2021 Archives

Remembering Sodom

  Remember when gay rights, civil unions, and gay marriage were the news.    The cause of those who promoted such things won the day, and they have now advanced to the next items on their agenda:  Men now want to “identify” as women and vice-versa.  Parents want to choose from a plethora of newly discovered “genders,” and impose one of them on their unsuspecting prepubescent children.  Those who disagree with them philosophically, are often accused of violating “hate crime” laws.  

  But those of us who have a personal relationship with our Creator God, through Jesus Christ, have grown to love and appreciate His inspired Word, the Bible.  We recognize it as the very Word of God, and take its principles and precepts to be the final authority for life.  As such, we are not at liberty to view the Bible as a smorgasbord from which we take what we want and leave the rest—God determines what is right and wrong in every issue of life.

  In Genesis 18-19, the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah were destroyed because of their unnatural attraction to the same sex.  In the book of Romans, the Apostle Paul declares the whole world (human race) guilty before God.  Homosexuals are specifically included in the roll call of the condemned “And likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust one toward another; men with men working that which is unseemly, and receiving in themselves that recompence of their error which was meet. (Romans 1:27).”  And then, according to God, there are only two genders, “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them. (Genesis 1:27)” …the gender choice was His.

  Before you get riled, let me say, the point of these, and all Scriptures where sin is named, is to establish the fact that All Men Are Sinners, separated from God and in need of a Savior—whatever the sin.  From one sinner to another, won’t you hear the good news?  GOD LOVES US SINNERS!  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16).”

It’s Not About You

  Several years ago I overheard a man talking to his very young daughter about going to a birthday party.  She had enjoyed having friends over to her own party and especially liked being showered with gifts.  When she had the mistaken idea that she would receive gifts at the friend’s birthday party as well, her father had to gently explain, “Honey, this party is not about you.”

  Seems quite simple doesn’t it? …and yet we adults sometimes need to be reminded of this same elementary truth.  It is a basic character trait of humanity to think, “Me First.”  But our Heavenly Father gently reminds His children,  “Let nothing be done through strife or vainglory; but in lowliness of mind let each esteem other better than themselves.  Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others. (Philippians 2:3-4)”  “Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring one another; (Romans 12:10)” In other words my brother or sister, “It’s not about you.”  God intends for those of us who know Him, to put the feelings and needs of others ahead of our own.

  The world certainly does not see it God’s way.  It is filled with deceitful, “Me First” minded people who would have you believe that they live and breathe to make you happy, healthy, wealthy, and wise.  For example, a close examination suggests that many politicians today desire only to exercise power over the people, while using them to insure a perpetual tenure.  They cleverly convince their constituents that they live only to defend and support the “American people,” while refusing to be held accountable to them.

  Many manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers are among the “Me First” crowd as well.  They continually, and greedily, fleece their unwary customers, convincing them, “Our products were established only to meet your needs.”

  Jesus, the Son of God, in whom there is no guile, selflessly lived His life among men and then died and rose again to pay for their sins.  It was the selfless Savior who taught us, “Let all things be done unto edifying. (1Corinthians 14:26)”  It’s not about you!

Hope

 The national headlines of late are troubling.  Have you paused to consider: Why do we open our borders without vetting the immigrants, knowing that among the masses of innocent hopefuls is a subset of every evil movement of those around the world who harbor pure hatred for our Constitutional Republic?  Why do those who argue for open borders also propose eliminating law enforcement and every institution that has been commissioned to protect our citizens from those who infiltrate with evil intent?  Why are our elected officials unconcerned about the national debt that is approaching a level at which it will be impossible to pay even the accrued interest?  Why is our government paying people who refuse to work, more than they have ever earned through gainful employment? Why are our leaders maneuvering us, as a nation, into a position of dependence upon those whose only expressed interest is to destroy our economy and our way of life?

  Perhaps, like me, in your contemplations, you adopt words like unreasonable, irrational or illogical to describe the present state of our union, and the philosophies of those who boast of their ability to legislate.  America is following in the footsteps of other nations who are no more—or whose high water marks are behind them.  These observations have discouraged the patriot and rallied the ranks of the enemy.  Those who love our country are heartbroken over what is lost in a generation of those who have failed to learn from history, and are therefore destined to repeat it.

  It is hard for those of us who have spoken so proudly of “God and Country” to accept the fact that country can make no boast of its own greatness, and never could, apart from its great God.  Our dependence cannot, and never should have been, upon a nation—not even in part.   The LORD bringeth the counsel of the heathen to nought: he maketh the devices of the people of none effect. The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD; and the people whom he hath chosen for his own inheritance. (Psalm 33:10–12).

Smirked

  Some time ago, I had the most interesting experience.  It was probably obvious where we were going as my wife and I pulled out of our driveway on Sunday morning at about 9:00.  She was wearing a dress and I was in my customary tie and jacket.  I mean, where do people go on Sunday morning dressed like that?  As I checked both ways for traffic, I noticed a man and woman walking down the street.  It was obvious from what they were wearing (or not wearing) that they were not on their way to Sunday School.  The woman was out in front and near enough that as I pulled out into the street, I could not help but catch her eye.  I hoped a nod and a smile would communicate a neighborly “Good morning,” but she immediately gave me a smirk, rolled her eyes and then looked away as if to say, “Mind your own business.”

  A familiar feeling welled up in my stomach, one that I had often felt when I knocked on someone’s door to share the gospel.  It was always unsettling when the occupant answered the door, heard that I was from a church, and acted as if I had come to deliver the bubonic plague in a special unmarked package.  As the door closed, something inside wanted to shout, “Give me a chance, I’m really a pretty nice guy.”  I often thought as I walked away, that the next time I see that individual may be at the Great White Throne Judgment, where everyone that is antagonistic toward the gospel will stand condemned before God, and be cast into eternal Hell to collect the wages of their sin.  I took no comfort in the thought, and tried to be more determined at the next door.  O how much can be lost in one moment—how much can be gained!

  Perhaps you feel the same frustration as you try to live your faith and share it with others.  Let me remind you that they are not rejecting you when they smirk, but your Lord.  Don’t stop trying; He is their only hope!, and you are privileged to tell them of His love.  Paul quotes the prophet Isaiah, “How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! (Romans 10:15)”

What’s The World Coming To?

  All of my life I have witnessed the scorn of those who dared to talk about the end of the age as if it were an imminent reality.  Interestingly, fictitious books and films that follow the lives of fictitious characters who face the cataclysmic events of the supposed last days of human life on earth, are accepted as palatable, if not praise worthy, productions by people of the arts.  The only difference seems to be that one is a sincere warning of impending judgment while the other is the usual gory produce of the entertainment industry.

  Acceptable or not, the reality of the end of the age is looking ominously close, to those of us who view the pages of prophetic Scripture as more reliable than the biased commentary hailed as “the news” of our day.  The unrest in Israel and the Middle East, the vastness and strength of the military of Communist China, the unprecedented alliances being formed among world powers, the apostasy that is taking place in the Church, the acceptance of a new paradigm for governance that calls evil good and good evil, are all shadows of things to come.  The list goes on, but these will suffice for now.

  While the Bible clearly states that no man knows the day or the hour of the end of the age, it does give us a verbal snapshot of the prevailing conditions that will indicate the end is near.  Paul paints a global picture of the the last days, for his young son in the faith, Timothy: “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.  For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,  Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,  Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;  Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof… (2 Timothy 3:1–5)”  The end of this age is coming and there is going to be a season of reckoning for those who inhabit this earth.

  If you are obliged to consider God’s warning, “…behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.  (2 Corinthians 6:2)  “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. (Acts 16:31)”