Weekly Word Definition – Image

A representation of the external form of a person or thing in art.

synonyms: likeness · resemblance · depiction · portrayal · representation · statue

Genesis 1:26 (NKJV)

Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

The general impression that a person, organization, or product presents to the public. “she strives to project an image of youth.”

synonyms: public perception · public conception · public impression · persona · profile · face · identity · front · facade · portrayal · depiction

Romans 6:4 (NKJV)

Therefore, we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.

To be buried with Christ in Baptism, is to be immersed under the water so that we may imitate the resurrection of Christ. Just as Christ died on the Cross for the sins of the world, we as True Believers are dead to sin and have risen from the waters of baptism a new person. This new person is free from the bondage sin uses to keep us from the life of Christ. This new life is a newness of mind, spirit, and soul.

Romans 8:1 (NKJV)

There is therefore now no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.

In this verse of scripture, Paul is using the word flesh to represent the Sin Nature. The sin nature does not walk in the ways of God nor Christianity. The sin nature is the constant urge to do things that are not pleasing to God. To do things that waste the short life span we have and to deprive us of the opportunity to worship God.

When Paul refers to the spirit, he could be referring to the Holy Spirit. When we walk according to the spirit, we are following the guidance of the Holy Spirit that lives in us (John 14:17) The Holy Spirit that comes from God and is part of God.

The sin nature is gone because we are dead to sin, and we have put on the New Man because we now have God living in us and the sin nature was replaced by God’s Divine nature (1 Peter 1:4)

Weekly Word Definition – Sanctification

The definition of Sanctification:

The state of growing in divine grace because of Christian commitment after baptism or conversion (Merriam-Webster)

In the first instance, to sanctify is to regard or declare “Holy” by separating from common usage to the service of God. (Funk & Wagnall’s Bible dictionary)

Hebrews 13:12 (NKJV)

Therefore, Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people with His own blood, suffered outside the gate.

Ephesians 5:26-27 (NRSV)

to make her holy by cleansing her with the washing of water by the word, so as to present the church to himself in splendor, without a spot or wrinkle or anything of the kind, yes, so that she may be holy and without blemish.

Ephesians 4:23-24 (NIV2011)

to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Sanctification is not some magic trick that God uses to keep us in line. It is the act of regeneration that leads to sanctification. Regeneration is the act of studying God’s word to the point of building a good relationship with God through the Holy Spirit.

We are not sanctified by the act of baptism, laying on of hands, or with some class that we attend. Only the Holy Spirit can help us achieve sanctification. Notice I did not say the Holy Spirit would give us sanctification. The Holy Spirit will only lead us and help us to achieve sanctification.

Why do we need sanctification? Without sanctification, we are just another person in the large pool of society. Just another person bound for the inevitable pool of sinners bound for the permanent punishment of the wicked.

To have sanctification is to be part of a small group of Christians that will live with God in Heaven.

Weekly Word Definition – Prayer

The word for this week is “Prayer”

A solemn request for help or expression of thanks addressed to God. Oxford Dictionary

An address (as a petition) to God or a god in word or thought. Merriam – Webster

In the Bible “prayer” is used in a simpler and a more complex a narrower and a wider signification. In the former case, it is supplication for benefits either for one’s self (petition) or for others (intercession). In the latter, it is an act of worship which covers all soul in its approach to God. Supplication is at the heart of it, for prayer always springs out of a sense of need and a belief that God is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6). But adoration and confession and thanksgiving also find a place, so that the suppliant becomes a worshipper. It is unnecessary to distinguish all the various terms for prayer that are employed in the Old Testament and the New Testament. But the fact should be noticed that in the Hebrew and Greek aloe there are on the one hand words for prayer that denote a direct petition or short, sharp cry of the heart in its distress (Psalm 30:2; 2 Cor. 12:8), and on the other “prayers” like that of Hannah (1 Samuel 2:1-10), which is in reality a song of thanksgiving, or that of Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ, in which intercession is mingled with doxology (Eph. 3:14-21). The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

There are four things all Christians must know about prayer.

To have a good prayer life, you must have a good relationship with God. To obtain the good relationship, you must study God’s word and learn His will.

Be humble and contrite, God will be willing and generous.

Christian Word Definition: Fasting

Abstain from all or some kinds of food or drink, especially as a religious observance. Oxford Dictionary

Fasting is a willing abstinence or reduction from some or all food, drink, or both, for a period of time. An absolute fast (dry fasting) is normally defined as abstinence from all food and liquid for a defined period, usually a period of 24 hours, or several days. Water fasting allows drinking water but nothing else. Other fasts may be partially restrictive, limiting only particular foods or substances. A fast may also be intermittent in nature. Fasting practices may preclude intercourse and other activities as well as food. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

There are many preachers today who wrongly teach fasting from the Old Testament. Fasting is a personnel decision and must be kept between the person and God.

Although not commanded of us by God, if done correctly and sincerely, I can’t see why God would not honor the humility of the fast.

Group fasts would be the same as the Pharisees hypocritical pretenses. Fasting is an individual decision and is between the person and God. What good would it do to announce your fast to the church? A Fast is about humility and a closeness to God. An announcement would be a statement of pride and could give the wrong message to both the church and to God.

Christian Word Definition: Humility

A prominent Christian grace (Rom 12:3; Rom 15:17, 18; 1Co 3:5-7; 2Co 3:5; Php 4:11-13). It is a state of mind well-pleasing to God (1Pe 3:4); it preserves the soul in tranquility (Ps 69:32, 33), and makes us patient under trials (Job 1:22).

Christ has set us an example of humility (Php 2:6-8). We should be led thereto by a remembrance of our sins (Lam 3:39), and by the thought that it is the way to honor (Prov 16:18), and that the greatest promises are made to the humble (Ps 147:6; Isa 57:15; Isa 66:2; 1Pe 5:5). It is a “great paradox in Christianity that it makes humility the avenue to glory.”

Illustrated Bible Dictionary: And Treasury of Biblical History

Humility is the quality of being humble. Dictionary definitions accentuate humility as a low self-regard and sense of unworthiness. In a religious context, humility can mean a recognition of self in relation to a deity or deities, and subsequent submission to said deity as a member of that religion. Outside of a religious context, humility is defined as being “unselfish”, a liberation from the consciousness of self, a form of temperance that is neither having pride nor indulging in self-deprecation. Wikipedia

Definition of humility: freedom from pride or arrogance: the quality or state of being humble accepted the honor with humility, the ordeal taught her humility: the quality or state of not thinking you are better than other people: the quality or state of being humble: the quality of being humble She accepted the award with humility.

www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/humility

How to Practice Humility

Mother Theresa once said, “Humility is the mother of all virtues, purity, charity, and obedience. It is in being humble that our love becomes real, devoted and ardent.” These words ring true, but you don’t have to be Mother Theresa, or even religious at all, to make an effort to practice humility in your everyday life. Being humble means accepting your limitations and making an effort to make the world a better place without wanting to take all the credit.

Developing a More Humble Mindset

Don’t think you’re too good for everything you do. People who have big egos tend to think that they deserve to be working at a better place, to be dating someone better, or even to be hanging out with people who are interesting and cooler. But your life is your life, and if you want better things, then you have to work to reach for them, instead of assuming the attitude that you’re not getting treated fairly. To practice humility, work to accept the life you have while striving for more without complaining.

 If you adopt the attitude that you’re too cool for school, people will become allergic to you. Instead, work to be grateful for what you have and work to earn more if that’s what you want.

Christian Word Definition: Religion

The definition of Religion is as follows:

 the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods. Oxford Dictionaries

a cultural system of behaviors and practices, world views, sacred texts, holy places, ethics, and societal organization that relate humanity to what an anthropologist has called “an order of existence”.  Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

They knew me from the first, if they were willing to testify, that according to the strictest sect of our religion I lived a Pharisee.

Acts 26:5 (NKJV)

Meanwhile Saul, still breathing threats and murder against the disciples of the Lord, went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues at Damascus, so that if he found any who belonged to the Way, men or women, he might bring them bound to Jerusalem.

Acts 9:1-2 (NRSV)

Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.

John 14:6 (NIV2011)

This I say, therefore, and testify in the Lord, that you should no longer walk as the rest of the Gentiles walk, in the futility of their mind, having their understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God, because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart; who, being past feeling, have given themselves over to lewdness, to work all uncleanness with greediness. But you have not so learned Christ, if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught by Him, as the truth is in Jesus: that you put off, concerning your former conduct, the old man which grows corrupt according to the deceitful lusts, and be renewed in the spirit of your mind, and that you put on the new man which was created according to God, in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 4:17-24 (NKJV)

As you can readily see, Christianity (the Way) is not a religion. Christianity is a way of life that is to be lived day by day. Through the study of God’s word (the Bible) and prayer through the Holy Spirit, each one of us will reach the righteousness and holiness that will bring us back to the original state; in the image of God. Genesis 1:27

Christian Word Definition: Perfect

In the Old Testament:

“Perfect” in the Old Testament is the translation of shālēm, “finished,” “whole,” “complete,” used (except in Deut. 25:15, “perfect weight”) of persons, e.g. a “perfect heart,” i.e. wholly or completely devoted to Yahweh (1 Kings 8:61, etc.; 1 Chron. 12:38; Isaiah 38:3, etc.); tāmīm, “complete,” “perfect,” “sound or unblemished,” is also used of persons and of God, His way, and law (“Noah was a just man and perfect,” the Revised Version margin “blameless” (Genesis 6:9); “As for God, his way is perfect” (Psalm 18:30); “The law of Yahweh is perfect” (Psalm 19:7), etc.); tām, with the same, meaning, occurs only in Job, except twice in Psalms (Job 1:1, 8; Job 2:3, etc.; Psalm 37:37; Psalm 64:4); kālīl, “complete,” and various other words are translated “perfect.”

Perfection is the translation of various words so translated once only: kālīl (Lament. 2:15); mikhlāl, “completeness” (Psalm 50:2); minleh, “possession” (Job 15:29, the King James Version “neither shall the prolong the perfection thereof upon the earth,” the American Standard Revised Version “neither shall their possessions be extended on the earth,” margin “their produce bend to the earth”; the English Revised Version reverses this text and margin); tikhlāh, “completeness,” or “perfection (Psalm 119:96); takhlīth (twice), “end,” “completeness” (Job 11:7, “Canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection?” Job 28:3, “searcheth out all the Revised Version (British and American) the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) “to the furthest bound”; compare Job 26:10, “unto the confines of light and darkness”); tōm, “perfect,” “completeness” (Isaiah 47:9, the King James Version “They shall come upon thee in their perfection,” the Revised Version (British and American) “in their full measure”). The Revised Version margin gives the meaning of “the Urim and the Thummim” (Exodus 28:30, etc.) as “the Lights and the Perfections.”

In the New Testament:

In the New Testament “perfect” is usually the tr of teleios, primarily, “having reached the end,” “term,” “limit,” hence, “complete,” “full,” “perfect” (Matthew 5:48, “Ye therefore shall be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect”; Matthew 19:21, “if thou wouldst be perfect; Ephes. 4:13, the King James Version “till we all come …. unto a perfect man,” the Revised Version (British and American) “full-grown”; Phil. 3:15, “as many as are perfect,” the American Revised Version margin “full-grown”; 1 Cor. 2:6; Col. 1:28, “perfect in Christ”; 4:12; James 3:2 margin, etc.).

Other words are teleióō. “to perfect,” “to end,” “complete” (Luke 13:32, “The third day I am perfected,” the Revised Version margin “end my course”; John 17:23, “perfected into one”; 2 Cor. 12:9; Phil. 3:12, the Revised Version (British and American) “made perfect”; Hebrews 2:10, etc.); also epiteléō, “to bring through to an end” (2 Cor. 7:1, “perfecting holiness in the fear of God”; Galatians 3:3, “Are ye now made perfect by the flesh?” the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) “perfected in the flesh,” margin “Do ye now make an end in the flesh?”); katartízō “to make quite ready,” “to make complete,” is translated “perfect,” “to perfect” (Matthew 21:16, “perfected praise”; Luke 6:40, “Every one when he is perfected shall be as his teacher”; 1 Cor. 1:10; 2 Cor. 13:11, “be perfected”; 1 Thes. 3:10; 1 Peter 5:10, the Revised Version margin “restore”); akribṓs, “accurately,” “diligently,” is translated “perfect” (Luke 1:3, “having had perfect understanding,” the Revised Version (British and American) “having traced …. accurately”; Acts 18:26 the King James Version, the Revised Version (British and American) “more accurately”). We have also ártios, “fitted,” “perfected” (2 Tim. 3:7, the Revised Version (British and American) “complete”); plēróō, “to fill,” “to make full” (Rev. 3:2, the American Standard Revised Version “perfected,” the English Revised Version “fulfilled”); katartismós, “complete adjustment,” “perfecting” (Ephes. 4:12, “for the perfecting of the saints”).

Perfection is the translation of katártisis “thorough adjustment,” “fitness” (2 Cor. 13:9, the Revised Version (British and American) “perfecting”); of teleíōsis (Hebrews 7:11); of teleiótēs (Hebrews 6:1, the Revised Version margin “full growth”); it is translated “perfectness” (Col. 3:14); “perfection” in Luke 8:14 is the translation of telesphoréō, “to bear on to completion or perfection.” In Apocrypha “perfect,” “perfection,” etc., are for the most part the translation of words from télos, “the end,” e.g. Wisdom 4:13; Sirach 34:8; Sirach 44:17; Sirach 45:8, suntéleia “full end”; Sirach 24:28; Sirach 50:11.

The Revised Version (British and American) has “perfect” for “upright” (2 Samuel 22:24, 26 twice); for “sound” (Psalm 119:80); for “perform” (Phil. 1:16); for “undefiled” (Psalm 119:1, margin “upright in way”); for “perfect peace, and at such a time” (Ezra 7:12), “perfect and so forth”; for “He makes my way perfect” (2 Samuel 22:33), “He guided the perfect in his way,” margin “or, `sets free.’ According to another reading, `guided my way in perfectness'”; “shall himself perfect,” margin “restore,” for, “make you perfect” (1 Peter 5:10); “perfecter” for “finisher” (Hebrews 12:2); “perfectly” is omitted in the Revised Version (British and American) (Matthew 14:36); “set your hope perfectly on” for the King James Version “hope to the end for” (1 Peter 1:13).The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia

Christian Word Definition: Prayer

The Definition for this week: Prayer

A solemn request for help or expression of thanks addressed to God. Oxford Dictionary

An address (as a petition) to God or a god in word or thought. Merriam – Webster

In the Bible “prayer” is used in a simpler and a more complex a narrower and a wider signification. In the former case, it is supplication for benefits either for one’s self (petition) or for others (intercession). In the latter, it is an act of worship which covers all soul in its approach to God. Supplication is at the heart of it, for prayer always springs out of a sense of need and a belief that God is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him (Hebrews 11:6). But adoration and confession and thanksgiving also find a place, so that the suppliant becomes a worshipper. It is unnecessary to distinguish all the various terms for prayer that are employed in the Old Testament and the New Testament. But the fact should be noticed that in the Hebrew and Greek alone there are on the one hand words for prayer that denote a direct petition or short, sharp cry of the heart in its distress (Psalm 30:2; 2 Cor. 12:8), and on the other “prayers” like that of Hannah (1 Samuel 2:1-10), which is in reality a song of thanksgiving, or that of Paul, the prisoner of Jesus Christ, in which intercession is mingled with doxology (Eph. 3:14-21).

The International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

There are four things all Christians must know about prayer.

To have a good prayer life, you must have a good relationship with God. To obtain the good relationship, you must study God’s word and learn His will.

Be humble and contrite, God will be willing and generous.