9 Things I’ve Done On My Journey Of Female #Entrepreneurship

Hey everyone!

I’ve been working hard at my new venture of female entrepreneurship in small business. This has come after a period of intense thought and coaching following the COVID-19 outbreak. I am throwing myself into something new. It’s something exciting and it’s taking time to set up but it will be totally rewarding and YOU yes YOU are going on this journey with me and you’re going to help! In time I’ll tell you how!

Before we continue did you ever read that post I wrote about whether or not it’s a sin to have sex when your wife is on her period? I’m doing a PhD in Black Theology (specifically doing research in Womanist Theomusicology) so my post is not just opinion, its the sound theological reflections of a Doctoral student routed in fact. Informative, interesting and funny all at the same time lol here it is below:

This is really interesting and pretty funny too lol

Is it a sin to have #sex with your wife on her #period? – | #vagina #menstruation #biblestudy #Christianity #marriage #WorshipJesus

Helloo everyone, I’m baaaaack 😛 It’s been really busy at hopelikerivers HQ but I am slightly less busy for now. This pause gave me some time to reflect upon the hard-hitting, unusual and taboo issues that I like to address on my blog regarding Christianity and women. Today we’re looking at the issue of married… Continue reading Is it a sin to have #sex with your wife on her #period? – | #vagina #menstruation #biblestudy #Christianity #marriage #WorshipJesus

Anyway… Back to business!

By now you’ve probably guessed I’m a bit quirky and this totally feeds into my business! 😉

So far I have completed the following 9 things:

  • Trained – was secretly doing this for months,
  • Upgraded website to receive payments
  • Got really excited
  • SEO optimization
  • Upgraded CV – it’s so full lol
  • Carried on finishing my PhD – I’ll update you about that in a bit
  • Signed up to some affiliate programs – yes I’m serious
  • Been exhausted
  • Watched Frozen 2…

To do:

  • Why would I tell you that? 😛

I was so happy to set up PayPal to start collecting payments for my business hehe:

Keep coming back to find out what I’m up to!

You know you want to!

xxx

#Sexy #Sex and #Christian #Worship

Posted this on Wednesday by mistake instead of Thursday but it’s all good 😄

Hellooooooooooo!

Now you know me and my juxtaposition of sexual activity and expressive worship. Well in my travels in academia doing my PhD in Womanist Theomusicology I came across something quite insightful that has really changed the way I worship. The idea came from a response to an interview question found in an ethnographic study by Travis Cooper (2011) Masters Thesis from Missouri State University: “Ecstasy and the Kinesthetic Body: An Ethnograhpic Study of Contemporary Pentecostal Worship”.

When analysing the responses Cooper received from the qualitative questionnaires regarding the worship techniques and ideas of Pentecostal Christians, Cooper found that one Pastor said something that really struck me. He related worshipping Jesus to a husband and wife having sex. Now, stay with me….!

The Pastor warned that when worshipping Jesus we should not perusing a good knees up with some songs that make us feel good. Instead, the pastor said we should be pursuing a relationship with Jesus. The same way a husband should not be having sex with his wife just for his own sexual gratification he should be having sex with his wife because he loves her.

The pastor said the following:

“…the ultimate goal for sexual relations between a husband and wife is not simply pleasure or childbearing, but facilitation of love between the two agents in the physical act of intercourse, so it is with worship.” (Cooper 2011, pp.182)

I learnt soo much about worship and love in that one profound sentence. There’s just so much I could say but I really think that sentence says it all. We should be thinking about Jesus when we are worshipping not looking to pleasure ourselves with little ditty’s that make us feel good.

So here’s how my worship practice has changed: Instead of sitting there singing/playing songs that make me feel good I think of Jesus more of a lover that I am pursuing. So I think well this should be about Jesus, what does Jesus want? How can I make Jesus happy? What can I do to make us closer?

Sometimes I just play the guitar to Jesus now because I think well, maybe Jesus just wants to listen to some music same as we humans do! Also, I try to improve my professional practice because I feel like Jesus wants me to improve.

When we worship and love our spouses it should be about the other person and getting to know them better not about ourselves.

Remember, pleasure should be a consequence of the pursuit not the other way around!

Biblical & Practical Reasons For Chucking People Out Of Your Church

Hey!

I know I have been busy but I decided to take some time out this week just for Moi! It’s not healthy to work alllllllllllllllllllll the time. So I decided to share my thoughts on chucking people out of churches.

Here we go!

The following is an essay discussing a few of my opinions on the Biblical and practical justification for Pastors/Leaders to remove individuals from their membership/assembly/smallgroup which I shall just call “church” from now on. I begin with some practical reasons why I think it is necessary to remove people who are not compliant from your church, following that I discuss the biblical justification as well. Finally, I discuss the hypocritical nature of keeping non-compliant individuals and end with my own thoughts on the matter.

Pastors chucking people out of their churches has become an unpopular act partly because in some circles it has been abused and misapplied and partly because it’s not a pleasant or easy thing to do. However, the church has both a right and an obligation to publicly disassociate themselves from anyone who claims to be a Christian but persists in unrepentant sin (Spreading The Fragrance 2020). This is because people who are non-compliant with the expected standards of behaviour putrefy the spiritual atmosphere of a church, as their behaviour inevitably spreads to the whole church and no one can remain unaffected by it (Spreading The Fragrance 2019). Meaning that it really is not practical to keep them, knowing that a sinful influence that is tolerated will pull others down, affecting the outward testimony of a church and compromising their mission which is saving souls (Spreading The Fragrance 2020). Let’s dig into exactly how the mismanagement of unaligned/non-compliant people in your church is not constructive in a, pragmatic, common sense way first and deal with the Biblical reasons second.

The Impracticalities Of Not Kicking People Out Of A Church When You Should

Unaligned people always cost you something (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave) and with all the costs that one already incurs with running an organisation it’s not financially viable to keep them. One must remember, we have to pay to physically keep the doors of a church open and the organisation running, it’s not free. A website is not free, corporate email is not free, utilities are not free, insurance is not free, maintenance is not free and the kind of administration that a public body has to do is not free either. Churches cannot – on top of that – have people that are costing them time and energy, they infect others with their apathy causing a lack of momentum (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave) which compromises the mission of the church and diminishes its viability as a good investment, whether that be financially, socially or emotionally – which, at the end of the day – affects the bottom line.

This is why having the right people is better than simply having people. Before a church can have more people the church need the right people. The right people are: people capable of taking on leadership; are aligned around a common mission, vision, strategy and values and have the character to withstand the tests of leadership (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave).

As an organisation a church does not need disengaged people, disengaged people can go and be disengaged elsewhere and to be perfectly honest, church leaders need to just accept that not everyone is even ready to engage. As far as I am concerned, disengaged people cannot serve, do not give and do not invite their friends to church. They just take up space. Whereas a few aligned people can change the world. Jesus did it with just 12! (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave).

Some people will find a better-fit elsewhere and church leaders need to be insightful and forward thinking enough to let them go. Church leaders will be serving certain people better by letting them find like-minded people at another church, giving them more space to find like-minded people who will help them accomplish their mission more effectively. Honestly, some people will thrive in a different environment, sometimes you need to let them go (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave).

Trying to people please and lead in a way that avoids people leaving is a terrible strategy. Yes, it’s uncomfortable when people leave and only sociopaths don’t care when people leave but I assure you, it’s irrational and unhealthy to keep some individuals. The moment a church leader focuses on who they want to keep, as opposed to who they want to reach, they will compromise the entire mission of the church (Nieuwhof 2020, When to panic).

Additionally, church leaders need to also be mature enough to understand that the church as a universal body is for everyone but their particular church that exists in their particular microcosm isn’t. Let me explain, we as Christians are part of a much bigger body, one church alone will not reach an entire city, it takes all the different varieties of churches and leadership that exist within a city to reach the people (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave). People need to be in a church appropriate for them. Not every church is blessed to do everything. God gives out blessings appropriate for people the same way Jacob blessed his sons before he died in Genesis 49:28 [NIV] where it says:

“[28] All these are the twelve tribes of Israel, and this is what their father said to them when he blessed them, giving each the blessing appropriate to him.”

Church leaders need to make an effort to really understand their appropriate blessing and know who their particular church is designed to reach and focus on that (Nieuwhof 2019, Why You Need To Stop). The music of one church is going to attract some people and bother others. The teaching style and content of another church is going to connect better with some and irritate others. The leadership style of a further church will be compelling to some and not so attractive to others. Even the location and the architectural style of the building in which a church group gathers, whether it’s a school, theatre, gothic cathedral, contemporary suburban mega-church, A-frame 50’s landmark or even a living room home church style get-up will make some feel at home, while pushing others away (Nieuwhof 2019, Why You Need To Stop).

Because of this and because of the diverse and subjective tastes of human beings churches that try to attempt the impossible by being all things to all people often end up being nothing to no one and lose their effectiveness in the process (Nieuwhof 2019, Why You Need To Stop). So, are you going to reach everybody? The answer is a resounding no (Nieuwhof 2019, Why You Need To Stop).

Furthermore, in order to accomplish the general mission of all churches, which is to reach the un-churched, one cannot spend time trying to retain people who call themselves Christians and are not engaged and causing trouble, especially because they want a church for the already convinced. Church leaders cannot be worried about reaching Christians who have no passion or respect for friends, family, fellow congregants and people who are not in a relationship with Christ. Church leaders need to focus on the few things and people that will help them accomplish their mission and they need to feel free to design a Sunday service that will create an experience that UN-churched people will want to come back to.

That requires being as culturally diverse as the community around them, so they don’t function as a club as opposed to a church; it is also a requirement that they make sure that they have a mixture of psycho-social realities, meaning that the church needs to have a mixture of rich people and poor people, churches with only rich people bothers me; church leaders also need to spend time attracting individuals who will not make the future impossible (Nieuwhof 2020, Why You Need To Stop).

Yes, it’s human nature to want to cling to people, especially in small churches where every number seems to count but some people hold a ministry back and yes I would much rather have people move beyond their own personal preferences and show grace but for some people, regrettably, that kind of humility is not possible and church leaders need to give them permission to go (Flowers 2020).

Know when to accommodate and when not to. Often a first or second offence is a time for accommodation but one must use ones discretion to evaluate when to hold attendees accountable. When accommodating becomes commonplace because of a continual breach of expectations, we need to hold those people accountable and ask them to leave (Pelletier 2020).

Yes, churches need good pastoral care initiatives because they cannot try and wrestle with principalities and powers of this world with nice HR practices. However, they must balance the need for pastoral ministry, with strong leadership that will not let Satan send our churches away from the mission they are intended to fulfil and a leader must avoid being satisfied in dysfunction and keep their church on course and sometimes this means making a tough call (Brookshaw 2020).

The church is God’s and must not be held to ransom by any leader, member or attendee. All are welcome, unless they are causing harm to the body of Christ and I personally do not think that there is any reason why leaders should allow divergent visions for a church among members and or attendees (Excellerate 2020).

Biblical Justification For Kicking People Out Of A Church

So, what kinds of things qualify a person to be kicked out of a church? 1 Corinthians 5:11 [NLT] has the answer:

“[11] I meant that you are not to associate with anyone who claims to be a believer yet indulges in sexual sin, or is greedy, or worships idols, or is abusive, or is a drunkard, or cheats people. Don’t even eat with such people.”

  • Immoral people: (gr. “pornos”) The literal meaning of the word is a male prostitute, but in the Bible it is used of all kinds of sexual immorality.
  • Covetous people: People eager to have more, especially what belongs to others. Covetousness is really a form of the next sin, which is Idolatry (Eph 5:5, Col 3:5)
  • Idolaters: Idolatry is when God is not of primary importance to you. You don’t determine this by your ability to manipulate yourself into a certain state of emotion but rather by what you tends to fill up your mind, what your actions are aiming toward and what gives you comfort, security and pleasure.
  • Revilers: A reviler is one who assaults and abuses with words. He or she will make harsh insults and accusations, intended to humiliate someone or damage their reputation.
  • Drunkards: No further explanation is needed, except perhaps to point out that any compulsive or addictive behaviour, that inhibits your sound judgement, could be a form of this sin.
  • Swindlers: (gr. “harpax”) It can mean a swindler, robber or extortioner. Basically anyone who by violence, threats or deceit takes something that rightfully belongs to another.

These six examplars are the types of sins that qualify for church discipline i.e kicking someone out (there are more but this list is a just one example in the Bible) (Spread The Fragrance 2020). Appearing to be a believer and not following what the Bible says as grounds for being kicked out is reiterated in 2 Thessalonians 3:14-15:

“[13]…dear brothers and sisters, never get tired of doing good. [14] Take note of those who refuse to obey what we say in this letter. Stay away from them so they will be ashamed.”

Also, in 1 Timothy1:20 where Paul talks about people who were supposed to be believers that he himself threw out of his community for purposely going against the Word of God:

“[19] Cling to your faith in Christ, and keep your conscience clear. For some people have deliberately violated their consciences; as a result, their faith has been shipwrecked. [20] Hymenaeus and Alexander are two examples. I threw them out and handed them over to Satan so they might learn not to blaspheme God.”

Finally, Titus 3:10 warns that divisiveness is cause for kicking someone out of a church where it says:

“[10] If people are causing divisions among you, give a first and second warning. After that, have nothing more to do with them. [11] For people like that have turned away from the truth, and their own sins condemn them.”

We can’t really apply a one strike and you’re out policy because that’s not what God does. He gives grace and second chances to those who are repentant (Spreading The Fragrance 2020). So how does a church go about getting rid of someone? Church discipline and the steps to remove a trouble maker from a community is clearly spelled out in a 3-Step plan in Matthew 18:15-17 where it says:

“[15] “If another believer sins against you, go privately and point out the offense. If the other person listens and confesses it, you have won that person back. [16] But if you are unsuccessful, take one or two others with you and go back again, so that everything you say may be confirmed by two or three witnesses. [17] If the person still refuses to listen, take your case to the church. Then if he or she won’t accept the church’s decision, treat that person as a pagan or a corrupt tax collector.”

So, you talk to the person privately, if they don’t listen you take other people with you to talk to them, if they still don’t listen you tell the church, if they still don’t listen to the church you have done your job, get rid of them to demonstrate holiness to your congregation.

Lack Of Church Discipline Is Hypocrisy

Given what the Word says it would be outright hypocrisy to retain people who cause trouble in our churches after the biblically mandated steps have been taken. God hates hypocrisy, it misuses religious man-made ideas for self-advancement, the self advancement in the case of not getting rid of a trouble maker would be any advantages a leadership might feel that it would gain by people pleasing, instead of doing the holy thing to do. God’s laws are the only laws that Christians should be preaching, when we twist these around to meet our own desires it angers God.

It has been communicated to me on more than one occasion that no-one has the right to remove an individual from a church as it’s neither Godly or holy. Matthew 7:1 has become one of the most quoted verses in the entire Bible. “Do not judge so that you will not be judged”. It is commonly used as justification for not expelling people from a congregation. However, if someone ever throws this verse at you, ask them if they think it’s wrong for you to judge others. When they say yes, then ask them to kindly listen to their own advice and stop judging you. If you feel up for it, try to explain to them the difference between judging someone and telling them what the laws are (Spreading The Fragrance 2020).

Disgustingly, I have found in my own experience that more often than not, people who quote such things at me have removed people from their own houses and or refused to host or even eat with other people because they believed they were quote “too much trouble and wouldn’t tow the line”. Such hypocrisy repulses me, isn’t one of the main accusations that are levelled against the church that there are so many hypocrites in it? How many people have been turned off from the Gospel because the church has not done it’s job and cleansed out those who only claim to be Christians, but really aren’t? (Spreading The Fragrance 2020). Think about it, how many peoples lives have been destroyed because churches wouldn’t kick out a peodo priests? Sometimes the churches knew about it and did nothing. I do not understand why those people were not only kept in the church but allowed to be in charge of small children.

The kind of judgement Jesus was talking about in Matthew 7 was a kind of is a self-righteous hypocrisy that set up a higher standard for others than for the self. Jesus never said we should stop differentiating between right and wrong. Not only do we as Christians have to differentiate but when someone claims to be a Christian and consistently acts in a way that brings reproach to the name of Christ, then the church is not only authorized but commanded to judge them, what happens on the outside of the church God will judge but what happens on the inside of the church, we are supposed to be judging according to 1 Corinthians 12-13 [NLT]:

“[12] It isn’t my responsibility to judge outsiders, but it certainly is your responsibility to judge those inside the church who are sinning. [13] God will judge those on the outside; but as the Scriptures say, “You must remove the evil person from among you.”” (Spreading The Fragrance 2020).

Such hypocrisy must end look at Matthew 23:27 [NLT]:

“[27] “What sorrow awaits you teachers of religious law and you Pharisees. Hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs–beautiful on the outside but filled on the inside with dead people’s bones and all sorts of impurity.”

Hypocrites are self-deluded fools who need to read their Bibles more carefully. They are deceiving themselves into thinking that their hypocritical deeds of obscuring a leaderships decision to remove a person, despite what the Bible says, is somehow evidence of “true godliness” or even worse they dare to think that they will have the ability to merit God’s favour. This is a terrible misconception and ultimately hurts the persons in question as well as the church community and you lose favour with God not gain it when you don’t adhere to biblical principles correctly and obscure others from doing so.

Hypocrisy is also offensive to God and man. No one finds hypocrisy to be an attractive quality. Not God, not the world. You don’t want to become everyone’s enemy. Unbelievers hate the hypocrite because they make themselves appear godly; God hates them because they merely look godly.

Hypocrisy also brings no comfort in death. You labour hard in life to do the wrong thing, arrogantly pretending to be godly, painting over your depravity with a thin veneer of counterfeit holiness, with standards of other people that are unreasonable that you don’t even attempt to live up to yourself and regrettably, at the end of the day, as you are doing the wrong thing and are trying to make others, who are trying to do the right thing do the wrong thing, you will eventually end up in hell as Galatians 5:19-21 says that sinners will not inherit the Kingdom of God (Crosswalk 2020).

If you want to go to hell with your false Christianity, please go to hell by yourself and leave your ministry and it’s leaders alone because unaligned people cost them and their congregants something, they make organisations unproductive, which damages their viability as a good investment in the eyes of others (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave). It’s not common sense to keep them.

Conclusion

Everyday all of us are just trying to run the race of life just trying to get ahead ourselves as individuals, as it says in Philippians 3:14 [NLT]:

“[14] I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.”. We have all got things on our plate and we don’t need any more drama.

Church leaders need to think about where they are now and where they are supposed to be. They are losing so much precious time pandering to people and things that will not satisfy the church or Jesus in the end. Whereas everyone else and every other church who is behaving in a functional and biblical way, churches who get rid of people and things that are unhealthy, they are out there getting on but others who don’t are standing still, trying to retain people, things and practices they should not because they are rationalizing with their human senses. Especially in small churches where leaders see they are only small and keep on comparing themselves to other big churches when they don’t know what’s going on behind the scenes with the big churches. All we see is that they have more people, so they keep burning so much energy just to retain, when their focus should be somewhere else and I for one do not think that any church leader should be willing to let those things and people that are unhelpful keep distracting them and their minitry (Anthem Lights 2020).

Having the right people is better than simply having people. (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave). Some people will find a better-fit elsewhere and church leaders need to let them go (Nieuwhof 2020, 7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave). Its unhealthy and unholy to keep some people, especially those whose conduct compromises the holiness of the church and thus it’s entire mission (Nieuwhof 2020, When to panic). Yes, it’s human nature to want to cling to people and old ways, especially when a church is small (Flowers 2020) but church leaders need to know when to accommodate and when to not (Pelletier 2020). It is usually not perceived as a good thing to get rid of people but church leaders, for the sake of holiness, cannot afford not to do it. The truth is that some people are of Christ and some are of the devil. If church leaders allow the latter to infiltrate the church and muddle the line between the two categories, that is a wicked thing to do (Spread The Fragrance 2020).

Let us as Christian focus on what our appropriate blessing is, which is what your church is designed to do and who your church is put here on earth to reach and what you are here to do (Nieuwhof 2019, Why You Need To Stop). Not every church is going to please every person and churches should not be changing their God mandated focus for people who should be elsewhere.

I for one don’t want spend my life trying to fight for what’s not mine or lose myself in someone else’s dream instead of God’s. I know those who are truly meant to be in a particular church are made with a purpose to reach past the surface and live life fearlessly for God in their area and I want nothing less for my church at least, than to be who we are meant to be (Anthem Lights 2020).

xxx

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Bibliography

Anthem Lights. 2020. ‘Who I’m Meant To Be Lyrics’ A-Z Lyrics Web site, at: <https://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/anthemlights/whoimmeanttobe.html&gt; 16 January 2020

Brookshaw, P. 2020. ‘Q&A – When Do You Ask Someone To Leave The Church?’ Pete Brookshaw Web site: <http://www.petebrookshaw.com/2013/09/q-when-do-you-ask-someone-to-leave.html?m=1&gt; 7 January 2020

Crosswalk, 2020. ‘5 Warnings for Hypocrites in the Church’ Crosswalk Web site, at: <https://www.crosswalk.com/blogs/christian-trends/5-warnings-for-hypocrites-in-the-church.html&gt; 7 January 2020

Excellerate. 2020. ‘How to Handle Rebellion in Church’ Excellerate Web site, at: <https://www.excellerate.com/articles/how-to-handle-rebellion-in-church/&gt; 7 January 2020

Flowers, A. 2020. ‘The Six People You Should Ask To Leave Your Church’ Western Seminary Web site, at: <https://transformedblog.westernseminary.edu/2014/03/04/the-six-people-you-should-ask-to-leave-your-church/&gt; 7 January 2020

Nieuwhof, C. 2020. ‘7 Reasons You Should Invite People To Leave Your Church Even Though It Scares You’ Carey Nieuwhof Web site, at: <https://careynieuwhof.com/leave/&gt; 7 January 2020

Nieuwhof, C. 2020. ‘When To Panic And When Not To Panic When People Leave Your Church’ Carey Nieuwhof Web site, at: <https://careynieuwhof.com/when-to-panic-and-when-not-to-panic-when-people-leave-your-church/&gt; 7 January 2020

Nieuwhof, C. 2020. ‘Why You Need To Stop Thinking Your Church Is For Everyone’ Web site, at: <https://careynieuwhof.com/why-you-need-to-stop-thinking-your-church-is-for-everyone/&gt; 7 January 2020

Pelletier, K. P. 2020. ‘Can I Ask Someone To Leave My Small Group’ Christianity Today International Web site, at: <https://www.smallgroups.com/articles/2016/can-i-ask-someone-to-leave-my-small-group.html&gt; 7 January 2020

Spreading The Fragrance. 2020. ‘An introduction to kicking people out of Church (1. Cor 5:1-8)’ Spreading The Fragrance Web site, at: <https://2cor214.blogspot.com/2011/06/introduction-to-kicking-people-out-of.html&gt; 16 January 2020

A revised #theology on #sex through #song (I WROTE A NEW SONG)

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

(I wrote a new song it’s at the bottom)

Sorry it’s late I was still doing work. I need to learn when to stop lol.

Anyway, remember the song I wrote based on Song of Songs called “I hope The Neighbors Don’t See? It was about marital sex in the garden. Follow this link to read my previous post on that song.

Anyway I wrote a Part Deux to that song, it’s a medley of another song I wrote called Right Here and a new part to I Hope The Neighbors Don’t See I affectionately call I Hope The Neighbors ALL See… heh heh 😏.

It’s still based on Song of Songs and mirrors follows the tripartite-metaphor in that the love poem represents love between:

1.) Women and Men

2.) King Solomon and a dark skinned woman and

3.) Jesus and the church.

However, this time I remembered the verse of scripture in the Bible that says:

Luke 8:16 NLT
“No one lights a lamp and then covers it with a bowl or hides it under a bed. A lamp is placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house.

So I thought yeah, hoping the neighbors don’t see you in the garden doing it with your spouse fits our Western sense of propriety, however, the lovers in Song of Songs are very public about their connection and hiding your love away doesn’t seem to be biblical, especially when it comes to your relationship with Jesus. (No I am not advocating public indecency, do have sex behind closed doors but do aspire to show your love for your fellow man, spouse and God publicly).

It also says in the Bible that we are not supposed to be ashamed of Jesus, if we are ashamed of Jesus and the message of the Gospel Jesus himself said He would be ashamed of us:

Luke 9:26 NLT
If anyone is ashamed of me and my message, the Son of Man* will be ashamed of that person when he returns in his glory and in the glory of the Father and the holy angels.

*a title Jesus gave to Himself.

But what does this talk about, marriage, sex and public displays of affection have to do with Jesus? There’s something you need to know about Jesus and our relationship with Him. Psalm 1:6 says:

Psalm 1:6 KJV
For the Lord knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

The Hebrew word used for “knoweth” is “yada” it’s also the Hebrew word for sex. In the Torah sex is not just something necessary for procreation but it’s about intimate knowledge of another individual it’s about knowing, recognizing and understanding each other (Gold 2020).

The word is used both in reference to a man and wife having sexual
intercourse and—get this—in reference to a person being in deep
fellowship with God (Gresh 2020).

Indeed Paul says that:

Ephesians 5:31-33 NLT
As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.” [32] This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. [33] So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.

The mystery of sexual and romantic relationships explains to us the depth of relationship we are supposed to have with Jesus.

Additionally, the church is described as the bride of Christ in Revelation. What do husbands and wives do? Yada yada… heh.

Properly understanding and appropriately practicing sex within the covenant of marriage is actually vitally important in understanding the Gospel and our relationship with Jesus. That’s why I’m so open about the topic.

So, we s supposed to be in an intimately deep relationship(sex metaphor) with Jesus (husband metaphor), in covenant(marriage metaphor) which would be the covenant of Salvation through the death and resurrection of Jesus and acceptance of that and Jesus does not like it when we are ashamed of Him .

So the same way you would show your love publicly to your spouse, have intimacy with your spouse and not be ashamed of the person you’re with its the same with Jesus.

Therefore, in light of the above I have come to the conclusion that, metaphorically, you would want the neighbors to see your relationship with Jesus publicly.

Therefore, I have written a new version as an add on to the original I Hope The Neighbors Don’t See to reflect this. In keeping with the husband and wife metaphor from Song of Songs, it’s actually about relationship with Jesus. It sounds raunchy but with a revised theology on sex it makes sense:

Ok here’s the Original:

HERE’S THE NEW SONG:

Xxxx

Bibliography

Gold, M. D. 2020. The Purpose and Meaning of Sex in Judaism
<https://www.myjewishlearning.com/article/the-purpose-and-meaning-of-sex-in-judaism/&gt; 02 January 2020

Gresh, D. 2020. Yada yada. <https://liesyoungwomenbelieve.com/yada-yada-yada/&gt; 02 January 2020

Totally Neat #YouTube Video I Found About #Solomon’s #Temple #biblestudy #Christian

Hey!

I’ve been having really nice personal Bible study time lately. I’ve been getting up around 3am-5am and just taking my time with Jesus.

You know Bible study can involve not just reading the Bible but other things to supplement understanding as well.

I’ve read the whole Bible several times now and I am at 1 Kings at the moment. This time around I wanted to fully immerse myself in the text and I tried to find pictures of what the things I was reading about might have looked like.

In my search Jesus led me to this really neat video on YouTube that really explains what King Solomon’s temple would have looked like and gives some other background information that is totally helpful.

Enjoy, P.S. that description of the Temple is in 1 Kings chapter 6 to 7. Happy reading! ✝☺ 📖 ⛪😇

Xxx

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HALT! – What Happened When I Was Hungry, Angry, Lonely & Tired! – #sex #music #Christian #Biblestudy

Dear all,

Have you heard of the acronym “HALT” stands for Hungry Angry Lonely Tired? It has consequences on your mind if you are in a place where you are all those things, leaving you vulnerable to relapse into a negative state and initiate a craving reaction… Being in a HALT state also shows that you are not taking care of yourself like you should. Here’s how it affected me the past two weeks.

What happened

Sometimes we can be called to do things but we allow the calling to become bigger than the One who called us. As I said, I’ve been overwhelmed with doing stuff, which made me Angry. This stuff was stuff which I should be doing and is important and vital to the continuation of the ministry at my church. However, I’ve been trying so hard that I even wasn’t reading my Bible as much as I should which made me spiritually Hungry and I felt Jesus was becoming jealous of the calling in that I was giving it more time that I was giving Him. So I finally finished what I had to do which was important and time sensitive and then I crashed in an emotionally/physically exhausted way (one night I even stayed up till after 8am doing stuff) because I was very Tired, on day I took off. That is when Jesus revealed the following to me whilst I was talking to Him please continue to read the following which happened last week:

I was sitting having a lovely day off and laying down having a conversation with Jesus on my bed and I noticed a few things different about that day. Firstly, the visions that Jesus shows me regularly came back. Jesus shows me visions and lots of other things regularly but since I was so busy I noticed they stopped, which made me a bit Lonely I thought maybe Jesus wasn’t showing me them because I was moving onto something else, no, I just was soo busy that what I was doing was competing for mental space with Jesus and Jesus was just not willing to compete but when I took a day off and Jesus was no longer in competition I noticed they came back.

Secondly, Jesus opened my eyes to the fact that I had been having nosebleeds for 2 weeks straight, culminating in a rather large one on the day I rested. I noticed it but I didn’t put two and two together to see the correlation between how much stress I was taking on and the nosebleeds. I had been internalizing so much stress and it was coming out as nosebleeds, I didn’t notice till I took a day off that I was not allowing Jesus to take my burdens and it was beginning to damage my health. How much stress does a person have to be under to have nosebleeds every day? Answer, a lot and to be so stressed that you don’t even realise it’s making you ill is dangerous. So again, by letting the calling become bigger than Jesus and taking on things all by myself I was damaging my health.

Anyway, revelations aside I felt like had quite a nice conversation with Jesus. I was feeling really quite tired by the end of the conversation as I had done stupid things like stayed up all night till past 8am in the morning working, so pulling proper all nighters and I was knackered by my day off.

So… I decided I would actually get into bed and lay down. I went to sleep, had a very strange dream and then woke up.

When I woke up, being in a HALT state had initiated a craving reaction and for the life of me I could not stop thinking about sex… I had very naughty thoughts (which I will not expand upon) solidly for a good hour or two about having sex in the control room of a music studio… I’m not even kidding, there was absolutely nothing else in my mind and it was as lucid as if I was there… (I’m definitely going to hide this blog post from my mother) I’m a musician. We are more prone to finding things like that sexy… Don’t judge meeeeeeeee!

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I couldn’t believe that I had actually thought such dirtiness just after having quite a nice, jovial conversation with Jesus before my nap.

And then I thought to myself:

“You know what? I’m not as good of a person as I thought I was”

and I shook my head at myself as I admitted my 29 year old humanity…

Normally, I avoid highly sexualised thoughts because firstly it’s a distraction and secondly it’s not good to focus on something that isn’t real. Lastly, there are Biblical reasons that revolve around how we are to conduct our thoughts and the Biblical mandate to not have sex before marriage (see my previous blog post about this)

  • I am not married so I need to rein it in for holiness reasons (and also for my own sanity…)
  • Jesus said that even if you think about doing a sin it’s just as bad as doing the sin. Sins can be committed both in our minds and by our actions. God tells us that we can sin in our minds just by lusting after someone. A person can sin by giving in to an inner emotion or passion and then dwelling on that emotion or passion like it says in Matthew 5:27-28:

(Matthew 5:27-28 NLT) “[27] “You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ [28] But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

  • Temptations are not from God but from Satan to drag us down and get us to do the bad things we are tempted to do and we should not meditate on our temptations. Sin does not occur when the emotion, thought, or passion first comes. However, if those thoughts are not resisted, then sin occurs when we give in to the emotion, thought or passion by dwelling on it (Never Thirsty 2019) like it says in James 1:12-15:

(James 1:12-15 NLT) “[12] God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. [13] And remember, when you are being tempted, do not say, “God is tempting me.” God is never tempted to do wrong, and he never tempts anyone else. [14] Temptation comes from our own desires, which entice us and drag us away. [15] These desires give birth to sinful actions. And when sin is allowed to grow, it gives birth to death.”

  • Additionally, what we think can make us dirty from the inside out as vocalised in Matthew 15:18-20

(Matthew 15:18-20 NLT) “[18] But the words you speak come from the heart–that’s what defiles you. [19] For from the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, all sexual immorality, theft, lying, and slander. [20] These are what defile you. Eating with unwashed hands will never defile you.””

  • A person sins by dwelling on something that God has told us to avoid. When we sin on the outside we demonstrate to God, to others, and to ourselves that we have already sinned on the inside. God has asked us to resist the temptation to sin by fleeing from it. We are not supposed to see how close we can come without sinning. Fleeing starts with avoiding thoughts about the sin as it says in Romans 16:19:

(Romans 16:19 NLT) “[19] But everyone knows that you are obedient to the Lord. This makes me very happy. I want you to be wise in doing right and to stay innocent of any wrong.”

We read in 2 Timothy 2:22 to also run away from anything that would stimulates “youthful lusts”.

(2 Timothy 2:22 NLT) “[22] Run from anything that stimulates youthful lusts. Instead, pursue righteous living, faithfulness, love, and peace. Enjoy the companionship of those who call on the Lord with pure hearts.”

So we really shouldn’t be dwelling on nonsense that will stimulate us in a way that is not holy. Instead we should be focussing on living descent holy lives.

So it got me thinking, how did this happen? It happened because I was spiritually and probably physically hungry. I was angry, lonely in a spiritual and physical sense and I was spiritually and physically tired… This then kick-started an instinctive craving mode to try fill the gap normally occupied by Jesus who nourishes me, keeps me calm, gives me company and renews my strength because I was previously too busy to engage with Jesus.

So how do we deal with cravings/bad thoughts that come with being in a HALT state?

Read your Bible Daily – to avoid being spiritually Hungry

I admit it, I was not reading my Bible as much as I should, I can’t believe 2 weeks of not paying at much attention to Jesus as I should as well as skipping a few days of Bible reading and my mind went south, literally… lol. My mind was stressed and did not have it’s daily meal of the Word all the time and the word calms me down. So what did my mind then gravitate towards, something that would naturally calm a person down and give some sort of… umm… release? lol. Sex 🙂 you need to read your Bible every day. I read it morning and night. Read it more than you have to the Bible says we are supposed to meditate on the Word all the time. The Word is also food for our souls. My soul was half starved and hungry, no wonder I was thinking crazy things.

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Change your focus – to avoid being Angry

Stop making your primary focus on things to do with Jesus or your ministry or everything and start making your focus actually Jesus Christ. Stop focussing primarily on your problems and the people making your problems worse as this made me Angry and look for constructive solutions and make sure you always give Christ supremacy in your thoughts.

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Commit our thoughts to prayer – to avoid being Lonely

We commit them to prayer, my problem was that I was not talking to or thinking about Jesus as much as I should because I was so busy doing the things Jesus asked me to do. This made me Lonely. I then crashed (emotionally) it was only then that I noticed the vacuum in my brain where thoughts about and for Jesus would normally have inhabited. The vacuum was filled with sex, thoughts of sex anyway lol… I needed to pray more to inject my humanity with holiness.

(1 Thessalonians 5:17 NLT) “[17] Never stop praying.”

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Don’t overwork – to avoid being Tired

(Psalm 127:2 NLT) “[2] It is useless for you to work so hard from early morning until late at night, anxiously working for food to eat; for God gives rest to his loved ones.”

Does what it says on the tin really.

Conclusion

I was Hungry (spiritually starved), Angry (due to the people around me making my task more difficult), Lonely (from lack of interaction with Jesus) and Tired (from over working, I actually ended up in A&E for fatigue related accident, related to how tired I was from doing what I was doing). Apparently, when you are these things as a man you shouldn’t go on the internet…. Seems as though that works for women to! I didn’t go on the internet btw but my mind just went south lol.

On a separate note, I wrote a blog post about issues men have here: 3 Ways The Devil Tempts Men

  • Hungry – Eat your spiritual food which is reading the Bible
  • Angry – Change your focus to things for and of Jesus
  • Lonely – pray and talk to Jesus
  • Tired – Don’t overwork and give Jesus and your family the time they deserve

If it took two weeks of distraction, overwork, then me crashing, for my mind to be in the gutter goodness knows what other people who don’t read their Bible regularly or talk to Jesus regularly all year must be struggling with.

Here’s some resources:

https://healthypsych.com/h-a-l-t-hungry-angry-lonely-and-tired-a-self-care-tool/

https://bustedhalo.com/features/what-works-10-halt-hungry-angry-lonely-tired

https://bradfordhealth.com/halt-hunger-anger-loneliness-tiredness/

Catherine xxx

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Bibliography

Never Thirsty, ‘When does thinking about a sin become a sin’ Never Thirsty Web site, at: <https://www.neverthirsty.org/bible-qa/qa-archives/question/when-does-thinking-about-a-sin-become-a-sin/&gt; 9 September 2019

SPECIAL EDITION: I Had A Vision Of #Heaven!!!!!!!!!! | #Jesus #Christian

I HAD A VISION YESTERDAY!

I was taken up to heaven and then taken into courtroom in heaven. God the Father was the judge. It was ornate like the Crown Court where the highest seat was reserved for the judge, which was God and there were places for Clerks and there were seats for the Defendant and Prosecution.

In this courtroom I had this sense that I was free but I saw where the Defendant would sit and I saw a young adult male, around my age (I’m 29 so around his early 30’s), sitting with his lawyer. He was in trouble and the court case that was happening in heaven was regarding him and he was talking with his lawyer.

The Defendant, so the person who was being accused, was wearing a dark grey almost black suit, he looked quite nice in it actually, I think he had a black skinny tie on and he was kind of tall. God also showed me that this guy told people he was a Christian. His lawyer was in a similar colour suit but was a bit shorter than the defendant and middle aged and was dressed smarter.

The lawyer was preparing all of the documents to make sure that the Defendant had every chance of a good defence, the lawyers body language suggested that this was crunch time and if this case didn’t win it was going to be hell for the young man.

I was in the audience part on the side of the Defendant, I was free to go where I wanted to but the Defendant had to stay put. Court had not started yet and everyone was not there but for some reason the Defendant had to turn up early with his lawyer. The movements of the Defendant because he was the Defendant were dictated to him because he was accused, so unlike me, he had to go where other people told him to go when they told him to go there.

As I said the court hadn’t started yet, people were moving around, the Defendant was there and only me in the audience, then for some reason the Defendant turned around looked me in the eyes and smiled. I got the feeling like he knew I was going to turn up, he knew I had his back and he knew I cared, which is why he turned around because he was expecting me.

Then something strange happened. I suddenly saw a vision within a vision. In this vision I saw the courtroom floor. Someone had dropped a USED CONDOM on the courtroom floor.

Now this signified several things:

  1. Contempt for God’s law
  2. Contempt for the institution of marriage because the person who did this NEEDED to used a condom because the person they were sleeping with they were not married to
  3. Contempt for the woman who had been slept with
  4. Contempt for sexual intimacy, this signified that sex didn’t mean much to the person who did this
  5. The person who used the condom had had sex in an inappropriate place that’s why the condom ended up somewhere it shouldn’t have.

When I was at university when you would walk to university there would be used condoms on the ground because people, who had no regard for themselves and didn’t fear God used to have sex in the alleyways then dump the used condoms. God was showing me that that’s what that situation meant.

The used condom was also evidence. IT WAS EVIDENCE AGAINST THE DEFENDANT!!!!! That was the reason why he was there. He had been sleeping with his girlfriend and God had finally had enough and the Devil was able to come before God and accuse the young man and the young man was now really in trouble. I am guessing the lawyer was either an angel or the Angel of the Lord as in Jesus.

The scary thing about this whole thing was that God revealed to me that this heavenly court case has not happened yet. I WAS ACTUALLY SEEING THE FUTURE!!!

There is somebody out there, around my age, male (obviously) sleeping with your girlfriend and God is about to run out of patience with you.

Please stop, God can see what you are doing. The Devil is laughing every time you sleep with your girlfriend because IT knows that you are digging yourself into a hole. And the Devil cannot wait to meet you in the afterlife. God sends people like me to intercede for you but I cannot pray you out of hell if you’re already there.

Stop it, stop it right now, ask forgiveness of your sins, find some bible believing guys who you can be accountable with, get prayer, discipleship, deliverance whatever you need to do to get right with God but please just stop sleeping with your girlfriend. Sex is for marriage only.

Your actions are irritating God and one day you will not be free.

Catherine

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Feeling better! 🙂

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A Case Study For The Stupidity Of #Complimentarianism | #Jesus #Christianity #Marriage #Relationships #Women #Feminism

Hello!

So, as we know I am egalitarian in that I believe that men and women are equal and they can make equal decisions in marriage etc. Of course, no matter how hard I try, I will never be able to donate sperm and if I ever find that I can, I need to see a doctor… So we can’t always do the same thing but in our humanity we are equal.

I know many people who are complimentarians, this is the idea where the man is the head and the woman is the neck “eugh” anyway… So this stupidness runs deep. I found out the stupidest thing happened, which just explains the stupid of that heterodoxy:

A woman who shall remain nameless, a friend of a friend, was (maybe still is I don’t actually know) married to the man of her dreams and believed in the whole man is the head of the household thing and that she was the neck. Her husband one day had an “inspired idea” to go and do something, which shall go unmentioned, which was overtly wrong (when it was explained to me what he did it was clearly wrong even to someone who is not a Christian). Now the silly wife knew this thing was wrong, however, she believed that as a wife Jesus and the bible says that she should just follow her husband’s instruction explicitly without comment. Sooooo, the wife went along with her husbands sin and just believed that her submission to his authority would somehow change him so he would see how wrong he was (I don’t know how she rationalised that but oh well….). Oh and the wrong thing that the man did cost them hundreds of thousands of pounds. Anyway, so the wife also believed that because the husband was the “head” God will see him as being more responsible for any sins committed in the marriage than her and that he, in God’s eyes, takes all the responsibility for all of the decisions made in the marriage and that God will judge him not her for them. So she didn’t think that God would see her as having any responsibility for anything that happens in the marriage even any bad decisions that she went along with because she thought that she was just being a “good” Christian by doing what her husband says and it doesn’t matter if what the husband says is wrong she should just follow and God will bless her for that.

How do some people manage to finish school?..

Does anyone but me see what’s wrong with that scenario? It is of course the logical conclusion to that heterodoxy. Ok sooo there are a MANY things wrong with this scenario. Where do I start, hmmm let’s deal with the whole diminished responsibility thing first. I’m just going to let the Bible do the talking!

So the Bible says that everyone is personally responsibly for her or his sins. We see that individuals suffer for their own sins:

(Ezekiel 18:20 NLT) “[19] “[20] The person who sins is the one who will die. … and wicked people will be punished for their own wickedness.”

I don’t know where that woman got her silly views from but it was informed by a false doctrine that was part of another false doctrine regarding women’s unfailing submission to beings equipped with peniii (pronounced peen-eye lol I love the top definition here https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Penii). However, I’m on a roll with the whole sin thing so I won’t be tackling that today (it would literally be around 60k words worth of explanation) let’s carry on ->

In fact, in the Old Testament, not only were individuals responsible for their sins but their sins could also have an effect on their children as well! Looky looky!!!

(Exodus 34:7 NLT) “[7] I lavish unfailing love to a thousand generations. I forgive iniquity, rebellion, and sin. But I do not excuse the guilty. I lay the sins of the parents upon their children and grandchildren; the entire family is affected–even children in the third and fourth generations.””

(Numbers 14:18 NLT) “[18] ‘The LORD is slow to anger and filled with unfailing love, forgiving every kind of sin and rebellion. But he does not excuse the guilty. He lays the sins of the parents upon their children; the entire family is affected–even children in the third and fourth generations.'”

These verses show that the sin of an individual can affect the other generations that come after them, which is true take the Holocaust for example, to this day Germany is still not allowed to have an army. Also, think about jail time. If someone’s Father does something that means that he goes to jail then the family is affected because the home becomes broken when one parent leaves. What you do affects yourself as well as others.

We also see verses of scripture that show us how we can be judged as accomplices to other people’s sin:

(Luke 12:47-48 NLT) “[47] “And a servant who knows what the master wants, but isn’t prepared and doesn’t carry out those instructions, will be severely punished. [48] But someone who does not know, and then does something wrong, will be punished only lightly. When someone has been given much, much will be required in return; and when someone has been entrusted with much, even more will be required.”

She knew what her husband was doing was wrong, the man was an idjit (click here for the definition: https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=idjit) but she went along with it anyway.

(Lol flock of penises https://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Penii Ok ok ok I’m going to be serious now… * slaps hand * bad Catherine ! naughty!! Lol I’m in such a strange mood right let’s carry on. I think I’m just so unimpressed and angry with that woman I’m struggling to take this seriously. Anyway…)

She knew what her husband was doing was wrong and she just went along with it. Pfft… Women were designed to be the ezer that is the helpmeet. B. Boyd (2013) explains this function quite well:

“…women were not created as afterthoughts, add-ons, or additives, like the kind I put in my truck’s gas tank, to give me a little boost. No, they were an integral part of the deal, from the very beginning of time…God welcomed His first divine daughter in a pretty powerful way: He referred to her by the Hebrew term ezer kenegdo, which translates in English to “helpmeet” or “helpmate”. As the NIV version of the famous verse has it: “The Lord God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helpmeet suitable for him” (Genesis 2:18 NIV)…twenty-one times the phrase ezer kenegdo is used throughout Scripture, sixteen of them are used to refer to God himself [examples: Psalm 30:10; 33:20; 115:10; 146:5.] God uses the same name for Eve that he uses for himself, which means that unless God had a massive inferiority complex, he had something more in mind than women as congenital add-on to man…“If Adam must think for, decide for, protect, and provide for the woman, she actually becomes a burden on him – not much help (which is why people in certain cultures just sell or abort their daughters), when you think about it. The kind of help man needs demands full deployment of her strengths, her gifts, and the best she has to offer. His life will change for the better because of what she contributes to his life” (Boyd 2013, pp. 18-20).

BOOM!

If we are not opening up our mouths and telling our husbands when they are wrong (provided that they aren’t the kind of men that will give you a beating for it) then we are in the wrong too. Partly because, as Boyd (2013) shows us, we are failing to fulfil our God ordained purpose to “help”. You are not helping him by not telling him the truth when he is wrong, that’s not faith its gosh darn stupidity. We are missing the mark when we do that and that is the definition of the term used for “sin” in the bible.

Yes pray by all means but open up your mouth, if your faith leads you to a place where you can’t council your husband then

1.) You’re not mature enough to be married

2.) You shouldn’t be married to him, especially as his mistake cost them sooooooooooooooo much money and it was foreseeable.

3.) You need to question the type of Christianity you are practising, if your faith practices are leaving you bound, leading to sin and are not leading to any personal transformation within individuals that practice it then it is an occult form of Christianity.

That kind of inappropriateness leads to “sin” and everybody missing the mark.

The noun חטא (het’) means sin and comes from the identical but differently pronounced verb חטא (hata’), which means to miss a mark, target, goal, objective. The word sin literally means “a missing.” examples include:

Judges 20:16, “Out of all these people 700 choice men were left-handed; each one could sling a stone at a hair and not miss.”

Proverbs 19:2, “…and he who makes haste with his feet errs.” (Abarim Productions 2019, Romans 7)

You don’t confront your husbands sin you, him and your marriage fails and you get to a place where you shouldn’t be and you miss your goals or objectives and this is “sin”. Again, if the kind of Christianity you are practising is making you do that it’s not Christianity at all and it’s heterodoxy. This is the logical conclusion to the Submission theological perspective she was practising it expertly and it led to it’s logical conclusion.

Christianity is all about taking personal responsibility for the things that you have done wrong. That is part of being a mature Christian. Jesus showed us the ultimate example of taking responsibility when He died on the cross for us. If we continue to sin willingly there is no other sacrifice for that.

At the end times we will all have to give account of everything we have done. You will be alone, confronted about what you did and more than likely naked because that is the way that God sees us:

(Matthew 12:36-37 NLT) “[36] And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak. [37] The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.””

(Romans 14:12-13 NLT) “[12] Yes, each of us will give a personal account to God. [13]… Decide instead to live in such a way that you will not cause another believer to stumble and fall.”

(Revelation 20:11-15 NLT) “[11] And I saw a great white throne and the one sitting on it. The earth and sky fled from his presence, but they found no place to hide. [12] I saw the dead, both great and small, standing before God’s throne. And the books were opened, including the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to what they had done, as recorded in the books. [13] The sea gave up its dead, and death and the grave gave up their dead. And all were judged according to their deeds. [14] Then death and the grave were thrown into the lake of fire. This lake of fire is the second death. [15] And anyone whose name was not found recorded in the Book of Life was thrown into the lake of fire.”

We are all responsible for our actions, just because your husband told you to do it and you are willingly “submitting” to him like a twit doesn’t mean that you are not going to get punished if the thing is wrong especially if you are NOT in a situation where he is going to beat you if you say something. Women whose lives are in danger if they say something to or about their husbands is another issue and I am not talking about them. I am talking about those who are in loving relationships and all they have to do is open up their mouths and say no to their husbands. Those women are going to get themselves into trouble with God if they do not say something.

Besides, Paul said if you do something that you think is wrong then you are sinning:

(Romans 14:23 NLT) “[23] But if you have doubts about whether or not you should eat something, you are sinning if you go ahead and do it. For you are not following your convictions. If you do anything you believe is not right, you are sinning.”

You will have to give account of your actions to God, God isn’t going to excuse you because your husband told you to do it, God is not interested in what your husband did or told you to do God is interested in what YOU, what did YOU do of your own volition. Why do people keep adding things to the Bible?

Catherine

 

 

Bibliography

Abarim Productions. 2019. ‘Romans 7’ Abarim Productions Web site, at: <http://www.abarim-publications.com/Bible_Commentary/Law_And_Sin.html#.XTCC9IXfv7g&gt; 18 July 2019

Boyd, B. 2013. Let Her Lead: Creating a Better Future for Women in the Church. Colorado: Bonfire Books, LLC.

I Saw #Jesus!

Hey everyone,

So yesterday I had some spare time and I was just (wasting it lol) spending it laying on my bed, on top of the covers, pretty much doing nothing but daydreaming, thinking about nothing important really. In fact, what I was thinking about was something rather silly, I was imagining being on one of those chat shows and thinking about what I would say and wear and so on lol.

Then I looked over to the right and I saw Jesus just casually sitting on the other side of the bed. I thought to myself wait a minute…. Jesus just stealthily came into my room, sat next to me on my bed without my knowledge and was listening to me think stupidness lol, nothing particularly holy or inspiring but Jesus just seemed to be happy to chill. At first I noticed and carried on thinking, then the Holy Spirit said to me I should thank Jesus for being there. So I did.

I thought to myself – how long has Jesus been there? Lol. Also, how often does Jesus do that? Lol. Also, I realised that Jesus must be there the whole time. We think we are alone but we’re not.

I thanked Jesus for being there because we know that Jesus “loves” us but sometimes it’s really comforting when Jesus does things to let us know that He “likes” us. You hang with people you can stand lol.

Interestingly – when I thought something that I knew was naughty, Jesus disappeared, I then asked forgiveness for that thought then Jesus reappeared!

My experience showed me that the following scriptures are true:

Psalm 34:7 NLT
For the angel of the LORD is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him.

This is because I realised through my experience that Jesus must there all the time!

Also:

1 Thessalonians 5:2 NLT
For you know quite well that the day of the Lord’s return will come unexpectedly, like a thief in the night.

Jesus came into my room stealthily like a thief in the night, without my knowledge, it was just – boom – Jesus is here. My goodness when the rapture happens no one is even going to know what hit them, Jesus will just be not there and then be there!

N.B. I was at the sink this morning, my mind somewhere else again and I saw Jesus again! Standing in front of me, facing me, body angled slightly to the side, looking at me like he was walking past, saw something interesting and had just turned around to look to see what it was.

Fascinating!

Catherine x

A Whistle-stop Tour Of #Ancient #Jewish #Worship #Music & Techniques

Hey!

Here’s a whistle stop tour of why Christians sing in church:

A History of Christian Worship

The early church was comprised of Jews who had accepted Jesus as the promised Messiah. Therefore, to understand what contemporary Christian worship is and why it is there, one must look at historical Jewish worship, as this is the foundation that modern Christian worship is based on.

The beginnings of Jewish music are not known, what is not shrouded in mystery is known by what the Bible tells us (Barton 2014, p.7). The book of Psalms is full of many musical directions of how to worship God, however, as there are no sound recordings or musical notation related to the musical directions in the psalms, we can only speculate as to how they would have sounded. The first mention in the Bible of music, a musical instrument and a musician is when a woman called Adah gives birth to her son whom she named Jubal, in Genesis 4:20-22:

“[20] Adah gave birth to Jabal, who was the first of those who raise livestock and live in tents. [21] His brother’s name was Jubal, the first of all who play the harp and flute. [22] Lamech’s other wife, Zillah, gave birth to a son named Tubal-cain. He became an expert in forging tools of bronze and iron. Tubal-cain had a sister named Naamah.” (Genesis 4:20-22 NLT)

Here, we are introduced to three primary professions on earth, apart from tending the Garden of Eden, like Adam. Those who work with livestock (v.20), the musician (v.21) and the craftsman in bronze and iron (v.22) (Barton 2014, p.9).

The Hebrews, (as they were known before they arrived in Israel), were given instructions to worship God in the books of the Law, which, at the time, also involved animal sacrifice. They were told what to sacrifice and when but no specifics was given regarding worship (Williams 2018, Origins of Christian Worship).

There are a few examples describing how worship was lead in the Bible but again we do not know how it sounded. We read early on in the Bible that after leaving Egypt, Miriam, the sister of Moses, took a timbrel and led the other women, who also had timbrels and to praise God in Exodus 15; 20 and 21. In Leviticus, we are introduced to the Shofar, this is a Rams horn which was blown by a priest on feast days. The Shofar is still played today and sounds like a trumpet or horn. In Numbers 10:1-10, we are introduced to another kind of horn, the silver trumpet, like the Shofar, this is not strictly a musical instrument but is also only used by the priests who blew it to signal to the Hewbrew’s that they were moving the camp.

Fast-forward many generations to the book of Samuel we discover that there were prophets who were also musicians. Saul met them following an encounter with Samuel:

“When you arrive at Gibeah of God, where the garrison of the Philistines is located, you will meet a band of prophets coming down from the place of worship. They will be playing a harp, a tambourine, a flute, and a lyre, and they will be prophesying. (1 Samuel 10:5 NLT)

Music was also used for therapeutic reasons, David played the harp for King Saul, conducted under what has become known as the Psalmist anointing, which is “…the power coming from God in the music to drive evil spirits away” (Barton 2014, p.9):

And whenever the tormenting spirit from God troubled Saul, David would play the harp. Then Saul would feel better, and the tormenting spirit would go away. (1 Samuel 16:23 NLT).

Later, once David became king and he brought the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem there was dancing; singing; they were playing lyres; harps; tambourines and other percussive instruments (2 Samuel 6:5) and Rams horn’s were played in 2 Samuel 6.15. David also assigned men from the Levite clans to sing and play music in worship to God in the tabernacle, (which at the time was a tent), 24 hours a day and they did so until his heir and son Solomon built a temple made of brick (1 Chronicles 6:31-32). In fact, the whole of 1 Chronicles 25 also shows us that David appointed entire families from the Levite clans to play music, this would have amounted to several thousand singers and musicians (Barton 2014, p.9). David also appointed a choir leader, who functioned, I imagine, much in the same way as a modern choir leader (1 Chronicles 15:16) (Nehemiah 12:46). When David established the Ark of the Covenant in the Tabernacle, he personally paid for musicians out of his treasury:

“[4] David appointed the following Levites to lead the people in worship before the Ark of the LORD–to invoke his blessings, to give thanks, and to praise the LORD, the God of Israel. [5] Asaph, the leader of this group, sounded the cymbals. Second to him was Zechariah, followed by Jeiel, Shemiramoth, Jehiel, Mattithiah, Eliab, Benaiah, Obed-edom, and Jeiel. They played the harps and lyres. [6] The priests, Benaiah and Jahaziel, played the trumpets regularly before the Ark of God’s Covenant.” (1 Chronicles 16:4-6 NLT)

Before David’s Tabernacle (tent) was erected worship was quite solemn, as directed by Moses and involved animal sacrifice. In David’s Tabernacle worship livened up. This could have been because David was quite a creative and passionate person. The Bible tells us that he was a poet, harpist and singer, as well as a shepherd, King and warrior. The Bible also tells us that David also appeared to enjoy dancing as well, see 2 Samuel 16:14 (Barton 2014, p.15).

Once, Solomon, David’s son and heir had built the Temple of the Lord, he celebrated this with music, 120 priests playing trumpets and God responded to this by filling the Temple with His presence:

“[12] And the Levites who were musicians–Asaph, Heman, Jeduthun, and all their sons and brothers–were dressed in fine linen robes and stood at the east side of the altar playing cymbals, lyres, and harps. They were joined by 120 priests who were playing trumpets. [13] The trumpeters and singers performed together in unison to praise and give thanks to the LORD. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals, and other instruments, they raised their voices and praised the LORD with these words: “He is good! His faithful love endures forever!” At that moment a thick cloud filled the Temple of the LORD. [14] The priests could not continue their service because of the cloud, for the glorious presence of the LORD filled the Temple of God.” (2 Chronicles 5:12-14 NLT) (Barton 2014, p.9).

The instruments used in the Temple worship in King Solomon’s times were:

Kinnor – A Harp or Lyre – a plucked string instrument probably with 12 strings. It is the national instrument of Israel still today.
Ugav – a flute or shawm – a wood instrument
Tof – a small tambourine-type instrument often played by women
Machalat – The nature of this instrument cannot be established

 

Non-musical instruments

Shofar – Ram’s horn
Pa’amon – Bells
Chatzotzerah – The Silver trumpet which God told Moses to make and used to signal the onward movement of the Hebrews in the wilderness and at other festival times – blown only by priests.
The tabret (or trimbrel) – was probably a small hand held percussion instrument (Rothmüller 1967) (Barton 2014, p. 16).

Following the destruction of this temple and the exile and return of the Israelites to Israel, worship changed slightly but the basic elements remained the same and there were still many musicians, Ezra records that 128 singers returned from exile with him (Ezra 2:41), later there were 200 women and men singers (Ezra 2:65). Nehemiah records in Nehemiah 7:67 that the singers were so numerous that they built villages around the capital to accommodate them and they were given a quota of food each day (Nehemiah 11:23) (Barton 2014, pp.17-18). What changed was the tone of worship during the exile of the Israelites from their own country to Babylon by the Babylonians. Singing in the synagogues was briefly banned, possibly due to the sorrow of exile as well as the rise of emphasis on the law by the Pharisee’s Some things were added, like the formalized order of public prayers, still used in Synagogues today, was established by the Great Assembly of Jewish leaders. This is known as the synagogue system (Barton 2014, p.19).

 

Historical Liturgical Synagogue Worship

The following are institutionalised liturgical practices from the synagogue system:

The Cantor

The Cantor was the leader of chanting prayers, psalms and scriptures in the synagogue, which became the dominant form of music in the synagogues for many centuries, following the lifting of the ban on singing in the synagogues. The chant was a liturgical practice that involved a number of syllables being sung to each note of a short melodic line that is repeated throughout the passage being read/sung. The cantor would take contemporaneous melodic patters or compose his own melodies. Chanting of Psalms was often done antiphonally with two choirs groups to lead the congregation. Rabbis did not allow women to sing, so all music was male led by men and boys and chanting was monophonic. The scales differed depending on the spatio-temporal location of the synagogue as the local folk music culture often influenced the Cantor’s musical creations (Barton 2014, p.21).

 

Cantillation

In the Cantillation the cantor or leader singer of a synagogue sings the declamatory form of the weekly text of the Torah, and the Prophets (Nevi’im) using pre-existing musical phrases. The musical phrases are chosen according to the text and book of the Bible being cantillated. There is no rhythm as different musical motives are combined together. Although there is reason to believe that cantillation goes back as far as Ezra in the Bible times – about 2,500 years ago – most melodies used today are no older that about the 15th or 16th century (Rubin and Baron 2006, pp.67-69) (Barton 2014, pp.21-22).

 

Jewish Liturgical Modes

A set of musical modes are called ‘Nusach’ which can refer either to a set of modes, melodies and also a set text or prayer. These modes or melodies link the prayer to a time of year or day and also indicate what prayer is to be sing or recited. These melodies became standardized, as did the prayers associated with the melodies. The Three main modes are: Ahavah Rabbah, Magein Avot and Adonai Malach. Today they are improvised from time to time) (Barton 2014, p.22).

 

Synagogue Prayers

The prayers of the Synagogues were chanted usually led by a Cantor and a male choir (if available). The Cantors usually sang in a florid and melodious style that was either of their own devising (before the modes became formalized) or influence by the local culture’s melodic lines. After the formalizing of the prayers the following forms emerged and remain until this day in the modern synagogues:

Piyyut: – a Jewish liturgical poem that is sung, chanted or spoken. A lot of Piyytim are poetic in character and often follow the order of an acrostic poem using the Hebrew Alphabet in order at the beginning of each line.

Zemiros: Jewish Hymns sung in Hebrew, Aramaic, Yiddish or Ladino, sung at holidays, the Shabbat meal on Fridays or any other day.

Nigun: religious songs sung by groups that involve voice and with no formal words; syllables such as bim-bim-bam or ai-ai-ai are sung.

Pizmonim: Traditional Jewish songs associated with Middle Eastern Sephardic Jews – but are also among the North African and Mizrahi Jews. Texts may come from the Old Testament or by poets. They are composed to praise God and contain traditional teaching. They are often sung at religious rituals or festivities such as circumcisions, weddings Bar Mitzvahs or other ceremonies.

Baqashot: a collection of songs and prayers sung by Sephardic Jewish communities during Shabbat, but also may be recited during the long weeks of winter) (Barton 2014, pp.22-23).

That’s all folks!

Bibliography

Books

Barton, B. 2014. The Music of the Jews: An Overview. Fellowship Diploma dissertation. National College of Music, London.

Rothmüller, A. M. 1967. The Music of the Jews; an Historical Appreciation. South Brunswick: T. Yoseloff.

Rubin, E. and J. H. Baron. 2006. Music in Jewish History and Culture. Sterling Heights. MI: Harmonie Park.

 

Websites

Williams, B. ‘Origins of Christian Worship’ Academia Web site, at: <https://www.academia.edu/26562401/Origins_of_Christian_Worship > 15 October 2018