Monthly Archives: April 2009

A BOOK ABOUT TO BE BORN

Writing has been a joy.  The mechanics of getting something ready for a publisher has been a pain!  Hope the book doesn’t mis carry or abort.  As my first dear Mother-in-law used to say:  it’ll be in print fairly soon now, “If the Good Lord be willing, and the crick don’t rise!”  I’ll keep you posted.  Hopefully, then, I can get back to the writing I so love.  I’ve missed you guys!   ~donkimrey

TABLE OF CONTENTS

DEDICATION…….. IV

FIRST THINGS FIRST…….. VII

Introduction…….. 1

JOSEPH OF EGYPT…….. 3

JOSEPH WONDERS (GENESIS 37)……. 12

THE EGYPTIAN VIXEN……. 18

THE KEY TO JOSEPH’S COMEBACK……. 26

Introduction here for Moses…  Get picture if possible…….. 30

PRINCE ON THE LAM……. 31

PRINCE ON THE LAM (PART TWO)……. 33

MAY I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION, PLEASE!?!……. 38

ON CHOOSING. . . OR BEING CHOSEN………. 40

MOSES, MAKE UP YOUR MIND……. 43

GOD WAS THERE ALL THE TIME……. 47

“RICH MAN, POOR MAN”……. 50

A REFLECTION……. 53

HOW DID JOB SURVIVE?……. 61

JOB’S ‘COMEBACK’……. 64

HOW DID JOB COME BACK?……. 66

BAD BOYS WILL BE BAD BOYS…….. 68

MEET THE PRODIGAL SON……. 69

THE TURNING POINT……. 70

AT THE END OF HIS ROPE HE FINDS HOPE……. 72

THE HOUR OF DECISION……. 74

WELCOME HOME, SON……. 77

THE OTHER BROTHER……. 81

NEED A SECTION DIVISION HERE  PETER……….. 84

THE ROCK. . . or just a pebble?……. 90

HOOF IN MOUTH……. 94

PETER’S RECOVERY……. 98

PETER, PLEASE PAY ATTENTION……. 99

SATAN HAS DESIRED YOU……. 101

ONE VERY LARGE little word. . ……… 104

JESUS PRAYS FOR SIMON PETER……. 107

For WHAT Would Jesus Pray?……. 109

NOT ALL THINGS ARE BRIGHT AND BEAUTIFUL……. 111

“INVITE THE DISCIPLES…DON’T FORGET PETER.”……. 114

PETER’S COMEBACK……. 118

The Question Begs an Answer……. 121

PLEASE ANSWER THE QUESTION……. 122

DO YOU REALLY LOVE ME?……. 128

Without their help……….. 131

AN AFTERTHOUGHT:……. 134

YOUR TURN

TO BE CONTINUED

 

 

 

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WHERE YOU BEEN, BOY!?

          As some of you may know by now, I’m moving in the direction of publishing some of the studies we’ve been doing on God’s Comeback Kids.  I considered the traditional route, but have found existing publishers/agents to be more of an obstacle than an avenue to the public.  That is true, especially if you’re new and unknown.  Since that seems to be the case (“Don Who?”), some friends who’ve encouraged me in this effort, have decided to go forward “on our own.”  That way, we’ll have flexibility and control over the format, which I’m hoping may become a workbook of some sort to be used in small groups.

         Thank you for your interest in God’s Comeback Kids.  It has been a great challenge to me, and as it has moved along toward possible publication, my prayer has been simply that God would use it to encourage and inspire someone else and to use it to bring others “home” to Himself.  If you are helped by the studies in any way, please know that makes me very happy and grateful.

         If you know others who may be helped by the studies, please don’t be bashful about recommending that they read it.  Or buy if for a friend who needs encouragement!   Or, suggesting that it be used as a study guide in some of the classes at your Church or on retreats.

         This is my first attempt at publishing anything beside Church newsletters, brochures, press releases and the like.  So, I’m on a “learning curve.”  I don’t have a large organization (that’s a classic understatement!), so our resources are limited (and another u.s.!). I do hope to find a way to get this kind of message into the hands of those who most need it.  I’m not a “non-profit” organization, and doubt seriously if I’ll go through the “red tape” required to set up one.  There are, however, Christian organizations whose entire existence is based on serving those who may be out of “hope and at the end of their rope.”

         I prefer not to get tied up with a lot of record keeping or “paper work.”  That’s just not my “schtick.”  It would require time and resources  an ability which I don’t possess.  Instead, I’d prefer to work with some already established Christian service organizations who can do that much more effectively and efficiently than I.  They’re also in position to recognize your contribution as a legitimate income tax deduction.  Even if that isn’t important to you, the fact of the matter is that it enables you to give more because the gift isn’t taxed.

         Nothing is “cast in concrete” at the moment.   But we are moving steadily toward a publishing date.  I’ll keep you “posted.”  (no pun intended!).  However, if there is interest on the part of anyone (or any organization) who could use such a book as another “tool” in their ministry, I do want to hear from you and will work with you toward such a goal.   It’s early, so details need to be worked out.  Here on the site, very soon, I’ll probably post the Table of Contents and perhaps some sample chapters to give you an idea of where I’m headed.  Please pray for this effort, and feel free to offer suggestions, advice, etc.  You may contact me in the response box below, or through the information available on the masthead.  I would really appreciate your prayers.  

God’s servant, your friend, and fellow student  ~donkimrey

P.S.  Another friend, Rick Taylor (who owns “Mollies’ Restaurant” here on our Island) has set me up a “Web site.”  I’m not sure how to work it, but I do have some smart sons and friends.  All we have at the moment is http://www.GodscomebackKids.org or net or com.  Promise I’ll do better!


         

WHO’S ON TRIAL HERE?

 

THE ARREST, MOCK TRIAL, AND ILLEGAL MURDER OF JESUS OF NAZARETH

         Matt. 26:1 When Jesus had finished all these words, He said to His disciples, 2 “You know that after two days the Passover is coming, and the Son of Man is to be handed over for crucifixion 3 Then the chief priests and the elders of the people were gathered together in the court of the high priest, named Caiaphas; 4 and they plotted together to seize Jesus by stealth and kill Him. 5 But they were saying, “Not during the festival, otherwise a riot might occur among the people.”

           The “pious planners” must have been up all night. Judas left Jesus and the other disciples right after they shared the bread and wine earlier that night in the “Upper room.”  It must have been getting late.  How did the religious rulers get the word around so quickly?  Something leads me to believe this wasn’t completely spontaneous.  They didn’t have cell phones or autos, so someone had to really “hustle” to rouse everyone out of bed.  It appears this thing had been a long time in planning, a long time in coming. The rulers had been sneaking and conspiring for months.  Never adopting or following any honest procedure.  Always clandestine in their evil, cunning plotting.  So, when Judas came forward that was the catalyst for which they were waiting. 

            Think about it!  The most respected, trusted leaders…RELIGIOUS leaders…under cover of night.  Long before the ordinary workday began.  It’s worth noticing, I believe, how careful they were not to “step on a crack.”  My  mind is boggled over how “particular” and nit-picky they were over the very slightest regulation . . . and then ran roughshod over truth, justice, fairplay and their own established laws!  Jesus never had a chance.  Their minds had been made up long before Judas’ action. Their “end” result justified any cruelty or excess.  Proper procedure, regard for human rights?  Who cared? The objective was simply:  GET RID OF THIS TROUBLESOME PROPHET!!  In blind, red rage, they weren’t about to be stopped.

           And, please remember:  Here we aren’t talking about savages.  We aren’t talking about barbarians who cut off heads and leave people dead and dying.  We aren’t talking here about Adolph Hitler.  Or Saddam Hussein.  Or Atilla the Hun. Or Osama Bin Laden or their like.  We are witnessing acts of outrageous disregard for life and law BY THE RELIGIOUS AND CIVIL OFFICIALS who knew better.        

          That was one of the first things I noticed which, it seems to me, is certainly immoral or unethical if it isn’t illegal. It doesn’t ever appear that any kind of “warrant” was officially issued for Jesus’ arrest, or the relentless pursuit the object of their hatred.  

57 Those who had seized Jesus…Look at this!  They come out in the dark with swords and clubs. Big, bad, brave dudes when they work in the dark!  And in a pack.  Cowards.  Bullies.  Hypocrites. How disgusting!  Educated hoolligans.  Jesus had “nailed it” earlier when He said the Pharisees were like a polished white grave stone that gleamed in the sunlight, but concealed rottenness and corruption beneath the surfaceled Him away to Caiaphas, the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were gathered together. 58 But Peter was following Him at a distance as far as the courtyard of the high priest, and entered in, and sat down with the officers to see the outcome. 59 Now the chief priests and the whole Council A “called meeting?”  This time of night? IS THAT LEGAL? By whose authority was that decision made?  Based upon what law?   Got all of the “honchos” up and out of bed.  Could you have aroused them for anything else?  Wasn’t there a clear headed, right thinking person in the entire body? The decision had already been made.  Days before.  The deck was stacked against Jesus.  The outcome of the “trial” now was inevitable.  kept trying to obtain false testimony against Jesus, so that they might put Him to death. 60 They did not find any, even though many false witnesses came forward. But later on two came forward, 61 “and said, “This man stated, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to rebuild it in three days.’”

          That doesn’t sound like such a ‘big deal’ to me.  But they must have figured something out. They took it to mean He had some kind of God complex or something. Even though they’d gotten a liar, probably a ‘paid performer.’ to perjure himself.  You can’t conceal your contempt for such high and mighty authority.  Look back at that for a moment and examine it a little more closely.  Isn’t it illegal to solicit false witnesses?  Or bribe them?  Or intimidate them into perjuring themselves?   62 The high priest stood up and said to Him, “Do You not answer? What is it that these men are testifying against You?”  Consider this statement, and what he says next.  Does that sound like an illegal attempt to intimidate a witness, or unduly influence testimony?   Isn’t that illegal?  Doesn’t common decency or jurisprudence make provision that you are not required to answer questions or testimony which would incriminate you?  Does it also strike you as being a bit absurd?  How pompous!   How pretentious!  How stupid and evil!  Nothing Jesus had to say would make any difference, so He didn’t say anything. The old spiritual says: “He never spoke a mumbling word!”                                                                 You know, the more you look at this entire happening, the more you begin to wonder:  “WHO’S ON TRIAL HERE?” While the religious leaders are screaming and slobbering, looking like fools and fanatics. . . like a pumped up, distorted version of a Jerry Springer production, Jesus stands above the fray.  His calm, regal dignity intact.  And later, when a politician continuously wets his finger to see which way the prevailing public wind is blowing so he can determine what his position is. . . worrying, of course about his popularity falling in the polls!  What do you make of that?  Does it sound in any way like anyone about whom you’ve read or heard lately?            

          In that connection, have you prayed or hoped for statesmen of integrity to replace those who masquerade as politicians or leaders? Without stooping ever to their level. . . without dignifying false or ridiculous charges with even a reply. . . He did, indeed, seem less like the “defendant” and more like the Son of God.

63 But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest said to Him, “I adjure You by the living God, that You tell us whether You are the Christ, the Son of God.” 64 Jesus said to him, “You have said it yourself; nevertheless I tell you, hereafter you will see THE SON OF MAN SITTING AT THE RIGHT HAND OF POWER, and COMING ON THE CLOUDS OF HEAVEN.” 65 Then the high priest tore his robes  such a drama queen!  Oh, wooo. I’m impressed! And said, “He has blasphemed! What further need do we have of witnesses? Behold, you have now heard the blasphemy; 66 what do you think?”  What an actor!! They answered, “He deserves death!” On cue!  Right on cue! This entire thing has been orchestrated! That is so obvious. 67 Then they spat in His face and beat Him with their fists; and others slapped Him, 68 and said, “Prophesy to us, You Christ; who is the one who hit You?”  Wouldn’t you think this is illegal? Does any law in any civilized society allow officers of the court to brutalize or ridicule or abuse a “defendant?” There is a total loss of any semblance of civility or dignity here.  Officers of the Court!  Heads of the Synagogue!  They should have known better!!  Behaving like animals! If you wonder how low a person can stoop, take a look.  If you ever wonder what “religion” is capable of, when not governed by law and love, take a look.  If you wonder what law is capable of doing when its conscience is seared and silenced, this is your answer.

          The entire ordeal strikes me as being uncivilized.  Can you imagine how they must have looked if someone had a hand-held camera, or a phone camera.  How outrageous!  You’ve seen people emotionally out of control in public.  They almost always make themselves look like fools.. 

Mark 14:43And immediately, while He yet spoke came Judas, one of the twelve, and with him a great multitude with swords and staves, from the chief priests and the scribes and the elders. 44And he that betrayed Him had given them a sign, saying, “Whomever I shall kiss, that same is he. Take him and lead him away safely.”45And as soon as he had come, he went straightway to Him and said, “Master, Master!” and kissed Him. 46And they laid their hands on Him and took Him.   

            Wonder who “they” were.  Were  “they” legal officials?  Or religious “lackeys?”  Do you suppose “they” included the high-placed prelate, or was he too soft and proud to “get his hands dirty?”  They “laid hands on Him.”  I doubt seriously if that is a gentle, polite gesture.  They grabbed Him.  Roughed Him up. It set the pattern for what would be happening for the next few hours. 

            When I read this part of the account, the question occurred to me: Did they have a warrant for an arrest? We already know there’s no such thing in play here as “Miranda Rights.”  But are these “vigilantes” acting legally in the first place.  Bribiing witnesses.  False accusations. 

             Everyone who’s studied history is aware of their respect for “The Law.”  That, and their belief in monotheism (Only One God, as opposed to a Heinz 57 variety of deities worshipped by other nations.). The other main party to this travesty was the local expression of the Roman Government.  The one that was so mighty and so successful in building an empire, constructing a sophisticated system of roads?  Yes, that Rome.  The same country noted for developing a system of jurisprudence which still serves today as a basis for government?  Yes that Rome!   Are you asking me to believe that the cream of society stooped to this level of barbarism? 

            You might, with good reason, suspect a Hitler, or a Sadam Hussein, or one of Bin Laden’s fanatical devotees use such tactics.  But a Jewish High Priest?  A responsible, educated public official?

            They were trying to build a case AFTER they had already arrived at a verdict.  Is THAT legal?   Verse 55 says “they sought for witnesses against Jesus to put Him to death, and found none.”  As you look this over, can you take a few moments to consider these questions? 

 1.    How many actual breaches of law or ethics or common decency can you identify during the process?

2.    Which of the revered Ten Commandments were broken?

3.    On appeal, what do you think the chances would be of gaining one and having the entire fiasco thrown out on appeal if heard by an honest judge with integrity?

4.    Do you “get it” that Jesus’ death was caused primarily because of the same kinds of sin we commit today and by the kinds of people who, even to this day, may stand in places of            religious and political leadership?

5.    Have you personally answered some of the compelling questions which came up during the trial?  Namely:  Who are you?   Are you the Christ?  What shall I do with Jesus who is          called the Christ?                                                                                                             

You have a lot hanging on your answers.   

God’s servant, your friend and fellow student 

~donkimrey

                               ><>

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

           Just wanted to let you know I haven’t pulled a Rip Van Winkle on you and wondered off to some secluded meadow for an extended nap.  Some things are happening which I’m anxious to share with you, but feel it’s a bit premature at the moment.  The reason I mention it now is to to explain why there haven’t been any posts in the last few days and to ask your prayerful consideration

          Attempting to prepare my own mind for the season we call “Easter,” my thoughts for our study have been focused primarily on the arrest, trial, and brutal “legal” murder of Jesus.  I’ve been visiting and contemplating each of the New Testament accounts of those events.  When you set aside your preconceived notions, and just think, use your common sense, and your imagination the reports take on a new sence of urgency, immediacy.   For your own benefit, I’d encourage you to set some quiet time aside to consider the significance of what I’ve been calling an “Eternal Event.”

          Here are some questions which I’ve tried to address with my mind and heart open to,  just simply, The Word of God.  The Biblical accounts.  That was, after all, all that the early Church had to go by.

          And even that wasn’t available immediately.  The Church would gather and listen to reports from eye witnesses before any account was written on papyrus, or stone tablets, or paper, or computer screens.  It was long before CNN live, round the clock, round the world instant access to anything and everything you want to know or, in some cases, don’t need to know.  All these early followers of Christ was bare essentials.

             Have you ever wondered HOW the explosion of evangelism took place in those exciting, early days?  Something took place that literally set their spirits ablaze, and when that took place Christianity swept like a wild fire across the Middle East, Europe, and eventually the entire globe.   That was caused because they listened carefully, thoughtfully, and personally to the witnesses and those who read the early manuscripts at small, perhaps simple and  probably disorganized, “prayer and praise meetin’s!”      

           So, what I’ve been doing is: trying to set aside my preconceptions and simply ponder, seeking answers to such questions like these:

~ Who was responsible for the arrest, trial, and execution?

(This isn’t intended to be a multiple-choice question.  But I could name names.  There don’t seem to be many (or even any) innocent bystanders.  Even those milling about idly, perhaps attracted by their curiosity at such commotion so early in the morning, seem to have been sucked into the insanity and injustice of the moment.  Who’s in charge?  Is this a free for all?  It looks like the inmates have taken over the asylum.  Is ANYONE in charge 

 ~ Could the outcome have been prevented?   How? 

~ How many of the Ten Commandments were broken?   By whom?  What is the significance of that?   Can you document the instances which seem to choke your sense of justice and you cannot swallow? 

 ~ How many other violations can you locate which destroy, ignore,  or distort the Roman Law, or our current system which goes out of its way to protect the rights of defendants?   Do you discover any other violations of your sense of justice or fair play?  Or regard for human dignity?  Or the perpetrators’  own self-respect? 

~  Do you know any attorneys who’d be willing to take up such a case in the event of an appeal?  What would be their case? 

  

~ What would I have done differently if I’d actually been there that morning?   How would You? 

 

~ How do such events affect my thinking and living today?

 

I’m studying along with you, and hope you’ll feel at liberty to express your own thoughts.  And add your own questions.

 

God’s servant, your brother, friend, and fellow student,

~donkimrey