Blog Archive

Friday, October 29, 2010

Question of the Week:
What About Job?

I wonder about the whole showdown with Job ...
~ Wendy Paine Miller

Set in the post-flood era, the book of Job evokes a picture of chess game between God and the devil, in which humans are pawns with wills of their own.

This book offers fascinating depictions of our God's personality, the devil, heavenly sparring, human suffering, philosophy, creationism, and far more—fodder for an entire book series. We'll peek at just three points.


Job represents epitome of suffering in every area of life, regardless of doing what's right.

Job holds the honor of Billy Graham and the riches of Bill Gates. Then he loses all—family, wealth, health, reputation. What he has left brings him only grief—an embittered wife's nagging, three accusatory "friends," and a despised life.

Job sowed goodness and reaps adversity.

Though he will be rebuked for calling God to account and complaining "not fair," Job's response to suffering itself has inspired humanity throughout the ages:

...[Job] fell to the ground and worshiped. And he said:
"Naked I came from my mother's womb,
And naked shall I return there.
The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away;
Blessed be the name of the LORD."
In all this Job did not sin nor charge God with wrong.
~ Job 1:20-22 (NKJV)


Job's wife provokes her husband using the exact words spoken in Heaven by God and the devil. (Compare Job 2:3 and 2:5 with Job 2:9.) We may deduce that her share in Job's losses has brought bitterness, making her vulnerable to accepting the devil's suggestions, which in turn enables the devil to use her as his mouthpiece.

God desires to be praised. The devil desires to see God cursed.

Job will curse his life. He will question God. He will complain at length, which is dangerously close to cursing God. Yet Job sets an example of rebuking the devil's words:

[Job] said to [his wife], "You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?" In all this Job did not sin with his lips.
~ Job 2:10 (NKJV)


Job curses his birth, cries "not fair," and seeks and audience with God to question Him. God gives Job an audience, but turns the questions on him with a reference to "children of pride."

Job is treated to a raw display of the Lord's power in lightning storm, tornado, and the possibly present behemoth and leviathan (likely a dinosaur and dragon).

Job already feared God. Now he is terrified. Realizing Whom he attempted to call into account, Job recants, calls himself vile, and repents. He thought he wanted God to justify His actions. But now Job justifies having trust in Almighty God's purposes, though we cannot comprehend them:

"I know that You can do everything,
And that no purpose of Yours can be withheld from You...
I have uttered what I did not understand,
Things too wonderful [incomprehensible] for me, which I did not know."
~ Job 42:1-3 (NKJV)

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This post originally appeared at Bullets & Butterflies. To see comments posted there click here.

What questions do you have about Christianity or the Bible? You're invited to leave them in the comments below (anonymous questions welcome), or email buildingHisbody [plus] @

© 2010 Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

New Every Morning

"This morning as you awakened, God's eyes swept over you;
He called you by name and said, 'Come, follow Me.' "
~ David Roper

Through the LORD's mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
~ Lamentations 3:22-23

Every morning is a new day. We begin afresh as we rise, with forgiveness for what has been, strength for what is, and bright hope for what is to come. We do not exhaust the Lord's mercies.

The LORD is good to those who wait for Him,
To the soul who seeks Him.
It is good that one should hope and wait quietly
For the salvation of the LORD.
~ Lamentations 3:25-26

Yesterday's grace is not for today. The soul needs to quietly wait upon the Lord with each new dawn, receiving fresh daily bread and living waters to replenish dependent relationship.

It is good for a man to bear the yoke in his youth.
Let him sit alone and keep silent,
Because God has laid it on him;
Let him put his mouth in the dust
There may yet be hope.
Let him give his cheek to the one who strikes him,
And be full of reproach.
~ Lamentations 3:27-30

The world is filled with suffering, disappointment, and people who let us down (or worse). Here is our job description: accept it all as allowed by God, trusting His purpose without complaint.

Though He causes grief,
Yet He will show compassion
According to the multitude of His mercies.
For He does not afflict willingly,
Nor grieve the children of men.
~ Lamentations 3:30-33 (NKJV)

Here is our hope: God's mercies are greater in scope and mightier and more abundant than the griefs and afflictions. We rest in the assurance that He asks far less than He gives and loves.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Friday, October 22, 2010

Question of the Week:
Why Not Skip the Old Covenant?

Why did God make an Old Covenant if He knew He was going to make a better Covenant?
~ Michaelle B., Michigan

There’s a joke which says God made Adam first as a rough draft, and Eve was perfection.

That implies that God was only warming up the first time around, and didn’t get it quite right until the second time.

God made male and female different, each one for a different purpose, and neither of them inferior to the other.

His covenants are also different, each one for a different purpose. However, the Bible clearly admits that the Old Covenant had problems:

For if that first covenant had been faultless, then no place would have been sought for a second.
~ Hebrews 8:7 (NKJV)

The book of Hebrews elaborates about many problems with the Old Covenant. Among them are that it commanded sacrifices of animals be offered for sins, but ongoing sins meant the need for more sacrifices. Furthermore, the Old Covenant did nothing to fix the problem of sin by changing the sinner. And a person could not live solely by faith, because the Old covenant required them to live by rituals and sacrifices and laws.

Because Jesus (and only Jesus) fulfilled the requirements of the Old Covenant, He was able to make the New Covenant of grace. His sacrifice for sin was the final one, for all sins of all time. His covenant gives His Holy Spirit to His followers, so that we not only have a righteous standing before God (which permits us access to Him), but are also being changed to stop sinning. We are no longer required to live by law*, but can live by faith in God through His grace.

"Grace is when God gives you what you don't deserve and
mercy is when God doesn't give you what you do deserve."
~ Unknown

The problem with grace is that a person who receives grace doesn't recognize it unless that person has been without grace and knew the need for it.

But before faith came, we were kept under guard by the law, kept for the faith which would afterward be revealed. Therefore the law was our tutor to bring us to Christ, that we might be justified by faith. But after faith has come, we are no longer under a tutor.
~ Galatians 3:23-25 (NKJV)

The law of the Old Covenant establishes that we are sinners because we inevitably break the law. Because of the Old Covenant, we understand our need for mercy. And only after we've understood what it is to live under law can we understand the freedom of grace.

*For more on what it means to live in freedom from law, see Question of the Week "Is it Wrong?"

For more on the continuing relevance of the Old Testament, see "
Value of the Old Testament?"

This post originally appeared at Bullets & Butterflies. To see additional comments click here.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Agreeing with the Devil

The theme for today’s blog carnival (hosted by Bridget Chumbley) is "Condemnation." To see what others are saying, visit her site
"One Word at a Time."

"Words have a longer life than deeds."
~ Pindar (ancient Greek poet)

"... the accuser of our brethren ... accused them before our God day and night ..."
~ Revelation 12:10-11 (NKJV)

The Hebrew word satan and the Greek word diabolos (translated "devil") both mean "accuser." The accuser speaks against mankind for our many sins "day and night."

We overcome the devil's condemnation for sin with a simple tactic:
agree with him.

"Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the way with him, lest your adversary deliver you to the judge, the judge hand you over to the officer, and you be thrown into prison."
~ Matthew 5:25 (NKJV)

A person is "blameless" either because no sin has been committed, or because the sin for which one stands accused has been fully resolved.

Each person must face the divine Judge, agree with the accusation of being a sinner, and ask for the mercy and forgiveness He offers through His Son Jesus.

Although we may resolve that matter, Christians continue to struggle against wrong actions, words, feelings and thoughts. If the adversary starts in with his accusations, we remain blameless by immediately resolving sin with admission and repentance, therefore denying our accuser any case against us.

Yet even if caught in sin, the Christian has no condemnation:

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.
~ Romans 8:1 (NKJV)

My standing before God in Christ Jesus is "righteous." The devil knows the power of words, and he will continue accusing me when I am blameless, attempting to steal away the joy of "no condemnation." He'll do the same to all other Christians, attacking mercilessly and unrelentingly with his accusations.

And if we choose to criticize and condemn other Christians, we stand with the accuser—wrongly agreeing with the devil.

If we are to stand with God, we will to speak truth with love, desiring to encourage one another and "stir up good works."

Words have power, for good or for evil.

Brothers, if someone is caught in a sin,
you who are spiritual should restore him gently.
But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.
~ Galatians 6:1 (NIV)

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
Image source, "Words":
Image source, "Letter Hug":

Friday, October 15, 2010

Question of the Week:
Why Do Christians Lie?

Why Do Christians Lie?
~ Anonymous

Rather than the lies for specific situations, this question implies general and ongoing deceit, most likely one of the following complaints:

1. Why do Christians contradict one another?
2. Why do Christians pretend to have all the answers?
3. Why are Christians hypocrites?
4. Why do Christians assert what obviously can't be true?

These questions are more easily answered if restated with less bias.

1. Why do Christians hold different perspectives?

We're each speaking the truth we understand, like the blindfolded group describing an elephant as a snake, a tree, a wall, etc. How important for us to work for unity and share information to obtain a whole picture!

2. Why do Christians sometimes share the wrong answers?

We hold all the truth we need in the Bible and in the Holy Spirit. But we're still learning to understand and apply it, and will continue to do so throughout our lifetime because it is so immense. We tend to fill in the gaps in our understanding with what we think is the truth but later learn to be off the mark. It is important to first ascertain the accuracy of foundational truths, remain teachable about all we have yet to learn, and remember that everyone else is also still learning.

That especially applies to teachers, (as well as people bold enough to attempt Q&A on Christianity and the Bible). James 3:1-2 (NKJV) says this: "My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment. For we all stumble in many things."

3. Why don't Christians live up to what they preach?

Christians can become so excited about how salvation has changed us that we make it sound as if we've been made complete. We can start sharing a message implying perfect people rather than invoking the perfect Son of God, Jesus Christ. Although our redemption from sin's death penalty is complete, learning to live like Jesus is a lifelong process. If we uphold Jesus Who lives inside of us as the Author of eternal Life, we'll be safely speaking truth. If we uphold our incomplete selves as "Life," the world may only see a crumbling bit of dying flesh and call it "Lie."

4. Why do Christians believe the impossible?

Perhaps the harshest physical reality of this world is that the dead don't come back to life. The definition of a Christian is a Christ-follower anointed with His Holy Spirit, who used to be spiritually dead but has been spiritually resurrected. Once death has been overcome, nothing else God asks of the Christian is "impossible."

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What questions do you have about Christianity or the Bible? You're invited to leave them in the comments below. Anonymous questions are welcome.

© 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
Image source:

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This post originally appeared at Bullets & Butterflies. To see additional comments click here.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

My Snow Day

"The role of a writer is not to say what we all can say,
but what we are unable to say."
Anaïs Nin

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... my own vineyard I have not kept.
~ Song of Solomon 1:6 (NKJV)

My pen (computer) has produced much about the Bible—church documents and Sunday school lessons, devotionals and sermons, non-fiction and fiction in prose and in poetry.

The fiction has been only in recent years, and came as a complete surprise to me. It's proven to be a more grueling challenging journey than all the rest. I've tried to evade it, but the Lord does not release me.

And so the time has come for me to devote more writing time to the biblical fiction for which I have Rachelle Gardner's representation and a waiting editor, in the hope I might also obtain a publisher.

Having followed through on the study of Revelation, I plan to break from daily blogging indefinitely. I relish the challenge of Friday Q&A far too much to quit contributing posts for Bullets & Butterflies. I'll likely continue to post here at Building His Body on Tuesdays, and perhaps on an occasional Saturday.

I paused blogging earlier this year when things were not well, until they were better. I now take a lesson from Billy Coffey's Snow Day, taking off work in one place to "call in well" and walk in other places.

My prayer is that what's here draws you to stay in God's Word, pray without ceasing, and seek unity with others in Christ's body.

May the Lord bless and direct you as you rely upon Him. All of you, my friends and readers, remain in my prayers.

Much love,

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]

Monday, October 11, 2010

Billy's Snow Day

Come and hear, all you who fear God
And I will declare what He has done for my soul
~ Psalms 66:16 (NKJV)

I once accepted a free book in exchange for my agreement to review it. I told myself I'd not do so again. If I judge a book that mediocre, I prefer to offer any critique privately.

It's quite another matter to have both the privilege of knowing the author personally and a behind-the-scenes peek at a work I can't help but view as quite perfect—and feel an irresistible urge to share that perspective when no review is expected ...

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(click to enlarge)

"Some of the best things in life
are encountered on a detour."
~ Billy Coffey

When I first encountered the writing of Billy Coffey, I was astonished by what I describe as "profound truth, pure and plain." I've expounded plenty on the Bible’s truths here, and once in a while I grasp enough Holy Spirit to pull off a post I read much later with a "wow." But I suspect this blog's appeal is limited unless one is already interested in the Bible.

Not so my brother Billy. His masterful storytelling is articulate enough to satisfy intelligence and simple enough to delight the heart and downright funny enough to tickle everyone from age nine to ninety. Enduring faith and poignant hope placed solidly on Jesus ebb and flow through his words like music of a rippling brook to soothe the soul—even the soul that hasn't yet encountered Jesus.

Billy's debut novel, Snow Day, is likely to please all of the people most of the time and most of the people all of the time. My favorite chapter, "More Than We Can Bear," startled me with its stark confrontation of faith before offering words which have come back to solace me often over past months.

Perhaps that's what Billy does best as he weaves his magic throughout his story. He draws you into seeing some everyday moment in a compelling new way, then takes you somewhere you’ve never been—enthralling you in the detour and leaving you with something you didn’t know you needed for the walk ahead.

And like a trail which still enchants as it becomes familiar, Snow Day continues to delight with each re-reading. If the book has a shortcoming, it is that it ends all too quickly.

Want an insider tip? Snow Day is officially released today. Every indication shows it headed straight to the bestseller list. So if you'd like to later boast that your copy is the first printing, get yourself one before your local bookstore runs out. If you buy two or three or more (as I am), you'll have the perfect Christmas gift on hand for that impossible-to-shop-for person on your list.

As Billy would say, "Promise."

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P.S. to Billy ~
Amid all else today, do you feel your Father's pleasure?
Thanks for sharing the journey with me.
Love, Annie

Tomorrow: My Snow Day.

Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.

Sunday, October 10, 2010


"I am the Alpha and the Omega,
the Beginning and the End,
the First and the Last."
... let him who thirsts come.
Whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.
~ Revelation 22:13,17 (NKJV)

Here is the end of Revelation, of the Bible text, and of the old heavens and earth.

For God, this is as good as the beginning, because He stands outside of time. Unlike mortal humans, who move through time like an unstoppable train on a single track, He is not limited to a single point on a line, in one dimension.

Jesus does not say He was in the beginning and shall be in the end. He declares Himself to simply be both the Beginning and the End, with the emphatic "I AM" which sums up His nature. He is Alpha and Omega, the whole of the matter. He is the First and the Last in a human life, to everyone of every time.

"I am YHWH, and there is no other;
There is no God besides Me.
... from the rising of the sun to its setting ...
there is none besides Me.
I form the light and create darkness,
I make peace and create calamity."
~ Isaiah 45:5-6

There is no other God, no other way to obtain love and light and life, no other means adequate to satisfy the human soul, both right now and for an eternity. Eternity may seem like a long time to those who live by time. But once we step outside of time with our God, we will cease to measure it.

I cannot help but smile that a God living outside of time said three times in the Bible's closing chapter, "I am coming quickly," knowing most of us would think "soon."

I believe it to be the former. I hope it to also be the latter.

Lord God, You are our All in All. You are our treasure, our comfort, our very life. We thirst much. Teach us to drink as freely and fully from Your Spirit as we will drink from the river of life.

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Saturday, October 9, 2010

Nearing Journey’s End

Many a time I've read through the Bible in a year. In January of this year I began a trip through a single book, Revelation, to see what it might reveal not about end times, but about the Person of Jesus and His bride.

And the spiritual battle was on. By late January, overwhelmed by circumstances, I retreated.

I'd already been embroiled in a spiritual battle which began in the summer of 2009, sharply escalating in August. (Was it only a coincidence that I began work on a book dedicated to the names of God in August?)

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"Blessed is he who reads and those who hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written in it; for the time is near."

~ Revelation 1:3 (NKJV)

The book of Revelation is unique among Bible books in this declaration. The book is ducked by many churches, and altogether forbidden reading in some countries which permit the rest of the Bible. Some people have objected to its inclusion as Scripture.

I began the study afresh July 26th, when I felt strong enough to battle again. And it has continued to be a battle. I have pushed forward without retreat this time. I'm no expert in spiritual warfare. But I know without doubt that every component of spiritual armor is critical—truth, righteousness, preparation with the Gospel, faith, the salvation of Jesus' lordship, deploying God's Word, and prayer. I know that satan will go to any length to make us curse God rather than bless Him. I know that God neither leaves nor forsakes His own.

Tomorrow, God permitting, I will conclude the study with the last chapter of Revelation, and of the Bible. I have prevailed.

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"Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; there shall be no more death, nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away."
Then He who sat on the throne said, "Behold, I make all things new."
~ Revelation 21:3-5 (NKJV)

In this second to last chapter, nearing journey's end, we have come full circle from perfect creation, through rebellion and Calvary and Hell, back to perfection.

I wonder at the phrase, "God will wipe away every tear." Does it mean no tears? Or that we are permitted only tears of joy which the finger of God gently wipes away? And what would it feel like to have Him wipe away tears with His hand rather than with His words, as He does now?

Peeking ahead, to tomorrow's last chapter, I think about one day knowing Him as He knows us now. And I think of us being already sealed with the Holy Spirit.

And I think of saints casting down their golden crowns before the throne, because we shall wear upon our heads something of infinitely greater worth than even a golden crown of Heaven:

They shall see His face,
and His name shall be on their foreheads.
~ Revelation 22:4 (NKJV)

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Question of the Week:
Who Compiled the Bible?

"When you have read the Bible, you will know it is the word of God, because you have found it the key to your own heart, your own happiness and your own duty."
~ Woodrow Wilson

Who decided which books would be in the Bible? I understand others were considered, but not added.
~ Andrew Garber, Port Orange, Florida

The Bible boldly declares itself to be the Word of God, that Jesus is the Word of God personified, and that Jesus is God—squarely placing the Bible as equivalent to God in authority.

The wise person is willing to question why any authority should be recognized as such.

The Bible requires reliable testimony be established by two or three witnesses. (Two witnesses are sufficient, but if doubt remains let there be a third witness.) Who are the witnesses to determine the difference between a simple writing (Greek gramma) and Scripture (graphē)?

When the Lord gave the Ten Commandments, He took the extraordinary step of speaking directly to the Israelites (Exodus 18:19-22), giving miraculous signs as a second testimony. There was no question of the commandments being God's Word. Because Moses was God's spokesman, likewise performing miraculous signs as confirming testimony, the first five books of the Bible (Torah) were accepted as Scripture without question (about 1450–1400 BC).

The remainder of the Old Testament (OT) was written by various prophets, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit. The Torah instructed that a prophet of the Lord would be confirmed by accurately foretelling what would come to pass. The Jews preserved the writings of these men as Scripture. In the third century BC, when the Greeks sought to establish a common language throughout their empire, the OT was translated into Greek as the Septuagint. Additional historical and philosophical writings of the time were included, and are contained in some Bibles to this day. But those additional writings were not recognized as Scripture by the Jews of the time, and are therefore referred to as apocryphal writings to distinguish them from the writings unquestionable as Scripture.

And that is the same standard used by compilers of the New Testament (NT). Early church leaders determined which writings to include as the authoritative Word of God by consensus. This was not a matter of voting, with majority rule. Only those writings judged as above reproach to be God’s Word were copied and handed down as Scripture. (See the "Criteria for Canonicity" below for further specifics.)

The most prominent criteria was if writings which recorded the Word of God came from Jesus' apostles—men with authority confirmed by miraculous signs and power of God. While they wrote many letters (or epistles), only some of those writings were held up as as Scripture (2 Peter 3:15-16.)

In our days, we still have witnesses to confirm the Word of God's authority. Church teachers who speak audibly are known as reliable by their fruit (Matthew 7:15-17)—by consistently displaying the fruit of the Spirit in revering Jesus Christ as Lord and God.

And when we seek God in truth, the Holy Spirit testifies truth to our heart.

Related post: Who Wrote the Bible?

= = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = = =

Criteria for Canonicity * [inclusion in the canon of Scripture]:
• Apostolic Origin — attributed to and based upon the preaching/teaching of the first-generation apostles (or their close companions).
• Universal Acceptance — acknowledged by all major Christian communities in the ancient world (by the end of the fourth century) as well as accepted canon by Jewish authorities (for the Old Testament).
• Liturgical Use — read publicly when early Christian communities gathered for the Lord's Supper (their weekly worship services).
• Consistent Message — containing a theological outlook similar to or complementary to other accepted Christian writings.

© 2010 Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
Image source unavailable.
* Source, "Criteria for Canonicity": (original author unknown)

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This post originally appeared at Bullets & Butterflies. To see additional comments click here.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

I’ll Be Back

Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection. Over such the second death has no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years.
~ Revelation 20:6 (NKJV)

“And he said to him, 'Well done, good servant; because you were faithful in a very little, have authority over ten cities.' ”
~ Luke 19:17 (NKJV)

Jesus described in a parable the day when His servants would give an account of how they used the spiritual riches He entrusted to them while on the earth. He spoke of them being rewarded with charge over cities, and our reign here is also described in Revelation (above and 5:10).

Maybe it’s just me, but the idea of returning to earth and reigning over it doesn’t particularly appeal. Once out of here, why would we want to return, even if the planet is returned to the pristine condition it had at creation?

There is one reason, and one reason only that I will definitely want to be here. This is where my King will be. And once I’m finally united to Him, I want to be wherever He is—even right back here with the rest of you.

Lord Jesus, how hard it is to work through this book and hear of all to come with You when we don’t yet see You! It’s not just about escaping this place, it is desire to be with You. Please increase our patient perseverance. And come quickly, Lord!

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Fairy Tale Not

Once upon a time a small girl lost her way in a dark forest ruled by an evil ogre, who captured the girl and shackled her with strong chains. The ogre often came by to amuse himself by frightening her, until the girl grew accustomed to him and to living in darkness and terror. And when she grew to be a maiden the ogre made her fully his.

Many years passed, and the young woman sometimes wondered if dreams of a loving papa and beautiful little girl in a sparkling city might be memories. But she once caught her reflection of dirty face and matted hair in a rain puddle, and saw her tattered rags and thought of her life with the ogre, and knew her dreams could not be real.

One day a woodcutter arrived in the forest. He offered her fresh water and fed her with warm bread and asked if she wished to someday follow him to the city. She feared the plain stranger and refused him, but he returned every day with food and the same offer.

When the ogre next came by, he found her well fed and raged against the woodcutter, warning her that the strange man sought to capture her so he might shame her filth and ugliness if she went to the city. The woodcutter returned the next day, and the ogre screamed that he could not have the girl for she belonged to the forest and to himself.

The woodcutter drew a sword and a key, bargaining his life for hers with the ogre, promising the girl he would one day return and marry her if she chose to be free. The ogre received the sword with a laugh and slew the woodcutter. The girl took the bloody key from the woodcutter’s hand, while the ogre ridiculed her dead hero and any thought of being a bride.

The girl long wept for the woodcutter, until one day she drew the key and unshackled herself. The ogre appeared at once and his taunts prevented her running away from him. But each night thereafter she dreamt of the woodcutter, who stood in clothes of gleaming white and spoke kindly to her and told her of secret treasures He’d hidden for her in the forest.

The girl began to venture farther and farther away from her chains, discovering beautiful garments and perfumes and jewelry and a rushing waterfall in which to bathe. The ogre never went away or ceased to torment her, but he no longer touched her and she came to stop fearing him. In her dreams the woodcutter had become a prince, assuring her that he lived to return for her, and she believed him and dwelt with joy even in the dark forest.

Then one day the living woodcutter become prince was crowned king, and he came for her on a white horse. She did not know that she radiated beauty in her joy and cleanliness and white garments, for she'd never quite stopped thinking of herself as a dirty little girl with matted hair in rags defiled by an ogre.

But her beloved woodcutter had always seen her as she would be this day, and had loved her from the beginning.

And they lived happily ever after.

~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~ ♥ ~

"Let us be glad and rejoice and give Him glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready." And to her it was granted to be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.
~ Revelation 19:7-8 (NKJV)

Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True ... And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
~ Revelation 19:11,16 (NKJV)

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Location, Location, Location

The theme for today’s blog carnival (hosted by Bridget Chumbley) is "Healing." To see what others are saying, visit her site
One Word at a Time."

"But to you who fear My name
The Sun of Righteousness shall arise
With healing in His wings."
~ Malachi 4:2 (NKJV)

Location, Location, Location

"Babylon the great ... has become a dwelling place of demons, a prison for every foul spirit, and a cage for every unclean and hated bird! ..." And I heard another voice from heaven saying, "Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues."
~ Revelation 18:2,4 (NKJV)

The ongoing look at Revelation here has come to the place where ultimate suffering, sickness and death are poured out upon Earth's inhabitants because of sin.

Like the right house being a matter of the right city, neighborhood, and land, the Bible describes healing from suffering, sickness and death as a matter of the right location, location, location.

The more closely we align ourselves with the ways of the world, the more of the world's sicknesses we suffer. The more closely we align ourselves with the ways of God, the fewer ailments we experience. This principle was stated in Exodus 15:26—the passage which names God "the LORD our Healer"—and continues all the way through Earth's last days as described in the above passage from Revelation.

The Jews who expected a Messiah to conquer their political and economic problems had difficulty understanding that Jesus' solution for all trouble was to conquer death and sin. Our foremost problem is the need for reconciliation to God through forgiveness of sins. When we draw near to God in repentance and ask for forgiveness of sin, we begin to be healed from a multitude of afflictions related to sin and death.

We are promised to one day live in the Kingdom of Heaven with resurrected bodies free of all sickness. Yet kingdom life begins now (Luke 17:21), as we become increasingly spiritual beings. Kingdom life brings healing of soul, heart, mind, and body. We tend to be most conscious of the need for physical healing, while the more significant healing is spiritual. The body both benefits from spiritual healing and may receive miraculous physical healing—even as it grows weaker and closer to death with age. God's Spirit completes the process of healing the whole person in Heaven.

YHWH Rophe-ka, LORD our Healer, please help us share Your healing priorities and cooperate with Your treatment plan. Please let us seek spiritual healing more than we seek physical healing. Please grant us strength of soul, heart, mind, and body that we might use our health to serve You well.

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Previous posts have discussed reasons for sickness ("YHWH Your Healer") and prayer for healing ("Why No Healing?").

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Monday, October 4, 2010

Hour of His Judgment

Then I saw another angel flying in the midst of heaven, having the everlasting gospel to preach to those who dwell on the earth to every nation, tribe, tongue, and people, saying with a loud voice,
"Fear God and give glory to Him,
for the hour of His judgment has come;
and worship Him who made heaven and earth,
the sea and springs of water."
~ Revelation 14:6-7 (NKJV)

... and they blasphemed the name of God who has power over these plagues; and they did not repent and give Him glory.
~ Revelation 16:9 (NKJV)

Hour of His Judgment

Genesis 1:1 opens the Bible with a simple introduction of the Creator as "Elohim," a Hebrew word which also denotes a judge's authority.

The book of Revelation closes the Bible with a depiction of the last days of human dominion on our planet. Over and over, praise for the Lord God Almighty and His sovereignty is abundantly manifest.

God's angel commands in chapter 14 that the Creator be feared and glorified by His creation in the hour of His judgment. The Maker wrote upon the conscience of humanity His judgments of all that is right and wrong. He now demands an account.

To blaspheme one's Maker at any other time would merit sound rebuke. To blaspheme Him in the hour of His judgment when His wrath climaxes might be compared to a convicted felon giving an angry human justice the finger and maligning his reputation as he pronounces sentence. Such resolve proves the righteousness of God's wrath against Evil.

In our limited view of spiritual matters, we sometimes question an everyday hour of His judgment, whether of right and wrong, of what He asks from us, or as He acts in our lives. Faith believes that He has the wisdom, authority and love of perfect justice, saying, "Lord God Almighty, true and righteous are Your judgments."

Sovereign Lord, give us patience for the day when we will see all from Your perspective. Please increase our faith to fully trust You in matters yet unseen.

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
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Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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Sunday, October 3, 2010

Standing By

"He will never break His promise,
though the stars should break faith with the sky."
~ Rich Mullins

Standing By

It was granted to him to make war with the saints and to overcome them. And authority was given him over every tribe, tongue, and nation.
~ Revelation 13:7 (NKJV)

Tuesday's post from Revelation 12:10-11 looked to the saints overcoming the devil with their Testimony.

But we see here in Revelation 13 that along the way, the enemy sometimes overcomes us.

It is in darkest moments of seeming defeat that we must call to mind: our Deliverer is standing by, waiting to make known His might.

My Deliverer

Joseph took his wife and child and they went to Africa
To escape the rage of a deadly king
There along the banks of the Nile, Jesus listened to the song
That the captive children used to sing
They were singing

My Deliverer is coming – my Deliverer is standing by

Through a dry and thirsty land, water from the Kenyon heights
Pours itself out of Lake Sangra's broken heart
There in the Sahara winds Jesus heard the whole world cry
For the healing that would flow from His own scars
The world was singing

My Deliverer is coming – my Deliverer is standing by

He will never break His promise
He has written it upon the sky

My Deliverer is coming – my Deliverer is standing by

I will never doubt His promise
though I doubt my heart, I doubt my eyes

My Deliverer is coming – my Deliverer is standing by

He will never break His promise
though the stars should break faith with the sky

My Deliverer is coming – my Deliverer is standing by

Lyrics "My Deliverer" © 1998 Myrrh Records
by Rich Mullins (1955 – 1997) and Mitch McVicker
GMA's Song of the Year 1999 (awarded posthumously)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Testimony, Part II

(Testimony [Part I] appeared on Tuesday.)

Testimony, Part II

"You are the light of the world... Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven."
~ Matthew 5:14-16 (NKJV)

Jesus says we are the light of the world. He later says He is The Light of the world. That is two uses of the definite article "the." We are evidently like the moon in reflecting the Son.

So how do we shine just as brightly as we can, expressing the love, joy, peace, etc., that the Holy Spirit puts in us, and do it in a way that says "Jesus" rather than "me"? Seriously! If you see a dazzling full moon light up a black velvet sky, do you think of the sun?

Even if it sounds cliché, I believe most Christians want to mean it when they say, "It's not about me, it's about Him."

So do we really mean it?

In the movie The Blind Side (based on a true story), Leigh Anne Tuohy's motive for doing good is called into account, and she starts to second guess herself. That scene hit me hard. I know I’ve got plenty of pride and general yuckiness that the Holy Spirit is still working out of me—how pure are my own motives?

Jason Stasyszyn recently wrote an article titled "The Intoxication of Feeling Needed." I believe I genuinely love people. I look for opportunities to show kindness simply because it feels good to drip Jesus on others—because it really is more blessed to give than to receive. But am I drunk with the Spirit or drunk with self-gratification?

And on those occasions when someone else openly questions my motives ... it's like being punched in the stomach and wanting to vomit. I feel I've failed to shine my Jesus. But I also have enough ego to be hurt.

And I question which one bothers me more ...

"Jesus is my Lord, God and King.
It matters less what people think of me
than what they think of Jesus Christ because of me."
~ @anne4JC Twitter bio

I mean every one of those words. I love Jesus and I love our Father more than words are adequate to express, powerful as words are. And I am so glad I died on the day I was born with His identity. I want to live His life and forget about mine, even on the days I fail to do that.

The enemy is merciless in attacking. But on days when I've cared about nothing else, those words on my bio have kept me going. When I'm angry, I remind myself that I'm speaking for Jesus and check myself. When I'm depressed, I remind myself that I'm reflecting Jesus and dig deep to put on some joy. When I'm really, really weary, I remind myself that I'm a walking testimony to the ability to do all things through Christ who strengthens me, and I draw upon His strength to keep on keeping on.

Because it's not about me. It truly is all about Him.

I appreciate hearing from you. Questions are welcome. Reply to
comments or e-mail me—my address is
buildingHisbody [plus]
Copyright 2010, Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Question of the Week:
Is Self-Defense Biblical?

"All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing."
~ Edmund Burke (1729-1797),
Irish statesman who supported American revolutionaries

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"Is self-defense biblical?"
~ Abbey S., Michigan

The question implies use of deadly weapons. The Bible provides interesting contrasts about "the sword." Consider two directives from Jesus on the night He was arrested:

"But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one." (Luke 22:36 NKJV)

"Put your sword in its place, for all who take the sword will perish by the sword. Or do you think that I cannot now pray to My Father, and He will provide Me with more than twelve legions of angels?" (Matthew 26:52-53 NKJV)

Contrast brings balanced perspective. Context is critical.

In the second passage, Jesus asserts the adequacy of defense from God and the peril of living with reliance on weaponry.

Yet weapons can serve godly purposes. In the first passage, Jesus gives new marching orders for going out into the world with the Gospel, instructing self-sufficiency which prepares for hazards. One way to avert violence—whether on a personal or national level—is to display strength and ability of defense with refusal to use it offensively.

Weapons serve other purposes of God's will. Governing authorities are called ministers of God, entrusted with use of force to suppress evil (Romans 13:1-4). Soldiers who accepted the Gospel were instructed to not intimidate others rather than to shun use of force altogether (Luke 3:14).

God also employs human weaponry as His own sword (Deuteronomy 32:39-42; Isaiah 34:5; Ezekiel 30:25). This same principle is evident throughout the book of Revelation.

"You have heard that it was said, 'an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth.' But I tell you not to resist an evil person. But whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also."
~ Matthew 5:38-39 (NKJV)

These words of Jesus are sometimes used to argue against self-defense. The context is examples of how to bless others. Jesus observes that a directive for equity in payment of damages had become justification for retaliation. Scripture condemns vengeance and exhorts tolerance of insult, teaching there is blessing in suffering for the sake of righteousness (Matthew 5:10; 1 Peter 3:14). The early church set an example of enduring violence, but they also took measures to avoid being victims of violence.

Every person must apply these passages as faith and conscience dictate. There is room in Christianity for both pacifists and warriors. I'll share my personal application.

As a former police officer, and now the wife of a police officer, I know anarchy would result if government did not provide civilian and military defense. I also know the danger of displaying a firearm unless one is prepared to use it. Bluffing is more dangerous than being unarmed.

As a student of history, I know that oppression results when citizenry's ownership of arms is abolished by government. I support the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

If I were in a position to defend the lives of others from criminal violence, my preferred weapon is a pump action shotgun, which unequivocally communicates strength of defense so it might not be necessary to use deadly force.

But if my life alone was threatened, I'd guess my offender is less prepared than me to meet our Maker. As my King's ambassador, I'm less inclined to use a weapon of steel as I am to take up the sword of the Spirit for my defense.

© 2010 Anne Lang Bundy, all rights reserved.
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This post originally appeared at Bullets & Butterflies. To see additional comments containing ongoing dialogue, click here.