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Lowell Brueckner

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Is There an Obsession in Your Life?


Oh Lord of Hosts!                  O righteous Father!

“The angel of the Lord said, O Lord of hosts, how long will you have no mercy on Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, against which you have been angry these seventy years?” (Zech.1:12)  I love to find this little word oh in the Bible text. Why do the translators find it necessary to include it here and in many places? It doesn’t add anything to the meaning of the sentence; it doesn’t clarify any point. It doesn’t name or indicate an action; it doesn’t define a noun or a verb. The translators discerned an expression of passion and for that reason we have it in this prayer from the Angel of the Lord to the Lord of Hosts. Oh! is an exclamation.

The Holy Spirit, author of the Bible, gives us an unparalleled privilege, allowing us to observe a scene that is too sacred for our eyes and unworthy thoughts. It is the communion that Jesus, the Son of God, had with His heavenly Father in John, chapter 17. There we see Him opening His heart and expressing His most intense and intimate desires. In verse 25, He demonstrates His passion: “Oh righteous Father!” It is holy ground and we ought to take off our shoes. The Lord Jesus Christ in the Gospel is the same Person, who is called the Angel of the Lord in Zechariah.

We listen to His words as He comes to the apex of His prayer: “I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me. Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you love me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me. I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them” (Jn.17:23-26). Now, that is the Gospel! This is Christianity! This is the will of the Father in sending His Son into the world. This is the Son’s deep longing, expressed to the Father.

How Do You Handle Life’s Minuses? by Dave Brueckner


Believe me, I don't say this, because our son wrote this article... But this is one of the best that we've ever posted! I say that because, I think it will be a great encouragement for many of you. Dave is not presenting a theoretical message, but something from the pains of real life. When I first published it in our quarterly "Call to Commitment" in the Summer of 2008, people wrote us about the help they received from it. 
We dare not be idealists; life does deal us minuses and we have to live with them. It will really be helpful to us, if we can see God behind it all with His wisdom and love, intimately involved, moving everything for our good. This will be a blessing for anyone...

How Do You Handle Life’s Minuses?
Dave Brueckner

We enter this planet with nothing in our hands. As time goes on, we accumulate possessions, relationships and knowledge. We are not to hold these with a tight grip, but loosely, as a loan from God, because when we exit this earth, our hands will be empty again. The death shroud has no pockets.

Sometimes we are separated from earthly possessions before death. If we hold on unrelentingly, we will grumble and complain, because we feel we were cheated from what was rightly ours. After Job lost everything, he blessed God and said, “The Lord gives and the Lord takes away.” How do I handle life’s minuses?

Update 2015: Ten Most Read Articles on CTC

Update 2015
I want to update you concerning visits to this Call to Commitment blog. As of yesterday, we have had 32,145 visits since our grandson, John, got us started in 2011. I am thankful to God, because I know and I am completely convinced that without Christ, we can do nothing. He is the One who enlightens us concerning His word and He is the One who draws people to read and receive edification. There are visits from all parts of the world, including places that I have never visited and from where I know no one.

Last year, on March 17, I made a list of the 10 articles most read since the beginning of the blogspot. For anyone who would like to see them, they are listed below:

The Cross Principle


“For He was crucified in weakness, yet He lives by the power of God. For we also are weak in Him, but in dealing with you we will live with Him by the power of God.”                                                                                                                       2 Corinthians 13:4
Paul understood this principle well. He saw the need among the believers in Corinth, especially, to grasp it. The Corinthians were boasting in men and their abilities. He presents the problem, as he begins his first epistle: “Each one of you says, ‘I follow Paul,’ or ‘I follow Apollos,’ or ‘I follow Cephas, or ‘I follow Christ’” (1:12). From there, he alluded to water baptism and the confidence that the people were placing in the agent who baptized (v.14-15). In chapter three, he returns to this Corinthian dilemma and attributed it to carnality, which was based on having mere human mentality: “For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh, and behaving only in a human way? For when one says, ‘I follow Paul,’ and another, ‘I follow Apollos,’ are you not being merely human?”

This mentality is colliding with the mind and nature of God, as well as the heart of the message of the gospel. What is the heart of this message? Paul said it is the “word of the cross” (1:18) and a few verses later, he declares, “I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and Him crucified” (2:2).  The message was singular and Paul had two ways of defining it, as far as any earthly school of thought was concerned, among Jews and among Gentiles. He said that they would think that it was foolish and weak! (1:23-25).

It was the message of One who surrendered His hands and feet to be nailed to a cross, where He hung helpless, while His life’s blood flowed from His veins. “He was crucified in weakness.”The cross was the Roman mode of criminal execution; it was a shame and an offense. The person who hung there was nothing; he was a public disgrace. The world was not looking for a bleeding Conqueror or a dying Champion, but Paul said that this was our message and he wanted no other!