Category Archives: Rambling

One Law

The traditional Gentile Christian says that we are no longer under the Law. Or sometimes they say the Law was never intended for us to begin with. They can’t seem to get their story straight. It’s pick-and-choose. Don’t worry about the Law of Moses – that was given only to the Israelites. Oh, but don’t kill anyone. That’s not right. Keep the 10 Commandments. Those were intended for everyone. Oh, well, except the sabbath day; don’t worry about that one. You know what though? You really shouldn’t get a tattoo or cut yourself. Only rebellious people do that. Oh, and if you commit homosexuality, you’re a reprobate. That’s an abomination. What? So is eating pig? Well, Deuteronomy doesn’t count anymore. Setting up a Christmas tree in your house is okay though. (I know that originated with fertility worship, but God shouldn’t care as long as we use the tree to worship Him.) Forget about the feast days. Yeah, He says they’re perpetual, but since they’ve been fulfilled, it would be sacrilege to keep them anymore. Oh, but you had better pay your tithes!!!!!

No wonder atheists and Jews think we’re crazy.

The Jews that I talk to say that the Law of Moses was never intended for Gentiles at all. But let’s see what their own Torah has to say about that:

“Ye shall have one manner of law, as well for the stranger, as for one of your own country: for I am the LORD your God.” Leviticus 24:22

“One law shall be to him that is homeborn, and unto the stranger that sojourneth among you.” Exodus 12:49

“One law and one manner shall be for you, and for the stranger that sojourneth with you.” Numbers 15:16

“Cursed be he that confirmeth not all the words of this law to do them. And all the people shall say, Amen.” Deuteronomy 27:26

The above passage is interesting in that it specifically doesn’t mention foreigners. However, it is referring to a future event, one that actually takes place in Joshua 8, after the fall of Jericho and Ai. Read the whole chapter, but take special note of the last verse:

“There was not a word of all that Moses commanded, which Joshua read not before all the congregation of Israel, with the women, and the little ones, and the strangers that were conversant among them” Joshua 8:35

Why would it be a sin for a Gentile to disobey Hebrew Laws? Because they are first and foremost Yahweh’s Laws. They are the very definition of righteousness itself.

Psalm 119:142: “Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth.”

Psalm 119:172: “My tongue shall speak of thy word: for all thy commandments are righteousness.”

And the righteousness of God did not morph somehow with the coming of Christ: “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” I John 3:4

Could our Father be any more clear? All of these apologetics you’ve been reading your whole life are merely that – man’s method of explaining away the things they don’t understand.

We seem to think that God and His righteousness and His Law are three separate things, but they aren’t. Since Jesus is the Word made flesh, we should realize that the Torah and the Messiah are inseparable. All of the following verses relate to the pre-incarnate Christ: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life; and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”

Read the whole chapter to see what I’m talking about.

Food for thought – how would you suggest that a Messianic Jew live? Should he throw out the perpetual commandments? What does “perpetual” mean to you?

What if you are among the ten lost tribes? What if you are Hebrew and you don’t know it? Most of us probably are: Genesis 48:19. What then?

What about an adopted child? Is he excluded from the laws of the family, or is he treated as a natural-born son? Galatians 3:29

Listen, if you really want to know what’s going on, read the entire Bible. Let it challenge your misconceptions, then dig until you find the answers. Then read it again. You will understand more the next time through, and expose the next layer of misconception. Rinse and repeat – it’s an incredible journey!

Entitlement and Your Child

The other day, Ian and I went to dinner at a local Mexican restaurant. I don’t know how we got started, but we ended up talking about credit. In this country, and in many others, I’m sure, we are nurtured up under the encouragement to always want more than we have. We celebrate things like Christmas and birthdays, which serve one major purpose, especially if you’re a kid – the getting of more stuff.

We’re taught that every kid “deserves” a good Christmas or a good birthday. We’re taught to get them whatever is on their wishlist, even if we have to max out our credit cards to do it. Then we bend over backwards trying to pay them off for the rest of the year, or just give up and declare bankruptcy when the creditors come knocking.

Let me tell you something you may not want to hear. This whole idea has been sold to us by companies who make their livings off of people who have bought into this lie. The only person who “deserves” anything is the person who has earned it. That’s a concept you don’t often hear anymore. But neither do your kids deserve everything that you can throw at them, nor is it good for them to receive everything their little hearts desire.

I know this is harsh. I know it’s controversial. But the pervasive disease of entitlement in our culture begins to take root during childhood. It is one of the major problems in our country right now, and we are almost all of us responsible for it.

So, how do credit cards tempt us to buy more than what we have earned? By persuading us that the next thing we want will be the last thing for a while. That we’ll be perfectly content if we can have just this one thing more. That a month from now, when the statement arrives in the mail, you will have more money than you do right now. Because you’re going to stop spending and start saving.

I told my son this:

The kind of person who will spend money he doesn’t have to buy something he doesn’t need will never, ever have money.

They will always be discontent with their current situation, and they will continue to lie to themselves about changing their habits or having more money in the future.

If you want financial advice, you need look no further than the Old Testament:

“He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves abundance with its income. This too is vanity. When good things increase, those who consume them increase. So what is the advantage to their owners except to look on? The sleep of the working man is pleasant, whether he eats little or much; but the full stomach of the rich man does not allow him to sleep.” Ecclesiastes 5

“The rich rules over the poor, And the borrower becomes the lender’s slave.” Proverbs 22:7

“Honour the Lord with thy substance, and with the firstfruits of all thine increase: so shall thy barns be filled with plenty, and thy presses shall burst with new wine.” Proverbs 3:9

photo credit: L’art au présent <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/144232185@N03/28745556294″>KAÏ,2016 – La Richesse – Wealth, Palais Royal, Rue de Rivoli, Paris-g</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

Conversations

I have had a few really great conversations this week on other blogs, and I thought it would be interesting to share them here.

Note, the following blog posts do not necessarily reflect my opinion. A couple of these conversations were interesting because I disagreed with the author. However, in each instance, the author engaged me with respect, and we had intelligent, enlightening interactions with one another.

I believe it’s important to read and consider things that we may not necessarily agree with. How will we know what we really believe about an issue if we’ve only ever heard one side?

“Prove all things; hold fast that which is good.” I Thessalonians 5:21

The Church Got it Wrong, by William Bouker

“The church would have us believe that the Law of Moses somehow became void.”

Interesting reading. The church definitely needs to see this. You will need to read the comments if you want to know where I stand.

The God of Slavery, by KIA

The God of slavery…again? by KIA

This blogger has written a series of posts about the immorality of slavery, what the Bible says about it, and the Christian response. I think it’s a topic we need to seriously consider. I think we need to read our Bibles to see what it really says instead of merely defending what we think it says. In my opinion, the topic of slavery foreshadows Christ. You will see what I mean if you read through the comments. (My comments are on the second link. I included the first link for context.)

Jesus and His Eternal Rest, by PreacherWin

When I first read this post, I agreed with almost every single word, but I misunderstood the author’s perspective. The conversation that ensued was quite interesting, to be sure! My last comment, however, was never approved for posting. I am assuming that the writer just hasn’t been on his blog lately, or that he wanted the last word. It is his blog, after all. Anyway, here is my last comment for you all to read, just in case it never shows up on his page. Note, you may want to read his article first, the comment section next, and finally my last comment, which follows:

Edited: He responded! I just hadn’t waited long enough, lol. So I’m going to delete my comment from this post. If you want to read the conversation, hop on over to his blog!

Homemaking: the Difference between Love and Hate

I have discovered the primary factor that determines whether I enjoy housework or detest it on any given day.

And the secret ingredient is…TIME.

When I get up really early in the morning, I have hours to spend before my 9am or 10am piano student arrives. I teach a lot of adults and homeschoolers, so I usually start my day with a lesson (or three).

It’s a quite simple formula really:

early start=good day;

late start=bad day.

In the very beginning of each day, I try to cross as many things as possible off of my to-do list. When I finish my morning routine, I choose from any number of other pleasant things to do: play the piano, write a bit, read and comment on blogs, clean the house.

Yes, I just categorized cleaning the house  under “pleasant things to do.” Generally, I’ll read a homemaking book or a cookbook while I relax during breakfast.

This usually kicks off my day and makes me feel like being productive. After that, I’ll throw open the windows, turn up some music, and just meander around the house. Start a load of laundry, tidy up, find something new to organize, clean a bathroom or two, make the bed. Whatever strikes my fancy.

I certainly don’t do everything every day, and I’ll be honest – there are some things that I never do. For instance, I never remember to wipe down switchplates or dust ceiling fans, lol. But the things that do get done add up to make a homey atmosphere, one that my family and I are happy to inhabit.

Time.

When I have hours stretching out before me, I never feel like I am wasting it. I don’t have to hurry. I can walk into the bedroom to put away the sheets and pillowcases, and stop to make the bed while I’m there without having to worry about forgetting to put away the rest of the laundry. I’ll get to it when I get to it. For the moment, I am relaxed and enjoying myself.

When I have time, I can allow myself to get sidetracked by any number of little details.

Precious time.

It’s something we all want, but we never seem to have enough of it. And yet, how much of our time do we give away to television, Facebook, the interwebs?

How does one go about making time?

Start by going to bed early. Stop eating and drinking several hours before trying to sleep, and when you lay down, relax and know that you can think, worry, plan in the morning. If you pray before you fall asleep, stop if you can. Give the Lord a better part of your day, and give yourself the freedom to fall asleep without feeling the need to get through your wish-list. If you do need to talk to Him right then, treat Him like a real person and not Santa Clause. Tell Him about your day, ask Him for help, get your sins or your problems off your chest, worship, be thankful, but do not engage in list-making. Go to sleep.

Get up early every single day, even if you didn’t get enough sleep the night before. Sleeping in will only make it harder to go to bed next time. It’s a vicious cycle, and the only way to correct it is to get up early all the time.

Finish by cutting out life-draining, mind-numbing habits and activities. If you watch a movie or jump on Facebook for a few minutes, be intentional. Check your notifications, watch one episode of your favorite series, and then GET BACK TO LIVING YOUR LIFE.

How do TV and movie producers portray a pathetically boring lifestyle? By showing their character chowing down in front of the TV. Ironic isn’t it?

Homemaking, as Promised

Yesterday I asked you to stay tuned. Here is the first post about homemaking, as promised. It’s more of an appetizer for the ideas that are coming. 🙂

My Homemaking Journey

When I got married and found myself trying desperately to keep house, I discovered that I knew almost nothing that a married woman would be expected to know. (That was back in the days of feeling good about myself if I actually “cooked” a 3-course meal: Rice-a-Roni, canned corn, and bagged salad.)

I have always loved learning from books, so when I realized how miserably I was failing, the first thing I did was order the book Home Comforts by Cheryl Mendelson. This was my first experience with Amazon.com, and I was thrilled when the $35 book showed up in the mail 2 days later. The price might seem a little steep now, but believe me, the book was worth every penny. Besides, nowadays, you can buy the paperback for a third of the original cost.

I read the hefty tome from cover to cover. Much of Mrs. Mendelson’s advice changed the way I approached housekeeping and stuck with me over the years (such as rinsing dishes in extremely hot water to avoid water-spots).

I am now reading it again, 17 years later, and her advice is just as appropriate today as it was then. Even more so for me in particular, due to my age and the activities I pursue. I find that I am no longer looking for shortcuts, but the right way to do things in order to enjoy the process and be more satisfied with the results.

Lately, I am finding housework pleasant. And it’s not just the pleasing air of living in a straightened and clean home, but it’s the pleasing activity of actually doing the work, and taking pride in a job well done.

I am finding that I am not as obsessive compulsive as I was in my early twenties. I know this because I am primarily rereading the relevant-to-me sections, skipping over things such as dishwasher use and maintenance because I don’t even own one. (I didn’t own one then either, but I still read every word, lol. I guess I was afraid that someone would ask – “Did you read that entire book?” And some silly part of me wanted to respond with a resounding yes. But no one ever asked…)

Even though I am skipping a few paragraphs here and there, I am still enjoying the book immensely. There are just some books in existence that have to be described as a breath of fresh air. Anne of Green Gables and Little Women come to mind immediately. Few non-fiction books have earned this place in my mind, but Home Comforts is certainly one of them. In fact, it might be the only one. At the moment, it’s my favorite book to read with an early morning cup of freshly-brewed coffee, completed by poached egg on toast and a few blackberries.

It’s a great way to kick off my day and get myself into the homemaking mood!

I’m Over-analyzing Myself via Blog Stats

I was looking over my blog stats earlier this week, and I noticed a strange disconnect between the things I blog about and the things I visit other people’s blogs to read about. So I made a couple of lists.

Now I’m no expert on blogging technique, but it seems to me that these two lists should have more crossover than they actually do.  I told myself that a big reason for the difference is that I write about the things I know, whereas I read about the things I want to know.

The second thing I noticed is that there are many things on the first list (things I write about) that I should be reading about too. I should always make an effort to keep learning, even if I feel that I’m already an “expert” on the topic (which I can’t honestly say about anything really).

To be perfectly candid, I fear that part of the reason I don’t read more about homeschooling, for instance, is because I am set in my ways and don’t want to have my opinions, methods, and beliefs challenged. Or maybe I am too lazy to defend them. Uh, oh. My sister will reprimand me if she reads this…

That’s a poor reason not to stay educated. Part of excellence in any area of study is keeping up to date on changes in your field.

And even if your area of expertise is something like math, which doesn’t change on a foundational level, it seems to me that you should still stay current on popular opinion, methods, and such things as math history and theoretical math.

There is always something more to discover.

The third thing I noticed is that there are things I could be writing about that I’m not. For instance, homemaking is one of the tags that I follow in my WordPress reader, but to my knowledge, I’ve never written about it. Which is a darn shame, because I love doing it.

I love creating a home with an inviting atmosphere. I love that my husband compliments me and tells me that he looks forward to coming home after a long day at work. He is excited to find out what’s for dinner or what I’m wearing or any number of small details that add up to make a home.

I enjoy reading about how others keep house, and I’m confused by why I don’t share my ideas and experiences to inspire others. I guess I’m afraid that it will look like I’m bragging on myself, but that’s not how I perceive others’ blogs when I visit them for ideas.

So, if you like housekeeping, or you wish you did, stay tuned. It entails so much more than cleanliness and offers many opportunities for creativity.

photo credit: trackrecord <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/22191301@N00/303650619″>EADS saliendo del pozo</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

Ever Changing

Christie Thomas

FreeImages.com/Christie Thomas

I have been reading back through some of my old posts this week, and there are a few points in which I no longer agree with myself. I have changed my mind about several things over the course of the last year or so. As I compile some of my popular articles into a book and expound on the ideas presented, I am finding that I am leaving a lot of remarks out, and even changing a few things altogether. It is my hope that I understand things a little better than I did when I first penned these blog entries. It is my prayer and fervent desire that the Lord bring me into a fuller knowledge of the truth. I know that I hunger and thirst after His righteousness, and that I have been marveling at how perfect His law is. I am considering re-posting some of my well-read topics with comments about how my perspective has changed. Would that be weird? Providing commentary on my own writings? Ha, if I have time, I think I am going to do it. If for no other reason than to provide clarity for anyone I may have confused along the way.