The Thrill of Victory and The Agony of Defeat ~ Part 2

In my last post, we began to examine a passage from 1 Corinthians 9 which Sha’ul used the Corinthian Olympics for some timeless insights in the adventure of life.  The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 9 that there are four things it takes to win in life.

  1. It takes desire.  We must want to win.
  2. It takes direction.  We must focus on a goal.
  3. It takes discipline.  We must be willing to work.
  4. It takes determination.  We must never give up.

We examined the first two principles in my last post.  In this post, we will tackle the last two principles in creating a winning life.

Sha’ul says: It takes discipline.

We must be willing to work.  In 1 Corinthians 9:25 he says: Now every athlete in training submits himself to strict discipline, and he does it just to win…” Notice he says they use strict discipline.  In other words, they have to practice self-denial.

These two words – discipline and self-denial – are not exactly popular words in the American culture.  How many of you go home and think, “I think I’ll meditate on the word self-denial How about discipline?” Continue reading “The Thrill of Victory and The Agony of Defeat ~ Part 2”

The Thrill of Victory and The Agony of Defeat ~ Part 1

Given current events, I’ve decided to take a brief break from our series on the END TIMES.  In this and the subsequent post, I want to share some lessons that Rick Warren shared with me four years ago from the London Olympics.

For the last two weeks all the eyes of the world have focused on the Rio 2016 Olympics.  Why is it we’re so interested in this?  It’s because we love to see people excel.  We love to watch winners.  I’m reminded of the old ABC show “Wide World of Sports.”  We would watch that show religiously for the “thrill of victory and the agony of defeat.” 

Click here for a YouTube clip.

I have set my DVR to record ALL that NBC had to offer this year from Rio.  I then fast forward or delete entire shows until I found the events that most interested me.

In 1 Corinthians 9, Sha’ul talks about the Corinthian games which in ancient Greece were second in importance only to the Olympics in Athens.  They were held every three years.  The games including running, leaping, spear throwing, boxing, wrestling, chariot racing and racing in armor (I would have loved to have seen that).  Everyone that competed was required to take an oath that said: “I trained for at least ten months and I will not resort to unfair tricks.”  Maybe the current IOC needs to reinstate that requirement?  Remember, they didn’t have steroids in those days. Continue reading “The Thrill of Victory and The Agony of Defeat ~ Part 1”

Eagle Christians

My friend, Wally Fry over at Truth in Palmyra and I have been talking about eagles and how they symbolize the Christian Faith.  It reminded me of a teaching that I heard in the early 80’s by Fr. Terry Fullam, a charismatic Episcopal priest, at a renewal conference held at USC (that’s University of Southern California, for you easterners – LOL) on the subject of “Eagle Christians.”  His text was Proverbs 30:18-19.  I sat there spell bound for over an hour.

I made an MP3 file from the cassette tape I bought at the conference.  I had to do some slight editing when I flipped the tape.  It’s a little over an hour in duration, but I think you will agree with me that the teaching was phenomenal. I think you will get a kick out of his comment on “Spiritual Streakers.”  Remember, that this was recorded in the early ’80’s.

I’m Baaaaaaack!!

When I posted my last personal blog on August 9th I thought I would be just taking a few weeks off to rest and to hear from God on the next topic He wanted me to tackle. I never thought that I would be gone this long. Except for posting on the Jewish High Holy Days this fall, I have re-blogged posts from sites that I follow. In addition, I have been posting God’s Word for Today images that have had special meaning to me thanks to my YouVersion app.

I sure hope you have enjoyed those re-blogs and want to thank my friends for allowing me to share them with you.

During my absence from the blogosphere, my wife and I took a four-week 7,500+ road trip to visit three of our grandsons, my wife’s brother and sister and to attend my 50th High School reunion in Michigan.  Although the trip was great, it was also very exhausting and took us two weeks just to recuperate.

Upon our return, I have been finalizing my portion of the curriculum for our church’s new Discipleship Pathways program. Based upon Yeshua’s model, we want to take new Believers through an organized process that will not only instill within them the basics of our faith, but will also prepare them to share the Gospel with and disciple other new believers in fulfillment of Matthew 28:18-20 (ESV): “And Jesus came and said to them [His disciples], “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age. (Emphasis added.) We not only want to make disciples, we want to train-up disciplers.

Now, it’s time to get back into sharing what God has laid on my heart for my next series. Topics that I post are those that God wants to instill in my heart as He directs me on the path as I walk with Him. Then, He asks me to share that loaf of bread that He has given me with my readership.

As a reminder and instruction to any new readers, I default to the Complete Jewish Bible (CJB) for basic scripture quotations, except where specifically noted. Proper nouns are almost always in Hebrew. I maintain a Hebrew to English glossary at this page.

I will post the first blog on the topic of Meditation and Memorization early this Sunday.

Happy Thanksgiving ~ 2014

In honor of our national holiday of Thanksgiving here in the United States tomorrow, I am re-posting this blog post by Sam Nadler.

Thanksgiving Expresses Praise and Adoration
by Sam Nadler Word of Messiah Ministries
October 31, 2014

 Hebrew Thanksgiving

​The Scripture states in Psalm 50:23, “He who offers a sacrifice of thanksgiving honors Me.” In November, we have designated one day for Thanksgiving; however, I have often encouraged families to take a month for Thanksgiving.  Since the Scriptures are permeated with the theme of thanksgiving, our lives are to be permeated with thanksgiving as well.  The Hebrew word for thanksgiving is todah. Todah means more than just showing appreciation, it also means praise and confession: “Now therefore, make confession (todah) to the Lord” (Ezra 10:11, see also Psalm 32:5). Here we see giving thanks as a confession of faith in the righteousness and justice of God.

The thanksgiving offering found in Leviticus 7 was simply called todah, or thanks, and was actually part of the peace offerings. “If he offers it [the peace offerings] by way of thanksgiving, then along with the sacrifice of thanksgiving he shall offer unleavened cakes mixed with oil…of the sacrifice of his thanksgiving peace offerings” (Lev. 7:12,15).  It is only when we have true peace with God that we can offer true thanksgiving to God. If we lack a thankful heart before God, then perhaps, we should see if we have genuine peace with God.  How do we have peace with God?  “Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Messiah Yeshua.” (Romans 5:1)  It is only by faith in Messiah Yeshua that we have peace with God.  This is because He is our sin offering: “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin [offering] on our behalf, so that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.” (2 Corinthians 5:21)   In the Hebrew Scriptures, an offering is often referred to by simply using the descriptive word of that particular offering.  In 2 Corinthians 5:21, Paul uses this same Hebrew phrase, “He made Him who knew no sin to be sin.”  Yeshua did not become sinful, but became our sin offering.  This is why Yeshua is also our “peace [offering].”  Ephesians 2:14, “For He Himself is our peace, who made both groups into one.” Both Jew and Gentile are made into one family in God by partaking together in Messiah, our peace [offering].  Indeed, peace with God is the basis for peace with one another.

Continue reading “Happy Thanksgiving ~ 2014”