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Figuring your life out

January 20, 2009

Does it ever seem difficult to see what God is doing in your life?

Proverbs 20:24 reads,

A man’s steps are from the LORD;
   how then can man understand his [own] way?

Maybe the point of life isn’t to understand your life but to use what God gives you to glorify Him because you’re undeserving of it. So, the next time you’re planning out your day remember to think of the verse above and that

The heart of man plans his way,
   but the LORD establishes his steps. (Proverbs 16:9)

Then proceed with a thankful, prayerful, humble heart to trust the Lord God who is Sovereign over all things and showed His love to the world by sending His Son Jesus Christ to live, die and rise again for His people and glorify Him for all He does.

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Atheist Ads in England

January 7, 2009

In Dr. Albert Mohler’s latest blog post he reviews the Atheistic ad campaign on the side of London buses. The ads read, “There’s probably no God. Now stop worrying and enjoy your life”.

Dr. Mohler’s post points out the feebleness of the argument that God probably doesn’t exist. I’d like to look briefly at the second part – “Now stop worrying and enjoy your life”. This is the conclusion they reach with probably no God in their life. Not only is their argument weak but they fail to see that most of the world, e.g. 95% of the United States, believes that there is some type of god in existence.

In that light I think the atheistic conclusion is actually helpful to Christianity. If the result of there being probably no god is a life without worry [about God] and with self-centered enjoyment then what about those who do believe there is a God and are living their lives without any worry or concern toward Him and with a complete enjoyment of their lives apart from God?

Hopefully a wayward Christian or a person just calling themselves a Christian will realize that they are living like atheists when they have no worry before God and enjoy their lives apart from Him. Hopefully this marketing campaign will raise awareness for people – “Wait, I call myself a Christian and live like an atheist”. Then they can resolve their life before God by trusting that Jesus removed the punishment for all the actions they may otherwise worry about and that they should not live for their own pleasure but should enjoy God and live for Him because of His provision for us in Jesus Christ.

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A Multi-cultural Christmas in Georgia

December 25, 2008

This Christmas I discovered personally that even our United States have a lot of cultural differences that need to be conquored in the name of Christ and worship of Him.

This year my Christmas Eve was 70 degrees. I’ve never had such a warm Christmas season in my memory. That also meant that there was no snow. I think that was also a first. Instead of two worship services (7:30 and 11pm) was a single service at 5pm. And instead of closing the service by singing “Silent Night” we sang “Happy Birthday to Jesus”.

It’s important to note that there was almost nothing wrong with these cultural changes in worship. They just take more concentration when worshipping to a suprise song of “Happy Birthday”. But our God is still the same and Jesus was met just as clearly without snow and jackets and late services and old hymns.

Hopefully God continues to teach us all how to worship and serve Him without being distracted by cultural traditions. Merry Christmas!

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Newsweek – what your congregation is reading

December 9, 2008

I just read a great post by Dr. Mohler on “Turning the Bible on its Head — Newsweek Goes for Gay Marriage

Some of the great points he makes are

  1. the willingness of people to stand in judgment over the Bible (thus proving that they do not consider the Bible revelation from God but something they can decide upon)
  2. “It is not a thin extreme of fundamentalist Christians who stand opposed to same-sex marriage — it is the vast majority of Christian churches and denominations worldwide.” – She tries to divide Christians, making them think they are only a few, and a stupid few at that.
  3. Newsweek has positioned itself as a pro-homosexual publication which does not choose to publish opposing or balanced arguments (as one might imagine a news institution to do.

I hope you’re able to read both the Newsweek article and Dr. Mohler’s article to confront those who may begin to doubt their faith and their Bible because of such anti-Christian articles.

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Brief look: Salvation by Education? Or Awareness?

December 3, 2008

I’m between two finals right now. The first went well and I’m hopeful about the second. But I wanted to write briefly about two strange forms of salvation – by education and by awareness.

There are a lot of programs out now to assist the “lower class” by educating them. There is also a trend toward everyone needing to go to college. But is the problem a lack of education?

Another trend is “awareness”. Every disease, it seems, has a walk or 5k run or special day to “raise awareness”. But is the problem a lack of awareness?

We don’t admit it as much as we should but our hearts are the problem. We are fallen people in Adam. And because of that our hearts are corrupt. We’re evil and the admission can hardly make it past our lips.

So, of course, salvation from our evil hearts is not by educating them (educated evil people?) or by awareness (evil people that are more aware of the effects of evil?) but by Jesus Christ, who saves us from our own evil and sinful lives.

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Review: 2008 National Founders Conference audio

November 6, 2008

Founders Ministries“Lengthening the Cords and Strengthening the Stakes: Renewing and Planting Local Churches” was the 2008 National Founders Conference title.

As their logo says, Founders is committed to Historic Baptist Principles. During their conferences they highlight those priniciples with solid biblical teaching. That proves true again in this conference. As I listened to it I kept thinking of people that I wanted to give it to.

There are nine parts to the conference. There is slightly more emphasis on church planting than church renewal/reform. Most of the presentations are exceptional. As with any conference, there are a few things that over extend themselves enough to be questionable. But as with any good conference. The encouragement, instruction and direction far outweigh what might be questionable.

Ed Stetzer gives the two main addresses, Lengthening the Cords and Strengthening the Stakes.  He arrouses the need for church planting, especially among those who can propagate sound teaching. Although his sections are the ones I tended to think streched Scripture too far, He still proves that much more focus on church planting is needed in churches today.

Voddie Baucham focuses on Building a Solid Doctrinal Foundation. As much as we can separate the church planting section of this conference from the church reform part, Baucham’s lecture is heart of the church planting section.

Andy Davis’ and Don Whitney’s presentations are the highlights of the conference. They give practical, insightful, experiential application of God’s word. They focus on the reform of the church which easily translates into new church planting as well. These three messages are the reason I recommend this conference so highly.

Audio for “Lengthening the Cords and Strengthening the Stakes: Renewing and Planting Local Churches” is on the 2008 National Founders Conference title webpage.

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How to tell if your church loves money more than Jesus…

October 10, 2008

Three steps…

1) Determine how Jesus would vote in an upcoming election. This is by far the most difficult step but still possible. The Bible is His revelation and speaks to all areas of life. So voting is in there, based on candidates who uphold justice (Romans 13).

2) Have the pastor preach on the evils and virtues of candidates and who the Bible is telling us to vote for.

3) Wait for someone to bring up the loss of the church’s tax-exempt status as a reason not to inform people of the Bible’s bearing on the voting booth.

You can determine three things from this actually: 1) need for more Bible study; 2) need for a more courageous pastor; 3) need to remove money (and any of its stanch advocates) as an obstacle to faith.

Example case: Obama is pro-abortion; McCain (though far from perfect) is anti-abortion and pro-life; the Bible is anti-abortion and pro-life. Vote McCain, if for no other reason than his standing on the most important issue facing the United States – the murder of unborn children.