is number 8 in a weekly series begun on December 21st/13
with a post called, “Married Forever?”
which is it? Is the purpose of marriage to promote the good of family
and society? Or is it to enhance the well-being of self? It might
surprise you to know that Jesus didn't set marriage up as a choice
between one or the other. I know, that's how the world views Biblical
marriage - oppression of self-fulfillment. However, like most other things that have to do with Jesus
and His teaching, the world is wrong. In reality, God brought
marriage into being with the intent of showing that mutual fulfilment
could only come through mutual sacrifice for one another.
set an example for us, Jesus gave up His rights and He died to self
to bring us into a healed relationship with Himself and then He said,
“Follow Me, be like Me, do in your relationships what I did in My
relationships. Submitting to Jesus by submitting to one another in
our marriages brings personal fulfilment. A marriage where two people
engage in loving surrender to each other drives away fear of
abandonment, ends loneliness, and grows us into Christ-likeness. And
that is the point of life (Romans 8:29). That is the “good” that
God works for in all things for believers; to make us more and more
like Jesus. The more you live out the Gospel of Grace toward each
other, the closer you become toward each other and to Jesus. That's
the secret, or the mystery of which Paul speaks.
marriage will change your heart and soul.
heard a comedian once, who said, “No matter how smart you think you
are, you're not that smart.” That's true, but so is the Bible which
explains, “No matter how good you think you are, you're not that
good.” We need to be changed. Society and the world at large
needs us to be changed. A Biblical marriage will bring about that
inner change unlike anything else. That is because Biblical marriage
teaches us what it means to love.
expressing the enormous love that Jesus washes over us, we are truly
transformed. However, this awareness of who we really are must be
brought forth in an atmosphere of love. Without a loving environment,
we simply will not hear the truth. In the absence of the certainty of
love, men hear criticism as rejection and women hear it as a lack of
love. With the certainty of love we not only hear the truth about our
sin with which our partner must live, we long to repent of our sin
and be changed. God's mercy and grace, freely received can then be
wouldn't believe the number of Christians who are scared of Jesus.
Sure, they've prayed a prayer asking for forgiveness, and they've
maybe even been baptized. But do they “follow” Jesus? Do they do
what He says regarding relationships and money and issues of
integrity? Nope. And you know why? It's too scary. They're afraid of
what He might ask of them.
get that. Been there, done that, as people used to say. If you
haven't tried stepping out in faith, if you haven't trusted Jesus
enough to obey Him, then you don't know from experience that He is
good. Not safe, as C.S. Lewis would caution, but He is good.
see, Jesus asks us to die to self. He asks us to turn our backs on
what the world says we can't live without. He asks us to trust Him.
Sadly, many, perhaps even most of those who call themselves followers
of Jesus trust the world's vision of security and value rather than
trusting their Saviour. But think about this!
who did not spare his own Son, but gave Him up for us all—how will
He not also, along with Him, graciously give us all things?
You think we can't trust our Lord, Creator and Saviour? He's held
nothing back. He's paid the price for our sins at His own expense.
You don't need to doubt the love of someone whose own blood has been
spilled for your good.
So, what if you stopped worrying about whether Jesus is going to make
your life difficult? Life IS difficult regardless of whether you're a
Christian or not. As the saying goes, "In this life you will
suffer. You will either suffer with Jesus or without Him.
So, what if you allowed yourself to realize that just on the other
side of what Jesus asks of you lies a life that's better than you
ever imagined? Jesus and the presence of His Holy Spirit changes
suffering into something that cannot destroy us.
So, what if just on the other side of your fear lies a life that is
full and abundant beyond description?
And then, what if you acted upon that belief? How would your life be
different? I can tell you how it would be, and so can millions of
others who have taken this step. Casting all your anxieties upon
Jesus creates the most amazing life possible.
longs to give us a good life. He died to give us the best existence
know at a fundamental level that what the world offers stands no
chance of delivering on its promises. You know that. So what are you
waiting for? What have you got to lose? Take hold of Jesus' hand and
with eyes wide open step into a life of obedience. To trust and obey
is not a leap in the dark. Rather it's a step into the light.
there were no obscurity, man would not feel his corruption; if there
were no light, man could not hope for a cure. Thus it is not only
right but useful for us that God should be partly concealed and
partly revealed, since it is equally dangerous for man to know God
without knowing his own wretchedness as to know his wretchedness
without knowing God.”
haven't read any atheist blogs for a long time. However, when I left
that part of the internet, there was a HUGE push for atheists to
start being good people, demonstrably good, publicly good. After thousands of years of mocking and jeering those who attempt to
follow God, derisively calling them do-gooders, modern atheists have
declared, “For the survival and growth of atheism we have to start
acting more like Christians. We have to do more for others.” The
old atheist tendency, found in the comment of one atheist blogger,
“Can't I just fuck around and watch tv if I want to?” is no
longer acceptable to organized atheism. There are now rules to
why atheists do good for non kin relationships. But the question then
arises, what about Christians? Why are they such – well – such
think the reason is, it's not the Christian who's doing it. When you
see true Holiness taking place it's because of the presence of the
Holy Spirit. In fact, where there is no Holiness, there is no Holy
those in a healed and forgiven relationship with Jesus, it is His
Spirit who directs and guides them toward the things that interest
Him. To put it crudely,
Christians are possessed.
And as long as they
obey Jesus' command to, “Abide in Me,” Christians will do what
the Holy Spirit leads, directs and guides them to do. Jesus said,
“Where I Am, there My servants will be also.” And where is Jesus?
He's with the poor, the sick and the down-trodden and with those on
the fringes of society. Jesus is serving and by extension, so are His
view – “All in all? You're just another brick in the wall.”
Russell confirms this belief. “That man
is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were
achieving; that his origin, his hopes and fears, his loves and his
beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms;
that no fire, no heroism, no intensity of thought and feeling, can
preserve an individual life beyond the grave; that all the labours of
the ages, all the devotion, all the inspiration, all the noonday
brightness of human genius, are destined to extinction in the vast
death of the solar system, and that the whole temple of Man's
achievement must inevitably be buried beneath the debris of a
universe in ruins – all these things, if not quite beyond dispute,
are yet so nearly certain, that no philosophy which rejects them can
hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on
the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul's habitation
henceforth be safely built.”
On atheism, there can be no other view of humanity.
view – You're a child of the King; a brother/sister of Jesus;
created in the image of the Creator of the universe. “You are the
special creation of a good and all-powerful God. You are created in
His image, with capacities to think, feel, and worship that set you
above all other life forms. You differ from the animals not simply in
degree but in kind. Not only is your kind unique, but you are unique
among your kind.”
of Creator God you are loved.
of Creator God you were born into His love.
of Creator God you were born to know His love.
of Creator God you were born to enjoy His love for you.
remember watching a scene in a movie where a mother was feeling
helpless in view of her young son's terminal illness. She was angry
and she was taking this anger out on a young Pastor who had come to
visit. The mother wanted to know why, why was her son sick when all
over the neighbourhood young boys were laughing and playing and
running around without the slightest thought of someday not being
able to play because of illness. The mother said to the Pastor, “When
young Bradly was well, I never asked why we deserved such good
fortune. Now however, you're damn right I want to know. Why would God
do this to us? I want to know!”
so too, I ask, “Why me? Why do I have so much? Why have I always had so
much. Why was I destined to be born in this country at this time in
history when I have so much more of everything than I need to
It’s weird how we never demand an answer from God as to why He
gave us hands that work perfectly, picking up, turning things off and
on, fixing, adjusting, caressing, creating and exploring with
exquisite dexterity. It’s mind-boggling to watch how we don’t
demand an answer from God as to why He gave us mouths with the
ability to sound out words, taste foods, sense temperature and
texture with extraordinary sensitivity; mouths and vocal cords that
can moan, cry and sing. We never seem to consider the contradiction
in how we don’t demand an answer from God as to why He gave us eyes
that can communicate emotion and explore the majestic beauty of
Creation, yet curse Him and demand all reference to Him be removed from the public sphere.
We use the word creation without ever considering the
We never seem to wonder why it is that we don’t demand an
answer from God as to why He has allowed us to be born in an
unimaginably huge and hostile universe on this little jewel of a
planet. We don’t ever consider why we don’t demand an answer from
God as to why He continues to allow us to take for granted the fact
that we have more food than we can eat; as much money as we need,
and a health care system that the majority of humanity cannot even
We don’t ever seem to wonder what kind of a person
would take all of these gifts and still curse the God who gave it all
especially don’t ever seem to think it odd that they don’t demand
an answer from God as to why He is so good to them even when they
hate Him, ignore Him, reject Him and hate those who love Him. Of
course if a conversation goes in this direction, atheists will
immediately yell "There is no God," since it doesn’t work
so well to let God exist only when you want to blame Him for
This is the 7th in a series that began December 21st/13 with a post
called, “Married Forever?”
week I ended with the statement, “I maintain that without knowing
the secret of marriage that Paul describes for us in
the New Testament, no marriage can reach the level of fulfillment for the couple, and glorification of Jesus that it was intended to
Secret of Marriage? I read through the whole Bible once a year, every
year. It's taken me nearly two decades to get what Paul is talking
about. Not because it's such a difficult concept, but because I
simply could not sink below the surface of what he was saying. Its
kind of like -
says clearly, “I'm talking about Christ and the Church.”
blink my eyes and say “Huh?”
talking about Christ and the Church (the body of believers).
Husbands, love your wives just as Jesus loves the Church and gave
Himself up for her.”
you're talking about Christ and the Church! . . . Huh?”
I get it. Then I didn't. Mostly probably because I didn't want to
hear what his words meant. I've since seen that many Christian
husbands don't want to get it. Paul is saying that the secret to our
role in marriage is to do for our wives what Jesus did to unite all of us
with Himself. He gave Himself up for us. Jesus IS the greatest
Being to ever exist. He is the Creator and sustainer of life and the
universe itself. And then He gave up His glory, became a human-being,
died on a Roman cross and paid the penalty for our sins.
gave up His rights as Creator God so that our needs might be met.
kind of sacrifice made possible an intimate, healed and forgiven
relationship with Him and He says to us husbands, 'THAT is how to do
marriage.' Jesus and the Church is what God had in mind when He
ordained way back in Genesis that, “A man will leave his father and
mother and be joined to his wife and the two shall become one.”
the secret that Paul is talking about. That is what keeps Biblical
marriage from being oppressive as the world imagines it to be. In
Biblical marriage the husband, under Christ, is the Spiritual Leader
of the home. As such, the husband gives himself up and models for the
God had this picture of salvation in mind when He instituted marriage
between man and woman, the marriage can only be successful when each partner
loves the other in a self-giving love.
said, “I did not come to be served but serve and to give My life .
often tell people (Christians) whose marriage is struggling, “If you try to fix this marriage, you will fail. If
instead, you focus solely on repairing your relationship with Jesus (not your partner's relationship but your relationship),
loving Him and obeying Him, the restoration of your marriage will
follow as naturally as dawn follows the dark.”
for your spouse, what Jesus did for you and your marriage cannot
is the great cope out, the great excuse to evade the need to think
and to evaluate evidence.”
Science” says of Darwinian evolution, it can turn dinosaurs into
birds, apes into humans and amphibious mammals into whales.”
yet there is not one iota of observable evidence of one “kind”
of animal changing or evolving into another “kind” of animal.
There is lots of evidence for adaptation within a kind (micro
evolution) but zero evidence of evolution of one kind of species
developing into a new kind, as described in “Live Science.”
is only the atheist presupposition, the unsupported and anti
scientific presupposition that takes adaptation (micro evolution) and
forces upon us a conclusion of macro evolution.
scientific method is based upon observation, testing and
verification. It allows us to draw conclusions that don't have to accepted by
faith. Evolution simply cannot be observed, tested or verified.
see nothing of these slow changes in progress.”
other words we have to accept the conclusion of evolution by faith.
Much like believing that matter has always existed even though
science and Big Bang cosmology says otherwise.
course atheists say, they must say, they have no choice BUT to say
that there are “missing links out there. We just haven't found them
yet.” Much as they say that they believe that an explanation that
this is a material universe only will some day be found. Till then
they believe it on blind faith. It's exactly like those atheist
leaders who will grudgingly admit that it's impossible to make even one grain of
sand out of nothing (let alone a whole universe). Yet they then say, unless you have “millions and billions of years. Then somehow the obviously impossible becomes possible.
you can think of any observable, testable, verifiable (science)
evidence for Darwinian evolution, i.e. a change of one kind into
another kind, then you can believe in evolution based on something
other than blind faith.
At least that's what those addicted to Pot will
tell you. 'Cause we all know how healthy it is to inhale burning
leaves. Especially when the smoke comes from plants that just grow
naturally in the wild.
that we know that the smoking-related effects on the human body just
keeps growing. It now includes liver and colorectal cancers,
diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis, erectile dysfunction and cleft pallet
in those born to mothers who smoke. We already know that smoking is
tied directly to lung, mouth and throat cancer as well as chronic
bronchitis and coronary heart disease. So what is the solution?
add marijuana smoke to agenda. That will keep down the costs of
health care. Brilliant!
is quoted by Matthew, “For where your treasure is, there your heart
will be also.”
put it another way, 'Show me where you spend your discretionary
money and time, and I'll tell you what you consider most valuable.' Is it the distraction of sports? Clothes? Vehicles and recreational vehicles? How about mood altering chemicals? Vacations? Tools? Investments?
context of what Jesus was talking about is our human desire for more
wealth than we need. “You cannot serve both God and money.” He
could have added, 'Though most of you will spend your life trying.' When we are young, most
of our money goes to acquiring “things.” As people age they
start storing up money for when they retire. This, even though Jesus
said, “How can it be of any benefit for anyone if s/he gains
the whole world, yet loses h/her soul?” Well, there is no benefit to
accumulating wealth, but that doesn't keep people from trying.
world’s 85 richest individuals now own as much as the poorest half
of the 7 billion global population (that's 3.5 billion
people), according to a reportreleased
by Oxfam on Monday. One
per cent of the world's families now own 46% of the world's wealth.”
doubt that any of those people would stumble across this blog, but we
regular people are no different. Any person within reach of a
key-board is richer than most people in the world. And we want more! As Buddha is reported to have said, “No matter how much you have, a
time will come when you will say, “this is not enough.”
Marcuse has said, “People have been seduced into a comfortable,
attractive, tasteful, fully enjoyable, form of slavery. This is the
worst kind of slavery.”
are slaves to ease of living. We work feverishly to pay for things we
don't need. We honestly believe that security can be found in storing
up “treasures” for ourselves here on earth, where they inevitably
deteriorate into junk. And by we, I am now talking about Christians.
Or at least those of us who call ourselves Christians. So far is the behaviour of Christians from the teaching of Jesus the Christ that Pope Francis said today, "I ask you to ensure humanity is served by wealth, and not ruled by it."
can't go on. It won't go on.
came to bring a Kingdom of generosity, and fairness, and decency
among humans. He expects us, as His followers, to end discrimination
and present to the world a mighty river of mercy. We are to care for
the poor, not blame them for their fate. We are to care for orphans,
not kill them before, or in some cases (see atheist Peter Singer)
even after they're are born. “Any
foetus is less human than an adult pig.” atheist Richard
are so terribly far from where we need to be, and God promises that
there is going to be hell to pay because of our negligence and greed
and our pure unadulterated self-love.
for what? What exactly does an accumulation of wealth bring us? Not
what we expect it to bring; that's for sure.
people pursue pleasure with such breathless haste that they hurry
right past it.” Kierkegaard
is the great cope out, the great excuse to evade the need to think
and to evaluate evidence.”
bizarre coming from a man who believes, on blind faith and contrary to all scientific
evidence that matter can create itself. He also believes that inanimate and inorganic chemicals "evolved" into life. Now that, like all of atheism, takes some faith.
heaven existed, do you think that you should be allowed entrance
based upon how good you are? Most atheists for example are adamant that
they are good people. They have to believe that because their mantra is, "I don't need God to be a good person." But don't we have to ask, according to what
standard should we measure ourselves to make our evaluation accurate?
many lies have you told in your life? The average person tells at
least five lies per day. What do you call someone who has told
you ever stolen something in your life? Have you taken something that
doesn't belong to you? What do you call someone who steals?
you ever used God's name in vain, or without respect? That's called
blasphemy. What do you call someone who uses God's name lightly or in
said, if you look at another person with lust in your heart,
imagining having sex with that person, you are guilty of committing
adultery. What do you call people who commits adultery?
Creator says that He is the standard by which we measure our level of
goodness. Not Gandhi, no Hitler, not your neighbour and not yourself.
your own admission you're a lying, thieving, blaspheming, adulterous
person in your own heart, and that's only reviewing four of the ten
commandments. How then can you consider yourself to be a good person,
good enough to be allowed into the presence of a perfectly Holy
good Judge must see that justice is done, that wrong is punished and
that those on the side of wrong are removed from those who long and
choose to do right. Because the price for your sins were paid for by
Jesus (God the Son), God the Father who is perfectly Just can legally
dismiss your penalty.
said, “The price of sin, the wages of sin, the consequences of sin
is eternal separation from God and everything and anything that is
good. We call that separation “Hell.”
that reality is so horrific God put in place a plan, whereby the
penalty of sin would be paid at His own expense. Jesus paid the price
for you sins and He said that if you would seek His forgiveness and
obey Him out of gratitude for His enormous love, you can avoid hell
and spend eternity in heaven with Him.
kind of a person would ignore and/or reject that kind of offer?
The 5th in a series - Have
you ever wondered what is the impact on marriage when the reality of
God is denied? Think about it! If we used to turn to God for our
source of meaning and purpose, love and redemption; those things that
humans need in order to be emotionally and spiritually healthy, what
do we do when the only true source of those things is ignored?
Naturally we turn to another human to supply our deepest needs.
you ever wondered what happens to marriages when that kind of
pressure is placed on one or both marriage partners? Yep. They
disintegrate under the impossible load. Those who contend that
traditional (Biblical) marriage is suffocating, in turn reject the
only possible way to allow freedom in marriage (each person living
for God) and place a truly oppressive expectation on the marriage
partners. And then, after the marriage ends, they say, “Life long, monogamous, committed
marriage is impossible to create.”
fact is, society needs people who are able to sustain long-term,
monogamous committed marriage. Without our ability to commit to the
good of at least one other human being, we will see humanity fragment
into billions of pieces. Both the children that inevitably come from
sexual unions and the adults around the world desperately need this
ability on the part of humans.
there is only one way to achieve these kind of relationships and
those who have rejected God and His guidelines are simply not able to
get the job done. I'm not talking about the longevity of marriage.
The celebration of the 50th anniversary make strike a cord
within, but longevity is no guarantee of quality. As was heard by a
son from his dad after burying a wife of 53 years, “I never loved
that woman.” For various reasons, lots of people just stick it out.
That's not the kind of marriage I'm advocating.
people long to be married; especially those who lack the
skills to maintain a quality relationship. And ironically it is those
who downplay the effects of sin and who ignore the divine origin of
marriage who think they'll do the best at having a good marriage. And
when the inevitable crash comes, it is not the people within the
marriage who are blamed but the institution of marriage itself.
maintain that without knowing the secret of marriage, that Paul
describes for us in the New Testament, no marriage can reach the
level of personal satisfaction and glorification of Jesus that it was
intended to attain.
am an historian, I am not a believer, but I must confess as a
historian that this penniless preacher from Nazareth is irrevocably
the very centre of history. Jesus Christ is easily the most dominant
figure in all history.”
historian H.G. Wells
a power surge of influence that knocked the socio / religious /
economic and political world off it axis, Jesus wanted you know about
Him and the Kingdom He came to represent. And indeed that's what
Jesus came to earth to tell about the radical social change that was
God's Kingdom come, on earth as it is in Heaven, He wanted the
whole world to know about it. So He chose as His messengers those
people in whom this radical change would be the most visible: mostly
the poor, the outcast, those on the fringes of society, those
rejected by “good society” but in some cases the most visible
change occurred in those who already considered themselves good
people, even holy - the religious leaders.
doctrine of the Kingdom of Heaven, which was the main teaching of
Jesus, is certainly one of the most revolutionary doctrines that ever
stirred and changed human thought.”
historian, H.G. Wells
took it to the streets and lived a Kingdom life; one of peace, and
forgiveness and mercy – toward His enemies. He showed complete
disdain for wealth and riches. He showed contempt
for power. Pride and possessions, looks and intellectual
accomplishment were ridiculed by Jesus. Jesus turned His back on
nearly everything that most people consider indispensable for a
when His followers showed that we really can live this
counter-cultural life and live it abundantly, His message went viral.
gets billions of hits, not just daily, but throughout each and every
North America, many who self-identify as Christians are so culturally
identical to the society around them, where Jesus is merely worn as
an accessory to their worldly life-style, that Jesus is rarely
recognized, and when He is acknowledged, it is often as the butt of
jokes and ridicule. For example, in this video Bill Maher describes
much of Christianity in North America today:
where ever a demonstration of God's Kingdom in action is being lived
out, still by small bands of misfits, Jesus changes history.
indwelling of His Spirit leads each Christian (“You will know them
by how they speak and act” Jesus), to carry on that
challenge. To feed the hungry, to end oppression and discrimination,
to enrich the poor, to take care of orphans and widows, to clothe the naked, to heal the sick and to
bring the good news of forgiveness and reconciliation to the world.
atheists and functional atheists know today regarding followers of
Jesus, those in power then (the religious elite), also knew,
either the death of Jesus and His message, or the end of society as we know it.”
as now, Christianity and the teaching of Jesus that is its source
must be done away with if the pleasures of this world are to be
you're interested in the difference between a true historian (eg.
H.G. Wells) and a typical “brute beast” atheist (as G.K. would
call him), check out the video at:
do you think it does to a society when it supports the murder of
almost 2 million children a year? Do you think it makes us less
caring? Do you think it numbs our sensibilities which in turn allows
us to ignore even greater abuse of one another?
you know that if only 1 person in 10 who call themselves Evangelical
Christians adopted one child who needs a home, every child in North
America now in care would have a home?
you know that?
New Testament tells us that because of the rise of wickedness, as
history winds down, “the love of many will grow cold.” The writer
is talking about the diminishing love of those who self-identify as
followers of Jesus.
we who profess to be Christians won't take care of the most helpless
among us, who will?
creeps and claws its ugly tentacles into every sphere of life. In the
Netherlands, a leader in Godless society, death by design has grown
in popularity (almost 20%) every year for the last six years. So full of meaning
and purpose (he says sarcastically) are the lives of atheists, that
5% of all deaths in the Netherlands are now people choosing to end
their lives. That's not counting the unassisted suicides.
teams of those willing to deliver death (Levenseinde), roam
the neighbourhoods, taking the lives of those whose physicians have
refused to cross this line for reasons other than terminal illness.
Newborns with disabilities, adults with depression, even chronic pain
is enough to make atheists and functional atheists believe that this life is just not worth
who see euthanasia as the panacea to our social ills either can't see
or wish to not see that our right to die today will lead directly to
our Duty To Die tomorrow. As the population ages, as resources become
increasingly scarce and as the fact that life without God really
doesn't allow for an earthly existence of meaning and purpose, death
will become the expected outcome for those requiring almost any type
of extra health care.
you want to know what's coming to North America? Just watch the
social experiment taking place in Nations where atheists lead people away from
Creator God and toward human wisdom. The inevitable fascination with
and longing for death goes hand in hand with atheism. Did I say the tentacles of atheism claw their way into every area of life? Just ask the wife of a man whose morality is based upon desire, about the atheist utopia. http://world.time.com/2014/01/14/hollandes-popularity-goes-up-after-news-of-affair/
I had this person ask me once to see his sister who was in the hospital
because of a drug overdose. No one seemed to know if the overdose was
intentional or not. Anyhow, this guy was certain that she was near
death because of her life-style and he was hoping that a counsellor
could “change her” so that she could know what it was to
experience peace and kindness in the days before she died.
was torn. My counsellor burn-out, my cynicism, my gloomy,
overwhelmed, drowning-in-the-pain-of-the-world wanted to tell him to
forget it. Violent, angry, bitter, broken, hopeless and helpless
people tend to die exactly the way they lived. As a teenager, her attitude will have been one where, if a school counsellor had told her, "Drugs and alcohol are slowly killing you," she would have responded, "That's okay. I'm in no hurry." And now, here she was, at the end of her journey. And instead of telling him the truth, I let both of
us believe the lie that change was possible and said, “Sure. What
room is she in.” It's no wonder Jesus wept. This sinful world is so very far from what we could have had.
The 4th in a series: “If
you're kind to me, I'll be kind to you.” I heard that today, from
a woman talking to her husband. Makes sense – right? Why would
anyone be kind to someone who is not kind back? Well, maybe because
that is the type of love that Jesus demonstrated for us and then He
said, “Follow Me.” Be like Me. Do in your relationships what I
did in My relationships.
atheists have shown me is that a radical change has taken place in our
culture. Atheists tell us that monogamy isn't natural. Any marriage
that is based upon monogamy is forcing an
unnatural relationship upon us. That's what many of them say. Guess
what? They're right.
Faithful, committed monogamy isn't natural.
are naturally takers and schemers and adulterers and liars and
self-obsessed and self-centred, willing to sacrifice those we claim
to love in order to satisfy our lusts. That's why thinking that
you've found “the right one,” or that you've found your “soul
mate,” is most often, at best, wishful thinking. The chances of
really knowing who you've married, at the time of your marriage, is
slim to none.
thinking and every online dating site in existence has led us to believe that if we look hard enough, we can
actually find “the right person.” The fact is we almost never
marry the right person. Why? Because marriage itself changes people. The person who
you marry will not be the person who you are married to a few months
or years down the road. As well, we often misread the person in front
of us. Or perhaps more correctly, we see what we want to see. That is
why a person who seems really stable during dating becomes deadly
boring later in life. The person who is outgoing and friendly turns
out to be down right flirtatious. The person who is carefree and fun
loving turns out to be reckless and undependable. We come to
despise the things we once thought we admired and loved. And yet, we
promised God that we would love this person – until the death of
one of us ends the relationship.
is what makes a Biblical marriage between two committed followers of Jesus so radical and counter cultural and light-years better than any possible secular marriage.
Biblical marriage is a commitment to love the person with whom you
are living – Period! It's really not about the relationship with your spouse, but your relationship with God. I will make a profound statement here, with absolute confidence.
When two married people put their relationship with Jesus first (I'll explain in later posts what that means), their marriage will not and indeed cannot fail to become a profound, wonderful, life enhancing journey.
what a dilemma! We simply cannot know ahead of time how our spouse
will change. That's why traditional marriage vows don't say, “I
love you,” but, “I WILL love you, through better or worse, richer
or poorer, in sickness and in health, till death do us part.”
there are some things that we must avoid at all cost when choosing a
mate. A Christian should never ever marry an atheist or someone of
another faith. Actually, unless you are a Christian in name only, you
would never compromise your relationship with Jesus by being
connected to someone who thinks your most important relationship is a
farce. As well, you should never marry an addict or an abusive person
expecting / hoping that your love will cause that person to change.
That's just prideful delusional thinking. It's similar to marrying
someone who has been married before and thinking that even though
s/he treated former spouses poorly, s/he will treat you wonderful.
Again, that's your pride creating delusional thinking. On the other
hand, know for a fact that the person who seems so perfect on your
wedding day may change a great deal, even by the time you finish your
honeymoon. That's because any two people, even those who are mature
Christians are and will remain broken by their sinful nature. That
means that no matter how much they've grown, they are still
profoundly selfish and self-centred. Immature, self-obsessed people
do not change for the better just because they've taken part in some ceremony.
Sooner or later the pretending will end. Remember, a major task of
life in general and dating specifically is to hide who we really are.
is why any marriage that has endured and flourished and grown into
something beautiful will have done so because both partners have come
to know the true meaning of love and commitment. This is something
that can only be learned by an intimate, healed, forgiven and
obedient relationship with Jesus.
rain and snow come down from the heavens and stay on the ground to
water the earth. They cause the grain to grow, producing seed for the
farmer and bread for the hungry. It
is the same with My Word. I send it out, and it always produces
will accomplish all I want it to, and it will prosper everywhere I
send it. You
will live in joy and peace. The mountains and hills will burst into
the trees of the field will clap their hands! Where once there were
thorns, cypress trees will grow. Where nettles grew, myrtles will
sprout up. These
events will bring great honour to the Lord’s
name; they will be an everlasting sign of His power and love.”
God's Words go out into the world, they will not return without
having accomplished their goal. Okay – so what is that goal, that
second stanza of this Isaiah passage shows that the purpose of the
Word is to bring forth worship in us. Our desperate situation in a
broken world is a drama being played out where the end of it all is a
restoration and reconciliation of our brokenness. The whole reason
for our life is to come to a point where we long to give praise and
worship back to our Creator. For it is when our deepest passions,
thoughts, desires and motives are directed to adoration of our
Saviour, that we are most fully alive.
Word of God as contained in the Bible is a means to an end. And that
end is the worship of our Creator, our Lord, our Saviour.
about the person you married. How well do you know that person before you made the commitment to marry? Did
you try to learn as much about that person as possible, or were you
satisfied with, “Okay, so, we've met, let's get married”?
Peter 3:18 says, “Grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and
Saviour Jesus Christ.”
Learn. Get to know. Become like.
is it that so many people think that being a follower of Jesus begins
and ends with a prayer of confession and maybe baptism?
let me ask these questions. Do you know what a dog is? Do you know what
they like to eat? What they like to do for fun? How they breed? What
kinds of dogs there are? How about if they can swim? So you know a
lot about dogs, right? Does that make you a dog?
course not. Just so, knowing a lot about Jesus does not make
you a Christian. Visiting a kennel doesn't make you a dog and faithfully attending a Church doesn't make you a Christian.
a Christian is when, after knowing and understanding the payment for sin that Jesus has made for every human on earth, knowing about what is expected
of you and the cost you will bear for becoming a follower of Jesus, as
well as knowing the consequences of both accepting and rejecting His offer of
forgiveness, you consciously decide to turn your back on sin, humbly
accept God's assessment of your thoroughly and utterly sinful nature, you ask for forgiveness and invite the very Spirit of the living God to
take over your life.
a Christian is each and every day listening to
and for and then following the guidance and correction of God's Spirit. Being a Christian is living life
as Jesus would live live if He was in your circumstances. Being a Christian means that the Spirit which lives within you changes and transforms your thoughts and behaviours. You wouldn't consider your relationship with your husband or wife a good relationship if you just skimmed the surface of human experience day after day.
life Christianity involves an intimate, healed and forgiven
relationship with the Creator of the Universe and that relationship
is personal, on-going and ever growing. If your relationship with Jesus is not
becoming more intimate, if you cannot look back and know that you are
closer to God today than you were a year ago, then the relationship
is moving toward the inevitable break that comes with pretending to
be what you never were.
are infamous for declaring that the idea of God is a man-made
invention. Knowing what we know from science however, it's the
non-existence of God that's the more likely invention. It is more
likely that it's people who are terrified and weak and needy, people
who are too pride filled and arrogant to follow His laws who decided
to ignore the obvious – Creator God exists.
it turns out, atheism is a crutch for those who cannot tolerate the
reality of Creator God's existence. As George MacDonald wrote, “How
often we look upon God as our last and feeblest resource! We go to
Him because we have nowhere else to go. And then we learn that the
storms of life have driven us, not upon the rocks, but into the only
they say, “Reality is for people who can't handle drugs.” And
there are a lot of people who avoid reality at all cost. The
Pot > Reduce Crime > Heal Society
when the cost of avoiding reality is simply a willingness to inhale
the smoke of what is essentially a health inducing plant, why would
you do otherwise? In fact, smoking Pot is such a healing way to face
life, even motherhood is improved while under the influence. Colorado
will soon be the best State in which to be a child.
say the State's drug addicts.
saw four women (mothers) on CNN awhile back. These mothers were being
interviewed by Piers Morgan, and they were singing the praises of
smoking dope. This shouldn't surprise. Drug addicts always
speak highly of their drug of choice. These women swear up and down
that smoking dope makes them better mothers. And it got me to
thinking. Just how crappy a mother do you have to be, that being
stoned on Pot (a drug that in many ways makes you experience reality
like a schizophrenic) makes you a better parent? .
Just how addicted does a person have to be to rationalize driving
your child to day-care while impaired by marijuana? If you say you
aren't impaired by marijuana, you're either smoking the worst weed
ever grown or you're a flat out liar. Which
leads to the age old question: How do you know if a drug addict is
lying? If her lips are moving. .
Just how addicted does a person need to be to think that ingesting
all the carcinogens of tobacco plus a whole host of new ones (have
you ever seen a cigarette ooze tar?) is a good idea to model for your
Just how crappy does your reality have to be that you need to use
drugs that turn your soul to ice.
And just how pathetic is your emotional life that you'll believe that
drug induced feelings of love are the real thing?
for many, Colorado is seen as a progressive state. It's ending a
foolish War on Drugs that wastes money and lives. This is
accomplished by simply making that which was once against the law,
legal. It makes perfect sense. And as many would logically intuit,
it's good as far as it goes, but it obviously doesn't go far enough.
Obviously we must now legalize cocaine, and heroin, and meth. And
don't forget about Ecstasy. Organized Crime makes a bunch off
Ecstasy. And why should gangs make money off of prostitution and
human trafficking and slavery? Legalize that crap and reap the
benefits of taxation from it.
we are to ever stand a chance of putting criminals out of business,
we must decriminalize what criminals are doing. Just
think of all the schools and hospitals and roads and dams that could
be built if the government took control of and taxed these harmless
forms of seeking pleasure.