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Mike,

You'd asked for tools that have been helpful in terms of sexual sins. I have really benefitted from NetAccountability software.

It's not a filter. Instead, it's a way for your accountability partner to see the web sites you visit through a secure web log. It'll flag sites suspected to be problematic for your accountability partner to review.

http://netaccountability.com

Accountability worked for Moses and Aaron, and it's really been helpful for me as well.

I enjoy very much the daily readings and then the sharing of thoughts through the daily blog. In an arena as large as this, visited by obviously a very diverse group from many theological backgrounds who have a common interest in reading The One Year Bible together, it would seem that doctrinal themes which could be divisive should be avoided. I am responding to the two references in today's blog that sexual sin will not remove one from salvation. There are many who would disagree. Although it was probably unintentional, I just do not feel that this is the place for the pushing of one's personal docrinal agenda.

Here is a good site that deals with pornography and sexual sin: www.x3church.com

Just to throw some more wood on the fire, the theological concept of losing one's salvation is a big debate among Christians and can definatly cause dissagreements. I would hope that people reading this would realize that it is indeed a blog, which can and will include personal convictions and interpretations. I think that it was a good thing to bring the subject up in the previous post and I hope that if someone does become confused over the matter, they would seek after God for more insight and become closer to him in the process.

Sammy & Kevin - thanks! Great posts & points. I do apologize for pushing a doctrinal position... I did edit the points above - and added in parentheses just a quick personal note.

I do realize that we have so many different denominations coming to this blog - so I will try to be cognizant in the future of keeping posts to the text. When I go off on my tangents - which I seem to be doing often... :), I tend to throw in some personal view points. And I'll try to note those when possible - or as Kevin said, being a blog, I probably can't help but bring in some personal viewpoints.

Again though, I do want this blog to be open & encouraging to all denominations, so will try to not "push" debatable doctrinal points... :)

Thanks everyone. I am glad you are on the One Year Bible journey with us!

Mike

as a woman, i was very interested in a man's perspective and struggle with sexual sin. i read 'every man's battle' - and would encourage women to pick it up to gain a perspective outside of their own experiences.
i do not mean to say that women do not struggle with sexual sin. i simply wanted to read it so i could be a support and help to the men in my life who struggle in this area.

as far as sammy's comment about 'pushing one's personal docrinal agenda' - again, please consider the perspective that the author of this blog is coming from.
i don't want to come off as not respecting your doctrinal stand - however, this is a personal blog created by mike. it is natural and expected that his personal doctrine would come out, and it should. after all - if we avoid every and all theological topic that is remotely debatable it would leave us with little room for exploration and discovering the Truth in God's Word.
i say - let mike be mike on mike's web site.
peace!
r

Rachelle - thanks for the post. And for encouraging me to be me! :) I do think though that Sammy has a good point too. I'll attempt to walk a fine line in balance. More than anything I want this blog to encourage folks to be in God's Word each day. And as Kevin suggested, we can then pray to God and speak to those around us about more of the doctrinal issues.

One thing you said Rachelle that I do want to comment on. I think it's okay to read books about the opposite sex's struggles with sexual sin for some perspective. However, I would caution against actually discussing sexual sin/struggles with someone from the opposite sex if it is just 2 of you alone. I read somewhere once that if you do this - two people, not married, opposite sex - talking about 1 or both of the person's sexual sin struggles, it can allow temptation to come in quickly - and then the 2 of you can end up in sexual sin! Now, not to say this is always the case... but I see the logic behind this caution. I think it's better for men to discuss with men only their struggles in this area - and women to discuss with women only their struggles in this area. And if you need an accountability partner in this area, obviously stick with someone of your same sex...

Just my two cents on this. :)

Thanks everyone for your grace!

Mike

hey mike - for clarification - your take on my comment about understanding mens struggle is not at all where i was coming from - and i'm really glad you pointed that out because it hadn't really occured to me and you are right! it is very important that accountability happens man to man and woman to woman! thanks for pointing that out!
my motivation was purely with the hopes that i might marry someday - and knowing the percentages of men who struggle with in some form of sexual sin, i figured whomever God brings into my life will struggle with it and i want to be prepared as a help to my mate!
i guess a secondary motivation was that i have many secular friends who speak freely about some of the by-products and tools of sexual sin without recognizing the damage it can do. i want to be somewhat educated on the subject as i find myself in discussion with frustrated wives of men who see no problem with endulging!
ok - i'll stop for today!
peace!

Rachelle - your 2nd post - well said & well thought out! Sorry I went off on one of my tangents based on your first post. :) -Mike

I wondering why no one has mentioned the killing (2:12) of the Egyptian by Moses? And why was God silent? Any thoughts?

B

Hi Bill - jump down to the Jan. 26 readings Comments for some thoughts folks posted up there. The bible.org commentary on chapter 2 has some commentary on that as well - at this link http://bible.org/page.asp?page_id=135 - or linked to in the Jan 26 readings posting in the 1st paragraph. -Mike

Just a quick note on the "doctrinal agenda" comments. I think we need to be very careful questioning someones personal viewpoint,we do not know where the Holy Spirit has led them. Besides, there are so many different ways of interpreting the Bible-that is why we have so many denominations! I think this is one of the reasons we have such division within the church, we seem to have a real problem accepting different viewpoints when the whole idea is to share ideas and opinions. I don't think most of us are theologians and even theologians can disagree on the interpretations. Plus, not all of our current Bibles are accurately interpreted. Hebrew and Aramaic had so many more words to convey their thoughts, and I was taught that Aramaic is similar to Chinese in that the meaning of a word can change by the pronunciation-so, the bottom line is we must pray for the Word to be opened to us as God would see fit. Now before anyone gets their panties in a bunch :), I am not talking about false doctrine, I am talking about using discernment to see other points of view-and Mike-you're doing a wonderful job. Thank you for being obedient! I think there is much to learn from other points of view, even if I happen to disagree with them. When I come across something that doesn't sit right with me, I pray for the Lord to shine some light on it, either change my mind (which He does quite regularly) or else I get a peace about where He has me. Thanks to everyone for their wonderful input! We all have our jobs to do in the body and I think this is a great illustration of that :)

Also, I may be outta line here, but what the heck- I am currently praying for a church home and would appreciate any prayer in that regard! Thanks so much!

In Christ
Betty

Genesis 4:5-21

What God has called you to do He has equipped you to do; what God has equipped you to do God has called you to do. The truth of that statement can be seen in these two chapters of Genesis. For forty years Moses had been a shepherd hiding out as a fugitive from Egyptian justice for the death of a man. Yet despite his sin of murder God’s plan for Moses did not change, and God wasn’t surprised by what Moses did. There is a passage in the book of Isaiah, first chapter, where God says, 18 "Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool. 19 If you are willing and obedient, you will eat the best from the land;” I think--no, I know this is about Moses and this is about us.

Moses reasoned with God even though God had purposed Moses’ calling long before he was formed in his mother’s womb, long before the foundation of the earth. Every reason, excuse, or problem Moses puts forth before God, God has an answer. And like the bread and fish in Jesus’ hands feeding the multitudes, Moses’ staff that he used in his roll as shepherd became greater than its original use once placed under the control of God. What is in my hand that I think is too small for God to use? What is in your hands? There are things inside of us, precious things, valuable things that God has gifted us with. Yet outside of His control those things are valueless and empty, but in his hands they explode with a worth and a value that is able to deliver a nation.

Whatever we are called to do the people we are to work with won’t understand. That is the pattern I see unfolding in chapter five and that is what happened with Jesus. Joseph’s brothers did not recognize their deliverer, Jesus was not and is not recognized by His own, and Moses was not recognized by those he was sent to lead out of bondage. And their deliverance from their circumstances wouldn’t happen the way they perceived it should happen. Also Moses’ entrance on the scene in Egypt caused the plight of Israel to get far worse before it would get better. I wonder if Moses had just shown up in the court of Pharaoh and spoke to him using diplomatic language and finesse would we be reading this Bible today. We would more than likely attribute the release of the Israelites a condition of Moses’ genius. But Moses was reluctant, he said he was unskilled, and the demands he gave Pharaoh just caused the screws to be tightened. If this was going to be a walk in the park, there would be no need for God.

I wonder if we may find ourselves in impossible situations, not because God is angry with us, not because we have done some sin, but we may be in tight places so that when our deliverance comes we know that it wasn’t by a man or men, but God!

Matthew 18:1-20

All of us want to leave a legacy of some kind. We want to be remembered. But Jesus says our greatness doesn’t come by being king of the hill, but being humble with a child like humility. Children are usually wide eyed with adults, with their parents. Looking up to them, asking question, thinking that mommy and daddy know everything and are the smartest people in the world, until they hit adolescents (smile). It is with that since of wonder and amazement that we are to come before God. It is with that since of trust that we are to come.


I have not followed the method of correcting a fellow believer that we read about in verses 15-20. This method is so very messy and time consuming. It is so much easier, from my point of view to just ignore the offender or just avoid him/her, especially if you are in a big church. But God has not asked me about my point of view, He wants me to see through His eyes and His heart. So it is probably not just by happenstance that the Parable of the Lost Sheep precedes this teaching on correcting a believer. This teaching is the application of the Parable and this is the first time I’ve seen that connection. The more I read the Bible, the more I realize how much I don’t know. Correcting a believer is bringing someone lost back to the safety of the flock.

Psalm 22:19-31

This is the last half of the Messianic Psalm that is shows not only Jesus’ crucifixion but also what that death, burial and reselection will bring upon the earth, deliverance from sin. Isaiah 61:1 The Spirit of the Sovereign LORD is on me, because the LORD has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,


Proverbs 5:15-21

God created us to enjoy sex, but sex within the bonds of marriage. And yes, sex is pleasurable and God made it that way. Our problems come because we think that the restrictions God placed on this act that He created for us to enjoy, is God taking away our fun. But when we consider the games we play, the manipulations the places we go to find sex, to get sex, is the price worth it? Even what is free has a cost and is not cheap. Judah, back in Genesis 38, exchanged his identity (his staff, his signet ring with his seal, and cord) for sex. Is what we do to get illicit sex, really worth the price we pay? That is why the writer advises us to, 15 Drink water from your own well--share your love only with your wife.

There is a “teaching” on Video Tape, and has a companion book, which is very intense and also deals with sexual sin in the ministry, as well as a workbook called Sex Traps by Dr. Wanda Davis-Turner. If you can deal with female Apostolic Minster who is black and kind of wild, but very funny you can laugh your way into conviction and repentance. It would be better to put the minister’s name into the search engine because if you put the title you will get a lot of unwanted stuff. And by the way the name of the production company that produced the video is, Holy Smoke. Productions.

Several years ago I walked into my church’s bookstore and the videotapes were stacked at least four feet high off of the floor all around the store. I said to myself, “I know what the majority of the counseling sessions have been about.” And anything I’m tempted to go hmmm! at a really good looking male, I recall a line in the tape. “God doesn’t want you sleeping with everybody because everyone you sleep with you become tied to.” Yikes! Do I want to have any kind of connection to that individual?

Grace and peace
Ramona

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