Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Devil is in the Details

Surprise, Surprise the job stimulus has not been effective. I wonder why. Could it be that big government is always a drain on the economy and that government spending never stimulates the economy? Contrary to the teachings of most economists it is the people free of government encumbrances seeking the blessing of God that revive an economy.
When a people or country throw off the yoke of tyranny and seek the Lord, economic prosperity will be the result. Each of the historic eras of prosperity (the 20's, 50's, 80's) were preceded by dramatic reductions in the size of and spending of the government and taxation and regulation of the people. There is nothing new in any of this. It is well understood and proven. So why do we insist on pursuing the course we are on, regardless of the historic record. We are not fighting flesh and blood. We are in the middle of a spiritual battle. No, really, we are.
Do you really think that Satan and the spirit of antichrist are interested in the welfare of mankind? Are they looking to increase freedom, liberty and our quality of life? I rather doubt it. The stated goal of the enemy is the enslavement or destruction of all mankind. Don't misunderstand me. I am not saying that the president and certain members of congress are in league with the devil. No. What I am saying is that their worldview, their understanding of how things work, are based on principles espoused by ungodly or demonically influenced men and women.
Do a little of your own research. The teachings of Marx, Nietzsche, Darwin, Alinsky and many others have influenced our current leadership. Even as Europe moves away from these policies, we embrace them. These ideas are in stark contrast to the scripture witch states we should not covet the belongings of others. Of course, the word also states we should not lie or steal either.
The devil is in the details.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

These Little Ones

"Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in Me to sin, it would be better for him if a millstone were hung around his neck, and he were drowned in the depth of the sea." Matthew 18:6

In Provincetown, Mass. they have to reassure us that they are not indeed handing out condoms to 7 year old children, only middle school kids. Whew, what a relieve. Only 11 and 12 year old children are being told its ok to have premarital sex. Every thing is fine.
Maybe I'm starting to get old. Maybe, I am just a conservative baptist preacher, too close minded to understand. I don't know. Maybe, the Provincetown, district is selling evil as good. This does not require much in depth commentary. Adultery and fornication are still sin. God's word and commandments clearly teach that sexual relations outside of a committed marriage is wrong and destructive. We all know that, even the progressives know that.
My solution is simple and straight forward. Elect new leadership in Provincetown, Mass. and change the policy. The only question that remains is do the people of God have the will to do what is needed to change these things? Does their biblical worldview cause them to do what is right. It is our fault that these people are in power, it is up to us to exchange the ungodly for the godly.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Faith, Hope and Charity

And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity. 1 Corinthians 13:13

I enjoy watching Glenn Beck. It is like getting a refresher on what I learned in high school. I know a lot of people say they never learned most of what he goes over. But I did. My mom sacrificed and sent me to a very conservative baptist high school. One of the things they had us do a lot of, was memorize scripture. Being a fundamental baptist school, the bible of choice was the King James version. So every time Glenn asserts his view that what our country needs is faith, hope, and charity, the first words out of my mouth are "these three; but the greatest of these is charity".
I have a great love for the founding fathers. I also love the sermons of George Whitefield and Johnathon Edwards. I believe that if we want to see an example of a society based on Christian ideals we need look no further than that generation. I think it is good and right to look at these men and women as the template of good and free America. But we must be careful. These were just men. They, themselves, would likely discourage us from putting our hope in them. Because we must look to their source.
The greatest of these is love. That is how it is translated today. Remember, that God is love. That is why even as we look to restore these three attributes, we must turn to God. Who do we put our faith in? The Lord. Where does our hope lie? The Lord. And who must we love with all that we are? The Lord. We should study our history and learn from it. What I feel is more important, however, is to study the Word of the Lord. How can we ever hope to gain our nation once more if we do not understand the principles that will allow us to build a firm foundation. Just reading the Word is not enough. We must use it to develop right doctrines or principles to live by. It must be internalized and meditated on to change us. Above all else, we must first be changed by the living Word, by placing our trust in Him. This must be personal or it will never be national.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Looking ahead while using the rear view mirror

Editor’s note: I have found that blogging on a regular basis is very difficult to maintain. Because the subjects I write about are very important, I feel it necessary to renew my commitment to keep this blog updated more often. I do apologize for the irregular intervals of my updates and look forward to adding new posts more often. And now the new post.

Looking ahead while using the rear view mirror

Last week I attended the funeral of my wife’s uncle Ben. Funerals, of course, are a time for reflection. This was no exception. The priest did something interesting this time however; he did a little genealogical research on Ben’s family. I’ve always found genealogies intriguing, but only pay them passing attention. I quickly realized that as a pastor and amateur historian, genealogies create a way for us to connect to history. John 10:10 Jesus says, “the thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly.” The thief has done a lot of stealing over the years he has taken our history and our roots. He has stolen our understanding of the founding fathers. In so doing, he has stolen our national identity and destroyed a way of life.

 In 2 Timothy 1:3-10, the apostle Paul reminds Timothy of his heritage of his mother Eunice and his grandmother Lois who both brought him up in the word of the Lord.  We should remember that our founding fathers, although not perfect, were in most cases God-fearing Bible believing Christians. Their vision of this country was that of a Christian nation. That never meant an exclusively Christian nation, but a nation dedicated to Christian principles nonetheless.  I should point out, that contrary to popular belief, there’s nothing wrong with this point of view.

Recent polls show that the majority of Americans are both conservative and Christian. While we should never exclude the views and opinions of the minority, the will of the people may still be expressed. For whatever reason, America has become a nation ruled by the minority rather than the majority. It is time once again for the majority to become active in how its government is operated. For far too long “Christians” have allowed in leadership, men and women who do not share their stated values. It is time once again to search out leaders that hold Christian values, have integrity, and are willing to lead by the courage of their convictions.

It is time once again to tell the stories of our families and our ancestors. We tell the stories not only for our children but for ourselves. We need to be reminded of who we are, this is how we develop a national identity. We must be willing to shut off the television and spend some time with our children and our spouses to read our Bibles to share our points of view and maybe even read the Constitution. When we do these things would develop in ourselves something greater.

Friday, June 11, 2010

American Patriotism

Joshua 4:6  that this may be a sign among you when your children ask in time to come, saying, ‘What do these stones mean to you?’  Then you shall answer them that the waters of the Jordan were cut off before the ark of the covenant of the LORD; when it crossed over the Jordan, the waters of the Jordan were cut off. And these stones shall be for a memorial to the children of Israel forever.”

Next Monday (June 14) is flag day. Flag day is a memorial of the day congress approved the stars and stripes as our standard. I bring this up because Dewey Moedey of KKIM asked me today; "What has happened to patriotism in America?" This question should give us pause.
I believe there are forces at work to undermine our national identity. America (and by extension, it's flag) is unique in the pages of history. Due to an ongoing effort to remove Christianity from our founders and our history, it has become necessary to extinguish the Spirit that accompanies our patriotism. 
John Adams believed that the fourth of July should become a religious holiday, a day when we remembered God's hand in deliverance and day of religious activities when we committed ourselves to Him in "solemn acts of devotion to God Almighty."    
His son and sixth president of the United States, John Quincy Adams, asked; "Is it not that, in the chain of human events, the birthday of the nation is indissolubly linked with the birthday of the Savior? That it forms a leading event in the progress of the Gospel dispensation? Is it not that the Declaration of Independence first organized the social compact on the foundation of the Redeemer's mission upon earth? That it laid the cornerstone of human government upon the first precepts of Christianity?" 
Patriotism (not to be confused with nationalism) at its best, is exemplified by selflessness. Have you ever wondered why the phrase is 'God and country'? When we seek the Lord and His kingdom, we lay aside self. We set aside the "me first" attitude and we love the Lord and then others. Christian patriotism seeks create a better country for all to live as equals. That is why the motto for the American revolution was "No King but King Jesus" and "Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God". 
The American spirit flows from the Holy Spirit. If we want to see patriotism return, we must as a nation, return to God. The bible tells us to not seek what is best for us over what is best for others, but rather look to the needs of others first and then ourselves. How much better would the world around us become, if we lived that way. Raise your flags this weekend as a reminder of how Americans should live. Tell your children of the sacrifices made for our freedom. If you don't know any stories, find them. When you tell them, point out the moral. Turn off the TV more and share what is good.

Happy Flag Day! 

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Life or Death?

The death penalty. Greater thinkers than I have tackled this issue. I wonder, does this require great thinking, or is this just a case of right and wrong. Genesis 9:6 says; Whoever sheds man’s blood,By man his blood shall be shed; For in the image of God He made man. This is a straight forward principle, that life is precious because God created it. So precious, in fact, that God requires life for life.
I had always wondered why those opposed to the death penalty, also happened to be in favor of abortion. Until I looked at it from a spiritual point of view, it baffled me. Individual lives are important. Regardless of class or financial status, every individual is important to God. Death and life are closely linked. We could not have life without our death penalty being paid in full by God.
That brings us to the latest discussion. Michael Astorga was found guilty of first degree murder of Bernalillo County Deputy James McGrane, guilty on two counts of tampering with evidence and guilty of possession of a firearm by a felon.The candidates for governor have taken their positions on this issue, but Diane Denish states that she will enforce the law if the jury decides to give Astorga the death penalty.
When November comes and goes and should the Lt. Governor become the Governor, will this position change? I can not write to the heart and mind of someone else. Let me just observe that life should be sacred for us. Christians should always understand that the Lord hears the cries of those whose lives are taken. The murder of Able makes this plain. He has given us a principle to live by, namely, if you take a life, your life will be required of you.
We can argue about the deterrent, we can argue about God's love and mercy, and we can argue about the humanity of the death penalty. If a people decide that life is so very precious that it's value is held in high esteem, I believe we would rarely use such punishment because we would have fewer murders. We should not allow our standards to be so eroded, that human life is worthless. The question remains, is the life of James McGrane worth the death of Michael Astorga?

Give a listen, Saturday's 8:30am on KKIM 1000 AM or on the internet.

Friday, June 4, 2010

No Sovereignty for Israel Either

The subject of national sovereignty rears its head once again. This time we are not talking about the US southern border, but the borders of Israel. Now I understand that in the eyes of many people and even nations, Israel does not have the right to exist. In fact, there have been a few heads of state that view the destruction of Israel as their life's work.
The real question is does Israel or any nation have a right to even have borders? Have we reached a point in global governance when nations no longer have the right to protect their sovereign borders? We may have even arrived at a point in history when nations can not even pass laws to use to govern.
The only reason anyone has a problem with the IDF boarding a ship that crosses a legal blockade, is that it is Israel that did it.
None of this is surprising, of course, Israel has been the red headed step child since it's inception. The bible clearly predicts this to be true. The nation of Israel and it's land (and water) will always be a stumbling block, because the Lord has made it so. It will continue to remind the world that the God of Israel is the one, true God, Amen.
I believe this issue of national sovereignty both in America and Israel is rooted in a desire to undermine or even destroy two nations that make a claim to the same God.
The world and its leaders instinctively know that to bring down the United States and Israel, is to defeat the Lord.
The root of all this goes back many thousands of years. It always leads to a choice, do we choose life or death.