The Price of the Cross

The Price of the Cross                                                                                      “For when we were still without strength, in due timeChrist died for the ungodly. For scarcely for a righteous man will one die; yet perhaps for a good man someone would even dare to die. But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”                                                           Romans 5:6-8    NASB                                                                                           This month my wife Jolyn and I celebrated our 37th wedding anniversary and, to be honest, it seems like it was just a short time ago when we made the commitment to love each other “until death do us part”.  When we first met I never envisioned having a family of 4 children and 10 grandchildren.  Now our eldest grandson Elian is 17 and our youngest granddaughter Rosie just turned 5.  it seems like just a few years ago they were all just little babies playing together and learning about all the things they could do to make their parents and grandparents laugh.

I often think back to those days before my becoming a Christian and a husband, father and grandfather.  Days when I was chasing the wind like a searching young man trying to find meaning in my life, or sitting in a prison cell contemplating the mistakes I had made in life.   They seem so distant to me now as I enter the last quarter, hoping that I can still be in the game long enough to see my grandchildren become young men and women with families of their own.  And I still have my own plans of things I want to do in service to my Lord.

Looking at my family makes me realize the great price the Father paid by giving up His Son Jesus to die on the cross for our sins.  I mean, throughout history there have always been those who stepped up and sacrificed their lives to save others:  heroes during times of war who jump on the grenade that lands in the camp and make the ultimate sacrifice to save their buddies. Firefighters who rush into a flaming building to save a stranger and lose their own life in the process.  Like the apostle Paul wrote in the passage above:  “For a good man some would even dare to die.”

It’s very likely that you or I would be willing to sacrifice our own lives if by doing so we could save the world.  But what if we were called upon to sacrifice the life of one of our children or grandchildren to save the world?  Would our love for the world carry us to that extreme?  Would we give the life of our child to save strangers; even those who didn’t like us or evil people we knew were opposed to us and everything we stood for?

Yet hear what the Apostle Paul tells us about the Loving God whom we serve:  “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”

God sent his only Son to the Cross to die for people who rebelled against Him and despised his goodness with lying, hatred, murder, rebellion and every kind of evil; even unbelief and denial that He exists.  Truly the Cross was heavy for the Lord Jesus, but we must never forget the price paid by the Father.  It was He who sent Jesus to the Cross and put the sins of all mankind on his beloved Son who suffered and died for the very ones who rejected and despised him.  “The Lamb of God, slain from the foundation of the earth.”    (Revelation 13:8   KJV)

By this single selfless act God extended his hand of friendship beyond measure to those who did not deserve it, opening wide the door of his Grace proclaiming:  “Whosoever will let him come.”

Yet still, in spite of this great outpouring of unmerited love and favor, many refuse to repent and turn to God to receive the healing blood of Christ to wash away their sin and rebellion and restore them to a right relationship with the Father.  They refuse to humble themselves and confess Jesus as Lord and receive the Holy Spirit of Life in Christ Jesus.

Soon judgment will be poured out upon the earth and God’s wrath will fall upon all those who continue to trod the Saviors sacrifice under their feet like so much dirt.  When the hand of God’s Grace is withdrawn:  “He who sits in the heavens shall laugh; the Lord shall hold them in derision. Then He shall speak to them in His wrath, and distress them in His deep displeasure.”  (Psalm 2:5)

The Cross was indeed a heavy price to pay, but it is finished and the Son of God has risen from the grave never to die again.  Let us give thanks to the Father of all Mercies who suffered beyond measure through the loss of His Son, but who will one day (and that day may be sooner than we think) “. . . render to every man according to his works.”    (Romans 2:6)

Yet even now as the world runs further and faster away from the Truth of God’s Word, He is stretching forth his hand of Grace, willing to place our sins upon the Cross of Christ if we will confess to God our need for a Savior.  And where can this Grace and Mercy be found?  Right where it has always been: at the foot of the Cross where Jesus Christ suffered and died to reveal his Loving Father to a rebellious people created in his image and likeness.

As we enter into this Season of Remembrance we call Easter, let those of us who know Christ as Lord and Savior remember that we are vessels who carry the forgiveness and mercy of our loving Heavenly Father within us.  Just as Jesus was “The Lamb of God, slain from the foundation of the earth”, God appointed us before we ever knew him to fulfill his will for us who would believe:  “For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them.”

Let us remember the price the Father paid for us, and let us go forth as ministers and ambassadors of Christ imitating and administering the great love of our Heavenly father to those around us.







You Cannot Serve God and Mammon

Choose this dayAnyone who knows my wife Jolyn probably knows that Christmas is her favorite time of the year.  She’s one of those rare people (who are apparently not as rare as I once thought) who keeps Christmas decorations up year ’round.  I have learned to live with it and have even accepted her idea that if I were to go on I would probably discover that Ebeneezer Scrooge lived somewhere in my family tree long ago:  to which I usually respond with a hearty: “bah, humbug”.

A few days before Christmas, Jolyn was surfing the television channels and came upon a movie entitled  ‘A Very Murray Christmas’.  Since all Christmas movies are considered worth a look to her, she watched just enough of it to see Miley Cyrus sitting cross legged in a mini-skirt on a white grand piano singing ‘Silent Night’.  I happened to walk into the room just when the song was starting and caught about a minute of her act.  To use a line from Miley’s own lyrics, it hit me:  ‘like a wrecking ball’.

As if that wasn’t enough shock for one day, about 10 minutes later a friend sent me an email which had a link to a video of London Hillsong Church doing their own Christmas version of ‘SIlent Night’: a Roaring Twenties Broadway style version complete with a hot orchestra, short skirted Flappers and a host of male dancers in black tuxedo’s.

I immediately emailed the friend who had sent me the link and asked him: “Am I just getting old or is the whole world going insane?”   He responded with the latter.  One might think that when we finally see that bright ‘City on a Hill” there will be big letters on the hillside reading:  HOLYWOOD

It has been a difficult year watching the IRS Investigations go nowhere, the insanity of the Planned Parenthood scandal, the ‘Lies of Hillary Clinton’ mini-series (apparently still in production) and the Iran Deal our President is so proud of;  all this set against a backdrop of Islamic Terrorism that somehow isn’t really Islamic at all according to our brilliant leaders.  In light of all that,  my wife’s 365 day Christmas seems perfectly reasonable to me now.

With our world  coming apart at the seams, one might as well have a table-top Manger Scene, some lights and a Santa Sleigh Ride to look at, rather than the nightly news broadcasting the insanity that has become our daily reminder of reality in today’s world.

As a father of 4 and a grandfather of 10, my heart breaks to see how successfully the false promises of the world draw our youth away in search of fame and fortune; some being pushed forward by parents anxious to get their child into the limelight and riches of stardom.  Television shows tell them they can all be stars if they peddle their talent on the open market.  But look what these promises brought to people like Whitney Houston and her young daughter:  a brief moment of riches and fame followed by the torment of drug addiction, misery and ultimately, tragedy and death.  A great musical gift once used to glorify God, now gone forever; snuffed out by the darkness that stole her light, and the thief who came to steal, kill and destroy both it and her.

Justin Bieber, who in the beginning of his rise to fame traveled with members of his Church working on staff to help him deal with the potential dangers of the sudden temptations offered by the world;  now, having cast all that away, is nothing more than a spoiled brat with hundreds of millions who thinks he can do whatever he wants, whenever he wants.

Who would have thought the young television starlet who played Hannah Montana, and won the hearts of youth everywhere, would become Miley Cyrus, the youthful vixen who seems to love nothing more than to shock everyone with her open immorality and sexual perversity on display for all to see.

Hollywood and the Western Pop Culture of addiction to entertainment is empowered by the same foul spirit that caused the Israelite’s to pass their children through the fire in sacrifice to Molech, the evil false god of the Ammonites (Jeremiah 32:35).  We must pray for them and others who are drawn toward the fire of worldly lusts and pleasures.  Pray they will hear God’s voice in their hearts and reject the offerings of the Prince of this World.  We must never forget that he is also called “the Prince of the Power of the Air (Eph. 2:2).”   Is not the ‘power of the air’ the realm trough which most of our media travels?

It’s not all bad news though.  I know many young talented people who have fire in their bellies for God and have dedicated their talents to the King of Kings.  May they never be drawn away to the beckoning cry of what the world will give them in trade for their devotion to fame and fortune.  The Apostle John warned us to love not the world, or the things that are in the world.  That is good advice for anyone, whatever age they may be.  Their gifts and talents came from God and He will honor them if they use them for His Glory.

God Bless Our Veterans

Veterans DayWar is a tragic reality we are all forced to live with from time to time.; whether it be one on one war with our neighbor or war triggered by the greed and selfishness of those who want to rule over other men and nations.  History has repeatedly shown us the truth of the Bible when it comes to man’s depravity and the fallen state of the world in which we live.  From the rebellion of Lucifer to the current time, there has always been another dictator waiting in the wings who wants to make the world their own, and rise up against the Creator of all things.

For Christians, we look for a coming age when there will be no more war:  a time when men will turn their swords into plowshares and peace will reign.  We believe this will come because the Lord  said it would, speaking through the Prophet Isaiah.  “And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many people: and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks: nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”   (Isaiah 2:4)

In the meantime, while we await the fulfillment of this prophecy, I want to thank God for our military veterans who have stood up to resist the evils of tyrannical leaders and nations whenever war became a necessary evil in their time.  Without the brave men and women who have risked their lives to protect freedom and liberty we would long ago have fallen to the merchants of death who hate all things good and seek to dominate others by their evil and selfish desires for power and control.

With many veterans who are family and friends  ― including our youngest son Jonathon who served in Afghanistan for a year― Jolyn and I have always held our military troops and veterans in high regard and in our prayers as well.  The damage that war causes goes far beyond the horrors of the death and destruction it yields while it is being waged.  Many veterans and their families continue to suffer greatly from their wartime experiences  in their attempts to access the proper care our government promised them when they enlisted or were drafted into the military.  Today we are faced with the tragic news that, on average, 22 American Vets commit suicide every day.  This is incomprehensible to me and baffles my mind to think that these heroic men and women are falling through the cracks of the political machine that is now running our country and our Veterans Administration.

So let us pray for our distinguished Veterans and their families.  And with so many wonderful organizations out there dedicated to honoring and helping them, find one that touches you heart and support them in any way you can.

May the Lord bless our Veterans today on this day of remembrance and give them peace and prosperity and encouragement for a job well done.  God bless our Troops and Vets, and may God bless America!



Abortion: A Sin or a Sign?

in_the_wombIf you have been following the gruesome videos of Planned Parenthood’s outing as baby killers and body parts marketers, it is very likely that you are suffering from PRSD (Present Reality Shock Disorder).  This is an affliction that comes upon those who are suddenly awakened to the reality that is happening around them.  This illness is often identified by an immediate sense of outrage which soon dissipates into a period of mental numbness and is often followed by either action, denial, or a return to life as usual to avoid dealing with the truth of what you are learning.  As a general rule, unless this awakening to reality causes some type of action response, things will soon return to normal and life goes on.

In the present case of the Planned Parenthood undercover videos released by the ‘Center for Medical Progress’, the reaction that follows these videos is often worse than the films themselves.   Having to read or hear the defensive arguments for funding Planned Parenthood presented in the liberal media is often more disturbing than the films.  It must have been like this outside of Noah’s Ark during the final month’s leading up to the big rain storm whenever that man of God tried to warn them of the coming deluge that would finalize God’s then judgment against the fallen human (sic) race.

The shocking reality brought to the forefront by these videos should certainly be a wake up call to anyone with even a smidgen of human compassion and decency.  But are these ungodly and ghastly evils just another sign of the depth of depravity to which we have fallen as a nation, or are they in fact a fulfillment of prophecy that points to an impending judgment soon to come?  Could this be a fulfillment of the last prophecy Jesus spoke as he endured the climb up the road toward Golgotha to fulfill his redemptive purpose of death on the Cross?

“And as they led him away, they laid hold upon one Simon, a Cyrenian, coming out of the country, and on him they laid the cross, that he might bear it after Jesus.  And there followed him a great company of people, and of women, which also bewailed and lamented him.  But Jesus turning unto them said, Daughters of Jerusalem, weep not for me, but weep for yourselves, and for your children.  For, behold, the days are coming, in the which they shall say, Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suckThen shall they begin to say to the mountains, Fall on us; and to the hills, Cover us.  For if they do these things in a green tree, what shall be done in the dry?  (Luke 23:26-31)

Was Jesus speaking only of the soon to come persecution and dispersion of Christians in AD70 by Titus, or was this a prophecy of the final condition of mankind that would come before the terrible day of the Lord’s wrath when the seven angels are commanded to pour out the vials of the wrath of God upon the earth.  (Rev. 16:1)  Was the tree as dry then as it is today?

Truly abortion is a sin for which many will be harshly judged.  Looking into the eyes of those who promote and perform the ghastly evils they so casually speak of in these recently released videos, one can truly say: “the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.”  Take a brief journey through the life history of Planned Parenthood’s Founder Margaret Sanger and you will see the essence of Adolf Hitler and Josef Mengele in female form.  One can almost hear her saying: Blessed are the barren, and the wombs that never bare, and the paps which never gave suck.”  Is this not the philosophy of those who do such things in the name of women’s rights?  And what about those in the halls of political power who are fighting so hard to defend the continued funding of this den of iniquity?  Shall they escape the wrath that is to come?  I think not!

Jesus said:  “Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.  (Matthew 18:3)   Could that same Jesus turn his face from the destruction of these little ones who are so heinously destroyed before ever having a chance to experience life outside of their mothers womb?  

Are these things merely the sins of the continued trek toward godlessness we see happening today, or are they in fact the fulfillment of Jesus’ final prophecy of the end times as he passed the crowd of women who wept for him on the way to the cross?  If so, let us weep for ourselves and for our children, for the next thing to come are the falling mountains of rocks and stones.

Respecting the Pope’s message with caution.

Pope Francis addresses a joint meeting of the U.S. Congress as Vice President Joe Biden (L) and Speaker of the House John Boehner (R) look on in the House of Representatives Chamber on Capitol Hill in Washington September 24, 2015. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque - RTX1S9V2While watching the tremendous reception given to Pope Francis by America this week, all of which was covered extensively in the media, it impressed me even further with the knowledge that we are living in perilous times.  Perilous in that, while we agree with the Pope’s proclamations of love, and the Golden Rule, we must not be naive and think that the way to create a peaceful world is through the recent nuclear deal with Iran.  We must not be swayed by the Pope’s comments before Congress to think that we should expect our government to view all things from that perspective.  As Ronald Reagan so wisely understood, we must “trust but verify”.  Trust is the Golden Rule aspect of that policy;  verify is what keeps the gold pure.

It is naive to think that our own government is free from corrupt ideas and policies for the simple fact it is run by humans, all of whom are a mixture of both good and bad.  We know this since it applies to those of us outside the halls of power as well.  However, we must also recognize the truth that some people are in fact  very evil and will give their best effort to turn things in a direction guided by dark ideas that spring from the nature of fallen man and the Prince of Darkness himself.  Whether they do so for malevolent purposes, from ignorance of the truth, or from a desire for personal power and influence, the result is the same.  From a political perspective this may have something to do with why so many are drawn to get behind Donald Trump in the next election.  This is idea is reinforced by a recent national poll finding that 72% of Americans believe America isn’t as great as it once was.

Like most Christians who understand that God loves all of us, I try to balance these things in a way that makes me reasonable, yet not unaware of the evil around me.  As we watch our nation slide into moral decay and the apparent attempt by many to test God with extreme tolerance and unleashed depravity, it goes far beyond the ideas of Republican or Democrat;  Liberal or Conservative.  It is true that God loves all of us;  yet somehow, without contradiction, the Bible tells us, “Jacob have I loved but Esau have I hated”.  (Romans 9:13; Malachi 1:3))  God is Sovereign and He chooses how He will direct both his affections and his anger.

America, Europe and the western world is being tested today with the increasing penetration of Islam into the west.  The terrible devastation and slaughter being wreaked by radicals who follow the Qur’an and the teachings of Muhammad found in their book is the best representation of what Islam really is.  Whether we like it or not, that is Islam!  There are obviously many who call themselves Muslim’s who are not carrying out radical acts of Jihad against those who don’t agree with them.  But these are not representative of true Islam.  Ask anyone who lives in a country where Islam has taken over the political or religious place of power and you will hear stories of torture, rape, female and child mutilation, human slavery, destruction of churches and synagogues, and the absolute enforcement of Islamic Laws on the people.

It is a difficult challenge for those of us who recognize the need to not hate all Muslims by painting them with the broad brush of extremism.  However, we must be honest and recognize that true Islam is a political system of domination that represents the antithesis of what we believe as Christians and what our Founding Fathers intended in the writing of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.

It would do us well to remember the story of Little Red Riding Hood.  She skipped along the path trying to be nice to the wolf while picking flowers for her grandmother.  But no matter how nice she was to him or how much the wolf looked like Grandma lying in her bed, in the end Little Red was nothing more than another meal for the wolf to consume in order to fill his ravenous and natural appetite.  Islam is growing in it’s appetite for conquest.  If we are not careful we will meet the same fate here in America.

Islam – Truth is Stranger Than Fiction

Mecca and the Kaba StoneIf there was ever a time when Islam could be thrust into the limelight of American culture, that time is now. One need only hear and see the daily ramblings of the news media to realize that our world is changing at such a rate it is almost impossible to keep up.  The people and things that played such a large part in making this the greatest country in the world are being thrown out of our history books and replaced by mindless entertainment and seemingly meaningless information designed to eliminate any real possibility that Truth exists.  Add to that a generation of young people who prefer to spend much of their time in a cyber world of imagination and relinquish the responsibilities required for maintaining our free society and we are a nation ripe for the picking.  I am reminded of the words of Abraham Lincoln who said: “Freedom is not the ability to do what you want to do; it’s the power to do what you ought to do.” 

The infectious rise of Islam in the western world has taken advantage of this new trend toward historical irrelevancy, and has found an audience so unsure that Truth even exists that they spend billions each year to defend and protect the very things that are out to destroy us as a nation.  Nothing highlights that fact more than the recent Iran agreement that is being pushed on the American people by an administration that cares more about their legacy than it does about our nation and the people they vowed to protect.  Somewhere along the line they decided that ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ was a good story to build upon when framing the American Philosophy for the 21st Century: as long as the person in the nightgown says they are Grandma we can trust them.  I can hear the sounds of wolves lining up for a room and a bed.  Especially those who come from the deserts of the Arab world.

However, there are still a few scholars who have not sold their souls in the Marketplace of Grant Funding,  some of whom have decided to apply their skills to discovering if Islam is what it claims to be, and if the religion and it’s prophet can stand unscathed in the light of True History.  They are asking questions about the real origins of Islam and putting it under the microscope of genuine research seeking one thing and one thing only: discover the historical proof that supports the claims of Islam, it’s supposed prophet Muhammad  and its holy book, ‘The Qur’an’?

One such scholar is British historian and author Tom Holland who in 2012 produced a documentary of his search to answer these questions from a non-partisan perspective.  The answers he discovered reveal the very real possibility that Muhammad was possibly a construct of several Arab leaders and that Islam has very little proof of its existence before a half century after the date attributed to Muhammad death.  It is worth nothing that his documentary has been banned in Britain.

At the center of Islamic worship is the claim that Mecca is the place where Muhammad received his vision and revelations, but is that true and if so, why doesn’t history have some proofs to back it up?  This 77 minute documentary is well worth the time required to view it.  I highly recommend that you watch the documentary which can be found at this link. Islam: the Untold Story

I also want to recommend another another website which I consider to be the best resource on the Internet for the truth on the subject of the historical claims of Islam.  History of Mecca   Please take the time to look at the movie and I highly recommend my friends website for a thorough picture of the History of Mecca and what that means to the world today.

Be blessed,


Insanity On Parade

The burden of the word of the LORD to Israel by Malachi.  I have loved you, saith the LORD. Yet ye say, Wherein hast thou loved us? Was not Esau Jacob’s brother? saith the LORD: yet I loved Jacob,  And I hated Esau, and laid his mountains and his heritage waste for the dragons of the wilderness.    (Mal 1:1-3)

The Coming Days of Challenge

Islam or ChritianityOver the past few weeks it has been anyone’s guess as to what is going to happen next on the world stage.  With our political leaders refusing to accept the fact that you cannot win madmen over with kindness we see more and more the insanity that takes over when men become self serving in their offices as elected officials.   The current batch in control has clearly taken sides against Jacob in favor of Esau so we know what to expect from them. Truly “power corrupts and total power corrupts totally” to quote Lord John Acton.

Islam is the end time enemy of the Church and those who don’t accept that will continue to reach across the  theological aisle and try to find a way to bring opposite  belief systems together as one.  Truth cannot combine with falsehood and produce deeper truth.  God hates mixture and He hasn’t asked for our opinion on the matter.

As Christians we have to choose what we believe.  Is it possible that the God of the Bible and Allah of the Qur’an are one in the same?  Maybe in today’s mixed up version of reality, but not to anyone who holds to the Biblical presentation of God.  Yes it is true that Allah is Arabic for God, but there are many names that are translated as God in other languages and cultures; that doesn’t mean they are representative of the One True God.  For Bible believing Christians there can be only One True God and He certainly is not the one found in the writings of Muhammad.

This does not mean that we are to disrespect another persons beliefs.  But for Christians and Jews God is not an optional character we can make in our own image or around the ideas of others just to avoid conflict.  He made all things and by him all things continue to exist.  In the opening verses of ‘Genesis’ and ‘The Gospel According to John’ God proclaims himself as the Creator of all things who dwells outside of time and has existed from all eternity.  In Genesis we learn that God spoke all things into being.  In the the New Testament Gospel of John we read that God was the Word and by the Word all things came into being; the Word became flesh and dwelt among us so that we could behold his Glory and see God manifested in human form. (John 1:14)

If the Allah of the Qur’an represents God, he is no better than fallen man, and maybe even worse.  He offers benefits for evil actions and promises impurity for those who will submit do his evil bidding.  The God of the Bible says we are to love others, while Allah commands his followers to hate and subjugate everyone that differs from them.  The God of the Bible reveals women as a gift and helpmeet from God to be honored and loved, while Allah sees them as nothing more than property to be enslaved and abused for the pleasure of men for being nothing more than the female part of our species.

Doing or accepting whatever is necessary just to get along with others is soon to be the new dividing line for Christians.  We are still to love our enemies as Christ taught us, but we must not make a golden calf of their deities just so we can lose ourselves in the crowd and stay under the radar when the trouble begins.  And it will begin and already is underway.  Even a blind man can see that the line is being drawn in the sand and we must choose this day whether we will serve the God of mediocrity and tolerance or stand up and profess that Jesus is Lord in the midst of a cynical and hostile generation.

The world is clearly losing it’s mind and we must decide as individuals whether we will join the parade of insanity that is making its way down the boulevards of this nation or hold fast to the profession of our faith like Luke who boldly proclaimed: “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.”  (Acts 4:12 NIV)

Where do we go from here? Part. 2

“Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him.” 1 John 2:15

Resisiting TemptationWith so many potential dangers facing the Church in America at this present time it is hard to deny that we are under a full on effort to do away with the influence of Christianity in modern America.  With each victory that is achieved by secular humanism and those who oppose Christ, there is a sudden onslaught that follows immediately after like an aftershock that follows an earthquake.  Yet, while it is true that no weapon formed against us will (ultimately) prosper, it is the weapons that we form against ourselves that tend to make us the most vulnerable to attacks against our belief system.

The world John is speaking of is the systems of this world which are currently under the power of Satan until he is finally cast out in the Judgment and thrown into the Lake of Fire with all of his followers.  It is the system of this world that calls us to seek the things of the world and once we have a taste for them it is hard to turn away.  This has always presented believers with great temptation. It kept many from following Jesus when He walked on the earth 2,000 years ago and after his resurrection it called others away from the true faith. We see this with the rich young ruler of Matthew 19 and with Ananias and Sapphira from Acts Chapter 5.

Crucifying the appetites we have for the things of this world will get harder and harder as we get closer to the return of Christ.  We see it now and for many it is hard to believe it can get worse, but I assure you it can and it will get much, much worse.  Today the Church resembles the world in so many ways that it is hard to distinguish where they differ except in the words they confess to believe.  Many find it hard to stand for traditional beliefs and morals and choose instead to take a neutral position on the critical moral issues of the day like abortion, traditional marriage, adultery or homosexuality in the Church.  Yet Jesus warned us to be hot or cold or He would spit us out in the day of Judgment.

In my  travels to foreign lands over the years I discovered a great truth about our nation that every year becomes easier to recognize and quite impossible to deny.  One of the most powerful and corrupting forces in our world today is the American Pop Culture.  Wherever it goes it sneaks in under the guise of youthful folly or innocence but soon decays into a powerful force for corruption and quickly tears away at the moral structures of the society by causing rebellion among the youth.  We need only look at today’s popular music and the low standards of morality on display in the many popular young stars of today to see of how far the moral compass of our young people has fallen.  The Media, Hollywood and the Western Pop Music Culture is largely controlled by Moloch and many of our youngest and most talented are sacrificed on this demonic alter on a daily basis.

The lust for fame and fortune has corrupted the hearts of many who think they can dip their foot into Moloch’s fire and come away unscathed or just slightly damaged.  This is the same trick the devil used on Eve and untold millions of people since then.  But Jesus warned us not to seek the treasures of this world where moth and rust do corrupt and thieves break in and steal.  You will never see a U-Haul behind a hearse.

Today many of the most influential teachers of the Bible talk about nothing more than how to get rich in the things of this world. They sell themselves like the heathen and call believers to follow their teachings which have little or nothing to do with the things Jesus taught.  They believe they possess all things but in fact they are possessed by the things they seek.  These will find it hard to walk away from them when the world draws it’s line in the sand and says CHOOSE!

Like it or not we are headed for hard times and I wouldn’t count on being raptured out before things hit the fan and our faith is tested with fire.  It is already happening to Christians in the mid-east and the Third World and if we think we are exempt because we are God’s favorites we might want to revisit the passage from 2 Timothy 3:12 and hope we are found worthy to endure what is coming.

Draw your loved ones close to you and do whatever you can to strengthen the things that remain.  Our hope is in the Lord, but our faith will surely be tested in the days to come.


Where do we go from here? Part 1

The Bible and the ConstituionThis week has seen dramatic results from the Supreme Court in cases having to do with The Affordable Care Act (Obama Care) and the legalization of same sex marriage in all 50 states.  Both received the Courts endorsement and a claim that they were protected by the Constitution.  This weeks outcome was predictable for many in light of past Supreme Court rulings that have virtually ignored the Founding Fathers’ clear meanings in favor of interpreting the original intent according to contemporary moral standards.

For those Christians who accept the Bible as God’s playbook for the human race, these rulings are a wake-up call to the prophetic timetable of the Scriptures.  The fact that they are happening when so many other signs of the times can be seen taking place all around us raises the question: What does it mean to Christian believers and where do we go from here?  There are those who will step back and say. God knows and He is in control, while others  will direct their efforts to continuing the fight in the political arena and focus their prayers, resources and energies on trying to elect candidates who hold to the traditional interpretation of the Constitution and historically accepted moral values.

The problem is in many ways similar to the rift between Conservative and Liberal ideologies in the political arena.  Those who hold liberal views appear to have no definable moral standards other than ‘ to each his or her own’ or those that that are adjustable to fit their argument; while those who hold to Conservative standards work from a clearly defined code of ethics and morality.  How this affects the argument is clear: true liberals care only about winning while true conservatives want to win, but will not stoop to methods and actions that go against their code of moral ethics. Anyone who doubts this need only look at the current  government scandals to see exactly what I am saying.

For the modern Christian, knowing just what to do about all this it is not as simple as it may seem.  Many Evangelical (sic) Churches yielding to a liberal view of the Bible are crying out  “Olly, Olly Oxen Free”  to anyone who claims faith in Christ.  This is certainly the case of the Emergent or Emerging churches and many of the traditional denominations as well.  This could also be applied to many of the seeker friendly churches.  With the acceptance of women bishops, homosexual clergy, universal salvation and the elimination of hell and judgment from their belief systems, Post Modernism is drawing a pink line in the sand and asking  ‘If you cross it,  what’s the big deal?’

At times like this, an Amish Church model seems absolutely reasonable and offers an approach to God that is essentially endorsed by the Scriptures.  “Come out from among them and be ye separate’  certainly is a response that is reasonable in view of the current trends of moral relativism.  From another point of view, I have many friends who are returning to the Roman Catholic Church because of the stability that it represents on issues like abortion, marriage and traditional family values.  If only they could really predict where the new Pope is headed.  His recent edict on the environment and climate change sounded so much like the liberal view it may leave some of them wondering if they made the right decision.

In the end I believe that God will truly sort it all out . . . but by His standards not ours.  As I recently heard Christian Apologist Ravi Zacharias say in response to a reporters question about homosexuality:  “God gives you the most sacred gift of the perogative of choice, but God does not give you the privilege of determining a different outcome to what the choice will entail. The consequences are bound to the choice.”

From a prophetic position I believe everything must now be viewed through the lens filter of Israels re-establishment as a nation in 1948 and the 6 Day War of 1967 from which point Israel will no longer be trodden under the feet of the Gentiles.  To me, those events fulfill the prophetic timeline that Scripture has given as the beginning of the end.  Therefore things are racing toward God’s final conclusion and events will move at an astounding pace just as they are right now.  Of course the question is then:  How do we determine the time frame of a generation when we consider the passage from Matthew 24:30-42 ?

I will consider that more in Pt. 2 of this series in just a few days.  In the meantime verse 42 gives us all some good advice to consider.




Prayer for Come Alive Ministries

CreationFestIn 1980 I met Harry Thomas, Jr.  for the first time when he walked into my newly opened ‘Good Samaritan Coffeehouse’ on a hot Friday night in June.  Harry is the President of ‘Come Alive Ministries’  in Medford, New Jersey and they had just taken over the local Jesus Festival from Calvary Assembly and were looking for some volunteers to help with the festival.   Harry and I became fast friends that night and several of the newly converted street people who came to the Good Samaritan volunteered to help and received free tickets to the Festival.  It was a great trade off and they all had a good time and got a powerful experience in their new found faith in the process.

Since that night in 1980 Harry has been one of my closest friends and a trusted adviser in whom I have the greatest confidence as a genuine Man of God.  Over the years I spoke at the Creation Festival in Pennsylvania many times, which was always a yearly highlight for Jolyn and the children as well.  I can still see my kids sitting high up on the stage scaffolding looking down on of our favorite Christian bands as they ministered to the tens of thousands of young people sitting in the vast field of grass in front of the big Creation main stage.

In 2004 and 2006 Harry and his staff at ‘Come Alive Ministries’ put together the ‘Friendship Festival’ in Morocco by invitation of the Muslim run government there.  Several popular Christian bands volunteered to go in an effort to reach across the aisle as an act of Christian love to the people of Morocco and their musical community.  Come Alive Ministries financed the festival there out of their own pocket for two years.  The musicians who went all paid there own way out of a desire to reach out to the Muslim people of Morocco with the love of Christ.  Tens of thousands attended both years and it was a fantastic experience for all who went from the body of Christ to share their ministry.

After those first two years I shared my thoughts with Harry and suggested that, in my opinion, the increasing radical elements of Islam were making it too dangerous for them to continue doing the festival in Morocco.  Harry had himself come to that conclusion and discontinued the Friendship Festival after 2 years.

Come Alive Ministries currently produces 4 Christian festivals in the US which are:

Creation East – Mt. Union, PA  June 24-27

Ichthus – Lexington, KY   July 8 – 11

Creation/Sonshine Festival –  Somerset, WI     July 16 – 18

Creation West – Tri Cities, WA     July 30 – August 1

I am asking all those who read this blog to please pray for Harry and his staff for these upcoming festivals.  With the current warnings of potential threats to Christians from homegrown ISIS sympathizers I feel it is imperative that we ask God to surround these festivals with protecting angels to watch over the attendees and keep this enemy
from bringing harm to anyone.  With tens of thousands of believers attending each of these Christian events I believe they are a high priority for our prayer lists.

This is especially critical for the ‘Creation/Sonshine Festival’ in mid-July as there is a massive population of Muslim Somali Immigrants in nearby Minneapolis/St. Paul which is just over 40 miles from where the Sonshine Festival is being held this year in Somerset, Wisconsin.  Somalia has one of the largest populations of radical Muslims in the world so you can see why I am asking so adamantly that you to pray for the staff and those who will attend the Creation/Sonshine Festival.

Many thousands of people young and old will commit their lives to Christ at these festivals, as we have seen every year since Harry and his then partner Tim Landis began doing The Creation Festival in 1979.  Creation East is their biggest event averaging around 100,000 in attendance each year.  If you have never been to a CreationFest event I assure you it is something you will never forget.   And if you are anywhere near one of these upcoming festivals it’s not too late to make it a special summer event for you and your family;  especially if you have young family members who are believers or are teetering on the edge of becoming one.

Again, please make a concerted effort to pray for these festivals for Divine protection for those who attend and all of the many staff members, speakers, musicians and volunteers who make these events such a powerful witness for our Creator.  If you can forward this Blog to your friends and family that you know will pray as well I would deeply appreciate if.

Visit the Creation Festival website for more information about ticket prices:

Thank you for your prayers in advance.