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Friday
Jul152011

The World is Broke

We've broke!  That seems to the cry these days, from about every state, and country in the world. There are governments, like Greece, who have mismanaged the idea of entitlements so badly that they will never get out of the financial hole. In Minnesota, we just ended a two week shut down of state government because the two parties running the state couldn't agree on the budget.  The Federal government is haggling about how to raise the credit ceiling so our government can borrow more money to stay solvent with it's creditors.  I still don't understand the thinking here.  Borrow more money so you can stay solvent?  How does that work?  Isn't there a day of reckoning when you have to face this credit bill?  This is the kind of mentality most Americans live out their lives. We want more so we borrow more, thinking that in time payments will solve our problems.  The problem is that you never have enough money to make the payments on the past debt while incurring more present debt, so debt continues to grow.  Our debt has contributed to the foreclosure issues in the housing industry, and will continue to affect the marketplace.  There have been those financial analysts who are predicting a financial meltdown in 2012, and it will get much worse for the global economy.  

Scripture tells us that God is in control of everything.  The unrest in the Middle East is His doing, as well as the earthquakes and strange weather patterns. The financial instability we are experiencing is His doing. God has predicted all of these things as ways to prepare us for what is to come. The Bible tells us that the world we now know will end, and His Kingdom, will replace how we do life here on earth. This new kingdom will not come without some turbulent times and it is my belief that God is preparing us today for what will happen tomorrow. The Bible speaks about a system of financial accountability that will require an allegiance to an ideology that will solve our financial issues, but we will have to compromise our belief system in order to access it. 

This just happened in our recent settlement of the state shut down in Minnesota.  The Republicans had to agree not to change some policies on some controversial issues in order to settle the dispute.  The number 666 will be a part of this buying and selling system what will require you to sell your soul to this system in order for you to do commerce. The person behind the system is Satan himself, and He will entrap people economically in order to get the worship he desires.

Now, given the kind of financial circumstances we are facing worldwide we are ripe for a system that would give every country financial freedom, personal security against terrorism, and provide a worldwide monetary currency that is accessed with a number tabooed to your body. Who wouldn't be lured into such a plan?  Bible prophecy is as accurate as the dawn of the day, and predicted this warning to us so we would prepared for such a day. Don't be mistaken, God is working His plan, and trying to get the attention of people to acknowledge His plan of salvation. When everything in life comes crashing down, and we realize how quickly we can lose everything in a moments notice, we become aware that someone else is in control of those things we can't control.  God's plan of sending His Son to die upon a cross that you and I have a secure future with God, is the only security you can count on that will not change.  His promise of eternal life can not be taken away from you,nor destroyed, and that is why He is trying to get your attention. Read this verse several times and commit it to memory, it will  provide for you the security you need as the times become more uncertain.

John 3:16-17

16“For God so loved ithe world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.  17For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but in order that the world might be saved through him.

This verse is as honest and truthful as you can get.....K

Thursday
Jul142011

The Silence of Truth

One of the characteristics of the last days will be a silence of the truth. Distortion, manipulation, ambiguity, are all ways to avoid the truth of matter. 

Our government is not being honest with itself or the American people. The truth is, we spend too much money as government, and no one wants to pay for the privileges we feel we are entitled to. Americans have always spent more than they make, it is our way of life.  If you don't spend, the economy doesn't grow, and if it doesn't grow, experience a recession. 

Our churches are not  honest either. Following the election of our current president I talked at some length with many African Americans about his election, and they were elated an African American got elected.  I am all for diversity, and the opportunity for any ethnicity to hold the highest office in the land, but I am not willing to compromise principle for that privilege.  As a Christian how can you support a person whose agenda violates the scripture morally?  You can't preach against abortion, or homosexuality, or support for Israel, and then support a person whose policies will violate the principles you spiritually stand up for.  That's just not honest or wise.

Recently Marcus Bachmann, the husband of a candidate running for president was maligned on national TV for believing that homosexuality can be prayed out of a person.  The homosexual agenda went underground to film a session with a counselor at Bachmann's counseling clinic whose counseling platform did not support the gay agenda.  Now, in a country that supports freedom of speech and freedom from the fear of reprisal, why can't Marcus Bachmann practice his belief and pursue a therapy that he believes in?  Instead he is made out to be a strange person, and hope of this agenda would be that the American people would see his candidate wife strange too, cut from the same cloth. 

If the Church practiced car bombings, road side bombs and personal terroristic attacks on combatants to their message, the media would be much more sensitive about reporting these issues. The media knows the Church won't push back, because their reputation resembles a big fat teddy bear, full of fuzziness, compromise and no guts. The Church doesn't know what it believes anymore that's why these issues of attacking prayer for the deliverance from homosexuality is not big issue.  In fact if the truth be known, there are probably many in the Christian circle who would agree with the gay advocates that praying against homosexuality is foolish and un-chrisitan. 

We are silencing the truth. This news story should be the lead story this Sunday by every pastor who cares about truth.  Pastors should instruct their flocks on why this issue of homosexuality will rival their way of life, and how it will affect the ability of the church to tell the truth. In time the freedom to preach against moral issues will be denied, because it will be considered hateful.  Preaching against sinful behavior will be outlawed by the courts of the land, and Christians will once again join the ranks of martyrdom if they want to talk about it. 

The silence of truth is no joke, and it's being accomplished right under our noses everyday, and there is little to no rallying cry from within our ranks.  Why? 

A missionary friend of mine who is home on furlough, but is in the Middle East studying the language so he can live among the Muslims and present a witness of Christ, said to me recently: "I was listening to contemporary Christian radio on my way to meet you today, and I was amazed how un-christian it really is.  There were no references to the power of the cross, the blood of the lamb, or the power of the Word of God.  There was little to no substance to what I was listening to, and I wondered, how will we ever convince a world that Jesus is the answer based upon what we present on Christian radio?"

He is right, how will we ever be equipped to take on the hostility of the world if we don't know the truth? It is as if we are all on a train, that is moving quickly toward a disaster because the bridge is out up ahead. Most of the church is clueless and their enjoying the ride. Some of us are running to the last car on the train trying to warn people as we go that there is danger ahead, but few believe it is true. However, no one is telling the engineer to stop the train. My missionary friend was honest about the pathetic message we present everyday on Christian radio, but it only adds insult to injury come Sunday morning because the pulpits are pathetically silent about preaching the truth.  The train is still moving, and I feel it going faster.........

Keeping it honest and truthful....K

Here is the ABC news report on Marcus Bachmann

http://abcnews.go.com/Blotter/michele-bachmann-exclusive-pray-gay-candidates-clinic/story?id=14048691 

Tuesday
Jul122011

Let's Talk About What I am For?

My wife is my honest barometer. She asks me the tough honest questions like:  "why can't you just tell people what you are for, and not always what you are against?"  Now that is a great question.  Commentators are always giving you the negative, because it's easier to point out what's wrong with a system, rather than what's right.  Think about all the people, including employers who will spend an enormous amount of time telling you what you did wrong, and ignore the vast majority of the stuff that you did things right.  In marriage counseling one of the techniques to help the couple is to find the positive things about the spouse and spend time talking about those positives. It's surprising how blinded we are to those good things, because we are so blinded by the overwhelming darkness of the negative.  I think that's why depression is so devastating, because there seems to be no way out of a deep dark hole. 

So what am I for?  Hummmmmm.....Okay here goes. 

1. I am for the goodness of God, He has spared nothing in order to win my heart.

2. I am for the Word of God that tells me about His goodness, and His plan from A to Z for the human race.

3. I am for the body of believers who are living their lives for Christ in a sacrificial way putting Him first before all things.

4. I am for the power of the Holy Spirit who is looking for obedient people to work through.

5. I am for the love, the sacrifice, and the power that prayer brings into a persons life on behalf of others

6. I am for the power of family, and the strength gained from the commitment of love.

7. I am for free speech, and the right to express myself including my faith without the fear of reprisal.

8. I am for the second coming of Jesus Christ who will return to earth to rule and reign from Jerusalem.

9. I am for godly leadership that lives out the priority of Christ first in wisdom and practice as they lead others.

10. I am for the nation of Israel whose future is in God's hands and it is where Jesus will return.

Okay, I am sure I could go on, but 10 is a good number.

As I was doing this exercise, I found it refreshing.  You should try it.  List 10 things you are for and see what you come up with. 

I also realized that I write a lot about these ten things in a negative way, because I personally violate them. I also realized that I assess others in light of their violation of them, and has become my source for negativity.  

So lets see if I have this straight: "my positives, (what I am for), becomes the source of my negatives because (what I am for) is being violated and discredited. "

Gosh, now I understand my negative side! It's really my positive side that I am standing up for when I am commenting on the negative side of things.  Now, I think that will work for me when my wife asks me again about why I am always talking about what I am against: "but honey, it's really not negative, it's just me standing up for what I am for."

 (I am sure she'll think it's just spin) I will let you know how it goes.

Keeping it honest and truthful......K 

How about a two minute drill to the approach to explaining evil?

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j7yNwEDtqjA&feature=related

Monday
Jul112011

Does God Really Care About My Hangnail?

One of the topics my wife and I often talk about is how "me centered" everything has become. In early childhood experiences we don't want to make anyone feel badly about performance, so everyone is equal and in sports, we don't keep score. Competition is bad when you are young, and good when you are old. Okay, I can get passed that, but what is happening to some of our 20 year olds is not healthy nor is it normal. They want the whole world not to keep score.  Well, guess what, competition is alive and well, and our little fuzzy world of protecting our kids has backfired. In many publications we find more and more that the USA is falling further behind in our abilities to compete with the education received in other countries.  Here is a report from MPR. 

New results from a test that compares education in developed and developing countries confirms that the U.S. is falling behind. NPR's Melissa Block talks with analyst Michael Davidson of the Program for International Student Assessment about the results of his organization's test.

An absoluate wake up call for America.  That's how Education Secretary Arne Duncan views the result of an international  standardized test in which U.S students ranked from 15th to 25th worldwide in science , reading and math.  At the top of the list are students from Shanghai, Hong hong and Singapore. 

I have to wonder if all the pampering our children received while they were going through the paces in elementary school contributed to these lower scores?  In many of these countries I doubt if any pampering when on, if nothing else they told that in order for you to compete with western nations you have be be better than they are in educating yourselves.  In fact, in many places in the world, students know 2,3 or more languages, and are fluent in them all.  So why am I picking on our pampered "don't keep score" generation? Because I see this is a weakening of the character of a person. I realize not everyone will compete at the highest levels in society, but an entitlement attitude doesn't build a "can do" society, it builds a "what's in it for me" society. 

Why is this important to blog about?  Because I see this pampered attitude in the church too. "God is going to take care of us, and we won't have to go through anything too tough in these last days" attitudes.    Really?   We forget about those saints who went before us who suffered greatly, and yet without complaint because they knew what God had promised them was worth the suffering. Hebrews 11 says;

Some were tortured, refusing to accept release, so that they might rise again to a better life.  36Others suffered mocking and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment.  37They were stoned, they were sawn in two, they were killed with the sword. They went about in skins of sheep and goats, destitute, afflicted, mistreated—  38of whom the world was not worthy—wandering about in deserts and mountains, and in dens and caves of the earth.

The scripture is full of battles and it took God to win them for Israel, and today, life is full of battles that only God can win for you.  So don't waste your energy on the hangnails, you have bigger things to concern God with than a little discomfort.  

Keeping it honest and truthful..K


 

Saturday
Jul092011

For Those Who Lead

One of the distinctive aspects of prophets is correction. Prophets came to the leaders of Israel with a message that generally told them to repent.  I suppose that is why we don’t like the true prophets of today either.

Here is a sample of what a prophet would say from Zechariah 10:2-3

2For the household gods utter nonsense,
and the diviners see lies;
they tell false dreams
and give empty consolation.
Therefore the people wander like sheep;
they are afflicted for lack of a shepherd.
 3 “My anger is hot against the shepherds,
and I will punish the leaders;
for the LORD of hosts cares for his flock, the house of Judah,
and will make them like his majestic steed in battle.

The people were idol bound, carelessly mingling the culture of their day with the practice of worshipping God.  It is a common dilemma among the faithful. How do we keep ourselves from incorporating too much of the culture into our lives, while at the same time not ignorant of the culture so we can reach it with our message of the gospel.  A fine line at times, but shepherds who know God can help us define the lines that honor or dishonor God. Today shepherds are often either afraid to identify that line, or they are ignorant of any lines at all.  In the above passage we sense God’s displeasure with leaders who never identify the lines for the people. The people wandered while the shepherds were silent.  Today we have a similar problem.  Leaders won’t address the issues where the lines are distinct between what is wrong and what is right.  However, God does draw the lines, and they are thick, recognizable, lines that serve like road guards that protect us from going over the cliff.  The Hebrew scriptures, (Old Testament) has so much to say about lines, but our Christian culture seems to ignore those lines by placing them into a category of old news. This is one of the reasons we decided to help believers understand the Hebraic Roots of the scripture by establishing a conference that addresses a perspective of God we don’t hear much about today.

Hebraic Roots Conference

The Hebraic Conference is designed as a reminder of God’s whole council, His entire story is important in these days of uncertainty.  This conference will share some insights into the nature of God we often forget today.  It will also challenge you with the importance of issues like Israel, culture and context, prophecy, and the unchanging nature of God. Our future is defined by what is recorded in the past, so please consider your attendance to this years’ Hebraic Roots Conference called, “Reconnecting the Branches to the Roots.”

So register for this free conference, October 13-15, 2011 by going to www.hebraicrootsconference.com

Registration is required because space is limited.

Keeping it honest and truthful...I

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