Monthly Archives: December 2015

America, One Nation Truly Under God.

One Nation Truly Under God.
Many would like to argue these days that the United States of America does not have Christian roots, or principles it was built on. However, many people forget to mention the first paragraph of the Declaration of Independence which

says,

(IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776

The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America)

“When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–”

How can you miss that? “Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” and “endowed by their creator”? It cannot be any more black and white in an actual historical document.

There is no “anti God” mindset here like so many have today. And although it is unconstitutional to establish a mandated religion, it is not absurd to remember the principles we are actually built upon.
One may say, “You cannot legislate morality!” well let me ask you this, “Is stealing a moral issue?” We have laws to protect our property from would be thieves. We have laws against murder, which we know is obviously a moral matter.

Over the years though people have fudged on so many moral issues that some can no longer distinguish between a decent and beneficial law and what they would call governmental oppression. I do not think many in our government themselves can even differentiate a good law from corrupt.

Many of the people running this country are as corrupt as those who vote them in. Not mentioning names, its not necessary, however, our current state as a country is lightyears from where it really ought to be. We can all agree probably that we have seen time and time again a judge pervert justice and render a worthless judgement. Or a politician in pretense act as though he or she has the citizen’s interests at heart yet be more moved by their own agenda.

How can we be shocked by where we are at? Mass shootings, and one bad news story after the other. I will tell you how, You wanted God out of every facet of your life so how on earth are enjoying it now? Angry protestors say we ought to take “One nation under God” out of the pledge, and take the “In God we trust” off the dollar bill, and then these people cry and moan, “Why did God not intervene in those shootings?” Well friends you all do not want him around and as Reagan would say “If we ever forget that we are One Nation Under God, then we will be a nation gone under.” -Ronald Reagan

How about Abraham Lincoln’s second Inaugural address?

http://www.nps.gov/liho/learn/historyculture/secondinaugural.htm

He quotes: “Fondly do we hope—fervently do we pray—that this mighty scourge of war may speedily pass away. Yet, if God wills that it continue, until all the wealth piled by the bond-men’s two hundred and fifty years of unrequited toil shall be sunk, and until every drop of blood drawn with the lash, shall be paid by another drawn by the sword, as was said three thousand years ago, so still it must be said “the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether.”
The speech in conclusion finishes this way, “With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan—to do all which may achieve and cherish a just, and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.”

These words were not penned by some unreligious man, undoubtedly there are various biblical references in these words. He mentions, “and for his widow, and his orphan”
“the judgments of the Lord, are true and righteous altogether.” In which he quoted Psalm 19:9

SEE IDENTICAL REF ALSO https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures/trt053.html

The Library of Congress gives us more insight into incidences and quotes that point to Abraham Lincoln’s deeply held faith.

“Chief Justice Roger B. Taney administered the oath of office to Abraham Lincoln using the Bible shown here. With the brief words, “I, Abraham Lincoln, do solemnly swear that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States” Lincoln was sworn in as the sixteenth president. The ceremony was witnessed by Clerk of the Supreme Court, William Thomas Carroll, who recorded the occasion in the back of this Bible.”
https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures/trt040.html

Lincoln says, “Imploring the assistance of Divine Providence, and with due regard to the views and feelings of all who were represented in the convention, to the rights of all the states, and territories, and people of the nation; to the inviolability of the constitution, and the perpetual union, harmony and prosperity for all, I am most happy to cooperate for the practical success of the principles, declared by the convention–” ( https://www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures/trt042.html )

Many like to blame Christians and say slavery is promoted by Christian people. One cannot really say that when they consider how President Lincoln was instrumental when it came to abolishing slavery.

YES America was a Judeo-Christian nation until those who disliked God asked him to leave. A word of caution, do not ask a good God to leave unless you truly want evil to come in and replace him. America is still “one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all”

Or it should be, but what justice can you expect out of judges who willingly apply to themselves the blind folds of bias? A country full of authorities that make up laws to suit themselves and they who only enforce the laws that best satisfy their appetites.

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Is Anger Always Sin?

Is anger always sin? I’d say no.
I do not think so, I think anger has great potential for good or evil. If we never got angry over certain things such as injustice or things like human trafficking, or child abuse or blood chilling crimes, then we would be pretty cold and heartless.

Ephesians 4 tells us, “In your anger do not sin”: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry, and do not give the devil a foothold.” Ephesians 4:26-27

I am thinking that it can be sin at times if it is rooted only in our wants or desires or our selfish desires. However, the honest truth is at some time we all get angry, whether it’s something minor or a serious harm done us. We can conclude from this that unresolved anger can lead to problems. If we let anger go un address it can lead to bitterness. Bitterness is like a nasty spider bite, certain spider bites left untreated will eat deep into tissue and rot flesh, bitterness likewise can seep into every area of our lives. It can affect the way we treat others in the present even if the pain we have felt is past history.

For me, there was a period in life where I had been hurt by certain people and that unresolved anger affected my view of women. Even if I was not being wronged at the present I thought they all were the same, shallow and incapable of anything but causing heartache, rejecting me, or inflicting serious injury. I saw them all the same and began to think there was no such thing as a decent woman. Fortunately I was wrong but in the moment, if you experience a string of incidents from a person or people group then it becomes easy for us to think that every person in that circle is just the same.

This can lead to a pessimistic attitude. It can poison our view of reality. As the old saying goes, “A few bad apples spoils the whole batch.”

The Bible addresses this issue in great depth. God knows how weak we all are and he has provided every believer the resources to fight back, the Holy Spirit and His Word. Ephesians goes on in the same chapter to say,

“Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you. ” Ephesians 4:31-32

“Their vine comes from the vine of Sodom and from the fields of Gomorrah.Their grapes are filled with poison,and their clusters with bitterness.” Deuteronomy 32:32

As you know sour and bitter fruit has an origin.

“See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God and that no bitter root grows up to cause trouble and defile many. ” Hebrews 12:15

A bitter root, produces bitter fruit. When I was a captive to this I found myself enjoying the idea of getting even, I wanted to see those who wronged me suffer and know why they were. I was seemingly always acting out of suspicion of ill in people, playing the game pin the tail on the rotten person”

Praise God he worked with me and helped me to forgive every person who had wronged me! I was given the idea from a James McDonald sermon on Bot Radio Network, to write down every person who wronged me and their offense and pray over them and the situation

This helped me resolve a lot of my anger. It was a process that was worth working through.

Biblical Submission vs The Worlds Deffinition.

We live in a world where people do like to exercise authority, privilege, and the upper hand over others for self interest or gain. But this is not how God calls his children to live. According to Romans 12, it says, “Do not conform any longer to the patterns of this world but be transformed by the renewing of your mind”

Many people cringe at the idea of submitting to ANYONE, and that is because many of us view this as being ordered here and their and being controlled. What makes that even more difficult is the idea of following or submitting to anyone who does not have our best interests in mind but comes from someone who just likes to be in control. I do not blame anyone who thinks submission is that for having a negative reaction. The truth is that submission and trust are not easily divorced from each other without negative results! In my mind, Id say, “Why submit to someone who does not really care about my feelings or needs but only likes a power trip.”

God is not like that! Oh never! His every word is meant for our benefit and not harm.

Jeremiah 29:11 (NIV)” For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

Biblical submission is very different than the world’s idea. Imagine being madly in love with someone, so in that case bending over backwards and going the extra mile is no chore, no! On the contrary! Its a joyous privilege!

In Mark 10:42-45, Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” 

Well imagine that! The God of Heaven in the incarnation of Jesus Christ serving the ones who owed him? He washed their feet, and in the end was brutally tortured and hung on a cross, not because he had to but because we needed it.

In the same way a godly man is willing to forfeit any rights to comfort he may have to see his wife well nourished emotionally and spiritually. He is not going to be overbearing or demanding! Love does not demand its own way but voluntarily yields itself for the better of them it loves.

(1 Corinthians 13:4-8) Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. But where there are prophecies, they will cease; where there are tongues, they will be stilled; where there is knowledge, it will pass away. 

The “Genocide Was in The Bible” argument.

What are we to do with a difficult passage of Scripture? Let’s get a general frame work so we can proceed first. 

We must acknowledge God is God and we are not. He really owes no man an explanation. As difficult as some things are to accept that are in the Bible we must resign to the fact that we are not the ones in charge here or call the shots. In Jeremiah it is described in this way

“But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it into another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him.” Jeremiah 18:4 

God owns it all, everything in Heaven and on earth is really at his disposal to do whatever he pleases, the Psalm says, “The earth is the Lord’s and everything in it, the world and all who live in it” Psalm 24:1

Why is this difficult for most people? Why has it been difficult for me to grasp myself at times? Well, we want to be the boss of our lives, name one person who’s favorite thing to do is follow directions or take orders from someone else, and I will name a person who does not actually exist. It’s human for us to want to be the ruler and authority, this is nothing new, in the Garden of Eden, the woman tried to be the man and the man tried to be God. 

We inherited a sinful nature and often times get irritated at the idea that we are not the one’s in charge.

Now, lets ask. Why did God command the Israelites to wipe out the Canaanites? How could a loving God command such a thing?

Many people like to bring up “genocide” in the Bible as an an objection to believing in God or worshiping God. They evaluate God as though he were a corrupt human who was guilty of bloodshed and they at the very same time elevate themselves as being the judge of fair and good when they are not. None of us are capable of that privilige. None of us are the moral standard, God is.

I.) God owns us all, and owes us nothing.

A few things to note, God created every molecule and he sustains the entire universe. I’d ask a person this, “If you created the Universe, then why would you obey the dictates of your creatures over your own wishes?” After all, if God answered to us, then he would not be much of a GOD but more like a passive parent that gives into a spoiled child’s every wish and is afraid to set any boundaries.
God does lay out boundaries and rules though, he designed the universe to work a certain way like a the creator of the computer created his invention to operate. 

Sin by one definition is going against the natural order and moral codes God has established. It does nothing to harm God to rebel really, it only hurts ourselves. He created rules to go by not for our restriction as much as our own benefit.

If you drive your car down the wrong way on the highway then do not be surprised by negative results. And do not be shocked if your car does not start if you end up deciding you know whats best by putting water in your gas tank just because it’s cheaper. 

This does not surprise us though that their are instructions to cars or appliances, but it sure seems to shock us that God has any rules or operating manual for humanity.

God sets the way things work, and he sets the rules. He created all things and really every breath we are given is not owed to us but a gift.

 “For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him.” Colossians 1:6

Get that? God owes no man or woman anything. I myself cannot demand God give me another day of life, although Im grateful he does. He can and has the right to end our lives at anytime and it is an act of mercy on His part if he does not. If you were to build or create something it is solely your right to do with that creation whatever you wish. When people try to apply human rules to God we run into a serious problem. God has told us, “thou shall not murder.” Why? The why is very important to ask. Who are we as mere humans to usurp God’s role to destroy a life? 

James 4:12 There is only one Lawgiver and Judge, the one who is able to save and destroy. But you—who are you to judge your neighbor? 

A lot of Bible critics say, “see the word of God is full of contradictions and God told the Israelites to commit genocide!” 

I’m sure most people can grasp the concept that their boss at work has the privilege and authority to do what they cannot. Your boss has certain leeway you do not possess. Suppose the boss said not to do something at the job as a general rule of thumb but in one rare instance permitted an exception. Under that circumstance the boss has approved what normally is a prohibition. 

We squirm at passages like this that we do not fully understand. We wonder how could God do this or command such a difficult and uncomfortable thing. I won’t say I fully understand all God does but then again I’m not expected to.

Numbers 33:55-56 “‘But if you do not drive out the inhabitants of the land, those you allow to remain will become barbs in your eyes and thorns in your sides. They will give you trouble in the land where you will live. And then I will do to you what I plan to do to them.’” 

One reason was God knew these people would cause serious problems later on.

Deuteronomy 9:4-6 After the Lord your God has driven them out before you, do not say to yourself, “The Lord has brought me here to take possession of this land because of my righteousness.” No, it is on account of the wickedness of these nations that the Lord is going to drive them out before you. It is not because of your righteousness or your integrity that you are going in to take possession of their land; but on account of the wickedness of these nations, the Lord your God will drive them out before you, to accomplish what he swore to your fathers, to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Understand, then, that it is not because of your righteousness that the Lord your God is giving you this good land to possess, for you are a stiff-necked people

The Lord said himself that the people were a wicked group of people, many ancient cultures practiced child sacrifices in their idol worship and their rituals, so lets not assume these people who God commanded the Israelites to destroy were a group of jolly good fellows.

Leviticus 18:21-25 “‘Do not give any of your children to be sacrificed to Molek, for you must not profane the name of your God. I am the Lord. “‘Do not have sexual relations with a man as one does with a woman; that is detestable. “‘Do not have sexual relations with an animal and defile yourself with it. A woman must not present herself to an animal to have sexual relations with it; that is a perversion. “‘Do not defile yourselves in any of these ways, because this is how the nations that I am going to drive out before you became defiled. Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. 

There is a whole bucket list of other sins on these people’s guilt stained hands. They had years and years to get things in order and God decided to use his people as his instrument of judgement on this savage race of people who kept going on in their ways.

Leviticus 18:25 Even the land was defiled; so I punished it for its sin, and the land vomited out its inhabitants. 

Now for the record God does not command his people to do such actions in this day and age. In fact If someone were to say God commanded them to kill another sinner than I’d think they were either seriously mentally ill or under the influence of the devil himself. This is not God’s way of dealing with sinful people now. Although there will be a day where his patience runs on and his justice begins. He is alway both just and merciful, he is merciful to give people time to change, but just in the sense he will not leave the guilty unrepentant unpunished.

Some may say, “God changed and contradicts himself.” No, not true, God does not change but he has unfolded his redemptive plan of grace at the cross! 

Every evil act, attitude, and sin ever committed is nailed to the cross because of Christ’s perfect life and sacrificial death on your behalf. And by the very power of God Christ was raised from the dead for the forgiveness of every sin committed. However, only those willing to receive it will obtain the deed of mercy and transformed life.

If God did not love sinful people, he would never have sent his son to suffer on a wooden cross and bleed the forgiveness and love of God. God on a cross, suffering in the skin of humanity. 
People reject his love though everyday because they either feel “unworthy” or reverse, they do not see themselves as desperate sinners in need of mercy. The people who do not see their need, are truly the worst in need and in the most dangerous place.

Ephesians 2:6-9 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. 

No one can boast about a gift. If they do then they are ridiculous. And no one is entitled to a gift, its given freely at the descretion of the giver. So if people cannot blame God for not doing his part. If they refuse his solution he has provided.

Why I believe in Creationism.

Science, that is actual valid science has been proven, in a time where the majority of people thought the earth was flat and that the sun revolved around us, the Scripture went against that grain of thinking long before. The earth is obviously not flat as we know now.

In Isaiah 40:22 it says, “It is He who sits above the circle of the earth, And its inhabitants are like grasshoppers, Who stretches out the heavens like a curtain, And spreads them out like a tent to dwell in.”

This website is pretty good at reminding us how even popular scientific consensus can be dead wrong.

https://answersingenesis.org/answers/books/taking-back-astronomy/the-universe-confirms-the-bible/

I value just about every new scientific so called discover as a self professed Atheist would value every so called “religious experience” I will be the first to say, there are some pretty silly things said by some who have claimed to follow God. However, I see silly things said also in the name of anti theism.

Now why do I not always accept a “scientific discovery” at face value?Scientific discovery seems to change a bit, adapt, or have to be tweeked ever couple of years. So I’m no idiot for being a “science” skeptic on certain things. If it can actually be proven as a fact, for example, water is composed of 1 part hydrogen and 2 parts oxygen. Thats fact.

But some tote a “new discovery” without asking if it is actually concrete. They fall into the error they claim about religious zealots, and like sheep will believe everything some scientist or college professor would tell them. Then they claim the “religious Bible thumpers” will “blindly believe whatever they are told.” 

Some do, but so do those who believe in the god of modern science.
Even If the scientific discovery contradicts other discoveries made in the name of science, they will desperately try to cram the two opposing ideas into a neat little package and wrap it up in a bow tie and call it “fact”

For example, in order to use the scientific method, the 4th step requires actually being able to test it. Now let me ask, “has anyone been able to test the big bang, or macro evolution?” Note: micro evolution is more plausible then macro evolution. Bacteria for example adapt and form new super strains, however, I have never seen a change so vasr it jumps species. If you breed a horse and donkey, you can get what is called a mule, an animal with no power to reproduce or create another mules. Mules are sterile. 
I for one have never been alive long enough or had time to test whether a fish over millions of years could eventually become a four legged mammal. I would waist my valuable life trying to do so. I for one will not do that.

One evidence for one I can think of right of hand for creative design is our own Milky Way galaxy. If you paid enough attention in science class you will know that all the inner planets, Mercury, Venus, Earth and Mars are solid, and after the orbit of Mars you have the “gas giants” that are not solid, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune (Pluto has been declassified as a planet by the way) This is very organized.

Look also at the Moon: according to

http://astronomy.nju.edu.cn/~lixd/GA/AT4/AT408/HTML/AT40804.htm

“As mentioned above, the Moon’s rotation period is precisely equal to its period of revolution about Earth—27.3 days—so the Moon keeps the same side facing Earth at all times (see Figure 8.11)”

Space.com also states: “The moon orbits the Earth once every 27.322 days. It also takes approximately 27 days for the moon to rotate once on its axis. As a result, the moon does not seem to be spinning but appears to observers from Earth to be keeping almost perfectly still. Scientists call this sychronous rotation.”

Synchronous rotation is no accident if you ask me. However, Im sure people who want to disprove creationism will try to to challenge this with everything the can whip out, and Im sure some will try. That’s expected. It is not uncommon and some people you cannot argue with because they always will have to be right in their own estimation, and a person like that does not want to be convinced otherwise but has resigned themselves to their belief and no amount of debate will change their minds.

However, me, I have enough evidence to believe in a Creator, from the complexity of every cell to the majestic universe. I have also my own experiences that cannot be challenged or changed by others. I have all I need to arrive at a reasonable conclusion and I do not let others take that away.

PT 2:How Can A Loving God send people to hell!?

Why It Is Impossible For Even God Almighty to Bend The Rules He Created!

For those who might think Im going to preach the ole “hell, fire or brimstone” just hear me out and you will see this leads in a very positive direction, not as they would say, “fear mongering” I am not particularly fond of scaring people into decisions or using that approach, like some would. After all, I believe the experience of God’s love first hand is what shatters the heart of stone. Not beating the judgement hammer every time. Keep reading for there is Hope.

How could a loving God condemn someone to hell? A very honest and good question non Christians ask! Let me illustrate how:
Supposed a thief, a rapist, and a mass murderer were being sentenced for their crimes. Would the judge be just to say to the thief, “your not as bad as those other two so Im going to give you a warning and let you go.”

Although the crimes have indeed ranged in severity, we see this as justice corrupted.

How then can a perfect God show partiality? Can an all loving and holy God be biased? Do we not view bias as a down fall in mankind? If partiality in man bothers us then how can we accept that an all holy and all perfect God could be like corrupt man? How could God be God if he contradicted himself and became “a kingdom divided against itself”? God cannot be perfectly just and partial at the same time! God cannot excuse one man’s “small” sin and then condemn another man of “larger sin”

James 2:10-11 For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles at just one point is guilty of breaking all of it. For he who said, “You shall not commit adultery,” also said, “You shall not murder.” If you do not commit adultery but do commit murder, you have become a lawbreaker.

God cannot be divorced from his Holiness.

God cannot be divorced from his deep love for mankind either.

We come to the fork in the road, the paradox of paradoxes. How can God in his holiness tolerate any man’s sin? And how could an all loving God bear to see his masterpiece of humanity suffer forever and ever in an eternal separation from his unquenchable love and presence forever?
There is no way around this. Except one solution,

The Cross of Jesus Christ,

Beaten and bloody, nailed to the cross in the scorching sun, suffering the heat of God’s wrath in your place and mine. Every drop of blood spilling down was enough to cover the sins of you, me and the world.

God in human flesh punishing himself willingly to save the most unworthy so that all can experience His life coursing through their veins, and his forgiveness and acceptance into God’s presence now and in eternity. Now how could an unloving God be capable of such undeserved mercy and that great of sacrifice?

(Romans 5:6-9) You see, at just the right time, when we were still powerless, Christ died for the ungodly. Very rarely will anyone die for a righteous person, though for a good person someone might possibly dare to die. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!

For Part 1 (see) https://wordpress.com/post/austingeorge.wordpress.com/250

 

People Who try to disprove Scripture with the ‘Slavery Was IN The Bible” card.

Intro:

There are more than one argument that are certain individuals favorite arguments to try to bad mouth the Bible. They seem to use the same few all the time and run out of creativity after that. The devil himself used the Bible to trip Jesus up but he was refuted by Christ each time. So I will now point out why some of the lies people keep circulating over and over are not true, and how it would not surprise me if these dead set militant slanderers are trying just bash certain parts of scripture in attempts to disprove it all.

As Jesus stated in John 3:19-21 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.”

Many people may have sincere doubts and honest skepticism, so for you all, please know that God loves you and understands doubts. Hebrews 11:6 says “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.”

Honest skeptics, please keep seeking and God will reveal himself.

However, to those who are just ticked off and want to disprove Christ, God or Scripture because your mad and upset, or “offended” God loves you too as well but he will not be mocked or disproven. He still is saving people without your permission and giving men and women who gladly receive him eternal life, forgiveness of their sins, and a future and hope. So as much as you try your not going to succeed at shutting the gates of the kingdom of heaven on those who God is drawing to himself.

Luke 11:52 “Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering.” 

If one wants to reject the hope God offers mankind themselves, then thats their choice, but some also actually try to stop those who actually are reaching out to the hope of the gospel. Its bad enough to not want one’s sins forgiven but even worse to drag people down with you, to try to stop others from having their sins pardoned is great evil.

Matthew 18:6-8 “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea. Woe to the world because of the things that cause people to stumble! Such things must come, but woe to the person through whom they come! If your hand or your foot causes you to stumble, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire. 

Im not being unkind here. Im saying exactly what Jesus said. By the way Jesus did not say when he said this that a follower of his is to tie a boulder around your neck and throw you into a lake. So lets get that out of your system now. He is stating how very serious sin is and that even death itself is a much better alternative then eternal separation from God’s presence. No harsh cruel tone or unkind words. Very serious words non the less. God forces no one against their choice to spend eternity with him. He will not violate a persons free will. He did not make robots who had no choice in the matter whether to love him but created people with wills that can actually volitionally love him back and obey him in joy and gratitude, not pre programmed cyborgs.
—————

An argument by the militant might sound like this:

An argument by the militant might sound like this:

The Bible: “Slavery and Revenge were promoted!”

A lot of people I have heard say that the passage in Deuteronomy that says an “eye for an eye and tooth for a tooth” is terribly mean verse. How is that?

This verse is not advocating or mandating revenge. No, it is on the contrary setting a limit on retaliation an enacting a fair standard of justice that cannot exceed proper realm. “The punishment should fit the crime” we always say here.

Take note of the verses following as well.
Exodus 21:23-27 But if there is serious injury, you are to take life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, bruise for bruise. “An owner who hits a male or female slave in the eye and destroys it must let the slave go free to compensate for the eye. And an owner who knocks out the tooth of a male or female slave must let the slave go free to compensate for the tooth. 

And no, the Bible is not advocating slavery here either. It’s addressing a common place problem that had not been eliminated yet. For one, if a slave was struck and his or her eye was damaged, they were to be set free. The term slavery in the Bible had more regulations then the kind we had here in the US before the civil war. American slaves had it a lot worse then slaves in the time of Moses.

Critics of the Bible like to say the Bible promoted and applauded slavery, which was not how it was at all. Just because God remained silent on certain issues did not mean he was for them. Polygamy in the Bible times was never God’s ideal. He just did not outright condemn it right off the bat, but when Jesus came he expounded on God’s actual design for humanity. Jesus condemned divorce along with polygamy in the same passage, and said God allowed it for a time because “your hearts were hard”


Matthew 19:4-9 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.” “Why then,” they asked, “did Moses command that a man give his wife a certificate of divorce and send her away?” Jesus replied, “Moses permitted you to divorce your wives because your hear
ts were hard. But it was not this way from the beginning. I tell you that anyone who divorces his wife, except for sexual immorality, and marries another woman commits adultery.” 



Jesus quoted the Old Testament and said, “A man will leave his father and mother and be united with his wife” not wives, not husband.

Jesus in an indirect way condemned, divorce, polygamy and anything other than a life long committed heterosexual relationship. There are exceptions to divorce such as unfaithfulness or abuse, but other than that it’s a life long haul, so enjoy the ride.

Now, some might challenge me and say, “Oh this means nothing, you cannot go off just that passage!” alright, fair enough.

Which issue should we delve into first? How the Bible does not justify slavery?

1 Peter 2:18-19 Slaves, in reverent fear of God submit yourselves to your masters, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh. For it is commendable if someone bears up under the pain of unjust suffering because they are conscious of God.

“but it says slaves here! Your God is promoting slavery!” No, because it restricts slave owners to a great degree in other places: Ephesians 6:9 and Colossians 4:1 are good starters. Look them up yourself. Do your homework before you comment below.

Christians made up a small minority for starters and were in no position to engage in a cultural social justice war. Their main objection was to share the gospel and they had no upper hand in the slavery issue. Culture at that time in that day embraced slave ownership and the Christians had to choose the right hills to die on, not engage the culture in an issue that they were way outnumbered by.

What about Christian slave owners? Good question, well Paul addressed that and if you look up Philemon, Paul talked a Christian slave owner out of retaliating against Omniseus his slave who stole from him, ran away and later came to Christ. Paul wrote a letter of persuasion. Read it yourself. Its near the back of the Bible.

As Christianity grew slavery was eliminated, well here in the US. Abraham Lincoln a devout Christian helped play a part in that, but in early church history this was not possible for the small minority.

In addition, God will not deal with all a persons wrongdoing all at one time, and in a Christian’s life not all sins fall away as fast as others. If a Christian is genuinely growing though, he or she will not stay in the same habits and sins that they escaped out of from coming to Christ. A young believer is not expected to be as put together as a mature saint in Christ. There must be grace for growth. If they do not seem to make any growth over time that leaves some questions as to whether they are very immature in their faith or just flat out not even born again at all, however that is not the topic of this post.

However we do have a very profound verse in the New Testament that seems to condemn slavery to a degree actually,

1 Timothy 1:8-11 We know that the law is good if one uses it properly. We also know that the law is made not for the righteous but for lawbreakers and rebels, the ungodly and sinful, the unholy and irreligious, for those who kill their fathers or mothers, for murderers, for the sexually immoral, for those practicing homosexuality, for slave traders and liars and perjurers—and for whatever else is contrary to the sound doctrine that conforms to the gospel concerning the glory of the blessed God, which he entrusted to me.

It mentions slave traders here. When Paul is referring to the Law, he is I’m pretty sure referring to God’s law not human law. He is in essense saying those who are righteous wont need a law to do right, they will by nature do what pleases God.

The book of Galatians says, “walk by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature” Galatians 5:16 and “For if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.” Galatians 5:18

All this means is God’s Spirit residing in our hearts becomes the Law, not some written code. Who needs a written code if their cheif desire is to love God and love other’s as they would themselves!

I do not claim to have every answer but I am very certain that those who say God is for slavery are absolutely dead wrong. I think rather some who want to reject Christ and the Word of God just enjoy painting Christians and Christianity in a bad light. If something challenges someone in an uncomfortable way they often want to disprove it, rationalize it away or slander it so they feel better about rejecting it. They do not like the ideas so they will like a master escape artist wriggle out of whatever they are afraid to accept.

After time they believe their own self rationalizations and lies to themselves that they are not at that point trying to disprove what they don’t like but they actually believe the lies they tell themselves.

That is true with pathological liars as well.
I need not say anything in addition to this.

“Why?” Some might say. Some might try to drag me into a debate hoping to prove what I said is wrong, and I have no time for that. If someone wants to “prove me wrong” then they obviously will not allow themselves to be proved wrong either. Why is this? Because, a person is going to believe what they want whether true or not and they will allow nothing to persuade them otherwise. So it’s pointless to debate with a person who does not want to be convinced. People will engage a person in an argument over a belief of some sort and they seldom give thought to the idea of changing their minds, no rather they want to in a sly way slip you their reasoning and have hopes of changing the other person, not themselves.

Indeed, “A man convinced against his will Is of the same opinion still”

Dale Carnegie, How to Win Friends and Influence People

Christians and Starbucks.

Some of you may already be aware that Starbucks has according to many sources come out in strong support of gay marriage. Some news outlets even say that Starbucks wants no business from those who support traditional values.

I am not afraid to say I opposed to the gay lifestyle as a follower of Jesus Christ. In fact Im not for any lifestyle that scripture clearly condemns as sin. No, Im not writing to attack anyone on how they live because ultimately they have to answer to Christ not me.

However, my point in writing this is hopeful to enable some of my fellow believers some scriptural wisdom when it comes to the common asked question. “Should we Boycott Starbucks?”

Well first off. I cannot answer that, but scripture can. Im reminded of Romans chapter 14, and 1 Corinthians chaprer 8

Romans 14:1-23 Accept the one whose faith is weak, without quarreling over disputable matters. One person’s faith allows them to eat anything, but another, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. Who are you to judge someone else’s servant? To their own master, servants stand or fall. And they will stand, for the Lord is able to make them stand. One person considers one day more sacred than another; another considers every day alike. Each of them should be fully convinced in their own mind. Whoever regards one day as special does so to the Lord. Whoever eats meat does so to the Lord, for they give thanks to God; and whoever abstains does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. For none of us lives for ourselves alone, and none of us dies for ourselves alone. If we live, we live for the Lord; and if we die, we die for the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living. You, then, why do you judge your brother or sister? Or why do you treat them with contempt? For we will all stand before God’s judgment seat. It is written:“‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord,‘every knee will bow before me;every tongue will acknowledge God.’” So then, each of us will give an account of ourselves to God. Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in the way of a brother or sister. I am convinced, being fully persuaded in the Lord Jesus, that nothing is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for that person it is unclean. If your brother or sister is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy someone for whom Christ died. Therefore do not let what you know is good be spoken of as evil. For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and receives human approval. Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a person to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother or sister to fall. So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the one who does not condemn himself by what he approves. But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin. 

A few highlights.

  • The one who eats everything must not treat with contempt the one who does not, and the one who does not eat everything must not judge the one who does, for God has accepted them. Who are you to judge someone else’s servant?


  • Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. 


  • But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin. 


First bullet point: 1.) The one who eats everything is not to judge him who does not and the man who has objectiom to certain foods should not impose his standard on him who does eat everything. Pretty basic, do not judge another believers personal convictions on not clear black and white scriptural matters. We see this happen with music, or even the occassional drink a believer might have, the Bible speaks of drunkeness but not a glass of wine on occassion. Some believers I feel try to in away without realizing it become the other person’s conscience or play Holy Spirit. Whether or not one drink is a sin or not, or whether as some may say, “punk rock is sin!” is not really ours to decide for every individual believer or not. God gave us the Holy Spirit to guide and convict, he gave us his word also as a standard of all rigtheous living. So Id say if its not clearly spelled out in the Word of God as transgression than we become the measuring sticks, and not God’s word, and that is not our place.

2.) “Do not destroy the work of God over food” basically, Paul is suggesting that something as insignificant as a meatball sub should not destroy or get in the way of the ultimate work of God. Can you guess? Why did Christ come to this earth, live the life of a man, die on a cross and ressurect? Was it so we could argue about a lame Starbucks coffee. Was it so we could quarel about boycotting this or that business and fight over whether heavy metal is of the devil? Was it so we could bicker and fight about this that or the other? Can we all agree as Christ’s disciples that the thing that brings God the most glory is the repentence of a sinner who in faith trusts Christ for his or her salvation? Can we agree that as Paul wrote in 1 Thessalonians that God’s will is our sanctification? Our holiness and love for him and all people?

3. AGAIN, I will say, it is from my understanding of scripture, that whether or not you chose to refrain from buying from this or that company is between you and God and there is no sense airing dirty laundry to the world, especially them who do not know Christ. As it says, “But whoever has doubts is condemned if they eat, because their eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin. ”  So really if you are unsure whether buying from a business that supports sinful agenda’s is God’s will, then bojollies listen to your doubts and do not violate your convictions. However, if you see Starbucks as just another place in a fallen world that cannot make you any closer or further from God. Then do what your faith allows. Do not announce it one way or the other, nor go there if your with a Christian who feels strongly against it. Don’t be legalistic but at the same time do not tempt a brother to disobey God’s personal word to them either.


1 Corinthians 8:1-13 Now about food sacrificed to idols: We know that “We all possess knowledge.” But knowledge puffs up while love builds up. Those who think they know something do not yet know as they ought to know. But whoever loves God is known by God. So then, about eating food sacrificed to idols: We know that “An idol is nothing at all in the world” and that “There is no God but one.” For even if there are so-called gods, whether in heaven or on earth as indeed there are many “gods” and many “lords”, yet for us there is but one God, the Father, from whom all things came and for whom we live; and there is but one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom all things came and through whom we live. But not everyone possesses this knowledge. Some people are still so accustomed to idols that when they eat sacrificial food they think of it as having been sacrificed to a god, and since their conscience is weak, it is defiled. But food does not bring us near to God; we are no worse if we do not eat, and no better if we do. Be careful, however, that the exercise of your rights does not become a stumbling block to the weak. For if someone with a weak conscience sees you, with all your knowledge, eating in an idol’s temple, won’t that person be emboldened to eat what is sacrificed to idols? So this weak brother or sister, for whom Christ died, is destroyed by your knowledge. When you sin against them in this way and wound their weak conscience, you sin against Christ. Therefore, if what I eat causes my brother or sister to fall into sin, I will never eat meat again, so that I will not cause them to fall. 

The Sin Parasite

If you have learned anything about me you will no I love biology, especially when it pertains to parasitic organisms. The thought that some alien life form can hijack our bodies is not just erie but fascinating. Parasitic worms especially have captured my interest from a very young age.

There is a lot of truth in science, and I believe God has given us natural facts to grasp supernatural truths, so men and women might possible reach out and find Him.

Romans 1:20 says “For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.” 

I see object lessons all the time in science. I cannot help but draw many comparisons.

Sin is a lot like a virus or as Augustine profoundly said himself was likened to a “parasite”

Augustine said once, ‘There can be no evil where there is no good… Nothing evil exists in itself, but only as an evil aspect of some actual entity… Evils therefore, have their source in the good and unless they are parasitic on something good, they are not anything at all.’ (Augustine, Enchiridi

Parasites give no benefit to the host really, on the contrary, some destroy their hosts.

There are many types of parasitic organisms but they all have this in common. The feed off of a host, they can live either as external parasites like leeches or ticks, but in other cases they can live inside their victims completely undetected robbing the life from the unfortunate soul.

In the Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans he describes sin in this way. He describe how the Law, or often referred to as the Law of Moses, was not sinful in itself but through the law sin was introduced.

“What shall we say, then? Is the law sinful? Certainly not! Nevertheless, I would not have known what sin was had it not been for the law. For I would not have known what coveting really was if the law had not said, “You shall not covet.” But sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, produced in me every kind of coveting. For apart from the law, sin was dead. Once I was alive apart from the law; but when the commandment came, sin sprang to life and I died. I found that the very commandment that was intended to bring life actually brought death. For sin, seizing the opportunity afforded by the commandment, deceived me, and through the commandment put me to death. So then, the law is holy, and the commandment is holy, righteous and good.” Romans 7:7-12 

What does this mean though? God laid out his standard as to how his chosen people out to live, so he gave them more or less a legal code of conduct. However, the problem that occurred was even though the law was “holy, righteous and good” it also created an opportunity to violate those principles. With the introduction of a command come an opportunity to break it.

Lets use an illustration from US law. Suppose there were no laws legislated for a particular matter, lets call it action Y. It would for that reason be not considered criminal in our legal system to do action Y if there is no law forbidding it. However, as soon as a law is passed in regards to action Y it also creates another opportunity for a criminal offense.

Sin has always existed but as Paul also said “For apart from the law, sin was dead.”- This is very much like our friend the parasite. A parasite is bad no matter what but as soon as it finds a host it can thrive. When the host dies, so does the parasite.

The law was sin’s initial host, and I guess you can say we became the secondary host for sin.

It’s very much like a parasite known by the Latin name, Dermatobia Hominus. Dermatobia Hominus is a what we know the “human bot fly.” An adult bot fly will lay an egg on a mosquito when both are traveling through the air and then when the mosquito bites a person, the bot egg falls off and the maggot burrows deep into the flesh of it’s secondary host, a human vector.

When God’s law came it also carried with it a capacity to say “yes” and obey, or “no” by disobeying and doing wrong. So we are the problem at the end of the day. How often do we know what is right and fail to do it? We know we shouldn’t lose our tempers but we feel that powerful inclination rise up and make us fall, time and time again. We are like the child or teen who’s parents tell them not to do this or that but for some reason that only fuels our desire to do it more. Many women say the idea of having something they know the cannot is irresistable. Women are complicated needless to say but that principle is at work in all our hearts, we want that thing we shouldn’t or are told not to.

Paul says, “sin seizing the opportunity afforded by the command deceived me, and produced every covetous desire in me” When a parasite attacks a human body it can create physical cravings due to the fact the body is telling us it needs nutrition, and in the same way sin in the soul produces the unclean craving we all have had. Paul concludes by stating
“So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in me, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within me. What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death?” Romans 7:21-24 

But thank goodness he does not conclude there but says, ” Thanks be to God, who delivers me through Jesus Christ our Lord!So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in my sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.”- Romans 7:25

In essence, no we can never be totally free of this parasite as long as we have a human body in this world. However, we are not left without the antidote. Biologically, a person can eradicate most of a parasite and live a normal life even though a few rogue renegades remain, but unlike before they are not infested or overrun by the parasite. Likewise, a Christian is not sinless after he or she trusts Christ, however, the reign of terror that sin caused has been nailed to the cross. The dominion has been abolished even if on occasion a Christian sins. “for if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old has gone and the new has come” 2 Corinthians 5:17

Does Christianity Really Oppress Women?

 

Some say Christianity oppresses women, well if that were the case then why did so many women weep when they saw Him nailed to that rugged cross. Some of the first witnesses of his resurrection were women.

Granted, some  have a warped view of Christ because someone who maybe claimed to know him abused the His words!

There will always be those who claim to know Jesus, and profess to be sheep, really actually be wolves in disguise.

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Do not run from the shepherd who died for you because some man or person who claimed to know him behaved in an abusive spiritual, emotional, or physical fashion. The Bible says, “Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church”

Did Christ abuse his bride? Did he abuse his authority and leadership over his Church? Is he kind when she is ungrateful? And is he patient when she is difficult? Does he punish us as our sins deserve? Does he condemn us when we have a difficult day? No, he died on that cross so he could adorn his bride with a garment of glory and righteousness! He gave her the ornaments of peace, joy, and hope! He lavished her with his loving kindness and betrothed her to himself.

Do not let someone in your past history drive you from the lover of your soul!