Monday, November 29, 2010

Entertainment IS optional

Entertainment.....This is a topic that I have thought A LOT about over the past few years and more so over the past few months.  We currently have TV with very basic progamming.  We have very few things we actually watch.  Some of those things are I Love Lucy, 19 Kids and Counting, and Andy Griffin. 

Why did I decide to write about entertainment because some things are bothering me about how "Christians" view entertainment and after reading another blog post on Harry Potter I felt compelled to share my thoughts.  We have become so slack and numb to sin that we watch it on TV without another thought that we are watching some of the things that sent Jesus to the cross.  One question to ask ourselves is if Jesus Christ were here would I watch or read this garbage, would I invite Him to attend this movie with me....because guess what....He's already there.  Another question to ask is if this were going on right outside my window would I stand there and watch or would I close the blinds.

I know for a fact that most Christians would never let two individuals have sexual relations outside their front window and watch but we actually record it on our DVR's and let it into our living rooms.  We wouldn't stand and watch someone kill someone else we'd close those blinds quick, yet we watch this without a blink of the eye on our TV. 

The immodesty on TV is horrible. IF it's not fitting to wear to the "church building" it's not fit to wear at all. The language...well would you allow someone to come into your home and use the words they use...I sure hope not.  The witchcraft/sorcery  is another issue I think we should all take a look at what God has to say about these issues:
2 Chron 33:6
"He made his sons pass through the fire in the valley of Ben-hinnom; and he practiced witchcraft, used divination, practiced sorcery and dealt with mediums and spiritists. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD, provoking Him to anger." 

Deut 18:10
"There shall not be found among you anyone who makes his son or his daughter pass through the fire, one who uses divination, one who practices witchcraft, or one who interprets omens, or a sorcerer"

 Gal 5:19-21 
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies,  envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.
Romans 1:28-32
28 And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind, to do those things which are not convenient;
29 Being filled with all unrighteousness, fornication, wickedness, covetousness, maliciousness; full of envy, murder, debate, deceit, malignity; whisperers,
30 Backbiters, haters of God, despiteful, proud, boasters, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
31 Without understanding, covenant breakers, without natural affection, implacable, unmerciful:
32 Who knowing the judgment of God, that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.

Just by looking at Gal 5:19-21and Romans 1:28-32 I think we can see listed many of the things we endorse by watching them on TV.  IF we are watching TV shows with adultery, fornication, sorcery, hatred, jealousies, selfish ambitions, dissensions, envy, murders, or drunken people then I say we are violating God's Word. Pay special attention to verse 32 in Acts...  that they which commit such things are worthy of death, not only do the same, but have pleasure in them that do them.  I can say there are many shows that I can think of just by seeing commercials that fit into the things mentioned in this verse: Desperate Housewives, Sister Wives and CSI.
I challenge you to really think about the things you are viewing and/or reading and make sure you're "NOT WATCHING THOSE THINGS WHICH SENT JESUS TO THE CROSS."  If you are I beg you to stop and ask for forgiveness because we aren't promised the next minute and we will have to answer for our behavior.
There are options to help Christians keep the filth out of their homes such as the TV Guardian (which we have) and the clearplay (which I hope to purchase soon). And remember there is an off button and you can use it.

As a man thinks in his heart, so is he (Prov. 23:7)  Think on things that are true, just, honest, pure, lovely, virtuous and praiseworthy (Phil. 4:8).  

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Give thanks

1 Thess 5:16-18 Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. Eph 5:20 "giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ"
These are two passages of scripture I have been thinking a lot about lately.  And since it's "that time of year" I thought I'd go ahead and share my thoughts. I think I'll just break it apart verse by verse so here we go....

Rejoice always-  What does that mean?  I think if we take scripture at face value it means just what it says.  We should be "full of joy" at all times. 
Pray without ceasing- Yet again....just what it says..make request and thankgivings to God without stopping.
In everything give thanks-  express gratitude in all that exists; for this is the plan of God in Christ Jesus for you.
And since we already "defined" all the words in Eph 5:20 I won't do that again.
Those two verse are probably two of the most difficult verses in the Bible for Christians to follow.  Why? We are taught that it is okay to "feel sorry" for ourselves when things go wrong.  We can be "angry" when things don't go as planned.  We can be disappointed or hurt when things fail or people are sick.  But that's NOT what God tells us.  He tells us to full of joy, expressing gratitude in all that exist.  And He even goes as far as to tell us when which is "at all times".  That's a far cry from what the world is teaching us. 
He even tells us how to  rejoice always and give thanks in everything.  We can do that by praying without ceasing.   If we continually go to Our Heavenly Father in prayer and let Him be in control of our lives then we will be aware that; whatever, He presents us with He will be there to guide us thru and in that we can rejoice.  We can also rejoice in knowing where we will spend eternity IF we are following His will no matter what may happen in this life. 
Will you choose to follow the world or what God tells us to do? Can you rejoice in all things knowing where you will spend eternity?
Here is how you can know:
Become a Christian according to Word of God:
Rom. 10:17
-Believe (Have Faith)
John 5:24
Acts 17:30
Matt. 10:32-33
-Be baptized
Acts 2:38,41

How to go to Heaven:
-Become a Christian
-Be faithful
Rev. 2:10

Monday, October 18, 2010

Does our faith affect the next generation

Since I blogged last on faith I saw a church sign that reads Faith- the ability to not panic.  WHOOA wait just a minute.  I don't think that's what God says faith is. 
In the bible when God talks about people who have faith they have "done something they were told to do" or trusted with there WHOLE heart that God would take care of them and do what HE said.  Examples: Abraham in  Romans 4- God told him he would have a son and he trusted what God said even though "old age" was against both he and Sarah.  He also trusted God in that when he was told to sacrifice Isacc he had all things ready to do so when the Angel of the Lord stopped him.  God had promised Abraham that he would be the father of many generations and he trusted God enough that he was willing to kill the son in which those many generations would come.  A Gentile woman in Matthew 15:21-28-  She had heard that Jesus could heal people and she trusted without a doubt that He could heal her daughter and she kept persisting until He answered her pleas. Mary in the "gospel" accounts what if she and Joseph hadn't had faith.  Joseph had faith in what God told him thru the angel that she would have a Son and he would be called Jesus and He would save the people from their sins.
We have here three examples in the bible of genuine faith that has affected the next generations.  If Abraham had decided that he better could have decided about his children than God then the rest of us wouldn't be here.  If this woman hadn't had faith that Jesus would heal her daughter, the daughter would still be demon possessed. And then Joseph's and Mary's faith. WOW...  Joseph had faith that what the angel said was true and he didn't put away Mary.  And Mary what if she had decided that being pregnant was just an inconvenience or at the wrong time. Then we wouldn't have the chance to spend eternity with God in Heaven.

So I think that our faith does affect the next generation in ways that we can see and in ways that we can't. The faith in the church is affecting the next generations.  We have older men and older women who are instructed in Titus 2 to teach the younger men and younger women how to conduct themselves.  I don't see that happening in MOST churches today. We aren't told...much less instructed on these things and these are the things that affect our faith.  We don't see examples in the church of those men and women who TRUST in GOD for all THINGS.  We feel the need to control some areas of our lives.  We feel the need to only have faith in God when things are going the way we want and if not then we take back the reigns.  God didn't say it was going to be easy to let Him control things and He didn't say we would like all the paths He directs us in.  But He did tell us it would be worth it. Luke 6:23 Matt. 5:12

I want to encourage each of us to look inside of ourselves and examine do we have the faith we want our children to have?  Do I know 100% without a doubt that if the Lord returns today that I'll spend eternity with God in Heaven and if my children have my faith will they do the same.  If not then we don't have the faith that the Bible instructs us to have.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Defining faith


Something that I have been thinking a lot about lately. Faith is something that I thought I knew the meaning to.  I have been "told" by many people what faith is.  It seems we all have our "own" definition of what faith is but is "our" definition the same as what God tells us in His word. 

First, lets see what the world says faith is:  According to Wikipedia faith is confident belief or trust in the truth or trustworthiness of a person, idea, or thing.  Websters defines faith as allegiance to duty or a person; something that is believed especially with strong conviction.

But what does God tell us about faith? In Romans 10:17 He tells us how we obtain faith " So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God." In Heb 11:6 He tells us without faith its impossible to please Him "But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him." Heb 11:1 "Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." In James "But someone will say, “You have faith, and I have works.” Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works."  These are just a few of the verses that talk about faith.

From the above verses I think we can observe that what God tells us faith is and how the world "defines" faith are different.  Faith in the Bible is active, faith as the world defines it is a "belief" or "allegiance" to something or someone we don't have to do "anything". How do you define faith?

In the near future I want to post about examples we have of the men and women of the Bible and the FAITH they had and how we can have that faith. So ....Stay tuned for the rest of the story. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

On my way to Work

So this morning on my way to work I said a prayer as I usually do.  I have been praying that God will bring me closer to Him and that in all things I will do His will and that I'll teach my children to do the same.  Well, this morning after my prayer.  I decided that since I have started "blogging" my thoughts that I will have the children do the same, except theirs will be on paper.  I am going to teach them to "count their blessings" and to "pray without ceasing" and to journal these things so that they will learn to "see" who God is and how he answers our prayers. 

I have learned that sometimes the things we consider "blessings" are not what God  considers "blessings.''  We need to study God's word to find out what God considers a blessing and count those things. A quote that often comes to mind when I think of blessings and how the world sees them is from Doug Phillips~ "The Bible calls debt a curse and children a blessing; but in our culture, we apply for a curse and reject blessings." 

So now I am on my way to "WORK" to teach my children and my self what true blessings are according to God's word.  I am going to count my blessings and watch as God teaches me to walk each step with Him.  To think and act the way He would.  To rid my mind of what the WORLD has crept in and taught us (even in the church) that blessings are.

Matthew 5:2-12
"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called sons of God.
Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
"Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

Wow, our view of blessings are much different from God's, we can see that in just a few short verses from Matthew.  Let us learn to count our "true blessings"  as God has so richly given us.
In Him

Monday, October 11, 2010

Why, How, and intentions

This is my first attempt at a blog.  Most people won't find me or the things I will write about interesting. I will answer the above three questions in this first post.  
I choose to start a blog to put my thoughts about numerous things out for others to see. Hoping that those who read it will be challenged in their current frame of mind.  That you will be provoked to check things out for yourself.  
I have learned lots of lessons over the past few years and I want to share some of those things that have lead me to lead the life I now do.  Some of the things that I will blog about I am currently studying and learning and growing in and others I have already studied about (which still doesn't mean I'm right). I will blog about my life, politics, and most importantly the Bible... You'll learn quickly that I am learning to Trust and Obey God in EVERY aspect of my life.  

I'll  be glad to answer any questions that anyone may have about any given subject...  We may have to agree to disagree on some subjects.  One thing that I will NOT agree to disagree on is the Bible.... 1 Cor. 1:10 "Now I beseech you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye all speak the same thing, and that there be no divisions among you; but that ye be perfectly joined together in the same mind and in the same judgment."  Having said that....I may have a misunderstanding of a scripture and if you believe I do,  PLEASE correct me. I'll be glad to dig deeper and will gladly correct any misconception or misunderstanding I have.