Saturday, August 25, 2007

New Orleans if I were King

 It's been now two years since the onslaught of Katrina and the death and destruction she wrought.  I am convinced now more than I was then that the reason New Orleans is still a mess and in limbo is RACE. 
If this had been a city full of Norwegians there would have been no questions asked.  The parts above the flood would be rebuilt.  The wards underwater and sinking would be abandoned.  The houses, trees and infrastructure still standing in ruin would be pushed together and land filled for building upon years from now.  Till then they could be a nice garden for people to enjoy.
The rest could be left as a big hole in the ground to receive garbage and debris from the other areas like Mississippi.  In a few years there would be additional land recovered.  In a hundred years or so perhaps half the city would be back.  The rest would be a below sea level forest for people to enjoy.
But, we won't do this.  They aren't Norwegians.  They are black.  The city represents something that will never be again.
Let the town become a nice little town of 200,000 people and homes.  Nevermore New Orleans as it was before.
Did anyone ask if perhaps that's as it should have been?

I'm just Saying

A few months ago I went out on a safe limb and said that Hillary's running mate would NOT be Obama.  It will be Richardson. 
I could give you lots of reasons why, but you can figure out why.
Vice President Richardson, get used to it.  It makes her unbeatable.

Samurai Wisdom

A Haiku that spoke to me today, You draw your own conclusions.

Barn's burnt down --


I can see the moon.

Mizuta Masahide

Written in 1688

I'm in the army of the LORD

Amiee Herd said it better than I could have. I saw Christina Amapoor's take on God's Warriors. It was a hack job on good people in the Body of Christ. Sort of adult Jesus Camp except without understanding.

Mindless propaganda for mindless and soulless lemmings who believe everything CNN says.

The fact is that the equivalences CNN made between Jihadists and Christians were so lame and slanted to render the series laughable if it weren't so sad.

In today's PC culture Onward Christian Soldiers would be out as a hymn.

Certainly the children's church song kids (especially little boys) love to sing would be out of bounds:
I may never march in the infantry, Ride in the cavalry, Shoot the artillery.
I may never fly o'er the enemy, But I'm in the Lord's army. (yes, sir!)
I'm in the Lord's army, (yes, sir!) I'm in the Lord's army, (yes, sir!)
I may never march in the infantry, Ride in the Calvary, Shoot the artillery.
I may never fly o'er the enemy, But I'm in the Lord's army. (yes, sir!)

THAT'S the World View CNN tried to portray. It's soooooo wrong.

Glug Glug Glug

We are wet, really really wet.
Oh, Peggy and I are dry enough. The ol Sump Pump cranks away much of the day lifting the water from below the floor to outdoors. 
But since 1987 I haven't seen it this wet.  We have had 15" of rain in 25 days.  That does things to the ground, rivers, ponds, streams, basements, roads, sewers, electrical infrastructure etc.  All not good.  Even growing things don't prosper when it gets that wet. I have some dracaena and yucca in planters that just rotted off in the wet.
There is damage, a lot of damage.  People who built houses like I would like to build 4 feet off the river have a much better view of the river from their living room by looking straight down than they used to have.  Their shoes disappeared in their living room while on their feet.
Oh, it will go away to flood some poor downstream mope and then down from that.  We don't hold water on the land anymore.  We just flush it.  Now we pay the price.  Then those down river.
It's not as bad as Winnona MN where several people were killed when a flooding river washed them away.  I don't know the circumstances of that but it appears that people drove into fast moving water and were washed into eternity.
We have those kinds here too.  Pictures from underpasses with Humvees and Toyota 4 runners up to their doors from too much water and flooded out.  Then some nutcase in a Chevy Caviler says, "yea, I can make it" and 5 minutes later he is having to roll down his window to escape for his life and his car is totaled. 
Somehow my pity quotient for this kind of stupidity is less than it should be.  If I were the insurance company I would review my policy on writing that idiot a check.
But all in all, we are really wet.  I saw a bright round thing in the sky this morning.  I wonder what that is?

Hanging Cats

In the little ND town I grew up in there were some sadistic kids who enjoyed finding stray cats, taking them to the barn and with twine hanging them by the neck until dead.

Those sadistic kids became mean sadistic adults. Most mass murderers hung cats or equivalent as kids.

How we treat others and how we treat animals says much about our character. I try to be nice to waitstaff at restaurants, people who work "Menial" jobs" like I did once. I know what it's like to be acknowledged. So I do. How we treat people who cannot repay your kindness and who will never see you again is a clue to who you really are. I am conscience of that and try to live that way.

Same with animals. I don't even like to trap mice. I don't kill spiders if I don't have to. I will swerve to avoid a wandering gopher. Some people enjoy hitting them. Not me.

I revere life. All life. Animal and human.

Yet I hunt, proudly. I fish. I eat meat. I am offended when animals that could have been providers of food are wasted. Ergo my support of horse slaughter and butcher. In the movie "The God's Must be Crazy" the Little bushman hunter kills a gazelle or some such. After which he kneels by the dead animal and thanks it for being sacrificed for his meal.

Last night I ate venison. I always thank the deer I shoot for being my meal as I clean it. I like to do my own field dressing because I do it with respect and honor. If you aren't a hunter you can't understand.

I am convinced that many non hunters have a distorted view of what and who animals really are. As wrong as hanging cats is, revering an animal above it's station (treating them like children or people) is just as wrong. They are animals. They should be treated as such, no more, no less.

In a previous post I asked the question which was filled with more stupid and vile writers and commenters, Daily Kos or Huffington Post. In the race to the bottom I vote for the Huffington post today. Lawrence O'Donnell, a liberal without a lick of brains and soulless, writes that what Michael Vick did was no worse than catching fish. No, he hung dogs, like hanging cats and laughed about it. Sadistic. Mean. He did this as a kid I'll bet and he now does it as an adult. Perhaps being in the NFL requires a meanness that is over and above the norm. If that's the case I'll never make it in the NFL. I'm a tad old and overweight too.

Animals are not people. They deserve dignity. That's that. Vick is a mean guy.

Friday, August 24, 2007

An Emotional Response to Evil

I know as a Christian I'm supposed to be forgiving and compassionate.

Compassion isn't boundless and forgiveness is not without memory except by God himself.

Today the killer of the little girl in Florida of 6 who the murderer raped, bound with speaker wire, then eventually put in a black plastic garbage bag alive, sealed it and buried her alive is going to be executed unless the lawyers can get him off because he's mentally deficient.

I would have suggested otherwise. I would have taken him from the courtroom where a very large black plastic bag would be waiting. I would have a backhoe already dug a hole. Placed him alive in it and thrown him in the hole while the father and mother watched and then the backhoe pushes dirt on the screaming man in the bag just as he did to the little girl with the purple dolphin.

I know it's not a christian thought and I'll have to repent. But, things like this should be publicized and televised. Maybe, just maybe it will slow down a few pedophiles for a few days.

At least there would be one less. Even though the death sentence was pronounced, there is zero belief it will ever be carried out.

That is the real crime.

Reason 500,237 why I should not be King.

WWJD? I don't know if Jesus would do this, I just might.

I've never met a man I would rather be than ME.

Every Word that follows is directly from the Word of God and answers a question:

I'm fearfully and wonderfully made, chosen and anointed of God. Revealed of the mysteries never seen by mankind before. I am part of the tribe of believers. There are other tribes but I am part of a tribe that believes.

In a comment the question was asked, What will I do when I run out of highs?

He is the MOST HIGH GOD. Which means He is so much higher than I could ever be, than you could ever be. He never bores. He is never disappointing. If he is most high he is higher than any high could ever be high. His ways are higher than my ways.

I run hard after Him. I know that if you want to fill a cup of refreshing you have to be where the water is flowing. Sometimes it's a drip drip drip till it's full. Sometimes it's a gusher. But it's always new flow.

Do I have roots? Oh, yes. Rooted and grounded in Christ. I am living and believing to live in the fullness of Psalm 1.

1 Blessed is the man

who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
or sit in the seat of mockers.

2 But his delight is in the law of the LORD,
and on his law he meditates day and night.

3 He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
Whatever he does prospers.

4 Not so the wicked!
They are like chaff
that the wind blows away.

5 Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous.

6 For the LORD watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.


It is.


In the German Language the words "I(ch) Will" means I want to. But, if you think about it, saying I WILL is more beautiful than saying I want to.

A few thoughts on doing rather than just talking about it.

"We become just by performing just actions, temperate by performing temperate actions, brave by performing brave actions."
- Aristotle

"What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything?"
- Vincent Van Gogh

"It takes courage to push yourself to places that you have never been before. To test your limits ... to break through barriers."
- Unknown

"It is good to have an end to journey towards; but it is the journey that matters in the end."
- Ursula Leaguing

"We don't receive wisdom; we must discover it for ourselves after a journey that no one can take for us or spare us."
- Marcel Proust

"It is time for us all to stand and cheer for the doer, the achiever - the one who recognizes the challenge and does something about it."
- Vincent Lombardi

"It is the nature of thought to find its way into action."
- Christian Nevell Bovee

"Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater benefit."
- Napoleon Hill

Thank God for President Bush

I don't expect that many people will read or listen to the fabulous unsparing and brilliant speech made by President Bush to the VFW.

Linked above is the President's speech to the Veterans of Foreign Wars National Convention on August 22, 2007, I noticed that the mainstream media was printing very selective sound bites from his speech, particularly as it pertained to their role in determining the future of our country. While this is hardly surprising, it is yet a huge disservice to all Americans who deserve to know the depth of historical truths that have converged in this hour of world history.

He clearly defined the reasons he has taken the steps he has in Iraq.

If you have the courage read the whole thing. If you don't you have no right to criticize.

If you do read it you won't. You can listen to it. You can download it to your IPOD. You can print it out. You can get this a hundred ways. But you won't. It just might disturb your liberal theology.

I wish President Bush would have told us before. But, maybe he did just in time and maybe he is smarter than people think.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Where I been

Tuesday PM after an appointment Peggy and I jumped in the Buick and roared off to Milwaukee to the KCM Believers convention.

We have been to several of these and they are always encouraging. This was too. I need to hear a fresh word sometimes to flush the religion in my soul.

I noted a few changes which I found interesting.

  • The level of Worship was much higher than it has ever been, more intense, more passionate
  • Many 25 and younger people there. We older ones are changing worlds faster and faster. There are 55+ and 25 and under in attendance. What happened to the middle?
  • Len Mink who has been worship leader for years has developed a team. He's there but he no longer leads per se. That' may be why the worship was better. They needed a change.
  • The worship team (other than 4 singers) is a grand piano, drum, guitar and bass. They rocked the joint. One set had a Hammond B3. But otherwise they just made it happen. You don't need a lot but you do need that.
  • I heard some things spiritually I had never heard before. That's why I go to these things. I have not yet learned, heard or preached the whole counsel of God. No one yet has. No one can. But I want to get close. This is not for the religious. It's too intense. If you want to see a Pharisee rise up, they will in the face of this.

If you are interested in watching the worship set before each speaker you might consider tuning into the broadband feed. 60 countries from around the world did. Every state in the union except 4 was
represented in person. There were about 3500 people in attendance.

So, that's where I was. You probably didn't miss me. I needed to be encouraged again. I was.

Tune in. You just might be too.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Nail on the HEAD

A commenter on the previous post caused me to read AGAIN the last paragraph of Pastor O's missive. In reading it I was cut to the heart. I sometimes feel like a fraud and unworthy.

This one hit me. I'll repost it all alone for your consideration. After reading it again, I printed it out in 36 point type on one page and posted it on my wall. I needed to hear this.

We are in trouble when we fail to be a voice for God where He has placed or sent us; when we are not setting the right example to others who look up to us; when we fail to seek God for deliverance from our known sins, pretending as if all is well and when we take the enemy of our soul for granted as if he is always a fool.


I mentioned in an earlier post that I was friends with some Nigerian pastors and leaders who are making a global difference.

Pastor Omidiran is one such. I submit his latest writing for your consideration. It is full of encouragement to do things right.

His good teaching called:


Man could be accounted sinful by reason of what he is, by reason of what he does and by reason of what he does not. However, when we fail to do what we ought to do, we create an untold problem for others and ourselves.

In this study, we want to examine some instances when men sin because they failed to do something.

1. OMMISSION- not taking prompt action e.g Israel ’s error concerning the Gibeonites (Josh. 9:3-21)

"And Joshua made peace with them and made a league with them, to let them live: and the princes of the congregation sware unto them" v15

By reason of carelessness, Joshua and his people spared those they ought to have destroyed. They even went as far as swearing an oath of commitment to them. The costly error here is that they failed to seek the Lord. They acted presumptuously. How many times in your life have you also acted like this?

2. COMPROMISE- failure to categorically take a stand for God and against unrighteousness. Inability to actively reject that which is evil or unacceptable to God. E.g Eli became a weakling, a mere shadow of himself; he failed to call his wayward sons to order. The Lord’s anger came upon his entire household.

"Now the sons of Eli were sons of Belial; they knew not the LORD….Now Eli was very old and heard all that his sons did unto all Israel ; and how they lay with the women that were assemble at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation. And he said unto them, Why do ye such things? For I hear of your evil dealings by all these people. Nay my sons; for it is no good report that I hear: ye make the LORD’s people to transgress. If one man sin against another, the judge shall judge him; but if a man sin against the LORD, who shall intreat for him? Notwithstanding, they hearkened not unto the voice of their father, because the LORD would slay them" 1Sam.2:12,22-25
"And Samuel told him (Eli) every whit and hid nothing from him. And he said, It is the LORD: let him do what seemeth him good" 1Sam 3:18

Eli proved so weak and irresponsible. He lost all that he laboured for in ministry.

3. NEGLECT- E.g Israeli tribes who failed to take full charge of Canaan .
"As for the Jebusites the inhabitants of Jerusalem , the children of Judah could not drive them out: but the Jebusites dwell with the children of Judah at Jerusalem unto this day" Josh. 15:63
"And they drave not out the Canaanites that dwelt in Gezer : but the Canaanites dwell among the Ephraimites unto this day, and serve under tribute" Josh 16:10

"And Joshua said unto the children of Israel , How long are ye slack to go to possess the land, which the LORD God of your fathers hath given you?" Josh 18:3

Are we not also failing to possess our own possessions today? To what extent have we neglected our birthright and responsibilities in Christ? (Jer. 48:10). Oftentimes we miss our portion because of unbelief. Unbelief is a lazy attitude in the life of many heirs of the kingdom

4. INDIFFERENCE -E.g Lot who dwelt in Sodom and Gomorrah . He was content with staying there in as much as he was earning a prosperous living. Even when the Angels were rescuing him from the inevitable inferno of divine wrath, he was reluctant to move on (Gen. 19:15,16)

5. BEING BUSY DOING NOTHING- E.g the Prodigal son ( Luk. 15:11-32).The young man seemed to be making waves before other vain-minded men, but he was actually a failure before God. He never realized his failure until he lost all his possessions.

Do not wait to repent later. Repent when you may still be able to recover something. Actually there is no man who will not ultimately repent (now or later), but some will act too slow; they will actually weep and wail in hell but there shall be no more remedy then. Will you wait anymore before you amend your wicked ways before the Lord? Every religious effort of man when a he is out of tune with is Maker is a wasted enterprise.

6. SLACKNESS- Not being firm and decisive. God will not take this kindly with everyone to whom he has committed the destinies of fellow men. How much trouble Pastors and Church leaders caused by reason of indecision. Most often they do not want their big congregations to be offended and so they would not rebuke sharply when the Lord so requires.

"Cursed be he who does the work of the Lord negligently (with slackness, deceitfully)…" Jer. 48:10 AMP

7. FEAR OR TIMIDITY- 1Sam 15:24. When we fail to do what is right simply because we are yielding to the influences of people, those people will not be able to save us in the day of God’s wrath. Is it not better to do the will of God, even, if it is against popular expectation? Is it not costlier to sacrifice the interest of heaven for that of men? Is it not rather of more grievous pain to be rejected by the Lord than by men? Why not ask King Saul?

"And Saul said unto Samuel, I have sinned for I have transgressed the commandment of the LORD, and thy words: because I feared the people and obeyed their voice" 1Sam.15:24

8. UNTAMED LUST OR IN ORDINATE PASSION- E.g Samson, the weakest strong man. He was sold out to his fleshly cravings or appetite for strange women. His future, hope and destiny were truncated. He died as a blind slave along with the uncircumcised Philistines with whom he was romancing. (Judg. 14-16)

Every frivolous 'Samson' in this world will die ingloriously. Do not make yourself a cheap bread to Satan

Think about this: We are in trouble when we fail to be a voice for God where He has placed or sent us; when we are not setting the right example to others who look up to us; when we fail to seek God for deliverance from our known sins, pretending as if all is well and when we take the enemy of our soul for granted as if he is always a fool. SHALOM

Monday, August 20, 2007

The Sand that is Left on Top

Last night Peggy and I were with the Other pastors from the Berwyn Church. Planning and praying.

During the meeting Aaron said something that shook me a bit. He said, I have 40 years of ministry time left. He is planning his whole ministry future.

I listened and reflected on how much sand is still in the top of the hourglass of my life. I want to believe I have 15 years of ministry left in me. Or more.

But, life is short. Today is my Son Kevin's birthday. He is 36. I wish I were, or maybe not.

Aaron and Kevin are about the same age. 40 years ahead of them yet. It's all exciting. But, it's sobering too.

Redeem the time for the days are evil. That's what the word says. I think I'll get about redeeming.

An Old Old Spruce Tree

There is some discussion and controversy about this. I will tell what I know. My cousin Wally can tell what he knows.

Here's the story as told to me by Uncle Wally years ago. When I was born in 1945 shortly after that my dad planted this tree. That would now be 62 years ago. The tree is well over 62 feet high.

So, it would stand to reason.

Wally's story is different. He says my dad planted it when he was born. I don't know if that's so.

So, we'll see.

On the other hand if a big wind comes and blows it down what does that mean...........

I remember the song:

My grandfather's clock
Was too large for the shelf,
So it stood ninety years on the floor;
It was taller by half
Than the old man himself,
Though it weighed not a pennyweight more.
It was bought on the morn
Of the day that he was born,
And was always his treasure and pride;
But it stopped short
Never to go again,
When the old man died.

Ninety years without slumbering,
Tick, tock, tick, tock,
His life seconds numbering,
Tick, tock, tick, tock,
It stopped short
Never to go again,
When the old man died.

SO, old spruce, no matter what the story, live long and prosper. I plan to.

Why People Get FAT

Any port in a storm.

CNN reports that there is a virus that causes people to get fat.

Yea, that's the ticket.

Dying Well

May we all die as well as Tammy did. I agree with Rick on this bigtime.

August 20, 2007


"Tammy Faye Lived an Extraordinary Life and She Died Well"

An Extraordinary Person

On July 20, when Tammy Faye Messner passed away at age sixty-five, it was on the international news because she was considered one of the interesting and extraordinary people of these times. As the wife of Jim Bakker, she was a co-founder of Heritage USA, and one of the pioneers of Christian television. After the failure of the PTL ministry, Tammy Faye continued to surface in the news, and drew continual interest from millions because she was such an interesting person.

I only met Tammy Faye once, when she and her husband, Roe Messner, came to see the restoration work at the Heritage Grand Hotel and Conference Center. Her suggestions were both insightful and helpful, but she was also very encouraging. I was touched by her grace and dignity, and especially with her genuine concern for all of the former PTL partners. It was obvious that she did not care nearly as much about the buildings as she did the people, something we have resolved to always try to emulate.

As Tammy Faye's health deteriorated over the last few years, we received regular updates from her friends or family members. There was one recurring theme in every one of these reports--her faith in the Lord was strong. While her body was being relentlessly attacked by that most terrible enemy--cancer--her faith seemed to just grow stronger and stronger. Even when she was obviously in great pain, she never seemed to fail to take an opportunity to testify of the goodness and faithfulness of the Lord. She faced the greatest fear of all--the fear of death--not only with great grace and dignity, but seemingly without fear. That is possibly the greatest testimony of all of true faith.

Everyone who has lost a loved one to cancer knows that it is one of the most evil and terrible enemies of all. The Church will one day have total victory over this evil, and then no Christian will have to die that way. I prayed as I know multitudes did for Tammy Faye's deliverance from it, and though she may have lost the physical battle against cancer, death is always swallowed up in victory for those who die in Christ. I pray that the courage and dignity she maintained while fighting this battle will be passed onto others to fight the good fight and never quit. She never quit.

Tammy Faye lived an extraordinary life and she died well. I was honored to know her as little as I did. We are planning to do a memorial for her on our Wall of Faith at Heritage International. She deserves to be honored as a mother of the ministry that touched many millions, and will continue to touch many more. I recently talked to Roe Messner, who said the family was doing about as well as could be expected. Her children, Tammy Sue and Jamie, have of course taken her passing very hard and need our prayers.

This is also a hard time for many of the former PTL partners, who loved Tammy Faye like she loved them. Many of these have also been a remarkable demonstration of loyalty, forgiveness and faith through some of the most difficult and confusing times. Those who did not become bitter became better, and are now some of the strong pillars wherever they are found in the Body of Christ.

The foundation of our faith is redemption and restoration. The end of that whole story will be a good one. Let's not ever forget that the foundation of our faith is based on the resurrection! Those who die in the Lord, do not die! They live forever. Tammy Faye is more alive now than she has ever been, and she is a part of that great cloud of witnesses.

Rick Joyner
MorningStar Ministries

I stole this and post it shamelessly

The following is from a good basic course on theology taught at National Community Church in Washington DC.
It is well worth reading and reflecting on. My comments at the end.



The Holy Spirit
The nine fruit of the Spirit (Gal. 5:22-23) are the by-product of a Spirit-filled life and evidence of spiritual maturity. The nine gifts of the Spirit are different manifestations of the Spirit to build up the body (I Cor. 12:1-11). We are instructed to diligently seek the gifts (I Cor. 12:31, 14:1), but they must be exercised in an orderly way (I Cor. 14:26-33) in the context of love (I Cor. 13:1-13).
- From National Community Church Statement of Beliefs

“But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you.” John 14:26

Pneumatology: A study of who the Holy Spirit is, what He does, and the gifts He gives. (Horton, Systematic Theology)

The Holy Spirit is the third person of the Trinity. He comes from the Father and is sent by the Son. Symbols of the Holy Spirit include wind and breath (Genesis 1:2, John 3:8, John 20:22, Acts 2:2), water (John 4:10, 15, John 7:37-39), fire (Matthew 3:11, Luke 3:16, Acts 2:3), oil/anointing (Exodus 29:7, Acts 10:38, 1 John 2:20, 27), a seal (Ephesians 1:13-14, Ephesians 4:30, 2 Corinthians 1:22), and the dove (Luke 3:22). Each of these symbols gives us a window into the personality and work of the Spirit.

Work of the Spirit
  • Creation
    • Genesis 1:2, “The earth was formless and void, and darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was moving over the surface of the waters.”
    • Genesis 2:7, “Then the LORD God formed man of dust from the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being.” The Hebrew word used here for breath is ruach, meaning “Spirit.” Thus, the Spirit brings physical life.
    • Ezekiel 37:14. “I will put My Spirit within you and you will come to life, and I will place you on your own land. Then you will know that I, the LORD, have spoken and done it," declares the LORD.” Thus, the Spirit brings spiritual life.
  • Conviction and Calling
    • The Holy Spirit works in the conversion process as the agent who fosters conviction of sin. In addition to convicting people of sin, the Spirit is at work in conversion as the agent of God’s call directed towards sinful humans. (Grenz, Theology for the Community of God)
    • John 16:8, “And He, when He comes, will convict the world concerning sin and righteousness and judgment.”
    • John 15:26, “When the Helper comes, whom I will send to you from the Father, that is the Spirit of truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify about Me.”
  • Adoption
    • Adoption is the act whereby the Spirit makes us members of God’s family.
    • John 1:12, “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His name”
    • Romans 8:14-17 “For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out, "Abba! Father!" The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we are children of God, and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him.”
    • Ephesians 1:4-5, “He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will”
    • John Wesley, the founder of the Methodist church, explained his Christian conversion this way: “I exchanged the faith of a servant for the faith of a son.”
  • Sanctification (Spiritual Growth)
    • In sanctification, the Spirit of God works to make us more and more like Christ. “It is our cooperation with the Spirit in living out in daily life the regeneration, justification, freedom, and power which is ours through conversion, so that we grow into Christlikeness and service to God.” (Grenz, Theology for the Community of God)
    • The work of God’s free grace, whereby we are renewed in the whole man after the image of God, and we are enabled more and more to die unto sin and live unto righteousness. (Westminster Catechism)
    • Fruit of the Spirit- Galatians 5:22-23, But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
    • He helps us in prayer (Romans 8:26-27) and illuminates Scripture (John 16:13, 1 Corinthians 2:10) for us
  • Empowerment
    • “When the Holy Spirit came at Pentecost and thereafter, He gave power than enabled the ministry of Christ to be carried forward. It was not power in a general sense, that is, an increment of supernatural strength that could have many uses, but power for ministry that flowed from the Father through the Son.” (Williams, Renewal Theology)
    • Acts 1:4, 8, “Gathering them together, He commanded them not to leave Jerusalem, but to wait for what the Father had promised, ‘Which,’ He said, ‘you heard of from Me; for John baptized with water, but you will be baptized with the Holy Spirit not many days from now...but you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.’"
    • Romans 15:18-19, “For I will not presume to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me, resulting in the obedience of the Gentiles by word and deed, in the power of signs and wonders, in the power of the Spirit; so that from Jerusalem and round about as far as Illyricum. I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.”
Gifts of the Spirit

A spiritual gift is any ability that is empowered by the Holy Spirit and used in any ministry of the church. (Gudem, Bible Doctrine)

Gifts of the Spirit are list in the following passages:
  • 1 Corinthians 12:8-10
  • 1 Corinthians 12:28
  • Ephesians 4:11
  • Romans 12:6-8
  • 1 Corinthians 7:7
  • 1 Peter 4:11
The “charismatic gifts” are referenced in 1 Corinthians 12:8-10:

“For to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, and to another the word of knowledge according to the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit, and to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, and to another the effecting of miracles, and to another prophecy, and to another the distinguishing of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, and to another the interpretation of tongues.”

At NCC, we believe that the Holy Spirit continues to grant all gifts to the church. We believe the spiritual gifts…
  • Are designed to build up the body
    • 1 Corinthians 12:7, “But to each one is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.”
    • 1 Corinthians 14:26. “What is the outcome then, brethren? When you assemble, each one has a psalm, has a teaching, has a revelation, has a tongue, has an interpretation. Let all things be done for edification.”
  • Should be actively sought
    • 1 Corinthians 12:31, “But earnestly desire the greater gifts.”
    • 1 Corinthians 14:1, “Pursue love, yet desire earnestly spiritual gifts, but especially that you may prophesy.”
  • Should be exercised in an orderly way
    • 1 Corinthians 14:26-33. Verse 33, “for God is not a God of confusion but of peace, as in all the churches of the saints.”
  • Should be exercised in a context of love
    • 1 Corinthians 13:1-3, “If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. And if I give all my possessions to feed the poor, and if I surrender my body to be burned, but do not have love, it profits me nothing.”

Spiritual gifts are given for the following purposes:
  • To authenticate the Gospel message throughout the church age
  • To help those in need, thereby demonstrating God’s mercy and love
  • To equip people for ministry
  • To glorify God (Grudem, Bible Doctrine)
Two views on the charismatic gifts include cessationism and continuationism. They are defined as follows:
  • Cessationsism: the charismatic gifts were intended to cease after the New Testament
  • Continuationism: the charismatic gifts were intended to continue throughout history. Therefore, contemporary believers should be open to them and seek them.

At National Community Church, we boldly assert that all gifts of the Spirit are still present and active in the church today and should be aggressively sought by followers of Christ.

Being Filled With the Holy Spirit
“We have an old gas boiler in our house. The pilot light is on all the time. But the boiler is not always giving out heat and power. Some only
have the pilot light of the Holy Spirit in their lives, whereas when people are filled with the Holy Spirit, they begin to fire on all cylinders )if you will forgive me for mixing metaphors!). When you look at these people, you can almost see and feel the difference.” (Nicky Gumbel, Questions of Life)

In the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit came upon particular people at particular times for particular tasks (Bezalel- Exodus 31:3-5, Gideon- Judges 6:34, Samson- Judges 15:14, Isaiah- Isaiah 61:1-2)

Now, the Holy Spirit is no longer reserved for particular people at particular times for particular tasks. Rather, he is poured out on all who follow Christ.

Joel 2:28-29
“It will come about after this that I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; and your sons and daughters will prophesy, your old men will dream dreams, your young men will see visions. Even on the male and female servants I will pour out My Spirit in those days.”

Examples of the Holy Spirit being poured out on believers in the early church:
  • Disciples- John 20:21-23 and Acts 2
  • Samaritans- Acts 8:14-18
  • Ephesus- Acts 19:1-7
This good stuff from a Pastor at the Church Mark Batterson (who I have blogged on before) leads in DC. Mark is the Son in Law of Pastor Schmidgall at Calvary Church (AG) in Naperville who was my pastor till his death in 98. I saw this referenced on Julies Blog and thought you should see this.

constantly astounded at how people after this simple review of a simple gift can deny the power and purposes of the Fullness of the Spirit today.

Tradition and fear are effective blinders. Bad teaching makes it worse.

Yet, the bulk of Chisindom on the earth flows freely in the fullnes of the Holy Spirit. Why only the western church in Devloped countries like Europe and North America can't seem to grasp this and it's relationship to the lack of spritual ferfor in churches in those developmed countries is a disconnect I can't grasp.

My concern for America and all developed countries is, if we don't get this right soon, God in his wisdom will have to Undevelop up so we will be ready to enter into the fullness of his presnece and not the pulled punches Christianity the church in sophisiticated developed countries practice today. It is the lukewarm spew spoken of in Revelation. When people get a taste of the real thing they never go back again. Let's give them the real thing.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

What the Battle over Global Warming is all About, CONTROL

There are always those who want to control others. The methodologies change but the motives do not.

The ecofascists (and I use the term in the dictionary sense of nationalized socialism) want to use the government to control our movements and our productivity. AGW (anthroprogenic is the first A) alarmism is first and foremost about the elimination of the automobile, that evil device that allows American to live where they want to live. Without the car, we would have to huddle in centralized government building projects such as is seen in places like Moscow. Cold, dreary places that suck your soul from your body and imprison you in the clutches of an uncaring paternal government.

Americans thrive because of our mobility. We are also harder to control because of it. Liberals can tax and control people in one locality but when those people have had enough of such quasi-totalitarian schema they move and the aforementioned liberals lose their power.

Look at California. Once a land flowing with metaphorical milk and honey, the land of opportunity and unbridled capitalism. It is now marked by massive upper middle class white flight. I'm not sure of the current figure but I recently heard that 2 million whites move out of California every year.

Where are they going? Places like Atlanta, GA where taxes are lower, regulation is not nearly as onerous, and land prices are not taxed into unaffordability.

Outlaw the car and the utopian liberal dream a victim class sheeple populace will finally be realized.

Is Nigera the Key to Revival?

When you mention Nigeria to most Americans it represents a scam of some kind. Or oil. Or civil war. It seems like little good news comes out of Nigeria.

Yet, what we don't understand globally and ethnically is the superpower status of Nigeria. I have never been there. I probably will never go. But I know people from Nigeria who have great influence in the Body of Christ for GOOD.

Many years ago I heard a prophet of God say that the next global awakening will come from black Christians. I assumed in my Ameriocentric attitude that meant African American Christians.

If you were going to look carefully into who is doing what in Black Christianity you would have to take a second look at Nigeria. Some Facts:

  • Nigeria is the largest country in population in Africa
  • 1 in 4 African's are Nigerian
  • Of the 750 million black people on the planet one in six of all black people on the earth is Nigerian.
  • There are only 40 million black people in the whole of the USA. The American black church is significant only in it's lack of size. Nigeria is triple the size of all American Blacks.
  • The most aggressive vibrant moves of God going on in the earth are populated in large part by Nigerian pastor leaders.
  • The largest outbound missionary by numbers to countries of the world from Africa is Nigeria hands down.

I have a few Nigerian Pastor brothers. Pastor Essian, Pastor Omidarian, Pastor Felix. I know of many more.

Maybe it's true. Maybe the next spiritual awakening will come from the spiritual superpower that is Nigeria. Maybe the American Church, maybe even the Black Church in America will catch on fire because of it all.

I am a tiny part of this move. I am an American address for an Nigerian Pastor I have never met.

I may not till heaven.

BUT, the much despised and rejected and disrespected country of Nigeria seems to be a root source for a new move of the Spirit across the globe. Even the Nigerian Anglican Church is inviting American Anglicans to join them in rejecting the apostate American Anglican Episcopal church and it's homosexual bishop. The American and European Nigerian Pentecostal Churches are vibrant and growing like Topsy.

Seems like every time the move of the Spirit happens it's despised, rejected and disrespected.

Always has, always will.