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The Little Willow
Posted On 06/22/2017 23:55:23

While going on a hike along a low lake I seen some small Willow trees.  This one scene I decided to paint as I have been out of practice for several weeks.  Because of the way these trees will grow and sit hanging over water the term "Weeping Willow" has been applied.  In my region, in the lower coastal estuaries, can be found many swamp willows.  These do remind one sometimes of a person with head down and weeping.  Perhaps, they can remind one of Jeremiah, the weeping prophet, and the Hebrew people weeping in their captivities, along Babylonian rivers. Interestingly, Psalm 137 mentions willows (some say no) and has been ascribed, by some rabbinical sources, as produced by Jeremiah. These are things to think on...

Some species of Willows are mentioned in the scriptures.  We see this inLeviticus 23:40, 

"On the first day you are to take the product of majestic trees--palm fronds, boughs of leafy trees, and willows of the brook--and rejoice before the LORD your God for seven days." ..

Willows have often been used to symbolize both joy and sadness, as well as strength and health.  Occasionally I see some grave stones with etchings of Willow branches.

Pastor Zomok

Tags: Tree Willow Sadness Jeremiah


God Breathed (2 Tim. 3:16)
Posted On 06/21/2017 05:39:48

All Scripture is inspired by God and is profitable for teaching, for rebuking, for correcting, for training in righteousness,..."---2 Timothy 3:16

In the verse above it is stated that the scriptures are "God-Breathed" and in the Greek the term is "Theopneustos".  I personally view this as the Holy Spirit pushing or prompting individuals to write the truth down so story lines and doctrines are correct, but in their own style and wording, and with the allowance of rounded numbers and figures of speech...etc.  I do not subscribed to the view that writers of the original manuscripts were used by God as court stenographers and where exact spellings might even be dictated by the spirit.  If the "stenographer" view were correct then we could not truly possess the word of God in English as there is not an exacting correspondence of English words with either Hebrew or Greek.  A good example is the Greek word makarios, which is generally translated "blessed" in our English translations for Matthew 5 and the wonderful Beatitudes, however, "blessed" does not mean precisely the same as makarios.  Some use the word "happy" and some translations use more than one word...or they give a note about the issue.  We also have three synoptic gospels (Mark, Luke, and Matthew) that differ on lesser issues, although with no contradictions or even clear paradoxes. For example, theGospel of Luke mentions that it was about 8 days...in chapter 9, whereas the Gospels of Matthew and Mark say 6 days (Mark 9 & Matthew 17).  It does not matter because no story or doctrine is changed...

This is my general view of this issue and I welcome other views.  I wish to hear from the brethren.

zomok

Pastor Zomok

Tags: Spirit Inspiration Bible Words


The God who Hides Himself
Posted On 06/15/2017 23:38:45

Image result for James Tissot Jesus Looking through a Lattice

"My beloved is like a roe or a young hart: behold, he standeth behind our wall, he looketh forth at the windows, shewing himself through the lattice."-Song of Songs 2:9

"Surely Thou art a God hiding Thyself, God of Israel -- Saviour!"-Isaiah 45:15

The Lord of all is so obvious in some respects but in other respects is mysterious and hiding.  What can be made of this? And how does God act in our world?  These are questions that myriads of philosophers and theologians have wrestled with for countless generations.

The apostle Paul points out that people know that God exists just by looking at nature itself (Romans 1:20) and are without excuse.  This touches on both "Natural Theology" and the "Cosmological Argument"  (Everything that exists has to have an adaquate cause.). These things clearly point at our creator, however one still wonders how does God breck into our world and act.

In my own experience God seems to act in subtle ways where things seem to line up in a wonderful manner.  It seems that God works through nature itself but also deeply on the quantum realm. The Lord loves his creation and wishes it to have freedom so one is going to see very few fiat miracles. God may work through your feelings, dreams, and intuitions..

pastor Zomok

Tags: God Love Nature Hope Freedom


If anyone thirsts
Posted On 06/11/2017 23:52:51







Image result for whoever drinks this water will thirst again




Image result for james tissot samaritan woman

I was looking at a James Tissot painting of the Samaritan women at the well and I started to ponder about the account which is found in the "Book of John", chapter 4.  In Eastern Orthodox tradition this women was named "Photina", which means something like, "luminous one".  I doubt if that was her actual name for several reasons.  This lady possibly would visit the well at warmer times too avoid others, who generally came to fetch their water in the mornings or near sunset.  She did not, evidently, have the best reputation as she has been living with several different men over time.  She wished to avoid the gossips and so came to the well when less folks were around.  The last thing she expected was to meet the Messiah and receive life giving spiritual water. Needless to say, her life changed for the better and, perhaps, she became a luminous one as she probably told people, for years to come, about her meeting the messiah at the well.

The words of Jesus, as found in verse 14, are nearly poetic "those who drink the water I give will never be thirsty again. It becomes a fresh, bubbling spring within them, giving them eternal life."  What is born of the flesh is flesh but what is born of the Spirit is Spirit. 

Pastor Zomok

Tags: Water Life Spirit Well


Apparitions of Mary...?
Posted On 06/09/2017 10:17:52

       

For centuries there has been many sighting, or claims of sightings of, what is thought to be Mary (Miriam) the blessed mother of the Lord Jesus. Nearly all of us have heard about some of these.  A prime example would be the happening near Lourdes, France, in 1858, when a young girl, named Bernadette evidently seen an apparition of Mary.  The dominant churches of the region usually have a local bishop investigate and certain procedures are followed to ascertain the validity of a sighting.  Both the Catholic church, in the west, and the Coptic church in Egypt, have declared some of these sightings to be valid.  To my mind some of these seem to be genuine sightings of something.  Are these genuine sightings of Mary or could some of them be of a demonic nature instead?  Satan can disguise himself as an angel of light.  What do you think?

Sometimes the apparition leaves a message to the witnesses or even something of a physical nature.  We see this with the "Lady of Guadalupe"story.  This was a Marian apparition/sighting in Mexico of 1531, by an indian named Juan.  The apparition told him to collect some roses, which he wrapped up in his cloth "tilma", which afterwards had an image of Mary on it.  This image is still being studied.  It seems to be miraculous.   Obviously there is something special in many of these sightings.

     

Getting back to the messages that are said to be heard coming from these apparitions of Mary....  Sometimes things are heard that could be deemed unbiblical and this is debated too.   Although Mary was highly blessed by God (Luke 1:48....."he took notice of his lowly servant girl, and from now on all generations will call me blessed."), she is not to be worshiped....  


Pastor Zomok

Tags: Mary Sightings Blessed Christ Lourdes


The Beatitudes
Posted On 06/03/2017 14:42:24

            &nb sp;      The Beatitudes

Truly happy are those who are poor in spirit for to them belongs the Kingdom of Heaven.

Truly happy are those in mourning for they will be comforted.

Truly happy are those who are gentle and don't brag for they will inherit the Earth.

Truly happy are those that hunger and thirst for what is just for they will be satisfied.

Truly happy are those that have mercy for others for God gives them mercy.

Truly happy are those that have a clean heart for they will see God.

Truly happy are the peace makers for they will be God's Children.

Truly happy are those who are persecuted for doing what is right for the Kingdom of God is theirs.  (Matthew 5:3-10)

____________________________________________________________________

In the wonderful Beatitudes the word translated "Blessed" or "Happy" is in Greek "Makarioi" and is close in meaning to the Hebrew "Ashrei".  It has been translated in several ways because it is hard to nail down its full meaning. When a person reads each of these they might be left wondering how can a person be truly blessed or happy if they are mourning or persecuted?  Perhaps a person can have a deeper joy and satisfaction that wells up at certain points or is timeless.  They may even have a special joy as they look toward what is eventually coming.

One thing about these blessed or truly happy souls is that they are in the proper frame of mind for the people of God are gentile and are for peace as well longing for justice to be done.  All these things go together.

Pastor Zomok




Tags: Blessed Happy Peace Makarios


Makarios Memorial Day 2017
Posted On 05/28/2017 23:29:25

Image result for father Abraham

Isaiah 51:2.....


Look back to the rock of your parents from which you were cut. See their weaknesses and realize that you share in some of those same weaknesses and others like them and keep watch! Also look and see how they brought Jesus and salvation to you. Look and see the strengths of your parents and remember where they found that strength, namely the rock of Christ Jesus from which they were cut through faith......never forget..

Have a blessed Memorial Day

pastor zomok

Tags: Christ Remember Rock


People are different so make allowences
Posted On 05/25/2017 09:19:32

      Image result for romans 14

Although we must avoid giving in to worldly activities or running with the crowd we must not be overly rigid either.  I am sometimes finding that Christians are being closed minded and not thinking, even condemning other believers for differing opinions on secondary issues. I myself have been condemned by other Christians (?) because I point out how "Hell Doctrines" are disproved, and/or I disagree with the general "endtimes" teachings...etc.. Note the inspired words of Paul, on several opinions, in Romans 14-

"But him that is weak in faith receive ye, yet not for decision of scruples. One man hath faith to eat all things: but he that is weak eateth herbs. Let not him that eateth set at nought him that eateth not; and let not him that eateth not judge him that eateth: for God hath received him. Who art thou that judgest the servant of another? to his own lord he standeth or falleth. Yea, he shall be made to stand; for the Lord hath power to make him stand. One man esteemeth one day above another: another esteemeth every day alike. Let each man be fully assured in his own mind. He that regardeth the day, regardeth it unto the Lord: and he that eateth, eateth unto the Lord, for he giveth God thanks; and he that eateth not, unto the Lord he eateth not, and giveth God thanks. For none of us liveth to himself, and none dieth to himself. For whether we live, we live unto the Lord; or whether we die, we die unto the Lord: whether we live therefore, or die, we are the Lord’s. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that he might be Lord of both the dead and the living. 10 But thou, why dost thou judge thy brother? or thou again, why dost thou set at nought thy brother? for we shall all stand before the judgment-seat of God. 11 For it is written,

As I live, saith the Lord, to me every knee shall bow,
And every tongue shall confess to God.

Pastor Zomok

Tags: Romans Paul Days Times Eating


A plan for you
Posted On 05/16/2017 22:31:57

       Image result for jeremiah 29 11 commentary god plans for you

"For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope".---Jeremiah 29:11


This promise was made to Jeremiah and the people of God during a time of great trouble. The Babylonians were ruling over the people of Israel, and though they wanted to be free from Babylon God told them that they would stay there for another seventy years.

We too often feel as if we are in captivity to problems or circumstances, yet God has a plan for us. Like Jeremiah, we must learn to trust God’s faithfulness even when we are surrounded by evil.

Pastor Zomok

Tags: Jeremiah Plan Grace Hope




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