Thursday, December 29, 2005
Do Children "Pay" For Their Parents' Sins?

Are you paying for your father's sins? Will your children have to pay for your sins?
The 2nd of the 10 Commandments says,

"You shall not bow down to (idols) or worship them; for I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me, but showing love to a thousand generations of those who love me and keep my commandments" (Deuteronomy 5:8-10, NIV). (Where the NIV says "punishing" the King James Version says "visiting").

Because of this verse, I have spent many years wondering, "Am I being punished for the sins of my grandfathers and great grandfathers?"

I also have spent a lot of time wondering, "Will my children and their children suffer for my sins?"

Perhaps you, too, have puzzled over these issues. Here's what the Bible has to say about the subject.

First, children do suffer for their parent's sins (notice the nuanced wording of the New International Version compared to the New Living Translation)...
You are loving and kind to thousands, though children suffer for their parents' sins (Jeremiah 32:18, NLT).

You show love to thousands but bring the punishment for the fathers' sins into the laps of their children after them (Jeremiah 32:18, NIV).

All you have to do to verify this is watch an episode of Dr. Phil. Dysfunctional, sinful (sometimes evil) fathers and mothers do leave emotional scars that can hamstring a child for life.

Second, children, however, do not pay for their parent's sins...
"Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to death for their fathers; each is to die for his own sins" (2 Kings 14:6, 2 Chronicles 25:4).

Five Applications

What does this mean to a leader trying to disciple men?
As leaders, let's make sure our men understand they are not being held accountable for the sins of their fathers, even if they are suffering because of those sins. A man who never felt his father's love and approval is not responsible for his father's sin, even though it hurts.

As a deterrent to sinful behavior, let's make sure our men understand that when they sin (e.g., commit adultery or seek an unbiblical divorce), their children will indeed suffer for their sins. For example, a young woman told me, "When my father deserted us, I didn't just lose my dad. I lost my mom too, because she had to work two jobs and I hardly ever saw her." The effect on this young woman has been lifelong.

Let's encourage men to confess the sins of their fathers. It is biblical to confess the sins of our fathers (e.g., racism, abuse, neglect, dishonesty)?.

Those of Israelite descent had separated themselves from all foreigners. They stood in their places and confessed their sins and the wickedness of their fathers (Nehemiah 9:2).
But if they will confess their sins and the sins of their fathers... (Leviticus 26:40).
Fourth, let's encourage men to ask God for mercy to be released from any bondage resulting from their parents' sins...

David prayed, "Do not hold against us the sins of the fathers" (Psalm 79:8).
Let's encourage men to forgive their parents - they will never make real progress until they do. Immediately after the Lord's Prayer, Jesus said?.

For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins (Matthew 6:14-15).

Bottom line: Yes, as children we do suffer for our parents' sins, but we are not responsible for their sins. We don't "pay" for the sins of our parents. We each stand alone before God. We each need a Redeemer and Savior of our own.

Scott R. Kindness

- posted by -g @ 9:26 AM | | 2 rocks in pond

Sunday, December 25, 2005
So last night we were in church listening to the homily.

[The we here is Lauren and I who were playing violin in the choir loft. The rest of the church was packed completely, but we got to sit by ourselves. Imagine that!]

Anyways, the priest mentioned something in the homily that really struck me.
I was dumbfounded, realio trulio.

He said,

(something to the effect of)

"in the eyes of the Lord, there is nothing about anyone that is irredeemable."

It's not like I hadn't heard that before, it just had never sunk in like that.
It just made christmas really good.

and this, too:

Image hosted by

yeah, that's a nano.

plus, my daddy-o made paella.

- posted by Allie @ 7:10 PM | | 1 rocks in pond

Saturday, December 24, 2005
Nothing Has Changed - everything is different
. . . your life is hidden with Christ in God
?Colossians 3:3

The Spirit of God testifies to and confirms the simple, but almighty, security of the life that "is hidden with Christ in God." Paul continually brought this out in his New Testament letters. We talk as if living a sanctified life were the most uncertain and insecure thing we could do. Yet it is the most secure thing possible, because it has Almighty God in and behind it. The most dangerous and unsure thing is to try to live without God. For one who is born again, it is easier to live in a right-standing relationship with God than it is to go wrong, provided we heed God?s warnings and "walk in the light" ( 1 John 1:7 ).

When we think of being delivered from sin, being "filled with the Spirit" ( Ephesians 5:18 ), and "walk[ing] in the light," we picture the peak of a great mountain. We see it as very high and wonderful, but we say, "Oh, I could never live up there!" However, when we do get there through God?s grace, we find it is not a mountain peak at all, but a plateau with plenty of room to live and to grow. "You enlarged my path under me, so my feet did not slip" ( Psalm 18:36 ).

When you really see Jesus, I defy you to doubt Him. If you see Him when He says, "Let not your heart be troubled . . ." ( John 14:27 ), I defy you to worry. It is virtually impossible to doubt when He is there. Every time you are in personal contact with Jesus, His words are real to you. "My peace I give to you . . ." ( John 14:27 )? a peace which brings an unconstrained confidence and covers you completely, from the top of your head to the soles of your feet. ". . . your life is hidden with Christ in God," and the peace of Jesus Christ that cannot be disturbed has been imparted to you.
- O. Chambers

- posted by -g @ 7:04 AM | | 0 rocks in pond

Tuesday, December 20, 2005
To Eat or Not to Eat

Everyone was staring solemnly at the Tree when Aslan suddenly swung round his head (scattering golden gleams of light from his mane as he did so) and fixed his large eyes on the children. "What is it, children?" he said, for he caught them in the very act of whispering and nudging one another.
"Oh-Aslan, sir," said Digory, turning red, "I forgot to tell you. The Witch has already eaten one of those apples, one of the same kind that Tree grew from." He hadn?t really said all he was thinking, but Polly at once said it for him. (Digory was always much more afraid than she of looking a fool.)
"So we thought, Aslan," she said, "that there must be some mistake, and she can't really mind the smell of those apples."
"Why do you think that, Daughter of Eve?" asked the Lion.
"Well, she ate one."
"Child," he replied, "that is why all the rest are now a horror to her. That is what happens to those who pluck and eat fruits at the wrong time and in the wrong way. The fruit is good, but they loathe it ever after."
"Oh I see," said Polly. "And I suppose because she took it in the wrong way it won't work with her. I mean it won't make her always young and all that?"
"Alas," said Aslan, shaking his head. ?It will. Things always work according to their nature. She has won her heart's desire; she has unwearying strength and endless days like a goddess. But length of days with an evil heart is only length of misery and already she begins to know it. All get what they want: they do not always like it."
"I-I nearly ate one myself, Aslan," said Digory. "Would I ---"
"You would, child," said Aslan. "For the fruit always works-it must work-but it does not work happily for any who pluck it as their own will. If any Narnian, unbidden, had stolen an apple and planted it here to protect Narnia, it would have protected Narnia. But it would have done so by making Narnia into another strong and cruel empire like Charn, not the kindly land I mean it to be. And the Witch tempted you to do another thing, my son, did she not?"
"Yes, Aslan. She wanted me to take an apple home to Mother."
"Understand, then, that it would have healed her; but not to your joy or hers. The day would have come when both you and she would have looked back and said it would have been better to die in that illness."
And Digory could say nothing, for tears choked him and he gave up all hopes of saving his Mother's life; but at the same time he knew that the Lion knew what would have happened, and that there might be things more terrible even than losing someone you love by death. But now Aslan was speaking again:
"That is what would have happened, child, with a stolen apple. It is not what will happen now. What I give you now will bring joy. It will not, in your world, give endless life, but it will heal. Go. Pluck her an apple from the Tree."

C.S. Lewis. The Magician's Nephew. Pp. 173-175.

- posted by -g @ 5:20 PM | | 1 rocks in pond

Sunday, December 18, 2005
INFANT DISCOVERED IN BARN, CHILD PROTECTIVE SERVICES LAUNCH PROBE Nazareth Carpenter Being Held On Charges Involving Underage Mother

Bethlehem, Judea- Authorities were today alerted by a concerned citizen who noticed a family living in a barn. Upon arrival, Family Protective Service personnel, accompanied by police, took into protective care an infant child named Jesus, who had been wrapped in strips of cloth and placed in a feeding trough by his 14-year old mother, Mary of Nazareth.

During the confrontation, a man identified as Joseph, also of Nazareth, attempted to stop the social workers. Joseph, aided by several local shepherds and some unidentified foreigners, tried to forestall efforts to take the child, but were restrained by the police.

Also being held for questioning are three foreigners who allege to be wise men from an eastern country. The INS and Homeland Security officials are seeking information about these who may be in the country illegally. A source with the INS states that they had no passports, but were in possession of gold and other possibly illegal substances. They resisted arrest saying that they had been warned by God to avoid officials in Jerusalem and to return quickly to their own country. The chemical substances in their possession will be tested.

The owner of the barn is also being held for questioning. The manager Bethlehem Inn faces possible revocation of his license for violating health and safety regulations by allowing people to stay in the stable. Civil authorities are also investigating the zoning violations involved in maintaining livestock in a commercially-zoned district.

The location of the minor child will not be released, and the prospect for a quick resolution to this case is doubtful. Asked about when Jesus would be returned to his mother, a Child Protective Service spokesperson said, "The father is middle-aged and the mother definitely underage. We are checking with officials in Nazareth to determine what their legal relationship is.

Joseph has admitted taking Mary from her home in Nazareth because of a census requirement. However, because she was obviously pregnant when they left, investigators are looking into other reasons for their departure. Joseph is being held without bond on charges of molestation, kidnapping, child endangerment, and statutory rape.

Mary was taken to the Bethlehem General Hospital where she is being examined by doctors. Charges may also be filed against her for endangerment. She will also undergo psychiatric evaluation because of her claim that she is a virgin and that the child is from God.

The director of the psychiatric wing said, "I don't profess to have the right to tell people what to believe, but when their beliefs adversely affect the safety and well-being of others- in this case her child- we must consider her a danger to others. The unidentified drugs at the scene didn't help her case, but I'm confidant that with the proper therapy regiment we can get her back on her feet."

A spokesperson for the governor's office said, "Who knows what was going through their heads? But regardless, their treatment of the child was inexcusable, and the involvement of these others frightening. There is much we don't know about this case, but for the sake of the child and the public, you can be assured that we will pursue this matter to the end."

- posted by Bruce @ 4:48 PM | | 0 rocks in pond

Monday, December 12, 2005
Three philosophies of life:

"To do, is to be. " - Socrates

"To be, is to do." - Aristotle

"Do be do be do." - Sinatra

To which one do you subscribe?

- posted by Bruce @ 6:51 PM | | 2 rocks in pond

Sunday, December 11, 2005
Psalm 85

For the director of music. Of the Sons of Korah. A psalm.

1 You showed favor to your land, O LORD;
you restored the fortunes of Jacob.

2 You forgave the iniquity of your people
and covered all their sins.

3 You set aside all your wrath
and turned from your fierce anger.

4 Restore us again, O God our Savior,
and put away your displeasure toward us.

5 Will you be angry with us forever?
Will you prolong your anger through all generations?

6 Will you not revive us again,
that your people may rejoice in you?

7 Show us your unfailing love, O LORD,
and grant us your salvation.

8 I will listen to what God the LORD will say;
he promises peace to his people, his saints?
but let them not return to folly.

9 Surely his salvation is near those who fear him,
that his glory may dwell in our land.

10 Love and faithfulness meet together;
righteousness and peace kiss each other.

11 Faithfulness springs forth from the earth,
and righteousness looks down from heaven.

12 The LORD will indeed give what is good,
and our land will yield its harvest.

13 Righteousness goes before him
and prepares the way for his steps.

- posted by -g @ 9:42 PM | | 0 rocks in pond

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