Rick Warren and the Daniel Plan

January 27th, 2011

Check out the the posted workbook and the introductory seminars at Saddleback Church.

Rick Warren, so-named America’s Pastor, introduces the Daniel Plan. The Decade of Destiny, seemingly veiled dominiionism, is unveiled and with it, the world-renowned medical doctors are introduced. In the workbook, a short bio on each of the doctors is provided for you. What is not provided for you in these bios are the spiritual qualifications of these doctors. For those who exercise discernment, you may find that at Renew America.

Rick Warren ‘s impetus for this is, as he says “The Father made your body, Jesus paid for your body and the spirit lives in your body so you better take care of it! That is an issue that God spoke to me about, and said you need to do this for your sake, Rick.”

O_o  Hmmm… I am confused here and have to ask… is that law, or grace? It sure smacks of law to me!

I am all for all of us getting healthy for that sake alone. I am sure it does have some spiritual benefits now by helping stamina and drive. But, please do not confuse it and put it in the place of the gospel.

Our entire mission should be that until the whole world hears the gospel, we should not stop proclaiming it. Even if the whole world hears, I am sure we should not stop!

We are all appointed one day to die, and taking care of our bodies is important. However, remember what the bible says in Luke 12:22-25

“And he said to his disciples, Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat, nor about your body, what you will put on. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens: they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn, and yet God feeds them. Of how much more value are you than the birds! And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?

Jesus then asks a very rhetorical question in verse 26.

” If then you are not able to do as small a thing as that, why are you anxious about the rest?”

I understand the context of the scripture may pertain somewhat to the subject matter at hand, but my point comes from the first part of Jesus’ question in Luke 12:26. Jesus makes the point that not one of us can add any stature to our lives!

We are instructed to seek first the kingdom of God… this is our calling. Matthew 6:33 says further, we are to seek after righteousness… and then we will be provided everything we need.

Sloth, gluttony and covetousness are at the root of America’s health problems. And yes, these are sins. So the problem that we have is sin. What is the Bible’s remedy?

It’s Jesus and His finished work on Calvary!

By this, I know Saddleback is tackling the problem the wrong way. They are doing it through the law, and law brings wrath (Romans 4:14!) They have prepared a yoke for you, and are asking you to willingly carry it. The only way out of this problem is REPENTANCE, not work!

But then, it leaves a greater question to churches… Why are these sins accepted, covered and not confronted as other sins, like adultery or homosexuality?

What Rick Warren is instructing you to do is NOT seek righteousness, but work to obtain something else for yourself. The real issue at hand is not just to become healthy! That cannot provide the cure. This case, as with any other stronghold sin, requires repentance, and necessitates a like-minded brother or sister with who are willing to be and to hold others accountable. What a concept!

But, back to the seminar…

After reading these short bios, Rick introduces each doctor and what they will speak on.

First… Dr. Amen will speak on motivation meaning, and will come back later on stress, belief and brain health. One question that pops into my mind is belief in what? And another, will the psuedo-science of psychiatry be involved?

Next, Dr. Hyman will speak on the fascinating topic of functional medicine. It will be a “whole systems” approach to health. Why do I immediately think holistic, universality?

And, finally… Dr. Oz will speak on losing weight and keys to longevity. He sends a personal hi from the studio of “30 Rock.” The words Daniel Plan are introduced… we will learn from the best! Dr. Oz exclaims “We believe that you could become a national model for many of the congregations and houses of worship to get healthy.”

All three of these doctors, who Rick says are his friends, have agreed to put together this Daniel Plan. The website is introduced… and I am sure there is a reference to Daniel, and his friends, Hannaniah, Asariah and Mishael.

Let us take a look at this Daniel Plan by going to the source, Daniel himself. Daniel opens his book by giving us the setting of how he and his friend s came to be in the Babylonian palace of Nebuchadnezzar. How some of the (already) FITTEST young of the royal and noble clans of Israel would be educated in the customs of the Chaldeans. We’ll pick it up in Daniel 1:5

The king assigned them a daily portion of the food that the king ate, and of the wine that he drank. They were to be educated for three years, and at the end of that time they were to stand before the king.

So, the king of Babylon would care for these young teenagers as royals. They would be provided a portion from the king’s table. But as we read further, we come to Daniel 5:8-10.

But Daniel resolved that he would not defile himself with the king’s food, or with the wine that he drank. Therefore he asked the chief of the eunuchs to allow him not to defile himself. And God gave Daniel favor and compassion in the sight of the chief of the eunuchs, and the chief of the eunuchs said to Daniel, “I fear my lord the king, who assigned your food and your drink; for why should he see that you were in worse condition than the youths who are of your own age? So you would endanger my head with the king.”

It was not that the king’s diet was bad. It was that Daniel “resolved he would not defile himself.” He was required to keep the Kosher dietary laws that all of Israel agreed to keep under the old covenant. Whether the king’s delicacies were pork, some other forbidden meat, or it wa just not bled properly, is unknown. But, it was not simply because it was meat. That would violate the command God gave to all after the flood in Genesis 9:3-4. But Daniel knew, vegetables would not have been sacrificed to other gods and would not defile him.

Daniel gave the servant an option, he said…

Daniel 5:12-13: “Test your servants for ten days; let us be given vegetables to eat and water to drink. Then let our appearance and the appearance of the youths who eat the king’s food be observed by you, and deal with your servants according to what you see.”

The servant agreed, and Daniel and his friends drank water and ate vegetables. We know what happens in the story… but have we really payed attention to the details?

Do you understand why the eunuch was upset to begin with? Could it be that just eating vegetables is not really healthy in the long run? Let’s find out…

Daniel 5:16 At the end of ten days it was seen that they were better in appearance and fatter in flesh than all the youths who ate the king’s food.

So, at the end of ten days, Daniel and his friends looked better and FATTER than all the other youths who ate the king’s food. Do you understand? They were FATTER!

O_o   Hmmm… I know, it is confusing! This “plan” as described by Daniel actually made fit people fatter than others not fed the same diet!

Here is how the account of this dietary saga ends, in Daniel 5: 17-20.

As for these four youths, God gave them learning and skill in all literature and wisdom, and Daniel had understanding in all visions and dreams. At the end of the time, when the king had commanded that they should be brought in, the chief of the eunuchs brought them in before Nebuchadnezzar. And the king spoke with them, and among all of them none was found like Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah. Therefore they stood before the king. And in every matter of wisdom and understanding about which the king inquired of them, he found them ten times better than all the magicians and enchanters that were in all his kingdom.

Think about it!

So God blessed Daniel and his friends, causing the diet that they ate to keep them healthy, in fact, in better health than all the rest of the youth. The food from the kings table was not wrong to eat because of its nutritional value, but only for the promise they had made to God not to defile themselves. It was God who blessed them, for their commitment to keep His ways, not just eating a diet of vegetables!

I am not telling you to not try to be healthier, but please… do not spiritualize it! There are plenty of reasons to stay healthy. But, when spiritualized, many dangers become imminent… Not the least of which is spiritual deception by the teachers involved.

We are promised by Rick Warren that The Daniel Plan will be promulgated through small groups. Be very prayerful, there are many who do not discern the danger. To most, I am sure this is coming to your small group, and soon. And there will be many who will be deceived… missing the grace of God, and the free gift of Jesus Christ… salvation!

That would be terrible indeed.

It is best for us to refect the teaching of those who would place us under a yoke other than that Jesus gave. Make no mistake. It is a yoke, and it fits right in line with the United Nations Agenda 21… A bold plan that is being implemented in every facet of society to further sustainable communities. Sustainable communities requires some form of population control, though tacit (meaning unspoken) just let your mind wonder.

Saddleback would like everyone to join them in this endeavor. It is cloaked in Biblical themes, but is it really a mechanism for control? This fits, conveniently, into the current global political, ecological and economic pressures to centralize control. The church is the last stronghold, but is quickly succumbing to this deception.

Guard yourselves, make sure you know… Satan tempted Eve by corrupting “God’s words.” See for yourself in Genesis 3:1. He asked Eve “Did not God say…” Look to those who teach you, make sure they are not the doing the same.

Jesus warned us, in the parable of the mustard seed, in Mark 4:30-32, and as Dr. Thomas Ice explains it in Consistent Biblical Futurism

“Even though specific prophecy is not given concerning the present church age, we have seen that the New Testament does paint a general picture of the course of this age. We learn that the purpose of this age is to preach the gospel throughout the world, knowing that there will be various responses to the message. As the church starts out small, like a mustard seed, it will nevertheless grow into a large tree where birds will come and dwell in its branches. Thus, the larger that Christendom grows the more apostate it will become.”

Pastor Joel Osteen on Homosexuality and Sin

January 25th, 2011

Here is a teaser for an upcoming interview for Wednesday 26 January 2011 that appeared on CNN’s Piers Morgan Tonight blog today.

Piers Morgan sits down with author and pastor Joel Osteen, and his wife Victoria Osteen.

What is interesting, is Osteen has apparently ben coaxed by Piers to call homosexuality a sin. Something Osteen has been reluctant to outright declare.

Joel Osteen, once again provided a national stage, seems to have missed a golden opportunity! I say seem, only because in TV anything can be edited… but consider the following exchange between Morgan and Osteen on the topic of homosexuality:

MORGAN: Say a friend of mine like Elton John watching this at home, who with his partner – a civil partner, David Furnish – have just had a surrogate child which was born on Christmas day. They’re going to be pretty angry what they hear. They’re going to think who are you to call them a sinner.

J. OSTEEN: Yes.

MORGAN: But why are they sinners in your eyes?

J. OSTEEN: Well, it’s strictly back to what the scripture says. I mean, I can’t grab one part and say God wants you to be blessed and live an abundant life, and not grab the other part that says, you know what? You know, live that kind of life. So it comes back to the scripture. I’m not the judge. You know, God didn’t tell me to go around judging everybody.

Osteen chose to be backed into a corner by a question from Morgan. A simple grasp of doctrine and theology would have prompted me to immediately say this back to Morgan.

ME: Piers, I believe that Elton John is a sinner. And yes, I believe his partner is a sinner, too. In fact, I KNOW it! It is not judgment or condemnation but fact.

I also know something else… I know that you, Piers, are a sinner! I know that I, too, am a sinner! The bible declares so in Romans 3:23. In Romans 3:10 it says, there is none righteous.

Homosexuality is a sin, yes. So is lying, stealing, lusting… heck even going shopping is really coveting. Yep, you got it, coveting is a sin.

But… given this predicament, What do we, as sinners, do?

That is where the good news enters. Romans 5:8-9 declares that Christ died for us and that through Him we are saved from God’s wrath. We must repent.

John 3:16-18 makes it very clear. I don’t judge you, nor do I condemn you or any other person. Your own sin does that. WE must believe on Who He is, and what He did and move from condemnation to salvation.

And John 3:36 tells us He that has the Son has life, and he who does not, the wrath of God abides on him.

Come on Pastor Joel… study to show yourself approved. (2 Timothy 2:15)

And Piers… Is not calling Joel a judge then putting you in the same supposed predicament you would like to hang on Joel?

I mean really… How can you JUDGE HIM?

One word to describe the Piers’ dudgeon! Hypocrisy! Yeah, I judged!

Everything is not Relative!

October 31st, 2010

A couple of acquaintances have recently said to me, in different conversations, “Everything is relative.”

My response was to ask them , “Is that a relative statement?”

It is quite obvious, all is not relative!

Matthew 22:34 –40 “But when the Pharisees heard that he had silenced the Sadducees, they gathered together. And one of them, a lawyer, asked him a question to test him. “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.”

Like the Old Testament Jewish leaders, you may have read these verses and missed GRACE. You complain about all the “bad” things God does, yet you have no absolute reference for good things, other than the revelation innate in all humans. Part of that revelation is that all murder of innocents is wrong. Science has absolutely no accounting for that. It provides no viable, rational, reasonable or even logical explanation for morality.

Those who balk at the so-called atrocities contained in the bible have probably never read, nor less understood THOSE two commandments that Jesus gave in Matthew 22:37-40. The first is to love God with all your heart… the second to love your neighbor.

I could say I do not know about you, but I do. You are human like me, and I know I have not, nor currently cannot, nor have any hope of keeping these two commandments. I will probably even break them as I write this to you!

If you want to pick verses here and there and then be angry at God, you are absolutely free to do so. Mind you, that would be a violation of the two commandments Jesus gave above.

As much as you might love science, there are things that science can never, ever account for… especially good things. There is no scientific reason for good things. But we know good, conversely we also know bad.

Although you may opine that you do not believe that all of us suffer the consequences of Adam’s sin. I want to tell you we do. As humans, AND descendants of Adam, we all die a physical death! We are all cursed by that sin.

Psalm 139… (read all of it please)http://biblia.com/bible/esv/Ps139.1 tells us that the God  we want to know is a personal God. He knows all of our thoughts, I know you may not believe that, but bear with me.

God knows everything about me, he knew it before I was born. He knew the exact day, yeah, the exact moment, I would sin against Him. Yet, lovingly, He still formed me, breathed life into me, and cared for me as He does today.

Let me show you a couple of other passages– to start a foundation. In Job 31-17, Job is in some serious despair.– Job said in Job 3:3-4, “Let the day perish on which I was to be born and the night which said a boy is conceived! May that day be darkness.”

Job laments his birth, this is what he says in Job 3:16-17 “Why was I not hidden like a stillborn child, like infants who never saw light?”

Why didn’t I die in my mother’s womb? “There the wicked cease from troubling, and there the weary are at rest.” What’s he saying? He’s saying, “I’d be better off if I wouldn’t have to face a troubling life–that I would enter immediately into, REST” (emphasis mine.)

In Ecclesiastes 6:3-5 Solomon laments “What’s the point of living two thousand years if you don’t ever enjoy true goodness? You’d be better off a stillborn child.”

But, the Bible tells us sinfulness is not a condition that comes upon people when they are old enough to choose to do evil (I Kings 8:46, Psalm 51:5, Psalm 58:3, Psalm 143:2, Proverbs 20:9, Ecclesiastes 7:20, Jeremiah 17:9, Matthew 15:18, Romans 3:10-11.) It is the condition of the entire human race since Adam and Eve. Everyone born has been born in a fallen, sinful state. That becomes evident as soon as any behavioral choice is made.

Ephesians 2:3 says we are the children of wrath. The bible is clear we are born with this proclivity that will eventually result in our death.

How could we then believe in a God who would seem to prescribe this?

As I see it, it is the human condition! We all must die… but then we all also have a choice!

Consider this…. condemnation is not from God. God has said this, in 2 Peter 3:9 it says that God is not willing that any should perish. Further more, in 1 Timothy 2:4 Paul writes that God’s will is that all should be saved! This says that you are born into existence, destined to die a physical death, YET the will of God is for you to inherit eternal life!

YES, Inherit ETERNAL LIFE!

But, there is another problem…

Revelation 20:11-13 “Then I saw a great white throne and him who was seated on it. From his presence earth and sky fled away, and no place was found for them. And I saw the dead, great and small, standing before the throne, and books were opened. Then another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged by what was written in the books, according to what they had done. And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, Death and Hades gave up the dead who were in them, and they were judged, each one of them, according to what they had done.”

This tells US that we all must give account for WHAT WE DO! So we die as a result of the original (Adam’s) sin, but we must be judged by what we do, as recorded in books in heaven.

Let’s read a little further…

Revelation 20:14-15 “Then Death and Hades were thrown into the lake of fire. This is the second death, the lake of fire. And if anyone’s name was not found written in the book of life, he was thrown into the lake of fire.”

Did you catch what the real problem is in verse 15?

It says, whoever’s name was NOT found in the book of life, he was thrown into the second death. It is called a second death, because it is not a physical death, but a ETERNAL, spiritual death. All of our deeds are recorded in those books. There is judgment for the works that we have done as they have been recorded in those books. But… regardless of what is the outcome of the judgment, it all comes down to that final book! That book is called the book of life! Why does it depend on whether any of our names are recorded there, or not?

Most people believe it is what we DO that counts FOR US… but the bible is clear… WHAT WE DO CONDEMNS US already (John 3:18!)

So, God knows that we are born into sin, that is to say… born to die, He still chooses for us to go to heaven. But sometime after we are born (and it is a different time for everybody) we CHOOSE to knowingly and WILLFULLY disobey God! Just as Adam did! This is the PERSONAL SIN we become responsible for, that immediately condemns us, and leads to spiritual death, for which we must answer to God.

So, how are we saved from this destiny?

By GRACE!

It may be said, if God takes all the babies that have died to heaven, that would be His grace, because we are destined for that place… BY HIS GRACE ALONE! Right?

But, I ask, how are you saved? Is it by keeping the law and doing good things?

Would it be better… law for babies and grace for you?

Of course not!

You have no more to do with your salvation than a helpless infant! Perhaps this is what Jesus had in mind when He said in Matthew 18:3, “You who go to heaven, go to heaven as little children.” Is there a better illustration of a salvation by grace than the salvation of a helpless infant?

Any true understanding of Scripture yields the reality that all salvation is by sovereign choice by God – through grace, based on nothing that the sinner merits!

So you can choose to focus on the deplorable condition of all mankind, and the evil that is so vividly described in the bible. This evil is a direct result of sin, and sin alone.

The penalty for doing evil, is death. That is what God told Adam in Genesis 2:16-17, and that penalty HAS NEVER changed! He has not changed His mind on SIN, from the beginning of the book until the very end.

Ezekiel 18:20 says, “The soul that sins, it shall die.” Not the soul that is born into sin, it is person who commits sin. That person owes a debt, in fact… We all owe THE SAME debt to God!

Yet… it is by GRACE, AND GRACE alone, provided by HIM ALONE, that we get to ever stand in His presence. That is why it is written in Acts 3:19-20 “Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus.”

Do understand what this verse is now saying… that if we REPENT… our SINS MAY BE BLOTTED OUT! Colossians 2:14 says that Jesus “cancelled” this debt that stood against us with its compulsory legal demands, and He nailed to the cross!

So, no… all things are NOT relative.

You will die, as a result of Adam’s sin!

And you will die a second spiritual death for what you have done!

But there is an out… Ephesians 2:8-9 says that it is by grace alone we are saved. It also says through faith… What faith?

Ask! (John 4:10!) I tell you this, not to scare you, but simply in hope that your eyes may be opened to the truth.

Church Worship – The Climb?

October 13th, 2010

Well, when I think that I’ve heard everything… Saddlebacksore Church makes me sit back and shake my head. Especially after the Jonas brothers singing odes of their lust for girls at the church’s Easter service.

In this video is a song popularized by the spiritledspirited artist, Miley Cyrus, who has traded the realm of the ‘tween for sleaze. Sadly, the song was sung in “church” for worship.

Rick Warren, affectionately termed America’s Pastor, is the pastor of Saddlebacksore Church. His teachings are widely available and infused with an undertone of Pelagianism. Pelagianism teaches that man has the ability in and of himself  to obey God and earn eternal salvation.

As worship at this church, the song is fitting. The worship is to the one doing the work of salvation… oneself. It is the message of the work one must do, do, do to obtain salvation.

Christian, apostasy is not overt, it is subtle. Over time, tiny, small changes add up to compromise! There is an old saw about swallowing an elephant. It is not accomplished all at once, but one bite at a time. This is the same trick the enemy loves to use! 

Jesus cried “Tetelesti!” In other words… “It is finished,” or “paid in full!” This is recorded for us in John 19:30. We know that there is no more work required by anyone for salvation, it has been accomplished!

Paul exhorts us in Philippians 2:12 to “work out” our own salvation with fear and trembling. This is not working at, or working up our own salvation, but humbly submitting our selfish will to a holy, sinless God, Who Himself has given us justification freely!

Salvation is by grace alone, through faith alone, in Christ alone. Check out Romans 5:1-2.

The Making (or Faking) of a Christian President

September 30th, 2010

Much hoo-hah is being made over the president’sseemingextreme spiritual  makeover. It seems the apologists are working overtime to polish up the tarnished “piety” of POTUS.

After spending many years of Sundays under Jeremiah Wright’s tutelage, it seems urgent for everyone to know that Barack Obama is a Christian.

During a town hall meeting in Albuquerque, New Mexico on 28 September 2010, the president was asked this question, “Why are you a Christian?”

His answer, beginning at about 7:45 in the video link above, is as follows…

You know, I’m a Christian by choice. My family didn’t – frankly, they weren’t folks who went to church every week. And my mother was one of the most spiritual people I knew, but she didn’t raise me in the church.

I know you do not have to go to church to be a Christian, but if not under the discipline of a body of believers and like minded people, doctrine tends to drift, so-to-say.

He continues…

So I came to my Christian faith later in life and it was because the precepts of Jesus Christ spoke to me in terms of the kind of life that I would want to lead – being my brothers’ and sisters’ keeper, treating others as they would treat me.

Hmmm… now this is where I really start to wonder. First, understanding what Jesus was saying in Matthew 7:12, He was talking specifically in the context of serving others. But it seems that our president wants to be responsible for, or worse yet, to control others. This is not what Jesus Christ taught, ever! Quite frankly it is not taught anywhere else in the bible.

But let us continue…

And I think also understanding that Jesus Christ dying for my sins spoke to the humility we all have to have as human beings, that we’re sinful and we’re flawed and we make mistakes, and that we achieve salvation through the grace of God.

Respectfully, Mr. President, I think you get it wrong, it is not about us. It was Jesus Who was humbled (Philippians 2:5-8) for our sins. It was He Who died a shameful death (Isaiah 53:4-5) and took our just punishment. Yeah, we are sinful, (Romans 3:10) willful-disobedient (John 3:19-20) wretches! We offer NOTHING to a holy God, but to agree with Him about our sin, repent and then humbly serve Him and others.

Furthermore, would you continue to steal glory from God, by stating WE achieve salvation? It is only by His longsuffering, His mercy toward us, and His great sacrifice of grace that we are saved! Hallelujah!

But, as someone who has totally missed the grace of Jesus, our president would instruct us to help others.

He continued…

But what we can do, as flawed as we are, is still see God in other people and do our best to help them find their own grace.

My job is NOT to see God in others, that sounds a bit pantheistic, or universal, not surprising for a post-modern man. But we do not help people “find their own grace.” That grace is useless! It is only the grace of God (John 3:36) of that saves. There is salvation in no other name, but the name of Jesus (Acts 4:12, John 14:6.)

Jesus teaches us how to identify Christians, first, by their fruits as written in Matthew 7:16. And then by the love we have for one another as written in  John 13:34-35. Some of that fruit can be found in this previous post.

Make no mistake, I am not judging the president. I am only being like a Berean, and testing what he says against what the bible says is true!

If President Obama did as Jesus instructed in John 13:15-16. My mind might be changed. But I think the woe that Jesus spoke to the Pharisees in Matthew 23:25-26 may apply.

Is there any hope for this generation?

September 12th, 2010

As I observe the people of this generation, I truly wonder if there is any hope for them. After spending twelve years in our government schools, the graduates have been taught self esteem, an expectation of entitlement, relative values and pornographic sexuality. This is all to be expected because the main thing taught by this culture is that they evolved by random chance from miscellaneous chemicals dissolved in sea water. At the same time they are encouraged to believe in either no god whatsoever or a pan-theistic earth goddess paganism.

This is a tragedy. The result of this “education” is a generation of people that do not understand that there is absolute truth. Even though it is so easy to see that this universe was designed for life (the anthropic principle), that there have been catastrophes that reshaped the earth (the fall, the flood), they still have chosen to believe the lie that God does not exist. They are sinners that need to be redeemed, eternal souls that are choosing to spend eternity outside of the presence of God.

The biggest part of the lie is the government and media relentlessly denying one sentence: In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. (Gen. 1:1) Every chance they get, in every documentary or news story, they casually mention that evolution is a proven scientific fact. If you cannot get past the first sentence of the message God sent, you have no reason to believe that he has the authority to set up and enforce rules. If you do not have to believe in a creator you definitely have no need to believe in the need for a redeemer.

Part two is this: if you make it past the lie of evolution your total lack of training in critical thinking, logic, mathematics, history or anything else that used to make up education makes it possible for you to be a Bart Simpson like under achiever with little or no effort on your part. If you manage to find out that you are a sinner you then have about a 90% chance of ending up in a church that does not tell you about how to be redeemed, does not teach you basic biblical doctrines that will cause you to grow closer to God. Instead you will probably be entertained with  great music, fantastic broadway quality productions, highly organized programs that  help you do good things for society or the environment, anything but the blood of Jesus.

Fortunately, anything is possible for God. God does not desire for anyone to go to hell. He can talk directly to your spirit, get the truth to you. All you have to do is receive that truth and act on it. The deck is stacked against you, but keep an open mind.

Justified by the Precious Blood

August 30th, 2010

 

Oh, the precious blood
that flowed from Mercy’s side,
Washed away my sin,
When Christ my Savior died.

Oh the precious blood
of Christ the crucified,
speaks for me before your throne
where I stand justified.

It is interesting how we spend much time justifying sin. We like to think the little white lies we tell are okay because they are justifiable. We also may believe it okay to steal food when we are starving.

We know that lying and stealing are wrong. However, we want to be justified. If then we long for this justification, how is it obtained?

Do we bring out a scale and weigh the perceived good and bad, and then make a decision?

If so, and we proceed with “justified” sin, is it still not sin?

Don’t get me wrong, I am not saying that we all have to work for justification. However, we know that we need it. Romans 3:20 tells us that if we try to be good enough to always do the right thing, it will not be good enough!

As the lyric in the song above… if we have put our faith in Jesus, we ALREADY are justified! It is by Jesus’ blood alone. It testifies to God the Father as we stand before His throne.

Hey, don’t believe me! Read it here in Romans 5:9.

We cannot justify ourselves, yet it is there readily available for all! Abundant enough that all can, in Christ, stand before the throne of a holy God! (Romans 4:5)

Oh, it is precious blood indeed!

You Thought I was One Like Yourself

August 25th, 2010

Psalm 50:16-21 “But to the wicked God says: “What right have you to recite my statutes or take my covenant on your lips? For you hate discipline, and you cast my words behind you. If you see a thief, you are pleased with him, land you keep company with adulterers. “You give your mouth free rein for evil, and your tongue frames deceit. You sit and speak against your brother; you slander your own mother’s son. These things you have done, and I have been silent; you thought that I was one like yourself. But now I rebuke you and lay the charge before you.”

How careful are we in our perception of Who God is?

Do we make Him out to be like us, or do we conform ourselves to Who He is?

These are interesting questions. To some extent, we are all guilty of the charges in these verses. What I find haunting and curious is the penultimate sentence. God’s longsuffering is extended to those who do not repent.

Yet, He is not like us. He is holy, and as such He requires us to be holy and sinless. He knows that we cannot, however, the charge is still laid at our feet, and we must bear the consequences.

Unless, in His love for us, He has provided a way in which we can stand before Him blameless!

It is Jesus, His Son Who bore the consequences some 2,000 years ago. He was put to death, and rose again the third day in triumph over death. Those that put their faith in Him, like putting on a parachute… have His righteousness and holiness imputed to them, making them acceptable to stand before a Holy God.

Romans 3:23-25 “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God’s righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins.”

Stephen Hawking: Abandon the Earth

August 9th, 2010

Stephen Hawking in Abandon the Earth says…

“It will be difficult enough to avoid disaster on planet Earth in the next hundred years,”

Yessirree… I will almost say it will be darn near impossible! We can both agree this, however, the particulars of the cause and solution are very different.

My outlook is taken from yet future events as they are recorded in the books of Daniel and the book of the Revelation. In these, is written a detailed description of coming events in a future time of great tribulation on Earth. It was also spoken of by Jesus, at length, in Matthew 13. It will be terrible to behold, let alone live through.

The escape, though, will not be on space ships… it will be a call by Jesus Himself!

You want to make sure you can hear the escape call? Check out this from Wretched Radio.

Is Christianity Religion?

August 7th, 2010

All religion, basically, is man’s effort to raise himself or make himself acceptable to God. Muslim, Hinduism, Buddhism even Mormonism and to some extent Catholicism require certain work or duty to become accepted. They all have their different tenets, but there is always something YOU have to DO to become acceptable to God.

This is played out in the story of Adam and Eve in Genesis 3. After their eyes were opened to good and evil, they knew they were naked.  They tried to cover themselves with leaves to hide their nakedness and make them acceptable before God. That was the first religious act.

But Christianity is different…

The Bible tells that there is none righteous and that no one seeks after God. (Romans 3:10-18) In fact it goes so far to say that we have all sinned. (Romans 3:23) It instructs us that the burden of death on the physical world is the result of sin. (Romans 6:23)

But there is a Remedy offered in the second half of Romans 6:23, where Paul speaks of a gift from God through one man Jesus Christ. If we step a few verses backward, it tells us that even though we were not yet born, nor even considering to stop sinning, that Jesus died for us. (Romans 5:8)

So there is nothing any of us can DO to please God. What condition are we left in if we then have no hope to please God?

Romans 10:9 offers the solution. It is to look upon yourself, and agree with God on your condition and the finished work of Jesus who took our penalties upon Himself willingly! A few verses later in Romans 10:13 it is declared "For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”"

The results of salvation are summed up in a few more verses. In Romans 5:1 we find we have been justified and have found peace with God. Romans 8:1 then explains that we have been removed from our former condemnation. A little further ahead in Romans 8:38-39 we read that there is nothing that can separate us from the love of God.

That is Christianity… we are justified by faith alone, through God’s grace alone in Jesus Christ alone!