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6-8-2015 Are You Double-Minded?

Prayers from a doubting heart don’t work. “For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways” (James 1:7-8 NKJV). We cannot pray to God and doubt Him at the same time! “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us” (1 John 5:14 NKJV). According to Acts 9:9, 11, Saul of Tarsus spent three days praying and fasting in blindness, but he had no confidence that he was saved until he was told to “Arise and be baptized, and wash away your sins, calling on the name of the Lord” (Acts 22:16 NKJV). In Acts 9:18, “he arose and was baptized.” Are you sure you’re saved?

This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#baptized, #confidence, #doubt, #fasting, #pray

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2-18-2015           Lifting Lent From Our Lives

Proclaiming a public fast to call attention to it is unChristian. Jesus Christ taught, “Moreover, when you fast, do not be like the hypocrites, with a sad countenance. For they disfigure their faces that they may appear to men to be fasting. Assuredly, I say to you, they have their reward. But you, when you fast, anoint your head and wash your face, so that you do not appear to men to be fasting, but to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly” (Matthew 6:16-18 NKJV). A face marked with “ashes” should be washed. Proclaiming to others that you’re fasting makes you a “hypocrite.” And fasting like a hypocrite has no reward from God! What doesn’t please God isn’t for a Christian.

This is Johnny Polk, with “Words of Wisdom” brought to you by the Oneida church of Christ.

#ashes, #fasting, #hypocrites, #public-fast, #unchristian

"Fat's where it's at!" revisited – JAM

I just opened my latest Christian Chronicle and the first thing I read was Bobby Ross’ Inside Story: “Thou shalt not eat too many fatty foods.” I was unaware of MSNBC’s “Praise the lard . . .” link or Time Magazine’s “Why Church Can Make You Fat” article. Nor had I read USA Today’s “the devil may be in the pepperoni”. Nevertheless, in spite of a chorus (non-instrumental, of course) of boos and cat-calls, I still contend that Christians should be taking the lead calling for moderation in all things, and that certainly includes eating. Are you the “salt of the earth” or the casserole of the community? If we are to be the best example and witness for Jesus, then “thin is in!” Christians of the early church fasted twice a week, if we are to believe the Didache. The only fast that Christians today practice is break-fast. Maybe the occasional fast would help us get in shape: better physical shape (and in this regard round is not a shape!) and better spiritual shape, too.

#fasting, #food, #just-a-minute, #obese

I’ve always believed the idea behind fa…

I’ve always believed the idea behind fasting is to deny the physical body in order to strengthen the soul. Fasting, if done properly (Matthew 6:16f), can help put priorities into focus. Putting the physical in subjection can help us meet spiritual tests (1 Corinthians 9:27). SInce subjection is the watchword of the Christian life, teaching our bodies to be subject can help us learn the principle.

#fasting, #subjection

Jesus fasted

Here’s a point to ponder. I always thought that the temptation to turn stones into bread came to Jesus as a result of his being hungry from his 40 days of fasting. So far so good. But, since fasting seems to be a means of spiritual strengthening, might we also look at Jesus’ fasting as preparation that he might meet his temptations in a stronger position than if he had not fasted? What do you think?

#fasting, #jesus, #temptation