Ministerial Meanderings

God centered theology in a man centered world.

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Location: Springfield, Missouri, United States

I was born in Washington D.C. and raised in Laurel, Maryland. I served in the United States Air Force for 20 years then retired. Then God led me to become a pastor. I was converted to Christ in the summer of 1966. I enjoy the company of my wife, children and grandchildren. I live with my three cats Taz.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Is It All About Me?

Back when I was a lot younger, I remember Burger King told us we could have it "our way." Now, a country singer sings about wanting to "talk about me," and other products and services try to do all they can to make things all about you. The whole culture works against true, biblical theology.

Yet, many in the Church today have bought into this antichrist theology. Prosperity theology teaches that Christ died to make you happy, wealthy and healthy. We are told that with the right kind of faith God is bound to answer your every "positive confession." In the doctrine of salvation many churches teach that Jesus died to make salvation possible to every one who wants it. In other words, Jesus died to actually save no one, but to make it possible for people to save themselves if they choose to. It is more of the theology of me-ism.

Churches today plan their services in a way to cater to the wants and wishes of the people, regardless of biblical theology. Indeed, many preachers have gone so far as to change the message of the Bible if it is deemed to be embarrassing or offensive. The theology of me is everywhere.

This kind of theology is called "anthropocentric theology." That is a fancy word for "man-centered" theology. It seems we (collectively) have forgotten one extremely important point. It is not all about me. It is, in truth, all about God. We need to once again recapture a "theocentric theology." Of course, you know by now that means "God centered" theology. The great Baptist preacher Charles Spurgeon once said that the truth of any doctrine can be measured by how much it exalts God and debases man. This kind of thinking is foreign to Christians in our day and age. The idea of debasing men seems false and insulting to us. Yet, the Bible teaches that we are depraved people and have no godly impulses apart from God giving them to us.

The first commandment God gave to Moses, written with the very finger of God Himself, is that "I am the Lord thy God which brought thee out of the land of Egypt. Thou shalt have no other gods before me." It really is all about God.

In your church, in your worship, in your life, measure everything, every teaching, every song, by how it exalts God. Turn away from those things that seem to make God more like you and me. In the end, be a true worshipper of God (in Spirit and in truth). Make it all about God.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

No Man Knows ...

It never ceases to amaze me at how quickly death comes for us. I was thinking about titling this post "Of Buildings and Bridges and Other Things" but I changed my mind. But I ask you to reflect for a few minutes. Very few people wake up in the morning thinking today will be their last day on the earth. On September 11th, 2001, those folks in the World Trade Center buildings were there for another normal day at work. New York City was going about it's daily business. I very much anyone had immanent death on their mind that morning. This past week, as people drove home from work, stalled in rush hour traffic, several people died when the bridge they were stopped on collapsed. Who would have thought? I doubt anyone sitting in their car was thinking "This is the day I could die." The evening of July 8th, my father went to bed like he always did. That night, in his sleep, he had a stroke and never woke up again. he passed away on the 11th of that month. None of these people had death on their minds, but it came for them anyway.

People live like they are immortal. Few, very few, live in the shadow of their mortality. The Bible says the number of a man's days are in God's hands. But we are not God. We don't know how many days we have. But the Bible also warns us that it is presumption to assume that we will be here on the earth tomorrow. In about 3 weeks I will be celebrating my 50th birthday. I am in good health and could end up living another 30 or 40 years (or more). However, I know I could die today. This could be my last day on the earth.

The late Dr. Walter Martin, the famed "Bible Answer Man, " once observed "We need to live our lives as though Christ will not return for 1000 years, but we need to live each day as though we expect to see him tonight." There is a lot of wisdom in that statement.

Beloved, our first priority is what God thinks about us. Reflect for a minute if you died today, would your actions be the things you want to be doing when you come face to face with God? If you died today, would today be a day worthy of being your last day here? Are the things the things that are worth doing on your last day? When you are gone (to your heavenly home) did your life count for something?

I was just thinking this morning and I wanted to remind folks to live in light of their mortality. Enjoy the day, the time you have left, however long it may be. May your life count. Don't waste it. Love people. Love your family and your children. Love God most of all. Live like it matters what you do. Make today a day worthy of being your last. Make every day worthy of being your last day. If you can do these things, you'll do well.