One more year closer to His coming! What a great year this has been. We have watched as the Father called some close friends home to glory. We have also watched as He decided to heal some because their job was not finished here. In both cases, we remember Abraham’s words “Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Genesis 18:25)
Right Division Blogs
Every month I promise myself that I will just write about good things, try not to be controversial and be positive like the popular preachers are. Something always jars me back to reality and the seriousness of God’s calling. Five years ago doctors diagnosed me with a rapid growing lung cancer and gave me a year to live. God Almighty changed that, gave me additional duties and this year the doctors announced me cancer free. Seven times each week God lets me stand before different classes and tell them about His Son. I get to serve as a jail chaplain and a police/fire chaplain.
Paul spoke of the “simplicity” in Christ.
“But I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtilty, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ.” 2 Corinthians 11:3
God made things simple for man, but man chooses to complicate them. Adam’s first orders were extremely simple:
The current fad among hip-hop Christendom is “reaching the youth.” Maybe we should ask ourselves, “For what purpose are we trying to reaching them?” Are we trying to get them saved? Are we trying to get their lives changed for Christ’s sake?
In Acts 15 we have an account of a harsh conflict between two of God’s children, Paul and Barnabas. Barnabas first appears in Acts 4:36 as one who sold his land and gave the proceeds to the apostles. The next time he appears is in defense of Paul’s conversion (Acts 9:27.) In Acts 11:22-26 Barnabas was sent by the church at Jerusalem to disciple new converts at Antioch. He thought of Paul and brought him to join in this ministry.
James, the Lord’s brother, in writing to the twelve tribes of Israel scattered everywhere, said,
“Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, to visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.” James 1:27
We live in unusual and interesting times. Never have things moved so fast around us. It took right at 5900 years for transportation to advance from animals to automobiles. In a 100 years man has achieved speed faster than sound, traveled to destinations as far as the moon and changed the English Bible over 200 times. In less than 50 years we have seen the most prosperous and advanced civilizations legalize murdering innocent babies, approve same sex marriages and strive to remove God and the Ten Commandments from our society. Man keeps contradicting himself.
A pastor friend of mine related this story. On their way home from church one Sunday, his ten year old daughter quizzed him. She said, “Daddy, that story you told today…was that really true or was it just preaching?” A little girl, wise beyond her years; for so much of what we hear as preaching may be just that…preaching, not truth!
Easter is here! Christ has risen! Everything worthwhile is tied to Christ’s resurrection. Paul said,
“And if Christ be not risen, then is our preaching vain, and your faith is also vain…If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” 1 Corinthians 15:14, 19
There are two events in scripture that point to drastic mistakes we can make about Jesus Christ. Both of these mistakes were made by people who were close to Him, who loved Him and were dedicated to Him.
1. FAILING TO RECOGNIZE HIS PRESENCE
Much is being written and spoken today about “praise and worship.” I am bad about accepting things, especially things issuing from Christian friends and reputable Christian leaders. It usually takes some traumatic event or conflict before I research anything on my own. It is obvious that “praise and worship” means different things to different people, but it is just as obvious that everyone seems to think it involves music of some kind.