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Avoid Sin for Their Sake

Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Today we’ll be looking at the tenth chapter of Paul’s first letter to the church at Corinth. In this chapter, Paul reveals the true reasons why we continue to avoid sin, though we are saved.

Reading: I Corinthians 10

Before we begin this reading, it’s useful to know a bit about the history of Israel, particularly that laid out in the book of Exodus. Many of the references made here are only truly significant in that context.

Moreover, brethren, I would not that ye should be ignorant, how that all our fathers were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea;

When the children of Israel were led out of Egypt, they all passed through the Red Sea together, and they were all guided by the Lord, who appeared as a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night.

And were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea;

In this shared experience, they were all baptised in the same faith and bound to the larger family of Israel.

And did all eat the same spiritual meat;

All those who wandered in the desert were fed of manna and quail.

And did all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them: and that Rock was Christ.

All those who were there drank of the water which was brought from the rock which Moses struck. Here we begin to understand the metaphor – all of us are baptised into the same gospel, partakers of the same scripture, and recipients of the living water which will not run dry (that is, Christ).

But with many of them God was not well pleased: for they were overthrown in the wilderness.

Though they had seen all these miracles, and they were all children of Israel, still there was sin and human weakness. Man will not be truly free of these curses until the final day, when we are given perfect form and brought to be with God forever.

Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust after evil things, as they also lusted.

We know that there were idols made in the desert. Many grumbled about Moses’s leadership, despite the signs that were given to support him. These issues are listed to remind us of our plight – we may be redeemed, but we are not yet perfected.

Neither be ye idolaters, as were some of them; as it is written, The people sat down to eat and drink, and rose up to play.

Neither let us commit fornication, as some of them committed, and fell in one day three and twenty thousand.

When the golden calf was built in the desert, Moses punished the people by forcing them to drink water tainted with ground gold. When they committed great fornication, the very earth devoured those sinners. This is the example we have – sin and be punished.

Neither let us tempt Christ, as some of them also tempted, and were destroyed of serpents.

Many lost faith, and were punished for their sinful ways by poisonous serpents. In this case, we know that the Lord provided a way of salvation – if you looked upon the staff which Moses carried, you would live, though you would still suffer the pain.

10 Neither murmur ye, as some of them also murmured, and were destroyed of the destroyer.

Even Miriam, Moses’s sister, began to grumble about him. The Lord punished them all mightily, though at Moses’s urging he ultimately restored Miriam.

11 Now all these things happened unto them for examples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

12 Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.

Guard yourself against sin and complacency. When you think yourself holy, you are likely to give in to a number of temptations whose punishments are grave.

13 There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.

Remember that the Lord was compassionate to the children of Israel. When they complained about the manna, he gave them quail (after punishing their grumbling). When they built the idol, they were not immediately struck down, but they were disciplined. When they grumbled, they were punished by snakes, but still there was a method of salvation.

So it is today. God does not place temptations in our path, but he allows us to be tempted. Even so, he always gives us a way to resist and/or be redeemed when we fail.

14 Wherefore, my dearly beloved, flee from idolatry.

15 I speak as to wise men; judge ye what I say.

These are teachings which make sense to the wise, who are able to see the patterns and embrace truth. Paul gives us reasons, so that we may judge the truth of his words and find them good.

16 The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the communion of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the communion of the body of Christ?

“Communion” literally refers to the establishment and enjoyment of community. We are bound together in our communion of the body and the blood, which we share. This is why many denominations have given communion often – it both binds us together and celebrates our union with Christ.

17 For we being many are one bread, and one body: for we are all partakers of that one bread.

18 Behold Israel after the flesh: are not they which eat of the sacrifices partakers of the altar?

All those who eat of the food of the altar (that is, the priests) are bound in communion with God under the old covenant. We are bound with Christ in the new covenant which he has given to us.

19 What say I then? that the idol is any thing, or that which is offered in sacrifice to idols is any thing?

20 But I say, that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to devils, and not to God: and I would not that ye should have fellowship with devils.

While we are bound with each other in the communion of Christ, we may yet be bound with others under their deities. We know that the devils which the others worship are powerless against the Lord whom we serve, but it is still best to be with our own than with others.

21 Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.

22 Do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? are we stronger than he?

Recall that ours is a jealous God, who seeks our eternal and complete worship and loyalty. It is best that we act in accordance with this truth.

23 All things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient: all things are lawful for me, but all things edify not.

Though all of our sins are covered under the blood of Christ, not all things are good for us to do. It is of little value for us to make greater company with pagans and atheists than with those who belong to Christ – it has been said that we are the sum of the five closest people to us.

In the same way, we should seek out that which is good and right and true. This preserves us against all else, for we are steeped in that which is right and good and useful for us.

24 Let no man seek his own, but every man another’s wealth.

Care more for others than for yourself. This principle edifies the whole community of believers.

25 Whatsoever is sold in the shambles, that eat, asking no question for conscience sake:

Take what you get. Better is stale bread from a fellow believer than the richest cuisine from fools and liars.

26 For the earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof.

All things are made by our Lord, and all things belong to Him. He is sovereign over all things in this world, visible and invisible.

27 If any of them that believe not bid you to a feast, and ye be disposed to go; whatsoever is set before you, eat, asking no question for conscience sake.

If you know that you commune with idolaters, you may eat, but ask not whether the food is consecrated to a false deity. Call it “plausible deniability”, if you wish.

28 But if any man say unto you, this is offered in sacrifice unto idols, eat not for his sake that shewed it, and for conscience sake: for the earth is the Lord’s, and the fulness thereof:

Honor God above all things. This includes food, drink, and all other things. It’s also best not to buy idols and fortune trinkets, for you know the origins thereof.

29 Conscience, I say, not thine own, but of the other: for why is my liberty judged of another man’s conscience?

All this is less for our sake (because we know that there is no true danger to us from devils and idols) than it is for others. They will see your loyalty and earnestness, and wonder.

30 For if I by grace be a partaker, why am I evil spoken of for that for which I give thanks?

It’s a pity that we must be judged so, but it is true. We are ambassadors of our Lord, so we must act in ways that are not pleasant for His sake. Let them know how we love and serve our God, and wonder.

31 Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.

This is a key verse that all should know and meditate upon.

32 Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:

33 Even as I please all men in all things, not seeking mine own profit, but the profit of many, that they may be saved.

We are saved, but many are still not. We are redeemed, but many are still slaves to sin. We live, yet many are still dead.

Let us act in such a way that they wonder about the God we serve. Let them know that we worship a God who Lives and reigns. In this way, we profit others over ourselves, and many more may be granted the Glory.

 Let us Pray

Sovereign and Righteous is the Lord who reigns in the heavens. His might covers all the earth, and even the demons fear his name. Praise be to the Great God, who Lives.

Mighty Father, we know that we are to be ambassadors for you. Though we should do all things in accordance with your will, and we should do all things for your glory, we are yet trapped in a body of sin. Grant us the strength to overcome our weaknesses; show us the way out of all temptations and guide us down that path.

You are the God who is With Us. Jesus is the Prince of Peace and the King of Kings, so we know that we serve one with dominion over all things. Help us to continue in this faith which you have granted to us.

In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,

Amen

 

May the Lord go before you to lead you,

Behind you to encourage you,

Beside you to befriend you,

Beneath you to uphold you,

Above you to protect you,

And within you to inspire you.

Go in the peace and power of the Almighty God. Amen.

How the Apostles Live

Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Today we’ll be looking at the ninth chapter of Paul’s first letter to the Church at Corinth. In this chapter, Paul lays out the case for his Apostleship and the importance of self-sacrifice in our daily ministry.

Reading: I Corinthians 9

Am I am not an apostle? am I not free? have I not seen Jesus Christ our Lord? are not ye my work in the Lord?

This is an interesting question which the scholars of the Church have considered for years: is Paul an apostle? Generally, we think of the Apostles as those who were a) called for a specific purpose of leadership and evangelism by Christ Himself, and b) actually met Christ.

Paul met Jesus at least once on the road to Damascus, when he was still the zealous Pharisee known as Saul, and he was a dedicated evangelist and leader of the early Church. Based on verses like this and the histories recorded in Acts, we think of Paul as the Apostle to the Gentiles.

Here, Paul reminds the church of Corinth about his status, so that they may not question by whose authority he preaches.

2 If I be not an apostle unto others, yet doubtless I am to you: for the seal of mine apostleship are ye in the Lord.

What is the greatest mark of the Apostles? Surely it is the brethren to whom the brought the Gospel and who remained steadfast in the Faith.

3 Mine answer to them that do examine me is this,

4 Have we not power to eat and to drink?

The Apostles broke bread with the brethren, and shared with them the story of the “Last Supper” (where our Lord Jesus Christ shared the cup of the New Testament with the Apostles).

5 Have we not power to lead about a sister, a wife, as well as other apostles, and as the brethren of the Lord, and Cephas?

As Peter was an authority of the early Church (though not the Pope, as the Catholics preach), so was Paul.

6 Or I only and Barnabas, have not we power to forbear working?

More than half of the book of Acts records the miracles which Paul was given to work.

7 Who goeth a warfare any time at his own charges? who planteth a vineyard, and eateth not of the fruit thereof? or who feedeth a flock, and eateth not of the milk of the flock?

In summary, Paul is reminding the Church at Corinth of how he “sowed churches” but did not profit from them nor demand anything of them but obedience to Christ.

8 Say I these things as a man? or saith not the law the same also?

Paul calls to the Scriptures to verify that what he preaches is not merely his teaching, but matches what is revealed in the Scriptures. It is not merely Paul who preaches, but the Word of God.

9 For it is written in the law of Moses, thou shalt not muzzle the mouth of the ox that treadeth out the corn. Doth God take care for oxen?

10 Or saith he it altogether for our sakes? For our sakes, no doubt, this is written: that he that ploweth should plow in hope; and that he that thresheth in hope should be partaker of his hope.

While the oxen pull the plow or tread out the corn (that is, while work is being done), they will tire quickly if they are unable to feed or rest. In the same way, while Paul and the Apostles spread the Gospel and instruct the brethren, they must be able to sustain their lives.

11 If we have sown unto you spiritual things, is it a great thing if we shall reap your carnal things?

Is Paul demanding all the wealth of the Church? God forbid! Instead, he asks that they support their brethren while they toil in service of our Lord.

This is the basis by which we ask for donations for ministry, and the reason why it is incumbent on us to provide for our toiling brethren.

12 If others be partakers of this power over you, are not we rather? Nevertheless we have not used this power; but suffer all things, lest we should hinder the gospel of Christ.

While the Apostles surely would merit great generosity (as they shared with those yet unbelieving the Gospel of Life), they do not demand great wealth for their “services”. This puts them in stark contrast to the likes of Joyce Meyer, the Hillsong church, and their ilk, who demand heavy payment and thus both restrict their messages and undermine the public impression of the Church.

13 Do ye not know that they which minister about holy things live of the things of the temple? and they which wait at the altar are partakers with the altar?

14 Even so hath the Lord ordained that they which preach the gospel should live of the gospel.

Since time immemorial, priests have partaken of the offerings. Much of the Levitical law describes the offerings that will be offered to God, and the portions which the priests would be permitted to take. In this way, their focus could remain on things of God.

15 But I have used none of these things: neither have I written these things, that it should be so done unto me: for it were better for me to die, than that any man should make my glorying void.

16 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!

If it were not for the Gospel, Paul would have nothing to show for his work. Indeed, the greatest value he received during his time as Apostle was fellowship with the expanding Church.

17 For if I do this thing willingly, I have a reward: but if against my will, a dispensation of the gospel is committed unto me.

18 What is my reward then? Verily that, when I preach the gospel, I may make the gospel of Christ without charge, that I abuse not my power in the gospel.

The Good News that we have in Jesus Christ is for all men, regardless of wealth or status (for God is no respecter of persons). In that spirit, Paul preached the word freely and without expectation of any worldly gains. This is consistent with Jesus’ teaching in the Sermon on the Mount, which called for offerings to be given in secret and prayers to be offered humbly.

19 For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more.

The Gospel grants us great freedom, for we need no longer worry about the Law which condemns our sins nor fear death and the world to come. Even so, Paul humbled himself as Christ humbled himself – to willingly become a servant.

20 And unto the Jews I became as a Jew, that I might gain the Jews; to them that are under the law, as under the law, that I might gain them that are under the law;

He approaches the Jews as a Jew, in full willing submission to the Law which no longer binds him. This allows him to serve them more readily, that they might accept him and receive the teachings that he brings.

21 To them that are without law, as without law, (being not without law to God, but under the law to Christ,) that I might gain them that are without law.

When he passes among the Gentiles, he does not keep Kosher, because they do not keep Kosher. He approaches them as a fellow Gentile, that he might be accepted and preach to them the good news of Christ.

22 To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

This is one of my favorite verses.

What’s the value of approaching atheists as though they both believed the Scriptures and understood the truths contained therein? Or what is the value of approaching Muslims with a BLT and a dog? They will repel you before you are able to share the truth with them.

Instead, approach them based on what they can already understand and receive, so that you might share with them the Truth.

This is one of the big reasons why I have read the Dao De Ching, the Sacred Havamal, and the Annalects of Confucius. If I can speak the Gospel using words and concepts that those around me can understand, then I can show them the greatness of our Lord.

23 And this I do for the gospel’s sake, that I might be partaker thereof with you.

24 Know ye not that they which run in a race run all, but one receiveth the prize? So run, that ye may obtain.

Mediocrity is not for the Church.

25 And every man that striveth for the mastery is temperate in all things. Now they do it to obtain a corruptible crown; but we an incorruptible.

People who master the guitar tend to apply great effort and focus toward the task, and as such learn a great deal about obtaining success. The same is true of those who study business, or art, or philosophy.

We obtain the same benefits, but we work to master something greater – an understanding and reliance on the Holy Spirit which is given us by Christ. The Donald Trumps and George Soros-es of the world will eventually die and lose access to what they have built, but we who are in Christ will gain everything. Thus, our determination should be even greater than theirs.

26 I therefore so run, not as uncertainly; so fight I, not as one that beateth the air:

27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.

Godly living and wisdom is a struggle to obtain and a struggle to live out, but the value is immeasuable.

Let us Pray

I lift up mine eyes to the hills, from whence cometh my help. My help comes from the Lord, the maker of heaven and earth. He who fed the children of Israel manna and quail in the desert, he who brought forth water from the rock. Great is the Lord who Provides.

Teach us, mighty Lord, how we might be as Paul, “all things to all people”. This teaching can be difficult for us, because we are often taught to act and thing and speak and live a specific way. Make us ready to speak to anyone about the hope that we have in Christ.

Further, Lord, we know that You care for the sparrows of the air and the fish of the sea. They do not wonder where each day’s meal will come from, yet we live with such questions and their associated fears. Make us to understand and embrace the provision that You will provide to us, so that we may live without fear in the love which You have for us.

We ask all these things in the name of the Lord Jesus Christ, our great high priest who has made intercession between us and You.

Amen

 

Go in God’s peace, brethren, meditating day and night on the Word of Truth which has been revealed to us.

Amen.

Brother Aurelius Moner – 5 Prayers

Again, I link to the work of Brother Aurelius Moner, who this time speaks of the “Five Most Perfect Prayers of the Church“.

Of course, he points to the Lord’s Prayer as the best, and then the Hail Mary (because he’s a Catholic). He then speaks on the Doxology (“Glory be to the Father and Son and Holy Ghost, as it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, unto ages of ages, amen.”), the Apostles/Nicene Creeds, and finally the Psalms.

Now, I may not be a fan of the Hail Mary (which I believe has crossed from celebration of her status as the virgin mother of Christ into direct worship), but I appreciate his take on the subject at hand. It’s worth a read.

Prayer is an expression of the Spirit which is in us, which points us back to God our Father, who is Lord over all things. Pray, then, as often as you are able.

Now enter into the season of Lent with all due reflection and contemplation. Our Lord Jesus Christ lives forever, and in this season we meditate on his teaching and his death.

Protect the Weaker Brother

Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Today’s reading is taken from Paul’s first epistle to the Church at Corinth. In this eighth chapter, Paul addresses concerns about food offered up to idols, and how to deal with issues that might concern those struggling to understand the faith which we possess.

Reading: I Corinthians 8

Now as touching things offered unto idols, we know that we all have knowledge. Knowledge puffeth up, but charity edifieth.

How many of us make claim to some form of knowledge, and feel proud of our insight and wisdom? This pride, as with most pride, builds up the ego while providing little of value to others.

Charity – the application of knowledge to help others – serves us all better. Rather than being proud of ourselves and our great intellect, it is better to put that knowledge into use.

And if any man think that he knoweth any thing, he knoweth nothing yet as he ought to know.

This reflects Socrates’s reflection on his own wisdom – he did not know much, but he was fully aware of what he did not know. According to the Oracle at Delphi, this made him the wisest man in all of Greece. Unfortunately, a cursory reading of Plato’s records suggests that Socrates let this supremacy go to his head at times.

But if any man love God, the same is known of him.

Surely it is better to be known as a God-fearing man, who does good and shuns evil, than a man who knows all things. The second is isolated on his mountain of knowledge, while the first is both admired in this world and the next.

As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one.

For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,)

But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.

What is an idol? We know that no spiritual creature can compare to the Lord, and we know also that many idols honor no spirit – they serve only to pacify the need for God in the minds and hearts of those who are yet dead.

Nothing sacrificed in the name of an idol can be tainted, because the idol possesses no power. Further, even if the sacrifice is in honor of a real spirit, that spirit cannot possibly surpass the might and glory of the One God, the Father. And if the sacrifice is in honor of some lord, that lord cannot compare the the Lord Jesus Christ.

Therefore, we need not consider such things when we receive food, shelter, or services.

Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge: for some with conscience of the idol unto this hour eat it as a thing offered unto an idol; and their conscience being weak is defiled.

Not everyone is prepared to understand and receive that truth. This is particularly true of those young in faith – for they have lived long in the shadow of death, and fear its touch. As they grow, they are brought to the realization that the Life which is in Christ is beyond all powers of death and darkness.

But meat commendeth us not to God: for neither, if we eat, are we the better; neither, if we eat not, are we the worse.

God doesn’t care if you eat food blessed by a Rabbi, a priest, a Cthulhu cultist, or no one. He doesn’t care if you receive charity from a fellow Christian or from a Pagan. His presence nullifies any perceived negative spiritual consequences of such matters.

But take heed lest by any means this liberty of yours become a stumblingblock to them that are weak.

It is best that we take consideration for the needs of our weaker brethren, as a big brother watches out for his younger siblings. As much as it depends on us, we should help each other to grow in the faith, not allow each other to wallow in confusion and doubt.

10 For if any man see thee which hast knowledge sit at meat in the idol’s temple, shall not the conscience of him which is weak be emboldened to eat those things which are offered to idols;

11 And through thy knowledge shall the weak brother perish, for whom Christ died?

This principle – that of preserving the brother from encountering that which might confuse him – is especially important in matters we have not yet considered.

Many books now exist speaking about guardian angels and communing with such spirits. We know that the angels which the Lord sends among us will be known, and their messages will be received, for that is their purpose among us. Further, when the Lord sends angels to protect us, we know that their tasks will be fulfilled in accordance with His will. The praise belongs to the Lord, with whom we may speak freely and without restraint, but these books teach prayers to the angels. It is imperative that we protect our brethren from such manipulative doctrines, which may well lead them astray.

I own several texts on witchcraft and wicca, and I was for a time a practitioner of such teachings. This was neither good nor correct, and for a long time I had to resist anything that had a connection to such pagan teachings. I was the weaker brother – it was important that I not even pray silently, so that I could be certain that I was not embracing a pagan trance.

And, while on the subject of prayer and meditation, these things are good and beneficial for the stronger brethren among us. However, if the weaker brother connects meditation to practices and teachings such as Hindu Yoga, we should refrain from talking about such things near him, so that he does not fall into bad teachings.

Suffice it to say, this principle applies to any number of things.

12 But when ye sin so against the brethren, and wound their weak conscience, ye sin against Christ.

13 Wherefore, if meat make my brother to offend, I will eat no flesh while the world standeth, lest I make my brother to offend.

It may seem a bit extreme, but Paul was willing to refrain from anything that might cause internal conflict among his brethren. If they were concerned about meat being blessed by a pagan ritual, Paul would eat no meat (which, I assume, he quite enjoyed otherwise).

Let us Pray

Mighty God, who is like you among the heavens? With a word, you lay the mountains low and cause the seas to stir. And, with a word, you calm the storms and heal the sick. Truly you are the One God, the Father Almighty.

And blessed is the Lord Jesus Christ, who being of one substance with the Father, took up the form of a servant, and humbled himself unto death upon the cross. To our Lord be all praise and glory, for his is the Name above all names.

As you sanctify us by the Word and the Holy Spirit, we come to understand many things that were formerly mysteries to us. However, we know that many of our brothers struggle, as the Spirit has yet to reveal these things to them. Teach us and guide us so that we may not cause any of our brothers to stumble – rather, help us to minister to their needs, so that they too might come to a fuller understanding of the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

We ask these things of you, the Father, by the blood of the Son which has redeemed us, and by the Holy Spirit who abides with us and teaches us all things.

Amen.

 

May the Lord preserve you in the Faith which you have received, and may you dwell in the richness of his presence now and forever.

Amen.

On Sex (Yeah, that should grab their attention)

Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Today’s reading is from Paul’s first letter to the Church of Corinth. In this seventh chapter, Paul speaks at length about celibacy, marriage, and why some people should do one and some the other.

Reading: I Corinthians 7

Now concerning the things whereof ye wrote unto me: It is good for a man not to touch a woman.

On its face, this would seem to contradict what God said in Genesis – that woman was made to “complete” man (literally: a helper suitable for man), and that we are to fill the earth and subdue it.

However, it is not necessary that every man should be married to a woman, nor every woman to a man, in order to fulfill these commandments. For some men (in particular), a higher calling supplants the physical urge to be with a woman. Paul appears to have been one of these men.

Nevertheless, to avoid fornication, let every man have his own wife, and let every woman have her own husband.

Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.

Paul has already laid out the case against fornication. Because we have physical urges (natural, and placed there by God) to lay with members of the opposite sex, it is much preferable for each man to marry one woman, and each woman marry one man.

In this marriage, the man must be good to his wife, and the wife good to her husband. After all, the Scriptures say that “the man cleaves unto his wife, and the two become one flesh.” As it is unnatural to purposely injure our own flesh, so too must we act toward our partners.

The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.

In this way, power is distributed between the husband and wife. She belongs to him, and he belongs to her. This is a balance, and beneficial for them and their offspring.

Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.

Generally speaking, the reason you got married in the first place was to “become one flesh.” Paul instructs married couples to have regular intercourse, so that (for example) a blue-balled man has no reason to go after some hot young harlot.

But I speak this by permission, and not of commandment.

For I would that all men were even as I myself. But every man hath his proper gift of God, one after this manner, and another after that.

Paul is drawn to the cause of ministry to such an extent that he is largely without the desire for a wife. This gives him great fulfillment, such that he would wish it on everyone he knows.

But, not everyone is given to such a focused cause. In fact, relatively few are.

I say therefore to the unmarried and widows, it is good for them if they abide even as I.

But if they cannot contain, let them marry: for it is better to marry than to burn.

Here is the heart of the teaching. One does not have to marry if one is not drawn to do so; this leaves them time and resources to pursue other quests. But, if one is drawn in by the desires of the flesh, it is better to marry than fornicate.

10 And unto the married I command, yet not I, but the Lord, Let not the wife depart from her husband:

11 But and if she depart, let her remain unmarried or be reconciled to her husband: and let not the husband put away his wife.

Divorce defeats the purpose of marriage. Two become one flesh, then go on to become one flesh with others. This is, fundamentally, no different from fornication.

However, in the event that the two do become divorced, they defeat the problems associated with fornication by eschewing sexual relationships with any but their original spouse.

It is interesting to note that, even in this time, divorce was apparantly primarily initiated by the woman. We see that the majority of all divorces in the Western world are caused when a “wife departs from her husband” – is this so common and ancient?

12 But to the rest speak I, not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away.

13 And the woman which hath an husband that believeth not, and if he be pleased to dwell with her, let her not leave him.

14 For the unbelieving husband is sanctified by the wife, and the unbelieving wife is sanctified by the husband: else were your children unclean; but now are they holy.

This teaching is of Paul, and not necessarily of the Lord. However, because of the Spirit that dwells in Paul, it is good to adopt such teachings.

There are thousands of stories of a believing woman bearing witness to the salvation of her husband. The author of the famous hymn, “Amazing Grace”, is one such instance. So, too, have many believing men born witness to the salvation of their wives. God is good, and He has caused many such things to occur.

15 But if the unbelieving depart, let him depart. A brother or a sister is not under bondage in such cases: but God hath called us to peace.

16 For what knowest thou, O wife, whether thou shalt save thy husband? or how knowest thou, O man, whether thou shalt save thy wife?

17 But as God hath distributed to every man, as the Lord hath called every one, so let him walk. And so ordain I in all churches.

Jesus spoke about being unequally yoked with the nonbeliever. It is a great strain on the Christian mind to know that one’s partner is, at least at present, on a path toward hellfire. We all pray for the salvation of those nonbelievers for whom we care so dearly, but it may not come to pass.

For the Lord alone is sovereign. He draws some sinners to repentance, and He allows some others to continue in their sin. We can do nothing to force salvation on anyone.

This is why Paul teaches the Christians to allow the non-believers to walk away. If God draws them, they will return in His time.

18 Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised. Is any called in uncircumcision? let him not be circumcised.

19 Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God.

20 Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called.

This is a copy of the teaching handed down by the Apostles in the book of Acts. The Jewish Christians were tormenting the Gentile Christians, claiming that they had to become circumcised in order to truly belong to the Kingdom of God. The Apostles rebuked this teaching, and Paul echoes that rebuke here.

It matters little to the Lord whether we are circumcised or not. The same can be said for marriage, so long as we do not engage in sin.

21 Art thou called being a servant? care not for it: but if thou mayest be made free, use it rather.

22 For he that is called in the Lord, being a servant, is the Lord’s freeman: likewise also he that is called, being free, is Christ’s servant.

23 Ye are bought with a price; be not ye the servants of men.

There is no difference in the Lord between slave and free. A Christian man who believes, despite his bondage in this world, is as much a Christian as the freeman.

However, because we have been “bought” by Christ’s death, we are to be His servants. This is a correct response to such generosity.

24 Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.

25 Now concerning virgins I have no commandment of the Lord: yet I give my judgment, as one that hath obtained mercy of the Lord to be faithful.

26 I suppose therefore that this is good for the present distress, I say, that it is good for a man so to be.

27 Art thou bound unto a wife? seek not to be loosed. Art thou loosed from a wife? seek not a wife.

Virginity is good. Lack of virginity is not bad.

Of course, if one engages in fornication in order to lose one’s virginity, that carries the problems of fornication. And if the non-virgin does not engage in sex, that is not a problem, either.

The Bible is largely silent on this issue (except in the case of Mary, because it is a miracle for a virgin to birth a son).

28 But and if thou marry, thou hast not sinned; and if a virgin marry, she hath not sinned. Nevertheless such shall have trouble in the flesh: but I spare you.

Marriage comes with problems. Anyone who tells you otherwise is a fool or a liar.

29 But this I say, brethren, the time is short: it remaineth, that both they that have wives be as though they had none;

30 And they that weep, as though they wept not; and they that rejoice, as though they rejoiced not; and they that buy, as though they possessed not;

31 And they that use this world, as not abusing it: for the fashion of this world passeth away.

Life on this earth is very brief, especially for the Christian in a land that despises Christ. These matters are concerns of the present life, which lasts only a few years, while the Christian is more deeply concerned with the Life to Come. Therefore, Paul has little interest in continuing this discussion much further.

32 But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:

33 But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.

Anyone who has been around a man before and after marriage can attest to the truth of this statement. A wife restricts the amount of time and resources one can expend in service of the Lord, by virtue of her own needs – this is a natural consequence of such contracts.

34 There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.

Some use this teaching to argue against marriage altogether. However, not everyone is given to the cause of the Lord – if a woman wishes to bear children (and a great majority does), let her marry and bear children with her husband.

35 And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.

36 But if any man think that he behaveth himself uncomely toward his virgin, if she pass the flower of her age, and need so require, let him do what he will, he sinneth not: let them marry.

Here, Paul is speaking about marrying a woman who has passed the age of her greatest beauty and child-bearing potential. You don’t “take her from the Lord” if you marry her at this age – she’s unlikely to change much over the course of such a marriage.

Personally, I don’t see why a man should do such a thing in the modern age, but that’s me. If a woman expends her youth and child-bearing years working, I see little reason to marry her, because the greatest values of marriage (children) are no longer possible. But I am young, and could yet be wrong.

37 Nevertheless he that standeth stedfast in his heart, having no necessity, but hath power over his own will, and hath so decreed in his heart that he will keep his virgin, doeth well.

Here Paul celebrates the will of the celibate-by-choice. There is no great value in involuntary celibacy, where a man desires to be with a woman but is unable to find even a partner for fornication, but the celibate-by-choice has great self-control and will, and is able to do great things with his time and resources.

38 So then he that giveth her in marriage doeth well; but he that giveth her not in marriage doeth better.

39 The wife is bound by the law as long as her husband liveth; but if her husband be dead, she is at liberty to be married to whom she will; only in the Lord.

40 But she is happier if she so abide, after my judgment: and I think also that I have the Spirit of God.

This same teaching of celibacy for men is good for women, and for much the same reasons. If a woman is content in abstaining from sex and marriage, it is good to remain in such a state.

Let us Pray

Blessed be the Lord our God, who has done marvelous things. Let us praise him in our words and our works, so that the world might see our good deeds and praise our Father in Heaven.

Father, these teachings are difficult for us. We are a people given to all manner of foolishness – we heed not wisdom, nor understand it when we see it. Give us understanding, Lord, so that we may show our love for you by doing as you direct.

We thank you that you have covered over our multitude of sins. Truly You are the Just and Merciful Lord, who has great compassion for us.

In the name of the Heavenly Father, our Lord Jesus Christ the Son, and the Holy Spirit who abides with us:

Amen

 

May the Lord bless you and keep you

May he make His face to shine upon you

And be gracious unto you

May the Lord look upon you with favor

And give you his peace.

Amen.

Judgment on the Vilest Fornicators

Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Today we’re going to look at the fifth chapter of Paul’s first letter to the church at Corinth. This was a church wracked with sin, and Paul has some very interesting advice for the church. This chapter is one of the sources from which we get the concept of “excommunication”.

Reading: I Corinthians 5

It is reported commonly that there is fornication among you, and such fornication as is not so much as named among the Gentiles, that one should have his father’s wife.

Even at this time, when Corinth was known for its obsession with sex and adultery (“Corinthian” was an insult not unlike “whore” or “slut”), there were things generally considered taboo. These acts were not yet named, because they were considered so vile that names were unnecessary.

Unfortunately, we live in a time where such things are not only named, but celebrated. This is abhorrent.

2 And ye are puffed up, and have not rather mourned, that he that hath done this deed might be taken away from among you.

Look at that – the early church had its share of deviants and “entryists”, too. They managed to convince themselves that such acts as are considered vile even by the unsaved Gentiles are good, right, and praiseworthy. That is invariably the mark of a sinful people.

3 For I verily, as absent in body, but present in spirit, have judged already, as though I were present, concerning him that hath so done this deed,

4 In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, when ye are gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,

5 To deliver such an one unto Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

This is a hard teaching.

By whose authority does Paul call for the Corinthians to excommunicate (that is, cut off from the church) this fornicator? He passes judgment within the church, on the authority of Jesus Christ, through the Spirit.

Why does he pass this judgment? Because the sinner is not merely unrepentant, but celebrates his sin. In so doing, he has spread his sin among his brethren, causing them to share in his celebration of depravity and ill vice.

What is this judgment? Paul calls for the believers to remove the celebrating sinner from their midst. This protects the church from absorbing his acceptance of sin, and through social pressure perhaps the sinner might come to repent. This is the reason for the “shaming” that our culture abhors.

6 Your glorying is not good. Know ye not that a little leaven leaveneth the whole lump?

7 Purge out therefore the old leaven, that ye may be a new lump, as ye are unleavened. For even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us:

8 Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.

It takes very little yeast to cause an entire loaf of bread to rise. As it works its way into the bread, the entire bread becomes “contaminated”. If you’re trying to make flatbread and use even a little yeast, it will cease to be flatbread.

This same is true of organizations, as we are seeing more and more in the US. Not only is the church corrupted with teachers preaching the “prosperity doctrine”, contemporary teachings (not derived from scripture), and all forms of pagan mystical practices, but other organizations are being corrupted by “entryists”. GitHub is hemorrhaging money on social causes that have demonstrated no value. Wikipedia has allowed itself to become as partisan a political entity as the DNC.

Let this be a warning: do not suffer the wicked to thrive in your midst, for they will corrupt you and your children.

This is why the Catholic church in particular has such waning attendance: centuries of corruption have produced an entity that drives many toward “atheism”. It is also why so many leave the church in their youth.

9 I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:

10 Yet not altogether with the fornicators of this world, or with the covetous, or extortioners, or with idolaters; for then must ye needs go out of the world.

11 But now I have written unto you not to keep company, if any man that is called a brother be a fornicator, or covetous, or an idolator, or a railer, or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with such an one no not to eat.

Jim Rohn popularized a saying: “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” As social creatures, we are driven to adapt and conform with those around us. However, we are called to “be not conformed to this world” (Romans 12:2). In order to do so, we must make preference to be with those who are of the Lord.

Generally, this saying is powerful for everyone – if you want to be like Joe, you should spend more time with Joe. If you want to be like Trump, spend time with Trump (or someone similar – not everyone can hang with Trump). So, too, if you wish to be like Christ, spend time with Christ.

12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?

13 But them that are without God judgeth. Therefore put away from among yourselves that wicked person.

The Church must moderate its own, but it has no business moderating those without the church. This is a reasonable teaching – what business does California have telling Texas what it can and cannot do? Or what business does Saudi Arabia have telling Britain how its citizens should live?

Let God pass the final judgment on those who are not among the brethren. Instead, in this day of salvation, pray for them and seek their redemption.

Let us Pray

Lord, you are truly the One God. We thank you that you are with us, you who are sovereign over all things.

Help us to receive the hard teachings, Lord. We live in a world of sin and depravity, which has sought to spread its leaven through the Church. Give us the strength and wisdom to expel the wicked from our congregation, so that we may continue to serve You in a world of sin.

Bring all to repentance and salvation, in accordance with your will,

Amen.

 

May the Lord make every path straight before you, and preserve you in the Word. Amen.

How to Use Big-O Notation

As we design functions, we have to consider how they will work in the real world. There are two common considerations as we compare solutions:

Time complexity – The amount of time it will take for our solution to complete
Space complexity – The amount of memory that our solution will consume

Unfortunately, because we can’t afford to test every solution in the exact conditions under which it will operate (and, let’s face it, we have no idea), we have to find a way to determine complexity without actual data. This is where mathematics come to the rescue.

Big-O Notation

There are three possible ranges of complexity we could look at:

  • The smallest possible situation (little-o notation)
  • The largest possible situation (Omega notation)
  • The average situation (Big-O notation)

Big-O notation shows us how a function scales with bigger and smaller data sets. We use the algebraic “n” to hold this number, and then we look at the function to determine how a change in “n” changes the time or space requirements. Common answers look like this:

  • O(1) – The size of the data has no effect on the size or time
  • O(log(n)) – The difference between larger data sets is less than that between smaller data sets (looks like a logarithmic curve)
  • O(n) – changing the size increases cost linearly (consistent increase)
  • O(n^2) – larger data sets increase the cost much more than smaller data sets (looks like a square curve)
  • O(n^y) – Larger data sets REALLY increase the cost

That probably doesn’t make a lot of sense, so let’s work through a few examples.

Example 1: A for loop

Let’s look at a common-sense for loop. In these cases…

int i;
int n;

for(i=0; i<n; i++)
{

}

In this case, we can easily determine the big-O notation, because we know that the for loop will execute once for every value of n. That means that the actual time cost of the for loop is x*n, where x is the time it takes to go through the for loop. The x is constant and (theoretically) much smaller than n, so we ignore it.

Thus, the big-O notation is:

O(n)

Example 2: The bubble sort

Now we’ll look at a sort algorithm, which we know always have a complexity between O(n*log(n)) and O(n^2) because nice mathematicians have proved it for us. This algorithm takes a set of unsorted data and returns a set of sorted data:

int i,j;
int data[n];
int hold;

//Go through all the data in the set
for(i=0; i&lt;n; i++)
{
    //We're going to put the smallest value in the &quot;i-th&quot; position
    //compare against all the unsorted data
    for(j=i; j&lt;n; j++)
    {
        //If we find something smaller, move it to the &quot;smallest&quot; place
        if(data[j] &lt; data[i])
        {
            hold = data[i];
            data[i] = data[j];
            data[j] = hold;
        }
    }
    //Now the &quot;smallest&quot; position has the smallest value in the set
}

If we think about it, as the algorithm goes through the set, it has to go through most of the set at each stage. Mathematically, it looks like this:

n + (n-1) + (n-2) + (n-3) + … + (n – (n-1))

If we reorganize and simplify, it looks like this:

n^2 – (n)

n is much lower than n^2, so we can safely ignore it, leaving us with a Big-O notation of:

O(n^2)

The Formula

When you need to solve for Big-O notation, you go through these steps:

  1. Write out your function
  2. Step through and figure out how many loops depend on the size of the data (n)
  3. Find the mathematic formula that describes just these loops
  4. Simplify
  5. Consider only the largest factor for Big-O notation
  6. Write a paper to convince your professor that this was really hard
  7. Win

Cleaning up – Comment out old code

If you’ve spent any appreciable time in the programming world, you’ve probably reorganized your code any number of times. When I’m writing code, I usually slap things out as I think of them, resulting in code that (while easy enough to read) defies the principle of unity. You’ll see me write things like this:

int main()
{
    int i, j, k=0;

    char * message = &quot;Says something\n&quot;;

    ...

    if(bad_input(input))
    {    
        printf(&quot;%s&quot;, message);
    }
    char * pandamonium = NULL;
    fill(pandamonium);

    ...

    struct a_structure * thisone = (struct a_structure *) malloc(sizeof(struct a_structure);

    ...
}

You see my point. While there’s nothing functionally wrong with this code, we usually want to put all of our variables up top in one “data” section. This is something of a holdover from assembly languages (which have distinct sections for data and code), but it’s not a bad practice at all. Generally, we try to keep this standard.

Reorganizing these things, though, often introduces a number of errors. They can be a hair unpredictable – I recently dealt with a reorg that invariably threw SEG_FAULTs, even though the code appears functionally equivalent to the original.

There’s one way to ensure that you always have code that works, even as you reorganize it:

Comment the old code out instead of deleting it.

It’s a simple process:

  1. Copy your code out, so now you have two identical copies of the same blocks.
  2. Use either block comments or precompiler comments (I use #if 0 … #endif, but /*…*/ works just as well) to isolate one of those working pieces
  3. Rearrange the un-commented code, and test relatively often.
  4. If you can’t figure out why the reorg is broken, at least you don’t have to rewrite the function.

When you’re 100% happy with your reorg, you can delete the commented-out code, but until then the cost of duplicate code is too low to consider against the cost of rewrites.

The Apostles, Lowest Among the Believers?

Grace and Peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Today’s reading comes from the fourth chapter of the Apostle Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians. In this chapter, Paul speaks of the role of the Apostles among the brethren; much of what he says can equally apply to any leader in the church.

Reading: I Corinthians 4

Let a man so account of us, as of the ministers of Christ, and stewards of the mysteries of God.

The Greek word for “stewardship” is “oikonomia”, from which we get the word “economy”. The word literally means “management of the house”, but it describes the management of any resources or materials for yourself and your kin.

We are stewards of the mysteries of God, meaning that he has entrusted these things to us for management. It is our job to know them, distribute them, and preserve them from the ravages of time and poor interpretation.

Moreover it is required in stewards, that a man be found faithful.

Indeed, who would entrust their accounts to the likes of Bernie Madoff, knowing that he is a criminal who mismanaged the accounts of thousands. So, too, must we be faithful to our God who has entrusted these things to us.

But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of you, or of man’s judgment: yea, I judge not mine own self.

For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not hereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord.

Therefore judge nothing before the time, until the Lord come, who both will bring to light the hidden things of darkness, and will make manifest the counsels of the hearts: and then shall every man have praise of God.

Most non-Christians are aware of the verse from Matthew 7: “Judge not…”. However, they know neither the context for that command nor the meaning of judgement in the Church.

Do you care more about what your coworkers think of you or what your bosses think? If your bosses love you, you are safe from punishment and guaranteed better work, but if they hate you your employment is at risk. So it is with the judgement of man and that of God.

We pass no sentence on people, saying, “You will never be saved, and you will die in your sins and be consigned to hell.” Even the Apostle Paul was once a Jewish Zealot responsible for the persecution and execution of a number of Christians, but the Lord saw fit to redeem him. So it is that we must curse no man.

This does not mean that we are to hold our tongues on matters of Sin. The man who says, “The law says you must not …” does not condemn anyone, for he has no power to pass sentence. For example, if you were driving and someone said, “You’re going 15 over, and I see cops”, is he a judge passing sentence upon you? No – they have shown great love for you by correcting your behavior before it was too late.

And these things, brethren, I have in a figure transferred to myself and to Apollos for your sakes; that ye might learn in us not to think of men above that which is written, that no one of you be puffed up for one against another.

We tend to get a bit full of ourselves, and we tend to venerate other men with traits that we admire. However, it is foolish to think of the likes of Joel Osteen or Robert Beisert as anything greater than man. This same is true of all “idols” – the Kardashians, Ronald Reagan, Bernie Sanders, “the government”, etc.

For who maketh thee to differ from another? and what hast thou that thou didst not receive? now if thou didst receive it, why dost thou glory, as if thou hadst not received it?

Now ye are full, now ye are rich, ye have reigned as kings without us: and I would to God ye did reign, that we also might reign with you.

Paul is pointing out that the Lord gives rich blessings to all who believe, and these gifts are not the result of our labors. It is within every Christian in whom the Spirit dwells to be a priest, under the Great High Priest (that is, Christ). We look to religious authorities with such awe, often unaware that that same Spirit is with us.

Therefore, let us not act as though the Apostles, Priests, or Saints are more than mere men. Praise instead the God who has given them those teachings which we are made to receive.

And beware any man who says, “Acknowledge me, for I am doubly blessed in the Spirit.” When Peter healed the lame man in the temple, he commanded him to praise the Lord alone. When Paul survived the serpent’s bite, he commanded the people of Malta to worship the God who saved him.

For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.

10 We are fools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.

Those whom the Lord has chosen as apostles are set out before the whole world as beacons of Christ. They travelled alone or in very small groups, poor and hungry. They were set out before the authorities and challenged. They were stoned and thrown out of towns.

11 Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace;

12 And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it:

13 Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.

Jesus warned his disciples that those who reviled Him would come to revile His children. They killed him, and they will kill us. They sought to punish and reprimand Him for speaking the Truth, and so they will do to us. They hated Him for acting in accordance with the Will of God, and not that of man. So, too, will they come for us.

Still, Jesus was good to those same people who hated Him. For we all were enemies of Christ, and now we sit at His table as Children of the Father.

14 I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.

15 For though ye have ten thousand instructers in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.

Fathers have a very special role. They are teachers, providers, instructors, sources of discipline and love, leaders, and defenders. Some of us are able to fill one of these roles, but few are able to be all these things to a congregation. For this reason, many congregations have a collection of leaders.

16 Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.

17 For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church.

Timothy was Paul’s metaphorical firstborn. He sat at Paul’s feet for years, growing in wisdom and faith and the Holy Spirit. Though Paul may not be able to come to his children in hour of need or doubt, the presence of Timothy is not unlike that of his “father”.

18 Now some are puffed up, as though I would not come to you.

19 But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord will, and will know, not the speech of them which are puffed up, but the power.

20 For the kingdom of God is not in word, but in power.

21 What will ye? shall I come unto you with a rod, or in love, and in the spirit of meekness?

Many in the church of Corinth were haughty, lording their status over others and passing a number of judgements against them. Paul knew this well, and so he sends to them this warning. If they did not correct their ways, then Paul would come to them in righteous anger, but if they repented he would come in love and restoration.

Let us Pray

Most merciful and Holy Father; Jesus Christ, the Son; and the Holy Spirit. We praise you, for the LORD our God is One God. Let us worship no others before You.

We thank you that you sent the Apostles among us, so that they could be both our brothers and our fathers. Thank you for the teachings of the Apostle Paul, who was sent among the Gentiles to explain the mysteries to us. And thank you that His words are passed down to us so clearly from the age of antiquity.

Grant us, as always, a greater knowledge of You and Your Word. Give us the gift of understanding, and grant us the ability to explain and teach, so that we may build up one another.

We ask these things in the name of the Lord who Saves, who is God With Us – our Lord, Jesus Christ…

Amen.

 

May the Lord bless you and keep you

May he make his face shine on you, and be gracious unto you

May he look upon you with favor

And give you his peace.

Go in peace, my brothers in Christ.

A Quick Request

I’m still not back from my holiday due to an important family concern, so I’ll not be ready to resume my regular posting schedule until after next week. I’m a bit disappointed in myself, because I do strive to put out content every week, but sometimes life happens.

I do have one request for you all: if you like what you’ve read under the tags “Linux + C”, “Computer Science 101”, or “Patterns”, please leave some reviews on Amazon for my books. While the majority of the content of these books is available here for free, these books help me keep the website up and reach a population that has yet to discover my blog(s).

Thanks for the support, and Happy New Year!

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