Owen German Shepherd
Owen is a fantastic dog

About Mark Malcolm

I am a Christian. I write. I spent time in the United States Marine Corps. I like games of all sorts. I am a husband. I am a father. I am a project manager. I am a dog owner. I am a hiker. I am a gun owner.

I am all these things at once and I do not believe any of them are mutually exclusive, one from the other.

About Me pages are as brief as they are inane. Most of the time you only discover the person lives in Somewhereville, with their dog, cat, wife, and three kids. That they like walks on the beach, sunny days, and caramel mocha Frappuccino.

You don’t really learn anything about them. It is just an entry on a website someone told them they had to have. This is not that kind of About Me page.

You want to know more about me? I suggest you find me and meet me. However, that isn’t always practical. To that end, if you are still with me, I am about to give you more than you probably want, but I am actually going to tell you what I believe. Keep in mind all the things I am as you read this. I do not believe God wants any of what I am excluded from being Me. If He does, He’ll let me know, and I will work it out with Him.

You may notice the headings below correspond to the menu options on the website. That’s because these are the things that are important to me. They are the things that make me who I am. They are the things I write about, post about, and find interesting. To that end I’m posting them here to build up my presence on my site rather than adding content to someone else’s platform. I wish more people would do that.


My Christianity

There are seven principles I believe. To understand me, you should understand these. 1-The basic human condition is fallen. 2-Jesus is God. 3-God loves all of us no matter who we are or what we’re doing or have done. 4-We can learn from the things that happen to us. 5-Patience is key. 6-Studying the word of God can answer all questions. 7-We are interested in gaining wisdom not proving our opinion/interpretation right no matter where our studies take us.

There are other things I believe, but these things are core. They are also rooted in scripture. As I said, I am a Christian. If you want to disagree with me about these things or Christianity in general that’s fine, but do so from a basis in God’s word otherwise we have little to discuss on the subject. Here the seven principles I believe along with the foundational scripture behind why I believe this. I welcome comments.

1. The Basic Human Condition

The first principle is the Basic Human Condition. The Basic Human Condition simply put is that flawed state in which men and women find themselves. We are frail, prone to mistakes, jumping to conclusions, in need of grace, and yes, unfortunately sinful. It is this basic condition that makes us require and need the endless forgiveness and grace of God, his Son Christ Jesus, and the Holy Spirit. It is also this condition that causes us to want to make the words of God in the Bible say what we want to hear rather than what God has said. This is an important distinction.

The Basic Human Condition goes back to the very beginning

Why do we suffer from this? To understand the Basic Human Condition, we must go all the way back to Genesis. Sometimes it is called Original Sin. Many refer to it as The Fall of Man; that fateful day when Man first exercised free will and disobeyed God and ate the fruit of the tree of Good and Evil.

23  For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;
Romans 3:23 (KJV)

From that day to this we have lived under the curse of death and bear the burden of our human desires naturally pulling us away from God. For most of us our natural human desire to choose that which is ungodly wins the majority of the battles. It is only with extreme effort, dedication, study, prayer, and help from those around us as well as God Himself, we are able to win the battle. It is a daily fight within each of us. A battle we fight day in and day out. On our own, we will lose the war. With diligent study of God’s word and His supreme assistance we can win these battles.

Christ on the cross
John leaves no question about the deity of Christ.

2. Jesus is God

Jesus’ deity is important because there are only two options for Christ. He either was God, or He was a man. If He was a man, then He had no authority to forgive sin as He did so many times since only God can forgive sin. If He cannot forgive sin because He was a man, then His crucifixion was nothing more than another human being dying on the cross and bears no salvation for anyone.

1  In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
John 1:1 (KJV)

However, if He was God, then He did have the authority to forgive sin as He did. If He was God made flesh, He was a suitable sacrifice for all sin ever committed or going to be committed. Jewish law, as rendered to man by God, required certain animals to be sacrificed to atone for certain sins. In all cases these animals were required to be without blemish and the finest specimens of their kind available. Therefore, only God could suffice to be a sin offering for the entire world past, present, and future. No mortal man, without being at once a man and the deity of God could fill this role.

3. God loves all of us no matter who we are, what we’re doing, or have done

God is a Father to us all and loves us all. For those of us who are parents, we understand the child/parent relationship.

You will love them no matter what.

That is worth repeating with emphasis.

You will love them no matter what.

Not what they do, who they do it with, where they do it, or why they do it. You will love them, and you will do so because they’re your children.

This sentiment extends to all your children.

Jesus Loves Everyone
Jesus loves everyone. Everyone.

But for those who are not our children, not so much. Unfortunately, it is part of our flawed human condition, but we have less tolerance for those people who are not our children or blood relatives as they become more and more distant from us.

16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
John 3:16 (KJV)

However, this is not the case with God. We are all His children. He loves us all no matter what. He does not love the sinful things we do, but He loves us in the hope we will turn from our sinful ways and return to the paths of righteousness He has laid out for us. Much like the parable of the Prodigal son (Luke 15: 21-24), or under another name the parable of the Loving Father, who when he had returned from squandering his father’s wealth and sinning against his father, was taken back by his father with all past transgressions, or sins, forgiven. Dear old dad did not hesitate, he just threw a party.

God is waiting to throw a party for every single person on the planet no matter how long we’ve been away, how awful we think we’ve been, how unredeemable we think what we’ve done is, or how close we think we are to our final reward. It is God.

Nothing is too big, hard, or lost for Him. The words ‘too late’ are an invention of man, which is not applicable to God. He can, and will, do anything for His children if we just ask Him.


4. We can learn from the things that happen to us

Good things and bad things happen to all people both Christian and non-Christian. A quite common question is, ‘why does God let bad things happen to good people’. The answer is not necessarily one people want to hear, but God does notletanything happen. He gave man free will and we use it. Sometimes people use that free will for bad purposes. However, God can use bad things to accomplish good things in many lives.

For us, if we are looking to God the Father for guidance and open to His direction, we can many times see reasons for the things that occur to us.

Do we discipline our children when they do not follow our instructions? If they willfully disobey us does punishment ensue in short order? But don’t we dole out this punishment from a sense of love in our desire to nurture our children to be good and decent human beings? Certainly, there are child abusers in the world, but that is not who we are talking about. When we as struggling parents attempt to raise our children the best way we know-how, we must take on that role of disciplinarian from time to time.

11  My son, despise not the chastening of the LORD; neither be weary of his correction:
12  For whom the LORD loveth he correcteth; even as a father the son in whom he delighteth.
Proverbs 3:11-12 (KJV)

We as God’s children are no different. We stray from our instructions from time to time and must be disciplined to be brought back in line; sometimes harshly sometimes softly. But always out of a sense of love. Why?

God disciplines us because, like us, God wants what is best for us, and He knows how best to get us each individually to behave. We should take this instruction as such. Biblically this is sound as we see in Proverbs 3:11-12.

5. Patience is key

God does not do anything quickly. His time is not our time. He has a much better sense of timing than we do anyway. Be patient for the things you have asked Him to tell you about and He will respond, but not when you want or think. If you have no patience then ask Him for some, but you may be surprised how He responds to your request. There may be other things He will need or ask of you before you are ready for Him to respond to this one.

Patience is key

8  Better is the end of a thing than the beginning thereof: and the patient in spirit is better than the proud in spirit.
Ecclesiastes 7:8 (KJV)

Study to learn the truth.

6. Studying the word of God can answer all questions

The Bible is the word of God directing us as individuals how to live life. It is not God’s word directing us as to how we are to tellsomeone elsehow to live their life. Answers each of us has found in the Bible direct us as individuals on what we should do are not necessarily the same answers someone else should or will receive. But those answers are there if we will look for them. Read the entire third chapter of Proverbs. We can see this concept there. Better yet, look up the wordwisdomin a concordance.

There are a lot of great passages concerning getting wisdom, but they point to God, God’s word the Bible, and Christ as the paths to true wisdom. If we have a question, we should study what the Bible says about that situation, and things will be made clear. We may not like what God’s word tells us in fact, it may be exactly the opposite of what we want it to say. We may not like the answer, but that is still an answer, just not one we like, which is a good transition into the final assumption below.

15  Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.
2 Timothy 2:15 (KJV)

7. We are interested in gaining wisdom not proving our own opinion/interpretation as correct

This is the crux of our learning. No matter what we find out, where the study goes or the things God reveals to us, we must be willing to accept them. I find many times when the answer is not the one, I wanted from God I begin justifying my own position as okay with God. I have grown to the point that once I begin justifying, I assume I am wrong and just running from what God really wants me to do, change, or believe. Many times, these things are hard, and I do not want to accept it. If we are honest with ourselves and God though, we must recognize these moments and comply with our Lord. To do otherwise is to invite discipline into our lives.


14  The heart of him that hath understanding seeketh knowledge: but the mouth of fools feedeth on foolishness.
Proverbs 15:14 (KJV)

The pretext here is that if we are truly seekers of wisdom, learning how to walk and be closer to God, we must also be open to the idea that some of our ideas of what God finds acceptable are likely to be challenged and have to change.

Fighting this change is resisting moving closer to the all-powerful creator in whom all things are good. As such, which is more likely what we are doing is okay and shouldn’t be a problem with God because x, y, and z are in the Bible? Or perhaps the information God has revealed to us through His holy word is uncovering a portion of our lives that was keeping us from walking in a more intimate and personal way with Him?

As painful, troubling, and hard as it may be to accept it, there are probably some things in our lives God would like us to change, and He is going to show them to us. We have the choice to listen and obey or rebel and resist.

The Bible clearly shows us compliance with God’s word is beneficial to us (just read Proverbs 3 again if you do not believe that one).


"Blacksmith" by Phil Roeder is licensed under CC BY 2.0


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"Blacksmith" by Phil Roeder is licensed under CC BY 2.0


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The Geek-Flag

"Blacksmith" by Phil Roeder is licensed under CC BY 2.0


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Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit. Ut elit tellus, luctus nec ullamcorper mattis, pulvinar dapibus leo.