Weekly Word Definition – Bondage

The Definition for the week is Bondage: the state of being a slave

the tenure or service of a villain, serf, or slave

:  a state of being bound usually by compulsion (as of law or mastery): such as

  • a:  captivity, serfdom
  • b:  servitude or subjugation to a controlling person or force young people in bondage to drugs

            Merriam-Webster

Used in two senses in Scripture, a literal and a metaphorical sense.

  1. In the former sense, it refers
    1. to the condition of the Hebrews (ăbhōdhāh) in Egypt (Exodus 1:14; 2:23) which is frequently called “the house of bondage,” Exodus 13:3, 14; 20:2; Deut. 5:6. It also refers to the condition of the Hebrews in Babylonia (Isaiah 14:3) and in Persia (Ezra 9:8), where a slightly different form of the same root (abhedhūth) is used in the original. In both these cases the bondage was not so much personal as national. As a rule, individuals were not subject to individuals, but the whole Hebrew people were subject to the Egyptian, Babylonian and the Persian states. They were forced to labor on public works, and otherwise, and were denied their own freedom when the exigencies of state seemed to demand it. The former word ʿăbhōdāh is also used in Neh. 5:18 as descriptive of the subject and depressed conditions of the Hebrews in Palestine during the earlier years after their return from captivity, when they were still living under Persian suzerainty.
    2. The word bondage ʿăbhādhīm is also used to describe the slavery into which the poor Jews were being forced by their more prosperous brethren in the earlier years under the Persians in Palestine (Neh. 5:5). Here true personal, though temporary, slavery is meant.
    3. Marriage is once referred to as a bondage (1 Cor. 7:15). It wasn’t the marriage that Paul was referring to, it was the obligations concerned with marriage.
  2. It is used in the metaphorical sense only in New Testament.

 “Bondage,” is the power of physical corruption as against the freedom of life (Romans 8:21), the power of fear as over against the confidence of Christian faith (Romans 8:15; Hebrews 2:15), and especially is it the bondage of the letter, of the elements, of a ceremonial and institutional salvation which must be scrupulously and painfully observed, as contrasted with the freedom of the sons of God, emancipated by faith in Jesus Christ. This bondage is a peculiarly Pauline idea since he was fighting for Christian freedom (Galatians 2:4; Galatians 4:3, 9, 24-25; Galatians 5:1). In 2 Peter 2:19 the idea is essentially different. Libertinism, masquerading under the name of freedom, is branded as bondage, in contrast with the true freedom of righteous living. The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

Bondage to sin is not necessary. Those who are true Christians have nothing to do with bondage to sin. Through our faith in Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit will guide us in a life free from sin if we will let Him. Don’t get caught up in bondage, it’s not worth it.

Love Never Fails

Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away.

1 Corinthians 13:8 (NKJV)

During World War 2, we had some great Generals leading fighting men to keep our freedom in this country. General Eisenhower became President of this country soon after he retired. This country will never forget Generals Patton and MacArthur.

There were two men they tried to get rid of at the start of the war. One was an Air Force Pilot. They turned him down for the Navy because he was too tall. When he went to the Air Force, he was turned down for being underweight. After he gained the weight, they finally waived his height and allowed him to fly. You can see the rest of James Stewart’s story in a movie called “Strategic Air Command.” What he has done for his country was not contained in the service. Jimmy Stewart dedicated his life to entertaining America.

The second man they didn’t want was a man who was too short and too weak. He was constantly sick and had only a fifth-grade education. This man was constantly risking his life for his friends. By the end of the war this man had more and higher decorations than any other man during World War 2. He then went on to dedicate his life to entertaining America. His name was Audie Murphy. You can see his story in the movie, “To Hell and Back.”

There was another man over 2000 years ago who was ridiculed and rejected by His own people. He came preaching salvation and they laughed at Him; His own people turned against Him. This man gave the ultimate sacrifice so undeserving people like you and I could be saved.

Jesus Christ came to this earth to demonstrate a love stronger than that shown by any other man ever. That love is still demonstrated every day.

Jesus died on the cross of Calvary to demonstrate that love, He paid the ultimate price for OUR sins and demonstrated the ultimate love.

These two men continued to show their love for their country through their acting. But in the end that acting came to a stop when they were old.

Christ, however, not only carried His love for all Christians to the grave with him; he also brought that love from the grave when he was resurrected. God’s (Christ’s) love continues today and will continue beyond the end of time. God’s love can never fail.

Let God be Magnified

Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You; And let those who love Your salvation say continually, “Let God be magnified!”

Psalm 70:4 (NKJV)

One Friday night you were at a bar downtown and you saw one of the church’s deacons and another man sitting with two women that you knew were not their wives, As the night went on the two men got loud and vulgar in their speech.

As the night progressed, you saw the deacon laughing and talking to the young lady he was sitting with. At the end of the night, the deacon escorted the young lady out of the bar. As you followed them, you saw the young lady get into the deacon’s car and they drove away.

It’s 2 a.m. and it’s time to go home. Why was the deacon there and who was that other man? I guess all these answers can be found tomorrow because at this point it’s time to get some sleep.

The next day you just keep thinking over and over why was the deacon there? Were the deacon and his wife having problems and no one knew? What about the other man, he wasn’t a member of the church or you would’ve seen it? Why did the deacon choose to not say hello?

You have a lot of things to think about over the next few days. I guess the main thing was whether to trust your instinct or to trust your feelings of anger and betrayal? Should you tell the pastor what you saw, or should you confront the deacon himself? This Friday night out had proven to be something of a dilemma.

How could you let everyone know what you had seen without putting your own participation in the eyes of the public? Perhaps if you went to the pastor and gave him a hypothetical situation. Perhaps he could use the guise of saying he was asking for a friend. No that wouldn’t work. The pastor would want to know what you was doing at the bar.

That Sunday the pastor preached about deception. The pastor talked about how deception can eat a person from the inside and work on their nerves. What were you to do? If you didn’t do something soon, you felt like you were going to go crazy.

Finally, you decided. You were going to talk to the pastor about the whole incident. When you arrived, there he was, it was the deacon. Now, what were you to do? There had to be a resolution to this dilemma that would glorify God. It was just a matter of finding it.

It wasn’t long until the deacon and that other man left. The deacon didn’t see you and after they left, it was your turn.

If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.

1 John 1:9-10 (NKJV)

When you saw the pastor, you suddenly decided it would be better if you confessed of your sin and received forgiveness than to rub someone else’s name in the mud. Perhaps the deacon was there to confess his sins also. You decide to get yourself back in good stead with God and receive God’s forgiveness and love.

 After all the stress and anxiety, you had gone through, you decided to tell no one what you had seen and just move on with your life. By doing so, one of God’s children would receive forgiveness and love and God would be magnified for His grace.

A couple of days later, you picked up his newspaper and there it was. There was a front page spread about the bust of a drug gang and the woman’s face was on the front page. You had not known the deacon was a police officer. God was magnified again.

When Your heart is Not with Me

If we want to be Christians, we must look like Christ. To look like Christ, we must act like him. What did Christ do that we don’t do?

Then she said to him, “How can you say, ‘I love you,’ when your heart is not with me? You have mocked me these three times and have not told me where your great strength lies.”

Judges 16:15 (NKJV)

Delilah was a harlot that was trying to deceive Samson so she could take away his strength. Samson was the reigning judge in Israel and had superhuman strength that he used to carry out his judgment on the land. Some would pay to see Samson in a situation of helplessness so they could kill him.

In our world today some would like to see the Christian community deceived and destroyed.

Because of the Covid-19 situation, most of the church congregations are not meeting together and therefore the close interaction with each other is not happening. Some are still meeting and associating in small groups. But for the most part, there is no communication with other Christians.

How many people think they love God and don’t? Why would those people think they love God? Why do we pretend that we Love God?

We do love God, but we have the wrong State of mind. Loving God is not enough. For many years we have known the love that God has for the world (John 3:16), however, many don’t know what that means. We can love God and still not be Christians.

I love my wife with all my heart but that does not make me a good husband. Loving someone is only the reason they get married. Loving someone will never take the place of action.

God loved the world so much; He felt the need to prove to the world that He loved them. God allowed His only Begotten Son to die on the Cross for the payment for “our” sins.

We owe it to God to give our hearts to Him every minute of every day. We need to read of Him, Study about Him, think about Him, tell others about Him every day.

Unfortunately, there are deceivers in our congregations that spread the word that God has a magic wand and all they need to do is love him and God will do everything for them. They couldn’t be more wrong.

As the Father loved Me, I also have loved you; abide in My love. If you keep My commandments, you will abide in My love, just as I have kept My Father’s commandments and abide in His love. These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full.

John 15:9-11 (NKJV)

What Christ was saying here, is that if we want to remain a Christian, we must do more than just love Him.

If we want to be Christians, we must look like Christ. To look like Christ, we must act like him. What did Christ do that we don’t do?

  1. Remain sinless. Christ didn’t sin. Christ was so busy helping and teaching others, He didn’t have time to sin.
  2. Talked to God. Christ was always going off by himself and talking to God. Many today say they don’t have that kind of time. However, we always seem to have time to watch T.V., or time to play games on the computer. There are other things we do that could be replaced with prayer and talking to God.
  3. He spread the Gospel. Christ was constantly teaching people about the nature and temperament of God. I find that people who are not Christians are watching those who say they are Christians. Are you spreading the gospel with your actions?
  4. Christ Healed the sick. No, God doesn’t expect you to lay hands on people and heal them. What you can do is visit the sick and cheer them up. Getting flowers when you are sick is ok but getting a visit from a friend is something special. A visit allows you to help someone.
  5. Christ gave His life for us. You don’t have to die for your friends, but if you love your fellow man with God’s love, you must be prepared to do that.
  6. Christ Joined God in Heaven. To join him, you must look like him

“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.”

John 14:1-3 (NKJV)

With All Your Heart and Soul

But take careful heed to do the commandment and the law which Moses the servant of the LORD commanded you, to love the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways, to keep His commandments, to hold fast to Him, and to serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul.”

Joshua 22:5

It was God’s love and mercy that led the children of Israel to the land that God had promised their ancestor, Abraham, and His power that assisted their victory. When Joshua told them to go home, they gathered their spoils and headed home.

As Christians, we can experience God’s Love and power every day. We can ask God to lead us to victory over our enemies and We can see firsthand the loving way God leads us and the power of God’s word. If you have a question about life, all you need to do is pray and God will make it happen.

To us today, prayer is the key to unlock God’s love and power. Prayer must be prayed to God in the name of Jesus Christ. Prayer must be prayed for the correct reasons and must be prayed from a heart that belongs to God.

Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

James 5:16 (NKJV)

There are many preachers and teachers today that tell the congregation what they want to hear so the money will flow their way. The truth is, God don’t hear a sinner’s prayer. God listens to the righteous. The righteous are those who do God’s will every day and put sin out of their lives.

Many will misquote the bible and tell you it is ok or natural to sin every day. It’s Not! However, if you should sin, God has made a way. Go to one of your fellow Christians and tell them of your sin and allow “them” to pray on your behalf.

God loves you and wants what is best for you. God will forgive you if you sin occasionally. However, sinning daily is not occasionally. That is practicing sin.

Look at it from God’s perspective. If you fill your day with sin, you won’t have time to do God’s will. You won’t have time to experience God’s love. You won’t have the time to properly care for you family, study the bible, and you lose the right to pray.

Now look at what God can do. If you study the bible, God can speak to you and lead your daily walk. If you live the bible every day, God can use you to bring others to salvation. If your heart is right with God and you pray for someone else, God will hear that prayer and act on it. God can show His love to other through you.

Try to live each day so others can see “Christ in you.”

Live and Multiply

If you want to keep God in your heart, you must do all the things that God stated in this verse of scripture so that we may “live and multiply.”

“See, I have set before you today life and good, death and evil, in that I command you today to love the LORD your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commandments, His statutes, and His judgments, that you may live and multiply; and the LORD your God will bless you in the land which you go to possess. But if your heart turns away so that you do not hear, and are drawn away, and worship other gods and serve them, I announce to you today that you shall surely perish; you shall not prolong your days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to go in and possess.”

Deuteronomy 30:15-18 (NKJV)

God has put up with a lot from mankind and still His love is there if we will ask for it. We must obtain God’s love much in the same manner as they did when this verse of scripture was written. What’s more we must do the same thing to keep God’s love that He describes in the verse of scripture above.

Almost from the beginning of the world, God promised to give the descendants of Abraham the land of Canaan. That was God’s promise to them and now they were there to claim it. The rules were the same then as they were when the land was promised to their forefather.

Today we are the spiritual descendants of Abraham and are entitled to the Love and promises that God promised to Abraham. No, we are not fighting for the land of Canaan, but we do need a good career in order to support our families and to be able to live a good life and multiply. To obtain this good career, we must follow the same rules that Abraham had to follow.

Satan is using false preachers to try to tempt and deceive the children of God today. They are trying to say that sin is ok, following the commands of God are not important and we have it better than the prophets and the Apostles to us. They are trying to teach individuality and hero worship and the new norm. Do not listen to them.

We still must live a humble life, not a life of self-glory. We still must follow the statutes and commands of God. If we follow those commands, then satan can’t have any part in our lives.

This is not a new set of rules that God is giving them. It is the same rules that were given to Adam and Eve (Gen. 1:28). There too, it tells them to go forth and multiply.

How do we know when the preacher is telling us something wrong? Simple. Read the bible for ourselves. Don’t tolerate a mispronounced word or sentence. There are many different translations of the bible today. Don’t allow them to discourage you. I find that if I teach from the NKJV and read to children and unlearned people from the NIV, that will suffice. The main thing is to study whatever version you use with God at home. If you study with God, He will teach you the truth that is contained in His word.

As Christians, we enjoy the love of God in a better way than they did in the Old Testament. We not only have the love of God in our hearts, we have God Himself living in our hearts. If you want to keep God in your heart, you must do all the things that God stated in this verse of scripture so that we may “live and multiply.”

You Shall Love the Lord

“Therefore, you shall love the LORD your God, and keep His charge, His statutes, His judgments, and His commandments always

Deuteronomy 11:1 (NKJV)

On August 14 at 10 pm I lost one of the things I love the most in this life. I lost my little dog Odie. Odie was a small 15lb bundle of joy that I and my wife owed our lives to, literally.

The first time he saved our lives was when we first got him, 14 years ago. He was about one and a half years old according to the Veterinarian and full of life.

My wife and I had been on disability for about a year when he came to live with us. He was a rescue that was found in the mountains of Tennessee. He had lived through the winter by catching game of one type or another.

My wife and I could tell you the time by what tv show we were watching. We were grossly overweight and in declining health.

When Odie arrived, things changed. Every two hours, he demanded a walk. Before long, we started to lose some weight and feel better. We decided to get out and ride bicycles and lose even more weight. The weight loss made us start feeling better. Our doctors at the VA hospital helped us get into a weight loss program. Before long we were wearing decent clothes and were active again. It was all because that little dog got into our hearts and refused to let us die.

The second time he saved our lives was different. We were living in an RV park and had to walk to the office to get out mail. One day my wife and Odie were going to get the mail and one of the people up front had their youngest Rottweiler off leash, and he came at my wife. Odie got between them and threw the bigger dog down on his back and held him there until the woman came and pulled him away.

Two weeks later, on the 4th of July, I was walking Odie and we were going to the pavilion to see someone. Again, those people had both of their Rottweilers off leash. When they came at us, Odie got between me and the other dogs and fought the two of them. They tore Odie’s chest open, but they never got to me. We took him to the Vet. And they said to just keep the area clean and let it heal.

That little 15lb dog was willing to give his life so I could live. Those Rottweilers weighted over 100lbs each. For the remainder of the 14 years he lived with us, his dedication to my wife and I was unmistakable. His one purpose for living seemed to be loving us. He was always with us and when anyone came to the house, He greeted them first and made sure they were safe to let in. There was nothing that could compare to the dedication that little dog had for us.

“If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever.”

John 14:15-16 (NKJV)

Why can’t we be as dedicated to God as that little dog was to my wife and I? That little dog was willing to give his life for us because he loved us as much as we loved him. We tried our best to return the affection by being devoted to him.

God gave His only begotten Son to die on the cross in our place (John 3:16) Then God gave us His Spirit to live in us and guide us through this life. Despite all God has done for those who ask Him to, most people reject God’s love and turn back to sin.

God’s love for us in 10 times greater for us than what most, so called, Christians give to Him. Being dedicated to someone means you devote your life to them; you love them totally and completely. This is the kind of love God has given us, why do some feel they don’t have to give that love back.

God doesn’t expect us to love Him as much as He has loved us, but we should. God is living “in us” 24/7 yet most people who call themselves Christians can’t find time to study their bible of to pray, or to help others.

Watching tv is not a sin, unless it is replacing the time you say you don’t have for God.

How dedicated are you to God?

Love the Lord Your God

“Therefore, you shall love the LORD your God, and keep His charge, His statutes, His judgments, and His commandments always.

“Therefore, you shall love the LORD your God, and keep His charge, His statutes, His judgments, and His commandments always.

Deuteronomy 11:1 (NKJV)

Forty-three years ago, my wife and I met at Great Lakes Naval Base near Chicago Illinois. When we met, we were in what they called “A” school. We were both seeing other people at the time, but that only lasted a month or so. When we finally figured out that we were clearly in love, we decided to get married. Believe it or not, she asked me!

My friends, and her friends all told us we were rushing into a marriage that would not last. Our friends all told us the marriage would not last more than 2 years. On our third anniversary, I reminded her that she forgot to get a divorce.

My wife and I both figured out that marriage was something we would have to work at. You cannot just take life as it comes, there is a lot of forgiving each other, a lot of compromise and a lot of fun attached to a marriage.

Most people think love is all you need for a good marriage, but they are wrong. Love takes work, emotion, help from others, but it also takes devotion to each other. The experience of love is what you make of it.

Loving my wife is the most fulfilling thing I have ever done. She brings me joy, comfort, frustration, and she lifts me up when I fall.

My wife and I love God and we know He loves us. That does not mean we get a free ride. We still study the bible, that is how you learn God’s will. If we know what God wants us to do each day, then we can accomplish His will and more.

We still pray every day, multiple times. We still volunteer for different things concerning the homeless, the sick and those who just need someone to talk to.

Most of all we try to live the bible every day. We try to keep all God’s commands and we try to return at least a fraction of the love that God gives us on a daily basis.

Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world. But when the fullness of the time had come, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Therefore, you are no longer a slave but a son, and if a son, then an heir of God through Christ.

Galatians 4:3-7 (NKJV)

My wife and I look at bible study on a personal note. What has God done for me? God listened to me when I repented of my sin. God gave His only begotten son to pay the debt for my sin on the Cross. God gave me his spirit to live in me and guide and help me if I listen to Him. God comforts me through the truth of His word. How much more love could I ask form God.

When my wife I got married they all said it wouldn’t last. When I was saved (28 years ago) People said I could not change. I did with the help of God’s Love.

Are you ready to change?

Walk in All His Ways

Deuteronomy 10:12-13

“And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments of the LORD and His statutes which I command you today for your good?

Deuteronomy 10:12-13

How dedicated are you to God? Do you know what Christ was like? Do you walk in the same way as Christ? Are you Christ Like?

Dedication.” Devoting a person, place, or thing to Holy use. You can also look at dedication as a round robin situation. To be dedicated you must be totally devoted to God; to the point of being Holy. In 1Peter 1:15-16, Peter tells us that God called us to be Holy, as He is Holy. To be like Christ who was holy. If we are holy, then we must be totally dedicated to God. If you are a Christian, you are holy. If you are not holy, you are not a Christian.

To be dedicated and holy, you don’t have to wander around and preach all day and night. You don’t have to talk about God with every breath you take, but you must think about God before you say anything.

Dedication is studying the bible at least an hour every day and you must live the bible 24 hours a day.

And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

Galatians 5:24-25 (NKJV)

One of my “soap boxes” is sin after salvation. As Paul states in the verse above, we crucified our sinful flesh (nature) when we were saved. The moment we dedicated ourselves to Christ (God) we were free from the sinful nature of the flesh. In 2 Peter 1:4 it states that we are partakers of the Divine Nature. What does that even mean? It means that we have been baptized into the body of Christ (the holy church) and therefore have dedicated ourselves to Christ. We can then be baptized by the Holy Spirit and thereafter our heart is the host to the Holy Spirit. With the Holy Spirit guiding our every thought and move, how then can we sin?

The answer to the next question is easy. If you are a Christian, then you have studied the life of Christ. If you have the Holy Spirit living in your heart, then your studies have molded you into the likeness of Christ.

Once we are in the likeness of Christ, then we now have the mind of Christ (1Co. 2:16). With the mind of Christ to guide our every move, how can we go wrong? Christ lived a sinless life. If we have the mind of Christ and are living the life of Christ, then how can we sin?

For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

Ephesians 2:10 (NKJV)

Salvation is given freely, but it is not free.

God freely gave His only son to die on the cross in our place. However, God has given us Commands over the years pertaining to how we should act and things we must do. If we want salvation and eternal life through the Love of God, then we must follow these commands without fail.

If we follow these commands God will use them to mold us into the likeness of Christ who did good works. These works are our gift from God. These are the works that give us a feeling of satisfaction, a feeling of accomplishment, a feeling of the goodness of God.

For this reason we also, since the day we heard it, do not cease to pray for you, and to ask that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.

Colossians 1:9-10 (NKJV)

Here is the round robin I told you about. Paul says that since the day they heard of the dedication of the church at Colosse, they had prayed for them. What did they pray for? Not for the individuals, but for the church body. For them to grow in wisdom and knowledge to do good works, not in riches to impress their neighbors.

If you want to be a Christian, then you must experience the “round robin” for yourself. You will never regret the experience, because without this experience, you are nothing.

Showing Mercy to Thousands

You shall not make a carved image… you shall not bow down to them nor serve them.

Deuteronomy 5:8-10

‘You shall not make for yourself a carved image–any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments

Deuteronomy 5:8-10 (NKJV)

The paragraph above is one of the most misread and misunderstood passages in the bible. Some people use this to say it is a sin to take a photograph or watch a movie. However, they don’t say anything about making statues as monuments to fallen heroes and they visit those statues and remember the fallen.

Let us take another look. What is the first verse? “’You shall not make for yourself a carved image–any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.”

Look at what I have underlined. What is a “carved image?” The dolls made in molds, not the ones that are sewn. A carved or poured plaque, especially if it is dedicated to someone. A carved “bust,” a carved or poured animal or mythical creature/person. These are the things Moses was talking about. These are the things God described to Moses when he gave him the Ten Commandments.

What about photographs? Do you worship Photographs? Let me tell you about a couple I once knew.

They were the Wilsons, Joe, and Margie. They had a son named Adam who was killed in Vietnam. When Adam was buried. Joe built a platform in the living room of their house. Joe hung an 18”X20” picture of Adam with candle sconces on each side. He also built a podium on the stage. Around the stage he built a kneeling bench on each side. Every night they would kneel and pray.

The reverence this couple were showing was not to God, it was to their son. I have been to their house many times and what we talked about most was their son. Even when we were supposed to be talking about the bible, they always found a way to make their son part of the conversation.

My dad had a second-grade education. But the book he practiced his reading in was the King James bible. I have known a lot of people with college educations that listened to my dad when it came to knowledge about life. I didn’t appreciate his knowledge until I was grown and on my own. He was probably one of the most knowledgeable people I have ever met, and he knew his bible.

I talk about my dad at times to my visitors, but he is not the only subject and I am not constantly grieving about his death.

I have many pictures of my grandchildren and I love to show them to people to let them know about my family. I like looking through scrapbooks to see the different people and what they like. There is no harm there, I do not bow down to them nor do I serve them.

Look at the second part of that sentence. If we bow before a picture to pray, even if we are praying to God it is wrong and our prayers are wasted.

Now look at the last statement God made in that paragraph. God promised His love to those who keep His commandments. If I live the bible every day, I will without trying keep God’s Commandments.

What most people don’t understand is that for them to keep the commandments, they first have to know what those commandments are. To know what they are, you must read and study the bible.

God’s love is everything. If you read and study God’s word, you won’t be able to do without it. If you live a sinful life you will one day with you had it.

My family and I have never worshipped each other, nor have we ever desired to be rich in money or in glory. What we have wanted is a good paycheck and we will give our tithe of one tenth of the money and all the glory to God and his love. AMEN!!