Monday, August 10, 2015

The Inauguration

So, what is this blog about?  Why does it exist?  What is the author's intent?

When a reader views a blog for the first time these are the questions that run through his/her mind.  This launching post intends to address these queries and a little more.

What is the impetus behind the blog?

First, one may ask "why another blog?".  There are many blogs authored and posted on the internet.  Do we really need another?  There are many godly men and women that use the internet medium to communicate the Truth.  Why should David maintain one as well?   The more I ruminated on the idea the more I realized that another voice proclaiming the truth in the clamor of error is needed.  Another voice announcing the Gospel is important in this world where sin is celebrated so loudly.  Therefore, I purpose to proclaim the truth of the Scriptures to the best of my ability in this blog.

In addition to being another voice for the truth, this blog is a forum for discussion on theological topics.  People around the world that can examine biblical truth together in the comments section of this blog.  I look forward to discussions with other theologians on the planet.

I look to this venue to refine my communication of and understanding of the Scriptures.  Publicly displaying my understanding of the truth of God's Word forces me to think through biblical topics and the best way to communicate that truth.  I pledge to be prepared on the topics on which I write.  I also plan to receive constructive criticism from others on my thoughts and understanding of the Word.  I welcome feedback that corrects my thinking, if that criticism is founded in a sound understanding and argument from the Scriptures.

What topics are addressed in this blog?

Much of what I covered to answer the question "why another blog?" answer this question, but I'll reiterate.  The primary issues we'll be tackling are related to the Bible, theology, and living the Christian life.  We will primarily focus on biblical theology.  Against popular (and even Christian) opinion, theology is *not* primarily an academic pursuit.  It is a very practical endeavor.  Theology gets a bad rap as an impractical exercise with no connection to devotion and the real Christian life.  I believe that to be erroneous and dangerous thinking.  Therefore, I look forward to discussing theology and its practical implications and application together.

On occasion, I'll also present a book review.  The books will be biblical or theologically focused.  I love to read and discuss good books.  I have a habit of purchasing books that look like a good read.  I have a Kindle application full of books that I have not read yet and a book case in the same situation.  My wife tells me that I do not need to purchase any more books since I have "plenty of reading material" currently. :-)

Lastly, I'll also present some topics related to biblical archaeology at times.  It's an interest and passion of mine as well.  In fact, the first series of posts will be related to my recent trip to Israel.  The trip was so fascinating and such a life changing experience that I cannot help but share the experience.

Why the name "Grafted into the Vine"?

I have been impressed with the thought that Paul calls out in Romans 11:17-36.  Paul uses the metaphor of a cultivated vine and a wild vine to illustrate a spiritual truth.  Israel is God's chosen people.  The Jews received the promises and the covenants with direct communication from Yahweh. However, the Jews who have rejected the Messiah are spiritually cut off from Him, the vine, as long as they remain outside of Christ.

In contrast, I, a Gentile, have been grafted into the vine through faith in Christ.  Paul likens the non-Jewish believer as a wild branch that is grafted into the cultivated vine.  Believing Gentiles are now recipients of God's saving grace through His Son and are objects of his love and mercy.  I am in awe of God's grace and mercy bestowed upon me.  I was reminded of this truth upon return of a recent trip to Israel.

A song that Maranatha Music! produced back in the 1980's puts a fine point on my thoughts:

Baruch Hashem Adonai

Who am I to be part of Your People
The ones that are called by Your Name
Could I be chosen as one of Your own
Could it be that our blood is the same
How can a stranger, a remnant of nations
Belong to the Royal Line
You showed your grace when the branches were broken
And I grafted into the Vine

Chorus:
Baruch Hashem Adonai
Baruch Hashem Adonai
Blessed be the Name of the Lord
Baruch Hashem Adonai


The name "Grafted Into the Vine" bears the name of this truth.  The importance of this fact in my life is why I gave this name to the blog.

I look forward to this adventure -- communicating the truth of God's Word and contemplating it together along with the application of it to our lives.

David



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