The Era of Jesus Video

Why did God send His Son to earth when He did? Why then? Why not now? Let me explain to you how things were 2,000 years ago, and maybe you won’t lose hope in His return. Join me in Blogging 2 Believers, only on You Tube, for “The Era of Jesus.” Also a great video for new believers!

Feel free to also share this link: https://youtu.be/dM6MvQoQm30

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The Relevance of Man

On this Father’s Day, I ponder the relevance of the first man on earth and the ancestral father of humankind. Through Adam’s transgression, sin entered the human race. We should be angry with him because his disobedience brought death to humanity and separated us from God. But even with this rough beginning, Adam still shared a close relationship with the Lord. He set the stage for many future generations of fathers.

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The relevance of Adam is great, for the Lord taught to him how to be a father, husband, and leader. Men, today, have lost many of his attributes through the centuries, but let’s review some of those original traits.

He was to become “one flesh” with his wife, always loving, respecting and praising her. God asked Adam to honor Eve as the weaker vessel.

Adam was responsible to guide his family in God’s ways by leading his family in prayer and worship. He was to be the head of the family, just as Christ is the head of the church.

The Lord demanded him always to work hard and keep a job to benefit his wife and children. If Adam could not provide for his family, he would deny his faith. (1 Timothy 5:8)

God asked Adam to be strong and courageous, as His presence would always be with him.

Adam was to raise wise, disciplined children while showing them compassion. He was to teach them about the Lord and the importance of following His instructions.

If Adam stayed righteous in integrity, God would bless his children. (Proverbs 20:7) It was crucial to be accountable and honorable.

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The Bible speaks to all people – whether men or women. However, Galatians 3:28 spoke to me: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” I hope liberated women will not misinterpret this verse for “man,” alone, was anointed by God with an exceptional title – the Body of Christ. Created in the image of the Lord, the Christian male stands tall and proud, just as Adam, before his family and God. He carries the weight of his loved ones on his shoulders while also following the Lord’s footsteps.

To all fathers, you are so cherished and loved for helping to build the Kingdom of God. It doesn’t matter if you have natural born children or stepchildren; your guidance could ultimately lead a child to the Lord. What fantastic recognition, fathers… you are God’s perfect creation!

Written by Anne Bicks, Editor of Bicks Books LLC

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The Fear of God

The Bible reveals that the beginning of wisdom and knowledge is the fear of God. But this phrase, “fear of God,” has become a bit of a misnomer. The word fear denotes afraid of or threatening. So many unbelievers, today, view acknowledging a higher power is a threat to their freedom. As a result, they live in darkness with the shades drawn, blinded to the evil surrounding them. Christians understand the fear of God means standing in awesome respect of His power and majesty.

In Exodus 19:17-19, God wanted the Israelites to understand He was real and powerful. So, He asked Moses to lead them to the foot of Mount Sinai, and this event occurred…

“Then Moses led the people out of the camp to meet with God, and they stood at the foot of the mountain.  Mount Sinai was covered with smoke, because the LORD descended on it in fire. The smoke billowed up from it like smoke from a furnace, the whole mountain trembled violently, and the sound of the trumpet grew louder and louder. Then Moses spoke and the voice of God answered him.”

If we read the scriptures just before Exodus’ verse 17, we discover the Israelites knew several days in advance they would experience God. Most of the people laughed it off and thought Moses was a joke. But as predicted, God terrified them when they witnessed His presence on Mount Sinai. The Lord speaks of fearing Him in the Bible to stop sinning, not because He is a cruel god. He wants us to understand we should run to Him when our enemies approach us.

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Moving ahead thousands of years later, what attitudes have changed today about God since Mount Sinai? Did mankind learn anything from the Israelites? My opinion is the world’s lack of faith has steeply declined, and the fear of God is nonexistent. People are unbalanced in their understanding of the Lord. They’re naïve, or perhaps uneducated, so they follow the weakest link on earth – Satan.

God is sending many signals to the world today of His power – pandemics, earthquakes, and other catastrophes. Still, many continue to ignore His signs. Just as the Israelites, they, too, will cower in fear when He returns and it will be too late.

Mentioned 365 times in the Bible, one would say the fear of God proves a point: it is time to adhere to God’s commands and not your own decisions. Take delight in fearing the Lord so you can walk in obedience and have the joy of a clean heart. It builds confidence for the judgment day, arriving soon. Fear of discipline helps us not to make mistakes. As we obey Christ, we remain in His love, and His joy will be forever in us.

The fear of God, and respecting His almighty presence, will build your eternal salvation. God bless you!

“They shall be My people, and I will be their God; then I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me forever, for the good of them and their children after them. And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from doing them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts so that they will not depart from Me.”  Jeremiah 32:38-40

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Send in the Doves

I took a reprieve from yard manicuring and sipped on a glass of tea. Without warning, three doves flew down to join me and fed on the seed my love scattered about the ground the previous day. They were only a few feet from my chair. Amazed and with exuberance, I surmised there must be a message in their trusting action. Am I being watched, I wondered? Is my every move being noted and written down for judgment day?

In scriptures, the dove is often used to represent aspects of God’s spirit, instructing our lives. It is a symbol of peace, but it held much more significance, for it affirmed Jesus as the Messiah. As John baptized Jesus, the Holy Spirit descended on Jesus in bodily form like a dove – the anointing of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, other heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest on him; Matthew 3:16

Also, Noah experienced a connection with these birds. Following the Flood, he sent out a dove. It flew out over the sea but then returned to the ark. Noah waited a week before he left it go again. This time…

“…the dove came back to him in the evening, and behold, in her mouth was a freshly plucked olive leaf. So Noah knew that the waters had subsided from the earth.” Genesis 8:11

The third time Noah sent out a dove, it did not return, revealing the dove had found a new home on the land of the earth. The message here? God had made peace with the earth and mankind.

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The Lord held doves in greatness. One biblical event describes Jesus angrily driving out all the merchants from the Temple, including “those who sold doves” to worshipers (John 2:16). The happiest of birds, it identifies and represents divinity and purity, as Jesus acknowledged by His anger.

So, do you think God sends in the doves to confirm our faithfulness or as a subliminal sign He is near? It’s easy to comprehend because, after all,  signs from God are clear as the day is long.

I want to share a personal event in my life. I married my wife on a beach in Destin, Florida. Standing on a platform next to the tall grasses and sand dunes, we recited our sacred vows. At the exact moment the Justice of Peace declared us man and wife, three doves flew out of the grass and over our heads. We will never forget it!

At first, we believed it was our deceased parents showing their approval, but now we view it differently – it was the Lord! To this day, His abundant blessings affect our life.

So, Lord, send in the doves! I built my sanctuary in honor of You. It gives me the strength for all things of which I can do to serve You better. I keep one eye on my blessings and the other on Your arrival. Standing like a soldier, I shall remain in prayer and feeding the doves You sent to watch over me this morning.

I love the days I can share Christ with all my readers. So many seeks the Lord, but He joins me in my daily thoughts. Call on our Lord, and He will send doves your way if you just have faith and pray.  What a merciful Father, don’t you agree?

Send in the doves, Lord, and baptize us with powerful wings and life ever after.

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Who Attempted to Stop Easter?

Easter is the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection. He was part of God’s prophecy to send a Son to live a sinless life and to suffer, die, and be raised again. How else could God send the message He is sovereign over our land? Because there is no other way to enter the Kingdom of God except through His Son (John 6:44), Jesus’ mission was to save believers from God’s condemnation.

Many biblical names hated and loved Jesus while He walked the earth. Had man believed in God’s ultimate plan for Jesus, these people would have realized the attempts to stop His crucifixion and/or life were futile. Five men failed God’s test.

So, who attempted to stop Easter?

SATAN

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Satan and Jesus were always brutal enemies. Their most well-known confrontation was Satan’s visit while Jesus fasted in the Judaean Desert for forty nights and days. Satan tempted Him to create bread out of stones to relieve his own hunger, and leap from a pinnacle and rely on angels to break his fall. But when Satan asked Jesus to kneel before him in return for all the kingdoms of the world, Jesus became furious.

“Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God, and serve him only.’” (Matthew 4:10)

Can you imagine Satan’s fury? If he were successful in tempting Jesus, there would be no Easter. Luke 22 claims Satan was most likely at the crucifixion as he was spotted in the area days before this historical event. He probably smirked with happiness, but little did he know…

King Herod

Image by James Tissot Collection (Brooklyn Museum)/FreeBibleImages.org

King Herod held the throne during Jesus’s time of birth. Furious to learn there was a Messiah who would be more loved than himself, he tried to find the pregnant woman. However, his plan backfired when the three Wisemen never returned with Herod’s information. He ordered all boys, in the age range of Jesus, to be executed. An angel warned Joseph and Mary to go to Egypt for safety as it was not part of the Roman territory.

King Herod was unsuccessful in finding our baby Savior. He died, instead, attempting to stop Easter because he was not part of God’s grand plan.

THE SANHEDRIN

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The chief priests, the Sanhedrin, were the Jewish council who hated Jesus. They wanted to kill him, so they looked for false evidence, such as blasphemy. Though it may appear they were fruitful in finally murdering Jesus, God’s plan overpowered their contempt. The empty tomb and Jesus’ resurrection made news. The Sanhedrin’s attempt to stop Easter failed too.

PONTIUS PILATE

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Pontius Pilate was the judge who would not give the eventual decision on Jesus’ death. Consciously, Pilate knew Jesus was innocent, but the uproar of the people shouting, “Crucify him!” intimidated his decision. High-ranking Jewish officials blackmailed him to kill Jesus. Finally, he gave the ultimate choice to the people.

If Pilate ordered Jesus dead, we would always know him as the man who stopped Easter. But our powerful God had a better way to save the world.

SIMON PETER

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Simon Peter was one of Jesus’ closest friends. In the Bible, Jesus often referred to him as Peter. We know his famous story as the fisherman who couldn’t catch his daily supply of fish… that is until Jesus arrived on the scene. He convinced Simon to return to his boat and drop his nets overboard. Soon  the nets overflowed with fish. Simon was a faithful follower of Jesus’ ministry, and later became an apostle.

When Simon was alerted that Jesus was arrested, he headed for Jerusalem. At the unmerciful sight of our Lord’s whipped and beaten body, he drew his sword in anger. He cut off the ear of the high priest’s servant before Jesus stopped him (John 18:10-11).

Jesus said to Simon, “Do you think I cannot call on my Father, and he will at once put at my disposal more than twelve legions of angels? But how then would the Scriptures be fulfilled that say it must happen in this way?”

Simon Peter felt as if he failed to save his friend’s life. How could God allow this to happen if Jesus was really who He pronounced Himself to be – the Son of God? He, too, doubted his friend’s identity until God resurrected Jesus. The Lord’s plan for mankind was greater than Simon’s attempt to stop Easter.

There lies a common theme in this morning’s Easter message: God is the ultimate ruler of our life. He sent His son into the world to give us eternal salvation, but what we do with this gift is our decision.

Today, as we reflect on our lives, we beseech God to intervene with the world’s problems. May He save us from a scenario we didn’t invite into our life. Some are trying to stop us from celebrating Easter. Is this a life experience and are we part of God’s ultimate plans? You bet! The evildoers won’t or can’t stop Easter. We may not enjoy egg hunts after Easter service, but we will exult our Lord Jesus, in the name of our heavenly Father, God.

On this Easter Sunday, we are challenged – is Satan behind the mass hysteria again? You bet! How else could a virus travel so fast around the world? It’s entered places where people do not visit often. Only Satan can try to stop Easter. I, for one, won’t let him do it!

God bless all our family, friends, and subscribers! Have a blessed, healthy, and peaceful Easter.


A Stone of Faith

Sometimes in life, our faith in God waivers in and out. We might roll our eyes when confrontation is before us and shun the real strength we prayed for in difficult times. But then we return to the very spot we waivered from in the beginning. Our Almighty God always remains with us, though, with welcome arms and forgiveness of our bad decisions.

Last night my eyes were opened a little wider by a word God whispered to my conscience. I woke in fear of trying to comprehend His message. So I picked up my Bible for protection and tried to find the meaning of the word He sent me. As many knows, I’m a man of great faith. I’m not a Bible scholar by any stretch of the imagination, but I do my digging when times like this are derived from God.

Before I tell you what the Holy Spirit spoke to me, you must know this word is written in scriptures only three times. It was used in the Old Testament in 543 B.C. by Samuel. He, too, was a man of great faith who led the Israelites to a battle with the Philistines for over forty years. The Israelites lost twice, but then Samuel looked to God and set up an Ebenezer between two mountains. He said, “Lord God, You are my stone of faith, my rock I shall not break.” (1 Samuel) Scriptures say, “The Lord thundered loudly against the Philistines that day and threw them into such confusion that they were defeated by the Israelites.” From that day forward, Ebenezer became the name of an altar for God to protect the Israelites.

So the bigger question is, why did God send me the word Ebenezer? Is it because I, too, am fighting two personal battles, and God came to tell me it will be Ok? Is it to inform you that your struggles are being watched over by the Lord? Yes, all the above is true! Remember, your enemy is not greater than God. He can make miracles occur with a stroke of His hand.

My word for the day, Ebenezer, is the moment you realize you could not have made it through the fires without God’s help. Your faith is like a stone, and only God can bring you through these impeachable battles.

Ebenezer is as powerful of a word today as it was with Samuel in the Old Testament. We all bear our crosses, and as Christians, we must realize it is only God who protects us. Our awesome Father will come to our rescue in times of need. All you have to do is humbly pray for His help. May your Ebenezer be an altar as it was for Samuel. God bless.


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The Three Will Meet

As the sun glistened in the sky, so shall God’s love and mercy radiate below the heavens. The waters receded reflecting the beginning of life. The elegance of the ocean’s beauty permeated in every ripple and sparkled like diamonds. Marine life emerged, slowly inhabiting the pristine bodies of the sea. The earth turned green from the growth of new sprouts. Creatures with feathers perched atop cliffs and took their first flight in the morning breeze. Beasts of the earth moved along the ground frolicking and seeking food. God was pleased He created a perfect balance to the sea and land.

It is here the three will meet…

So, God decided it was time to create His own image and let him enjoy the fruits of His imagination. Man, the most sophisticated species, roamed the land and learned to hunt above and below the earth’s surface. But, our Creator realized man needed a complement, so he didn’t have to live alone. He made a correction to the plan and gave the man a submissive woman to love, adore, and honor. She was a goddess from heaven, where all human life evolved, and a rib created her. They cultivated the earth with the enjoyment of love, bringing gifts to God. What a masterfully crafted world designed by an architect far beyond our scope of knowledge!

It is here the three will meet…

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Then suddenly, out of the blue, cumulus clouds mounted, and storms roared destruction to His creation. Evil evolved, and lightning tried to conquer the earth. God was furious Satan, a fallen angel of all people, found pleasure in the flames of wickedness. So, Noah built an ark to help Him wash away the sin of the world, but to no avail. Evil came back with a vengeance. This time, God sent Moses with scripted laws in stone which gave guidelines for mankind to live by, but still, immorality existed. Now distraught, God insisted on filling the world with love, so He divinely created an offspring in His own image. This child would attempt to right the wrong in people.

There the three will meet…

Ultimate wealth now lies upon the edges of the origin of the earth. God vowed His son shall return and destroy all persisting evil. If you lay claim to worldly idols, be prepared… you won’t have them much longer. Death and destruction are in the forecast. God will eliminate sin with the same scorching flames evil derived from when Satan arrived on earth.

So, I shall run to meet Him, at His point of origin – the beginning of life. Like all sinners, I too will bear the heartaches of hell on the incoming tide. God will scold for poor choices, yet many will still choose the path of least resistance. Behold your breath, for the undertaking of God words, shall not be minced in heaven. I will stand with all of humanity, when the firestorm commences, praying our Father will save those who asked for forgiveness.

I beacon all believers to join me. Let us gather, in good faith, and bring love to the beach where Christ will come calling once again.

For there the three will meet – the Father, the Son, and… will you be joining me too in the celebration? ~~www.danabicksauthor.com~~

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Jesus’ Ministry

It’s the Holy Week for Christians, and I reverently remember our Lord, Christ Jesus. In the quiet of my domain, I search the Bible for answers to my questions such as what was Jesus’ real ministry on earth? Did Jesus practice a religion or was He a rebel who rode off into the desert eluding Roman authorities?

Jesus spread the principles of entering God’s kingdom to all walks of life in Galilee, Capernaum, Judea, and Nazareth. He started at about the age of thirty at the River Jordan near Bethany-across-the-Jordan where He called His first five disciples. Though our Savior was Jewish, his ministry often taught parables and verses from the “sacred books” which we know today as the Old Testament. But, sometimes He referred to the Hebrew Bible, specifically the five books of Moses (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy), the Torah, and the Book of Psalms.

As you may detect, Jesus disdained religious discord. He wanted people to love one another and love God. This was the basic concept of all His messages and the only way to heaven. Love and kindness is not a religion but an emotion, so He reached listeners through relationships rather than synagogues. When we integrate the theory of one religion into our life, God’s lessons often become overshadowed by hypocrisy, hatred, and division. Today’s religious persecution of humanity is such an example of this concept. Instead of loving one another and maintaining the state of our hearts, we fight to the end defending our religious rights. This was the exact reason Jesus’ ministry remained non-denominational – one church under Christ Jesus.

The parables Jesus taught became His primary method of speaking His Father’s words. He rarely used texts out of scriptures nor explained or commented on them. He considered this “preaching,” not teaching; instead, He left Himself open to interpretation and offered a story for listeners to ponder and ask, how can this get me into heaven? The Parable of the Mustard Seed was Jesus’ favorite.

THE BASIC PRINCIPLES OF JESUS’ MINISTRY

LOVE

At the core of Jesus’ ministry were a few critical impressions which He consistently shared with everyone; foremost was love. Believers asked Him occasionally which commandment was the greatest, and His response stood with, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and all your strength.” His second favorite was, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” Love is the nucleus of everything right and perfect in the world. Jesus taught examples of love and compassion by healing the sick, restoring eyesight, and feeding the hungry. But, He emphasized loving our enemies for even though they are wicked, they also need love. “Love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back.”

FORGIVENESS

Forgiveness was the second most important concept to Jesus. He spoke we must repent of sins and ask God for forgiveness so God may forgive our wrongdoings. Jesus claimed we must forgive every time we are wronged. “If your brother sins, rebuke him, and if he repents, forgive him. If he sins against you seven times a day, and seven times comes back to you and says, ‘I repent,’ forgive him.”

JUDGING OTHERS

Jesus also warned His listeners not to judge others since we are all sinners. Though born sinless, He still had mercy and compassion for mankind. He often told the story of an adulteress woman about to be stoned to death (found in John 8:1-30). Jesus told her accusers, “He that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone at her.” They all departed and Jesus told the woman, “Neither do I condemn thee: go and sin no more.”

WEALTH AND POVERTY

Jesus did not speak it is a sin to be wealthy, only that we give our riches back to the Lord and others in need. He spoke of the affluent becoming too attached to material possessions for when we die, our “objects of happiness” will mean nothing. Christ used the example of a rich man who lived by all the other commandments, and he approached Him to find out how to have eternal life. Jesus replied, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” The man became very sad because he could not part with his riches. Jesus later told His disciples, “I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven.” Doesn’t say much for the Powerball today, does it?

Let us analyze your strength, as a Christian, in this situation. If Jesus were to come to you today and ask you to give up your home and all possessions to follow Him, WOULD YOU DO IT? If the answer is yes, you may find eternal salvation in heaven. If the answer is no, it is time to question your faith and love of money and objects. What means more to you – living as one with God, now and forevermore, or exploiting the riches which cease after you die and you stand in judgment by the Lord? Will it be God or your self-centeredness?

HYPOCRISY

Jesus learned of hypocrisy by observing the Pharisees. They prayed in the streets and always attended the temple, but the inside, their contemptible hearts were made of stone. He loathed hypocrisy in any form. Our sovereignty to God is a private matter and not to be exploited in crowds. You may ask why this is imperative? Because we are sinners, our actions often fall short of God’s requirements. If we expose our praise and inner thoughts of God to outsiders, yet our daily activities show different, we become deemed a hypocrite and severely judged. Many non-believers will not follow the church because of this very reason.

PRAYER

Jesus often taught the nature and power of prayer. He emphasized “The Lord’s Prayer” and said it was not for show but a private matter. “When you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.” Prayers are to be directed to God the Father only, not angels, saints, or Mary. Jesus considered chanting of prayers to be of pagan roots, now observed in Catholic and Orthodox churches. He asked we use prayers to develop a close, personal relationship with God.

Do we see the irony in Jesus’ instruction on praying? How many large churches, today, organize huge crusades and festivals to bring people closer to God? How often do we receive an invite on Facebook to join a Watch Party where someone is screaming out the name of the Lord and asking for forgiveness? The idea churches adopted prayer methods against Jesus’ teaching is quite a dose to swallow. They walk in total disregard of the foundation of God’s word!

Christ Jesus tested and prevailed in His ministry of love, right down to His last days. He was a sinless mortal man leading the way for humanity to follow in His footsteps. Yes, Jesus paid the ultimate price for His beliefs in love.

On this day, Good Friday, I plead my faith to Him, under the cross which He brutally hung on for me and all sinners. I also pray my Father will bless my ongoing ministry for all who come searching to fill a void in their heart with our Lord, Jesus Christ. And finally I pray, friends, you find God’s peace and love on this holy weekend. www.danabicksauthor.com

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A Real, Father Christmas

A Real, Father Christmas cover

This is part one of a three-part Special Edition of Everything Christmas Blogs. As Christians, it is important to know about Jesus. For example, how many details do you actually know about His family? Though most information is minimal, try to use your imagination, along with the details and facts of the Bible, to understand this holy dynasty. Today, we will learn of Joseph, the carpenter, legal father of Jesus Christ. Enjoy!

 

Jesus’s father, Joseph, was a real father Christmas – he personified a great example of fatherhood. A direct descendant of King David, his birthdate is circa 1782 BC, according to the Gregorian calendar method. In the book of Matthew, Joseph was one of eleven children, but only one of two natural-born children to Jacob and Rachel. Rachel could not conceive until late in life. Joseph was her first child and the most favored by Jacob.

Joseph lived in Nazareth, a tiny town of 400 residents, just twelve miles southwest of the Sea of Galilee. The meager, peasant families, all of whom were Jewish, barely survived farming the rocky, hilly terrain. But he became a skilled carpenter and later a well-respected contractor. He passed his family’s inherited talents on to his son, Jesus.

A Real, Father Christmas pic 1

Biblical Nazareth

A faithful and devout man to Judaism, Joseph raised his family under the same practices and beliefs. As the story of Mary and Joseph unravels in Matthew 1:1-18, this compelling man was of middle age when he met Mary. In biblical days, the parents of young girls arranged marriages. Because the age span of humans was short (35-45 years), girls wed at twelve to fourteen years old. It is unclear in the Bible if a marriage arrangement was the situation with Joseph and Mary because their story began when they were betrothed.

So, to describe Joseph’s personality and strength of character, let me set the scene of events. He was an honorable man who loved his soon-to-be-wife, Mary, very much. One day, Mary solemnly approached him and told him she was pregnant. His first instinct could have been anger and rejection. An acceptable response, in those days, would be to send her off to be stoned and ridiculed by the masses because she was pregnant with another’s child. Instead, his faith in God led him to believe her story of an immaculate conception.

A Real, Father Christmas pic 2

Joseph lovingly took her under his wing, setting aside his own needs for Mary’s protection. Men in this culture were not inclined to bend to a woman’s needs, but he set the bar very high. He traveled many miles with Mary until he found a safe and quiet place for her to give birth. But his starring role was about to begin.

Mary gave birth to our Savior, and Joseph was overcome with emotion. He named the baby Jesus (meaning Savior). Biologically, Joseph was not the father, but in every way, this man was a proud, surrogate patriarch. He raised Jesus in the Jewish religion and taught him a spiritual life. His role as a protective father ensured the survival of the child. This was evident when a second angel relayed another message:

A Real, Father Christmas verse

 

Again, Joseph traveled by night with Mary and Jesus, from Egypt back to Nazareth. He humbly and quietly saved Jesus’s life and established a residence for his family. Joseph certainly proved his willingness to be obedient to God’s direction and guidance.

A Real, Father Christmas pic 3

Though an exact date of Joseph’s death is not available, we can surmise it occurred sometime between the beginning of Jesus’s ministry and His crucifixion; Jesus made arrangements for John the Baptist to take care of His mother after His death. This was indicative Joseph was not alive.

What a silent hero Joseph was and a real role model for Christians today! He took his son, God Almighty, and taught him to pray and how to work. This is a man who was forced to live, initially, a life of purity within his marriage to Mary. Sacrificing the ability to have any kind of normal life came with many struggles and much criticism, but Joseph overcame them all. Few examples of these godly traits were seen in biblical days and even less so in today’s generations. Is it any wonder Jesus was a sinless man with such endearing and loving qualities?

Joseph was a gentle and wonderful man. Thank you, to this real, Father Christmas for living and teaching us the example of true love.

Enjoy this video called, “Joseph’s Hands”:

 

To be continued…. please join us on Thursday for Part Two of Everything Christmas Blogs!


Give the gift of a miracle!

Christmas ad for book FB

Losing Sight of Christmas

Losing Sight of Christmas cover

Enjoy “The Christmas Shoes” by Newsong 2000!


The muddy slush piles up against curbs and trampled footprints scatter about on the snow-covered sidewalks. Storefronts capitalize on impending Christmas shopping with festive, decorated windows. Full of alluring ideas that tax the mind where wallets won’t permit, it’s hard to swallow. But, love consumes our hearts, so we become obsessed with not wanting to forget a single person. We shop online and by foot comparing prices, then wait in long lines. Frustrations mount as, sometimes, we end up paying for overnight delivery because we ran out of time.

Losing Sight of Christmas pic 1

Are we losing sight of Christmas? We join together bearing gifts for one another to commemorate Jesus’s birthday on the 25th day of December. But where did the idea of excessive gift-giving come from, anyway? It’s not how this holiday began because there was a time when celebrating this day was a taboo.

 

Origin of the Christmas Holiday
Jesus’s birth was categorized as a pagan holiday. It is their belief He never existed as a man, only as a spiritual entity. Then, in the 1600s, Rome became the birthplace of Christmas as we know it; so, it’s a fairly new celebration. But, as history reveals, Protestants (the Puritans) in America hated this holiday and banned it in 1644. They believed it was an insult to God to honor a day associated with ancient paganism. The Puritans also considered Christmas trees and decorations unholy rituals as well as traditional foods such as mincemeat pies and pudding.

Losing Sight of Christmas Pic 2

Pagan Christmas image courtesy of Huffington Post

 

Commercialism of Christmas
So, how did Christmas ever come to the point of being the ultimate gift-giving experience instead of the rejoicing of a holy birth? Perhaps the commercialization of Santa Claus bearing bags of gifts started the dreaded Christmas creep. New York City’s annual American International Toy Fair is held in February, and the stores purchase and scheme for the following holiday. Isn’t that a little much?

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Do you know a whopping 18% of gifts given to others are never used by the recipient? To make matters worse, we spend the next six months paying off the debt we incurred because it was ‘the thought that mattered.’ Scroogenomics author, Joel Waldfogel, summed it up well – “if the spending we engage in doesn’t produce any satisfaction, then it’s hardly a measure of well-being.” Why are we allowing the commercialism of Christmas to affect our purses and create greediness?

 

Make Your Christmas Count!
I think this Christmas we should, instead, get involved with our communities. Spend money, if you must, giving to those less fortunate. There are orphanages, Senior Citizen centers, hospitals, and homeless people who would appreciate your gift. Take your children with you and let them feel the happiness of another person smiling over an unexpected present. After all, as a Christian, God expects us to help others in need.

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Image courtesy of YouTube

Overloading our own kids and others with presents is not the reason for the season! Limit your immediate family gifts to three and make them count. The birth of Jesus should be our celebration. Attend a local church service and enjoy the sensations of the joyous season. Jesus was born to save us – let that be enough for you this year.
God bless and Merry Christmas!

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Please join us on Thursday, November 22nd for another “Everything Christmas Blog”!


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