In This World

The God Who Designs and Defines Love

I know I haven’t posted on here in a while.

That’s my bad. With the busy-ness of seminary and working at my church and leading Bible studies and trying to stay somewhat in-shape and socializing and trying to get at least a few hours of sleep a night, I haven’t had much extra time to be writing, and what free time I have had, I have spent researching for a series of videos I am preparing for my YouTube channel.

That being said, beginning this week, the fruits of that labor will hopefully begin to pour fourth. Starting today…..

The God Who Designs and Defines Love

Resurrecting God the Father

It is essential to my argument that I begin today’s writing with a disclaimer:

** Before even beginning to address specific gender roles as they are outlined in the Bible – especially as it pertains to why God is consistently, throughout the biblical narrative, referred to with male pronouns – we must establish that we are discussing things from a strictly Christian perspective. It is easy to object to the biblical ideas of masculinity and femininity when considering the sinfulness of man and the oppression that submission might so easily espouse within power-hungry and demeaning individuals, but we must accept, going into the argument, that we are speaking from the ideal as established by God in His creation of man. In this, we must discuss matters such as submission, sacrifice, headship, and leadership not according to the negative connotations established by a prideful and lustful society, but rather according to the biblical standard to which we all must strive. When you give a man a gun, he may use it to either protect or to slay – we may guide him towards the former, but the option by which he uses it is up to him. All rules and roles in any governance or society stand the possibility of being abused; the Bible seeks to establish gender roles in a manner that is holy and set apart, glorifying to God for the betterment of mankind. A rational and concise conversation regarding such matters is impossible if we do not first establish a stable worldview which we can then extrapolate. Thus, for the purposes of this article, it is my request that we set aside secular ideologies and rather read the “He” of God the Father according to the Biblical context, that we might better understand Christian ideals and even more greatly come to grasp the beauty of God’s love towards us. **

I will begin my argument by stating this: God is spirit. Of course, He stepped into the flesh via the person of Jesus Christ and thus lived on the earth for approximately thirty-three and a half years as a Middle Eastern man, but from eternity past to eternity future God is, according to His divine nature, spirit. Thus, He is neither male nor female; however, the way in which God manifests Himself is masculine in nature, in that he designed man as an image meant to reflect Him. Therefore my thesis is that our use of the pronouns “He,” “Him,” “His,” etc. are essential in comprehending our own selves in relationship to God.

Resurrecting God the Father

Rise of the Mystics - Book Review

I had the pleasure of being part of Ted Dekker’s Launch Team for the second and final installment in his “Beyond the Circle” series, Rise of the Mystics, and as it finally hits bookshelves today – Tuesday, October 2, 2018 – I can finally post my review of it!

Rise of the Mystics - Book Review

1 Passageonians

From David, a follower of the Way and a disciple of the one true King,

To those brothers and sisters in Christ for whom, by the grace of God, I was permitted to shepherd during our time in the Holy Land:

Grace, peace, and understanding unto you from God our Father, Christ His Son, and the Spirit that grants discernment, alive in us right here and right now.

I want to begin by first thanking the Lord for my every moment shared with you, from the first encounters as strangers to the reluctant farewells by which we departed only a short time later. It is by His grace alone that we were brought together, and if I have come to know the character of the Lord at all, it would be left understood that He is not one who wastes any of the time He has allotted. For this reason, I believe that our short time together was a period instituted by God, and through that time I hope we found ourselves capable of bringing Him glory upon glory, living from faith to faith, from hope to hope, from joy to joy. Yes, He gave us this time that our spirits might be enriched and uplifted and our faiths strengthened all the more, but even more so, He gave us this time that we might return the glory back unto Him who provided us with our every breath. To Him be the praise for granting us such an opportunity, and even if such an opportunity had been lost, let us praise Him still more!

1 Passageonians

The Artist's Intent

ART AND BEAUTY – creation and attractiveness – are two entities that are as inseparably linked together as they are curious to the pining soul. One’s definition of art might differ from another’s just as easily as what they call beautiful might differ from their best friend’s definition. Nevertheless, despite cultural changes and despite stretches through millennia and despite various styles and products and mediums being passed throughout all history, art and beauty are indissolubly bound together, connected by the fact that art cannot be art without layers of beauty, and what is beautiful cannot be beautiful if it is not in some way artistic. They are two sides to the same coin, one the entity as described by the quality and the other the quality given expression through the entity. When you begin to interpret these two things in conjunction with one another, you arrive at the point of purpose, what some would call “meaning.”

The Artist's Intent

Vegas

59 dead. Over 500 injured. The deadliest mass shooting in modern US history.

This is the news that we all woke up to on Monday morning as a result of the tragic events that took place in Las Vegas on Sunday night. A 64-year old man made his way up to the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay hotel and sent a hailstorm raining down on innocent concert-goers for Lord knows what reason, and now we wake up and fall to our knees as we ask God a short but extremely important question: “Why?”

What does this mean for all of us? What does it mean for Christians as people begin to accuse our God of malevolence or claim that this incomprehensible evil is proof of His inexistence? How are we supposed to live faithfully in a world where evil runs rampant and we are striving to live like Noah in a world that’s unaware of the Flood that’s coming? How do we respond to this pain, this suffering, this tragedy? What cold we possibly do to cope with the outbreaks of hatred and violence in the world that surrounds us?

Vegas

2 Percenter...& Proud?

I love Texas A&M.

I really do. I’ll admit that when I made my first college visit to the sprawling campus my junior year of high school I wasn’t the biggest fan (I didn’t grow up in an Aggie family, so I didn’t have the prior bias), but each and every day I’ve been here, the place has grown on me. I flash my thumb, I sing my “Howdy,” I shout my “Whoop!” I now love the campus, I love the atmosphere, and I love the people.

I even like the football too.

The thing is, I’m not one of those Aggies. You know what I’m talking about, one of those towel-wavin’, yell-shoutin’, ring-dunkin’, maroon-wearin’, horse-laughin’, hardcore Aggie elites clad in nothing but maroon and white day and night, caring so much for all things Aggieland that if there was a course offered called Aggie Traditions, they would come out with a 12.0 GPA. Here at A&M we call those people “Red A**” (I censor this because sadly we are not talking in terms of donkeys), and I’m simply not one of those. I am what people at A&M would call a “2 Perecenter,” which the Wikipedia page for Aggie Terms (yes, that’s a thing) defines as “Aggies who choose not to participate in Texas A&M traditions.” This isn’t to say that I despise all the Aggie traditions or that I hate the school (which I’ve already clarified), but simply that I came to the school purely because it was a good school to go to, and for some reason have never been able to truly grasp the whole Aggie tradition thing.

2 Percenter...& Proud?

Beauty and the Beast, but from Gaston's Perspective

How was I to know that love would be my own undoing?

Love for my town. Love for its people. Love for its safety. Love for a woman.

Love for Belle.

I had never been the most conventional of people. I was an adventurer by heart, desiring nothing but to take on the next greatest challenge while ensuring the safety of my poor, provincial town with its many citizens too oblivious to know the obvious threats of the surrounding French countryside, including wolves and beasts of all shapes and sizes. But I kept them safe, and what they didn’t know couldn’t hurt them as long as I was on watch.

Beauty and the Beast, but from Gaston's Perspective