1 Timothy 4:1-4

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The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer. – 1 Timothy 4:1-4

Dear Jesus,

I know of churches that regulate what people eat and forbid their pastors to marry, although I am not in those churches.  I also know that some weird and small cults have done the same for their adherents for many centuries.  I’m in a church that gets grace and understands that true spirituality is found in your salvation and love and not in our self-imposed religious rules about diet and celibacy.  But I know that since we are human we too, at times, will reduce the measure of our faith to the level of conformity we see in our fellows to our habits and ways of doing things.  I know the demonic world is after us to make us think it’s all about what we do and don’t do instead of about who we believe in and why.  Protect us all dear Jesus, from the dubious trail of self-made worship that looks nothing like the pure mature freedom to love and trust that comes from understanding your great gracious rescue.


Pastor Don Patterson

The minute we stop looking at ourselves as a burning stick snatched from the fire (Zechariah 3:2) we will fall into a smug self-made righteousness.