There was a time when the Israelites had a chance to enter the Promised Land. God encouraged them to send out some spies to take a sneak peek at what would be in store for them. As noted in Numbers 13:17-20 and 27-30, they failed to see the opportunities but instead focused on the obstacles. Rather than having an unconditional faith that trusted in God’s way of working things out on their behalves, they showed him lukewarm loyalty that shrank back from obedience when a decision had to be made.
The holiday season is right around the corner. Thanksgiving meals and Christmas gatherings are looming large. Would you believe that sometimes these festivities can be a bit challenging for Christians? This is particularly true when they visit family or friends who are not disciples. It is even more difficult when the family members engage in behaviors that are not in harmony with the faith. What is the disciple to do?
Giving money, tithing, contributing to the needs of the church, taking up a collection … call it what you will, it is a sore subject for some in the church as well as many outside of it. Their mixed feelings are not totally unfounded. There are plenty of well-publicized incidents where so-called church leaders bilked their flocks out of hard-earned moneys to fund their own lavish lifestyles. While this type of behavior is clearly not in keeping with scriptures, there are still some persistent myths that beg for a busting.