Sunday, May 21, 2006

The Weekend

Sorry I'm late on the next Ecclesiastes post. I'm sorry I'm late with a post period.

I thought about posting Friday but I thought I would wait for Saturday, you see, Saturday was pageant day. My wife and her mom enters one of our daughters in pageants. That means I stay out of the way all day long and/or hide which means usually watch a movie or sit at the computer. Yesterday however was not one of those days. I decided to go outside and rake our yard. While I was at it I raked my mother-in-laws yard and then part of our neighbors. It was like Jesus said, "Are you frustrated? RAKE!". And so I did with 3 big ol scabbed up blisters to show for it.

Today we took the girls to the city pool and now my big fat belly is all tanned and I'm tired from throwing girls through the air and pulling them around the pool at break neck speed!

We probably should be going to church right about now but were going to stay home. I'm just not ready for another sermon on how to get saved....but I digress

I will try tomorrow to get the next Ecclesiastes post up. I know what I want to write about. I have it all in my head. I just need a couple names I don't feel like looking up right now and I'll be set. It's going to be on Ecclesiastes 2:16-17. Just think of what one person can do. Can you think of any examples? I'll give you a hint. Abraham.

Thanks for all your comments on the previous post. I didn't expect that! Just some spontaneous thoughts that dumped out into a post.

Thanks for coming to Deeper Truth!

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Jesus is my American Idol!

My wife likes to watch American Idol so we were watching tonight when the contestants all went back to their respective home towns to thousands upon thousands of cheering, screaming, hysterical, people.

All this for people who are not even technically stars yet.

Wouldn't it be nice if we could get that excited about a Savior who died to show how much He loved us and wanted us to be with Him?

Jesus wasn't a star but there was a time when He road into a city to cheering, screaming, hysterical, people......yet the same people screamed "Crucify Him!" only a few short hours later.

People are fickle like that and thus the church is driven in purpose to please the people with it's best American Idol glitz and glam to attract an unfaithful bunch who only want to hear about their best life now.

Perhaps if we would "determined not to know any thing among" the world, "save Jesus Christ, and him crucified" the Holy Ghost would move and produce "The sacrifices of God" which "are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart". "The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit" ( 1 Corinthians 2:2, Psalm 51:17,34:18).

What did that say? The Lord would SAVE them!

We have it all backwards.

"He that goeth forth and weepeth, bearing precious seed, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing, bringing his sheaves with him" (Psalm 126:6).

We want to rejoice first. We want feel good messages that will help us find a purpose for our best life now. We don't want to be told that smoking a cigarette is a sin. We don't want to be told that living together out of wedlock is a sin. We don't want to hear about our braty kids that don't listen because we plop them in front of video games and TV's while we work two jobs and marriages crumble chasing an American Idol dream. Nope! We want to forget all that every Sunday when we go to church and hear what a great bunch of people we are and how proud god (small G) is of us for simply showing up every other Sunday for the fourth service.

I'm rambling. This is a spontaneous post. Just something I was thinking about.........maybe God will use it bear some precious seed.

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Ecclesiastes 2:14-15

"The wise man's eyes are in his head; but the fool walketh in darkness: and I myself perceived also that one event happeneth to them all. Then said I in my heart, As it happeneth to the fool, so it happeneth even to me; and why was I then more wise? Then I said in my heart, that this also is vanity" (Ecclesiastes 2:14-15).

In the previous Ecclesiastes post we saw that in verse 11 Solomon turns to look back at everything. In verse 12 he turns himself to look back upon his actions. Now he begins to draw conclusions from looking back upon his past and actions.

Solomon knew that the wisdom of a sensible person guides his way of life, but the stupidity of fools misleads them (See Proverbs 14:8). He also knew wisdom is directly in front of an understanding person, but the eyes of a fool are looking around all over the world (See Proverbs 17:24).

The Hebrew word roshe means to shake; the head (as most easily shaken). It would seem that Solomon is saying that a wise man is not easily shaken. The word rendered darkness is kho-shek'. It means, the dark; hence (literally) darkness; figuratively misery, destruction, death, ignorance, sorrow, wickedness: - dark (-ness), night, obscurity. I am pretty sure Solomon was miserable. I believe he knew he was walking toward destruction and death. I believe he knew he walked in wickedness. If he didn't know while he was walking in those paths he certainly knew when he sat to write Ecclesiastes and looked back at the path he took.

Perhaps Solomons was warning us. Do not let your focus be shaken from the Lord or you will die! In the Word of God separation from God is death. Sin separates us from God. No, We don't lose our salvation but we separate ourselves from God by our sins. God's Word says, "Every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death (James 1:14-15).

Do a search of the word fool in Proverbs. You will find it 41 times in 41 verses. What Solomon says about fools in Proverbs all applies to him! Maybe this is why he says here, "As it happeneth to the fool, so it happeneth even to me; and why was I then more wise?". Here is one example of what God has to say about a fool through Solomon in Proverbs. "Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit" (Proverbs 25:5).

We are seeing God's answer to Solomons folly in Ecclesiastes. Solomon was drawen away by his lust which caused is eyes to be shaken from the Lord which caused him to walk into darkness where he was separated from the Lord and died spiritually which brought misery and sorrow. God's answer was to rise up 3 adversaries against Solomon which most likely caused havoc in his kingdom. I imagine Solomon was full of regret at this point, looking back, remembering the wisdom God had given him that he exchanged for the folly of the world. Then he said, "that this also is vanity" or pointless.

It is indeed pointless to allow anything to distract us from the Lord, but, God Is Good! "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." (1 John 1:9). This promise is only for those who know Jesus as their personal Lord and Savior. If your saved may I ask what foolish decisions have shaken your eyes from the Lord today? May I be so bold as to ask what you might need to bring to God and confess? You don't have to carry that burden anymore. The guilt will be lifted. The darkness will clear.

Death does come for everyone. The wise and fool alike. For the fool who dies without Christ there will be no forgiveness and cleansing. They will be eternally separated from God, the second death. "Death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death" (Revelations 20:14). If you don't know where your going then click below to find out about Jesus. Don't die a fool.

I want to know Jesus

Monday, May 15, 2006

Going to be late posting, SORRY!

I'm sorry I have not got to the next Ecclesiastes post.

We had revival last week. This past weekend was busy. Tonight I have the last classes of the quarter for my seminary extension classes.

Got the final test tonight! *whew*

I will try and get the next post by tomorrow night.


Thanks for coming to Deeper Truth!

Friday, May 12, 2006

Called to Preach

I think I have always knowen that the Lord has a purpose for me. I think I might have even knowen this before I was born again. I believe I was always and still am scared of the purpose. "What if I stumble? What if I fall? What if I lose my step and make a fool of us all? Will the love continue, when my walk becomes a crawl?"*

When I first got saved I got to the part of the Word where Solomon asked for wisdom. Of course this is after Proverbs, and I thought, YES! This is my prayer! This is it! I think the Lord honored that request. I also think Satan stomped all over it and I let him for a long time. Satan did this with one sentence I have heard repeatedly. "You have to have more than a head knowledge". I know better than to let this judgmental statement get the better of me now.

I believe I have been called to preach. I started actually voicing that belief almost two years ago. It scares me to death. I have preached four times. Once on Heaven and the other three times I preached what I believe I am called to preach which is, "the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins" (Mark 1:4).

I have repeatedly heard from people, even my wife, that preaching sin is not what people want to here. I should preach an encouraging message. My pastor has even fell into this trap. This is why I have preached once on Heaven.

I'm not sure I'm called to be a pastor, the fear of failure looms large, but I have no doubt I am called to preach. I think my call is that of Ezekiel. "Prophesy upon these bones, and say unto them, O ye dry bones, hear the word of the LORD" (Ezekiel 37:4). I think I am to be an evangelist which I have often heard is a dying thing. I believe I am to be an evangelist to the church.

"God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty;
And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to naught things that are" (1 Corinthians 1:27-28).

I believe these verses are me. I was and may still be the foolish thing. I was certainly base.

I have heard that the message of repentance is not being preached anymore. I hear a lot of people talking about that fact. I see a lot of pews that are empty and I see alot of pews full of empty people. I believe the end is near. I believe Jesus is coming soon. I believe the message, "Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand" (Matthew 3:2) is the right Word for the right time and as scary as it may be and as much as I'm afraid I could be wrong and/or fail I think I am the man called.

I'm just waiting on the Lord to, I guess, have other men see it too.

*lyrics by DC Talk

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Ecclesiastes 2:11-13

"Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labor that I had labored to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun.
And I turned myself to behold wisdom, and madness, and folly: for what can the man do that cometh after the king? even that which hath been already done.
Then I saw that wisdom excelleth folly, as far as light excelleth darkness" (Ecclesiastes 2:11-13).

We covered verse 11 in the previous Ecclesiastes post. I include it here for the first part that says, "Then I looked".

Before chapter 2 verse 11 Solomon was talking about all that he had done. He really hasn't gotten into his full rant yet. Everything before lays the foundation for everything to come. It is in chapter 2 verse 11 that Solomon begins forming Ecclesiastes in his mind. He's looking back now at all that was before this verse. From here on out everything is a review, with more elaboration, of everything already said.

Solomon turns to look back at everything. In verse 12 he turns himself to look back upon his actions. In Ecclesiastes 2:10 I stated, "I am convinced he delved into the deepest darkest sins any of us can imagine". I think Solomon saying, "what can the man do that cometh after the king? even that which hath been already done." is another hint that he did everything we can imagine somebody totally rich, totally powerful, totally in control, and totally in charge can, could, and/or would do.

Notice in verse 13 that it is after everything is said and done he realizes that "wisdom excelleth folly, as far as light excelleth darkness". Isn't that the way we are? When we are walking in darkness we are blind. We can't see! At best we can only see what is right in front of us.

When we keep company with folly then folly is all we will know. Everything will be ridiculous. Not ridiculous funny either. Ridiculous as in nothing will make sense. There is no meaning to life in folly. It's all for the moment with no vision beyond that moment. It's when we repent of our ways and turn to the Lord and His wisdom in His Word that we find ourselves looking back at where we were and saying, "Wisdom is better than foolish ways".

If you are like me you have suddenly walked into the light several times and found out just how far in the dark you were. Darkness is always a subtle thing. It creeps in as the light fades but light is always a sudden thing. Light banishes darkness in an instant but darkness will never banish light.

Though I may choose to walk in the Light of the Lord I have often found myself in the dark and wondering how I got there......usually just after the Lord brings me out.

Where are you today?

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

*Sigh* Rained out again!

I'm going to go broke without work. I am one of those people who simply cannot afford any days off. Two days in a row is going to cripple us for a month of making up the difference.

Anyways, I'm going to work on the next Ecclesiastes post and God willing get it posted sometime today. ...... EDIT: It's later now. I did yard work and emptied a shed of a bunch of trash. I have revival in a little bit. No new Ecclesiastes post today. Sorry.

If my mom reads this....SEND MONEY!

Yep, I'm a big kid!

Just in case you missed any.....

Ecclesiastes 2:10 and Ecclesiastes 2:11 were posted in the last couple days.

Rain, rain, go away........Awwww, blah, we need it and last night at revival I was thanking God for it.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Rained Out, Day Off

I was rained out of work today so I got another post up.

There is three post that came in fairly rapid succession, not counting this one.

Thought I would mention it since the previous two run together sorta.

Have a great day your in!

Ecclesiastes 2:11

"Then I looked on all the works that my hands had wrought, and on the labor that I had labored to do: and, behold, all was vanity and vexation of spirit, and there was no profit under the sun" (Ecclesiastes 2:11).

In the last post and the previous verse in Ecclesiastes we saw Solomon chasing after all of his desires and getting every one of them. I closed the previous post with the thought that Ecclesiastes was his portion which was his condition while writing. He was an old broken man regretting every desire he ever laid his eyes on. This verse confirms that. "Then I looked"....and he found "no profit under the sun".

I have throughout these post questioned exactly what Solomon labored to do. I have said he didn't actually labor to do anything. I think the Hebrew word rendered works further solidifies the idea that Solomon did very little with his hands.

The word rendered works in Hebrew is mah-as-eh'. It means, "an action (good or bad); generally a transaction; abstractly activity; by implication a product (specifically a poem) or (generally) property". This word comes from a root word which means, "to do or make".

Solomon looked upon his transactions. He looked upon his actions. He looked upon the results of his transactions which caused things to be done or to be made. A couple of these things I am certain were done by the Lord through him, like building the temple, but most of the things Solomon seems to be taking an account of in Ecclesiastes have very little to do with the Lord. Indeed, his works become little more than activity and product. The end product being "vanity and vexation of spirit". I don't think Solomon could have picked a more apt word to describe his works at this point in his life.

The three Hebrew words after mah-as-eh' are very interesting too. They are: shel "on account of, what soever, which soever: - cause, sake", ...: aw-saw', "to do or make" and, ...: yawd, "a hand (the open one (indicating power, means, direction, etc.)".

So Solomon by his transactions/actions, on his account, caused things to be done or made by his power, means, direction, ect. Solomon certainly was not leaving any room for the Lord to have done anything at all and yet Solomon himself did not labor at all! This is why Solomon found that all he had labored to do was vanity and vexation of spirit, that is, his spirit.

Solomon took pride in things he had not honestly labored for. He looked upon things he commanded to be done by his power and took pride in works that were not his own. He took credit for works that the Lord had done through him. He took credit for works he caused to happen that had nothing to do with the Lord.

As you go through life today give credit where credit is due. "Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to whom custom; fear to whom fear; honor to whom honor. Owe no man any thing, but to love one another: for he that loveth another hath fulfilled the law" (Romans 13:7-8).

Don't be a glory hound! "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God" (1 Corinthians 10:31).

Whether a parent, a boss, or a king... remember to pat the childs, the employes, the subjects, ect., remember to pat their backs and thank God and give Him the glory for the child, the good employee, the loyal subjects, ect. It was God who put you in the authoritive position and it was God who gave you the child, the employee, the subjects, ect.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

Ecclesiastes 2:10

"And whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them, I withheld not my heart from any joy; for my heart rejoiced in all my labor: and this was my portion of all my labor.
(Ecclesiastes 2:10)

The word joy in this verse means "blithesomeness or glee, (religious or festival)". It's interesting to note that Merriam-Webster defines blithe as, "1: of a happy lighthearted character or disposition, 2: lacking due thought or consideration".

A happy lighthearted character is what I am certain Solomon was thinking here. It was not the joy of the Lord. I think if we just read his next words it verifies his happy lighthearted ways, for he says his heart rejoiced in what? Not in the Lord! His heart rejoiced in his labors.

What exactly was his portion? Who's labor? Did Solomon really have a right to rejoice in anything other than the Lord? I don't think so. It was the Lord who established him. It was the Lord who blessed him. It was all the Lords doing and here is Solomon saying "my labor" twice!

How did Solomon fall so far? Just back up a bit in the same verse. "Whatsoever mine eyes desired I kept not from them", and that was his problem. I probably would have a pretty happy lighthearted character too if I had everything I ever wanted given to me, but Solomon could not find any joy. At least not the kind that comes from being in right standing with God.

What really happened is Solomon got all he desired and it caused blithesomeness or glee which caused him to be lacking due thought or consideration. I am sure Solomon did not mean the second definition when he wrote this but that is what happened with him none the less.

Solomon got everything and anything. He did everything and anything. He saw God perform miracles we can only study and at the same time I am convinced he delved into the deepest darkest sins any of us can imagine. What was his portion? It wasn't the joy he speaks of here. His portion is Ecclesiastes. An old broken man regretting every desire he ever laid his eyes on.

What will your portion be?

Saturday, May 06, 2006

Fixing up Deeper Truth..... You can help!

I have been toying with the header here as you can see among other small tweaks and such you may or may not have noticed.

I received a comment that this page is too big for at least one persons screen. Does anyone else have this problem?

Do you have any suggestions on how I could make Deeper Truth better? Easier to view? Easier to read? Anything?

I have not found any templates I like so I have settled in on tweaking the one I have. Sometimes things work. Sometimes they don't. Hopefully I am catching the things that don't before they get published, if not, I ask you to inform me of errors.

Your comments, suggestions, criticisms, and/or critiques of any and everything here are greatly appreciated.

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Ecclesiastes 2:4-9

"I made me great works; I built me houses; I planted me vineyards:
I made me gardens and orchards, and I planted trees in them of all kind of fruits:
I made me pools of water, to water therewith the wood that bringeth forth trees:
I got me servants and maidens, and had servants born in my house; also I had great possessions of great and small cattle above all that were in Jerusalem before me:
I gathered me also silver and gold, and the peculiar treasure of kings and of the provinces: I got me men singers and women singers, and the delights of the sons of men, as musical instruments, and that of all sorts.
So I was great, and increased more than all that were before me in Jerusalem: also my wisdom remained with me" (Ecclesiastes 2:4-9).

What is the first thing you notice about these verses?

Look again, take your time.

Five verses, five I's. Do you know what is in the middle of sIn? "I" am.

I did this. I did that. I I I! ME ME ME!

What did Solomon really do? Did he really build anything? Or did he have things built? Who allowed him to do anything at all? Who's blessing was upon this list of things?

"I made me great works; I built me houses; I planted me vineyards". Oh really? There was another time that people built them a great work and a great house. "And they said, Go to, let us build us a city and a tower, whose top may reach unto heaven; and let us make us a name, lest we be scattered abroad upon the face of the whole earth" (Genesis 11:4). Was this Solomons attitude too? I don't know but I would guess he crossed that line even if it was unintentional and the Lords punishment fell upon him just as it did the people at Babel.

Read the verses again please.

Now read these,

"When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the LORD thy God for the good land which he hath given thee.
Beware that thou forget not the LORD thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day:
Lest when thou hast eaten and art full, and hast built goodly houses, and dwelt therein;
And when thy herds and thy flocks multiply, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied;
Then thine heart be lifted up, and thou forget the LORD thy God, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage" (Deuteronomy 8:10-14).

Solomon had history. Solomon had these exact words written for him to read. He would have read these words too being the wisest man ever.

WE HAVE THESE WORDS! "Beware that thou forget not the LORD thy God"!

What have you done? What have I done? Is it Me, Myself, and I or is it "not my will, but thine, be done." (Luke 22:42)? Who are we giving the glory too?

Do I wish I could have financial security? YES! I tell you the truth though, I doubt I am responsible enough to do anything more than live from one paycheck to the next and just make it. The Lord knows that too and he keeps us lean and thus we lean on Him. I think I would rather be lean than at the top like Solomon and filled with grief.

Joel Olsteen might help you to live YOUR best life now but if you want to live the best life the Lord has for you put that book down and pick up your bible.

TV evangelist might help you achieve wealth but I would venture to say the problem is not how much you have it is your attitude about what you already have.

"Godliness with contentment is great gain.
For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
And having food and raiment let us be therewith content" (1 Timothy 6:6-8).

Solomon was not content. All those I's! that he did and no contentment in any of them. What was it Jesus said? Oh Yes! I remember!

"Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28).

Our best life is in Jesus! Take I out of sIn and put yourself in H"I"M!

Monday, May 01, 2006

Ecclesiastes 2:3

"I sought in mine heart to give myself unto wine, yet acquainting mine heart with wisdom; and to lay hold on folly, till I might see what was that good for the sons of men, which they should do under the heaven all the days of their life" (Ecclesiastes 2:3).

This is a most interesting verse. From a personal standpoint I have gave myself to drinking and drugging. From how I see this verse out of my experience it makes it interesting. What I have learned about this particular verse makes it very interesting. I pray it all transfer to this page and becomes something valuable for you.

Let's start with what I have learned. The word rendered "I sought" in Hebrew is "toor". It means, "to meander". The word rendered "heart" is "labe". It means, "the heart; also used (figuratively) very widely for the feelings, the will and even the intellect; likewise for the centre of anything". The word for "give" is "maw-shak". It means, "to draw, used in a great variety of applications (including to sow, to sound, to prolong, to develop, to march, to remove, to delay, to be tall, etc.).

So Solomon meandered in his feelings, will, and intellect. He then as Youngs Literal Translation says, tried "to draw out with wine my appetite". Solomon broke fellowhip with God and sowed to the flesh. Solomon sounded out, that is, investigated to the full extent, partying. Solomon prolonged himself or removed himself from God. Solomon developed a different set of feelings, will, and intellect. Solomon marched away. Solomon removed himself. Solomon delayed God's will for his life. Solomon became tall in his feelings, will, and intellect.......ect.

Maybe I'm stretching the definitions. Maybe not. I'll let you decide. I will say this. To "lay hold" of anything one has to get a good grasp on it and not let go. It's not a touch. It's not a grab. It's a grasp and hold.

Here's how it worked in my life. I partied hardy before the Lord but that is not what I will be talking about. After I was saved, I meandered in my feelings. My feelings affected my thoughts which affected my will which tossed intellect out the window. It works just like this, "Well God, You didn't do what I wanted so I'm going to go and get drunk!". Solomon couldn't say that though. God had done EVERYTHING! for Solomon.

Are you blessed by God? Watchout! You might get complacent and your feelings might wander and all the rest of you with them. It's a very small adjustment of the rudder that sends a ship miles off course over time.

My feelings got the better of me. God had just done EVERYTHING! for me except the one thing I wanted. Since He didn't do that one thing all the other things didn't matter and I got mad at Him and let my feeling produce a 3 year period of nonstop everything. I laid hold on folly. If you dare to lay hold on folly, Watch Out!, folly does not let go easily once it lays hold on you.

Isn't it interesting that after Solomon was good and drunk he decided to get a handle on anything useful we mortals might do during the years we spend on this earth. Maybe Solomon wasn't drunk on alcohol but he did get good and drunk on the world.

I am doing these post as much for myself as for any of you who come here and read. So I ask myself, "Am I drunk with the world or with the Spirit?". Which are you?