Showcase: Blessings

  • Be Blessed As A Child In Your Father's Heart by Sylvia Gunter +

    Listen to Galatians 4:6-7. "Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit Read More
  • Overcomers Blessing by Sylvia Gunter +

    "I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know ... Read More
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Don  Carsonhttp://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/2-kings/8.html

http://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/1-timothy/5.html

http://www.biblestudytools.com/rsv/daniel/12.html

http://www.biblestudytools.com/psalms/passage/?q=psalm+119:49-72

2 Kings 8; 1 Timothy 5; Daniel 12; Psalm 119:49–72

ALTHOUGH I DID NOT KNOW IT, while I was in my last year of high school my parents made a quiet vow before the Lord.

For reasons too complicated to go into here, they decided that unless certain things happened, at the end of the year Dad would resign from the pastoral charge he had maintained for fifteen years.

I finished school, left home, and went off to university. Within a month or so I received a letter from my parents: Dad had resigned as pastor of that church.

My parents had very little money. There was no other French-speaking church that was open to him. At this juncture Dad felt too old to start another church in another locale. He refused to consider pastorates in English Canada: both his call and his heart were tied up with Quebec. So I found out what my parents had decided: they were moving to Hull, on the French side of the river across from Ottawa, the nation's capital, where Dad would support his family as a federal translator, and give as much time as he could to the French-speaking church in Hull.

I did not get "home" until Christmas. Somewhere along the line I probed my father to try to understand his reasoning. Granted his conviction that he should stay in a French-speaking part of Canada, the question soon arose as to how he would support his family. "For Scripture says," Dad explained, "that if a man does not support his own family, he is worse than an infidel": he was using the King James Version form of words of 1 Timothy 5:8: "If anyone does not provide for his relatives, and especially for his immediate family, he has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever."

Obviously this text has some exceptions. If a man is too ill to work, for example, he is exempt—and judging by the tone of the entire chapter, the church itself should pick up whatever support is necessary, if the family cannot manage. But what strikes the reader about many of the instructions in this chapter is the way the church's provision for the social needs of her people is prescribed with extraordinary sensitivity to the dangers. At the risk of oversimplification, the pattern Paul lays out can be summarized like this: those in genuine need are looked after by the church, but those with the capacity to find their way and support themselves must do so—both so as not to be a burden on the church, and for their own good—or be charged with abandoning the faith. Laziness is not next to godliness.

I cannot think of many times when I had greater respect for Dad's obedient faith.

http://thegospelcoalition.org/blogs/loveofgod/

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Reflections to Consider

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Favorites

  • Mysterious and Unknown: Our Great God Fernando Ortega +

    Eternal God, unchanging Mysterious and unknown Your boundless love unfailing In grace and mercy shown Bright seraphim in ceaseless flight Read More
  • Our Great God by Fernando Ortega +

    Eternal God, unchangingMysterious, and unknownYour boundless love, unfailingIn grace and mercy shownBright seraphim in endless flightAround Your glorious throneThey raise Read More
  • This is my Father's world by Fernando Ortega +

    This is my Father's world, and to my listening ears all nature sings, and round me rings the music of Read More
  • Praise to the Lord, the Almighty by Fernando Ortega +

    Praise to the Lord, the AlmightyThe King of creationO my soul, praise HimFor He is thy health and salvationAll ye Read More
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Hidden Blessings

  • Holy as God is Holy +

    As Eugene Peterson says, the book of Leviticus shows how God brings everything into his holy presence and transforms it Read More
  • Jeremiah: The Importance of Repentance +

    As Eugene Peterson has noted, Jeremiah is used by God to call the people of Israel to repentance. Read More
  • Balaam: What Happens When You Try To Strong-Arm God +

    In Numbers, the surrounding nations watch as God pours out blessing and good fortune over and over on the Israelites. Read More
  • Born of Water: A sign of our new creation in Christ +

    Baptism is like a wedding vow. Read More
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