Is it wrong for Christians to do yoga?

Yoga1

By Pastor Doug Graham

If you’re a strong Christian and you only do the exercise part of yoga I suspect it would be ok but my question is, why would you want to do yoga when it’s based upon, “a school of Hindu philosophy advocating and prescribing a course of physical and mental disciplines for attaining liberation from the material world and union of the self with the ultimate principle?”

A true definition of yoga shows that its based on idolatry and worldly thinking. It often involves a Hindu chant and emptying the mind. As Christians we are to fill our mind with the Word of God. If you want to exercise then ride a bike or jog. There are also plenty of stretching exercises you could do to be healthy; some of which may be “yoga like” stretching and postures.  Weekly exercise, relying on Christ, and trusting in His Word seems to be a much better way for a Christian to deal with stress or anxiety than to do the spiritual part of yoga.

If you’re just stretching then don’t call it yoga. If you’re just doing the physical part of yoga to relieve chronic pain or to be more in shape, and you’re not doing the mental and worship part of yoga then my point is don’t call it yoga because it’s too confusing to many people. It can be a stumbling block for them. But if you are doing the spiritual part of yoga then don’t think you can separate that from the idolatrous ideas, practices, and movements its based upon.

As a Christian I’d rather not join with a false god (Brahma) or ideas steeped in idolatry in order to be whole. Even Hindus know that yoga is not a practice of Christianity. I’m not saying someone isn’t a Christian if they do yoga. I’m using Biblical discernment and I hope Christians would do the same.

The Word of God is sufficient to fill my heart and mind with peace and joy. As far as exercise, I personally play racquetball every week. It’s not only good exercise but I also benefit from the Christian fellowship of the men I play with. I also enjoy using my total gym. But my favorite form of exercise is taking a walk with my family.

For those suffering from chronic pain I would recommend this book: “Pain Free” by Pete Egoscue.

Psalm 1:1-2 says, “Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.”

As for me and my house we will fill our mind with the Word of God. I hope you will do the same.

Here’s a short video of John MacArthur and his view on Yoga:

 

Posted in Exercise, Faith, False Teaching, Idols, The Bible, The Gospel, Yoga | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

38 One Another Bible Verses

One another1

“Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” 1 John 4:11

Because of God’s great love for us we are given all we need to live and to love in harmony with one another, but none of us finds that easy. In our sinfulness and selfishness, we often only see our own way as the right way to go about living our lives.

‘One another’ Bible verses are clear in their advice, however, the reality of practicing these Biblical virtues of love, forgiveness, humility, patience, and hospitality, among many other things, is more easily said than consistently lived out.

So, ‘one another’ Bible verses serve as a wonderful starting point for our learning.

We do not know everything. There is always another side of the story. Pro. 18:17 says, “The one who states his case first seems right, until the other comes and examines him.”

The point is we all have blind spots and we need to be aware of our lack of knowledge. We need to be humble to hear someone speak the truth in love to us about an area in our life where we need to mature in Christ.

So I encourage you to ask a loved one or a trusted friend, what area of your life needs to change? Ask them, where do you need to grow in holiness?

Applying these one another Bible verses helps us to “speak the truth in love” (to one another) so we can “grow up in every way into him who is the head, into Christ.” –Eph. 4:15.

It is my prayer that these ‘one another’ Bible verses truly take root in our hearts and in our church this coming year and manifest themselves daily, evident through lives of  humble service to one another.

Leviticus 19:11 (#1 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Do not steal. Do not lie. Do not deceive one another.

Zechariah 7:9 (#2 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). This is what the Lord Almighty says: ‘Administer true justice; show mercy and compassion to one another.

John 13:14 (#3 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet.

John 13:34 (#4 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another.

John 13:35 (#5 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). By this all men will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”

Romans 12:10 (#6 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves.

Romans 12:16 (#7 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Live in harmony with one another. Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position. Do not be  conceited.

Romans 13:8 (#8 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for he who loves his fellowman has  fulfilled the law.

Romans 14:13 (#9 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother’s way.

Romans 15:7 (#10 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

Romans 16:16 (#11 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the churches of Christ send greetings. (a kiss on the cheek or a friendly hand shake or hug will do).

1 Corinthians 1:10 (#12 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). I appeal to you, brothers, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that all of you agree with one another so that there  may be no divisions among you and that you may be perfectly united in mind and thought.

1 Corinthians 16:20 (#13 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). All the brothers here send you greetings. Greet one another with a holy kiss. (see #11).

2 Corinthians 13:12 (#14 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Greet one another with a holy kiss. (see #11).

Galatians 5:13 (#15 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). You, my brothers, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one  another in love.

Ephesians 4:2 (#16 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.

Ephesians 4:32 (#17 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.

Ephesians 5:19 (#18 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Speak to one another with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord.

Ephesians 5:21 (#19 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.

Colossians 3:13 (#20 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Colossians 3:16 (#21 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing  psalms, hymns and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 (#22 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.

Hebrews 3:13 (#23 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.

Hebrews 10:24 (#24 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.

Hebrews 10:25 (#25 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another and all the more as you see the Day approaching.

James 4:11 (#26 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Brothers, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment on it.

1 Peter 1:22 (#27 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Now that you have purified yourselves by obeying the truth so that you have sincere love for your brothers, love one  another deeply, from the heart.

1 Peter 3:8 (#28 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.

1 Peter 4:9 (#29 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling.

1 Peter 5:5 (#30 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Young men, in the same way be submissive to those who are older. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward  one another, because, “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”

1 Peter 5:14 (#31 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ. (see #11).

1 John 1:7 (#32 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.

1 John 3:11 (#33 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). This is the message you heard from the beginning: We should love one another.

1 John 3:23 (#34 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). And this is his command: to believe in the name of his Son, Jesus Christ, and to love one another as he commanded us.

1 John 4:7 (#35 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.

1 John 4:11 (#36 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.

1 John 4:12 (#37 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.

2 John 1:5 (#38 of 38 One Another Bible Verses). And now, dear lady, I am not writing you a new command but one we have had from the beginning. I ask that we love one another.

Posted in Biblical Counseling, Change, Christlikeness, God's Word, Godly wisdom, Growing together, Holiness, Love for others, One another, Sanctification, Small groups, The Bible, The Church | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Building a Home and a Marriage

marriage heart ringWhen seeking to begin or rebuild a marriage God must be the starting point. God has to be the foundation of a home and a person’s thinking; then you can address marital issues.

Eph. 2:20-22 says, “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus himself being the cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole structure, being joined together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord. 22 In him you also are being built together into a dwelling place for God by the Spirit.”

Ask yourself, will the Gospel be your all and all in your heart and home? Your marriage and family must have Christ as King and Master. The better you can daily imitate Christ, the stronger your marriage will be. The more Christ rules your home, the more it will honor the LORD.

Becoming Christ-like in your marriage is key. A hypocritical example will never serve to help you build a God honoring home. We should practice being truthful and repentant over our sins. That will go a long way in building a marriage.

We must acknowledge our constant need for the Savior; to help us turn from sin, confess our sin, and trust Christ to cleanse our heart from sin. Only Jesus can transform our hearts so we can strive to model Him in our home.

One practical way to be Christ-like in our home is to develop a servant’s heart. There is no better way to be godly than to seek to serve your family. Mark 10:45 says, “For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

But building your marriage and home on Christ goes beyond personal growth; it also means encouraging others in your home to live for God. Teach them, show them, encourage them, and equip them to live a life that honors the LORD.

Your kindness to your family will make more headway than being critical. The reason for this is because kindness resembles the Gospel. Romans 2:4 says, “Or do you presume on the riches of his kindness and forbearance and patience, not knowing that God’s kindness is meant to lead you to repentance?”

If the Gospel is to take center stage in your home then it won’t happen by just attending church. The Gospel has to be a regular topic your family talks about. Christ has to be foundational in all you do together as a family.

Is Christ LORD in your heart and home? In what ways can Christ take center stage in your heart and home? Pray together as a family asking the LORD to be sovereign and supreme in your heart and home.

Colossians 1:18 says, “And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent.” This means Christ is first, He is the highest in rank, He is exalted above all! I hope that is true in your heart and home.

Prayer:

LORD, thank You for my family. Help me to love them as You sacrificially loved the  church. May You be the basis of our life, thinking, and home. I cannot build a home without Your help and grace. Make my heart Your home. Grant me the grace to rely on You and look to You as my LORD and Savior.

Help me to model You, serve like You, and encourage others to trust in You. Help me to lead my family in lots of discussions about the wonder of Your power and grace! In Christ name I pray, amen.

Posted in Christlikeness, Grace, Heart purity, Home life, Honoring God, Jesus Christ, Marriage, Preeminence of Christ, Repentance, The Gospel, The Lordship of Christ | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Finding Contentment

Contentment1Phil. 4:11-12 says, “Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. 12 I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need.”

Contentment is learned through God’s training school of life. The world will tempt us to be dissatisfied and discontent. It will tell us we always need more. But to be content doesn’t mean that we are free from the cares of life; it means we are free from being controlled by the cares of life.

Instead of having thoughts that are filled with desiring more and more, to be content means our thoughts are filled with the Holy Spirit who is enough.

The challenging situations of life and a humble response to the LORD who uses those challenging situations for our good help us to find contentment.

2 Cor. 1:8-9 says, “For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.”

The secret to finding contentment is wrapped up in Romans 8:28, “And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”

My soul can be content because God is always working for my good and for His glory. I can never control the external events of life, but I can submit my heart and my will to God’s will, and trust Him to bring change, peace, wisdom, strength, direction, and blessings.

The heat of life doesn’t have to control me, the craving desire for more doesn’t have to be my idolatrous lust, instead the Holy Spirit can transform my mind and fill my heart, and the LORD can be the Ruler of my life. It’s then I find contentment.

2 Cor. 12:10 says, “For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”

Contentment is found only in Christ. Psa. 23:1 says, “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.”

When the heat of life comes I can turn to God and learn from Him, instead of chasing after the wind and fighting for my will to be done. Luke 22:42 says, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”

LORD, thank You that You are a God who is enough. You alone are the source of peace and joy. You alone satisfy the cravings of my heart. I humble myself before You.

When life gets “hot,” grant me Your sufficient grace that helps me to live with contentment. In Christ name I pray, amen.

For more on this topic, see this article by Rick Thomas: http://rickthomas.net/the-secret-is-revealed-for-learning-contentment/

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The Center of the Universe

Sermon: The Center of the Universe
Center of the Universe

Delivered by: Pastor Doug – 4-13-14.

Revelation 4-5 -Palm Sunday.  

Sermon summary: Revelation symbols, seeing the big picture, worshiping Christ, centered on God, worship disorder, creating Sovereign, conquering Savior, the Gospel, the Lion, the Lamb, suffering, the way Jesus conquered was amazing!

To hear more sermons by PD go to: MadeToFish.com

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Mind and Emotions

Mind and Emotions

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Giving Hope – 1 Cor. 10:13

Giving Hope - 1 Cor. 10:13

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