C.H. Spurgeon

Sinners, let me address you with words of life; Jesus wants nothing from you, nothing whatsoever, nothing done, nothing felt; he gives both work and feeling. Ragged, penniless, just as you are, lost, forsaken, desolate, with no good feelings, and no good hopes, still Jesus comes to you, and in these words of pity he addresses you, "Him that cometh unto me I will in no wise cast out."

Comment Policy: No profanity or blasphemy will be posted. You do not have to agree, but if you would like your comment posted, you will have to adhere to the policy.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Filling the Void

In a recent blog post, the writer suggests, by the title “Saying Goodbye to Your Imaginary Friend,” that persons should turn away from believing in God.

The claim is through childhood, children may easily develop beliefs that fictional characters and invisible friends are somewhat true, since their ability to perceive fact and fiction is greatly less than adults. Although, as a child grows and matures, they begin to see the line between fact and fiction in somewhat of a new light, realizing that some things they considered to be fact are but fictional, and some things they considered to be fiction are actually factual.

It is here that the writer would like to assume that Christianity is merely made of adults who are unable to say goodbye to childhood fantasy, without Filling the Void with another fantasy, namely a mythical being we call God. Interestingly, throughout time man has also filled science with cases of unexplainable fantasy, only to later replace fantasy with more fantasy, or sometimes even having to come to terms with the fact that they simply believed fictional thinking. Some may wish to claim that science merely corrects itself, and man continues to question it, but I can’t help but ponder is it all just Filling the Void of their childhood fantasies, as they say Christianity is.

It seems there is a failure to understand, in their own examples, how a doctor can both pray to God for wisdom and healing, but also use the technology God has allowed our generation to have. Why can one not accept it is completely acceptable for an Engineer to both use the proper tools to design and construct a building, as he also prays to God asking for wisdom and blessing upon his work? Why can the writer not understand, there need not be one without the other?

In closing the writer claims, “as adults, it is time for us to say goodbye to the remnants of a long-ago childhood, and embrace a godless, free-spirited future with logic, rationality and passion as our steering wheel.”

In questioning such a thought, I simply asked, “But what exactly do people turn to, when they turn away from God? It is not always "logic" or "rationality," for sometimes it is merely for a "passion" to do that which they know God has commanded not to.”

The writer’s response was, “This is a question I was faced with when I became an atheist. I guess everyone has to find an answer to fill in that void.

Some turn to sports, others turn to science, and depending on your passion, there is always something concrete to hold onto, till life ceases to exist no more.”

So, we have adults which turn away from God, which sent His Son Jesus Christ to forgive sinners of sin, to cleanse us from all unrighteousness, turning to sports, science, and to any other thing which fulfills the lusts of one’s passions. These things are not concrete, nor do they give one comfort in the moment of death, nor through times of struggle, hurt, or need. They are simply a temporal, man-made solution in hopes of Filling the Void. They are unable to fulfill mankind’s eternal need of Christ dwelling in us as Lord and Saviour.

Interestingly, one does not need to turn away from God to enjoy sports, or some of the things science has given us. There is also no reason to hold back one’s prayers and thanksgiving toward God, for what He has given us to enjoy and use to make our lives better. Physical man-made things, regardless of how grand they may appear, cannot fill the spiritual void within mankind’s being. To believe one can fill that gap with fleshly entertainment and wisdom is merely missing the mark, not Filling the Void. The void remains with a superficial covering which must be continually maintained and/or replaced with a new one.

Most, if honest, would confess that the point at which they turn their backs on God, is because they refuse to adhere to His Word: Loving the sin over the Savior. Denying sin as sin, merely acknowledging they may do some things wrong, people falsely believe they are removing themselves from their accountability to a holy, sinless God. Why deny one’s sins, when our great God has made provision through Christ, that it may be forgiven thee? Simply turn to God, repent of your sins, put faith in the work of Christ, whereby you may be saved and cleansed.

In salvation, one has Jesus Christ Filling the Void, for in turning one’s back on God, the void yet remains.

Friday, October 26, 2007

108 Year Old Rabbi Dies, Leaving Claim Jesus Is the Messiah

I was recently given an article, though it is from April 2007, whereby “one of Israel's most prominent rabbis” had apparently left a note proclaiming “Yehoshua, or Yeshua (Jesus), is the Messiah,” wishing it not to be read until one year after his death, at age 108.

Concerning the letter abbreviation of the Messiah’s name, He will lift the people and prove that his word and law are valid.

The Hebrew sentence (translated above in bold) with the hidden name of the Messiah reads: Yarim Ha’Am Veyokhiakh Shedvaro Vetorato Omdim

The initials spell the Hebrew name of Jesus, Yehoshua. Yehoshua and Yeshua are e‑ectively the same name, derived from the same Hebrew root of the word “salvation” as documented in Zechariah 6:11 and Ezra 3:2. ­The same priest writes in Ezra, “Yeshua son of Yozadak” while writing in Zechariah “Yehoshua son of Yohozadak.” ­The priest adds the holy abbreviation of God’s name, ho, in the father’s name Yozadak and in the name Yeshua.

There seems to be some debate over the authenticity of the writing, for obvious reasons, but it appears that there is more evidence which points to its credibility than to it being a fake.

It also appears that:
“A few months before Kaduri died at the age of 108, he surprised his followers when he told them that he met the Messiah. Kaduri gave a message in his synagogue on Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, teaching how to recognize the Messiah. He also mentioned that the Messiah would appear to Israel after Ariel Sharon’s death. (The former prime minister is still in a coma after suffering a massive stroke more than a year ago.)

Other rabbis predict the same, including Rabbi Haim Cohen, kabbalist Nir Ben Artzi and the wife of Rabbi Haim Kneiveskzy.”

I assume we will find out if this is so, but further in the article it mentions an interesting thought of Kaduri, concerning the Messiah. The Jews do not accept Jesus Christ as their Messiah, nor the New Testament concerning Scripture, and it appears that this speaks more concerning the Antichrist than the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

The claim here is that, “As leader, the Messiah will not hold any office, but will be among the people and use the media to communicate. His reign will be pure and without personal or political desire. During his dominion, only righteousness and truth will reign.”

Consider Scripture declares the Antichrist shall come in peaceably, assumingly bringing comfort and unity to the world.

It is also true that “It will be easier for non-religious people to follow the [m]essiah than for Orthodox people.” Simply because [1] the children of God (both Jew and Gentile believers) will have already been raptured, and [2] anyone left which the Spirit moves upon toward the Truth will deny the Antichrist the title of Messiah.

The further claim is, “The revelation of the Messiah will be fulfilled in two stages: First, he will actively confirm his position as Messiah without knowing himself that he is the Messiah. Then he will reveal himself to some Jews, not necessarily to wise Torah scholars. It can be even simple people. Only then he will reveal himself to the whole nation. ‑The people will wonder and say: ‘What, that’s the Messiah?’ Many have known his name but have not believed that he is the Messiah.”

It may be that the Antichrist does not know he is the Antichrist at first, as with Judas, but clearly after the first 3 ½ years, when Satan enters him, there will be no doubt. As he proclaims himself as God, peace shall turn into destruction. And most likely, “the wise Torah scholars” would see him as a fake, not having any true likeness to the Messiah of Scripture.

Interestingly, Scripture is clear as to the return of the Messiah (Christ), that He indeed knows who He is and will show Himself to both the Antichrist and the whole nation of Israel. For it is written:

29 Immediately after the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

I can’t help but find it interesting that a Rabbi would name Jesus as the Messiah, but equally interesting is his professed understanding and description of things to come, which appear to point more toward the Antichrist than the Scripture’s account of the return of Jesus Christ.

Here is a link to some interesting information concerning the book of Revelation, by Clarence Larkin [1919]. He also has a needed “companion” study on the book of Daniel, and some interesting Charts.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


Yes, it is spelt that way in the title on purpose. How do you consider Halloween personally? Do you see it as a pagan holiday, religious holiday, or simply just a day for you and/or your children to enjoy dressing up in costumes, walking around the neighborhood collecting a bucket full of candies, and maybe visiting a haunted house or two as all innocent fun?

“The modern holiday of Halloween has its origins in the ancient Gaelic festival known as Samhain.” Samhain (“the word for November in the Gaelic languages”) has origins as being “used for a month in the ancient Celtic calendar, in particular the first three nights of this month, with the festival marking the end of the summer season and the end of the harvest.” It appears that the Gaulish calendar (noting “the Gauls practiced a form of animism,” the worship of animals, and “perhaps the most intriguing facet of Gallic religion is the practice of the Druids.”) was set to the belief that the year was divided into “the 'dark' half, beginning with the month Samonios (the October/November lunation), and the 'light' half, beginning with the month Giamonios (the April/May lunation).” “The Samhain celebrations have survived in several guises as a festival dedicated to the harvest and the dead. In Ireland and Scotland, the Féile na Marbh, the 'festival of the dead' took place on Samhain.”

“Samhain is observed by various Neopagans in various ways. As forms of Neopaganism can be quite different and have very different origins, these representations can vary considerably despite the shared name. Some Neopagans have elaborate rituals to honor the dead, and the deities who are associated with the dead in their particular culture or tradition.”

“Samhain is one of the eight annual holidays, often referred to as 'Sabbats', observed as part of the Wiccan Wheel of the Year. It is considered by most Wiccans to be the most important of the four 'greater Sabbats'. It is generally observed on October 31st in the Northern Hemisphere, starting at sundown. Samhain is considered by most Wiccans as a celebration of death and of the dead, and it often involves paying respect to ancestors, family members, elders of the faith, friends, pets and other loved ones who have died. In some rituals the spirits of the departed are invited to attend the festivities. It is seen as a festival of darkness and death, which is balanced at the opposite point of the wheel by the spring festival of Beltane, which Wiccans celebrate as a festival of life and fertility.”

“As October 31 is the last day of the bright half of the year, the next day also marked the beginning of winter, which the Celts often associated with death, and with the slaughter of livestock to provide meat for the coming winter. The Celts believed that on October 31, the boundary separating the dead from the living became blurred. There is a rich and unusual myth system at work here; the spirit world, the residence of the "Sídhe", as well as of the dead, was accessible through burial mounds. These mounds were opened twice during the year, on Samhain and Beltane, making the beginning and end of summer spiritually resonant.”

“The term Halloween (and its alternative rendering Hallowe'en) is shortened from All-hallow-even, as it is the eve of "All Hallows' Day", also which is now known as All Saints' Day. It was a day of religious festivities in various northern European Pagan traditions, until Popes Gregory III and Gregory IV moved the old Christian feast of All Saints' Day from May 13 to November 1. In the ninth century, the Church measured the day as starting at sunset, in accordance with the Florentine calendar. Although All Saints' Day is now considered to occur one day after Halloween, the two holidays were, at that time, celebrated on the same day.”

“Halloween did not become a holiday in the United States until the 19th century, where lingering Puritan tradition restricted even the observance of Christmas prior to the 1800s. American almanacs of the late 18th and early 19th centuries do not include Halloween in their lists of holidays. The transatlantic migration of nearly two million Irish following the Irish Potato Famine (1845–1849) finally brought the holiday to the United States. Scottish emigration from the British Isles, primarily to Canada before 1870 and to the United States thereafter, brought the Scottish version of the holiday to each country.”

“There is little primary documentation of masking or costuming on Halloween in the United States or elsewhere, prior to 1900. Mass-produced Halloween costumes did not appear in stores until the 1930s, and trick-or-treating did not become a fixture of the holiday until the 1950s.”

“Halloween is now the United States' second most popular holiday (after Christmas) for decorating; the sale of candy and costumes are also extremely common during the holiday, which is marketed to children and adults alike. According to the National Retail Federation, the most popular Halloween costume themes for adults are, in order: witch, pirate, vampire, cat and clown.”

“The jack-o'-lantern can be traced back to the Irish legend of Stingy Jack, a greedy, gambling, hard drinking old farmer who tricked the devil into climbing a tree, and trapped him by carving a cross into the trunk of the tree. In revenge, the devil placed a curse on Jack which dooms him to forever wander the earth at night.” “But in America the tradition of carving pumpkins is known to have preceded the Great Famine period of Irish immigration, and the tradition of carving vegetable lanterns may also have been brought over by the Scottish or English; documentation is unavailable to establish when or by whom. The carved pumpkin was associated generally with harvest time in America, and did not become specifically associated with Halloween until the mid to late 19th century.”

“The main event for children of modern Halloween in the United States and Canada is trick-or-treating, in which children disguise themselves in costumes and go door-to-door in their neighborhoods, ringing each doorbell and yelling "trick or treat!" to solicit the usual gift of candies. Although the practice resembles the older traditions of guising in Ireland and Scotland, ritual begging on Halloween does not appear in English-speaking North America until the 20th century, and may have developed independently.”

“In North America, Christian attitudes towards Halloween are quite diverse. The fact that All Saints Day and Halloween occur on two consecutive days has left some Christians uncertain of how they should treat this holiday. In the Anglican Church, some dioceses have chosen to emphasize the Christian traditions of All Saints Day, while some Protestants celebrate the holiday as Reformation Day, a day of remembrance and prayers for unity. Celtic Christians may have Samhain services that focus on the cultural aspects of the holiday, in the belief that many ancient Celtic customs are "compatible with the new Christian religion. Christianity embraced the Celtic notions of family, community, the bond among all people, and respect for the dead. Throughout the centuries, pagan and Christian beliefs intertwine in a gallimaufry (hodgepodge) of celebrations from October 31 through November 5, all of which appear both to challenge the ascendancy of the dark and to revel in its mystery."”

Click above to see what Chick Publications suggest.

A litte more history.

An Atheist’s Fantasy of Killing God

Verified at snopes.com, coming this December 2007, is a movie entitled The Golden Compass.

Origins: “The film is based on (released in the U.S. as The Golden Compass), the first offering in Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy of children's books, a series that follows the adventures of a streetwise girl who travels through multiple worlds populated by witches, armor-plated bears, and sinister ecclesiastical assassins to defeat the oppressive forces of a senile God.”

Snopes also notes, “The series' author, Phillip Pullman, is an avowed atheist who has averred that "I don't profess any religion; I don't think it's possible that there is a God; I have the greatest difficulty in understanding what is meant by the words 'spiritual' or 'spirituality.'" Critics of Pullman's books point to the strong anti-religion and anti-God themes they incorporate, and although literary works are subject to a variety of interpretations, Pullman left little doubt about his intentions when he said in a 2003 interview that "My books are about killing God." (Conservative British columnist Peter Hitchens labeled Pullman "The Most Dangerous Author in Britain" and described him as the writer "the atheists would have been praying for, if atheists prayed.")”

Bill Donohue, president of The Catholic League, has said: “Look, the movie is based on the least offensive of the three books. And they have dumbed down the worst elements in the movie because they don't want to make Christians angry and they want to make money. Our concern is this, unsuspecting Christian parents may want to take their kid to the movie, it opens up December 7th and say, this wasn't troubling, then we'll buy the books. So the movie is the bait for the books which are profoundly anti-Catholic and at the same time selling atheism.”

“Other critics, however, have described Pullman's works as being more generally anti-religion rather than specifically anti-Christian or anti-Catholic: In "His Dark Materials," Pullman's criticisms of organized religion come across as anti-authoritarian and anti-ascetic rather than anti-doctrinal. (Jesus isn't mentioned in any of the books, although Pullman has hinted that He might figure in a forthcoming sequel, "The Book of Dust.") His fundamental objection is to ideological tyranny and the rejection of this world in favor of an idealized afterlife, regardless of creed. As one of the novel's pagan characters puts it, "Every church is the same: control, destroy, obliterate every good feeling."”

I guess this is just: An Atheist’s Fantasy of Killing God.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Qualifications of a Bishop or Deacon

In I Timothy 3, we have the qualifications of a bishop and deacon, as given us by God, through the pen of Paul.

1 This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) 6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.

8 Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre; 9 Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience. 10 And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless. 11 Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things. 12 Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well. 13 For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.

As Christians, we understand that bishops (pastors) and deacons are not sinless persons which have reached a stage of perfection others cannot. We must acknowledge that it is the power of God which works in us to do that which is right. Although there be some that feel the moving of the Spirit of God to be called to these positions of service, can we not all strive toward these qualifications in our own personal lives also, even if we are not called to the specific ministry of bishop or deacon?

Men: Is there any cause whereby we should not desire to be vigilant, sober, of good behavior, given to hospitality, apt to teach (even if simply presenting the gospel to a lost soul or sharing what God has given us from Scripture with a friend or family member), not addicted to alcohol or a drunkard, not a fighter, not greedy of filthy lucre, patient, not a brawler or covetous, not double-tongued, holding firmly to the faith of the gospel within us, without slander, being faithful in all things, ruling our house and raising our children well (by the use of godly wisdom, correction, and Scripture), being of good report both within and without the church?

Ladies: Is there any cause whereby you should not desire to be serious concerning the things of God and how you study and obey them, not a liar or a gossip, faithful in all things, helping your husband raise the children in the nurture and admonition of the Lord, being an example of a godly woman both to those who are within the church and those who are without?

If we dare look for these qualities in the bishops and deacons, whereby we judge their character and walk with God, as whether to call them to service within our churches, should we not also look for these same qualities within ourselves lest we hold them to a higher standard while we ourselves become slack and lazy in our service to God?

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Christopher Hitchens : Militant Atheist?

“Myers says Hitchens wasn't noticeably drunk, so he doesn't have his usual excuse for inexcusable behavior, such as in this previous instance. In any event, such antics are the logical extension of his increasingly warlike thought. This ex-Trotskyist, whose support for militant secularism led him to idolize the founder and first commander of the Red Army, has gone so over the top with his crusade against all religion that he has come to advocate wiping out entire populations. "Demolish it!" he said, when asked about Iran – with apparently no more moral compunctions about the slaughter of the innocent than one might normally exhibit toward a swarm of midges.”

“Hitchens is quite clearly marketing himself as a contemporary Robert Ingersoll, the spokesman for atheism and secularism in the English-speaking world, although, clearly, looking at the bestseller list, he has a lot of competition for that title. If someone with that kind of a public platform should use his status to spread and popularize the suggestion that it's a good idea to kill off the world's Muslims, then we, as a society, are poisoned by his prominence. Decent people cannot allow it.”

You may read the article and decide for yourself here: http://antiwar.com/justin/

Spiritual Immigration

I was recently given an article speaking of the Dutch apparently, “have just instituted some of Europe's most stringent requirements for would-be immigrants.” It seems that “Verdonk argues that the Netherlands can no longer afford to welcome immigrants who will not integrate into mainstream society, which is why she has advocated a new restrictive visa system.”

I know here in America we have some of the same issues of immigrates coming to America, and rather than adapt into our culture and society, they would rather keep their culture and society, sometimes even demanding we accept and nurture theirs over Americas; But, this is not where I would like to go with this post. I am sure if one would like to argue for/against immigration in America, there are surely an abundant amount of places to visit to have your voice heard.

Today I would like to discuss the idea of Spiritual Immigration from a person without God, to a person of God. We understand Christianity is so-called, because it is made of persons who are called Christians, meaning they have put faith in Christ Jesus for forgiveness of sins unto salvation, and should desire to be Christ-like. So, although the context shall remain in Christianity, I would ask for the moment to dismiss the idea of denominations, for I would assume that any Christian denomination agrees that a person is either without God, or is of God (meaning Christ has saved them).

As a lost man, we are out of fellowship with God, living in our sin, and have no desire for the things of God. We are happy to do our own thing, and make our way upon this earth without adhering to what is written in Scripture. There may be times that we feel sorry, may even try to live by what Christian things we have heard, and may even try church for a while, but soon find ourselves pushing it all aside once more to do what we find pleasing in our own hearts and minds.

One day, whether at home, work, church, or merely anywhere one finds themselves, they come under the conviction of the Holy Spirit of their sin and need of Christ as Savior. By grace, they put their faith in Jesus Christ, repenting of sin, as they are converted from a place out of fellowship with God, to a place of being in fellowship with God. Scripture declares, “Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.” At this very moment of conversion, one has passed through Spiritual Immigration, from the devil unto God.

Why then, when we have been given a new birth by God Himself, do we wish to yet cleave to the old man, old ways, and desire not to embrace the new? Why do we believe that now that we have been placed into fellowship with God, by Christ, that we should try to bring with us those things which kept us out of fellowship with God? Do we not grieve the Spirit in trying to doing so? How is it that when we know God does not like that which we have been saved from (sin), do we think He will somehow accept it now within Himself, simply because we refuse to let it go?

Dear Christian, do we not see this as spiritual hypocrisy, as we claim to thank God for allowing us to spiritually migrate from the land of Satan to the land of God, only to desire the things of the land of Satan over the things of the land of God; further acting as if God doesn’t care that we desire sin over righteousness. God help us as professing Christians, to not hold on to our sins as we Spiritually Immigrate, by the hand of God, from the desert of Satan into the holy land of God.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Heterosexual Titles Terminated

The Terminator has apparently terminated “from California schools” the use of “"Mom and Dad" as well as "husband and wife"” according to a recent article from http://www.worldnetdaily.com/.

The article proclaims:

“Analysts have warned that schools across the nation will be impacted by the decision, since textbook publishers must cater to their largest purchaser, which often is California, and they will be unlikely to go to the expense of having a separate edition for other states.

The bills signed by Schwarzenegger include SB777, which bans anything in public schools that could be interpreted as negative toward homosexuality, bisexuality and other alternative lifestyle choices.

There are no similar protections for students with traditional or conservative lifestyles and beliefs, however.

Also signed was AB394, which targets parents and teachers for such indoctrination through "anti-harassment" training, CCF said.

Thomasson said SB777 prohibits any "instruction" or school-sponsored "activity" that "promotes a discriminatory bias" against "gender" – the bill's definition includes cross-dressing and sex changes – as well as "sexual orientation."

"Because no textbook or instruction in California public schools currently disparages transsexuality, bisexuality, or homosexuality, the practical effect of SB777 will be to require positive portrayals of these sexual lifestyles at every government-operated school," CCF noted.

Thomasson said Schwarzenegger also signed AB14, which prohibits state funding for any program that does not support a range of alternative sexual practices, including state-funded social services run by churches.”

To note some hostility, and to whom it is from:

As WND reported, a board member for the homosexual advocacy group Equality California verbally attacked and threatened CRI for its opposition to the bill earlier.

The board member sent an e-mail and video to CRI threatening the group would be buried if it continued efforts opposing the homosexual advocacy.

"The shocking hate mail we received shows that those behind this legislation do not promote true tolerance," said England. "Only politically correct speech will be tolerated. Those with religious or traditional moral beliefs will not be allowed to express their opinions in public schools." ”

Thursday, October 11, 2007


Bitterness may be defined as, “a feeling of deep and bitter anger and ill-will,” and is a powerful enemy of charity and Christian living.

We must not allow bitterness to have its way in our lives, for “any root of bitterness springing up trouble” in us, opens the door “thereby many be defiled.” Do we really want to be the reason that many become defiled?

Yes, there may be things that happen in life, that cause us to distance ourselves from other persons and certain things, but we are still to “be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”

Be ye angry, and sin not” is not permission to have “a feeling of deep and bitter anger and ill-will” towards someone. For Christ, beaten and suffering, hung upon the cross of Calvary, as a substitute Lamb, crying, “Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.”, and the following verses of Ephesians 4:26 & 27 say, “let not the sun go down upon your wrath: Neither give place to the devil.” Bitterness is giving “place to the devil”, by allowing our anger of sin to grow into “a feeling of deep and bitter anger and ill-will” against person(s) or thing(s), without ever granting forgiveness. Remember, it doesn’t matter if one deserves it, for neither have we, yet Christ has forgiven.

Although, persons and circumstances in our lives may cause us difficulties, whereby the soil of our hearts may become ground for the seeds of bitterness, it is us who nourish the vines of bitterness to grow. Further allowing it to attach itself to those around us, till it takes root so deep, no one can tell from whence it has come. We must allow the Gardner to keep the seeds of bitterness from our soil, for which His seed is made. And if by chance, we have allowed the vines of bitterness to grow above our eyes to see past it, we need only to plead to the Gardner, to clean us as only He knows how.

Put away the seed of bitterness from you, and “be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ's sake hath forgiven you.”

Wednesday, October 10, 2007


Burdens, of various types, can bring us down into depths of sorrow, if we are not careful to keep our eyes focused on God. They come in many different forms, being brought on by ourselves or others, and can catch us most unaware; especially if we fail to notice or address the signs at the onset. How quickly bags of leaves can become lead weights upon our backs.

  • Some burdens are self induced, by sin in our lives, and failing to obey the Word of God.
  • Some burdens are created by what others do in sin, which personally affect us.
  • Some burdens are created by what we see around us, in people’s lives, our churches, the communities, our country, and the world.
  • Some burdens are shared, when we are in a position or asked to pray for, counsel, witness, or help someone (whether unaware to them or by their asking).

When we become burdened down in the trials and worries of this life, we must not allow our pity party to keep us from God. God is still on the throne, and has promised, “that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” We must remember that Christ laid down His life, that we might be saved. He will not forsake us, but has said, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” The Holy Spirit also is here, whereby we are “sealed unto the day of redemption.” He is a Comforter to us, if we would only trust in Him. We must reject the works of the flesh, and embrace the fruit of the Spirit.

Something I think we often miss, when we become overwhelmed with our own burdens, is that everyone around us has burdens of their own to endure. At the very moment one finds time to comfort us, their own hearts may be heavy with burdens. Have you ever considered the heart of the pastor, who may carry the burdens of the whole church? Why do we have the right to enjoy a self indulgent pity party, when there are many persons which we could possibly help, suffering the weight of burdens also? Are we any more deserving than them? Are we any more deserving than Christ, whom suffered and gave Himself ransom for our sins, on the burden of the cross of Calvary? Who then was there to give Him comfort? Yet, He has promised to give us “the peace of God, which passeth all understanding.”

I am not saying that some burdens are not more grievous than others, trust me, I know. We are asked to “Bear ye one another's burdens”, and so we must, that the whole body of Christ (each person) may have their needs met.

We cannot allow our own burdens to keep us from listening to the Spirit of God, and continuing to do the work we are called to do. There is hope if “in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.”

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Check Out This 'Fly' By

Dragonfly or Insect Spy? Scientists at Work on Robobugs.

Do we get billed, if we accidentally kill one?

“No agency admits to having deployed insect-size spy drones. But a number of U.S. government and private entities acknowledge they are trying. Some federally funded teams are even growing live insects with computer chips in them, with the goal of mounting spyware on their bodies and controlling their flight muscles remotely.”

Follow Up To: Do I Make You Feel Uncomfortable

As a follow up to my recent post, entitled Do I Make You Feel Uncomfortable, a friend of mine suggested that I write an article discussing “the correct ways to do things.” I ponder this may go along with my article, entitled Critical Teardown versus Constructive Criticism. As in most cases, to see what is wrong is a bit easier than to find the right corrective action for it. And I am not sure I have done any better work here.

As discussed in my last post, let us consider the topics of witnessing, touching, too personal, and personal space. As posted in red within the right column of my blog, one may note that these are merely my personal thoughts and are not to be used to judge my church, pastor, or its members, and thus the reader is free to agree or disagree with the assertions I put forth. But if you disagree, please suggest a positive alternative.

WITNESSING: Although I received a comment, to my last post, “If you don't want to make people feel uncomfortable, consider not proselytizing to non-believers,” witnessing is a command by God, both in the Old Testament and New Testament, which is clearly expressed by Jesus Christ before and after His crucifixion. Scripture saith, “For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.” A person must realize that they are a sinner and need to repent (to turn from sin to Christ), to receive salvation by grace, through faith in Christ. This does not come from brow-beating a person into submission of our legalistic rules, but by showing them the Word of God, and what He has determined to be sin and righteousness. Conviction comes from the Holy Spirit using the Word of God; therefore, sometimes when non-believers become uncomfortable with the gospel of Jesus Christ, it is really being uncomfortable in their sin by the convicting presence of the Holy Spirit. Before one simply tries to witness, they should be in tune with the Spirit of God and His Word. This can’t be done on a spur of the moment, if we are not already striving to live obedient to Scripture, in a healthy, personal relationship with Christ. Quite often we need to take notice of the opportunities we have to witness to lost family and friends, which will seldom have one feeling uncomfortable, unless we question them in a public setting or exhaust their patience, by our continual placing more emphasis on each and everyone of their personal sins, than the grace and mercy that can be found through forgiveness in Christ. Remember a “good” sinner and a “bad” sinner are still sinners, and only the blood of Christ can cleanse us white as snow. Don’t witness in self righteousness, for it is the righteousness of Christ that saves a sinner from sin, and works in us to do that which is well pleasing to the Father. There is a greater chance of making persons feel uncomfortable as we witness, when we go door to door, pass out tracts, or simply speak to one is passing. When we offer a tract, if the person refuses to take it, accept their rejection. If a person is holding a beer, when they open the door as you hand them an invitation to church, don’t start railing or rebuking them on alcohol. Acknowledge we all have sin, even Christians are saved sinners, and that we all need the Savior, Jesus Christ. Be Holy Spirit led in witnessing, and don’t expect others to come to Christ, if you haven’t spent time with Him all day either.

TOUCHING: In dealing with touching, it seems that hugs have drawn the most attention from my previous post. It appears a lot of women are “huggers”, but the evidence remains that they do not all like to hug all men. So a man can scream to the roof tops, “Why won’t she hug me”, and the simple answer remains, “She doesn’t want to, and doesn’t owe it to you.” A friend of mine noted, at another place I posted my topic, the following:

First: a man is ALWAYS to wait for a lady to extend her own hand before he shakes hands with her. ALWAYS. It is considered rude in polite society for a man to extend his hand first. Since it is always assumed that a woman would not ever be the aggressor, but rather, is the weaker and gentler sex, the extension of her hand is a non-threatening gesture and always acceptable.

Second: this hugging rule is slightly trickier. Certainly one would not hug a complete stranger, however, in the company of friends, it is not considered impolite for a 'BRIEF,' yet warm, hug to be offered by a woman. If a woman hugs a man and he deems it uncomfortable, it is never polite to, in turn, make the woman feel uncomfortable, or to make her feel that she has done something wrong. It is ALWAYS up to the man to be a 'gentleman.'

Apparently, these were derived from Emily Post’s Etiquette, from 1922. If we take these at face value, the common theme is to allow the female person to extend the handshake or hugging toward a male person. I dare say that this may not remove all uncomfortable situations for the male, but I can’t help but believe this would be a much better practice; especially in a church setting. I am not addressing that we should not hug anyone, but I think one needs to consider, “Why do I want to hug them,” before they do it. Characters are easily seen, especially for persons in a church setting. People notice those that are “innocent huggers” and those which may appear to be “selective huggers” (and I will leave it at that). I completely realize that many family and friends grow up in church and honestly love one another and enjoy seeing each other on Sundays, but if the only time you talk to this teenage or younger woman is Sunday morning, do you really need a hug from her, men? Personally, I would say it is best to refrain from older men extending a hug toward a teenage or younger woman, unless she first extends it to him, and it is done openly.

TOO PERSONAL: I believe friendships and relationship must somewhat grow before we can expect someone to feel comfortable giving or accepting too much personal information about ourselves or themselves. The best policy should be, if you are not sure if the other person is comfortable talking about something (whether of them or you), I would suggest refraining from doing so, or asking them politely, would they mind first, and accept their answer without getting offended. Personal is exactly what it means, it is theirs or yours, and not necessarily for another person. Even though, both men and women enjoy a compliment, there is a line that one needs to take care not to cross over. “Your hair looks really nice today,” is not the same as saying, “Your skin looks so soft.” This may be a little extreme, but also consider the idea of whether the comment is made in passing, or is continuously elaborated on. Pay attention to your comments, before you say them, to see if they are questionable. If you think they could be taken wrongly, and cause the person to feel uncomfortable, don’t say it.

PERSONAL SPACE: Often times, especially in church, there is interaction of male and female persons. We need to take notice and beware that we do no invade another’s personal space, to cause them to become uncomfortable. If a female is alone in an area, and a male enters to speak with her (or vice versa), especially if you do not mutually see one another as friends (meaning already both feel comfortable with each other), take note that you allow “buffer” space to [1] ease the other party, and [2] not allow one in passing to take notice and assume something inappropriate. Keep doors open and remain visible to hallways, and if the other party seems uncomfortable, don’t make a scene, but dismiss yourself till others are present.

I may have done nothing but repeat my last post of this issue, but it is only because I consider it important and it seems that it is not often thought about. More than just touching can and does cause a person to become uncomfortable, and if all possible, we should refrain ourselves from being the cause. I believe that staying spiritually minded, in a prayerful relationship with Christ, meditating on the precious Words of God, we will be sensitive to the Holy Spirit, and the uncomfortableness that we could bring upon others and/or ourselves may be diminished.

Monday, October 08, 2007


I was recently given a link to a page entitled, What Denominationalism Does to Christ. The writer lists the following points:
  • Denominationalism mocks Jesus' prayer for unity.
  • Denominationalism produces unbelief.
  • Makes Christ a contradictory Lord.
  • Denominationalism makes Christ a hypocritical Lord.
  • Denominationalism presents Christ as unfair and unjust.
  • Makes Christ the author of confusion.
  • Denominationalism makes Jesus an incompetent Lord.

This post is not directed to the individual, which gave me the link, but just my thoughts in reference to the writer of the original page.

First, may we simply define a denomination as a religious group, made of local churches, set apart by doctrinal and theological differences, concerning the Scriptures, from another?

The writer, under Denominationalism makes Jesus an incompetent Lord, notes “the problem is not the Lord's inability, but the problem is man's unwillingness to accept what is taught in the Bible.” To this, I agree 100%, and this is why we have denominationalism.

Denominations set themselves apart, by what they teach and how they act, toward God, Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit, and the Scriptures.

Yes, Scripture declares [Ephesians 4]:
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: 14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.

The problem is not with the Scriptures, and the Spirit revealing the truth to us, but with men refusing to obey that which is true in Scripture as taught by the Spirit. We trade tradition, experience, and emotion over comparing Scripture with Scripture.

Interestingly, the writer gives no “corrective action”, per say, to rid the world of denominations, but to hold on to only the true teachings of Christianity, according to Scripture. I assume we are all to follow him or his pastor and teachings.

I would not say that Denominationalism mocks Jesus' prayer for unity, but shows indeed there was a reason that Christ prayed. In these times “evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers” should have been preaching to man the Scripture without error, but they have not all done so – nor have the people with “itching ears” wanted it as such – therefore we have divisions within the faith, which Christ Himself will correct.

I would not say that Denominationalism produces unbelief, for we are born in unbelief, and that is why we are called on to believe. One is not called on to believe in a denomination, but in Christ, the Savior, for the forgiveness of sin.

I would not say that Denominationalism Makes Christ a contradictory Lord, for it is man who contradicts Scripture in error, and not Christ, whom is true and righteous in all accounts.

I would not say that Denominationalism makes Christ a hypocritical Lord, for it is man who is hypocritical, when he refuses to acknowledge and preach the true Word of God, when it goes against his own ideas, desires, emotions, and experiences.

I would not say that Denominationalism presents Christ as unfair and unjust, for it is man who changes the pure words of God into a lie, by incorporating their own thoughts over that which is expressed by the Holy Spirit.

I would not say that Denominationalism Makes Christ the author of confusion, for it is man who is the author of confusion. Both the man that preaches a lie (whether knowing or unknowingly) and the man (who claims to be saved) that is too lazy to have a personal relationship with Christ, and love the Scriptures.

I would not say that Denominationalism makes Jesus an incompetent Lord, for it is man who is incompetent concerning the Scriptures.

Denominationalism is a reflection on the corrupt nature of man, not the perfection of Christ. How can one say that denominationalism has led to confusion and unbelief, when it was actually the unbelief and confusion, concerning Scripture, of professing Christians which has led to denominationalism?

How then can one suppose that we rid this world of denominationalism, and be immediately joined in the unity of the faith? Ah, by adhering to Scripture and being obedient to the voice of the Holy Spirit, over emotion, experience, and tradition. Surely this is something Christ Himself will set in order when He returns.

Truly it is written, “let God be true, but everyman a liar.”

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Do I Make You Feel Uncomfortable

I saw a brief segment of the news Tuesday, and it was talking about the Clarence Thomas, Anita Hill case of 1991. Apparently, this recent interview stemmed from his writing of a book regarding himself, called “My Grandfather’s Son”, and it appears that he has been accused of trying to “re-write history” by doing so. The case of 1991, involves Anita Hill bringing sexual harassment allegations against Clarence Thomas, assumingly which he denies.

Although this story caused me to ponder this post, it is not really the topic I would like to discuss. I would rather simply entertain, for a moment, the idea of how we (both men and women) may actually make another person feel uncomfortable, with or without even knowing it.

I personally believe a person can become uncomfortable with us or us with them, accidentally, meaning one does or says something innocently, not meaning anything by it, yet it causes the other person to feel uncomfortable. I also believe, there is the intentional act, not really to cause one to become uncomfortable, but an “over the boundary” sort of act, which is intended to draw a particular reaction from the individual, whether the hoped for response is achieved or not, which may or may not be followed by a quick forethought “apology”, if the response is negative. Some sexual harassment readings will tell us that this can start with hints, words, and lead into brief or light touching, just to see how far one can go, to receive the response they desire.

But, again, I would like to cover, the somewhat less offensive (if there is such) ways of which I believe we may be causing people to feel uncomfortable, without even knowing it, yet maybe should be.

WITNESSING: As a Christian, I firmly believe that we should share our faith with others, and present the gospel in a clear Biblical fashion, according to the words of Christ in Scripture. I have been with persons that present the gospel, and ask the person if they would like to accept Jesus Christ as their Savior. The person politely avoided the question, but said that they may come to church Sunday. Instead of allowing the Spirit to move upon the person to conviction (which may be years later or another visit), they asked them about five more times, if they would like to ask Jesus to save them. This is not necessary Christian witnessing, and all it did was to cause the person to become uncomfortable with us. Who knows if the person would have come to church, if the person would have refrained from boxing them into a corner, by continuing to demand an answer? We cannot confuse our making a person uncomfortable with our forceful witnessing, with Holy Spirit conviction.

TOUCHING: My wife’s family is the “huggy” type, whereas my family is not. When we meet her family, there is always an exchange of hugs and maybe even a peck on the cheek. This is not to say this is wrong, but I often see hugging elsewhere that seems somewhat less appropriate and less desirable to the one being hugged. Take for instance, older men hugging the younger ladies (or girls) in the church setting, or elsewhere for that matter. Please understand, I am by no means claiming these men are perverts, I am simply noting the faces of some of the young girls I have seen being hugged. We should realize that maybe people do not feel comfortable hugging us, or us hugging them. They (as in a woman or a man) do not owe you a hug. You ask, how you can know if you make them feel uncomfortable or not – wait until they reach to hug you. If they don’t, don’t get offended, realize they just don’t need or want a hug at that moment. This also applies to older women hugging younger men (or boys), but it seems to be seen less, although some boys may find it uncomfortable to hug also. Although young children may hug more frequently (especially girls), as they mature, they may become less comfortable hugging an adult (especially a male) – even if they had for years as a child. Respect it.

TOO PERSONAL: This seems to be an area that many miss the signs of the other person growing uncomfortable. The simple fact is some persons click into friendships, whereas some do not. This is not to mean that something is wrong with one of the people, and/or the other person is simply unfriendly, but personalities and other factors do play a role in how friendships develop, and as to whether one becomes comfortable or uncomfortable with us (or another). Just because we feel comfortable with another person, to share all or some of our more personal thoughts, does not mean they feel comfortable listening to it or lending advice. We can cause some to become uncomfortable by telling them all about ourselves, as we can by asking them personal questions. We have no right to pry or ask another individual personal questions about anything, and expect them to feel comfortable sharing information with us. This is especially true when it comes to male and female interaction. Someone may be a very nice person, and unable to tell us that we make them uncomfortable, sharing all of our personal information or asking them of theirs, so we must not mistake their listening, as to them feeling comfortable with us. A lady (or teen) does not always need to know that you think she is beautiful, she looks nice in such and such of clothing, you like her skin tone, or if you were younger you might like her. Sorry guys, but the fact is, ladies may not mind one person expressing there thoughts in this matter, but they may not want to hear it from you.

PERSONAL SPACE: Personal space is when one finds themselves having to always call or be around another individual. Again, this may be because we really like (not necessarily as anything more than friendship) a person, and feel comfortable around them. Remember, just because we have attached ourselves to them (for whatever reason), doesn’t mean they feel comfortable around us, or that they are equally attached to us. This does not mean there is something wrong with them or us, it simply means they could be really busy, already have a best (or bests) friends they confide in, or simply just don’t feel that comfortable with us. A lot of times, ladies feel uncomfortable when placed in a setting alone with a man, especially if they do not already feel comfortable with that man, but it may also be true of a man they have known for years. Realize that (men and women), and don’t place the other party in that position of feeling uncomfortable.

We cannot make or cause one to feel more comfortable with us by invading their personal space, by always calling them, by telling them all of our personal history, by inquiring of all of their personal history, and/or by complimenting them on physical appearance, but we sure can cause them to become more uncomfortable around us. I sure would hope there is no Christian that has a desire to have others tip-toe uncomfortably around us, so lets take the time to observe ourselves, and how we are causing people to react to us. We can’t get mad or frustrated simply because someone may feel uncomfortable around us, we need only to acknowledge it, and desire to change our actions which are causing it. We may never be able to be best friends or as close to someone we really like (as we hoped), so we need to accept it and not allow it to cause us to become depressed about it, to where we become offended.

I am sure each one of us has been put into an uncomfortable situation before, and we know how it feels, even if the other person did not. How about we take the time to consider the other person (as in the above), and ask ourselves, Do I Make You Feel Uncomfortable.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Humanist Draws Line Between Atheism and Anti-theism

“While atheism is the lack of belief in any god, anti-theism means actively seeking out the worst aspects of faith in god and portraying them as representative of all religion. Anti-theism seeks to shame and embarrass people away from religion, browbeating them about the stupidity of belief in a bellicose god.” - Greg M. Epstein

Would this not mean that there are atheists, and then there are atheist extremists, aka anti-theists?

As in many atheists’ blogs which I have seen (not all), there has been the use of terms such as moderate Christians and Christian extremists (labeled as fundamentalists). In following suit, there must also then be moderate Atheists and Atheist extremists. For there is the atheist which lives their life with a “lack of belief in any god”, then there is the atheist which appears to actively spend their life speaking, writing, blogging, and ranting against every religious thing that takes place.

The definition of moderates seems to be, they may concern themselves with belief or lack of, but do not interpose their beliefs onto others.

So we are left with the Christian extremists asking the Atheist to, “repent of your sin and believe in Christ for salvation”, and the Atheist extremists asking the Christian to, “turn away from Christianity and believe no longer in God.”

You just have to love the labeling system....

John Bunyan

To be saved is to be preserved in the faith to the end. 'He that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved.' (Mt. 24:13) Not that perseverance is an accident in Christianity, or a thing performed by human industry; they that are saved 'are kept by the power of God, through faith unto salvation.' (1 Pet. 1: 3-6) But perseverance is absolutely necessary to the complete saving of the soul…. He that goeth to sea with a purpose to arrive at Spain, cannot arrive there if he be drowned by the way; wherefore perseverance is absolutely necessary to the saving of the soul.