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 Hobbs, Taz, and Chloe.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Another Disturbing Number

In my last blog entry I remarked on the number of babies aborted in the United States versus the number of troops killed so far in the Iraqi War. But there is another number, and it is almost even on par with the horror of the number of babies killed each year in the United States. It is the number of people smuggled into the United States to serve in this country as slaves.

Yes ... you heard me right ... as slaves. It is estimated by our government that between 18,000 and 20,000 men, women, and children are brought across U.S. borders every year to serve in slavery of one kind or another. Many of them, especially the women and children, end up serving as sex slaves. It is reported to be a business that tops a billion dollars a year.

We aren't talking about some uncivilized third world nation, or some despotic regime, we are talking about right here in the good ole U. S. of A. It gives a whole new meaning to "Bring me your tired, your weary, your huddled masses yearning to be free..." Freedom? For you and me but not for the nearly 20,000 slaves who are in bondage within the borders of our own nation! And think dear friend, that is 20,000 a year! This year! Last year, the year before and the year before that!

Other than abortion, I can think of few things that creates such a moral revulsion in me than the idea that people are being kept as slaves in the country I love and served. It is horrific that 20,000 people a year are smuggled into the U.S. to be slaves. But one would be one too many. Even one ought to create the same outrage in us.

We Christians have been the voice of the unborn, speaking for them, trying to bring as end to the onslaught of abortion. We need to find our voices to speak for those who have no will of their own but live to serve the wills of other people. It is not only our duty as Christians, it is our duty as human beings.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Disturbing

Since the beginning of the war with Iraq, 3867 American troops have lost their lives. This number is a troubling number. Anytime even a single U.S. soldier, sailor, airman, or marine is lost, it should trouble us. In Congress as well as statehouses across the nation, people are rallying for ways to bring an end to the Iraqi conflict and bring our brave troops home to their families. It is good and right that we try to do so. As Christians we desire peace over conflict. And as we honor our men and women (and their families) who sacrifice so much to keep us safe in our homes, it is right that we try to shorten the conflict that keeps them away from their homes. It is good to see people debating, arguing, and searching diligently to bring these honored troops home.

But even more troubling is that in the same time period as our 3,867 brave American heroes were sacrificing their lives, 5,997,395 American children lost their lives to the war on our children called abortion. But I am not hearing any great outcry. There is no debate, arguing, or searching out ways to bring this wanton destruction of human life to an end. That is because the pro-abortionists have distracted us with terminology like calling the fetus "fetal tissue matter" or some other such phrase. They make it sound like you are having your appendix removed. And our courts tell us it is a woman's Constitutional right to kill her baby. When a young man or woman signs up to serve their country, they know the risks they will have to take. But a baby in the womb knows nothing of the risk of having their brains sucked out, or being torn limb from limb and pulled out of their mother's womb, or of being flooded with a saline solution that will burn the flesh off their bodies as though they were in an acid bath. No, all they did was to be conceived in a nation that silently kills millions every year.

And that disturbs me ... a lot.

Friday, November 09, 2007

The Cost of Hypocrisy

One of the best ways to help your children come to an early saving faith in Jesus Christ is to let them see you practicing your religion from an early age. If your children see that Christianity is important to you and that the truths you say you believe are really life changing truths that affect how you live then they will come to realize the importance of these things in their own lives. As they see you live out your Christianity and that living it out makes a difference in your life, they will come to know what a vital, living relationship with Jesus is. They will see it modelled day after day.

But the reverse is also true. If you say you are a Christian and say the things of Christ are important to you, but you live an antinomian lifestyle ... that means a lifestyle that is against the law (of God) ... then they will see the hypocrisy in your life and learn the lesson that Christianity really doesn't matter one way or the other. Your own hypocrisy will work against them to turn them away from Christ. If they do make a "commitment" to Jesus, it is likely to be skin deep.

If we are going to see a life changing experiential Christianity being carried forward into the next generation, there are a few things we need to do.

First, we need to be sure of our own relationship to the Lord Jesus Christ. We cannot be expected to live like a Christian if we are not Christians to start with. Many Bible passages give us proofs by which we can be sure we are one of His. First, settle the doubts of your heart that your God is the Lord.

Second, knowing that you are a Christian then live like what you are. I use the term "you" here, but I am speaking generally of all of us who name the Name of Christ. If we are Christians then we need to live like we are Christians. I know this sounds self evident, but think to yourself how many professing Christians you know who are Christian in word only, but not in deed. The world can easily find hypocrites, just like those in the Church can. What is rare are real Christians, connected to Christ by the agency of the Holy Spirit and living life according to the voice of the Spirit and the Holy Scriptures.

Third, we need to not be ashamed to be seen being Christians. Christ said we ARE the light of the world. That is an indicative statement. It tells us what is. We can light the world brightly or light it dimly, but we are the light of the world. If Christ is all we claim He is (and He is), then let's let our light shine brightly for all to see. Most of all, let's let our children see it.