Washed, Sanctified, Justified!

1 Cor. 6:1-11, ESV
Thank you, Jesus! Thank you for freedom from the bonds of sin!

Final Instructions and Benediction

I'm typing this out in order that the passages are better committed to my memory and posting it in order that I can look back on it later and remember. May it bless you as well!

1 Thessalonians 5:12-28, ESV
"We ask you, brothers, to respect those who labor among you and are over you in the Lord and admonish you, and to esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Be at peace among yourselves. And we urge you, brothers, admonish the idle, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with them all. See that no one repays anyone evil for evil, but always seek to do good to one another and to everyone. Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Do not quench the Spirit. Do not despise prophecies, but test everything; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil.

Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it. Brothers, pray for us. Greet all the brothers with a holy kiss. I put you under oath before the Lord to have this letter read to all the brothers. The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you."

Proverbs 30, ESV

Proverbs 30

The Words of Agur

The words of Agur son of Jakeh. The oracle.

The man declares, I am weary, O God;
I am weary, O God, and worn out.
Surely I am too stupid to be a man.
I have not the understanding of a man.
I have not learned wisdom,
nor have I knowledge of the Holy One.
Who has ascended to heaven and come down?
Who has gathered the wind in his fists?
Who has wrapped up the waters in a garment?
Who has established all the ends of the earth?
What is his name, and what is his son’s name?
Surely you know!

Every word of God proves true;
he is a shield to those who take refuge in him.
Do not add to his words,
lest he rebuke you and you be found a liar.

Two things I ask of you;
deny them not to me before I die:
Remove far from me falsehood and lying;
give me neither poverty nor riches;
feed me with the food that is needful for me,
lest I be full and deny you
and say, "Who is the LORD?"
or lest I be poor and steal
and profane the name of my God.

Do not slander a servant to his master,
lest he curse you, and you be held guilty.

There are those who curse their fathers
and do not bless their mothers.
There are those who are clean in their own eyes
but are not washed of their filth.
There are those—how lofty are their eyes,
how high their eyelids lift!
There are those whose teeth are swords,
whose fangs are knives,
to devour the poor from off the earth,
the needy from among mankind.

The leech has two daughters:
Give and Give.
Three things are never satisfied;
four never say, "Enough":
Sheol, the barren womb,
the land never satisfied with water,
and the fire that never says, "Enough."

The eye that mocks a father
and scorns to obey a mother
will be picked out by the ravens of the valley
and eaten by the vultures.

Three things are too wonderful for me;
four I do not understand:
the way of an eagle in the sky,
the way of a serpent on a rock,
the way of a ship on the high seas,
and the way of a man with a virgin.

This is the way of an adulteress:
she eats and wipes her mouth
and says, "I have done no wrong."

Under three things the earth trembles;
under four it cannot bear up:
a slave when he becomes king,
and a fool when he is filled with food;
an unloved woman when she gets a husband,
and a maidservant when she displaces her mistress.

Four things on earth are small,
but they are exceedingly wise:
the ants are a people not strong,
yet they provide their food in the summer;
the rock badgers are a people not mighty,
yet they make their homes in the cliffs;
the locusts have no king,
yet all of them march in rank;
the lizard you can take in your hands,
yet it is in kings’ palaces.

Three things are stately in their tread;
four are stately in their stride:
the lion, which is mightiest among beasts
and does not turn back before any;
the strutting rooster, the he-goat,
and a king whose army is with him.

If you have been foolish, exalting yourself,
or if you have been devising evil,
put your hand on your mouth.
For pressing milk produces curds,
pressing the nose produces blood,
and pressing anger produces strife.

Father, forgive me, for I have sinned against You. You are my help. You are my strength. You are my fortress. You are my deliverance.

Why Live Music Attendance is Failing

I was recently talking to a friend of mine concerning the state of attendance of live music not just in our town but in other places in the country as well. It seems as though attendance to “band” shows is down. Singer-songwriter performances have always had the “correct” number of attendees, in my opinion, because of the way the singer-songwriter system is set up. Usually, one books a singer-songwriter in a restaurant or private venue; one or the other. Because of this, attendees either ignore or enjoy the performance. That being said, this post is not concerned with the singer-songwriter. So, let us not count that style of music in the discussion.

My aim, however, is concerned with “band” music. I have seen quality musicians and singers with quality songs struggle. My question and frustration (as I know is theirs as well) is ‘why’? Why the heck are these talented people struggling to captivate and, more importantly, keep an audience? Their performances are good. Their talent is good. Their delivery is good. So, why?
My conclusion, which I will express in a moment, comes from simple evolution. Do we as a society remain stagnant biologically and spiritually and technologically? No. We evolve. So, then, why is the “band” idea remaining the same? We should evolve this! How? Creativity. Learn from the past, but don’t stay in it. People are incredibly bored with the “band scene”. Believe me, I am. I don’t want to go see a band play. I don’t.

Now, I am in no way saying, “People are bored. Let’s make them ‘unbored’.” No, no, no. I’m rather saying. Get creative. Get weird. I have been loving folks like The Flaming Lips, James Blake, and Astronautalis as of late. Why? I mean, The Flaming Lips are old. They’ve been going at this for a while. So, why am I captivated so much by them? Because they are weird. Because they are creative. They don’t stay in the box. James Blake & Astronautalis: they don’t stay in the box, and they are on constant mission to create.

So, my conclusion: The “band scene” cannot and will not captivate unless they first create. Think I’m wrong? Apply this and prove me wrong! Please! I believe I am correct, but I want to see if I am. There is a difference between ‘I was inspired by’ & ‘I created’. Create! Just as you were created, create! Evolve! I believe we will see a shift in numbers, captivation, and loyalty in live music attendance if the change & evolution is made.