In this episode of the Backyard Preacher Podcast Nate examines faith and works. James says faith without works is dead. Yet what are these works? Is it right action? Religious ritual? Loving your neighbor? These are all great, but we humans will always come up short. The fact is we cannot please God through right action. Being a “good” person; Jesus himself said “who is good?” The problem is many of us try to please God through right action that we become infatuated with our religious belief, rituals, and deeds it creates a type of religious OCD.
James says faith without works is dead. Yet what are these works? Is it right action? Religious ritual? Loving your neighbor? These are great, but in my understanding the human will always come up short. The fact is we cannot please God through right action. Being a “good” person; Jesus himself said “who is good?” Our problem is many of us strife so hard to please God through our actions, in life we become infatuated with our religious beliefs, ritual, deeds, it creates a religious OCD. It causes anxiety, depression, and endless pushing of the rock up the hill only to have it fall back down on you. We place ourselves in our own form of purgatory trying to please God. Faith without works is dead, but what are these works? Trust, to trust in God as Abraham. Only faith can please God, the action of faith is trust. Let’s face it, many of us say we trust in God yet to be honest most things we have in life are created by our own hands. We get the job, the loan, and everything else that works out in life then we give praise to God. When it doesn’t we say we are suffering with Christ or come up with any excuse to ease our spiritual suffering and disappointment. Trusting God is probably the hardest thing we can do as Christians, yet it is easier then trying to live our definition of morality. Trusting God does not require pushing the stone up the hill only to get rolled over, it involves knowing that God is, and we are not. A acknowledgement that everything will be okay regardless of the outcome because our trust, our hope, our faith is in God. This trust can motivate us, inspire us to great actions without the feelings of unworthiness. God did not create garbage, he created beautiful people which he knows can never meet our self- created standards. So today be kind to yourself, stay inspired. Love yourself, this will help you love others. Remember God loves you not for your works but just because you are his children. God bless and have a great day!
Be Kind-Stay Inspired
Good day Backyard Preachers! It has been a while but I AM back. Nate talks a little bit about his recent struggles along with the power of our words. We struggle in life, it is not easy. Yet through are struggles sometimes we are just paying the price for a better life. Be blessed!
When studying ancient Egypt it is fascinating yet it shouldn’t be how much of Judaism is intertwined with the people of Isreal and the Old Testament. Now we could say the Egyptians were followed a polytheism religion except for one unique Pharaoh Akhenaten which some say could have been Moses himself, I doubt that though. He made all Egypt submit to one God. It is also interesting how our psalms and the psalms of Egypt are so similar. Then again I shouldn’t be suprised the people of Isreal were living there for 400 years. From the Ark of the Covenant, to the Temple it self along with sacrifices all seem to be related to ancient Egypt. Want to have your mind blown? Check this out. Psalms 104 Praise the Lord, my soul.
Lord my God, you are very great;
you are clothed with splendor and majesty.
2 The Lord wraps himself in light as with a garment;
he stretches out the heavens like a tent
3 and lays the beams of his upper chambers on their waters.
He makes the clouds his chariot
and rides on the wings of the wind.
4 He makes winds his messengers,[a]
flames of fire his servants.
5 He set the earth on its foundations;
it can never be moved.
6 You covered it with the watery depths as with a garment;
the waters stood above the mountains.
7 But at your rebuke the waters fled,
at the sound of your thunder they took to flight;
8 they flowed over the mountains,
they went down into the valleys,
to the place you assigned for them.
9 You set a boundary they cannot cross;
never again will they cover the earth.
10 He makes springs pour water into the ravines;
it flows between the mountains.
11 They give water to all the beasts of the field;
the wild donkeys quench their thirst.
12 The birds of the sky nest by the waters;
they sing among the branches.
13 He waters the mountains from his upper chambers;
the land is satisfied by the fruit of his work.
14 He makes grass grow for the cattle,
and plants for people to cultivate—
bringing forth food from the earth:
15 wine that gladdens human hearts,
oil to make their faces shine,
and bread that sustains their hearts.
16 The trees of the Lord are well watered,
the cedars of Lebanon that he planted.
17 There the birds make their nests;
the stork has its home in the junipers.
18 The high mountains belong to the wild goats;
the crags are a refuge for the hyrax.
19 He made the moon to mark the seasons,
and the sun knows when to go down.
20 You bring darkness, it becomes night,
and all the beasts of the forest prowl.
21 The lions roar for their prey
and seek their food from God.
22 The sun rises, and they steal away;
they return and lie down in their dens.
23 Then people go out to their work,
to their labor until evening.
24 How many are your works, Lord!
In wisdom you made them all;
the earth is full of your creatures.
25 There is the sea, vast and spacious,
teeming with creatures beyond number—
living things both large and small.
26 There the ships go to and fro,
and Leviathan, which you formed to frolic there.
27 All creatures look to you
to give them their food at the proper time.
28 When you give it to them,
they gather it up;
when you open your hand,
they are satisfied with good things.
29 When you hide your face,
they are terrified;
when you take away their breath,
they die and return to the dust.
30 When you send your Spirit,
they are created,
and you renew the face of the ground.
31 May the glory of the Lord endure forever;
may the Lord rejoice in his works—
32 he who looks at the earth, and it trembles,
who touches the mountains, and they smoke.
33 I will sing to the Lord all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
34 May my meditation be pleasing to him,
as I rejoice in the Lord.
35 But may sinners vanish from the earth
and the wicked be no more.
Praise the Lord, my soul.
Praise the Lord.
Now in contrast a hymn to Aten of the Egyptians
How manifold it is, what thou hast made!
They are hidden from the face (of man).
O sole god, like whom there is no other!
Thou didst create the world according to thy desire,
Whilst thou wert alone: All men, cattle, and wild beasts,
Whatever is on earth, going upon (its) feet,
And what is on high, flying with its wings.
The countries of Syria and Nubia, the land of Egypt,
Thou settest every man in his place,
Thou suppliest their necessities:
Everyone has his food, and his time of life is reckoned.
Their tongues are separate in speech,
And their natures as well;
Their skins are distinguished,
As thou distinguishest the foreign peoples.
Thou makest a Nile in the underworld,
Thou bringest forth as thou desirest
To maintain the people (of Egypt)
According as thou madest them for thyself,
The lord of all of them, wearying (himself) with them,
The lord of every land, rising for them,
The Aton of the day, great of majesty.
This does not hurt my faith nor should it hurt yours, but we must dive into the secrets and discover what is kept from us . The Lord God is one! praise him always! We are influenced by where we come from and if you think about it Egypt played a great role even comming to the rescue of our Lord Jesus Christ (Matthew 2)
When we say that the whole Bible is the “word” of God which I believe has led to much confusion, due to the fact that literalist use the words to control and manipulate; even when they do not realize it. Yes there is most definitely words of God within our Christian text, yes the text is inspired by the Holy Spirit, yet through men who had no idea they were writing holy texts. Rather a book of history, stories of God presented through the eyes of men. Writings of trials and tribulations, praise and lamentations. A story of the people of Israel. A good news of salvation in Jesus, a church created through the power of God, and yet most of our NT is letters written to other churches. This is not a bad thing. But to say it is all the “Word” of God is problematic for Christians the reason as I stated above is the easy way this can lead to manipulation and control of the layman. I like to call my Bible Inspired text, true text, and text of our most holy faith that help lead us to salvation. That’s all happy Easter! I am such a cynic.
Nate talks about the connectedness that each and every single one of us have. You have been that person and that person has been you. So Be kind and Stay Inspired!