Command #36 - Be A Servant

July 31, 2015

From the elusive Command, Lose your life, we now encounter one of the most down to earth of all the Commands: Be a servant. No mystery exists here. We all know what it means to serve, to put someone else's need ahead of our own...the good deed, the kindness shown, the helping hand, the burden shared, the load lifted, the feet washed, the cup for the thirsty wayfarer. Opportunities for service are presented us every moment of every day.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #35 - Lose Your Life

July 29, 2015

Most of Jesus' Commands are reasonably straightforward, easy enough to understand, uncomplicated, unambiguous. Easy to obey--no. Easy to understand--yes. It is not usually a question of being confused about what is required. Rather it is a question of how serious we are about wanting to obey.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #34 - Deny Yourself

July 27, 2015

The great moral teacher interpretation of the life and impact of Jesus Christ is surely one of the most naive perspectives ever proposed for such an important historical figure. C.S. Lewis has memorably argued that anyone making the claims Jesus did must either be a lunatic, a madman, or what he claimed to be. It is not merely Jesus' claim to be one with God that is astonishing and revolutionary, however, so too is much of the rest of his teaching. Far from being a traditional "moralist," a great deal of what Jesus said turned conventional wisdom upside-down.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #33 - Be At Peace, Reconciled, and United With Others

July 23, 2015

The enormity of this Command is of such scope and magnitude that it is impossible to overstate. If Love is the first Command, this surely represents one of the most important dimensions of Love itself. Indeed, unity with our fellow man is one of Love's significant visible expressions. If we would "Be righteous," this is where it begins.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #32 - If Part Of Your Body Sins, Get Rid Of It

July 22, 2015

It has been mentioned before that Jesus occasionally uses overstatement and exaggeration to get his point across. This is obviously again the case here. No one seriously believes this Command is to be obeyed literally. None of Jesus' own disciples, to our knowledge, obeyed this Command as it stands, nor did Jesus expect them to.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #31 - Be Righteous

July 20, 2015

The Commands of Jesus seem to come in two broad categories: Those that are straightforward and relatively simple to obey...and those that are impossible to obey.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #30 - Believe That You Will Receive What You Pray For

July 17, 2015

There are fewer more perplexing, misunderstood, misappropriated Commands in the Gospel than this. How many disappointments have been based on grandiose prayers for healing, for financial provision, for restored relationships, and for thousands of other good and worthy things... that have not happened? We have all experienced the ache, frustration, and confusion of unanswered prayer.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #29 - Don’t Be Anxious

July 15, 2015

It is sometimes difficult to know how to live in the practical reality of Jesus' admonition in the latter half of Matthew 6: Consider the birds of the air and the lilies of the field. They neither sow nor reap, yet your heavenly father cares for them. So don't worry about what you shall eat or drink. We are all familiar with his words. But do they not often sound just a little too idealistic?

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #28 - Believe in Me

July 13, 2015

Jesus does not stop with commanding belief in general, not even belief in God. He zeroes in with yet more precision and specificity by also commanding belief in him. This further dismisses the notion that Christianity may be equated with being a kind person and trying to do good in the world. Those are good things. But they are not Christianity.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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Command #27 - Believe in God

July 10, 2015

We find ourselves looking at a series of Commands subject to widely varied interpretation as we attempt to navigate the conundrum between the temporal and spiritual components of the Christian life - Love God, Love man... Give to the poor, Believe.

From The Commands by Michael Phillips. Read by Michael Kimball. More information on this and similar writings may be found at Father of the Inklings. Visit Amazon to purchase The Commands and other books by Michael Phillips.
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