Sunday Faith Blog

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DOES GOD CARE?  

If so, How?  and Why?

HERE are some pertinent Scriptures….maybe picking one and elucidating on it here will make for a good and enlightening discussion?

God bless you all…

Z

 

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33 Responses to Sunday Faith Blog

  1. Sure He cares.
    We are expected to make wise decisions.
    We are a republic.
    We have a responsibility.
    Wrong choices on our part brings consequences.
    As a country that once was nominally Christian, we’ve screwed up a lot and lost a lot of opportunities.

    2 Chronicles 7:14King James Version (KJV)

    14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

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  2. jerrydablade says:

    “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.”

    I have always liked that one. Z, you ask “Does God care?” (Are you asking whether God cares who is president or who we support? I believe these are two very different questions. I would ask a different question. Will YOU care when engulfed in His light and a fullness of understanding when looking down from heaven?

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  3. bocopro says:

    As everybody’s grandmother said at one time or another, “all things in moderation.” She didn’t get it from the Bible, though. I think it came from Ralph Waldo Emerson, and he cautioned to avoid being IMmoderate in your moderation.

    Then of course there are . . . (truncated and a bit out of context)

    1 Timothy 5:23 — Take thee a little wine for thy stomach’s sake.

    And of course Ecclesiastes 7:16 — Be not righteous overmuch.

    Ecclesiastes has a lotta good advice, if you take it as that . . . guidance, or even suggestions. Take it too seriously and it can get depressing. Kinda like Proverbs . . . take the distilled wisdom as the generalities they are, not as guarantees.

    As with all multi-layered literature — approach it with barefoot caution and an open mind.

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  4. Silverfiddle says:

    God loves each and every one of us, regardless of our degree of belief or disbelief in him.

    Nothing I’ve read in the Bible would lead me to believe he’s backing a particular candidate.

    I also see no reason for God to favor us over, say, Kenya or Korea.

    “With God on our side?”

    I prefer President Lincoln’s formulation, that we had better pray that we are on God’s side.

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  5. geeez2014 says:

    SO many aspects and answers to my question….all good input.

    Ed, I put that scripture on my side bar about 2 weeks ago because I believe it so strongly…I believe we’re expected to make wise, Godly decisions, too.

    Jerry “Are you asking whether God cares who is president or who we support?” I’m not sure, frankly! I think I meant more does He care who is president. I do believe He cares who we support. (and the other answer is “you bet!”)

    Bocopro: Ecclesiastes is amazing..Proverbs is interesting and has some gems in it. I don’t view the BIble as “multi layered literature” needing a careful approach and I wish my mind weren’t quite so open, frankly!!!

    SF…yes, I do see a reason for God’s favor on America….I’ll never believe this isn’t a grand experiment on His part; I just had the crazy thought that the story of America could be a new New Testament chapter, but then I realized we’re really in the Old Testament…the story of Israel constantly turning her back on God is us. I’m Israel, too, sadly, at times.
    And no, nothing in the Bible leads us to believe He’s backing a candidate but when we see His advice and His clear layout of how we should live our lives, our actions, our words, I think that, in a way, He does> ??

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  6. I believe in American Exceptionalism.
    Not because we are God’s favorite, but because He had a plan for us.
    It’s evident in our history.
    I hope He still does.
    But we must cooperate or pay the price.

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  7. bocopro says:

    The reason I refer to the Bible as literature is that like all good stories throughout history, it reflects, records, and interprets the very delicate and often dangerous act of being human. The word Bible itself means essentially a collection of books, which is precisely what it is.

    But what do those books do? Well, without going into laborious detail and heroic inventories of examples, here are the story features, or the “layers” in the book:

    Surface — the story itself, basically the story of mankind
    Allegorical — how we can learn vicariously from the experiences of those who tried it first
    Pedagogical – lessons, instructions, guidance, exempla
    Anagogical — holy texts, words, scriptures, inspired passages
    Metaphysical — transcendental, abstract, “beyond the ordinary and natural”
    Moral — behavioral exempla, ethical lessons, paradigms
    Parables — holy individuals, saints, martyrs
    Fables — the symbolism in Revelation is unmistakable; Job mentions beasts and birds, as does Jesus
    Legends — things written centuries post facto tend to slip into this category
    Myths — we LOVE ’em; can’t live without ’em, and the Bible is a rich source
    Mysticism — depends on your perspective, but that which is beyond normal ken

    It also contains numerous archetypes, strategies, histories, prophecies, and many, MANY other tropes, devices, rituals, rules, suggestions, and even propaganda.

    No other since source in Western literature has so often been used for allusion, reference, or quote as the Bible. Shakespeare is a distant second. The first book Gutenberg printed was the Bible, and after Caxton copied his device in England, the ONLY book many people had in their homes once printing made books affordable was the Bible, and since there were no movies, no TV, no internet in those days, reading the Bible became group entertainment at night when it was dark and people couldn’t work.

    We’ve all heard people say that they’ve read a book or watched a movie or heard a poem many times and found or saw or realized something new and different each time.

    Hey, if that ain’t the Bible, then I’m the love child of Mao Tze Dong and Cleopatra.

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  8. Silverfiddle says:

    It is not inconsistent to say that the Bible is literature, as described by the Boon County Professor, and also the inspired word of God. There are indeed many layers to the Sacred Scriptures.

    I don’t believe America came to be because of some plan of God’s, but I do believe that any group of people who embark on a noble project, dedicate it to him, and give him honor will be blessed by him. So, in that sense, he blessed the founding of this nation. I don’t know what about this nation today would merit any more special attention from our Lord than say, Haiti or Germany.

    God has a plan for each individual, but for the United States? I just don’t see it, scripturally or otherwise.

    Z: The OT stories of the Hebrews are the story of each human heart. God gives us a beautiful garden, a wonderful life, but we let Satan talk us into taking that fruit from the tree of knowledge of Good and Evil, the one and only thing God told us not to touch.

    God leads us out of the slavery of sin, but we grumble, so he gives us manna, we praise him, but soon tire of the manna. He leads us to the Promised Land, and land of milk and honey, and we rejoice, but then soon turn to ungratefulness.

    When I went through my religious conversion, seeing that–the connection of those stories to my own life, and seeing how closely tied the OT and NT were, was a transcendent eye-opener for me.

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  9. Bocopro: it was reading the Bible to understand literature references (Call me Ishmael…) that lead me to an understanding of God’s pre-eminence, and my need to submit to Him.

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  10. Daniel 2:21
    And he changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding:

    Throughout history God has raised nations and empires for his purpose, even if to punish Israel, or guarantee peace for the transmission of the gospel.

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  11. Mal says:

    Bocopro……Thanks for the quote from Timothy re drinking not only water but wine “for thy stomach’s sake.” I especially liked that one and will continue to be an adherent to the teachings from the good book!

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  12. Bob says:

    “Does God care?” This is a great question, and I don’t have an answer. If you read the scriptures, we are to obey our governmental laws, shut-up, and pay the taxes. After all, everything that government does is a tax one way or another. Taking this to the extreme it means that not only do we pay the monetary tax, but we are taxed to pay our time, allegiance, and lives in case of war as the government deems necessary.

    As an aside:
    Titus 3:9 “But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. ”

    I think this says a lot about the law and lawyers. This is one booming industry that contributes nothing to the general economy. The practice of law is a parasite on society.

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  13. bocopro says:

    Well, Mal . . . that quote is taken out of context. Paul suggested that Timothy mix a little wine with his water because of his infirmities, but I don’t remember what those infirmities were (or if Paul or Timothy ever enumerates them).

    My inference is that Timothy abstained completely from wine (many priests were forbidden its use in those days, as I recall), but he had some kind of problem, perhaps digestion issues, and Paul suggests wine for the medicinal purpose.

    In any case, the practice in that region in those days was to mix water with the wine, usually less than 50/50, so Timothy more than likely used it out of necessity rather than pleasure. I guess. At least that’s what my grandmother told me (if memory serves).

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  14. geeez2014 says:

    LITERATURE; not saying it ISN”T great Lit…maybe the greatest…I personally don’t approach it that way…but sometimes I read something and think “Man, who could have written anything THAT BEAUTIFUL? Men in sandals with no education? I think not.

    Ed “Not because we are God’s favorite, but because He had a plan for us”
    SO VERY well put….
    As far as history, one only needs learn about Squanto to say “How could that have been anything BUT GOD?”

    bocopro…sorry to imply I don’t think the Bible is great literature; some scholars, even non Christians, say it’s the BEST….I personally look at it as so much MORE than “just” lit, that that’s why I mentioned that. Great comment, thanks.
    Some CHristians don’t drink at all and I’m not here to weigh in on that or judge, but yes, wine was really used to purify water in those days. Still, why use WINE and then later condemn it, which it really isn’t, it just says “too much” isn’t good. (I’ll drink to THAT! HA!!)

    Bob “Titus 3:9 “But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless.”
    WOW…another excellent scripture for this post, thank you.
    That’s where I’m getting to….I’m thinking Trump speaks so viciously and the others have shown themselves to be not much better this past week particularly, so that some of us DO turn away, turn off the controversies, the dissensions, etc…..Law or not, this is ALL worthless compared to Heaven, as Jerry implied above.

    SF..as I said “one only has to look at the miracle of Squanto and how he got where he was and when” to figure there’s something supernatural. Also, look at how infinitely better America was when God was clearly there…I’ve been watching great old movies on and off this week, on TCM, and am considering a post about that…Christian hymns as soundtracks in REALLY popular movies, sermons, Christian (or just plain GOOD, not necessarily Christian) messages (but plenty overly CHristian, too…(MRS MINIVER, etc etc etc) It shocks me watching a secular famous film only to hear hymns in the background, or Scripture on the screen at the end (SINCE YOU WENT AWAY), etc ettc… To see the difference of our country without God is pretty unsettling and pretty clear, I think.
    Germany was VERY VERY Christian for years……..they’ve gone far away, …voila.
    \France, too.
    Spain? Voila.

    Is it COLONISTS’ work ethics and their shovels and hoes or their faith taught to other countries that lifted countries up where they’d once been mud pile villages, like in African countries, etc…?

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  15. There were many injunctions against being a wine bibber (drunkard) and most people take stuff and run with it.
    Maybe Paul was trying to correct that .

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  16. geeez2014 says:

    Ed, yes, as I said doing anything “too much” is definitely discussed. Do you have Scripture about prohibiting drinking alcohol at all??

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  17. geeez2014 says:

    BY THE WAY: I am SO happy for all this GREAT INPUT; It’s exactly what I hoped for.

    Regardless of the Bible as lit, etc etc., I think the question is a good one to ponder and I’m glad we’re doing it.

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  18. I always thought this was a strange one. If you couldn’t get to the temple to offer your tithes:
    Deuteronomy 14:26 – And thou shalt bestow that money for whatsoever thy soul lusteth after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul desireth: and thou shalt eat there before the LORD thy God, and thou shalt rejoice, thou, and thine household,

    Except for that, there are many warnings about drinking to excess, but no outright prohibitions.
    1 Timothy 3:8 – Likewise [must] the deacons [be] grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;
    Galatians 5:21 – Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told [you] in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God.
    Ephesians 5:18-20 – And be not drunk with wine, wherein is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

    But no prohibition. With me, I often got carried away, so abstinence doesn’t hurt.
    I miss me some dry white wine though.

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  19. geeez2014 says:

    Even the Deuteronomy verse, in commentaries, suggests that not alol wine or strong drink needs be stopped…anymore than they’d stop sheep or oxen…. Almost sounds like a lenten reminder to me, you know? When the soul desireth, remember the sacrifice of Christ and don’t do that right now? For example.

    No warnings except “to excess”….exactly, Ed.
    And, yes, if one tends to “I can’t stop at one or two,” then abstinence definitely doesn’t hurt. I admire your recognizing that in yourself….as you know, some don’t, or won’t 🙂

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  20. Baysider says:

    I’m with Ed – yes, He cares. We have been given responsibilities here, and His people are expected to live up to those (cannot at all understand Christians who don’t vote). Once you know Squanto’s story is it possible to believe that God did not have His hand at work here in some special way?

    Good link. Check out the context of Ps 33:12, Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord, the people whom he has chosen as his heritage! While that nation may be Israel, the Psalmist goes on to state great principles that I believe apply to all (similar to the Jeremiah verse Ed quoted): “Ps. 33:16 The king is not saved by his great army; a warrior is not delivered by his great strength. … Behold, the eye of the LORD is on those who fear him, on those who hope in his steadfast love, that he may deliver their soul from death…”

    Micah asks “what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?” I believe God wants us to divine the best balance of those in the men we put in charge of the government. If they walk humbly with God, they are much more reliable to do the rest, right? THAT’S what the Lord wants. It speaks volumes that we have so few choices of godly men who are skilled in political leadership.

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  21. Silverfiddle says:

    It is a dangerous and conceited deception to believe you are God’s Chosen, especially for a nation not mentioned in the Bible.

    I still stand by Old Honest Abe’s formulation. We enjoy God’s blessings and favor if we are wise enough to strive mightily to be on his side.

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  22. geeez2014 says:

    Even Pastor Jeffers is complimenting Trump. “I didn’t know him,” Trump says, “and I LOVE HIM” Wow, that’s discerning, isn’t it? You never met him but you LOVE HIM because he’s NICE TO YOU..that’s mature 🙂

    here’s Jeffers…a synopsis; I was typing as he was talking on the video:
    “Mr. Trump sincerely loves this country….he has many billions of reasons for not running but he wants to make America great again. He is truly pro LIFE, I have talked to him at Trump Towers ($$$) and he cares for the unborn….his pro-life was real, believe me. Trump cares about and loves evangelical Christians….when Ronald Reagan was running the first time, he met with a group of Evangelical leaders, and he said he endorsed US…I have met with Mr. Trump on ‘several occasions’ and I can tell you that if he’s elected, we who are Evan. Christians are going to have a true friend in the WH. God BLESS Donald Trump”

    I have no comment
    Rahab comes to mind, however.

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  23. geeez2014 says:

    SF….I don’t know that any of the comments above suggest we think Americans only are God’s Chosen….if I did, please paste it…I’m curious only because I don’t feel that way and typing these little ditties often make for misunderstanding.

    I DO, however, remember the writings of our Founders, so MUCH inference to God, the Bible, following Him, striving mightily to be on His side,” as you say so wisely…

    Too much of our early days are centered on God…..miraculous provisions, etc., but I do NOT think God loves Americans more, he loves EVERYONE..He uses unbelievers to help His cause (Cyrus comes to mind because we just studied him but there are MANY more, as you know), He says he ‘hates’ some but, mostly, GOD LOVES ALL OF HUMANITY. Not only America or Americans.
    I’d never deny that our early days and our adherence to His word for so many years (abolishing slavery so early in man’s history, etc etc) put us in better stead than many countries, but that’s from OUR seeking His wisdom, as Mr. Lincoln said.

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  24. Silverfiddle says:

    Z: God did greatly bless us as a nation. I’m not arguing, or saying you said this, but some people lapse into a kind of national Calvinism, believing God ordained us for this or that, and with God on your side, you can do no wrong.

    In the Old Testament, God did indeed cause the rise and fall of great armies, kings, and nations to advance His will here on earth, always in relation to his people, the Hebrews. This is interpreted by the prophets and explained in the writings. They say it plainly: Persia, the Edomites, Egypt..

    Since Holy revelation stopped at the end of the Apostolic Age, we have no way of knowing whether God has chosen our nation for any such purpose. Who can know the mind of God? What we do know is that we can have confidence in him, as it says all over the Bible, if we believe in him and follow his just laws.

    I believe (and we’re probably saying the same thing) that God blessed this nation’s founding because the people at that time honored him, begged his aid and forgiveness, thanked him, and established a society and legal system that accorded with his Divine Law.

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  25. Mal says:

    Well said, SF.

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  26. Bob says:

    “Law or not, this is ALL worthless compared to Heaven, as Jerry implied above.”

    That’s almost exactly what I wanted to say in my comment. God doesn’t care what game we are in so long as we are with Him. Governmental, corporate, self-employed, family or single, we are God’s children first and foremost. To Him all this election stuff is just noise (I think), although I still want Him to have a part in the outcome. My fear is that I will not like God’s outcome! 😦

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  27. Baysider says:

    Maybe Pastor Jeffers should remember that Trump knows how to ‘make the deal.’ Remember the 3 big things that got the Tea Party going? Auto bailout. Bank bailout. Stimulus. Trump was FOR all three. Ditto for single-payer. Well, I hope he’s pro life, but he thinks his sister would be good on the supreme court – she’s a leftie.

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  28. geeez2014 says:

    SF “I believe (and we’re probably saying the same thing) that God blessed this nation’s founding because the people at that time honored him, begged his aid and forgiveness, thanked him, and established a society and legal system that accorded with his Divine Law.”

    We are saying exactly the same thing.

    BOB; YES YES YES! And the bummer is GOD’S TIMING and GOD’S INTENTIONS….we might NEVER KNOW while on this earth!

    Baysider: Trump downplays any ‘leftie-ism’….says she’s not, just “INCREDIBLY SMART” and, of course, would be a “PHENOMENAL” Supreme Court Judge…not just GOOD, but PHENOMEnAL!! 🙂
    Cruz has attacked her as being leftwing and extremist for calling a New Jersey law banning late-term abortions “unconstitutionally and incurably vague,” adding that it placed an “undue burden” on women’s constitutionally protected right to the procedure.”
    Sadly, a woman DOES have a right, according to the law of this land, to an abortion and to suggest she’s extremist for ruling otherwise is an unreasonable call. Cruz reminds us she was appointed by Clinton, so she’s a leftie but the other side of that, left OUT by Cruz, of course, is it’s Reagan who appointed her to the bench; Clinton only bumped her up. (I guess I should use other language considering it’s Clinton but… HAHA~!!)

    She’s not particularly known as a Leftwinger…at least my reading hasn’t shown that; please provide any links, I truly am interested…not challenging you, just curious.

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  29. To support partial birth abortions is extreme, even among the general population that supports abortion.

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  30. geeez2014 says:

    Oh, Ed….Of course. I personally think there’s nothing more brutal and disgusting than late term abortion…but we don’t know the details of that case, it was THE LAW she ruled on, finding it vague and unconstitutional. whatever we like, the law is the law…The vagueness of that particular law was what apparently bothered her. Perhaps she wanted a tighter law to better protect a child. We don’t know that.
    Also, for Cruz to bring HER up in his fight with Trump is unseemly to me…thanks.

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  31. geeez2014 says:

    Her name is Maryanne Trump BARRY….cracks me up, reading it, I thought “I hope she’s not much like MARION BARRY!” 🙂

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  32. Baysider says:

    No links. I’ve heard 3 good in-depth interviews on Trump in the last week. This came out. It reminded me of Bush wanting to appoint a ‘loyal’ appointment to the court (nothing new) with much more qualified conservatives waiting in line. Did I overstate? Maybe. Maybe not. She has her brother’s temperament and has been described as brash and politically incorrect. Now THAT usually means leftie (PC, that is). He’s such a worse-than-Rockefellar Republican. I have absolutely no trust in him.

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  33. geeez2014 says:

    Baysider, Hurrah if they say she’s politically incorrect because I love to think of myself as politically INcorrect…saying the truth instead of what ‘they’ want to hear.
    Look, I’m not sticking up for her, I couldn’t care less about her, but it’s information like I posted above from Cruz, that really bugs me…getting half a story and capitalizing on it; and I think whatever Judge Barry is, she’s entitled to it; she’s not running for president.
    Would that her little brother wasn’t!!!

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