• OVER 5,000 ARTICLES AND QUOTES PUBLISHED!
  • Samuel at Gilgal

    This year I will be sharing brief excerpts from the articles, sermons, and books I am currently reading. My posts will not follow a regular schedule but will be published as I find well-written thoughts that should be of interest to maturing Christian readers. Whenever possible, I encourage you to go to the source and read the complete work of the author.

  • Blog Stats

    • 1,395,575 Visits
  • Recent Posts

  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 1,271 other followers

  • September 2012
    M T W T F S S
     12
    3456789
    10111213141516
    17181920212223
    24252627282930
  • Recommended Reading

The Inspiration and Authority of the Bible

Quoting J. C. Ryle:

“Let us boldly maintain, in the face of all the opposition, that the whole of the Bible is given by inspiration of the Holy Spirit, that all is inspired completely, not one part more than another and that there is an entire gulf between the Word of God and any other book in the world. We need not be afraid of difficulties in the way of the doctrine of absolute inspiration. There may be many things about it far too high for us to comprehend: it is a miracle, and all miracles are necessarily mysterious. But if we are not to believe anything until we can entirely explain it, there are very few things indeed that we shall believe. We need not be afraid of all the assaults that criticism brings to bear upon the Bible. From the days of the apostles the Word of the Lord has been incessantly ‘tried,’ and has never failed to come forth as gold, uninjured and spotless.”

“It Was My Hands that Stretched Out the Heavens”

 

Science and the Bible:

I made the earth and created man on it; it was my hands that stretched out the heavens, and I commanded all their host. (Isaiah 45:12 ESV)

The expression “stretched out” is used over and over again in the scriptures to explain the process by which God created the universe. There are many other words or expressions that could have been used, but God inspired men to use this expression. Why? Well, it is certainly consistent with our present understanding of an expanding universe. Our present ability to observe the cosmos has confirmed that the universe is, indeed, expanding. The distance between the stars is ‘stretching’, just as the writers of scripture first indicated, even when their contemporaries were completely silent or mistaken on this issue.

(What did the first galaxies look like? To help answer this question, the Hubble Space Telescope photographed the Hubble Ultra Deep Field (HUDF), the deepest image of the universe ever taken in visible light. Pictured above, the HUDF shows a sampling of the oldest galaxies ever seen.)

 

When Forgetting is a Blessing

But whatever gain I had, I counted as loss for the sake of Christ. Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ and be found in him, not having a righteousness of my own that comes from the law, but that which comes through faith in Christ, the righteousness from God that depends on faith—that I may know him and the power of his resurrection, and may share his sufferings, becoming like him in his death, that by any means possible I may attain the resurrection from the dead.

Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own. But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:7-14 ESV)

During our childhood and youth, we are taught the importance of remembering various things. It may be our multiplication tables or how we are to behave at the dinner table. We are taught to remember Bible verses, historical facts, and how to brush our teeth. We are reminded of what is important to remember by our parents, teachers, friends, and authority figures. The ability to remember is obviously very important.

Strangely enough, the Bible teaches us that forgetting is also important. In chapter 3 of Philippians, Paul says: “But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:14, ESV)

Paul is seeking to know more of Jesus Christ. He is no longer the man he was and he is not yet the man he should be. As a maturing Christian, he understands he is still far from being like Christ. “Not that I have already obtained this or am already perfect, but I press on to make it my own, because Christ Jesus has made me his own. Brothers, I do not consider that I have made it my own.” (Philippians 3:12-13, ESV) Paul is striving for nothing less than the total perfection of Christ.

Paul continues, “But one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 3:13-14 ESV) Notice that Paul mentions the strategy of “forgetting”.

Paul’s religious accomplishments of the past are made irrelevant to what he is hoping to obtain. Paul’s pursuit of Christ and His righteousness is the primary focus of the present and future. We cannot coast along upon the deeds of the past. The runner who looks back will lose the speed needed to win the race. It is not easy to make progress when you are looking in every direction but forward.

We must forget and press on. How badly do you want the prize? There is a strong bond between our pressing own and the depth of our desire for Christ-likeness. If you are satisfied with yourself, why should you keep pressing forward?

We are not yet what we ought to be, but Christ has made us His own. This should serve as an inspiration to us. We must “press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.” Our race is not yet done. Therefore, forget what lies behind and strain forward to the glory that lies ahead!

%d bloggers like this: