Tuesday, November 11, 2008

J.C. Ryle - The Eye of God

J.C. Ryle - The Eye of God, Thoughts for Young Men

- Special Rules for Young People -

(3) For another thing, resolve never to forget the eye of God. The eye of God! Think of that. Everywhere, in every house, in every field, in every room, in every company, alone or in a crowd, the eye of God is always upon you. "The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good." (Prov. 15:3), and they are eyes that read hearts as well as actions (Heb. 4:12, 13).

Endeavor, I beseech you, to realize this fact. Remember that you have to deal with an all-seeing God, - a God who never slumbers nor sleeps (Ps. 121:4), - a God who understands your thoughts afar off (Ps. 139:2), and with whom the night shines as the day. You may leave your father's house, and go away, like the prodigal, into a far country, and think that there is nobody to watch your conduct; but the eye and ear of God are there before you. You may deceive your parents or employers, you may tell them falsehoods, and be one thing before their faces, and another behind their backs, but you cannot deveice God. He knows you through and through. He heard what you said as you spoke to people today. He knows what you are thinking of at this minute. He has set your most secret sins in the light of His countenance, and they will one day come out before the world to your shame, unless you take heed.

How little is this really felt! How many things are done continually, which men would never do if they thought they were seen! How many matters are transacted in the chambers of imagination, which would never bear the light of day! Yes; men entertain thoughts in private, and say words in private, and do acts in private, which they would be ashamed and blush to have exposed before the world. The sound of a footstep coming has stopped many a deed of wickedness. A knock at the door has caused many an evil work to be hastily suspended, and hurriedly laid aside. But oh, what miserable driveling folly is all this! There is an all-seeing Witness with us wherever we go. Lock the door, draw down the blinds, close the shutters, put out the light; it does not matter, it makes no difference; God is everywhere, you cannot shut Him out, or prevent His seeing. "All things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account" (Heb. 4:13). Well did young Joseph understand this when his master's wife tempted him. There was no one in the house to see them, no human eye to witness against him; but Joseph was one who lived as seeing Him that is invisible: "How can I do this great wickedness," he said, "and sin against God?" (Gen. 39:9)

I ask you to read Psalm 139. I advise you to learn it by heart. Make it the test of all your dealings in this world's business: say to yourself often, "Do I remember that God sees me?"
Live as in the sight of God. This is what Abraham did, - he walked with Him. This is what Enoch did, - he walked with Him. This is what heaven itself will be, - the eternal presence of God. Do nothing you would not like God to see. Say nothing you would not like God to hear. Write nothing you would not like God to read. Go no place where you would not like God to find you. Read no book of which you would not like God to say, "Show it to Me." Never spend your time in such a way that you would not like to have God say, "What are you doing?"

Saturday, October 4, 2008

7 C's of History - 3rd C: Catastrophe

Preached by David Kautt on Sunday, September 21, 2008 at Northwest Christian Church

Scripture passage: Genesis 6:5 – 8:

5 The LORD saw how great man's wickedness on the earth had become, and that every inclination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil all the time. 6 The LORD was grieved that he had made man on the earth, and his heart was filled with pain. 7 So the LORD said, "I will wipe mankind, whom I have created, from the face of the earth—men and animals, and creatures that move along the ground, and birds of the air—for I am grieved that I have made them." 8 But Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD.

Genesis 6:11 – 22:

11 Now the earth was corrupt in God's sight and was full of violence. 12 God saw how corrupt the earth had become, for all the people on earth had corrupted their ways. 13 So God said to Noah, "I am going to put an end to all people, for the earth is filled with violence because of them. I am surely going to destroy both them and the earth. 14 So make yourself an ark of cypress wood; make rooms in it and coat it with pitch inside and out. 15 This is how you are to build it: The ark is to be 450 feet long, 75 feet wide and 45 feet high. 16 Make a roof for it and finish the ark to within 18 inches of the top. Put a door in the side of the ark and make lower, middle and upper decks. 17 I am going to bring floodwaters on the earth to destroy all life under the heavens, every creature that has the breath of life in it. Everything on earth will perish. 18 But I will establish my covenant with you, and you will enter the ark—you and your sons and your wife and your sons' wives with you. 19 You are to bring into the ark two of all living creatures, male and female, to keep them alive with you. 20 Two of every kind of bird, of every kind of animal and of every kind of creature that moves along the ground will come to you to be kept alive. 21 You are to take every kind of food that is to be eaten and store it away as food for you and for them."
22 Noah did everything just as God commanded him

The Seven ‘C’s’ of History…

So far in our look at these central events of human history their Biblical back ground, and their significance for our lives we have examined what we need to know from Genesis chapter one and two regarding ‘C’ number one: Creation. "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." and, you and me, too! And, as created we are accountable to Him! He made us to please Him. He made us, and we shouldn’t try to return the favor! ‘Creation’, that’s ‘C’ number one.

Then there’s Corruption. ‘Corruption’, when we move from the final words of Genesis chapters one and two, into Genesis chapter three and beyond, we move from what God said and said was "Very Good", into sin and into its awful ‘wage’; its horrible ‘payoff’: DEATH and all that goes with it! Corruption, why is there sickness and suffering and disease and death in this world? Is it because it has ALWAYS been that way? That’s evolution’s answer! Evolution teaches that DEATH is a friend! Or, is the reason for sickness and suffering and death because man’s sin turned God’s good (very good) creative plan upside down? That’s the answer, the Divinely-supplied answer, found in this Book.

Creation, Corruption; what is ‘C’ number three? ‘C’ number three of History is what we are calling ‘Catastrophe’.

Before we look at this important aspect of our 7 ‘C’s’ of History outline (taken primarily from Genesis chapters six through nine) allow me to ask for a quick show of hands. How many of you have had the opportunity, over the last few days, to view any of the photographs or TV film footage of the damage caused in the Southeast Texas area by Hurricane Ike? It’s a horrible, and horrific scene, if I do say so myself. But listen, first thing, the first thing we need to know and remember about this third ‘C’ of history (‘Catastrophe’) is this: whether it be the storm of wind and rain, that effected our gulf coast region, the meteorologists called "Hurricane Ike", or the global flood, the world-covering flood or Noah’s day (as recorded in Genesis chapters six through nine); lets remember: what we’re talking about, what we’re looking at in those newspaper photographs and TV film footages (and what Geologists are digging up and discovering all over the face of the earth) is not the evidence of incredible displays by ‘Mother Nature’ at work! No! Rather, what we’ve seen and heard and yes, most of all read, is undeniable evidence of God’s power at work in His world!

The hymn-writer put it so well, when He penned the essence of Psalm 50, verse 12, in these immortal words, "This is my Father’s world… I rest me in the thought, of rocks and trees, of skies and seas, His hand the wonders wrought." "Mother Nature!" Fooey! That’s a pagan religious concept, beloved, do you know that?! Whether it be the localized storm of wind and waves and water we’re calling "Hurricane Ike", or more significantly – for the sake of this study – that world-encompassing, mountain-peak-covering flood of Noah’s day, look at it! Look at it please, through this window (the Bible) and you’ll see: these are not illustrations of the hand of ‘Mother Nature’, there is no such person! No! These powerful cataclysmic events are none other than the powerful hand of our God at work! What an awesome and mighty God we serve, Amen?! Amen!
Secondly, and I believe much, much more seriously and soberly, the flood – the world-wide deluge of Noah’s day – what was it?

Can’t you just imagine the skeptical, political cartoonists of Noah’s day? Mocking at Noah’s family building this huge boat! A barge-like ship that was 450 feet long, beloved, that’s a football field and a half long! It was large! 75 feet wide & 45 feet high! This was a huge boat; and, from what scientists and engineers have surmised, an incredibly well-designed one, also! Built not only to house a pair of animals – from each kind – you know, two: a male and female of the dog kind (of the canine family), and two, male and female, of the cat kind (of the feline family), and so on.
This incredibly well designed boat not only was built to house the animals and Noah and his family – and all they would need for more than a year of time that they would spend on that boat – but, it also was intricately fashioned so as to withstand all the upheaval that would go with a deluge of this might! 40 days and nights of rain pouring down, down from the windows of heaven; and other things spewing up, up, up when the fountains of the great deep were broken apart.

Imagine the skeptical, political cartoonists of Noah’s day, mocking Noah and his family, making fun of their huge work project, and scoffing at their humble, yet very fervent preaching about getting ready! "Ha! World-wide flood! Ha! What does old Noah thinks God’s gonna do, turn on heaven’s sprinkler system and forget about it? World-wide flood! Ha! It will never happen!"

Beloved, what was the globe-covering deluge of Noah’s day? A cartoonist’s depiction that never came to pass? No! Listen and listen well to this very sobering fact! It was the Justice and Judgement of God with respect to sin! "Be sure," the Bible says, "Be sure, your sins will find you out." They will! "Be not deceived," don’t let Satan fool you, like he did the people of Noah’s day, "God is not mocked!" The massive fossil record of our day – the unbelieving, skeptical geologists don’t recognize it, but beloved we ought to - what is that fossil record? It is the testimony of a grave-yard, a world-wide ‘grave-yard’ bearing witness to the wickedness of man and his rejection of God’s offer of an ark of safety, God’s provision; a way of escape from the judgment!

‘Catastrophe’, that’s what ‘C’ number three is. Then, notice also, with me, beloved, that ‘C’ number three of History – this one we’ve labeled ‘Catastrophe’, because it refers to the globe-covering flood of Noah’s day – what is it? What does it picture for us?

Genesis 6, verse 8 – I love this verse – set over against God’s just and righteous response to the pervasive wickedness of mankind in that day and time: "I will destroy man whom I have created…for I am sorry that I have made them…" Set over against the sad and painful message of verse seven, is the very next verse in the text: Genesis 6, verse 8, and notice what it says, notice it’s marvelous emphasis in contrast to verse seven’s emphasis on God’s judgment: "But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord…"

My friends, I know it may be hard to see – at first, especially considering all the devastation that a world-wide judgment on sin and sinners would bring to pass – but listen, and look, Genesis 6, verses seven and eight; or, take one of my New Testament favorites: Romans 6, verse 23; and, what do you see? What do you hear? Do you see and hear only, "the wages of sin is death?" Is that all there is in this third ‘C’? No! Genesis 6, verse 8 – and the rest of Romans 6, verse 23 – "The wages of sin is death," yes! "But, the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord." Our Ark of Salvation!

‘C’ number three (Catastrophe) it isn’t all gloom and doom! No! The mercy of God! The kindness and compassion of God, do you see it? You need to see it, beloved! Even with the gloom and doom for every one else, there was grace – God’s amazing grace for Noah, his wife, their three sons and their three sons’ wives – for eight people. Eight precious souls God rescued and delivered from those horrible flood waters through His divinely ordained mechanism an ark of safety! This book – way over in the New Testament – indicates that, ultimately, Jesus (God’s dearly Loved Son) is the ultimate Ark of Safety! Are you in Him? Are you?
‘C’ number three of History, what is it that God wants us to see though this real event, from Mankind’s history, the catastrophic world-wide flood of Noah’s day? He wants us to see the power of God, doesn’t He? Yes! He wants us to see the justice and judgement of God, doesn’t He? Yes! And He wants us to see the mercy of God, doesn’t He? Yes! He wants us, as we look again at these critical early chapters from the Book of Genesis, to see all these things, my friends. But, listen, He also wants us to see His faithfulness! God also wants us to make careful notice of the fact that our God keeps His promises! Genesis six, verse seven, what was God’s promise there? "I will destroy man and beast and bird and creeping thing." "I will." And did He do it? You bet he did! Those billions of dead things, buried in rock layers all over the earth, they weren’t put there over the course of millions and millions of years of gradual erosion and decay and deposition! No! They were laid down by water, a huge globe-covering amount of water, all at once. Why? Because God is faithful! But, you know something else, my friends? A world-wide catastrophe wasn’t the only thing God promised in Noah’s day! No! What else did He say He would do? Genesis 9, verses 8 through 17:

8 Then God spoke to Noah and to his sons with him, saying: 9 "and as for Me, behold, I will establish My covenant with you and with your descendants after you, 10 and with every living creature that is with you: the birds, the cattle and every beast of the earth with you, of all that go out of the ark, every beast of the earth. 11 Thus I establish My covenant with you: never again shall all flesh be cut off by the waters of the flood; never again shall there be a flood to destroy the earth." 12 And God said: "This is the sign of the covenant which I make between Me and you, and every living creature that is with you, for perpetual generations: 13 I set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. 14 It shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud; 15 and I will remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living creature of all flesh; the waters shall never again become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 The rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I will look on it to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth." 17 And God said to Noah, "This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between Me and all flesh that is on the earth."

Beloved, when God sent that incredible global deluge upon those wicked people, what was He doing? He was keeping His promise, He was showing His faithfulness! Guess what? Every time you and I watch the storm clouds gather ,and see the lightning and hear the thunder and watch the rain, guess what? When that magnificent rainbow comes out afterwards what is it declaring you and me? Do you know? Beloved, it is declaring loud and clear – for all to see and hear – that our God still keeps His promises! That our God still is faithful!

Genesis chapters six through nine and their record of a world-wide flood and an ark that saved eight precious souls, and a pair of animals of each kind – I don’t know about you – but, when I read something like that, I’m tempted, my friends, to relegate it to the past, to that part of my bookshelf marked "History". And to wipe my hands and be done with it! But, listen! This Book won’t let you and me be done with it!

No! Rather, if you go over to the New Testament – to passages like Matthew 24 and Luke 12 and 1 Peter 3 and 2 Peter 3 – you know what you will find out? You will find out that this moving account from our ancestor’s History points forward to our future destiny. Beloved, just as in Noah’s day, there is COMING a day, when God will separate the sheep from the goats and the wheat from the tares and the fruitful branches from the unfruitful ones! And, on that day a cataclysm of even greater magnitude will come like a thief in the night to destroy the entirety of the created realm; no, not with water, but with consuming fire. And, those who are in the Ark of Safety will come through it unscathed, only to enjoy and posses God’s New Creation afterwards, and forever! But, such is not the case for those who scoff, and refuse to believe that anything like what happened in Noah’s Day would ever happen again! But, believe me, my loved ones, it will! It will!

2 Peter three, verse 9 – read it sometime, my friends. In essence it says that God’s slowness in keeping this promise – the one about the future catastrophe – is not an indication that He won’t keep His promise! No! Rather, it is a signal to all, to all who delay, that He is being patient, incredibly patient with you, in hopes that you will repent and get in the Ark!

Tick…tick…tick…tick. How much time is left on God’s clock? Anybody dare to venture a gues? Tick…tick…tick…tick. ‘C’ number three declares loud and clear: "Behold, now is the acceptable time, behold, now – today – is the day of salvation!"

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

7 C's of History - 2nd C: Corruption

Preached by David Kautt on September 14th, 2008 at Northwest Christian Church:

Scripture passages: Romans 5:12:

12 Therefore, just as through one man sin entered the world, and death through sin, and thus death spread to all men, because all sinned— (NKJV)

1 Corinthians 15:21-22:

21 For since by man came death, by Man also came the resurrection of the dead. 22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ all shall be made alive. (NKJV)

Romans 8:18 - 23:

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. 19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; 21 because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.

The Seven C's of History. Last LORD's day we began a look at this subject: the Seven C's of History, in order to compare them and contrast them with the secular humanist, evolutionary point-of-view held by so many. And also, so as to prepare and equip us, as Christians, with reasons, logical, meaningful and most of all, Biblical reasons for the hope we have in Jesus Christ.

I don't know if you realize or not, my friends, but there's a war going on right now in our world, in our society, and I'm not talking about the ones where bombs & tanks & guns are being used as weapons. Rather, the war of which I speak is a war over that immortal question Pontius Pilate asked Jesus: "What is truth?" "What is truth?" (See John 18:38) What is the truth regarding the reason behind everything, who we are, who we got here, why we are here, and where are we going? Is the truth about ultimate origins to be summed up like this: "Something came from nothing, across the span of millions, even billions of years, through the agency of blind chance, finally, folks like us are on the scene? Is that the truth about ultimate origins and causes? Or, is the truth that which is summed up in the very first verse of this Book, "In the beginning God created the heavens & the earth."?

Creation at the hands of the All-Wise, All-Powerful Creator, that's the first 'C' of history, and that's the truth about ultimate origins. But, what about the second? Before we explore it and explain it, allow me to ask you, how many of you noticed the messages on our church signboard this morning, as you entered the building? Two questions, two penetrating questions, that likely cause even the best prepared of us to squirm a little bit. Number one, "Why is there death and suffering?" Why is there death and suffering? What is the truth about those two subjects? And, along with that, question number two, "Why does God allow hurricanes?" Why did God allow Ike to pound the Texas gulf coast, just 24 hours, or so, ago?

Corruption, that's the second 'C' of history. But does it adequately, effectively, logically and yes, most important of all, explain the problem of death and suffering, in a Biblical way? Beloved, I don't know if you realize or not, but, from the vantage point of secular humanism and Darwinian evolution, death is a friend. Death is, that means, that mechanism, if you will, through which greater, up-the-ladder, evolutionary development and improvement come to pass. Darwinian evolution, the heart and soul of secular humanism;s theology, philosophy, biology, and so on. In effect, Darwinian evolution teaches that is a friend!

Now, before we look at what God's Word has to say about all of that, allow me just to ask you to respond to that statement, "Death is a friend" from the stand point of your heart and your mind. For example you take a trip to the cemetery following the hearse, as it carries the lifeless form of your spouse, your child, your parent, your friend; is death a friend? Is is?! Or, how about this scenario: you're seated in your doctor's office, when in walks the Physician with a most grim expression on his face, and the words, the news, "Your condition is terminal!" Some of you have been there in that office, recently! How did you respond? Is death a friend? Is it?! What is the truth about suffering and death? Are they a friend, sort of "pave stones" in the "thorough-fare" called "evolutionary progress". Or, or, are they to be blamed on God?! How could a good God, a loving God allow a terrible, devastating event like Hurricane Ike to occur? Or, is there a third possibility, here? What is the truth about suffering and death?

The first 'C' of history this divinely inspired Book presents is the one we labeled Creation. Creation. How does that portion of history begin and end? Do you remember? Genesis chapter one; it begins with the awesome, powerful wisdom of God, our Creator. And, it runs all the way through to the end, Genesis 1, verse 31; not with death, but with life; not with what our heart and soul screams is bad, but with what God declares to be good, very, very good! What is the truth about suffering and death; about hurricanes and their horrible devastation? Genesis chapter 3 provides the case-in-point. And, places like Romans 5:12, 1 Corinthians 15:21-22 and Romans 8:18-23, supply the explanation and interpretation. Beloved, the truth about suffering and death, about hurricanes and their awful devastation, is not that is has always been - millions, even billions of years of slow, gradual upward (??), yes "progress" - nor is it to be found in blaming God, He caused it! Rather, my friends, do we believe, really believe what this Book says? The truth about suffering and death, according to this Book; is that one man, Adam, sinned and through that one man's sin, suffering and it's ultimate conclusion, death, entered into the world! In Adam, all die! ALL! And yes, because of sin, Creation, plants, plan-ets, animals, and people - all creation - groans. Why? Because death is a friend? No! But because death is the ultimate foe!

Corruption, the awful effects of sin - Adam's sin - and yes, our sin, upon our lives and upon this world. I want to give you at least five reasons why this second 'C' of history, why we simply must not let go of it or trade it away for the "death is a friend" way of thinking.

First, the "death is a friend" evolutionary mind-set, what impact does it have on one's view of life? One has to look no further back into the history of mankind than to the days of Adolf Hitler and godless Nazi Regime, to see it. One has to go no further than across town to that place called the 'Planned Parenthood Clinic', to see that Charles Darwin "Death is a friend" viewpoint actually serves to cheapen the value of life! "Get out of the way, you weak ones! Get out of the way, you defectives ones! Get out of the way, you elderly and in-firmed ones! Get out of the way, you unwanted ones!" We must cling to 'C' number two - Corruption - as the explanation for sickness, suffering and death, lest we sink into the cesspool of abortion, infanticide and euthanasia; the view-point that ought right to be called "Pro-death"!

Second, we must reject the "Death is a friend" evolutionary model, because of how it completely cuts sin out of the picture! You think about it, millions, perhaps even billions of years of death prior to mankind's arrival; through this process of evolutionary development, how could God called millions - maybe even billions - of years of death, "good"?! Fact is, He didn't! Furthermore, millions and billions of years of death, prior to the appearance of Adam and Eve - and their sin - in the Garden of Eden, what does that do? It directly contradicts Genesis 1 through 3, Romans 5 and 8, and 1 Corinthians 15!

Third, look ahead to the last 3 'C's' of history (Christ, Cross & Consummation), and think with me: If sin is not the cause, the reason, behind death, then what is the reason for Christ's coming to this earth? Then what is the meaning and purpose of the Cross? Do you see it, my Loved Ones? If sin is not the reason for sickness, suffering and death, then Jesus' death - Jesus' sacrificial, substitutionary death for us - was un-necessary; there is no reason - despite what the apostle Paul declares in Romans 5:6-11 - for God to "demonstrate His love for us, in that while we were yet sinners, powerless, ungodly, and (even His enemies), Christ died for us." There's no reason, no purpose for the Cross, if death and suffering and sin are not connected!

Fourth, what of the gospel, and what of the task of proclaiming the gospel? If death is friend and not foe, if the evolutionary explanation for the how and why of suffering and death is the truth; then, not only is our preaching in vain, so is our faith! "Let us eat and drink (and be merry), we're gonna die tomorrow, anyway, right?!" (1 Corinthians 15:12 - 34)

Last of all, if the viewpoint of secular humanism and Darwinian evolution, about death is right - that death is man's ultimate end - then what of our hope? What of our hope? There is no light at the end of the tunnel, marked "Bondage to Decay"! If death is the end... there is no joy - just ahead - as the groan of this age ends and the glory of the age to come begins, forever! There is none of this, if Corruption and death is not linked to sin!

But listen, beloved - listen - one the authority of the One who is Truth, I stand before you today to declare to you that Corruption - sickness and disease, hurricanes and devastation, and death - is not a friend, but a foe! Sickness and disease, hurricanes and devastation, and death, these are not what always has been; but what entered into this world when Adam and Eve deliberately broke God's law.

No, listen, my friends - listen - this explanation of death, corruption as a result of sin, does not serve to cheapen life; rather, it serves to underscore, underscore, just how valuable life - all human life - is! And, instead of gutting the gospel, by negating the necessity of the Cross of Christ, what does 'C' number two do? Genesis 3, verse 15, it points us forward to the Seed of woman, Jesus Christ, begotten of God the Father, but born of the virgin Mary, that He might crush the head of the Serpent and defeat death once and for all!

Finally, this explanation - this one right here in this Book - as to the truth about death and suffering, you know what it does? How is ought to impact you and me? Let me read it to you one more time:

18 For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us. 19 For the earnest expectation of the creation eagerly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. 20 For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; 21 because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body.

Corruption, the second 'C' of history, how does it answer the age-old questions regarding the reasons behind suffering and death - hurricanes and devastation? Are you listening? This Book answers those questions, not with fallen man's opinions, but with the truth - the simple, powerful, liberating, hope-supplying truth - from the One who is Truth!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

7 C's of History - 1st C: Creation

Preached by David Kautt on September 7th, 2008 at Northwest Christian Church:

Scripture passages: Psalm 8:1-9:

1 O LORD, our LORD, how excellent is Your name in all the earth, who have set Your glory above the heavens! 2 Out of the mouth of babes & nursing infants You have ordained strength, because of Your enemies, that You may silence the enemy and the avenger. 3 When I consider Your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have ordained, 4 what is man that You are mindful of him, and the son of man that You visit him? 5 For You have made him a little lower than the angels, and You have crowned him with glory and honor. 6 You have made him to have dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet, 7 all sheep and oxen even the beasts of the field, 8 the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea that pass through the paths of the seas. 9 O LORD, our LORD, how excellent is Your name in all the earth!

& Psalm 19:1-6:

1 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. 2 Day unto day utters speech, night unto night reveals knowledge. 3 There is no speech nor language where their voice is not heard. 4 Their line has gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them He has set a tabernacle for the sun, 5 which is like a bridegroom coming out of his chamber, and rejoices like a strong man to run its race. 6 Its rising is from one end of heaven, and its circuit to the other end; and there is nothing hidden from its heat.

Exactly 3 years ago this week, my family and I had the privilege of hearing Biblical Creationist speaker, Ken Ham, of the Answers In Genesis ministry, in person. And, going back even father that that, Julia and the children and I have also enjoyed opportunities to see, hear and meet other Creationist speakers; such as John Morris and Thomas Sharp, as they spoke on the subjects of the trustworthiness of the Bible in this age of Scientific skepticism. These God-ordained opportunities lit a fire in the hearts of Joel, Abby & Caleb and the rest; a fire of holy desire to help folks like us and others that, we all may meet, to come to trust, believe and have confidence in - not only what this Book has to say about salvation and morality - but also to trust in and have confidence in what this Book has to say about history, geography, science and other things. Perhaps, my friends, you don't realize it, or perhaps you don't think it has any impact on your life, but listen, we are (as Bible believing Christians), engaged in a war. No, not a war where bombs, guns, tanks and hum-vees are used. But one where opposing views of the world, the truth and of what matters most, are in conflicts with one another. The back side of this sheet - inserted in the worship bulletin this morning - summarizes in chart fashion the essence of that opposing view point, secular humanism, as it touches and transforms what people believe about truth and reality and what matters most. Compare that view truth about truth and reality and what matters most, in all these different areas of importance, with what this Book teaches. Believe me, the divide (the gulf separating the two) is great; really, really wide. And, here's the deal, by and large through our public education institutions, through the media, through the government (the courts, the legislatures, etc.), and yes even through many churches, the opposing view (the worldview the places man in the center of everything and removes God, which is anti-Christian, anti-Bible) is being taught, promoted, glamorized and even legislated!

Why would such a thing as Biblical Apologetics in a day and time like this even be necessary and helpful? Because we need answers! Because we need to be equipped and prepared to be able to answer the questions others may ask us about what we believe and why we believe it.

1 Peter 3:15, make note of it, memorize it as a significant theme passage for the sake of what we are going to learn about today. The apostle Peter writes, "Sanctify the LORD God in your hearts, and always be ready to give a defense (to provide a well-reasoned answer) to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you..." (NKJV, emphasis added) And do it how? "With meekness and fear (with gentleness and reverence, with humility and respect), having a good conscience, that when they defame you as evildoers, those who relive your good conduct in Christ may be ashamed." (NKJV, emphasis added)

How many of you believe, if all you had was a nutshell to contain it, as I do, that the essence of this Book's message is something like "Trust God, Trust Christ and be saved"? You know, something like what is encapsulated in the words of John 3:16? "Trust God, Trust Christ and be saved", in a nutshell, is the main theme of the Bible. But, listen, what if the very Book that supplied the details about that salvation message (Jesus death on the cross, His burial, His resurrection, His ascension and His second coming, etc.), was wrong or even out and out false (lying) about such things as: how everyone came into existence, how death and suffering entered into this world, how it is that the dinosaurs and other species disappeared and how different languages and cultures and skin colors came into being? What would, knowing that this Book was wrong about these things, make you think about the salvation message part of the book? Beloved, do you see the dilemma? Do you understand the potential difficulty that I am depicting for you here? Let me state it plainly, one more time. If the Bible's history of the origin of the universe, the origin of man-kind and the origin of suffering and death; if its explanations regarding such things as the disappearance of dinosaurs and the formation of different national and cultural groups, is wrong or even false, and therefore untrustworthy, then what? Then what? Then who's going to trust the salvation, the trusting in Jesus part of it?! Right? Much more, who's going to obey the "you-must-live-this-way" part?

But listen, my loved ones, listen. I don't believe that what we have here is a Book full of cute, little 'make-believe' Sunday School stories about serpents and trees and gardens, about boats and animals and floods, and about a tower built toward heaven: 'make-believe stories', that have no basis in real history. All of which then is attached (connected) to the gospel message we hold so clear, and all of which we then have to kind of shut our eyes to, and hope nobody asks us about it, so that we an still cling to the salvation message. No, I don't believe that, my friends! Rather, what I believe we have here - in this Book - is a record of the truth. The way these events really happened. The truth regarding all of these things; which, if you study them out, you will find them to be confirmed, validated by such academic areas as archaeology, geology, astronomy, biology, genetics and so on...

The Seven C's of History, what are they? Creation, that's Genesis 1 and 2. Corruption, Adam and Eve's sin in the Garden of Eden and the effects of that disobedience on all the rest of the created realm...and, on all the rest of mankind, including you and me. Corruption, that's Genesis chapter 3. 'C' number 3 is Catastrophe. What is the Bibles answer to the massive amounts of fossils. And yes, even dinosaur fossils found high and low all over the earth? A world-wide catastrophe. That's the answer: a world-wide catastrophe, and the lingering, transforming, climatic effects of that catastrophe for years to come. A globe-covering flood. What would you expect such an incredible amount of water to do to any plant or animal or dinosaur or person in its way? Billions - I mean billions of dead things (fossils) formed suddenly and rapidly, buried in rock layers laid down by water - water? That's what a flood is all about, isn't it? Billions of dead things, buried in rock layers, laid down by water, all over the earth! The world-wide flood of Noah's day, that globe covering catastrophe, that's 'C' number 3, and that's the answer to what happened to the dinosaurs. Then there's 'C' number 4: Confusion. How is it that there are differences in the skin color, bone structure, eye shape, (etc.) from one group of people, one tribe or nation to another? Are some lower on the evolutionary chain of development than others? And, how did they end up being scattered all across the face of the earth? What's the answer - the correct answer to these questions? The evolution answer with it's built in racial prejudice? Or, the Genesis chapter eleven answer. The Bible's answer, no, not some 'make-believe' Sunday School Story, but that which can be validated and confirmed through the proper study of such academic disciplines as anthropology and genetics and archaeology. The Bible's answer to the differences in skin color and racial prejudice and all that goes into it, is 'C' number 4. Genesis chapter 11. The confusion of the language and the scattering of the people groups from a real place and a real tower called Babel. The 7 C's of history, you can read through the remaining 3 for your self. But think with me, will you? 'C' number one, rooted in the words of Genesis one, verse one, how does that first 'C' (Creation) and that very first verse of all the Bible, differ in their presentation of the origin of all things, as compared to the secular humanist view as presented on the back side of the bulletin insert?? Pull out the sheet and think one more time through it with me please!

Beloved, this is not just some preacher's rhetorical hype. No! Rather, the question: where did everything come from? and, with it: where did you and I come from? literally everything else hinges on the answer to these key questions! "Where did everything come from?" And, "where did you and I come from?" I know it's hard to get our limited finite minds around it, beloved; but listen, the answers to those two, important and related questions, bring us back to still another question, that if we can answer it, we will be well on our way to answering practically every other question we might ever ask. Here's the question: what is eternal? What is eternal? Is there anything present and in existence now, today, that has always bee present and existent.

Listen, the secular humanist worldview, the 'genesis 1:1' of the secular humanist worldview; what would it state with respect to this question about what is eternal, what has always been there? Well, there isn't a secular humanist "bible", per se, and therefore no secular humanist 'genesis 1:1'; but, if there was, can't you just imagine it stating something like this: "If there is anything that is eternal, it is that which is material (physical), not spiritual or mete-physical in nature." Matter is eternal stuff that has always been there! That's what the secular humanist viewpoint teaches and believes; "In the beginning was matter, stuff..." But, what does the Genesis 1:1 of this Book declare? How does it answer what may very well be the most basic of man's questions, the question related to origin?

Genesis one, verse one. God is eternal, a powerful, uncreated, self-existent, in-dependent, supreme & personal being. He has always existed, and He is the ultimate source for all that is, and yes, He is our ultimate source! Capital 'C' number one, Creation, requires, demands that there must be a capital 'C': Creator. He is the One from whom we call came! But, what difference does that make? John Dewey (there's a name you may not be familiar with), the father of modern Public Education in America and a signer of the original Humanist Manifesto, like every other "good" Secular Humanist, taught that there is no reason for religion; no purpose behind Christianity, because there is no God, because man has no soul, because man is nothing more than a highly evolved animal; and because death is man's end, his final destination! What version of Genesis 1:1 do you think John Dewey was using?

Creation and the Creator, the first 'C' of history, and the reasons this Genesis 1:1 (the Bible's Genesis 1:1) makes all the difference are these:

As a special creation of the Almighty Creator, your life, my life, is precious and so is every other human life; born or unborn, young or old, strong or weak, well-formed or mal-formed, in some way! Amen? Amen! Because this Book starts with the words: "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth" (NKJV, emphasis added), your life, my life, every life is precious!

Second, you and I owe our lives to Him! He made us, the Psalmist says, "fearfully and wonderfully", (Psalm 139:14, KJV) and therefore, He owns us! We belong to Him!

And, listen, if we belong to Him - if He owns us my right of Creation - then what? The, number 3, He has a right to rule in our lives! Or, to put it another way, our lives are - and are to be - all about Him! Not all about us!

We began with Genesis one, verse one; now let's end with a verse from the last book of the Bible, the book of Revelation. Revelation four, verse eleven: "Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power: for Thou hast created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created." (KJV, emphasis added)

Amen?? Amen!

Monday, August 25, 2008

Man's Chief End~

Shorter Catechism (Westminster)

Q: What is the chief end of man?

A: To glorify God – 1 Cor. 10:31 - "Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatever ye do, do all to the glory of God."

Col. 3:17 - "And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him."

Peter 4:11 "If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles (utterances) of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion forever and ever. Amen."

Zechariah 14:21 "Yea, every pot in Jerusalem and in Judah shall be [engraved] HOLINESS UNTO THE LORD OF HOSTS."

2 Cor. 4:1-7 - "But we have this treasure in earthen vessels…"

2 Tim. 2: 20-21 - "But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wool, and of earth; some to honor, and some to dishonor: if a man therefor purge (cleanse) himself from these (see verses 16, 19), he shall be a vessel unto honor, sanctified (set apart) and meet (fit, useful) for the master’s use, and prepared unto every good work."

Rev. 4:11 - "Thou are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power for Thou has created all things, and for Thy pleasure they are and were created."

Psalms 73:25-26 - "Whom have I in heaven by Thee? And there is none upon earth that I desire beside Thee. My flesh and my heart faileth; but God is the strength (rock) of my heart and my portion forever."

Psalms 16:5-6 - "The LORD is the portion of mine inheritance and of my cup; thou maintainest (upholds) my lot. The lines are fallen unto me in pleasant places; yea, I have a goodly heritage (inheritance)."

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Family Blog

Here is a link to our blog where you can learn more about our family: http://www.texasskies.blogspot.com. Enjoy!


Are You a Saint? Part 2, Post 2

Here is the Second part of "Are you a Saint?" Part 2

There’s a second thing that saints love because it’s something that God loves. And it’s something that we need a whole lot more of these days. Do you have any idea what it is? Let’s read Malachi 2:10-16.

Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously with one another by profaning the covenant of the fathers? Judah has dealt treacherously, and an abomination has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem, for Judah has profaned the LORD’s holy institution which He loves. He has married the daughter of a foreign god. May the LORD cut off from the tents of Jacob the man who does this, being awake and aware, yet who brings an offering to the LORD of Hosts!
And this is the second thing you do: You cover the altar of the LORD with tears, with weeping and crying; so He does not regard the offering anymore, nor receive it with goodwill from your hands. Yet you say, “For what reason?” Because the LORD has been witness between you and the wife of your youth, with whom you have dealt treacherously; yet she is your companion and your wife by covenant. But did He not make them one, having a remnant of the Spirit? And why one? He seeks godly offspring. Therefore take heed to your spirit, and let none deal treacherously with the wife of his youth. “For the LORD God of Israel says that He hates divorce, for it covers one’s garment with violence.” Says the LORD of hosts. “Therefore take heed to your spirit, that you do not deal treacherously.”

Do you understand what the LORD, through His prophet Malachi is proclaiming here?

In effect the LORD is declaring: “I love fidelity – faithful God that I am. I love faithfulness.” And yet, many of God’s people in Malachi’s time, and far too many in our time, have forgotten or neglected this. God loves fidelity. He loves faithfulness! And so do his saints.

And notice: these verses indicate that fidelity – that very precious commodity of faithfulness – on the horizontal level cuts two ways. Number one, it pertains to our relationship with God. Are we faithful, are we showing fidelity toward Him? Verse 11 tells us that the Israelites in Malachi’s day had committed an abomination against God. They had profaned God'’ holy place by linking up with foreign gods, with idols. But that’s only half the story. Not only were Malachi’s people unfaithful to God – desecrating His holy sanctuary, but on the human-to-human level they were demonstrating great infidelity, too!

A holy institution, created by God, called marriage was being obliterated, too, by their unfaithfulness. What God had meant to be His instrument for raising up godly offspring was being ruined by God’s people seeking ways to break those covenant unions.

Listen up, my dear ones. The Scripture is pretty plain, isn’t it? God loves fidelity and hates infidelity. And, saints – children of God, if they really are saints, will love and hate those things, too. And, they will demonstrate that love and that hatred right here [point to wedding band] in that uniquely, precious covenant relationship called marriage.

The things saints love – they love the things God loves. Things like righteousness and truth and faithfulness and justice. But is that ALL they love? Are these things the only things that God loves? Well, the answer to both of these questions is “No.”

There are several more things that God loves and that saints – if they really are saints – will love, as well.

But before we close, allow me to change directions just slightly. The things saints love. They love what God loves. That’s what we’ve been looking at up to this point, right? Now, listen carefully. As I was looking into this topic, I found that there were many things that God loves. But then, do you know what I noticed? I picked up on the fact that not only does the Bible tell us about WHAT God loves, it also underscores for us WHO God loves.

We read it earlier, but listen to it again, Psalm 146:7-10, “The LORD opens up the eyes of the blind, and raises up those who are bowed down; the LORD loves [there’s that phrase again] the righteous, protects the strangers, and He supports the fatherless and the widow…”

Whom does God love? He loves all of these – the righteous, the stranger, the fatherless and the widow. Psalm 87 says, “God’s foundation is in the holy mountains. The LORD loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob. Glorious things are spoken of you, O city of God!” Jeremiah 31:1 and following reads, “The LORD says, ‘I will be the God of all the families of Israel, and they shall be My people. Yes, [He says,] ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love, and with lovingkindness I have drawn you [to Me].”

Listen my friends. God doesn’t just love things, things like righteousness and truth and faithfulness and justice. No! God also and every bit as much loves His people. He has set His love on and, by His Holy Spirit, has poured out His love INTO His people, those who come to Him by faith in Jesus Christ His Son – His saints.

So what? So, if saints love the things God loves, if they love WHAT God loves, then what? They will also love WHOM God loves. They will love the people God loves. One passage from First John summarizes the point. 1 John 4:20 and 21, “If someone [some supposed saint] says, ‘I love God’ yet hates his brother, he is a liar! For he who does not love his brother whom he has seen, how can he [truly] love God whom he has not seen? And this commandment we have from Him: He who loves God MUST love his brother also.” Saints – if they really are what they claim to be – they will not only love the things God loves, but also they will love the people God loves – their Christian brothers and sisters.

The things saints love. They love the things AND the people that God loves. Are you a saint? Am I? Having seen what we’ve seen today through this Book, what do we see in the Mirror? It’s true, isn’t it. You really can tell a whole lot about a person – about yourself – by discerning what that person loves and by then observing what he worships and serves. May this Mirror reflect the fact that you and I really do love the things [and people] God loves! Amen? Amen.


Are You a Saint? Part 2, Post 1

This is a sermon, so it is going to be kind of long

Preached 5-21-06 AM service at Northwest Christian Church, McKinney, Texas

David Kautt, Preaching Minister

"Rejoice in the LORD, O you righteous!
For praise from the upright is beautiful.
Praise the LORD with the harp;
Make melody to Him with an instrument of
ten strings.
Sin to Him a new song;
Play skillfully with a shout of joy.
"For the word of the LORD is right,
And all His work is done in truth.
He loves righteousness and justice;
The earth is full of the goodness of the LORD."
Psalm 33:1-5

"His foundation is in the holy mountains.
The LORD loves the gates of Zion more than all the dwellings of Jacob.
Glorious things are spoken of you, O city of God! Selah Psalm 87:1-3
"Happy is he who has the God of Jacob for his help,
Whose hope is in the LORD his God,
Who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that
is in them;
Who keeps truth forever.
Who executes justice for the oppressed,
Who gives food to the hungry.
The LORD gives freedom to the prisoners.
"The LORD opens the eyes of the blind;
The LORD raises those who are bowed down;
The LORD loves the righteous.
The LORD watches over the strangers;
He relieves the fatherless and the widow;
But the way of the wicked He turns upside down.
"The LORD shall reign forever – Your God, O Zion, to all generations.
"Praise the LORD!" Psalm 146:5-10

Are you a saint? Am I? if you remember the thrust of our lesson from just two weeks ago, you’ll realize that what those questions are asking of us – what God’s Word is probing us about is the issue of what we love, and what we worship and obediently serve!
Do you recall how we began that study a couple of weeks ago? We began with this statement: "You can tell a great deal about a person by listening, by watching and by discerning what he or she loves. For what he loves, is what he worships. What he loves is that to which he is committed. And, what he loves is that to which he is enslaved.
What do you love? What do I serve and worship? As I told you last time, my interest in these two sets of seemingly unrelated questions was piqued when I came face-to-face with Psalm 40:16, which states: "Let all those who seek You, rejoice and be glad in You [O LORD]; [and] let such as love Your salvation say continually, ‘The LORD be magnified…."

Once again, the verse begins by saying, "Let all those who seek You…." Let all those who seek the LORD…." Seekers of the LORD – how about it? Would you say that quality is at least one of the definitions of a saint found in the Scriptures? Saints are those who seek the LORD! But then, listen to the rest of the verse again with me, and make the connection with me again between my question: "Are you a saint?" and my question: "What do you love and worship?"

Psalm 40:16: "Let all those who seek You [O LORD], rejoice and be glad in you! {And] let such as love your salvation say continually, ‘The LORD be magnified!’"
Beloved, where are we going with this? What am I up to as your teacher?

Here’s where we’re going: I’m not merely interested in a dictionary definition of the word saint – of the phrase child of God. No! Rather, my hope and my prayer is that, through His Word, God will show us what a true saint really is by helping see what true saints – genuine children of God – really love. And then, with that portrait of the things saints love before us, sort of like looking in a mirror, we’ll be able to discern whether or not those things are indicative of and manifested in our lives. We’ll see whether or not the things true saints love are the things we love.

The Things Saints Love
By way of review, let me just remind you that this Book in places like Psalm 40 and Psalm 119 and Psalm 122 and indeed in many other places, make note with me Beloved, that this Book – God’s Word – informs us that saints, true children of God – what do they love? They love, they are committed to the things of God. True saints invest themselves in the things of God. But what things are those?
A minute ago we read Psalm 40:16. Saints love God’s salvation, His rescuing and delivering work in their behalf, accomplished by Jesus Christ at Calvary. They love it.

Secondly, Psalm 26:8 shows us that saints, genuine children of God, love God’s house. They are glad, really really glad, when someone says to them, "Hey! Let’s go to the house of the LORD."
Thirdly, we learned last time that you can tell that saints really are God’s children. How/ By observing their love for God’s Word. By taking note of their love, and their love-inspired obedience to the Word of God.

Are you a saint? Am I? Saints, genuine children of God, love the things of God. They love the things of God. But, that’s just the beginning. We’re just getting started. How else can we tell a saint, an honest-to-goodness child of God, from someone who isn’t?
Once again, like we’ve said before, we’ve got to look at the things a person loves, at what he or she worships and serves. Saints. How do you know they are such? You know it because they love the things of God. That’s number one. But that’s not all. You know it.
By looking in the mirror of God’s Holy Word, you can discern who is and who isn’t a child of God, a true saint, by observing whether or not they love the things God loves. You see, saints – true children of God – what do they love? Point number two: real saints love the things God loves.
Now here’s the $64,000 question. What does God love? What does God love?

You may not have picked up on it as we read the three different passages from the book of Psalms earlier, but the fact of the matter is the Bible is explicit and exceedingly clear in saying, "This is what God loves!" For example, we read Psalm 33 at the outset. The psalmist calls God’s people to praise the LORD. He says, "Rejoice in the LORD, O you righteous! For praise from the upright is beautiful! Praise the LORD with the harp and make melody to Him with an instrument of ten-strings! Sing to Him a new song and play skillfully with a shout of joy! Praise the LORD."
But why? Read on to find the answer. "For the word of the LORD is right, and all His work is done in truth." He loves – there it is, my friends – the LORD loves – what does He love? Say it with me. "He loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of the goodness of the LORD."

What does God love? From Psalm 33:5 we learn that He loves righteousness. He loves righteousness. He loves what is straight and even and true – what is born out of loyalty and excellence. But why?
Turn just a few pages to Psalm 11:7. The reason God sets His love on righteousness is because He is righteous. The old King James Version says it oh-so-succinctly, "The righteous LORD – the righteous LORD loveth righteousness. In other words, God’s love for righteousness first and foremost is due to the fact that He is, by His very nature, righteous! When He speaks, He speaks what is true. When He acts, His actions are always – as the carpenter puts it – ‘on the level’ – straight and even and true.

But, so what? So what? What difference does it make to you and me that God is righteous and the He loves what is righteous?
Here’s that question again. Are you a saint? Are you? Well, if you are, then listen. Take note. Psalm 23:3 tells us that God is leading you in His righteousness. The One who is the Shepherd and Overseer of every true child of God leads you in paths of righteousness for His name’s sake. Or how about this one? Psalm 31:1-5. What’s so important about God’s love for righteousness, about His being righteous?

Mark it down, brothers and sisters. God also saves and rescues and delivers His people in righteousness. He does! And so, what can we say? With David the psalmist, with Jesus our Savior, we can exclaim: "You are my rock and my fortress. Yes, You are my strength. Into Your hands [Your strong and righteous hands] I commit my spirit,… O LORD, God of truth."
God loves righteousness. He is righteous. So what does He do? He revives, He renews His people, His saints in righteousness.
Psalm 119:40 reads "Behold, [O LORD], I long for your precepts; please revive me in your righteousness."
Then one more, one that has got to be the most staggering, the most astonishing of all, Psalm 89:14-18. God is righteous. And He loves righteousness. So what does He do? How does He appropriate that righteousness into the lives of His people? Are you listening? Psalm 89. Our righteous God exalts His people, sets them on high, in His righteousness. "Blessed are the people who know the joyful sound! They walk, O LORD, in the light of Your countenance. In Your name they rejoice all day long, and in Your righteousness they are exalted."

The LORD loves righteousness. The righteousness God loves righteousness. And what did we say was the case for true saints, for genuine children of God? They love what God loves. They love the things God loves. Keeping that in mind, listen now to these verses from the lips of Jesus, one more time. "Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness" After what? After righteousness. Blessed. "Oh the abundant joys of those who hunger, who thirst, who yearn for and long for what God loves. Righteousness. For they shall be filled." That’s Matthew 5:6. And then there’s Matthew 6:33. Jesus says, "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness." Over and above everything else saints love, saints pursue what God loves – His righteousness – "and all the other things they need will be added to them." Saints. Children of God. Do love what they love? Do we love what the LORD loves?
There’s a second thing that saints love because it’s something that God loves. And it’s something that we need a whole lot more of these days. Do you have any idea what it is? Let’s read Malachi 2:10-16.
Have we not all one Father? Has not one God created us? Why do we deal treacherously with one another by profaning the covenant of the fathers? Judah has dealt treacherously, and an abomination has been committed in Israel and in Jerusalem, for Judah has profaned the LORD’s holy institution which He loves. He has married the daughter of a foreign god. May the LORD cut off from the tents of Jacob the man who does this, being awake and aware, yet who brings an offering to the LORD of Hosts!

(More to Come!)


Saturday, June 14, 2008

Patriarchy:: Father's Day 2008

"Praise ye the LORD. Blessed is the man that feareth
the LORD, That delighteth greatly in his
commandments. His seed shall be mighty upon the earth:
the generation of the upright shall be blessed. Wealth
and riches shall be in his house: and his righteousness
endureth for ever. Unto the upright there ariesth light
in the darkness: He is gracious, and full of
compassion, and righteous. A good man sheweth
favour, and lendeth: he will guide his affairs with
discretion. Surely he shall not be moved for ever: the
righteous shall be in everlasting remembrance. He
shall not be afraid of evil tidings: his heart is fixed,
trusting in the LORD. His heart is established, he
shall not be afraid, until he see his desire upon his
enemies. He had dispersed, he hath given to the poor;
His righteousness endureth for ever; his horn shall be
exalted with honour. The wicked shall see it, and be
grieved; he shall gnash with his teeth, and melt away:
The desire of the wicked shall perish."
Psalm 112
Only A Dad~
Only a dad with a tired face,
Coming home from the daily race,
Bringing little of gold or fame
To show how well he has played the game;
But glad in his heart that his own rejoice
To see him come and to hear his voice.
Only a dad with a brood of four,
One of ten million men or more
Plodding along in the daily strife,
Bearing the whips and the scorns of life,
With never a whimper or pain or hate,
For the sake of those who at home await.
Only a dad, neither rice nor proud,
Merely one of the surging crowd,
Toiling, striving from day to day,
Facing whatever may come his way,
Silent whenever the harsh condemn,
And bearing it all for the love of them.
Only a dad but he gives his all,
To smooth the way for his children small,
Doing with courage stern and grim
The deeds that his father did for him.
This is the line that for him I pen:
Only a dad, but the best of men.
Edgar Guest

We love you Dad, and may the Lord bless you and give you many more Father's Days!!!

Joel, Abby, Caleb, Phoebe, Johanna & Jaden

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

The Happiness of Those Who Trust in God

"1 I will praise the LORD at all times;
His praise shall continually be in my
2 My soul shall make its boast in the
The humble shall hear of it and be
3 Oh, magnify the LORD with me,
And let us exalt His name together.
4 I sought the LORD, and He heard me,
And delivered me from all my fears.
5 They looked to Him and were
And their faces were not ashamed.
8 Oh, taste and see that the LORD is
Blessed is the man who trust in Him!
9 Oh, fear the LORD, you His saints!
There is no want to those who fear
15 The eyes of the LORD are on the
And His ears are open to their cry.
16 The face of the LORD is against those
who do evil,
To cut off the remembrance of them
from the earth.
17 The righteous cry out, and the LORD
And delivers them out of all their
18 The LORD is near to those who have a
broken heart,
And saves such as have a contrite
19 Many are the afflictions of the
But the LORD delivers him out of them
20 He guards all his bones;
Not one of them is broken.
21 Evil shall slay the wicked,
And those who hate the righteous
shall be condemned.
22 The LORD redeems the soul of His
And none of those who trust in Him
shall be condemned." - Psalm 34:1-5, 8-9, 15-22