May 30, 2011

Practicing Multiculturalism

I Kings 16:30-33

In a more culturally confident age, the British in India were faced with the practice of suttee - the tradition of burning widows on the funeral pyres of their husbands. Gen. Sir Charles Napier was impeccably multicultural:

"You say that it is your custom to burn widows. Very well. We also have a custom: When men burn a woman alive, we tie a rope around their necks, and we hang them. Build your funeral pyre; beside it, my carpenters will build a gallows. You may follow your custom. And then we will follow ours."

There's nothing like inclusiveness to get the multi-cultural crowd into a lather. These people are the type to advocate for 2+2=5 and 2+2=3 to get as much attention and respect as 2+2=4 does.

In short, they have traded the truth of God for a lie (Romans 1:25).

However, this idea of inclusivity is not novel or original. King Ahab perfected it. In the Old Testament, he - along with his pagan wife Jezebel (rhymes with hell), who was the daughter of Ethbaal of Tyre, the priest of Astarte (also known as Eastre) - built an altar to the pagan god Baal in Samaria.  Because of this apostasy, judgment was poured out on Ahab and Jezebel ( II Kings 10:18-31):

"And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the LORD above all that were before him. And it came to pass, as if it had been a light thing for him to walk in the sins of Jeroboam the son of Nebat, that he took to wife Jezebel the daughter of Ethbaal king of the Zidonians, and went and served Baal, and worshipped him. And he reared up an altar for Baal in the house of Baal, which he had built in Samaria. And Ahab made a grove; and Ahab did more to provoke the LORD God of Israel to anger than all the kings of Israel that were before him."

Thus, does this sad tale end like any tale should end when apostasy takes hold of a person's heart: "And concerning Jezebel the Lord also spoke, saying, "And of Jezebel also spake the LORD, saying, The dogs shall eat Jezebel by the wall of Jezreel." (1Kings 21:23)

The prophet Micaiah foretold Ahab's death at Ramoth-Gilead. Ahab disguised himself, and went to a battle at Ramoth, but was killed by an errant arrow (1Kings 22:30-37). As his chariot was being washed, dogs came and licked up his blood.

What does all this have to do with multi-culturalism? When taken to the extreme and there is a demand to include the lies along with the truth then the danger is that the truth will be crowded out by the clamor of the lie. Those who don't believe in God's inerrant word are then subject to fall for the lie of the devil himself.

Romans 1:21-22 reads, "Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools."

Don't be a fool. Trust in Jesus Christ who is the way, the truth and life (John 14:6). Accept no other.

April 16, 2011

Choose Your Bible Wisely!

The Valley of Trouble

Joshua 7

Oh, what trouble we bring upon ourselves when we don't obey God's warnings! Joshua and his crew were told by the Lord not to take anything that was accursed from the town they were about to level. They were also instructed that the gold, silver, brass and iron belong to God; they are consecrated as treasury unto the Lord (Josh 6:18-19). The Lord told them that they would make themselves accursed if they took the accursed thing and the camp of Israel a curse and trouble it.

The word accursed means a thing not devoted to God and intended for destruction, such as an idol, because it is evil in the sight of the Lord.

Yet, Achan disobeyed God's clear command and it impacted not only him, but his family and the nation of Israel. You see, your sin affects other people; it is not isolated even if no one knows what you've done in secret, because God knows. Psalm 44:20-21 says this:

"If we have forgotten the name of our God, or stretched out our hands to a strange god; Shall not God search this out? for he knoweth the secrets of the heart."

When you put your focus, desires and attention on other things instead of God, you've just made a god for your own personal worship. Achan did just that. And for what? Precious metals that belonged to God and a Babylonian rag. How tragic.

You don't have to end up like Achan, who was judged by God. If you believe that Jesus died on the cross for your sins; that He is the Son of God; that He rose from the dead on the third day; and call Him Lord and Savior, you shall be saved (Rom. 10:9-13). However, if you reject Jesus Christ then you are already condemned; you lack of belief condemns you (John 3:16-18). And, those not found written in the book of life shall be cast into the lake of fire.

Consider the hymn, What A Friend We Have In Jesus

Have we trials and temptations?
Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged—
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful,
Who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness;
Take it to the Lord in prayer.

Friend, you don't have to end up condemned to the everlasting fire. Ask Jesus into your life today. Don't wait. Tomorrow might be too late.

February 16, 2011

The Greatest Love of All

 John 3:16

"Is it love ... or guilt? No matter why shoppers head out to buy Valentine's Day gifts each February, the fact is that they do buy them. And while chocolatiers, jewelers, and florists get a sizable chunk of that business, there is plenty of spending to go around. In fact, consumers will ring up a staggering $17.02 billion in Valentine's Day sales this year, according to the National Retail Federation (NRF)." source,

On big reason was left out: Lust. You see, Valentine's Day focuses on the physical and the sensual. It's hardly about a mind set towards faithfulness and commitment. It's more about the senses.  Lust, as defined by the Oxford English Dictionary, means, "Strong (esp. uncontrollable) sexual appetite or desire."

Jesus Christ stated: "But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart." (Matt. 5:28)

James 1:14-15 states the consequences of lust as such: "But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. "

Love, in its purest form, is selfless; it is a decision to put the interest of the other ahead of your own interest. Christ not only lived this life out, but he lived it completely to its logical conclusion: He died for it. John 3:16 states, "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life." Indeed, Christ said, "Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends." (John 15:13)

Please see His sacrificial love on the Cross as an invitation to a relationship with the One who loves you: Jesus Christ. There is no greater love than His. He says in Revelation 3:20, "Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come in to him, and will sup with him, and he with me." C'mon! What are you waiting for? Tomorrow's not promised. After all, you're worth more than $17.02 billion. To Christ, you are priceless. No one else truly sees your worth that way. Except Jesus.