Monday, August 6, 2007

Are We Really Utilizing God's Strength?

This past Sunday in our Sunday School class we were continuing in our study of Colossians. As we were discussing the passage in chapter 1, a verse there really stuck out in my head and heart and I wanted to share as well as challenge you.
In verse 29 of chapter 1 it says: "To this end I labor, struggling with all His energy, which so powerfully works in me".
Now I hear the famous "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" quoted a lot and rightly so, but I believe this verse might be overlooked.
Think of other words for "energy". I think of Charles Atlas above and the word: "strength". Think of it: the God who created the Universe with just the breathing of a few words is the same God who works in us! As Paul said, "which so powerfully works in me".
How "powerful" is God's energy in you? Are you lifting weights on your own?
He is mighty strong, lot's of energy, let's tap into it and take on the world!!

32 comments:

mick b; the Anti-Bill said...

OK, I'll respond first. My brother and I grew up wanting to be like Charles Atlas. His body-building ads were in every comic book we ever bought. We were tired of having bigger guys kicking sand in our faces on the beach! Now onto Colossians; by far my favorite book in the Bible, esp. Chapter 2. Three verses jump out at me: 3,8 and 14. As verse 2 states; "in Christ Himself are hidden all treasures of wisdom and knowledge." To strive toward the mind of God is to strive to attain wisdom and knowledge. All others ring hollow and smack of the Gnosticism that Paul worked so hard to defeat (or reason with). Any philosophy built on the "traditions of men" from verse 8 may tempt our minds and hearts and when presented in such a way, can deceive even the most staunch of believers. However, when our philosophies are rooted in Scripture (not the Talmud, Apocrypha, etc.), we are being fed with the "advanced" principles in this world and therefore given true wisdom and knowledge. Verse 14 summarizes the victory that believers have over the hollow philosophies of men. Jesus the Christ, by sacrificing himself on the cross, so that we might grasp the grace and mercy of God the Father, simplified the entire process. The Pharisees (cut to the quick in Matthew 23:13-36) built a wall that separated man from God grace and mercy. Written some 30 years after the death of Christ, Paul was dealing with the same problems facing Jesus previously. In fact, most of our "faith-related" issues are due to the exact same thing. Rather than taking the Word at face value, as literal, infallible truth, religions continue to add to the Word to justify behavior and calm dissensions with their body of believers.

mick b; the Anti-Bill said...

OK, page two (I had to relax in the hot tub for a few moments). "In the beginning was the Word". "The Word was made flesh and dwelt among us." I take this to mean that Jesus existed before time. He is the Word and was created in human form that we might see the Truth before our very eyes and "turn from our wicked ways" built on the hollow deceptive philosophies created by men's traditions. Jesus is the Word and also "the author and perfector of our faith." The rub begins when professed Christian denominations don't proclaim the Word as "infallible", but rather a document in constant metamorphosis and open to individual interpretation. In doing so, Jesus has been lowered from perfection and placed into the same category as sinful man. Jesus' attitude to the adulteress was one of compassion and forgiveness, but his last words to her were "don't repeat the sin." He didn't abolish the Law. He demonstrated that it should administered with love. He didn't rewrite Scripture to give absolution to the masses. He showed it's proper and just application.

Jennyth said...

Mick...good gosh, how do I follow that? I saw Bill's new post earlier and was going to respond, but didn't. Came back tonight to say something, and you and are your theological maturity...kind of makes my thoughts seem a bit simple. Oh well. :)

Anyways...Bill, thanks for the thoughts here. I really like to think of God as energy, and honestly have NEVER thought that way before. Considering I've always struggled with my energy levels, even as a child I was always tired, to think of tapping into God's power and energy to give us fuel and light for our days and tasks really is simply HOPE for me.

A hope that one day I can bounce out of bed and be an energetic person. Now I'm sure you think of me as energetic, cause I was a crazy spitfire in Sunday School...but that's different. I mean a God given energy to do His will and deeds everyday. That's my goal in this life, to not drag, but to live life at the fullest possible level. Energetic. God's energy. Like it. Rock on, Bill.

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Although I don't understand half of what you said Mick I am sure it's all good.
jenny, I think we are all guilty of the same.
That is why this verse meant so much.

Bill's Waste of Air said...

jenny, I am uncertain why you don't allow comments on your blog?
As for pdx being "socially eco whatever friendly"?
yuck
Wack job libs are "freeing" your mind.
Run away now.
pdx is San Francisco II, the sodom of oregon.
gomorrah is eugene.
Please either stay in Pasadena or move back to Salem and let us clean you up from all of that California air smog and brain smog.

mick b; the Anti-Bill said...

Take me out for golfing and we can chew the proverbial fat.

Jennyth said...

Ha Bill!!

Long story about why I don't allow comments on my blog...I had some past enemies (what I referred to when I say healing from my past), coming on a being really rude on my comment section. So, I turned them off.

I am not going to respond to your concerns...cause Jeremy doesn't like me fighting. Don't worry about us, we're good. There's a lot of people in PDX that need to hear about Jesus...that's all I'm going to say about that. :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Bill... I want to hear more about how you are preparing to teach high school. Can that be your next post? Thanks, Kristi

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Kristi, see your own blog for answer to your question.

Tammy said...

Bill,
I want to know where you hang out in Portland that makes it like Sodom. You must go to a different part of town than where my sister lives, or where I shop and eat, or use to work. I guess I'm more sheltered than I thought, because I had no idea. PDX like San Fran or Vegas. Are you sure?
Tammy

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Tammy,
please watch the news at night. That will give you a start.
The Gay Pride festivals that are now second in size only to SF and NY.
The rise of "Air America" the liberal radio network.
If you could only see and read the discussion board for radio and tv personalities and see what they say, they are really left.
How about the fact that the two main counties in PDX are what determine the entire state's political stance? We are a conservative state, but due to those two counties and one in Eugene, we are considered by the media nationally and the political community as a LEFT WING State.
That is why I say what I say.
Oh, how about the Saturday Market? Yes cute little arts and crafts are sold as well as marijuana paraphenalia, drug culture ideas, abortion rights stands and more.
PDX is what gave us senior citizen murder (death with dignity), abortion at it's highest rate per capita. Need I go on?
Just because they have some neato restaurants and cool places to go does not lessen it's impact for evil upon this state.

Jennyth said...

and like I said before...

those people need Jesus.

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Yes they do. No doubt about that, but they also need him in Enterprise, in Prineville, in Medford, in Coos Bay and many other places including good old Salem/Keizer.
I am not wanting to lessen your burden for Portland at all. I am merely pointing out why I do not like the place.
Salem Riverfest with Reid Saunders would never fly in PDX. Of course I know if God wanted it to, it would, but you know what I mean.
The fields are ripe everywhere.
I am currently reading a book by the great evangelist Dr. John R. Rice, who even in his day (the 1920's to 1940's) was considered a "radical" preacher, much less if you read him today.
The book is a gathering of 11 of his best sermons called "When Skeletons come out of their closets". He clearly and scripturally defines how horrible the final White Throne Judgement will be. He clearly states and backs up with scripture, we who accepted Christ will not be judged there, but rather only those who denied or did not accept Christ. We who did, will be there as witnesses for the prosecution.
He preached that we don't have much time (and this was in the 1920's) and we have a lost world. He also clearly defines how horrible Hell will be and does not shy away from telling sinners their final destination. I love his style, candor and passion. Oh that our preachers today would get off the "feel good" crud and embrace the idea that most are going to Hell and we have been called to show them the way out.
Whew, had to get that off my chest.
Back to you Jennyth, you are spot on, rock on girl.

Jeremy Green said...

Tammy,

I would like to respond to your question about why PDX is like Sodom..

I think that Bill was making reference to 'the prophets' understanding of the judgment on the city. Take this passage written by the prophet Ezekiel (16:49-50)

'Now this was the sin of your sister Sodom: She and her daughters were arrogant, overfed and unconcerned; they did not help the poor and needy.'

I think that Bill is really upset by how arrogant, wealthy, and uncaring PDX is. He is obviously TO'd by how little PDX cares for the POOR. This is the reason God gives for the destruction of Sodom and must be what Bill is getting at in his post.

...right Bill?

Jennyth said...

and we're off and rolling...my theological hubby has joined the conversatin

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Jerm,
you're vast knowledge of the Bible that you have acquired would be too much for me to tackle.
I wouldn't even think to debate you.
or bait you.
Please look up the Websters definition of "sodomite" and you will know what I am referring to. I know they still use dictionaries somewhere so you might have to go to that most unused of all learning facilities, the library and find one, but you will.
Actually I think I did a dang good job of describing why I don't like PDX.
So read it again, slowly, pretend it is a professor at the old seminary and try to pay attention.
I believe that between all the hoohaw they be teaching you and the smog, you'se brain is under undue stress.
Come up here where the air is clean and we'll help filter you out boy!
Oh ya, another reason I don't like PDX, dirty air.
thanks for reminding me.

Tammy Bowers said...

Bill,
I don't like you slamming Jeremy. I'm going to protest your blog ... for 1 whole day, anyway.

See ya Friday!
Tammy

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Tammy, you have never experienced Jeremy's scathing blows then. Believe me it can be very very invigorating.
You must know that it is all in good love and humor.
I love the guy and miss him greatly.

Jennyth said...

tammy,

seriously, these guys talk this way to eachother all of the time. thanks for sticking up for Jeremy, but really, he's fine and is holding his own...

protest if you must, but no need from the "Greens"... :)

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Thanks jenny for explaining the rather weird way we guys talk to each other. Apparently you HAVE paid attention to all thos FFL discussions over the years.
I guess Dan must not let Tammy in on those and that is probably good because if she saw what dear sweet Danny boy wrote she'd probably leave him!! :)

mick b; the Anti-Bill said...

sodomite: a person who engages in sexual intercourse considered to be abnormal, as between two male persons. This is from Webster's New World Dictionary copyright 1987. Has the definition changed in the last 20 years to fit our "progressive" society?

Tammy Bowers said...

Okay, my one day boycott has ended. Jenny, I don't think Bill every needs defending. Bill, my Danny Boy has his perfect reasons for posting his slams on your NFL draft board. That is all guys and appropriate for trash talk. Not so good for a blog though. I understand excellent discussion and disagreement, as long as it is respectful. But this is your blog, you can do it anyway you want. PTL for America's freedom, right! I just may have to boycott it from time to time if it crosses the line, which will not hurt you one bit, but I'll feel better.

Jennyth said...

well said, Tammy...

No worries, I wasn't defending Bill, just making sure you knew we were fine. You do what you must to keep the peace for yourself. Instead of a boycott, I'm just not going to actually go head to head with Bill on why I am not in a "brain fog" liberal mindset. Boy, I'd love to, though. Some of the things I've been convicted on concerning what the Bible says about how we should treat God's creation, take care of the poor, and not completely separate ourselves from non-Christian heathens would probably get a huge an completely crazy debate going, and since my hubby has requested I don't "go there"...I will respect him and keep my mouth shut.

I love Bill and think I'll just agree to disagree with his Portland conclusion, and hey guess what...

Portland was just named the 3rd "greenest" city in the world. Gotta love it!!

Bill's Waste of Air said...

Well, hmmm....Dan will probably never let you see the stuff he writes, but that is ok because I know in my heart we are friends and we just talk pretty funny and I never ever take any of it personal. Blog, discussion boards, IM or chat rooms are all the same, place where opinions and sometimes more, are posted. This blog is for all to whack away at whatever ax they want to grind, or whatever they want period.
I respect what you have said, but have to disagree as the parties involved are good with each other.
Now as for you young lady, Jenny....don't tell anyone but I recycle paper almost to the point of obsession and my wife comes from a long line of timbermen!
So I guess that makes me a closet eco whatever.
I will never debate what God has laid on someones heart, that is none of my beeswax, so of course it is all in fun.
You go girl.
Signed,
Oprah

Bill's Waste of Air said...

PS: my dig at Jeremy was actually quite good when you really read it. When was the last time any of us used a Library? No, we "google" it now. We are becoming a society of morons who let other people come up with our answers.
What happened to sitting up long hours in the library digging through huge amounts of books trying to find the perfect quote for a paper or research we are working on, or for that matter just to soak up the atmosphere of peace, quiet and serenity of the library?
No we are all in our dark little rooms pounding away on keyboards. Sad. Really. Guilty.

Jennyth said...

Bill...I just love ya, man!!

I'm with you on the dictionary thing...the only ones I think we still have around is something written in greek (literally) from Jeremy's classes, and a Scrabble dictionary. Funny.

Anonymous said...

Hey! Don't drag my name into all this blog crap. Freakshow vs. Freakshow is how I see it. . . . . what a waste of time and breath. Signed, Mean Dan

Jennyth said...

Dan,

Are you calling me a freakshow or Jeremy? Or just Bill and himself?

Jen

Anonymous said...

have to ask bill. . . can't take one single thing I say seriously. Could you tell Jeremy that Dusty won't come home until 3 or 4 a.m? He will know what that means for his ffl picks. . . have to be saturday morning. I know, you could care less about ffl. . . sorry. DB

Jennyth said...

No problem, Dan...

I'll let Jeremy know.

And seriously, the fact that you came on here, just makes me laugh! I love it.

Bill's Waste of Air said...

See Tammy???? He's mean and rotten to the core.
Still love em though!! LOL!!

Tammy Bowers said...

You can wish, Bill.