Free In Christ

Finding Freedom in the Churches of Christ

Archive for October 2009

Darin Hufford on “church”

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This is post (from a few years ago) really gets to the point on how I feel about “church”


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October 31, 2009 at 6:29 am

Ben Witherington and Women

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Here is a great article by Ben Witherington on women in ministry.  This guy has really done his homework and I really think he comes to some real reasonable conclusions.

Written by freeinchrist

October 27, 2009 at 8:00 am

God and 1 Corithians 13: God Does Not Envy

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None of us would like to think that God is envious but many of us do. Envy is really jealousy and we do believe God is a jealous God. The Scripture even says that God is a jealous God.

So does this mean that God isn’t love? Do the Scriptures contradict themselves?

I believe that God is love and that love does not envy, so I believe that God does not envy (is not jealous) either. So, why does Scripture say that God is jealous?

I think that we need to see two different types of jealousy. One for our gain and one for the gain of others. Let me give you an example. If I am jealous of something that you have (a house, a car, etc…) then this is an ungodly type of jealousy. God is in need of nothing and would never be envious of what someone else has. He would never be jealous in this sense. The sense He would be jealous is when He sees what we could have as opposed to what we do have because of our failures. His jealousy is for us, not for Him. When Scripture says that God is jealous it is talking about Him being jealous that people run after idols instead of Him. He doesn’t care about this because He has an enormous ego or because He is in need of us, He cares about this because He loves you too much to watch you waste everything He has given you on worthless idols and He knows that we need Him. This is jealousy out of love for us, not the opposite of love.

When we see God as envious, we believe that we should be that way too. We must learn to see God as a God of love who does not envy and learn to be this way as well.

(For more on this, check out Darin Hufford’s The Misunderstood God: The Lies Religion Tells About God or you can find a link to it by clicking “Store” at the top of the page)

Donald Miller On Writing

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This is touching, thought provoking, and hilarious. It is very long but if you are a fan of Blue Like Jazz: Nonreligious Thoughts on Christian Spirituality you should find this entertaining.

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October 25, 2009 at 8:00 am

God and 1 Corinthians 13: God is Kind

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1 Corinthians 13 also tells us that love is kind and we know that God is love. So, is God kind?

We need to distinguish between two things that are often thought to be kindness: actual kindness and manipulation.

When someone does something “kind” for you because of how it will benefit them, it is often confused for kindness.  This is so often the case in the world that we sometimes think that God uses this kind of “kindness” as well.  God’s kindness is actual kindness.  He isn’t just concerned with Himself and doesn’t give us His grace for His benefit, but for ours.  He loves us and His gifts are true kindness, not manipulation.

Have you ever thought, “if I was a better Christian God would…” or “since I do ____ God won’t help me”.  If so, then you were thinking that God would manipulate you into action.  This is the way of the world but not the way of God.  God is kind and gives His grace as He chooses, not to manipulate us.

Part of learning to trust God is learning to trust the authenticity of His kindness.

(For more on this, check out Darin Hufford’s The Misunderstood God: The Lies Religion Tells About God)

Written by freeinchrist

October 24, 2009 at 8:00 am

God and 1 Corinthians 13: God is Patient

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1 Corinthians 13 tells us that firstly love is patient.  We are also told in Scripture that God is love.  Does this mean that God is patient?

I think we all know that it does but sometimes  we don’t view God as though He is patient.  We know that He wants us to be patient but sometimes we don’t think that He is.

We need to always realize that God is patient with us.  This is one of the things that should endear us to Him.  We can go to God because He is patient with us.  When we are stuck in the same sinful patterns, God is patient with us.  He doesn’t like that we sin, but He is patient with us.  Knowing this helps us to trust Him.

(Some of this is from Daren Hufford’s The Misunderstood God: The Lies Religion Tells About God )

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October 23, 2009 at 8:00 am

God and 1 Corinthians 13: Introduction

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1 Corinthians 13:4-8a

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails.

This series is about how if God is love, then the “love passage” has to describe Him. But does it.

In Darren Hufford’s The Misunderstood God: The Lies Religion Tells About God he talks about how this passage must reflect God’s true character because God is love.

If this book is correct then we should be able to say that God is: patient, kind, does not envy, does not boast, is not proud, doesn’t dishonor others, is not self-seeking, is not easily angered, keeps no record of wrongs, does not delight in evil, rejoices in the truth, always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres, and never fails.

Some of these are believed by pretty much everybody but others contradict what most people think about God.  I’ve believed for many years that “God is love” is one of the most important things we can learn about God.

Written by freeinchrist

October 22, 2009 at 1:18 am