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Only Those Who Receive Love Can Give Love

10 Dec

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So a donut shop in Portland, Maine – The Holy Donut- decided to help needy people in their town this Christmas. That is a nice thing to do and is pretty typical of businesses this time of year.

They asked their customers to donate items and to get them to do so, The Holy Donut offered them free donuts. So far so good.

The donut shop partnered with The Salvation Army USA to identify needy families who would be the recipient of this goodwill.

Then all hell broke loose.

The LGBTQ community in Portland (and around the country) pummelled the donut shop’s Facebook page with accusations that the shop was anti-gay and discriminating against the gay community. These people were upset at the donut shop working with the Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army was founded in the U.K. in 1865 as a Christian (Protestant) organization committed to helping those in need and less fortunate all over the world.

But because they do good in the name of Jesus, they are a target of militant LGBTQ bullies and so are any organizations that are associated with them.

To that end, the Holy Donut’s Facebook page got bombarded with an inordinate number of bad reviews as well as comments containing lies about the Salvation Army.

God calls His followers to do good in His name. To that end, there are thousands of Chrisitan charities around the world who are supported financially by millions of Christians (including myself) in obedient response to God’s command.

There are very few Muslim charities. Those that do exist serve essentially the Muslim community – they aren’t open to helping people of other religions – certainly not Jews.

There are virtually no Hindu charities as Hinduism is a fatalistic religion – they believe that people get what they deserve from their gods (aka “karma”) and therefore they should not be offered any outside assistance.

The two largest religions on the planet (by number of members) do very little to help others. Of all the world religions/faith systems, It is Christianity that does the most good around the world. And it does so because Christians worship a God who not only loves them but proved that love by coming to earth as a human being – Jesus – and dying for them so they could escape eternity in hell.

When you’ve been shown true love you want to express gratitude to the one who loves you. You do that, primarily, by showing the same love to others, including people in your own community and people you’ve never met on the other side of the globe regardless of who or what they are.

No one can love without first being loved. Likewise, you cannot love if you refuse to accept the love that another has for you. When you have no love for others, you can only love yourself. That leads to intolerance as you become entirely self-focused.

The LGBTQ community is completely self-absorbed. They’re filled with jealousy, selfishness, and hate for one simple reason: they have refused the love that God offers them. Hence they do not have – and cannot have – any love for anyone else except themselves.

The only way to love others is to first receive the love of God. God pours out His love on His children and He does so unceasingly. The word picture in the Bible is that of a cup being filled with water continuously so that it overflows, spilling the water it receives onto everything around it.

That is the love God has for His children. And that is the way – the only way – for love – true love – to spread around the world. Love starts with God. Wherefrom God is removed, there can be no love.

The answer for the LGBTQ community is not to bully those who do good in Jesus’ name. The answer for them is to humble themselves, acknowledge and repent of their sins (which aren’t limited to homosexuality), and to accept the free, no-strings-attached forgiveness God offers them.

This is the answer, in fact, for everyone.

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“When Will This End?”

6 Nov

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There was no shortage of comments from politicians after yesterday’s mass shooting at a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas which left over 25 people dead. These comments, on TV news programs and social media, offered prayers and condolences for the injured as well as our nation – pretty typical stuff that we’ve, sadly, become all to accustom to reading every few weeks in our country.

There were also comments like the one Senator Dianne Feinstein made in her official statement on the incident. The Democratic Senator from California asked, “When will this end?

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The obvious political answer is when our leaders, including Ms. Feinstein who has served in Congress for 40 years, finally take action to reduce the availability of guns in this country instead of just talking about doing so.

While curtailing the accessibility of guns in this country through government legislation will reduce the number of incidents similar to what happened Sutherland Springs, Las Vegas, Columbine among too many other places, it will not eliminate it. Human beings cannot solve this problem.

The only answer to eliminating violence of any kind on our planet is for human beings to be filled with God’s Holy Spirit. Human beings are evil. Our propensity is to hurt other human beings. No one can look at the history of the human race and plausibly deny this. Moreover, God tells us this in the Bible.

Unfortunately, very few people even read a Bible anymore and even fewer believe what it says. Over the past several decades we’ve removed the Bible from our lives both physically and intellectually. We’ve decided that we – human beings – can fix our problems and make the world a better place without having to answer to a higher authority.

We could not be more wrong.

Over the past eighty years in the United States alone we’ve made it illegal to teach the Bible in school, made it illegal to pray in schools, we’ve rejected many of the instructions God has given us in the Bible by accepting, celebrating, and legalizing pornography, abortion, homosexuality, same-sex marriage and gender fluidity.

During that same time period, we’ve undeniably seen our country’s morality, finances, security, civility, and healthiness (both physical and mental) decline. – a decline that has become more precipitous in more recent years. It will only gain traction if we don’t address the true underlying issue – we not capable of dealing with our troubles.

Human beings are not capable of fixing the problems we cause. Any “solution” that we come up with to fix a problem only creates more problems. This is because our so-called solutions don’t factor in the reason for all the evil that occurs on this planet – the human heart is wicked.

Again, God makes this clear in the Bible. Human beings, in and of their own efforts, do not have the capacity to bring about anything good. We can only make things worse, even when we intentionally try to make them better.

Despite the preponderance of evidence proving this, we stubbornly and arrogantly continue to insist to ourselves that we have the power to improve our welfare. In defiance of God, we continue to see ourselves as authoritative and capable of deciding what is best.

Human beings have usurped God’s right to decide what is right or wrong or to decide what is necessary or unnecessary, thinking we can do at least a good of a job as He can or even better. The truth is are ill-equipped to make important decisions.

Our desire to rely on ourselves instead of God is not based on any empirical evidence that we can actually do so. It is based on nothing but self-adoration. We think so highly of ourselves that we are blind to the reality of our own limitations and weaknesses.

The only way that trouble, including mass shootings, in our nation can be abated or even ended is for the residents of this country – each and every one – to humble himself or herself before God and seek His mercy. We must repent of our arrogance and our sin and cede control of our lives back to the God who created us and loves us and who wants the best for us.

Unlike other human beings, He is not only willing, but also able, to provide it.

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Digital Communciation Is Controllable Communication

5 Nov

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A few days ago, President Trump’s Twitter account was unavailable for 11 minutes. It turns out that one of Twitter’s employees, who apparently is not a Trump fan, deactivated the President’s account at the end of what was planned to be his last day with the company.

Regardless of what one thinks of Donald Trump, this event should cause everyone concern.

When computers began to become mainstream several decades ago, it was quickly realized that storing information “online” was much more convenient than storing it on paper. Online data storage provides the capacity for data sharing and allows for data to be easily backed up restored in the event of a data loss, among other benefits.

More recently, the invention and rapid acceptance of social media has created a world of digital communication. No longer do we write letters to each other or have phone calls. Instead, we communicate through texts and online postings.

At this point, our communication channels and data storage are almost entirely digital. Someday they will be 100% so. This is certainly very convenient. But it is also scary because a digital world is a controllable world.

Digitally storing and transmitting data creates the opportunity for it to be centrally regulated. It is possible, as was the case with this Twitter employee, for someone who has access to a communication channel to dictate who can use that channel and what information can pass through that channel.

Corporations do this all the time. When employees at most, if not all, major companies access the Internet they do not access it directly. They go through what is called a proxy server. This server, which is administered by an employee or small group of employees, is configured to prevent and allow only certain types of information to be sent out of and retrieved into the company’s internal network (the “Intranet”).

This is done to protect the company. Filters on the proxy server can prevent things like computer viruses from being installed on their computers. Most companies also use the filters to prevent employees from accessing certain websites including porn sites. They can even prevent certain types of email attachments from being sent outside of the company’s network to safeguard trade secrets and proprietary data.

In these cases, managing the digital communication channel is a good thing – doing so protects the company. But these filters can just as easily be used nefariously.

Many countries, primarily Muslim countries and China, similarly prevent their citizens from accessing certain websites, namely those related to the Bible or Christianity as well as social media sites where their citizens could learn about these things.

In doing so, these countries control what information their citizens have access to and thereby control their beliefs.

And while the countries that do this are not exactly known for freedom, it is not too far-fetched to imagine countries whose citizens are currently free to do the same thing someday.

We cannot deny that there is an ever-widening chasm in the United States between people on various fronts including race, religion, and political party. Socialism is rapidly gaining acceptance in our country, especially among young people who unquestionably have more arrogance and intolerance than previous generations. This is a deadly combination.

The belief that the general population should be ruled by an (allegedly) elite few as Socialism espouses, is the perfect breeding ground for information control. When people are so arrogant to think others should believe like they do and at the same time believe in centralized power, they will be intolerant towards information that does not align with their opinions.

As the spread of relativism and atheism spread around the globe, it is certainly foreseeable that countries all over the world someday prevent access to information about God and the Bible.

Those in power want stability so they can stay in power. As such they will always side with the majority. If the majority believe that a minority group – such as Christians – are a problem, those in power will restrict information to prevent the increase in membership of that minority group.

While such a tactic may have been next to impossible just a couple of decades ago, digital communications make it more than possible now. In fact, within the next couple of decades it is very likely.

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Human Leadership Is Smoke & Mirrors

1 Nov

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New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ordered the spire atop One World Trade Center to be lit red, white, and blue tonight “in honor of freedom and democracy” after the terrorist attack in Lower Manhattan by an Islamic supporter of ISIS.

This useless act of symbolism accomplishes nothing. All it does is dupe those too ignorant enough to believe it does.

This is just another action by a politician to increase their own current popularity and secure a future legacy by doing something does not solve anything but gives the illusion that it will.

Only God can solve our problems. Until and unless we as a nation seek and obey God’s counsel, we’ll have more and more terrorist attacks in this country, not to mention more problems in general.

This includes electing leaders who stop using smoke and mirrors, admit to themselves they don’t have the capacity to address the ever-increasing issues our country deals with, and lead according to God’s commands.

Mr. Cuomo is not this kind of person. As an ardent supporter of murdering unborn children, the NY governor isn’t shy about thinking he knows better than God.

Such ignorance and arrogance is what leads to the kind of ideas that “address” problems by demanding lights atop a building be a certain color.

Human leaders can accomplish nothing. All they can do – and will do – is make things worse because their leadership is based on selfishness.

God is the only one who can truly lead us. In Him only must we put our trust.

“Do not put your trust in princes, in human beings who cannot save” – Psalm 146:3

“It is better to take refuge in the LORD Than to trust in man.” – 118:8

 

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Sex Is Like Fire

29 Oct

It seems that every day we hear or read about a new sex-related crime.

Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein have apparently sexually harassed dozens of women in Hollywood.

Another story of a teacher having sex with a student (or students) comes out every few days.

Recently we’ve read about prison wardens having sexual relationships with inmates, and passengers masturbating on airplanes and even fondling people seated next to them.

Even more, our country has a porn epidemic. Many people, notably teenage boys, have developed a porn addiction. The easy availability of sexual imagery online is causing our young men grow up with a distorted view of women and sex. This leads them to commit sex crimes (although girls are not immune from porn addictions either).

As the number of sex crimes increases so does the country’s outrage at these incidents. Certainly, we should not tolerate this behavior. But we should not be at all surprised by it.

In the United States we “liberated” ourselves from the sexual restraints of previous generations by, among other things, legalizing pornography, and accepting sex before marriage. Sex is prevalent in our movies, music, and advertising – now more than ever. All of this goes against God’s commands.

God designed sex to be between one biological male and one biological female who are married to each other. Any other use of sex is sin. In the Bible God unashamedly and frequently warns us about misusing sex. There are very good reasons why He does so.

God created sex for the practical reason of populating the earth. But also, like everything else God created, such as sleeping and eating, sex has a spiritual aspect.

Marriage was designed by God to be symbolic of the union between Jesus and the Church – all the people who become part of God’s eternal family. The husband is analogous to Jesus and the wife is analogous to the Church.

Just like Jesus sacrificially loves the Church, husbands are to sacrificially love their wives. The wife should faithfully receive the love of her husband [Ephesians 5:22-32]. By obeying God’s marital roles, the husband and wife send the message of God’s sacrificial and complete love to the world around them.

Likewise, the husband and wife’s sexual relationship is a picture of the unity and joy we’ll have when we – all the people who believed in Jesus and make it to heaven – are united with Jesus in a relationship that will never end.

As an aside, this is why God commands us not to get divorced. Jesus will never “divorce” any of us. Since marriage is meant to be an expression of Jesus’ unbreakable relationship with all believers, divorce ruins that analogy and sends the wrong message to an unbelieving world.

The sexual pleasure derived from the physical union of a husband and wife’s earthly bodies is meant to remind them of the unity, fulfillment, and inexplicable pleasure they’ll experience in heaven. This is not to say that our relationship with Jesus will in any way be sexual – it will not. The Bible tells us there will no sex in heaven; sex will only exist on earth.

When we reduce sex to an act that simply seeks to satisfy one’s carnal desires we negate the message God wants to teach us through marriage and sex.

In the United States, and most of the world, we came to the wrong conclusion that God’s restraints on sex were puritanical and suppressive. This happened because people stopped reading their Bibles. Therefore they failed to learn and understand God’s purpose for limiting sex to a heterosexual marriage relationship. Instead of filling their minds with God’s truth, they filled it with Satan’s lies. And of course, that has lead to nothing but problems.

If we followed God’s rules on marriage and sex there’d be no STDs, or unwanted children, or abortions, or sex trafficking, or sexual assaults, or any of the other myriad problems in this world related to sex, of which there are many – including some murders. A great percentage of crimes that are committed can trace their origin to some sort of sexual issue.

Our country’s – and our world’s – rejection of God’s definition of sex is the cause of all these troubles. If we want to stop them we need do what God says – eliminate pornography, limit our sexual behavior to a heterosexual marital relationship, eliminate the overt sexuality in our entertainment and advertising, etc.

We can arrest all the sexual deviants we want. We can pass all the laws we want. We can express our outrage on Twitter all we want. But until and unless we do sex God’s way, we will continue to see an increase in sex-related crimes.

This is all just another example of how the decisions the human race makes – decisions we think will make life better – only makes life worse.

Sex can be a good thing. So can fire. But that can only be if they are used properly. When misused, they will lead to tragic problems.

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The US’s Deadly Embrace Of Satan & Sin

20 Oct

Recently, one of the branches of the public library in the city of Long Beach, California held a story-time hour for children. Sounds sweet, doesn’t it?

Storytime in libraries is as common and traditional as sliced bread. And who doesn’t support their taxes going to read stories to kids?

But actually, the guest of honor at this event was a demonic-themed drag queen. Yes, you read that right.

The event was part of an agenda being pushed by a group called The Drag Queen Story Hour (DQSH). Yes – believe it or not – such a group exists. And it is nationwide. It has a location in San Francisco (of course), two in New York, and one in Los Angeles.

According to the DQSH website,

Drag Queen Story Hour (DQSH) is just what it sounds like—drag queens reading stories to children in libraries, schools, and bookstores. DQSH captures the imagination and play of the gender fluidity of childhood and gives kids glamorous, positive, and unabashedly queer role models.

Not surprisingly LGBTQ and satanic groups in the Long Beach area praised the event on social media. It was also promoted by the city of Long Beach itself.

It might be surprising to find out that the library was named after a former first lady. That is until you found out which one. The library is The Michelle Obama Public Library.

Keep in mind, reading the Bible to children in a school is illegal. Reading it to them in a library at taxpayer expense, if it is not illegal, would certainly be met with outrage by the ACLU, the Freedom From Religion Foundation, and every atheist and liberal within 3,000 miles. CNN would make it above-the-fold news on their website.

But it’s okay to have a man dressed as one of Satan’s female helpers read a socially-biased story about gender fluidity to children at taxpayer expense.

If anyone wonders why America is crashing and burning, look no further.

Rejecting the love of God as intolerant while promoting the sinful agenda of the LGBTQ community in the form of a satanic cross-dresser is as debauched as can be.

All of human history is the story of mankind rejecting God while trying to create a better planet. The problem is that God gave the human race utopia – the Garden of Eden – but we rejected it, thinking we could go it alone – without having to answer to a higher power.

That, however, is impossible. Without God life only deteriorates. This is why hell will be so indescribably horrific. God won’t be there. And since God is the only source of good, hell will be hell.

The state of affairs in the United States proves this. Over the past 80 years, this country has rejected God’s truth and has replaced it with our own definition of truth including:

  • Removal of the teaching of creationism from schools and replacing it with the teaching of the lie of evolution
  • Legalization of pornography, despite God’s clear and accurate warning that it is a sin and will ruin lives
  • Legalization of abortion, despite God’s commands not to kill anyone, including those who are weaker and defenseless
  • Rejection of God’s design for marriage to be between one biological male and one biological female and replacing it with same-sex marriage
  • Trading God’s invention of two genders, male and female, with innumerable, self-defined alternatives

The truly frightening part of all this is not only have we rejected God – that is scary in itself – but to fill the resulting void we’ve embraced Satan.

It should not go unnoticed that the more we reject God, the more Satan has permeated our society. Many of the most popular TV shows, books, movies, and video games in this country today have some association with death and the occult and – therefore – Satan.

As a result of all this renunciation of God – renunciation caused by the arrogance and ignorance inherent in the human heart and mind – America is not only in a bad place, but a very dangerous place. Tragically, almost nobody realizes it.

The leaders of this country, those who have influenced them, and those who willingly follow them – are stupid, blind, and self-adoring. They think they are forward-looking and progressive. They think they are actually advancing society and making life better for themselves and future generations by embracing that which God says is sin. They could not be more wrong.

It cannot be doubted that America is in serious and accelerating decline. And we can clearly correlate that decline to the progressive abandonment of God and the accompanying acceptance of evil.

If we don’t soon repent and turn from our rampant and celebratory embracement of sin, our decline will be even further expedited, resulting in the annihilation of our country within the lifetime of some of those reading this.

There isn’t much time left to realize our mistake, change our minds, and turn back to the God who loves us and desires to be with us. We’re almost at the point of no return.

God has thus far demonstrated exceedingly unwarranted patience towards us. But He isn’t going to be tolerant with us forever.

 

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Suppressing Discomfort Brings Disaster

14 Oct

Recently a school district in Mississippi removed the classic novel “To Kill A Mockingbird” from their junior-high reading list. According to the school board president, Kenny Holloway, the reason for its removal was that “some of the book’s language makes people uncomfortable.”

The book, written in 1960, chronicles the lives of siblings Scout and Jem Finch as their lawyer father, Atticus Finch, defends a black man accused of raping a white woman in a small Alabama town. Despite evidence that proves the man’s innocence, the all-white jury finds him guilty.

“To Kill A Mockingbird” was Harper Lee’s first novel. Critically acclaimed, the book garnered Lee the 1961 Pulitzer Prize. It has been widely read both in and out of the public school system across the United States since its publication.

The subject of racial inequality is understandably the cause of much discomfort. It’s undeniable that it exists in this country. But the idea that people – especially children on the verge of adulthood – should be shielded from uncomfortable subject matter is dangerous.

People who are willing to only hear what they want to hear have no chance of improving. Improvement can only come when one realizes they are not what they should be and then takes the steps to improve. Used properly, discomfort is a stimulus that motivates us to make changes that make lives better for ourselves and for others.

Over the past few decades the United States has become a pleasure-seeking culture. We only want to experience things and be told things that make us feel good. Hence, the explosive influence of sex into virtually every aspect of our lives. Anything that causes emotional distress is seen as bad and sometimes even criminal.

Nowhere is this more evident than in the efforts we’ve seen in recent years by special-interest groups and government to remove God and the Bible from our society.

The Bible – God’s word to mankind – calls every member of the human race a sinner. And a hypocrite. And a liar. And sexually immoral. And selfish. The list goes on.

But people don’t want to hear negative things about themselves. Instead, they only want to hear words that make them feel good, regardless of whether those words are true or not. They want to think they’re wonderful and good just as they are.

As a result of the discomfort caused by the Bible, we’ve been removing God from our country as fast as we can. In the past few decades we’ve removed the teaching of creationism from our schools. We’ve removed the Bible from schools. We’ve criminalized prayer in schools. We’ve removed monuments of the Ten Commandments from public places. We’ve even removed references to the role religion, specifically Christianity, played in the history of the United States.

But we’re not done yet. There are on-going efforts to further remove God from our culture including removing the words “In God we trust” from our money and coinage.

All because people are offended by God’s word.

Each of us can choose how we’ll react to any information we receive. This includes how we react to what God says. We can choose to reject His words, and even to fight against them. Or we can choose to see them for what they really are – the truth.

Suppressing or ignoring the truth, even if it makes you uncomfortable, is never an appropriate response. Doing so may make you feel better about yourself, but a comfortable feeling built solely on lies is a precarious place to be.

Even worse, you’re only delaying the moment when you have to finally admit the truth about yourself to yourself. The longer you delay, the more disastrous the consequences once you inevitably do admit it.

The Bible certainly does make people uncomfortable – much more so than “To Kill A Mockingbird”. C.S. Lewis, the English philosopher who went from being a staunch atheist to being one of Christianity’s most ardent apologists, famously said: “If you want a religion to make you feel comfortable, I certainly do not recommend Christianity”.

God intentionally makes us uncomfortable for a reason. He wants us to know how broken we are. He wants us to realize that due to our brokenness – our sin – we’re headed for a horrific eternity in hell.

And He also wants us to know that He loves us has made a way for us to avoid such a fate.

The way God made for us is through the death of Jesus. As Jesus hung on the cross He became sin and took on the wrath due us because of our sin. As a result, everyone’s sin has been paid for. All you have to do is accept that payment.

If you do, then you are no longer seen as a sinner in God’s eyes. Instead, God will call you His son or daughter. And His heir. And His masterpiece. And blameless. And righteous. And holy. And beloved. And a citizen of heaven. The list goes on.

Telling ourselves lies will only lead to disaster. When it comes to lying to ourselves about our sinfulness, that disaster is eternal. We need to acknowledge what we are so we can change.

True change cannot happen without motivation. Our motivation to repent of our sins begins with being made uncomfortable by what we really are.

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