Friday, April 22, 2011

For Our Transgressions ...

Who hath believed our report? and to whom is the arm of the LORD revealed? For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. 

 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

But He was wounded
For our transgressions,

He was bruised
For our iniquities:

The chastisement of our peace
Was upon Him;

And with His stripes
We are healed

All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.

He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. 

Yet it pleased the LORD to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the LORD shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities. 

Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death: and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

—Isaiah 53

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Shot Heard 'Round the World

Image from

Today marks the 136th anniversary of the battles at Lexington and Concord, which sparked America's war for independence.

For many years, the colonists had been growing increasingly disgruntled with British infringements on their liberty. They had tried various means, from petitions to protests, in an attempt to influence Parliament and King George III to recognize their rights as Englishmen and cease the unjust and unlawful oppression. But, as Thomas Jefferson would write in 1776, "Our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury." Instead of honoring the colonists' rights, Parliament implemented still greater and more coercive measures, intended to keep the colonies under control. As more British troops were sent to America, the patriots organized to prepare to defend themselves should diplomacy fail. When General Gage, the British military commander in Boston, sent soldiers to capture weapons and ammunition stored at Concord, the colonists were ready. On April 18, the night before the raid was to take place, several riders set out to alert the countryside. Paul Revere is now the most famous of these riders, but several others participated, including William Dawes and Samuel Prescott. By the time the regulars began their march, the militia had been awakened and was mobilizing.

When the British forces arrived in Lexington on their way to Concord, they met about 80 militiamen, led by Captain John Parker, waiting for them. A British officer, probably Major John Pitcairn, ordered the colonists to lay down their arms. Parker told his men to disperse. Both sides had been ordered to hold their fire, but in the confusion that followed, a shot pierced the morning air. To this day, no one is certain who fired the shot. More shots soon followed from both sides. Eight militiamen were killed and one British soldier was wounded. The "Battle" of Lexington was really only a brief skirmish, but it marked the beginning of a war that would change the history of America and of the world.

The regulars reached Concord, where a larger force of militiamen met them. This time the colonists killed and wounded several more of the British. As the redcoats marched back to Concord, they suffered many more casualties from ambushes by groups of minutemen. A small group of men had dared to stand against the might of the greatest military power in the world.

Today, take some time to remember the men who fought and died to make this nation free. Because of their sacrifice, the United States has been a free nation for more than 200 years. Are we prepared to make the same sacrifice, if necessary?

By the rude bridge that arched the flood,
Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled,
Here once the embattled farmers stood,
And fired the shot heard round the world.

—Ralph Waldo Emerson

Monday, April 11, 2011

"And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul" (Genesis 2:7).

Try to picture this scene in your mind: God has spent the last six days creating the earth. Throughout the week, He spoke, and it was done. Light, air, land, vegetation, the celestial bodies, birds, fish, animals—all have sprung into existence at His word. Now the world is ready for what is to be its primary inhabitant. God says, "Let Us make man in our image." Does He speak him into existence, as He did all the rest of creation? No. He kneels down in the dirt and patiently, lovingly, shapes and forms a man. One by one, He molds each detail of this masterpiece. He forms him after His own likeness, with the power to think, to reason, to plan, to love—to choose. He fashions the eyes that will perceive fine details and many shades of color, and the hands capable of performing an enormous range of complex tasks. Then, when all is finished, He bends over His creation and breathes into his nostrils. The breath of life—the breath of God—is given to what has until now been mere dust. The man is literally inspired. The perfectly formed lungs inflate for the first time, and then deflate, beginning a cycle that will continue, virtually without interruption, for many hundreds of years to come. The heart begins to beat. The other systems begin their operation. This is no longer an intricate sculpture. This is a living soul. The man opens his eyes and looks into the face of his Creator.

Many people today teach that we are the product of random chance, that we are simply more highly evolved versions of other life forms. But the Bible teaches that we were created. Not only created, but created in a unique way, unlike any other being in the universe. God personally formed us in His own image. That's a subject for deep thought!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Testing ...

This is a test to see if the BLB Script Tagger I just installed will work. If it does, the following Scripture references (and any others on this blog from now on) should all be hyperlinks: Genesis 1:1; Psalm 1; Daniel 1:8; 2:20; Matt 1:21; Colossians 3:1-3; James 1:2, 3.

Let's see if this works ...


It does! :-)

Saturday, April 9, 2011

First Post

I've been thinking for some time about starting a personal blog. With my 17th birthday being today, I decided that now would be as good a time as any. I'm not sure how often I'll be able to update it, but I'll try to post something every now and then.

I have so many broad and diverse interests that at first I had a difficult time settling on a theme for this blog. "Miscellaneous Musings" seems to solve the problem for now. Perhaps, over time, some unifying theme might emerge. We'll see. At any rate, whether I post about aviation, music, Scripture, or simply everyday events, I hope that this blog will serve to edify its readers.

That's all for now. Happy Sabbath!