Thursday, April 30, 2009

PSALM 5

To the chief Musician upon Nehiloth, A Psalm of David.

1 Give ear to my words, O LORD, consider my meditation.

2 Hearken unto the voice of my cry, my King, and my God: for unto thee will I pray.

3 My voice shalt thou hear in the morning, O LORD; in the morning will I direct my prayer unto thee, and will look up.

Here's a good idea. Why don't we, like David, start our day seeking the Lord's face and blessing?
Note by the way, King David, acknowledges that God is his King as well as his God. This certainly implies a willingness to obey as well as wanting God to hear his petitions.

4 For thou art not a God that hath pleasure in wickedness: neither shall evil dwell with thee.

5 The foolish shall not stand in thy sight: thou hatest all workers of iniquity.

6 Thou shalt destroy them that speak leasing: the LORD will abhor the bloody and deceitful man.

The character of God makes it impossible for Him to be pleased with sin (the New Testament declares in 2 Timothy 2:13 If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: He cannot deny himself.

7 But as for me, I will come into thy house in the multitude of thy mercy: and in thy fear will I worship toward thy holy temple.

8 Lead me, O LORD, in thy righteousness because of mine enemies; make thy way straight before my face.

David doesn't claim to be righteous on his own but he knows what he needs. He comes to God for mercy (which only a sinner needs), he comes to God to worship in fear, and for guidance.

9 For there is no faithfulness in their mouth; their inward part is very wickedness; their throat is an open sepulchre; they flatter with their tongue.

10 Destroy thou them, O God; let them fall by their own counsels; cast them out in the multitude of their transgressions; for they have rebelled against thee.

11 But let all those that put their trust in thee rejoice: let them ever shout for joy, because thou defendest them: let them also that love thy name be joyful in thee.

The comparison of those that trust in themselves versus those that trust in God reads like a modern day analysis. Compare that to politicians, Hollywoodites, sports figures, or even people you know... hopefully not the person in the mirror.

12 For thou, LORD, wilt bless the righteous; with favour wilt thou compass him as with a shield.

What we need is the blessing of God on our lives. Let us seek Him in humility, in our need, and oh yes... in the morning!

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

THE CENTURION'S UNLIKELY FRIEND

ACTS 27

Pastor Rick Jackson

I. THE UNLIKELY FRIENDS [V. 1-10]

1. The Uneven Standing [v. 1-2]

2. The Unexplained Kindness [v. 3]

3. The Unsolicited Advice [v. 4-10]

II. THE UNCOMFORTABLE JOURNEY [v. 11-32]

1. The Dictates of Worldly Wisdom [v. 11-13]

2. The Dynamics of Sharing God's Word [v. 14-26]

3. The Development of Tempered Trust [v. 27-32]

III. THE UNCOMPROMISING STAND [27:33-28:16]

1. One Man's Faith Cheers Many [v. 33-36]

2. One Man's Fate Spares Many [v. 37-43]

3. One Man's Father Blesses Many [27:44-28:16]

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

PSALM 4

To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm of David.

1 Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness: thou hast enlarged me when I was in distress; have mercy upon me, and hear my prayer.
2 O ye sons of men, how long will ye turn my glory into shame? how long will ye love vanity, and seek after leasing? Selah.
3 But know that the LORD hath set apart him that is godly for himself: the LORD will hear when I call unto him.
4 Stand in awe, and sin not: commune with your own heart upon your bed, and be still. Selah.
5 Offer the sacrifices of righteousness, and put your trust in the LORD.
6 There be many that say, Who will shew us any good? LORD, lift thou up the light of thy countenance upon us.
7 Thou hast put gladness in my heart, more than in the time that their corn and their wine increased.
8 I will both lay me down in peace, and sleep: for thou, LORD, only makest me dwell in safety.

Once again the psalmist speaks of a time of trouble and yet even in the midst of that trouble God made room for him [v.1]. Based on God's character and previous actions he fully expected God to have mercy and answer prayer.

Though men prefer vanity and lies God sets apart the godly for Himself. So the psalmist says in effect, "Even in trouble... Pray, be amazed at God, do right, encourage your heart in the Lord as you rest and let God work! (Too often we want to rush ahead of God). Offer God a pure life and trust Him to take care of the rest."

Verses 6-8 is a short prayer of for God's blessing, a recognition of what God has done and the benefit derived from His watch care. Oh that we would do likewise!

Monday, April 27, 2009

PSALM 3

A Psalm of David, when he fled from Absalom his son.

1 LORD, how are they increased that trouble me! many are they that rise up against me.
2 Many there be which say of my soul, There is no help for him in God. Selah.
3 But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head.
4 I cried unto the LORD with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy hill. Selah.
5 I laid me down and slept; I awaked; for the LORD sustained me.
6 I will not be afraid of ten thousands of people, that have set themselves against me round about.
7 Arise, O LORD; save me, O my God: for thou hast smitten all mine enemies upon the cheek bone; thou hast broken the teeth of the ungodly.
8 Salvation belongeth unto the LORD: thy blessing is upon thy people. Selah.

The old song says "Nobody knows the troubles I've seen..." David certainly had trouble. Granted many of them were self-inflicted through wrong decisions, wrong actions, wrong handling of situations... BUT--- how many of us can say we have never done the same? Show of hands? I thought not.

It got so bad for David even his own son was seeking to dethrone him and kill him. When his son rebelled many joined in on the rebellion. How many folks are just waiting for something bad to happen to us so they can jump on the bandwagon? People were even saying God had deserted David [v. 2] and David knew they were saying that!

JUST BECAUSE PEOPLE SAY SOMETHING DOESN'T MAKE IT SO! When I was at Flagler College back in the 1970s we read a book in history class written in the 1930s that said the Scopes trial of 1925 and its aftermath had killed Bible-believing Christianity. The professor asked the class if that statement was true? Most of them agreed that it was (after all it was written in a book). How he knew I'm not sure but the professor, a Bible-believing Christian himself, knowing he had a young Fundamentalist in the room said, "Mr. Jackson, do you agree with the author's assessment?"

"No sir!"

"Why not?"

"Sir, the largest church in Tennessee [where the Scopes trial took place] is the Highland Park Baptist Church in Chattanooga, Tn. with over 10,000 members. The largest church in Florida...Indiana...Virginia...Alaska... The Churches that thrive the most, large or small, are the ones that still teach and preach the Bible!" [Thank God for John R. Rice and The Sword of the Lord where I had gleaned that information over those formative years]

"That would be correct. History is sometimes seen best from a distance class."

We all learned something that day. I learned my professor knew me better than I thought. The class learned that historians are NOT always right, nor are they the unbiased lot they would have us believe and the professor learned he could call on that skinny [at the time] kid and get a somewhat intelligible response.

David continued to trust God no matter what the people said. [v. 4] Brother Lester Roloff used to sing, "...There's something mighty sweet about the Lord, It really doesn't matter, what the people say, there's something mighty sweet."

David continued to pray. He knew the Lord heard him and so do you know what he did? He slept soundly! [v. 5] Worry is such a time waster and sleep stealer. Someone has said, "I absolutely refuse to worry!" As long as the reason for that statement is trusting God I concur. Take your burden to the Lord and LEAVE it there. Don't take it back with you.

Who cares who or how many oppose you [v. 6] when God is taking up your cause [v. 7-8]? Salvation belongeth unto the LORD: thy blessing is upon thy people. Selah.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

SALT IS GOOD, BUT...

Luke 14:34 Salt is good: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be seasoned?

Pastor Rick Jackson

On April 19, 2009 Miss North Carolina was crowned Miss USA, but the big story was Miss California's comments regarding gay marriage.
Fox News reported: When asked by judge Perez Hilton, an openly gay gossip blogger, whether she believed in gay marriage, Miss California, Carrie Prejean, said "We live in a land where you can choose same-sex marriage or opposite. And you know what, I think in my country, in my family, I think that I believe that a marriage should be between a man and a woman. No offense to anybody out there, but that's how I was raised."

You would have thought she called for mass executions. She has faced ongoing hatred spewed by the liberals of Hollywood and Washington. Interestingly enough, Obama gave the same basic answer to Rick Warren while running for president and got nary a peep from the same crowd. Makes you want to go, “Hmmmm.” Doesn’t it?

Carrie is a self-proclaimed Christian and was doing something all Christians ought to do a little bit of… she was being salt! Let’s see what the Bible has to say about the matter.

I. THE POSITIVE POWER OF SALT [MT. 5:]

1. Salt Flavors [v. 13]

Job 6:6 Can that which is unsavoury be eaten without salt? Or is there any taste in the white of an egg?

Salt that is bland is not salt worth the name “salt“. Like some Hollywood Christians.
According to Elizabeth Thompson of Hollywood Life (an internet entertainment website) "Hills" star Heidi Montag messaged Ms. Hilton on Twitter today, telling him, "God says in the bible that we should love our neighbor and he created us all as equals. I know in my heart that gays and lesbians should have the same government rights that Spencer and I will when we get married. So, yes, this blonde Christian believes in gay marriage and I hope to one day go to YOUR wedding, Perez!!!"
Woah. Heidi Montag thinks the Christian right is neither Christian, nor right. This is… disorienting…
Even Miley Cyrus chimed in, tweeting to Perez:
"jesus loves you AND your partner and wants you to know how much he cares! thats like a daddy not loving his lil boy cuz hes gay. and that is WRONG and very sad! like i said everyone deserves to be happy. i am a christian and i love you - gay or not. BECAUSE you are no different that anyone else! we are all gods children! i am not. saying this so would be nice on your site (though that would be nice jk;) but because the LORD has spoken "love cuz god loves."

Did she mean I Jn. 4:11 Beloved, if God so loved us, we ought also to love one another.

Maybe she should read the 10 verses preceding those. The testimony of these two women is virtually flavorless. They need to remember:

2. Salt Preserves

3. Salt Produces Thirst

Perhaps what they have forgotten is:

II. THE NEGATIVE POWER OF SALT [MT. 5:]

1. Salt Stings (get sweat in your eyes, or salt in a wound)

2. Salt Can Aggravate High Blood Pressure

3. Salt is a Corrosive

These 3 things are what happened when Miss California reminded the world what the Bible says about marriage.

III. BIBLE TRUTHS ABOUT SALT

1. Christians are THE Salt [Mt. 5:13]

I’m going to be honest with you… Miss California was almost to the point of losing her own testimony with her lack of modesty. 1 Timothy 2:9 In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel…

2. Christians are to have Salt [Mk. 9:50]

Carrie still had some… Heidi & Miley- not so much

3. Christians are to Speak with Salt [Col. 4:5-6]

Saturday, April 25, 2009

QUESTION OF THE WEEK! - What is the goal of apologetics?‏

Q: What is the goal of apologetics?

A: According to Van Til, apologetics aims to defend the Christian faith by answering the variety of challenges leveled against it by unbelievers, thereby vindicating the Christian philosophy of life (worldview) over against all non-Christian philosophies of life (worldviews).

There is a large number of ways in which Christian truth-claims come under attack. They are challenged as to their meaningfulness. The possibility of miracles, revelation, and incarnation are questioned. Doubt is cast upon the deity of Christ or the existence of God. The historical or scientific accuracy of the Bible is attacked. Scriptural teaching is rejected for not being logically coherent. Conscious life following physical death, everlasting damnation, and a future resurrection are not readily accepted. The way of salvation is found disgusting or unnecessary. The nature of God and the way of salvation are falsified by heretical schools of thought. Competing religious systems are set over against Christianity. The ethics of Scripture is criticized. The psychological or political adequacy of Christianity is looked down upon.
These and many, many other lines of attack are directed against biblical Christianity. It is the job of apologetics to refute them and demonstrate the truth of the Christian proclamation and worldview—to “cast down reasonings and every high thing that is exalted against the knowledge of God” (Corinthians 10:5).

Therefore, apologetics involves intellectual reasoning and argumentation. The loathing of such things in many quarters of the modern Christian community is unhealthy. Reasoning is not an unspiritual activity, and argument does not mean personal contentiousness.

Continue reading this concise apologetic for apologetics in Another Cup of Coffee, the final entry in our series of articles from the late Dr. Greg Bahnsen.

News to Note Quick Look

The seal that wasn’t: “Evolution at [w]ork,” declares National Geographic News. “[T]he evolutionary evidence we have been lacking for so long,” reports BBC News. So just what is this new fossil? Read more.

Lord of the Tools: “How could a hominid with a brain the size of a grapefruit craft tools?” asks ScienceNOW’s Elizabeth Culotta. Read more.

Also: the earth that wasn’t, meet mini–T. rex, Earth Day and creation, and don’t miss . . . . Read more.

Prayer Requests

View the current prayer requests to keep track of and pray for current ministry needs. Thank you!

Answers ... with Ken Ham radio program

An asteroid—did it wipe out the dinosaurs?
Genesis—has it been replaced?
Earth Day—a hidden agenda?
Education—what’s its real priority?
Mars—why’s there so much interest?

After Eden

This information was provided by Answers In Genesis, an excellent source of material relating to Creation and evolution. Please visit their website using the link in the upper left.

Friday, April 24, 2009

PSALM 2


1 Why do the heathen rage, and the people imagine a vain thing?
2 The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the LORD, and against his anointed, saying,
3 Let us break their bands asunder, and cast away their cords from us.

4 He that sitteth in the heavens shall laugh: the Lord shall have them in derision.
5 Then shall he speak unto them in his wrath, and vex them in his sore displeasure.
6 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion.

7 I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee.
8 Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.
9 Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.

10 Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth.
11 Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling.
12 Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.

Another one of my favorite Psalms (I am probably going to be saying that a lot). Years ago as a young preacher I was invited to preach to other preachers at a "chapel pastors" meeting. The very thought scared me to death! God gave me an outline of this Psalm that I used and God gave me peace and everything went fine. Later that same week Warren Wiersbe preached the same Psalm and the same basic outline at a Bible Conference at the great Highland Park Baptist Church in Chattanooga, TN. One of my friends teased me that Wiersbe had "borrowed" my sermon! The in joke here is that many of us have borrowed Wiersbe's messages from his "Be-series" Bible study books, etc. I was ever so thankful I preached it before he did!

The Psalm practically outlines itself.

v. 1-3 The Attitude of the World

v. 4-6 The Attitude of God the Father

v. 7-9 The Attitude of God the Son

v. 10-12 The Attitude of God the Spirit

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Danny Wuerffel


Heisman winner yearns for inner-city transformation

By Jeff Robinson, LOUISVILLE, Ky. (BP)--

Though he won the Heisman Trophy in 1996 as a quarterback for the University of Florida, Danny Wuerffel was blindsided many times by blitzing defensive ends and linebackers.

But nothing in football prepared him for the blow his heart received as he drove past a squalid and decaying housing project one afternoon on his way to football practice as a member of the New Orleans Saints.

Wuerffel assumed that the dilapidated building was fit only for destruction. But as he looked, a small girl carrying a baby doll emerged from a front door. That house of horrors was her home. Never had a 300-pound defensive end hit Wuerffel with such visceral force.

"This building should have been torn down decades earlier," Wuerffel said. "But this little girl was living there. It broke my heart because I knew this just wasn't right. The Lord opened my eyes that day to see something that was going on in my own backyard, something I had seen a hundred times, but hadn't really ever seen. That's where it began.

"The seed of desire for inner-city ministry was sown in Wuerffel that afternoon. He recounted his testimony and his ongoing work with Desire Street Ministries at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in a March 24 presentation sponsored by the Dehoney Center for Urban Ministry.

Soon after seeing the young girl in the slum, Wuerffel sought out Desire Street Ministries, located in New Orleans' Ninth Ward, one of the country's most dangerous and down-and-out neighborhoods. Desire Street Ministries proclaims the Gospel among the inner-city poor and works for their economic and educational renewal.

"I remember the first time I went down to this neighborhood I was blown away by the dire poverty, the injustice, the violence, the lack of education -- everything about this neighborhood broke my heart," Wuerffel said.

"I had heard of and seen places like this from a long way off in Third World countries, but what hit me was this was right down the road from the Superdome where the Florida Gators won the national championship, where I was playing professional football. In a sense, this was in my own backyard and I wasn't even aware of it."

From 1993-96, Wuerffel was the University of Florida's starting quarterback, leading the Gators to a national title during 1996, his Heisman season. He was drafted by the New Orleans Saints and played seven years in the NFL before retiring after the 2002 season to work full-time with Desire Street Ministries in New Orleans.

Wuerffel began volunteering with Desire Street Ministries while playing for the Saints, and he continued to live in New Orleans while playing for Green Bay and Washington later in his career. When he returned to work full-time at Desire Street Ministries, Wuerffel and his wife moved into the Ninth Ward, choosing to live among the people they sought to serve in spite of the obvious dangers that haunted the neighborhood.

"The thing I really began to see [is] God's heart for such a place as the Ninth Ward of New Orleans," Wuerffel said. "As we begin to open the Scriptures, there are a number of themes that we miss until our attention is called to it, and I am convinced with all my heart that God has a special place in his heart for the poor, for those without a voice, for the orphans, for the widows, for the disenfranchised.

"It is in every book of Scripture, every genre, beginning to end. It is very important to God and it is very important to Him that His people care about it as well. While there were lots of things I could do with my life as I began to retire, as I began to see my life and how it intersected with Desire Street, I knew that God had a heart for the poor and He wanted me to as well.

"Desire Street Ministries planted a church in New Orleans and in 2002 began Desire Street Academy, but the ministry fell into serious jeopardy when Hurricane Katrina stormed ashore in August 2005, putting much of New Orleans under water.

The storm surge destroyed the Wuerffels' home, immersing it in water up to the roof. It also claimed Desire Street's headquarters, the academy and the new church.

In the days following the historic storm, Wuerffel and the Desire Street staff labored to find a new headquarters for the ministry and its academy. The church, however, joined the ranks of Katrina's victims.

The academy reopened for the 2005-06 school year as a boarding school in Niceville, Fla. The next year the school moved to its current home in Baton Rouge, where it has become the foundation of an outreach to the inner city of Louisiana's capital city.

The ministry, meanwhile, relocated its headquarters to metro Atlanta, where Wuerffel, his wife and three children live today. In 2006, Wuerffel was appointed executive director of the ministry when founder Mo Leverett resigned. Desire Street today has partner ministries in four cities in the Southeast.

Wuerffel, who is the son of a minister, said he would not trade his work at Desire Street Ministries for a place in the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

"I look at all that a great quarterback like Peyton Manning has accomplished and I think it's great," Wuerffel said, "and I'm happy for Peyton. But I wouldn't trade places with him. It has been a tremendous blessing to watch God transform so many people in these difficult places by His grace."

Jeff Robinson is director of news and information at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Copyright (c) 2009 Southern Baptist Convention,
Baptist Press901 Commerce Street
Nashville, TN 37203
Tel: 615.244.2355
Fax: 615.782.8736
email: bpress@sbc.net

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

PAUL & THE UNKNOWN CENTURIONS

ACTS 20-24

Pastor Rick Jackson

I. PAUL'S PROTECTORS

1. From a Mob [21:26-40]

2. From a Violation of His Civil Rights [22:20-26]

3. From a Conspiracy [23:12-24]

II. PAUL'S POLITICS

1. the Function of Government is to Encourage Righteousness [Rm. 13:1-3]

2. The Funtion of Government is to Punish Evil [Rm. 13:4]

3. The Christian Should Exercise his Rights but Rightly [Acts 22:25-30]

III. PAUL'S PHILOSOPHY

1. Paul Used His Opportunities [24:10-21]

2. Paul Accepted His Limitations [24:22-27]

3. Paul Lived His Philosophy [Phil. 4:11]

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Put Earth Day in Proper Perspective

This cartoon was provided by Answers In Genesis, an excellent source of material relating to Creation and evolution. Please visit their website using the link in the upper left.
--------------------------


We are not against the earth. It was created by God and man was given dominion over it (Gen. 1-2). We are not against using the resources God has given us wisely. We are against worshipping the creation rather than the Creator (Rm. 1) or giving priority to other species over the welfare of humankind. One day God will recycle the earth for His glory and the benefit and appreciation of the redeemed (II Pt. 3). -Rick

Monday, April 20, 2009

PSALM 1

Psalm 1
1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
4 The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

The Lord is certainly good to us. Though have read this Psalm probably hundreds of times, referred to it literally scores of times, preached from it and heard others preach from it dozens of times I never had anyone point out (to my knowledge) what the Lord laid on my heart recently.

Of course much can be said about the whole Psalm. It is a wonderful start to a wonderful book of the Bible! But verse three is what grabbed my attention this time. The blessed man will bring forth his fruit in his season--- that's a promise. But another promise is "his leaf also shall not wither."

Whereas the first speaks of fruit (conduct, converts, character) produced in and by our lives the second refers to our testimony itself. The blessed man, the man in the Word(v.2), the man separated from the world (v. 1), is a continual testimony! He is an evergreen as opposed to a tree that shed its leaves and appears dead for a time. It was for this reason that Boniface, an early Christian missionary chose the evergreen as a symbol for God as he witnessed. [search Boniface in this blog and see the origin of the Christmas tree- it wasn't of pagan origin!]

What kind of tree are we?

Sunday, April 19, 2009

MORE OR LESS?

JOHN 20:19-25

Pastor Rick Jackson

Everybody says they want more out of life- but do they? They choice of getting more out of life is largely up to us, as the disciple Thomas found out the week after the first Easter.

I. A WEEK WITH LESS [v. 19-25]

1. Less Joy & Peace than Others [v. 19-21a]

2. Less Direction & Knowledge than Others [v. 21b-23]

3. Less Assurance & Faith than Others [v. 24-25]

II. AN EVENING WITH MORE [v. 26]

1. With a Primary Pattern [v. 26a, Acts 20:7]

And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them… and continued his speech until midnight.
1 Corinthians 16:2 Upon the first day of the week let every one of you lay by him in store, as God hath prospered him, that there be no gatherings when I come.

2. With a Promised Presence [v. 26b, Mt. 18:20]

3. With a Powerful Peace [v. 26c, John 14:27]

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.

III. A LIFE WITH ABUNDANCE [v. 27-31]

John 10:10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.

1. You can have Faith in God [v. 27, Mark 11:22]

And Jesus answering saith unto them, Have faith in God.

Acts 1:3 To whom also he shewed himself alive after his passion by many infallible proofs, being seen of them 40 days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God.
2. You can Worship God [v. 28, Jn. 4:23-24]

But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.

3. You can be Blessed of God [v. 29-31]

Psalm 1

1 Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly, nor standeth in the way of sinners, nor sitteth in the seat of the scornful.
2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD; and in his law doth he meditate day and night.
3 And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
4 The ungodly are not so: but are like the chaff which the wind driveth away.
5 Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
6 For the LORD knoweth the way of the righteous: but the way of the ungodly shall perish.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

QUESTION OF THE WEEK! - Why did Jesus say the Father was greater?‏

Q: Why did Jesus say the Father was greater?

John 14:28“You have heard Me say to you, ‘I am going away and coming back to you.’ If you loved Me, you would rejoice because I said, ‘I am going to the Father,’ for My Father is greater than I.”

A: We have discussed the doctrine of the Trinity in a number of places on this website. A corollary is that the Father is God, Jesus is God, and the Spirit is God—one God in three persons. A number of passages emphasize that Jesus is God (e.g., Philippians 2:5–8). Some people have stumbled over the phrase “being in the form of God,” as if this phrase implies a relationship that is less than equal. Actually, in the Greek, this phrase is even stronger than just saying “Jesus is God.” The phrase is closer to saying “Jesus manifests God.” The phrase states that Jesus and the Father are one in essence. Of course, John 1:1–3 points out that Jesus, the Word, created all things and so on.

Having accepted the deity of Christ, what are we to make of Jesus’s statement in John 14:28 that “My Father is greater than I”? Pseudo-Christian religions make much of this verse. For example, a Jehovah’s Witnesses publication called “What Does God Require of Us?” references this verse to “prove” that Jesus is inferior to God.

Continue reading Paul Taylor’s refutation of this commonly alleged Bible contradiction in Contradictions: Greater Than or Equal To?

News to Note Quick Look

Noah’s Ark, Hong Kong style: We were deluged with media tips this week about the Wall Street Journal’s front-page coverage of a Noah’s Ark replica. Read more.

Instantaneous evolution: Early humans weren’t very good at swinging from trees. But if you think that has evolutionists doubting human evolution, think again. Read more.

Also: the sophisticated lives of sea scorpions; not just ordinary Neanderthals; adult stem cells to the rescue (again); “God’s not showing up on this MRI—He must not exist!”; and don’t miss . . . . Read more.

Prayer Requests

View the current prayer requests to keep track of and pray for current ministry needs. Thank you!

Answers ... with Ken Ham radio program

Water on Mars—what does it mean?
A God—is this obvious from creation?
Public education—is it neutral?
Diamonds in a day—not millions of years!
Jesus’ blood—why was it necessary?

After Eden

This information was provided by Answers In Genesis, an excellent source of material relating to Creation and evolution. Please visit their website using the link in the upper left.

Friday, April 17, 2009

QUOTES OF THE WEEK!

I will place no value on anything I have or possess, except in relation to the kingdom of Christ. - David Livingstone (missionary)

The call of God is that deep inward conviction accompanied by peace in the heart and confirmed by the Word of God that God would have us do a certain work in a certain place. - Francis Dixon (minister)

See, if you don't show up to read your Bible, it's not a book you're saying you don't have time for. It's Jesus. The devil knows that. That's why he'll do everything he can to keep you away from God's Word, because he knows that your neglecting His Word keeps you from Jesus. - Doug Hutchcraft (national speaker)

Integrity without knowledge is weak and useless, and knowledge without integrity is dangerous and dreadful. - Samuel Johnson (1709 - 1784)

We have too many high sounding words, and too few actions that correspond to them. - Abigail Adams (1744 - 1818)

We cannot take our people beyond where we ourselves have been, and it thus becomes vitally important that we be men of God in the last and highest sense of that term. —A. W. Tozer

Thursday, April 16, 2009

The Splendid Coward

By Pastor Donald Prout (1931-2007)

from The Biblical Evangelist (see link at left for more like this excellent message)

A "splendid coward" is how one biographer describes him. He flits across the pages of Scripture so quickly we hardly see him. All we know concerning him takes place during a period of three hours – between the time of our Savior's death ... and His subsequent burial. But each Gospel writer sees fit to mention this man ­and the remarkable role he played in the events surroun­ding that first Easter.

His name? Joseph of Arimathea. A "splendid coward" indeed!

I. His Secret Discipleship

"And after this,” writes John – after the Savior has "yielded up the Ghost" and the Roman spear has been thrust into His side – "after this, Joseph of Arimathea, being a disciple of Jesus, but secretly for fear of the Jews …” (John 19:38).

A secret disciple? The words seem to contradict each other. Yet here it is engraved in the pages of Holy Writ. The God, who sees the heart, looked upon this man as a true disciple of the Lord Jesus.

Just nine hours previously the Sanhedrin had met to condemn Jesus to death – and Joseph was a member of that august body. Luke tells us, however, that "Joseph, a counsellor ... was a good man and just: (the same had not consented to the council and deed of them ... )" (Luke 23:50-51).

Does that mean, I wonder, that when the vote was taken he hung his head and hoped that none had noticed his hand was not raised? Or, maybe, only a quorum had been called to that sunrise gathering – and Joseph of Ari­mathea had not even been in attendance.

In either case, the record stands – a "secret disciple." Fear of what men might say; fear of loss of position; loss of friends; loss of popularity ... fear paralysed his testimony. A secret disciple!
Had you or I lived in far-off Jerusalem at that time and joined forces with the small band of believers we would have surely looked at this man and said: "He's not one of us." And we would have been wrong!

One is reminded of Lot in the Old Testament saga, de­void of testimony, living in an incredibly wicked environ­ment, even suggesting to the men of Sodom that he bring out his daughters to them rather than his angel visitors ... (Genesis 19:8) – yet the inspired New Testament writer tells us that Lot was a true child of God (II Peter 2:6-8).

There are times that wheat and the tares are so difficult to distinguish it behooves us to remember the Savior's admonition: "Judge not!" Man only looks upon the out­ward appearance; God sees the heart! And He knows those who belong to Him.

Joseph of Arimathea did belong to the Lord. True, he was no shining example of spiritual maturity, but as he stands at the back of the crowd that day at Calvary, with cloak shrouding his face lest he be recognized, methinks tears could be seen in his eyes. For he is a disciple of the One who had died upon the center cross.


II. His Supreme Devotion

Have you ever paused to think what was about to happen to the body of the Lord Jesus?
Normally those who had been crucified would die a lin­gering and painful death. Perhaps for two or even three days they would hang there as the noonday sun blazed upon them, and as vultures circled overhead, waiting to pick their bones clean ...

But the morrow was the Passover – a holy feast day – ­and it would be contrary to the Mosaic Law to leave a body on the cross during that period (Remember! – Jesus had already died.)
Let John pick up the story: "The Jews, therefore, because it was the preparation, that the bodies should not remain upon the cross on the Sabbath day (for that Sab­bath day was an high day), besought Pilate that their legs might be broken, and that they might be taken away" ­(John 19:31).

Permission is granted. And the Roman mallets smashed the legs of the two thieves. Whereas some relief could be gained by a crucified man who eased the strain by "stand­ing on the nail in his feet" - the broken legs meant no such relief was possible. The heart was soon strained to breaking point. Death came quickly.

And as Joseph, the good and just man from Ari­mathea, watches this grim scene, something happens.

Does he see the grave being hastily dug nearby to dis­pose of the three bodies? Or a cart being hauled into place ready to transport the corpses to Gehenna, the ever-burn­ing rubbish tip just south of the city wall?

Is it to be that in less than three hours (when the Passover commences) the body of Jesus will be subject to the same fate as that of the two malefactors?

Joseph weighs the issue in his mind.

On the one hand – he has a tomb, a new tomb, in this very area (John 19:41).

And it is not right, surely, that this One whom he ac­knowledged as "Lord" should end up as food for vul­tures.

"But wait a minute, Joseph! Surely you are not contemplating identifying yourself with this Jesus?"

Even His own closest friends have forsaken Him. Ex­cept John ... there he is about to escort Mary to his home.

"It is all over, Joseph. There is nothing anyone can do any more."

"Yes, there is!" Did Joseph utter the words out loud as he dropped the cloak from hiding his features?

"Yes, there is! I was too scared – too cowardly – to nail my colors to the mast when Jesus was alive. But I'm willing to do it now! He can have my tomb."

"But Joseph ... think of your position in the Sanhedrin. It will cost you your job to go through with this foolhardy plan of yours!"

Remember Joseph! Crucifixion not only spells death, but shame! Identify yourself with Jesus at this stage and you will bear the stigma the rest of your life ..."

The sun sinks lower. Two hours to go before the Sab­bath commences ...

One hesitates to read more into the sacred sltory than what the Gospel writers record. But I can well imagine, as Joseph of Arimathea stands there, eyes focused upon that cross ... a mind torn 'twixt what was the right thing or the wisest thing to do ... suddenly a hand touches his shoulder.
He turns.

It is Nicodemus, a fellow member of the Sanhedrin. Nicodemus speaks ... "I didn't expect to see you here, Joseph ..."

The man from Arimathea forgets his "fear of the Jews." The die is cast. He makes a great confession.

"Nicodemus," I can imagine him saying, "I'm a disci­ple of that Man on the center cross. Oh ... I've never confessed Him publicly before. But He's my Lord. I don't understand all the reason behind what has happened to­day. But this I know – it's not right He should not be afforded a proper burial. And, Nicodemus, I have a tomb. See – over there! And I've decided to use it for the burying place of Jesus. He's my Lord, Nicodemus. My Lord!"

And Nicodemus would have replied, "He's my Lord, too. Ever since I spoke to Him one night, I've been a follower of His" (John 3:1-10; 7:50, 51).

Thus it is the two "secret disciples" decide on the action that must needs be taken. And taken urgently. Once that Sabbath begins at sunset there will be no way they can put their desires into effect.

Joseph of Arimathea heads off to get permission from Pontius Pilate while Nicodemus sets out to gather the spices and linen clothes ...

If there is one word that shines in the sequence of events that follow it is the one recorded in Mark's Gospel:

"And now, when even was come (ie., it is almost sunset) because it was the preparation, that is, the day before the Sabbath, Joseph of Arimathea, an honourable counsellor, which also waited for the Kingdom of God, came and went in boldly unto Pilate and craved the body of Jesus" (Mark 15:42-43).

Did you catch it? Boldly!

No secret disciple now! Here is – in the words of an­other – "one common soldier who enters the arena of battle when all the generals have fled!"

The Gospel story continues, telling us how surprised Pilate was to learn the crucified trio were dead already. Is it a trick, perhaps, to get the Nazarene from the cross before He dies, and tenderly care for Him until strength returns? Already there are rumors that He said He would reappear three days later. Better make sure, Pilate!

So a centurion is despatched to see if Jesus is really dead.

Anxious moments.

Joseph sees the sun sinking quickly as he gazes through the palace window. Half an hour at the least. Where is that centurion?

At last Pilate is assured that Jesus is truly dead ...

Back at Calvary the crowd has dispersed. The bodies are down from the cross now. Dumped unceremoniously on to the cart.

John places his arm around weeping Mary. They pre­pare to leave this agonizing scene.
But suddenly, along the path that leads up the hill, comes Joseph of Arimathea – frantically waving a piece of paper in his hand. "Wait!" he cries to the Roman soldiers. "Wait!"
Here it is ... permission from Pontius Pilate himself that the body of Jesus may be handed over to Joseph of Arimathea!

John and Mary and the other women must have stared in astonishment at this new twist in the bewildering events of that day. For – remember – up until now Joseph had been a secret disciple! Not even they had known of his allegiance to the Lord Jesus. Yet here he is ... at the very darkest hour ... showing supreme devotion, willing to share the taunts and ridicule of whoever learns that he has given his tomb to inter the body of Jesus.

And here comes Nicodemus! Panting, puffing ... as the shadows lengthen ... here he comes with myrrh and aloes – "about an hundred pound weight" (John 19:39).

And loving hands take the body of Jesus and wrap it in the linen clothes and place it in the tomb of Joseph of Ari­mathea.

The sun sets. And the Sabbath begins ...

III. His Satisfying Destiny

Oh ... I know the Scripture becomes silent concerning the future of Joseph.

I guess when it was noised abroad that he had given his tomb for the body of the Nazarene all those things he had expected came true – dismissal from the Sanhedrin; ostracism from friends. Persecution, even as the Book of Acts records befell the followers of the Way.

Then came the day when Joseph lay a-dying. And the saints gathered around his bedside. Did Paul give a little homily, I wonder, and John read an appropriate Psalm? It could well have been so.

But the thrilling truth that comes to mind is the attitude Joseph of Arimathea would have at a time like this. Fear? No ... he had left his fears far behind long ago, that day when he publicly confessed himself a disciple of Jesus.

Besides ... death held no fear for him. He was about to be buried in a conquered tomb!

For from that grave the Lord had arisen. Death could not keep her prey.

And Joseph of Arimathea knew the One who had conquered death (in his tomb!) would one day come again as He had promised. Death had lost its sting.

The resurrection of our Lord, bodily from Joseph's tomb, was a pledge that one day, from that same tomb, Joseph also would rise again!

And not Joseph only, but all who are disciples of the Lord Jesus "shall hear His voice ... and shall live!" (John 5:25-29).

God grant that we might know something of that supreme devotion displayed by Joseph of Arimathea ­and then we, too, shall be assured of the same glorious and satisfying destiny.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

THE CENTURION’S SECRET

ACTS 10

Pastor Rick Jackson

Have you ever had a secret that really wasn’t a secret but people thought it was a secret because it wasn’t a well known fact? For instance because my nickname is “Rick” many people assume my given name is “Richard” and I have had quite a few people act shocked when they learn my given name is in fact, Frederick. No secret really but some people seem to think it was. The centurion in Acts 10 had a “secret” too, but it was not a secret and it was something he wanted rectified. Let’s find out what it was all about!

I. HIS STRENGTHS [v. 1-2]

1. He was Devout [v. 1-2a] He didn’t reject the knowledge of God’s existence.

2. He Feared God [v. 2b] He didn’t reject the knowledge of facing God.

3. He Prayed [v. 2c, 30-33] He didn’t reject the idea that God would answer prayer.

II. HIS SECRETS [v. 22-27]

1. He was Lost [v. 22-23]

2. He was Ignorant [v. 24-26]

3. He was Easy to Win [v. 27, 44]

III. HIS SALVATION [v. 6-10]

1. God is more interested in saving us than we are in being saved [v. 3-8]

2. God has more problems with Christians going than sinners coming sometimes [v.9-21]

3. God has provided the way of salvation [v. 36-43]

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Classy Insults?

That's what the email my sister sent me called them...

When Insults Had Class...

"He has all the virtues I dislike and none of the vices I admire." -- Winston Churchill

"I have never killed a man, but I have read many obituaries with great pleasure" -- Clarence Darrow

"He has never been known to use a word that might send a reader to the dictionary." -- William Faulkner (about Ernest Hemingway)

"I've had a perfectly wonderful evening. But this wasn't it." -- Groucho Marx

"I didn't attend the funeral, but I sent a nice letter saying I approved of it." -- Mark Twain

"He has no enemies, but is intensely disliked by his friends." -- Oscar Wilde

"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play, bring a friend... if you have one." -- George Bernard Shaw to Winston Churchill

...followed by Churchill's response:

"Cannot possibly attend first night, will attend second, if there is one." -- Winston Churchill

"I feel so miserable without you, it's almost like having you here." -- Stephen Bishop

"He is a self-made man and worships his creator." -- John Bright

"I've just learned about his illness. Let's hope it's nothing trivial." -- Irvin S Cobb

"He is not only dull himself, he is the cause of dullness in others." -- Samuel Johnson

"He is simply a shiver looking for a spine to run up." -- Paul Keating

"He had delusions of adequacy." -- Walter Kerr

"Why do you sit there looking like an envelope without any address on it?" -- Mark Twain

"His mother should have thrown him away and kept the stork." -- Mae West

"Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go." -- Oscar Wilde

Monday, April 13, 2009

What you do to get married and what you do because you are married!

A lot of difference in what you do to get married and what you do, because you are married!

Sumner Wemp (see link at left)

There is a world of difference in what you do to get married and what you do because you are married. You do not start living together and have children and become a father and a mother to get married. You do that when you have gotten married. You must understand that you get a marriage license, go to the preacher who has authority to marry you, he asks if you take this man/woman to be your lawful mate. You must answer from your heart out loud, "I do" and then he pronounces you husband and wife. Then you live with her and do all those things married couples do.

In God's eyes and in our eyes it is the same way about getting saved. You must "understand" (Matt 13:23) like the good seed to produce as you ought. Remember the Ethiopian to whom Phillip went, heard him reading the Bible and asked if he understood it. He said, How can I except some man should guide me and he desired Phillip that he would come up and sit with him and "guide him" . And his name is legion today, the many people I find who want to know how to get saved.

Just the other day, I had the joy of seeing a lady come to understand how to be saved and had the assurance she was saved and stopped trying to save herself. You do not join a church, get baptized, start tithing, start living a godly life to get saved, you understand the Lord Jesus who knew no sin, suffered and died for your sins on the cross, paid your debt in full, rose again and was seen by hundreds. Remember no one saw Allah, Mohammad, Buddha nor Confucius pay your debt of sin, rise from the dead and be seen by hundreds of people.

Now to be saved you must believe God that Jesus did pay for your sins, rose again and was seen alive by hundreds, then Let God know You believe Him and receive the Lord Jesus as your personal savior. For He is the one authority who can pronounce you saved. Then you confess publicly you have received the Lord Jesus as your Savior, get baptized and start living a godly life ---because you are now saved. Doesn't that make real good sense?

"For we are not saved by what we do but by what He did for us. I use this with almost every person I lead to the Lord and it really helps them understand how to be saved. ABC Sumner

Sunday, April 12, 2009

THE TABERNACLE- A PORTRAIT OF CHRIST (5)

EXODUS 29

Pastor Rick Jackson

This lesson continues on those who would be working in and around the tabernacle. Everything about the Tabernacle pointed to the Lord Jesus Christ.

I. THE LORD’S SELECTION [v. 1-9]

1. Must be Cleansed to Represent Jesus [v. 1-4]

2. Must be Clothed to Represent Jesus [v. 5-6, 8-9, Zechariah 3]

3. Must be Completely Yielded to Represent Jesus [v. 7, Ps. 133:1-2]

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments;
John 3:34 For he whom God hath sent speaketh the words of God: for God giveth not the Spirit by measure unto him.

II. THE LORD’S SACRIFICES [v. 10-28]

1. Picturing a Life-changing Salvation [v. 10-14]

2. Picturing a Life of Sacrifice [v. 15-18, Romans 12:1]

I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.

3. Picturing a Life of Service [v. 19-28, Philippians 2:17]

Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all.

III. THE LORD’S SHADOWS [v. 29-46, Heb. 10:1-4]

1. A Continual Consecration (Dedication) [v. 29-37]

2. A Continual Offering [v. 38-42]

3. A Continual Sanctification [v. 43-46]

HEBREWS 7:23-28

RESURRECTION TRUTHS

LUKE 24

Pastor Rick Jackson

I. RESURRECTION TRUTHS ABOUT OUR BODIES [v. 36-43]

1. Our Bodies Will Be Fantastic [v. 36]

2. Our Bodies Will Be Familiar [v. 37-40]

3. Our Bodies Will Be Functional [v. 41-43]

II. RESURRECTION TRUTHS ABOUT OUR BIBLES [v. 44-46]

1. Without a Doubt the Bible is true [v. 44]

2. Without a Doubt the Bible is Understandable [v. 45]

3. Without a Doubt the Bible is Source of THE Plan of Salvation [v. 46]

III. RESURRECTION TRUTHS ABOUT OUR BEHAVIOR [v. 47-53]

1. The Responsibility of the Twice Born Believers [v. 47-48]

2. The Resources of the Holy Trinity [v. 49-52a]

3. The Reality of the Crucified Life [v. 52b-53]

Galatians 2:20 I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

QUESTION OF THE WEEK! - Who is the real Jesus?‏

Q: Who is the real Jesus?

Dr. Mark Bird answers this week’s question with a personal and powerful Easter message.
A: I have never forgotten the unusual conversation that I once had with a hitchhiker. We had not traveled very long together when I realized my rider was in some kind of a cult. He said that he would “come to power” in about 10 years and would end up being responsible for annihilating thousands, maybe millions of people. He went on and on, both amusing me and perturbing me. Finally, I turned to him and said, “So, who are you, anyway?” He looked me in the eye, paused, then said, “I am he, the 3rd Son of the Father, the Prince of Peace!”

Though this man probably hasn’t gained much of a following, the Bible does predict that in the last days, false Christs and false prophets will come and deceive many. Many people these days are putting their faith in false or imaginary Christs who cannot save them. You might meet two of these false Christs—introduced to you by the Mormons and the Jehovah’s Witnesses.

As part of your Easter celebration, take the time to continue reading The Real Jesus and reflect again on the fundamental nature of our Lord and Savior.

Network with Us

Did you know that Answers in Genesis is on both Facebook and Twitter? The Creation Museum is on Facebook and Twitter as well. (Warning: Facebook and Twitter are both social networking sites with user-contributed content. Children should not visit the sites without parental supervision.)

Answers Education Online

The next session of our online astronomy course begins soon and registration is open until April 13. “Creation Apologetics and Astronomy” is a six-week course designed to equip you to defend your faith in an evolution-dominated world that is increasingly hostile to Christianity.
Each weekly lesson is designed so that you can work at your own pace, making it ideal for both students and working people. The lessons focus on helping you understand the issues involved in astronomy and how to use the information you learn to share your faith with others. Topics include distant starlight, astronomy in the Bible, problems with the big bang, life on other planets, and more.

As a student, you will be involved in reading articles, watching videos, discussing ideas with classmates and instructors, and applying what you have learned in the assessments. For more information about this learning opportunity, visit Answers Education Online.

Sign up today so you don’t miss out on this exciting opportunity!

News to Note Quick Look

The magic of “gradual change”: Can evolutionists rescue their own model of bird origins? Read more.

Ken Ham as Survivorman: Stone blades from more than 500,000 years ago: the work of an alleged human ancestor or Ken Ham playing Survivorman? Read more.

Also: Birkat Hachama and a recent creation; creation globalization; whose chain of logic?; and don’t miss . . . . Read more.

Prayer Requests

View the current prayer requests to keep track of and pray for current ministry needs. Thank you!

Answers ... with Ken Ham radio program

Adam and Eve’s coats—from which animal?
The Resurrection—why do we believe it?
Jesus’s death—connected to Genesis?
Jesus Christ—was He a true man?
The Resurrection—does it really matter?

After Eden

This information was provided by Answers In Genesis, an excellent source of material relating to Creation and evolution. Please visit their website using the link in the upper left.

Friday, April 10, 2009

It Only Takes One



Jeremiah 5:1 "Run ye to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now, and know, and seek in the broad places thereof, if ye can find a man, if there be any that executeth judgment, that seeketh the truth; and I will pardon it."

It Only Takes One

Legend has it that a riot broke out in a Texas town. As the riot grew out of control, the lawmen of the town called for reinforcements from the famous Texas Rangers. The sheriff who expected to meet a great force at the train depot was a little shocked to see just one Ranger step off the train. Knowing the severe conditions of the riot, the man exclaimed, "There is only one of you!" The lone Texas Ranger replied, "Well, there is only one riot, ain't there?!" The theme "one riot, one ranger" started that day because of the truth that one person can make a difference!

Here in Jeremiah 5, God was looking for just one person in Israel. Moses begged God to spare Sodom and Gomorrah for ten righteous people in that wicked city, but here in Jeremiah, God was looking for one person of His own people. Verse 1 says, "If ye can find a man . . . that seeketh the truth; and I will pardon it." God was looking for a man that was seeking after the truth. Sadly, He could not find one.

It has rightly been said that all it takes for evil to triumph is for good people to do nothing. In your church and your family, it only takes one person to do nothing. Jeremiah went looking for God's one man, and in verse 5 he says, "I will get me unto the great men, and will speak unto them . . . but these have altogether broken the yoke, and burst the bonds." Great is not what people see but what God knows. The "great" men in Israel were not doing what God made them to do. They should have been the ones leading the people, but they decided to "break the yoke and burst the bonds."

It all ended up at verses 30-31: "A wonderful and horrible thing is committed in the land; The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and my people love to have it so. . . ." The people needed direction and leadership, but the prophets and priests weren't leading, and the people "love[d] to have it so." How sad it was that the one man, who should have been leading, was lying or ruling his own way!

Today, we still see the thing God called "wonderful and horrible thing." Parents, the "one" God gave to lead, will not lead and direct their children and then send them off, hoping they will make the right decision. Parents, that is why you are there! Help your kids make the right choice-it won't happen otherwise!

Certainly this applies to preachers and people, too. May God help your pastor (or you, if you are one) to lead your church in the right way. Everyone serves, and preachers are followed by the people they serve. What we need is people to lead by serving.

The end will come-you can know the end by looking at the path you are going down today. What path are you on today? May God help you to lead today by serving the people you are accountable for. It only takes one!

For more information about the Bill Rice Ranch visit our website: billriceranch.org

[originally sent out November 19, 2008‏]

Thursday, April 09, 2009

Is Obama Afraid of the J-Word?

Is Obama Afraid of the J-Word?
by Chuck Norris
04/07/2009

According to a new national survey by the Pew Research Center for the People & the Press, 11 percent of Americans still believe President Barack Obama is a Muslim. Seven percent of Democrats believe it. And nearly 20 percent of evangelicals do.What I find fascinating is that the same study shows only 55 percent of Democrats know or believe Obama is a Christian, even after Obama spent nearly two years on the presidential campaign trail spouting his views and beliefs on everything under the sun.Moreover, about 1 in 3 people don't have any idea what his religious convictions are. Should the percentages be that high? Religion might be a private choice, but should it be a secret one, too, even for leaders?

For the rest of this article go to:

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=31375

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

A CENTURION RECOGNIZES GOD

LUKE 23

Pastor Rick Jackson

Here in Luke we find a centurion who seemed to have learned the truth concerning Jesus the same way many others have… slowly, as the Holy Spirit opened their spiritual eyes until they saw the Son of God for who He is- God in the flesh!

I. WHAT HE SAID [v. 47]

1. Glorified God [v. 47a]

2. “Certainly this was a righteous man.” [v. 47b, 40-41]

3. “Truly this man was the Son of God” [Mk. 15:39]

II. WHY HE SAID WHAT HE SAID [v. 1-47]

1. A Soldier Listens [v. 1-6, 13-24, 27-31, 34-37, 39-43, 46]

2. A Soldier Looks [v. 7, 11, 25-26, 32-33, 38, 44-47]

3. A Soldier Learns [v. 41-43, Mt. 27:54]

Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.

III. WAS WHAT HE SAID ENOUGH?

Was he saved? I like to think so but some don’t agree. Was saying the right things, enough?

1. A Simple Affirmation of Bible Truth is Not Enough [James 2:19]

Thou believest that there is one God; thou doest well: the devils also believe, and tremble.

2. A Sincere Acceptance of Christ’s Person & Work is Enough [John 1:12]

But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:

3. A Solid Answer May Have to Wait [1 Corinthians 13:12]

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Kids in & out of church

One of those emails my sister sent me...

A little boy was overheard praying: '... if you can't make me a better boy, don't worry about it. I'm having a real good time like I am.'

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

After the dedication of his baby brother in church, Jason sobbed all the way home in the back seat of the car. His father asked him three times what was wrong. Finally, the boy replied, 'That preacher said he wanted us brought up in a Christian home, and I wanted to stay with you guys.' ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

One particular four-year-old prayed, 'And forgive us our trash baskets as we forgive those who put trash in our baskets.'

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A Sunday school teacher asked her children as they were on the way to church service, 'And why is it necessary to be quiet in church?' One bright little girl replied, 'Because people are sleeping.' ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A father was at the beach with his children when the four-year-old son ran up to him, grabbed his hand, and led him to the shore where a seagull lay dead in the sand. 'Daddy, what happened to him?' the son asked. 'He died and went to Heaven,' the Dad replied. The boy thought a moment and then said, 'Did he get thrown back down?' ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

A woman invited some people to dinner. At the table, she turned to their six-year-old daughter and said, 'Would you like to say the blessing?' 'I wouldn't know what to say,' the girl replied. 'Just say what you hear Mommy say,' the woman answered. The daughter bowed her head and said, 'Why on earth did I invite all these people to dinner?'

Monday, April 06, 2009

The Designed Creation‏



The Designed Creation


April 2009


"Understand, ye brutish among the people: and ye fools, when will ye be wise? He that planted the ear, shall he not hear? he that formed the eye, shall he not see?" (Psalm 94:8-9)


The concept of evolution, according to this verse, is nothing but brute-like foolishness. If an automobile presupposes an automaker, and a clock implies a clockmaker, surely the infinitely more intricate and complex eyes and ears of living creatures require an eye-maker and an ear-maker! "The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, the LORD hath made even both of them (Proverbs 20:12).


The most basic of all scientific laws--the law of cause and effect (no effect greater than its cause)--becomes utmost nonsense if the cosmos is the product of chaos and the universe evolved by chance. "The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God" (Psalm 14:1).


Every creature, from the single-celled amoebae to the amazing human body, bears the impress of intricate planning and construction. The notion that such complex structures could evolve by random mutations and natural selection is simply a measure of the audacity of human rebellion and the absurdity of humanistic reasoning. Such things never happen in the real world, and there is no real scientific evidence whatever for "vertical" evolution from one kind to a higher kind. The only genuine evidence for evolution is the fact that the leaders of intellectualism believe it, and the only reason they believe it is their frantic desire to escape God. "Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools" (Romans 1:22).


The ear did not "evolve"; it was planted. The eye did not "happen by chance"; it was formed. Every wise man and woman will say with the psalmist, "I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well" (Psalm 139:14). HMM

Sunday, April 05, 2009

THE TABERNACLE- A PORTRAIT OF CHRIST (4)

EXODUS 28

Pastor Rick Jackson

This lesson is not on the Tabernacle proper but is on those who would be working in and around the tabernacle but the meaning has not changed. Everything about the Tabernacle pointed to the lord Jesus Christ in one way or another and the priesthood and even the garments worn by the priests is NOT an exception.

I. SERVANTS OF THE LORD [v. 1-5]

1. God calls Some to Specific Ministries [v. 1]

2. God calls Some to Use Specific Abilities [v. 2-4]

3. God calls Some to Give Specific Materials [v. 5, 25:1-9]

II. SPECIFICATIONS OF THE LORD FOR THE HIGH PRIEST [v. 6-39]

Fine Linen-the righteousness of Christ Blue=Heavenly White=perfect purity

Red=earthly/death/sacrifice Purple=royalty (as a blend of red & blue)

1. The Ephod and the girdle [v. 6-14]

2. The Breastplate [v. 15-30] Urim & Thummim (lights & perfections)

3. The Robe, Mitre, and the Coat [v. 31-39]

29:5-6 And thou shalt take the garments, and put upon Aaron the coat, and the robe of the ephod, and the ephod, and the breastplate, and gird him with the curious girdle of the ephod: And thou shalt put the mitre upon his head, and put the holy crown upon the mitre

III. SPECIFICATIONS OF THE LORD FOR THE PRIESTS [v. 40-43]

1. Look Right for the Lord’s Service [v. 40]

2. Be Right for the Lord’s Service [v. 41]

3. Be Modest for the Lord’s Service [v. 42-43]

THE KING’S THREE COMINGS

JOHN 12:12-19, LUKE 19:35-40

Pastor Rick Jackson

This account is also given in Mt. 21 & Mk. 11 but for times sake we’ll not turn to those portions. That Jesus is King of Kings, as well as King of the Jews is not open to question among Bible believers. Might I show you this morning a three-fold division of His kingship?

I. HIS INCARNATION AS A KING

1. Jesus was Born a King

Matthew 2:2 Saying, Where is he that is born King of the Jews? for we have seen his star in the east, and are come to worship him.

2. Jesus Spoke as a King

Mark 4:41 And they feared exceedingly, and said one to another, What manner of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?

3. Jesus Exercised Kingly Authority [King of Kings-over all kingdoms]

Mark 1:27 And they were all amazed, insomuch that they questioned among themselves, saying, What thing is this? what new doctrine is this? for with authority commandeth he even the unclean spirits, and they do obey him.
Matthew 12:26 And if Satan cast out Satan, he is divided against himself; how shall then his kingdom stand?

II. HIS PRESENTATION AS A KING

1. By Scriptural Confirmation

Zechariah 9:9 Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. [Fulfilled in Matthew 21:5]

2. By Governor’s Edict [Jn. 19:13-22]

3. By Glorious Resurrection

Romans 1:4 And declared to be the Son of God with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead:

III. HIS GLORIFICATION AS KING

1. The Gathering of His Subjects [Matthew 3]

1-3 In those days came John the Baptist, preaching in the wilderness of Judaea, And saying, Repent ye: for the kingdom of heaven is at hand. For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.
11-12 I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire.

2. The Conquering of His Enemies [2 Thessalonians 1:8-9]

In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ: Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power;

3. The Recognition of His Position [Philippians 2:9-11]

Wherefore God also hath highly exalted him, and given him a name which is above every name: That at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; And that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.

Saturday, April 04, 2009

QUESTION OF THE WEEK! - Did Darwin recant?‏

Q: Did Darwin recant?

A: It has been widely held among many sincere and well-meaning Christians that Charles Darwin on his deathbed not only renounced evolution, but also accepted Jesus Christ as his savior. The tale of this deathbed conversion has been passed down over the years as fact. This “event” has even been used as “evidence” that evolution is false. The overzealous have, at times, boldly proclaimed, “See—even Darwin knew that this theory was not true!”

What is the basis for this story? As often as it is repeated, there must be credible evidence that these events actually took place, right? Surely, the tale would not have continued though the years if it were a lie? Sadly, when evidence is sought, there is little to support this story.

Charles Darwin died in April 1882 and was buried in Westminster Abbey. Within days of his death, reports of a conversion experience began to circulate. The first report supposedly came in a sermon preached in South Wales by a gentleman identified as “Mr. Huntingdon.” Some weeks later there surfaced a report about a letter sent to John Eadie, a divinity professor in Glasgow, in which Darwin indicated, “He can with confidence look to Calvary.” Curiously, when examined, Darwin’s existing correspondence (which totals over 14,000 letters) contains no communication between these two men.

Did Darwin renounce evolution before he died? Read more about Lady Hope and the legend at Darwin’s Deathbed Conversion—a Legend?

News to Note Quick Look

Don’t get fooled with the evolutionists: To mark April Fools’ Day, National Geographic News summarized some historic—and noteworthy, from our perspective—scientific hoaxes. Read more.

The menace of giant salt lakes: Yet another explanation for a catastrophic mass extinction—could it be? Read more.

Also: “fuzzy” math; now we know what isn’t out there; how you can help (dis)prove evolution; and don’t miss . . . Read more.

Prayer Requests

View the current prayer requests to keep track of and pray for current ministry needs. Thank you!

Answers ... with Ken Ham radio program

Looking for life—in all the wrong places!
Dragonflies and fighter pilots—what can we learn?
Evolution—now, is it “practical?”
Up to date on evolution—how do we do that?
Being divisive—Is it Christian?

After Eden

This information was provided by Answers In Genesis, an excellent source of material relating to Creation and evolution. Please visit their website using the link in the upper left.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Look where we have come

Sumner Wemp (see link)

Most of the great universities such as Harvard, Yale, Princeton were founded and taught by God fearing Pastors and people. I have read many of their constitutions and all said they were founded for the glory of God and the propagation of the gospel of Christ.

Most "rescue" missions were founded to reach and win men and women to Christ. They attracted the people through feeding and sleeping them. I have preached in dozens of mission. One of my favorite places to minister. My whole family spent all of one Christmas day in the great Pacific Garden Mission in Chicago eating with the people and preaching 5 times that day and loved it. The Salvation Army, the YMCA and YWCA were founded as a Christian organization also to win people to Christ through their means.

The Baptist Hospitals, Methodist Hospitals, Presbyterian Hospitals were all founded not just to minister to people physically but as a means to minister spiritually. On and On we could go. The truth is now, you cannot put up tract racks in them to try to win people to Christ. I have tried. Many of course have Chaplains and most do not witness to win people to Christ. I have been there too many times and no one tried to win me to Christ. I have the thrill of life to win many nurses to Christ in the hospitals. What happened to these wonderful institutions? They went from a spiritual ministry to a social ministry and left their primary purpose. Of course, not all of them but most of them. Have you tried to give out tracts in some of these places. I have and been told, we are not supposed to do that for we offend other religions.

Now, the same happens in churches. Liberal churches all over America never preach against sin nor the positive of preaching the gospel how Christ suffered and died for our sins and rose again. Prosperity theology where every one is told how to live prosperously. is a prime subject in some of the largest churches. No gospel. No preaching how the Lord Jesus suffered and died for sins, rose again and was seen by hundreds.

Christianity is banned from public schools, sports events, etc. but a singer can bare her breasts and the crowd goes wild cheering her on. My wife is very ill right now and you should hear most tell her we are thinking about you, you are in our thoughts and this by professed Christians. Lets give the gospel to people, lets pray for people not think about them.

"Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord" We were one of those nations and now we are turning our backs on what made us the wonderful, prosperous, loving nation in the world. GOD HELP US. Lets get back to God before it is too late, if it is not already too late. make sense?

I know. I have only scratched the surface. All Because of Calvary, Sumner and Celeste
 
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