Yes, I am exclusive!

I was reminded of this folk tale from India recently and thought about those who say all religions are equal. 

It was six men of Indostan
To learning much inclined,
Who went to see the Elephant
(Though all of them were blind),
That each by observation
Might satisfy his mind.

The First approach’d the Elephant,
And happening to fall
Against his broad and sturdy side,
At once began to bawl:
“God bless me! but the Elephant
Is very like a wall!”

The Second, feeling of the tusk,
Cried, -“Ho! what have we here
So very round and smooth and sharp?
To me ’tis mighty clear
This wonder of an Elephant
Is very like a spear!”

The Third approached the animal,
And happening to take
The squirming trunk within his hands,
Thus boldly up and spake:
“I see,” quoth he, “the Elephant
Is very like a snake!”

The Fourth reached out his eager hand,
And felt about the knee.
“What most this wondrous beast is like
Is mighty plain,” quoth he,
“‘Tis clear enough the Elephant 
Is very like a tree!”

The Fifth, who chanced to touch the ear,
Said: “E’en the blindest man
Can tell what this resembles most;
Deny the fact who can,
This marvel of an Elephant
Is very like a fan!”

The Sixth no sooner had begun
About the beast to grope,
Then, seizing on the swinging tail
That fell within his scope,
“I see,” quoth he, “the Elephant
Is very like a rope!”

And so these men of Indostan
Disputed loud and long,
Each in his own opinion
Exceeding stiff and strong,
Though each was partly in the right,
And all were in the wrong!

The only person who truly know what an elephant looks like is the person who can actually see the elephant. The point I’m getting at is this: If you say all religions are equal what you are claiming in essence is that you have the ability to see what they don’t. You are claiming to have knowledge that is superior to those who have religion. So your view is really just as exclusive as any religions maybe. Because you claim to have revelation they don’t posses.

I embrace the claim that Christianity is the only way to God and heaven, but tell me what other religion claims to have a Savior who died for his enemies, commands us to love and pursue peace with each other?  

Thanks to Tim Keller! 

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God is not a Republican!

I’ve been shocked at myself over the last few years. See I am a very conservative person who has voted republican since 1986. Recently however God has been dealing with me over this. See my tendency is to believe there is salvation for my nation in the republican party. Oh sure if you ask me I would tell you that the only hope for America is Jesus, but then I would expound the virtues found in the republican party as the path we need to take.

Here is what I’m coming to realize God is not a republican, but neither is he a Democrat. So I have abandoned both parties in favor of the Gospel. Real hope and change isn’t found in the face of Obama, Mitch McConnell or any other elected official. It’s found in the gospel of Jesus Christ and in Him only.

I have come to believe that the biggest mistake the church has made in the 20th century was the moral majority movement. I say this because during this period the body of Christ in America quit relying on the power of the Holy Spirit to effect change, and instead relied upon the arm of flesh found in men and women who used us for political power.

As hard as it maybe to hear we need to realize that we forgot the power of God through His proclaimed word, and embraced a political ideology that replaced the call of daring faith for financial security and peace. So we aligned ourselves with men and women who give lip service to our beliefs while accepting bribes, kickbacks, and political favors.

We need to abandon our faith in these men and women and reestablish it in the gospel of Jesus Christ as the source of true security! As long as we are in Christ we are secure regardless of how the world treats us. I’m not saying don’t vote, rather I’m saying seek God first before voting. Keep politics in perspective and remember that we can bring about real change only if God is working with us as we spread the gospel of His son Jesus Christ!

Mark 16:20 They went out and proclaimed everywhere, while the Lord worked with them and confirmed the word through the accompanying signs

I am still a conservative both socially and economically, only now I’ve decided that spreading my faith is more important than my political views. Because you know what? Socialists go to heaven if they believe in Jesus as Lord and savior!  Because socialism is an economic philosophy that has nothing to do with saving faith!

Out if what?!

I was recently at a certain fried chicken establishment named after a state that starts with a K. Here is a hint…It isn’t Kansas and they still have Colonels.

Anyway, I pulled up to order dinner for my family at 5:30 PM, placed my order and then was informed by the voice emanating from the sign that they were currently out of chicken.

Of course me being me responded with “seriously?” realizing that the little girl who owned the voice probably wasn’t responsible I said “Mam…I thought I was at #FC isn’t chicken what you do?  I mean it’s in your name.” ” I think I’ll go get some pizza”

This little incident got me thinking though. How many church’s put in their name or mission statement things that they are out of?

For that matter as individual Christians are we out of Love, Joy, Peace?

What about forgiveness are we out of this as well? I see church’s splitting, and Christians never trying to reconcile with those they are at odds with. Grieving God to His core.

Do we not realize that the reason God hates strife among His people is because His nature is perfect unity? God is a trinity God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit one God in three persons all in perfect harmony and unity.

So when we act in disunity we are ultimately rejecting God and His nature, and the love of God is not in us. 1 John 4:20 “Whoever claims to love God yet hates a brother or sister is a liar. For whoever does not love their brother and sister, whom they have seen, cannot love God, whom they have not seen.”

When we love one another we tell the world that we love God and follow Jesus. John 13:35″Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” The sad thing is though anymore it seems we are out of chicken in the church. We need to repent and seek out forgiveness from both God and our fellow man. Then we’ll have what we need to reach America with the gospel!

It’s not unusual!

This isn’t my usual blog entry, but I felt like sharing it anyway.

Almost ten years ago my immediate supervisor was a woman. She was in my opinion one of the best department managers I have ever had. A great person, strong leader, and level headed she was fantastic to work for.

I remember though, that there was a guy on the stocking crew that had a tremendous crush on her. This was not reciprocated by her, nor encouraged because she is an honorable Godly woman. However it did become the source of numerous jokes from me. Because this guy would go out of his way to speak to her, and ask me if she was coming in, and so on.

Now I love a good laugh! I can’t help it, it’s part of who I am,  its how God made me. So one morning while helping to unload a truck I just happened to mention that she was a huge Tom Jones fan to the guy. This however was not true, but in my mind very funny!

To my great joy this guy would ride by us on power equipment during the stocking process, singing Tom Jones songs. One time it would be “It’s not unusual to be loved by anyone!” the next and perhaps the funniest; was when he sang the song “Whats new pussy cat”  complete with the “whoa! whoa! whoa!”

She new exactly where this came from and she would turn to me and say…”I hate you!” This would always make me bust out laughing! I’m laughing now just remembering it!

My point is this, when we forget how to laugh, we forget how to live. So learn to lighten up and laugh!

By the way She and I still laugh at that guy’s behavior!

 

 

Mark of the Beast?

Let me give a little insight into my end times theology. I am not looking for the Antichrist or his mark because I do not believe the Church will be here. The reason for this is Jesus bore the full wrath of God that we deserve. So since the Bible calls the great tribulation period “The wrath of the Lamb” I do not believe the Church will suffer the wrath of God and will be raptured or taken out before hand.

However this article caught my eye so I have provided a link.

http://androidcommunity.com/motorola-digital-tattoos-and-vitamin-authentication-pills-are-the-future-20130531/

 

So could this be an avenue for the mark of the beast mentioned in Revelation?

My Cross is too heavy!

If you have been a christian for any length of time you’ve read, or heard read  “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me.”  What if your cross is to heavy? Every time you look at it you think I can’t do it, I can’t carry it, I’m to weak and wounded.

How do we face such a situation? Believe me these situations will come, pretending they won’t is foolish.  In fact you maybe there now struggling to pick up a cross that seems to get heavier, and heavier by the second. There is an answer you know. We find it in the Life of our Lord who also had a cross to pick up. His was a literal physical weight. (Though our emotional, and physical problems can be just as heavy.)

We find the answer in a couple of different places.

First here in Luke 23:26  As they led him away, they seized Simon of Cyrene, who was coming in from the country. They placed the cross on his back and made him carry it behind Jesus.

The second is here in Mathew 11:28 Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

Jesus couldn’t carry His cross because He was to weak and weary, so let me ask you this, why are you trying to carry yours? Jesus is our Simon of Cyrene the difference is that Simon was forced to carry the cross, and Jesus longs to carry it for you.

Why not go to Him in prayer crying out to Him when you feel the weight, and let him take it for you. Don’t try to take it back! He has strength to carry what you can’t.

One more quick thing

While writing this I remembered that David Wilkerson has already said this far better than I did so here is the link to His article.

http://www.worldchallenge.org/en/node/1349

Marriage and the Divine Image

When God made man he spoke these words ” Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, after our likeness” , this statement is followed by a description of how God made them “God created humankind in his own image,  in the image of God he created them, male and female he created them”. This is vital to our understanding of marriage.

It’s vital because when we go to Genesis 2 and read the more detailed account of the Creation of Man there is an interesting statement from God. “The LORD God said, “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a companion for him who corresponds to him.””(Emphasis Mine)

This statement is interesting and important, because everything up to this point God had pronounced as good. However man being alone was not good. So God made a companion or helper for man to do what man could not do for himself. Man was alone he could not be fruitful and multiply. The divine blessing upon creation he was unable to enjoy by himself, man needed a companion he needed woman to fully walk in the divine blessing upon creation.

So man was incomplete, his completion was found in the one taken from him, his flesh of his flesh, or bone of his bone. So it could be said that woman completed the divine image of man. This is seen in this passage of Scripture:

Gen 1:26 Then God said, “Let us make humankind in our image, after our likeness, so they may rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over all the creatures that move on the earth.”
1:27 God created humankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them,
male and female he created them. 

This then allowed Man and Woman to receive the divine blessing of “Be fruitful and multiply” found in verse 28 of chapter 1.

So why is this important in the current redefinition of marriage?

Because a rejection of the Biblical definition of marriage is a rejection of not just a definition, but rather God’s original purpose of creation of man and woman. It’s a statement of extreme rebellion against God and His word. Man and Man can not be fruitful or multiply, neither can woman and woman. I realize that they can adopt, or use artificial insemination to increase, however this doesn’t change God’s original purpose for humankind. Rather in a way it affirms it, because adoption and insemination requires the opposite sex.

As I’ve said in the past Marriage is a divine institution and is not to be redefined by man.
Biblical Studies Press. (2006). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Ge 1:26–27). Biblical Studies Press.

Biblical Studies Press. (2006). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Ge 2:18). Biblical Studies Press.
Biblical Studies Press. (2006). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Ge 1:27). Biblical Studies Press.

Biblical Studies Press. (2006). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Ge 1:26). Biblical Studies Press.