Prayer Gardening: Prayer is a subject that concerns all humans regardless of the entity with which they are attempting communication. As Christians, our relationship to God begins with prayer, the prayer of confession for salvation. After salvation, the Christian has a "hotline" to the Throne of God through which we learn and grow in our relationship with him.Knowing how to access that hotline is the key to a successful communion with the Almighty. Our awesome relationship to the God of the Universe is like no other religion, so doing it properly brings results and nourishes our faith to live Godly lives and also to bring others to the Throne.In this text, I cover all of the aspects of prayer that not only plants seeds of faith but waters them. Our growth in faith leads to a closer relationship to God through his Son, Jesus Christ.
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There is much more to come in the book with the working title of God Thinks. Stay tuned on Facebook for the announcement.
If you enjoyed this "think piece," please share it with your friends on my Facebook page with the link above.
By Dell Belew, Ph.D., August, 2015
This working title may be a bit presumptuous until I get to the thesis, so I beg my readers’ apology until such time as I come to that point. In the meantime, take a seat and put your thinking cap on, you know that thing teachers insisted that we had in elementary school. What you are reading now is preliminary remarks to build a scaffold on my own theories. I say “theories” because I take a few chapters from the Bible to build my arguments for answers to questions still being debated—somewhat poorly I might add. Read all of this as I post the continuing comments with an open mind; I believe it will set you free! I enjoy friendly debate, but don’t respond if you intend to consider me stupid or off on a tangent. I am neither.
Over twenty years ago, the Lord opened my eyes to a passage in the Bible that startled me in its simplicity. More importantly, the image I saw was the answer to what I suspected was the reason why people call nature “Mother Nature.” Let me hasten to say that I was not reading some mythological text or some human manifesto that suggested that we refer to Nature as a Mother figure. I was reading the Bible that proclaims itself to be Truth and the Word written by God and transcribed by human beings—and all at the approval and command of Almighty God who the Bible refers to as the Creator and Sustainer of all that we call life.
The first few verses of Revelation 12 were eye opening at the time but later the remainder of the chapter revealed answers to some of the most universal questions that theologians and scientists have attempted to answer. From later research of scientists and other thinkers on the subjects, I found none of them in agreement with their findings. That prompted me to go further into the Bible to look for confirmation regarding what I believed I was reading. I kept the research data along with my thinking prompted by that data so that one day I could do a sequel to the book that came from my initial revelations from Revelation 12.
Today seemed like a good day to start this venture after listening to a teacher through DVD who rather arrogantly made jokes about those who had a different opinion. His arguments did not have good logic though he jokingly rebukes his opponents. He is a Christian man and was speaking to a group of college students with confidence that he was correct. Had he the information and the insight to place certain chapters in The Revelation into proper perspective, he might have come off of his high horse.
This proper perspective also would answer many questions and solve manner arguments. One thing I will say here but will repeat later is that one of the proponents of the so-called Gap Theory, the man I first heard that notion from and who annotated the entire Bible with specific and exhaustive details, waltzed all around the proof text for his theory and missed it entirely. I went to his annotated edition of the Bible and checked the real proof text verse and he interprets it incorrectly and never mentions the Gap Theory in that context.
It was then I realized that the Lord had put my finger on the basis for not only that theory but also answers to many other big questions about life. I have been a student of the Bible for forty years and I can honestly say that I have been wrong about some things and I am not immune to be challenged. Thousands of denominations have been created by those who quarrel about theories outside of what makes us “Christian.” Those doctrines are necessary for salvation so we should be very careful when we step out beyond the basics, which are God’s creation of man, the fall of man, the birth, death, and resurrection of our Savior Jesus Christ who died to buy us back from sin so that we can once again be eligible for sonship to the God who created us.
I don’t mean to sound arrogant in this text, but I do know that if readers will be open to hear what I say, their concept of the whole plan of God will be so crystal clear that it will open up more aspects of the Christian experience that will be life-changing. Knowledge is power and the Truth will set us free! That’s a promise!
I ask as you begin this work to suspend your disbelief and surge forward with an open mind prayerfully.
A Timely Matter
One very significant factor when interpreting the Bible is time and all of its ramifications. Before I delve into the sometimes complicated subject of time, let me explain that the greatest danger in interpreting the Bible is a failure to read the words properly and closely. As an English professor, I can tell you for sure that a failure to define words in the context in which they were written will sink your boat. Having said that, let me also acknowledge that many errors occur when translating scriptures; therefore, defining words properly must include doing so in context.
One does not have to be a Hebrew or Greek scholar to do the research. The Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance of the Bible, Riverside Edition is the best example for the kind of study that is necessary. I highly recommend it in the print edition. Online resources are good and I use them for quick study, but for serious dissection of a passage, I prefer the print copy of Strong’s. I have other texts recommended by seminary professors, but they generally are not necessary when we read both closely and in context.
In terms of the variances in the translations, I ask a seminary professor whether the variances changed the meaning or context and he quickly answered a resounding, “No!”
Admittedly, I do not understand MUCH of the Bible in terms of prophecies, so I take what makes sense to me and postpone the others until God reveals how they fit together.
Another pitfall to interpreting Scriptures is believing something just because another human tells you without doing your own careful study. Always question what you are being taught while looking at the Bible verses yourself! Let another person’s teaching inspire you to do your own study. I will give an excellent example, which you will read again in this text, I’m sure.
Finis Dake was an amazing, brilliant, and resourceful preacher and Bible scholar who annotated the Bible in such an intricate way that he defies description. I first met him when he came to a local church to talk about [and sell] his annotated Bible. I have the greatest respect for the man and he opened a myriad of things in the Bible that sent me home with questions and curiosities.
Time and space do not allow me to go into all of those here, you’ll be happy to know; but one thing in particular stands out in my mind when people are teaching or rejecting the so-called Gap Theory. This theory suggests that there is a long gap in time between the first verse in Genesis; “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth”; and the second verse: “And the earth was without form and void and darkness was upon the face of the deep.”
Dake claimed that the “deep” implied that there was once water covering the entire earth. He referred to that as the Pre-Adamite Flood. The theory in its simplicity raised some more questions and some possible answers, but I was not curious enough at the time to research my thoughts or his. I just accepted them at face value. He had not gone into any detail about where that flood came from and why it was there. Several years later, God showed me where it came from and why, which is the basis for this “think piece.”
The answers magnified some mysteries that have plagued mankind since the Garden of Eden. Meanwhile, I attempted to put some other things together from my own research about other topics God had revealed to me; but I forgot about Dake until one day it occurred to me to see what he had to say about the flood from my source in the Bible. Lo and behold, he had not interpreted that passage correctly regarding time. He seemed to have fallen into the most popular teachings of that chapter.
More interesting to me is the fact that the primary verse that would have perfectly proved Dake’s Gap Theory. He had incorrectly interpreted as had everyone else I read. I almost lost faith in Dake’s annotations, though he is helpful in cross references and often in translating words. I hasten to add that it is more important to translate and interpret for yourself right in the Word to avoid being led astray by other people. I must add that my own thoughts from reading the passages were under close scrutiny and prayer before I wrote the first book.
The most important place to begin is asking the Lord through the Holy Spirit to teach and guide you to help make sense of what you are reading. On the other hand, the timing for revelation is primary. When the Lord wants you to know something, he will guide you when you give him permission and put yourself in a position to receive. Let us move on to some thoughts about time.
Time, Timing, Time-Sensitive
It is no secret that God is timeless; he sees the end from the very beginning of history all at once. Why is that? It is his history and his plan. He set up the right time and space for your life while simultaneously giving you a free will to make your own choices—to choose his way or your own way. Herein is our biggest problem as human beings. We are very much limited in time and space.
The Nature of Earth Time
Splitting theological hairs is a favorite past time in the Christian church. Unfortunately, we find more things to divide us than to unify us. One such disagreement that creeps into discussions among Christians from time to time is about time.
At best, time is a slippery concept. As soon as we give someone the time, it is wrong and it goes from present time to past time. Then there is that elusive future time that never really comes. "The sun will come up tomorrow," or so Annie claims. We interpret that as a hopeful little song; but it`s really not true and is rather pessimistic in respect to time because tomorrow is a concept that never comes.
Today is the only tomorrow we will ever know. Only when time ceases all together will we be fully able to live quality lives today. The whole concept of time trips us up in many ways. We live with regret over the past or look forward to the future too much to enjoy the moments. Even now I`m so caught up in the notion of time that I`m digressing. What I really want to discuss is the origin of time and the global understanding of God`s time.
The story in Genesis that tells of a six-day creation stirs up debates between Christians and scientists, which is understandable. The fact that it is debatable among Christians is less understandable in light of our commitment to believe the Bible. Leaving the scientists` argument for another time, let us look at the believer`s arguments. In addition, let us leave out the theological "tags" that we wear: tags like "fundamentalist," "legalist," "liberal," "moderate," “conservative,” and so on. Let us just look at the words in the text.
The first phrase in the Bible, "in the beginning," suggests that there was a time when heaven and earth did not exist as we know them because having a beginning implies the start of something. Had it been otherwise, that verse would read "always the heavens and earth existed," but it doesn`t. The most important part of that first verse is “God,” so we first need to concede that heaven and earth had a beginning and a maker. That maker is God, who refers to himself as “Yahweh, I AM that I am.” “I am” is first person, present tense, and never changing. He always was and is and is to come simultaneously.
We cannot fathom an experience that doesn`t change or a Being that sees clearly what has happened, what is happening, and what will happen forever--and all in the same instance. Because our human spirits are not time bound and, therefore, eternal, it is possible to be in “I Am” time. To remember something from the past and dream of the future are the only ways to live in I AM time. Our memory and imagination faculties are the ways for humans to bring that into focus. That, however, is not very practical because we live in a time-driven world.
So if our Creator doesn’t exist in time nor is He limited by time, why did he establish it for us? My first reaction is that he wanted to limit the time that the Enemy of our souls would be able to torment us. Adam and Eve were created to be eternal with the Life (Zoë) of God in them. Their disobedience led to their accountability, which is a conscience that could never be satisfied. As long as they remained in that state, their Enemy ruled over them. Time, as a result, became a measuring stick and sometimes a cruel one.
On the other hand, living eternally with God and all his goodness is quite different from living in a state of human ability and responsibility ruled over by the Enemy. What did Adam and Eve know about survival without God? Death was not their worst enemy; it was living without God in the “now.” In order to survive the labor and separation, the couple was given a time limit, a "time out" rather than a never-ending life without Him. Thank God!
This fact, in itself, separates our world from that spiritual place where the Enemy cannot touch our spirits and souls again. Time, therefore, became their friend by limiting their suffering until deliverance came. Thus, time is the enemy of Satan because his time is also limited.
Death is our deliverance as well because Christians escape the human proclivity to suffering. Time limits our years of living in the curse that is still upon the earth and our earthly bodies. Even at its best, this life pales in comparison to all of the things in Paradise; actually, there is no comparison between the two. The best thought for a Believer is eternity begins now.
Imagine if we lived a cursed life eternally, like the mythological Sisyphus, King of Corinth, who incurred the wrath of Zeus for telling a secret. He was cursed to push a boulder to the top of a hill, only to have it roll back down upon him again--and doing it over and over--eternally. There are many things I would not want to repeat for an eternity. However, eternal damnation is far, far worse than pushing a rock up a hill to have it come back down.
What about the origin of time? When did it begin? Do we know? The answer to those questions also answers the critics of the six-day creation story. When God turned on the light, he established lamps to house the Light by day and night. The sun and moon were not the source of Light but controlled the luminosity to give us specified times to work, rest, and govern the harvest of our provisions. God was establishing time at the beginning of his recreation of earth and mankind on it.
The amazing fact of the sun’s distance from the earth is proof enough for me that God put it all in place. Had it been closer, it would scorch us; had it been further away, we would freeze. And who holds it at bay? God, the maker of time and the movement of the sun in 24-hour increments. The movement of the planets is important in this discussion, but I won’t go into it at this point.
Had creation time been different than what it is today, as some suggest, the sun might also have been significantly different in its movement and distance from the earth. Someday, the sun will change dramatically and scorch the earth but only when it is no longer the lamp of heaven but the curse of earth.
Therefore, when God said, "And the evening and the morning were the first day," he was establishing a means by which we would count days. Earth time is measured by days based on the rising and setting of the sun. Ancient civilization followed the movement of the sun for measuring many things. Despite the reference to one day`s being a thousand to the Lord, he set us up on a sunrise, sunset schedule, though he is not moved by time. This is the correct translation of that reference.
For those who argue against absolute truths, let me remind you that the sun absolutely appears as the earth circles around it every day.
Time was God’s idea and he set the clock. Only twice in Scripture did the clock (i.e., time) stop for Joshua and Elijah. The times for the setting and rising changed to some degree based on God’s time table and the movement of the earth, also God’s work.
He finished the work of his own hands within a given time frame: "And the evening and the morning were the second . . . third . . . fourth . . . fifth . . . sixth day" (Gen 1.5, 8, 13, 19, 23, 31).
After He finished the heavens and earth, it was the seventh day, which he set apart for rest. In verse 14, the creation of the lights in the firmament, God further states that the sun and moon were "to divide the day from the night" and "for signs, and for season, and for days, and years" (Gen 1.14). Sounds like an establishment of time to me. When arguing for a literal interpretation, we must acknowledge that there are many aspects that must be read as literal. This is one of those times. We cannot accept the possibility that we can see things as we please. I hate when people say, “Well, that’s your opinion” as if the words in the Scriptures can be redefined or the context can be changed to meet anyone’s need to be right when they may be, in fact, wrong.
To be honest, it is impossible for us to believe that all of creation came about as a result of God’s spoken word based on his will. Our first act of faith is to believe that He is who he says He is and can do what He says he can do. Mankind is too proud to believe it is that easy. That’s why he’s God and we are not. “Without faith it is impossible to please God.” If someone jumps off here, it is at his own peril.
So there we have the establishment of time: a day is one morning followed by one evening, each day having specific purposes and expectations leading to a rest period so that we can bear the work. In the darkness of depression, I learned to appreciate a respectable bedtime. In contrast, when life is good, we don`t want time to end. The promise of Eternity is that the good time will never end. But that is the paradox of time!
Time is both our best friend and our worst enemy. Our experience with measured time tells us that whatever bad thing is happening will eventually pass and that relief will come; or that whatever good thing we expect will eventually come to pass. We call both eventualities faith and hope.
On the other hand, time is our worst enemy because we feel the extreme pressures of the material, time-space continuum as a threat against our accomplishing time-related things such as motherhood or careers. As we plan out our lives and project our wishes into the future within a given time frame, we have disappointments when the "time" comes but the expected results do not. As I age, “time left” is a greater threat than when I was in my 20s.
In both the good and the bad expectations come the "due season" of God`s timing. What the writer of 1 Peter meant for us to know is that our concept of time isn`t God`s limitations, i.e., a day as a thousand years with the Lord. He is neither bound by nor motivated by a phase or stage of human understanding of time.
Prophecy is an ultimate example of God`s time. We see prophecy as future time, as foreknowledge of things to come; but when God speaks about a future experience, he does so knowing it surely will come to pass because he is already there and he speaks of things he sees and knows--and, in fact, has even projected. The only difficulty with prophecy in human terms is discerning whether the prophecy is of God or not. That takes faith and experience in hearing the voice of God.
On a more global note, we should zoom out and see another aspect of time that began to seem most important. On another page, I will share some revelations I have had pertaining to the past before the creation in Genesis 1.2 ff, but for now let me say that those revelations have led to an investigation of time outside of time; that is, before time when beings did not enjoy constant and personal communion with their Maker. It was a civilization much like the deists believed about God and his world—that he set in motion and backed off for it to run the program yet it was not our civilization.
Since Abraham, God has gotten intricately involved with humans who accept the conditions of that covenant. God does not need to keep replenishing the world like he has in the past. He has made a covenant with our civilization that he will be our God if we will be his people. What happened before our time can be a model of what NOT to do, though it is not necessary for us to know. Perhaps that is why we do not have specific details about the whys and wherefores of that history. Remember the Bible is the history of God’s chosen people and the Church, with rules for engagement with Him.
Prehistory is a time before time in a land before time but for a reason fixed in time.
The Nature of God-Time
We mortals have difficulty understanding mystical experiences and anything we cannot measure or predict. Time can be measured and our lives are doled out in seconds, minutes, and hours; but we cannot fathom a Being who transcends time. More difficult is believing that the same Being keeps time moving to bring to a close all things according to His time table.
Let us take prophecy for example once again. It is both mystical and mysterious; many people understand it as foreknowledge of something that is scheduled to come to pass in the future. However, from the God-time perspective, it has already happened in the future and we will only “discover” it when we get there.
Getting “there” sets up another mystery. Is time also a place? Yes, because mortals occupy a place at any given time. What that has to do with anything is the notion that prophecy tells of a time and place where certain events will transpire or happen, so time and place are correlated.
Hollywood has its own version of time and dimensions, something I haven’t mentioned as yet. In the movie Contact, scientists find a coded message transmitted, they think, from an alien planet called Vega. They think that Vegans have an intelligence that far surpasses that of humans. The “Earthlings” receive the coded message in several sheets. They try unsuccessfully to break the code but can`t get the sheets to line up at all registration points.
Finally, they discover that the pages don`t fit side-by-side or end to end, but on top of each other in a particular order as a primer to interpret the digital codes. When overlapped correctly, the message is clear and the scientists find a design for space travel. In the end, the craft turns out to be more about time travel than space. The human voyager leaves the craft, but the craft never leaves its place.
However, the voyager actually travels to another dimension and arrives clearly in a place outside of earth time. I allude to this movie because it is some screenwriter`s conception of the ways in which time and space defy human intelligence and limitations. The movie is based on Carl Sagan’s book. Until we learn that, we can consider that the writer`s motivation is to show us the possibility of another dimension beyond ours, that’s being Carl Sagan, we can’t make any scientific or theological conclusions. I use it here merely as an example or metaphor.
The conclusion of the movie’s theme is that there is “something” out there besides us. The writer was possibly working that out for himself. Art makes that possible, but that’s the subject of another book, Art: The Language of the Soul.
Some Jungian critics would say that the writer could not even imagine such a thing unless the possibility exists in the first place. Carl Jung called such capabilities “archetypes.” Plato called them “forms,” that is things and objects that exist within God-space. Thus, whatever we create on earth is mere imitation of the original.
Plato also believed that knowledge is remembering and not acquiring new information. The preacher in Ecclesiastes agrees that “there is nothing new under the sun.”
In the movie, it seems like only seconds that the time traveler is gone, but in space-time, she is translated for 18 hours. I never even understood light years, so this confuses me; but the encoded message helps me understand something I could not before (which once again shows me the value of art.) My spirit does not operate on clock time like my body. My spirit has the ability to transport me in many directions in God-time to whatever dimension I need to understand His will.
In this God-time, we have dreams and visions. All of these ideas are in the Scriptures. In the case of the tower of Babel, God saw the tower that men were building and said, “. . . [N]ow nothing will be restrained from them, which they have imagined to do” (Gen 11.6b). It is possible to enter another dimension outside of time.
To limit what they could do, he had to breakdown the communication by confusing the language. On the day of Pentecost, he restored a common language. The restoration united imaginations so that the Church can do anything He puts into our imaginations. Notice, however, this restoration of language was only for Believers, so God left those who are in the world confused.
Through God`s language, He gives keys to decode the messages hidden in scripture. He uses metaphors and patterns overlaid upon Truth that can only be discerned by those to whom He gives the revelation. The idea of forms and patterns is interwoven throughout the Bible. Hebrews 11 pulls the idea together in terms of God`s models that replicate those in heaven---just like Plato says.
Our greatest replica on earth of a heavenly original is Jesus Christ. He is not only the Incarnation of God, who put on flesh to pay our sin debt, he is also the earthly representative or model of God Almighty, maker of heaven and earth.
Now, let us go back to the movie writer`s depiction of the overlapping idea in code that leads to the construction of a craft for time and space travel. God, who has everything we need to live both inside and outside of earth time, has given us a code. What is less clear is the “code” that makes time and space travel possible. Living the Christian life in earth-time requires an understanding of the principles, but living in the spiritual Kingdom of God requires an understanding of the overlapping of time.
Overlapping simply dramatizes God`s ability to be in the past, present, and future times and to be everywhere at once. From our own experience with memory, we can visualize overlapping and a kind of stacking. When we think of the past, our memory fills our mind with images and accompanying information. We have the miraculous ability to see many years of experiences and people`s faces and voices in one instant of time, yet we understand how they have affected us---mostly because the memories come with emotional reactions.
With good imaginations, we can visualize the future. This mode is our way of projecting what we think could happen and what we desire to have happen that gives us hope and motivation. The way the memory and imagination work together is more powerful than anything we can understand with our human minds. Wondrously, both faculties can give us a clear picture of the way God sees us in our space-time warp.
Outside of those human faculties, the closest I can come to explaining the inexplainable is by using transparencies for an overhead projector. If all of human life could be put on microfilm transparencies, dividing them into three sheets representing, past, present, and future, with a fourth sheet for depicting the globe, we could get a slight sense of God`s time-space presence in more human terms.
Then we need to add a fifth dimension that results from the overlapping of the four sheets. We can call this fifth dimension “the Mystery of God,” which results from a view that zooms out from the human to the Divine. Through the zooming out process, we can see and comprehend the Plan as God sees it. In this fifth dimension is the “knowing.” The only way we can “know” or “see” this vision is through the lens given to us in the Holy Spirit.
Perhaps a better analogy of the overlapping is an encyclopedic or textbook reference to the human anatomy. Some books have several colored transparencies with the systems of the body. Each system, the nervous, skeletal, muscular, vascular, and epidermal, has its own transparency. As each transparency is turned and overlaid on the previous one, we see the layers and interconnections of these systems in the body. Once the epidermal layer is placed upon the others, we no longer see the systems underneath, just the results when the figure is animated. But we know they are there and, to some extent, what they are, despite the immediate covering.
The covering is actually incomplete from our visual understanding because we cannot know what that figure might be if it moved or how it might be in the future. That`s the part that God knows. We can make assumptions based on past experience watching people move and age; however, the only way we can know for sure in human terms is to wait on the full revelation. God, on the other hand, can show us the rest in our imagination through dreams and visions.
If we apply this analogy to God`s unlimited time and space, we can begin to get a grasp of what faith is all about. God sees past, present, and future and shows us as we draw closer to Him. Then and only then can we see through His eyes. We can see all things and know all things that pertain to God`s plan and then walk in it with confidence. Prophecy allows us to see when God chooses. Prophecy HAS to come to pass because it is the revelation of “known” things. Only our fear and carnal understanding can cloud our vision of the great things He has in store for them that love Him.
Leaving the transparency examples now, let us suspend our disbelief and imagine that God has overlapped time, space, and circumstance in the chapters of the Old and New Testaments. This overlapping we can call by two names: prophecy and revelation. As we study the Scriptures, we can read the prophecies and figurative language with some intellectual understanding. When we combine prophecies with the fulfillment, a subconscious layering takes place, as with memory of our personal past can bring images of our past within the same mental arena without regard for the time or place that they originally occurred, therefore leaving time out of the equation.
However, we need special revelation or awareness from God in order to have confidence in God-time. Jesus told his disciples that they would not understand everything he said but that the Holy Spirit would lead them into all Truth. The Truth about time, I believe, will bolster our faith and open us up to greater, higher levels of understanding.
Truth is locked in time and space until God unlocks or unveils it for us. Prophets spoke mysteries even they didn`t understand in their day. The reward for believing and seeking diligently is that God comes as his Spirit teaches and leads us into all Truth. Truth is the reward that the writer of Hebrews promises: “. . . anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him” (Heb 10:6b NIV). This is a major key point in understanding time and Truth.
When we get too carnally minded, we see only the limitations of time, so we become frightened. Most intelligent people can decipher surface prophecies, especially those which have come to pass, but it takes the Spirit of God to reveal those prophecies that are layered and interwoven that have happened and continue to have an effect on the present and future or that have not been fulfilled as yet.
If the Bible is inspired by the One who calls Himself “I Am,” how can we miss the fact that the Bible is alive in the past, present, and future all at once? When we can acknowledge that, we can begin to see the world as God sees it. Seeing Truth takes us to levels of life that allow us to go from glory to glory, never fearing what man can do to us. If the Being who transcends time and space is on our side, how can we fear or hesitate to serve Him unequivocally?
Time is on our side so that we can know that our suffering within the material world will ultimately end. Some people believe that the reason God cast Adam and Eve out of the garden was to keep them from eating of the Tree of Life and, thus, protect them. To live eternally with God is one glorious prospect, but to live eternally separated from Him would be an unspeakable horror; it would be Hell.
As long as we live in a time-limited world, we can make choices as to how we will live in eternity, so time gives us the leeway to choose. Grace and free will become our lifelines if we make the right choices. Sadly, the same time is given for those who do not choose God through His son Jesus Christ.
Having suggested all these things, let me conclude with the great news that we aren`t limited by time or space if we make the right choices. The spiritual world is the only world that brings peace, love, and joy now and forever more.
At the very least, we are the tiniest speck in the whole plan of God. It is, perhaps, too much of a leap for us to know, but with the Word and the indwelling of God through his Holy Spirit, he tells and shows us what we need to know; when we need to know; and what we should do with what we know, seamlessly and timelessly!
The Nature of Bible-Time
If you have been with me on the previous sections, you will hopefully be able follow my argument. You will also hopefully find my motive for building a case for overlapping and coding at all. I firmly believe that we cannot box God in and insist that the order of the Bible is too much chronological or that each prophecy or event has a one-time occurrence.
It is vital to believe the foundational doctrines of Christianity, namely the Trinity, the Virgin birth, the redemption of the Blood of Christ, and our eternal reward for having believed on God through Christ. But it is equally important to see the whole plan of God as it is interwoven throughout the testaments. The knowledge of the plan makes us better ambassadors for the King. It helps us live in freedom—from bondage.
So where do we begin to understand Bible-time? The difficulty with answering that question is the very complexity of the overlapping that I suggest in the previous section. As a baby Christian, I had little knowledge of anything except John 3:16. I had no idea that the four gospels told principally the same story from four different perspectives. By the time I made my way from Matthew to John 3, I had a clear vision of who Jesus Christ is and that he is real and very much involved in my life as a believer. I also had the answer for what had happened to me as I read the Gospels. I had become born again, a new creature in Christ Jesus.
I didn`t understand that the night I committed my life to him; I understood as I interacted with Bible through my spirit. No one could have adequately explained how that could happen, but I soon learned that is a matter of spiritual growth as I learned to crawl and then walk through my new life. From that first encounter with God through the Gospels, I branched out into the letters and stopped at the Revelation for some obvious reasons: I didn`t have a clue what to do with the book.
Knowing what the letters are all about was easy and even the Psalms and Proverbs. Genesis told stories of early civilization and where it all began. The Exodus, easy, as well as other Old Testament historical records. After 25 years of reading, I`ve come to see the Bible in a whole new light. I don`t see it as a book for everyone in the world but as a book for the covenant people of God then and now. Though He wants all the world to be in covenant with Him, not all will be.
God does not tell us everything that happened for all eternity before or after the beginning but He has told us and will reveal to us all that we need to know. For us, therefore, to believe that if a civilization is not mentioned in the Bible, it did not exist is wrong thinking in Bible-time. I go into greater detail in other pages. For now I want to discuss Bible-time as it relates to where we are presently and how much more we need to be open to possibilities.
To be legalistic and fundamental keeps people tuned in to the Biblical mandates about faithfulness and sinfulness, but legalism can become a mental trap that forbids our openness to God`s revelation knowledge. As I`ve mentioned before, if we are to walk by faith and not by sight, we need to learn what the invisible parts of our existence are all about. The world in which we live has become more and more corrupt every day until we have become embroiled in things personally that sabotage our faith in Christ.
The miscommunication in our era is so subtle that it darkens our spirits without our realizing it. Many, in fact, have grown cold to the Bible and to the message of the Gospels. A new wave of evangelism is sweeping the world as things become more corrupt. The timing of this wave isn`t man`s; it is God`s for He knows that time is short and the days are becoming more evil.
People who study prophecy can give much better details than I from recent past and current events to prove that prophecies have been fulfilled in our lifetime. What I offer in this section is the idea that we may be looking for more visibly graphic things than will occur, so we need to look for more subtle fulfilments in order to become more aware as to the Bible-time.
Prophecies pertaining to Israel are spread throughout the Old Testament. Because scholars believe the prophecies in the Revelation are for the future, so believe they would be about the Church and the world. What happens when we consider the Revelation from God's sense of time that is past, present, and future simultaneously?
The Fine Art of Worship II: If your church is thinking about expanding the worship experience, this text is an excellent guide for all of the arts: visual, musical, sacred dance, dramatic, and poetry. I am available to come for workshops or seminars with your congregation or for the youth. Although this text has black and white images, the color images are on my website www.dellbelew.com on the Painting in the Spirit page. Paperback B/W edition: $17.99; Sorry, no Kindle edition of this one but the text is in the first edition above in Kindle for $5.99 [There are no images, however.]
The Woman & Her Seed, the abridged edition to a previous longer version. It is an upgrade of sorts in light of ongoing events in life for women and their seeds. To make the study a little less complicated, I removed Part III, which has my research and proof texts. The Woman, The Red Dragon, and The End of the Age has my research in Part III, but I found that many people do want to get into those details. If you are one of those, this text is a little more manageable.
Paperback: $14.99; Kindle: $.99.
The Fine Art of Worship: The aspect of Worship in the church setting is often misunderstood. As a result, the activity that takes place in a sanctuary can sometimes be off the mark. When the sovereign being--the object of worship--is God, the Creator, we should assume that he has given his followers an ability to be creative. And what better place to create than the sanctuary where believers hope to invite the presence of their Creator?
This work attempts to do two major things: teach the meaning of "true worship" and provide inspiration for creating many forms for worshipping God. In the process, worshippers receive revelation knowledge from God. The worship of God involves both adoring Him and drawing others into His presence. Visual, dramatic, musical, and kinetic arts create that space, not only drawing Him but speaking through believers to other believers for edification. The worship experience becomes an interactive and profound meeting between the Divine and man. This text serves as a training manual of sorts to encourage others to use their creative gifts and talents to get further into "true worship" and to bring others into the Father's presence. [This is the color image edition, but the black and white images reduces the cost of printing. That title is slightly different: The Fine Art of Worship II. See below.]
Color edition: $35.00; Kindle $5.99 (without images).
Who is the Holy Ghost? The Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost is often the most misunderstood aspect of the Trinity. This text explains the distinctions between the three "persons" of the Trinity in terms of their manifestations in the world and, especially, in the Church today. I have found that church people tend to believe what they are told without searching and researching what the Bible actually says about Judeo-Christian values and doctrines. In this book, I take readers through the maze of the Bible to reveal that the Holy Spirit is much more than we realized but and yet much less than we have given credit. Knowing the hierarchy of the Godhead and the purpose of each of God's manifestations to man is vital to living the Christian life and establishing a right relationship with Him.
Paperback: $12.99 Kindle $1.99
Son Rise Reflectionsis a collection of devotions that cover a wide range of meditations for each of the 40 days of the Lenten season beginning with Ash Wednesday and ending with Easter. Most of the readings are accompanied by scriptures and prayers.
Paperback: $6.99; Kindle: $1.99.
Firewalker: A Novel: Dr. Joy Lightner authored 14 books before her last, which was a fictional novel based on her own life. Her last book alerted many who sought to stop her pen at all cost. As the retired author escapes her captors and hides in the dark woods, she retells of her many revelations leading up to the backlash of her most threatening novel. The author and her publicist spend a long dark night in the damp woods before finding refuge in an abandoned church awaiting their fate--and the fate of the entire world.
My first venture into fiction. I enjoyed it so much that I am writing a second. This novel is a blend of fiction and nonfiction as many of the aspects are true; the ones that are futuristic are quite in the realm of possibility and, even, prophetic. Paperback: $15.99; Kindle: $1.99.
Leaving and Cleaving: The Biblical Guide to a Happy Marriage.Through the years, I have officiated at many weeding. When I agree to ask God's blessings upon a couple, I insist the couples attend at least 4 premarital counseling sessions with me. Recently, it occurred to me that having something in writing might make the counseling sessions more memorable and also provide a refresher after the marriage when the stars in their eyes have begun to lose their sparkle. The book incorporates Biblical guidelines in addition to some modern interpretations given the ways marriage is being conceived in the 21st-century.
Available in paperback and ebook on Amazon.com or through me @email@example.com
My first memoirs under this same title was a hit even among people who didn't know me very well, which always amused me as most of what I was recording could come under the heading "You had to be there!" There were some serious essays in which I was expounding on whatever was irritating me at the time. Some stuff was just funny. Book II is very similar in that I pick up with the stories I was writing for my writing group as examples--seems people don't think they have much to tell unless they hear other people's stories. One of the participants in the group did the same thing with her stories.
Available in paperback and ebook on Amazon.com or through me @dellbelew33@hotmail.
The Princess Dell Journals: Though I have lived something less than a charmed life, I have certainly had many interesting events, some ridiculous and some sad. I teach a creative writing group at the local senior center, Generation One, and it became a group of people who were interested in remembering and, in some cases, writing down their past life's stories. My own memoirs grew out of my leadership of the group as it is my responsibility to provide prompts, inspirational points for their writing. There is much more than family, personal history here. Readers are known to chuckle at my humorous perspective on life's events. This book has been a favorite even among people who are not family.
Paperback: $15.99 Kindle $3.99
Genesis One Designs
Publishing, Writing, Bookstore, Art/Design, Christian Ministry, Photography .
God Thinks: A Preview of a book in progress.
In Full Bloom. Of all of my creative endeavors, poetry was one of the last ones to appear in my life. When I say "appear," I mean that it almost sneaked up on me. I had written some poetry on occasion when an event or sight had stirred my imagination; but it wasn't until I was stirred deep in my soul by a movie that I was inspired with a sense of urgency to write down my feelings and thoughts.
As I was writing the second line, I had the thought, "This is a poem." Every person who has ever given any thought to what a poem is will have a different definition. Mine is quite simple; a poem comes from the stirring of the inner soul that requires expression. The expressions in my poems range from the ridiculously silly to romantic meanderings to the sorrowful, cathartic reflections during a dark time in my life.
Paperback: $5.99 Kindle $.99
Books are available through my website,, email at firstname.lastname@example.org, Contact page, or Amazon.com in paperback and ebook. Books ordered directly from this website are shipped FREE in the United States. I am presently offering a FREE pdf file of Who is the Holy Ghost? To obtain your FREE copy, request it on the Contact page. Secure payment should be made through PayPal and assigned to Dell Belew. If you do not have an account, you may create one.
Healing: Miracle or Mystery?: Some simple but profound truths about the Christian's claim to health and long life and why we are living so far below our privilege. Learn what God has done for the Christian and how to appropriate the claims of the Kingdom regarding the most important aspects of life in THIS world and the next. Paperback: $14.99; Kindle: $1.99.
The Woman The Red Dragon, and The End of the Age: The contents of this book first came to me as a revelation in preparation for teaching a class on Revelation 12. For several years parts were added in a way that made me know that the Lord was trying to tell us something. The results took 11 years to organize and finally conclude that it was finished. There are so many major revelations that came about in the process that I found it difficult at times to handle. I am firmly convinced that the Lord gave it to me and then pulled it together. It is divided in sections for simplicity--though there isn't anything simply about this book.
In it, I reorganize the chronology of the Bible and tell the story of the struggle of the woman and her seed throughout history even before time by bringing passages together that are strewn around. These passages indicate the times past, present, and future situations that help explain why humans are here and how we fit into the plan of God. We have been taught that every human has a purpose but few find theirs. I believe the plight of women, in particular, has been the most troubling; however, the evidence I have found indicates that women are not only key in creation, but they have been key in the evil force that has been ledged against humanity. The identity of Evil in the world depends upon believing that the Bible is true. Meeting that condition comes with more understanding of a global view of the war between Good and Evil with the creation of man and Earth caught in the middle. Mankind wins in the end and takes the final prize: ruling and reigning with the "man-child" Christ forever after the final conflict. The book is both a revelation and a warning to men, women, and the Church of the 21st Century. This edition is available only through me presently.
Paperback: $15.99; no Kindle edition available at this time.
ART: The Language of the Soul: The joyful appreciation of art and beauty in nature elevates the soul to higher levels, but it has the potential for much more. Transcendence and inner healing loom on the horizon for eager sojourners in quest of wholeness and the subsequent satisfaction of a life well-lived. The key to these experiences is awareness; first, of the possibility for anyone who seeks, knocks, and asks; and second, of the simple practices that can unlock the doors. Some of these simple practices are described in this text. The book is both philosophical and practical and comes from 40 years of growth and experience as an artist working in all media, including writing.
Paperback: $10.99, Kindle: $1.99.
The UNdiet Book: Using age-old wisdom, I approach the dilemma of diets and exercise programs that are not working. Americans are obsessing on food, the good and the bad kinds, to the extent that the only people making headway are the ones conceiving of the diets, supplements, and videos. With this common sense "Livet" plan is the Biblically founded mindshift in the entire problem of food and what we should be thinking about our bodies and what we put into them. We have bought into the grand lies about food, the good and the bad. This plan advocates a mindshift away from the bondage of diets and exercise programs and to the freedom every Christian should enjoy in the Kingdom of God. The basis for one of the biggest lies is the teaching that our bodies are the temple of the Holy Spirit. The body was not made for food but food for the body. The book lays out a plan to cut to the chase and get us back to the right mindset about food so that we can eat and enjoy our food without the fear, anger, guilt, and hatred we have heaped upon ourselves over the years. Obesity is growing rapidly among adults and children; now is the time to put a stop to it for our spiritual and emotional well being.
Paperback: $4.99; Kindle: $1.99.
I suspect from past experience in teaching Christians that many of them are unaware of the dangers the devil (whose proper name is Satan) presents in their lives everyday and at every turn. Ignorance is bliss doesn't even cover the problems associated with not knowing that he exists and, especially not knowing what he is up to. In this text, I begin with the encounters with Jesus after his [Jesus'] baptism. If we do not know who our enemy is, we are without hope and help in the world. Therefore, searching out the information that we are given in the Bible is the second step; the first is in acknowledging that we NEED to know.
Available in paperback and ebook through Amazon.com and me (email@example.com).
The years 2021 and, now, 2022, have been banner years for God's provisions during personal sorrows from loss of family members. Just as I was finishing up this latest text, the LORD spoke an awesome and most comforting word for my daughter-in-law about the death of her son. That word alone convinced me how important it is for the Body of Christ to awaken their senses to the ways in which God speaks directly to our souls. I had to go back to the printer and revise the text to include that information fresh off of God's press. The book speaks to all of us about the adoring relationship we have with our on-time and all-encompassing Father who wants us to know exactly what is happening in our lives so that we are not distracted nor dismayed by the events that threaten to encompass us with dread and fear. The book became a spiritual autobiography with stories to which we all can and should be able to relate.
Available in paperback and ebook from Amazon.com and from me. [firstname.lastname@example.org)
Money, Money, Money: After a lengthy discussion with a good friend about how I survived for 10 years without a job but maintained an excellent credit rating, she said, "There's your next book!" In the process of writing this one, it occurred to be that the best use of the book would be in my marriage counseling sessions with young people who are about to marry and begin their financial lives together. I include many excellent suggestions and helpful but necessary information about having, using, and not having money. All of my experiences come from my life beginning with childhood issues and through to lean years as a divorced and later unemployed single mother. Most are very practical and some may seem a bit foolish but trust me when I say, they work. I am a living witness to all of this.
Paperback: $11.99 Kindle $2.99
Meditations: Living the Word Daily. In 2016, I determined each day to write a devotional beginning with the first day of the year. This edition contains those daily meditations. I believe there may be one day missing, for which I apologize. The others will keep the reader busy as some of them cover more than one page. Cover painting copyright Dell Belew 2016.
Paperback: $15.99 Kindle $3.99..
Dell Belew, Artist & Creative Director
The Blood Often called a "slaughterhouse religion," Christianity is rich with Blood, the Life-giving source that is rarely understood by those who claim to be followers of Jesus Christ. In this text, I attempt to explain in sometimes simple detail all of the aspects of the Biblical understanding of God's ordinances and Jesus' shedding of Blood at Calvary. I cover the first instance of God's giving mankind his Life Blood and then man's loss of that vital aspect. Finally, I explain why Jesus' blood was sufficient to redeem a fallen race back to a Holy God.
Paperback $5.99 Kindle $2.99 .