God’s One Glaring Problem

God has one glaring problem; He thinks He is God! And of course, He is God, which even makes it worst because as usual He is right… again. In Exodus 20:3 God makes His intention crystal clear, ”You shall have no other gods before me.”

Christ-following, at is most basic level, is simply coming to grips with God truly being “God”, with Jesus truly being “Lord”, and with the Holy Spirit truly being the controlling influence of your life.

Even Jesus had to make a choice to surrender to God’s will and purpose for His life. In Philippians 2:5-6 the Bible says that “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus: Who, being in very nature God, did not consider equality with God something to be grasped……” What a phrase!!! Even though Jesus was in His very nature “God”, “He did not consider equality with God as something to be grasped”.

Yet as people, who in our very nature are a long, long way from being God, we somehow believe that it is our right and duty to “consider equality with God as something to be grasped”. How? What would you call knowingly, willful disobedience for example? Each time God asks something of us and we choose to not surrender to His will and purpose are we not in fact making our opinion, and our will equal to His?

As people, we have learned to blame such disobedient behavior on things such as fear, our comfort zone, procrastination, just being human, we will never be perfect after all, etc. But the reality is that we really do not want anyone telling us what to do, including God.

Folks, this deal is pretty simple. God is “God”, and we are not. His ways are not our ways, His deeds are not our deeds, and His thoughts are not our thoughts. He is God!!! He is so far beyond our imagination that we will never truly grasp His majesty and glory. And after all, would you even want a God that you could dissect and fully grasp? In some ways God has made Himself fully known and understandable, yet in other ways God is an amazing mystery.

The Bible says in Ephesians 1:3-11 & 2:8-10 that God knew you and chose you before the world was created, that He created you then prepared in advance a list of good works for you to accomplish in your lifetime, and that as time reaches fulfillment He will make the mystery of His will known to you.

Our job? Love God with ALL of our heart and with ALL of our soul, and with ALL of our mind. Seek first God and will take care of the details and make the mystery of His will known to you at the proper time. Embrace Him as God.

Surrender to Him and His purposes for you. Surrender your right to debate with Him or to see equality with His as something to be grasped. Surrender your plans and your dreams for the future to Him.

Choose, as an act of your will, to have no other gods before Him. And don’t forget to thank Him for the next breath you take because He is the one who gives it to you.

Ten Reasons Equally Intelligent People Disagree on Scripture

One of the things that has always bothered me is why do equally intelligent people disagree on biblical interpretation? I see things pretty simply. Scripture is the absolute truth word of God. It is the only thing I know that meets the standards required to be absolute truth.

For something to be absolute truth is must meet three criteria. It must be universal, which means it is right for all people, all times, and all places. It must be constant, which means it is unchanging. And finally, it must be objective, which means it is not based on a person’s feelings, circumstances, etc.

There are ten basic reasons why I think equally intelligent people disagree on biblical interpretation.

First, there can be a failure to approach Scripture with the proper respect. Seeing scripture as our sole authority of faith (what we believe) and practice (what we do) is proper respect, based on Scripture’s testimony of itself. When someone does not treat Scripture this way, it violates all rules of accurate biblical interpretation.

Second, is a lack of objectivity. Scripture is not subjective to our whims, opinions, and preferences. Scripture stands alone as absolute truth. We must approach Scripture objectively.

Third, some people are merely searching for proof, not for truth. They are looking for one verse that seems to agree with them, instead of looking at the all Scripture says regarding a subject. I have been known to ask people who want to debate with me, “Do you want to be right, or do you want to discover the truth?” Never be afraid of discovering truth, even if it disagrees with your preset opinion.

Fourth, they fail to equally consider all Scripture says concerning a specific subject. It is easy to over-value a verse that says something that agrees with you, and then to under-value the verse that disagrees with you.

Fifth, some people just blindly accept another person’s opinions and research. They don’t study for themselves, they just read a commentary or book, and accept it without doing their own homework.

Sixth, filtering Scripture through self-issues, rather than filtering self-issues through Scripture. Some people want to filter Scripture through themselves, their experiences, their opinions, their woundedness, etc, instead of filtering themselves through Scripture.

Seventh, over-analyzing, over-complicating, and over-spiritualizing a simple message. Let me boil the entire bible down to four words; “Love God, Love people”. Keep it simple.

Eighth, expecting the flesh to understand what only the Holy Spirit can teach. Some things just don’t make sense to you minds or our flesh. Don’t try to explain God. He is beyond explanation. His ways and thoughts are higher than our ways and thoughts.

Ninth, some people read “into” or “out of” Scripture. They try to justify their preset opinion by removing or adding to Scripture something that fits their agenda.

And lastly, some people fail to understand the context. The context of a verse matters, we can’t just take a verse out of its context, and use it prove our point.

Tragedy. Evil. Love Trumps Hate.

A few days ago, singer Christina Grimmie, of Voice-fame, was gunned down as she signed autographs after a concert. Then, today, Sunday, June 12th, a gunman, shouting “Allah Akbar”, murdered at least 50 people, and injured another 53 people in a packed Orlando Florida nightclub during a nearly four-hour siege from 2:00-6:00am Sunday morning, before the SWAT teams stormed the building and killed him. ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attack calling the gunman an “Islamic State fighter”.

One event is a senseless murder, and the other is another, equally senseless, radical Islamic terrorist attack. It was the worst terrorist attack on our soil since 9/11. Whether it’s a national-level tragedy like today, or the personal, more private tragedies that happen every single day, evil knows no boundaries. We live in a broken, dark, depraved world.

I cannot imagine the level of evil required to walk into a packed nightclub, or to a signature line, or a school, or an office party, etc and just start shooting. But I do know evil obviously exist and is intent on destruction.  I have lived in a small town (Carlinville, IL) for the past 16 years.  In that time, even our small, safe, friendly town has seen tremendous tragedy.  Beyond the young people who have died WAY to young due to car accidents, suicide,  drugs, drunk driving, or disease, we have had shootings and murder here even.  Sheer evil exist in every corner of the world, even in small hometowns where “nothing ever happens here”.

In Revelation 12:10-12 the story is told of a war in heaven, and Satan being thrown out.  It says Satan was “hurled to earth, and angels with him”.  God’s commentary was, “The accuser (Satan) has been hurled down. Therefore rejoice, you heavens and you who dwell in them! But woe to the earth, because the devil has gone down to you! He is filled with fury, because he knows that his time is short.”

Evil will not end.  More laws, including gun control ones, do not change the human heart. Only Christ can change the human heart.  Hope is found in Christ, and in Christ alone.  Everything else will always come up short.

The best response you can make to rampant evil expressing its ugly reality is to start chasing after the heart of God full speed!  Some of you who are reading this post feel the Spirit of God stirring you right now.  You know you need to make a decision about living your life a little more intentionally.  You know God is turning your heart toward Him.  He feel him right now.  Turn tragedy into triumph!

Bring your anger, fear, and broken hearts to Him.  He is broken-hearted by what happened today too. In the midst of tragedy and absolute darkness, there is ALWAYS hope in Christ.  That doesn’t mean evil stops or goes away.  It means that the light of Christ is greater than the deepest darkness evil can create.  It doesn’t mean that the pain goes away.  It means that   Love wins!… Hope wins!… Peace wins!… because Jesus has already won!

The best way to overcome evil is to give everything to Christ.  Total, and absolute surrender.  How that passage in Rev 12 says it is “They triumphed over him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony; they did not love their lives so much as to shrink from death.”

Take something Satan mean for destruction and let God use it to transform you!