God is Sovereign, and uses Men and Nations.

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Some folks have the notion that the Bible, and Christianity, is all about them, and getting saved by Jesus because He loves them soooooo much.  Don’t get me wrong, Jesus does love those He has been given by the Father, but you know what He loves more than sinners saved?  If you said anything other than the will of the Father, you might try again.  That’s right, He loves the will of the Father.  So much so, that He loved sinners, while they were yet sinners, so much that He died for them.  So if Jesus loves the will of the Father, why do we seem to love our own wills so much?  Why do we seem to put this inordinate value on our own volition and liberty?  Why, when Christ our Savior, submitted His will to that of the Father, by dying on the cross, do we refuse to bear our cross?

I believe the answer is this man centered hermeneutic when reading the Bible.  It seems to be intrinsic to a large part of American Christianity.  So when we read a passage like this one, where God is using the Assyrians to punish the Israelites as judgment against them, we see it as mere history.  We completely glaze over the obvious fact that God has used them like a weapon.  Even the Assyrian king didn’t give God the glory.  He wasn’t humble at all.  In his impudence, he thought that he was the one who did all of those things to Israel.  Just read the passage, and I’ll be there when you are done…

“Isaiah 10:12-15 NASB So it will be that when the Lord has completed all His work on Mount Zion and on Jerusalem, He will say, “I will punish the fruit of the arrogant heart of the king of Assyria and the pomp of his haughtiness.” (13) For he has said, “By the power of my hand and by my wisdom I did this, For I have understanding; And I removed the boundaries of the peoples And plundered their treasures, And like a mighty man I brought down their inhabitants, (14) And my hand reached to the riches of the peoples like a nest, And as one gathers abandoned eggs, I gathered all the earth; And there was not one that flapped its wing or opened its beak or chirped.” (15) Is the axe to boast itself over the one who chops with it? Is the saw to exalt itself over the one who wields it? That would be like a club wielding those who lift it, Or like a rod lifting him who is not wood.”

Finished?  If you’ll notice how arrogant and proud the king was, it is obvious that he suffered the same self-delusion that many Christians suffer from today.  We think we are just the center of the Christian world.  Oh sure, we give lip service to Jesus, just like some musician on an awards shows thanks Him, along with their entourage and momma.  I encourage you to look at what God says about this arrogant man.  Look at verse 15.  In verses 12, and 13, God says He is going to punish the king after He is done using him.  We then read why God has determined to do these things,

“Isaiah 10:16-22 NASB Therefore the Lord, the GOD of hosts, will send a wasting disease among his stout warriors; And under his glory a fire will be kindled like a burning flame. (17) And the light of Israel will become a fire and his Holy One a flame, And it will burn and devour his thorns and his briars in a single day. (18) And He will destroy the glory of his forest and of his fruitful garden, both soul and body, And it will be as when a sick man wastes away. (19) And the rest of the trees of his forest will be so small in number That a child could write them down. (20) Now in that day the remnant of Israel, and those of the house of Jacob who have escaped, will never again rely on the one who struck them, but will truly rely on the LORD, the Holy One of Israel. (21) A remnant will return, the remnant of Jacob, to the mighty God. (22) For though your people, O Israel, may be like the sand of the sea, Only a remnant within them will return; A destruction is determined, overflowing with righteousness.”

God is the author, His glory is the point, His Holy One is who it is all about.  God chose Israel to demonstrate this through, just like He chose us in Him before creation to demonstrate this through.  Be honored to be used by God in your lowly state as a vessel of honor.  Don’t think that there is something about you that warrants this utilization, not your works, not your choice, not your fallen faith, not your fallen repentance, no there is nothing about you that would make you appealing to God.

“1 Corinthians 1:22-31 NASB (22) For indeed Jews ask for signs and Greeks search for wisdom; (23) but we preach Christ crucified, to Jews a stumbling block and to Gentiles foolishness, (24) but to those who are the called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God. (25) Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men, and the weakness of God is stronger than men. (26) For consider your calling, brethren, that there were not many wise according to the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble; (27) but God has chosen the foolish things of the world to shame the wise, and God has chosen the weak things of the world to shame the things which are strong, (28) and the base things of the world and the despised God has chosen, the things that are not, so that He may nullify the things that are, (29) so that no man may boast before God. (30) But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption, (31) so that, just as it is written, “LET HIM WHO BOASTS, BOAST IN THE LORD.””

It is all about Jesus.  God grants the new birth, the saving faith, the saving repentance from dead works, to Christ, God is the author of our salvation, for His glory, amen.

Is Your Hope in Politics, or God’s Gospel?

Years ago I was a Fox News Christian.  My political ideology took precedence over my theology.  In other words, I cared more about being conservative, than I did about Christ, and the will of God.  I also saw conspiracies all over the place.  It seemed to me that there was a world government that controlled all of the governments of the civilized world.  I thought that the world government was comprised of the ultra-rich and influential.  I haven’t really changed my mind about that.  I do think that the enemy has his minions running a satanic plan.  What has changed is that I no longer think it is possible to fix the problems via politics.  I also think that the enemy can only do what sovereign God allows.  I believe with all my heart, all that matters now, is to preach the gospel to the lost and perishing world.  I read something from Isaiah today that brought this to mind.  

 

Isa 8:11 — Isa 8:16
For thus the Lord spoke to me with mighty power and instructed me not to walk in the way of this people, saying,
“You are not to say, ‘It is a conspiracy!’
In regard to all that this people call a conspiracy,
And you are not to fear what they fear or be in dread of it.
“It is the Lord of hosts whom you should regard as holy.
And He shall be your fear,
And He shall be your dread.
“Then He shall become a sanctuary;
But to both the houses of Israel, a stone to strike and a rock to stumble over,
And a snare and a trap for the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
“Many will stumble over them,
Then they will fall and be broken;
They will even be snared and caught.”
Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.

 

Of course, I’m not encouraging you to take this section out of context.  It is obviously a prophecy from God to Israel, through Isaiah.  I get that.  The Israelites were suspicious of the true prophets of God.  They didn’t like the warnings they gave them.  They were relying on their allegiances with pagan nations, they were hoping on pragmatic security and not God.  Relying on our own feeble abilities and righteousness keeps us from God the same way that it kept many of the Israelites from Jesus when he came.  This also reminds me that living in fear of what could happen, and what the government will do to us, is not honoring to God.  God is the one who we should fear.  He is the one who we should concern ourselves with.  We should seek his glory.  The true hope of the world is not electing the right politicians, it is the wonderful gospel of Jesus.  Only the transforming work of God can change the hearts of sinful men, and reform the reprobate heart.  So we preach repentance of sins, and faith in the work of Christ on the cross, to justify men to God, and save their souls from the flames of Hell.  

The god called evolution.

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John Q. Public: Hey Dr. Quasi Science, I’ve got some questions for you.

Dr. Quasi: Well, ask away.

John: If evolution is true, why are there still monkeys?

Dr. Quasi:  Well, due to evolution the monkeys evolved along a different path than homospapiens.

John:  Then why are the monkeys the same now as they appear in the fossil record?

Dr. Quasi:  Evolution takes her time, and we just haven’t seen any changes since the time that evolution put monkeys and man on different paths.

John:  If evolution is true, why are there two different sexes in many creatures and in some they are asexual or hermaphrodites?

Dr. Quasi:  Oh silly man, that is simply because evolution did what was best for the survival of the species.

John:  If that is true, did the desire to have sex evolve first, or the ability?

Dr. Quasi:  Oh you poor ignorant man, they both evolved at the same time.

John:  Hmm… that sounds very improbable especially considering all of the species that reproduce by having sex.  They would have all had to evolve the ability, and the desire, and the sexes, along with all of the complex physiological and neurological modifications that went along with sex.

John:  If we could observe evolution happening, that would help your cause, but we can’t.

Dr. Quasi:  Well, just because you can’t see it, or observe it directly doesn’t mean it isn’t at work.  You poor backwards soul.

John:  Well doc, I think you have a god called Evolution, who requires nothing of you other than to just be a brute and reproduce at any cost.  Your god has no morals, and doesn’t care about what you do.  Your god neither loves you or hates you.  Matter of fact, the god you’ve described doesn’t care about you at all.  You choose to substitute a god that you’ve made up that you like better.  You like your imaginary god because you hate the true and living God.

Dr. Quasi:  There is no God.  You are ignoring scientific fact!  Evolution is true.  You just won’t acknowledge all of the proof.  You’d rather remain ignorant.

John:  Wow, that sounds familiar…

“Romans 1:18-32 (NASB) 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men who suppress the truth in unrighteousness, 19 because that which is known about God is evident within them; for God made it evident to them. 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they are without excuse. 21 For even though they knew God, they did not honor Him as God or give thanks, but they became futile in their speculations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22  Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the incorruptible God for an image in the form of corruptible man and of birds and four-footed animals and crawling creatures.
24 Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them. 25 For they exchanged the truth of God for a lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.
26 For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, 27 and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.
28 And just as they did not see fit to acknowledge God any longer, God gave them over to a depraved mind, to do those things which are not proper, 29 being filled with all unrighteousness, wickedness, greed, evil; full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice; they are gossips, 30 slanderers,  haters of God, insolent, arrogant, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, 31 without understanding, untrustworthy, unloving, unmerciful; 32 and although they know the ordinance of God, that those who practice such things are worthy of death, they not only do the same, but also give hearty approval to those who practice them.”

 

Cartoon is from Answers in Genesis, and the video is from Living Waters.

Why Did Jesus Speak in Parables?

Here is the setting and context,
Mat 13:1 That day Jesus went out of the house and was sitting by the sea.
Mat 13:2 And large crowds gathered to Him, so He got into a boat and sat down, and the whole crowd was standing on the beach.
Mat 13:3 And He spoke many things to them in parables,
He was preaching to the Jews about salvation and what that would look like,
saying, “Behold, the sower went out to sow;
Mat 13:4 and as he sowed, some seeds fell beside the road, and the birds came and ate them up.
Mat 13:5 “Others fell on the rocky places, where they did not have much soil; and immediately they sprang up, because they had no depth of soil.
Mat 13:6 “But when the sun had risen, they were scorched; and because they had no root, they withered away.
Mat 13:7 “Others fell among the thorns, and the thorns came up and choked them out.
Mat 13:8 “And others fell on the good soil and *yielded a crop, some a hundredfold, some sixty, and some thirty.
Mat 13:9 “He who has ears, let him hear.”
Then His disciple ask the question,
“Why do You speak to them in parables?”
His answer in context to what He was teaching seems pretty clear.
Mat 13:11 Jesus answered them, “To you it has been granted to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been granted.
It appears that He knows that they are not permitted to understand, and that the parables are part of that judgment from God against them. God has granted to them to hear and understand, but He has excluded the others as judgment against them. They don’t have the ability to hear or understand according to God incarnate. If we have Jesus we have the Father. He sovereignly willed that they not come to an understanding of salvation.
Jesus explains further that it is because they didn’t have him from the beginning and that what they have(not him, but self-righteousness) will be taken away.
Mat 13:12 “For whoever has, to him more shall be given, and he will have an abundance; but whoever does not have, even what he has shall be taken away from him.
Mat 13:13 “Therefore I speak to them in parables; because while seeing they do not see, and while hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.
Here Jesus recalls the prophecy He gave through Isaiah,
Mat 13:14 “In their case the prophecy of Isaiah is being fulfilled, which says, ‘YOU WILL KEEP ON HEARING, BUT WILL NOT UNDERSTAND; YOU WILL KEEP ON SEEING, BUT WILL NOT PERCEIVE;
Mat 13:15 FOR THE HEART OF THIS PEOPLE HAS BECOME DULL, WITH THEIR EARS THEY SCARCELY HEAR, AND THEY HAVE CLOSED THEIR EYES, OTHERWISE THEY WOULD SEE WITH THEIR EYES, HEAR WITH THEIR EARS, AND UNDERSTAND WITH THEIR HEART AND RETURN, AND I WOULD HEAL THEM.’
As judgment against them they would be blind until the land of Judea was destroyed by the Romans. So God determined to do this to them in His sovereign, just, and righteous will.
This in context to the earlier verses shows us the other side of the coin, that these people are the ones who will be given more.
Matthew 13:16-17 NASB
[16] “But blessed are your eyes, because they see; and your ears, because they hear.
[17] “For truly I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.
Matthew 13:34-35 NASB
[34] All these things Jesus spoke to the crowds in parables, and He did not speak to them without a parable.
[35] This was to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet: “I WILL OPEN MY MOUTH IN PARABLES; I WILL UTTER THINGS HIDDEN SINCE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD.”
These truths are from the beginning, before anyone was created.

Our lives will end.

Our lives will end. The time we have, we are spending. It is up to us how we spend it, but once it is gone we cannot get it back. We can spend it being angry, sad, or hurt by our loved ones, or we can love them more than being angry, sad, or hurt. Nonetheless, the time will be gone and we will be remembered. If God is our master, wash the feet, endure the suffering. Jesus left the majesty of Heaven, to seek and save the lost. He washed the feet of sinful men whose sins He would suffer for on the cross. Our sins, on the cross of His suffering. Surely our loved ones have sinned and hurt us. We have sinned and hurt Jesus. What is our suffering compared to His? Forgive the broken sinful people in our lives, and love them more than we love our own anger, sadness, hurt, pain, and being victims. We are more than that, through Christ we are conquerors. He has won the victory in the war. Dear Christians, just keep fighting the battles. When we fall to the enemy’s tactics, remember Jesus. Repent, and get back in the fight against sin. We must give grace and mercy to our loved ones and all people who hurt us or make us feel like victims. Our time will be well spent, loving well.

1 Peter 4 (NASB) 1 Therefore, since Christ has suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves also with the same purpose, because he who has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2 so as to live the rest of the time in the flesh no longer for the lusts of men, but for the will of God. 3 For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties and abominable idolatries. 4 In all this, they are surprised that you do not run with them into the same excesses of dissipation, and they malign you; 5 but they will give account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 6 For the gospel has for this purpose been preached even to those who are dead, that though they are judged in the flesh as men, they may live in the spirit according to the will of God.
7 The end of all things is near; therefore, be of sound judgment and sober spirit for the purpose of prayer. 8 Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. 9 Be hospitable to one another without complaint. 10 As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 11 Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
Share the Sufferings of Christ
12 Beloved, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal among you, which comes upon you for your testing, as though some strange thing were happening to you; 13 but to the degree that you share the sufferings of Christ, keep on rejoicing, so that also at the revelation of His glory you may rejoice with exultation. 14 If you are reviled for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests on you. 15 Make sure that none of you suffers as a murderer, or thief, or evildoer, or a troublesome meddler; 16 but if anyone suffers as a Christian, he is not to be ashamed, but is to glorify God in this name. 17 For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? 18 And if it is with difficulty that the righteous is saved, what will become of the godless man and the sinner? 19 Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.

 

The Hypocritical Statement of Target.

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How can anyone look at their statement, and not see the extreme hypocrisy behind it?  This seems like a no-brainer to me.  Here is a quote from their site, “…Inclusivity is a core belief at Target. It’s something we celebrate. We stand for equality and equity, and strive to make our guests and team members feel accepted, respected and welcomed in our stores and workplaces every day…”  Let’s look a bit more closely at this.  First, they insist that “Inclusivity is a core belief at Target.”  Now remember, inclusivity is their justification for allowing men in the ladies’ room and women in the men’s room.  To most reasonable people inclusivity would imply that Target allows everyone from every walk of life to shop at their stores without prejudicial treatment.  They provide public restrooms for their patrons to relieve themselves.  So to be true to their policy, they should either do away with restrooms, offer only a universal public restroom, or offer separate restrooms for every type of pseudo-gender that any insane person identifies as.  Those are pretty much your options if you insist on identifying as, “inclusive.”

The first solution is not practical.  As part of good customer service people expect to have access to a public restroom.  The second option would be fine, but they would have to have several separate, self-contained unisex bathrooms, that only could be occupied by one person at a time, each.  This is not as burdensome and impractical as the last option.  In that case, every time someone imagined a new gender, Target would have to install and label a new restroom just for their newly sinfully imagined gender.  The sin addled mind is incapable of making righteous use of reason.

Of course, there is the fourth option.  They could just do what they are doing right now.  They are taking the discriminatory, bigoted, hateful, intolerant, exclusive, and hypocritical approach. They force the 99.8% of the public, who identify as either male or female to fall in line with the new morality.  Which by the way, is neither new nor moral.

Here is another quote from their site, “…We believe that everyone—every team member, every guest, and every community—deserves to be protected from discrimination, and treated equally. Consistent with this belief,Target supports the federal Equality Act, which provides protections to LGBT individuals, and opposes action that enables discrimination…”  They say that they believe in absolutes.  You can see this when they say, “everyone, every team member, every guest, and every community.”  but this isn’t what they really mean.  Sure they say it and it sounds good, but it isn’t the truth.  They are lying to us.  It is impossible to do what they are saying.  When you have communities with world views that make mutually exclusive statements, you can’t equally affirm them all.  Ultimately you will affirm some of them over the others, and that is what Target has done.  they are affirming the anti-Christian, secular, satanic, sinful, destructive, death culture worldview, over its antithesis.  In so doing, they have prejudicially discriminated against all who oppose the worldview they affirm and have acted to exclude them from consideration in regards to their beliefs.  They have upheld the beliefs of the perverse over the moral and called it good while denigrating anyone who criticizes them as evil.

The left has created this insane notion that reality doesn’t matter and there is no absolute truth.  It is obvious that there are only two genders.  The problem is that we should have never engaged them in the conversation or used their terminology.  It should still be considered a crime for a man to go into the ladies’ room.  It should be a crime to do a sex change surgery.  It should definitely be against the Hippocratic oath.

Since we allowed the discussion, we somehow gave some sense of legitimacy to their argument.  As soon as this issue came forward we should have laughed in their faces, refused to discuss it, kept things the way they were, and walked away.

I get it.  Sinful people are hurting.  They need real help.  Not this insanity.  You don’t give a suicidal person a knife.  We have to do what is good for crazy people because they aren’t competent enough to know what is good for them or to want it.  They need to be regenerated by God and saved from their sins.  They need counseling and help not mutilation by surgeon.  Most of all they need Jesus.

God only made two genders for mankind.

God only made two genders for mankind. Male and female is all there is. You don’t go to the hardware store looking through the nuts and bolts to buy a nolt! If you found one it would be good for nothing. If you don’t believe me, maybe you’ll believe God when Jesus quoted His words from Genesis while He was being questioned by the Pharisees in the book of Matthew, “And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH’? “So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”
[Matthew 19:4-6 NASB]
So if God eternal, and incarnate has explained what He meant, when He revealed what is written in Genesis to us, and it isn’t good enough for you, then it isn’t the rest of us that have the problem. It is you! You are sick! You are not well in the head! You are in deep confusion and sin! You are evil through and through! You need to repent of your sin and ask God to forgive you and heal you from this deep perversion. If you repent and believe upon the finished work of Christ, there is hope for you! You can be saved! For those of you monsters, confusing your very own little children into believing they are not the gender God blessed them with, there is a special place in Hell reserved for the likes of you! Your punishment for harming those little image bearers of God will be exactly as severe as God justly imposes. This should scare you! You are an abuser of children and a blasphemer! Repent! Repent!! REPENT!!! Your death may come upon you at any moment. The next moment you will be in front of the one true and holy God. He will judge you and without the atoning work of Christ to make you just in His sight, you will be sent to Hell for eternal torment and suffering. One moment will be worse than the last. You will feel as if you are being eaten from the inside by worms that never finish their meal. You will feel the immense pain of being burnt up, but never being finished with the burning. You will be in darkness with no solid ground beneath your feat. You know the feeling you get when you miss a step in the dark and begin to fall? That is the anxiety and fear you will feel for ever and ever. You will only hear the suffering others in hell. The gnashing of teeth and wailing will be ringing in your ears. The smoke of their torment will rise up forever. Your only experience will be suffering. You won’t know how long you’ve been there. Has it been a minute, a day, a thousand days, a year, a million years? Eternity is an ageless age. An existence without time, and you will be suffering for all eternity. There will be no fellowship with God. God will be there pouring out His wrath on you. You will justly deserve it. Repent now while there is time! Turn from the judgment to come. Stop approving of sin. Stop calling evil good and good evil. Acknowledge God truth! Believe in the Savior for the forgiveness of your sins!!!