Hello friends. My name is Arjay B. Araña, I’m a Filipino, and this is Swordsman Beginnings — my study journal for my blogging ministry, Swordsman of the Word™. The essays that I will write someday find their beginnings here. This is their birthplace.
Unfortunately, my work for my primary website, Swordsman of the Word, is indefinitely suspended, and writing for this study journal, and maintaining my news and resource site, Swordsman Network, are the only things I can do for now (and in the foreseeable future). Still, this doesn’t mean that this blog gets less than my best. In fact, working on this study journal is part of my very testimony that, despite all the hindrances and delays, I’m still not giving up on my blogging ministry.
Now, being a Swordsman of the Word is about rightly wielding “the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God” (Eph 6:17). Basically, this means being both competent and careful — and filled with truth and love — in proclaiming God’s Word, which has the power not only to build up souls but also to destroy if used carelessly. And while speaking the truth in love is not a new concept, it is a deep passion with me, and the one distinctive characteristic of my ministry is my willingness to share to others how the truths of God are lived and manifested in my own life. For me to be honest and to be genuine as much as possible.
For my posts in this study journal — even though they are only the beginnings of my future essays — I’m already following these principles of being a Swordsman of the Word. And so one consequence of this is that my posts are always personal and have a direct relation to life. For there is just so much materials to study, and so many topics to write about; following these principles gives me some direction and some focus to my blogging.
My primary study resource is, of course, the Bible. (I’m using a number of study Bibles to help me in my reading and writing.) However, I also listen to online lectures and sermons, and I read other books, and so I occasionally write about them too. For those of you who want to know, I’m a silent student of Ligonier Ministries (R.C. Sproul et al.) and Grace to You (John MacArthur), benefiting greatly from the resources they’ve made available for free on the internet.
As to my theological convictions, I’m seriously studying Reformed theology, and I’ve adopted as my own The Gospel Coalition Confessional Statement.
Since my blog for Swordsman of the Word is temporarily unavailable, I’ve republished here in Swordsman Beginnings the ministry’s New Founding Documents. You can find the links below. (Note that there is a last essay I haven’t written yet.)
Running this Blogging Race Once Again (Dec. 27, 2019) — Despite all the energy, time, and tears I’ve already spent on this blog, I’ve still waited on God — for him to prove to me that he really wants me to spend a significant part of my life blogging for him.
A God-Centered, People-Oriented Blogging (Feb. 8, 2020) — I’ve been redefining the ministry in the light of who and what I am now as a Christian… and also in the light of my experiences and the results of my efforts since I started this blog….
*Adopting TGC’s Confession and the Creeds (Jul. 2, 2020) — Before I resume writing for this blog, I would like to settle first one necessary foundation, and that is a clear declaration of my theological position and convictions.
A Hard-Won Triumph of My Faith (Aug. 9, 2020) — I never thought that the next two years would turn out to be such a struggle getting this ministry off the ground, and that they would bring me — in addition to the blessings — much pain, hardships, and regrets.
A Vocation That Is Like No Other (Sep. 30, 2020) — God has ordained it that I, Arjay, would not stand among them — other believers — but to stand a bit separated from them. On the boundaries. At the gates. I am a Swordsman of the Word, and I stand at the gates.