Month: March 2012

“Allergy Season”

Allergy season is here! When that layer of green dust appears, then you know the plants are in business. But the appearance of green dust isn’t the only indicator of the beginning of allergy season – the disappearance of modest clothing seems to mark the start of the season too. It seems as if more people get allergic to their clothes than they do the pollen at this time of the year.

As Christians, whether it’s 30 or 100 outside, we represent God to the world. If we allow our public clothing to leave “little to the imagination” on purpose, then it’s not the cotton’s fault…it’s our conscience that has the problem! We should know better. As the temperature starts to rise, with or without the pollen count, please remember that modesty should matter for Christian men and women.

Ladies, short shorts and short skirts, tight pants and dresses, low-cut shirts and blouses, and bare all bikinis may be in touch with the latest fashions, but it’s out of touch with holiness. Men, mowing the yard can be done just as easily with a shirt on, and leave the “muscle tee’s and the gun show” for the guys at the gym. People don’t have to see your masculinity to know you’re a man.

Don’t compromise godly values for worldly wardrobes. Dressing immodestly isn’t a matter of economics – it’s a matter of self-worth. Dressing immodestly isn’t a matter of opinion – it’s a matter of distinction. Dressing immodestly isn’t a matter of control – it’s a matter of consideration.

Immodesty from a Christian is nothing to sneeze at, whatever season we’re living in. EA

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is our life appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory. Therefore put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.” (Colossians 3:1-5)

The Greatest Peace Sign the World Has Ever Seen

For it pleased the Father that in [Jesus] all the fullness should dwell, and by Him to reconcile all things to Himself, by Him, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross. And you, who once were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works, yet now He has reconciled in the body of His flesh through death, to present you holy, and blameless, and above reproach in His sight— if indeed you continue in the faith, grounded and steadfast, and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel which you heard…” (Colossians 1:19-23)

How Do Our Words Taste?

Some have said that nearly 6,500 human languages exist! How many of those languages do you think has words that are kind? How many of those languages do you think has words that are hurtful? Probably about 6,500 of them, huh?

Knowing how to talk and knowing how we should talk are two different things aren’t they? Since the day God gave humanity the ability to speak different languages humanity has been using all the different words we know to do two things – help or hurt. “There is one who speaks like the piercings of a sword, But the tongue of the wise promotes health.” (Proverbs 12:18)

How would our words taste if we had to eat them? I believe James hints at this idea in James 3:7-12 when he said…

For every sort of beast and bird and every living thing on earth and in the sea has been controlled by man and is under his authority; But the tongue may not be controlled by man; it is an unresting evil, it is full of the poison of death. With it we give praise to our Lord and Father; and with it we put a curse on men who are made in God’s image. Out of the same mouth comes blessing and cursing. My brothers, it is not right for these things to be so. Does the fountain send from the same outlet sweet and bitter water? Is a fig-tree able to give us olives, my brothers, or do we get figs from a vine, or sweet water from the salt sea?” (BBE)

I want to quickly focus on verse 11 (the highlighted scripture) and what we can learn from it. (more…)

Help for the weary, worn, troubled and tired…

There are moments in life when it seems as if we can become so weary, worn, troubled and tired that no amount of sleep can bring the refreshment and relief that we desire; that is, if sleep is even possible. Once when David was dealing with a particular personal struggle he prayed to God saying, “I am weary with my groaning; All night I make my bed swim; I drench my couch with my tears.” (Psalm 6:6)

The fact is that some troubles are brought our way by others, but at other times the fact that we bring our own problems to our door can be seen in David’s life. Whatever the case may be, the weariness and worn feelings that come our way from time to time mean that we are human.

People need help. We are all in need of help at one point or another. Whether we are dealing with family issues, financial problems, job scares, health woes, sinful weaknesses or any of the emotional hardships that can come along with those and many other troublesome situations, God can help. He is our help – “God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.” (Psalm 46:1) Even the man who took out Goliath knew where his help came from. (more…)

Can You Find The Cat???

A little good and clean fun never hurt anyone…actually, it’s good for us – “A merry heart does good, like medicine,But a broken spirit dries the bones.” (Proverbs 17:22)

I got this picture in an email; it’s no “Where’s Waldo,” but I thought I would pass it along for the fun of it. I don’t know why the cat is there, but he’s taking a walk on the junk pile.

Can you find him? If you do, don’t tell where he’s at…let others enjoy the challenge of looking for him too.

Remember to smile and enjoy the fun in life when you get a chance!

Reasonable questions to ask about the rapture theory…

Every once in a while I still see a bumper sticker that says something like, “In case of rapture this car will be un-manned” or “When the rapture happens you can have the car.” You probably know that the word rapture is a popular one among many people in the religious world. But what you may not know is that the word itself is not used once in the KJV of the Bible and there is no solid support found in the original Greek manuscripts.

Now, I’m not saying that Jesus isn’t returning, that the dead won’t be raised or that the living won’t be caught up. Christ returning is definitely not a teaching foreign to the Bible. Jesus taught His disciples and warned others that He would return (Mark 14:62, John 14:3, 1st Cor. 11:24-26). But the doctrine of the second coming of Christ and the perverted doctrine of the rapture are not the same. One is right and the other is wrong.

Yes, I know the rapture is a popular teaching, but being popular and being right are not the same either. Think about some of the major components concerning the teaching of the rapture. The details depend upon who’s teaching it, but there are several common foundational teachings that crumble when they’re examined along with some clear statement scriptures found in the New Testament.

One major foundational teaching is that Jesus will return secretly to “rapture away” His disciples. If that’s true then why did the apostle John say that when Jesus returned everyone would see Him? Revelation 1:7 says, “Behold, He is coming with clouds, and every eye will see Him, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen.” The apostle Paul said Jesus will return with a shout! Why shout if it’s supposed to be a secret? “For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of an archangel, and with the trumpet of God” (1st Thessalonians 4:16) (more…)

Avoiding Spiritual Heart Disease

The number one cause of death for the last couple of generations in America has been heart disease. While physical death cannot be avoided (save Christ’s return), the problem with heart disease is that often it is something that results from an intentional lack of care and awareness on our own behalf. Sadly, physical heart disease has a spiritual counterpart.

Many of God’s people have given into, are suffering from or have died with spiritual heart disease (Proverbs 4:23; Matthew 15:18-20). This is a condition that CAN BE AVOIDED in many of the same ways that physical heart disease can be. Consider these suggestions for a moment:

DIET

Now when the tempter came to Him, he said, “If You are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” But He answered and said, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:3,4). Our spiritual diet matters!

EXERCISE

For bodily exercise profits a little, but godliness is profitable for all things, having promise of the life that now is and of that which is to come. This is a faithful saying and worthy of all acceptance.” (1st Timothy 4:8,9). Our spiritual exercise matters!

REST

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28-30). Our spiritual rest matters!

Sounds like directions right from the page of a doctor don’t they? It’s because they are – The Great Physician’s Handbook! (2nd Peter 1:3) The same Physician that not only told us how to avoid spiritual heart disease, He showed us how with His own life. EA

AND MEANS AND

Do you know what the word “and” means? From the elementary levels in school, kids are taught that the word “and” fulfills the role of a conjunction in a sentence. That means that the simple definition of “and” is, “along with; in addition too.

An example on how to use the word “and” would be: Go to the store and get a gallon of milk. When we want to tell someone to do two or more things in one sentence then we use the word “and.” I know all of that sounds like a “duh” statement, but I have a reason for speaking so plainly and simply, so please stick with me as I continue to explain.

Now, to be honest, English was really my least favorite subject in school, but I do remember some of the lessons that I was taught and the importance and meaning of “and” is one of them. Maybe one of the reasons I still remember it so well is because as a child I learned what the word “and” meant even before I started school. If my parents told me to do something by using the using the word “and,” then I knew whatever they were saying had better be done whether it was before or after the “and” was spoken.

It seems as if everyone completely understands what “and” means when it comes to everyday life. When someone gives us directions to a location we pay attention to every “and.” For example, if someone tells us to go straight and turn right at the second red light, then we look for the second red light so we can turn right. If you are cooking and the cookbook says to add one egg and a cup of flour, we don’t just add the egg; we add the egg and flour. Why? Because the cookbook said so when it used the word “and,” right?

You see, no person with a simple understanding of the English language will argue about what “and” means – that is until we start talking about what the Bible says about becoming a Christian. If the Bible uses the word “and,” why don’t we look at it the same way that we do any other time?

See if you can agree with the word “and” in all these scriptures. They are in order:

John 4:24; Romans 1:16; 1st John 1:8 “and” Mark 16:16.

God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.

For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ,for it is the power of God to salvation for everyone who believes, for the Jew first and also for the Greek.”

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.”

He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

Now here’s my whole reason for what I said in such plain language earlier. Does a person have to worship God in spirit and in truth? Can the gospel save Jews and Gentiles? If a person denies their sin, is the truth in them? Look at the verses and answer the questions. They are easy to answer because of the word “and.” Now, can a person be saved without being baptized? I guess it depends on what your definition of “and” is. Think about it. EA