for your loyalty is divided

between God and the world.

~ James 4:8 NLT


4. The Good Soil

 Still other seed fell on good soil.

It came up and yielded a crop,

a hundred times more than was sown. 

(verse 8)

But the seed on good soil

stands for those with a noble and good heart,

who hear the word, retain it,

and by persevering produce a crop. 

(verse 15)

Who has a noble or worthy and good heart? It is clear from scripture that all have sinned and none are righteous. So, this passage cannot mean the word fell on hearts that are good. Verse 8 is talking about soil: the place and things that nurture the heart.

agathós – means inherently (intrinsically) good; as to the believer, describes what originates from God and is empowered by Him in their life, through faith.

~ HELPS Word-studies

Strongs Concordance describes good as having developed a good constitution or nature: γῆ, Luke 8:8; δένδρον,Matthew 7:18, in sense equivalent to ‘fertile soil,’ ‘a fruitful tree,’ (Xenophon, oec. 16, 7 γῆ ἀγαθή, … γῆ κακῇ, an. 2, 4, 22χώρας πολλῆς καί ἀγαθῆς οὔσης) and that it corresponds to the figurative expression good ground, denoting a soul inclined to goodness, accordingly, eager to learn saving truth, ready to bear the fruits (καρπούς ἀγαθούς, James 3:17) of a Christian life.

Hearts are make noble and good by allowing the living word of Christ to flow freely within and without the whole course of our life.

When we first receive the word, it is clear from the preceding three types of soil and the whole tenure of scripture that all are unrighteous and deserving of death. There is nothing we can do to make our hearts noble or good. 

And to the one who does not work

but believes in him who justifies the ungodly,

his faith is counted as righteousness,

~ Romans 4:5 ESV

After ungodly sinners receive the word, their hearts begin to change. This is an instantaneous gift and yet can be a time consuming process that begins to reveal itself as demonstrated by the love of God emanating from an increasingly growing, consecrated, and submissive heart.

Pauls describes above God’s pardon and crediting our faith as righteousness. Christ justifies us while we are yet ungodly and guilty of sin.

As a result, God cleanses us from guilt of our all our past sin, frees us from the power of sin, and enables us to live a life that is truly righteous. This is a what true pardon means. Not only forgiving us but enabling us to be obedient to Him.

Therefore, my beloved,

as you have always obeyed, so now,

not only as in my presence

but much more in my absence,

work out your own salvation

with fear and trembling,

~ Philippians 2:12 ESV


Whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation

in His blood through faith.

This was to demonstrate His righteousness,

because in the forbearance of God

He passed over the sins previously committed.  

~ Romans 3:35 NASB

Faith is Reckoned as Righteous

 When we get saved, God passes over all our previous sins. Our heart has not been made pure yet because the predisposition to sin, to do evil (carnality) still remain. We are pardoned the moment we are saved. 

Our heart still needs to be purified. It still needs to be made noble as grows in that good soil that Jesus is developing.

This is where the act of salvation gets interesting. We have been pardoned. Not by any righteousness in us but by our belief in Jesus. He justifies the ungodly, not doing any work but having a faith (believing) that is counted as righteousness.

Keep in mind scripture does not say we are given Christ’s righteousness. We must always remember that God is just and He judges according to truth. Our salvation is based on faith and faith alone. We are still what we were in mind, body and soul. The work has just begun. He has only begun to make us holy. This is what He wants to finish.

Christ’s righteousness is not imputed to us as our righteousness. This is a common mistake based upon assumption. Scripture states that God reckons our faith as righteousness, which is conditional or us to be united with Christ who was raised for our justification.

Genuine saving faith is transformative and righteous at the outset. Jesus begins by imputing righteousness justifying our faith. Through obedience, our hearts being to filled with His love as He cleanses (purifies) our heart from of all its impurities stemming from sin.

Our imperfections remain since we are still human with limited in knowledge, perspectives, and understanding. It is our sinful character or nature that is being cleansed. Our memories, thinking, and habits remain as they become subject to His image and we become partakers in His nature.

seeing that His divine power has granted to us

everything pertaining to life and godliness,

through the true knowledge of Him

who called us by His own glory and excellence.

For by these He has granted to us

His precious and magnificent promises,

so that by them you

may become partakers of the divine nature,

having escaped the corruption that is in the world

by lust (by our evil desires or sinful nature).

~ Peter 1:3b-4

Partaking in His holiness is the natural outcome of continuous, active, saving faith. This can only happen in a consecrated life, undivided in devotion and commitment to Christ. 

He wants to strengthen your faith, conform you to his image, so when He comes (or you die), you can be confident, lacking in nothing with a clear conscious, unblemished, and unblamable in His sight.

May he strengthen your hearts

so that you will be blameless and holy

in the presence of our God and Father

when our Lord Jesus comes

with all his holy ones.

~ 1 Thessalonians 3:13 NIV


Blessed are the pure in heart:

for they shall see God.

~ Matthew 5:8 KJV


The purpose of my instruction is

that all believers would be filled with love

that comes from a pure heart,

a clear conscience, and genuine faith.

~ 1 Timothy 1:5 NLT


For judgment will again be righteous,

And all the upright in heart will follow it.

~ Psalm 94:15 NASB

God wants to purify our hearts: to make it morally upright, noble enough to eschew (to consistently, firmly, and assertively turn away) from all evil and abhor sin (to regard sin as vile and utterly detest it all its forms) from the deepest recesses of your soul.

A christian pastor once tried to correct me and told me that the gospel is not about morality. This could not be further from the truth. From the moment Adam and Eve sinned, their moral compass was skewed and and in need to correction. God wants to restore our moral compass so that we can be with him.

We are given a warning in Hebrews 5:7-14 about falling away and the importance of living a righteous life. Without the moral compass God wants to restore in our heart, we will be unable to distinguish good from evil and will remain in sin.


Therefore, whosover believeth in Him will have transformed nature because they have a continuous and active faith in the only holy, upright, and righteous savior, Jesus Christ.

Love Him with all of your heart. If you cannot truly and completely do this, it is because even a tiny part of your heart is at enmity with God. Ask Him to continue His work of purifying your heart.

He can do anything. Don’t give up.

Through it all: He will perform and do His good pleasure in you . . . if you believe.



Dirt, Dust, and Soil


Everything has its Place

I was pulling weeds in my garden today as dark clouds began to appear reminding me of the coming storm.

As I sifted the dirt from the weeds, I noticed how dark and rich the soil was. My plants will be nurtured well as they grow this season. Already, my corn, cabbage, kale, lettuce, and watermelon have begun to spring forth with life.

I can’t wait to try my hand at the sweet potato slips we are preparing . . .  

“America the Beautiful” reminds us that our amber waves of grain blanketing rolling hills are our heritage even under God’s curse we are to work the land all the days of our lives.

It is from that same soil that God took and “formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and he became a living soul.” ~ Genesis 2:7

It is the purpose that, “God took the man, and put him into the garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it.” Genesis 2:15

How beautiful and abounding with life was the soil God made for us. In the Garden, man walked, and talked, and lived in perfect harmony with God.  

That was, until sin entered man’s heart and caused a change in the whole world around him.  

God said,

cursed is the ground for thy sake;

in sorrow shalt thou eat of it

all the days of thy life; 

Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth;

and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; 

In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread,

till thou return unto the ground;

for out of it wast thou taken:

for dust thou art,

and unto dust shalt thou return.

~ Genesis 3:17-19

That rich and perfect soil had changed. It still brought forth food but it was cursed, cursed by sin. The world had lost its natural purpose that God originally intended.

No more would the Earth merely bring forth life and things that God would call “Good.” Now the Earth would bring forth that which brings pain, suffering, and death.

Soil Becomes Dirt

Soil now has very limited uses. We have to regulate our use of it. If we don’t it becomes dirt. If the soil continues to degrade, it becomes dust.

So God’s curse, cast on a once perfect world, is used to curse man, or more accurately, to bring judgment upon the sin that man commits.

In Canaan, the Israelites were instructed to give the soil rest every seventh year.

For six years you are to sow your fields

and harvest the crops,

but during the seventh year

let the land lie unplowed and unused.

Then the poor among your people

may get food from it,

and the wild animals may eat what is left.

Do the same with your vineyard

and your olive grove.

~ Exodus 23:10

We get refreshed when we rest and that is one of the reasons God instructed the Israelites to fallow their ground for a year. There were other reasons to, and they all point to Christ.

The Christian Sabbath is given to us so we can rest in the redemptive work of Christ; to be fed, learn of Him and give Him the first fruits of our lives.

On the first day of the week,

when we were gathered together to break bread,

Paul began talking to them,

intending to leave the next day,

and he prolonged his message until midnight.

~ Acts 20:7


Upon the first day of the week

let every one of you lay by him in store,

as God hath prospered him,

that there be no gatherings when I come.

~ 1 Corinthians 16:2

Rest Brings Life

Obedience to the word of God brings rest and abundant life

When we care for the soil as good stewards, it brings forth life and sustenance. It is the source of our earthly life for that is where we came from and it where we will return.

In addition to being made from soil, the soil also reflects our earthly characteristics; those things foreordained for destruction.

Who is wise and understanding among you?

Let them show it by their good life,

by deeds done in the humility

that comes from wisdom.

But if you harbor bitter envy

and selfish ambition in your hearts,

do not boast about it or deny the truth.

Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven

but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic.

For where you have envy and selfish ambition,

there you find disorder and every evil practice. 

But the wisdom that comes from heaven i

s first of all pure;  then peace-loving,

considerate, submissive, full of mercy

and good fruit, impartial and sincere.

Peacemakers who sow in peace

reap a harvest of righteousness.

~ James 3:13-17

Our thinking, our desires, our goals, the whole of who we are in our natural state by its very nature is worldly and earthen. 

Our earthly bodies, its natural desires, and inclinations; mind you none of it is sinful in itself; yet we are cursed to die because of Adam’s sin and because we sin.

But alas, there is a second part of our nature; That which is linked to the eternal. It is that part that longs for heaven and in dire need of redemption.

It is our soul and spirit. They are so closely linked that only the word of God can separate them.

For the word of God is living and active

and sharper than any two-edged sword,

and piercing as far as

the division of soul and spirit,

of both joints and marrow,

and able to judge the thoughts

and intentions of the heart.

~ Hebrews 4:12

God wants to pierce this area of our heart so He can clean out the dirt. 

Restoration begins upon initial salvation, when we are no longer subject to serve sin.

We are now justified in Christ and are free to serve God in an exclusiveness that holds no room for the things of the old man, namely fleshly desires that lead to sin.

We are no longer to serve sin or have any part in sin. This is why Jesus came to set us free. If we do sin by mistake we have an advocate but there is no excuse to continue in sin. Christians who do this will perish in their sins.

For if we deliberately keep on sinning

after receiving the knowledge of the truth,

no further sacrifice for sins is left for us

~ Hebrews 10:26

Dirt out of Place

For you were called to freedom, brethren;

only do not turn your freedom

into an opportunity for the flesh,

but through love serve one another.

. . . But I say, walk by the Spirit,

and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh

. . . those who practice such things

will not inherit the kingdom of God.

. . . Now those who belong to Christ Jesus

have crucified the flesh

with its passions and desires.

~ Galatians 5:13a, 16, 21b, 24

If you have not crucified the flesh, its passions, and desires, you do not belong to Christ. You belong to your father the Devil. 

This is a hard saying.

Whoever makes a practice of sinning

is of the devil,

for the devil has been sinning from the beginning.

The reason the Son of God appeared

was to destroy the works of the devil.

~ I John 3:8

Dirt in our Heart

Soil has its place. When soil finds itself in places it does not belong, soil becomes dirt. Its attractiveness, bounty, and life giving properties give way to a spoiling nature.

If we get dirt on our church clothes, a new hat, or our children’s hands are soiled, dirt is disagreeable.

It is soil out of place; it is dirt.

Now we know that dirt in or on our body or clothing does not really make us dirty. It only taints the earthly surface.

Even after we are justifies, there is dirt deep inside our soul that needs to be removed. If we do not love God with all our heart, this is evidence that the work is not yet complete. 

It does not happen at death. For death is not our savior. Death is a curse. How we are in our current state will be how we are when we die. Jesus explained it to us and the apostles continued His work.

After Jesus called the crowd to Him,

He said to them,

“Hear and understand. 

It is not what enters into the mouth

that defiles the man,

but what proceeds out of the mouth,

this defiles the man.”

Every plant which My heavenly Father

did not plant shall be uprooted . . . 

Do you not understand

that everything that goes into the mouth

passes into the stomach,

and is eliminated?

But the things that proceed out of the mouth

come from the heart,

and those defile the man.

“For out of the heart come evil thoughts,

murders, adulteries, fornications,

thefts, false witness, slanders.

These are the things which defile the man;

but to eat with unwashed hands

does not defile the man.

~ Matthew 15:10b, 11, 13b, 17, 18-20

Sin has dirtied our heart. If you are a Christian and you retain any of the characteristics of sin in your heart, you are in need of the purifying work of the Holy Spirit.

A clean heart is one that has nothing in it that ought not to be there. Every good affection is in it, and no evil affection.

If there is one evil affection, it causes the heart to be unclean. A clean heart, in other words, is a heart that is the home of every good affection and has none of the evil affections in it.

It is, “A heart from sin set free.”

~ George Asbury

Every Christian needs a clean heart. God can cleanse your heart of all sin and purify your soul with His word and Spirit.

We are called to act:

No one serving as a soldier

gets entangled in civilian affairs,

but rather tries to please his commanding officer.

Similarly, anyone who competes

as an athlete does not receive the victor’s crown

except by competing according to the rules.

The hardworking farmer

should be the first to receive a share of the crops.

Reflect on what I am saying,

for the Lord will give you insight into all this.

~ 2 Timothy 2:4-7

As a soldier, we are to focus solely on the Lord’s will; not allowing any worldly affairs to distract us or impede our mission of serving God and spreading the Good News. 

As an athlete, we are to complete according to the rules; the N.T. was given as a rule book. Holy Spirit is given to help us understand it. As a Christian dedicated to winning the race, everything you need has already been given to you.

As a farmer, we are to first receive our share of our labors that have been wrought by Christ. Yes, these are works.

God does not use dead carcasses. He uses living, willing participants who, give of themselves as a service of love and sacrifice to the Lord.

We are not saved by our works, but faith without these works is a dead faith. We are to show our works by our faith.

You believe that God is one.

You do well;

the demons also believe, and shudder.

But are you willing to recognize,

you foolish fellow,

that faith without works is useless?

Was not Abraham our father

justified by works

when he offered up Isaac his son on the altar?

You see that faith was working with his works,

and as a result of the works,

faith was perfected;

and the Scripture was fulfilled which says,

and “Abraham believed God,

and it was reckoned to him as righteousness,”

and he was called the friend of God.

You see that a man is justified by works

and not by faith alone.

In the same way, was not Rahab

the harlot also justified by works

when she received the messengers

and sent them out by another way?

For just as the body without the spirit is dead,

so also faith without works is dead.

~ James 2:19b-26


Wherefore gird up the loins of your mind,

be sober, and hope to the end

for the grace that is to be brought unto you

at the revelation of Jesus Christ;

As obedient children,

not fashioning yourselves

according to the former lusts in your ignorance:

But as he which hath called you is holy,

so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;

Because it is written,

Be ye holy; for I am holy.

And if ye call on the Father,

who without respect of persons

judgeth according to every man’s work,

pass the time of your sojourning here in fear:

Forasmuch as ye know

that ye were not redeemed

with corruptible things, as silver and gold,

from your vain conversation

received by tradition from your fathers;

But with the precious blood of Christ,

as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

Who verily was foreordained

before the foundation of the world,

but was manifest in these last times for you,

Who by him do believe in God,

that raised him up from the dead,

and gave him glory;

that your faith and hope might be in God.

Seeing ye have purified your souls

in obeying the truth through the Spirit

unto unfeigned love of the brethren, 

see that ye love one another

with a pure heart fervently:

Being born again, not of corruptible seed,

but of incorruptible, by the word of God,

which liveth and abideth for ever.

For all flesh is as grass,

and all the glory of man as the flower of grass.

The grass withereth,

and the flower thereof falleth away:

But the word of the Lord endureth for ever.

And this is the word which by the gospel

is preached unto you.

~ I Peter 1:13-25

Our bodies will wither away like dust. But the soul that is purified by the heavenly work of the Holy Spirit will endure in perfect love and harmony with God until the end.

The soul that sinneth, it shall die.

Ezekiel 18:20a

By faith,

Keep up the “Good” work my friend.

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

God’s Handiwork

Thy hands have made me and fashioned me:

give me understanding,

that I may learn thy commandments.

~ Psalm 119:73

God has fashioned all that we are. He gave us the capacity to learn of Him, to know Him, to love Him, and learn His commandments.

For the invisible things of him

from the creation of the world

are clearly seen,

being understood by the things that are made,

even his eternal power and Godhead;

so that they are without excuse:

~ Romans 1:20 

We retain the knowledge that we are created by God and are without excuse in our disobedience to this truth. 

Through the fall of Adam, we lost our way. We need to seek Him, learn His ways, and separate ourselves from the world to be with Him.

For thou hast possessed my reins:

thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb. 

I will praise thee;

for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:

marvellous are thy works;

and that my soul knoweth right well. 

My substance was not hid from thee,

when I was made in secret,

and curiously wrought

in the lowest parts of the earth. 

Thine eyes did see my substance,

yet being unperfect (unformed);

and in thy book all my members were written,

which in continuance were fashioned,

when as yet there was none of them. 

How precious also are thy thoughts unto me,

O God! how great is the sum of them!

 I should count them,

they are more in number than the sand:

when I awake, I am still with thee.

~ Psalm 139:13-18

God has designed us wonderfully, fearfully, and marvelously. We are immeasurably precious in His thoughts.

We cannot really comprehend how much God loves us. But we can see how much He gave of Himself through His perfect life and torturous sufferings at the cross.

We can also look around us and see the immense creation made for us to dwell in.

Thou knowest that I am not wicked;

and there is none that can deliver

out of thine hand. 

Thine hands have made me

and fashioned me together round about;

yet thou dost destroy me. 

Remember, I beseech thee,

that thou hast made me as the clay;

and wilt thou bring me into dust again? 

Hast thou not poured me out as milk,

and curdled me like cheese? 

Thou hast clothed me with skin and flesh,

and hast fenced me with bones and sinews. 

Thou hast granted me life and favour,

and thy visitation hath preserved my spirit. 

And these things hast thou hid in thine heart:

I know that this is with thee. 

If I sin, then thou markest me,

and thou wilt not acquit me from mine iniquity. 

If I be wicked, woe unto me;

and if I be righteous,

yet will I not lift up my head.

I am full of confusion;

therefore see thou mine affliction;

~ Job 10:7-15

Age of Accountability

God clothes us in skin, flesh, and bone, and imbues us with intelligence and morality.

His presence keeps us alive.

He did not make anything evil or wicked. Yet wickedness is found in everyone of us.

We learn about sin the moment this corrupt world influences our existence.

As we grow in understanding, seeking how to meet our needs, these processes bring choices that facilitate a sinful predisposition. Sin takes a hold and we become its servant.

Jesus answered them,

Verily, verily, I say unto you,

Whosoever committeth sin

is the servant of sin.

~ John 8:34

God marks us because we choose to sin. We have fallen short of His glory, deserving, His judgment.

From our youth, our willful actions and conscience of right and wrong gradually bring upon us the consequences of sin.

At what age this occurs, is a mystery and probably unique to everyone. But there comes a time when we are guilty of sin, have reached the age of accountability, and are no longer .

Jesus said,

“Let the little children come to me,

and do not hinder them,

for the kingdom of heaven

belongs to such as these.”

~ Matthew 19:14


And he said:

“Truly I tell you,

unless you change

and become like little children,

you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.

~ Matthew 18:3

Even though we are created in God’s image, we are also created after the image of Adam. I do not quite understand how this works or how to define it.

I prefer not to use the term “original sin” since its origin is rooted in Manichean Gnosticism and was first articulated and defined by Augustine of Hippo, a Roman Catholic monk. 

His definition is clearly pagan in origin and the other two prominent theoretical definitions do not satisfy my understanding either.

I choose to only use what biblical references I can find to define our sinful state from conception to death. Some call it a predisposition, wickedness, our sinful nature, (total) depravity, etc.

In time, my understanding of this troubling issue in our soul will grow and mature. Until then, I pray the Holy Spirit leads me into deeper understanding.

What I do know is that a new born baby has not consciously committed sin because they have not developed knowledge of the law and do not meet the criteria for volitional sin.

Also, Jesus stated multiple times that the kingdom of Heaven belongs to little children.

God’s Grace

One of the beautiful aspects of God is His grace.

As we grow and live, God grants each one of us favor (grace) offering life abundant even in our sinful state.

He gives us the choice to choose His righteousness or to remain in our sin. 

He longs to give us hope. But alas, like it was Adam and Eve, we are empowered with the ability to choose.

Dear children,

do not let anyone lead you astray.

The one who does what is right is righteous,

just as He is righteous.

The one who does what is sinful

is of the devil,

because the devil has been sinning

from the beginning.

The reason the Son of God appeared

was to destroy the devil’s work. 

~ I John 3:7-8

If we choose to remain wicked, woe to us; for judgment awaits us while we remain in this state.

If we chose His righteousness and abide in Him, afflictions may still come, confusion may still beset us, but our guilt of sin has been purged and we are placed among the righteous.

The Lord examines us to see if we are righteous as He is righteous, or if we continue in the works of the Devil, namely, willfully remaining under the power and reign of sin.

The LORD examines both the righteous and the wicked.

He hates those who love violence.

~ Psalm 11:5


This is how it will be at the end of the age.

The angels will come and separate

the wicked from the righteous

~ Matthew 13:49

The original human image God created was beautiful, innocent, pure, and entirely dependent on Him. All was perfect. Sin was entirely absent.

There was not a hint or even an inclination to sin. At least not until the embodiment of death, darkened Eden’s home.

For more information describing sin’s origins, it is touched on here and here.

Even with sin, God has so generously bestowed upon our soul the grace to make us whole.

Somehow we are deeply flawed with sin. Adam brought death to us all, but Jesus brings us life.

Unfortunately, most of the world will not receive God’s gift allowing Him to change our hearts and lives.

Their sins will drag them into the depths of the eternal Lake of Fire.

His Image in its Purity

Our calling to purity, holiness, in humble and simple obedience to God’s plan. Life itself reflects God for God is the source of all life and in Him is life.

Then God said,

Let us make humankind in our image,

after our likeness,

so they may rule over the fish of the sea

and the birds of the air,

over the cattle,

and over all the earth,

and over all the creatures

that move on the earth. 

God created humankind in his own image 

in the image of God he created them, 

male and female he created them. 

God blessed them and said to them,

Be fruitful and multiply!

Fill the earth and subdue it!

Rule over the fish of the sea

and the birds of the air

and every creature that moves on the ground.

It was so. God saw all that he had made

– and it was very good!

~ Genesis 1:26-31

Being made in the image of God indicates a capacity of authority. An authority to decide (true choice) to do what is good and right or wrong and evil.

His image also includes the power to procreate.

Moral intelligence and creativity reflects the image of God, who wants us to regain what was lost.

These two qualities remained after the fall however flawed they were.

But His grace abounds toward us and offering hope and peace.

By whom also we have access by faith

into this grace wherein we stand,

and rejoice in hope of the glory of God.

~ Romans 5:2

Do not think that at the fall the image of God in us was lost. It remains, however marred, we are still lovely and precious in His sight.

After the flood, God proclaimed once again that we are created in His image.

It is the sin in who we are and the sin that we commit that God hates.

He came to free us from sin. His freedom is true, pure, and yet not without its trials.

Your Image Restated

And God blessed Noah and his sons,

and said unto them,

Be fruitful, and multiply,

and replenish the earth.

And the fear of you and the dread of you

shall be upon every beast of the earth,

and upon every fowl of the air,

upon all that moveth upon the earth,

and upon all the fishes of the sea;

into your hand are they delivered.

Every moving thing that liveth

shall be meat for you;

even as the green herb

have I given you all things.

But flesh with the life thereof,

which is the blood thereof,

shall ye not eat.

And surely your blood of your lives will I require;

at the hand of every beast will I require it,

and at the hand of man;

at the hand of every man’s brother

will I require the life of man. 

Whoso sheddeth man’s blood,

by man shall his blood be shed:

for in the image of God made he man.

Genesis ~ 9:1-6

We still have the power to procreate after God’s original plan.

We still retain our moral authority over all of creation though the relationship has changed. 

We no longer live in harmony with all the creatures of the Earth. They fear us because of sin.

Not only are we responsible as stewards over them, we are told to use them as food.

The value of human life is also reinforced. Killing requires the death sentence of the offender. 

Here we begin to see clearer that the thoughts of man carry with them the power of death or life, temporally and eternally. 

We are told that if Christ is truly the head of our life, our entire person glorifies God through submissive obedience to His will.

This obedience must include the absence of sin. For there is nothing in sin that glorifies God. Only in its absence can we dwell in the place that God calls “Good.”

He has given us His power and His authority. He calls us to walk in His way. He has given us Jesus to show us, help us, and lead us.

We are called to enter into the narrow gait and travel the beautiful road with Him.

How lovely on the mountains

Are the feet of him who brings good news,

Who announces peace

And brings good news of happiness,

Who announces salvation,

And says to Zion,

“Your God reigns!”

~ Isaiah 52:7


A highway will be there, a roadway,

And it will be called

the Highway of Holiness.

The unclean will not travel on it,

But it will be for him who walks that way,

And fools will not wander on it.

~ Isaiah 35:8

God wants to help you every step of the way. Walk in Him, dwell in His word, obey Him in everything. Use your whole heart, mind, soul, and strength.

Get as close to Him as you can.

In Obedience, you Reflect His Image

Be ye followers of me,

even as I also am of Christ.

Now I praise you, brethren,

that ye remember me in all things,

and keep the ordinances,

as I delivered them to you.

But I would have you know,

that the head of every man is Christ;

and the head of the woman is the man;

and the head of Christ is God.

Every man praying or prophesying,

having his head covered,

dishonoureth his head.

But every woman that prayeth

or prophesieth with her head uncovered

dishonoureth her head:

for that is even all one as if she were shaven.

For if the woman be not covered,

let her also be shorn:

but if it be a shame for a woman to be shorn or shaven,

let her be covered.

For a man indeed ought not to cover his head,

forasmuch as he is the image and glory of God:

but the woman is the glory of the man.

~ I Corinthians 11:1-7

This scripture points out that the image and glory of God is present, true, and real, living in us.

The issue about the hair is not the point here. But the first twelve words give instructions to the church and settle this and all other issues for me. 

We are instructed to obey all the ordinances as delivered by the apostles.

As a man, I will not wear a hat while praying nor will I let my hair grow out to look uncut. And to women, this instruction is about not cutting of hair or having a shaved head.

Sorry about the side-track but the underlying genre of this post is about the beauty of being in the image of God and the scripture above describes how our image is to be reflected in this life.

Be meek and Full of Wisdom

And the tongue is a fire,

a world of iniquity:

so is the tongue among our members,

that it defileth the whole body,

and setteth on fire the course of nature;

and it is set on fire of hell.

For every kind of beasts,

and of birds, and of serpents,

and of things in the sea, is tamed,

and hath been tamed of mankind:

But the tongue can no man tame;

it is an unruly evil, full of deadly poison.

Therewith bless we God,

even the Father;

and therewith curse we men,

which are made after the similitude of God.

Out of the same mouth

proceedeth blessing and cursing.

My brethren,

these things ought not so to be.

Doth a fountain send forth

at the same place sweet water and bitter?

Can the fig tree, my brethren,

bear olive berries? either a vine, figs?

So can no fountain both yield

salt water and fresh. 

Who is a wise man

and endued with knowledge among you?

Let him shew out of a good conversation

his works with meekness of wisdom.

~ James 3:6-13

Let us be wise and follow after every Godly instruction. We are called to love our neighbor as ourself because they are made after the image of God.

God’s grace through us and in us reflects His image toward others. His is not a hypocritical love, a feigned or attempted love.

His love in us is a sincere, pure, and honest love.

Check yourself.

Do you have genuine unconflicted love for your Christian brethren?

for strangers?

for family members?

fellow employees?

How about Muslim terrorists? 

A Holy Image

God is Holy. He is not the author of sin. He is the author of freedom, purity, love, and righteousness. 

We are created in His image, and yet, have been nurtured to follow after Satan’s Edenic deceptions from our youth.

We must put away all sin, and let God sanctify us wholly through the knowledge and love of the truth.

Jesus came make us free. Let Him have His way in your heart.

We are to become as little children, to live in simplicity of faith.

From our birth, the looming clouds of sin and death, hover and wait. They seek to overwhelm and capture that which God is building.

Fear not, He has overcome the world!


As Christians, our intellect, emotions, moral judgement, body, and will are to be subject to sanctification of the Lord.

He seeks to change us so we can be salt of the earth, light to the world, not conflicted or marred by continued sin.

He is holy and we are to reflect His image if we are to truly be a part of his priestly and royal family. 

How beautiful are the feet of them

that preach the gospel of peace,

and bring glad tidings of good things!

~ Romans 10:15

It is funny how this post looking into how we are created in the image of God points to God’s redemption and holiness.

Like the glassy reflection in a pond on a cool winter’s morning, we are a reflection of what dwells within . . . 

But as he which hath called you is holy,

so be ye holy

in all manner of conversation;

~ 1 Peter 1:15

Of Heavenly Beings . . .


There are four angels mentioned in the Bible: Gabriel, Michael, Apollyon, and Lucifer. Two are holy and two are evil. 


Apollyon and his role is described in Revelation 9:6-12:

And in those days men will seek death

and will not find it;

they will long to die,

and death flees from them.

      The appearance of the locusts

was like horses prepared for battle;

and on their heads

appeared to be crowns like gold,

and their faces were like the faces of men.

They had hair like the hair of women,

and their teeth were like teeth of lions 

They had breastplates of iron;

and the sound of their wings

was like the sound of chariots,

of many horses rushing to battle.

They have tails like scorpions,

and stings; and in their tails

is their power to hurt men for five months.

They have as king over them,

the angel of the abyss;

his name in Hebrew is Abaddon,

and in the Greek he has the name Apollyon

The first woe is past; behold,

two woes are still coming after these things.

Apollyon is the king of the bottomless pit and leads demons out to torment men for 5 months during the Day of the Lord This section of scripture only describes element of wrath.

The Day of the Lord also includes other elements. But we are only focusing only its context with the angels.

Apollyon is let loose out of the pit at the sound of the fifth trumpet, one of a series of 7 trumpet judgments of God.

God sends Apollyon as part His judgment after He returns and cuts short the Great Tribulation (Satan’s time of wrath on Earth).

Jesus has already gathered his church from the four corners the Earth; the dead rising first, and the remaining elect gathering together to meet Him in the air.

The rapture of the church must happen before God’s wrath is poured down because, “we are not appointed unto wrath.”

Here is where Jesus discusses His return and the gathering of His elect before the pouring down of His wrath.

When ye therefore shall see

the abomination of desolation,

spoken of by Daniel the prophet,

stand in the holy place,

(whoso readeth, let him understand)

Then let them which be in Judaea

flee into the mountains:

For then shall be great tribulation,

such as was not since the beginning of the world

to this time, no, nor ever shall be.

And except those days should be shortened,

there should no flesh be saved:

but for the elect’s sake those days shall be shortened.

Wherefore if they shall say unto you,

Behold, he is in the desert;

go not forth . . . believe it not.

For as the lightning cometh out of the east,

and shineth even unto the west;

so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

Immediately after the tribulation

of those days shall the sun be darkened,

and the moon shall not give her light,

and the stars shall fall from heaven,

and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

And then shall appear

the sign of the Son of man in heaven . . 

And he shall send his angels

with a great sound of a trumpet,

and they shall gather together his elect

from the four winds,

from one end of heaven to the other.

~ Matthew 24:15-21-29, 31


Michael appears to be immensely powerful crowned as a prince and an archangel. He is perhaps the greatest of all angels in heaven. One day we will find out.

The onset of the Great Tribulation is listed as the last time that he plays a role. It is highly likely that Michael is the force that withholds the Antichrist, allowing Satan to have his time to persecute the church for 3 1/2 years. 

And at that time Michael shall stand up,

the great prince which standeth

for the children of thy people:

and there shall be a time of trouble,

such as never was

since there was a nation

even to that same time:

and at that time thy people shall be delivered,

every one that shall be found written in the book.

~ Daniel 12:1

This is the only scripture that points to what restraineth the Antichrist and allows his release, initiating the 3 1/2 year period known as the Great Tribulation (of Satan’s wrath).

I have found no biblical supports for another restrainer (popularly believed to be the Holy Spirit).

Nor is there any scripture to indicate that Michael is not the restrainer. 

Scripture records Michael battling demons and Satan. It also reveals the fact the believers (by nature have the Holy Spirit) are still on Earth during the Great Tribulation.

This is the best interpretation of the restrainer of Satan I can find in scripture.

But the prince of the Persian kingdom

resisted me twenty-one days.

Then Michael,

one of the chief princes, came to help me,

because I was detained there

with the king of Persia.

~ Daniel 10:13

The next rather long segment of scripture shows Michael ovecoming Satan and all his angels, casting them to Earth, and releasing them for the Great Tribulation to persecute the church who hold the testimony of Jesus.

Then war broke out in heaven.

Michael and his angels fought against the dragon,

and the dragon and his angels fought back. 

And prevailed not;

neither was their place found any more in heaven.

And the great dragon was cast out,

that old serpent, called the Devil, and Satan,

which deceiveth the whole world:

he was cast out into the earth,

and his angels were cast out with him.

And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven,

Now is come salvation, and strength,

and the kingdom of our God,

and the power of his Christ:

for the accuser of our brethren is cast down,

which accused them before our God day and night.

And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb,

and by the word of their testimony;

and they loved not their lives unto the death.

Therefore rejoice, ye heavens,

and ye that dwell in them.

Woe to the inhabiters of the earth

and of the sea!

for the devil is come down unto you,

having great wrath,

because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.

And when the dragon saw

that he was cast unto the earth,

he persecuted the woman

which brought forth the man child.

And to the woman were given two wings

of a great eagle,

that she might fly into the wilderness,

into her place,

where she is nourished for a time,

and times, and half a time,

from the face of the serpent.

And the serpent cast out of his mouth

water as a flood after the woman,

that he might cause her

to be carried away of the flood.

And the earth helped the woman (Israel),

and the earth opened her mouth,

and swallowed up the flood

which the dragon cast out of his mouth.

And the dragon was wroth with the woman,

and went to make war

with the remnant of her seed (the church),

which keep the commandments of God,

and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.

~ Revelation 12:7

Above, at the casting out of the Devil and his angels to Earth, scripture immediately refers to God’s children giving up their lives; while they overcame him (the Devil and his works of sin) by the blood of the lamb and the word of their testimony.

It becomes very clear that angels play a significant role in the salvation of God’s people, their chastisement, and the judgment of the wicked.

The second (good) angel mentioned in the bible is Gabriel. He primarily functions as a messenger, i.e.,  imparting wisdom to Daniel and pronouncing special messages to others such as telling Zacharias about the birth of his son, John the Baptist and Mary of the birth of her son, Jesus.

And Zacharias said unto the angel,

Whereby shall I know this?

for I am an old man,

and my wife well stricken in years.

And the angel answering said unto him,

I am Gabriel,

that stand in the presence of God;

and am sent to speak unto thee,

and to shew thee these glad tidings.

~ Luke 1:18-19


And in the sixth month

the angel Gabriel

was sent from God unto a city of Galilee,

named Nazareth,

To a virgin espoused to a man

whose name was Joseph,

of the house of David;

and the virgin’s name was Mary.

And the angel came in unto her,

and said, Hail,

thou that art highly favoured,

the Lord is with thee:

blessed art thou among women.

~ Luke 1:26-28

The fourth angel, Lucifer, gets his own post here since there is to much context to consider. 

We can be confident that the angels have as much interest in learning about us as we do them.

God’s creation is most fascinating, wondrous, and awesome to them as well!

A Living Hope

We have a living hope that our O.T. Fathers deeply wanted to know more of, and that the angels still desire to see how the grace of God works in the lives of those who love Him.

Our salvation is precious and far above all things. Let us seek Him dearly as He asks. 

Blessed be the God and Father

of our Lord Jesus Christ,

which according to his abundant mercy

hath begotten us again unto a lively hope

by the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

To an inheritance incorruptible,

and undefiled,

and that fadeth not away,

reserved in heaven for you,

Who are kept by the power of God

through faith unto salvation

ready to be revealed in the last time . . .

Of which salvation

the prophets have inquired

and searched diligently,

who prophesied of the grace

that should come unto you . . .

which are now reported unto you

by them that have preached the gospel

unto you with the Holy Ghost

sent down from heaven;

which things the angels desire to look into.

~ Peter 1:3-5, 10, 12

The Opposite of Love

What is the Opposite of Love

I have learned that the opposite of love is not hate. For hate is only a symptom, a fruit or product of the seething plague that opposes love.

Hate stems from pride, from jealousy, from coveting. Hate springs from its root in many twisted forms. The root is Sin; rebellion against God.

So, the opposite of love is sin. Jesus warns us of this enemy and provides a glorious remedy.

And many false prophets shall rise,

and shall deceive many. 

And because iniquity (sin) shall abound,

the love of many shall wax cold. 

But he that shall endure unto the end,

the same shall be saved.

Matthew 24:11-13

This is not only a description of what happens when are deceived. With every sin, love begins its dissipation until it lies cold on the ground, dead, like a rock laying on the side of the road.

The verse is also prophetic and hints at a time yet in the future when the fruit of sin will be at its greatest in the hearts of man. 

Also, it is inferred that we must avoid any false teaching, especially those that lulls us into the sleepy delusion that we can continue in comfort committing iniquity without it affecting our heart or standing with God.

Instead, we are told to, “test everything, hold fast to that which is good and stay away from every kind of evil.” 

Standing in the goodness of God, clothed in His truth and righteousness, having the gospel at our feet, and faith and hope of salvation to protect us, we can endure to the end.

God forbid we continue in sin! Lest in the end, what God finds in us, He hates. We will in no wise enter the kingdom of heaven.

Because of all their wickedness in Gilgal,

I hated them there.

Because of their sinful deeds,

I will drive them out of my house.

I will no longer love them;

all their leaders are rebellious.

~ Hosea 9:15

 When we continue in sin or fall back into sin (after getting saved), we find a spirit of rebellion against God has infiltrated our soul and we have once again become slaves to sin.

“Truly, truly, I say to you,

everyone who practices sin is a slave to sin.

~ John 8:34

We are called to avoid all sin and help those who have fallen, yet being careful not to fall into sin ourselves; for sin is a trap, a snare, that enslaves and brings the guilt it truly deserves.

Brothers and sisters,

if someone is caught in a sin,

you who live by the Spirit should restore that person gently.

But watch yourselves,

or you also may be tempted.

~ Galatians 6:1

We do have a high and holy calling to serve God and others: To be salt and light in a world of darkness that has deeply permeated our modern church as well as the world.

Compromise and moderation is not an option for the enduring Christian. It is a recipe for death and a cold heart.

Love vs. Sin

The weight of sin is the daily battle in this world. But we are called to be victorious!

The Day of Christ (Day of the Lord, His Second Coming, etc.) is so deeply connected to the principle of Love vs. Sin that it cannot be separated from Christian thought or eshcatology.

Let no man deceive you by any means:

for that day shall not come,

except there come a falling away first,

and that man of sin be revealed.

~ 2 Thessalonians 2:3

We fall away because we have let sin remain in us and spoil a heart growing in love.

No man can serve two masters:

for either he will hate the one, and love the other;

or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.

Ye cannot serve God and mammon.

~ Matthew 6:24

 This is why loving others as Christ loves us is the most important thing we can do. It is what we should be striving for day and night; in every aspect of our life!

and walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us,

and hath given himself for us an offering

and a sacrifice to God

for a sweetsmelling savour.

~ Ephesians 5:2

We must walk in love and not in sin if we are to please our Lord and He is to truly be our Savior.

He came to condemn the sin that dwells in us, to set us free from our bondage and service to sin, so we could love His as He loved us! 

For what the law could not do,

in that it was weak through the flesh,

God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh,

and for sin,

condemned sin in the flesh:

~ Romans 8:3


If ye continue in my word,

then are ye my disciples indeed;

And ye shall know the truth,

and the truth shall make you free.

They answered him, We be Abraham’s seed,

and were never in bondage to any man:

how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free?

Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you,

Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin.

And the servant abideth not in the house for ever:

but the Son abideth ever.

If the Son therefore shall make you free,

ye shall be free indeed.

~ John 8:32-36

Let us be redeemed by love and walk in the path that only purity of heart can bring.  

Blessed are the pure in heart:

for they shall see God.

~ Matthew 5:8


And God, which knoweth the hearts,

bare them witness, giving them the Holy Ghost,

even as he did unto us;

And put no difference between us and them,

purifying their hearts by faith.

~ Acts 15:8-9


You have purified your souls

by obeying the truth

in order to show sincere mutual love.

So love one another earnestly from a pure heart.

~ 1 Peter 1:22

Brothers and sisters,

keep your hearts pure.

Obey the truth in love,

and walk in holiness



Jeremiah 1:10

These are some notes regarding our high purpose in God through the perspective of Jeremiah the prophet’s calling.

Jeremiah was appointed or deputized to represent God’s will and speak for Him to Israel, His people and nation.

Make no mistake about it, each one of us is called to serve a Holy and all powerful, righteous God.

There are untold rewards when this service is appreciated and humbly observed.

Likewise, there are consequences and judgment when chastisement fails to heed the calling of God from a broken and contrite spirit.

See, I have this day set thee

over the nations and over the kingdoms,

to root out, and to pull down,

and to destroy, and to throw down,

to build, and to plant.

~ Jeremiah 1:10

Like Jeremiah, we are given the responsibility to root out all sin in our lives, to pull down Satan’s strongholds, and make our lives obedient to Christ.

For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal,

but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;

Casting down imaginations, and every high thing

that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God,

and bringing into captivity every thought

to the obedience of Christ;

~ 2 Corinthians 10:4-5

In the battle for our mind and heart, we are instructed to destroy the works of the Devil and to throw down anything that grieves the Spirit of God.

He that committeth sin is of the devil;

for the devil sinneth from the beginning.

For this purpose the Son of God was manifested,

that he might destroy the works of the devil.

~ 1 John 3:8


let us lay aside every weight,

and the sin which doth so easily beset us

~ Hebrews 12:1


Therefore, putting aside all filthiness

and all that remains of wickedness,

in humility receive the word implanted,

which is able to save your souls.

~ James 1:21

When we are obedient to God in these four areas, He enables our obedience to search, destroy, and become victorious over sin. Thus, begins His miraculous work of making us holy as He is holy.

Within this concurrent work of God through our consecration and sanctification, our heart and mind continuously attunes to God’s good pleasure and casts aside dross.

Where destruction and ruin from sin once dwelt, seeds of righteousness are sewn.

for the equipping of the saints for the work of service,

to the building up of the body of Christ;

until we all attain to the unity of the faith,

and of the knowledge of the Son of God,

to a mature man, to the measure of the stature

which belongs to the fullness of Christ.

~ Ephesians 4:13


as he which hath called you is holy,

so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; 

Because it is written,

Be ye holy; for I am holy.

~ 1 Peter 1;15

The following commentary on Jeremiah 1:10 highlights why it is so important to have a clear understanding and deep appreciation of the character of God’s calling on your life.

The two great blessings of election and mediation are here distinctly taught. God did not speak to the nations directly, but mediatorially He created a minister who should be His mouthpiece.

Observation itself teaches us that men are called and chosen of God to do special work in all departments of life.

The difficult lesson for some of us to learn is that we are called to obscurity, and yet this is as clearly a Divine appointment as is the choice of an Isaiah or a Jeremiah.

If you look at life, you will see that the most of men are called to quietness, to honest industry, and to what is mistakenly called common place existence.

What of it?

Shall the plain murmur because it is not a mountain?

Shall the green fields complain that Mont Blanc is higher than they?

If they have not his majesty, neither have they his barrenness.

To see our calling, to accept it, to honour it, that is the truly godly and noble life!

Every man is born to realise some purpose.

Find that purpose out, and fulfil it if you would lovingly serve God.

We find no difficulty in persuading a man that he is a Jeremiah or a Daniel, at any rate that, under certain circumstances, he might easily have turned out a Hannibal or a Wellington.

The difficulty, on the contrary, is to persuade a man that the lowliest lot, as well as the highest, is the appointment of God;

that door keeping is a promotion in the Divine gift;

and that to light a lamp may be as surely a call of God as to found an empire or to rule a world.

J. Parker, D. D.

God has place an immeasurably high value on you because you are created in His image. 

Whoever sheds human blood,

by humans shall their blood be shed;

for in the image of God has God made mankind.

~ Genesis 9:6

This command was given to us after the flood. Yet, God persisted in showing us his grace, favor, and redemptive love: 

God showed his great love for us

by sending Christ to die for us

while we were still sinners.

~ Romans 5:8

If we disregard the value God places on our existence, we disregard the giver of life.

He has shown us many times in His the holy word the judgment that befalls His people when they disregard Him.

When we offer ourselves completely, He sanctifies us by creating a new-life giving spirit in us, purifying and holy. 

Let us strive to be ready, lest we fail to be fit for his His service here on earth or to stand blameless before Him in heaven. 

And you, that were sometime alienated

and enemies in your mind by wicked works,

yet now hath he reconciled 

In the body of his flesh through death,

to present you holy and unblameable

and unreproveable in his sight:

If ye continue in the faith grounded and settled,

and be not moved away from the hope of the gospel,

which ye have heard,

and which was preached to every creature

which is under heaven;

~ Colossians 1:21-23


Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you wholly;

and may your spirit and soul and body be preserved complete,

without blame at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.

~ 1 Thessalonians 5:23

God has written His instructions to follow and waiting for you.

The seven characteristics that God began to work in Jeremiah at his calling are the same characteristics that should be in us according to his purpose, sanctified in Christ Jesus, and the rich glory that is his inheritance among the saints.

These will be addressed in the next post entitled, “Jeremiah’s Life and our Calling.”

May you strive to be His saint, righteous and holy . . . 

Goodbye Knott’s Berry Farm

This week I made my last trek with an old friend: it was a sad and troubling experience. I grew up loving Knott’s Berry Farm. With the new ownership from about a year ago, changes are starting to show.

My family already put off anything relayed to Disney after careful study and observation that there are underlying dark and wicked ideologies that permeate all things Disney.

We are told in Hebrews 12:1 to:

lay aside every weight,

and sin that so easily besets us

so we can run with patience the race set before us.

The are some obvious concepts in this passage; like eliminating things that hinder our walk or lead us to sin. Walk here means the deep and lasting commitment to loving God with all our being and loving our neighbor as ourselves.

The less obvious concept here is running with patience: we can run much more efficiently and reach our goal when we are not burdened.

A burden can stop us from reaching the finish line.

This is not something you want to ignore when the finish line is God and heaven.

But that is not the crux of this verse in my opinion. It is the concept of patience that is most critical.

Here we will consider patience in both its positive and negative light in connection to my experience at Knott’s.

Patience develops from a love that is being perfected.

Love is perfected by an unwavering and single-minded faith in the one who calls us through the power of the Holy Spirit. This produces in us

 wisdom, and righteousness,

and sanctification, and redemption

~ 1 Corinthians 1:30


God hath from the beginning

chosen you to salvation

through sanctification of the Spirit

and belief of the truth:

~ 1 Thessalonians 2:13


that each of you know how to possess his own vessel

in sanctification and honor 

~ 1 Thessalonians 4:4

The Positive Characteristics of Patience

Characteristics of patience are: steadfastness, constancy, endurance. (It is consistent in the picture of a race as found in Hebrews 12:1).

One who is not swerved from his intended purpose and remains loyal to his faith in Christ and His holy calling even under the greatest of trials or sufferings. This is often unjustly committed by others through their sinful deeds. 

Godly patience produces a gentle and kind long suffering; an enduring and sustaining perseverance in the face of circumstances beyond our sphere of influence.

Of course there are exceptions or variations to the course of patience such as with Job and Jeremiah but the general definition stands in my degree of understanding scripture.

How is this in relation to Knott’s?

The Negative Characteristics of Patience

Jeremiah provides a perfect example.

In the book of Lamentations, Jeremiah is beset by the many sins and weight produced by the nation of Israel.

They fell away from their walk with God and not only lost the love of the Father but they were receiving their just recompense of God’s correcting hand.

For the few righteous that remained, His rod and His staff became the comforter. For the rest, He became the gavel of judgement.

He hath builded against me

and encompassed me with gall and travail.

~ Lamentations 3:5

In this passage, we begin to see the characteristics contrary to patience found in those obedient to Christ.

The collective sin and many weights so deliberately enjoyed by the people of Israel brought with them, a crippling snare. They were stopped in their tracks.

No longer could they run the race set before them. The hand of God brought everything to a stop.

Jerusalem, the city of peace, was literally encircled by a witness of many enemies. They built a fortress round about them and eventually tore down their ramparts and walls.

The enemy denied the people of all resources to the point that mothers were eating their infants and toddlers.

All this happened because their spiritual leaders were worthless and misleading in the sense that they did not expose their sin and lead them to repentance.

Sin can have the same effect in us spiritually and physically when we choose to embrace it and be entertained by it.

When this happens we become encumbered with gall and travail, just like Jeremiah.

Gall and Travail

Gall is bitter and poisonous, like venom from a snake (get the spiritual image here). Without the whole armor of God, the enemy can enter our life and spoil us.

The nature of gall shakes us to our core. It envelops the whole person so as to infect us at our chiefest parts: our cognitions, where we make decisions, and our outlook or world view.

Travail when united with gall is a vicious combination because travail always results in a weariness from toil, hardship, or distress.

This weariness brings with it impatience from the things that cause our spirits and life to be grieved or offended. It can come from something done to us, something we do. It can come from someone else or from within us.

Travail and gall is brought on only by sin, from within or without.

Taking it Home to Knott’s

The Children’s Show

There is a stage in Snoopy land at Knott’s that presents certain ideas to the young and innocent.

I observed the glorification of frank selfishness produce in the play that ended with song that encouraged the love of secular rock and roll.

(the presenter expected the children to already be familiar with a song sung by those who avow and openly practice homosexuality.

Tacit of approval of any sin is not an element of Godly patience.

Then the song switched and played the music used by cabaret dancers who historically kick up their legs to the music as they reveal their nakedness to the audience.

I watched my children be exposed to this.

Now they don’t know what is means right now, but later when other things of a similar nature are presented to them, the stage will have already been set, so to speak.

It is a subtle form of conditioning not fully appreciated by the innocent or complacent.

Now, I willingly chose to take my family to Knott’s and felt the conviction associated with a mild taste of gall and travail.

Throughout the park monitors are being strategically placed so park goers inevitably watch whatever is being displayed.
This increased my weariness and trouble because we have no control of the content.

We have no TV in our house for very good reasons.

I will gladly sit down and discuss the harm TV brings to one’s spiritual life any day of the week. 

More importantly there was secular music being played throughout the park did something very bad to my soul and mind. 

As a newly dedicated Christian, one of the best things I have done is to eliminate wordy influences from the media, TV, movies, magazines, newspaper, advertisements, radio, etc.

Now, it is very common to awaken with scriptural thoughts, prayers and praise to God, or to have beautiful Christian hymns ringing through my mind throughout the day.

What happened on the way home from Knott’s checked my soul and took away my patience and joy in the LORD.

I had a song from the park stuck in my mind. Even today, 24 hours later, curse words from that son have replaced the praises of God as sinful thoughts course through my soul.

God forgive me for my poor choice and for subjecting my children and wife to elements that caused the eventual destruction of Israel, your temple. and the destruction of millions of souls.

I pray God will guide me and give me the wisdom to choose the right activities to engage my family from this day forward.
I have learned a great lesson.

Amusement parks are not conducive to holiness or a sanctified life in Christ.

God forgive me and renew a right spirit in me.

A poem about prayer


Prayer is the soul’s sincere desire,

Unuttered or expressed,

The motion of a hidden fire

That trembles in the breast:

Prayer is the burden of a sigh,

The falling of a tear,

The upward gleaming of an eye,

When none but God is near.

Prayer is the simplest form of speech

That infant lips can try;

Prayer, the sublimest strains that reach

The Majesty on high:

Prayer is the Christian’s vital breath,

The Christian’s native air,

His watch-word at the gates of death,

He enters heaven by prayer.

Prayer is the contrite sinner’s voice,

Returning from his ways,

While angels in their songs rejoice,

And say, Behold he prays!

The saints in prayer appear as one,

In word, in deed, in mind,

When with the Father and the Son

Their fellowship they find.

Nor prayer is made on earth alone:

The Holy Spirit pleads;

And Jesus, on th’ eternal throne,

For sinners intercedes.

“O Thou, by whom we come to God!

The Life, the Truth, the Way,

The path of prayer thyself hast trod,

Lord, teach us how to pray!”


What’s in a name

Glory to God in the Highest

I found this gem of a commentary through studying an interesting and increasingly inspiring message on the sign of my Brother-in-Law’s church over Christmas. I looked and looked for the picture of the sign so I could post is here, but could not find it. The caption read something like this:

Glory to God in highest heaven,

and peace on earth

to those with whom God is well pleased.

~ Luke 2:14

I love older commentaries. Found within are fountains of beauty springing from writers inspired by study not stained with the lackadaisical attitudes of our modern global society; all too often this same attitude is found staining our softened and compromised churches.

By B. H. Carroll

The name “Jesus” means Saviour, and the salvation to be achieved by him was not political deliverance of his people from Roman rule, but salvation “from their sins.”

What a pity that his own disciples were so slow to understand the nature of the salvation, and how readily even Pontius Pilate acquitted him by the verdict, “I find no fault in him,” when he understood that our Lord’s kingdom was not of this world, and hence not a revolt against Caesar.

Had the suspicious, bloody-minded old tyrant, Herod, understood, there would have been no massacre of the babes at Bethlehem.

And even in our late day we need to be continually reminded of the real mission of our Lord.

Let us make no mistake about this “salvation from sins.”

It is salvation through the vicarious expiation of sins satisfying the claims of justice.

It is salvation from the guilt of sin by justification, through faith.

It is salvation from the defilement of sin by the cleansing blood of Christ applied by the Holy Spirit.

It is salvation from the love of sin through regeneration.

It is salvation from the dominion of sin through sanctification.

It is the salvation of the body through resurrection and glorification.

We may not stop at salvation done for us, but must include the salvation wrought in us.

Salvation has the legal aspects expressed by the appropriate words, expiation and justification.

And further expressed in a commercial legal sense by redemption and ransom.

If you address as Father the One

who impartially judges according to each one’s work,

conduct yourselves in fear

during the time of your stay on earth;

knowing that you were not redeemed

with perishable things like silver or gold

from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers,

but with precious blood,

as of a lamb unblemished and spotless,

the blood of Christ.

~ 1 Peter 1:17-19


whoever wants to become great among

you must be your servant,

and whoever wants to be first must be your slave

just as the Son of Man did not come to be served,

but to serve,

and to give his life as a ransom for many.

~ Mat 20:26-28


He gave his life to purchase freedom for everyone.

This has now been witnessed to the world

at the proper time.

~ 1 Timothy 2:6


and you will know the truth,

and the truth will make you free

~ John 8:32

Woe to the teacher or those taught who ignore one of these elements.

It has its biological import, expressed by birth from above, or a new creature; and life more abundant, expressed by sanctification.

Woe to the teacher or those taught who leave these out or magnifies these by decrying the legal aspects!

It has its human or experimental side,

as expressed in contrition, repentance,

faith, confession,

reformation and all those fruits of the Spirit,

love joy, hope, peace,

as we walk in newness of life from grace to grace,

from faith to faith,

from strength to strength,

perfecting ourselves in holiness,

being changed more and more into the image of Christ,

from glory to glory.

Thank you Mr. Carroll for your godly wisdom. May it touch the heart of others who happen to stumble across this humble and poor note found on this little blog.

When the angels sinned,

God let them fall all the way to Hell.

When humanity sinned,

God came down to restore us,

and cloth us in risen His glory.