Saturday, April 28, 2007

God's words of comfort for virgina tech families

1THE SPIRIT of the Lord God is upon me, because the Lord has anointed and qualified me to preach the Gospel of good tidings to the meek, the poor, and afflicted; He has sent me to bind up and heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the [physical and spiritual] captives and the opening of the prison and of the eyes to those who are bound,(A) (is 61:1)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

spiderman and the gospel

One of my son's favorite superheros is spiderman (as well as my own along with capt america in which i wanted to get the last issue (march 2007)were he "died" as a lifelong fan but moneygrabbers brought up the issues and currently it is selling on ebay for 29.95-sad when a real fan can not find the joy of buying and reading up on his favotire superhero-enuff said) and one of spiderman's favorite sayings is: with great power comes great responsibility" and reeflecting on this we christains have been entrusted with the greatest power that transforms not only us but individuals,society and culture for the good:THe Gospel. so the question i poise to us how are we like spiderman with the great power of the gospel how responsible are with it? Are we using it?or like spurgeon said one day bibles gathered so much dust on them that you can spell out hell on them...are we using it to gain riches?gain power and praise?......
12For the Word that God speaks is alive and full of power [making it active, operative, energizing, and effective]; it is sharper than any two-edged sword, penetrating to the dividing line of the [a]breath of life (soul) and [the immortal] spirit, and of joints and marrow [of the deepest parts of our nature], exposing and sifting and analyzing and judging the very thoughts and purposes of the heart(heb 4:12)
24So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts upon them [obeying them] will be like a [a]sensible (prudent, practical, wise) man who built his house upon the rock.(matt 7:24)
2We have renounced disgraceful ways (secret thoughts, feelings, desires and underhandedness, the methods and arts that men hide through shame); we refuse to deal craftily (to practice trickery and cunning) or to adulterate or handle dishonestly the Word of God, but we state the truth openly (clearly and candidly). And so we commend ourselves in the sight and presence of God to every man's conscience( 2cor 4:2)
9And He said to them, You have a fine way of rejecting [thus thwarting and nullifying and doing away with] the commandment of God in order to keep your tradition (your own human regulations)!
10For Moses said, Honor (revere with tenderness of feeling and deference) your father and your mother, and, He who curses or reviles or speaks evil of or abuses or treats improperly his father or mother, let him surely die.(A)
11But [as for you] you say, A man is exempt if he tells [his] father or [his] mother, What you would otherwise have gained from me [everything I have that would have been of use to you] is Corban, that is, is a gift [already given as an offering to God],
12Then you no longer are permitting him to do anything for [his] father or mother [but are letting him off from helping them].
13Thus you are nullifying and making void and of no effect [the authority of] the Word of God through your tradition, which you [in turn] hand on. And many things of this kind you are doing.
(mark 7:9-13)
16For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith,[a] as it is written, "The righteous shall live by faith."[b] (rom 1:16-17)

Monday, April 23, 2007

my five year old son takes me to theology class

My son's first words were thank you-for awhile no one belived me until he confirmed it by saying it in front of my family one day. This drew out this personal reflection:

that our first words should be when we are saved by Christ is: thank you

every mercy,grace,blessing from the hands of our Lord and Savior: thank you

our family,friends: thank you

our talents: thank you

our education: thank you

our health: thank you

our luxeries,jobs,homes,food: thank you

our good times and bad times; thank you

12I give thanks to Him Who has granted me [the needed] strength and made me able [for this], Christ Jesus our Lord, because He has judged and counted me faithful and trustworthy, appointing me to [this stewardship of] the ministry.( 1tim 1;12)

1O GIVE thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever.
2O give thanks to the God of gods, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever.
3O give thanks to the Lord of lords, for His mercy and loving-kindness endure forever--(psalms 136:1-3)

23and I behold another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of the sin that [is] in my members.
24A wretched man I [am]! who shall deliver me out of the body of this death?
25I thank God -- through Jesus Christ our Lord; so then, I myself indeed with the mind do serve the law of God, and with the flesh, the law of sin. ( RO 7:23-25)

15Now thanks be to God for His Gift, [precious] beyond telling [His indescribable, inexpressible, free Gift]!( 2COR 9:15)

4For everything God has created is good, and nothing is to be thrown away or refused if it is received with thanksgiving( 1TIM 4:4)

20At all times and for everything giving thanks in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to God the Father.( EPH 5:20)

Why the good guys enabled the evil of virgina tech masscre

Here is a interesting article on the virgina tech massacre:

The 'good guys' are enabling evil
Posted: April 17, 20071:00 a.m. Eastern
By Felicia Dionisio
Why didn't the president of Virginia Tech University and the police chief charged with protecting the lives of those poor defenseless students and faculty members do more to stop the campus massacre?
Because they were enabling evil.
They're just the latest example of a society-wide refusal to fight the good fight.
I'm sitting here watching these same men give a news conference in front of TV cameras. They look like deer in headlights as they try to explain why they apparently allowed a madman to kill two people and then remain on a college campus for hours while they stood by, meek as lambs, refusing to acknowledge the evil thrust upon them, refusing to allow the innocent any opportunity to protect themselves.
The so-called SWAT teams are supposed to neutralize the threat. They're trained to rush in and save lives. Why are so many of them seen on video standing around behind police cars while shots are being fired, while innocents are dying inside?
Why don't they do what they are trained and paid to do? Why were they sitting back and allowing evil to run its course without fighting to stop it?
Because they were enabling evil.
Did Columbine not change the rules? Knowing what we know now, why didn't they stop the threat sooner? There had been previous bomb threats at Virginia Tech and another shooting near campus last year. Hello?
(Column continues below)

Am I the only one on the planet who recognizes and fears the post-9/11 world we live in?
Did anyone not think this might be a terrorist act?
For that matter, did anyone not think a lone gunman, some evil nut, might be on a shooting rampage?
Did anyone not think it might be a good idea to cancel cheerleading tryouts?
I have only one explanation for why everybody failed to react in a more aggressive manner. Why they did what they did. Why they didn't do what they should have done.
Because they were enabling evil. Because our laws, our culture, our attitudes, our ways are all influenced by evil.
This is Satan's world, and most are marching to the beat of his drum, whether they know it or not.
Those ''authorities,'' and anyone else who had any opportunity to thwart this slaughter, are complicit in this horrible crime.
They sat on their hands for hours and stood by as dozens of innocents, completely unaware of the evil about to be thrust upon them, were slaughtered.
I can draw only one conclusion. They refused to act, because they didn't want to act. If that's not evil, I don't know what is.
The ''authorities'' hid behind their desks and their police cars.
They didn't want to ''inconvenience'' anyone.
They didn't want to make a fuss.
They didn't want to overreact.
They didn't want to appear foolish.
They didn't want to risk ridicule.
They didn't want to make anyone angry.
They didn't want to get sued.
They didn't want to shoot someone.
They didn't want to pay any overtime.
They didn't want to miss lunch.
They didn't want to trouble any professors.
They didn't want to do the right thing.
They didn't want to cancel those cheerleading tryouts.
And they didn't want to acknowledge evil exists and thrives in this world.
They didn't want to confront that evil. And they didn't want to confront it, because they're enabling evil.
Think about it.
Why don't lawmakers seem to know the difference between right and wrong? Why don't they ever do anything for the good of the people?
More laws that limit freedom? Like gun-control laws?
Higher taxes?
Illegal immigration?
Why don't our elected officials seal our borders and protect U.S. sovereignty?
Jail for protecting your life and property?
Innocent young men accused of rape while exonerating evidence is withheld?
It's out there. And it reared its ugly head yet again today in a sleepy little town in Virginia.
Sadly, the ''good guys'' stood around and watched it happen.
And that, my friend, is evil.

amusement and theme parks for which jesus?

I came across this article and the question i ask is this which jesus? will it serve?will glorify and praise?will love? The Jesus the eternal word the I am or the jesus of the mighty dollar? This just reminds me of Jesus's confrontation with the money changers where God's house was made into a house of merchandise--same thing here jesus and the bible has been made into a house of merchandise...

15-17Jesus put together a whip out of strips of leather and chased them out of the Temple, stampeding the sheep and cattle, upending the tables of the loan sharks, spilling coins left and right. He told the dove merchants, "Get your things out of here! Stop turning my Father's house into a shopping mall!" That's when his disciples remembered the Scripture, "Zeal for your house consumes me." (john 2:15-17)

12-14Jesus went straight to the Temple and threw out everyone who had set up shop, buying and selling. He kicked over the tables of loan sharks and the stalls of dove merchants. He quoted this text: My house was designated a house of prayer; You have made it a hangout for thieves.Now there was room for the blind and crippled to get in. They came to Jesus and he healed them. (matt 21:12-14)

18However, when Simon saw that the [Holy] Spirit was imparted through the laying on of the apostles' hands, he brought money and offered it to them,
19Saying, Grant me also this power and authority, in order that anyone on whom I place my hands may receive the Holy Spirit.
20But Peter said to him, Destruction overtake your money and you, because you imagined you could obtain the [free] gift of God with money!
21You have neither part nor lot in this matter, for your heart is all wrong in God's sight [it is not straightforward or right or true before God].(A)(acts 8:18-21)

Ministers react to proposed Bible oriented theme park
Pastor Ed Lykens plans to visit the proposed Bible theme park on the first day it opens if the tourist attraction locates in Rutherford County.Lykens, who pastors the First Church of the Nazarene, said he would be curious to learn how the park would portray the Bible.Developers of the proposed Bible park reported the tourist attraction would depict the Old and New Testaments. Developers are considering Rutherford County as a possible location.While no specific location was announced, The Murfreesboro Post learned from residents and two county commissioners that developers are considering a location on Blackman Road between Interstate 24 and state Route 840.Lykens likes the idea of spreading news about the Bible “as long as we don’t get in the Jesus car and go through ‘Spooky Mountain.’” He hopes the park will accurately reflect the Bible.He and several other ministers shared some opinions about the park.Lykens said the Bible park could spread the message of the Bible and allow visitors to ask questions and receive explanations of what they see.Rutherford County would be a good location because it would draw visitors throughout the state and nation easily.“If they build one, they should probably build a hotel on the property,” Lykens said. “I think it’s good for businesses in the community as well because it will bring people in to spend money. It probably won’t boost church attendance any.”Developers of the park said it would be non-denominational unlike the Holy Land Experience in Orlando that is denominational.Assistant Pastor Kurt Copeland of independent Franklin Road Baptist Church said his wife and two young daughters visited the Holy Land Experience about two years ago.“As a preacher, I loved it,” Copeland said.The family enjoyed viewing a re-creation of Jesus’ resurrection, the replica of the garden tomb and the hill of Golgotha.Rev. Copeland likes the idea of having a Bible-based theme park that would bring attention to the Word of God.Personally, he doesn’t favor the commercialization of the Bible through the park but he knows Christian bookstores profit from the Bible and related merchandise.“It would be hypocritical to say we don’t like the for-profit park,” the Rev. Copeland said.He believes students from the Franklin Road Christian School would visit the park on a limited basis.The Rev. Don Morris of Fellowship United Methodist Church, said he believes any well-thought-out activity that exposes people to the Bible is good.News accounts about the park’s Bible exhibits such as Moses and the walls of water will be a good thing to demonstrate.“We’ve all watched Charlton Heston go through the Red Sea” and learned about Jonah and the whale.“But someone who never read the Bible may go to the park and want to learn more,” the Rev. Morris said. “What a great way to learn.”Being a profit park doesn’t bother him, the Rev. Morris said, adding churches don’t run free.“It’s going to be a fun place to go with your family,” the pastor said. “We live in a world where families are pulled in thousands of different directions. This will be a good place for the family to go together.”The Rev. James Avaritt has been pastor of Bellwood Baptist Church for 23 years. He doesn’t object to the concept of a Bible-themed park.“I would hope they would built it with respect to the Bible, not having it as a theme and not respecting the Bible,” Avaritt said.Like other pastors, he knows Bible bookstores make a profit so he doesn’t have a problem with the commercialization of the Bible in a park as long as it represents the Bible.“I think personally they would do a bigger business if they had a country music theme like Opryland,” the Rev. Avaritt said.Lisa Marchesoni may be reached at 869-0814 or at

Thursday, April 19, 2007

more virgina tech tragedy resources

Following article by Pastor chapell:

Jesus WeptJesus' tears show us God understands and rules over the terror of this Bryan Chapell
From Preaching Today audio Tape 229God, foreknowledge of; God, love of; God, sovereignty ofJohn 11:35
Illustration: I have a friend, a businessman, who sat in a hotel room in the Midwest watching early news reports of an airliner hitting the World Trade Center in New York City. He knew his adult son was inbound to New York City on an international flight, and he bowed his head and prayed for the God he loved to take care of the son he loved. He raised his head and looked back to the TV in time to see the second airliner hit the World Trade Center's second tower. And he says he could not anticipate and even now cannot fully explain his reaction. For when he recognized he may have witnessed the murder of his own son, he was filled with rage. His rage was so real to him that he could imagine the hands that had once held his infant son around the throat of a terrorist, strangling him with unrelenting force until his eyes bulged with the terror that he himself had caused.
Now you and I know that father was spared the death of his son, because the airliners that hit the World Trade Center were not international flights. But that father still struggles with an inner anguish. He is a dedicated Christian, a man of principle who has sought to live consistently his faith. He struggles with knowing where it was beneath his principles and his regular personality that such rage and hatred came from in that moment.
As he's analyzed it, he has recognized it is not just his rage at the terror of one who may have killed his son. He recognizes more and more that in that moment that he saw the second airliner hit the second tower of the World Trade Center, he had to come to grips with the fact that the God he calls his Lord had not protected his own Son. And it was not merely the terror of men that had angered him, but a sense of betrayal of his God.
How do we deal with that? How do we deal with the reality that there is such awful tragedy, and still say God is good?
I know we will say it is a fallen world and it groans as in the pains of childbirth awaiting its redemption, the redemption of our bodies and the renewal of all creation. I know we will say the final chapter of the world is not yet written, that God will bring good and set it right. I know we will say that in the final day judgment will be vindicated and justice will be mediated. God will do what is right in that day. I know we will say that when the ground shakes for a nation, not only do the heavens shutter, but men may fall to their knees in repentance. And that may be a good outcome. I know. I know. I know.
And yet, Christian, you still have to deal with the fact that you say God is good, and planes with people hit the World Trade Center and exploded in balls of fire that killed thousands of people, and tens of thousands are grieving, and thousands and thousands more are propelled toward war. And it's not only our own people who are hurting; there are tens of thousands who are headed toward refugee camps where they will live in squalor and die lingering deaths. And you say God is good.
How can we say God is good in the face of tragedy? Does he understand? Does he care? Does he rule? The Scriptures answer our plaintive cries, the cries of our heart that are beyond logic, with simple words: Jesus wept. It is meant to go beyond our logic to answer our most basic questions. Does God understand? Jesus wept.
What is the account of Lazarus's death trying to make clear to us? In one measure it is making sure we know that God knows.
God KnowsHe knows, among other things in the face of tragedy, what will happen. Verse 4 says that when Jesus is informed that Lazarus is sick, he says: "This sickness will not end in death. No, it is for God's glory so that God's Son may be glorified through it."
He knows what will happen. In verse 11, after Jesus speaks about Satan being destroyed, he says, "Our friend Lazarus has fallen asleep; but I am going there to wake him up." The amazingly dimwitted disciples don't get it. So he says even more plainly in the verse 14, "Lazarus is dead, and for your sake I am glad I was not there, so that you may believe." Why? What will he do? What will happen?
It's clear he knows, if you look at the twenty-third verse. When Martha comes to find out why he didn't come sooner, Jesus says, "Your brother will rise again." In each measure, the Bible makes clear that God in his Son knows what's going to happen. He knows.
The events of tragedy do not elude him, even if they exasperate his people. And they do exasperate his people, the Bible plainly shows. When Martha comes out to Jesus, who has delayed so long to get there, she says in the twenty-first verse, "Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died." And Jesus still waits outside the town. Mary finally goes out to him in verse 32: "When [she] reached the place where Jesus was and saw him, she fell at his feet and said, 'Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died.'"
These are amazing statements, because they contain in the same moment amazing faith and great blame. "Lord, if you'd been here, you would have been able to save him." There is the faith. "I believe you're able to stop this. But, Lord, where were you?" It's not a systematic theology, but it does express our hearts with great understanding. "You're able. Where were you?" It's not just an ancient account. It's what we say: "God, I know you're able. But where were you when this disease spread in my family? Where were you when that car crossed the centerline? When that deal was lost, Lord, you're able. Where were you? When the towers fell, Lord, you're able. Where were you?"
There's no immediate answer in this text. It doesn't say he was outside town for a particular reason. He just says in words that cause us a good deal of consternation that what will happen will be for God's glory and for the good of his people: Lazarus is dead. For your sake I am glad I wasn't there to fix it in that moment so you'd believe something.
God simply says: I'm not surprised. It's not the final answer, but God is simply letting us know in some measure he knows what will happen. And I need to know that for my comfort, that my God isn't ignorant of what will happen. In fact, he says it will happen for glory and ultimate good.
But then why does he cry? He's saying this is going to be for God's glory and for my disciples, so why does he cry? Because he knows what has happened. Lazarus is dead. In that stark, plain fact of the death of a friend, Jesus weeps and reminds us that any death, even one death, is a destruction of the good plan of God, the way he made this world. It is a corruption of the universe. It will require even the death of God's Son to put things right. And in the meantime, God's people will experience pain and misery in a fallen world. For a moment visibly, and sometimes even violently, the prince of darkness will have his day. And that is distressing enough, awful enough, terrible enough that even Jesus has tears about it.
I need to know, too, not just that my God knows what will happen in his divinity, but in his humanity he knows what has happened. He experiences the reality of the misery of this world. I need to know that the knowledge of good outcomes does not deny me the right of tears now.
Illustration: I must have watched the movie It's A Wonderful Life dozens of times. I know how it will turn out. I know George Bailey will be okay. I know his friends will rally around. I know Zuzu will get well. I know Clarence will get his wings. And yet, despite knowing the outcomes, I can't but feel the distress and the tears when the pharmacist boxes the young George's ears and causes him to go deaf in one ear. I can't but feel the pain of Mr. Martini going in the gutter. I can't stand it when Donna Reed tells Jimmy Stewart to go out of the house. I know what's going to happen, but knowing the outcomes doesn't take away all the hurt.
So when I see Jesus weep, I know some things. I know I have permission to dry my tears, because Christians don't fear death as much as others. We know the outcome. But at the same time, I have the permission to weep, because Christians should feel death more keenly than others. We know what it's all about. We know this is not the way it was meant to be. We know Jesus had to die to overcome this. We know death is awful. We know it's miserable. We know it's part of the curse. We should feel the depth of it and be willing to say we don't have quick, ready answers. This is horrible. It really is. And we can say that because Jesus wept.
God CaresSo Jesus knows. But does he care? The answer is the same. How do I know he cares? Because Jesus wept.
Even those who are observing him know that. Look at the thirty-sixth verse: "The Jews said, 'See how he loved him!'" You get the sense that Jesus is not just letting a little, wet tear come down his cheek. This is observable, obvious grief. Tears are wrenching him in such a way that people said, "My, how he must have loved him."
We hear people say, "Yes, some died, but more were spared. There could have been fifty thousand people and only seven thousand died." This makes perfect sense, unless you were married to one of the seven thousand, or it was your father or your mother or your child.
There are people who say, "Yes, some despair now, but others will be led to repentance." This makes perfect sense, unless you realize that what you're arguing is that terror is a tool of God's spirituality.
And there are those who say, "Judgment was warranted upon an evil nation." Yes, but it is warranted every day because of the sin of each one of us, even we who gather here. God would have a right to bring this building down upon our ears.
I'm not saying that the rational explanations have no place, that they're not in some measure useful. But they are not sufficient. The human formulas even of our theology are incomplete. We can say the words. "God's works of providence are his most holy, wise, and powerful preserving and governing all his creatures … and all their actions … ."
Yes, I know the formula, and I believe it. But it's incomplete. It bothers some level of our desire for a systematic theology to recognize that truth is a person. Jesus said, "I am the way, the truth, and the life." If you want to know the truth about this, look at Jesus. Jesus wept.
Does he care? Jesus wept. Does he feel it? Jesus wept. Does he love us through it? Jesus wept. There is in the expression of his humanity what I need to know when my logic fails.
Illustration: At one time, I was a presbyter involved in the discipline of a minister, and we did all we were supposed to do for his sin. In every step of the way we said, "We do this because we love you, because this is good for you, because this is for the glory of God and the testimony of his church." And he believed all of that.
But some years later, when he had been restored and was in the ministry again, he said, "I never understood the love of God in that process until I went to a distant church. The pastor there knew my situation, and as soon as he saw me come through the door, he walked quickly to me and without a word put his arms around me and wept on my shoulder for me. Then I knew about the love of God."
The rational explanations are real, but until we say Jesus wept and understand the full truth of that, we don't have answers for the world. And Jesus didn't just shed tears; he shed blood, too. He'll do it in the days following this account. And without the cross, I don't have much to say to this world in the face of tragedy. I can unroll all the logical possibilities, but if I don't have the cross, it's not enough.
Our tendency in an academic world is to try to comfort people by coming up with answers to the circumstances or even trying to soften the circumstances. What we have to learn to do as ministers, as parents, as those who offer comfort to other people is to say, "You are looking for answers in your circumstances, but the only answers are in the character of God."
Does God care? Look at the cross. Look at the Savior, who wept for you and bled for you. The truth is in the person and his character. When all our answers about the circumstances fail, the truth has to go back to looking at his character.
God RulesThe final question may be the hardest of all. Does God rule in all of this? The Scriptures make it plain, though in terms we don't like, that God's triumph comes sometimes after a time. There may be a delay, but there's always a design.
Wouldn't it have bothered you to be Mary and Martha in this circumstance? In verse 4, after Jesus is told about the sickness of Lazarus, he says, "This sickness will not end in death." But in verse 6 we are told, "He stayed where he was two more days." And that's not the end of it. Verse 17 says, "On his arrival, Jesus found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb for four days." There's a minimum of six days in there.
Then you take the conversations with Martha and Mary outside the town and the walk to tell him all he's got to do is snap his fingers and in the blink of an eye Lazarus will be back. All this time is going by. It's not fixed yet. It's not made right. But at the same time that we see this delay, there is an amazing intricacy of design that's put before us in the Scriptures.
Remember the context. Within days of this event, Jesus tells a parable to these same disciples. A rich man has a poor beggar sitting at his gate, and the rich man ignores the needs of the poor man. Then in the afterlife the poor man is in heaven and the rich man in Hades. The rich man says to Father Abraham, "Would you please let that poor beggar go back to my family and tell them about the consequences of their evil life?" And Father Abraham says, "If they would not believe Moses and the Prophets, they will not believe even if one should rise from the dead." Do you remember the name of the poor man in the parable? It was Lazarus.
Within days we have this account of one who rises from the dead, and his name is Lazarus. And when he rises from the dead, everyone believes him and they convert to Jesus Christ, right? No. If you look at the fifty-third verse of the eleventh chapter, you read, "So from that day on they plotted to take his life." They now have a focus: We'll get this one who raises people from the dead.
Can you imagine being the disciples and thinking, What else can we do here? They even see a resurrection and yet they don't believe. And in a few more days they will see the one who did the resurrecting dying on a cross. How are they supposed to handle all of this?
The parable is a lens to understand Lazarus at Bethany. And Bethany is a lens to understand Calvary. And Calvary is a lens to understand eternity and now.
Jesus' triumph may take some time, but it will surely come, for he is ruling with a care, with an intricacy, with an intimacy for his people that defies our full ability to comprehend. After all, he will pass this way again. In just a few days he will go through Bethany again on his way to Jerusalem while the crowds take off their cloaks and put palm branches before him. They will say, "Hosanna! His time has come!" But his time has not yet come, though it will surely come.
In another day or two they will say, "Crucify him!" because his time has not yet come. But though it has not yet come, it will surely come. And when they hang him on a cross, they will chide him, "Tell your angels to come." They do not come, but they will surely come.
Three days later he will rise. His time has surely come.
The promise of God will be fulfilled. Though it tarries, wait for it. For it will surely come, and it will not be late. God speaks to his people in such a way that we in a fallen world might trust that he is love. Unless we miss the point, he puts tears on the face of the Savior, each tear a lens so we will focus in, look closely, and through the microcosm of that tear begin to recognize what God has done. He has shown us in real form how he is in charge of the world in its intricacy as well as its grand scale. He is at work, and his illustration is not stick figures drawn in the sand. It is dealing with the realities, the harshness, the terribleness of this life.
Lazarus is dead. And to show us that God has power over even death, the harshest of this world's realities, Jesus comes to make it right. He will raise this one to show he has the power over sin, even to the extent of death. We see it in this microscopic vision of Lazarus's life.
And we see it in a grander scale when Christ himself rises again. If I had been at the foot of the cross, I would have said, "Lord, don't do this. This is wrong." But it was right, and I know it because I look through the tears of Jesus to see what is being accomplished is the rule of God on behalf of his people. It is why Jesus wept: so we would trust he cares enough to do the right thing. And his rule will win out. He shows us as he overcomes the power of death to accomplish his good purposes in a fallen, sometimes terrible world.
Does he understand? Yes. Jesus wept. Does he care? Yes. Jesus wept. Does he rule? Yes. Jesus wept. Every tear is a lens to reveal the power of God ruled by love in behalf of his people, so we know when we face the terror he still loves and he still rules, because Jesus wept for us.
Bryan Chapell is president of Covenant Theological Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri, a contributing editor to Preaching Today, and author of Holiness by Grace (Crossway, 2001) and Christ-Centered Preaching (Baker, 1994).

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

virgina tech tragedy

There are no words to express what happed at virgina tech-there are no words to express the tragic loss of friends,relatives and loved ones-there are no words that we can give them a anchor to hold them in this storm-there are no words that we can answer WHY?-there are no words that can turn back the time or bring them back---But there is one place we can point them to find the answer,to find comfort and to find hope: Christ and His word--our bread,our water,our medicine,our ANCHOR for our broken lives and broken hearts......

51I am the living Bread which came down from Heaven. If any man eat of this Bread, he shall live for ever; and the Bread that I will give is My flesh, which I will give for the life of the world."

(john 6:51)

32Jesus then said to them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Moses did not give you the Bread from heaven [what Moses gave you was not the Bread from heaven], but it is My Father Who gives you the true heavenly Bread.
33For the Bread of God is He Who comes down out of heaven and gives life to the world.
34Then they said to Him, Lord, give us this bread always (all the time)!
35Jesus replied, I am the Bread of Life. He who comes to Me will never be hungry, and he who believes in and cleaves to and trusts in and relies on Me will never thirst any more (at any time). (john 6:32-35)

19[Now] we have this [hope] as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul [it cannot slip and it cannot [a]break down under whoever steps out upon it--a hope] that reaches [b]farther and enters into [the very certainty of the Presence] within the veil,(A)
20Where Jesus has entered in for us [in advance], a Forerunner having become a High Priest forever after the order (with [c]the rank) of Melchizedek.(B) (hebrews 6:19-20)

14But whoever takes a drink of the water that I will give him shall never, no never, be thirsty any more. But the water that I will give him shall become a spring of water welling up (flowing, bubbling) [continually] within him unto (into, for) eternal life.(john 4:14)

31And Jesus answering said unto them, `They who are well have no need of a physician, but they that are ill: (LUKE 5:31)

Sunday, April 15, 2007

my take on the Don Imus racial trash

My take on the don imus racial trash(see video link: )is this: What he said in no sane reality or sane world is acceptable and we should protest loudly and not only that but as christains seek to confront racism in all its forms. YET where are the leaders that protested this(sharpton,jackson etc)not doing the same againest the rappers and other hiphop videos who degrade woman verbally and visually and exhort crime as a virture? both them and don imus are the same side of the coin-the only difference is one is white and the others are minorities-Both have a influnce for good or bad on culture-and both should be held accountable and protested againest equally.....

See these links for further research:

8-9Summing it all up, friends, I'd say you'll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies. (pilippians 4:8-9)

further article of interest:

Friday, April 13, 2007

I thank God,

I would like to God because i recieved the good news yesterday when we got home that He answered my prayer which was a real david vs goliath situation-and of course i was david. The answer to prayer enables me to provide for my family in the midst of my health condition-easing the stress to my wife which i alone if i was healthy should and must bearand to provide my son with blessings denied me growing up.

once again i thank God for He alone deserves all praise for It was His strength,wisdom not my own that opened the doors.......
And I was with you in weakness, and in fear, and in much trembling. And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man's wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power– that your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God." 1 1Cor 2:3-5

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

what does saving a polar bears cub relates to being a christain?

The above link leads to a story where some animal rights groups want this poor polar bear cub that was rejected by the mother to let him die rather than a human caring for it. I think from scriptures what the zoo is rightfully doing is saving the polar bear cub. I really hate the darwianian survival of the fittest mentality which these animal rights groups espouse.

Let us look at what the bible says about man and his relationship with creation:

15And the LORD God took the man and put him into the Garden of Eden to dress it and to keep it. (gen 2:15)

Yet You have made him but a little lower than God [or heavenly beings], and You have crowned him with glory and honor.
6You made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet:(A)
7All sheep and oxen, yes, and the beasts of the field,
8The birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, and whatever passes along the paths of the seas.

(psalms 8:5-8)

6Your righteousness is like the mountains of God, Your judgments are like the great deep. O Lord, You preserve man and beast. (psalms 36:6)
10You make springs gush forth in the valleys; they flow between the hills; 11they give drink to every beast of the field; the wild donkeys quench their thirst. 12Beside them the birds of the heavens dwell; they sing among the branches. 13From your lofty abode you water the mountains; the earth is satisfied with the fruit of your work.

14You cause the grass to grow for the livestock and plants for man to cultivate,that he may bring forth food from the earth (psalms 104:10-14)

we christains are called to be like our heavenly father and one of the things we reflect this besides:

living life of holiness,of doing good etc is taking care of animals.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Ben 10 and the Christain

One of my son's favorite shows is Ben 10. The main charecter in the show ben has a watch which allows him to become many different alien superheros. In reflecting on this we christains are called to be ben 1os to all the world:
21To those without (outside) law I became as one without law, not that I am without the law of God and lawless toward Him, but that I am [especially keeping] within and committed to the law of Christ, that I might win those who are without law. 9 1cor 9;21)
meaning not the way some pcusa pastors did last decade by attending strip clubs to win the people there for Christ(and by wearing their clerical collars while there further granted them God's "blessing") by joining them in their particular sins and rebellion towards God. BUT
instead as christains who are neighbors,workers,friends etc living,sharing,bearing,comforting,loving,defending,blessing and expressing our faith to them.

Thursday, April 05, 2007

martin luther sermons on easter


Holy, holy, holy(Thomas Brooks, "The Crown and Glory of Christianity, or, HOLINESS, the Only Way to Happiness", 1662)"Who is like You, glorious in holiness?" Exodus 15:11God is . . . infinitely holy, transcendently holy, superlatively holy, constantly holy, unchangeably holy, exemplary holy, gloriously holy. All the holiness that is in the best and choicest Christians is but a mixed holiness, a weak and imperfect holiness. Their unholiness is always more than their holiness. Ah, what a great deal . . . of pride is mixed with a little humility, of unbelief is mixed with a little faith, of peevishness is mixed with a little meekness, of earthliness is mixed with a little heavenliness, of carnality is mixed with a little spirituality, of harshness is mixed with a little tenderness! Oh, but the holiness of God is a pure holiness, it is a holiness without mixture; there is not the least drop or the least dreg of unholiness in God! "Godis light, and in Him is no darkness at all." 1 John 1:5In God there is . . . all wisdom without any folly, all truth without any falsehood, all light without any darkness, and all holiness without any sinfulness.God is universally holy. He is holy in all His ways, and holy in all His works.His precepts are holy precepts, His promises are holy promises, His threatenings are holy threatenings, His love is a holy love, His anger is a holy anger, His hatred is a holy hatred, etc. His nature is holy, His attributes are holy, His actions are all holy.He is holy in sparing; and holy in punishing. He is holy in justifying of some; and holy in condemning of others. He is holy in bringing some to heaven; and holy in throwing others to hell.God is holy . . . in all His sayings, in all His doings, in whatever He puts His hand to, in whatever He sets His heart to.His frowns are holy, His smiles are holy.When He gives, His givings are holy giving; when He takes away, His takings are holy takings, etc. "Holy, holy, holy, is the Lord Almighty!" Isaiah 6:3God is eminently holy. He is transcendently holy.he is superlatively holy.He is glorious in holiness.There is no fathoming, there is no measuring, there is no comprehending, there is no searching, of that infinite sea of holiness, which is in God. O sirs! you shall as soon . . . stop the sun in its course, and change the day into night, and raise the dead, and make a world, and count the stars of heaven, and empty the sea with a cockle-shell,as you shall be able either to conceive or express that transcendent holiness which is in God!God's holiness is infinite. It can neither be . . . limited, nor lessened, nor increased. God is the spring of all holiness and purity. All that holiness which is in angels and men flows from God, as the streams from the fountain, as the beams from the sun, as the branches from the root, as the effect from the cause. Ministers may pray that their people may be holy, parents may pray that their children may be holy; but they cannot give holiness, nor communicate holiness to their nearest and dearest relations. God alone is the giver and the author of all holiness. It is only the Holy One who can cause holiness to flow into sinners' hearts; it is only He who can form, and frame, and infuse holiness into the souls of men.A man shall sooner make make a world--than he shall make another holy. It is only a holy God, who can . . . enlighten the mind, and bow the will, and melt the heart, and raise the affections, and purge the conscience, and reform the life, and put the whole man into a holy gracious temper. God is exemplary holy. He is the rule, example, and pattern of holiness. "Be holy, as I am holy." 1 Pet. 1:15.God's holiness is the copy which we must always have in our eye, and endeavor most exactly to write after.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

visit my other site

If you like this site you might like my other one check it out:

Not by bread alone

Everything in creation is goodwhich God has given us: food,shelter,music,recreation,family,love,sex,friendship etc BUT they will never fully,completely,perfectly and constantly satisfy us. Only God and God alone could,can and does---these things are meaningless distractions(the Lord knows how many cases they serve as guideposts to a eternity in hell) lacking definition,meaning,hedges(from going beyond its God given and God ordained boundaries from idolatry to sin,to pride where these blessings from God we claim come as our result of our sweat,wisdom and talent) and sustenance.

Give us this day our daily bread,(matt 6:11)


33For the bread of God is he who comes down from heaven and gives life to the world." 34They said to him, "Sir, give us this bread always."

35Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst (john 6:33-35)

gospel from la fea mas bella

In the worldwide hit" La fea mas bella" one of the supporting charecters mentioned that even though her father had recently passed away-he still spoke to her. What she was not saying was that he was speaking to her like a ghost but she was saying by his words,his example and experiences they shared thats how he spoke to her. This is a reflection of the truth found in the bible:

4By faith Abel offered to God a more acceptable sacrifice than Cain, through which he was commended as righteous, God commending him by accepting his gifts. And through his faith, though he died, he still speaks. ( hebrews 11:4)

The question and the challenge to All of us is this:

what are we teaching our friends,children,strangers,neighbors,fellow workers and bosses and family by our words and actions and silence?

How will they remember us?

and the challenge is this:

To run to Christ and ask for His forgiveness and mercy when we fail

To ask Him for the Grace to live a pleasing life that draws others to Him and

To Thank Him and Him alone when our lives are truly pleasing and drawing others to Him.

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Easter resources

This is one of the holidays throughout the year that people become christains for that day. Hopefully these resources will point them to Christ and away from cultural,familyand social traditions and from being like a christain for that day to be a christain from today to eternity.