Posts tagged ‘God’

The Revelation of Jesus Christ – A Call to Ultimate Hope

The Book of Revelation has a unique blessing for those who have willing “ ears to hear” the message Jesus has for all who eagerly await His return. It may surprise many that Revelation actually covers a period of 1,007 years or more.

This has been a demanding task to say the least but after more than 2 years of daily study I have decided it’s time to write.

Though this prophecy evokes great anxiety and fear in many, it was clearly written with great anticipation and hope for the signs of Christ’s return and the redemption of all who placed their faith in Christ’s sacrifice on the cross for them.

My main struggle has been with an attempt to inspire hope instead of disparaging. Second to that I prayerfully wanted to convey what I consider to be the most probable unfolding of the events covering the end of this age , the Great Tribulation of 7 years followed by Christ’s 1,000 year reign on Earth when each day is better than the previous day for a millennium. Finally the Great White Throne of Judgment followed by an new Heaven and a new Earth.

The first few chapters are a message to “the 7 churches”. I believe these 7 churches are examples of the conditions of the churches in the time of Christ’s return for His own. The church should to prepare for Christ’s return for His own before judgement comes to all the inhabitants of the world.

Revelation reveals the events of the final days of the end of this age , the Four Horsemen , a great earthquake , the sealing of Gods Jewish servants , the Rapture and then the judgement of the Great Tribulation , hail and fire mixed with blood rain down of the earth, very likely a super volcanoe such as is under Antarctica, an Asteroid Strike , World War, The Fall of Babylon( America?) the Thousand Year Reign of Christ on Earth, The Battle of Armageddon, The Great Judgement Seat of Christ , the end of time and sorrow as Eternity in Heaven with God begins.

Rapid-Onset Gender Dysphoria Research Vindicated – Family & Society – WORLD

https://world.wng.org/content/rapid_onset_gender_dysphoria_research_vindicated

The Unifying State of Wonder We Experience in Creation

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He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name,he gave the right to become children of God.

(The Gospel of John 1:10-12,The Bible )

Just as with any creative art, the creation we see around us reflects attributes of it’s Creator. We contemplate it through our senses of sight, scent, and sound. Together they leave us with one unifying state of wonder. The message is there for the taking if we dare to reach out and grasp it. All that is lovely, magnificent, majestic, intriguing, complex, simple, and beyond compression. He is far more than all of these combined.

Dear Muslim – An Early Book Review of Answering Jihad by Nabeel Qureshi NYT Best Selling Author and Apologist

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Dear Muslim,

It is fitting to address you this way and reflect the context of Nabeel Qureshi’s latest book due to be released on March 8th, 2016 by Zondervan Publishing. Qureshi’s book is titled Answering Jihad.

As a former devout Muslim who applied the same level of critical thinking to Islam and Christianity as his academic work, Qureshi is compassionate and credible to speak to the subject of Jihad and Islam.

By the age of 6, Nabeel had read the entire Quran and memorized several Islamic prayers as his parents raised he and his sister to be fully devoted Muslims.

If you are currently a Muslim, you owe it to yourself and your loved ones to make yourself aware of the knowledge and facts contained in this dynamic new book. It is particularly surprising to see that much of Qureshi’s conclusions against Islam come from the very sources that should support Islam, the Quran and the Hadiths.

If you are a Christian, you owe it to your community, whether they are Atheist, Muslim, Christian, or something else, to raise awareness of the truth about Islam. Whether it is examined from a doctrinal or a historical standpoint, Islam is clearly not a religion of peace.

I cannot overstate the thorough quality of writing and diplomatic yet direct stating of the truth that Qureshi brings to this difficult subject.

Answering Jihad is as interesting as it is informative, and in my opinion, it is also well written. I view this book with the highest regard and highly recommend it to you.

http://www.amazon.com/Answering-Jihad-Better-Way-Forward/dp/0310531381

Other books by Nabeel Qureshi :
http://www.amazon.com/Seeking-Allah-Finding-Jesus-Christianity/dp/1501262947

Foremost Genetic Expert Francis Collins Says DNA is “The Language in Which God Created Life”

Christ's Resurection from Death

Mankind Was Created by Jesus -The Word Made Flesh, and With His Words,

and the Result is That We Have Words at Our Core.

Jesus is God incarnate. 

Yes, He is the Word made flesh that dwelt among us as John’s Gospel tells us in chapter 1 ,”all things were created by Him”.

This ,”Word”, coincides with Genesis in the Bible where God “said, let us create man in our image”.

I’m saying that DNA is literally a detailed account of what God said when He created man.

We have evidence that God exists in ourselves.
In DNA we are witnessing through science the transcending of the natural realm into physical evidence for the miraculous.

Read this excerpt from a book written by the world’s foremost Geneticist Francis Collins –

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“As the leader of the international Human Genome Project, which had labored mightily over more than a decade to reveal this DNA sequence, I stood beside President Bill Clinton in the East Room of the White House…”

“Clinton’s speech began by comparing this human sequence map to the map that Meriwether Lewis had unfolded in front of President Thomas Jefferson in that very room nearly two hundred years earlier.”

“Clinton said, “Without a doubt, this is the most important, most wondrous map ever produced by humankind.”

But the part of his speech that most attracted public attention jumped from the scientific perspective to the spiritual. “Today,” he said, “we are learning the language in which God created life.

We are gaining ever more awe for the complexity, the beauty, and the wonder of God’s most divine and sacred gift.”

“I had worked closely with the president’s speechwriter in the frantic days just prior to this announcement, and had strongly endorsed the inclusion of this paragraph.”

“When it came time for me to add a few words of my own, I echoed this sentiment:

“It’s a happy day for the world.

It is humbling for me, and awe-inspiring, to realize that we have caught the first glimpse of our own instruction book, previously known only to God.”

“Why would a president and a scientist, charged with announcing a milestone in biology and medicine, feel compelled to invoke a connection with God? Aren’t the scientific and antithetical?….

for me the experience of sequencing the human genome, and uncovering this most remarkable of all texts, was both a stunning scientific achievement and an occasion of worship.”

~Francis S. Collins, The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief~

“And War Broke Out in Heaven” – The Lasting Implications for Mankind

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Did you know there was a war in Heaven?
It’s true, and some of the details of this incredible event are revealed to us in the Bible and have lasting implications for mankind.

And war broke out in heaven: Michael and his angels fought with the dragon; and the dragon and his angels fought, but they did not prevail, nor was a place found for them in heaven any longer. So the great dragon was cast out, that serpent of old, called the Devil and Satan, who deceives the whole world; he was cast to the earth, and his angels were cast out with him. Then I heard a loud voice saying in heaven,”
Now salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of His Christ have come, for the accuser of our brethren, who accused them before our God day and night, has been cast down. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony, and they did not love their lives to the death”.
“Therefore rejoice, O heavens, and you who dwell in them! Woe to the inhabitants of the earth and the sea! For the devil has come down to you, having great wrath, because he knows that he has a short time.” 
(Rev 12:7-12 NKJV)

Lucifer was said to be the angel who reflected God’s glory. He wanted to be God and tried to overthrow God. One third of the angels followed him in this revolt. It is recorded in the Bible in Isaiah 14.

 “How you are fallen from heaven, 
O Lucifer, son of the morning! 
How you are cut down to the ground, 
You who weakened the nations! For you have said in your heart: 
‘I will ascend into heaven, 
I will exalt my throne above the stars of God; 
I will also sit on the mount of the congregation 
On the farthest sides of the north; I will ascend above the heights of the clouds, 
I will be like the Most High.’ Yet you shall be brought down to Sheol, 
To the lowest depths of the Pit. “Those who see you will gaze at you, 
And consider you, saying: 
‘Is this the man who made the earth tremble, 
Who shook kingdoms, Who made the world as a wilderness 
And destroyed its cities, 
Who did not open the house of his prisoners?’ 
(Is 14:12-17 NKJV)

The implications for mankind from this event have lead to the fall of mankind from relationship with God and the change from an innocent nature in mankind to a moral consciousness of right and wrong.
That also means we have become responsible for our actions, impure, and unable to know our Holy perfect God in our current state.

This happened in the Garden of Eden when the disobedience of first man and woman occurred after Satan tempted the woman saying, “You will be like God,”, the same prideful ambition Satan succumbed to.

And to bolster these claims we also know that the oldest book of the Bible, the book of Job, also portrays Satan as our accuser as he is referenced here, “the accuser of our brethren”, and the unseen reason for many of mankind’s sorrows and trials.

Satan appears to be desperately appealing to every possible scenario to prove that he has been unjustly judged by God as he awaits his sentence to be carried out.

But we have an advocate with Father God who is Jesus Christ His Son. He came from God to be one of us. He alone lived a perfect sinless life. He willfully died a cruel death to pay for our sins. He rose from the dead to defeat death and offer life to all who believe.

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. He that believes on him is not condemned: but he that believes not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God.” 
(John 3:16-18 KJV)

Jesus said;
“In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world. ”
(John 16:33)

Trust Him as your Savior today.
Rest in Him for all your tomorrows.

They Gave Christ a Cross, Not Guessing that He Would Make it a Throne

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“He did not conquer in spite of the dark mystery of evil. He conquered through it.”

~James Stewart~

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“It is a glorious phrase of the New Testament, that ‘he led captivity captive.’ 

The very triumphs of His foes, it means, he used for their defeat. He compelled their dark achievements to sub-serve his end, not theirs.

They nailed him to the tree, not knowing that by that very act they were bringing the world to his feet.

They gave him a cross, not guessing that he would make it a throne.

They flung him outside the gates to die, not knowing that in that very moment they were lifting up all the gates of the universe, to let the King of Glory come in.

They thought to root out his doctrines, not understanding that they were implanting imperishably in the hearts of men the very name they intended to destroy.

They thought they had defeated God with His back the wall, pinned and helpless and defeated: they did not know that it was God Himself who had tracked them down.

He did not conquer in spite of the dark mystery of evil. He conquered through it.”

James Stewart (1896–1990) was a minister of the Church of Scotland

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” And you, being dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh,

He has made alive together with Him,

having forgiven you all trespasses,

having wiped out the handwriting of requirements that was against us,

which was contrary to us.

And He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.

 Having disarmed principalities and powers,

He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.”

(Colossians 2:13-15)

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life.”

(John 3:16)

God Required Holiness of Humanity – So God Provided Holiness to Humanity

God said,
“Be Holy because I am Holy.”

Man’s dilemma,
“all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

So God came down to man as a man,Immanuel, God with us.

and the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
and by his wounds we are healed.

after the suffering of his soul,
he will see the light of life,

Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting ?

 He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us,

that we might become the righteousness of God in Him.

 The Lord has shown his holy arm
    in the sight of all the nations,
all the ends of the earth have seen
    the salvation of our God.

And you also were included in Christ when you heard the word of truth, 

the gospel of your salvation.

Having believed, you were marked in him with a seal,

 the promised Holy Spirit, 

who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance 

until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—

to the praise of his glory.

(Scripture references – 1 Peter 1:16,Romans 3:23,1 Corinthians 15:55, Matthew 1:23,2 Corinthians 5:21, Isaiah 52,53, Ephesians 1:13-14)

Life, Creation and Wisdom – We See So Little of All That Really Is

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Men look up into the sky at night and marvel in wonder at the sheer number of stars and the vastness of the universe.

Yet with our most sophisticated telescopes today we can see that far more is actually there  than the unaided eye can see.

The voids of blackness begin to fill in with the light of discoveries previously unknown.

You may then realize that in a similar way that you can never know it all.

But rest assured you CAN know the one who does know it all, and He calls each of the heavenly host by name.

He is God, and has also promised;

as it is written:

“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,

Nor have entered into the heart of man

The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.”

(I Corinthians 2:9)

Then Jesus told him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed;

blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.” 

(John 20:29)

The devil’s Hordes Greatest Defeat

Christus op  kruis - Vlissegem

Christus op kruis – Vlissegem (Photo credit: PhilFlickr2)

 “The devil’s hordes thought, at first, that the crucifixion of Christ was their triumph. 

But their very triumphs, God used for their defeat. 

They thought they had God with His back to the wall,

pinned and helpless and defeated. 

They did not know it was God Himself who had dragged them down to that point. 

He did not conquer in spite of the dark mystery of evil,

He conquered through it.” 

Scottish Theologian James Stewart

 

Biblical Content in the Context of Biblical Emphasis is Our Biblical Imperative

Christ's Resurection from Death

Most of what Christians communicate has Biblical content. Subjects like predestination, grace,love,unity, God’s sovereignty are all typical examples of Biblical Content.

But any time we communicate Biblical Content but neglect Biblical Emphasis, we violate Biblical imperative.

What is Biblical Imperative?

“That in all things, Christ might be preeminent.”

“I am determined to know nothing except Christ and Him crucified.”

To put it another way,

Jesus said,”I am the way, the truth, and the life, no man comes to the Father but by Me.”

The entirety of Christianity begins with the redemption of mankind.
Jesus is the only way to the Father, He is the only truth that leads us to the Father, He is the only life we can obtain with the Father, for we are all already dead in trespasses and sins.

Even discipleship means nothing without Christ.

“I am the Vine and you are the branches, without Me you can do nothing.”

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Preacher.
What could you possibly have to say that would have more meaning or relevance aside from Jesus Christ ?

The Deconstruction of Absolute Truth and the Foundation of a Free Society

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“It has been said that when human beings stop believing in God they believe in nothing. The truth is much worse: they believe in anything.”

Malcolm Muggeridge

 

Our Declaration of independence reads,”We hold these truths to be self-evident”…

So what happens when a previously free society no longer accepts Absolute Truth?

If; “You shall know the truth and the truth shall set you free,” then to deny the truth means you will loose your freedom.

Government becomes a kind of god because selfish people no longer behave responsibly with their freedoms.

Government gets big.

Government takes more and more.

The people stop providing for themselves and become slaves to the government.

Totalitarianism is inevitable to those who deny truth and the personal responsibility that comes with knowledge of the Truth.

Freedom cannot survive as our one and only truth.
Freedom is the result of acceptance and application of Truth.

Truth sets us free.
Without it we are slaves.

“And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.” Therefore if the Son makes you free, you shall be free indeed.”
(John 8:32 ; 36)

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” (John 14:6)

God of Truth – He is the Rock of Absolute Truth

An Absolute Firm Foundation

An Absolute Firm Foundation

 

“He is the Rock, His work is perfect;
For all His ways are justice,
A God of truth and without injustice;
Righteous and upright is He.
For I proclaim the name of the Lord:
Ascribe greatness to our God.”

Deuteronomy 32:4,5

 

Ethos,Pathos,Logos – The Image of God

Bust of Aristotle. Marble, Roman copy after a ...

Bust of Aristotle. Marble, Roman copy after a Greek bronze original by Lysippos from 330 BC; the alabaster mantle is a modern addition. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

God created man in His image.

Aristotle identified three primary areas of influence and response that comprise the mind, heart, and soul of mankind.

He called them Ethos, Pathos, and logos.

God is sovereign and all Powerful- this is Ethos

God is the author of wisdom and is all knowing- this is Logos

God is Love and so loved the world He gave His Son – this is Pathos

The Psalms puts it this way;

Psalms 139:1-4 “O Lord, You have searched me and known me. You know my sitting down and my rising up;
You understand my thought afar off. You comprehend my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways. For there  is not a word on my tongue,
But behold, O Lord, You know it altogether.”

God knows us, understands us, comprehends us altogether because He loves us.

His pathos brought His ethos and logos to our rescue.

His pathos / love bridged the gap between us and God through Christ.

God wants our love as well.

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your mind, and with all your strength.” (Deuteronomy 6)

The most remarkable thing about what God requires from us is that He gave all of himself for us in Christ first.

He expressed all His ethos, pathos, and logos for our benefit through the cross.

Is God not worthy of all our love in return?

The Reformers Missed The Supreme Sola – The Sixth Sola – Sola Christus Emphainein – Emphasize Christ Alone – Christ Centered

English: John Calvin Deutsch: Maße: 41 x 29,5 ...

English: John Calvin Deutsch: Maße: 41 x 29,5 cm, Johannes Calvin (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


“You search the Scriptures, for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.” ~Jesus Christ speaking to the Pharisees~ John 5:39

Christ is due the supreme preeminence in everything befitting His supreme nature over everything.

This is what it means to be Christ Centered. To emphasize Christ Alone. Jesus is the center of our spiritual universe.

It is up to today’s reformers to have the courage to influence a more Christ-like Church as the reformers of 500 years ago.

But we will only become more Christ-like if we hear and are told about Christ.

Who is Christ?

Christ is King of Kings, and Lord of Lords. (Revelation 19:16)

He is Immanuel, meaning ,God with us. (Matthew 1:23)

The Five Solus came from the early reformers in response to doctrinal errors that had crept into the Catholic faith.

That is not the best way to define your doctrinal distinctions because you are limited to the perceived errors you are responding to and will likely miss something.

The early church fathers and reformers missed the need to state with absolute certainty that,”in all things Christ might have the preeminence.”

Did the reformers assume that everyone would know Christ was supreme and it need not be said?

I think a close examination of the Five Solas support that theory because they come close to making that statement.

But as they say,”good enough never is.”

The fact is that mankind is prone to selfish pride that wars against our humble Savior’s rightful place in our hearts.

Christ is our religion, it’s all about Him, yet many, maybe most sermons I hear fall short of giving Christ supreme preeminence .

A popular radio preacher, Dr.D.J. can preach about Grace for 20 minutes on the radio without mentioning Christ more than once or twice.

Does D.J. take it for granted we all know Christ brought Grace to mankind?

Or a ministry who primarily focuses on family instead of  Christ will talk about relationship issues without mentioning Christ.

Do they imply Christ is not the answer to all that ails mankind?

Do they just assume we all know that only Jesus can fix all that is wrong with society?

Practical advice should be part of the answer, but in Christianity, it should never be the preeminent answer.

Jesus saves, Jesus transforms and Jesus makes all things new.

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new.”

(2 Corinthians 5:17)

Here is a short summary of the Five Solus:

Sola Scriptura – Scripture Alone
Sola Christus – Christ Alone
Sola Gratia – Grace Alone
Sola Fide – Faith Alone
Sola Deo Gloria – The Glory of God Alone

Each of the Five existing Solas depend on Christ.
Jesus is the Lliving Word of God, the Way, the Truth and the Life. He is the Living Scriptura.
Christ is the one mediator between God and man, the Sola Christos.
Christ’s death and resurrection made God’s Grace available to mankind. Jesus is the Sola Gratia.
Christ said, “believe in Him whom God has sent.” Christ is the Sole Fide, in whom we place our Faith Alone.
Jesus is our bridge to Sola Deo Gloria, Christ is also our one mediator between God and man as we approach the Father in worship, thanksgiving, and praise. Without Christ, we could not know the Father.

“Unwarranted confidence in human ability is a product of fallen human nature … God’s grace in Christ is not merely necessary but is the sole efficient cause of salvation. We confess that human beings are born spiritually dead and are incapable even of cooperating with regenerating grace. We reaffirm that in salvation we are rescued from God’s wrath by his grace alone. It is the supernatural work of the Holy Spirit that brings us to Christ by releasing us from our bondage to sin and raising us from spiritual death to spiritual life. We deny that salvation is in any sense a human work. Human methods, techniques or strategies by themselves cannot accomplish this transformation. Faith is not produced by our unregenerated human nature.” – Cambridge Declaration

(Source , http://www.monergism.com/directory/link_category/Five-Solas/)

Christ must take the place of preeminence in all that is Christian.

Our doctrine must relate to Christ and be founded in Christ who is the Author and Finisher of our faith. 

“looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”(Hebrews 12:2)
Our problems must find their solutions in Christ, and in knowing Him, and becoming like Him as we grow.
“And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.” (Colossians 1:18)
To give preeminence is to place supreme emphasis upon.

The Five Solus deal primarily with redemption and the Biblical basis and authority concerning redemption.

The reformers came very close to making a complete distinction of Christ in this regard, but we cannot afford to assume people know the critical importance of giving Christ preeminence in all things.

We must emphasize Christ as completely as we are called to love Him completely.

“You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.”
“We love Him because He first loved us.”

That is why we need The Supreme Sola – The Sixth Sola – Sola Christus Emphainein – Emphasize Christ Alone.

 “For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”

(John 3:16)

(As always, I welcome any and all insights regarding this subject.)

Newton’s Empirical Assumption of the Known Universe and the Influence of Christian Beliefs in His Theories

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The belief that God created everything

The influence of Christian beliefs in the theories of history’s greatest scientist

“Did blind chance know that there was light and what was its refraction and fit the eyes of all creatures after the most curious manner to make use of it? These and such like considerations always have and ever will prevail with man kind to believe that there is a being who made all things and has all things in his power and who is therefore to be feared.”

“He who thinks half-heatedly will not believe in God; but he who really thinks has to believe in God.”

~Sir Isaac Newton~

http://www.answersingenesis.org/articles/cm/v12/n3/sir-isaac-newton

Maxim-“The Will of the People is the Law of the Land” is Good Only as Long as the People are Good

This 1866 engraving depicts Washington praying...

This 1866 engraving depicts Washington praying at Valley Forge (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

“The foundations of our National policy will be laid in the pure and immutable principles of private morality”

George Washington

max·im . A succinct formulation of a fundamental principle, general truth, or rule of conduct.

The word,”Choice”, has become synonymous with freedom in American society to the point that anything that restricts our freedom of choice is considered wrong.

Does not right and wrong exist and boundaries then are established to keep us and others from harm?

Violence shades our days and intrudes our peace of mind, and robs us of hope for a better tomorrow.

We can’t deny something is indeed wrong.

If WE THE PEOPLE want the freedom to practice the 2nd amendment, the right to bare arms, yet we fail to live the 1st amendment, freedom of religion, the result will be gun control for lack of heart control. In fact, all other freedoms grow out of the willful practice of the first amendment by the society at large.

True Freedom is composed of two conditions of restraint; The absence of externally imposed restraints by others, and presence of internally imposed restraints by ourselves.

The two are essential to have together, but self-imposed restraints are dependent on willful desire for moral virtue that comes from God.

The greatest challenge to a free people is not to throw off restraints to freedom, but to willfully impose responsible restraints on themselves by means of the pursuit of virtue.

But we have proven we are unable to help ourselves.

We are all like Lazarus in his tomb for 3 days,…dead and even unable to call out to God.
Christ calls us.

God gives life ,and awakens us to knowing Him.
American Christians have taken their gaze from steadfastly looking to our First Love, Christ, to things, status, power, pleasure and ease.

Christ Centered love, and then a resulting Christ Centered hunger for knowledge of the One we love above all other affections, is what America and the World needs most.

Heralding the truth of how ,”we love Him because He first loved us before we KNEW Him,” is the key to restoration and life, and freedom.

This is the definition of social reform

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”

2 Corinthians 5:16-18

And with freedom comes great power and possibilities,…and great responsibility.

We will either be a people who worship our God who,”created all men equal and endowed us unalienable rights”, or we will ignore our creator and worship the creation instead, such as freedom or self.

In the final analysis, we will either pass an enduring freedom to the next generation, or destroy our future as a free people.

The choice is ours.

 “Only a virtuous people are capable of freedom.”
“No longer virtuous, no longer free;”

Benjamin Franklin

“Can the liberties of a nation be thought secure when we have removed their only firm basis, a conviction in the minds of the people, that these liberties are the gift of God?That they are violated but with his wrath? I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just, and that His justice cannot sleep for ever.”

Thomas Jefferson

“It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible.” ― George Washington

Pascal on Mankind and God

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“Man would desire to be great and sees that he is little; would desire to be happy and sees that he is miserable; would desire to be perfect and sees that he is full of imperfections; would desire to be the object of the love and esteem of men, and sees that his faults merit only aversion and contempt. The embarrassment wherein he finds himself produces in him the most unjust and criminal passions imaginable, for he conceives a mortal hatred against that truth which blames him and convinces him of his faults.” ~Blaise Pascal~ (Pensees)

God Encourages This Form of Boasting – That You Know Him

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We were made to communicate with God.

Deep down inside we all know this in our moments of quiet reflection.

“This Is What The LORD Says”…

Jeremiah 9:24 This is what the LORD says: “Let not the wise boast of their wisdom or the strong boast of their strength or the rich boast of their riches, 9:25 but let the one who boasts boast about this: that they have the understanding to know me, that I am the LORD, who exercises kindness, justice and righteousness on earth, for in these I delight,” declares the LORD.

Belief in Jesus Christ is the way

1 John 5:20 We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life.

2012 in Review for Christ Centered Teaching – Sharing Christ’s Good News With The World

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 9,700 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 16 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Everything Connects to Everything Else ~ Leonardo da Vinci ~

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“Study the art of science and the science of art.”

“Especially, learn how to see.
Realize that everything connects to everything else”

~Leonardo da Vinci~

This quote by da Vinci reveals the primary guiding principles of one of the great minds of art and science.

As a Christian, I can see how da Vinci had discovered that all things were connected.

Connection implies a common origin.

Scripture states that ALL things came from Christ.

In Christ all things find origin and connection.

Colossians 1:17
“He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.”

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16 For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. 17 He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18 And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19 For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20 and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross.”

(Colossians 1:15-20)

This big wheel of life centers on Christ. He is the one of whom all things begin and end and are held together.

Christ is the Center by which all things are connected.

Share God’s Gift With Others – His Grace

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Grace is its own reason for doing good to those deserving the opposite.

We did not and cannot earn favor with Holy God.

God’s very nature, which is love and righteousness, satisfied our sin natured disconnect with Him by personally bridging the gap between us.

The only reason for this given in the Bible is ,”God so loved the world.” (John 3:16)

The sacrifice of God’s Son on the cross 2,000 years ago for the sin debt of all mankind was purely motivated by a God whose nature is love.

God’s righteousness stood in stark contrast and condemnation to the imperfection of mankind.

The love of God satisfied what was lacking for each of us to know God by the gracious gift of Christ’s imputed righteous nature in all who believe in Christ as Savior.

This year, in a world that is growing increasingly dark, let God’s Gift of love through Christ shine in you and through you in the same way God’s love came to us,.. even though we were undeserving and in desperate need, He came to save us.

 “Freely you have received, freely give.” ~Jesus Christ~ (Matthew 10:8)

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God—not by works, so that no one can boast.”

(Ephesians 2:8,9)

God Bless, and Happy New Year

Christ Centered Teaching and God Came Down

The First Christmas Gift – God Came Down To Us

 

Immanuel

 

The First Christmas Gift – God Came Down To Us

Click on this link above to watch an amazing Christmas pageant by Kensington Church in Troy Michigan.

The humorous intro includes NFL ,(American), Pro Football Detroit Lions players Matthew Stafford and Calvin Johnson.

Following that is ,”The Christmas Song”, an original Jazz/Rock piece by the Kensington praise musicians that about blew me away.

Most or all of this stage performance was recorded live, so the video includes a 1 minute intercession after the initial song.

What follows is an amazing  theatrical story that illustrates how when God came to be with us , He brought life and light into our dark and dead world.

The Bible says that we didn’t understand who Christ,why He came, or what He was doing.

When the story begins, everything is in shades of black, white , and gray.

Interestingly, the color red is used, the color of blood, to symbolize how Christ gave His life in order to give us life.

Then everything bursts into vibrant color to symbolize new life through Christ.

The video is 86 minutes long but can be started or stopped at any point.

If you wonder what Christmas is all about, or if you feel like you have lost the joy for Christmas, this video will help you find your joy.

The pageant is filled with amazing original music and a simple yet profound message.

I recommend watching this regardless of your condition in life.

Whether alone or with family,..

this message is meant for each one of us no matter where we are in life.

God came down to us!

The first Christmas gift was to us!

God Will Help You

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“Behold, this river of God is full for your supply;”

“He Will Help You” 

by C.H.Spurgeon

“‘I will help you,’ says the Lord.” Isaiah 41:14 (NKJV)

This morning let us hear the Lord Jesus speak to each one of us:“I will help you. It is but a small thing for me, your God, to help you. Consider what I have done already. What! not help you? Why, I bought you with my blood. What! not help you? I have died for you—and if I have done the greater, will I not do the less? Help you! It is the least thing I will ever do for you; I have done more, and will do more. Before the world began I chose you. I made the covenant for you. I laid aside my glory and became a man for you; I gave up my life for you; and if I did all this, I will surely help you now. In helping you, I am giving you what I have bought for you already. If you had need of a thousand times as much help, I would give it you; you require little compared with what I am ready to give. ‘Tis much for you to need, but it is nothing for me to bestow. ‘Help you?’ Fear not! If there were an ant at the door of your granary asking for help, it would not ruin you to give him a handful of your wheat; and you are nothing but a tiny insect at the door of my all-sufficiency. ‘I will help you.’”O my soul, is not this enough? Do you need more strength than the omnipotence of the united Trinity? Do you want more wisdom than exists in the Father, more love than displays itself in the Son, or more power than is manifest in the influences of the Spirit? Bring hither your empty pitcher! Surely this well will fill it. Haste, gather up your wants, and bring them here—your emptiness, your woes, your needs. Behold, this river of God is full for your supply; what can you desire beside? Go forth, my soul, in this your might: the eternal God is your helper!Fear not, I am with thee, oh, be not dismay’d!I, I am thy God, and will still give you aid.“How Firm a Foundation”Adapted from Morning and Evening.By: Charles Spurgeon on Dec 16, 2012

Why? – Jesus and Innocent Suffering

The question of suffering is one of life’s biggest questions.

Any loss, loss of livelihood, health, loved ones is shocking to us, as it should be.

 

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The unspeakable tragedy of loss is compounded by the loss of innocent life and the suffering of innocent people.

Men, women and children needlessly suffer and die amidst violence, cruelty and neglect.

We are left to ask,”Why did God allow this to happen?”

When we experience loss,”Why!”,is the first thing that comes to mind.

There are no pat answers,… but we can find deeper reason and comfort in knowing we are not alone.

God chose to experience loss for our sakes.

God came down to us in the personage of Jesus Christ and suffered and died for us to spare us eternal suffering.

God the Father turned away from Christ on the Cross, prompting Jesus Christ to cry out,”My God, My God,WHY have you forsaken me?

God as the man Jesus Christ felt the agony of loss and asked WHY?

The Bible tells us God did this because He loves us.He became one of us, struggled like we do, tempted in every way as us yet without giving in to sin.

And He suffered to a degree that we have not, and can not, for He alone was perfect and worthy to carry all the sins of our entire human race.

Christ paid for the sins all mankind from Adam to the last of our kind who will be born.

Christ carried every sin ever committed, or that will be committed, by every victim and by every perpetrator, who ever lived or has yet live, upon Him on the cross.

And the punishment of us all was upon Him.

“Surely he took up our infirmities
    and carried our sorrows, 
yet we considered him stricken by God, 
    smitten by him, and afflicted. 
 But he was pierced for our transgressions, 
    he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was upon him,
    and by his wounds we are healed. 
 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, 
    each of us has turned to his own way; 
and the Lord has laid on him
    the iniquity of us all.”

(Isaiah 53:4-6)

Because of Christ we know that the reason suffering exists can NOT be that God is insensitive to our condition.

Perhaps part of the reason is to make us what C.S.Lewis called, “Free Lovers.” We love God not for what He gives , but simply for the sake of whom He is.

If , like the old testament figure from the Bible, Job, we can love God regardless of total tragedy and loss, then our love for God will be like the love God has for us! Unconditional.

“This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins.”

(1 John 4:10)

God’s love is Unconditional love.

Tim Keller uses the illustration from the Book of Job in the Bible to show that Satan tried to make God question Job’s love for God. Satan accused Job of conditional love.“Take away everything you have blessed him with and he will curse you!”, he said to God.

And God permitted Satan to take all of Job’s children, possessions and wealth.

When Job still blessed God, then Satan insisted if God allowed physical suffering then Job would curse God.

Job did become very bitter, but did not curse God.

…”Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship  and said:

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb,
    and naked I will depart. 
The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; 
    may the name of the Lord be praised.”

” In all this, Job did not sin by charging God with wrongdoing.”

(Job 1:20-22)

It really is all about Love.

Satan tried to convince Job that God did not unconditionally love him, just as Satan tried to convince God that Job didn’t unconditionally love God.

And perhaps then our suffering, like Job’s, has profound reason and eternal purpose.

To refine our love into the kind of love Christ has for us.

For He loved us before we knew Him.

Unconditionally.

“For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith —and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast.”

(Ephesians 2:8,9)

Related Sermon by Dr. Tim Keller of Manhattan Presbyterian Church Manhattan N.Y.- 

http://sermons2.redeemer.com/sermons/suffering-if-god-good-why-there-so-much-evil-world

“How Great is Our God: with Louie Giglio (full video)” 40 min.

( Click here for the full Video )

By the word of the Lord the heavens were made,
And all the host of them by the breath of His mouth. Psalms 33:6

Louie Giglio blows our minds as we try to grasp the enormity of God’s creation.

Just a glance into the massive universe that God has made adjusts our view of God in contrast to our sin and struggles.

Pastor Giglio also tells of what is known of DNA and how it further proves , “we are fearfully and wonderfully made”.

Then Giglio tells how he was approached by a molecular biologist on one occasion after telling of the bigness of God. This man challenged Giglio to tell everyone about the protein, “Laminin”. This protein literally holds us together. Amazingly,under an electron microscope, a single Laminin protein resembles a cross.

Here is the definition of Laminin that I found in Wikipedia.

“The trimeric proteins intersect to form a cross-like structure that can bind to other cell membrane and extracellular matrix molecules.”

Even more amazingly beautiful is the alignment with the Bible as it describes how Christ,,” holds all things together.”

“He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross.” (Colossians 1:15-20)

This is an amazing sermon about our amazing God who’s love is beyond the vastness of the entire universe, yet reaches to the smallest detail of who and what we are.

God’s signature and compassion is literally everywhere.

“But God forbid that I should boast except in the cross of our Lord Jesus Christ, by whom the world has been crucified to me, and I to the world.”

( Galatians 6:14 )

What Tone in Christian Discussion is Biblical ?

What Kind of Tone Is Appropriate in Christian Discussion?

Christians are to be gentle ,kind, lovingly compassionate, meek and humble, like Christ. That much is obvious, though not always common.

But what about some of the examples of situations where Christ was angry, or when the Apostle Paul burned with indignation?

I think it depends on the situation. Christians are suffering from a stifling and un-Biblical monotonic response to the issues we face today.

 

We believe one tone should apply to everything, yet Indignation is also Biblical.

Keep in mind that silence was only used by Christ during the trial for crucifixion, when He willfully gave up His life for you and I. He said nothing in His own defense.

There are many shades of Christian communication, and all are Christ like. For instance,… are you trying to encourage? For the most part ,be gentle.

Are you exhorting and spurring others on? Be hopeful and thankful.

Or are you defending the most precious life-giving Gospel,the Blood of Jesus, and Grace of God from the self-righteousness of moralistic legalists who always demand our own works be tacked on to Christ’s work? (Legalism)

Now that’s a different story. Take the Apostle Paul for instance.

II Corinthians 11:29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to stumble, and I do not burn with indignation? (NKJV)

Christians today need to find their voices! Rightly dividing the word of God means 2 Corinthians 11:29 is in the mix.

Our insight as to when to speak up and which tone to use may make the difference as to whether we speak up at all.

Unlike the message we are all getting from our Post-modern world today, God never meant us to keep silent, He said ,”Go and Preach the Gospel.”

A lot of essential Biblical examples stand out in regard to what tone is right and when we should use them.

Too many issues demand our voices!

A great example is this video that went viral  and caused an uproar with some of the so-called,”pillars” in  modern Christendom.

In the video,Jefferson Bethke Kicks the proverbial Snot Out of Legalism!

But he has a much more subtle tone than Jesus does in Luke 11:44 !

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like graves which are not seen, and the men who walk over them are not aware of them.”

Or Jesus in Matthew 23:13

“But woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you shut up the kingdom of heaven against men; for you neither go in yourselves, nor do you allow those who are entering to go in.”

In fact, Bethke is well below the tone Jesus used to beat down the self-righteous Pharisees of His day!

And Bethke is also doing the Church a service just like the Apostle Paul in the book of Galatians!

Only Bethke is milder than Paul too! Like in Gal.1:6

“If anybody is preaching to you a gospel other than what you accepted, let him be eternally condemned!”

In fact,Paul was far more direct as he beat down the legalists, and he even,”withstood Peter to his face.” This is the big ,long earful that Peter heard from Paul in front of Barnabas and many others. Galatians 2:11- 21

“When Peter came to Antioch, I opposed him to his face, because he was clearly in the wrong. 1Before certain men came from James, he used to eat with the Gentiles. But when they arrived, he began to draw back and separate himself from the Gentiles because he was afraid of those who belonged to the circumcision group. 13 The other Jews joined him in his hypocrisy, so that by their hypocrisy even Barnabas was led astray.

14 When I saw that they were not acting in line with the truth of the gospel, I said to Peter in front of them all, “You are a Jew, yet you live like a Gentile and not like a Jew. How is it, then, that you force Gentiles to follow Jewish customs?

15 “We who are Jews by birth and not ‘Gentile sinners’ 16 know that a man is not justified by observing the law, but by faith in Jesus Christ. So we, too, have put our faith in Christ Jesus that we may be justified by faith in Christ and not by observing the law, because by observing the law no one will be justified.

17 “If, while we seek to be justified in Christ, it becomes evident that we ourselves are sinners, does that mean that Christ promotes sin? Absolutely not! 18 If I rebuild what I destroyed, I prove that I am a lawbreaker. 19 For through the law I died to the law so that I might live for God. 20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. 21 I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, Christ died for nothing!”

Paul got in Peter’s face in front of everybody, to defend the blood of Jesus as the ONLY means to be saved!

So don’t let them make you back pedal Jefferson Bethke. Take heart!

You aren’t bashing the Church. On the contrary!

If a person loves Jesus and His Bride the Church, then he will defend the ONLY means to establish the Church.

The pure, true Gospel established by the washing and regeneration of the pure, perfect blood of Jesus Christ on the cross is the ONLY way the Church can ever exist.

Your statement  is right in line with guys who have made all the difference when it counted, like Paul, and Luther, and countless others.

Jesus vs. Religion? Jesus will always win!

Speak up! Be bold!

That is our part to this world. Give them Jesus!

Christianity and Islam – The Basic Fundamentals of Different Fundamentalisms

Map showing the relative proportion of Christi...

Map showing the relative proportion of Christianity (red) and Islam (green) in each country. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The essence of any religion is the fundamental truths it is founded upon.

That would comprise a religion’s Fundamentalism.

A “Fundamentalist”,is one who attempts to strictly adhere to a religion’s fundamentals.

The word fundamental can mean something  good or bad, depending on a religion’s core truths.

The Supreme Doctrines of Christianity and Islam are polar opposites.

“Hearing that Jesus had silenced the Sadducees, the Pharisees got together. One of them, an expert in the law, tested him with this question: “Teacher, which is the greatest commandment in the Law?”

” Jesus replied: “‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ All the Law and the Prophets hang on these two commandments.”  (Matthew 22:34-40)

“Do not be overcome by evil but overcome evil with good.” Romans 12:21

God wants us to love Him, and has provided the ultimate reason to desire to love Him by loving and giving His one and only Son, Jesus Christ as a sacrifice, the just for the unjust, on the cross. God WINS our love and trust.

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son,that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”(John 3:16)

In contrast to that, Islam means,”Submit to Allah”, and force is the means Allah’s word, the Koran, imposes.

Free will is forcefully denied by this fundamental belief of Islam.

(Read the following quotes from the Koran)

Qur’an:8:39 “Fight them [who do not believe] until all opposition ends and all submit to Allah.”

Ishaq:324 “He said, ‘Fight them so that there is no more rebellion, and religion, all of it, is for Allah only. Allah must have no rivals.'”

Qur’an:8:65 “O Prophet, urge the faithful to fight. If there are twenty among you with determination they will vanquish two hundred; if there are a hundred then they will slaughter a thousand unbelievers, for the infidels are a people devoid of understanding.”

Qur’an:9:5 “Fight and kill the disbelievers wherever you find them, take them captive, harass them, lie in wait and ambush them using every stratagem of war.”

Qur’an:9:29 “Fight those who do not believe until they all surrender, paying the protective tax in submission.”

Qur’an:47:4 “When you clash with the unbelieving Infidels in
battle (fighting Jihad in Allah’s Cause), smite their necks until you overpower them, killing and wounding many of them. At length, when you have thoroughly subdued them, bind them firmly, making (them)captives. Thereafter either generosity or ransom (them based upon what benefits Islam) until the war lays down its burdens. Thus are you commanded by Allah to continue carrying out Jihad against the unbelieving infidels until they submit to Islam.”

Free World listen!! It is clear! Democracy was born out of Christinity’s “Unalienable rights” and the belief that “all men are CREATED equal”. 

Allah demands we all SUBMIT to him. Or die.
Islam is fundamentally tyrannical.

God’s desire is for us is to LOVE Him, and He personally came down to us to die for our sins and defeat death for us.

What more could He do ?

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

God did this to set is free from sin and death. Christianity is fundamentally liberaiting.

“If the Son of Man sets you free you shall be Free indeed.”

Different core beliefs, different fundamentals, different fundamentalists.

Additional verses and links

Qur’an Sura 4:34, “Men have authority over women because [Allah] has made the one superior to the other… Good women are obedient… As for those from whom you fear disobedience, admonish them and send them to beds apart and beat them. Then if they obey you, take no further action against them…”

http://www.addthis.com/bookmark.php

 

Closing the Theological Loop of the Faith and Works Debate.

The Death of Jesus

The Death of Jesus (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cruising the blogosphere or Twitter can be very revealing.

It seems you can always find a comment or article by someone expressing concern for an apparent lack of focus on works and holiness on the part of Christians. They almost always quote James 2:17.

 “Even so faith, if it has not works, is dead, being alone.”(James 2:17)

And then you have another group who only wants to quote about love.

  If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing.”(1 Corinthians 13:3) 

Both are true. The Answer is in closing the theological loop of the Faith and Works Debate.

Faith without Works is dead.

Works without Love is Nothing.

The only question is; “How do we find this LOVE we need so our works will amount to something instead of nothing?”

This is how,…

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus. He is God in flesh and He came here just to save us and make us His own.

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus and His cross. Jesus was born to die there. He took our sins on Himself. He was perfect and Holy. Christ alone was worthy to pay our debt.

Let us fix our eyes on Jesus and His resurrection from the dead. He conquered death so He alone could give life to all who come to Him in faith, believing Christ died for them and accepting Him as Lord and Savior.

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the JOY set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Hebrews 12:2)

“We love because he first loved us.”(1 John  4:19)

The Pathway to Blessing

AbrahamAndIsaac

Commitment on Trial

Genesis 22:4-18

Abraham began walking with the Lord many years before he was asked to offer Isaac on the altar. His first step had been to leave his home and relatives and go to a land God pledged to show him. But now he was being told to give up the person he cherished most. Isaac was the son of promise–the one through whom God would bring forth a great nation and bless the entire world. This was the biggest challenge Abraham had ever faced, yet he obeyed.

The Lord never allows us to rest on a spiritual plateau. That’s why He at times tests our commitment. These stretching opportunities are an expression of His love because He knows that standing still is not what’s best for us. The testing is designed to help us grow in faith, obedience, and spiritual maturity while increasing our dedication. That is the way we become valuable servants in His kingdom.

Abraham’s obedience to this crucial test was determined by his understanding of God. He believed that the Lord would keep His promise to give him descendants through Isaac, even if it required raising the boy from the dead (Heb. 11:17-19). That’s why Abraham confidently declared to his servants, “We will worship and return to you” (Gen. 22:5, emphasis added). He knew the Lord was faithful.

If you’re going through a time of testing, God is seeking to raise your commitment to a new level. He wants to prove to you that He’s faithful to His promises and will greatly bless you for your obedience. The stretching may be painful, but He will wrap you in His love and carry you to victory.

Charles Stanley

The Virgin Birth – Christianity Has a Divine Founder Who Is Fully God and Fully Man – Jesus Christ.

The Virgin Birth – Christianity Has a Divine Founder Who Is Fully God and Fully Man- Jesus Christ. 

Whose Son Is the Christ?

(From The Bible) Matthew 22:40-46

” While the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?”

“The son of David,” they replied.

He said to them, “How is it then that David, speaking by the Spirit, calls him ‘Lord’? For he says,

 ‘The Lord said to my Lord:
    “Sit at my right hand
until I put your enemies
    under your feet.”

 If then David calls him ‘Lord,’ how can he be his son?” No one could say a word in reply, and from that day on no one dared to ask him any more questions.”

 

Simply put….

 God didn’t make another God. Jesus is God as fully man and fully God. 

The Holy Spirit of God made life happen in the virgin, Mary’s womb.

God can do anything as big as He wants.

Even if His ways are bigger than our minds can grasp.

 Thats why its called faith….

 

Come to Jesus and Obtain the Fullness of Love and of Grace

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“The best way to come to Christ is to come meaning to get everything, and to obtain all the plenitude of grace, which he has laid up in store, and promised freely to give. Some poor souls who come to Jesus Christ seem as if they wanted a little relief from fear, a hope that they may just get saved, and a fair chance of going to heaven when they die. Pray do not come in that way, my dear friend. Come intending to obtain the fullness of love, the uttermost of grace.” C.H.Spurgeon

Ephesians 1:13,14 “And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.”

The Road Map For Renewal For America – Gospel Shaped Ministry – By Tim Keller

“Gospel ministry is endlessly creative,it’s ever new,it means that you can preach the Gospel and you never have to be afraid of boring people.”

“The Gospel is what every theological category should be expounding when we do our theology.”

 “Every sermon ought to be about Jesus. It doesn’t matter what passage, or if it’s the Old Testament or the New Testament,it should be Jesus”

“Father, we want to be Gospel shaped people now.”

Tim Keller

This video is 54 minutes long.

If you can watch this video but only  have time for a few minutes of it, I suggest you watch the last 11 minutes, and come back for the rest later.

If you can watch the entire video you may conclude it is one of the best, and perhaps the best sermon I have posted by Tim Keller.

If you cannot watch the entire video, I will be posting more quotes from this video as I find the time. Please come back for more.

The Very Best Place To Live

 

 

heavens

heavens (Photo credit: Mystic Musings…)

 

“For here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.” (Hebrews 13:14)

 

Heaven.

 

Think of it.
Living with God in God’s city!
Streets paved with pure gold.

 

Jobs- Don’t need them. Everything is God’s and all who received Christ are His royal family! We will have no want or need except to be with God.
Crime rate – eternally zero.
Climate – always perfect, never storms or cloudy, never too hot or too sunny, in fact, it is always day time because Christ is always there and His glory is it’s light!
Health- Our bodies are totally changed into perfect bodies when Christ returns to take us home. No more illnesses or death, weaknesses or bad health ever. Our new bodies will be incorruptible.

 

Ethnic diversity- People from every kingdom,nation, and tribe on Earth.

 

Things to do- Basking in the full and continually abundant love of almighty God. Worshiping God in His presence will be a natural response.

 

The ultimate best place to live is literally out of this world!
But we can have our citizenship to that city now.
The price of our residence in Heaven has been paid for already by a generous benefactor, God.

 

” for God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.”(John 3:16)

 

In fact, if we decide we want to go there, God will personally seal the deal.

 

(Ephesians 1:13,14)” And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession—to the praise of his glory.”

 

If you want to be sure now of where you will live for eternity, ask Jesus to be your Lord and Savior now,…He’s listening.

 

Ayn Rand on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, 1967 – She Was An Atheist

Ayn Rand,Author of Atlas Shrugged, First Appearance on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson, 1967

Part 1 of 2

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Part 1 -This is the same interview from a different source in case the first one has been removed again-

Part 2 – This is the same interview from a different source in case the first one has been removed again-

“Mankind suffers from two excesses: to exclude reason, and to live by nothing but reason.” ~ Blaise Pascal~
Faith owns the comprehension of things eternal.
Reason owns the comprehension of things temporal.
The eternal transcends the temporal.

Carson did an incredible job interviewing Rand. Although the video is 26 minutes long, the basis for her beliefs and philosophy are revealed in the first few minutes.

He starts right off by asking her,“What are the basic principles of your definition of objectivity and of your philosophy you believe in ?”

Her answer said it all, “The basic principle of objectivism is that man must be guided exclusively by reason.”

This glaring hole in her philosophy exposes her atheism,which she openly professed to believe.

We all have the right and freedom to choose our own path and destiny, but to deny the laws that govern the means of arriving at our desired destination belong to our creator, whom she openly denies to exist.

“The just shall live by faith.” (Romans 1:17)

The laws of reason and nature do not dictate the actions or ability of the Creator.

Rather, God dictates the laws that apply to us, and He lives beyond those limitations.

To believe in God’s unlimited abilities is to have faith, which transcends reason.

The seeds of postmodernism can be found in her belief that we should arrive at the same moral truth purely by reason.

Time has proven Rand is wrong.

She believed that altruism and self interest were in opposition to each other and that society must choose one or the other.

Yet she even conceded to Carson that philosophy had many definitions for morality and what is ethical.

Rand believed in capitalism. What she failed to see was that capitalism only works so long as democracy is sustained.

Democracy is dependent on freedom, and freedom requires personal responsibility.
Personal responsibility requires a moral standard. Jesus is that standard, and His sacrifice is our model.

A moral standard is sameness.

This is where Ayn Rand has been proven wrong.

The predominate philosophy today is postmodernism, the belief that,”what you believe is okay for you and what I believe is okay for me.”

Postmodernism does not fulfill Rand’s vision of a single standard for morals and ethics.

Having come from an extreme socialist country, Russia, she clearly disavowed forced altruism,which is what socialism is.

But Rand however did not disavow Communism’s atheism. For had she embraced Christianity, she would have seen in Christ, the inspiration for self sacrifice that most of our founding fathers saw and followed.

Jesus Christ is the supreme symbol of moral standard many signers of our Declaration of Independence followed when they willfully gave their lives and possessions for a higher ideal.

Ayn Rand’s philosophy is anti-socialistic, which would appeal to fiscal conservatives who do not have a well developed religious philosophy.

The problem is that Ayn Rand’s philosophy is also fatally anti-democratic.

Selfishness leads to greed, which is not only morally wrong, it is killing our politics, banking system, government and people.
And when self becomes the god of a nation, democracy fails.

John 15:13 Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. (NIV Bible)

Proverbs 19:17 “He who has pity on the poor lends to the Lord,
And He will pay back what he has given.”

“Mankind suffers from two excesses: to exclude reason, and to live by nothing but reason.” ~ Blaise Pascal~

Breakthrough Discovery of DNA – We Are Far More Intelligently Designed Than We Knew Before

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“It now seems to me that the findings of more than fifty years of DNA research have provided materials for a new and enormously powerful argument to design.”

~Antony Flew ~ 

Anthony Flew was the most vociferous atheist of the 1970’s, 80’s, and 90’s. and then he discovered the similarities of the Biblical account of word based creation in the Bible and word based DNA in all living things and people.

Scientists continue to discover that we are far more intelligently designed than we previously knew.

“After all, says Gerstein,(one of the Gnome Project leaders), it took more than half a century to get from the realization that DNA is the hereditary material of life to the sequence of the human genome. “You could almost imagine that the scientific programme for the next century is really understanding that sequence.” (Mark Gerstein, a computational biologist at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, who helped to design the data architecture for ENCODE project involving over 500 scientists)

Scientists have discovered that at least 80 % of our DNA is active in all our biological processes.
Prior to these results scientists believed only 2 percent of our DNA to be active and the rest was ,”junk DNA”.
This new clinical study proves that DNA is far more intricate and complex than previously believed.

The new results are a blow to the Evolutionary Theorists of Darwinism.

The fact that the Genesis account of creation in the Bible shows that ,”God Spoke, and it was,”has long been the Intelligent Design community’s greatest scientific evidence for proving God created everything.

Life ,and all living things have DNA.

DNA is a language. The words often used in reference to DNA and its function are, gnome, code, all meaning information in sophisticated sequence and sophisticated purposes.

Given the fact that there are only 4 letters to the DNA alphabet, and this scientific team thinks science will be about deciphering its meaning for the next 100 years ?, its safe to say we are not here by accident.

Our DNA reflects the Genesis record of creation in the Bible where everything came to be through the spoken word and language of Almighty God.

DNA is a detailed record and result of what God said at the creation of all living things.

But Christians have always been in the place where science will eventually arrive.

Psalm 139:14
“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.”

The link below is to one of the many articles released.

http://www.nature.com/news/encode-the-human-encyclopaedia-1.11312

God has a promise and eternal hope for you and me. This time it involves becoming a new creation. This is God’s promise.

2 Corinthians 5:17
“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!”

You Shall Love The Lord Your God

“Whatever your heart clings to and confides in, that is really your God.” ~MartinLuther~

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. “And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart.” (Deuteronomy 6:3-6)

We are commanded to love God.

The command is actually the context for the Ten Commandments.

As Martin Luther pointed out,“We do not disobey any of the other commandments until we first disobey this, “You shall love the Lord your God.”

God gave this command in the old testament. God gave Christ, the ultimate reason to love Him, in the new testament.

“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him, should not perish, but have everlasting life. ” John 3:16

If an all-powerful, all-knowing God would give everything for, why would you not trust Him and love Him?

He knows suffering, because He suffered.

What more could He do?

Cling to Jesus Christ.

The NEW Serenity Prayer

God, grant me the serenity to accept that you can do anything, Courage to believe I can do all things through Christ, And wisdom to believe it is so.”– God Came Down

“The Spirit which rests upon Jesus must anoint us also, or the measure of faith will not be enlarged.”
Breathe then the prayer to God, my brother, “Increase my faith:” this will be a far wiser course than to resolve in your own strength, “I will believe more,” for, perhaps, in rebuke of your pride you will fall into a decaying state, and even believe less. After having made so vainglorious a resolution, you may fall into grievous despondency: do not therefore say, “I will accumulate more faith,” but pray “Lord, I believe, help thou mine unbelief.” Herein is your wisdom.”– C.H.Spurgeon —

God Grant Me Faith – Prayer

Lord thank you for the faith to change what I can, the courage to believe nothing is too hard for you, and the wisdom to know that for sure. — God Came Down

“The Spirit which rests upon Jesus must anoint us also, or the measure of faith will not be enlarged.”
Breathe then the prayer to God, my brother, “Increase my faith:” this will be a far wiser course than to resolve in your own strength, “I will believe more,” for, perhaps, in rebuke of your pride you will fall into a decaying state, and even believe less. After having made so vainglorious a resolution, you may fall into grievous despondency: do not therefore say, “I will accumulate more faith,” but pray “Lord, I believe, help my unbelief.” Herein is your wisdom.”– C.H.Spurgeon —

We Will All Stand Before God, And Adore Him

“Look unto me, and be you saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word has gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear.”(Isaiah 45:22 45:23)

To behold God is to behold Perfectly complete beauty.

To behold God is at once to be amazed in rapture and awe.
All of nature’s glory combined can’t come close to the glory of the one Creator.

We will see God.
Everyone will behold His glory and splendor, and will desire nothing more than to bask in His presence forever.
We will kneel before Him and His perfect majesty.

I personally believe that even the unquenchable torments of the fires of Hell will not compare with the eternal torment of having witnessed God in all His splendor, and not being able to partake in His eternal presence, but being eternally cast from Him whom we were created to adore.

The Book of Life will be opened, and all who’s name are not written in it will be cast into the Lake of Fire.
But I can’t help but believe that the thing that will be even worse than Hell’s fire will be the experience God’s presence and then being torn away from Him and His perfect love,perfect beauty and glory forever.

John 1:12
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:”

His name is Jesus