We Are Not Who We Were

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”  2 Cor 5:17

This past weekend, I received an interesting question I have heard many times before, and have tried to answer, but out of a sense of humility, the answer is not readily accepted.  “How important is it, for a Christian, to tell God when we pray how terrible and unworthy we are?”. This seems like a reasonable thing to do.  We want to be humble before God, and what a better way to show humility than to recognize ourselves as a totally worthless individual that could not do anything ourselves to make us worthy, and understanding our reliance upon God to do what we are incapable of doing on our own?  This is a noble sentiment, however, it is partially wrong.  Not the fact that we cannot do anything toward our salvation, but the idea we are worthless.

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Categories: Theology

Is it belief

Jesus said to him, ‘Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.‘”  John 20:29

If you ask any Christian if they believe there is a Heaven, he will most likely say “Yes”.  And if you were to ask any Christian if God loves them, you would probably get the same answer.  We have been taught all our lives that Heaven is a real place and that God loves us.  We say with little hesitation that we believe the words of the bible are true, and we really mean it.  However, have we ever examined what we say we believe, not to validate the truth of them, but rather if we truly believe them?    Read more…

Categories: Theology

Doing Good

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.”  Php 2:3

A couple of weeks ago, I decided it was time to redo my office and study.  It had devolved into such dis-array I never wanted to come down here.  However, now that I, with the help of my family and Brandon, a good friend of our family, have been able to bring order out of chaos, I am back now doing some of things I love, reading, writing, and just enjoying quiet and de-stressing times at my desk.

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Categories: Culture

Love, The Greatest Gift

A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.  By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”  John 13:34-35

This coming week, we will be celebrating Thanksgiving.  We all know what this day is about, giving thanks to God for all the gifts and blessing He has given us.  There is so much for us to be thankful for; our jobs, family, friends, the things we have, etc.  However, I would like to spend a few moments talking about probably the greatest gift we have ever received.

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Categories: Culture

Who is really first

“”Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while this house lies in ruins?”  Haggai 1:4

As I find myself sitting in the Student Center at New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary(NOBTS)  in, you guessed it, New Orleans, I finished my summary of the book of Haggai for the Old Testament Theology class I am taking for my Doctorate in Theology.  I am not attending NOBTS, rather I am getting my degree from another Seminary, however, I joined my son for His trip here as he takes some of his classwork at the seminary, required if you are attending from a hub campus as he is doing.  As I was studying Haggai, God showed me something that I want to share with you that I hope helps you in your Christian walk.  However, before I tell you, I would like to give you some background information that will help you understand my thoughts.

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Categories: Theology

A Tale of Freedom

and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”  John 8:32

Jacob woke up from a hard sleep, wondering somewhat where he was.  He looked around to get his bearings, and then began to rub his eyes.  He looked down at his side table, and noticed a book that had not been there when he dozed off the night before.  He sat up, very curious.  Living in a small eight by twelve foot space in the middle of a large open building, his world, where no-one is allowed to leave their life space, and especially enter another’s, makes this rather puzzling.  Should he open it and see what it is?  Was this a trap set by the Ultimate Ruler to determine who was faithful and punish those who were not?  He was confused.  Who could have placed it there?  He stared at the book.  It was enticing him to open it.  He perused the area around his room.  No one was looking.  He reached out and touched it, then quickly pulled his hand back.  Nothing strange.  He looked around again, and slowly turned to the side of his bed and carefully picked up the book.  He lifted the cover and found one sentence on the page.  “Take heart; I have overcome the world.” (Joh 16:33b)

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Categories: Story, Theology

Our Testimonies

Therefore do not be ashamed of the testimony about our Lord, nor of me his prisoner, but share in suffering for the gospel by the power of God,”  2 Tim 1:8.

What comes to mind when you think of someone’s testimony?  If you were to ask some people, they would say that it is their story on how they became a believer and follower of Christ.  And they would be correct, sort of.  That is a part of what a testimony is.  But our testimony is anything we have seen or experienced that proclaims the truth.  From a Christian context, it is a declaration of anything that God has done for us or made us aware of.

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Categories: Theology

The Strait Way

Enter by the narrow gate. For the gate is wide and the way is easy that leads to destruction, and those who enter by it are many.  For the gate is narrow and the way is hard that leads to life, and those who find it are few.”   Mat 7:13-14

Imagine two roads.  The first is a grand six lane highway with easy access.  The speed limit is sixty-five miles per hour, and it provides a comfortable journey from point A to point B.  The second is a very narrow road, barely two lanes, with difficult access.  The speed limit is twenty five miles per hour, and you have to be careful to avoid driving off the road.  Now, suppose you are told that both roads lead to the same destination.  Which one would you choose?  Most, if not all of us would choose the first road.  Sounds like a no-brainer to me.  As long as both lead to the same place.

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Categories: Theology

On Compassion

“A Society that lacks Compassion, lacks a future”

This is a little different post than I normally write.  It is based on the case of little 10-year-old Sarah Murnaghan, who is dying from cystic fibrosis and needs a lung transplant in order to survive.  Without the transplant, she has a mere few weeks to live.  The doctors and surgeons say that she has a good chance of recovering and living a normal life if they can get the lung.  However, federal policy states anyone under the age of twelve must wait until there are no adults who need lungs before they can be offered one.  When Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius was asked to make an exception so that this little girl could have a chance at life, her response was, in essence, that this was a difficult situation, and that she has requested in the last couple of a days a review of this policy.   However, this review could take up to a year to complete, long after Sarah has passed away.  According to Tom Price, Republican Representative from Georgia, all that is necessary for Sarah to receive an exemption is for Ms. Sebelius to sign an order to make it so.  However, she refuses to do so, because she does not want to get involved with this situation.  Read more…

Categories: Culture

The True God

O Lord GOD, you have only begun to show your servant your greatness and your mighty hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do such works and mighty acts as yours?”  Deu 3:24

How do we live this Christian life as it is meant to be lived?  Many ask this question, and there can be as many answers as their are those who ask the question.  Most answers given are either incomplete or completely wrong.  There are many books that have been written discussing this topic and presenting various answers to it’s readers.  Sermons, lectures and classes have been offered to help the attendees try to live the Christian life as God intended.  However, most of these things end up being a list of do’s and don’ts.  What too many do not understand is that our actions alone do not allow us to live the true Christian life.  We can do all the right things, but still miss the heart of the matter.  It does not matter what we do, but who we are and who we believe God is. Read more…

Categories: Theology