A New Year and a New Beginning

Biblical Modesty for Women

The start of a new year is often viewed as an opportunity for a new beginning. I would like to consider 2017 as an opportunity to, Lord willing, accomplish what we thought was going to take place last year! If you have previously visited this blog, you probably have wondered what happened, why the absence.  A word of explanation is in order.

James gives all of us a warning in chapter 4:13-16.

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow, we shall go to such and such a city, and spend a year there and engage in business and make a profit.” Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away. Instead, you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and also do this or that.” But as it is, you boast in your arrogance; all such boasting is evil. James 4:13-16.

Those who know me well know that my speech often contains the words “Lord willing.” But the opening entries to this blog did not. May I at this point praise our God that He is sovereign. He is in control. I am reminded that Proverbs 16:9 states,

The heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps. Proverbs 16:9

The psalmist wrote in Psalm 37:23,

The steps of a man are established by the Lord, when he delights in his way. Psalm 37:23

Now that word of explanation as to what happened to this blog.  First, I had major surgery that the doctors said would take a year for recovery.  They were correct. I had just begun that recovery when 2016 began.  The year also saw my mother-in-law’s health decline and by June the Lord took her home. Several months were consumed with helping to care for her and her affairs. Within a month of her home going, my husband contracted Valley Fever. The doctors said a six-month recovery was expected and they were correct.  Proverbs 16:9 said that we lay our plans, but God orders are steps.  Amen!!

Lord willing, we will be sharing the truth of God’s Word with you, my sisters, and sharing with you that in my life I find Him faithful.  This past year I responded to a request from numerous people to teach what God says about women’s dress and what it is that sometimes are problems for men in the way we dress. As the initial post for this new year, may I direct your attention to that study.  You may listen to my teaching or you may read an edited version.

 

The Bible – My Owner’s Manual for Living Life

The Bible

 

Many years ago I came upon the following statement regarding the role that the Bible can have in an individual’s life. As its truth changes individuals, it can then change a society. I would encourage you to not only read this statement but to make a copy of it, perhaps placing it in your Bible or in another spot where it can be reviewed often.

The Bible

This book contains: the mind of God, the state of man, the way of salvation, the doom of sinners, and the happiness of believers. Read it to be wise. Believe it to be safe, and practice it to be holy.

It contains light to direct you, food to support you, and comfort to cheer you. It is the traveler’s map, the pilgrim’s staff, the pilot’s compass, the soldier’s sword, and the Christian’s charter.

Here heaven is opened, and the gates of hell disclosed. Christ is its grand subject, our good its design, and the glory of God its end. It should fill the memory, rule the heart, and guide the feet.

Read it slowly, frequently, and prayerfully. It is a mine of wealth, health to the soul, and a river of pleasure. It is given to you here in this life, and will be opened at the Judgment, and is established forever.

It involves the highest responsibility, will reward the greatest labor, and condemns all who trifle with its contents.

– Author unknown

Psalm 119:105 claims that

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

Think what it is like to be surrounded by total and complete darkness and have no knowledge of what lies ahead, above or behind you. Suddenly a bright light is turned on and you can see all that lies above, ahead, and behind you. Now you know which way to turn, which path to take. Fear gives way to peace as you proceed. The Word of God provides that kind of guidance for living life.

Consider the powerful claims of Psalm 19:7-9.

The law of the Lord is perfect, restoring the soul;
The testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple.
The precepts of the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart;
The commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes.
The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring forever;
The judgments of the Lord are true; they are righteous altogether.

These six words, law, testimony, precepts, commandments, fear and judgments refer to the Torah of God or the Word of God and its role in the life of the believer. All six of these terms are synonyms for the Word of God.  At the time the Psalms were written, the Torah (the five books of Moses) was all that the ancient Israelites had of the Word of God.

When one accepts or yields in obedience to the moral principles of the Word of God, the soul is revived or refreshed. It enables us to be rightly related to God. Since God is the author and cannot lie (Numbers 23:19), it is sure or true. We can trust its teachings and thereby grow in wisdom. Yielding to the truths of the Word of God will bring joy to our hearts and lives.

The Bible’s commands are pure or unclouded. There is no error or deceit in them. They bring understanding and hope which leads to salvation. The fear of the Lord refers to our response to the truth as revealed in the Word – a response of reverence and worship. One who truly believes and embraces the truth has a relationship with God that endures forever. The judgments, judicial decisions or ordinances of God are correct or righteous.

Can you imagine a better foundation, a better guidebook, and a more complete instruction manual than the one God has given to us – the Word of God, the Bible?

Sister, what is your relationship to the Word of God? As Psalm 19:10-11 says,

They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold;
Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb.
Moreover, by them your servant is warned;
In keeping them there is great reward.

Let us join together in making this gift of God a part of each day. Let us read it, memorize it, study it, meditate upon it and obey or live by it! May it guide our thoughts and our decisions.

Your comments are welcome here.