Friday, January 26, 2007
While prayer, fasting, accountability and true repentance are all great and needed in the walk of a Christian there is also the need for teaching and trust.
So I'm learning about the Glory God gets by saving us from our sin and enabling us to walk in godly ways. I'm also learning about the Living Water that only He can provide and how this water truly satisfies.
I'm two days into a 60 course on purity. Check it out www.settingcaptivesfree.com
Tuesday, January 23, 2007
I've found recently that it's our nature to be fearful. We almost go looking for something to be fearful about. As one problem is dealt with we quickly look to the next to see if it's about to destroy us. This week God has eased my mind about an important thing, God be Blessed, and what have I done? I've traded that worry for a financial worry. Surely if God can save a soul such as mine, and create the whole universe He can care for all of my needs.
When a Christian worries he is proclaiming that God is a liar. That's the hard fact of it. Will we fear? yes. Does that mean we're not Christians? No. But it does mean we have more to learn about Him. That shouldn't be a surprise for any of us though should it.
Some times it's good just to proclaim truth and agree with it. God is faithful. He is just. All good giving and all perfect gifts come from Him. He will not leave us nor forsake us. He is able to keep us from falling.
Thank God for His work in my life. For the godly fear, and reverence I have learned to have for him. For the love He has put in my heart, not only for brethren, but also for the lost.
As my wife would express. He is good. And that's good enough for me.
Saturday, January 20, 2007
Monday, January 15, 2007
Yuri and I shared the answer with him but he was really too drunk to understand so we gave him some reading material and a website to go to. We prayed he'd get the chance to learn.
Tonight on my way to pick up my lovely wife I stopped at a fatal car crash. An apparently drunk driver had come up the Highway going the wrong way and struck C's car head on. I'm a First-Aider and stop at quite a few accidents. The driver who was going in the wrong direction died prior to my arrival, so I proceeded to help C who was in some trouble. Thankfully the fire dept and medical help were there faster than I could even finish checking C out and he left the scene alive and I expect he'll be ok with medical help.
The thing is C had no idea he was going to be involved in this accident. Had he known, he wouldn't have left Yuri and myself until he knew everything he could about God. The other driver surely didn't know he was about to die. I wonder if one of our team had given him a tract?
My point in posting this is simply that the Gospel is not a game. People die. Life happens and it gets bad in a hurry. We don't get a 24 hour notice about when we're going to finally take God seriously and check Him out.
Take the test and get it worked out while it's still Today.
Friday, January 12, 2007
Here's the previous post.
Answers in Genesis got a feedback E-Mail about their content as it applies to the abortion of unborn children. The person was upset and brought out a number of the normal arguments and accusations. The reason why I think this is a good read is because it IS an emotional issue. And it's hard to think straight when things as painful as "rape" "incest" "deformities" and "mental disorders" are brought up. Are there real honest and reasonable answers to concerns such as these? Take a look at the feedback article to see for yourself. Here's a quote and a response from I found endearing.
Next time you meet up with someone disabled from birth, look them in the eyes and tell them that they should have been aborted. About nine out of ten British babies suffering from Down’s Syndrome are aborted.3 Such an attitude encourages society’s irrational fear of disability, as if the mother were giving birth to a “monster.” Such negative stereotypes of disability should have no place in today’s society, and certainly have no place in a biblical worldview, which sees all human life as being in the image of God. Anya Souza—a Down’s Syndrome sufferer—was allowed to address the 2003 International Down’s Syndrome Screening Conference in London. She said:
I can't get rid of my Down's syndrome, but you can't get rid of my happiness. You can't get rid of the happiness I give others either. It's doctors like you that want to test pregnant women and stop people like me being born. Together with my family and friends I have fought to prevent my separation from normal society. I have fought for my rights... I may have Down's syndrome but I am a person first.4
Thursday, January 11, 2007
Vernon K. Lockner
Beyond the brilliant crystal sea,
Past streets of gold and emerald green,
I see a rainbow ‘round His throne,
Where Christ and heaven are my home.
Beyond the mighty cherubim,
Past countless angels praising Him,
There is a place of faithful rest,
A mercy-seat where all are blessed.
Beyond the elders, twenty-four,
The tree of life and golden shore,
Where gates are pearl and all is right,
And Jesus is the only Light;
Beyond the many woes of life,
Past all the sin and constant strife,
Beyond the pain this life will bring,
There is a song the saints still sing!
Beyond this earth and all the tears,
Past all our cares and anxious fears,
I long for heaven’s perfect peace,
And dancing at the wedding feast.
Beyond this life, beyond our death,
Just past our final mortal breath,
For those in Christ God has a plan:
Eternal joys at His right hand.
So, heed His call and come to Him;
Bring nothing but your guilt and sin.
In Christ alone place all your faith,
And come to heaven, saved by grace!
Monday, January 08, 2007
I Cor 15:1-8
1Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the gospel which I preached unto you, which also ye have received, and wherein ye stand;
2By which also ye are saved, if ye keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless ye have believed in vain.
3For I delivered unto you first of all that which I also received, how that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures;
4And that he was buried, and that he rose again the third day according to the scriptures:
5And that he was seen of Cephas, then of the twelve:
6After that, he was seen of above five hundred brethren at once; of whom the greater part remain unto this present, but some are fallen asleep.
7After that, he was seen of James; then of all the apostles.
8And last of all he was seen of me also, as of one born out of due time.
In Verses 1 & 2 we see Paul declare that the Gospel he preached to them is the Gospel by which we are saved and they received it. It talks about how if this is not kept in mind and believed that they would have believed in vain (they would have been the Apostate, or false converts). This is a strong statement, Paul is saying - this is IT. If you don't believe this then you're not saved.
The beginning of Verse 3 is leading into explanation of what he had taught them.
Now we get the actual Gospel starting in Verse 3b "how that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures." How Christ IS the fulfillment of promises made in, and legal requirements of the OT. He died for our sins - our sins required death, and He did the dying.
Verse 4 That He was buried and rose again in accordance with Prophecy.
Verse 5 - 7 The witnesses who can confirm these events to be so.
Verse 8 Paul's apostleship confirmed, therefore he has authority to declare the above to be the Gospel.
So in these 8 verses we get the complete full council of the Gospel. It's authority and accuracy is confirmed by Scripture, Witness and Apostleship (Paul had already had the signs of an Apostle confirm him before them - and us by record). This is complete verification and complete council. The whole of the Good News.
That we need to explain elements of this such as what the OT did foretell, and what it did have as legal requirements to be fulfilled is clear. So there ya have it.
Saturday, January 06, 2007
Friday, January 05, 2007
Men have written volumes and spent their lives studying this subject. My study has been for the duration of a year and a half, and my writings about Scripture include only this blog, my personal notes and an article as of yet unpublished. What I'm saying is my qualifications are next to nil. I will endeavor to rely on the given Teacher to be my guide.
Because this can be a huge topic I will limit my post to the following. Is a Christian required or even allowed to obey all or any part of Mosaic Law. If not, then what law(s) or rule is a Christian required to obey. And hopefully I can sum up with something along the lines of “what the big deal is anyway”.
This will NOT be an exhaustive work, it ought to be considered more of an introduction to an area of study we all need to spend time in. This slim work may even appear to be a bit of proof-texting because of it's briefness.
Right out of the gate let's see an undebatable statement in Scripture. Rom 6:14 “ For sin shall not have dominion over you: for ye are not under the law, but under grace.” What does this mean? Rom 6:18 “Being then made free from sin, ye became the servants of righteousness.” The Christian is a servant of righteousness, he is “under” the rule of grace.
Col 2:13-17 says “13And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;
Clearly, this teaches against following the Ten Commandments which are often referred to as the “Moral Law” and therefore still in application. Col 2:16 clearly teaches against the keeping of the Sabbath by Christians. The Sabbath was given to Israel for the express purpose that they would remember the rest of being released from Egypt. It was given so that Israel may know that God is the Lord, who makes Israel holy. Ex 20:8-11, Ex 31:12-13, Deut 5:12-14, Ezek 20:12 and Ezek 20:20
Ok one last point on the separation of the Christian and Mosaic Law and then we'll move on. This could get very long!
In Romans 7 the Apostle Paul teaches about marriage to explain the relationship of the Christian to Mosaic Law. The marriage is valid as long as the spouse is alive. But if the spouse dies the person is released from the law of marriage. He applies it to Christians in Rom 7:4 “Wherefore, my brethren, ye also are become dead to the law by the body of Christ; that ye should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God.” and Rom:7:6. “But now we are delivered from the law, that being dead wherein we were held; that we should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter.”
The book of Galatians is a great resource for those struggling with law keeping. Now let's move on to the subject of what Law(s) or rule the Christian IS under. The Law of God, The Law of the Spirit, and the Law of Christ – together know as the rule of Grace.
Rom 7:25 “I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.”
Rom 8:4 “That the righteousness of the law might be fulfilled in us, who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”
20I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.”
We see from the numerous verses above that it's Christ's life not ours. That we are to live by Spirit. That we are to follow the Law of God, the Law of Christ.
But what IS the Law of Christ? That's a GREAT question. And one I'm only partially prepared to answer. Remember this is an introduction for you (and me really). Some argue that the Law of Christ is the teaching from the Mount in Matt 5-7. While Our Lord's teachings are statments of truth there is one glaring issue that leads me to believe this couldn't be what Paul is writing about when he uses the term “the Law of Christ”
This is the complete opposite of what Paul teaches the Church. Paul always teaches the Church that our sins have been (in the past) forgiven, not to do something in order that they will be forgiven. Example Col 2:13 “13And you, being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses;” What's more, Paul instructs us to “forgive as we have been forgiven” not “forgive so that we will be forgiven” Eph 4:32 “And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”
So what IS the Law of Christ then? Well I believe Gal 6:2 holds the key. “Carry each other's burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ.”
Our Lord gave us two Commandments. Matt 22:37 “Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.” John 15:17 “These things I command you, that ye love one another.” Or with both Commandments in one statement Luke 10:27 “And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.”
We see that in carrying each other's burdens, or loving each other, we fulfill the Law of Christ.
What's the Big Deal? If we try to keep rules we are denying the rule of Grace in our lives. In everything we do, think, hope and dream we ought to be following the promptings of the Holy Spirit, fulfilling the Law of Christ (or God) and letting Him live instead of us. Sure it's “messy” without a list of rules we have to keep. It makes it much harder to point our fingers at each other and talk about what wretch this person or that person is. It makes it very much harder for us to “look” righteous. But remember it's these things that God hates.
Thursday, January 04, 2007
I will quote from the NIV because it uses the word "Gossip".
Proverbs indicates that Gossip reveals a lack of trustworthiness, and that the gossip it's self goes to the core of a man. Prov 11:13, 18:8, 26:22
Romans has the following to say;
Rom 1:28-32 "28Furthermore, since they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, he gave them over to a depraved mind, to do what ought not to be done. 29They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips, 30slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents; 31they are senseless, faithless, heartless, ruthless. 32Although they know God's righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them."
That seems pretty clear doesn't it? Then Paul puts Gossip in his list of rebukes against the church at Corinth in II Cor 12:19-21
"19Have you been thinking all along that we have been defending ourselves to you? We have been speaking in the sight of God as those in Christ; and everything we do, dear friends, is for your strengthening. 20For I am afraid that when I come I may not find you as I want you to be, and you may not find me as you want me to be. I fear that there may be quarreling, jealousy, outbursts of anger, factions, slander, gossip, arrogance and disorder. 21I am afraid that when I come again my God will humble me before you, and I will be grieved over many who have sinned earlier and have not repented of the impurity, sexual sin and debauchery in which they have indulged."
In 1 Timothy 5:13-14 Paul is instructing Timothy how to deal with younger widows. Part of this is a warning of their "giving the enemy an opportunity for slander" in respect to their gossip.
"13Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. And not only do they become idlers, but also gossips and busybodies, saying things they ought not to. 14So I counsel younger widows to marry, to have children, to manage their homes and to give the enemy no opportunity for slander."
The Apostle John uses the gossip of a man to reveal the evil in him in 1 John 1:9-11.
"9I wrote to the church, but Diotrephes, who loves to be first, will have nothing to do with us. 10So if I come, I will call attention to what he is doing, gossiping maliciously about us. Not satisfied with that, he refuses to welcome the brothers. He also stops those who want to do so and puts them out of the church.
11Dear friend, do not imitate what is evil but what is good. Anyone who does what is good is from God. Anyone who does what is evil has not seen God."
Well I submit for your consideration that a Christian knowing that Gossip "goes down to a mans innermost parts" is not committing an act of love, but is in fact committing an act of hate. When a Brother gossips about a Brother he surely is not loving that man. Jesus gave us a clear command to "love each other". So, if you look at the truly hurtful and evil act of Gossip as not an act of love but in fact an act of hate the following is the nail in the coffin for the idea that Gossip isn't as bad as "other sins".
" 21"You have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not murder,[a] and anyone who murders will be subject to judgment.' 22But I tell you that anyone who is angry with his brother[b]will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to his brother, 'Raca,[c]' is answerable to the Sanhedrin. But anyone who says, 'You fool!' will be in danger of the fire of hell."
Raca is a term of contempt and the Sandedrin is the Jewish council.
Here we see Our Lord Jesus Christ tell us that being angry with our Brother (in Christ) is the same as Murder.
Now is Gossip not as bad as those "other sins"? I ask you to consider it yourself.
After a moment I suggest we all view and submit to the teaching in Matt 18:15-35.
Tuesday, January 02, 2007
Creationists and Evolutionists all agree that mutations happen. We've all watched, cataloged and studied them. We've each even theorized on what might happen if this or that mutation did occur . What's really interesting though is this. Studying what actually has happened!
The True Origin Archive has an interesting article on Mutations. It's semi technical.
Here's a quote;
In order to locate all alleged examples of beneficial mutations, I carried out a computer search of the literature. My review covered all published scientific studies that dealt with beneficial mutations. The definition of beneficial mutation used was a mutation that was regarded as beneficial by the authors surveyed. Key words used in the computer search included synonyms of beneficial, such as “favorable, helpful, usable, valuable, adaptive, good, advantageous, supportive, positive,” etc. The search of two data bases totaling 18.8 million records found that, of all articles discussing mutations, only 0.04 percent, or 4 in 10,000 articles on mutations, were located that discussed beneficial or favorable mutations. Some overlap exists in the data bases searched, consequently the actual total number of records searched was less than 18.8 million. The overlap in the search was estimated by extrapolating from the records found. Assuming that the same level of overlap exists in the entire database, a total of approximately 16 million records was searched. These searches may have missed some relevant articles but are useful to indicate trends.
All of the 126 examples located were then reviewed, focusing on evidence for information-gaining beneficial mutations. It was found that none of them contained clear, empirically supported examples of information-gaining, beneficial mutations. Most “examples” of actual, beneficial mutations were loss mutations in which a gene was disabled or damaged, all of which were beneficial only in a limited situation.
A review of both textbooks and journal articles on evolution demonstrated that the most common examples of beneficial mutations were sickle cell anemia, bacterial resistance to antibiotics, Ancon short legged sheep, viral/bacterial immunity, and a “putative beneficial mutation for lipid transport” (Galton, et. al., 1996; Strickburger, 2000).
An example of a mutation that was beneficial in specific situations was damage to the Chemokine receptor 5, (CCR5), the principle co-receptor in T-cells that causes cells with CD4 receptors (primarily T-cells) to be unable to take the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) into the cell. As a result, a person with this mutation has an abnormally high immunity to HIV infection (Huang, 1996; Wilkinson, 1998).