Category Archives: Daniel Grey

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Why The HECK Should We Pray Anyways?

Let’s read through Luke 18 together.

“Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.” ‭‭Luke‬ 18:1

Always pray. Don’t give up praying. That is the meaning of the parable Jesus is about to tell us. We don’t even need to read it to find the meaning. It’s clear.

When we do read it we find the parable of the unjust judge who provides justice for the widow because she is a persistent (maybe even annoying) person. Jesus is saying to us, if that is what an unjust, powerful official does for their subjects, God will surely bring justice to his chosen ones. 

He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’ “For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’” And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”
Luke 18: 2-8

A little while after this parable we come to the story of the rich young ruler. A man who would not give up his great wealth and follow Jesus to earn his salvation.

18 A certain ruler asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 19 “Why do you call me good?” Jesus answered. “No one is good—except God alone. 20 You know the commandments: ‘You shall not commit adultery, you shall not murder, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother.’[a]21 “All these I have kept since I was a boy,” he said. 22 When Jesus heard this, he said to him, “You still lack one thing. Sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.” 23 When he heard this, he became very sad, because he was very wealthy. 24 Jesus looked at him and said, “How hard it is for the rich to enter the kingdom of God! 25 Indeed, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of God.” 26 Those who heard this asked, “Who then can be saved?” Luke 18:18-26

I feel for the rich young ruler. Immediately after I read this I hesitated to pray, ‘Lord take my riches if that’s what it takes for me to be a true follower of you.’ Clearly – there is still room for sanctification to happen in my heart. But Jesus tells us, “What is impossible with man is possible with God” (Luke 18:27), so there’s hope for me yet.

In fact Jesus goes on to promise us that those who leave everything to follow him will get more than that in this age… and in the age to come. That means in this life and the next! What a promise!? It just takes some trust. 

2“Truly I tell you,” Jesus said to them, “no one who has left home or wife or brothers or sisters or parents or children for the sake of the kingdom of God 30 will fail to receive many times as much in this age, and in the age to come eternal life.” Luke 18:29-30

At the end of this chapter we see a little bit of a call back to the parable of the unjust judge. A blind man yells at Jesus as he is walking by and continues to call out to him despite others telling him to stop and to be quiet. The blind man is persistent. Jesus hears him. Asks him how he can help. And then gives him sight.

35 As Jesus approached Jericho, a blind man was sitting by the roadside begging. 36 When he heard the crowd going by, he asked what was happening. 37 They told him, “Jesus of Nazareth is passing by.” 38 He called out, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!” 39 Those who led the way rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!” 40 Jesus stopped and ordered the man to be brought to him. When he came near, Jesus asked him, 41 “What do you want me to do for you?” “Lord, I want to see,” he replied. 42 Jesus said to him, “Receive your sight; your faith has healed you.” 43 Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus, praising God. When all the people saw it, they also praised God. Luke 18:35-43

Conclusion

Always pray. Don’t give up praying. Our just God will hear you. 

Why Do You Look For The Living Among The Dead?

The other day I was reading the last chapter in Luke and a verse struck me. It is a quote from one of the angels talking to the women looking for Jesus in the empty tomb.

“Why do you look for the living among the dead?” Luke 24:5b

I think it’s a particular stunning verse, and in the context of the Luke’s narrative it is the turning point. Preceding this moment we have a close friend’s betrayal, unjust trials, torture, and the crucifixion of an innocent man. Let us sit in that for a second. Imagine yourself a witness to these moments:

A friend’s betrayal

Unfair, unorthodox, & unjust trials

Torture – flogging and mockery

Crucifixion, a humiliating and painful execution of state sponsered asphyxiation

Death of an innocent man

Then BAM! These ten words nearly jump off the page and bring a sudden stop to the terror.

Why do you look for the living among the dead?

Jesus is alive!

Can you feel the power in this verse? Do you see how the whole world pivots from this moment? Can you put yourself in the shoes of the women that day? Can we have the humility to put ourselves under the same scrutiny?

Why do I look for life among the dead?

I have sought to find life and salvation in relationships with women. I have looked for pleasure in the grave of porn sites. I have fought and sought to be approved and impressive to others who themselves are seeking life in the cemeteries of this world.

Even now I search for comfort among the cushions of the couch instead of in the God of the universe. I search for appreciation and value for the deeds I do in my house, at work, and in my friend group instead of doing great things out of the confidence that God has already declared my value infinite. I search for happiness and joy within my life without going to the source of happiness and joy. I search for comfort, appreciation, approval, happiness, & joy in a world that has no idea how to acquire them while the Creator of these blessings offers them in abundance.

Why do I look for life among dead?

I do this because I have not convinced myself of the full goodness of God.

A Prayer

Father, please change my heart. Make me into a new being. Inspire me to be a man who seeks after You. Win my heart over. Convince me of Your love and goodness. You are so kind, so gracious, so loving. Help me believe that you are the source of life and not this world. I love you. Your will be done. Amen.

I know I’m not the only one. What about you?

Why Do Christians Obey Some OT Laws & Ignore Others?

An Introduction

Hello TP4 readers,

I am Daniel Grey, a friend of Nathan’s. I asked Nathan if I could use his soap box to help equip the Saints and he has graciously and generously welcomed me.

A few months ago a friend challenged my group of Christian friends to each bring our most feared question about the Bible/Religion/God. The result was six deep questions loaded with emotional and/or cultural baggage. And so I got to work answering each one with gifts God gave us: faith, The Bible, reason & (hopefully) gentleness. I hope each of you will take into consideration my answers, but most of all I hope you test everything I have presented. Be like the Bareans. Without further ado here is question 1 of 6.

Why Do Christian Obey Some Old Testament Law, But Ignore Others?

Christians obey some old testament laws and ignore others because we love God and all laws were fulfilled by Jesus. Let me explain.

There are three types of laws. These three categories were developed by scholars, not presented specifically in scripture.

  1. Ceremonial/Sacrificial – meant for the temple
  2. Government/Judicial – meant for nation state
  3. Moral – meant for everyday life

Jesus’ one sacrifice on the cross satisfies the need for any laws regarding forgiveness of sins (Ceremonial/Sacrificial laws) because forgiveness is offered to all Christians who ask for it. The Government/Judicial law is meant for the (probably ancient) nation state of Israel. Since most Christian do not live in Israel now and no one lives in the ancient state of Israel we can see that the the Government/Judicial law is non applicable. On top of all that we can turn to scripture and see that according to Romans 10:4 and Galatians 2:16 all OT laws were satisfied by Jesus so we are no longer under the law.

We have covered why Christians don’t obey certain laws (Ceremonial/Sacrificial & Governmental/Judicial) of the Old Testament, but why do they obey the moral laws?

The moral law states what is pleasing to God. Since we know God doesn’t ever change we know that what is pleasing to God 2,000 years ago is pleasing to God today. In other words, God loved when a husband encouraged his wife in 50 B.C. just as much as when a Husband encourages his wife today.

Don’t we (usually) want to express our love to those we adore? If a husband finds that his wife loves purple flowers, does he not buy purple flowers every time he gets her flowers? If a wife knows her husband loves back rubs when he is stressed does she not rub his back when the weight of the world is on him?

This is true of the Christian in their relationship with God today. A Christian need not obey the moral law for salvation. Salvation is obtained through Jesus Christ alone. A Christian simply obeys the moral law as an act of love toward God. We know these behaviors please Him and we do those behaviors simply because we love Him.

But how do we determine what is a moral law? As stated before the categories of the law are not laid out in scripture so any answer we find must be taken with a grain of salt. I landed on these answers which I got from Got Questions & Bible Study Tools. You can Identify a moral law if it does one of these three things

  1. Promote the welfare of those who obey
  2. Reveal the fallen state of man
  3. Restrain evil

I hope you found this answer helpful. Below you can find my list of sources and my outline for this post.

~ Daniel F. Grey

MORE ANSWERING HARD QUESTIONS
Is My Unbelieving Loved One In Hell?
How Can A Good God Allow Suffering?
Can Someone Embrace Homosexuality And Still Be Saved?
How Do You Admonish Someone Who Is Not A Believer?
How Do You Direct A Stranger Who Wants To Take The Next Step As A Believer?

Sources

Outline

Why do some old testaments laws still hold while others are overlooked?

  • 3 types of laws (these categories are made up by scholars, not presented specifically by scripture)
      • Ceremonial/sacrificial – meant for the temple
      • Government/Judicial – meant for nation state
      • Moral – meant for everyday life
  • All OT laws were satisfied by Jesus and so we are no longer under the law. Romans 10:4; Galatians 2:16
  • However, some Christians still follow the moral law… Why?
    • The moral law states what is pleasing to God and what is pleasing to God 2,000 years ago is pleasing to God today. 
    • As an act of love for Christ – people naturally try to please their loved ones to express their love for them – Christians do the same with Jesus. 
  • How do we determine what is a moral law?
    • Moral laws
      • Promote the welfare of those who obey
      • Reveal the fallen state of man
      • Restrain evil
        • This list is a combination of got questions & bible study tools articles.