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Monday, April 30, 2007

epichorēgeō Your Faith

2Peter 1:3-7 gives us another Biblical example of the partnership involved in the Christian walk. [Also see Phil.2:12-13] After being informed of what God has supplied, the believer is then exhorted to "add to/furnish" his faith. The verb translated "add to/furnish" is epichoregeo. This fine old Greek word introduces the metaphor of the Choregos of Classical Athens.

The ancient world was totally alien from our modern view of culture, religion and politics. That sounds almost simplistic, but it's amazing how we tend to forget this when reading our Bibles! Civic, cultural and religious life were inextricably linked. There was no separation of church and state. There was no sense of "individualism" or "self determination". Membership in a particular city-state was the key component of their lives. Greek drama was presented as a part of the religious celebrations during various festivals. Wealthy patrons would be the ones to finance these endeavors. Such acts of generosity were viewed as an important factor in being a citizen of a particular polis. The Choregos was the patron who donated the money to finance the chorus. [The purpose of the chorus was to explain things to the audience and interact with various characters. They were a vital element in a Greek play.] In recognition of such magnanimous behavior, the Choregos was often honored with a monument, bearing appropriate inscriptions. This is a picture of such a monument in Athens. It's located just below the Acropolis, on the sides of which were the two primary theaters of Classical Athens.

The word eventually came to mean "generous and costly co-operation". Peter uses it to exhort the believer to engage in a cooperative effort with God that will result in a Christian life that glorifies Him. Do we view OUR Christian walk in this manner? Are we "generous" and making a "costly cooperative effort" to display a Christian walk that glorifies God? I think understanding the meaning and history of this one verb adds an important element to our understanding of Scripture!

Friday, April 27, 2007

Cheap Attempt to Get Comments

I know I haven't been posting much lately. It's not that I'm not thinking. It's not that I'm not reading. It's not that I'm not studying my Bible. It's not even that I'm not writing...I'm just not writing HERE. But you may have noticed that in my previous offerings, I have not had a single comment in ages. That leads me to believe that either no one is READING my blog any more or it's just that no one is writing comments. If I'm really writing only for myself, that's OK. I like to write! ;) But I am curious about which is true.

Sooo..I am posting a story guaranteed to get at least ONE comment. Here are pictures of scenes from LOST as portrayed in LEGOS!! Ehhh? I'm on to something, aren't I?! A crowd pleaser for sure...

Monday, April 16, 2007

Man's Response to Tragedy

There are a few special places in the world where I love to be. Places that draw me back again and again. Places that welcome me and and make me feel as if I belong. One of those places is where Beth did her undergraduate work - Virginia Tech. I love that campus! I love the natural beauty of the area. I love the incredibly friendly, outgoing people there. I love their over-the-top school spirit - where they actually WEAR the school colors and logo every day! I love the Hokie stone architecture with all those great archways and courtyards. I love interacting with perfect strangers who smile at you and are kind and who apparently had Moms who taught them basic manners. I love going into a store or a restaurant where they seem GLAD to serve me! And I especially love Va. Tech football games where they taught me how to be fan. I just love BEING there.

Today in the news I saw what one deranged person can do to such a wonderful place. Seeing the bodies of those crazy students who were pushing Springtime by wearing their maroon "Hokie" shorts being carried out of classrooms, covered in blood, just made me fall apart. I feel as if those are MY if that gunman came into MY home. I want to hug the families and cry with the students and pray with the faculty and townspeople.

On-line I found a "Comments" section at one of the major East Coast News sites, where people could write down their thoughts. I went to it hoping to find comfort. But instead I found mean-spirited vitriol and a rabid discussion concerning gun-control. Is this how we in America respond to tragedy? By giving our own self-exalting position on an "issue"? Is the opportunity to make a political point more important than feeling grief and sympathy and loss? People died! A university and a community have suffered an extraordinary loss! And there are people who look upon that as just another opportunity to voice their opinion and political agenda? It's just not right.