Revisionist History, Pride and Judgment Day

“History is written by the winners” is a trite statement, and not true. I know it’s making a point, but alas, it’s not true.

The South lost the American Civil War. They lost big time.

Not only were a generation of men cut down, their entire economic existence was eliminated with the abolishing of slavery.

The South was stuck with 1) a huge loss to explain and 2) an odd position of defending the fact that they fought to enslave other humans.

The South, during the War, was fine calling themselves “Rebels” or “Rebs.” But after the war, they felt a need to rewrite history.

“Was your father a Rebel and a Traitor? Did he fight in the service of the Confederacy for the purpose of defeating the Union, or was he a Patriot, fighting for the liberties granted him under the Constitution in defense of his native land, and for a cause he knew to be right?”

That reads much better than: we fought for the right to enslave others.

“Keeping to this revisionist tendency, rather than propagate undignified titles like “the late war” (too vague), the “Civil War” (too revolutionary), and “the War of Rebellion” (far too revolutionary), in the late 1880’s [Confederate Veterans societies] approved resolutions encouraging the conflict’s official designation as “the War Between the States.” Successive generations of Southern schoolchildren would learn it as such.” (Quotes from here, page 264)

I have even heard it referenced as such. It wasn’t called that til 20 years after the fact.

Losers rewrite history too. In fact, Losers might have more of a reason to influence our memories–they have reputations to re-inflate.

Winners tend to gloat and exaggerate their awesome; losers tend to downplay their losses. Both are primarily interested in looking better.

What are you embarrassed about in your life? Do you feel a need to rewrite your history, to exaggerate your wins or downplay your losses? Do you feel a need to rip others apart to make yourself look better?

All of these things are symptoms of pride. Pride must be killed in you. Changing facts to suit your arrogant needs may work in history, but it does not work before God.

Be real with reality. Deal with it. Take care of it. One day it will be too late and God isn’t interested in your revisionist history.

The Game of Learning

Stupid people abound.

Apparently, being stupid pays off since so many people decide to stay there.

I never understood stupid.

Then again, there are some who think I am stupid, perhaps stupid is relative.

No, I didn’t say my relatives are stupid.

Proverbs 10:23 is translated differently by every translation. But I think the NASV is a  good translation of it, or at least a translation that is the most fun.

Doing wickedness is like sport to a fool,
And so is wisdom to a man of understanding.

Young’s Literal Translation is similar:

“To execute inventions [is] as play to a fool,
And wisdom to a man of understanding.”

“Sport” and “play” are both translations of the Hebrew word sechoq, which is usually translated as “laughter.”

I like that.

Being wicked is fun, a game for wicked people. Getting wisdom is a game, a source of fun, for smart people.

Do you find learning a source of entertainment? Something you would associate with laughter, play, and fun?

If not, I imagine you view learning as drudgery and work, which is why many remain stupid. Stupid either does wickedness, or gets taken in by wickedness.

Proverbs is all about the value of wisdom and understanding. Getting those things is not automatic. It begins with the fear of God.

Learning God’s wisdom can be a source of enjoyment. It’s why David said he delights in the law of God. Why John says God’s commandments are not grievous.

Once you have a right relationship with God, you know your place and His place, what He says becomes a source of joy, laughter, and play.

There is no place for boring, dry, humdrum Christianity. If that’s what it is to you, get right with God.

Yes, there is work and study, and all of that is not fun, but there is a joy in learning. Find that joy.

Happy is the man that findeth wisdom,
and the man that getteth understanding.

Bearing Life’s Burdens

Everybody has problems.

One of our problems is: what do we do with our problems?

The Apostle Paul tells us in Galatians 6:5 that, “every man shall bear his own burden.

Seems simple enough–got a problem? Then take care of it. Don’t burden others, be responsible, man up, and deal with it.

Paul also tells us, three verses earlier, “Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ.

OK, seems simple enough: Do what you can to help others bear their burdens.

So, OK, now I bear my burdens and I’m bearing other people’s burdens? Where am I getting the energy to bear all this?

Cast thy burden upon the Lord, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.

The Psalmist tells The Righteous that they can trust the Lord to help with their burdens.

As you bear your own and other’s burdens, throw those burdens on the Lord.

Remember, His yoke is easy, and His burden is light.

Christ is pulling with you. Don’t forget that.

Also don’t forget that this promise is for “the righteous.”

Perhaps life is beating you down so much because you’re not right with God. You don’t know the right way to deal with problems. Perhaps you are running to other possible sources of deliverance beside the Lord, because your unrighteousness is deceiving you, or making you too afraid to come to God for assistance.

These are possibilities that deserve attentive consideration.

We will know Christ is pulling with us because our whining will decrease and our patience will increase.

You know you are pulling alone when the whining is ramped up and patience is out the window.

Eternity is a long time. We are living for that.

All this stuff here is just trouble waiting to be smashed into oblivion with the glories of eternal fellowship with our Savior.

The Gift of God is Eternal Life

Eternal life is a gift of God; not the gift from God.

It’s possible I’m splitting hairs, but I borrowed the idea from Oswald Chambers, so he’s a hair-splitter too!

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

So, what would be the distinction there?

A gift from God means the gift originates with Him. He is the giver.

A gift of God might carry with it the idea that it’s part of God. In other words, God is, in essence, the gift, and this gift brings eternal life.

In other words, eternal life isn’t just a thing God gives you, like getting a bike from your dad for your birthday.

But eternal life is part of being in God, because God is eternal life.

“I am the way, the truth and the LIFE.”

Receiving Christ is a receiving of life.

No God=No Life

When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.

“. . . we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

Does Google Hate Jesus?

A Google user recently pointed out that Jesus doesn’t get his own “knowledge graph” when you search his name.

A knowledge graph is the little box at the top of Google searches that gives brief details about who the searched person is.

The kind of thing you’ll see if you search Muhammed.

Apparently, Jesus doesn’t get his own knowledge graph result, but other prominent religious figures like Muhammad, Moses, and Buddha do.

Does Google hate Jesus?

Well, I wouldn’t put it past them, but no. Once again, just relax everyone.

“You won’t find a graph for Vishnu, the Supreme God of Vaishnavism, one of the three main sects of Hinduism or Shiva, another popular Hindu deity. You won’t find a graph for Kirshna either.

“There’s no knowledge graph for God, Allah, or Yahweh either. What do Jesus, Vishnu, Allah, and these left-out entities have in common?

“They’re all God, or gods. Sure, Jesus Christ is also believed to be a human, the son of God. But in Christian teachings, Jesus is also God himself. It looks like Google is simply shying away from assigning any sort of god their own knowledge graph.”

5 Ways to Know you are Identified With Christ

“Identification with Christ” is the point of the Gospel.

Identification is more than just calling ourselves “Jesus people” or “Christians.”

What Christ did; we join Him in. That’s identification with Christ.

How does one know if one is identified with Christ? There are many ways, but here are five key ones.

1) Desire to Defeat Sin
Although sin gets little air time, wanting to defeat sin should have been the main reason you came to Christ. You are fed up with your failure and with the world’s empty answers about your soul’s longings. You know there’s more to life than flailing around amusing yourself. You know Christ is the only answer to sin and its problems.

2) Desire to Pursue Righteousness
If you are putting off sin, you will discover time on your hands. What to do with yourself now that you aren’t sinning? Christianity is more than defeating sin; it’s living in righteousness. Put off the old and put on the new. This involves first, knowing what God thinks is right and second, going and doing that.

3) Humility
Self-righteousness, pride, and arrogance sum up the life of sin. It’s all about you. Now, as identified with Christ, it’s all about Him. It’s no longer I who lives, but Christ who lives in me. You don’t trust yourself. You don’t rejoice in yesterday’s victory; you watch out for today’s coming battles.

4) Service
Other people suddenly show up on your radar. You care more about helping, than evoking sympathy and burdening others with your whiny problems. You stop being busy, and start finding time to be helpful to others. You submit to others for their edification, rather than fighting for your rights.

5) Fruit of the Spirit
Things start happening in your life that never happened before. You grow in self-control and patience. The stuff that used to get you worked up ceases to have that effect. There is a calmness that carries you. You become even-keeled emotionally, and yet feel certain emotions like never before.

There are many other signs you are truly identified with Christ. Each of the aspects of the fruit of the Spirit could get its own paragraph here. Prayer is a huge indicator as well–are you talking to Christ? A desire to read the Word grows. You desire to know God, not just use Him for your temporal blessings. You desire spiritual knowledge to know what to do because you realize how little you know, rather than growing in knowledge to win arguments.

The bottom line is: words matter very little in proving you are saved and identified with Christ. What does your life communicate? Does Christ cross your mind during the day? Do you desire to do what is pleasing to Him? When making decisions, do verses come to mind?

It’s a new life! If you’re still living the old, either wake up, or get saved, which ever applies to you!