Wednesday, August 31, 2011

And This Is Eternal Life

And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. ~ John 17:3

John 17 chronicles the most beautiful prayer ever uttered. It is fitting that such a prayer would be spoken by the God-Man, Jesus Christ the Lord.

John 17, commonly referred to as "The High Priestly Prayer," can be rightly divided into three major parts. In verses 1-5, Jesus prays for Himself. In verses 6-19, Jesus prays for His closest earthly friends--the apostles. And in verses 20-26, Jesus prays for every person who would ever know Him as Lord and Savior. In this remarkable prayer, the Creator allows the pinnacle of His creation (mankind) to have a brief and poignant glimpse of direct communication within the Godhead, as the Son speaks to the Father.

Jesus begins by decisively affirming His deity. God shares His glory with no one. Yet God the Son can pray to God the Father, beseeching the Father to glorify the Son so that the Son may, in turn, glorify the Father (v. 1). Jesus could command such glory be given to Himself because He is God in the flesh.

Jesus further asserts His deity, as well as His sovereignty, when He declares that He has authority over all creation (v. 2). Jesus is the giver of eternal life and He will give eternal life to all the Father, from eternity past, has determined will receive it.

With the words, "and this is eternal life," Jesus is making it very clear that the next words that come out of His mouth will define eternal life and the way to receive it. Jesus said, "that they know you the only true God..." "Knowing," as it's expressed here, is not simple intellectual assent. It is not the mere scholastic gathering of facts. To know God is to know Him intimately, relationally, lovingly. To know God is to be known by God.

For the Christian, to know God is to have known the former reality of the bondage of sin and death. It is to have known not only what it means, but also how it felt to be alienated from God. It is to have known the growing weight of sin's consequences and the overwhelming sense of guilt, shame, and unworthiness in light of God's moral law. It is to have known the deserved justice of God.

Thanks be to God that for the Christian there is so much more to knowing God. It is to know God as Abba, Father--as Daddy. He is no mere acquaintance. He is not some distant relative with whom there is nothing more than a biological connection. The Christian knows the Father as any son or daughter knows their dad, with the joy and gratitude that many adopted children feel toward their adoptive parents--parents who literally saved them from squalor and even death.

Eternal life is to know God--"the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent." Jesus, speaking in the third person, reaffirms what He told the Jews earlier. "I and the Father are one" (John 10:30).

One cannot know God without knowing Jesus Christ, because Jesus Christ is God. God the Father sent God the Son to serve as the perfect God-Man, to make the perfect substituionary, atoning sacrifice for sinners. And it is this same God-Man who prayed to the Father after His last sermon to His disciples, who now intercedes at the right hand of the Father, for His Bride, the Church, the born-again follower of Christ.

Dear evangelist, this is Him who you know, who knows you, and whom you serve as you proclaim the gospel to the lost. And this is the one you will make known to those whom God will save, who will use your evangelism efforts to draw sinners to repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. The One who defined eternal life; the One who is eternal life; the One who has saved you and now intercedes for you; is the same One who emboldens you, strengthens you, encourages you, and keeps you as you fulfill the Great Commission, for His glory.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Did PZ Myers do a 180?

I hear that PZ Meyers just stated publicly that he thinks I'm a fraud. See: http://bit.ly/njFaBW Does that mean that up until today he thought that I was genuine in my faith, but after viewing our latest video (called "180") he now believes that I'm lining my pockets? If that's so, he can take comfort from the fact that if I am a hypocrite (the biblical word for fraud), I will end up in Hell--with all murderers, liars, thieves, blasphemers, fornicators, and adulterers, etc.

Then again, if I am a fraud, why would we be planning to freely give away (that's no charge) 200,000 copies of the video, in September, October, November, or perhaps December of this year? Why would we make it freely available for viewing (that's no charge) on www.180movie.com Why would we be selling the professionally produced 33-minute video (in an attractive jacket) for the exorbitant price of one dollar?

We have 2,000 faithful workers who are chafing at the bit to get "180" into people's hands because it has such a powerful message. These are the same wonderful workers who volunteered their time to give away about 200,000 copies of Darwin’s boring book (with the Introduction that presented Intelligent Design and the Gospel), at one hundred of America's top universities. Atheists messed up that giveaway-date. We came a day early and sent them in a panic.

So make sure you get the date right this time--so that you can once again try and protest free speech, and attempt to stop (censor) us from giving "180" away. And make sure you get the right universities this time. I will give you a hint as to which ones we will visit. There are a total of 2,618 in the United States, and we will be going to 100 of them.

Spread the Word About 180Movie.com!

Today, we unwrapped the official website for the documentary "180." There, you can watch the official trailer and a special message from Ray Comfort. You can also send an email to all your friends about the site, as well as sign up for Living Waters' official weekly email update.

One way you can help us get the word out is by sharing the website on Twitter. And if you "tweet" about the website, please include the #180movie hash tag. And while you are on Twitter, please pay Planned Parenthood (@PPact) a visit. They have lots of followers who I'm sure would be interested to hear about this new documentary. Get creative and get the word out to those who could help to create the most "buzz" about the site and the documentary.

Of course, posting a link to the website on Facebook and Google+ will also be very helpful in spreading the word about the documentary.

And, as we announced on today's show, we are about to mount a world-wide effort to distribute more than 200,000 copies of the documentary on university and college campuses, in a single day.

The regular cast of atheists who visit this blog think they know where we are going and when. Shhhhh! Don't tell them this, but they don't have a clue. :-)

We do expect considerable opposition to this documentary and to the world-wide distribution project. After all, we live in a depraved world and there is a great deal of money involved in the murder of unborn children. For every child saved, abortuaries and organizations like Planned Parenthood lose money.

Unlike atheists who are very small in number and unable to organize a concerted effort of any real consequence, the pro-abortion/pro-murder crowd has considerable financial, political, and personnel resources at their disposal. So, your prayers (Christians) are certainly appreciated.

So, go to 180movie.com. Share it with everyone you know, and with people you don't know. It's about time something important like the lives of unborn children trends on Twitter and elsewhere above Lady Gaga, the deceased King of Pop, and a basketball player who changes his name to "World Peace."

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Everyone Lives By Faith

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Prayer Stand

Monday, August 22, 2011

Professor Horner's Bible Reading System

I would like to introduce you to a friend of mine and his Bible Reading System. His name is Professor Grant Horner, associate professor at The Master's College--specializing in the Renaissance and the Reformation. He is also the Chair of Humanities at Trinity Classical Academy.

The Bible pictured here is the one from which Professor Horner has read for the last 26 years. I was introduced to his Bible Reading System just a few days ago, through an invitation to the system's Facebook group. I have but one complaint.

I love the Word of God. I love reading the Word, talking about the Word, and preaching the Word. But, like probably so many of you, I have been challenged my entire Christian life to remain consistent in my daily feeding upon the Word. While I am in the Bible every day (often times for the benefit of others), my personal reading time has been marked by peaks and valleys of consistency.

I have tried just about every Bible reading program imaginable--going so far as to try to develop my own when all other efforts failed. I truly believe I have finally found the Bible Reading System I will use until the Lord takes me home. Yes, it has only been a few days of using Professor Horner's system. But I believe it is that good. I believe this system of intense absorption of the Word of God will revolutionize your Bible reading and finally place the Word where it should be--deep in your heart, at the forefront of your mind, and on the tip of your tongue.

I am convinced that Professor Horner's Bible Reading System is going to make me a better evangelist, a better teacher, and a better student of the Word. I hope you will join me on the journey.

What follows is Professor Horner's explanation of the Bible Reading System, as it appears on the Facebook page.

~~~

"I have more wisdom than all my teachers, for thy testimonies are my meditation." Psalm 119:99, right-hand page, left-hand column, dead center of page. Many people ask me how it is that I know precisely where virtually *everything* is in my Bible. The answer: this system. I began in 1983 (adapting and tweaking the basic design of another system) as a brand-new convert; within 3 years I knew the text of my Bible very well. Twenty-five years later it is essentially imprinted on my mind and heart. I have been all over the country and have taught this system in many churches. I have done open-microphone Q&As on Bible and theology -- with 1200 people in the audience -- as well as cultural-analysis live radio shows where you have to think fast -- and it has been the "imprinting" value of this system that has helped me provide quick, clear, heavily contextualized scriptural answers (I Peter 3:15; right-hand page, right hand column, 1/3rd way down). I have no Seminary degrees, no Bible-college or Christian school education -- hey, I never even went to Sunday School (the first church I went to, just months after my conversion, threw me into Sunday School-- to teach!!! *BIG* mistake, by the way...) All I DID have was a chair, a lamp ... and my Bible.

This is *not* merely a speed-reading program, nor is it a 'study' system. Read the 1-page description provided here to see how it works. (I'd also recommend you look at my first few posts in the Discussion Board 'Starting Up' below as well, for more thoughts.) DO NOT be intimidated! I was a college drop-out, ex-heavy-druggie when I started it. If I can do it, so can you!

TRY IT FOR A MONTH. Then tell me what is happening!

Join if you wish to try it; stay if you keep it up for one month! And make posts about your struggles, the effects it is having on your biblical understanding and discernment, and to encourage others.

HERE IT IS:

* PROFESSOR GRANT HORNER'S 'TEN LISTS BIBLE READING SYSTEM' *

Each day you will read one chapter from each list, in order. THAT'S RIGHT -- *TEN CHAPTERS PER DAY*!!! Use ten bookmarks or sticky notes with the individual lists on them to keep track of your locations. On day one, you read Matthew 1, Genesis 1, Romans 1, and so forth. On day 2, read Matthew 2, Genesis 2, etc. On day 29, you will have just finished Matthew, so go to Mark 1 on the Gospel list; you’ll also be almost to the end of 2nd Corinthians and Proverbs, you’ll be reading Psalm 29 and Genesis 29, and so forth. When you reach the last chapter of the last book in a list – start over again. Rotate all the way through all the Scriptures constantly. Since the lists vary in length, the readings begin interweaving in constantly changing ways. You will NEVER read the same set of ten chapters together again! Every year you’ll read through all the Gospels four times, the Pentateuch twice, Paul’s letters 4-5 times each, the OT wisdom literature six times, all the Psalms at least twice, all the Proverbs as well as Acts a dozen times, and all the way through the OT History and prophetic books about 1 ½ times. Since the interweaving is constantly changing, you will experience the Bible commenting *on itself* in constantly changing ways -- the Reformer's principle of 'scriptura interpretans scripturam' -- 'scripture interpreting scripture' IN ACTION!

After you’ve read any particular book once or twice, your speed in that book usually *doubles or triples* because you’re familiar with it and can move quickly and confidently -- because you are no longer merely decoding the text but thinking it through in the context of all of the scripture! Acts 20:27. Even an ‘average’ reader, if focusing on moving through the text, rather than trying to figure everything out, can usually do this in about an hour a day – 5-6 minutes per chapter. If it is taking you longer, then you are ‘reading wrong’ – stay relaxed, focus, and just keep it moving. Moderate but consistent speed is the key. This is "gross anatomy" -- looking at the whole body; you're *not* closely studying organs or systems or tissues or cells -- it is *not* microbiology. BUT -- microbiology and the study or organs makes more sense when you know what the *whole* structure of the human body is like, and how all the parts, large and small, relate in perfect interdependence. After just a few days the reading gets *much* easier; in a month it will be a habit, and in six months you’ll wonder how you ever survived before on such a slim diet of the WORD. And then -- you'll tell others to start the system!

I began in 1983 as a new Christian and have now read (most of) the Bible hundreds and hundreds of times. You also need to get ONE Bible, keep it, and do all your reading in it, so you learn where everything is. I’ve had the same Bible since 1983 and I know it intimately. If you keep switching Bibles, you ‘lose’ this intimacy with the text. Find a translation and format you like and stick with it. THIS IS CRUCIAL.

When I was flown out by Masters for a 3-day interview/theological-grilling process, the culmination was of course being ushered in to Dr. John MacArthur's private study, which is where he asked me this one question: "Can I see your Bible?" I thought he would be horrified, because it looked like it had been through a typhoon -- it looked unloved and neglected. Something from a dumpster. It was unbound, with stringy mess and paper debris hanging out. I was so embarrassed. I thought he would chastise me and recommend I get a new study Bible if I was serious about the Word. (No doubt which study Bible he would recommend!!!) He flipped through it and handed it to his wife and said "If your Bible is falling apart, you probably aren't." I was basically hired on the spot.

Your Bible is the only thing on Earth that, as you wear it out, will actually work better and better.

THE TEN LISTS:
List 1 (89 days)
Matthew, Mark, Luke, John

List 2 (187 days)
Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, Deuteronomy

List 3 (78 days)
Romans, I&II Cor, Gal, Eph, Phil, Col, Hebrews

List 4 (65 days)
I&II Thess, I&II Tim, Titus, Philemon, James, I&II Peter, I,II&III John, Jude, Revelation

List 5 (62 days)
Job, Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon

List 6 (150 days)
Psalms

List 7 (31 days)
Proverbs

List 8 (249 days)
Joshua, Judges, Ruth, I&II Samuel, I&II Kings, I&II Chronicles, Ezra, Nehemiah, Esther

List 9 (250 days)
Isaiah, Jeremiah, Lamentations, Ezekiel, Daniel, Hosea, Joel, Amos, Obadiah, Jonah, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi

List 10 (28 days)
Acts

If you are wondering why you should read Acts (or Proverbs) all the way through *every single month* then -- you've just shown that you NEED to read them that much!

*Put these instructions in your Bible and review them from time to time*

SECRETS TO SUCCESS WITH THIS SYSTEM:

• Read one chapter from each list each day, in one sitting or two. At the end of a book, go to the next book. At the end of the list – start it again. Do it in the order given above.

• Read quickly (without “speed reading”) in order to get the overall sense. Read as fast as you comfortably can with moderate retention. You’re not studying deeply or memorizing; shoot for 5-6 minutes per chapter. At the end of a chapter, move immediately to the next list.

• GET THROUGH THE TEXT – no dawdling, back-reading, looking up cross-references!

• There are different ‘kinds’ of reading: super-quick skimming, careful moderate-paced, studying the text, deep meditation. You should be between the first and second kind.

• Most people decrease their time spent and increase their retention after just two-three weeks! I now read and retain the entire text of Matthew in 35 minutes, Romans in 20, Genesis in *one hour*!

• Don’t look up anything you ‘don’t get’ – real understanding will come through contextualizing by reading a LOT of scripture over time. Get through the text!

• If you miss a day or two – OK, get over it, then keep going. Don’t cover yourself in sackcloth and ashes and quit! Move the bookmarks along, to find your place(s) quickly next day.
Heb 4:12;5:11-14; Eph 5:26; 6:17; Col 3:16; 2 Tim 3:16; Psalm 119; Ezra 8; Prov 3: 1-2, 10:14; Daniel 1

The goal of this system is simple, and twofold: To know scripture, and to love and obey God more!

SOLI DEO GLORIA

Thursday, August 18, 2011

They Did Not Expect To Die That Day

Monday, August 15, 2011

God Won't Be Bribed

Sunday, August 14, 2011

The Third Street Heralds


Are you thinking about forming a new evangelism team, but you're not sure how to go about it?

Do you want to join an active, biblical evangelism team in Los Angeles County?

Are you looking for websites of biblical evangelism teams?

Do you want to be encouraged by an evangelism team that emphasizes being part of and accountable to the local church--a team that is making a stand against Nomadism within the evangelism community?

Do you need help finding a church in your area?

Then I want to encourage you to visit and follow the Third Street Heralds blog.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

America: The Modern-Day Valley of Slaughter (video)

Have You Forgotten the Lord Your God?

Monday, August 8, 2011

Drew Was Drawn To The Cross


A tragedy happened in my community the other day. A retired dentist, allegedly battling depression, picked up his in-laws, brought them to his home, executed both of them as they sat in the car in the driveway, and then turned the gun on himself. The man's in-laws were 95 and 90, respectively.

Marissa and I decided to go to the corner of Bridgeport Lane and Newhall Ranch Road, in Valencia, with the "Are You Ready?" cross. Undoubtedly people in the otherwise quite and upscale neighborhood would be thinking of the murder-suicide, and maybe thinking about their own mortality. Our hope was that people would see the cross and consider how they would answer the question, "Are you ready? Are you ready to stand before God and give an account for your life?"

I had spent the day with the Third Street Heralds on the Santa Monica Pier and Third Street Promenade, and I would stand in the pulpit of my vacationing pastor the next morning. So, the plan was to spend only about an hour on the corner, before the sun went down, which would give me enough time to put the finishing touches on my sermon.

Traffic was light on Newhall Ranch Road (a major roadway), for a Saturday evening. But hundreds of motorists and passengers saw the cross as they drove by.

I looked at my watch and let Marissa know that we would head home, soon. Moments later, I heard the familiar "clickity-clack" of skateboard wheels traversing the cracks separating the large blocks of concrete that formed the sidewalk. I turned around to see a young African-American man riding a skateboard in my direction. I took out an "Are You Ready" gospel tract from my tactical bag and waited for the young man to arrive at the corner.

As he came to a stop, I handed the young man the gospel tract. "Here ya go." I said.

He took the tract and looked at the front and the back.

"It's a gospel tract." I offered.

"I don't know what that means."

"It has a gospel message about Jesus on the back."

"Oh. Okay."

"Let me ask you. What do you think is going to happen to you when you die?"

He paused for a moment. He said he would be with the Lord. I asked him why he believed that. He said he had turned his life around and repents whenever he does something wrong.

I asked him if he grew up going to church. He said he did. I asked the question because it was obvious to me that while he knew some of the Christian "lingo," he didn't really understand what it meant.

He wore a white tank top t-shirt. Above the shirt's neck line, and just below his clavicles, the young man had a tattoo that read: "Fear God and not them." To each side of the slogan was a tattoo of a cross. He had more tattoos on other parts of his body, including his left forearm. There he had the acrostic "R.I.P.", followed by a name I couldn't read, along with some other tattoos that seemed to indicate some kind of gang involvement--past or present.

His name was Drew. He was 18-years-old.

"Drew. Let's say you and I are friends. You're a Christian and you know I'm not. And you and I know that I have only three minutes to live? What would you say to me?"

"What do you mean?"

"You know I'm about to die and you know that I don't know the Lord. What would you say to me?"

Drew thought for several seconds and said, "I don't know."

"Okay. Let's switch places, now. I'm the Christian. You're my friend. You're about to die. And you don't know the Lord. Here's what I would say to you."

In just a few minutes' time, I shared the law and the gospel with Drew.

"Drew, what are you good at?"

"Music."

"What kind of music?"

"Rap. I play the sax. I produce music."

"Let's say I came up to you and said, 'Drew, I know all there is to know about rap music.' So, you say to me, "Okay, Tony. Tell me all you know about rap music.' And then I say, 'Roses are red. Violets are blue...And I can't remember the rest.'"

I paused for a moment and waited for Drew to chuckle, which he did.

"Drew, if I said that to you, would you believe I know anything about rap music?"

"No. I know where you're going with this."

"Okay. Then Drew, if you wouldn't believe I knew anything about rap music; why should I believe you are a Christian when you can't tell me how to become one?"

"I hear what you're saying."

"Drew, are you sure you know the Lord?"

Drew looked off to the distance for several moments. He wasn't sure. Or should I say he knew he didn't know the Lord.

"I've turned my life around. I mean I've really turned it around. I use to do some bad stuff--a lot of bad stuff."

I assured Drew that turning his life around wouldn't make him right with God. I also assured him that no matter what he did in his past, there was forgiveness in Jesus Christ.

"I'm glad I met you, today." Drew said.

"I'm glad I met you, too. That's why I'm out here with this cross--hoping to have conversations with people like you.

"When was the last time you read the Bible?" I asked.

"Months ago."

"When was the last time you missed a meal?"

Drew smirked and nodded his head.

"If you wouldn't miss a meal to feed your stomach, you should be even more concerned about feeding your soul. Do you have a Bible?"

"Back in Indianapolis." Drew had recently come to California from Indiana, and would likely return to Indiana, soon.

"If I gave you a Bible, would you promise to read it?"

"Yes."

I removed a nice leather ESV "New Testament, Psalms and Proverbs"--one my pastor had given me just for times like this--from my tactical bag and handed it to Drew. "Start with the Gospel of John. It's the fourth book of the New Testament. You could probably read it in one sitting."

We shook hands and said good-bye. I told Drew that we would be praying for him. He thanked me and crossed the street the next time the light turned green.

As he rode away, I told Marissa that Drew was the reason we came to the corner--a corner where I had never before stood with the cross. She agreed. We made our way to my car where we prayed for Drew's salvation.

Sola Deo Gloria! Drew was drawn to the cross.

The Rich Young Ruler

The Two Greatest Commandments

Sunday, August 7, 2011

America: The Modern-Day Valley of Slaughter (Audio)

This morning I had the opportunity to stand in my pastor's pulpit and preach a new message titled, "America: The Modern-Day Valley of Slaughter."



If you have any difficulty utilizing the above player, you can download a high quality and low quality version of the audio.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Is There Truth In All Religions?


Recently, we received the following question from Brett, which we answered on the August 3rd edition of the show:
"I've been a Christian for about 3 years now. I'd REALLY love to have On the Box answer this question. Is there a hint of Truth in all world religions? If so, can the answer be found in Scripture? Again I would love to have this answered! Thank you!"
As I stated on the show, something that is partially true is entirely a lie. And such is the case with every religion in the world that is contrary to biblical Christianity and the Word of God.

Scripture provides a vivid account of worldly, creature-made religion at work. The scene is the temptation of Jesus Christ, found in Matthew 4:1-11.
Then Jesus was led up by the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted by the devil. And after fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. And the tempter came and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, command these stones to become loaves of bread." But he answered, "It is written, "'Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.'"

Then the devil took him to the holy city and set him on the pinnacle of the temple and said to him, "If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down, for it is written, "'He will command his angels concerning you,' and "'On their hands they will bear you up, lest you strike your foot against a stone.'"

Jesus said to him, "Again it is written, 'You shall not put the Lord your God to the test.'" Again, the devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. And he said to him, "All these I will give you, if you will fall down and worship me." Then Jesus said to him, "Be gone, Satan! For it is written, "'You shall worship the Lord your God and him only shall you serve.'"

Then the devil left him, and behold, angels came and were ministering to him.
The words that came out of Satan's mouth were true, to the extent that he quoted Scripture. Yet Jesus quickly thwarted Satan's efforts by correcting his misuse of the biblical texts. And the way Jesus did that was by using Satan's own weapon against him--the Word of God. Whereas Satan wielded the sword flagrantly and erroneously, the Lord wielded the sword truthfully.

So what is truth?

Before I answer, I want to encourage you to read Matt Slick's answer to the question; and then watch Mark Spence as he discusses relativism.

God the Father is truth.
So that he who blesses himself in the landshall bless himself by the God of truth,and he who takes an oath in the landshall swear by the God of truth;because the former troubles are forgotten and are hidden from my eyes (Isaiah 65:16).
God the Son is truth.
Jesus said to him, "I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me (John 14:6).
God the Holy Spirit is truth.
When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come (John 16:13).
The Word of God is truth.
The sum of your word is truth,and every one of your righteous rules endures forever (Psalm 119:160).

Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth (John 17:17).
Therefore, every man-made religion that is contrary to the truth of God and His Word is a lie.

Such man-made religions include, but are not limited to: Roman Catholicism, Mormonism, Jehovah's Witness, Islam, Buddhism, Hinduism, Atheism, Agnosticism, Oprah-ism, Oneness Pentecostalism, Baptismal Regeneration, Pelagianism, Open Theism, Darwinianism, Theistic Evolution, Ecumenism and Pluralism, the Social Gospel Movement, and the Emergent Movement (at least the segment of the movement that follows the teachings of the likes of Rob Bell and Brian McLaren).

Like Satan, each of the above religions claim to know the truth and most of them (again, like Satan) twist the Truth of God's Word to satisfy their own selfish, arrogant desires to create a false god in their image--to create a false god in their own sinful imagination that is not sovereign, but rather is subservient to the follower.

There is only One who is true in every respect--God, the Creator, the only Sovereign, the only Lawgiver and Judge, the only Savior, the only Lord, the only life-giving Spirit. He is true. His Word is true.

These truths need not be proven to those who in sinful ignorance, arrogance, and open rebellion against God refuse to believe and obey the Truth.

These truths need only to be proclaimed. The Judge of the Universe will never step down from His holy bench to be judged in the fallible court of public opinion by the criminals of this world--those who have broken His Law and refuse to repent and believe the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

From the Makers of Ramadan

For those of you who are joining me in praying for the persecuted church during the month of August, here's a story out of Malaysia of the persecution our Christian brethren are facing, from the makers of Ramadan. The writer is a missionary to this Muslim nation.
It's 3:15 in the morning here on the 4th day of Ramadan and one of the new Malay believer families Wan and I led to the Lord have been arrested. They have 4 kids from 10 to 2 years old and they arrested the kids as well. There is the possibility the kids will be taken from them and put in "good Muslim homes."

From one of the Malays that got away I have a very vague idea where they are. They are at one of the "Pusat permurniahans" [religious rehabilition centers] deep in the jungle about 2 hours north of here. I have not yet located this particular one but am heading out to search for it right now. I'm just getting over strep throat and so not performing my best here.

My goal right now is just to hook up with them whether that means getting arrested, visiting them (there's no such thing as visitation at these places; the locations are big secrets) or at least screaming encouragement from outside the walls!

From what I understand several other Malays from an IM group were also arrested tonight.

Please pray for these believers! They are extremely young - "Bob" has been saved about 8 months and his wife about 2 months. Pray that Jesus' glorious presence overwhelms them! That heaven seems close and earth seems a vapor... that God would give them boldness, joy, peace, and hold their precious yet delicate faith strong in His hands and keep them from falling.

I ask that you'd pray for me as well that God would grant me eyes to see the battle clearly from His perspective and not an earthly perspective.
While we are not scheduled to pray for the persecuted church in Malaysia until August 12, please take time today to pray about the specific situation.

Thank you.

A Pastor's Kid Hears the Gospel

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Solicitors of Death

I wonder how many Christian parents during the upcoming election season will send their children door-to-door to solicit support for pro-choice candidates (Republican or Democrat), but wouldn't dream of sending their children door-to-door to share the gospel. They'll send their kids out to solicit death, but they won't send their kids out to offer life.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Close Your Eyes and Cover Your Ears

All one has to do to keep from seeing the evidence of the intricacy of design in this video is to close his eyes and cover his ears. Sadly, those who deny I.D. and the reality of the existence of the Designer must do just that to justify their unbelief.

Andrew's Baptism

Monday, August 1, 2011

Ramadan, Belial, and the Persecuted Church


This year the Islamic holiday of Ramadan runs August 1-30. According to Wikipedia:
Ramadan (Arabic: رمضان‎ Ramaḍān, Arabic pronunciation: [rɑmɑˈdˤɑːn]) (also Ramadhan, Ramadaan, Ramazan) is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar, which lasts 29 to 30 days. It is the Islamic month of fasting, in which participating Muslims refrain from eating and drinking[1] during daylight hours and is intended to teach Muslims about patience, spirituality, humility and submissiveness to God. Muslims fast for the sake of God (Arabic: الله‎, trans: Allah) and to offer more prayer than usual. Compared to the solar calendar, the dates of Ramadan vary, moving backwards by about eleven days each year depending on the moon; thus, a person will have fasted every day of the calendar year in 34 years' time. Muslims believe Ramadan to be an auspicious month for the revelations of God to humankind, being the month in which the first verses of the Qur'an were revealed to the Islamic prophet, Muhammad.
Sadly, some professing Christians around the world, including some noteable false teachers, believe it is somehow in keeping with the Christian faith to celebrate Ramadan. This is just one of many unbiblical efforts (such as Chrislam) to harmonize the false religion of Islam with Christianity.

The apostle Paul warned against such sinful, ecumenical efforts in his second letter to the Church in Corinth.
Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, "I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty (2 Corinthians 6:14-18)."
According to the above passage of Scripture, Christians are not to enter into spiritual enterprise with followers of other anti-Christ religions such as Mormonism, Jehovah's Witness, and Islam, to name a few. This would include any ecumenical prayer effort since the one, true God does not hear the prayers of the wicked (Isaiah 1:10-20).

Paul writes, "What accord has Christ with Belial." The term "Belial" is an ancient word used for Satan. The word's most literal translations are "worthlessness," "destruction," and "treacherous." Paul makes it clear that for a Christian to join hands or link arms with followers of false gods, such as the god of Islam, is to engage in worthless, destructive, and treacherous activity that furthers a satanic agenda.

Instead of searching for streams of commonality with practitioners of anti-Christ religions, instead of blaspheming the one true God by perverting prayer and worship through ecumenism, I want to encourage readers of this blog to follow the lead of Christian organizations like Open Doors USA. According to Open Doors USA:
With the start of the month-long Islamic fast called Ramadan that begins Aug. 1, Open Doors USA is launching a 30-day campaign urging Christians in the West to pray with persecuted believers in Muslim-dominated countries.

During August most Muslims will fast from dawn until dusk, seeking to shed their sins through acts of restraint. They believe this is a time of purification accomplished through good deeds and self control.

To guide Christian’s prayers during Ramadan, Open Doors USA is offering a Ramadan Prayer Calendar. The calendar has multiple prayer points designed to help Christians pray with persecuted Christians around the world during the 30 days.

“Ramadan is a time when Christians are especially isolated in some Muslim-dominated countries,” says Open Doors USA President/CEO Dr. Carl Moeller. “This is why it is so important for us to unite in prayer with persecuted Christians throughout the world. I urge you to use the Open Doors resources to pray with our brothers and sisters.”
In an effort to assist Christians in praying for the Persecuted Church during the Belialian holiday of Ramadan, below you will find a list of the thirty largest Islamic countries. Pray for persecuted Christians in the Islamic country corresponding with the day of the month.

And here are some suggested topics for prayer:

Pray the Lord will provide physical and spiritual protection for His Church.

Pray persecuted Christians in Belialian nations will persevere through whatever trials the Lord allows.

Pray persecuted Christians will be faithful to proclaim the one, true gospel of Jesus Christ, regardless of the personal cost.

Pray for Christians, both here in the USA and in Belialian nations who have compromised the gospel and shipwrecked their faith by entering into spiritual enterprise with worshipers of false gods. Pray the Lord will graciously bring them to repentance.

Pray for revival in Belialian nations. Pray that many will flee from the worship of the false god of Islam, repent, and receive Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.

And here is the list of the largest Belialian nations:

August 1 - Indonesia
August 2 - Pakistan
August 3 - Bangladesh
August 4 - Egypt
August 5 - Iran
August 6 - Turkey
August 7 - Sudan
August 8 - Algeria
August 9 - Morocco
August 10 - Iraq
August 11 - Afghanistan
August 12 - Malaysia
August 13 - Saudi Arabia
August 14 - Uzbekistan
August 15 - Yemen
August 16 - Syria
August 17 - Kazakhstan
August 18 - Niger
August 19 - Burkina Faso
August 20 - Mali
August 21 - Senegal
August 22 - Tunisia
August 23 - Guinea
August 24 - Somalia
August 25 - Azerbaijan
August 26 - Tajikistan
August 27 - Sierra Leone
August 28 - Libya
August 29 - Jordan
August 30 - United Arab Emirates