The Diary of a Bible

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JANUARY: A busy time for me. Most of the family decided to read me through this year. They kept me busy for the first two weeks, but they have forgotten me now.

FEBRUARY: Clean-up time. I was dusted yesterday and put in my place. My owner did use me for a few minutes last week. He had been in an argument and was looking up some references to prove he was right.

MARCH: Had a busy day first of the month. My owner was elected president of the PTA & used me to prepare a speech.

APRIL: Grandpa visited us this month. He kept me on his lap for an hour reading I Cor 13. He seems to think more of me than do some people in my own household.

MAY: I have a few green stains now. Some spring flowers were pressed in my pages. I suppose this was bound to happen– after all, it is spring!

JUNE: I look like a scrapbook. They have stuffed me full of newspaper clippings – one of the girls was married. I get to hold the “glad tidings.”

JULY: They put me in a suitcase today. I guess we are off on vacation. I wish I could stay home; I know I’ll be closed up in this thing for at least two weeks.

AUGUST: Drat. Still in the suitcase.

SEPTEMBER: Back home at last and in my old familiar place. I have a lot of company. Two women’s magazines and four comic books are stacked on top of me. I wish I could be read as much as they are.

OCTOBER: They read me a little bit today. One of them is very sick. Right now I am sitting in the center of the coffee table. I think the Pastor is coming by for a visit.

NOVEMBER: Back in my old place. Somebody asked today if I were a scrapbook.

DECEMBER: The family is busy getting ready for the holidays. I guess I’ll be covered up under wrapping paper & packages again … just as I am every Christmas.

I recently came across a statistic claiming that only about 10% of professing Christians have read the entire Bible. Does the other 90% include you? Guilt is not the reason for this post, but I do want to encourage my readers to pick it up and read. It is not an ordinary book.

16 “All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right.”

2 Timothy 3:16

“The vigor of our spiritual life will be in exact proportion to the place held by the Bible in our life and thoughts.”

— George Muller

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Tiny Little Giftlets

 

51+IynkoiCL._SX425_He was created of a mother whom He created. He was carried by hands that He formed. He cried in the manger in wordless infancy, He the Word, without whom all human eloquence is mute.    –Augustine

There were many who saw the babe, but did not see the salvation.    –Author Unknown

For the Christ-child who comes is the Master of all; No palace too great, no cottage too small.    –Phillips Brooks

Rejoice, that the immortal God is born, so that mortal man may live in eternity.    –John Hus

His poverty was so great that He was born in another man’s house, and buried in another man’s tomb.    –John Boys

It is here, in the thing that happened at the first Christmas, that the most profound unfathomable depths of the Christian revelation lie. God became man; Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the incarnation.   –J.I. Packer

Who can add to Christmas? The perfect motive is that God so loved the world. The perfect gift is that He gave His only Son. The only requirement is to believe in Him. The reward of faith is that you shall have everlasting life.  –Corrie Ten Boom

The Almighty appeared on earth as a helpless human baby, needing to be fed and changed and taught to talk like any other child. The more you think about it, the more staggering it gets. Nothing in fiction is so fantastic as this truth of the Incarnation.   — J.I. Packer

There were only a few shepherds at the first Bethlehem. The ox and the donkey treeunderstood more of the first Christmas than the high priests in Jerusalem. And it is the same today.    –Thomas Merton

Christmas is based on an exchange of gifts, the gift of God to man – His unspeakable gift of His Son, and the gift of man to God – when we present our bodies a living sacrifice.    –Vance Havner

The idea that there’s a force of love and logic behind the universe is overwhelming to start with, if you believe it. Actually, maybe even far-fetched to start with, but the idea that that same love and logic would choose to describe itself as a baby born in shit and straw and poverty is genius, and brings me to my knees, literally. To me, as a poet, I am just in awe of that. It makes some sort of poetic sense. It’s the thing that makes me a believer, though it didn’t dawn on me for many years.    –Bono

The central miracle asserted by Christians is the incarnation. They say that God became man.   — C.S. Lewis

Infinite, and an infant. Eternal, and yet born of a woman. Almighty, and yet hanging on a woman’s breast. Supporting a universe, and yet needing to be carried in a mother’s arms. King of angels, and yet the reputed son of Joseph. Heir of all things, and yet the carpenter’s despised son.   –Charles Spurgeon

Carols stir us. Holy words inspire us. The golden glow from the manger warms us. A little religion at Christmas is fine. But that glow in the manger comes from the Light of the world. It exposes evil and either redeems it or destroys it. The babe in the manger is far more than an object for sentimental sighs. He is the Son of God who must be accepted as ruler – or confronted as rival.   –John G. Stackhouse, Jr.

The universal joy of Christmas is certainly wonderful. We ring the bells when princes are born, or toll a mournful dirge when great men pass away. Nations have their red-letter days, their carnivals and festivals, but once in the year and only once, the whole world stands still to celebrate the advent of a life. Only Jesus of Nazareth claims this world-wide, undying remembrance. You cannot cut Christmas out of the Calendar, nor out of the heart of the world.  Anonymous

It is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas when its mighty Founder was a child Himself.   –Charles Dickens

Christmas is for children. But it is for grown-ups too. Even if it is a headache, a chore, and a nightmare, it is a period of necessary defrosting of chilled hidebound hearts.   –Lenora Mattingly Weber

Hark the herald angels sing,
Glory to the new-born king.”
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled.!   –Charles Wesley

This Gospel anticipates a world far different from C.S. Lewis’s Narnia, where it is “always winter, and never Christmas.” The promise of the Gospel is that it is “always Christmas.”  To be “in Christ” is to enjoy each morning as a Christmas morning with the family of God, celebrating the gift of God around the tree of life.   –Kevin VanHoozer

The spirit of Christmas needs to be superseded by the Spirit of Christ. The spirit of Christmas is annual; the Spirit of Christ is eternal. The spirit of Christmas is sentimental; the Spirit of Christ is supernatural. The spirit of Christmas is a human product; the Spirit of Christ is a divine person. That makes all the difference in the world.   –Stuart Briscoe

Here’s a side to the Christmas story that isn’t often told: Those soft little hands, fashioned by the Holy Spirit in Mary’s womb, were made so that nails might be driven through them. Those baby feet, pink and unable to walk, would one day walk up a dusty hill to be nailed to a cross. That sweet infant’s head with sparkling eyes and eager mouth was formed so that someday men might force a crown of thorns onto it. That tender body, warm and soft, wrapped in swaddling clothes, would one day be ripped open by a spear. Jesus was born to die.    –John MacArthur

There is no connection between the worship of idols and the use of Christmas trees. We should not be anxious about baseless arguments against Christmas decorations. Rather, we should be focused on the Christ of Christmas and giving all diligence to remembering the real reason for the season.   –John MacArthur

Quotes from CrossQuotes.org under the topic, “Christmas.”

ybic, Bryan

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We All Scream for Ice Cream!

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Sometimes, God’s Word is like an ice cream parlor. It has 66 flavors (books) and selecting a scoop is really hard. Should I have Psalms, or Matthew? What about special toppings? Of course, Revelation can be an acquired taste– but a scoop is truly heavenly.

Maybe I’ll get crazy, and have a double scoop; possibly Ecclesiastes and James, with sprinkles– but on a waffle cone? I don’t think so.  Ah decisions, decisions– what’s a guy to do? Sometimes the person behind the counter will cheerfully give you a taste test. (But after giving you several samples, they seem to catch on.) 🙂

Now I know the Bible is really far more than an ice cream shop. Jesus once said, “My words are Spirit and Life.” What more can you say to that?

“All Scripture is inspired by God and is useful to teach us what is true and to make us realize what is wrong in our lives. It corrects us when we are wrong and teaches us to do what is right. 17 God uses it to prepare and equip his people to do every good work.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17, NLT

I suppose this a serious matter. I will not trivialize it. The inspired scripture corrects us, and teaches us. It connects with us on so many levels, doing a comprehensive “all-points inspection.” It should be our first action, and our last stop. The Christian must make it his prime concern, or deal with the consequences of a barren life.

The essential idea I suppose, is connecting with a scripture portion that has been saturated with the Holy Spirit’s presence, just for me. But, if I don’t read it, I’m putting myself outside God’s primary way to change me. And that is sad. He gives me so much, and ignore it.

But I can’t lament how terrible my life is, if I cut myself off from all that can save me. If a physician writes out a prescription for my pneumonia, I must take my medicine if I’m going to heal. I shouldn’t expect to get well if I don’t take my meds.

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Some Quotes:

“The Word of God is creative. It is a hammer that crushes the hardness of our insubordination. It is medicine that heals the brokenhearted. And it is light that gives us guidance and hope on our way.” — John Piper

“This Book contains the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners and the happiness of believers. Its doctrines are holy, its precepts are binding, its histories are true, and its decisions are immutable. Read it to be wise, believe it to be safe, and practice it to be holy. It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you. It is the traveler’s map, the pilgrim’s staff, the pilot’s compass, the soldier’s sword, and the Christian’s character. Here paradise is restored, Heaven opened, and the gates of hell disclosed. Christ is its grand object; our good is its design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill the memory, rule the heart, and guide the feet. Read it slowly, frequently, and prayerfully.” —Anonymous

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kyrie elesion, Bryan

(Lord, have mercy on me)
 
 
A fun menu to drool over– http://www.themoosecafe.com/menus/

BB Book Review: “Imaginary Jesus”

“Imaginary Jesus,” by Matt Mikalatos

This was a book saturated with holy surprises.  For sure, the title seemed eccentric and I couldn’t be certain that it be worth reading.  After I read several pages I was able to use my own “spiritual” GPS and locate, and understand the “lay-of-the-land.”  There was a sense of reading something very fresh, and striding to keep up with Mikalotos.  I discovered that I couldn’t wait for the next page, which is a great indicator.

Imaginative and engaging.  If this book transformed into a person, I would immediately invite him to my living room for coffee and a conversation.  I would not hesitate.  Plot and content wise–this is a narrative of a man’s journey to what is real.  Especially in the spiritual realm of the truth, where it is best to possess what you confess.

The book unfolds with adventure after adventure.  It has a plot that seems like sci-fi.  It is both exotic and friendly, all at the same time.  If I could think out loud my impressions of “Imaginary Jesus” in a single word it would be “winsome.”  Mikalatos presses into our imaginations a journey that is both amusing as it is cutting.  It is a fun read, that is explosive and sure, it puts together for us an understanding of our own hearts in this generation.

Outside Review: “Take the theological forcefulness of Bonhoeffer, combine it with the imaginative whimsy of C. S. Lewis and the wit of Charles Spurgeon, and you get Matt Mikalatos. Imaginary Jesus marks the debut of one of today’s most prominent young Christian writers. “(Gary Thomas, Author of Sacred Marriage and Pure Pleasure )

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I purchased my book direct from Amazon.com for $10.19 USD.

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: BarnaBooks (March 18, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10:9781414335636
  • ISBN-13:978-1414335636
  • ASIN:1414335636
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.6 x 0.5 inches
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars.  (134 customer reviews)
  •  Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #75,518 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)