Friday, October 22, 2021

Heavenly Swords

 


In the Bible weapons are used to illustrate and emphasize many different points of taking action or defending.

The great majority of illustrative swords are to be used only by the Lord, such as the Sword of Justice and the Sword of Vengeance (Isaiah 66:16, Isaiah 34:5-6, Ezekiel 12:14, Leviticus 26:25).

The use of God’s swords is not without warning and always a last resort. Whenever humans use swords they are often “implements of violence” (Genesis 49:5). Even the angels, with their heavenly swords, are only allowed to use them under God’s command (1 Chronicles 21:27, Genesis 3:24). God had said that “vengeance is mine” (Romans 12:19).

Of the illustrative swords there is one that collectively we have been commanded by God to use and that is “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Ephesians 6:17).

The truth is the most powerful force in the universe. No matter how people try to cover, shame, falsify, distract from, or silence, the truth will always come out. To tell the truth, and being brave enough to use your voice, may feel like going to war, especially if you are exposing truth to those who hate it.

This is our heavenly mandate and the weapon mortals have the opportunity to use in the battle against evil.



 Image by azboomer from Pixabay 

Saturday, September 25, 2021

The Way of Light from the Epistle of Barnabas the Apostle, and fellow-traveler of St. Paul the Apostle.


The General Epistle of Barnabas Chapt 14 – 15

 

The Way of Light

From the 14th Chapter of the Epistle of Barnabas the Apostle, and fellow-traveler of St. Paul the Apostle.

 

5 Now the way of light is this: If

any one desires to attain to the place

that is appointed for him, and will

hasten thither by his works. And the

knowledge that has been given to us

for walking in it, to this effect: Thou

shalt love him that made thee: thou

shalt glorify him that hath redeemed

thee from death.

 

6 Thou shalt be simple in heart, and

rich in the spirit. Thou shalt not

cleave to those that walk in the way

of death. Thou shalt hate to do any-

thing that is not pleasing unto God.

Thou shalt abhor all dissimulation.

Thou shalt not neglect any of the

commands of the Lord.

 

7 Thou shalt not exalt thyself, but

shalt be humble. Then shalt not take

honour to thyself. Thou shalt not

enter into any wicked counsel against

thy neighbour. Thou shalt not be

over confident in thy heart.

 

8 Thou shalt not commit fornication,

 nor adultery. Neither shalt thou

corrupt thyself with mankind. Thou

shalt not make use of the word of

God, to any impurity,

 

9 Thou shalt not except any man's

person, when thou reprovest any

one's faults. Thou shalt be gentle.

Thou shalt be quiet. Thou shalt

tremble at the words which thou hast

heard. Thou shalt not keep any

hatred in thy heart against thy brother.

Thou shalt not entertain any

doubt whether it shall be or not.

 

10 Thou shalt not take the name of

the Lord in vain. Thou shalt love thy

neighbour above thy own soul,

 

11 Thou shalt not destroy thy

conceptions, before they are brought

forth; nor kill them after they are born.

 

12 Thou shalt not withdraw thy

hand from thy son, or from thy

daughter; but shall teach them from

their youth the fear of the Lord.

 

13 Thou shalt not covet thy neighbour's goods;

neither shalt thou be

an extortioner. Neither shall thy

heart be joined to proud men; but

thou shalt be numbered among the

righteous and the lowly. Whatever

events shall happen unto thee, thou

shalt receive them as good.

 

14 Thou shalt not be double-

minded or double-tongued; for a

double tongue is the snare of death.

Thou shalt be subject unto the Lord

and to inferior masters as to the representatives

of God, in fear and reverence.

 

15 Thou shalt not be bitter in thy

commands towards any of thy

servants that trust in God; lest thou

chance not to fear him who is over

both; because he came not to call

any with respect of persons, but

whomsoever the spirit had prepared.

 

16 Thou shalt communicate to thy

neighbour of all thou hast; thou

shalt not call anything thine own: for

if ye partake of such things as are

incorruptible, how much more

should you do it in those that are

corruptible?

 

17 Thou shalt not be forward to

speak; for the mouth is the snare of

death. Strive for thy soul with all thy

might. Reach not out thine hand to

receive, and withhold it not when

thou shouldest give.

 

18 Thou shalt love, as the apple of

thine eye, everyone that speaketh

unto thee the Word of the Lord. Call

to thy remembrance, day and night,

the future judgment.

 

19 Thou shalt seek out every day,

the persons of the righteous; and

both consider and go about to exhort

 others by the word, and meditate

 how thou mayest save a soul.

 

20 Thou shalt also labour with thy

hands to give to the poor, that thy

sins may be forgiven thee, Thou

shalt not deliberate whether thou

shouldst give; nor having given,

murmur at it.

 

21 Give to everyone that asks so

shalt thou know who is the good

rewarder of thy gifts.

 

22 Keep what thou hast received;

thou shalt neither add to it nor take

from it.

 

23 Let the wicked be always thy

aversion. Thou shalt judge with

righteous judgment. Thou shalt

never cause divisions; but shalt make

peace between those that are at

variance, and bring them together.

 

24 Thou shalt confess thy sins; and

not come to thy prayer with an evil

conscience.

 

25 This is the way of light.

Silver Creek State Park

 









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