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Eric’s Sunday Sermon; Taking Away What You Can

Updated on January 7, 2018
Ericdierker profile image

Holding degrees in philosophy and Law. Formal studies or certificates or degrees in business, theology, insurance and security. Ex-preacher.

Let Us Start With a Clean Slate

No prejudgments written in stone.
No prejudgments written in stone. | Source

A Base Point To Start With

So there were two men. Both had obtained a degree in philosophy. They very much liked to go for road trips and spend hours truly arguing and debating things like the early works of Veneziano placed against the simplest of form by Descartes who owns “cogito ergo sum” or “I think therefor I am”. To be sure they were no scientists. But the inspired theoretical early notions of string theory was ripe for the picking.

The one opted for a more humanistic study and the other more theological studies. Of course one cannot move into either of those arenas without many hours in word constructionism and logic.

Can anyone even imagine a more boring pair? And do not worry the talks around the campfire and fishing were just as exciting although in nature they were more drawn toward discussion of plants and biology, Darwinism. And as hikers of the Grand Canyon formations and rock layers were in the mix. Go ahead and delve into the possibilities of billion year old rocks.

All of that to get us to faith and love. Christians to be sure. Not at all the same kind of Christians but both firmly founded in "'Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind'; and, 'Love your neighbor as yourself.'’ From the words of Christ usually noted in Luke 10, I believe.

Here is the rub. Both men could read and decipher and had good recall. The appropriate meaning of a word used in a text had to be handled in context. So they had a neat trick. If a passage were different to each, then an argument would ensue. If there was no resolution and agreement they would move onto another passage and repeat. The younger man kept a journal for a bit. Now those passages not agreed upon would go into a pile. Those passages agreed upon would go into another.

Take it enaturally

Here was the theory; life is short and there are a bunch of things to do. You cannot read while hiking a mountain, surfing, skiing or driving. Not to mention amore. So we are not going to become experts in all things biblical. So let us take the ones of ease and clarity and spend our time on those. Now do not get your knickers all tied up. What they went after was not that it was easy to take, simply that a meaning could be agreed on. Some of that stuff is gnarly like killing a million Egyptians or Jericho. But boy is it easy to agree upon what it means.

How Wonderful That We Can Grow Younger!

A Birthday Above the Boulevards of Saigon

I should have just taken a picture of my bride, she is so much more beautiful than any place.
I should have just taken a picture of my bride, she is so much more beautiful than any place. | Source

Pleas Spend Time In The Good Pile

Sorry that was pretty boring. If you stuck with it you are a true friend. But it sets up our discussion here. “Of what worth is an education if it brings no benefit to another?” How can a doctor survive without patients? Being a mechanic and only working on your own car is fruitless. Being a teacher with those you teach not being able think is a waste of air. If the famer only grows to feed himself he will die of sloth. And alas a writer with nothing to add might keep her fingers off a keyboard.

From experience I can tell you that most people who are really truly experts on a piece of literature are boring and cannot apply their knowledge for other’s benefit. There is a study floating around where they compared doctoral candidates. The group that went slower and incorporated more “life” into their life did better. Now do not get me wrong. It would seem that whatever endeavor you go after you should be professional about it. Let us just say that you spend a solid 3 hours on your craft or interest every day. You will become good at it probably. But if you spend a straight 10 hours on it some place in your life will suffer and most notably is the loss of ability to socially interact.

I wonder how many readers are close to a gamer who plays 10 hours a day. My suggestion is that none of you do. I mean how would you know them if all they do is game? The addict and the drunk sooner or later go so far as to only drink alone. And that takes a lot of time to alienate everyone around them. Maybe we call them an expert at alienation.

Or how about we do what our two men do? See this is what reading all of this is good for. Take parts of your life and put them in a disagreement pile and the other in an agreement pile. Watching a nature show that is award winning on your big screen and/or walking outside in nature. Those go into the good pile. Eating out every day of the week and/or staying completely out of the sun. Those we would be in disagreement on in certain ways. So we argue it out. We/you agree that both are the best in moderation. So into the good pile. Eating nothing in order to lose weight like fasting and/or eating as much as you want. We will never agree on that or maybe we do and into the bad pile.

We Can, As A Nation, Lead Ourselves Into The Light not Hell on Earthj

Some Folks Spend Their Entire Life Looking For Good

Joys heaped upon joys!
Joys heaped upon joys! | Source

We Wonder If We Can Ever Get Enough Love

So here is the sermon good part. There simply is not time enough for us to be fearful in a scared way and confident in a moderate way. So choose which to spend your time on. The good pile or the bad pile. Just take the Bible. There are many fine internet and actual publications that will take you all the way through it in a year. I have done that twice and reading it completely as a text. It is cool. Like we hope these sermons are. Every time you read it there should be another take away. Hopefully these thoughts synergize with your thoughts and those can be so different even in a single day.

So with the Bible you just followed the excerpts from above about love you do not have time for that stuff we put into the bad pile. If you want to take away time from good service and love by all means go study more of the part of no agreement.

Of course I am of the opine that if we fill our hearts with love there is no room for the “other” stuff.

Just assume there is hell and brimstone and a lake of fire. Just assume you should be fearful of such wrath. Just assume if you follow the above commandments then that which will send you into the depths of hell has no room in you.

Please make those piles and then extract those concepts in love. You won’t have time to head on over to the bad pile, you will be busy sorting through the good and implementing into a life of sharing that good pile.

(I mean no offense to those who preach that you are going to hell if you do not genuflect in the way they say)


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    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 11 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Lawrence you are a good friend yet we are worlds apart and yet neighbors. Your comment is fantastic.

      This is what I had "Put your butt in a chair and leave it there". A friend got me to read Leviticus again today. I like rules.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 12 days ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Shaloo I once held a great soldier in my arms as he died. He was at rest and so made me. We take from life and I pray the Lord that I give.

    • swalia profile image

      Shaloo Walia 12 days ago

      A great hub as usual...your sermons are so inspirational!

    • lawrence01 profile image

      Lawrence Hebb 2 weeks ago from Hamilton, New Zealand


      When I read something like this, I'm reminded what my Old Testament professor at Bible college told us at the start of our Old Testament studies.

      He was of Russian Orthodox Jewish origin, and loved everything Jewish, but often used to say, "If you get two Jews to discuss something, you'll always get three opinions!"

      Far greater minds than mine have puzzled over these things, and come up with different opinions, so what hope do I have?

      The Bible gives us some guidance in what to accept and reject, as long as it's within those guidelines, I'm not going to worry about it, but just do what you say, and concentrate on the Love of God.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 5 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Denise this is so true. But I just get confused with the light we are given. How dare I hide the grace that God gave me under a light shade of bucket.

      Please note, that we are in accord, so I write and not chit chat at parties.

    • denise.w.anderson profile image

      Denise W Anderson 5 weeks ago from Bismarck, North Dakota

      Sometimes I find myself in the place of these two gentlemen, craving the solitude more then interaction with others. I ask myself how and why and the only conclusion I can come to is that I feel more safe when alone than I do in the company of others. Conversation is filled with effort and misunderstanding. When alone, I can relax and just be.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Audrey your comment is really good. Thank you. It reminds me of an apology note I sent to my eldest brother I had not been a good brother. He wrote back to me that there are no good brothers or bad brothers there are only brothers.

      (Yes some of us still sit down with pen and paper and send letters via the mail.)

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Frank I have not yet figured out the formula for me. But your comments mean a lot to me because I respect your opinion so much.

      Thank you.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 6 weeks ago from Shelton

      Eric, another strong and deliberate sermon.. bravo my friend and please keep. .ahhh preaching? awesome

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 6 weeks ago from Idyllwild Ca.

      Thanks Eric for another inspiring reminder to live life to the fullest as we look for the good in all things and all people. When I start to judge another person for doing some dumb thing - I remind myself that he is God's kid too.

      I truly enjoy my life. It isn't 'good' or 'bad' - it's what I make of it.

      Have an awesome New Year!


    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you Devika I agree with you completely.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Sorry I missed you Kari. It sure works that way for me. I had a little episode where I realized the reverse is true also.

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 6 weeks ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Life is meant to be enjoyed and to feel happiness and love too. Thank you for this great hub!

    • k@ri profile image

      Kari Poulsen 6 weeks ago from Ohio

      If we fill our hearts with love, it does crowd out the fear and hurt. I really enjoyed this one!

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Dora I only have about 10 minutes a day to do loose Bible Study with my son. We ain't got time to slog through some parts. I really like Paul and Luke and James. Time will tell.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Weithers 6 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks for teaching balance. We must not only endure life; we must enjoy it too.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 6 weeks ago from london

      You're funny, Bro. Lol

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Discrimination is so important Manatita. Splice and dice it. I have had some problem with indigestion lately. The direction my intentions and discrimination of that which may cause it. Don't ask me about potato juice;-)

      But I hope that our spiritual well being has the same scrutiny as the physical.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      John tonight we are delving into the science of phosphoric stuff. We are learning (my seven year old and I) about why it self combustions and yet in sea water does not. That is the root of the good pile. Not important maybe but something our earth can teach us. When do we have time to do wrong to another?

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      You hold tight to that angel Demas. She is so right. I have this nasty little cancer and my wife constantly reminds me "what room is there in your heart for disease". I like it.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      It is funny John. Today I call my faith, charity and love as delicious. I think maybe because I am still celebrating masses with the flesh and blood. I do not believe I ever did have a bad communion.

    • faith-hope-love profile image

      John Ward 6 weeks ago from Richmond, British Columbia, Canada.

      I enjoy your Sermons they do evoke us to really check not just our beliefs; They also cause us to renew our way of viewing Life. Keep them coming. I am a permanent Student. God Bless. John W

    • Perspycacious profile image

      Demas W Jasper 6 weeks ago from Today's America and The World Beyond

      My wife summed up your latest sermon some years ago when she said, "If I am doing all the good I can, I have no time for anything else."

    • John MacNab profile image

      John MacNab 6 weeks ago from the banks of the St. Lawrence

      Excellent, thought provoking hub, Eric. I am beginning to hesitantly poke about in the good pile.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 6 weeks ago from london

      Sorting the good and bad pile. So many scriptures come to mind, including Paul's and Solomon.

      Wisdom, discrimination, prudence... ever remaining awake ... todos.

      Thank you so much!!

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you Linda and a happy Monday to you. It just seems to me that we all fall short. But if we are just cruising around spreading the good news of love we really do not need to worry about other stuff. Linda I put you in the good pile.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 6 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      Sorry I'm late. I take weekends off and then catch up like crazy Monday mornings. Anyway, love...there it is...shout it from the mountaintops....include it in every email....never leave home without it.

      Peace and love, my friend.

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      Linda Lum 6 weeks ago from Washington State, USA

      Eric, I love the thought behind the last paragraph--stay busy sorting in the good pile and you won't have time for the bad. I know there is "bad". I know there is fire and brimstone but I am not afraid. I know who rescued me in Love.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Clive I cannot remember a time that you did not go into the good pile. Friendship is great.

    • clivewilliams profile image

      Clive Williams 6 weeks ago from Jamaica

      Blessings Eric

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 6 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      Thank you John. I like the idea of commonality versus conformity. Perhaps even that we disagree is common ground if we treat as such in love.

    • faith-hope-love profile image

      John Ward 6 weeks ago from Richmond, British Columbia, Canada.

      Well said and a good plan of life. Love is a decision and is not related to being in full agreement with thoe we love. All we must do is to decide to love. No two Humans will be able to agree on everything.