Near the top of my to-do list for the Fourth of July

The Missus and I had a quiet Fourth, just the two of us, at home. I stayed away from the office, but piddled with work throughout the day. I didn’t even take a nap, which was near the top of my to-do list for the day. Did a bit of writing.

Naps help one live longer, work better, and think more clearly. They’re one of the good things of life, along with chocolate. When I was working from home, naps were easier to take. Now that I’ve returned to keeping regular and long office hours, they’re not much of an option. Unless someone wants to donate a comfy sofa for the office. I have room for one, by the way.

• I’ve said on Twitter that people will find my editorial this next Monday, written for Forthright Magazine, uninteresting, boring. People may not even open the email after seeing the title. My way of trying to drum up some interest in it to keep people from trashing it.

• A reflection I wrote on my blog a couple of days ago about homosexuality got a bit of attention. I wrote it after the release of a scholarly article that explored a word (aselgeia) used by Jesus (condemning the practice of it) which just might include homosexual activity.

• Part of this week’s reading is Psalm 85. Today I spent a few hours, unplanned, studying and researching it. It was of great spiritual benefit to me. I didn’t write much on it, but I was blessed by it and the writings on it I consulted. That the NIV Study Bible had one of the best analyses of its structure was a bit surprising.

• Things I have been writing, in Portuguese, include ye olde dictionary of biblical vocabulary, lessons on Christian attitudes for Sunday Bible study, and the beginnings of a work on the “good conduct in Christ” (1Pt 3.16), the practice of living for God, especially as it touches on morals.

• In English, be sure to catch my article in the August Gospel Advocate on “Christ as Prophet, Priest, King.” They even made it a special issue because of that article. (Yeah, right.) It is a special issue, but for a different reason, something of a compendium of basic doctrines, as I recall. I feel privileged to have a small part in it. I’m grateful for brother Greg Tidwell’s invitation to write for it. I don’t know all the other topics, but I felt like I got the filé mignon of assignments.

Any time we can talk or write about our Lord Jesus Christ is a blessing, is it not? He ought to be the constant topic of our conversation. As important as baptism is, can we manage to talk more and know more about the King of Kings than about the rite of entry into his kingdom? We ought to, you know.

• That, plus a devotional thought on the divinity of Christ I read this morning from a book of collected writings of one author, reminds me of a story a close friend told me long time back that pains me to this day. A well-known preacher in the brotherhood, said my friend, did not know that Jesus was divine. It wasn’t until my friend showed him the biblical evidence that he came to understand this basic doctrinal truth.

What gospel this man preached, if he did not have a knowledge of God-in-the-flesh? Did he only teach against denominational doctrines and in favor of baptism and a cappella music? I don’t know. I do know that, when I heard the story, I became concerned for those he had taught.

• Ironic that, although progressives among us rail hard and long against inferences as a part of establishing biblical doctrine, Walter Kaiser emphasized inferences in his 1987 book, Toward Rediscovering the Old Testament. Quite a fascinating read on that today as I browsed through the book again.

• Failure, be it ministerial, moral, or relational, is a hard thing. Our Christian walk is an up-and-down prospect, but so many of our stumbles and tumbles are avoidable. We can never be too watchful. I remember a few years ago stumbling in the street as I returned to my office from lunch. Sidewalks here are notoriously uneven and broken. I was wearing a pair of shorts, and skinned my leg terribly. But when I fell, by instinct I jumped back up again almost as quickly as I fell. That must have been quite a sight to see, if any of the residents along the street were looking out their windows.

Isn’t that kind of instinct to pop back up again just what we ought to have when we fall?

“Although a righteous person may fall seven times, he gets up again” (Pro 24.16 NET).

#corollaries, #divinity-of-christ, #failure, #inferences