Rightly Divide the Word and the Situation

August 2, 2018

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

July 31, 2018



Most situations in life are the result of a negotiation. The best negotiators are the ones who have refined the art of reading the situation and the parties involved.  A misread of the situation or parties can be disastrous.

Most people became involved in multiple contracts when they got a phone, opened an email account or bought a house.

How many people took the time to read the fine print? There could be something in the fine print that is objectionable. However the fine print is where the ‘gotcha clause’ is hiding in plain sight.

For a couple of thousand years, we have been warned, that whatever is done in secret will come out into the light.

A daily reading reminded me that we should rightly divide the Word. I would take that one step further to say we should rightly divide every situation.

The term rightly divide the Word has also been written to properly handle the Word, digging into the real meaning and using it in context. The Word should be separated into two or more parts, meanings, areas, or groups which fit into the context of the sentence, paragraph and chapter to determine the true meaning of the Word

“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)


Properly reading the situation will provide you the best opportunity to obtain favorable results

This command is for us to “give diligence” (Greek spoudazo) for God’s approval by “rightly dividing” the word of truth. That which is to be rightly divided is not in doubt: “Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth” (John 17:17). The end goal is to “display yourself” as one who is, therefore, approved by God.


Properly understanding the people, situation, or documents will provide you the best opportunity to obtain favorable results and a peaceful outcome.

The key is to “rightly divide” the Scriptures. The Greek word orthotomeo, only used this one time, has several shades of meaning: to cut straight, to cut straight ways; to proceed on straight paths, hold a straight course; to make straight and smooth; to handle aright; to teach the truth directly and correctly.


This cuts down the opportunities for deceptive practices to prevail.

Two passages emphasize the way to “divide” the Scriptures. When Isaiah asked rhetorical questions about how to learn and understand biblical knowledge, the answer was “precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little” (Isaiah 28:9-10).Thus:

Find the major pieces first.
Find the supporting elements next.
Find the pieces throughout the text.

Solomon, as the “wise preacher,” noted that one who would teach the people knowledge must have given “good heed, and sought out, and set in order many proverbs” (Ecclesiastes 12:9).

Pay attention to the words (meanings, context).
Penetrate (research) the teaching (text first, then books).
Organize the information for teaching purposes.

This kind of study preparation requires a “workman”—one who is willing to give the diligence necessary to produce the powerful sayings built on the “word of truth.” If properly prepared, the workman will never be “ashamed.” HMM III (1)


We are all the workman in every situation in life. You decide if you want to do life the easy way or the hard way. The hard way could lead you to spiral down the road of fear, anxiety, depression and their related costly and generally unwanted consequences.


When all else fails, read the directions. Pay attention to the words and their meanings in context; to the signs and the situation. Stay alert to the fine print to save yourself a lot of needless aggravation and from the road of fear, anxiety, depression and their related costly and generally unwanted consequences.


Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org 




  1. http://www.icr.org/article/10710


Strings On Your Finger

June 2, 2017

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

May 29, 2017


Ever forgotten anything? Ever tied a string on your finger to be reminded of something? If you had multiple things to remember, would you recall which string was for which?

Have you tried journaling? Yes, you say, and it went well for a while, then you got too busy and didn’t have time to write, and write, and write. Well, the great thing about journaling is that you write as you will, jotting down what seems important to you at that time.

Although facts don’t change over time, people’s recollection, perception or perspective of the facts may change.

Over the ages people wrote in words or created graphics about events which were of historic significance to them.

History is important. People who don’t know history are often bound to repeat it.

Doctors need to know about your medical history, and sometimes your family’s medical history, in order to have a better understanding and an idea of what to look for and learn of any adverse reactions to treatments or medications you might experience.   You certainly would not want to be treated for appendicitis if yours had already been removed. You also would not want to be treated for depression when indicators suggest that he should be addressing a brain tumor.

Court hearings normally have either a voice recording or a written transcript of the conversation to keep accurate records. The recordings or written transcript are often referred to when a ruling is being written. The written rulings are recorded in official court records and often times published.  There are mechanisms in place to correct errors.  People rely on the written rulings in settling disputes. There are mechanisms in place to appeal the rulings if one party is not satisfied. Sometimes outcomes change as the result of appeals.

No matter how much some people don’t like a historical event, the event will not change. People’s reaction to the historical event can change.

People are born and that historical event is recorded.

People die and that historical event is recorded.

Many events in the life of that person between their birth and death are memorialized by various records kept by the government or other entities.

We know a lot about Rev Billy Graham and Adolph Hitler because of a large volume of records and recordings which were made and preserved.  There may be a dispute about certain specific events concerning either of these public figures. I would think people would generally think that Rev Billy Graham did a lot of good things for a lot of people. Whereas, I suspect that would not be the consensus about Adolph Hitler who caused the deaths of many innocent people.

Some people seem to have the idea that historical events can be erased. Perhaps the movie “It’s A Wonderful Life”, which airs around Christmas time, is reality to those who think they can erase historical events.

There are some who may not like an outcome of a historical event and try to fight the battles over again. Perhaps they would have more success by inventing a time machine which would allow them to revisit a specific moment to alter events.

Some would like to go back and remove a life changing car accident from history, they can’t. The way you deal with it can be changed.

Some would like to change the results of an election, they can’t. The way you deal with it can be changed.

Some would like to change the historical event of the American Civil War, a war between the slave owning Democrats and the anti-slavery Republicans, they can’t.

Removing the string from your finger, shredding a written record, or tearing down a monument will not change the historical events.

Monuments are reminders of good and bad times. People don’t always have the best memory, which is why we may need a string on our finger, a monument, or a trophy for an accomplishment we achieved. The string, monument, or trophy can be used to start or continue a conversation on how not to repeat the mistakes of the past, how we can do better this time….


Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org


Hearts and Flowers Time Again

February 3, 2017


By Rev Paul N. Papas II

January 31, 2017


If you’ve been in a store lately you’ve seen a lot of red trying to entice you to purchase your Valentine gifts, cards, and chocolates before you leave the store.

The history of Valentine’s Day seems murky as there is more than one St Valentine. One thing is clear today there are a lot different ways Valentine’s Day is celebrated around the world to include mass weddings, dressing up in special costumes, and one of a good day to become engaged.

There are some Christian roots in Valentine’s Day. There is an ancient Roman fertility god tradition for the same day.

Whatever the actual origin of   Valentine’s Day might be it has become a day of hearts, chocolates, flowers, and romance. It’s a day when sweethearts share some special time together. Married couples can rekindle their romance by celebrating Valentine’s Day in a special way.

This is all well and good for people who are involved or married…..if you’re single Valentine’s Day could be a traumatic experience and quite depressing.

Valentine’s Day festivities are geared for couples.

It is common for singles who struggle with depression to see the world around them paired off while they are not to have their depression worsen. They feel inadequate or feel less than because they are not with someone special. There are also singles that choose to be single.

Singles who struggle with depression; anniversaries, birthdays, holidays can cause sadness, irritability, and deeper depression. Knowing your triggers can help you get through and move past the tough days with a little planning ahead. If you know a time period is going to be difficult plan to do something other than sitting alone on your pity potty. The more time you spend on your pity potty then more you will probably spiral downward.

Depression is a treatable medical condition that many have overcome or learned to live with it is not something that occurs from lack of character, weakness or laziness. Unfortunately the stigma of the words ‘mental illness’ has been weaponized and demonized to the point many are afraid to come out the shadows to seek help. I have previously published several articles about this over the years, especially concerning veterans.

A break-up or loss of a loved one at anytime can be tough to deal with. Anniversaries, birthdays, and holidays can add an extra burden. One way to grieve is by finding away to express your sadness, you’ll find it healing. Finding a good listening ear is a well known way to get through tough times, whatever they might be. A walk or a shower can help you feel better also. Staying in bed will not be helpful for the depressed or grieving and you could end up on your pity potty.

I firmly believe that each one of us can do something to help someone else. A timely smile, an encouraging word, a listening ear, perhaps a hug, or helping in a way you can is very good medicine for the giver and receiver. It could be just the hearts and flowers that were needed at that moment.

Go forth and spread those hearts and flowers each day.


Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ)

www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org



A Time For Sharing And Giving

December 2, 2016

Thankful count the ways
By Rev Paul N. Papas II
November 29, 2016

We can finally breathe. After eight years of being insulted, deceived, mistreated, unjustly reviled and maligned the Eagle will soon be able to soar to new heights again. The abuser is moving out, but somehow I think he’ll be lurking around corners waiting for an opportunity to pounce.

Most of the abuse has been psychological with wounds that may not be visible to the naked eye. Just like in a home, victims of psychological abuse can be of any age or gender. This form of abuse is often difficult to prove. It includes threatening the victim with violence, harassing them at home, outside the home, at school or work, denying the victim access to others (e.g., refusing to allow the victim to see friends, preventing use of the telephone), confining the victim to home or area, destroying or taking the victim’s property. Many abusers will arrange it so that his victims are totally dependent upon the abuser, making it very difficult for the victim to move out. Many abusers will arrange it so that all money and services are controlled by the abuser.

After eight years of abuse fewer people have their homes, their health, or jobs. Black Friday was more like Bleak Friday.

After eight years of abuse the number of suicides is up. Twenty two Veterans a day alone are completing suicide.

We can finally breathe again. The new guy loves the Eagle and is preparing to restore the Eagle’s habitat and make the Eagle great again. The new guy is going about the business of building bridges with various people, some of whom bitterly opposed him. The new guy is refusing his salary and is working for free. The new guy is leading by example, giving and sharing.

We may not have much, but we can dust ourselves off and work with our neighbors to restore the Eagle’s habitat. The task is yuge and may appear to be overwhelming for some. You’ll be surprised how much we can accomplish and how quickly we can accomplish it by working together.

Sometimes overwhelming feelings rise up within us or we face difficult experiences: relational conflict, chronic illness, failure, job loss, and rejection to name a few. When a big problem presents itself, it is tempting to curl into a ball and allow worry to consume us mentally and physically. The best way to overcome the overwhelming tasks is to start working on completing the task. Instead of focusing on the mountain before you focus on pebbles in front of you. As you begin working on the task you will find that you begin to heal from the eight years of abuse.

Christmas is fast coming upon us. May I suggest a gift that will keep on giving, the gift of self sharing time with your neighbors to pitch in to restore the Eagle’s habitat? The life you save may be your own.

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.famlyrenewalcenteraz.org

Access Denied

January 1, 2016

hope rejoice sacredtouches

By Rev Paul N. Papas II

December 29, 2015


In this day and age most of us are used to conducing internet searches for all kinds of things. Have you ever typed in a subject about a current event to be told by the search engine ‘Access Denied’ ?  I was last week. I tried a different search engine and was able to obtain information about the event.


It is likely you have heard of issues concerning the care of Veterans by the current Veterans Administration.  The Veterans who are patients at a VA Hospital are not faring much better with their physical or spiritual needs.   Prayers by Chaplains must be prescreened for offensive words, like Jesus. This means that their access is being denied to hear the Word of God.


A few years ago, as a matter of conscience, I ended my status as a volunteer Chaplain as I would not allow anyone to prescreen prayers.


Combat Veterans were asked to do nearly impossible missions of securing territory at great personal risk of harm to themselves in the face of danger. Some Veterans rescued others without regard to their own safety. Some Veterans gave all they had and will never raise sons and daughters. Veterans gave so much so that our nation would be free.


There are many people who suffer from fear, anxiety, or PTSD with a multitude of possible causes or causal events. Each sufferer of fear, anxiety, or PTSD can be helped.  One help that has proven successful for many is their reliance upon their spiritual faith.  A good spiritual life gives hope.  Hope is a key to healing. People who have hope can endure suffering, while looking forward to that hope.


Man is not all you can see. He has a spiritual aspect, or as some say, a spiritual body.  Both the physical and spiritual aspects, or bodies, must be exercised to be strong and make a whole person.


The answer as to why some people deny others hope goes back to the Garden of Eden when the snake lied to and misled Eve who passed on the lie to Adam, denying access to hope.  Misery loves company.


Have you ever noticed that some people complain about every little thing, they seem to enjoy taking the joy out of life?


Isn’t it a pleasure to be around people who seem to smile from the inside?smile


Both the complainer and the smiler could be experiencing the worst times of their lives and you would not know it unless you got to know them. Who would you rather get to know the complainer or the smiler?


Most likely the complainer does not have a good spiritual foundation and is full of darkness. It is also just as likely that the smiler has a good spiritual foundation and lets the light shine through.


The smiler is more likely to handle bad situations better, require less medical attention, and heal faster.


Veterans gave a Blank Check which could have included their death to Uncle Sam in order to keep this country the Home of the Brave and the Land of the Free. The least we could do is give the Veterans hope and the care when needed.  Let’s break open the doors to the VA and let some fresh air, light and hope shine in!

always a soldier


Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) www.narrowpathministries.org and www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org 

Caring from Conception

November 6, 2015

God Greater Than Circumstance kristiann1
By Rev Paul N. Papas II
November 3, 2015

I know there is a lot of debate as to when Life begins. We are all fitfully and wonderfully made. God knew us before we were in the womb as our spirit comes from him to fellowship with Him. You might guess from that opening that I am not pro choice on that issue. There is a choice that God is in favor of and leaves up to us all and that is as to whether we will follow Him or not.

Life never has been the life of Riley or a bowl of cherries. Pick anytime in history and you will see the location might be different however life was not easy.

Farmers did not always have the large tractors, combines, other tools of today. They had their hands, their backs, and long days working in the fields for six days. Sundays were set aside for the worship of the one who gave them their life and crops.

The neighbors who were farmers, cattlemen, and shop keepers worked together and helped each other in time of need. There were no government programs waiting for them when they hit the shores of this new world and none in the old world from which they came. The first meeting houses were the churches. The locals came together to govern themselves. They fought the fires together and had barn raising events to build or rebuild helping their neighbor.

When our country expanded westward it took hardy souls to cross the vast open lands with few possessions in a covered wagon. Those hardy souls traveled in groups called wagon trains in order that they could help and receive help when needed.

We were designed to fellowship and part of the fellowship is helping each other.

We were designed to form and live in family units, a Dad, a Mom and children. The family unit is under attack however that is a subject for another time.

This time I want to focus on when Dad and Mom are longer in the picture, such as when they both have died and the children survive. Upon the parents death the children are left behind with the pain and trauma of the loss and rudderless. A ship without a rudder on the open seas is in grave danger.

We are called to care of widows and orphans. When that was written widows were defined as women over 60 who did not have children. At that time and often times today children take care of elderly parents. It was thought that younger widows could remarry.

That still leaves orphans.

Children left without parents or family members to take them in are on their on and vulnerable to perverts and slave masters who exploit them. Orphans who end up living on the streets may do anything to eat or obtain acceptance. Too many children are bought and sold by perverts and sex traffickers, sometimes multiple times a day.

Children with families are much more likely to have their medical and mental health issues taken care of. Orphans living on the street on the other hand could spread or die from various illnesses without the care they would receive through their family. Orphans living on the street could experience psychotic episodes as a result of untreated mental illnesses.

There are children who for various reasons end up in Foster Care. Children who are in Foster Care have more opportunities in life if the Foster Parents have a heart for the Foster Children. Sadly, there are reports of various abuses in the Foster Care program as well.

Unfortunately, some parents have been known to abuse their own children. In that case both the parents and the children need help with the issues resulting from that abuse.

I have notice that there are many adoption agencies, many of them private, who will endeavor to match eligible families with children waiting to be adopted. Some people have traveled to other countries to adopt children.

Where do those children come from?

With the economy getting worse we’ll see families getting into tougher straights than before. In the Great Depression some families offered to sell some of their children so the rest could survive. We know some people today ‘rent’ their children to pay for drug debts.

There are many successful people who had some pretty rough lives growing up. Some of those successful people who had rough lives were adopted into loving families. Yes, they did well despite circumstance beyond their control. Here is one example. There is the only one Eagle Scout to ascend to the Presidency. He is also the only future US President to tackle a future Heisman Trophy winner when he brought down running back Jay Berwanger. I am writing about the 38th US President, Gerald R. Ford.

What I don’t see many of is Orphanages who will take in children and provide them with their physical, medical, and spiritual needs. I have found Christian organizations that will provide support for adoptive families and Orphanages. I think is time that churches answer the call and open and operate Orphanages.

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org

Other Consequences of Ruling

July 3, 2015

moral compass
June 30, 2015
By Rev Paul N. Papas II

Sometimes we don’t realize all of the consequences of our actions before we embark on a trail.

An experienced hiker or camper probably would not forget his map, compass, and proper footwear. Although an experienced hiker or camper should be able to navigate day or night without a compass, he may navigate as precisely as he would with a compass.

An experienced camper should be able to find or construct a shelter from his surroundings.

Ignoring, loosing or throwing away your moral compass can be harmful in more ways than one. There could be physical, psychological, or spiritual harm done to yourself or those around you when you ignore, lose, or throw away your moral compass. Often times it is hurt people who ignore, lose, or throw away their moral compass to try to dull the pain of the hurts. People who suffer the pain of being hurt often times hurt others.

We may never know the exact reasons why the five Supreme Court justices thought they could redefine marriage. They also may not have thought about all the consequences of their actions. One such consequence of their actions is a weakened U.S. military.

Our military is already stretched thin across the globe. It does not look as though the situation is going to improve in the near future.

As a Veteran I can tell you that from Boot Camp teamwork is stressed, as is leadership. Some of our finest Military leaders produced the most results because they were not afraid to lead the charge, they did not sit in an office dictating the next move. The Military leaders who produced the most results were recognized as part of the team trying to accomplish a mission.

The most effective teams in the military trust each member with their lives. If they don’t trust each other and they have to keep one eye on their team member and the other eye on the enemy their life expectancy is very short.

The consequences of failing to follow the Chain of Command can be seen in military and in civilian life. Look how many civilian Whistleblowers are retaliated against for warning the public of danger that has been hushed up. The situation in the military could prove to be deadly or career ending for failing to follow the Chain of Command.

One consequence of the redefinition of marriage by the Supreme Court is further rise in and greater suppression of rapes and sexual assaults in the military upon men and women.

The normal process in the Military to report a Rape or Sexual Assault is to report it up the Chain of Command. Unfortunately that system usually produces recriminations upon the victims, little or no reporting beyond the unit, and improper handling of the investigation. Congress has failed to pass a bill that would permit military personal to report a Rape or Sexual Assault to a civilian authority.

The redefinition of marriage could see a rise in rapes and sexual assaults upon men and women as we did after don’t ask don’t tell was implemented. The number of reports may well go down so as not to be labeled as homophobic or some such nonsense.

Rapes and Sexual Assaults in the military could lead to distrust among team members. The distrust of fellow team members weakens the team and weakens the military. The distrust of fellow team members could prove deadly in combat and turn a winnable situation into a disastrous defeat for the battle and the nation.

Those who commit rape or sexual assaults in the military have a greater chance of not being brought to justice as a result of the redefinition of marriage and perpetrating the same crimes upon the civilian population.

The cost upon the victims of rape and sexual assaults are not always considered either. Victims of rape and sexual assaults have more and long lasting mental health issues and higher rates of suicide than those who have not been raped or sexually assaulted. There is help available for victims.

Perpetrators don’t usually seek help, however is available.

I believe those five who thought they were redefining marriage never considered they were weakening our military.

Sexual Assualt Military

The Invisible War – Official Trailer

Reverend Paul N. Papas II is a Pastoral Counselor with Narrow Path Ministries (MA and AZ) and Founder of the Family Renewal Center (AZ) http://www.narrowpathministries.org and http://www.familyrenewalcenteraz.org










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