Obama on the Bible

 

Someone might ask, well aren’t these valid talking points?

They are misguided. Let’s address his message and see. I will not address whether the US is still or no longer a Christian nation. Or whether or not the nation should be ruled via Christian principles. What I will address are the passages that Obama misrepresents. For some Christian, he sure doesn’t seem to have much faith in what’s written in the Bible. But that too I won’t bother to get into.

Whose Christianity would we teach? Biblical Christianity. Explain scripture with scripture, and things iron out very easily. So then it is not JtM’s Christianity or Obama’s Christianity, but Biblical Christianity that’s important.

There are some things which, with a non-seared conscience (1 Timothy 4:2), people just know inherently are either morally right or wrong.

“Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the Law, do by nature what the Law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the Law, since they show that the work of the Law is written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts either accusing or defending them. ” – Romans 2:14-15

Slavery

It really is something else that Obama would stand there and suggest that the Bible is condoning the cruel form of slavery that we know of today. If it did, then why even bother to free the Israelites from the Egyptians? Scripture makes it clear about how we are to treat others.

“And masters, treat your slaves in the same way. Do not threaten them, since you know that he who is both their Master and yours is in heaven, and there is no favoritism with Him” – Ephesians 6:9

So obviously, if a passage seems to be speaking favorably of someone owning slaves, then there are also rules on how those people are to be treated. And once we understand these rules, we see Scripture is in no way condoning mistreatment of others. So the slave-master relationship, is really as we have today an employee-employer relationship.

Eating Shellfish

Back then, they didn’t have the methods of cooking or certain sciences (at least not without divine revelation) as we do now. Shellfish needs to be prepared properly.1 God wanted to prepare a healthy heap of people to bring the Messiah out of. Not a set of sickly people. Who would listen to the Gospel from a bunch of miserable looking people?

“And at the end of ten days their features appeared better and fatter in flesh than all the young men who ate the portion of the king’s delicacies. Thus the steward took away their portion of delicacies and the wine that they were to drink, and gave them vegetables.” – Daniel 1:15-16

Daniel’s testimony influenced the Babylonians. A sick looking Daniel would have hurt the mission.

Straying from the faith

Deut 21:18-21
I suppose he is referring to Deuteronomy 21:18-21. Obviously it is not referring to no light rebellion since: “Fathers, do not exasperate your children; instead, bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord.” – Ephesians 6:4

This obviously lets us know how parents are to treat their children and how to train them up. So if a parent were to be stoning their child to death, obviously it is concerning serious matters.

In fact, Obama’s quotation of the passage is in err since the verse is not even talking about straying from the faith, though obviously someone in such rebellion has already strayed. If straying from the faith was the problem, then what’s up with the story of the Prodigal Son? Obama makes it seem as if the Bible is saying if a child decides to no longer be a Christian, they are to be stoned. Sorry Obama, but that’s Islam.2

Deut 13:6-10
If Obama is speaking of Deuteronomy 13:6-10 in regards to leading people away from the faith to worship other gods, then we know from other areas in Scripture that idol worshipping often involved human sacrifice and other forms of wickedness.

“He followed the ways of the kings of Israel and even sacrificed his son in the fire, engaging in the detestable practices of the nations the LORD had driven out before the Israelites.” – 2 Kings 16:3

“They have built the high places of Baal to burn their children in the fire as offerings to Baal–something I did not command or mention, nor did it enter my mind.” – Jeremiah 19:5

Even so, how could the Messiah come from a people who were busy worshipping idols? Who would even recognize Him? They struggled to recognize Him even when they were at their “best” or “most religious”.

“Philip said to Him, “Lord, show us the Father, and that will be enough for us.” Jesus replied, “Philip, I have been with you all this time, and still you do not know Me? Anyone who has seen Me has seen the Father. How can you say, ‘Show us the Father’?” – John 14:8-9

“Then they said to Him, “Where is Your Father?” Jesus answered, “You know neither Me nor My Father. If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.” – John 8:19

I don’t see anywhere in Scripture which teaches that people are to be stoned for straying from their faith; strays can be found. Stoning is the punishment for a deeper, much more treacherous kind of rebellion. Even if there were such teachings about stoning for “straying from the faith” in the Old Testament, then it is clear from the New Covenant, that Christ’s sacrifice offers mercy for the stray, which was so beautifully described from the story of the Good Father, normally called the Prodigal Son.

Summary

The Bible must be read full-circle. Can’t just pick out a bunch of passages and call it George or call it a day.3 It is very easy to fall into the lime light or same line of thinking if we are not careful to study or do the research ourselves, even if the talking points are favorable for our own worldview or ideology.

References:
1. http://healthyeating.sfgate.com/risk-shellfish-2026.html
2. http://wikiislam.net/wiki/Persecution_of_Ex-Muslims
3. https://www.usingenglish.com/reference/idioms/let’s+call+it+a+day.html

QA: Does the Bible Teach Works Based Salvation like Water Baptismal Regeneration?

Short answer, no it does not. But what about Scripture like:
“He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.” – Mark 16:16

“And Peter said unto them, Repent ye, and be baptized everyone of you in the name of Jesus Christ unto the remission of your sins and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” – Acts 2:38

Doesn’t that teach that water baptism is a prerequisite to salvation?

coc-doctrineAgain, no, the Bible does not teach that we need to do anything more that believing in Christ in order to receive salvation. I know, there are denominations out there like the Church of Christ1, who will preach differently. But their teaching is unbiblical. They will accuse anyone who teaches in accordance to Ephesians 2:8 to be teaching that good works are not important. Good works are certainly important! But they are not the means to salvation, but only the evidence of it.

In Scripture we see “believe and confess”, “believe and be baptized”, or “believe” by itself. Why is that? Why don’t we just see “believe, confess, be baptized…” always listed together if the sum of salvation is equal to the total of “man’s” parts? You will see as you follow below.

When the Bible says believe in Jesus and ye shall be saved, it is talking about a belief that acts. The new believer is expected to produce fruit in accordance with their repentance. Otherwise, the so-called believer’s “belief” or faith would be dead and similar to the belief of demons.

“You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that—and shudder. You foolish person, do you want evidence that faith without deeds is useless?” – James 2:19-20

Understanding the differences

That doesn’t explain why Acts 2:38 is written that way you may say. But when Scripture appears to conflict, the solution is simple, find other passages in Scripture to explain the “troubling” passage.

“To Him all the prophets witness that, through His name, whoever believes in Him will receive remission of sins.” – Acts 10:43

So which is it, is baptism or believing the cause of remission of sins? How do we reconcile Acts 2:38 and Acts 10:43?

There is no problem at all really when we think about what baptism represents.

“Therefore we were buried with Him through baptism into death, that just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.” – Romans 6:4.

Baptism is symbolic of Christ’s work for us. We are not physically killed with Christ, obviously. Baptism is simply a public expression by the believer of where he/she chooses to put their faith in for salvation from their sins; baptism represents the person’s belief. So Acts 2:38 and Acts 10:43, are in fact saying the same thing.

Advocates of baptismal regeneration may ask, where do we get that wording from. If you are asked this, you can simply respond to them that they too must use phrases to express what they understand which are not verbatim in Scripture. Take for example the doctrine found on the Church of Christ website. Notice they say: “Though God’s part is the big part, man’s part is also necessary if man is to reach heaven.”. Where in the Bible is there this wording? There isn’t. They just believe that Scripture teaches like this, they believe this teaching is supported. So if you are ever presented this objection, remind the supporter that they too do the same.

“And that water is a picture of baptism, which now saves you, not by removing dirt from your body, but as a response to God from a clean conscience. It is effective because of the resurrection of Jesus Christ.” – 1 Peter 3:21

Advocates of water baptismal regeneration will just take the first clause and say: “see, water baptism saves you”! But will ignore the rest of the verse, which explains what the verse is saying fully. It’s not saying the act of being immersed in water saves, notice “not by removing dirt from your body”, but “as a response to God from a clean conscience”. One can see that baptism is being connected with belief. In the Old Testament, we know that the blood of bulls and goats didn’t actually save (Hebrews 10:4).

The Old Testament Jew was saved before he brought the offering. That offering was only his outward testimony that he was placing faith in the Lamb of God of whom these sacrifices were a type…Water baptism is the outward testimony of the believer’s inward faith.2

Looking at the verse differences logically we see:
“They replied, “Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved–you and your household.” – Acts 16:31
Here belief = TRUE, therefore salvation = TRUE
“If you declare with your mouth, ‘Jesus is Lord,’ and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.” – Romans 10:9
Here confession = TRUE, belief = TRUE, therefore salvation = TRUE
“Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.” – Mark 16:16
Here belief = TRUE, baptized = TRUE, therefore salvation = TRUE
In all cases, salvation is the result/sure/true. We see belief appearing on its own, and salvation is still true.

In Mark 16:16, notice even the next part of the verse says:
“but he who does not believe will be condemned”
Emphasis is on belief. Assuming Mark 16:16, is referring to water baptism, if it was necessary unto salvation, then the clause would have been:
“but he who does not believe and is not baptized will be condemned” Yet, we know that’s not what Scripture says.

Advocates of baptismal regeneration and works based salvation for the matter, simply add the works together to produce salvation. They view the works as supplements to produce the whole salvation. But it seems the Bible teaches about a kind of belief with by-products or belief that produces fruit in keeping with repentance.

If water baptism and other works were necessary prior to salvation status being reached, then someone who only ever heard or read verses like John 3:16 would be in trouble. Soldiers who believed in Christ on the battle field and died there without getting baptized with water, or confessing publicly with their mouth to others about their faith, would still go to hell.

Again, when the Bible says believe and you will be saved (Acts 16:31), it is talking about a special kind of belief. Just like Galatians 5:22-23 is speaking of a special kind of fruit.

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

Notice it says “fruit”, singular. That suggests the items in the list are things that encompass one another. For lack of better words, they are one in the same or by-products of one another.

If salvation is the sum of parts as stipulated by doctrines like from Church of Christ, then such supporters can never claim to be saved or be a Christian. By their own false doctrine, their salvation is not sure and Jesus is a liar because He said whoever believes has eternal life (John 3:36). For works based salvationists, it is only after they have lived out their total lifespan and completed all parts (hear the Gospel + believe + repent + confess + get baptized with water + live out a Christian life = salvation) will the sum of the parts make the whole salvation. Otherwise, if such supporters can claim that they are saved at the time of any just 1 or some of those parts, then salvation cannot be equal to the sum of all the parts as listed in the doctrine of denominations like Church of Christ. Again, what about people who die soon after believing in the Lord? What if they never got to share their new faith with others, or never got the opportunity to be water baptized?

Case of past historians/preachers

Advocates of works based salvation may even try to argue on another angle. They may ask you if you disagree with all the people from the past who taught works were necessary prior to salvation. Don’t get into that argument, because you must stand on their false premise when you answer. The answer to that objection is simple: since the idea is understood differently from Scripture initially from each party, then looking at the the teachings of others, we will continue to understand the idea the way in which we first understood if from Scripture. Say for example:
If A sees a particular colour as dark green and B sees the same colour as light green, then no matter when they see that colour again, they’ll continue to see it as they saw it initially. Basically, we do not need to get into the believe or believe not preachers from the past debate; it is irrelevant and advocates of works based salvation use it to trap you into making you feel that you are placing your understanding above great preachers from the past or making yourself out to be smarter than they are.

Case of the thief on the cross

You may be tempted to bring up the case of the thief on the cross. After all, only thing he did in regards to his salvation that we see from Scripture was believe in Jesus. Advocates of works based salvation may respond that the command of baptism came after, that the thief got saved by Old Testament terms3. However, Hebrews 11 doesn’t appear to draw any contrast between faith of believers after Jesus’ resurrection and before that time. Some may actually say that we don’t know if he didn’t do anything before that time; I say we don’t know that he did!

Case of Jesus’ Baptism

You may even be tempted to bring up the case of Jesus being baptized with water though He was/is sinless. Advocates of works based salvation will simply claim that Jesus was baptized for a different cause. And of course agreed (Matthew 3:13-17), but they are the ones claiming that water baptism is necessary for the remission of sins.

Case of Cornelius (and his household)

Also, you may be tempted to bring up the case of Cornelius; believing that he was already saved before getting baptized. They will claim that the Holy Spirit had not touched down and opened for Gentiles as yet. They don’t believe Cornelius was saved prior to being baptized, though there is better support for him being saved since Acts 10:1-3, rather than later after Peter’s preaching. The event in Acts 10:44, suggests the outpouring was for the Jews’ understanding, not that God hadn’t already accepted the Gentiles and was in that moment now accepting the Gentiles.

“Then Peter opened his mouth and said: In truth I perceive that God shows no partiality. But in every nation whoever fears Him and works righteousness is accepted by Him.” – Acts 10:34-35

Cornelius was already fasting and praying to God before the event in Acts 10:44, and God heard him. Which suggests some kind of proper communion with God.

“So Cornelius said, ‘Four days ago I was fasting until this hour; and at the ninth hour I prayed in my house, and behold, a man stood before me in bright clothing’, and said, ‘Cornelius, your prayer has been heard, and your alms are remembered in the sight of God’.” – Acts 10:30-31

“We know that God does not listen to sinners. He listens to the godly person who does His will.” – John 9:31

In this case, the deeper we go into studying works based salvation, we see how it makes man dependent on other man for salvation. What if Peter didn’t understand the vision, or worse didn’t go to meet Cornelius? Poor Cornelius would be doomed to wait on some other preacher. In order for this false teaching “to stand”, other Scripture must be twisted or ignored.

Works based salvationists cannot explain the reason for the differences in the verses throughout Scripture

Besides for the response of Jesus’ baptism, the other poor exegesis result because they started out falsely to begin with. And so they will jump around Scripture to “explain”, even appearing to make a different form of salvation for Old Testament believers. Yikes. Yet, in all this “explaining”, they cannot come up with a reason (even a false one) for the differences in Scripture; like when we see “believe” appear on its own and other times when it appears with “confess” or “be baptized”. Works based salvationists simply try to add works/parts/catalysts together and create their own standards for salvation. And some may be sincere, and some perhaps stubborn to change. God alone knows their motives. Yet we know:

Jesus replied, “This is the work of God: to believe in the One He has sent.” – John 6:29

There is only one kind of work we have to do in order to be saved, and this is not talking about any dead kind of belief or faith. Support of that is seen in James 2:19-20, Matthew 3:8, John 14:15 and other verses which makes it clear that true faith in Christ results in obedience.

Summary:

Argument by works based salvationists Response
If you don’t believe salvation is obtained by man having done these things, then you teach good works is not important. This is false, and a cop-out. Because even they will argue that water baptism etc are not works, but in the same breath, they will accuse you of teaching against good works. I think they very well know that many of us who disagree with their teaching, absolutely believe good works to be important, just that we believe good works are the result of true faith/belief.
The Bible does not teach water baptism, confession, repentance etc to be works. In order to harmonize their teaching with Ephesians 2:8, they will claim that water baptism etc are not works, and may say they are parts of the process or catalysts. Whatever wording we use, whether we say “work”, “catalyst”, “part” does not matter because even John 6:29 calls believing a work.
Are you making yourself out to be smarter than those from the past who taught this doctrine? Don’t get into that argument. It is based on a false presupposition, a false start. If they understand from Scripture the colour dark green, and we understand light green, then no matter who follows after we will see as we did initially.
You are not relying on the Bible alone. Lots of people when they don’t hear what they want to hear will say this. Particularly when you are trying to explain your understanding of what Scripture is teaching. But in reality, everyone when explaining themselves,
use words or phrases which are not verbatim in Scripture. You can always point the person back to their doctrine and point out words which are not found in the Bible but used in their doctrine. Obviously they believe what is written in their doctrine is supported by Scripture, and same for your own statements of faith. If they are honest, they won’t argue on this.

 

Disclaimer:
1. Not claiming that water baptism is not important, you should be baptized at the earliest opportunity. Baptism is very significant. Your faith should bear good fruit in keeping with repentance.
2. Times above we have just automatically assumed that when baptism is mentioned, it is referring to water baptism. But it really doesn’t have to be, and that is a discussion for another topic. Taking a deeper look and not automatically assuming water baptism when Scripture is silent, further irons out the clear teaching of faith alone salvation, that obviously is evidenced by good works.

References:
1. http://church-of-christ.org/how-does-one-become-a-member-of-the-church-of-christ.html
2. https://www.gotquestions.org/baptism-1Peter-3-21.html
3. https://www.gospelway.com/salvation/thief_cross.php

Gay Awareness: The Biblical Truth

Very well said!

Then Jesus told His disciples, “If anyone would come after Me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me.” – Matthew 16:24

Comparing the Bible to the Koran?

bible-koran

Some in order to defend the Koran will run to the Bible. Notice, when we need to defend the Bible, we use the Bible to defend itself. But almost every other literature wants to defend itself by the Bible, and sometimes they do so by means of “selective reasoning”.

I have heard many try to justify the passages of violence in the Koran by pointing to passages in the Bible. Why can’t the Koran justify its war without pointing to the Bible?

The reason for war in the Bible was always a case for dealing with sin. Moreover, each time there was war it was with a specific nation, closed commands leaving no room for acting on those commands today. And if that isn’t enough, when the soldiers came to arrest Jesus, Peter drew his sword to fight. Jesus rebuked Peter and told him “put your sword back in its place, those who live by the sword will die by the sword” (Matthew 26:52). Even when it appeared most justified (defending the Lord Jesus) to fight or war, Jesus didn’t allow it. Instead, the Bible says things like “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.” (Ephesians 6:12) So senseless violence, like the Crusades, that would have claimed to be in the name of Christianity would be in direct violation with what the Bible teaches.

Can we say the same for the Koran? I tend to try to avoid these conversations, it is better to let the Muslims use their Koran to defend their Koran. But I will say this much however. We cannot use part of Surah 5:32 (like some only take part of the verse) as a synonym in application to the Bible’s Exodus 20:13. Why? Because Surah 5:32 says “Because of that, We decreed upon the Children of Israel that whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved mankind entirely…”

The verse from the Koran was given to the Children of Israel, the Jews, not to the owners of the Koran, the Muslims. Therefore, a jihadist or muslim extremist can deem himself justified when he kills because the verse was directed to the Jews. That is not to say the verse is not a universal one, being applicable to even the Muslims (it could be or could not), but as it is written currently, having the Israelites as the subject, a jihadist can ignore the verse and not apply it to himself. Unless there are other verses in the Koran to defend itself, the Koran leaves open interpretation as to how Christians and Jews are to be treated.

“Fight in the way of Allah those who fight you but do not transgress. Indeed. Allah does not like transgressors.” – Surah 2:190
“And kill them wherever you overtake them and expel them from wherever they have expelled you, and fitnah is worse than killing. And do not fight them at al-Masjid al- Haram until they fight you there. But if they fight you, then kill them. Such is the recompense of the disbelievers.” – Surah 2:191
“And if they cease, then indeed, Allah is Forgiving and Merciful.” – Surah 2:192
“Fight them until there is no [more] fitnah and [until] worship is [acknowledged to be] for Allah . But if they cease, then there is to be no aggression except against the oppressors.” – Surah 2:193

Muslims claim that Surah 2:191 is taken out of context by critics. But Surah 2:193 shows otherwise. Notice that the condition to stop fighting INCLUDES worship to Allah. It says “there is no [more] fitnah and [until] worship is [acknowledged to be] for Allah”. The important logical operator here being AND. So fight them until they submit or worship Allah. Some have said that these verses are of the past. Well, that’s wonderful if they are, we should cease all this senseless violence now. Moderates, please show the muslim extremists the passages that prove these verses are within a historical timeframe and no longer applicable for today.

I believe it is good to strive for peace. Unfortunately, it will not happen in the way that we are striving for now. Sin is very real, and there are real spiritual forces out there meaning to cause harm. The final war until real peace is recorded in the Bible, a time well known as “armageddon”. Jesus will one day return to throw the devil into the Lake of Fire. Jesus will judge the living and the dead. All those who have accepted His free gift of salvation will live in eternal peace, but to those who have rejected Him will be separated from Him forever in torment by all that is not good.

There is a lot of debate about whether Islam is a religion of peace or not. It is actually irrelevant whether Islam means peace or not. The Koran contradicts itself since even by its standards Jesus is very special. “And [mention] the one who guarded her chastity, so We blew into her [garment] through Our angel [Gabriel], and We made her and her son a sign for the worlds.” – Surah 21:91 Can you really trust a book that declares Jesus to be born of a virgin, yet in the same breath declare that He is not the Son of God? If He was born of a virgin, then exactly of who could He be begotten of if He’s a good prophet? Must He not be begotten of God, hence the Son of God? In the self conflicting Koran, Jesus is more highly spoken of than Muhammad, subjectively speaking of course; depending on whether one would find a miracle birth and miracles more appealing than the legacy that Muhammad left behind.

Dear friends, do not be left behind trying to defend and indefensible cause. Come to Jesus. He has declared that He is the way, the truth and the life, no one comes to the Father but by Him. (John 14:6) Jesus loves you very much. Can you find any where in the Koran where Allah declares his unfailing love for his people? On the contrary, you can find it in the Bible in so many places, and the word of His love is backed with many actions of sacrifice, forgiveness, mercy and grace. What’s there to choose but Jesus? No comparison at all, Jesus forever the eternal Word of agape love and goodness.

QA: Couldn’t God Just Not Create Hell?

qa

So here we are, at one of those “couldn’t God just do it like this” questions. This question might be interesting, but it exposes a gross misunderstanding about the nature of God (holy where sin cannot dwell), the nature of man (created in the image of God) and what happens when man disobeys God (broken fellowship with God).

What makes Hell hell has more to do with not experiencing God than anything. The Bible says all good things come from God (James 1:17). Therefore, Hell is a terrible place because nothing good is there, since a person in Hell is out of God’s presence. So this person experiences no more good things like laughter, mercy, grace, love. A rejection of God on earth is an automatic rejection of all those other good things. Now think about it…do we go sit and genuinely fellowship in the house of someone we reject as a friend? Good things we experience are all “commodities in God’s house”.
Human beings were created in God’s image which means free will that builds character is an attribute that we have. Free will determines whether someone likes pink or blue, chicken or fish etc etc. God wants people to worship Him freely (John 4:24). Otherwise, there’s no real love involved. Hell was originally prepared for the devil and his demons (Matthew 25:41). Lucifier and a third of the angels choose rebellion against God. Their anti-God behaviour costed them His presence. That place out of God’s presence is called Hell. People who have rejected fellowship (by not repenting of sin and accepting His free gift of salvation) with Jesus Christ will go there. They didn’t want to be with God on earth, so why should He force them to spend eternity with Him? God’s desire is that people will choose Him freely and avoid separating themselves from His presence and all the good that comes with being with Him for all eternity in the next life.

For the Glory of God

remain at the cross

Our actions generates celebrations from one of two kingdoms. “Do things for the glory of God” is not for God’s benefit, as God is already all sufficient. Operating for His glory is a benefit to us. When we do or say something that His kingdom can rejoice in, we welcome Psalm 91:11 in our lives.

On the contrary, when we do or say something that the enemy and his kingdom can rejoice in, we reject God, and join the company of the enemy and his bandwagon.This saddens God because He knows the enemy has nothing but death to offer us. And God’s desire for us is to have life through Him the life giver, and have that life in abundance.

“So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31

Consult God First

IMG_1307

There was a brother in Christ who told me that whenever his daughter would come to him with issues, he’d ask her if she had first talked to God. If she’d say no, he’d tell her go talk to God first then come back to him after. The earthly father was teaching something crucial here, “the principle of God first”.

There is so much anger and malice I’m reading these days that it is clear some of us aren’t following that principle. Particularly because the words spoken/written are contrary to the Word of God.

What part of pray for your leaders do believers not understand? What part of put away anger and malice is confusing? Our feelings are not always facts. Angry at your leader? Don’t like him/her? Pray for them. If you are a believer in Christ, it is your duty to represent the Lord as He calls us to. Nothing more shameful than believers acting worse than those in the world.

1 Timothy 2:1-3
Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior…

Ephesians 4:31
Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice.

This works in all cases. We need to consult God first in our lives. We can end up in all sorts of trouble otherwise and end up saying things that we only regret later on. Let’s take a page from Nehemiah from chapter 2. Notice when the king (who had reasonable authority to grant Nehemiah’s request) asked Nehemiah what he wanted, Nehemiah prayed to God before responding. Urge us (myself most definitely included) to do the same. Amen.

Nehemiah 2:4-5
Then the king said to me, “What do you request?”
So I prayed to the God of heaven. And I said to the king, “If it pleases the king, and if your servant has found favor in your sight, I ask that you send me to Judah, to the city of my fathers’ tombs, that I may rebuild it.”

A Child Born, but a Son GIVEN

christmas

 

“For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.” – Isaiah 9:6

Notice that the child was born, but the son was given. Signifying once more that Jesus was on Earth as God in the flesh. He was, is and is to come. Thank You Jesus for leaving your Heavenly home to save us from our sins! We owe it all to You.

Merry Christmas all! May our minds and hearts be focused on the Giver of the Gift of Salvation; for there is no gift greater than the one given by our Great God. Amen!

Innocent Blood

This has been on my heart for a while now. Over the year think I have been really jolted into the reality of how brutal it is to kill the innocent in the womb. I have been trying to avoid speaking on the issue, but alas I will speak.

Below is a graphic and sad picture of what many babies face when they are aborted.

abortion

In the OT, many nations were cut off because they sacrificed and burned their children to false gods. Today, many have raised “choice” and “situation” as reason to abort the child in the womb. I believe it grieves God greatly.

With the win of Donald Trump, and his promise to elect justices that will rule against abortion, I believe we have made a turn for good. Had we selected the alternative, who knows, maybe we would have been like past nations, been cut off too.

So yes, the election was about the Supreme Court because in it shapes the direction of the nation.

The image is indeed graphic. But selected for a reason. In the Bible described an account (Judges 19) where a woman was gang raped. She was found dead at the threshold of her home. Her master, grieved by what had happened to his concubine, cut her lifeless body into 12 pieces and mailed them to the leaders to show the kind of evil that happened in the land. I am sure the graphic body parts caught the attention of those leaders. In the same respect, I hope that the image catches your attention to grieve for the life of the innocent.

“Did not He who made me in the womb make them? Did not the same one form us both within our mothers?” – Job 31:15

If God gave that life, we do not have the right to take it away.

I would have to say that freedom is not the right to do whatever we want, but the right to choose what we ought. If we do whatever we want and end up breaking the law of the land, in the natural we end up in jail. In the spiritual, die in such a state of sin and we go to an eternal prison separated from Jesus.

It is my hope that we will turn from the idea that it is okay to kill the innocent in the womb.

Finally, may the Lord grant Donald Trump and Mike Pence all wisdom, health and protection to lead the great nation of the United States and in turn, may those who do not yet know the Lord Jesus, turn to Him for the forgiveness of sins and life eternal. Amen.

 

Struggle

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Struggle. We all have our seasons. If you’re a believer in Christ and find yourself discouraged remember that you’re not alone. There are several reasons why we each find ourselves in this place:

1. Sometimes it is actually not anything we have done wrong. The devil came after even Jesus, surely he will come after followers of Jesus. In these times, we just need to speak the Word against whatever accusations the enemy is speaking out against us.

2. Sometimes we are doing all sorts of things for God (taking care of others/ministry), but not taking timeout to be with God Himself. Martha, Martha, go sit at the feet of Jesus.

3. The pressures of life get to us. We worry, we fear and we want to walk by sight, as the unknown plunders away at our faith. In these times, we need to look back at the character of God. Check out His miracles (up to what He is doing today), study His universe. Think about it, God spoke great balls of fire into existence! On a personal level He heals sickness, warns us of danger etc; His mighty works are too numerous to mention. We need to remember that when we have Jesus in our boat we have nothing to worry about.

4. Sometimes we are engaged in activities, like listening to certain kinds music, watching certain movies etc that may be permissible but not beneficial. What we deposit is what we are able to withdraw. Put that stuff down and return to a heart of worship.

5. And sometimes, we are just in plain sin. If it is habitual, encourage us to speak to at-least one mature believer in Christ about it. When we shed light on what we do in the dark, the enemy loses that foothold of strength he has in darkness.
Regardless the reason, God is faithful, He cares and will complete the good work He begun in us. Living for Christ is a daily thing. Yesterday’s manna is yesterday’s manna. Not because we prayed 15 minutes yesterday means we can run on yesterday’s prayer.
Anyhow, let’s pray for one another and cover one another. 🙂

“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.” – James 5:16