2022 Archives

Change

   Remember when almost everyone allowed God to be God in their lives?  Remember when our nation was indeed one nation under God, and He had the final word?  Remember when people didn’t worship their stuff?  Remember when the name of God was considered sacred?  Remember when most people went to church on Sunday or at least were respectful of those who did?  Remember when it was honorable to be called Father or Mother?   Remember when taking a life was murder?  Remember when an intimate relationship with the opposite sex required marriage?  Remember when everyone agreed with God’s definition of family?   Remember when crimes like embezzlement, theft, and conspiracy did not pay?  Remember when lying was a bad thing to do and telling the truth even when it hurt was good?    Remember when it was wrong to make your neighbor’s success the measure of your own?  My, how times have changed—how quickly they are changing today.

  If you are rattled by the rate of change, take heart; God never changes:  “For I am the LORD, I change not… (Malachi 3:6)”  “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)”  “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. (James 1:17)”

  God created mankind with the ability to choose so that man could, of his own volition, choose to love and worship Him.  Man not only chose to exclude God from his life, but has feverishly worked to eliminate His moral influence from the earth—hence all the change. But God has lovingly and faithfully built a Bridge by which sinful man could enter once again into His presence.  “Jesus saith… I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)”

  God tells us that, at the right time, He will supernaturally enter again into the affairs of mankind and the crooked will be made straight.  For now He warns, “Seek ye the LORD while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: (Isaiah 55:6)”  “…behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation. (2 Corinthians 6:2)”

The Spiritual Realm

  Every one has some knowledge of what we call the physical realm.  It is the world in which we live, and the world that we experience with our five senses.  The ancient Greeks believed that everything in this physical realm consisted of some combination of just four elements: earth, water, air and fire.  We know now that their ideas were a bit simplistic, but perhaps in time, even our “modern” understanding of the complexities of this realm will prove to be only elementary.  There are the worlds of the infinitely large and the infinitely small that are yet, for the most part, veiled in our own ignorance.

  But there is another realm more encompassing than the first, and though our physical receptors are not sufficient to explore that realm, it is no less real, no less a part of our present abode.  It is called the spiritual realm, and God, who is Lord of both realms, has informed us that though our present awareness is somewhat limited to the physical realm, there is coming a day when we will enjoy the fulness of His creation and His own presence in both realms.  But for now, our most comprehensive perception of the unseen must come from the creation (what God has done), and the Word of God (what He has said).

  “The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard. (Psalm 19:1–3)”  “For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: (Romans 1:20)”

  “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: (Colossians 1:16)”  “For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. (Ephesians 6:12)”  God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. (John 4:24)

Fairy Tale

  Do you believe in God, heaven, hell, angels, demons, eternal life, etc.?  Quite often, as I explain what the Bible has to say about the unseen, I am reminded that many perceive these things as nothing more than fairy tales.  The average man has a tendency to reject, out of hand, anything that cannot be experienced in real time with his five senses, or perhaps anything that he cannot masterfully manipulate.  But when that same man attempts to explore the infinitely small or infinitely large elements of our complex physical realm, it becomes apparent to him that even the wisest men among us are hopelessly narrow minded, and infinitesimally small.

  The eternal things are not fairy tales, nor are they myths.  This great design requires a Great Designer—obviously from that other realm.  The intricacies of life were understood before they were set in motion.  The laws of nature are anything but random—nothing just happened.  Millions or billions of years of blind, unrefined, unrestrained natural forces could not have affected change in the vast “nothing,” so as to produce a “something.” …and cosmic energy could not have produced life where there was none.

  So, if we are not able, in a lifetime, to wrap our minds around the stuff of this temporal world, why should we be so quick to deny even the existence of a spiritual realm, especially when we consider all of the undeniable evidence existing in the well ordered cosmos in which we reside (Romans 1:20)?  The Bible suggests, “…the god of this world (Satan) hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them. (2Corinthians 4:4)”

  For me, it’s a no brainer, “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. (Genesis 1:1–2)” “For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: (Colossians 1:16)”  If indeed there is another realm, perhaps you would do well to discover it now rather than later.

For The Last Time

  As I grow older, I am often mindful of the fact that certain things that I do at this point may be done for the last time.  No, I am not trying to be morbid, but simply facing the fact that, relatively speaking, life is short.  At a certain point, it would be practical to assume that I will not buy another vehicle or roof the house again, etc. in my lifetime.  The Bible speaks of making plans without considering what God has willed for one’s life.  James declares, “Go to now, ye that say, To day or to morrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow.  For what is your life? It is even a vapour, that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away.  For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that. (James 4:13–15)”

  Wow, God says that life is like a “vapor,” a puff of steam.  Before you can blink an eye, it may be snuffed out or absorbed into its surroundings, never to be seen again, …and did you notice, there is no mention of the age of these would be merchants of James 4.  Indeed, caskets come in all sizes.  Oh my, I guess I have now ventured into the realm of morbidity.

  Well, since we are here, maybe I should also mention that, in spite of all this talk about death, in the spiritual realm the soul never dies.  God has made it abundantly clear that, like Christ, “the first fruits” of the resurrection, my body (and yours) will be resurrected and reunited with our eternal souls to enter into that eternal state for which we were created.  But there is a matter that must be taken care of before one dies if he hopes to enjoy the hereafter:  Your sin (and mine) present a problem when it comes to living with God in the eternal realm.  You see, He is holy and cannot tolerate sin, and we are very sinful creatures, unworthy of His presence—but not to worry…

  “God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us. (Romans 5:8)”  “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved, and thy house. (Acts 16:31)”  I hope you will consider it.  Who knows, you could be reading this message, or I could be writing it, for the last time.

Sharing Christ

Who?  If you know Christ, YOU should share Him with others because…

• You are a part of “the body of Christ” and it is the work of Christ to win others to Himself. (1 Corinthians 12:13, 27; Luke 19:10)

• You are the “sons of God” and it is the character of God to win others to Himself. (John 1:12; 2 Peter 3:9)

• You are indwelt by the Holy Spirit whose purpose is to help you to win others to Christ.  (1 John 2:20; Acts 1:8)

• You are a part of the Church, and the Church was founded on the principles of winning others. (Matthew 28:19-20; Acts 8:1,4)

What?  Sharing Christ with others means…

• Sowing the gospel seed. (Matthew 13:1-23)

• Delivering the gospel message. (Mark 16:15-16)

When?  YOU should be sharing Christ NOW because…

• The harvest is ripe. (John 4:35).

• The power to share is made available to believers NOW. (Acts 1:8).

• The last minutes of this age are ticking away. (Ephesians 5:16).

• This is your opportunity to do something for the Lord. (2 Tim. 2:15).

Where?  Where ever YOU are, you should be sharing Christ because…

• You are the salt of the earth. (Matthew 5:13)

• You are the light of the world. (Matthew 5:14)

Why?  We must engage in sharing Christ because…

• God’s Word commands it. (Matthew 28:19-20).

• Jesus deserves it. (2 Corinthians 5:14).

• The unsaved world needs it. (1 John 5:12)

How?  We can share Christ with others by…

• Giving someone a gospel tract. (2 Corinthians 4:4)

• Share your Personal Testimony of salvation. (1 Peter 3:15)

• Confront someone about their need of forgiveness. (Acts 26:17)