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Showing posts from January, 2017

If I Were the Devil

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If I were the Devil, I would find a way to make Christians comfortably unaware of deception by getting them to make emotions the measure of truth. I would destroy the ability of God’s Word to change their lives (even though they quoted it on a daily basis) by persuading them that the knowledge and skill to meaningfully understand and apply it is unnecessary and even harmful. I would teach them to take pride in their own ignorance, and judge truth by their own experiences. Then under the pretense of teaching the Bible, I would carefully emphasis some passages out of context, and skip over many others so that even while they think they are hearing God’s Word, they are actually hearing what they want to hear – or what I want them to hear. They would be able to quote the Bible chapter and verse, but its meaning would be lost to them. God’s Word would be little more to them than a series of bumper sticker slogans, powerless to challenge or change them.

I would give them an attitude of sus…

What Does Jeremiah 29:11 Mean?

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If one were to guess which is the most misused verse in the Bible, Jeremiah 29:11 would have to be one of the finalists. From children’s cartoons, to jewelry, to wall hangings, to bumper-stickers, we’ve surrounded ourselves with a verse plucked completely out of its context and provided it with a connotation that is actually entirely at odds with the message it is intended to communicate.
Jeremiah 29:11 reads: 
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” (NIV)
Isolated from its context, this sounds like a happy affirmation of God’s plan for your personal well-being. With a little bit of imagination, it might even serve to affirm God’s desire for your own wealth and prosperity, a la Joel Osteenism, but let’s take a closer look. The entire book of Jeremiah consists primarily of its namesake telling the nation of Israel that their continued persistence in idolatry and rebellion towards the one tru…