Store up for yourselves treasures in Heaven
where moth and rust cannot destroy and thieves cannot break in and steal

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Fools and Justice

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard fools go off on how unjust eternal punishment is “just for denying God’s existence,” or “just for a few sins.”

Well, how would YOU know whether or not it is just?

“But nothing,” they say, “can warrant eternal punishment in hell.”

Again, how would you know whether or not eternal punishment in hell is just?

How would you know if it is a punishment that fits the crime?

Your Creator says that denial of His existence and willful disobedience of His command DOES warrant eternal separation from His presence. And if anybody would know, it would be the One who Created you.

Our fallen nature is such that we have almost zero comprehension of the wondrous perfection of love as it is found in our Creator.

Our fallen nature is such that we have almost zero comprehension of the vile and odious nature of turning our backs on what was meant to be perfection.

It doesn’t matter, technically, how MANY sins we have committed. Sin as it’s normally understood is just a symptom of the real problem, the problem of who we are, people who in our natural state are unfit to be in the presence of a perfectly Holy Creator God.

John 3:18 tells us clearly that we either allow God to change our natural state or we WILL be eternally banished from His presence - for eternity - in hell - as a just
punishment for willfully remaining in our fallen state - Period.

Some people believe that they should have a say in whether this is acceptable or not - hence the label - Fool.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

A Pharisee at Heart?

This story has many different versions but the truth of it is sure.

A Jewish holocaust survivor was sitting at the trial of a Nazi officer who was responsible for killing, not just members of his community, but his own parents. During a break in the trial a news reporter observed this man with tears streaming down his face. Misinterpreting what he was seeing, the reporter asked the man if his were tears of rage. The man looked up and said, “Tears of rage? No. Not at all. These tears are because I recognised that the evil that resides in that Nazi also resides within me.”

If we fail to recognise the evil that resides in others (husband / wife / neighbour / co worker) also resides in each and every one of us, we fail to know ourselves at all.

It simply cannot be right for:
. a Christian to not hesitate to find fault with others,
. a Christian to relish the opportunity to judge others,
. a Christian to possesses an eagerness to correct others,
. a Christian to not show mercy and grace and forgiveness in the face of being wronged.

Most Christians have been brought to a place of humility whereby the mere thought of judging someone else, the mere thought of holding another accountable is abhorrent. How can we who have been born of love and forgiveness, withhold love, refuse to let go of the past, refuse in fact to forgive?

Friday, February 26, 2010

Benny's Got a Horseshoe Up His Butt

Just read where Suzanne Hinn is leaving her goof-ball husband Benny Hinn. I just took a look at a clip of her sermon entitled "Holy Spirit Enema" and I'd have to say that this is one of the luckiest days in that man's life. Wow! She is some piece of work.

I Hate My Nissan

I hate everything about my crappy 2007 Nissan Sentra that I bought from the crappy Oakwood Nissan dealership in Saskatoon Saskatchewan. I hate the crappy cvt that only works properly at summer temperatures and the crappy service at the crappy service department. I had an appointment for an oil change. Not heart surgery - an oil change. Two hours later the car was still sitting where I had parked it. This is not the first time that an oil change has taken over an hour. Never again will I go back. And I hate the way the crappy service department tries pushing crappy Nissan parts, parts, parts, "You need a new cabin air filter." Ya right. Like all the winter dust since my last oil change in November has plugged the thing. I've heard them telling other customers the same thing. I am soooo sorry that I ever bought this crappy vehicle from this crappy dealership.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

How’d He Do That? General Revelation 3:

Religious longings -

Theologians tell us that God has used two primary means of revealing Himself to us - General revelation and Special revelation. In the first post on this subject, I looked at General Revelation as found in Creation. The second part looked at General the revelation of our moral character. This third part looks at the universal longing to worship. I believe that to date, no people group has been discovered who lack a sense of awe before the supernatural. Atheists pretend this isn’t so, hence the descriptor “fool” as it is used in the Bible. Be it dung beetles or God Himself humans have a “sense of deity” as Calvin notes. Luther rightly states that humans will either worship God or an idol but worship we will.

While I’ve talked about God’s revelation to us, it’s important to note that this revelation is not something external to ourselves. Even with the fact of creation, we know at a fundamental level that it is God and not we ourselves who is at the top of things. Only when we humble ourselves to that inner knowledge do we awaken to the reality of things. When people refuse to adopt that attitude the door to further revelation is closed. A continuation of that hardened heart will lead to a point whereby revelation cannot be desired even in the smallest sense.

God promises to hold us accountable for refusing general revelation.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Built for Perfection

Ever wonder why we feel bad for doing things like lying? Ever wonder why betraying a friend makes us feel uncomfortable? The fact is, we feel badly because we were created as moral beings in a moral universe. More than that, we were built for perfection. We were built with the expectation that we would choose to do right. The feelings that come with doing wrong are uncomfortable and painful for a very good reason. In fact, this kind of pain is crucial for our well being. This pain signals that something is wrong. It’s a warning that needs to be heeded. Ignore this pain and the situation will only get worse.

Sadly what usually happens is that we look for ways to block our guilt, to ignore our guilt. A Header on one fool’s blog says, “So Long to Christianity and Thanks For All the Guilt.” People, like the one just mentioned deliberately declare wrong to be right in an attempt to placate the uncomfortable feeling that is guilt. Redefining right and wrong in an effort to do away with guilt won’t work; at least not in the manner this fool intends. We are, in reality unable to deal with real guilt on our own. That is the whole purpose of the Cross. To become emotionally and spiritually healthy, we require forgiveness, not from ourselves but from the One that we’ve offended, the One whose laws we have broken. - our Creator.

Our guilt is a symptom of something that we’ve broken, something that we are powerless to fix. We have destroyed a relationship with our Creator and only He can reconcile or restore to proper working order a relationship that was once perfect. An example of just how badly this relationship is damaged, is that in many cases people don’t even want our Creator to do anything about this breakdown.

The sickest among us actually believe or at least pretend to believe that everything is alright, as is. In the face of overwhelming evidence that humans are broken at a fundamental level, these people envision a bright future, as long as we ignore the moral law that is written on our hearts. The idea that God hardwired that moral code into us for our own good makes fools feel slightly nauseated. Thoreau in Walden stated, “If I knew for a certainty that a man was coming to my house with the conscious design of doing me good, I should run for my life.” Jesus did exactly that and fools like Thoreau, like cockroaches when a light switch is turned on, scurry for cover,

“Light came into the world but the world loved darkness.”

That is why, one day, those who long to be separated from their Creator will get that desire fulfilled. Those who long to have a healed relationship with their Creator restored to its original state will get that desire fulfilled. No one will be denied what they’ve worked a lifetime to achieve.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

You Know and I Know

We all know when we’ve done wrong. We don’t need God’s written law or any other law to tell us when we’re doing wrong to our neighbour. We are hardwired to know the truth. Yet with effort we can dampen this knowledge to the point that we can override the guilt that comes with misbehaviour.

While God has revealed His presence to us through our conscience He did not create us with the inability to override our conscience. He did not create us as robots.

For without choice there is no love. Without choice there is no right or wrong.

Romans 2:12-15 shows that God has revealed Himself to all in the conflicts of our moral experience. Differences in moral codes does not negate this fact. God has not left us without testimony of His existence.

Monday, February 22, 2010


Chatroulette is causing some buzz because people don’t seem to recognise that it’s just more of the same old thing.

"It completely goes outside of your comfort zone," he said. "Especially with Twitter and Facebook, you're used to associating with people who are like you, whereas on Chatroulette ... you come across just random people.”

That’s not true. At Chatroulette you’re associating with people who are exactly like you - those who are unable to interact or relate to real people face to face, and who then spend hours “interacting” with those relationships that require no commitment or effort.

“It’s soooo hard”

That’s what I hear from people as they are struggling in relationships.

Things have been said that can’t be unsaid.

Things have been done that can’t be undone.

What to do.

What to do.

“When they hurled their insults at Him, He did not retaliate; when He suffered, He made no threats. Instead, He entrusted Himself to Him who judges justly.” 1 Peter 2:23

Only a few people have the courage to imitate Jesus but O the blessings that come from giving up the fight, from letting go of the temptation for revenge. The thing that makes life so hard is in trying to make things fair. On the other hand, casting our troubles on God removes that load and brings peace - a Holy Peace.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

We’ve Got a Problem

In the New Testament there is a solid, clear, easy to follow theology of suffering. It’s one that, like God, does not destroy evil. Rather it defeats the power of evil.

Problem: In most cases we ignore this path that is laid out for us.

On our own and in a perfectly natural, logical and “sane” manner, we do everything we can to avoid being hurt by others. Many who have been hurt by those closest to them even develop and live by a new creed, “I will never allow myself to be hurt again.”

This is 180 degrees in the opposite direction from the path that Jesus took.
This is 180 degrees in the opposite direction from the path down which Jesus said, “Follow Me.”

Because of that, if we follow the path of avoiding relational pain, we will also miss the ONLY path that leads to emotional and spiritual health.

Hated without cause, mocked, lied to and lied about. Jesus, our example and character goal, came to earth knowing in advance that He would be abused, misunderstood, mistreated, rejected, insulted, betrayed and ultimately have humanity do our absolute worst to Him. Yet He entered into a covenant relationship with us anyway because He loves us. And then Jesus said, “Pick up your cross and follow Me (be like Me, do what I did, act like I did, relate to others like I did).

This is just one more of the many paradoxes of Christianity. Give up in order to get. Die in order to live. Lose in order to win. And the reason we’re told to do this is because, as it turns out, real life and real living, the abundant life, the full life is actually found down this path of pain. Sounds masochistic? How can it be? It’s what our Saviour lived for us and tells us to live as well - for Him. And because He loves us we can trust His advice, take His advice, live His advice. Those who have done this, those who have gone on before us tell us things like, “That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” 2nd Corinthians 2:10.

People who avoid relational pain are attempting to become strong, to become remain safe. However, like everything else we do because of our fallen nature, we do practically the opposite of what will work. The creed, “I will never allow myself to be hurt again” does not, in fact protect us from being hurt again. It cannot. All it does is create walls that shut people out and as a result causes even more and longer term pain.

Now, is it hard to do; to follow Jesus down this path? It will probably be the most painful thing that you’ve done to date. You will literally feel as though God is asking you to die inside. You will feel as though it’s too hard, too much, too unfair.

You’re not alone. You’re not the first.

“For we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about the affliction and oppressing distress which befell us in [the province of] Asia, how we were so utterly and unbearably weighed down and crushed that we despaired even of life itself (or as some think “we longed to die). Indeed, we felt within ourselves that we had received the very sentence of death but that was to keep us from trusting in and depending on ourselves instead of on God Who raises the dead.” 2nd Corinthians 1:8,9.

Dying to self in a healthy manner can only be done with the help and strength of Jesus your Saviour, but O my what dividends it pays in the area of emotional / mental / spiritual health.

In contradiction to the verse just quoted, many people distort 1st Corinthians 10:13 and say that God will NOT give us more than we can bear.
1. This verse is talking about temptation. God will give us an out from that which is tempting us.
2. God most certainly gives us more than we can bear or handle because only then are we driven to our knees in utter dependence upon Him.

Jesus cried out “My God, My God, why have you forsaken Me?” He fell on His face in the garden in utter despair of ever escaping the path set before Him. His stress and agony was so great that a medical condition call hematidrosis set in whereby “In great anguish, He prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.” He called out, “Please don’t make Me go through with this . . . BUT if this is what you want Me to endure, then endure it I will - for Your sake.”

And there lies the secret. We are not called to, and we must not give in to the temptation to endure relational pain in order to “change” the other person. THAT is what leads to our emotional breakdown. Rather, “In all things, whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory and honour of the Lord.” Do this, for this reason and the evil intent of others cannot destroy you. You will become stronger than you ever imagine possible. “Those who wait upon the Lord are like Mount Zion, unmoved by any circumstance.”

If I was asked to give the single most important interpersonal /spiritual / life changing principle that I’ve learned so far, this would be it. Grab hold of Jesus hand, and with eyes wide open and chest bared to the blast, step into the pain. Wade into the pain that others are about to throw at you and if you do this, not on your own but with your Lord and Saviour as your Guide, Counsellor and Comforter, you WILL come out the other side stronger than you ever imagined possible.

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.” Isaiah 43:1,2

That is why those who have gone down this path are able to say with confidence, “If God is for me, who can be against me? What can mere man do to me?” “No, in all these things (trials, suffering, difficulties) we are more than conquerors, through Him who loved us.”

Friday, February 19, 2010

Jesus preached more about the danger of false religion than any other sin.

What danger you ask?

False religion can make you feel comfortable while on your path to hell.

Sin will not do that.
Fools often make the accusation about this or that aspect of Jesus’ life, death and resurrection, that it was not verified in other literature of the time. They say this as though it would make some sort of difference in the stance they take in their denial of God’s existence.

Listen! It would make no difference. Not one single bit of difference would be made if there was any amount of corroborating evidence because their stance is not based on evidence.

What Use, Sorrow?

Many people wonder why God allows / causes suffering, tragedy, sorrow, difficulties.

There are of course many reasons but three obvious reasons are:

. Pain and sorrow drives those who are destined to reject Him further and further down the road to destruction.

. Pain and sorrow drives those who are destined to salvation into the arms of Jesus.

. Pain and sorrow are used by God, more than anything else, to bring about character change in those who long to become like Jesus.

Consider These Real-life Examples:

A man keeps score by how much money he makes. He cannot seem to stop judging those who make less.
- He is fired from his executive job - no one executive job but two.

A woman keeps score by the age and style of her furniture. She cannot seem to quit thinking less of those who have older, smaller, less than.
- The downturn in the economy forces her to buy used.

A person with depression becomes overly dependent on her husband.
- A death in the extended family forces her husband to leave her on her own while he takes care of business.

A woman lives with guilt because of being physically abusive toward her children. She prays for “gentle hands.”
- Arthritis renders her hands all but useless.

A man struggles with chronic unfaithfulness.
- Medications to treat a physical condition makes sex nearly impossible.

A man struggles with chronic lying.
- He is caught in a series of lies that threatens the survival of his marriage.

Without these difficulties and sorrows, these people would, in all likelihood still be caught in the folly of their ways.

Fools will cluck, cluck at the meanness of God for bringing these difficulties into these people’s lives.

Each of these people are today, giving prayers of thanksgiving for having been released from their bondage.

Fools will say that all this is coincidence.

“Coincidence is just God working anonymously.” Albert Einstein

Thursday, February 18, 2010

I So Wanted To

Protect my children from harm.

That’s all I’ve wanted to do.

That what I’m supposed to do.

It’s my job as a parent.

But I can’t.

I can’t plug all the holes.

Evil comes from too many directions.

Parenting is by far the most difficult thing that I've ever tried to do.

Do You Only Have Hate?

That’s how I sometimes feel when I read comments about some person who’s gone to jail or whose family split or who died / suicide. Some fashion designer recently hung himself and my goodness, the mean and trashy comments were something to listen too. His family is not the first, of course, to hear such insensitivity.

“Come down from the cross if you’re the Son of God.”

“If you are the king of the Jews, save yourself."

Exactly what kind of people mock and insult someone who is dying? What kind of people try to hurt more, those who are already maxed out on hurt?

And then Jesus said, “Father, forgive them, because they don’t have a clue what they are doing.”

That is the kind of people who hurt the hurting. Those who don’t have a clue. The love of many has indeed grown cold and because of that, they don’t have a clue.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


“This is a glorious day for Canada!”

That’s what the announcer said.

Did we solve world hunger? Find the secret for peace on earth? Did a Canadian scientist cure the worst of the world’s ills? Destroy an earth obliterating asteroid?


Not even close.

What happened was, a young Canadian woman rode her snow board down a hill faster than three other young women on their snow boards.

And that, we’re told, constitutes a glorious day for Canada. True, is was the Olympics but still . . .

How did our values ever become so skewed?

For This Reason

Why pain and suffering? Why tragedy? Why this fatal flaw that resides in our nature? Why so much sorrow as we hurt those we claim to love?

The Bible says it begins with our rejection of God. Our rejection of His existence has caused Him to pull back, to a degree, His hand of protection. There was a time when evil was kept at bay. It was not allowed to touch us, to damage and destroy us. And then we went our own way. We decided that we would be the masters of our fate and the captains of our souls -

“So God gave them over in the desires of their hearts.”

What could have been known about God was discarded and blocked out and denied. Fools exchanged truth for a lie.

“So God gave them over in the desires of their hearts.”

We chose to become sexually disoriented. We chose to step outside the boundaries and oasis of safety.

“So God gave them over in the desires of their hearts.”

We chose evil over good, greed over contentment, murder over love, lies over truth, pride over humility, ruthless over kindness.

“So God gave them over in the desires of their hearts. Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death, they not only continue to do these very things but also approve of those who practice them.”

For this reason God gave us over to the vagaries of nature and the vicious desires of the soul.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

We Humans Are Amazing

Consider this: The first murder took place over an act of worship in the very presence of God.

How’d He Do That? General Revelation 1:

Creation -

Theologians tell us that God has used two primary means of revealing Himself to us - General revelation and Special revelation. Today, I’ll look at General Revelation.

General revelation is referring to the universe in general and planet earth and life upon earth in particular. Many people, the Bible refers to them as fools, suggest that the universe just happened without any assistance from a force outside of nature. Nature, they say, brought itself into being. Hence the term “fool.”

In Romans 1:18-32 Paul explains God’s judgement on those who reject such obvious evidence of God’s existence. “God’s invisible qualities, His eternal power and divine nature have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made.”

Because at one time nothing natural existed, the Creator of our universe is obviously outside of or supra natural. Because nothing material existed, our Creator is obviously Spiritual. Because nothing natural can exist from eternity, our Creator is obviously infinite and eternal. Because the universe came from nothing, in an instant with the material parameters fixed at the singularity, our Creator is obviously a power and an intelligence the likes of which is mostly beyond human comprehension.

“Therefore no one is without excuse.”

“God has not left Himself without testimony of Himself.”

Monday, February 15, 2010

What are the odds?

If God is our Creator, it is highly probable that we were created for a purpose. And since we are responsive, relational beings, it may also be presumed that one of God’s purposes for creating us is for relationship with Himself.

In order to have this relationship He would have to reveal Himself, or make Himself known to us. Paul tells us in Romans that Creation itself is one aspect of this revelation from God to us, about Himself.

Further, as we seem to intuit, that God is a God of love, then the likelihood of Him revealing Himself to us becomes all the more probable; in fact it becomes overwhelmingly probable.

Haiti Missionaries

Because I don’t like being wrong, or more correctly, because I don’t like being seen by others as being wrong, I rarely make predictions. However I’m going to make an exception.

Regarding the Baptist Missionaries who’ve been accused of kidnapping. My guess is that a slimey con man took some naive do-gooders for a ride. They almost rounded up a bunch of children for him.

These kids were only hours away from working as slaves in the sex trade.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

By What Authority?

Jesus was asked on occasion, "By what authority are you doing these things?"

Christians need to ask themselves a similar question. By what authority can we know God?

Some refer to the creeds; the Apostles Creed being probably the best known
- These creeds often seem too general to serve as a final word of truth.

Others fall back on the main trend of Christian opinion or Christian consensus
- Who do we listen to? Theologians? The Clergy? The average person in the pew?

Many go by their own subjective experience of God.
- As biased and prone to error as humans are, this is a dubious choice.

Many others say Christian reason alone will suffice.
- While our rational faculties must be used, again our biases often override our reason.

"Our inner voice" is the advice of many a secular counsellor.
- And many a shipwrecked life is evidence that this route alone is not the path to travel.

While each of these can make a contribution to knowing the Mind of God, our doctrine can never be merely intellectual, nor can we rest on merely subjective experience. The ultimate source of authority, regarding God, must be the revelation of God Himself.

God has made Himself known to us through His word, through the Person of Jesus the Christ, through the indwelling of His Spirit and through His Creation.