Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: Honesty

Even in the littlest of details, strive for honesty.ย 

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Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: Mistakes

There is a difference between making a mistake and committing a sin.

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Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: New beginnings

Life is a series of beginnings. How you enter into them makes all the diffรฉrance.

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Bible Reflections ๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿ‘งโ€๐Ÿ‘ฆ

Is Jeremiah 10:3-4 against Christmas?

Jeremiah 10:3-4 is simply an excuse for Christians to celebrate Christmas. It’s also an excuse to call Christians “pagans” that celebrate Christmas. One can’t win either way. For many people, Christmas is a feeling that takes them back to their childhood. They gravitate towards the gingerbread, the gifts, the carols, and the Christmas tree. Talk about a sensory overload! It’s a cherished custom that’s hard to let go of.

Not to stray off-topic, but at first glance/read, many people take Jeremiah 10:3-4 out of context. It’s better to read the chapter in its entirety, but I want to look at the first 4 verses. This chapter opens with a request for Israel to listen to what Jeremiah is saying, for he speaks the Word of God. The second chapter is a reminder that we live in the world, but we shouldn’t even think of taking up such worldly ways. Verse 3 speaks of idol worship where trees are cut down to make idols for worship, and we’re never to worship God through images or idols of any sort. Verse 4 describes how the idols are then decked in silver and gold. Yet, despite the care, time, and patience that goes into craving and decorating a lifeless deity, comes to life it does not.

Statue of Baal โ€” Google Arts & Culture

Statue of Baal via Google Arts & Culture

We can clearly see that Jeremiah is condemning idolatry, not Christmas trees. He is reminding his people that the gods that the pagans worship are NOTHING compared to the True and Living God. Compare Jeremiah 10 with Isaiah 40:18-20; 44:14-17, and read how similar the arguments are. When will a Christmas tree become a graven image for these passages to apply? When people start bowing down to worship or pray to them.

However, I’ll also have to concur that there is a slight resemblance between the Christmas tree and the tree of Jeremiah and Isaiah. The Christmas tree is supposed to be a decorative symbol, yet, there are songs directed to the tree as if they were meant to serenade it.

Although Jeremiah 10:3-4 may not be of the beloved Christmas trees, they began as a pagan tradition and there is no denying it, no matter how much one dresses or lights it up. Christmas loving Christians are going to want to defend and argue over other man made traditions that non-loving Christmas Christians keep, such as birthdays, but that’s a topic for another day.

Merry Christmas Animated Gif Love Messages | Best Wishes

GIF via Best Wishes

Conclusion

The Israelites failed to heed God’s warning time after time. They were fascinated by the religious practices of their neighbors, so it became easier overtime to ignore God, and slip into idolatrous worship, thus learning the way of the Gentile. The celestial body was part of the Gentile’s worship, so that includes the sun, and December 25th do have significant history with sun worship. As the wisest man once said, “There is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9). Many customs and traditions are recycled and simply given a new name and purpose, and Christmas is one of such.

When we look at Jeremiah 10, we must remember that Christmas came into being long after the death and resurrection of our Savior, as a day to honor His birth. Some might argue that “we honor Him every day,” but why December 25th to commemorate a birth that is inaccurate? Why December 25th to give gifts, spend time with loved ones, and share with the homeless? Shouldn’t those things be done during the year, and not one day a year? What’s so special about this one day that we stop to “celebrate” and “honor” Christ? Why not every day?ย It’s no wonder why this festive season is fill with so much of anxiety!

15 Hilarious Christmas GIFs That You'll Want To Share - Society19

GIF via Society19

Getting back on track, Jeremiah 10 is referring to idolatry as the practice of decorating Christmas trees originated later. However, although the passage is not referring to Christmas trees, take time to look into the celebration of Christmas and its trees. God warns that “the customs of the peoples are futile”, so why are Christians bent on looking at pagan practices and seeking to copy them? Why do we seek to justify the keeping and practices of it?ย We need to stop borrowing attractive religious customs from the world around us, and worship God in spirit and truth as it is meant to be. Our religious practices should be taken DIRECTLY from the Bible.

Final Thoughts:

  • No matter what, we can’t put Christ back into Christmas, for He was never there to begin with, no matter how it is dressed up. It’s not even pronounced Christ-mas, but kri-smuhs. If it’s all about Christ, why is the ‘t’ silent?
  • It’s AMAZING how many people disobey or trash Christ during the year, but come together to “celebrate His birth” for one day. Make it make sense.
  • It is easy to give praise with our voice, but what about action through obedience?

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VERSE OF THE MONTH (December 2021): 

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge. 

Hosea 4:6 ๐Ÿค”
Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: We are lacking knowledge

Romans 15:4 perfectly captures why the Bible was written. Yet, many people lack knowledge for they do not read, learn, meditate, and study the scriptures. They lean on false teachings instead of opening the Bible. They get their learning from Hollywood, misinformed and misguided individuals/celebrities, instead of going directly to the Word.

It’s no wonder we are destroyed due to a lack of knowledge!

To reject the knowledge of the Word of God is to reject God. Today, open your Bible and seek knowledge.ย 

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Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: Where were you when God created the world?

God made the world without help. We were not there to give advice or guidance, so why do we want to dictate on God’s behalf?

God was the One Who laid out the blueprint, measurements, and details. The angels delighted in the Creator’s creative creation by singing and shouting for joy.

The world is not what it once was, but when Christ returns to reclaim what’s rightfully His, we shall rejoice as the angels. Even so, come soon, Lord Jesus.

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Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: Return to the Lord

What right do we have to complain about the punishment of sin we’ve committed? None at all. We tend to want His grace, but not His fair justice. We shouldn’t even be complaining about God, but to God.

Instead of complaining, and fretting, let us instead examine our hearts, ways, thoughts, and beliefs. Let us repent, and turn again to the Lord. Saying that we are of God is easy to say, but are our actions in sync? Being a Christian is an everyday affair, not a sometimes affair.

Instead of complaining, we should encourage ourselves in hope. 

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Devotion ๐Ÿ™

Scripture of the Month: Mercies and forgiveness

How many times have we rebelled against God? Countless! Yet, God is so merciful, He tends to forgive us, and start with us all over again, once we’re willing to let Him work.

So, what’s our excuse?

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My 2 Cents ๐Ÿ’ญ

The internet NEVER lets you forget!

It has been a whirlwind sort of affair, watching guest hosts vie to be the next permanent host of Jeopardy!. I’ve enjoyed a few of the guests, but I had a feeling that Mike Richards was going to be the chosen face, although he didn’t stand out for me. As the Executive Producer of Jeopardy!, I felt as if he shouldn’t have even guest hosted, however, I was willing to give him a chance as the new host. That was, until the angry internet mob decided to remind him of unsavory comments he made on an eight-year-old podcast series in 2013 and 2014 about women, Jews, and other groups. They cried out for blood, and Richards had no choice, but to step down.

Nowadays, people drag others down for their sins, and they mostly do it from behind the screen bringing up “receipts” and “tea”, and crying out for cancel culture. We tend to look at the past instead of the present. Who is to say that Richards is not a changed man now? Why can’t forgiveness play a role, given that we’re all fickle creatures and the ones rattling the cage are not without sin as well?ย 

Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Colossians 3:13

Getting back to Jeopardy!, most fans were excited about LeVar Burton despite his guest hosting gig having the lowest ratings. My favorites were David Faber and Joe Buck. I was hoping that one of them would’ve been chosen to be the next face of the game show, seeing that they brought a sense of enjoyment and entertainment to the show, especially Buck.ย 

You’ve heard this many, many times before, but be careful of what you say on the internet, for your footprints are easy to track as the internet never lets you forget.

And that’s my two cents.

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VERSE OF THE MONTH (August 2021): 

Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; 
yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.ย  

Jonah 2:4 โ›ช
Bible Reflections ๐Ÿ‘จโ€๐Ÿ‘ฉโ€๐Ÿ‘งโ€๐Ÿ‘ฆ

If He knocks, will you open the door?

Here, we see Jesus standing outside. He’s knocking. Why? Because He wants to be let into our life and heart. However, He’s not going to be knocking all the time. He’ll only knock for a while. Eventually, He’ll stop.

Jesus is the ultimate gentleman. He doesn’t just force Himself into someone’s life, He knocks first. And if you let Him in, supping with Him can be just as rewarding.

Jesus wants to sit at the table with you. He wants to dine with you today. Will you open the door – even if it’s just slightly – and welcome Eternal Life, or will you leave Jesus standing out in the cold?

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VERSE OF THE MONTH (August 2021):  

Then I said, I am cast out of thy sight; 
yet I will look again toward thy holy temple.ย 

Jonah 2:4 โ›ช