Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Happy Reformation Day!


It was on October 31, 1517 that Martin Luther, a young Augustinian Monk nailed his 95 THESES to the door of the Castle Church at Wittenberg, Germany, sparking what's now known as the Protestant Reformation!

Ephesians 5:16
...redeeming the time, because the days are evil.(KJV)
...making the best use of the time, because the days are evil.(ESV)

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Does the "The Fountain of Youth" exist?

I'll give you the answer at the end of this post, and you may be surprised by The Answer.

I'm sitting here Saturday morning in my easy chair ,deep in thought, talking to and hearing from the Lord with my Bible opened to Isaiah.   Today the earthly body of my Aunt, my Dad's baby sister, his last living relative from his immediate family (parents & siblings), will be laid to rest, while she is now in Heaven in the presence of Jesus.  She has reunited with her sister who went before her, her daughter who went before her, her mother and father, as well as many others loved ones who died "in Christ". 

Many thoughts are going through my head, pertaining to man (and woman's) endless pursuit to prolong the life in this body, keep it from aging, and try to defeat the natural process that was set in motion from the fall of Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden when they were cast out due to sin, and removed from the presence of the "Tree of Life".

From the ancient writings of Herodotus, to the explorations of Ponce de Leon in the 1500's, to the last Pirates of the Caribbean movie, men (and women) have been looking for the fountain of youth.  I can also think of many more movies, literature, etc. that have "immortality" in the flesh as part of it's subject, such as "Tuck Everlasting", "Highlander", "Peter Pan and Neverland", etc., and even "Wolverine".  Needless to say, I enjoy these kinds of stories and movies as much as the next person for "entertainment", but also realize the futility of such earthly pursuits.

In the pharmacy where I work I see on a daily basis people trying to defy the aging process.  Men getting pills, injections, L'Oreal hair coloring kits, hair implants, all desperately seeking to defy the aging process and return to their youth.  Women getting every kind of cosmetic plastic surgery, implants, etc. they can to try to look young, and defy the aging process.  Infomercials abound with anti-aging products, work-out videos, etc., and friends on facebook are pushing AmWay-like products they think will work miracles.  People spend much more time in the Gym, running, biking, etc. than they do in prayer and personal Bible study.  But like in an old "Twilight Zone" episode, they don't realize how futile, vain, and ultimately useless their attempts are, and that end the end, we will all return to dust (unless we're alive when Jesus returns).

The Bible teaches that after death, we will all spend eternity in either Heaven or Hell, and will be given new bodies prepared for such eternal existence.  Eternal life in this body would be eternal torment.  This body was born to one day die.  We can spend all our time, money, and efforts searching for the "Fountain of Youth", but will never find it in the natural realm.  Most literature and movies dealing with the subject show a tragic end to such pursuits.  In the words of Ecclesiastes, "Vanity, vanity, all is vanity".

In Isaiah 40 (ESV) the prophet wrote"
All flesh is grass,
and all its beauty is like the flower of the field.

The grass withers, the flower fades

when the breath of the Lord blows on it;

surely the people are grass.

The grass withers, the flower fades,
but the Word of our God will stand forever.

Now comes the answer my question.  The Fountain of Youth-is it real?  
Absolutely, but its just that we're "lookin for life in all the wrong places" (I know-a lame alteration of Mickey Gilley's "lookin for love in all the wrong places" lyrics-lol)
As I sat and pondered this morning, I was reminded of the encounter Jesus had with a woman at Jacob's well in Samaria, told in John Chapter 4.  Jesus told the woman where the real fountain of youth is found, and how to partake of it and live forever.  It's simple, and can be received by Grace through Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  It can't be found in Florida, in the Caribbean, in a pill, injection, in a Gym, or anywhere else but in the Lord Jesus Christ.  So here's where the Fountain of Youth is spoken of in Scripture, and has been right under our noses all this time.  Problem is, people are spending far too much time searching the world for answers, rather than searching the Scriptures.
John 4:13  Jesus said to her, "Everyone who drinks of this (earthly) water will be thirsty again,
John 4:14  but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a SPRING of water WELLING UP to ETERNAL LIFE." 
So there you have it-The Real Fountain of Youth, the Lord Jesus Christ!

I thought I was through typing, but just had another thought come to mind, where the "tree of life" is mentioned again by John, in Revelation 22.  Adam and Eve were banned the Garden, and from its presence, but in the Eternal state, those in Christ will see and partake of it again.

Rev 22:1  Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb
Rev 22:2  through the middle of the street of the city; also, on either side of the river, the tree of life...
Rev 22:14  Blessed are those who wash their robes, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates.
Rev 22:15  Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.
My Aunt partook of this "Living Water" when she was but a child, and found the REAL Fountain of Youth, springing up to Eternal Life, which she is now partaking of in Heaven.  Have you?  If not, and you want to know more, send me a message and I'll be glad to share more of the Gospel of Jesus Christ with you and talk about how you can drink of this water too!

How will your pursuit for the Fountain of Youth and/or the Tree of Life end?  Futile? or Fruitful? Where will you spend eternity?  Inside (Heaven)? or Outside (Hell)?

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Newspapers? Cable News? nah, my hope is in the "GOOD NEWS"

 Where's your hope?

Matthew 5:18 ESV  For truly, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not an iota, not a dot, will pass from the Law until all is accomplished. 

The LORD will reign forever...Praise the LORD!  Psalm 146:10(ESV) 

(Nebuchadnezzar, Belshazzar, Napoleon, Stalin, Mussolini, Herod, Hitler, etc. did not reign forever, and Barak Hussein Obama will not either.)

Psalm 145:13  Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and Your dominion endures throughout all generations.

Psalm 146:5  Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the LORD his God,
Psalm 146:6  who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, who keeps faith forever

I was going to post this comment on FB but it got too long, so I changed it to a blog post to spare those that don't want to read a long entry on FB.  Sharing my thoughts this morning, the first off day I've had in a while.

I've not been blogging much over the last year or so, because a lot of things have changed in our lives lately. I've changed jobs and and am now working more hours, and am more physically tired and mentally strained at the end of the day as a result.  Kim has taken on a full-time high school teaching position after many years of being a home-maker, and her workload has increased tremendously.  The kids are busier than ever.  We're actively involved in ministries at our Church.  Because of our limited free-time, some things had to give, and I now spend much much less time in Newspapers and watching Cable News, but I decided decades ago that I would not neglect the daily reading of  the Good News, God's Holy Word.  

My wife and I began our Facebook accounts a few years back when our kids wanted to get them, so we could monitor their activity.  As a result, we both reconnected with friends and family that live far off that we had lost touch with, and have really enjoyed checking in on FB fairly regularly to see what's going on with everyone. 

Here lately, I've been getting on FB less and less due to my busy schedule.  I realize many readers of this blog are international, but here in America, through this last election, I read daily posts that I agreed with, but it seemed to me like people were putting all their hope in the Republican party and Mitt Romney, whom I had/have real problems with (but yes, I had/have even more problems with Barak Hussein Obama-the most ungodly leader this country has ever seen).  It grieved my heart that these were our two choices, and still believe its the "Judgment Hand of God" on our Nation.  I believed Romney was the "better of two evils" mainly because he appeared to be able to work with Christians on some common grounds that reflect Biblical and moral values such as protecting the unborn babies from abortion, marriage being only between a man and woman, and other such issues which I ALWAYS look at when considering a candidate.

But now, after the fact, I question whether I should have even voted for a Mormon, who believes and devotes his life to another gospel, which is no gospel at all, and another god and another jesus (no caps because they're not the God and Jesus we know).  I prayed, made my decision, held my nose, and voted.  He lost, I felt better for exercising my right to vote, which I've always done since I was old enough to vote, knowing the sacrifice our military men and women have made through the years for our "right to vote".

However, I had this issue resolved in my mind back during the Bill Clinton era, when I was studying through the Book of Daniel in the 1990's.  God is Sovereign, and He is in control of every little detail in His Universe.  Even the placement of evil rulers over His people.  I (we) should pray and vote, but we have to trust in Him, no matter the results. Daniel was a child of God, an Israelite, who had been taken as a prisoner/slave into a foreign country by a foreign tyrant.  But he continued to serve God, pray toward Jerusalem three times and day, and not compromise his faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  These are his words, while living as an exile in a foreign land under a pagan idolatrous king, Nebuchadnezzar.

Daniel 2:21  He (the LORD) changes times and seasons; He removes kings and sets up kings

Daniel 4:17  ...the Most High rules the kingdom of men and gives it to whom he will and sets over it the lowliest of men.

So sometimes God's people are put under ungodly rulers for God's own purposes, which sometimes include His judgment, and purification of His people.

Now, after the election in America is over, much on Facebook is all about gun control, and I have many guns, and will vote accordingly, and am concerned as well about Obama's agenda(s).  But I realize there are greater forces at play here than just us.  There's a spiritual warfare going on, and this country has turned its back on God.  God is turning us over as a nation to suffer the consequences of our own ungodly actions. 

Now for my point...My Hope is in the Tri-une God of Scripture- God the Father, the Holy Spirit, and my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and His Gospel, not in man, and not in "increasing awareness" of social/secular issues by multiple daily postings of the latest secular news articles that do nothing for the soul, but only increase stress from an already stressful day. 

Wow, I feel like I'm just getting started with relaying the thoughts going through my mind this morning, and have much to do today, and am now remembering why I haven't blogged in a while.  I can't seem to stop once I get started-lol.  But even now, as I began in prayer and reading the Scriptures before daylight this morning, then took a few minutes to browse through Facebook to "catch up", and got side-tracked with this post, I am being drawn back into His Word, then only "everlasting Good News".

Psalm 138:2(ESV)  I bow down toward Your holy temple and give thanks to Your name for Your steadfast love and Your faithfulness, for You have exalted above all things Your name and Your Word.
Psalm 138:3  On the day I called, You answered me; my strength of soul You increased.

Something I thought of the other day while studying the Old testament, by the way, is how Jesus said "destroy this temple and I will build it again in 3 days", referring to His body.  So, I believe this passage to us today as New Testament Christians, is saying "I bow down to You, my precious Lord and Savior Jesus Christ"

F.Y.I., the following is how my Facebook post started this morning, until I decided it was too long, and changed it to a blog post.
Are the latest stories from newspapers and news channels keeping you down? Sure seems like it for many FB friends out there.  I agree with what most of you are saying and posting about Obama, gun control, losing our liberties, rights, etc., and I'm as much a Christian, conservative, gun owner, etc., as most of you, and I have voted, vote, and will continue voting for candidates and bills, laws, etc. that reflect Christian/Godly/Biblical and yes, U.S.Constitutional principals accordingly, but man, how depressing to read all this stuff everytime I get on FB.  I recommend getting your heads out of the newspapers and on-line news so much, turn off the TV sometimes, and spend more time reading the everlasting Good News!  Just sayin!  Feel free to delete me if this offends you.

I'm not going to find a good stopping point this morning, but time to go.  In summary, do you want to be blessed with the Good News?  Or do you want to be discouraged with all the secular bad news?
Psalm 146:5  Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the LORD his God