What's Next?

We’ve made it through the whole New Testament!  What a fantastic journey it was too!  Naturally, I have been thinking about what is next for this space.  It would make sense for us to go back to the beginning and start from Genesis and go through the Old Testament, and that will probably happen at some point in time.  However, I need a little rest and the Old Testament, as a whole unit, would be a multi-year commitment that I don’t know I can make right now.

But, the question is still out there: what’s next?

I’ve been doing some thinking and what I’ve come up with is a sort of interactive journey through the Heidelberg Catechism.  Now, before you close your browser window and start looking for a different devotional idea for 2017, read on and give it some thought.

The Heidelberg Catechism is broken up into 52 segments, perfect for a weekly devotional.  Each question and answer contain tons of Scriptural support that we can consider and the whole of the Catechism is primarily discipleship oriented.  In fact, the Heidelberger was written as a discipleship tool, teaching young Christians about Scripture and what it means to be a Christian.

So, here’s how 2017 is going to work for us:

On weekday mornings, questions from the Heidelberg Catechism will be posted along with the associated Scripture given for the answers.  The answers themselves, however, will not be posted.  What I hope will happen is that, through reading the Scripture, you will work to formulate your own answers to the questions.  I want to encourage you to post thoughts, reflections, questions, and comments each day.

Some weeks there will be a question each day, others it will not because of the number of questions there are for that week.  Some days will have more Scripture passages than others.  Take your time, maybe spend more than just a day on them.  Enjoy the journey!

On Friday, the whole week’s questions along with the answers will be posted along with some of my reflections as well.  Through all of this, I pray that together we can discover deeper meaning and grow deeper in our relationship with Christ.

2 Peter 1 – All We Need

Read 2 Peter 1

As Peter opens his second letter, he spends a great deal of time emphasizing the identity of the recipients.  He reminds us that our identity is secure in Christ and that God has given to us everything that we need to live into this reality of our lives.  This was likely a needed reminder for those he was writing to considering the hard times that they were dealing with.  It is a necessary reminder for us all that time as well, considering the pressures and competing worldviews that culture throws at us every day.

Peter encourages believers, in the midst of the spiritual battle that we are in, to strengthen our faith and our witness through adding a number of things to our lives.  Each of these, goodness, knowledge, self-control, perseverance, godliness, mutual affection, and love, are elements of the life of faith that we are called to live.  Each are attributes of God, parts of His character that are revealed through Christ Jesus.

Like everything that we talk about when it comes to faith, Peter is not talking about a sort of “works righteousness” way of living, but rather a deepening of the faith that we have which will in turn cause us to live in a greater way into the calling that we have received as children of God and heirs to His promises.

Why does Scripture continually come back to this?  Peter points out here that, even though his readers are firmly established in the truth, he wants always to remind them of these things.  This is an important aspect of what why we read Scripture and worship together as Christians.  In this world, where so many different things trying to suck us into their own identity, we need to be reminded constantly of who we are and whose we are.  So often we forget in one fashion or another, straying all over the place.  For this reason, we remain committed to Scripture and to prayer, seeking God and listening for the Spirit’s voice to remind us and direct us each day.