Friday, July 26, 2013

Cartoon of the week

You can add a few more "non-scandals" to that vehicle. Maybe the cartoonist is onto something here ...

Saturday, July 20, 2013


John 15:7: If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. (KJV)

This verse hold several simple, yet powerful truths for the church is these times, when Christians in America are bewildered about the direction of this country (mainly downhill). First, we need to let God's Word, the Bible, “abide” in us. This is not just head knowledge: “Abide in youNot only are remembered, but are suffered to remain in you as a living principle, to regulate your affections and life.” (Barnes)

This is rooted in the first part of the verse, about abiding in Jesus. Obviously, we abide in Jesus when we ask Him into our heart as our Lord and Savior. When we love anyone, their voice, their words have a life in us that no one else could ever have. How much more should this be with our Lord Jesus and His Words in the Holy Bible!

When we are abiding in faith in Jesus, and let His words direct our paths (Proverbs 3:5-6), then we can be confident that whatever we ask, it will be done for us. It's easy to believe for this in regard to personal needs—but do we believe this for our neighbors, and for that matter, for our nation? Yes, we must put hands and feet under our prayers in standing up for biblical truth and opposing Satan's plans to tear down out society—but we must first and foremost have the total faith in Jesus in our prayers to do this.

When our faith in not firmly rooted in God's Word, any enthusiasm we have in our efforts to turn people back to biblical truth will wilt away, especially in the face of trials and opposition (Matthew 13:5-6, 20-21). So our first steps in shining our light into the darkness, in seeing true revival come to the American church, is not dreaming up more complicated man-made methods for this, but by the church returning to basics of the faith, to get afire with the love of Jesus in our hearts and letting that love shine through our words and actions.

Here is a video link to a chorus written about this truth, that I hope will bless you as you allow Jesus' words to abide in you.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Heart of the pro-abortion movement

The heart of the pro-abortion movement has been pretty much exposed in the recent battle to stop pro-life laws in Texas. I'm posting some links, but here's a rundown:

*The “pro-choice” protesters aren't content to carry around perverted signs—they have little children carrying them too.

*Members of the pro-abortion crowd repeatedly yelled “Hail Satan” at pro-life demonstrators who were singing “Amazing Grace.”

For the above two items, check out the link here (Warning: some of the signs in the pictures are offensive. Actually, they are ALL offensive—but some are especially perverted).

*State legislators are receiving threats from these alleged guardians of women's rights—including messages hoping that their daughters are raped.

*And the kicker—these are PAID activists. They are pulling in up to $2,200 a month from leftists groups allied with President Obama.

If you have the stomach, check these links. Then pray for the pro-life legislators and demonstrators in their courageous stand for life; for the pro-abortion activists' salvation; and for what's left of the conscience of our nation.

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Dressing down the sheep: some thoughts on the ranting pastor

At last count, there are almost 300,000 hits on the YouTube video starring that Oklahoma pastor who dresses down his congregation during Sunday service. The video gem of his latest homiletic outburst features the pastor criticizing an engaged couple he was supposed to marry. That couple left the church shortly after his “corrective” message, where he was down in the aisle, pretty much in the man's face, saying “You're one of the sorriest church members I have. You're not worth 15 cents.”

I write this as someone who is apprehensive about criticizing any ministry, even if that ministry does things that may seem unusual. But this video cries for some biblical perspective. For that, I turn to a passage that at first seems to have nothing to do with our interesting pastor and his preaching method:

If, therefore, the whole church comes together and all speak in tongues, and outsiders or unbelievers enter, will they not say that you are out of your minds? But if all prophesy, and an unbeliever or outsider enters, he is convicted by all, he is called to account by all, the secrets of his heart are disclosed, and so, falling on his face, he will worship God and declare that God is really among you.” (1 Corinthians 14:23-25, ESV)

Let's put aside the issue about whether you believe spiritual gifts such as tongues and prophecy are for today; there are dedicated believers on both sides of that issue. Paul is expressing a concern here for what an OUTSIDER would think should they come into the meeting. Of course, this is not calling for churches to “water down” their worship or message so as not to “drive away” unbelievers. Nonetheless, Paul is concerned with what an unbeliever will take away from a church meeting. You see, EVERYTHING a church does tells people something about God; the message is not limited to any inspired speaking or even singing.

So when a pastor uses his pulpit to berate members of his church, what is THIS telling people, especially those outside the church, about God? Look at the pastor's words again, when he tells that young man, “You're not worth 15 cents.” Tell me if you honestly think THAT reflects the heart of Jesus; do you REALLY believe JESUS would say that? To be sure, Jesus had harsh words for hypocrites; put His finger directly on the sin of the woman at the well and the rich young ruler; and even rebuked his beloved disciple Peter with the words, “Get behind me Satan” (see Matthew 16:21-23).

But for that pastor to tell that man, a member of his church, he was “not worth 15 cents” is reprehensible, for this is a soul Jesus died for. Or has that pastor forgotten about John 3:16? Picture yourself being in the shoes of a young Christian couple looking for a church, who could well have been visiting that church that day. Or maybe the visitors are a couple living in sin, wanting to get right with God and enter into marriage—and you get an earful of THIS message. Like that poor couple the pastor “confronted,” you'll walk out the door of that church and not look back—and if you're unchurched, probably forget looking for ANY church again.

I don't know that pastor personally, so I can't speak to whether he is living up to those apparently lofty standards he was laying down for that “worthless” man and his fiancee. I certainly hope so, for his sake. But maybe he needs to start praying about whether his “method” really glorifies God, or simply discourages believers and gives unbelievers all the more reason to not follow Jesus—certainly not the Jesus that pastor is presenting.