The Greatest Need of Man Answered and Settled by God Part 7

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Praise is due to you,a O God, in Zion,

and to you shall vows be performed.

 

O you who hear prayer,

to you shall all flesh come.

 

When iniquities prevail against me,

you atone for our transgressions.

 

Blessed is the one you choose and bring near,

to dwell in your courts!

We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house,

the holiness of your temple!

 

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,

O God of our salvation,

the hope of all the ends of the earth

and of the farthest seas;

 

the one who by his strength established the mountains,

being girded with might;

 

who stills the roaring of the seas,

the roaring of their waves,

the tumult of the peoples,

 

so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in awe at your signs.

You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy.

 

You visit the earth and water it;

you greatly enrich it;

the river of God is full of water;

you provide their grain,

for so you have prepared it.

 

You water its furrows abundantly,

settling its ridges,

softening it with showers,

and blessing its growth.

 

You crown the year with your bounty;

your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.

 

The pastures of the wilderness overflow,

the hills gird themselves with joy,

 

the meadows clothe themselves with flocks,

the valleys deck themselves with grain,

they shout and sing together for joy.

–Psalms 65:1-13

God’s Credibility

If you are familiar with Greek mythology, you can see all sorts of gods depicted in their literature. These gods have different powers that enable them to defeat enemies. However, these gods, like humans that created them, has certain limitations. And surprisingly, these Greek gods can be outsmarted by mortals. With that kind of god, being powerful has limits. Yet the God of the Bible is far beyond what the human mind can conceive. But because of His goodness, He let us grasp us some aspects of Him being God through the Scriptures. As we wind down to a few installments of our study, we already studied the two things God answered to man’s greatest need. Then we turned to the satisfaction that these truths bring. This week and two succeeding weeks, we shall focus on the five things why we should trust God. As we read the middle and later part of Psalms 65, we can see the first two of God’s credibility:

  1. Far Reaching

 

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,

O God of our salvation,

the hope of all the ends of the earth

and of the farthest seas; (v.5)

 

so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in awe at your signs.

You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy.(v.8)

 

As we read verses 5 and 8, we can see God as being the hope, reaches at the very ends of earth. Turning to Psalms 103: 11-12, “His love is as high as the heavens are above earth” and “as far as the east from the west, so far does he remove our transgression from us”. Those description means that God is limitless to reach each and every one to display His goodness and mercy. God is not bound geographically, that His saving powered is concentrated in Jerusalem. Going back to the verses 5 and 8, we see that His far reaching capabilities is extended to the farthest part of earth.

 

 

  1. Powerful

the one who by his strength established the mountains,

being girded with might;

 

who stills the roaring of the seas,

the roaring of their waves,

the tumult of the peoples, (vs. 6 & 7)

Knowing already that God is far reaching, it won’t be hard for us to accept that He is powerful.  Not only does He “by his strength established the mountains…” or “who stills the roaring of the seas”, according to Psalms 104: 5 He is the one who “set the earth on its foundation”. That is why there is no excuse to trust God in what He gave us. The two greatest need of man from a far reaching and powerful God! May we give glory to Him day by day!

Book Review: Sa Puso at Diwa by Elizabeth Sonto-Mendoza

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Another one of those Achilles’ Heels book review, “Sa Puso at Diwa” is a kinder curriculum published by CLC Philippines. This is out of the usual books CLC publishes but as far as I can tell this is one great curriculum. Mendoza is a veteran in writing textbooks with a Christian view so expect that she knows what children should learn and what teachers should teach.
Using methods like reading, writing and singing, “Sa Puso at Diwa” lets you learn different subjects like English, Math, Filipino and Values. The lesson is easy to be taught and easy to be graps. If the content is polish then the over all design of the book is commendable. Although Mendoza should have put some more biblical stuff, she left some crumbs to compliment the nationalistic side of the book.
Both teachers and student will benefit from this curriculum. The essential stuff that kinder level children is presented in this book. Schools should not look further. Here is a kinder curriculum that will be of great use to shape the minds of the students.

Book Review: Willmington’s Guide to the Bible by Dr. Harold L. Willmington

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I have to admit there are two of Achilles’ heels when doing a review. One is big bulky books and two reference books. A big bulky book overwhelms me and a reference book makes me unworthy to review such category. Now here comes my greatest fear. One book has both of my weakness. Nevertheless, I will face my fears and give my opinion on this book.

“Willmington’s Guide to the Bible” is a colossal book that claims to be “all in one Bible resource”. Well it is and it should be considering the size of this book. This volume boast 8 books in one.

This reference tool is not a Study Bible meaning it doesn’t include the actual Bible. So you have on one hand on a Bible and the other one the “Willmington’s Guide to the Bible” (and I hope it won’t break your bones). With its bulkiness, you might ask yourself, when was the last time you used a hefty volume like this? It would be nice if this book comes with a CD version so it can be use over a PC. Maybe the size does overwhelm the user but one should not. Aside from the typical content of any reference books about the Bible, this book sure does give you much more. You might just stick with some online and free study Bible, but I tell you the “Willmington’s Guide to the Bible” has its own content you won’t find online. Also it is worth noting, this reference book covers some controversial issues (Calvinism and Arminianism, young earth creationism and old earth creationism etc.,) with a fair and balance look.

Dr. Harold L. Willmington did give us a dream book that carries the essentials in studying the Scriptures. Good for personal study and preachers preparing a sermon, “Willmington’s Guide to the Bible” will add some superb background. Get this excellent reference book at CLC Philippines.

The Greatest Need of Man Answered and Settled by God Part 6

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Praise is due to you,a O God, in Zion,

and to you shall vows be performed.

 

O you who hear prayer,

to you shall all flesh come.

 

When iniquities prevail against me,

you atone for our transgressions.

 

Blessed is the one you choose and bring near,

to dwell in your courts!

We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house,

the holiness of your temple!

 

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,

O God of our salvation,

the hope of all the ends of the earth

and of the farthest seas;

 

the one who by his strength established the mountains,

being girded with might;

 

who stills the roaring of the seas,

the roaring of their waves,

the tumult of the peoples,

 

so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in awe at your signs.

You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy.

 

You visit the earth and water it;

you greatly enrich it;

the river of God is full of water;

you provide their grain,

for so you have prepared it.

 

You water its furrows abundantly,

settling its ridges,

softening it with showers,

and blessing its growth.

 

You crown the year with your bounty;

your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.

 

The pastures of the wilderness overflow,

the hills gird themselves with joy,

 

the meadows clothe themselves with flocks,

the valleys deck themselves with grain,

they shout and sing together for joy.

–Psalms 65:1-13

God’s Credibility

Now that we have found the two needs of man that has been answered by God and the satisfactions it brings to us, we are now to focus on why we would trust God in those things. We are now bound to see God’s credibility. The later part of Psalms 65 left us the full details on why we should count on Him.

Searching for relevant information using internet is so easy. Just go to Google, type your inquiries and in a fraction of a second, it will yield the information you are looking for. However, not all the information you’ll get are true. We don’t want to get, say news items that are false. We want to have a reliable source that we can depend on to get the truth. Similarly, God does have something to say on why we should believe on Him. He can authenticate His claims by who He is. Our two greatest needs (salvation and prayer) rely on God’s credibility for it held both of them to be dependable.

There are five things we should consider to see the reliability of God:

  1. Far reaching

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,

O God of our salvation,

the hope of all the ends of the earth

and of the farthest seas; (v.5)

 

so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in awe at your signs.

You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy.(v.8)

 

  1. Powerful

 

the one who by his strength established the mountains,

being girded with might;

 

who stills the roaring of the seas,

the roaring of their waves,

the tumult of the peoples, (vs. 6 & 7)

 

  1. Provider

 

you provide their grain,

for so you have prepared it. (v. 9)

 

 

  1. He Holds the Time

 

You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy. (v.8)

 

  1. Enricher

 

You visit the earth and water it;

you greatly enrich it;

the river of God is full of water;

you provide their grain,

for so you have prepared it. (v. 9)

 

You water its furrows abundantly,

settling its ridges,

softening it with showers,

and blessing its growth.(v. 10)

 

You crown the year with your bounty;

your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.( v. 11)

 

               

In the succeeding weeks we will look at these five traits of God’s credibility.

Book Review: The Portable Seminary by David Horton (Editor)

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Reference book is not my turf in reviewing books, but “The Portable Seminary” blows me away. Not too bulky of a book, this book packs definitive entries that a true seminary carries.

Some contents here reminds me of “Fast Facts…” apologetics book. Enough information to let you grasp the topic but leaves room for you to crave for more. It gives you an overview of what a seminary teaches without giving all of it away. “The Portable Seminary” is not too technical to read that you might think scholars who live in ivory towers can appreciate. An average Christian joe will like this book. The word “seminary” on the title doesn’t equate as being too boring to read. Nor does it mean it will be a complicated smorgasbord of information you need to digest. Catalogue neatly in one volume, this one will not overwhelm you.  In fact I enjoy this book like any other book I read.

With “The Portable Seminary” you can take the seminary anywhere. It is a very useful reference tool for people who want to get much needed information in one book. This book is user-friendly for everyone. One of the best gift you can give to a seminary students and church workers. But for me, you owe to yourself to have a copy of this essential material to equip you. This wont collect dust on your book shelf. Highly recommended!

The Greatest Need of Man Answered and Settled by God Part 5

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Praise is due to you,a O God, in Zion,

and to you shall vows be performed.

 

O you who hear prayer,

to you shall all flesh come.

 

When iniquities prevail against me,

you atone for our transgressions.

 

Blessed is the one you choose and bring near,

to dwell in your courts!

We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house,

the holiness of your temple!

 

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,

O God of our salvation,

the hope of all the ends of the earth

and of the farthest seas;

 

the one who by his strength established the mountains,

being girded with might;

 

who stills the roaring of the seas,

the roaring of their waves,

the tumult of the peoples,

 

so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth are in awe at your signs.

You make the going out of the morning and the evening to shout for joy.

 

You visit the earth and water it;

you greatly enrich it;

the river of God is full of water;

you provide their grain,

for so you have prepared it.

 

You water its furrows abundantly,

settling its ridges,

softening it with showers,

and blessing its growth.

 

You crown the year with your bounty;

your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.

 

The pastures of the wilderness overflow,

the hills gird themselves with joy,

 

the meadows clothe themselves with flocks,

the valleys deck themselves with grain,

they shout and sing together for joy.

–Psalms 65:1-13

 

What Satisfaction Did God Provide?

Knowing that God gave answers to our greatest needs and settles it, it brings a satisfaction to us. Just like receiving a gift it brings joy to us, so is the knowledge that God answered the ultimate need of man.

Goodness

Blessed is the one you choose and bring near,

to dwell in your courts!

We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house,

the holiness of your temple!

Psalms 65:4

God proves that in Him there is goodness. This is of course not just in terms of what He can provide physically(if you read the later part of Psalms) but the mercy and grace that overflows from Him.

Confidence

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,

O God of our salvation,

the hope of all the ends of the earth

and of the farthest seas;

Psalms 65:5

Knowing that God provided the answers which are salvation and prayer, this gives us confidence. We can hold our heads up high grounded on what he provided. Another confidence booster is, if you go back to verse 4, being His elect which makes a lot of difference. Confidence to walk in the ruined world with God is heaven already. Now who can snatch that goodness and confidence from you? No one!

Reflecting on these thoughts, what reasons can we give that we should not take part of these scarce heavenly commodity? What excuse can man give upon reaching such truth? Let us be all reasonable and get this providential lot from our Creator

Book Review: Getting Into God by Stuart Briscoe

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Everything has a beginning and the Christian life is no exemption. That’s why to be a Christian, one must be born again. And like a physical birth, spiritual birth starts with the basic in order to grow. Babies drink milk. So do new believers. Babies crawl then eventually takes small steps. Christians also has to crawl and do some baby steps. “Getting Into God” gives us some guide in order to grow in our newly found faith in Christ.

Briscoe divided this short book into two parts. It might be a familiar territory for some but the treatment of every part of this book comes with freshness that is why it’s a good read. Briscoe gave us a not-so technical approach to the first two chapters of the book. The lion share of the book goes to Part 2 and Part 3 which is about prayer and witnessing respectively. I find odd considering that reading the Bible, praying, going to church and witnessing which are essential for Christian growth should be treated in equal parts n a book. But as you dive in the book, you’ll appreciate what Briscoe did. Every chapter ends with something interesting.

Although this book is geared towards the new believer, it does however give something for seasoned believers. Dip in to this brief boom and you’ll benefit from it. The book ends with a personal Bible study that immediately sets the reader to benefit from God’s Word.

This beginner’s guide is a good tool for new Christians. Practical and insightful, get this book for yourself and someone beginning his Christian walk.