What Will We Remember?

We come again to this special time of year when we remember friends and loved ones in a special way. We honor the memory of those who gave their lives for our country and for freedom. We ask now if they died in vain. We still enjoy freedom, but how long will we be free? We are squandering our freedom on things that will ultimately leave us enchained in slavery of one kind or another. You can be sure that those who lived in the Roman Empire in its glory days never expected to look back and see its collapse. How the mighty fell! We, in America, will share a similar fate if we fail to come to our senses in time. Psalm 9:17 issues this solemn warning, “The wicked shall be turned into Hell, and all the nations that forget God.” This warning has application for this time in history and for eternal destiny. Will we look back and remember how great that we were and mourn our collapse? Alexander de Tocqueville, with rare insight, pinpointed the choice. He said, ” Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great.” (emphasis mine). If we haven’t already reached the point of no return, it seems that our options are either persecution, some other form of judgment or revival and Spiritual awakening. Selah! Does the church have the Spiritual and moral fiber to lead America to reverse course? Remember, you and I who are born again, are the church. Will we do our part?   Ron

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Books Can Undermine Faith

Books can undergird truth or undermine faith (sometimes both). There is hidden danger in not a few books. The problem is a lingering idea handed down from previous generations. It has been assumed by many that if authors are published, they are to some degree experts and must know what they are talking about and therefore can be trusted. A vast amount of content in books, magazines and other media is totally unreliable and can be very powerful in undermining faith and good judgment. Never approach a book, no matter the author or the reputation of the author, without critically analyzing the content. Discernment is greatly lacking in many readers and authors. Even books by Christians (and generally assumed to be dependable Christian publishers) are apt to have unbiblical content. Godly standards have been lowered in many Christian novels. Commentaries and other study aids often teach things that will not hold up when looked at in the light of thorough Scriptural study. Isaiah 8:20 warns, “To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.” Many Christian schools and colleges are not training students to be intense researchers but rather are training them to pass along the positions of the school. Selah! II Timothy 2:15 tells us to study so that we will “….rightly divide the Word of Truth.” Failure to learn to rightly divide the Word brings shame.  Ron

Christian(?) Counseling

Things that undermine belief reach us in many forms. One area that is least likely to be suspected as a source of unbelief is Christian counseling. Let me underscore that there is true and reliable Christian counseling. However, there is counseling that is called Christian but is actually just secular counseling baptized in Scriptural terminology. Those providing this kind of counseling are likely sincere and thought that worldly counseling principles were valid and could be used in a Biblical way. It’s not unusual for some to say that the Bible doesn’t speak to some issues that we face today. We have lost sight of the fact that the Word of God has principles and guidelines for all issues of life. If human problems are caused by brain damage or chemical imbalance, seek medical help; if they are spiritual problems, the Bible has answers. Use of worldly psychological principles implies that Scripture alone is insufficient. There are Christian counselors who use only Scriptural principles. “Blessed is the man that walketh not in the counsel of the ungodly.” (From Psalm 1:1). This is true even when that counsel is wrapped in Scripture. I Corinthians 3:19 reminds us that “….the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God.” (I strongly recommend Jay Adam’s book, “Competent to Counsel.”). Selah! Unless God and man agree, trust what God says, not what man says!   Ron

Counsel from Friends

Often friends’ counsel is helpful; sometimes very helpful. However, sometimes it leads to unbelief and is even more dangerous coming from friends. Because we know them and trust them, we may not critically analyze their counsel. The situation is complicated even more, because friends advice and counsel is usually given with an honest desire to be helpful. Nevertheless, is their counsel Biblical? Friends will have varying levels of Scriptural understanding: some may have none at all. If we don’t check their advice against the Word of God, we may believe what we are told and end up failing to believe what the Bible clearly teaches. For example, a friend, one who may have been a victim of someone else’s unbelief, may sincerely believe that you have to find a way to reconcile Scripture with the findings of (what is considered to be) science. True science must always bend to the Bible. Many Christian colleges teach that God used evolution to create. Instead of six literal days, they say, God used long periods of time to create. Will we believe what God clearly states in His Word or will we share in the unbelief passed on by a well-meaning friend? Check all counsel against the Word of God! Once again we are admonished to “prove all things; hold fast that which is good” (I Thessalonians 5:21). Selah! That which is good will not conflict with God’s Word.  Ron

Another Attempt to Win Your Confidence

Our modern educational system has lots of knowledge but are without God’s wisdom. They have the earthly wisdom to apply their knowledge. Quite often, they fail to use their knowledge wisely. However, their wisdom only has value in this world. Multitudes have a wisdom that makes life better here but they have no wisdom in relation to the hereafter. What folly to plan for this life and ignore eternity. Our educational system is bankrupt Spiritually. Why? Because, as Proverbs 1:7 tells us, “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.”  Knowledge that truly counts begins with God! With all of mankind’s earthly knowledge and wisdom, we have not eliminated crime, hatred, wars, poverty, etc. We have lost our sense of morality. We have no anchor or compass to stabilize us on our journey through life. We have worshipped at the altar of man’s wisdom, only to watch as our idol fails us. Trusting man’s wisdom, whose source of knowledge issues out of Spiritual blindness and sin darkened minds, is to lean on a reed that will collapse and leave us broken. When we seek God; when we trust Jesus Christ and receive Him as Lord and Savior, the blindness and the hopelessness lifts. “For the LORD giveth wisdom: out of His mouth cometh knowledge and understanding” (Proverbs 2:6). Selah! Shall we believe man or God? Eternity awaits our decision.  Ron

Competing for Your Trust

There is a strange tendency in fallen human nature. We seem to have a skeptic’s approach to the Bible but easily swallow what so-called science dishes out. We are more apt to believe this false science than the simple Truths of Scripture. That is, until we are born again and begin to realize that God’s Word is always right. However, some even doubt after they are saved. They are so taken with what scientists teach, that they try to make the Bible harmonize with the claims of these scientists. How foolish! The claims of science change frequently. Psalm 119:89 reminds us that, “For ever, O LORD, Thy Word is settled in Heaven.” Why do we trust fallen men’s reasoning and insult God by attempting to make His Word accommodate to the output of those that are Spiritually blind? Bring the current thinking of unsaved people to the Bible and if their teaching goes against the Bible, let them change their thinking to align with God’s Word. Science, as it is espoused today, has been wrong many times; the Scriptures have never been proven wrong. Some have thought the Word of God to be wrong, only to discover later that it was right all along. Men’s reasoning often proves to be sinking sand. God’s Truth is a solid rock foundation for this life and the one to come. ” It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man” (Psalm 117:8). Selah! Trust God and you will never regret it; fail to trust Him and you will regret it forever!   Ron

Understanding Unbelief

Many people think of “believing” as a sort of “feeling” that something is true. They pray for faith. They say that they want to believe but that they have doubts. Does God call for something vague and weak? Of course not! At the risk of redundancy, let me point out that unbelief is the opposite of belief. Instead of looking for a “feeling” of confidence, we have a decision to make. Will we believe what we want to believe or what God has chosen to reveal to us? For example, we have certain ideas in our minds. (Sometimes, they are right; often, they are not). Will we choose to believe what we think or what God says in the Bible? This is the crux of the matter. Will we accept that the Bible is always right or will we decide that what we think is right and the Bible isn’t right? We may even have honest questions about the Bible. Have we ever spent time and effort to discover the evidence for the Bible’s claims; that it is indeed the Word of God? If God has revealed Himself in the Bible (and He has), what source of information is most reliable, His absolute Truth, or men’s constantly changing and often wrong ideas? Proverbs 3:5 reminds us, “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.” Regardless of feelings or our own ideas, choose to believe God. We have often been wrong; He never has been wrong! Selah! Our eternal destiny depends on what we choose to believe!   Ron