Well I just want to start out by saying that this past year has been incredible. God has shown me so much through this, and I am so blessed that all of you read it. It is so encouraging to me whenever someone tells me that they like my blog, especially when that person is someone I really don't see often(read: they are not at Texas A&M). But I also have had people reading this from around the world, from Russia, Germany, England, Israel, and others, and I just want to thank everyone who has read any of my posts or who reads each one I put up. So while I write this blog more for my own spiritual growth, I am so encouraged by all the people who are also being encouraged by it.
I also want to mention something that has blown me away. I started writing this blog almost exactly a year ago, with the intent to write one post each week. There have been times where I kept up with that very well, but there have also been times where I just did not, and there were also several instances in which I put up a series of posts in a very short time. But what amazes me is that this post is my 52nd post--through all that it came out to an average of exactly one post per week, right what I had intended from the beginning. I had not planned this by any means, and I am just going to praise God for giving me vision to write exactly what he wanted, when he wanted, and to have it work out so perfectly in the end. I will never understand the mysterious ways in which God works, but I will always praise his name for I can see him working in this world.
Now the last few posts I wrote have been me describing the Gospel as an allegory, comparing abstract parts of the Gospel in terms of situations we encounter every day. Most of these posts were pretty much just a word vomit of my understanding of the situation, and I recognize that they were not always clear and organized, and they generally did not have Scripture references. This was intentional: I wanted these analogies to be accessible to someone reading it without the added complication of trying to discern if the Bible was true or not, and it was my hope that this would make it easier to understand. As for the lack of organization, that was more just a product of me wanting to get all my thoughts down and letting the Holy Spirit work through me, and like all my posts, have it be just a spur-of-the-moment thing. I generally don't go back and re-read or edit my posts, because these are just my thoughts of the moment, not essays.
But with that being said, I am excited about the next series of posts I am going to write. The last ones were focused on understanding Christianity, but in truth those all mean nothing if you don't include the Bible. And how can I expect anyone to believe the truth of the Bible if they do not know anything about it. Because the sad truth is that most people on this earth will take any history book to be truth, even if the book is ancient or compiled from ancient sources, but they do not like to take the Bible as being truth because it is ancient. And this is understandable: the most recent book of the Bible is Revelation, which is still nearly 2000 years old, and the oldest being Genesis at about 3400 years old. But to put this into perspective, Homer's The Odyssey is about 3200 years old, and people generally take our modern copies as more or less the same as what was written then: why do people say differently about the Bible? It is this kind of stuff I hope to make clearer through my next few posts, and show how we can be sure that the Bible as we have it is as near as the original writings as it can possibly be, and how we can be sure that these writings are truly God's Word and not words of man.
And with that, I just want to leave you guys with some Scripture. This is Isaiah 61:1-3, and in Luke 4 Jesus teaches on this text in the synagogue, declaring this Scripture to have been fulfilled in him:
The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me,
because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives and release from darkness for the prisoners,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor
and the day of vengeance of our God,
to comfort all who mourn,
and provide for those who grieve in Zion—
to bestow on them a crown of beauty instead of ashes,
the oil of joy instead of mourning,
and a garment of praise instead of a spirit of despair.
They will be called oaks of righteousness,
a planting of the Lord
for the display of his splendor.
~ Isaiah 61:1-3