Angel Pet: Maggie

Thanks to Katie and Chris for sending in a photo of their darling Maggie.

Maggie with a Reubens angel

Maggie with a Reubens angel

Angels and animals make the best combinations, don’t you think?  Send in your pet photos to angelpet@angelicabelle.com.

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Angels in the Bible: Guest Post, Sort of

Daily Beast logo

Candida Moss wrote a really nice piece for the Daily Beast about the supposed angel priest who showed up at the site of a car wreck.  (I wrote about the angel priest here.)

Moss’ story goes on to talk about the modern cultural perception of friendly, pretty angels who are at our beckon.  She explains that angels can be terribly frightening when encountered by humans.  And she reminds us that they are part of God’s army with the power to destroy people, demons, and cities.  You can read her article here.

Angel Action Figure

If you were hoping to re-enact the announcement of Jesus’ birth with action figures one day, well, you’re going to be happy.  I found this set on Amazon.

shepherd and angel action figures with sheep

shepherd and angel action figures with sheep

I can think of a lot of other scenes to re-enact as well.  For instance, the angel Gabriel driving Adam and Eve out of Eden.  Ken and Barbie would come in handy for that drama.  Or maybe you want to show your Sunday school class how the angel appeared to Paul on his tempest-tossed prison ship and told him that Paul would live through the shipwreck.  Or you could create an entire stop-motion movie of the Book of Revelations.  Oh, the possibilities are endless.

 

A Hummingbird Called Patience

This is a hummingbird with a broken wing that floundered into my life quite by accident.  I named the wild hummy Patience.

Patience with angel

I gave him/her that name because the little birdy wanted to fly so badly, but it needed time to mend.  It needed time to heal.  And it needed patience to allow the healing to happen.  Watching the hummy made me keenly aware of my own unwillingness to wait for God’s hand in my life.  I want to flap my wings constantly, I want to just keep moving regardless of whether or not I know where I’m going.  But that isn’t always healthy for me.  Just like I knew the hummy needed to calm down in order to get to a better place, God knows what is best for me; His angels are watching out for me.  And it would be easier on both of us if I would just have some patience and let His will work in my life.

I fed Patience, kept him safe, and found a veterinarian that would give him medical care and rehab him.  I would have probably kept him if it weren’t illegal in California to do so.  There’s something about caring for another being that really produces a bond.  I can’t even imagine how much God is bonded to us.  We all need so much care and love.

Does God Send Evil Spirits?

chained demon

I came across two verses in the Old Testament which refer to God sending evil spirits upon people.  The first is

Judges 9:23-24

“God sent a spirit of ill will between Abimelech and the men of Shechem; and the men of Shechem  dealt treacherously with Abimelech that the crime done to the 70 sons of Jerubbaal [Gideon] might be settled and their blood be laid on Abimelech their brother, who killed them, and on the men of Shechem, who aided him in the killing of his own brothers.”

And the second is 1 Samuel 16:14

“But the Spirit of the Lord departed from Saul, and a distressing spirit from the Lord troubled him.”

Some translations actually say “evil spirit” instead of “distressing spirit.” Does that mean God will send evil spirits into our lives?  No, not necessarily.  But He might allow evil spirits to get to us if we are constantly sinning.  Both Abimelech and Saul had it coming.  They were severely disobedient to God and His laws.  They didn’t run from evil.  They didn’t fear God.

My MacArthur Study Bible notes that God allowed these evil spirits to torment Abimelech and Saul because of their considerable sin. It says, “There are several NT occasions where God turned people over to demons or Satan for judgement (see Acts 5:1-3; 1 Cor 5:1-7; 1 Tim 1:18-20).”

Yikes.  This is pretty heavy motivation to keep on the straight and narrow and to listen to my conscience.  There’s demons out there and I don’t want them getting through my hedge of protection.

For Further Reading:

http://www.apologeticspress.org/apcontent.aspx?category=6&article=1278

A Faith Gene?

An article by PopSci discusses the implications of the findings from a study of twins.  The study shows that faith has a genetic component.

http://www.popsci.com/science/article/2013-08/what-twins-reveal-about-god-gene?src=SOC&dom=tw

I can see evidence of this in my own family. Faith is abundant on my father’s side of the family but not so much on my mother’s side.

I’ve noticed, while reading the Old Testament, that God had a way of genetically selecting faithful men for the tribe of Israel.  He started by choosing Noah and his family, the only people He deemed worthy to save in a world full of wicked people. God weeded out the bad seeds with a flood, and let the good ones propagate. Then He chose Noah’s son Shem, over his brothers, to be the head of the Semitic people.

Shem Ham and Japheth by James Tissot 1904.

Shem Ham and Japheth by James Tissot 1904.

 

Later on, God chose Shem’s descendant Abraham to be the father of Israel (through Isaac, but not through his half-brother Ishmael).  Isaac’s son Jacob fathers the heads of the twelve tribes of Israel, but Jacob’s twin brother Esau (truly the eldest) gets sidelined because he didn’t value his birthright.  He therefore didn’t get to contribute to the gene pool of Israel the way his fraternal twin did. Interesting, huh?

So if we apply genetics to theology (which is probably a bad idea–but that isn’t going to stop me from doing it), maybe genes are the way that God predestines us to be Christians.  Maybe He knew that some of us would be more likely to turn to Him than others because of heritage and He explained that to the apostles through the concept of predestination.  Or maybe I’m off my nut.

What do y’all think?  Let’s chat about it.

Jesus On Toast

Jesus Toaster

Jesus Toaster

You may know about this already, but it’s still worth pointing out.  Someone has invented a toaster that burns the image of Christ onto your daily bread.

The Lord on your toast

The Lord on your toast

And that toaster is for sale.  How amazing is this world?

Check it out and remember me at Christmastime.  No, I don’t actually own one of these yet.

http://www.jesustoasters.com/