Open Blogging

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65 Responses

  1. jtk says:

    Other than Vine’s Expository Dictionary, anyone have a good resource for looking at what the original words in Greek mean?

    Any good resources for studying the original text, such as e-sword Nasb with Strong’s numbers, KJV/NKJV with Strong’s Numbers?

    I use e-sword, Olive Tree Bible Software on my Iphone (my favorite)……

    And here’s my other fave for basic, good definitions:

  2. open blogging? here’s my ‘tippy toe try’…

    Mother’s Day tomorrow is going to be tough for me and my family (immediate and extended) due to the loss of my Mom last month.
    Since my Dad’s passing ON Father’s Day 2010, that holiday, coming up in June, has been shrouded as well.
    Please pray my family and for ‘This Son’ who dearly and deeply misses his mother on Mother’s Day.

    (tried to express this yesterday in my comment regarding the family of Dallas Willard, but I guess everyone was too busy arguing about doctrine and church history. no biggie, it’s your blog not mine)

  3. jtk
    Olive Tree had a good Greek Lexicon by Mounce and Koivisto. But The Shorter Lexicon of the Greek NT by Gingrich and Danker is what my instructor recommended I get (He taught at Dallas Theo Seminary).

  4. Nonnie says:

    Mike and Brandy, I know it is hard. I lost both my parents within 7 months of each other, less than 2 years ago. The holidays bring so many emotions to the surface. May God bless you.

  5. mike and brandy
    this is my second mother’s day without my mom. I miss her too. My father died about 30 years ago. I still feel the void. I’ve told my kids that the most important thing is that no matter what, we all meet together again on the other side. My younger daughter asked “how will we find each other”. I told here there is a one of a kind tree there that bears 12 different types of fruit. Just ask for directions to that tree. I’ll meet you there with your mom, grandmother, and I will introduce you to your grandfather.

    We will all meet on the other side. That reality helps me deal with some of the “sting” of death

  6. Michael says:

    mike and brandy,

    For something like that you’re better off using the prayer thread on most days.
    We try to keep it uncluttered from the other stuff and we have people who do read it regularly and pray for the needs.

  7. Steve Wright says:

    jtk, You want to bite the financial bullet and get the Bauer,Danker,Arndt, and Gingrich Lexicon. I have no idea if an online version exists – I use the book.

    It’s the gold standard today.

  8. As a pastor preaching is a love/hate thing. I love it when the many hours of studying, praying, and research comes together and a clear path of thought emerges, and relevant applications become clear. But if I am honest, I hate the many hours of studying, praying, and research!! ๐Ÿ™‚ For me, I have about a 6 hour window on Sunday where after three services, I enjoy (or sometimes lament) the Sunday morning service. Then about 9 Sunday night I begin to get anxious about Monday morning, when it all starts up again.

    But at the same time, I love the challenge. Am I nuts or do can any of you pastors relate?

  9. “do can” Yes…I just made that word up

  10. one to many “Steves” this morning!! Just kidding with Steve W

  11. on another Open Blogging note…

    Today in 1981, Bob Marley died of ‘Cancer’ at age 36.
    Warning: Devil’s Advocate Hat going on ๐Ÿ™‚

    If Marijuana is ‘medicinal’ and can be used to treat Cancer…, and Bob surely smoked up a bunch of reefer in his day, why didn’t it work for him?

    just sayin’…

  12. jtk says:

    Thanks, Steve and Steve!

    I will look into both of those!

  13. mic – medicinal marijuana is used to treat side effects of cancer & cancer treatments – especially nausea and bone pain. It is not touted as a cure or prevention for cancer.
    Once upon a time hospice worker.

  14. erunner says:

    Music is up for the week. Feel free to drop by.

  15. erunner says:

    Even included a Christmas song as I think it’s a shame we limit them to a few months a year.

  16. Michael says:


    I’m way opposite…I love the times of study and research and would rather do that than anything.

  17. Michael says:

    Marijuana can be medicinal…and i would advocate strongly for legalization for many reasons.
    Don’t care for the stuff myself, but I think I’m in the minority.

  18. Believe says:

    “Other than Vineโ€™s Expository Dictionary, anyone have a good resource for looking at what the original words in Greek mean?”

    Here’s an easy quick reference to consider.

  19. Believe says:

    And here’s the link ๐Ÿ™‚

  20. Michael says:


    I use Accordance and Logos mobile apps…Accordance is my preference in mobile.

  21. Steve Wright says:

    When I was very young in the Lord there was an idea that “the application belongs to the Holy Spirit” – I believe that to be hogwash today when it comes to the Sunday message.

    So that is where the challenge can often reside. I enjoy the study and research too, and find typically a bunch of things I will never actually share in the sermon, but will let those details shape the message behind the scene.

    At the same time, there is a balance. I want people first and foremost to understand the text. That alone is huge, and I do not see the Sunday message as a life-changing event but rather more as a meal – we need to eat, and eat regularly. The eating is life changing in the Spirit over time. One meal does not change our physical lives. A multi-year diet will – either for good or bad.

    Yet, the message is not a seminary class either. So application does have a prominent place – and some texts are harder for application today than others. That’s why I have some books of the Bible as my “:Sunday books” which I will teach then, and others are taught during the midweek which is slightly different and of course to a much smaller audience and typically one consisting of pretty mature believers in the Lord.

    A final challenge is that our congregation consists of 7th grade to the elderly. We have unbelievers, babes in Christ, and seminary students/graduates. I try to have the message include something for all.

  22. Rob Murphy says:

    @ erunner – have you heard the song “Already All I Need” by Christy Nockels? I was listening to it in my quiet time this week and you came to mind. I think there’s a couple versions on youtube. And you listen to a ton so you might’ve already caught it.

  23. Michael says:


    Putting something together for that wide of a demographic would be really hard.
    That is quite a challenge…that I’m glad I don’t have. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  24. Steve Wright says:

    I am sensitive to the fact that a lot of illustrations I have heard from other pulpits always seemed aimed at the 40s something married couple with a few minor children – while everyone else is left out.

    No offense meant, but I would never have a “Sunday series” on marriage, or child-raising.


  25. erunner says:

    Rob, I have both of her CD’s and love them. I have so much music it’s hard to listen to all of it! I have listened to her music and I’m listening to the song now and I’m going to include it next week. Thanks for the suggestion. It’s a beautiful song…

  26. erunner says:

    Rob, What I love about music is how songs can speak words/feelings that I have but am unable to form. They bring peace and calm to me and help put things into perspective. I believe these songs that are offered from the heart are a beautiful thing in the eyes of God and He can use them to speak to His children. That’s why I devote a day each week to music. Feel free to offer me suggestions any time. Have a good day!!

  27. Believe says:

    I think the bible is just as paradoxical (if not more) in the “original” language. Not sure that it makes much of a difference.

  28. Michael says:

    Over on the far right I have created a new page for questions about the faith and assorted skepticism.
    Those who wish to engage in such now have their own space to do so…and the rest of us can have the rest of the blog back.

  29. ( |o )====::: says:

    Questions about faith and Christianity always originate from the far left.


  30. Believe says:

    What does “open” mean? What’s the original greek on that word? LOL

  31. Michael says:


    That was actually funny…my mistake! ๐Ÿ™‚

  32. Believe says:

    Open* Blogging ๐Ÿ˜‰

  33. Believe says:

    From as objective a position as I can muster, I see the “fruit of the Spirit” as defined in the bible…nearly everywhere in nearly every Group in some capacity.

    I also see what is attributed to the devil and the flesh in every Group as well.

    I find this interesting.

    I think Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness and Self-Control are Universally “good” concepts and principles and probably always have been.

  34. Believe says:

    I wonder why the “fruit of the Spirit” isn’t articulated and measured by a different metric if doctrine and theology is so important?

  35. Michael @ your #19,

    you might be suprised at how in the ‘majority’ your opinion on legalization really is and even how many christians agree with you. i for one am a lot more ‘libertarian’ leaning than i used to be as a CC’ite.

    “mind over matter… if you don’t mind, it don’t matter.” Wisdom from my Dad.

    when did give the Federal Government the power to outlaw plants, ‘medicinal’ or otherwise? I thought that was God’s paygrade?

  36. sorry, that was michael’s #18

  37. jtk says:

    “Questions about faith and Christianity always originate from the far left.”

    –naaaahhhh, there’s plenty the righties get cut wide open about in the Bible.

    Put well played and funny

  38. jtk says:

    Good call on the skeptics page, Michael.

  39. bauer arndt danker gingrich sounds great, but $130? Not now anyway.

  40. PP Vet says:

    I speak life and health and peace, prosperity and strength, over the entire PP community.

  41. Believe says:

    โ€œBut at the same time, I love the challenge. Am I nuts or do can any of you pastors relate?โ€

    I think most pastors who express this sentiment would no sooner arrive to a Sunday morning service unprepared than would a performer on opening night. There is an expectation of preparedness and an audience and the result of a poor performance would cost the pastor attendance, popularity and money. Now, some are better winging it than others, but most have a sort of built-in drive to perform at their best in public as the stuff is usually recorded and measured against other pastorsโ€ฆand the followers need their leader to give a good performance consistently.

  42. Fundy Mental says:

    I had a front-row seat of just how important the performance of the duties of the pastor was growing up in CC. It is a huge thing to the pastor (and the same for his friends).

    I think this is a prevalent dynamic in most of Evangelicalism. Probably not as much in the Mainlines as the messages tend to be rote and boring and methodical and not nearly the skilled persuasive delivery of the Evangelicals.

    I think that some of the best practitioners of verbal persuasion, besides politicians, are preachers.

  43. Believe says:

    I’d like to change my moniker to Fundy Mental, but it’s modding all my comments under that name

  44. Michael says:

    I really don’t see it that way.
    First, I have a responsibility to feed the flock…and I believe I’ll be judged by God for how well I do that.
    Second…I teach a chapter every week. Every week I learn something new that I really can’t wait to share with the church. It’s exciting for me to share the things of God with the family of God.

  45. Michael says:

    Now, there are no doubt many who do craft their sermons as performances…but I don’t think any of them blog here.

  46. Believe says:

    Dreads services are pretty entertaining ๐Ÿ™‚

    Steve Wrights are pretty prepared.

    It is what it is, I think it’s just how church has evolved and is part of the church culture and is expected. It’s by nature an exercise in public speaking and persuasion and there are certain built-in expectations and unwritten rules that are closely followed.

  47. Believe says:

    My pastor gives a great performance, he’s funny, keeps it entertaining, and is very persuasive. I like it.

  48. Believe says:

    I’ve seen it many times, empirically. There is a direct correlation to a large church audience and a dynamic, entertaining and good public speaking preacher who gives a consistently good performance speaking and teaching. It’s just a fact of life. I think pastors, like other public speaking professions, have to prepare or they will embarrass themselves. Folks have an expectation that they’ll receive a prepared message that has some sort of support from the bible behind it, delivered in a manner that is engaging and has some sort of life application.

  49. Believe says:

    I think to over-spiritualize it and to lament the necessity of preparation is like a Football Player lamenting having to lift weights and run and practice to be a good football player.

  50. ( |o )====::: says:

    Love is a garden furniture swing assembled on a hot day by a man who is grateful for the woman who is the mother of his daughters, while those daughters plot their surprises for the woman they call “momma”…

  51. erunner says:

    G, Sometimes I think you fell out of a Billy Jack movie!! :mrgreen:

  52. @ erunner’s 16

    I love the Choir of King’s College. I bought this last year and I love it!

  53. erunner says:

    Derek, It sounds beautiful. I really enjoy choir music.

  54. covered says:

    jtk, I use the New International Dictionary of New Testament Theology by: Colin Brown and it’s awesome. It is a 3 vol set and my wife found them used and in great condition with dust covers etc, for around $135. It is worth every dime and I use them often.

  55. Steve Wright says:

    jtk, a final point about the BDAG. You really need to be comfortable with Greek to use it. Not fluent but there are no strong’s numbers or anything to help. You don’t want to have to spend several minutes just looking up a word in its alphabetical order. Also, the lexical form of the word is only given – so just trying to find a word that you see in an interlinear, without knowing how to parse it, isn’t going to happen.

    A good tool for parsing is Perschbacher’s Lexicon. Has every single word in the New Testament.

    (There may be an online alternative but this is the same book I had to buy in seminary so I keep using it.)

  56. brian says:

    Pastor Wright if I may respectfully ask a question considering Greek. Why would the creator of the entire universe speak to His children in a rather obscure language in writing over centuries? I dont get that, I understand the apologetic and I am very sympathetic to it, but if I was a father, oh wait I was in the experiential sense I would have stood on my head upside down naked in a slow storm to contact my children. My mother said basically will you take care of him and I had a total of 30 minutes to agree. I agreed and stuck with that commitment for over twenty years. I agree that makes me an apostate, trust me it does when one looks at what was said to me and my nephew during my evangelical years. We were both the spawn of Satan, and that is the nice version.

    Your a pastor and as a pastor, and might I add a fine pastor from what I see, deal with absolutes. I think absolutes are a delusion at best, we deal in probabilities and that is a fact. We build bridges, produce medication, provide care, set policy all based on probabilities. If we did it on absolutes we would be back in the dark ages and that to is a fact.

    I have grown use to me being told I hate God, well actually I have not but that is a moral failing on my part. But you asked a question I think it was, and I could be wrong “What is truth” and you said to believe who I know can be a pain in the backside take it up with Him. I have tried, to no avail, and I mean no avail. I will agree I am one of the non elect, actually most of my Christian life I have considered that my position so being the spiritual spawn of Satan I am I have refrained from entering to local bible studies, churches and so on as to avoid damaging another persons faith. I am sure that also supports the fact that I hate God and He hates me with an eternal passion but I cant seem to get to that point. I dont hate God, I hate the pain I have caused in the name of God, I hate, no loath my pride with passion but I dont hate God. I missed that train. Goes to show what a failure I am I cant even get that straight.

    You see I admire you and in some ways envy you, I do not have that surety, I think we live in a universe of probabilities, not absolutes. I cant state I dont want to live in a world of absolutes. I know you and “believe” have had your bouts I can attest as one hurt in the faith not near as much as believe it scares you deeply. My response was to be at my fathers death bed and to carry on his wishes, which I did even though it cost me, a price I was willing to pay. In Believes Paradigm that is not an option. My father being a vessel of wrath like his son (me) could connect, that is not possible in the apologetic believe is in. They think God ordained all this mess, of course that is crazy on its face but that is another post.

    I am writing this Pastor Wright because what you say does sink into even the most darkest of souls such as myself. So thanks you and feed your people. Believer know I understand in ways I cant state, I wish I could take the pain from you. But God loves you and your family and there will be healing on this side of the grave or the other. I find peace in that. I hope you can. Oh and if believers father is reading this, be like my father, make peace with your son, it is worth it.

  57. brian says:

    sorry for the spelling errors this in on x45 and I still cant see it right. excuse the spelling grammar errors thanks I hope the essence got through

  58. brian,
    You are one of my favorite humans

  59. Happy Mother’s Day to all Mothers!

  60. mrtundraman says:

    “Why would the creator of the entire universe speak to His children in a rather obscure language in writing over centuries?”

    Why did God become man in Jesus Christ? That is the Christian faith in a nutshell.

    Greek was the language of the world in that day. More than English is today. What language should the record of the life of Jesus be written in?

  61. Xenia says:

    Happy Mothers Day!

    I’m off to Church and then a happy day with one of my daughters.

    ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚ ๐Ÿ™‚

  62. Solomon Rodriguez says:

    Happy mothers day! Also heres to the Ducks beating thw Deadwings tonight. Since my Blues choked against the Kings ill support the mighty ducks for the rest of the playoffs

  63. Steve Wright says:

    God had to pick a language when the New Testament was written so He chose the most common, understood language in the world. He sought to communicate to the regular person, not the Homeric scholar.

    From the earliest days of Christianity the early believers sought to translate the Bible from that Koine Greek to their native languages, and that effort still continues to this day. For us English-readers we have excellent translations, some word-literal, some dynamic equivalent.

    I was answering a question from someone seeking to dig deeper into the study of the Scriptures in the original – just as any would-be-teacher with responsibility to an audience seeks to learn an influential book in the language it was written to the best of his/her ability. Or for that matter the layman seeking to discover even greater riches buried in the text, nuances, structure and so forth. Many English words have multiple Greek words – that alone makes it interesting to see which word is behind the English text.

    Nowhere have I said, nor implied, that unless one reads the Bible in the original languages, one can’t understand God’s word. Can’t understand the doctrines of the Christian faith. I’m thrilled that people are willing to just read their English Bibles, whatever the translation, and believe what is written on those pages, and seek to put those words into practice in life.


  64. Dave says:

    Steve, I would say Sundays message is definitely a meal, and the behind the scenes stuff happens too, just like you said. Ive found that after the meal, either the next day or the next etc.. The spirit does bring something about, but its not a thought, its an action! A sort of consequence of being fed. Its totally spirit led, and spirit applicable, but its not quite what happens on Sunday morning.

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