Mocking Jesus

There are times when I forget that I am going to have to give an account for every action and word I take and speak. Thankfully, God gives me reminders of this eternal truth and one such reminder came yesterday at church.

Our pastor is preaching on Christ’s seven sayings from the cross. Yesterday he was reading from Matthew 27 when the reminder came to my mind:

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Cutting Through the Deception

Random House Dictionary defines deception as, “The state of being deceived.” It further defines deceive “To mislead by a false appearance or statement; delude.” The biggest deceivers in our lives are usually us. I can convince myself that I am living a life pleasing to Christ, all the while going back to a besetting sin like a dog returns to his vomit.

Self-deception is not a 21st Century phenomenon; the Apostle John addressed this delusion from which many in the new church suffered:

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Seeking My Own Desires

When I want to get my own way, I make sure no one is in my way. What I mean is I don’t seek the counsel of others; in fact, I avoid it. The Bible warns against such foolishness:

    “A man who isolates himself seeks his own desire; he rages against all wise judgment.” (Proverbs 18:1)

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Rejecting Cain’s Worship

thHave you ever heard someone say, “I can worship God anyway and anywhere I want?” Perhaps you’ve said or thought this. I know it is a convenient thought, but convenience is rarely the path we should take. When it comes to worshipping God, we have to do as He commands. We don’t get to pick and choose.

Many people get upset with me when I tell them this, but at least they haven’t wanted to kill me. Do you realize that the first murder ever committed by man was rooted in God’s rejection of man’s self-determined worship style? Have you ever heard of Cain?

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Heavenly Shade

Living in Florida and being from California, I’m quite used to the sun. In fact I used to crave the sun. However, as I’ve gotten older I’ve become less partial to the hot sun. I have to have my sunglasses whenever sunlight is present, and I love me some shade on a sunny day.

Did you realize that God actually shades us from the hot sun? Not only does He shade us, He also protects us from the moon crashing to the earth. God perfectly designed Earth to be the exact distance from the sun to provide us what we need from it. He also put the moon into orbit at the perfect point so Earth’s gravitational pull would not allow the moon to collide with Earth.

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Only One God

There is only one God. If this is not true, then the Bible is a lie. People may have their own gods, or be their own god, however it is a lie. Mormons do not worship the same God as I do; neither do Muslims. If they do, then the Bible must be declared a lie, and it was by those two belief systems because they wrote their own religious books. More importantly, they have violated God’s First Commandment. God declares of Himself:

    “And God spoke all these words, saying: ‘I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage. You shall have no other gods before Me.’” (Exodus 20:1-3)

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Saying What God Says

Last Sunday my pastor, Dr. Dennis Brunet, said something upon which I’ve set my heart and mind. He said, “If the Word of God says it, then I can say it.” Americans are a very opinionated people, and many Christians—me chief among them—are guilty of offering varied opinions on many subjects. God’s word has addressed many of the issues facing our nation today, so our opinions must sync up to Biblical teaching.

The immorality that runs rampant through our society today can be dealt with by turning to our Bibles:

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Hating God Haters

I have a sin to confess. I hate someone. His name is Mikey Weinstein. He is a God-hater. He is president of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation and has made it his mission in life to remove Jesus from the military. He makes military leaders quake in their loafers. I try to focus my hatred on his actions, but my wicked heart and flesh rise up in hatred towards him.

It is okay to hate the vile actions of men, but we are to love all men regardless of who they are. Hatred towards men never produces fruit; love brings an abundant harvest for the glory of God:

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Spiritual Victory

So how does the once great Christian America rescue itself from spiritual captivity? Can our nation once again live by the Biblical principles upon which it was founded? We’ll answer the second question first: in a word, yes. The Old Testament tells us:

    “If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)

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The Liberty Of Jesus

FreedomIt was on a Tuesday, 238 years ago this date, that we as a nation declared our independence from Great Britain. Think I’m a couple of days too early? July 2, 1776 is the day the Second Continental Congress voted to adopt Richard Henry Lee’s resolution declaring independence from Great Britain. Twelve colonies voted unanimously, with New York abstaining. It was on July 4, 1776 that Thomas Jefferson made his final edit on the Declaration of Independence. John Hancock and Charles Thompson signed the Declaration of Independence on July 4th, with the 54 other delegates signing the document on August 2, 1776.

Why the history lesson in a devotional? I share this with you so that you know the complete and truthful history of our nation’s founding instead of what you learned in school. As John Adams declared while defending the British troops during the Boston Massacre trial, “Facts are stubborn things.” Facts are not only stubborn, but they are also very important.

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Mocking What You Reject

Mocking Girl5One of the most frustrating things for me as a Christian is when an unbeliever mocks the Bible. When I first started walking close with the Lord, it seemed everywhere I turned I heard the Word of God being mocked. It took many years of Christian growth and maturity to overcome the urge to strike back at the mockers. Then of course my pastor, Dr. Dennis Brunet, succinctly summed it up for me last Sunday in his sermon:

    “Whenever you reject the Word of God, you must mock it.”

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A Living Faith

Shield Of Faith (1)I like one of the more popular Christian acronyms and that is the one for FAITH: Forsaking All I Trust Him. Like is the case with many things in our Christian culture, this makes a great refrigerator magnet and bumper sticker, but when the rubber meets the road we often times do the opposite.

It is our natural tendency to trust our senses before we trust our faith. That’s because we have faith in our faith instead having faith in God. Jesus taught His disciples an important lesson when it came to faith when they came upon the withered fig tree:

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A Deliberate Calculation

You-Have-A-ChoiceBy now most of you have heard that Phil Robertson, the patriarch of Duck Dynasty fame, has been for all intents and purposes fired by A&E Television. His crime? Speaking Biblical truth while doing an interview with GQ Magazine. I won’t take up space here quoting what he said; you can find that on the internet. What is important to understand is that Phil knew what he was doing and that he would no doubt reap a whirlwind. In fact, if he did not expect one he is not as wise as I believe him to be.

One thing Phil says he appreciates about his fame is that it gives him a platform to proclaim and share the gospel of Jesus Christ. in this day and age, that alone is calling spiritual artillery onto your own position. The name of Jesus is to be uttered only inside church walls. For some enemies of God they would prefer there be no churches in America. Nevertheless, as Christians we have a choice we must make if we are going to live in the cultural rot known as American society. Joshua simplified it centuries ago:

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Strengthening Your Heart

Coeur bodybuilderA friend I made on Facebook named Jack had triple-bypass surgery yesterday. His wife Paige posted thanks and praise after her husband’s surgery, saying God kept him from having a massive heart attack that would have killed him. All of their friends are praying for Jack’s quick recovery and that his heart will be stronger than ever.

Medical science is amazing and the discoveries made each year increase our knowledge of the human anatomy. But what about the spiritual heart? How do we strengthen our spiritual hearts? Is there a type of bypass surgery that can repair a broken or defeated heart?

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Being Sealed By God

seal-of-godWhen it comes to God, what is the number one duty of all humans? Atheists would tell you nothing because there is no God. They have violated the First Commandment of God. Agnostics would say that we cannot really know our duty towards God because we can’t really know if there is a God. They too violate the First Commandment of God. Atheists do so because they believe in themselves; agnostics because they believe in knowledge. By placing either self or knowledge before God, they make each their gods thus violating:

    “You shall have no other gods before Me.” (Exodus 20:3)

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Prison or Passion

sunday school“A Sunday school is a prison in which children do penance for the evil conscience of their parents.” H. L. Mencken

“This Sunday School has been of help to me, greater perhaps than any other force in my Christian life, and I can ask no better things for you than that you, and all that shall come after you in this great band of workers for Christ, shall receive the same measure of blessedness which I have been permitted to have.” John D. Rockefeller

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Reasoning From A False Premise

false premiseTo not believe in the God of the Holy Bible means you must reject a vast amount of obvious evidence. When you know the truth and still reject it, you must live in a make-believe world. To not believe in God, you eventually get to the point that you do not glorify Him, and you descend into the realm of foolishness:

    “because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened.” (Romans 1:21)

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Confirmed In His Unbelief

Unbelief Sign bewareLast time we met I wrote, “The only way you cannot believe in God is to ignore the evidence. His power over all creation is obvious for all to see. We are without excuse if we choose not to believe in Almighty God. When man refuses to acknowledge God’s existence and give Him the glory He deserves, then ingratitude and ignorance enter into a person’s heart.”

If we will not believe in God, Paul tells us it will be replaced with ingratitude and ignorance that eventually ends up in spiritual darkness:

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Clearly Seeing The Invisible

telescopeLast Sunday our Minister of Students Andrew Bosak preached a powerful sermon from Romans 1 and it became clear to me that we have all the evidence we need when it comes to God’s existence. I remember driving through the Austrian Alps on our way to Italy and I told Karen, “There is no way you can look at this natural beauty and believe it all happened by accident.” No, there is so much natural evidence to God the Creator that it must be deliberately ignored. Paul clearly explained this to the church in Rome:

    “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and Godhead, so that they are without excuse, because, although they knew God, they did not glorify Him as God, nor were thankful, but became futile in their thoughts, and their foolish hearts were darkened. Professing to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.” (Romans 1:20-23)

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