Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Grandpa in Pictures

See part 1 for the story of Grandpa.

Grandpa and me

Grandpa, Jen, and me

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Being Preserved

all verse links are to the Recovery Version for comparison

In a copy of the NIV with footnotes written by Charles Ryrie:
Gal. 3:16
The promises were spoken to Abraham and to his seed. The Scripture does not say "and to seeds," meaning many people, but "and to your seed," meaning one person, who is Christ. (NIV)
The note on this verse says:
seed. Since Paul's argument here is based on the singular form of the word in the OT (Gen. 22:17-18), he must have believed in the accuracy of the very words of Scripture.
Ryrie goes on to use this and another example from Matthew to explain the inerrancy of every word in the Bible—even singular, plural, or tenses of words are important.

However, when we come to 1 Thessalonians 5:23 or Hebrews 4:12,
spirit, soul and body should not be understood as defining the parts of man, but as representing the whole man.
Such is the contradiction by those who insist that man is merely two parts—body and soul (which is supposedly the same as the spirit)—and ignore or explain away the many verses in the Bible that speak of the three parts of man. In Greek, spirit is pneuma and soul is psuche, two distinct words. So according to the fact that every word of the Bible is God-breathed and inerrant, soul and spirit should refer to two distinct parts of man. The tendency to confuse the two is even apparent in the translation of the NIV in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 referred to above—the conjunction and is removed from between "spirit" and "soul," although it is unquestionably there in the original Greek text.

More important that simply being correct on this doctrinal point, however, is the idea put forth in the verses from 1 Thessalonians 5 that we must be preserved in all three parts of our being. Verse 23 uses two marvelous words, "(sanctify you) wholly" and "(be preserved) complete," to speak about this preservation. From the footnote, and explained in more depth in Life-study of 1 Thessalonians messages 23 and 24, wholly is quantitative and complete is qualitative. Therefore, we must not only know that we have three parts—spirit, soul, and body—but we must go on to know our three parts and open to the Lord that they be sanctified wholly and preserved completely.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs

Creative consultation by Jolene

Once upon a time, there was a little girl named Goldilocks. She lived in the woods with her father, who was an inventor. One of his inventions was a time machine. But she wasn't allowed to play in it. However, Goldilocks didn't always obey, and she was very curious.

So one day, when she was playing with her dog, her dog jumped into the time machine, and she climbed in to get him. But he jumped out to go chase his ball. She was about to climb out of the time machine, but she noticed that there was a spot on one of the buttons. Not wanting to leave it dirty, she started to wipe the spot off, but as it came off, the button accidentally depressed and started the time machine. Before she could climb out, the time machine went back 150 million years to the Age of the Dinosaurs.

Goldilocks climbed out of the time machine and heard a noise coming from the trees to her left. As she poked her head through some bushes, she saw a clearing, and right in the middle was a small Allosaurus. He had his leg caught in some logs and was trying to get it out.

Goldilocks walked over to him and said, "Hello." the Baby Allosaurus replied, "Can you help me get my leg out?" Goldilocks said, "Sure," and proceeded to wiggle his leg loose from the logs in which it was trapped. Just as the leg came loose, there was a terrible crashing and two larger Allosaurus came through the trees, roaring loudly. Goldilocks began to be a bit frightened, but the Baby Allosaurus looked at the larger dinosaurs and called, "Hi Daddy, hi Mommy, this person just helped me get my leg out." Goldilocks looked up at the fearsome predators and said, "Nice to meet you, my name is Goldilocks."

The smaller of the two adult dinosaurs replied, "I am the Mommy Allosaurus and this is the Daddy Allosaurus. Thank you for helping our Baby Allosaurus free his leg."

"You're welcome," said Goldilocks.

"We were about to get dinner," said the Baby Allosaurus, "would you like to join us?"

Goldilocks said she would and she followed the three carnivores as they stalked and caught a stegosaurus. After a delicious meal of stegosaurus steaks. Goldilocks said she had to be going and made her way back to the time machine. After getting in and going back to the instant she left, she realized that she had forgotten her camera and hadn't taken any pictures of her new friends.

Sunday, December 13, 2009


8/28/1919 to 11/26/2009

While many pages could be written about what Grandpa accomplished in his lifetime of over ninety years, one memory stands out to me.

Jen and I were visiting him and Grandma Dorothy several summers ago, about a year after we had finished the full-time training in Anaheim. On our way to Corning, I asked the Lord how Grandpa was with Him. I didn't know how to bring up the subject with someone so much older than me, and whom I respected to the uttermost. So as he and I were sitting on the sofa while Jen and Grandma Dorothy were off doing something else, I wanted to say something, but didn't know what.

That's when Grandpa turned to me and said something like, "You know, Ben, I feel like the Lord has been taking care of me my whole life."

I was first amazed, and then thankful to the Lord for answering my earlier prayer. Grandpa proceeded to tell me of an experience he had while in the Air Force, flying a large cargo plane. While flying in formation, the pilot to his left began to roll right too early, heading directly for Grandpa's plane. Grandpa gave it power and pulled up as fast as he could in a plane that large, causing the two to miss by less than 50 feet. Once on the ground, the other pilot was devastated thinking of the accident he had almost caused, but Grandpa was stern yet forgiving.

What was even more impressive than this story was how Grandpa's comment reflected the end of the life of another man of God, Jacob. Genesis 48:15-16 says:
And he blessed Joseph and said, The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, The God who has shepherded me all my life to this day, The Angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the boys; And may my name be named on them, and the name of my fathers Abraham and Isaac; And may they be a teeming multitude in the midst of the earth.
Praise the Lord who both shepherded Jacob all his life, and who took care of Grandpa his whole life.

Every time we visited Grandpa in the last decade of his life, he always had a new story to tell me, one I had never heard before. And the final time we saw him, this past summer, he got to meet his Great-grandson, who shares his middle name, Jesse, and who is the first boy of his generation to bear the last name Gallarda.

Thank You, Lord, for Grandpa.