“(4) Four Ways Sin Is Useful” Or “Jeering And Flouting (s)atan” Or “Mocking The Devil Is Dangerous But Can Be Fun And Glorifying To God And His Power”

“I will ascend above the heights of the clouds; I will be like the [M]ost [H]igh.”
(Isaiah 14)

 

“The best way to drive out the devil, if he will not yield to texts of Scripture, is to jeer and flout him, for he cannot bear scorn.”
Martin Luther

The devil.. the prowde spirite.. cannot endure to be mocked.”
Thomas More

 

The quoted words of Luther and More is from “The Screwtape Letters”  written by C.S. Lewis.

 

Persons of our time do not believe in a real person, called (s)atan. Even some Christian leaders say that the devil is not a real person but a synonym for evil just as the events in Eden are a synoym. These “church leaders” are a synoym for true Bible teachers and are true examples of (s)atan’s ministers transforming themselves into Christ’s true ministers.   I do know that (s)atan is a person. We do not know where he is, but we do know he is here and he is active. We know that he is at work in this world, for he is the god of this world. He has his minions and he has an orginization. The Devil is here and he is doing what he can to defame our Lord Jesus. Of course, he cannot do anything with out God’s Permission and allowance. He is doing everything that our wise and sovereign God has always planned for him to do. (s)atan is simply stringing along those who are not written in God’s Book of Life.

That is right, readers, The events in Eden were not a surprise to the Omniscient, Omnipresent and Omnipotent God. This may be hard to accept for mistaught believers.(s)atan and his misleading of Eve and Adam was all according to God, Who has always worked everything according to His perfect will. The serpent’s treachery in Heaven and his activities in the garden were all part of God’s plan and His will. Just as Judas and his betrayal was planned, in the Psalms it was prophesied, and Christ put it in action by picking Judas as one of His disciples. One cannot believe God is all knowing if one does not believe this.

One might then ask if God is the cause of sin. He is not as He only let (s)atan do what (s)atan would do, and He allowed Eve and Adam to do in Eden. If (s)atan was able to enlist (1/3rd) 0ne-third of the angels in Heaven to follow him, could he not, with ease, do the same with Eve and Adam? Therefore, as a prosecuting attorney can use evidence, that was disallowed by a judge, if the defending attorney brings it up by mistake, so does God use sin when it is introduced by a foolish (s)atan that is doing exactly as God always knew he would. My reader this may not be something you have been taught in the past, that does not make it any less true annd proper.

This does not put God in a bad light, but it presents Him in a light of sovereignty and foreknowing, and wisdom and prudence. To believe anything else is to believe God can be caught off guard and out of full control of all things. My reader, God cannot be caught off guard, if He could what kind of God would He be?

I will, in this article, and as God is willing, demonstrate how sin is useful to God and the Christ-ian family.
1. Sin is used by God to glorify the Godhead and especially Christ in the sight of the world.
2. How sin is used by God to keep us safe in our humility.
3. How sin is used and will be used by God to separate His elect from (s)atan, sin and all evil doers.
4. How God and Christ-ians can, do, and will humiliate (s)atan now and for all time.

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  1. Sin is useful and is used by the Godhead to glorify Himself, especially God’s Son and our Lord.
    Think about this, my fellow deep and independent thinkers,
    A. If not for Sin, there would have been no need for the Word to be made flesh. For what other reason would the Eternal Word of God to become flesh and to dwell among us? What other cause would there be for Christ entering time and space to glorify the Father, Himself, and the Holy Ghost? Sin was used by the Godhead to introduce Himself to humanity and to introduce His love and His kindness, His grace and His mercy, His lonsuffering, and His great power over all things. Readers, this was all preplanned  and perfectly orchestrated in order to manifest and demonstrate God’s Immence greatness and His unlimited Glory. My reader, This is the God of Holy Writ. This is the God you have been called to love and glorify, If you worship anyone other than this God that is presented before you in this article you are worshipping a false God and you are guilty of adultery, and idolatry, and using God’s Name in vain. This may be hard to swallow, but it is far easier to swallow than it will be to swallow a cup of sin for worshipping a false God, a false idol that is not in complete and utter control of all things from the beginning, yea rather, from before the beginning all the way through to the very end. My readers, God knows the end from the beginning and from before the beginning, (Acts 15). To worshipo any other God is to worship a God that is too small to be the God of the Christ-ian faith. Give God praise and glory, worship this God, for this is the God of Holy Scripture.
    B. There would not have been any need for God to so love the world and send His only begotten Son. If not for the introduction of sin, In what other way would God manifest and demonstrate His love, that is “so” great that He would send His only begotten Son?
    Look back to the Old Testament, God gave the Jews all that was necessary. He supported them in the wilderness, He delivered them from captors time and time again, He gave them great victories over pagan cultures, He allowed them into the promised land, God gave and He gave and He gave, yet the people loved Him not for His greatness or the richness of His grace, mercy, love, and kindness, His winking at their sin for a time, His providing them the sacrifices that they may remain holy in His sight. He gave and gave and gave over, and over, and over again and again, and again but they would not love Him. Therefore, He gave His only begotten Son so that they might love Him back, but again, the Jewish race did not acknowledge God’s great love. Because of this utter show of unthankfulness God turned to the gentiles. The Gentiles upon hearing this Gospel responded with great thanks and grateful hearts

    2. God uses sin to keep us safe in humility.
    There is one way to bring about God’s anger upon one’s self. It has been proven through out Scripture and history, it is in keeping with God’s Nature and Glory, and it makes sense.
    The one way to attract God’s anger upon one’s self is to demonstrate pride, especially spiritual pride. Lucifer, Adam and Eve, King Saul, King Herod and so many other were dealt with by God for their pride getting the best of them. When their sins should have humbled them before God, as David’s sin did, they  instead, entertained feelings of greatness due to their sin. Lucifer would be the king of God’s angels and God’s people, God humbled him.  Adam and Eve would be like gods, God humbled them. King Saul saw himself as being worthy to step into the office of priest, making himself a priest as well as a prophet and king, which was an office reserves to the Coming Christ, God humbled Saul. King Herod, was said by the people, to have a voice like unto God. Herod gladly excepted this praise and worship, God humbled Herod.
    God uses sin to keep His people in the safe place of humility. You and I sin, and we all have pet sins that will not be mortified, why is this? We ask oiurselves and God, “Why cannot I mortify this (1) one or these few sins? If I could just stop these few things I would be a much better Christ-ian and God would be so pleased and I would feel so much greater.”
    Have we not all asked these questions, I hope so, because these are questions that demonstrate our understanding of sin and our need for God’s grace and our need for His only begotten Son. These sins remain in order to keep us safe from spiritual pride. It is true, if we could do away with this (1) one or these few sins we would be greater Christ-ians, we would be better Christ-ians, God would be so pleased with us, etc. And therein lies the problem my, so sick of sin, readers. If these sins were to go away so would our dependency upon God, His Son, and His Spirit. Pride would set in and instead of pleasing God we wowuld greatly anger Him. I’m sorry, but this is how our hearts and minds work. Your pet sin is saving you from God’s anger.
    This does not mean that we should cuddle or coddle up to our pet sin or sins, we should continue our warfare against it and our calling upon God’s grace to win the battles over that pet sin, knowing we will lose some battles and win some battles over it, but know this, though we will lose some battles, we have already won the war, for Christ has overcome this world and so have we, as we are in Him,  the news of the victory just have not made frontline news yet.

    3. God uses sin to separate His elect from the world. Christ has said many times, those that love Him will keep His Word and His commands. That is a positive statement. As I have taught many times, to understand a principle in Scripture one must look at a statement and look for the positive and negative truth or truths taught therein.
    Sin is used of God to show a comparison and a contrast between His elect and those not chosen. Our obedience and love, one for another, demonstates to the world that God has, in fact, sent His Son, and we are the evidence of God’s great love and kindness. The disobedience, contempt, and utter rebellion of those that belong to (s)atan demonstrate and manifest the difference between the (2) two factions that exist on this earth.
    The contempt can be seen in Christ’s command to turn the other cheek to those that would strike us on our right cheek. I have fought numerous men for sport and when I was younger for anger. I’m right handed, as is most of society, so when I strike I hit the left cheek of my opponent. But Christ spoke of the right cheek being hit. So in this scenario I do not think Christ is speaking of a fight at all.
    The only other way for the right cheek to be smitten, other than by a left handed man, is if he is struck by a man’s right handed back of the hand slap. This kind of strike shows contempt from a man in a place of power and authority. Therefore, Christ is speaking of the world’s contempt for those who have been chosen out of this world (John 15). God uses sin to manifest His grace and mercy upon some and His Holiness, Righteousness, and wrath upon others.

    4. God uses sin to befuddle and to humiliate (s)atan and his ilk. We too may and can use sin to humiliate the devil, but we must be careful and remain in a state of gratefulness, and humility when we do so. We must remain passive in this mocking of (s)atan as we are told in Jude, that even Michael, the Arch-Angel does not bring a stinging or railing rebuke to the devil.
    I have received retaliation from (s)atan’s minions for outwardly mocking (s)atan. God has allowed some attacks upon myself from (s)atan’s camp to call me back to humility. We must be passive in our flouting and mocking of (s)atan, by that I mean, God will use us as a means to flout and mock (s)atan.
    The most one should ever say unto our great foe is, “In the Great Name of our Lord and Master ( Our because God is still (s)atan’s Lord and Master), We (ourselves and the Holy Spirit, and the Angels that attend us, and the Sovereign God that ever watches over us) rebuke thee. In the Name of your Lord, Master and Maker, Get thee behind me, thou defeated devil”

    By sin, Godhead is greatly glorified especially His Son, the devil is utterly humiliated, mocked and flouted, and we are kept safe from pride. Give God your praise and worship for He is most worthy.

Godspeed.

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“Eye For An Eye And A Tooth For A tooth Is Still In Play” Or “Lawlessness Prevails Because Criminals Are Not Put To Death” Or “Grace And Mercy At 11:00AM And A Hanging At 3:00PM”

“Ye have heard that it hath been said, An eye for an eye, and a tooth for a tooth: But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”  (Matthew 5)

“Recompense to no man evil for evil…if it be possible, as much as lieth in you, live peaceably with all men… Be not overcome of evil, but overcome evil with good.”                                                                                                                                          (Romans 12)

 

God is the God of Balance. God is merciful and God is Wrathful. God Loves His own and God hates all workers of iniquity. God is tender and God is severe. Everything has it’s time and it’s place.

The passages above may seem to contradict one another. But if we believe that Scripture is inspired by God then we must believe there are no contradictions. Every word of God is Pure and every word of God fits together, nothing wanting. For example, in Christ’s sermon from the mount He says, Let your light so shine that men will see it and glorify God and then a minute later He says, When you do your good works let no man see thee.

What are we to do with these seeming inconsistencies? First we must know these are not inconsistencies. We must start off knowing that these puzzle pieces must fit together. When our Master tells us to let our light so shine and to be seen and then tells us to do our good works in secret, He is speaking of motive.

We should do good, even great works in Christ’s Name but we do not do this with the interest of drawing attention to ourselves. When we are doing a good work in Christ’s Name, we do so without looking for recognition, The Master said, if you do good works to be seen of men, then that is your reward and expect nothing from God. If you do good works in Christ’s Name and you do it without thoughts of praise and grandure, if you do good works only to please God and to help others, then God rewards you openly. These fit together nicely.

On to “eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth” being compared with the Master’s “But I say unto you, That ye resist not evil: but whosoever shall smite thee on the right cheek, turn to him the other also.”

What are we to do with this? Again, it all fits together. Eye for an eye tooth for a tooth speaks to judicial judgements. It does not speak to personal revenge. God put this law in place to keep life balanced, Eye for an eye means a balanced punishment for the crime committed. In other words, Justice does not take a life for an eye or a tooth. The penalty must fit the crime. Therefore, if a person kills another person, the killer has forfeited his life and should…no, must be put to death. The law of God states however, that one must not take personal pleasure in the death of the killer.

The law of God states that if a man kills another man, he is to be put to death. This law introduces the Avenger of Blood. The Avenger is a family member who had the right, judicially, to hunt down the murderer and summarily take his life. But, God adds a caveat, the Avenger of blood cannot take personal satisfaction and pleasure in the killing of the killer. If the Avenger of Blood takes pleasure and satisfaction, he then becomes a murderer in God’s sight, Who looks upon the heart of man. No pleasure is allowed in killing, it is a work of balance.

In this world that lieth in wickedness, the laws of God have been dismissed as brutal and inhuman and mean. God’s law of an eye for an eye and a tooth for a tooth is still in play, but the cultured and respectable puny humans have deemed the law of God too Brutal and law as barbaric..

An example of God’s law being dismissed can be seen in divorce. It is written, What God has joined together, let no [puny human] man put asunder. Then and if the divorcee marries again God calls it adultery. Why? Because God has Joined them together and no man, no paper or edict can tear that union asunder. In God’s eyes the man and his bride are still  joined together. In man’s eye the couple are divorced and free to marry again, but God doesn’t see it that way. God had joined them together and puny man then decrees and thinks that divorce is just and good. In God’s Eye and according to God’s law, they are still (1) one flesh, therefore when the couple marries another they are committing adultery.

We are not allowed to take personal pleasure in the punishment of another. We are called to see that justice and balance are done evenly. But in our world there is no law, we live in a lawless world. In a responsible world where persons are diligent with law and order we would hear of God’s grace and mercy in the Church and then justice and law being kept, killers, murderers, rapists, etc. would be hanged at a communal place where God’s laws are honoured.

The world is what it is, but when the Master returns all will be right and good.

Godspeed.

“How To Pull Yourself Out Of A Bad Mood” Or “Do you Really Want To Be In A Good Mood?” Or “How To Stay In A Good Mood” Or “Can One Remain Positive While Being In A Bad Mood”

“Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in [H]is sanctuary: praise [H]im in the firmament of [H]is power. Praise [H]im for [H]is mighty acts: praise [H]im according to [H]is excellent greatness.”  (Psalm 150)

“…[M]y soul refused to be comforted.”  (Psalm 77)

 

Let me preface this article by saying, I have had long periods of melancholy. I would call them dark places and to be honest, I still have them but they’re are much, much longer periods in between. So I know what I speak of.  As I said before, in another article, my Uncle Jerry said to me once, “You have the disposition of a rattle snake.”  My sister once said to me that I would end up in prison. My Mother used to say, “I don’t know about you.” Sometimes she still does but for different reasons. When I was a teenager I fell into the destructive pattern of cutting. So again, I know of what I write in this article.

To demonstrate a great juxtaposition, I can say now, “The joy of the LORD is my strength.”  When I used to read that I wasn’t really sure what it meant.  Did it mean that God would grant me strength if He had joy from me and He would withhold it if He was displeased? I wasn’t really sure, but now I know.

I am strengthened when I find my joy in the LORD. Let me define joy, but first let me define happiness and fun. Happiness can come and go and is based on things outside ourselves, “Blessed [or happy to the third power] is the man when…[some condition is met].”  which means unhappy is the man when that condition is not met. Fun lasts only as long as something that is fun lasts. Joy, on the other hand, can exist when things are good as well as bad. Joy is based in God and not yourself, some condition, or while something lasts.

However, one can still fall into a bad mood with their joy intact. Joy has much to do with one’s outlook on life. I can fall into a bad mood and still know that God is enthroned and that all things will work together for my good. Joy allows me to be thankful even when I am down. The Christ-ian is a complex new creature.

How can we pull ourselves out of a bad mood? I have found praising God works wonders. In our (1st) first text above we are told to praise God pretty much every where and to praise him for His mighty acts and His excellent greatness. This means we can praise God anywhere, anytime, and at all times. We certainly have much praise worthy material: God’s mighty works, and His excellent greatness. So often we use words and do not think of their meaning. Excellent greatness for example, We should praise God for His greatness that excells all other things that have a quality of greatness or exceeds all others. The word greatness has many meanings. These are definitions for greatness from the dictionary:
1. Notably large in size.
2.Large in number or measure.
3. Remarkable in magnitude, degree, or effectiveness.
4. Full of emotion.
5. Eminent, distinguished.
6. Long, continual.
7. Principal, main
9. Superior in character and quality.
10. Remarkable skill.
11. General term of approval.
Again, God excells and exceeds all others that fit this definition.

When one wants to study God’s mighty works one need only turn to Isaiah 40 and Job 38-42. Here are just a few nuggets from these great passages,

“Behold, the nations are as a drop in a bucket, and are counted as the small dust of the balance:  behold, [H]e taketh up the isles as a very little thing. And Lebanon is not sufficient to burn, nor the beasts thereof sufficient for a burnt offering. All nations before [H]im are as nothing; and they are counted unto [H]im less than nothing, and vanity. To whom then will ye liken God? or what likeness will ye compare unto [H]im? “(Isaiah 40:15-18).

“It is [H]e that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers;  tha stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and speadeth them out as a tent to dwell in. That bringeth the princes to nothing; [H]e maketh the judges of the earth  as vanity.”  (Isaiah 40:22,23)

Reader, Do thyself a favour and read Isaiah 40 and Job chapter 38 – chapter 42.  By my count that is (6) six chapters. This can easily be read in one sitting or it can be broken up into one chapter per day for (6) six days or (2) two chapters for (3) three days. How ever you read these just please read these.

Other mighty works that should be considered and God should receive praise for is Christ’s work on the Cross and His resurrection. In the Old Testament the one act of God that is called upon time and again to demonstrate His power is the dividing of red sea. When the people needed to be reminded of God’s greatness and of His power and might, the prophets would point to the Red Sea. In the New Testament, the single act that demonstrates the great power of the Godhead is the Resurrection of Christ. I say Godhead because each person in the Divine Trinity is given credit for the resurrection. The Father raised Christ, Christ rose from the dead, by His own power, and the Holy Spirit is creditted with the resurrection of Christ.

If you want to pull yourself out of a bad mood, praise ye the LORD.

However, According to our (2nd) second text above, sometimes we can refuse to be comforted. The truth is some people are happy being miserable and that is not a contradiction in terms. I have known people through the years that simply refused to be happy. There are Christ-ians that are not happy lest they be mournful and these are not those that are comforted in their mourning (Matthew 5).

We have counseled persons and it is usually women…not being sexist, only factual, and these persons simply would not be counseled, they were not happy unless thay had problems to complain about. These persons liked to have attention and this is how they got it. If they were ever happy or joyful, they would lose everyone’s attention. When this became obvious I refused to speak to them anymore about their problems. I told them they have not a nd probably willl not ever do what we have suggested so there is no point to our discussions. When this person would try to sneak something in, I would refuse to discuss it if it was negative. I never saw her again.

I have also found some women who complain about how aweful their husbands are, are usually the problem. To hear these women belittle their husbands one would expect a monster, but we have found so often the opposite. I can think of (2) two women in particular. One sought the pastor’s counsel (not me) saying her husband was possessed by a demon. The pastor met the husband and found a quiet, humble man. In fact, this man, at this meeting submitted to Christ and has been a member of a church ever since and this goes back (2) two decades!!! The wife was the problem the whole time.
Another woman would go on and on about how aweful her husband is to her how he doesn’t pay attention to her etc. etc. etc. I met this husband. He was a descent guy, great father, and it turned out the wife was borderline.
[SIDENOTE: I am not suggesting that the wife is always the problem. I know many men that are aweful husbands and aweful fathers. I have often said the church should start a ministry called the (as)salt ministry. This ministry would visit abusive men at their homes and have very direct conversations. If that didn’t work we could visit them at their place of employment during their lunch break. One might object by saying the abusive man would only hurt his wife and or child(ren) when the (as)salt ministry left the home or the place of employment. To answer that objection let me say this, before the men left the abusive man alone with the abused wife and or child(ren), certain promises would be made to the abuser if he stepped out of line and a minister from the (as)salt ministry would remain behind in a car for the night. Another objection: The abuser could call the police and report the minister as a stalker. Answer to objection: The abuser could not do this lest he wants to confess to domestic abuse.]

My point is this, Some persons refuse to be comforted or do what they need to do to get help.

 

To summarize: If you want to pull yourself out of a mood or a funk, praise God, it’s that simple. If you are not willing to do this, then you are one who refuses to be comforted.

There is a hymn that reads, “Count your blessing; name them one by one.” When I led singing for a while or when I sing to the Lord alone, I change the words to, “Name them ton by ton.”

 

 

 

 

“The Appearance Of Evil” Or “Who Defines The Appearane Of Evil?” Or “This Rule Can Be Taken Too Far”

“Abstain from all appearance of evil”  (1 Thessalonians 5

 

This rule can be abused like other rules.  The rule regarding modest apparal is certainly another. The question in both of these is s simple one, who defines  modest apparel. To illustrate the (2nd) second point I will share a point made by another preacher. If you saw a woman wearing a nice dress with prints of flowers on it and gold colored buttons most would agree that it was modest apparel. However, an Amish women would consider her as dressing like a whore. Amish wear only black dresses with black buttons. Colors are considered worldy. So again, who defines modest apparel?

I remember reading a book years ago on this subject of modest apparel and I will never forget what I read in this one section. A preacher had been invited to preach a “revival” and would be staying at the home of the inviting pastor.  The pastor arrived with his family at the inviting pastor’s home.  The children pointed out to tgheir father, “Dad, look Pastor X’s kids are playing in short pants, don’t they know that’s a sin?.” To this their father retorted, “Not everbody believes the Bible like we do, they don”t undertsand it is a sin to dress like that.”  The irony in this is not everone believes that wearing shorts is a sin but everyone believes judging is a sin!!! The question remains, who defines modest? In the Old Testament it is defines as a person not wearing that which pertains to the opposite sex.

It could also be degfines as not wearing anything that is meant to cause members of the opposite sex to lust. Our Lord said that if a man looks upon a woman an dlusts after her he is guilty of adultery WITH her. As she is quilty of dressing in a way, hoping to cause a man or men to lust after her. Christ teaches that if men do lust after her, she is guilty as well.
Of course, there is clothing we all can agree on as being immodest. When it comes to clothing that we might disagree on as being immodest, I think it should come down to the dressers intent and motivation. I think most could agree on the timeliness of apparel, as well.
I remember years ago when I was a youth pastor, there were a couple young teen girl that would wear extremely short skirts and i think they knew what they were doing. I remember the pastor at the time drew me into a hall way and scorned me about their short skirts.  He told me, with his finger inmy face to take care of this. I remember getting back in his face and telling him to talk with their father as it was a job for him and not me. I could speak about this from a pulpit but not one on one or two on one. I am sorry to say, both girls ended up as you might expect.

Today I read a question on FB. The question was whether or not a man should compliment a female. I am sure this question is being asked due to the stories that are prevalent in the news today.  I think this would fall under the topic of avoiding the appearance of evil. It would also raise a furhet question already mentioned above, who defines an appearance of evil. This question could also be placed under the old, “Better safe than sorry” category.
As I dwelt upon this Fb question, I determined a few answers.
1. One should only compliment ones wife, daughters, mother, Grandmother, other family members, older women in the presence of one’s wife, one’s fiance.
2. In todays work place it cab become impossible not to spend time with members of the opposite sex. If this is true, here are some basic guidlines, inform you wife before hand, never touch except a very brief and firm handshake, keep business materials on the table, Possibly bring another co-worker, say grace and be seen. Do not pray with the member of the opposite sex. These are some brief ideas and i’m sure their are more.
3. Billy Graham and the men that worked for him all signes an agreement that they would never be alobe with a woman not their wives and this kept him free of cotroversy.
4. With all of the above being said, I must confess, that I, in the pass, did have lunch with (2) two members of the opposite sex often. I worked with both of these women. Both were married for many years and were both older than me by decades. Both their husbands knew about me and my wife knew about both of them, in fact one of them spent Christmas with my family for years. She knew and loved my children and were loved by my children. In fact I should speak in terms of present tense. This woman lives in Kentucky now and missed by me more than I can say. She also loves the Lord Jesus.
5. I know many persons would read number (4) four and would take a hard line and would never accept my frienship with these (2) two woman. This is were one would have to make a decision for themselves and base their friendship on a hard and fast rule or on an exception to the rules.
6. AS for a church pastor, it is safe not to spend time with women of his congregation, especially behind closed doors. Another person should always be present and this other person should be a woman if possible. In a perfect world this other person should be the pastor’s wife.  If it is impossible to have another person present and the meeting cannot be rescheduled, it must be recorded with the other person’s permission, if possible the meeting could be videotaped as well.
7. In the world we live in today, The rules above should be followed even if the meeting is between (2) two members of the same sex, Ie. (2) two men. What a world we live in.
8. What about (2) two young persons? What about (2) two college aged kids? My daughter has been dating a young man for (3) three years. They have known each other since kindergarten. CErtain ground rules will be something the (2) two young persons will need to decide along with both sets of parents. In our case, Everyone knows where the kids will be at all times, this includes both sets of parents. The kids are usually at either his parents home or our home. When they stsrted dating, I drew up a contract that both kids signed. When either set of parents go out of sign the kids will go with those parents or will spend most of their time with the parents remaining home.

I hope this helps as we are living in a world of mixed signals, not so-mixed signals, and the abuse of power and authority. Let us all be safe and wise in this world that lies in wickedness. I hope to write an article on the abuse of power and authority as this is a subject that causes me great anger. I cannot think about anything that causes me to seethe more. THe abuse of power and authority can be seen through out Scripture, and throughout the world down through the ages into contempory times.

This abuse can be seen in Scripture when a king sought to lay with another man wife as well as during the middle ages when a king retained his right to lie with a man’s new bride (Braveheart). This can be seen or heard of almost daily as women are coming forth and reporting celebrities and politicians that have abused their powers through out the years. This abuse of power was also very prevalent during the days of slavery. Whenever older men, including fathers, and relatives will sexually abuse young boys and young girls in the family.
When I am king for a day, all men and women that use their power to abuse those in subjection to them such as employees and young kids will be executed upon their convictions as well as all duly convicted rapists. The days of a (4) four year statute of limitations will be done away with forever. All statutes of limitations upon rape and or sexual abuse will end just like all statutes of limitation of murder.  I will see to it that all rape kits will be read within a very short period of time. As of now there are rape kits that have not been looked at for years and years and the statue of limitations have already elapsed.

Godspeed.

“More On A Biblical Principle” Or “Casting All Your Cares On [One Another]” Or “Being A Sounding Board Is An Honour” Or “Silence is The Wise Man’s Ally” Or “A Man Will Die By The (s)Word If He lives by the (s)Word”

“Casting all you cares upon [H]im for He careth for you.”  (1 Peter 5)

 

We wrote an article recently concerning a Biblical priciple. This principle concerned doing for others what God does for us. In this article we mentioned forgiving others because God forgives us. We spoke about comforting others because God comforts us among others. In this article we would like to speak about being a sounding board or letting others cast their cares upon you.

You might find this a bit frightenibg. You might not feel qualified but that is the beauty of being a sounding board. Tou need not have the answers, you need only listen as the other vents frustrations, cares, anger, etc. I have heard other complain about being a sounding board as they feel as though they are being used, that the one venting doesn’t really want their councel, they are simple using you to hear themselves think. This is certainly the wrong attitude. My eldest daughter will bring some of her concerns to me, she will lay out frustrations, options, etc, on;y to come to her one conclusions and all I have done is nod my head, shake my head, raise my eye brows, say, huh or hmmm and them feel relief that she has figured things out for herself or God has anwered her.

Sometimes to help another one merely has to pretend one is hearing a non english person talking to you, only smile and make a non verbal gesture. It is or should be taken as an honour when another uses you as a sounding board. THe person speaking to you trusts you, considers you as being smart or wise and valuable.

In our text above we are told to cast our cares upon Christ because He cares for us, however this text does not promise an answer to our cares. One may infer that an answer could be forth right but the passage does not state it out-right. After having written that last  (2) teo sentences let me state clearly thay when an answer does come one should always acknowledge and give thanks to God for the answer. It is always good practice to give God thank for all things such as answers, or wisdom as coming from above. One can never go wrong in acknowledging God for all things, trust me.

As I wrote above, it is an honour when someones looks to you as someone they can bounce things off of.  It is cettainly a great honour to this writer. I view this honour as a major part of my ministry.  Like I wrote above, we might not always have an answer as the one speaking to you might come to an answer on thieir own or God may grant them wisdom. I have actually had someone thank me for my help in solving a problem when all I did was listen and acknowledge them with gestures, verbal and non verbal. We need not have all the answers, we need only be a set of caring ears, as James said, Be slow to speak and quick to hear…” (James 1).
I have heard it said, God gave is (1) one mouth and (2) two ears let us use them accordingly. THe Proberbs has so very much to say about listening and speaking. The wise man counsels us to keep quiet, and Peter tell us that the man that seeks a happy life, he will keep his mouth clothed. WE also read in the Gospels how often Christ would use brevity and silence in His ministry. The Proverbs also tells the fool that he will be thought wise if only he would keep quiet and the fool will be known by a multitude of works.  When i was a much younger and a much more foolish lad, I was a big drinker and I could actually hide my inebriation by keeping silence. Scripture teached that love will cover a multitude of sin, experience teaches me that silence can to. Please do not take the last couple of sentences as an encouragement to sin quietly. I am simply making the point that silence is a good quality to have, sin is not. One can be sure that sin will find you out, especially if you continue in that sin.

Godspeed.

“More Ways To Dwell In God’s Presence” Or “Ways To See God Everywhere” Or “Practicing The Presence Of God Part (2) Two”

“…I am continually with [T]hee: [T]hou hast holden me by my right hand.  (Psalm 73)

“But it is good for me to draw near to God…”  (Psalm 73)

“…[I]f any man thirst let him come unto [M]e, and drink.”  (John 7)

 

Everyday we use water, we wash ourselves with water, we drink water, we are made up of water, the earth is covered mostly by water. Whenever we use water, there is the opportunity to meditate upon the washing of the Word. We can use our imaginations to dwell upon Christ as the Living Water. We can also think about the judgement, wrath and fury of God as God used water to flood the earth.

One can think of the (3) three states of water, Liguid, Ice, and Steam. This can allow us to dwell upon the great truth of the Godhead Trinity.  Liquid being the Father, Ice being the Son, and Steam being the Holy Spirit. Liquid can go everywhere, into every crack, into every crease, into every nook, into every tiny space. This is why Water in Liquid form can represent God the Father. Ice on the other hand is more of a solid. This reminds us that the “Word became Flesh and dwelt among us.” Christ is God incarnate, likewise, ice can be thought of as Liquid in solid form. Then we have steam, steam is the (3rd) third state of water. Steam cannot be handled, caught or stopped. Steam can animate a heavy train.  You can see how water can be used as a prompt to think upon God, praise God and to offer worship to God.

Who doesn’t love a good stretch? After sitting down or lying down for a time, it feels very good to stand up and to stretch our arms and legs out with a big OOHHH!. It feels so good to crack our neck and to crack our knuckles. When you do this you have a fine opportunity to meditate and dwell upon the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus.

How about when we look in a mirror? We might remember the words of James. “For if any be a hearer of the [W]ord, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: For he beholdeth himself, and he goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was.”

Also…when we walk through a doorway, why not meditate upon our Lord being the Door to the Father? Why not look upon a door and note that it is held up by (3) three hinges? This could remind us of the (3) three nail wounds in our Saviour’s Hands and Feet.

When I drive I see many signs, one of these signs read, “One Way.”  When I see a one way sign, I think about Christ being the One and Only Way to God, the Father. I also think about people thinking their way of life is fine, but Scripture tells me that the end of their lives are the ways to death.

When you drive through a toll booth think about the Narrow way to God and how the Broad way leads to destruction.

When we see a hill, why not think about Christ’s sermon from the Mount?

 

This is not an exhaustive list of ways to keep God in your thoughts but it is a start. I hope these help,  to keep our minds on God is the way to experience peace.

The more time you spend with God the more you will become like His Son. The more time you spend with God, the more you will take His attributes upon yourself. Simple logic states that the more time one spends with anything the more familiar one will become with that thing. Likewise, the more time one spends with God, the more godly you will become.

If I could preach only (2) two messages for the rest of my life, I would preach (DV) God’s Sovereignty and all it entails. I would also preach the blessedness of walking with God and dwelling in His Presence, perpetually.

Godspeed.

“Growing Nearer To God” Or “Some Ways To Pray Without Ceasing” Or “Practicing The Presence Of God” Or “Using Time As A Prayer Prompter”

“My voice shalt [T]hou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto [T]hee, and I will look up.”  (Psalm 5)

 

There are many ways one can dwell in the Presence of God. There are many ways to pray without ceasing. There are many ways to think upon God at all times. This may sound impossible but it is not. When we say pray without ceasing or perpetually dwelling in God’s Presence we are speaking about a spirit or mindset, maybe even an outlook.

The (1st) first thing you should understand is that your thoughts and actions should be considered prayer. God knows our thoughts afar off (Psalm 139). You can say to God, “Please accept my thoughts as prayer.”  In Ephesians (3) three, We learn that God is able to do “exceeding abundantly above all we ask or think…” You can and should ask God to consider your thoughts as prayers. We learn from Romans (8) eight, that God reads the mind of the Spirit Who indwells us. This means that the Spirit can and will and does take your thoughts and turn them into prayers that are acceptable to God. Simply say to God that you want there to be an understanding between the (2) two of you, and that understanding is that God will accept your thoughts and feelings as prayers directed towards Him.
This thought-prayer-life should not replace your formal times of prayer. Your actions and decisions can also be considered prayers unto God if you cognitively direct the acts and decisions toward God. In other words, you can say to God that this action or decision you have made is because of Him. An example, if you pick up a piece of debris in a parking lot because that parking lot belongs to God, as it is under the heavens, and all things under the heavens belong to God this act can be considered a communication with God, Simply say or think, “God, I did that for you and for no other reason.”
Brother Lawrence, in his book, one of the most influential books i have ever read, said that he would not pick up a piece of straw or hay, except it be to God’s glory. His book, by the way, is titled, “Practicing the Presence of God.” When I become king of the world for a day, this book will be mandatory reading for all believers. This book is a litle book that is made up of (4) four conversations with Brother Lawrence (1600’s) and (13) to (15) thirteen to fifteen letters written by Lawrence, depending on the edition you read. I have said many times that this little book changed everything for me and I do not say that lightly.

Another way to remain in the spirit or mindset of prayer is by using a clock, watch or any device that tells time.
Examples: When you look at the clock and it reads 3:16, you can quote to God, John 3:16 and thank Him for your salvation. When the clock reads 5:20, you can give God thanks for all things, as Ephesians 5:20 says, ” Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the [N]ame of our Lord Jesus Christ…” (Sidenote: this passage mentions the Trinity).  When the clock reads 5:21, you might remind yourself to prove all things before accepting something as truth, (1 Thessalonians 5:21). Connecting the clock with Bible chapters and verses can help you remain in God’s Presence, it’s a good tool for memorizing Scripture too.

When the wind blows you can think of the Holy Spirit as John 3 tells us that the Spirit is like the wind. In the Spring when plants begin to bud, let your mind go to Christ’s resurrection and then and there thank God for your salvation.

There are many, many ways to keep your mind on God if you want to keep your mind on God. In the Psalms, David says that the wicked do not like to have God in any of their thoughts. We should infer from that truth that the righteous should always have God on and in the mind (Psalms 10).

We can say without hesitation that time spent with God is time well spent. Time spent with God will keep us from spending time doing things we shouldn’t be doing. Time spent with God is a way to lay up treasures in heaven. Spending time with God is a way to worship Him. Spending time with God is a good way to become Christ-like.

If you are seeking peace, let your mind be stayed upon God (Isaiah 26).

Godspeed.