Sunday, April 27, 2008

Looking For Loopholes

There are some people who always seem to be looking for a way around God's Word. They will diligently search the scriptures, but only to find out how they can circumvent or avoid the clear teachings of the Bible. They are looking for loopholes. Here are just a few perceived loopholes they may try to use.

1. No one is perfect (Romans 3:23). On the other hand, we are told to go on unto perfection (Hebrews 6:1). When Jesus told the woman caught in adultery "Neither do I condemn you," He also said, "...go and sin no more" (John 8:11).

2. Others are in sin... What about them? They are like Peter when he wanted to get off the "hot seat" by asking Jesus "But Lord, what about this man?" (John 21:21). Yet, Paul warned us not to compare ourselves with others (1 Corinthians 10:12). Actually, this is only an attempt to dodge our own responsibility to deal with sin in our lives by diverting attention to the sin of others. It just does not work.

3. I'm never separated from the love of God (Romans 8:38-39). That's right. Furthermore, God even "commended His love toward us in that while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us" (Romans 5:8). While God loves His children, he also disciplines them. As the Hebrew writer put it, "For whom the Lord loves He chastens" (Hebrews 12:6). Jesus said, "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent" (Revelation 3:19). He still expects us to repent. Even though God loves the lost, they are still just that-- lost!

4. The blood of Christ keeps on cleansing (1 John 1:7). Yes, the word "cleanses" does include a continuous action in the Greek. While the blood of Christ does keep on cleansing us, it is based on the condition that we walk in the light!

5. You can't judge me (Matthew 7:1). This seems to be the "granddaddy" of all so-called loopholes. However, this does not refer to all kinds of judging. Jesus told us to "judge righteous judgment" (John 7:24). Of course, Psalm 119:172 informs us that "all God's commandments are righteousness." So we can judge based on what the Bible teaches. Paul condemned the Corinthians for not judging when they should have dealt with the sin among them (1 Corinthians 5:1-3). The bottom line is this--we will all be judged by the Word of the Lord (John 12:48).

There is no such thing as a get out of jail free card while we refuse to repent of sin. Looking for loopholes will never benefit us spiritually, nor will it ever help a person go to heaven.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Dangers of Oprah!

There are a couple of YouTube videos you need to see. Someone sent this to me by e-mail, and I don't always take the time to immediately read things that are forwarded to me. However, I do usually get around to them. That said, I just checked out a a forward that contained a video clip about Oprah's Church and one about her denying Christ. I knew she was getting into the New Age movement, but I did not know she was into it this deeply. You may have seen these already, but if not here they are.

I don't think there is anything said in these clips that you cannot answer for yourself. So, I'm not going to take the time to give "Book, Chapter, and Verse" when you know them as well as I do. Yet, it is good to hear what Oprah is teaching. Due to her huge audience, she is more dangerous than most people think!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

New Class Book!

I have just published a new book entitled Fullness of Time: A Brief Historical Background of the New Testament. It is a 13 lesson class book for teens or adults. This book is designed to help Christians have a better understanding of where the Pharisees and Sadducees came from. It has a discussion of the Herodian family, the Emperors, etc., showing how they fit in with the New Testament. There is also a discussion of how we got the Bible and its reliability. The Inter-Testament Period is covered as well.

This material was the result of an adult Bible class I taught in Doniphan a few years ago. Then, Adam Faughn showed me how to self-publish on So I want to thank him for helping me with this. If you would like to purchase a copy of this book from Lulu just click here.

Friday, April 11, 2008

"American Idol" Edits Out Jesus

I admit it... I enjoy American Idol when I can see it. It is actually a very good and glorified talent show. Although I missed the "Idol Gives Back" special Wednesday evening, I have heard what happened during their finale when they sung "Shout To The Lord." The lyrics "My Jesus, my Savior..." were changed to "My Shepherd, my Savior..." These lyrics are the first words of the song. Actually, it was a little surprising they would even perform this spiritual song. Click here to see an article about the performance. It is a wonderful song of faith in Jesus, but the name Jesus was edited out of the song for this performance.

Some think that even the watered down version of the song was a step in a good direction, but I think it is a step in a very dangerous direction. Why? This leads to a politically correct form of religion. It seeks unity based on consensus rather than what God demands of those who would be His disciples. When Peter addressed the Sanhedrin, the high council of the Jews, he spoke of "Jesus of Nazareth" and then said, "Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name heaven given among men by which we must be saved" (Acts 4:12). Later, the Sanhedrin commanded them (Peter and John) "not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus" (Acts 4:18). The Apostles answer was classic, "Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard" (Acts 4:19-20).

The refusal to use Jesus' name in a way such as this reveals that one is either ashamed (Romans 1:16) or does not truly believe in Jesus (John 8:24). Jesus Himself said, "Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven. But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven" (Matthew 10:32-33).