*WordPress as Transition CMS

Hello friends. I know that you’re wondering what’s happening to me, and so here’s an update.

Well, the truth is, I’ve been resting — losing myself again in the world of fiction — and trying to bring myself into the right mental and emotional states. Because honestly, I’ve been deeply disappointed that my work of moving my blogging to a self-hosted CMS has been delayed. And though I’ve tried, I just couldn’t let it go, and simply go back to my writing and studies. (You see, blogging is all I have right now; I have no other present hopes but to see this ministry succeed.)

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#blogger, #blogging, #christian, #christianity, #cms, #publisher, #publishing, #religion, #tiki, #webmaster, #website, #wordpress

*Migration Updates Summary

Hello friends. Here now is the summary of my migration updates.

But first, you should know that because of my lack of resources, my move to a self-hosted CMS has reached an impasse. My hopes for some provision have not happened yet, and so I’m stuck. And when it does resume, it’ll take me many months to complete the migration process. And that is because, in addition to developing the website itself and transferring my content, I also have a lot of studying to do — the CMS that I’ll be using, Tiki, is not as easy to use and maintain as WordPress, and my webhost is DIY and not exactly designed for beginners. So I thought that it’s a good idea to make this summary and pin it on top of my blogs, to continually remind everyone of the coming move.

READ FULL BLOG POST

#blogger, #blogging, #christian, #christianity, #cms, #publisher, #publishing, #religion, #tiki, #webmaster, #website

*Founding Documents Republished

Hello friends. 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.

#bible, #blogging, #christian, #christianity, #church, #faith, #god, #holy-spirit, #jesus, #ministry, #perseverance, #religion, #suffering, #writing

Too good to be true? Or just plain unbelief?

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We Christians often speak about how BIG our God is — how powerful, how awesome, and how mighty he is. And because he is that, we can dream about doing great things for him, and we are assured that no matter what kind of troubles we might find ourselves in, he is able to defeat our enemies for us. We proudly speak that with him, with our powerful God, nothing is impossible if we believe.

All of these are true, of course, with this one caveat that anything is possible with God only if it is according to his will. (Because God is not our personal genie.)  And yet… how many of us Christians truly live our lives in the light of this magnificence and almightiness of God? How many of us do attempt to accomplish seemingly impossible things? Not many I would say. Because here is the catch: For God to be powerful in your own life, you have got to have faith in him. In his perfect character. In his sovereignty. In his very nature as God. The faith to follow him in his difficult ways, and to obey his Word. The faith to risk everything in exchange for his blessings.

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The irony is, we boast so much of our God, and yet we expect so little from him. And we risk so little. We pray to him about our needs and desires, and yet we dare not ask too much lest we be disappointed if he said no. And we keep a tight grip on our comforts, fighting for the status quo — fearing change, suffering, hardships, and the slander of others — and yet we still have the audacity to call ourselves people of faith.

And the sad thing is, when God’s wonderful answer to our prayers does come — beyond anything we could have ever imagined, we say — we often doubt it, thinking it’s too good to be true (or not what it’s supposed to be at all). We doubt, we second-guess, we waver, so that in the end we forfeit the blessing — failing to give back what God demands in return. To believe it. And to do something about it.

Zacharias’s blunder is the prime example of these things I’m talking about, and it shows that being in the ministry, and even long years of service, are not guarantees that we will have the necessary faith when it matters the most.

Here was a matured man of God, and a priest no less, performing the sacred duties in the temple. Childless and already old, he had been praying for a child for years, and when God’s answer finally come, and in the most wondrous of ways — a message delivered by an angel! — and the promised child, what a great man he would become! — what did Zacharias do? He doubted it. He asked for signs, so he could believe.

Zacharias said to the angel, “How can I be sure of this? For I am an old man, and my wife is well advanced in years.” The angel answered him, “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God. I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news. Behold, you will be silent and not able to speak until the day that these things will happen, because you didn’t believe my words, which will be fulfilled in their proper time.”

Luke 1:18-20 WEB

Fortunately, God dealt graciously with Zacharias, and did not take back the blessing of the promised child. Still, he had to face the consequences of his unbelief.

Here is an important lesson to learn: Let’s not be conceited, my friends, just because we are an elder or a pastor in a church, or something. Faith in God has no direct correlation to our achievements or status.

~ • ~ • ~ • ~ • ~

Is asking for signs from God wrong? No, not by itself. After all, God does give signs to guide us in his will, and the Christian is told to be discerning in all things, and to find the will of God in his life. And so, when does asking for signs become wrong? When does it become a sin? It is when our faith in these signs replaces our faith in God. That is, it is when these signs become our idol.

Remember what Jesus called the people who were asking for signs from him when he was already among them, the Son of God made flesh, and performing miracles after miracles? An evil and adulterous generation.

As I see it, the root cause of all these “signs problems” is that, as human beings, we tend to believe more in the things we can see with our own eyes and have physical evidences for, than in things we cannot see and only have faith in — in this case, the nature and character of God.

When Zacharias asked for signs from the angel, how did the angel respond? By giving his credentials. “I am Gabriel, who stands in the presence of God. I was sent to speak to you and to bring you this good news” (v.19). In other words, Gabriel was saying to Zacharias that he should have believed him by virtue of who and what he is. The personal messenger of God Almighty.

In the same way, when we receive word from God — a command, an answered prayer, an encouragement, a piece of wisdom — we should believe it by virtue of who and what God is, and not because of any outward confirming signs. Appearances, after all, are sometimes deceiving, and God sees much more of people and of circumstances than we ever could.

And how do we know that the word we got really comes from God? Well, angels are a rare sight, but we do have God’s Word and godly people to guide us in our way. We also have our prayers, where we not only speak but also listen. There are no formulas, no set procedures, only guidelines (and woe to those who try to confine God and how he works on a set of rules!), but there comes a time when we do have to make a choice: to believe and to act, or to doubt and to keep on asking for signs.

To believe by virtue of God’s character and nature alone. This is the highest pinnacle of faith. Of course, new believers who are still getting to know God personally are not expected to display this kind of faith. And that is because they simply don’t have yet that foundational knowledge of God. Matured Christians, however, especially those who are in the ministry, and especially those who are deeply intimate with their Lord, are expected to act better. Much, much better. In fact, they are expected to glorify God by their steadfast, conquering, and amazing faith. For there is just no excuse to believe more in outward appearances than in what God says, when you already know personally how good, how faithful, and how mighty he is.

Now, on a personal note:

I’ve always wanted to write for God, and for many years I’ve waited and prepared for that. When God finally gave me his answer — calling me to full-time ministry and work for him as a blogger — I was overjoyed. Thus, my blogging ministry, Swordsman of the Word, was born. It was and will always be my dream job. To serve God and to work for my livelihood doing what I do and love best.

Unlike Zacharias, and despite the unlikeliness of that calling — because I didn’t have the resources, nor the contacts, nor the training and the experience — I didn’t doubt God. I believed, I acted, and I fought for it.

Yes, I didn’t doubt. Not God. And not the works I was called to do. The problem was, the people around me did. And still do.



And now my questions to you, friend, are… Do you want to be saved? Do you want to know how YOU can be reconciled to God through Jesus Christ? Do you want to be sure that you can spend eternity with him? Then please read this: God’s Plan of Salvation

Hey there. I need your help if I am to continue serving God (and you!) through writing and blogging. Your donation will go a long way to ensure that :-)
Support me:   Ko-fiPayPalLiberapay

For news about this ministry, for more of my writings, and for some resources you can study, especially audiobooks, please visit Swordsman Network.

Also available is my website Free Online Bibles — a simple, fast, and personal way to read the WEB, ASV, and KJV.


#bible, #blessing, #blogging, #christian, #christianity, #doubt, #faith, #fear, #god, #hypocrisy, #idolatry, #jesus, #ministry, #religion

My New Study Journal Blog

This is the first of my journal entries here in this new blog of mine, Swordsman Beginnings.

Actually, I was not sure about starting this blog at all, but I need to be writing again. After my months-long rest, it’s time to renew this essential part of my life.

Unfortunately, all my works for Swordsman of the Word and The Swordsman Network are still suspended, and a journal blog is all I can do at the moment. I only have my Android smartphone with me; my PC has been dead for months now (I need a brand-new one); and I still got no provision and go-ahead from God to resume all my previous works. It seems to me that all that God wants me to do for now is to study… and yes, to write in this journal blog.

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This is not an impromptu decision. I’ve been thinking about starting this journal for weeks. Before that, I had explored writing for Medium, but that didn’t work out. I had also considered repurposing (yet again) my original blog here in WordPress.com… but I didn’t want to face the amount of tedious work involved in that. And so it’s clear to me that a new P2 blog is the best and easiest way to begin this journal.

Why then the name? Why Swordsman Beginnings? The simple reason is that this will be mostly a study journal, and much of what I’ll write here will be the seeds — the beginnings — of the essays I’ll write for Swordsman of the Word. Someday.

Right now my major study is reading the Bible, and so I’ll be mostly reflecting on select Bible verses.

By the way, I’ve just created this blog, and so there’s still some work to do….

#bible, #blogging, #christian, #christianity, #god, #journal, #religion

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