Thursday, December 24, 2015


by Marsha Burns

From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly.  Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics.  It has two levels of meaning; the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning known only to member of their church.  Each element in the carol has a code word for religious reality, which the children could remember.

On the 1st day of Christmas my true love gave to me...A Partridge in a Pear Tree
The partridge in a pear tree is Jesus the Christ, the Son of God.  In the song, Christ is symbolically presented as a mother partridge that feigns injury to decoy predators from her helpless nestlings, recalling the expression of Christ's sadness over the fate of Jerusalem:
Luke 13:34-35  "O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, the one who kills the prophets and stones those who are sent to her! How often I wanted to gather your children together, as a hen gathers her brood under her wings…”
2 Peter 3:9  The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

On the 2nd day of Christmas my true love gave to me...
Two Turtle Doves
The Old and New Testaments, which together bear witness to God's self-revelation in history and the creation of a people to tell the Story of God to the world.
Turtle doves form strong pair bonds, Turtle Doves have become emblems of devoted love.  You can’t have one without the other.
Song of Solomon 1:15  THE BELOVED: Behold, you are fair, my love! Behold, you are fair! You have dove‘s eyes.
This speaks of God’s love for us and our love for him … the Bridegroom and the Bride.

On the 3rd day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Three French HensThe Three Virtues:  1) Faith, 2) Hope, and 3) Love
1 Corinthians 13:13 And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.
Faith – conviction of truth
Hope – expectation of good
Love – brotherly love, good will of Christians towards Christians which is enjoined and prompted by their religion.

On the 4th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...
Four Calling BirdsThe Four Gospels: 1) Matthew, 2) Mark, 3) Luke, and 4) John, which proclaim the Good News of God's reconciliation of the world to Himself in Jesus Christ.
All four gospels present Jesus as both the Son of God and son of man. They all record His baptism, the feeding of the 5,000 from five loaves and two fishes, Mary's anointing of the Lord Jesus, His prayer in the garden of Gethsemane, His betrayal, trial, crucifixion, death, burial and resurrection.

On the 5th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Five Gold Rings
The first Five Books of the Old Testament, known as the Torah or the Pentateuch: 
1) Genesis, 2) Exodus, 3) Leviticus, 4) Numbers, and 5) Deuteronomy,
which gives the history of humanity's sinful failure and God's response of grace in the creation of a people to be a light to the world.

On the 6th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Six Geese A-laying
The six days of creation that confesses God as Creator and Sustainer of the world.

Genesis 1:1-2 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.  The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God was hovering over the face of the waters.
Day 1:  He separated light from darkness
Day 2:  He divided the waters and made heaven
Day 3:  He divided the land from the sea and created grass, herbs and trees
Day 4:  He created the sun, moon and stars
Day 5:  He created living creatures of the air and sea
Day 6:  He created creatures on the earth and man to have dominion over the earth
Day 7:  He rested.

On the 7th day of Christmas my true gave to me....
Seven Swans A-swimmingThe seven gifts of the Holy Spirit: 1) prophecy, 2) ministry, 3) teaching, 4) exhortation, 5) giving, 6) leading, and 7) compassion
Romans 12:6-8:  Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith;  or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching;  he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

On the 8th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Eight Maids A-milkingThe eight Beatitudes:
1) Blessed are the poor in spirit – those who know their need for God
2) those who mourn – those who have repentant hearts
3) the meek – those who rely on God instead of their own strength
4) those who hunger and thirst for righteousness
5) the merciful – those who help the afflicted
6) the pure in heart – free from corruption, sin and guilt
7) the peacemakers – those who help bring God’s peace to mankind
8) those who are persecuted for righteousness' sake – those who are mistreated because of Christ and suffer for His sake.

On the 9th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Nine Ladies DancingThe nine Fruit of the Holy Spirit: 1) love, 2) joy, 3) peace, 4) patience, 5) kindness,
6) generosity, 7) faithfulness, 8) gentleness, and 9) self-control.  (Galatians 5:22)

On the 10th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Ten Lords A-leaping
The ten commandments: 1) You shall have no other gods before me; 2) Do not make an idol; 3) Do not take God's name in vain; 4) Remember the Sabbath Day; 5) Honor your father and mother; 6) Do not murder; 7) Do not commit adultery; 8) Do not steal; 9) Do not bear false witness; 10) Do not covet. (Exodus 20:1-17)

On the 11th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Eleven Pipers Piping
The eleven Faithful Apostles:
1) Simon Peter – heard (and obeyed)
2) Andrew – natural man
3) James – gift or endowment
4) John – beloved of God
5) Philip -- friend
6) Bartholomew – covered in blood, forgiven
7) Matthew – strong and able to fight (the devil)
8) Thomas – twin or joined with, one in heart
9) James son Alphaeus -- transformed
10) Simon the Zealot – zealous for the Lord
11) Thaddaeus – courageous and bold

On the 12th day of Christmas my true love gave to me...Twelve Drummers DrummingThe twelve points of doctrine in the Apostles' Creed: 1) I believe in God, the Father almighty, creator of heaven and earth. 2) I believe in Jesus Christ, his only Son, our Lord. 3) He was conceived by the power of the Holy Spirit and born of the virgin Mary. 4) He suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, died, and was buried. He descended into hell. 5) On the third day he rose again. He ascended into heaven, and is seated at the right hand of the Father. 6) He will come again to judge the living and the dead. 7) I believe in the Holy Spirit, 8) the holy catholic (the undivided) Church, 9) the communion of saints (joint participation and fellowship), 10) the forgiveness of sins, 11) the resurrection of the body, 12) and life everlasting.

Faith Tabernacle

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Happy Halloween - 2015

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Happy Mother's Day

God's Garden
When the wise God planted His garden,
Scattering the seeds from above,
The choicest seed in His packet
Was the flower of mother love.
Carefully watched over and tended,
Nurtured by sunshine and shower,
Ever growing sturdy and stronger,
It blooms, a beautiful flower.
A flower so sweet and entrancing,
Dazzling and shining and white,
A love that guards us and guides us
Through life, our beacon light.
A love that steadies our footsteps,
That stretches a helpful hand,
That comforts our sorrows and heartaches,
That always will understand.
Mother love...God's gift to His children,
With heavenly fragrance fraught,
The brightest flower in God's garden,
His truest forget me not.
Myrtie Fisher Seaverns

Thursday, January 1, 2015

He has given us new birth into a living hope

We have future and a hope

"For I know the plans I have for you," says the LORD.
"They are plans for good and not for disaster,
to give you a future and a hope."
-- Jeremiah 29:11, NLT
Looking forward to what lies ahead
"No, dear brothers and sisters, I am still not all I should be,
but I am focusing all my energies on this one thing:
Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead,
I strain to reach the end of the race and receive the prize for which God,
through Christ Jesus,
is calling us up to heaven."
 -- Philippians 3:13-14, NLT

His mercies begin afresh each day
"The unfailing love of the LORD never ends!
By his mercies we have been kept from complete destruction.
Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each day.
I say to myself, "The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!" -- Lamentations 3:22-24, NASB
New birth into a living hope
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!
In his great mercy
He has given us new birth into a living hope
through the resurrection of Jesus Christ
from the dead."
-- 1Peter 1:3, NIV
All things have become new
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation;
old things have passed away;
behold, all things have become new." 
-- Corinthians 5:17, NKJV



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