A lot of times people who think Christianity is just another tale created by…. for…. (You can fill in what you have heard as well or what you may usually say) also state that they are “open-minded”. In reference to religion or spirituality they either believe _____ or don’t believe in anything at all because they go by “facts”, you know things they can “see” and “verify”. Faith? No room for it. “I got it see it and touch it” is a common phrase. One can punch holes in the logic of the so-called reason but then it doesn’t accomplish too much (to the best of my knowledge).
Recently I have changed my approach. Now I simply state something and let the Holy Spirit work on them when He feels there is good opportunity.
Here’s the gist:
“Ok – you are open-minded, that is good. Since you are open-minded and we are talking about something that does have eternal consequences you should try this.
After all, you are open-minded and no harm will come of it.
Starting today read one chapter in the Gospel of John per day. Before you read it simply say “God if You are there and this info is true please show me and if I need to be saved please show me.”
That’s it. Something that will take about five minutes a day for 21 days.
Now add them to your prayer list.
A lot of haters out there in the the “love-people” who are so “open-minded” when in ref to those against/unhappy with the Supreme Court’s decision last Friday.
I am glad Christians live under grace and not under the Law because no one can be saved and redeemed by the Law (Romans 2:12, 3:20-21; Galatians 2:21, 3:11 KJV: I can’t vouch for the other translations) (Sentence for those who want to quote the vast number of rules for the Jews in the OT.)
Disagreeing with the decision and with so-much of what is norm in society doesn’t (or at least shouldn’t) come with hate/venom and I hope what I wrote wasn’t misconstrued as such. I actually only had grief, concern and troubled-spirit when I wrote it. I am aware that a trick or SOP for the people referenced in the first sentence of this post is to call sincere objectors – haters. I can say/write I do not hate those who celebrate the decision on Friday. I do know – with certainty – it is all a spiritual battle.
“But God hath revealed them unto us by his Spirit: for the Spirit searcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God. For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.”
(1 Corinthians 2:10-16 KJV) don’t
So yes proper judgement is expected of the Christian. As the old saying goes “We are to be fruit-inspectors”. And don’t forget “by their fruits you shall know them” (Matthew 7:20) – and btw, Jesus did say that.
An interesting and sobering article posted this past Friday on the Time’s website. While I do not equate so-called orthodox Christianity with anything resembling Roman Catholicism, I do agree with the gist of the article. In my opinion we are now finally officially Sodom and Gomorrah and this is not the place where Bible believing Christians will be welcomed. I have posted in the past about the meticulous plans to warp this country as well as posts on the very real reality that we are involved in a spiritual war that is far more devastating than Isis, Taliban, Nazis and whomever else you can throw into the mix. Those organizations are puppets for the grand evil master-mind who has but one goal: the eternal destruction of every human soul he can get his grip on. Flight of fantasy on my part? Ladies and gentlemen I can not articulate just how bad and real it is NOR how much WORSE it is going to get here and throughout the world.
If you are identified by the world as a Christian you need to consider somethings about your life going forward. Bullseyes are being zeroed in. This is not melodramatics. Do you really stand on your convictions and beliefs? Whatever the cost?
“Why in the world are you linking gloom and doom to the USA’s Supreme Court equating homosexuals getting same-sex marriage Constitutional protection of a right?” Simple because blatant sin is being officially approved as “good”, “normal”, even “righteous”. That is completely contrary to the word of God and I and many others try to live our lives aligned and obedient to God’s word. No we are not perfect but we also don’t give up.
By the way, it was not an accident that the homosexual movement branded themselves with the rainbow. The rainbow was the first sign God gave to the human race when He promised Noah that He would never again destroy the earth with water. It is a sign for remembrance of the covenant God made with Noah and all future descendants of the human race. Trust me, it was no accident.
Woe unto them that call evil good, and good evil; that put darkness for light, and light for darkness; that put bitter for sweet, and sweet for bitter! Woe unto them that are wise in their own eyes, and prudent in their own sight!
One more further word of warning; do you remember what God says living in Sodom & Gomorrah did Lot?
For if God spared not the angels that sinned, but cast them down to hell, and delivered them into chains of darkness, to be reserved unto judgment; And spared not the old world, but saved Noah the eighth person, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood upon the world of the ungodly; And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrha into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly; And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked: (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing, vexed his righteous soul from day to day with their unlawful deeds)
(2 Peter 2:4-8)
Tomorrow being Monday, I doubt I will be posting SO this post will be my official birthday post, though it is one day early. How old you ask? Tomorrow is the big five-oh. Yep 50 freaking years old. When I opened the card from my family on Friday and saw the large word Fifty on the card, I think that was the first real time it all actually “set in” for me.
No I am not whining I will be 50. No I do not feel any closer to death that a day earlier. I have none of the baggage like in reaching the milestone of 50. But, STILL, in my opinion that is a big milestone for me and anyone else. Next “aging” milestone will be 60 so that is quite a ways off.
I did have an interesting surreal moment, actually moments this weekend. I have caught (I guess in my mind’s eye) experience (people, cars, etc) moving in a bit of a blur. Ya know like catching time speeding up further. I noticed this on Friday and Saturday. It was like the usual effect in movies/tv when they are trying to express the sudden acceleration of time. It was quite interesting. I look fwd to noticing it today and tomorrow, hopefully.
“So Kevin, after almost fifty years of life on this earth, what would you share with someone who asked?”
I guess several things, though they will lack eloquence and artful writing…
* I think we spend way too much time on the temporal things instead of the more important eternal matters.
* A friend is someone that is THERE and PRESENT of their own volition. Anything else is a paid acquaintance at best.
* Too often fondness is incorrectly called love.
* We must plan and proactively engage in what needs to be done in order to have the life we want to experience.
* Peace requires a lot of preparation and hard work…..and often common sense.
* Much of life is vanity.
* Our thinking affects our health, perspective and our experiences.
* Healthy eating is something one owes themselves. and their loved-ones.
* Integrity is something we must work hard to achieve and keep.
* One’s imagination can and usually will produce far more horrible experiences than that one will actually experience so try to shift one’s focus.
* A personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ and God, the Father is worth far more than any other relationship one can have on this earth.
* Do your very best to not grieve the Holy Spirit.
* The most important book one can read and re-read and apply to their life is the Holy Bible; particularly the KJV.
* One needs to be engaged in healthy hobbies in order to have a balanced life.
* A true friend can be a precious gift.
* Life will be full of hard choices, seek the wisdom of God and then act in faith.
* Speak kindly to yourself in your mind. Harmful words damage your being and spirit.
* Every family has some dysfunction that needs to be delicately managed.
* Read “good” books each week.
* Travel is good for your life and awareness.
* Be kind because everyone is going through trials and hard things.
* A smile is a powerful gift and a good hug even more so.
* Don’t go to bed angry.
* Don’t get tangled with “stuff” and getting more and more of it.
* Don’t compare oneself with another human being. No good will come of it.
* Work hard to be content.
* Civility is a badge of honor.
* Set timed goals for oneself so that you can grow and develop.
* Marriage is a commitment, hard work and well worth it.
* Work hard to be the very best you can be for others and for your own self.
I am surpised so many things actually came to mind just now. That took less than 10 minutes to put in writing.
From In Touch (emphasis added)
“The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he (Thomas) said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. And after eight days again his disciples were within, and Thomas with them: then came Jesus, the doors being shut, and stood in the midst, and said, Peace be unto you. Then saith he to Thomas, Reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing. And Thomas answered and said unto him, My Lord and my God. Jesus saith unto him, Thomas, because thou hast seen me, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed.”
Thomas is an “everyman”. He hadn’t yet seen the resurrected Jesus, though he’d heard, as you and I have heard that Jesus had risen from the dead. Angry, hurt, and confused, he resisted believing the bewildering accounts of resurrection—accounts that came from trusted friends he had lived with for three years.
Thomas was no stranger to resurrection. With his own eyes, he’d seen Jesus raise Lazarus from the dead—and he had believed. But he had also personally seen Jesus crucified, and that’s when his dream of the kingdom died. Crucifixion seemed more powerful than resurrection, more final. Faith crumbled; hope was crushed.
Then Jesus appeared alive, and gently said, “Peace be with you,” offering Thomas all the proof he needed. The proof he personally needed. Resurrection, it turns out, was more permanent than death.Face it: Believing in resurrection isn’t easy no matter how many people tell you it happened. Jesus still has to bring us to belief, to give our hearts and minds and souls peace in faith. Without appearing physically to us, He gives us what we need in order to believe—what we ourselves need. And as He did with Thomas, Jesus seeks us out.
1. Thomas had seen miracles; he’d witnessed many demonstrations of Jesus’ supernatural power. Yet the crucifixion shook his faith badly. Has anything ever shaken your faith to the core, even though you may previously have seen numerous works of God? What can you learn from Thomas’s experience?
2. In order to believe, Thomas needed something tangible—something special for him. The vast majority of Christians have never seen the resurrected Jesus, yet God gives us what we each need in order to believe. What did (or do) you need for faith to become real? How has Jesus revealed Himself to you or how do you still need Him to do so?
The purpose of this post is to get on a couple pages what I believe to be a reason why many people do not accept the Bible and specifically why they do not believe the doctrine of salvation as understood as perseverance of the saints who of their own freewill believe and accept that the Jesus of the Gospels is the Lord Jesus Christ, the Messiah, God manifest in the flesh, the one who gave His life as a ransom for sin at Golgotha and was buried and three days later resurrected and some days later ascended into Heaven and will soon come back to rule and reign on this earth (ref).
I am not going to use a lot of Bible verses, just a few, because if someone does not believe the Bible is the Word of God then providing a bazillion verse references will only exacerbate matters.
Here I go…
I believe Lucifer was a created being, an anointed cherub who covered the throne of God. He was the most beautiful of the spiritual beings God created. Over a matter of time he developed pride and misplaced and used it as a means to have aspirations to at least put himself on the same level of God. It was this attempt that he apparently tried to carry out that resulted in him being punished and expelled out of Heaven (technically the third heaven) which is where God’s throne is (Isaiah 14:12-26; Ezekiel 28:12-19). Through this expulsion he changed and gained the name of Satan. Through this he changed but he can still appear to human beings as an angel of light or pretty much however he wants to appear.
Satan saw God recreate the earth and create Adam and Eve and he saw immediately a means to attack God and that was to ruin these two beings. Through deception he got Eve to disobey God and the Adam willfully disobeyed God choosing to follow Eve. God appears in the garden of Eden and Satan is there with Adam and Eve. Pay close attention. God pronounces judgments and prophecies what will eventually happen (Genesis 3 and specifically verse 15). “And I will put enmity between thee and the woman, and between thy seed and her seed; it shall bruise thy head, and thou shalt bruise his heel.”
Satan is wiser than any human being. Satan heard the judgment and knew immediately what it was implying: a virgin would conceive and give birth to the Savior of all the creation. He understood this because a woman does not have seed and yet look at the verse again. Something was going to occur that involved something outside of human flesh to create a very special human being. Now much could be said as to what would transpire but I will limit it to two thoughts. The first is Satan knew he needed to wipe out a specific line/heritage so as to frustrate the birth, maturation and victory of this special human being. The second, one of many fail-safe plans, he needed to pervert the words of God so as to get any future offspring to not correctly understand and believe it.
In the first case we see Cain killing Abel then fallen angels coming down and polluting all of creation resulting also in what is known as giants (that is something for a different post, Genesis 6) such that only one man and his immediate family are genetically clean, righteous – Noah. Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord. God wipes out all of His creation with a flood. Time passes and God selects Abram (later his name is changed to Abraham) and God tells him that he will bless him and give him a great land. Fast forward Jacob whose name is changed to Israel, Joseph, Moses, Pharaoh, what follows is a history of war, blessings, disobedience and judgment over and over again. Also over this period nations try to wipe out the people of Israel. Fast forward to around 3 BC a virgin conceives and later gives birth – what happens? As soon as Herod finds out he has every child 2 years and younger murdered. Why? Twofold, Herod was trying to preserve his throne and Satan was trying to kill that special human being that God said would save His creation about 4000 years ago.
In the second matter, in those 4000 years Satan rose up Nimrod (Genesis 10 & 11) who was worshipped and later Semiramis and Tammuz and the whole shebang when you study it is a woman who gives birth from the gods and she has a son who becomes her husband and he dies and is resurrected and do you see what is happening? From these starts the mystery religion is formed and it goes from the area of Persia down to Egypt back out to Persia and Palestine and then up and over to Asia Minor and Europe. Through the years its teachings change and adapt and grow to entangle cultures and people (see the definitive work about this: Hislop’s Two Babylons). From history as many people already know you can trace religions which taught a virgin born baby, a baby that was god, a god that was one yet many, blood sacrifice, resurrection of god-being, etc.
Satan is not foolish or ignorant. He knew exactly what to do to gain the best chance of blinding people to the Truth and have them dwell in Hell with him for all eternity. The human race is a means to an end to him. The end is his efforts to hurt and frustrate God. He knows what the end will be. He believes God’s word though he convinces humans it is all fables and lies. He knows. Remember he was in existence before the earth and creation was brought into being. He knows God and he knows God will keep His word.
At this moment Satan is the god of this world. Soon the Lord Jesus Christ will come and defeat him and wrap him in chains to bind and throw him in the bottomless pit. Jesus will then rule and reign on this earth (Revelation 19 & 20).
So what are you going to do with this information and Jesus?
[please forgive type-o-s and poor grammar]
To the best of my knowledge all religions but Christianity (which is different from Roman Catholicism) teach that one must work or earn their way to heaven, nirvana, or whatever the term is for the blessed hereafter. The god or prophet gives rules and admonitions that one must follow and obey so as to have a hope, a possibility of gaining eternal bliss.
With Christianity, the God of the world said here is what you would have to do – be perfect everyday of your life and this will require sacrifices and rituals to cling to in order to hope for eternal bliss. In essence at this point of the story it is the same as all other religions.
Then He did the unthinkable and said, I know you can’t do it so I will send my Son to you and He will do it and He will fulfill the required righteousness on your behalf and if you accept His work, His payment for your life – if that is all you will trust in to enter Heaven, you then can freely enter.
Immanuel – God with us. Doing for us what we could not do in order to have an eternity we desperately desire.
Acts 15:11 But we believe that through the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ we shall be saved,
Galatians 2:16 Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
Galatians 3:11 But that no man is justified by the law in the sight of God, it is evident: for, The just shall live by faith.
Galatians 3:22 But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Jesus Christ might be given to them that believe.
Galatians 3:24 Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith.
Ephesians 2:8&9 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: Not of works, lest any man should boast.