Believers on Mountain Bikes

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Welcome to Spokane BOMB! Here you'll find the latest news about our upcoming rides and events along with current photos, video links, devotionals, prayer requests, and a page highlighting our good friends from BOMB Ukraine. If you are new here, please go to the "Upcoming Rides" tab for the most up-to-date calendar listing our next scheduled outings. Also, please fill out the Email Subscription box and click on the "Sign me up" button (lower right side of this page) to "follow" this blog and get automatic email notifications anytime new information is posted, including weekly ride announcements. You can also email us directly at spokanebomb@yahoo.com if you have any questions. 2016 will mark our 9th season of mountain biking in the Spokane area and it's going to be epic - so come ride with us!

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The Final Word…

TETELESTAI!

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A Dying Man’s Final Words

Only one person in history never left behind any unfinished business. His name is Jesus Christ. He is the only person who could come to the end of his life and say—with absolute and total truthfulness—”I have finished everything I set out to do.”

It is Friday in Jerusalem and a huge crowd has gathered at the place called Skull Hill. It was on the north side of the city, just outside the Damascus Gate, and located by the side of a well-traveled road. The Romans liked to hold their crucifixions in public places. Killing people in public had a salutary effect on the masses.

This particular crucifixion started at 9 A.M. For three hours everything proceeded normally. Then at exactly 12 noon, the sky went black. Not overcast, but pitch black, so black that you couldn’t see your hand in front of your face. It wasn’t anything normal like an eclipse. The darkness seemed to pulse and throb, almost like the darkness was a living thing, an evil mutant creature escaped from some science fiction movie.

Only this was no movie. What happened was real. For three hours darkness fell across the city of Jerusalem. There were screams, hideous cries, moans, and other unidentifiable sounds. Then, just as suddenly as it started, the darkness lifted, disappeared, vanished, and sanity returned to the earth.

One glance at the middle cross made it clear that this man Jesus would not last much longer. He looked dead already. His body quivered uncontrollably, his chest heaving with every tortured breath. The soldiers knew from long experience that he wouldn’t make it to sundown.

Then it happened. He shouted something—”My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” Someone in the crowd shouted back to him. Moments passed, death drew near, then a hoarse whisper, “I thirst.” The soldiers put some sour vinegar on a sponge and lifted it to his lips with a stalk of hyssop. He moistened his lips and took a deep breath. If you listened you could hear the death rattle in his throat. He had less than a minute to live.

Then he spoke again. It was a quick shout. Just one word. If you weren’t paying attention, you missed it in all the confusion. Then he breathed out another sentence. Then he was dead.

What was that shout? In Greek it is only one word … Tetelestai … “It is finished.”

Was, Is And Always Will Be

Tetelestai comes from the verb teleo, which means “to bring to an end, to complete, to accomplish.” It’s a crucial word because it signifies the successful end to a particular course of action. It’s the word you would use when you climb to the peak of Mt. Everest; it’s the word you would use when you turn in the final copy of your dissertation; it’s the word you would use when you make the final payment on your new car; it’s the word you use when you cross the finish line of your first 10K run. The word means more than just “I survived.” It means “I did exactly what I set out to do.”

But there’s more here than the verb itself. Tetelestai is in the perfect tense in Greek. That’s significant because the perfect tense speaks of an action which has been completed in the past with results continuing into the present. It’s different from the past tense which looks back to an event and says, “This happened.” The perfect tense adds the idea that “This happened and it is still in effect today.”

When Jesus cried out “It is finished,” he meant “It was finished in the past, it is still finished in the present and it will remain finished in the future.”

Note one other fact. He did not say, “I am finished,” for that would imply that he died defeated and exhausted. Rather, he cried out “It is finished,” meaning “I successfully completed the work I came to do.”

Tetelestai, then, is the Savior’s final cry of victory. When he died, he left no unfinished business behind. When he said, “It is finished,” he was speaking the truth.

What Was Finished?

When you read these words of Jesus, only one question grips the mind—What was finished?

Matthew Henry, who lived and wrote over 300 years ago, in his remarks on this saying of Jesus (volume 5, p. 1201), he lists 8 things that were finished or completed when Jesus cried out “It is finished.”

1. The malice of his enemies was finished. By nailing him to the cross, they had done their worst. There was nothing more they could do to the Son of God.

2. The sufferings ordained by God were finished. Many times during his ministry, Jesus spoke of “the work” he was sent to do and of the “hour” of trouble that was coming. He once spoke of a “baptism” of suffering he must undergo. All those things were ordained by God. None of them happened by chance. Even the evil plans of the Jews fit somehow into God’s greater plan to save the world through the death of his Son (Acts 2:23). But those sufferings were now at an end.

3. All the Old Testament types and prophecies were fulfilled. Matthew Henry lists a number of examples—He had been given vinegar to drink (Psalm 69:21), he had been sold for 30 pieces of silver (Zechariah 11:12), his hands and feet had been pierced (Psalm 22:16), his garments had been divided (Psalm 22:18), and his side was pierced (Zechariah 12:10). There are many other prophesies surrounding his death. All those had been or very soon would be fulfilled.

4. The ceremonial law was abolished. As Romans 10:4 puts it, Christ is “the end of the law.” It finds its completion and fulfillment in him. Therefore, all the Old Testament rules concerning animal sacrifices are set aside. And the rules and regulations concerning the priesthood are out of date since the Greater Priest has now laid down his life for his people. Those laws pointed to the cross. But once Jesus died, they were no longer needed. “The Mosaic economy is dissolved, to make way for a better hope.”

5. The price of sin was paid in full. Do you remember the words of John the Baptist when he saw Jesus? He called him “The lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29) That “taking away” of sin was accomplishment by the death of our Lord.

6. His physical sufferings were at an end. “The storm is over, the worst is past; all his pains and agonies are at an end, and he is just going to paradise, entering upon the joy set before him.”

7. His life was now finished. When Jesus cried out “It is finished,” he had only a few seconds to live. All that he had come to do had been fully accomplished. His life and his mission came to an end at exactly the same moment.

8. The work of redemption was now complete. This is undoubtedly the major meaning. Matthew Henry expands on what Christ’s death accomplished in four statements, each one beginning with the letter F. The death of Christ provided a …
Full satisfaction for sin
Fatal blow to Satan
Fountain of grace opened that will flow forever
Foundation of peace laid that will last forever

Paid In Full

But there is more to the meaning of tetelestai. It means all of the above, but it especially applies to the price paid for the sins of the world. Merrill Tenney (Expositor’s Bible Commentary, IX, 185) notes that the verb was used in the first and second centuries in the sense of “fulfilling” or “paying” a debt and often appeared in receipts. “It is finished” (Tetelestai) could be interpreted as “Paid in full.”

“Paid in full” means that once a thing is paid for, you never have to pay for it again. In fact, “paid in full” means that once a thing is paid for, it is foolish to try to pay for it again.

So let me ask you a personal question. What sin is keeping you from God today? Is it anger? Is it lust? Is it a hard heart of unbelief? Is it alcohol abuse? Is it an uncontrollable temper? Is it cheating? Is it stealing? Is it adultery? Is it abortion? Is it pride? Is it greed?

Let me tell you the best news you’ve ever heard. It doesn’t matter what “your” sin is. It doesn’t matter how many sins you’ve piled up in your life. It doesn’t matter how guilty you think you are. It doesn’t matter what you’ve been doing this week. It doesn’t matter how bad you’ve been. It doesn’t matter how many skeletons rattle around in your closet.

IT IS FINISHED!! Paid in full.

Looking ahead….

Greetings BOMBers!

As we embark on a new riding season, Robert and I want to thank you all for making this a fun and uplifting group to be a part of. I hope this year will be another fun and exciting riding season.

Although we haven’t yet begun our regular ride calendar — the weather is being a bit finicky as of late — some of the ideas that have been proposed for this year ( in addition to our usual rides) include doing some family rides (perhaps along Centennial Trail) at a pace and level that all family members could ride along.

Also, we’d like to try to feature one “epic” ride per month, which might involve a little further drive than our usual rides to take advantage of more dramatic scenery and trail length. Along with this idea we have something very special planned. A friend is letting Robert use his house at the base of Silver Mountain the weekend of July 28-30. We’d like to host a BOMB barbecue and epic ride at Silver Mountain on July 29th! For those who haven’t been there recently, Silver now has trails for riders of all levels and if family members want to go but don’t want to ride, there is the water park and a host of other things to do in Kellogg, Idaho. Mark your calendars now and stay tuned for more updates!

Last but not least, if you would like to lead a ride on your favorite trail please let us know. It’s easy to lead: you just pick your favorite trail, plan a short devotional, and then post or send us the info to post! It’s that easy!

Please keep this fellowship in prayer as we continue on!!

Blessings!

~Matt

A New Season is Dawning…

Hello Friends!

It’s been a long time since we’ve met, hasn’t it?  It’s been a rather… stout winter, I think we’d all agree.  A long, cold, primarily gray and prolonged season of dreariness, where thoughts of hitting the trails probably haven’t crossed many minds.  It seems like eons ago that we were enjoying the crisp fall riding weather as the days grew steadily shorter.  Our calendar says Spring began last week, but the evidence just doesn’t seem to be there.  Or is it?

Thank God, nothing can stop the changing of the seasons.  The joy of springtime sun will return, much like the promise found in Genesis 9:13.  This stunning view took place just 2 days ago!

It’s time to start thinking about the next season of Spokane BOMB, and we’re going to start this weekend! Although the trails in our usual ride venues are still muddy and in some places impassable, Friday looks to be a sunny day which will dry things out, and Saturday should allow us to actually get out and start exploring again (along with testing out my new “bionic” knee).

We’re planning a nice mellow (ok, not too mellow) early season ride. We would also like to share some exciting plans for the summer and encourage others to show us their favorite trails by signing up to lead rides as well.

We will plan to meet just inside Riverside State Park at the new parking lot with the post and pole green fence (Discovery Pass required, map below). If you don’t have a Discovery Pass, you can park at the Seven Mile horse corral and ride down to the lot. We’ll plan to meet at 1:45PM and be ready to ride by 2.

If you would like to lead some rides this summer but can’t make this ride and meeting, please contact me or Robert and we’ll talk.

The Ride: Riverside State Park

Date: Saturday, April 1

Time: Meet at 1:45PM , depart by 2

Ride level: Early season, mostly flat and probably muddy!

Ride Leaders: Robert and Matt

Location: https://goo.gl/maps/JqYjNzFvDWD2

Bring: Helmet, glasses, layered clothing and mudflaps if you got ’em!

It’s been a long cold winter, time to hit the dirt! Please plan to join us!

~Matt

A New Year’s Recommended Reading List

Hello everyone,

frozen-flag

Welcome to 2017!  The “old” year seemed to pass on more quickly than ever before, and we’re looking out over a new set of 365 unpredictable calendar days ahead.  Many of us are probably sighing with relief that 2016 is but a memory now.  As we enjoy this last holiday of the Christmas season, did you have a good Christmas?  Make any new year’s resolutions?  Did they seem oddly familiar?  Contemplating this day here at work, I read over last year’s January 1 post and I see some common themes emerging.  There are so many ways we can approach the end of a year and the beginning of the next, and the chance for a “reset” is always welcome.  But what do you consider your biggest accomplishment of 2016?  Was it reaching some personal or financial goal, or did you experience some real growth in your walk with God?  Last year I talked about relationships taking priority over resolutions; what about the most important relationship of all, that which we have with our Creator?

IN THE BEGINNING GOD…..(Genesis 1:1)

…”SURELY I AM COMING QUICKLY.” AMEN. EVEN SO, COME, LORD JESUS!  THE GRACE OF OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST BE WITH YOU ALL. AMEN. (Revelation 22:20-21)

Those sentences bracket the text of the greatest story ever told, a perpetual bestselling book, in fact the most widely sold and distributed book of all time.  Estimates range between 2.5 and 6 billion copies have been placed in circulation since the 1800’s, with millions more added each year, alongside electronic book versions and apps such as YouVersion (itself establishing a record of over 200 million downloads).  It’s actually 66 books in one, written by over 40 different authors over the course of some 1600 years.  You’ve probably heard all that before.  Impressive statistics, aren’t they?

But — so what? What difference does it make?

You’ve probably got one, or two or five, printed copies of various translations at home along with apps on your phone, tablet, and computer (or desktop shortcuts to BibleGateway.com and BlueLetterBible.org).  And there is virtually no end to the commentaries, devotionals and study guides we can easily reference with little effort at all.  Despite these advantages, here in the United States we live among the most biblically illiterate population this nation has ever seen.  There’s only one cure for this condition: We have to actually read our Bibles.

bible

Just 2 days ago I finished walking through the complete Bible for the 4th time since becoming a Christian.  The version I used (above) has 1268 pages, which is a daunting prospect no matter how avid a reader you are.  Here’s the thing: It actually took me 2 years to read this “Bible in a Year.”  Fact is, that’s been fairly typical for me.  I have plenty of devos, Christian books on lots of topics, and other edifying publications on hand, but using a daily reading format (chronologically going through daily Old Testament, Psalms, Proverbs, and New Testament passages) I usually bog down for the first time in Leviticus or Numbers.  It’s hard to get going again, and then other distractions arise, and discouragement usually follows.  But you just have to keep at it.  Choose a different translation to liven things up; I chose the NCV and I attest to the fact that it gave me new perspective on particular books like Job and the prophets.  I really enjoyed it again toward the end!

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So as you set about to start your new year — for most of us it begins in earnest tomorrow — I encourage you to add this worthy goal to your list.  No matter what your daily time with God looks like, delve into the riches of the full counsel of His Word.  It doesn’t matter how long it takes you, read it cover to cover (Genesis to Maps!).  That’s the means He has provided to get to know Him.  “Let the man who would hear God speak, read Holy Scriptures” said Martin Luther.

Stay close to your Lord and Savior — the Word Himself, from John 1 — this year.  No matter what lies ahead, you’re going to need His counsel, grace, and forgiveness.  We all will.  But all the treasure worth pursuing in life in found in His presence alone.  Start reading now!

In His grace,

~Matt

New Blog page! Welcome to the Prayer Center

Hello friends,

Your BOMB servant-leaders have added a new page to our WordPress “blog” — an online place for prayer requests, praise reports, and any other spiritual edification tools we can come up with.  (Check it out by clicking on the appropriate “tab” on the page bar at the top of our WordPress blog, just above the header photo).  Since this is new there may be a few kinks to be worked out, but let’s try it.  You can go there anytime to submit — using the “Leave A Reply” box below all current entries — your own PR’s, or to offer comments of encouragement and support  (specific prayers, words of affirmation, a particular Bible verse, etc), or just to see what’s been posted lately and add those PR’s to your prayer list.  Hopefully this will keep you coming back to the Blog page on a regular basis, even in the fall and winter when we aren’t riding as much.  I promise timely review and approval of all comments submitted.  If the nature or significance of a particular intention or request warrants, we’ll do a new “post” as a way of notifying everyone to pray for that PR.  Our aim is not to bombard your inbox with an annoying number of e-mails, but to encourage our fellowship to “bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2).  Go there right now, I’ve got the ball rolling with a special prayer request for a special trip coming up very soon!

– Matt

P.S. I forgot to add a few details:  Your PR’s can be as general or specific as you wish; names are not required (i.e. you could simply say “please pray for my mother’s health”); and you do not have to “sign” them with your own name if you don’t want to.  We’ll know when reviewing comments before we approve and post them that you’re a member of the BOMB fellowship (which will keep random or “spam” comments out), but will keep your identity confidential of you prefer.  We can do this by copying your PR into the text area that only we can edit, rather than letting it appear as a comment at the bottom of the page.

As I said, this is new so we might have a few things to learn yet, thank you for your patience!

Check out some ride photos from previous seasons…

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