Friday, November 21, 2008

Now What?

I was reading my bible the other day, and the passage I was looking at related to the manner in which Christians are to live, and how we are to think. Paul was writing of how believers are to walk in love, even as Christ loved us and gave Himself for us. He went on to say because of this, sexual immorality, impurity, and covetousness should not even be named amongst the saints. There should be no filthiness, foolish talking, crude joking in our lives because this is all out of place, but instead of these things, we should give thanks to God (Eph 5:1-15). I began to think: Paul could be writing to our nation and the church should wake up. 
When I look around today, I am not surprised at the casual sin and the accepting, tolerating attitude of people in general. God knows that is simply an expression of an unredeemed nature. People who do not claim to have a relationship with the Lord and His word cannot be expected to think or act in accordance to His will, though there are times that they most certainly do things that are charitable and caring, or sacrificial and result in good for those around them. 
What bothers me and saddens, even grieves me is when I see those who claim to be believers arguing in favor of things that the bible clearly condemns. 
I expected the election to turn out the way it did, and in this blog put forth some of the concerns that I had about it. Of course, Christians representing both parties let their thoughts be known, and I read all the comments written concerning why my thoughts were wrong or right. The funny thing is, some people think that I am a staunch Republican when in fact I am more Independent in my outlook on some issues. I vote for the person most closely mirroring my conscience, and do not vote along party lines if I disagree with the person's positions. I do not echo party line talking points, but try to think for myself. And my thinking is informed, not by the newspaper or televised news accounts (which are without argument biased to the "left") but by the word of God. After reading it for 38 years, and studying and teaching it for 35, I would guess that my way of thinking has been influenced by what I read in scripture. Which is why I teach in the manner I do, and write the things I write.
 For some, my opinions are just that, my opinions and on many matters, indeed that is what they are, simply my musings and opinions. Still, I would simply encourage believers to make sure that their opinions are formed through careful reading of the word of God with a desire to align with Him. This is what I would hope for all Christians, that we would consult the Lord and His word, in order to come into alignment with Him and what He has said in His word. 
Without a doubt, people today are much more callused to truth than in any other time I can remember. The filth of the world has pretty much polluted the moral base of this great nation, and I remain concerned at the lack of discernment many have. 
I was thinking about how people got to the place of thinking that marriage is inconsequential, and unnecessary to protect. Part of my answer came as I was flying home from a recent trip. The airline offered free movies, several one could select by simply scrolling through a personal screen and clicking "play movie". Under the heading of "comedy" were several recent movies, so I began watching them. I opened up three of them, and turned each one off within a couple of minutes. Each one had language that I can't repeat, and scenes that were pornographic. These were movies that any kid could turn on and watch, unedited, and I was shocked that this is what people watch and have no problem with. 
Some argue that such viewing does not effect the way people think, but a recent study reveals the opposite. What you watch most definitely influences how you think, and what you will do. Our society is totally callused, and the sad thing is that the church is too. 
The fact is, when so many have gone through divorces themselves, marriage loses its shine, especially when the persons going through the divorce are Christians. The ones most troubled are the children, who see marriage as something that doesn't necessarily work out, and isn't really something that lasts a lifetime. Millions have been broken through divorce, depreciating the value of marriage, and so ultimately it all boils down to "love". Since love is something we all need, why not let people who love one another get married, even if they are of the same sex? After all, marriage isn't that sacred, is it? 
Simplistic ramblings, I know, but true nonetheless. What we watch, read, listen to, think about, and eventually desire is what we ultimately do. I pray that people in our church will actually begin reading, thinking about, desiring, and ultimately begin doing that which pleases the Lord. And it all begins with loving Him, reading His word, and determining to keep it. 


Laura said...

Hi Pastor David
I appreciate everything you are saying in this post. In regards to divorce hurting children, a few weeks ago my Annie finally figured out that at one time my own parents were married and had children but then were no longer married. She cried and said that is not the way its suppossed to be. Then she asked if Jose and I would stay married or split up. Needless to say she needed much reassurance which we gave her. I'm not enjoying having to watch my childrens' eyes being opened to the world and the consequences of disobedience.
Thank you for standing up for the truth and exhorting the body to be obedient.

circleslash said...

When people argue in favor of things the Bible clearly condemns, it's because they don't put God's word, first. If He is the First and Last... If His word is alive and unchanging... if He never contradicts Himself, then folks are sadly mistaken and outside God's will.
One thing I know for certain: We never have to pray about what God's word already says concerning a matter. Period. After all, isn't that what satan got Eve to do? Doubt God?

Alicia said...

I so agree with you regarding pleasing the Lord and acting upon what we read and learn from the Word.
I tell my boys that there is only one person that I answer to and that is the Lord. I remind them often that they may be the only one to touch someones life at any particular moment and they shouldn't miss an opportunity to represent their God. Every day when I drop my son off at school I tell him,"Go and be a shiny light for Jesus!"

Tom said...

Pastor David I must say I think you are awesome and the way you think about things makes me go hmmm. The more I think the more I am sickened by what is passed off as acceptable behavior or beliefs in this country.

I have learned through trial and error that living my life according to the bible is difficult, very difficult and I struggle with it everyday but please name me one good thing in anybodies life that you didn't or don't have to fight for each and everyday. Remember the easy way out usually isn't the right way out.

Life is difficult in general but I have found that if I try and apply the bible and god's word to my life everyday the difficult things don't seem so difficult. I struggle everyday with making sure I make the right decisions that deal with work, wife, kids and money and sometimes I choose the wrong answer but if I trust in God and his word I know that my life is in the most secure place imaginable and yes I may stumble and even fall down sometimes but he is always there to pick me up dust me off and point me back in the right direction.

Sorry to ramble but to much caffeine today. I wrote something else completely off track but wanted to share my thoughts with you.

I am so sick to my stomach over the prop 8 thing and how we who voted yes on 8 are portrayed as hateful but yet we are not the ones going around beating people up for there beliefs. I guess if you don't get what you want the goal is to act like a 3 year old and throw a temper tantrum until you do. The people voted deal with it. I just wish somebody would stand up to the no on 8 supporters grab them by the shoulders shake them up and introduce them to the truth. Why is everybody so scared to stand up to these people?

Thanks for listening to me ramble on. God Bless, Tom K.

:corinne: said...

Very truthful and convicting comments Pastor David. Oh and just to add to your comments in regard to "media influences"...Yes it's very much effective because if it wasn't...they wouldn't spend millions of dollars for a 30 second blurp during a widely known National Football game. So for those that may not see it that way...They need to wake up and smell the Billions of dollars being spent on Media advertising!
Thank you Pastor