Category Archives: Doctrine/Biblical Scholarship

Are you defiling the dwelling?

2 Corinthians 6

1 And working together, we also call upon you not to receive the favour of Elohim in vain –

2 For He says, “In an acceptable time I have heard you, and in a day of deliverance I have helped you.” See, now is the well-accepted time, see, now is a day of deliverance –

3 giving no cause of stumbling in whatever, so that the service is not blamed.

4 Rather, we commend ourselves as servants of Elohim in every way: in much endurance, in pressures, in hardships, in distresses,

5 in stripes, in imprisonments, in disturbances, in toils, in watchings, in fastings,

6 in cleanness, in knowledge, in patience, in kindness, in the Set-apart Spirit, in love unfeigned,

 7in the word of truth, in the power of Elohim, through the weapons of righteousness, on the right and on the left,

8 through esteem and disrespect, through evil report and good report; regarded as deceivers, and yet true;

9 as unknown, and yet well-known; as dying, and see, we live; as disciplined, and yet not killed;

10 as sad, yet always rejoicing; as poor, yet enriching many; as having none, and yet possessing all.

11 Our mouth has spoken openly to you, O Corinthians, our heart is wide open.

12 You are not restrained by us, but you are restrained by your own affections.

13 But for the same reward – I speak as to children – open wide your hearts too.

14 Do not become unevenly yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership have righteousness and lawlessness? And what fellowship has light with darkness?

15 And what agreement has Messiah with Beliya‛al? Or what part does a believer have with an unbeliever?

16 And what union has the Dwelling Place of Elohim with idols? For you are a Dwelling Place of the living Elohim, as Elohim has said, “I shall dwell in them and walk among them, and I shall be their Elohim, and they shall be My people.”

17 Therefore, “Come out from among them and be separate, says יהוה, and do not touch what is unclean, and I shall receive you.

18 “And I shall be a Father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to Me, says יהוה the Almighty.”

Winterizing, or how not to eat the bread of idleness

I don’t know if people realize, but this summer has been the coolest for the US if not the world since we started keeping records. Don’t believe the media hype about “climate change” and hot summers. Those folks are getting paid to lie to you about everything.
This winter is expected to be pretty brutal, and 2015 looks to be REALLY interesting.

My suspicion is the nice inter-glacial we’ve been in called the Holocene has ended and our world will be reverting shortly into its native, cooler state. That being said, our family is starting to prep for winter. Regardless of whether it is cold or mild, our goal is to remain comfortable. It’s possible to do these things with a bit of foresight and a little cash if you have a long enough lead time. We are incredibly rich and blessed, yet cash poor, so our family has to be careful about where we put that cash to use.

I am not trying to prep for the end of civilization, merely for the inevitable irritating occurrences that can be mitigated with a bit of planning. A good example: we went to the beach this last weekend, and took our travel drink kit that has a little propane burner, cups and thinks to make hot coffee, tea, etc. I’ve not looked at it for some time, at least since our flight from the park. One really important item was missing: A LIGHTER. We had nary a match between us either. And of course, we did not discover this until we had already dragged all of our equipment out on the beach, down from the long trail to the parking lot. *le sigh*. I really dislike that, and a bit of checking before we left might have avoided the nuisance.

In light of our preparation failure from the beach, I’ve tried to work out covering all the basics to stay comfortable for the winter. The plan is to keep our eye on the fact that there could be power outages after storms and other unexpected occurrences that are potentially disruptive. This last winter the area saw quite a bit of unexpected snow, up to a couple of feet that paralyzed the local infrastructure. We were used to that in the mountain area of California we left behind, but have grown soft living on the coast where very little changes 
So the basics: heat, water, food, in no particular order.

We are getting a cord of wood delivered this weekend. It’s going to cost around $175 a cord to have it delivered here. Daniel will stack it himself with a bit of *mostly useless* assistance from me and the dogs.
The plan is, Lord willing, to buy one a month until we get 3 or 4 to burn in the fireplace. We have a nice covered spot to put it in, but it’s at the far back end of the storage and will have to be humped up one truckload at a time *then up the stairs* to burn. The exercise possibilities are endless! The owners suggested getting a fireplace insert, but unless I find one that is really cheap I don’t think that will happen. At least I will get the chance to use some of my awesome cast iron cooking in the fireplace this winter 
We also have a small propane heater, and the house has central heating if we absolutely need it. Since we don’t pay the electrical bill we try to use as little as possible. We’ll be filling up the propane bottles one at a time over the next two months as well. The idea is to have multiple vectors of preparations, so if one fails there’s at least one backup.

We’ve been picking up bottled water and canned food, a bit at a time at the store to rebuild our stock. I’ll be canning up everything we don’t eat immediately from the garden, plus more that we’ll be gleaning from trees and bushes in the field next to the facility here. I have a large stock of canning items that I have collected over the years, but still need to add more Tattler reusable lids and jars. I still have not purchased a freezer, and may not get to it this year. I can find one for around $100 but I want to spend that money elsewhere this month, so I don’t think it will happen soon. If I do find some really good meat or vegetable buys, I will can or dehydrate them for now. The freezer is not a true necessity, but more like a giant luxury 

The water is on a well, but we won’t be able to get a hand pump for it due to the design and lack of information about the well itself. The old owners did not give the new owners any info in the sale, and I personally do not want to spend money on getting it inspected.
There is a lake across the street if we were really hard put to get water. We have some Berkey filters, and the plans to make a home made one using the filters and two plastic buckets put together if necessary. I have a back up water filtration system that is primitive but works: one micron cloth filters to run the water through that I picked up on eBay years ago, then boiling it to kill anything not filtered out. A one micron filter will actually come close to cleaning the water completely, but why take chances?
We have two sports bottles that filter water in our travel bags as well.
I wish we had not left our rain barrels behind, but we had no place to put them. I need to find at least two new ones. They seem to be a scarce and expensive commodity in the area. Again, multiple vectors for redundancy.

Thrift store shopping is our friend. We’ve been buying nice old quilts and other warm items in need of mending or cleaning from the thrift stores, and will keep looking for more. We also have been stocking up on yarn finds and sales to make some items both for ourselves and for gifts for friends.
I’ve been trying to sell off unneeded clothing items and oddities from around the house to raise cash to buy more suitable winter items. I’ve done a bit of trading too.
We are still on the lookout for good bags to use as containers for car kits for road emergencies. I have a giant bag that we can *but currently don’t* stick in the ‘Hoe that holds water, a change of clothes, first aid supplies and a drink kit including filtered water bottles but need to break it down to something more manageable that can stay in the vehicle.
We also need to finish collecting medical supplies. We have a bit, but they are currently scattered from Hell to breakfast in various spots around the house and garage.
Daniel hung up my big dry erase board so I could write a checklist to keep track of where we are in the process, along with a weekly Bible verse to memorize.
It’s more than a good start, methinks. If we can keep the momentum up we will be in a good position come winter to stay comfortable without expending a huge amount of effort. This in turn will give us time this winter to start working our way through the big stack of books, sermons, podcasts and assorted sundry items to get closer to our Creator as He has commanded us, so our “saved” time will be put to good use rather than eating the bread of idleness. (Pr 31:27)

What are you doing to get ready for winter?

Respecting him when you don’t necessarily want to…

Sunshine Mary has a really interesting post up about respecting your husband even if he is having trouble leading and/or following through. We don’t so much have a problem around here with my husband failing to lead, it’s more my keeping my mouth shut so he has the space to breathe, let alone lead. He is a great leader and is NOT forgetful, and I know this, but I still have difficulties with asking questions and making statements that will ultimately leave him feeling as if I am challenging his authority.

I am a work in progress, after all *gulp* and still unlearning feminism taught to me by my second wave mother, who still buys into the whole shebang. I would pray that after 25 years of marriage I can just learn to be QUIET and my naturally silent and thoughtful husband can and will do what he needs to for us to rebuild our lives.

I DO trust him, and for the most part my asking questions is NOT rebellion, just curiosity. But again, after so many years of running my mouth he does not trust ME or my motives. When I get to the point to where I am not reacting to things he is saying I know I will finally be in the right place. Or at least starting to get there! God give me grace and strength to submit fully and serve my husband with all my heart.

My big concern right now is supporting my niece, who is having a tremendously hard time with her husband. She is 27, married 5 years with one child. Her husband, brought up by a harridan feminist mother and a silent father, has fallen into drugs and poor choices. My niece had even worse parenting than I did, but is good, and smart, and a college graduate from a family that has only two: her and I. We actually went to community college together, and I made jokes to our classmates about changing her diapers, to her great chagrin. She is a loving Christian girl that is not fully invested in feminism or the female imperative, and there’s hope she can see her way all the way out.

I believe she wants to stay with him, but he is not leaving a clear path forward. He’s not willing to change at this point, and keeps denying the drug problem, even though it’s as plain as the nose on his face. I KNOW a large part of his problem is his meddlesome mother who owns their house although the small family is making the payments, and my niece by not relinquishing any space to lead. She is the “responsible” one in the family, and leads due to his “failing to lead”. I could show her this article, but I don’t know if she would listen, with the situation as serious as it is. She forced him out of the house after she caught him making “shake and bake” meth with a 2 liter bottle in their basement, to protect their daughter and home, and I don’t blame her. But he is not too far gone. He CAN go back to rehab, and back to church. Amongst many things, I told her that she needs help from the men in her life, such as their pastor and her father-in-law. She has no father to turn to, and her mother is a drug addict and a wreck. If he wants back in the home, and I think he does, the men can help convince him to go to rehab and to straighten out his act, in ways that she can’t, and probably shouldn’t.

How would you advise her?

Secular VS Sacred Music

Elspeth over at Loving in the Ruins posted about how her family was working on abstaining “from any music other than Christian music for a month and see what God does with that.”

My problem with that? Being a former actual Heathen who still enjoys metal, I find most Christian music…creepy. There was a South Park episode where Cartman forms his own praise music boy band and turned secular pop music love *koff sex* songs into “Christian” music so icky I can’t even hardly think about it. But I will tell ya, sitting in church, I swear that is exactly what I was hearing.

Mind you, that type of song did not appear at the Reformed Church I attended until it closed, but in the bazillion mainstream churches our family went to trying to find SOMETHING that was not completely appalling and apostate. (This was in California. It’s not easy to find a good church there, for many, many reasons.)

I am trying this idea out, with good results. It’s been a challenge finding music that will fit the bill. The rock music I have enjoyed in the past really is unsuitable to the person I am right now, for the most part. I find the lyrics especially troubling, viewing them through a Biblical lens.

Since I grew up outside of Christianity, I know very few hymns. It’s something I am working on, trying to find versions of classic hymns I find appealing.

There are a few things I enjoy: almost anything by Bifrost Arts, a lot of of Indelible Grace’s catalog and Chavah Messianic Radio.

I have a special place in my heart for Chavah. I can put it on as lovely background music for hours. I don’t generally care for Klezmer type music, and some of the stuff on their is point blank AWFUL, but most of the music is so infectiously cheerful I can’t help but smile when I hear it. Some of the best artists to my listening ears are Sons of Korah (LOVE the Psalms!), Marty Goetz, and Paul Wilbur.

But there is one artist so different from anything I’ve ever heard it actually makes me jump when one of his songs come on.His name is Aviad Cohen, the artist formerly known as “50 Shekel”. He performs Techno-Messianic music, of all things!

His music is definitely not for everyone. But it fits the bill when I need to listen to something uptempo to cheer me up 🙂

Here’s a couple of his songs. The first is techno with a bit of rap in the middle, the second is pop dance music and features Sharon Wilbur.

Heroes of the Reformation

There are a lot of heroes from the Reformation, and lest we forget them by ceasing to talk about them, people MUST revisit the history of the Reformation from time to time. Many of the early Reformers paid a HIGH price for what we take casual advantage of now, such as reading a copy of the Bible in our native language.

Our first hero: READ THIS.

This will tell you about William Tyndale, who was BURNED AT THE STAKE for translating the Bible into English. Here’s an excerpt from the article by John Piper at Desiring God:

“Tyndale hoped to escape this condemnation by getting official authorization for his translation in 1524. But he found just the opposite and had to escape from London to the continent where he did all his translating and writing for the next twelve years. He lived as a fugitive the entire time until his death near Brussels in 1536. He watched a rising tide of persecution and felt the pain of seeing young men burned alive who were converted by reading his translation and his books.

His closest friend, John Frith, was arrested in London and tried by Thomas More and burned alive July 4, 1531, at the age of twenty-eight. Richard Bayfield ran the ships that took Tyndale’s books to England. He was betrayed and arrested, and Thomas More wrote on December 4, 1531, that Bayfield “the monk and apostate [was] well and worthily burned in Smythfelde.”

Three weeks later the same end came to John Tewkesbury. He was converted by reading Tyndale’s Parable of the Wicked Mammon which defended justification by faith alone. He was whipped in Thomas More’s garden and had his brow squeezed with small ropes till blood came out of his eyes. Then he was sent to the Tower where he was racked till he was lame. Then at last they burned him alive. Thomas More “rejoiced that his victim was now in hell, where Tyndale ‘is like to find him when they come together.’

Four months later James Bainham followed in the flames in April of 1532. He had stood up during the mass at St. Augustine’s Church in London and lifted a copy of Tyndale’s New Testament and pleaded with the people to die rather than deny the word of God. That virtually was to sign his own death warrant.

Add to these Thomas Bilney, Thomas Dusgate, John Bent, Thomas Harding, Andrew Hewet, Elizabeth Barton and others, all burned alive for sharing the views of William Tyndale about the Scriptures and the reformed faith.”

When I read this I was moved to tears. Don’t let their sacrifice be forgotten or whitewashed in today’s “acceptance and tolerance” atmosphere of “can’t we all just get along?!?” Xtianity.

Acts 20:7 and the Sabbath

NATSAB: The First Day of the Week and Acts 20:7

I read this article by Pete Rambo with a great deal of interest. He’s a thoughtful and passionate guy on his blog, and I’ve found he is well worth reading. It helps for me that he comes from a Reformed background, so I get what he’s saying and the journey that he has undertaken, as mine is somewhat similar.

A while back I had a big, drawn out discussion with the pastor from our old church *Reformed Baptist* regarding the Sabbath. I wanted to know what he thought about why the Sabbath had been moved Sunday instead of remaining on Saturday. Pastor Don believed strongly in keeping the Sabbath, as it was a part of the Big 10, like many of the Reformed churches, but felt just as strongly that it was on Sunday and used Acts 20:7 as a large part of his defense. I wish I had looked up the words in Strong’s at the time, as I think it would have bolstered what I had to say about the subject. My take is that the Sabbath was never moved BY GOD from Saturday, and as a person that believes that God is unchanging, and his word is the final authority I note that there is no Biblical support for the moving of the Sabbath. We as a family are always testing everything, and trying to root out man made traditions from what Scripture states.
Full disclosure: I am a Sabbath keeper, but far from perfectly. We are mindful that it is meant to be a day of rest, but we are not Jewish and don’t follow Talmudic law in the observance in any way.

Neither of us convinced the other, but it was a spirited and enjoyable evening. Pastor Don died unexpectedly last spring, and after a failed long search for a replacement the church closed a few weeks ago. Pastor Don will be sorely missed.
There’s a video this same blogger posted a day or so ago, that I think fits nicely with this that I am gonna stick here. I have had this same experience a WHOLE bunch of times, and it made me laugh.

On “experiencing life first”

This.

“For some reason as he told me about it I couldn’t help but recall this post from Sunshine. My second thought was that she wasn’t referring to experiencing “life” at all, but what she really meant was experiencing multiple relationships.”

This is the single woman experience, in a nutshell. I can feel a bigger post a comin’ on, regarding growing up with a feminist mom, and how she missed out on just about everything breaking “free” of the patriarchy. She was a multiple marrier back in the 70’s, before it became REALLY fashionable to commit serial monogamy, and had three children by different men. This post will not slam her, as I don’t wish to, recognizing she is a child of her times as well as noting she truly believed that she was doing the right thing by living her life “her way”. She is a now delightful woman in her 70’s, and still defending her choices even though you can see a clear line from those choices to the results that she now finds dissatisfying, near the end of her life.

More later!

Found an “old friend”

https://musingsofamountainmama.wordpress.com/

I used to read this lovely blog regularly and credit her for being the first person to share the Gospel to me. She also lead me to MB but found him to not be to her own personal liking. I probably should have heeded what she said, but then I would not know what I know now 🙂

She’s had several blogs. Every one in a while she gets fed up and quits, then her readers have to wait for her to resurface.  She is definitely worth reading.