Find me in my pain, find it burying me slowly
How can You see into my eyes like they’re open doors to search through the midnight?
Why did You uncover me beneath this dirt to know where I hide?
I should be dead, but I’m still breathing somehow
The light is blinding and I can feel Your hand pulling me out
Everything I’ve wanted has fallen and is broken now
All of their pieces are left behind in the coffin where it belongs and where I once lived
I want to repent, I want to be perfect despite the temptation and the voices in my head telling me to be different, it’s all garbage
I hope You aren’t disappointed but after a while I feel like You don’t even notice
A part of me is missing and I just can’t fill it
I’ve tried and I’ve cried and I’ve tasted loneliness until my tongue was dry
I’ve been burning through the days searching for a better way
In truth I’ve been running away while everything was falling down around me
You promised to be with me as long as it takes even when I’m drowning
I need You to calm these waves but it seems like You’re far away
Make me listen
Make me different
Their mind is a loaded gun, I was the target and I’ve come undone by their shots that aimed into my heart
I’m stuck in a cage with my doubt and the toxic lies of the enemy, but I think I’m ready for You now
Everyday by myself I’m breaking down
Come and find me in my pain
You found it burying me slowly
How can You see into my heart like an open door?
I heard You knocking long ago to surrender my soul but I was afraid to reach out
Your hope is what I need now
I’ve got a war going on inside my soul
I don’t want to fight alone
I’ll give it all away, it’s all superficial
Let your Love surround me
Put Your arms around me
Your Love sees the ugly inside me and whispers that it’s staying
Your Love can’t be shaken by the decisions I’ve made
Your Love can open the coffin built by the mistakes that I’ve been laying in
You can take everything, I’ll give you the key to my mind and my heart
Hold me now
I need to feel You
Show me how to make it new
The past I can’t undo
But I don’t want to walk into the future without You
Soteriology, simply put, is the study of the doctrine of salvation. Soteri means preserver or savior and ology describes the study of something or someone. In this case, we are studying the doctrine of salvation, and listing a few related questions.
What are some of the questions soteriology addresses?
Once someone is saved are they always saved?
Is baptism required for salvation? What is baptismal regeneration?
Yes – by the Holy Spirit. If one has accepted Jesus Christ into their heart and dies without the opportunity to be submerged by water, their soul is still heaven-bound (Luke 23:40-43).
Baptismal regeneration is the belief that one MUST be submerged with water in order to be obtain salvation.
What is repentance and is it necessary for salvation?
Repentance is a change of mind about a situation; it is necessary for salvation.
Is one sin worse than another?
This is a twofold question. If one has sinned, he is not any greater or any lesser than another sinner. However, each sin will be judged accordingly. God is a good judge and would not punish a liar the same as He would a serial killer.
Do conjoined twins have two souls?
Yes – one apiece.
What is salvation?
Salvation is an act of saving someone or something from harm or damage.
How were people saved before the coming of Jesus?
They weren’t. Old Testament saints waited in a place called Sheol until Jesus came to fulfill His purpose on earth.
How is a person saved or “born again a second time”?
Jesus describes this process is John 3. In order to be born again, one must receive the Holy Spirit and then they are “rebirthed” as a “spiritual” being. If they refuse, they are still of the flesh.
What about those who have never heard the Gospel – are they going to Hell?
God judges the heart while man judges the outer appearance. So while an individual may not have read a bible or recited the sinner’s prayer, they may be able to enter Heaven’s gates nonetheless.
How do man’s free will and God’s sovereignty work together in salvation?
Men are free to decide their own choices but God determines the consequences.
Do all religions offer salvation?
No – just Christianity.
Soteriology describes redemption (compensation), justification (impartiality), sanctification (set apart), propitiation (favor), and substitution atonement (reparation). All of these things work together to create the wonderful plan that God created in order to maintain a relationship with His creation despite their flaws and sinful nature.
Salvation is not man drawing towards God, rather God drawing towards man (John 6:44).
Why did God go through the trouble of creating and carrying out the plan of salvation in order that His enemies to live forever?
God’s Words for You puts it this way as they read from the book of Ephesians:
The initiating cause of our salvation is the will and purpose of God (Eph 1:5, 9, 11)
The motivating cause of our salvation is the love of God (1:4)
The necessitating cause of our salvation is our spiritual deadness and sin (2:1-5)
The enabling/facilitating cause of our salvation is the grace of God (1:6-8; 2:5-9)
The meritorious cause of our salvation is the blood of Christ (1:7)
The legal cause of our salvation is the imputed righteousness (1:4)
The effective cause of our salvation is the power of God (1:18-23)
The subjective cause of our salvation is hearing and understanding the message of Christ (1:9, 13)
The instrumental cause of our salvation is faith (1:1, 13; 2:8)
The locational cause of our salvation is union/identification with Jesus Christ (1:3, 4, 7, 11; 2:5-6)
The recitative cause of our salvation is the praise and glory of God (1:6, 12, 14; 2:10)
As featured on The Dirty Christian
As solid of a relationship as you may have with God, you must agree that there are times of turmoil in this totally one-sided love you have. I say one sided because the deeper I go into the presence of God the more I grow to understand that my love for Him is totally overshadowed by His love for me. It’s completely different from any relationship that I’ve ever been in, and along with it being new, life with Jesus brings new complications and even more new joys!
I have since been acquiring a list of standard practices that I have gone through or seen executed perfectly. As my divine Creator washes over me with love, showers me with His detailed affection and offers me intrinsic value; I have become increasingly aware of my ability to reciprocate with total arrogance and selfishness.
It might seem like nothing to other people, but the smallest things mean so much when we zoom out. Things like my inability to wake up early and pray, or my two years of complete marijuana obsession. They seem insignificant to some but let’s be real; putting these things at a greater priority than the Creator of all things, author of time and giver of life is a big deal to me.
So it’s because of my daily heathenly practices that I’ve acquired a list of ways to ruin this amazing thing I got going with the Big Guy. It’s a sort of “how to” of nightmarish proportions. Follow these steps exactly, and you will be broken, lonely and farther from God than you were when you were an agnostic, Beatles fan who loved MGMT and only smoked bowls cuz blunts ruin the flavor, bro. (I’m looking at you, Chaz) So here comes the guide to losing the relationship–a guide I know you won’t follow. But when you run across one of these and you can juke it like Steph Curry before Lebron you will thank me.
Prioritize God Last In Your Life
Look, some things in life can’t be given up. Too much change is required. You need to stop trying to squeeze God into every little thing you do and relax. If God is really who he says he is, then you can set your schedule and He will come to you! Besides, bottomless mimosas on Sunday mornings for 20$ is unbeatable. What kind of God would make you give that up?
Pray Only For Things You Want
God is like a genie. When you pray for something you always 100% of the time get it. Because God wants you to always have what you want. This way if you mess it up, you can only blame yourself! Isn’t He so good?!
God is Good!
Chaz: In All of the Times!!
–It’s “All the time” Chaz, but anyway.
Don’t worry about praying for things that aren’t your business, focus only on things that include you, and as you pray about them make sure you tell God that you want Him to have His way about all of these things. While you’re at it, never offer to pray for someone and always ask for prayer. Make sure that the two are tied together. You just never want to actually act on the prayers that are said. That would be ostentatious.
Develop Relationships That Only Benefit You.
While you are in ministry, make sure you forget about the little people, if you are in business make sure you work too much and forget about church, if you are a church goer make sure you only hang out with the “cool” people in church. No one else really hears from God. Who do you think told them to wear those long-cut tees? Make sure you only become friends with people who have something to offer you.
If anyone asks you for anything in return, they aren’t really your friends and you shouldn’t build deep friendships with them. They are just shallow and trying to use you.
I’m telling you this is the way to go! If there is a short cut to destroying your relationship with God here it is!
You’re the only one that matters. If someone doesn’t fit into your schedule, then why should you sacrifice your time to make time for them? Sure, keeping your word is good and all but keeping your purpose intact…at all costs…now there is something God respects. You need to look out for yourself. It’s not like you have people who are going to do that for you. Since you only hang out with the cool people, odds are you won’t have many friends. You are one step closer to isolation. Which is one spot on way to kill your relationship with God.
Great! So you’re isolated, you only hang out with certain people, your prayer life is self-focused and you fit God in “wherever you can”. Looks like we only have a couple more things to go before you’ve effectively ruined your relationship with God.
Try to Be Relevant to People Instead of Obedient to God.
You’ve gotta have the new Hillsong Y&F album. And you besta make sure you’re at Fetty Wap & Andy Mineo show but since it’s on a Saturday night, you should probably sleep in and just stream some Steven Furtick from bed Sunday morning. Maybe do a Coffee & Bible IG post, and snap yourself going for a run (mind, body and soul). Not gonna lie! It felt like an amazing Sunday so you could do that for a few weeks until you start receiving some sweet texts and calls from your leaders and pastors.
“We miss you, dawg.”
“You coming to home group? Got that lasagna tonight!”
“Hey, hope you’re okay. We miss you.”
“Applebees tonight. You in?!”
Don’t listen to or seek leadership in your life.
For grade A, fast track to destruction of your relationship with God, skip right to here. All of the things discussed up to this point could arguably be misinterpreted. We could say you just didn’t have any control over them and you were simply going through a hard time. Here is where you differentiate yourself from all the others. Where you stand out and say “I REFUSE TO LISTEN TO GODLY ADVICE FROM GODLY PEOPLE!”
When you take that stand, you are saying consciously, with your heart that you want to inflict damage on your relationship with God. I say this so vividly because it is one of the only steps here that require true rebellion against authority on earth. Every other step have been micro-rebellions against God. But in this step, we make it public.
If I can provide road signs for future mishaps in your walk that is what I want to do. In all seriousness there are a couple of main ways to restore your relationship with God if it’s hurting and that is Spiritual Accountability and Obedience to God’s word. Without those two we will never feel like we are fulfilling our lives as Christians. Any way we size it up, our lives and our being are made to work in the function of church as Christ sees it (not American Church). A spiritual family, built on the word of God. Building each other up through prayer. Without these functions we are lone rangers doomed to solitary Christianity, a diluted Jesus. Because He uses His sons and daughters who are willing and works through them. This walk is only feasible with Christ and community. All this in love,
The Test of Knowing Him
Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him. He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.
Angel Quiroz is a vlogger, blogger and designer. Angel has created the website Culture and God for the purpose to inform culture of societal achievements and downfalls, faith, love and life from a fresh perspective and interesting facts about shopping, fitness and music. While being transparent with his own life challenges, part of Angel’s goal is to encourage you to take heart as God builds character and strength so as to let His glory and your purpose shine like a lamp set upon a hill. If you wish to contact him, he has communication set up through his website through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Google Plus.
Check out one of his most recent posts when you hover over Culture and God in the menu bar!
Unless there is air, there is no fire
Unless there is life, there is no living water
Until I’m dead, I’m not born again
Praying a prayer does not mean I’m religious
Going to church does not make me a Christian
Rebellion is called sin and there are snakes in the wilderness
My ghost is left in the garden because I’m not perfect, and I’m not as spiritual as you think I am
Are you expecting too much of me, or am I not being all I could be?
God chases those He loves even while they’re in darkness
Before we’re brought to life, we’re walking carcasses
But now I can impact a life because of a life changing Message
At 17, I experienced death and eternity
Pinned to the ground forced to cry out to unlock the restraints of immorality
Sin does not laugh or enjoy games
I don’t mean to bring up the past but at that point I was born again
It’s not who I was, it’s who I am
The truth is for the body and faith is for the mountains
There’s nothing new about it but it’s still full of power
He promised millions of miles by my side as Jehovah Jireh
He promised to be the star directing my path as the Prince of Peace just as He did for the three kings
To be the author and finisher of my faith and as the lamp to light my way
Unless there is love there is no change
Some say I lost my life but I never settle for average
Some are scared they’re going to die so they’re living it to the highest
But if Jesus wasn’t resurrected, you’re already wasting your life
You need eternal salvation because this isn’t all there is
Until you’re dead, you aren’t born again
At 21, I heard a call and a command to abandon my selfish desires and wills in the grave
Unless there is life there is no living water
Take a sip of Life before returning to the well of man
There is grace
And there is fire in His eyes
The Son separated from glory
To crown you eternal life
When did I lose myself?
When did I lose myself in you?
Hear me screaming and feel them reverberating
The echos are your compass to find me
You have all of my heart, the one you left behind
You cannot erase history merely amongst the wings of time
I want to know that you’re finally gone, but your picture is still on the wall of my heart
Ashes of our dreams together are scattered around, haunting me forever from now on
I saved my last breath for you and you’re still holding it in your arms
You have all of me captured in your illuminated darkness
I wish you would just leave, so why are you still standing here?
I wish you would disappear, so why does your presence still linger near?
The abrasions inflicted by your sorcery do not heal
I gave you all of me, but you took it all from me
I made the mistake, so blame it all on me
But trust when I say I will never again live for poisonous beauty
Why am I so hypnotized by what does not last very long?
Before I knew it, what we had suddenly was gone
Reaching out for hope between the tears when it was over
When I look into your eyes searching for oceans, all I see are dirty little puddles
I don’t have a right to know everything, but Jesus does
I don’t do it all right, but I know Jesus does
Our last goodbye disappeared as a butterfly would
I’m not holy, but I tell you what He told me
In the back of my mind I’m wondering if you’ll always be the tourniquet to my mentality
Is this the new reality, the fork in the road right here?
Where I choose to let the Man who parted the seas to let me out of the tower guarded by your noisy promises?
I’m dying with a broken heart until I hear His footsteps
They approached the door
When He opened it, He told me to come forth
I’m desperate for hope
He said He lost Himself, He lost Himself in me
He heard my screams and felt them in His heartbeat
I don’t know what to do; still kind of out of it
I don’t know how to forgive
He said it didn’t matter, just to take His hand
The first hello came like a butterfly would
I don’t know how You’re going to come through
Why You’re even bothering to fix this hardened fool
Maybe You can do everything you say you could
Maybe You’re accustomed to opening these tombs
Wrestling with God and coming face to face with yourself
The fight of your life that you’re in and that you’re going under is the one that said
There’s something about you that you need to change
If you seek God face to face you will die
Before you change you have to meet the truth and meet the lie
God isn’t trying to change you so He can love you – He loves you so He’s trying to change you
We act on what we perceive is true
God is going to jump on you, He’s going to be constant
* * * * *
In order for there to be a breakthrough, there needs to be a broken you or (In order to have a breakthrough, you must break something to go through)… The broken you must be placed in the Hands of the one who manufactured, God the Maker)
Silence is the audience chamber of God
Jacob is not wrestling with God, God is wrestling with Jacob
Maybe there’s some things that I want to change about myself
Maybe there’s a lot of things, more than what I want to deal with
I can be petty sometimes, I can be nagging
I know I lie a lot and oftentimes I’m moody
I’m unforgiving, angry and impatient
I’m a bunch of nasty things and a killer is one of them
It’s not right, I know, and I feel like I’m working on it
I hate myself but inside I’m really hurting
I’ve met the truth and I know the lie inside and out
The silence is screaming at me but I can’t hear if God is too or not
There’s something in me that needs to change and I know it’s my heart
God is constant and true, holy and pursues
I am emotionally through, my soul is cornered and bruised
I know I don’t have any excuse, and He knows that, too
I hate what I’ve become and I hate what I’ve done, but it’s over and done with now, I won’t look back, I never do
I act on what I perceive is true but my truth never really is
I do these things because in reality along the way I have lost You
I hope for a breakthrough one day
I hope that you’ll penetrate this stone heart so I’ll never walk the same
You did this in Genesis 32, I’ll know You’ll do it again
You’re a God who is constant and true, who is holy and pursues
I’m embarrassed and lonely inside and I’m ashamed to come to You
Your chamber is quiet and it is only us
I can feel Your eyes on me
Are you feeling pity and disgust?
I’ve come face to face with myself, the pain of losing what I thought I most wanted
My treasure was eaten by moths and it’s long since rotted
I have baggage from my childhood and mistakes that’s weighed on my heart
There’s something in me that needs to change and I know where to start
In order for there to be a breakthrough and a spirit that’s renewed, I have to start with You
On January 22, 1973, the US Supreme Court handed down its landmark decision in the case of Roe v. Wade, which recognized that constitutional right to privacy extends to a woman’s right to make her own personal medical decisions — including the decision to have an abortion without the interference from politicians.
Planned Parenthood Action Fund
Abortion is a choice made by millions of women, so exactly what is the meaning of this procedure? According to the British Pregnancy Advisory Service, “Abortion is when a pregnancy is ended so that it does not result in the birth of a child.” Could abortion be legalized murder approved by the Supreme Court? Many would strongly disagree and contest that it is simply a woman’s right to do with her body what she chooses. However, according to the BPAS, when a woman is pregnant it would seem that she is making a choice that affects not just her person but the person of the unborn. Is deciding a person’s right to live a legal or moral issue?
Is rape a plausible reason for abortion considering that the mental health of the victim might be of greater value than the unborn?
In some cases a child can be conceived because of rape. While I was interviewing a pro-choice advocate, she stated, “Why should a woman be forced to be reminded of how the conception took place every time she looks at the child?” To this, I reply that the manner of conception should not mean a death sentence, and a child otherwise often brings great joy and pleasure. If the mother deliberately makes the choice to kill her unborn baby, she will not only have suffered the consequences of the rape but inherit the title as a mother to a dead child whose life was taken by her own hand. This situation will put her in an unnecessarily worse emotional and mental state than before. Pregnancy is never the crisis – death of an innocent human being, however, is. Robyn McLean, a rape victim, stated, “My son is so precious to me, and with or without him, I would’ve had to heal from the same wounds from the abuser. My son was part of my healing. To have had him aborted would’ve doubled my pain and problems.”
Is a child’s lack of enjoyment of life a plausible reason for abortion?
Pennie D. commented, “All of the mother’s time and effort would have been in taking care of the new [disabled] child. It also breaks up many marriages.” Ebony from Brooklyn, New York, agreed, “…my neighbor who has the same condition cannot walk or talk or even recognize her own mother. She has NO quality of life nor does her poor mother. To bring someone in the world with that kind of disability knowingly and to know that you are not prepared to handle it is wrong in my opinion. You don’t know if they are in pain, they can’t tell you. Sometimes in life we have to make hard decisions. The answers are different for us all.” If a child born with physical or mental restrictions nullifies a marriage, the only conclusion is that the marriage never had the foundation of a strong and enduring love to begin with. A marriage usually “falls apart” because both give up and forego the effort rather than making it work on the cornerstone of unfailing and unconditional love, otherwise known as true love. A failed marriage is not the child’s fault, but, unfortunately, they are deemed as such. The choice of and use of personal pleasure is isolated to the individual rather than by a second or third party, thus, it is illogical for a mother or father to decide and terminate the quality of life for someone who hasn’t experienced it yet for themselves.
Scott K. from LA says, “I don’t think you made the right choice [to abort]. Sorry. The point of ‘all of this’ is to love and be loved, not walk or do somersaults.” Rosie H. from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania says, “…my daughter was diagnosed with Down Syndrome at 18 weeks gestation. We made the decision to keep her. I have encountered a woman who continued to struggle over termination decisions and it’s always “what if”…our family will never be the same but we have embraced the change and it has made us proud of us, and our other children are learning to cope in the face of disappointment and sadness…there is no such thing as a perfect life.” No one is ever really prepared to care for a child that has certain constraints, but because of true love, as mentioned before, the mother will adjust and make herself adept to caring for the child.
In August 2006, the U.S. FDA announced approval of Plan B, a hormonal birth control drug, also known as a “morning-after” pill, for the over-the-counter sale to women aged 18 and older.
Is the morning-after pill or birth control an abortion aid?
The optimal and safest birth control is completely avoiding sex, nevertheless, let’s examine these aides in more detail. Birth control pills contain small doses of hormones that are taken on a daily basis during a woman’s menstrual cycle and are used with the intent of preventing conception. The morning-after pill is an emergency contraceptive that is claimed to have the ability to prevent conception even after sexual union has occurred. The difference between the two is the morning-after pill contains higher dosages of estrogen or progestin (or progestin only) than a birth control pill. Both types of pills claim to prevent conception and thus to be different in their mechanism than Mifeprex, or the “abortion pill”. RU-486, also Mifeprex, contains a combination of two medications which are used to cause an abortion in women who are up to eight weeks pregnant. Anything chemical or physical that destroys a baby once conceived in an abortion. Plan B, or the morning-after pill, contains a secondary mechanism that interferes with the movement of the ovary egg and alters the lining of the uterus which prevents implantation of the developing embryo (a developing baby). Because a new human life begins at conception, or fertilization, both of these mechanisms are considered abortifacient despite Plan B packing and patient information.
For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever! Amen.
In light of all this, the life and breath of a human being, whether today’s society considers it to be “flawed” or otherwise, Psalm 127:3 says, “Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD, the fruit of a the womb a reward.” The life of the born and unborn are made manifest for the glory of God and Him alone. It is not up to the Supreme Court to make decisions of life – God creates and sustains it – or death because God determines when to take His living breath back. We are created for His glory, which is why there is a concept such as the “enjoyment of life.”
We love because he first loved us.
The Good News shows how God makes people right with himself, according to Romans 1:117. So what is the Good News? The Good News is the grace Jesus Christ offers as our living savior by His work on the Cross and through this grace all sin is forgiven forevermore. Jesus Christ promised the forgiven the indwelling of the Holy Spirit and a future home in Heaven. According to Genesis 2:17, the act of sin leads to punishment and death. To become saved from these things, one must realize his or her own sinful nature and agree with God that sin is wrong. Because of God’s kindness, he or she should repent of sin altogether and ask for forgiveness. God is willing to extend forgiveness as often as needed because of the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ when He was crucified on the cross. Because of Jesus, though we were dead in our trespasses, because He has risen, we can be made alive and new through His mercy, grace and forgiveness and spend eternity with Him in Heaven. Jesus died for everyone, regardless of age, sex, race, or the sin that was committed.
The…jailer asked Paul and Silas, “Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” Paul and Silas responded, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved.”
Procrastination is one of the biggest reasons why people wander from God. Putting off important things and occupying your time with futile affairs can easily enough divert you from God’s perfect will — and what exactly is God’s will? Part of it is for you and I to be disciplined and responsible with our time, money, and talents. Poor utilization of the latter three commodities lead to bad discipline easily that leaks over into your relationship with God. Hebrews 12:11 says, “For the moment all discipline seems painful rather than pleasant, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.” Structuring your time and energy to what matters most is what yields you profitable fruit. By poorly using what God’s given you — time, capabilities, opportunities — yields slothfulness, emptiness, and little to no self-control. So how do we kick this ever-clingy habit of procrastination?
Step one: Repent. Do you agree that procrastination, slothfulness, and idolatry is wrong? If so, confess that to God and agree to hate it just as much as He does. Ask for forgiveness, which is a fresh chance to start over anew. Psalm 103:12 says, “As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us.”
Step two: Quit whining. Seriously. Hebrews 13:17 says, “…with joy and not with groaning, for that would be of no advantage to you.” When you complain and cry and basically just spread a whole lot of hot air, you’re not benefiting anyone, not even yourself. Remember, staying in God’s will yields peace, fruit, and righteousness, so He‘s only looking out for your good, to give you a future and a hope.
Step three: Separate the good from the evil. It’s that simple.
What are the things that bring about holiness, healing, and restoration to your life and relationship with God? Is it loving and serving others, meditation on Scripture, or something else? Focus on those things to continually grow and enhance them. What are your gifts and talents? Glorify God instead of self.
What are the things that are a stumbling block or promises fulfillment aside from God? Get rid of it. Matthew 5:30 says, “And if your right hand causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to lose one part of your body than for your whole body to be thrown into Hell.” That’s Jesus speaking. What keeps tripping you up in life? Decide and get rid of it. Remember, through this we’re developing discipline and structure with God and in life.
Step four: Don’t quit. Galatians 6:9 says, “And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap, if we do not give up.” And if a season does come where you do feel like throwing in the towel and slipping back into your old ways, remember that you will rise up again. “For the righteous falls seven times and rises again…” quoted from Proverbs 24:16.
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.