Favorite Tunes

Get a playlist! Standalone player Get Ringtones

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Meditate On Such Things:

"All these died in faith, without receiving the promises, but having seen them and having welcomed them from a distance, and having confessed that they were strangers and exiles on the earth. For those who say such things make it clear that they are seeking a country of their own. And indeed if they had been thinking of that country from which they went out, they would have had opportunity to return. But as it is, they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God; for He has prepared a city for them." - Hebrews 11:13-16

The verses are speaking of Abraham, Sarah, Issac and Jacob in the context of the great chapter of faith in Hebrews 11. It is referring to their obedient faith in following God, no matter what the cost. Because of faith, which was revealed by their obedience, God said that He was not ashamed to be their God. That is an amazing thing to have said about someone. Of course, most of us would say "Sure God is not ashamed to be my God. I go to church, pray some, read His word some, tithe, etc." While all those things are great and godly from a right attitude/motive but that is no reason for God to be proud to be our God, because there are some many lost people doing those things while thinking God is proud to be called their own. Abraham and the others were commended by God for their complete self-denial and total (besides a few flops -it's a given) submission in all things to God Himself. I would ask you to ask yourself "Is God ashamed or proud to be called your God?" Don't just ask yourself, ask God over and over if He is ashamed or not to be called your God. It is not an easy thing to do but an important and necessary discipline for spiritual maturity.

"For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when He comes in His glory, and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels." - Luke 9:26

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Intel Gets It - So Why Can't We?


Click on the link and watch "The Mystery" commercial first.

The other day I was watching T.V. and this commercial came on and I immediately thought of this connection. The commercial asks the question "When does a computer become a computer?" As that question was asked it peaked my interest. I finished watching the commercial and I saw the message clearly. I do not know if Intel has any Christian ties (wouldn't that be great!), but the message was what Christians have been wanting the world to announce for some time now. The answer to the question from the commercial was when the Intel processor was joined with the motherboard of the host computer. Do you get it yet? It is saying that it a computer at conception. Getting warmer. O.K. What I saw was the realization of the age old question - When does a human being become a human being? I know this may seem like a far stretch but the truth is there. In comparison to the commercial, a human being becomes a human being at conception. When the sperm (the Intel processor) fertilizes the egg (the motherboard) it is now a human being (a computer). Fine, so I may be crazy, but it is true. Life does not begin at birth but at conception. Psalm 139:13-15 declares "For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother's womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows very well. My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my substance; And in Your book were all written The days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was none of them." Although the commercial comparison may have been a far reach, the Word of God declares that from conception we are being formed and fashioned by the "hand" of God. The tragic reality is that people making computers (though helpful they are not even close in value as a human - no matter who they may be) understand this important truth while we argue whether or not a embryo (a baby) is worthy to live or die. I saw a shirt once that said "Your mother was Pro-Life - What Happened to You?" It is time for Christians to stand up for the most helpless and needy, unborn children. We were all there once and "Thank God" that some one stood up for us allowed us to have life (a gift given or taken only by God). Think about it and ask others - Intel gets it - So why can't we?

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Do Church Signs Reveal the Church's Spiritual Health?

While on a trip this past week I passed this church sign twice. This picture was taken the second time around. The first witty message read "Try Our Sundays, They're Better Than Baskin Robbins." At first, that is a real knee slapper, but when you think about it, what a shame that a church has to put something so meaningless outside the church in attempt to draw people in. I know that to many this may seem extreme to be criticizing church signs, but to me the worldliness of the church signs reveals something more tragic. What has Christianity become? To many seekers today it is nothing more than "catch phrase" spirituality. Everybody wants the answers quick and simple. Unfortunately spiritual maturity in Christ takes time (a lifetime to be exact). Just as our outward appearance is to reveal our inward testimony (Matt. 5:16 -" "Let your light shine before men in such a way that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.") so should the sign of a church reveal the inward workings of a church. Scripture quotes, biblical principles, and the like reveal a church centered on God's Word. Witty messages, catchy quotes, and silliness reveal a church that is worldly, thinks lightly of the Word, and is not maturing spiritually. Yes there are exceptions, but what do you think is more important? To draw them in with the truth of God's Word or to draw them in with silly and relevant garbage? I once heard someone say that in the way in which you hook a person is the same way in which you must keep them. You cannot draw people in to church with worldly stuff and then try to give them biblical truth. That is not what they were looking for. If you draw them in with the truth then they will not feel bamboozled when the church is God-centered and Bible-centered. Just a thought, but a serious one in that.

Other sad attempts: http://googlified.com/2007google-vs-god/

Sorry if that is just too much to handle.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

What to Concerntrate On

From Oswald Chambers', My Upmost for His Highest

"I came not to send peace, but a sword." - Matthew 10:34.

Never be sympathetic with the soul whose case makes you come to the conclusion that God is hard. God is more tender than we can conceive, and every now and again He gives us the chance of being the rugged one that He may be the tender One. If a man cannot get through to God it is because there is a secret thing he does not intend to give up—‘I will admit I have done wrong, but I no more intend to give up that thing than fly.’ It is impossible to deal sympathetically with a case like that: we have to get right deep down to the root until there is antagonism and resentment against the message. People want the blessing of God, but they will not stand the thing that goes straight to the quick.

If God has had His way with you, your message as His servant is merciless insistence on the one line, cut down to the very root, otherwise there will be no healing. Drive home the message until there is no possible refuge from its application. Begin to get at people where they are until you get them to realize what they lack, and then erect the standard of Jesus Christ for their lives—‘We never can be that!’ Then drive it home: ‘Jesus Christ says you must.’ ‘But how can we be?’ ‘You cannot, unless you have a new Spirit’ (Luke 1 l:13).

There must be a sense of need before your message is of any use. Thousands of people are happy without God in this world. If I was happy and moral till Jesus came, why did He come? Because that kind of happiness and peace is on a wrong level; Jesus Christ came to send a sword through every peace that is not based on a personal relationship to Himself.

Friday, August 3, 2007

Not Just "For" But "Because" of Us!

Isaiah 53

Who has believed our message?
And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed?
For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
And like a root out of parched ground;
He has no stately form or majesty
That we should look upon Him,
Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.
He was despised and forsaken of men
A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief;
And like one from whom men hide their face
He was despised and we did not esteem Him.

Surely our griefs He Himself bore,
And our sorrows He carried;
Yet we ourselves esteemed Him stricken,
Smitten of God, and afflicted.
But He was pierced through for our transgressions,
He was crushed for our iniquities;
The chastening for our well-being fell upon Him,
And by His scourging we are healed.
All of us like sheep have gone astray,
Each of us have turned to his own way;
But the Lord has caused the iniquity of us all
To fall on Him.

He was oppressed and He was afflicted,
Yet He did not open His mouth;
Like a lamb that is led to slaughter,
And like a sheep that is silent before its shearers,
So He did not open His mouth.
By oppression and judgment He was taken away;
And as for His generation, who considered
That He was cut off out of the land of the living
For the transgressions of my people,
to whom the stroke was due?
His grave was assigned with wicked men,
Yet He was with a rich man in His death,
Because He had done no violence,
Nor was there any deceit in His mouth.

But the Lord was pleased
To crush Him, putting Him to grief;
If He would render Himself as a guilt offering,
He will see His offspring,
He will prolong His days,
And the good pleasure of the Lord will prosper in His hand.
As a result of the anguish of His soul,
He will see it and be satisfied;
By His knowledge the Righteous One,
My Servant, will justify the many,
As He will bear their iniquities.
Therefore, I will allot Him a portion with the great,
And He will divide the booty with the strong;
Because He poured out Himself unto death,
And was numbered with the transgressors;
Yet He Himself bore the sin of many,
And interceded for the transgressors.

Do we reckon the work of Christ as merely something He wanted to do "for" us? To better understand/appreciate the work of Christ we must come to realize that Jesus came to earth in the incarnation, lived a perfect life, was crucified in innocence, and raised up on the third day not just "for" us but "because" of us! If we (all of humanity) had no griefs to bear, sorrows to carry, transgressions to be paid for, and no iniquities to to be crushed then there would not have been a reason for Christ to come. If we were able to keep the Law of God there would have been no need of a sacrifice, but "because" we all fall short of the glory of God, Christ came to take our place on the judgment seat of God. He became the perfect sacrifice that God required. We could never meet God's standard (that is the whole purpose of the Law - Gal. 3:24). Christ had to come not just to hang out with us here on earth and see what the food was like, but because we are fallen and and unable to please God. It is "because" of us that Jesus gave His life as a ransom for many.