Author Archives: daytontn

1 Clement – Another exhortation to the church at Corinth and a Christian named Tim

“Ye are fond of contention, brethren, and full of zeal about things which do not pertain to salvation.”

Those are the words of Bishop Clement to the church in Corinth (45:1).  Some things never change.  The church in Corinth struggled to such an extent that the Apostle Paul wrote several lengthy letters to them and–several years later–the senior pastor of the church in Rome felt the need to write as well.

Earle E. Cairns wrote, “About the year 95 a serious disturbance occurred in the church at Corinth. A little later Clement, the leading elder in the church at Rome, wrote his first epistle to the Corinithian church to urge the Christians who were in revolt against the elders to end their disturbance and to be in subjection to these elders…” (Christianity Through the Centuries, p.73).

I trust you have read the New Testament books 1 & 2 Corinthians.  Each is filled with personal information about Paul and material specific to the situation in the troubled congregation.  Each epistle also contains great truths, encouragements and exhortations.  The same is true of 1 Clement.  I doubt you have read this particular epistle.  Unless you have been assigned the read 1 Clement by a history teacher or seminary professor, you will most likely never read the fifty-nine brief chapters.  However, I recently did so and thought I would share some of which stood out to me.

I hope you are encouraged by these words by a man of God.

“Content with the provision which God had made for you, and carefully attending to His words, you were inwardly filled with His doctrine…” (2:2).

“So let us give up vain and fruitless cares, and approach to the glorious and venerable rule of our holy calling. Let us attend to what is good, pleasing, and acceptable in the sight of Him who formed us. Let us look steadfastly to the blood of Christ, and see how precious that blood is to God, which, having been shed of our savlavation, ahs set the greace of repentance before the whole world” (7:3-5).

“So let us yield obedience to His excellent and glorious will; and imploring His mercy and loving-kindness, while we forsake all fruitless labours, and strife, and envy, which leads to death, let us turn and have recourse to His compassions” (9:1).

“He does good to all, but most abundantly to us who have fled for refuge to His complassions through Jesus Christ our Lord, to whom be glory and majesty ofr ever and ever. Amen” (20:

“The all-merciful and beneficent Father has bowels [of compassions] towards those who fear Him, and kindly and lovingly bestows His favours upon those who come to Him with a simple mind” (23:1).

“What shall we do, then, brethren? Shall we become slothful in well-doing, and cease from the practice of love? God forbid that any such course should be followed by us! But rather let us hasten with all energy and readiness of mind to perform every good work. For the Creator and Lord of all Himself rejoices in His works” (33:1-3).

“Let him who has love in Christ keep the commandments of Christ” (49:1).

“May God, who sees all things, and who is the Ruler of all spirits and the Lord of all flesh–who chose our Lord Jesus Christ and us through Him to be a peculiar people–grant to every soul that calls upon His glorious and holy Name, faith, fear, peace, patience, long-suffering, self-control, purity, and sobriety, to the well-pleasing of His Name, through our High Priest and Protector, Jesus Christ, by  whom be to Him glory, and majesty, and power, and honour, both now and for evermore. Amen (58).

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My Heart Goes On

Do you remember the theme song from the movie Titanic?

This blog has nothing to do with it.

Well, maybe the title does.  “My Heart Goes On.”  And, it does.  In a recent entry, I found myself being unexpectedly vulnerable.  In a round-a-bout manner, I admitted that spiritually I am neither where I once was nor where I want to be.

Rather, I am here:  Discontent in my contentment of malaise.  Yet I continue to fight.  I continue to believe.  And my prayer is that hope, followed by joy, might be the result.


It’s a small word, but such a huge necessity in life.  Sometimes–as we notice in Psalm 42–we have to remind ourselves to hope in God.  We are also taught in Scripture that our perseverance and the Word of God produces hope in us.  Paul put it this way:

“For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope” (Rom. 15:4).

I am called to persevere and I am called to remain in the Word of God.

Yet, I am not to be prideful of my measly good works.  Anything good I actually do (persevering in the faith, continuing to read and meditate upon the Scriptures, watching and listening to sermons, attending church, etc.) are actually gifts from God.

Paul followed Romans 15:4 with Romans 15:5!

“Now may the God who gives perseverance and encouragement”

And a further reminder that these gifts do indeed come from God is located later in the chapter:

“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, so that you will abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit” (Rom. 15:13).

So–at the very foundational level–what must I do?  Remain in contact with God through whatever means are available to me.  He is the source of my spiritual life and He is the cure for my spiritual sickness.  He saved me.  He will sanctify me.  He began a good work in me.  He will complete it.

Didn’t I read above that God gives encouragement?!

That’s where I find myself today.  Encouraged.  God isn’t going anywhere and I am going to continue holding on to Him–even if some days it is by the fingertips of faith.  Thankfully, His grace refused to let me slip.

And I have the distinct impression that some of you can really relate to my current condition. Perhaps knowing you are not alone is just the comfort you needed today to keep your grip and God.  And hope.


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Perspective and Pleasant Places–Our Satisfaction

Lord, my allotted portion and my cup,
    you have made my destiny secure.
Pleasant places were measured out for me;
    fair to me indeed is my inheritance.

Those are the sentiments of the author of Psalm 16.

John Piper and Jonathan Edwards simply reword what had been stated earlier.  Consider these words from John Calvin (1502-1546):

The Psalmist confirms more fully what he had already said in the preceding verse with respect to his resting, with a composed and tranquil mind, in God alone; or rather, he so glories in God as nobly to despise all that the world imagines to be excellent and desirable without him. By magnifying God in such honorable and exalted strains, he gives us to understand that he does not desire any thing more as his portion and felicity. This doctrine may be profitable to us in many ways. It ought to draw us away not only from all the perverse inventions of superstition, but also from all the allurements of the flesh and of the world. Whenever, therefore, those things present themselves to us which would lead us away from resting in God alone, let us make use of this sentiment as an antidote against them, that we have sufficient cause for being contented, since he who has in himself an absolute fullness of all good has given himself to be enjoyed by us. In this way we will experience our condition to be always pleasant and comfortable; for he who has God as his portion is destitute of nothing which is requisite to constitute a happy life.

“We have sufficient cause for being contented”


God is enough.

That is an objective reality.  But how is it possible for our experience to match that objective reality?  How can we reach a point where we are fully-satisfied if all we have is God?

Is it by sampling the buffet of the options in the world around us?


You don’t know how good the burger is at Kenny’s Bar and Grill without having first tasted a McDonald’s sandwich.  Isn’t that the message of the book of Ecclesiastes?  A man with every flavor alternative found it all bland.  Nothing satisfied.  He had numbed his taste buds.

Another author offers a better approach.

“Taste and see that the Lord is good” (Psalm 34:8).

Two aspects of that verse are obvious:  (1) We can taste of God, and (2) When we taste of God, we find Him to be good.

First, we can taste of God.  This does not mean God is food or that food is God.  Instead, this teaches us that God can be experienced.  We can apprehend Him with our senses.  A vibrant relationship with a living God can be become a reality.

Second, when we taste of God, we find Him to be good.  The author is not meaning that we find the Lord to be omnibenevolent (all-good).  Rather, he is teaching us that God is satisfying.  When we truly experience God, we being to comprehend that He truly is all that we need.

Several passages in the New Testament proclaim this.  I have pasted them below.  As you read them, meditate upon your present experience with Christ.  Do you have a healthy, growing relationship with God?  Are you finding the Lord to be good–satisfying?  Are the sentiments offered below part of your own testimony?

Php 4:12 I know how to get along with humble means, and I also know how to live in prosperity; in any and every circumstance I have learned the secret of being filled and going hungry, both of having abundance and suffering need.

Php 4:13 I can do all things through Him who strengthens me.


Heb 13:5 Make sure that your character is free from the love of money, being content with what you have; for He Himself has said, “I WILL NEVER DESERT YOU, NOR WILL I EVER FORSAKE YOU,”

Heb 13:6 so that we confidently say, “THE LORD IS MY HELPER, I WILL NOT BE AFRAID. WHAT WILL MAN DO TO ME?”



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Reflections on the Quest: Depending upon God’s testimony for our salvation

In a recent conversation (FB-messaging) with a dear friend about John Adams and his son, John Quincy Adams, the topic of whether or not they possessed genuine, saving faith arose.  I mentioned that I thought I had read enough to believe that John Quincy was a Christian.  I continued,

I’ll look again. The more important question is: Do our actions, reactions and words show evident of our knowledge of and love for Christ?  In your case, I would say, “Absolutely.”  I am not as convinced of my own testimony.

My friend responded, 
Well, I’m thankful neither of us depend on our testimony for our salvation–but that our imperfect love is more than covered by His!”
He who began a good work in me is faithful; He will complete what He started (Phil. 1:6).  My imperfection will be visibly covered by His perfection.  I am not saved by my persevering, but by His persevering on my behalf.  Literally nothing can separate me from His love (Rom 8:39).
If you are a believer, it is possible that no truth is more precious to you than that which I just shared.  God was fully committed to loving you from the initial moment He decided to adopt you in eternity past.  That love is not diminished by your half-hearted obedience or lukewarm response.
Frederick Lehman wrote one of my favorite hymns entitled The Love of God.  I was astonished to learn that the third stanza was actually written by a patient in an insane asylum.  As you read the words below, you’ll have to admit that these sentiments do indeed represent biblical reality.  Read them slowly.  Contemplate what is being said.  Worship.
  1. The love of God is greater far
    Than tongue or pen can ever tell;
    It goes beyond the highest star,
    And reaches to the lowest hell;
    The guilty pair, bowed down with care,
    God gave His Son to win;
    His erring child He reconciled,
    And pardoned from his sin.

    • Refrain:
      Oh, love of God, how rich and pure!
      How measureless and strong!
      It shall forevermore endure—
      The saints’ and angels’ song.
  2. When hoary time shall pass away,
    And earthly thrones and kingdoms fall,
    When men who here refuse to pray,
    On rocks and hills and mountains call,
    God’s love so sure, shall still endure,
    All measureless and strong;
    Redeeming grace to Adam’s race—
    The saints’ and angels’ song.
  3. Could we with ink the ocean fill,
    And were the skies of parchment made,
    Were every stalk on earth a quill,
    And every man a scribe by trade;
    To write the love of God above
    Would drain the ocean dry;
    Nor could the scroll contain the whole,
    Though stretched from sky to sky.

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Five Long Weeks

Sorry for my absence!  It’s been five long weeks for me.

As most of you know, I am a manager at a local IT managed services firm.  That’s my day job. My part-time job is that of adjunct instructor for a couple of colleges.  I rarely teach for Bryan College, but Belhaven University tries to keep me busy.  And that they did!  I taught each Monday and Tuesday in downtown Chattanooga for the past five weeks.  And that about did me in!  Thankfully, Labor Day weekend hit on the second week of the schedule, but I still needed to take the day after the last class off as a vacation day to recoup.  I learned one truth through the experience.  I can’t agree to teach again back-to-back nights.  It’s too difficult on this old body, particularly since I need to be fully-engaged in my position during the day.  I need at least one day between classes from this point forward.

We live and we learn.

I like getting old.

Seriously–I am thankful I turn 50 in March.  I like maturity, partly because it has been so slow in coming for me.  I like perspective.  I am grateful for the realization that the greener grass elsewhere is simply a mirage.

I don’t have anything profound to say at the end of a long week.  I think I am still worn from the past five weeks.  I’m also tired from working outside today with a chainsaw.  I am ready for a good night of rest.  Hopefully I will write something worth your attention in the near future.  Tomorrow I will begin final grading for the two courses I just completed teaching.  I’ll be watching some football as well.  Part of the morning will be spent gathering with God’s people at church.  Looks to be a good day.

Thanks for stopping by the blog.  I hope you had a great month.  Blessings, Tim

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Taylor Swift is not legendary

A few days ago, I heard a promotion on the radio for a major music event upcoming in Las Vegas.  Taylor Swift was mentioned in the list of scheduled performers.  That did not surprise me.  How the announcer described her, however, caught my attention.  In fact, it made me laugh.  He did not call her beautiful.  He did not call her talented.  He called her legendary.


Not the word I expected.  And–I believe–it is not a word we should use so flippantly when describing individuals.

I heard that radio spot on the way to Pizza Hut to pickup food for the family.  As soon as I greeted the teenager at the cash register, I asked her, “What comes to your mind when you hear the word ‘legendary’?”  Her response was perfect.  She thinks of “heroes, people who made a difference.”  People to be remembered.

Taylor Swift?

I don’t think so.

But whom?

Let me ask you:  What name comes to your mind when you hear the word legendary?  George Washington?  Thomas Jefferson?  Harriet Tubman?  Neil Armstrong?  Mother Teresa?  All good candidates.  They all made a difference.  They may even qualify for the category of hero.  But one thing is sure, they can definitely be described as examples.  And isn’t what every adult should be?  It’s what I want to be–an example; a great example.

Do you know why?

More is caught than taught.

Whether we like it or not, we are being watched.  Some of us are being viewed by very impressionable eyes.  In my case, five children are watching how I act and react.  They are listening to my words.  They are even evaluating the attitude in which those words are communicated.

That is sobering!

I am not “legendary.”  I never will be.  My name may not be remembered the week after my funeral.  The difference I have made is minimal.  However, I am very much counting on another “L” word to be in play:  Legacy.

I am currently in the process of raising adults.  They just happen to be young at the moment.  But my mission is more than simply seeing that my children mature into adulthood.  I desire them to be adults who genuinely make a difference in the world in which they reside.  Indeed–it is my intense prayer that they become God-exalting, people-blessing adults. Should that be the result of our incessant efforts and untold hours, Jodi and I will be very pleased.  We do not care of our children become legendary; faithful with their time, talents and treasure will suffice.

Parenting is such a challenging vocation!  Without a doubt, it is the most difficult calling in which I have engaged.  How desperately I do I need God in this endeavor!  How thankful I am that Jodi and I are on the same page when in comes to both our philosophy of parenting and how that philosophy is fleshed out on a daily basis!  Are we perfect parents?  Not even close.  Our children will attest to our glaring faults and failures.  Yet I also believe–if not now, in the future–that they will describe our parenting as purposeful.  They will remember how much we were engaged in their lives and how much we valued time together as a family.  They will also easily recall the spiritual emphasis that permeated their environment. This gives us hope as we navigate both the teenage years and the baby years (Celena is 14 and Cadence is 4 mos.)!

If you are a parent, continue to strive to take your responsibilities seriously.  Stay engaged.  Strive to leave a legacy.  If you do not have any children, pray for those who do and support their efforts.  More is caught than taught through you as well.

Taylor Swift isn’t legendary.  I am not legendary. But I can leave a legacy.  You can do the same.

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Contemporary Christian musician, do you really want me to sing THAT?

“His love is reckless.”

I heard that in a Christian song recently on the radio.  What does that mean?  I wonder if the author actually mulled over the meaning of the word “reckless” or if he choose it because it fit the rhyme in his head.  I have often thought that when hearing Christian praise and worship songs.  How much consideration was put into the writing of this song?

Now before you write me off as an old fundy (someone who only prefers the hymns of yesteryear) or someone from the reformed camp that chooses to only sing the Psalter, hear me out.  I do indeed enjoy contemporary Christian songs and modern praise and worship music.  My favorite band is Casting Crowns.  My issue isn’t in the actual music, but in the words put to that music.  In other words, I prefer meat with my music.

I found a humorous article related to this subject on (see link below). Stephen Altrogge wrote “How To Write An Awful Worship Song.” One of his suggestions is:  Be Vague About Your Theology.  He wrote, “Make sure to avoid any theology at all costs. Don’t talk about atonement, wrath, or any other biblical concepts. You want your song to be all about feeling. Don’t let the mind get in the way. Repeat after me: Worship is a warm feeling, sort of like heartburn, only better'” (quoted with permission).

Someone who left a comment in the section below the blog (joanna) added the following:

  • Write in overblown statements about how dedicated you are to God even though it is not an accurate description of your spiritual life or of anyone likely to be singing it. Examples:
    – Jesus I will tell the whole world about you
    – Jesus you mean everything to me
    – Jesus, I’m totally devoted to you
    – I will live every moment of everyday for you

joanne concluded her comments, “Doesn’t matter if you haven’t thought of God most days last week, haven’t tried to tell anyone about Jesus in years and have a heart full of idols, including the lines above is legitimate you are trying to write awful worship songs.”

Contemporary Christian musicians, please wrestle with your words before putting rhyme to them.  Please ensure that there is meat with the music.

God’s love isn’t reckless.  In fact, it’s the exact opposite.

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Grace: I Need It Now

As TJ and I were driving home from Nashville on Sunday, I heard a song on the radio by Jimmy Needham that really captivated me.

“If I Ever Needed Grace”

It still feels like yesterday
A lifetime of empty days
My hungry heart was desperate for a meal
I feasted on the bread of life
Forgiveness pierced me like a knife
Your breath filled up my lungs and I could feel
I was broke and all I could say was

If I ever needed grace, it’s now
You are strong when I am weak, somehow
I am weak enough to see
I need you to cover me
If I ever needed grace, it’s now

I met the woman of my dreams
Wanted to give her everything
Then fear came like a thief in the night
But my journal pages prophesy
That one day I’d make her my bride
Soon my best friend was wearing white
With our lives ahead all I could say was

If I ever needed grace, it’s now
You are strong when I am weak, somehow
I am weak enough to see
I need you to cover me
If I ever needed grace, it’s now

In every joy and pain
Whatever comes my way
God I need your grace

Nine short months ’til she arrived
Little hands and lions eyes
And I’m so scared I don’t have what it takes
But I hear your voice sunday morning
Father give me eyes to see
All I need’s the power of your name

If I ever needed grace, it’s now
You are strong when I am weak, somehow
I am weak enough to see
I need you to cover me
If I ever needed grace
If I ever needed grace
If I ever needed grace, it’s now

He needed grace to become a believer.  He admits to needing grace as a new believer.  He hopes for grace as his marriage begins.  He understands his desparate need for grace as his first child was born.  WOW!  Did I write this song?  Those were my repeated prayers as well.  I very much needed grace during those seasons and God answered those prayers.  But my need for grace never stops.  Like the author of the song, I find myself in need of grace again today.


When do we all need grace?


Without it, we are without hope.  Without it, we cannot breath–figuratively or literally.  As I write these words, I am reeling from the news of the apparent suicide of Robin Williams.  I had no idea that he struggled with depression.  I am saddened to think of him in a position of hopelessness–that place of not knowing where to turn for help.

If I ever needed grace, it’s now.

And–thankfully–grace is available.  God is rich in grace and He willingly gives grace to those humble enough to ask.

“Grace be with you  all” (Heb. 13:25).


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Hardees can keep their burgers and porn!

I am not a fan of Hardees (Carls, Jr. for those of you “out west”).  I have never been very impressed with their menu, the cleanliness of their stores or the staff that they hire.  And–I am disgusted with the soft porn they use on television to sell their products.  We saw an ad just the other day where two women were wearing swimsuits that showed as much flesh as was probably legally to show.

So they could sell a hamburger.

Remember the “good ‘ole days” when some fully-dressed, gray-haired ladies yelled, “Where’s the beef?”

Remember when McDonald’s ads were appropriate viewing for the entire family?  I do, because those days are still in the present.  Simply put–McDonald’s does just about everything better than Hardees (you might argue successfully that the biscuits are better at Hardees).  I know that there are exceptions in everything, but I remain convinced that McD’s is a far-better managed restaurant chain than Hardees.  They are also much more concerned with family values.  Chick-fil-A leads the way, but I want to take this opportunity to (1) let McDonald’s know that I appreciate their modesty in their advertisements and (2) let Hardees know that they have seen the last dollar from my wallet.

And believe me when I say–they couldn’t give a rip.

I found the following online helpful:

CKE [owner of Hardees and Carl, Jr] is running the ads in select markets only after 9 p.m. and has no plans to drop the ads, said spokeswoman Jenna Petroff.

The ads are aimed at Hardee’s “target audience of Young, Hungry Guys,” she said in a prepared statement. “We do not aim to exclude or offend any other group with our efforts, but merely to appeal and amuse a very specific audience.”

Another new Hardee’s promotion involves using actresses dressed as French maids on segways to promote the chain’s new French Dip Thickburger.

“The Hardee’s marketing team seems intent on pushing the boundaries at every turn whether we’re talking about ‘iced B-holes’ or the company’s attempts at turning hamburgers into sex objects,” said Parents Television Council president Tim Winter, in a statement. “Each and every local franchisee can and should object and every Hardee’s customer has the right to patronize a more responsible fast food restaurant chain.”

I close with a paragraph left in the comment section below the article from which the above quote was taken. It was written by Inanho on July 22, 2009. You’ll either agree with it or continue to think of me as a conservative, old fart.

It is truly amazing to me that any corporation or advertising agency would subject the public to the kind of commercials that Hardees’ management company has aired for the last decade or more. Many commercials prior to the distasteful “biscuit hole” one have targeted the lowest common denominator of male sensibilities.  Jenna Patroff says that the ads are aimed at Hardee’s “target audience of Young, Hungry Guys,” that “We do not aim to exclude or offend any other group with our efforts, but merely to appeal and amuse a very specific audience.” It’s ironic to me that the spokesperson is a woman who certainly has no sense of the history of subjagation of, sexual objectification, and domestic abuse against women in this country. When, as a society, we have commercials entering our home that are totally insensitive to the safety and wellbeing of women through an act to “appeal and amuse” “young, hungry guys,” then we are going down a path of no return. While I agree that, if we don’t like their ads, then you can choose not to buy from Hardees, AND I don’t believe in censorship of speech in any form, we all must stand up for what is right. We cannot return to a period of our history when women were seen as second-class citizens and sexual objects, I don’t care what some “young, hungry guys” are amused by today!


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A Plea to Christian Teachers in Public Schools

Christian teachers, please do not be offended by this post.  I do not believe you are in sin because you are employed by a government school.  Rather, I believe God has strategically placed you on the front line of the culture war for a very noble purpose.

You are in your classroom to represent the triune God and teach His truths–truths about His ways, His world and His Word.

This plea is based out of a love for truth and out of a love for children.  I trust you love these as well or you would not be in full-time education.  You love truth.  You love children.  Teachers should do no less.

My plea also springs from my experience in public education–grades K5-12.  I was educated in government schools in Wisconsin.  Throughout my entire primary and secondary education, I was taught many facts. But I was not presented with the whole truth that unifies the facts and provides the necessary rationale for why things have happened and for how and why things happen this very day.  For example, I had perhaps ten classes in History and Science in elementary, middle and high school without a single mention of God.

It’s not that my competent, educated, well-meaning teachers ridiculed God.  They never mentioned Him.  Ever.

My former professor, RC Sproul, comments on the approach taken by our government schools in a book he wrote about worldviews:

“A neutral education is one that is neither pro-religion or anti-religion. It is neither pro-God nor anti-God. It seeks to keep God out of educational issues. The only problem with the solution is that the ideal is impossible. There is no such thing as a neutral education…Every education, every curriculum, has a viewpoint. To teach children about life and the world in which they live without reference to God is to make a statement about  God. It screams a statement” (Lifeviews).

And what statement does it scream?

God does not matter.  He is inconsequential.

So, how relevant is God to truth?

Every year I pray that I will hear that a Christian teacher in a public school is fired.

Please allow me to explain before you navigate away from this page in anger.  I don’t want anyone to lose their job. I know what it is like to be unemployed.  I hope none of you experience a lengthy period of job searching, wishing that someone–somewhere–finds your resume attractive.

But I do want to hear of Christian teachers possessing the courage to do three biblically-sanctioned activities, thus my pleaLove Christ, Live  Christ & Speak Christ.

Within the last couple of years, I asked a teacher in the government schools here in Tennessee if she had begun decorating her classroom for Christmas.  Her response caught me off-guard.  “We’re not even allowed to say the word ‘Christmas’ at school.”  Honestly, she would probably had been fine had she let the word slip a couple of times.  But had she read the account of the birth of Jesus in Luke, chapter two, she would have lost her job.

Even here in Tennessee.

Don’t miss the irony.  Had a teacher read a truthful account of the one of the most significant events in the history of the world to a class of children, she would probably have been disciplined by her principal or by the school board.  Most likely, she would have found herself filing for unemployment benefits.

But had that been the result, she could have slept well, knowing that–like the apostles so many years ago–she had done “the right thing.”

Act 4:18 And when they had summoned them, they commanded them not to speak or teach at all in the name of Jesus.

Act 4:19 But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to give heed to you rather than to God, you be the judge;

Act 4:20 for we cannot stop speaking about what we have seen and heard.”

Teachers–another school year is about to begin.  Please do not squander this opportunity.  You posses a position of great influence.  Impressionable ears and eyes surround you.  Love Christ.  Live Christ.  Speak Christ.  You are in your classroom to represent the triune God and teach His truths–truths about His ways, His world and His Word.  Let God worry about the results.

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