Author's Bias | Interpretation: conservative
Inclination: promise | Seminary: none

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For many years I did not read the Bible because of my difficulty reading and understanding it. It was so much easier to sit at church and listen to a good pastor give an expository sermon. Had I thought about it, I would have realized that I opened the Bible only 50 times a year and that was to have the pastor read it to me. It was a bit foolish to think that sitting in church would meaningfully change my heart and conform me to Him in a lasting manner. I studied with Bible study groups and booklets, but I never learned how to read the Bible by myself. As the result, I've made many regrettable mistakes in my life that could have been easily avoided had I been abiding in the Lord.

Since I have learned how to read the Bible, my walk with the Lord is much better and consistent. I still make mistakes, but they are fewer and less severe. Perhaps the greatest impact is that I've been more graceful and forgiving as I am humbled with the experience of God's grace.

It is my prayer that this site encourage and challenge you in your walk with the Lord. I'm not a Bible scholar, but God has brought a variety of godly people to this site who share in this desire. This site certainly does not take the place of the many great books that teach you how to read the Bible, but it does provide material that you could use or adapt for your personal ministry to your family, friends, church, and acquaintances.

May the Lord give you eyes to see and ears to hear!
-Douglas Mar

Released on the web in the year 2000, continues to serve hundreds of thousands each year worldwide.

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A Question To Consider: What Will You Do With Your Life?

Natural consequence is the universal teacher of life. And if we have the wisdom to learn, we become a better person, or so we think so. Until circumstances bring us so low that we discover that our good self-image is really a façade for selfishness or pride or some other aspect of human nature.

We begin to have some inkling that the natural consequences for our unfettered pursuit of natural desires isn’t good or that we may be unworthy of some title of goodness. So when we don’t receive a deserved punishment or penalty, we begin to wonder. We begin to sense, though not fully comprehend, what true forgiveness is.

We learn or hear from others whose faith in gods and philosophies help us understand what charity is; however, the meaning of true forgiveness escapes us. We prefer a finite understanding. The very idea of inner peace is inviting whether from the position of giver who absolves by the pleasure of magnanimity or from the position of receiver who resolves by refusing all responsibility. So we think we can control our peace of mind. We can be what we make ourselves to be. We can control our destiny. We can achieve salvation.

But paradoxes emerge. In our wisdom, we are confronted by the realization that despite our best efforts, we cannot always be that good or prefer to keep some characteristics deeply hidden even from ourselves. And deep down, we begin to question, as much as we pride ourselves with our reason and logic, whether we should discern the truth by how we feel.

And all the while we discover that there is one faith that is distinctly different. A faith that recognizes the futility of human effort, and a God whose revelation is based on historical fact. Its uniqueness from all other religions is that the cost of redemption is born by another. The simplicity of faith in the One who was sacrificed, which makes salvation a free and universal gift that cannot be achieved, is inconceivable by any standard.

We prefer to accept the Golden Rule where we can understand the cost and have some vested interest in its outcome. Yet our logic unconsciously prevails. When we attempt to understand this grace, we are astonished by just a glimpse of love required for this provision especially when we know just how unlovable we are. And like true forgiveness, we begin to see, though not fully comprehend, what true love is. It is not as skin deep or as temporal as our culture has taught us. If anything we are left with a profound sense of gratitude, and, as we learn what God means by love, it gradually dawns on us that we were victims of a grand illusion.

So when we return to the idea of natural consequences, at some point we realize that this is in the eternal sense, while observing with a certain clarity the tempting illusion that engulfs others. Then we suddenly stop for in the constellation of possibilities, we realize that it was one life who introduced us to God, one life who helped us read the Bible, one life who encouraged us in our faith walk, One life who made an eternal difference at one moment in our lives.

So we are left with this question: what am I doing with my one life?

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