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Desiring to build others up & give grace to those who visit

Archive for the month “March, 2013”

Do Not Compromise; Do Not Show Animosity

Dear Christian brothers & sisters, do not give in to culture, society, this world for the sake of avoiding conflict:

Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership has righteousness with lawlessness? Or what fellowship has light with darkness? What accord has Christ with Belial? Or what portion does a believer share with an unbeliever? What agreement has the temple of God with idols? For we are the temple of the living God; as God said, “I will make my dwelling among them and walk among them, and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. Therefore go out from their midst, and be separate from them, says the Lord, and touch no unclean thing; then I will welcome you, and I will be a father to you, and you shall be sons and daughters to me, says the Lord Almighty.” (2 Corinthians 6:14-18 ESV)

Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world— the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world. And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. (1 John 2:15-17 ESV)

But also, do not despise those who stand against you & harbor anger & ill will towards them:

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly. Never be wise in your own sight. Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, “if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good. (Romans 12:14-21 ESV)

Remember. You were once like them. You once were an enemy of God so have pity on them. Show them mercy. Show them love. For your Savior has done as much (& much more) for you.

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ— by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. (Ephesians 2:1-9 ESV)

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Why Do We Fear the Direction This Country is Headed?

I haven’t written anything on here for quite a while, & I’m not really sure I’ll be able to adequately explain my thoughts on this subject.

But…

When I see conservative media outlets making doomsday predictions about what will happen to this country as our rights are supposedly slowly stripped away or as we slip into greater moral decline, I am not surprised; they are only doing what any good “news” source is supposed to do–keep their viewers (readers, listeners, etc.) coming back for more. However, when I hear Christians spouting the same talking points, it really grates on me.

Don’t get me wrong, I think part of our duties as salt & light is to try to preserve a moral society for the benefit of all & to expose those things that are evil, so I’m not opposed to pointing out & trying to change those things that we see as wrongs or abuses of this country’s laws. But it really bothers me when Christians take a secular-type of end-of-the-world attitude toward things the government & society are doing.

I have two basic thoughts on these matters:

1. (And this, I think, is the more important of the two) Why should we fear doomsday, end-of-the-world, apocalyptic predictions? Do you not realize or remember what the end of this world means?! It means Christ’s return! It means a new heaven & new earth! It means no more sorrows, no more heartache, no more brokenness! It means we will be like Christ & be able to see God face to face without being consumed! Is this not a wonderful thing? A glorious thing? A thing to be desired not feared?

2. If the end is not near (relative to what we can see of time) and the government does begin to openly oppose & oppress Christianity, so what? Yes, I think we should attempt to prevent that from happening if we can. But is the governmental oppression of Christianity necessarily a bad thing? An evil thing, yes, but all that is evil is not necessarily bad for us in this life. The oppression of Christianity in this country, should it happen, I believe would serve to refine the church as a whole as well as Christians individually. I think we would cease to see nominal Christians; those who continued to claim the name of Christ you could be fairly certain were truly Christians. That is not always true today. I think of other countries where Christians are martyred for holding fast to the Gospel, & I see a strength of faith that is largely absent in this countr]y (I include myself in that accusation). I WANT that kind of faith. I DESIRE to be so absolutely secure in Christ that I can completely, honestly say, “If God is for me, who can be against me?” I believe that there are many like myself who will have difficulty reaching that point unless we are forced to it by the stripping of our luxuries & distractions. This does not mean that I don’t believe God’s Word & do not trust in His promises, but it does mean that I struggle to live them out on a daily basis.

I believe; help my unbelief!

America will fall. The United States will inevitably disintegrate. The Stars and Stripes will bleed. The White House will turn to rubble. That is certain. We stand like Augustine before the sea. We pray that God will spare our nation. If He chooses not to, we ask for the grace to accep[t its demise. In either case, we look to Him who is our King and to heaven, which is our home. We await the city of God, the heavenly Jerusalem, whose builder and maker is God.

R.C. Sproul

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