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  • J. Randal Matheny 2:36 pm on 2014-06-23 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , recreation,   

    Going to the house of friends to watch Brazil play again in the World Cup. This is about the only sports games that I watch, once every four years, Brazil in the Cup. We’ve even missed — sorry, Americans — the US play in the Cup. We don’t have any TV reception at home, so this gets us out of the house. The Missus is taking potato soup and chocolate muffins to enjoy afterwards. Christians can enjoy clean fun. That’s good for pagans to see. We’re real people and know how to enjoy this life, while watching for the Lord Jesus to sweep us into the next. The key is joyful and thankful holiness. There’s nothing more beautiful to show the world and for the world to see. Even during a ball game.

     
    • Jack 3:01 pm on 2014-06-23 Permalink | Reply

      Randal, I met these good folk from the Christian Church (Ind.) some 30 years ago and still receive an occasional letter of theirs passed on by a long time friend and mentor of mine that guided, or was it goaded, me into being a Berean. They have been successful in various foreign fields for many, many years.
      I am sending this note because of your’s and David’s comment, “We’re enjoying seeing the World Cup soccer championship games, held in Brazil this time.”

      David and Carol Bayless
      Pass. Pau d’Arco 100 — Coqueiro 67113-190 Ananindeua, PA, Brazil
      davidb57@uol.com.br
      Belém, Brazil

    • Randal 7:30 pm on 2014-06-23 Permalink | Reply

      Hello, Jack, thanks for the note. I’ve known the Baylesses for many years. They’re good people. He has fought the charismatic movement in the midst of the Christian Church here in Brazil. It’s a shame the instrument continues to be a barrier to fellowship.

  • Ron Thomas 3:37 pm on 2013-12-13 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: family excuses, , justifiy, recreation,   

    JUSTIFICATION 

                    No man can come to Jesus unless the Father draws him (John 6:65). This interesting remark by the Lord tells us much about why people are not saved. People are not saved because they are not listening to the Father via the word He proclaimed (John 6:44-45). That which is more important to a large percentage of humanity are the following:

    Recreation: life is stressful and when there is opportunity to get away from familiar surroundings one feels to need to exercise it. Thus, remarks like the following are spoken: “On the weekends my family gets out on the lake because we don’t go boating very much and, besides, we can’t find a better day than today.” (This is said about camping also.) “Are you telling me that I can’t go on vacation with my family because I need to go to church?!”

    As you listen to the one who speaks this way or in a similar way, they will tell you much more than they want known. The guilty ones who offers excuses like these attributes words and motivations to the “accuser” because of their own guilt. What they really desire is to get away from the stress of life in their normal surroundings, and this includes attending services where the Lord’s church meets.

    Work: rather than taking necessary time away from their work environment there is an effort to justify missing Sunday services in order to get caught up on whatever is felt as lagging behind. This perceived notion of getting caught up is like having a carrot tied to a string and placed on a stick and put in front of an animal who chases it continually.

    Family: some justify their refusal to come to the services of the Lord church because problems occur in the family. Jesus said, “So everyone who acknowledges me before men, I also will acknowledge before my Father who is in heaven, but whoever denies me before men, I also will deny before my Father who is in heaven. “Do not think that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I have not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I have come to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law. And a person’s enemies will be those of his own household. Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, and whoever loves son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me. And whoever does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me” Matthew 10:32-38, ESV).

    Unfortunately, these same people who make attempts at justification are the same people who do have an affinity for the Lord. On judgment day, however, that affinity (sympathy) will have the Lord showing none to them. RT

     
  • John T. Polk II 2:00 am on 2013-11-19 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , , , , recreation, , ,   

    (#110) The Proverbs of Solomon 16:16-Coins or Christ? 

    Since God Created humans, only God can provide specific understanding of human behavior. God gave Solomon Divine Wisdom (1 Kings Chapters 3 and 10) to explain what and why behavior is as it is, and Proverbs 10:1-24:34 are randomly written, as if they were Solomon’s judgments about individual cases brought to him, or simply God-given explanations about life. New Testament passages may help see the continuation of Wisdom offered through Jesus Christ.

    Proverbs 16:16: “How much better to get wisdom than gold! And to get understanding is to be chosen rather than silver.”

    Some things are worth more than “silver” or “gold.” “Wisdom” and “understanding” are two of these. “Wisdom” is God’s Intelligent Design that He placed in every detail of His Creation in the “heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). This truth is at the foundation of faith in God, for: “He has made the earth by His power; He has established the world by His wisdom, And stretched out the heaven by His understanding” (Jeremiah 51:15); “By faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that the things which are seen were not made of things which are visible” (Hebrews 11:3).

    “Understanding” is recognition of this, and it is humbling to the human mind, for we cannot be in charge of our own destinies without God’s help. Solomon, in Chapter 8, had already personified Wisdom, who explained how God placed it throughout the Creation, and shows it to be priceless: “Receive my instruction, and not silver, And knowledge rather than choice gold; For wisdom is better than rubies, And all the things one may desire cannot be compared with her” (Proverbs 8:10-11); “My fruit is better than gold, yes, than fine gold, And my revenue than choice silver” (Proverbs 8:19).

    The Apostle Peter was inspired by the Holy Spirit to bring this to our attention who live under the Law of Jesus Christ: “And if you call on the Father, who without partiality judges according to each one’s work, conduct yourselves throughout the time of your stay here in fear; knowing that you were not redeemed with corruptible things, like silver or gold, from your aimless conduct received by tradition from your fathers, but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. He indeed was foreordained before the foundation of the world, but was manifest in these last times for you who through Him believe in God, who raised Him from the dead and gave Him glory, so that your faith and hope are in God” (1 Peter 1:17-21). Just as God’s Creation shows His Wisdom, those who accept this fact can see His Wisdom in their Recreation. Jesus left us with the Gospel command to:  “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned” (Mark 16:15-16).

    All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

     
  • John T. Polk II 4:00 am on 2013-07-10 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , , , recreation,   

    #23 Studies in the Book of Proverbs: Eight Reasons Why Listen To Reason #5… 

    #5  8:22-36: She Speaks Powerfully

    Verses 22-23: Before the Creation

    Wisdom was not acquired by God, but was inherent in God, “before there was ever an earth.” It was with His Word of Wisdom, He “created the heavens and the earth” (Genesis 1:1). Christ was that Word, for “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). It is true of the Christ that: “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist” (Colossians 1:15-17). This was never true of any other “prophet.”

    Verses 24-31: In the Creation

    These verses follow the day-by-day account of the Creation, as recorded in Genesis Chapter 1. All scientific studies are simply efforts to discover, and reveal, the magnificent Wisdom of God in this Creation. For those who follow after the “god” of Chaos, a.k.a. “The Big Bang,” “Evolution,” “Darwinism,” there is no Wisdom to discover, but only more words to keep adding Time and Chance to their unproven, unscientific Theory! Wisdom, including Intelligent Design, is found in all of God’s Creation, and every time it is discovered, it makes sense!

    Wisdom was used (verse 24) on Day 2, to balance between the “depths” and “fountains” of water. The undersea “fountains” feeding warm water have been found throughout the seas;

    Wisdom was used (verses 25-26) on Day 3, to shape “mountains” and “hills,” forming natural barriers and boundaries to regulate life on earth, and to plan the very dirt surface that would give life to vegetation;

    Wisdom was used (verses 27-28) on Day 4, to set the stars, sun and moon in their places to give seasons, tides, and day and nights;

    Wisdom was used (verse 29) on Day 5, to give the sea “its limit,” that is, assign it its place and purpose;

    Wisdom was used (verses 30-31) on Day 6, to make whatever was Created on each day “good.” The making of man and woman “in His image” (Genesis 1:26-27) was of particular “delight,” so “the sons of men” should feel a special attraction to Wisdom.

    Verses 32-36: For the Creation

    God’s children, made with His Wisdom, should “hear instruction, and be wise,” not rejecting any of it. “Blessed” (happy) is every person who “listens to” Wisdom, eagerly “watching daily” for the “gates” or “doors” (openings, either of the Word of God or scientific research). Wisdom is “life,” and it is in Jesus Christ, “and the life was the light of men” (John 1:4). Jesus later prayed, “And this is eternal life, that they may know You, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent” (John 17:3). To summarize this, John wrote, “And this is the testimony: that God has given us eternal life, and this life is in His Son” (1 John 5:11). Everyone living without Jesus Christ has failed to find God’s Wisdom, either in Creation, or Recreation!

    All Scriptures and comments are based upon the New King James Version, unless otherwise noted.

     
  • Stephen R. Bradd 12:36 pm on 2010-03-04 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: recreation,   

    Playing with my children 

    That’s the best rest for me. I love wrestling on the carpet with my 3 sons, having them read to me, throwing balls around, playing video games together, etc….it’s all good.

     
  • J. Randal Matheny 12:11 pm on 2010-03-04 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: recreation,   

    R&R for me 

    • Inside a novel I get away from all the weight of responsibilities and the reality of this world, to travel and adventure.
    • Walking in the middle of nowhere, be it a woods or the concrete jungle of the big city.
    • Writing poetry is my quick, no-expense getaway.
     
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