“Idolatry” is the practice of seeking the source and provision of what we need either physically or emotionally in someone or something other than the one true God. It is the tragically pathetic attempt to squeeze life out of lifeless forms that cannot help us meet our real needs.
Scott J. Hafemann, The God of Promise and the Life of Faith, page 35.
To crave more than God has given, so that we do what he prohibits in order to get it, is an idolatrous rejection of his sovereign love.
Scott J. Hafemann, The God of Promise and the Life of Faith, page 47.
“The church is growing because of persecution,” he continues. “I have hope again and I am satisfied, not because we have arrived – we haven’t; there’s lots to learn yet – but because we are alive again and growing and equipping the saints for the work of the Kingdom. We still have to be extremely careful every day, and there are dangers, but the sense of peace each day and hope for the future make all the rest seem like stepping stones to glory.”
People of Faith, Presence Magazine, Jan/Feb 2020, page 19.
Confidence in God’s promises (hope) because of a trust in his provisions (faith) expresses itself in obedience to his commands (love). God’s commands thus map out the way in which we are to magnify his surpassing value, power, and love in our everyday lives.
Our lives of obedience, summarized in the command to love others, thus fulfills God’s purpose of revealing his glorious character in the world.
Scott J. Hafemann, The God of Promise and the Life of Faith, page 57.
True Christianity is not a veneer of morality glued onto the exterior of our lives, but a profound change of heart, mind and will which is then expressed in outward behaviour. The word of God changes individuals, in the context of Christian fellowship, from the inside out.
Paul Barnett, The Message of 2 Corinthians, page 62.
We will never find ourselves in a place God has not provided.
Scott J. Hafemann, The God of Promise and the Life of Faith, page 54.
The four absolutes we all have in our minds: love, justice, evil, and forgiveness. They all converge at only one point in history – at Calvary.
When God insists that he alone be our God, he is insisting on our happiness, since nothing compares with God when it comes to satisfying our longings.
Scott J. Hafemann, The God of Promise and the Life of Faith, page 41.
To worship is not just to offer compliments to God but to offer oneself to God, not as a gift but as something that always rightfully belonged to him. Worship is therefore giving God what is due to him, not just our service and obedience but our very selves. We can obey and serve God to a self-gratifying extent without ever trusting in him. The entrusting of oneself to God is the essence of worship.
Matthew Jacoby, Deeper Places, page 132.
Throughout the psalms, a profound process of transferal takes place. One yoke is replaced with another. The exodus experience is enacted over and over again. The yoke of slavery is replaced by the yoke of God. This process is the essence of what we call worship, and it is essential that we allow the psalms to define worship in accordance with this process. It is important to understand worship on a continuum. Worship is a motion away from autonomy and toward God. It is an act of renunciation and reappropriation. We renounce our autonomy, we give up the right to set the goals for our lives, and we come under the authority of God.
Matthew Jacoby, Deeper Places, page 131-132.