Monday, August 31, 2009

Does the World See God with Us?

Yesterdays text at SGCF was Gen 21:22-34 which reveals that Abimelech saw God was with Abraham and begs us to ask the same question of ourselves: Does the World See God with Us? Does the world observe that our lives are different and that difference being our relationship with God. This is not simply about people seeing different actions but seeing them in such a way as to acknowledge that the difference is that God is With Us.

I truly believe this only happens when we live by the all sufficient Word of God. When we are obedient to His word by His power the world will notice. We do not have to try and be different as if we just seek to live as God commands that will stand in stark contrast to the world around us and be noticed. Now this notice may bring a blessing such as with the treaty with Abraham and Abimelech or it may bring the blessing of persecution as the Apostles and the martyrs down through the ages have experienced. But a life lived that reflects God is with us will be noticed.

Living a life that is seen by the world as revealing God is with us is a life of worship to the one that has called us to Himself. Let us live such a life.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Health Care and the Bible

A friend of mine on his blog, The Crux of the Matter, asked a question about how we should view health care from a Biblical perspective. I thought I would post my response here:

I think there is an error that many make when speaking on social issues and health care is no different. The Bible speaks of caring for widows and orphans and others in a number of places; Deut 10:18; Deut 14:28-29; Deut 24:17-21; Ps 82:3; 1 Tim 5; James 1:27; etc. It is often verses such as these that those purporting a social gospel grab hold of to say the government needs to do something. But this misses the point that these actions were put forth to the church and Israel and not set up for the government of the land. Yes the government of Israel would have part in this as in Deut 14:28-29 but we could probably see this as even now applying to the church but not to the government as we have today.

Another thing that is also often missed is that the care that is to be offered often has stipulations as with widows in 1 Tim 5 and with those being able to work in 2 Thes 3:10. Even the offering in Deut 14:28-29 is only every three years so is not perpetual in the sense of most programs today. To simply have a social program or health care open to all with no stipulations is not biblical.

The bottom line, scripture does call for believers and the church to help those truly in need as the bible directs and describes but simply because we are called to do so does not dictate the government regulating it. The church and those that like to use the church have misused God’s call for his people and in many ways all people to mandate a top down manner of caring for others. Care for others is to be done as an out flow of the commands of God and His change of our hearts. This is the call in Luke 10:30-37 but that call is not for a program to help those in need but is to be ready to care for others as the need arises as the Samaritan did. To use this passage, as I have seen done, to say universal health care is a biblical principle misses the point Christ is making, that we are to all care for our neighbor out of love for God not out of subservience to the state.

So I would say that to say the church needs to be involved in some manner with helping the needy is biblical but it needs to be done out of obedience to scripture not some governmental law. I would even say that this is truly how things have worked in the past, that is until we as a people began to rely on the state to take care of these issue. It was the church that set up orphanages and feed the hungry. But then the state started taxing so there was less money and they took over the welfare and the church handed that over to the state so look where we are now.

As an addition:

While I would say that National Health Care would be in violation of the 10th amendment of our constitution we as believers need to first seek what the Bible says before we consult even the constitution. However in many instances you will find the constitution when properly interpreted through the lens of its framers will in general not conflict with the scriptural mandate. However interpreting the constitution through the “living lenses” of our current government is another matter and is very often in conflict with the Bible.

So at the end of the day while health care may be good it is not a right and God has set up His kingdom to be cared for by His people in His way. As with the Samaritan we are to care for the needy as God brings them into our midst but we are to do so as a people of God and the church of God, His bride, not as a mandate of the state. Once the conversation strays from the Bible it becomes mostly opinion but when we stick to the only infallible and unchanging standard then we can make God glorifying decisions.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Daniel Hannan Interview

This is a good interview on among other things healthcare from someone intimately involved in public healthcare.

At the end of the day though the answer is not conservatism or any other "ism" it is in seeking Matt 6:10 – Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Which is a call for God's kingdom to be magnified here today, "on earth", by His people living by His word and His power.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Government Can

Tim Hawkins is at it again:) - A sad but true comment on our government.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Patrick Henry on the Constitution

Here is a great quote from Patrick Henry on the Constitution that my son and I have posted at our quote blog – What they Said:

“The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government - lest it come to dominate our lives and interests.”
Patrick Henry

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Aren’t Our Children to be Lights in the Government Schools?

This is probably the most used statement when it comes to sending children of Christian parents to the government schools. While I am sure the intent is noble the reality of this is that the children will probably be changed by the schools more than the schools being changed by the children sent there.

For one to be a light in a dark place that person needs to first be a light. Thus while some may be able to argue for their older children being lights this argument is lacking when it comes to younger children. I would add that having worked with youth in the past I can truthfully say I have seen very few youth that would qualify for being the light God speaks of in His word. To be the light God has called us to be is a result of discipleship not simply a profession of faith, it is to be a reflection of the true light that is Jesus Christ. Children need to be raised to be lights and sending them off to the government schools does little else but indoctrinate them into the darkness the government schools spread.

Also, to send children of any age off to a system that is antagonistic to God and teaches along those same lines is to be avoided at all cost. The result of this abdication of the training of the children of believers is that the fear of God that wisdom begins (Prov 9:10) with is nowhere to be found. Instead children are taught that to fear God is not for the enlightened people we are today.

One may think they can counteract this government schooling with training at home but when children spend vast amounts of their time in the government school system it would take an inordinate amount of time to simply correct the wrong teachings and even more time to teach what is correct. With the small amount of time that parents spend in the home and even less time spent in discipling thier own children counteracting the government indoctrination seems highly unlikely.

So let us not send our children to spend large portions of their days in darkness. We need to take the commands of God to teach our children seriously and not abdicate that responsibility to the state.

You can also read a previous post by Voddie Baucham on this subject: Salt and Light

Series Posts
1) Christian Homeschooling and Charter Schools
2) What is the purpose of Christian Education: Part 1 & Part 2
3) Should the Government be involved in the Education of our children
4) Why are we so easily swayed by the money & items offered by charter schools?
5) Should not my children be in the public school to be lights in a dark place?
6) Why do we need to meet man’s standards for education?
7) Why do we need relief or a respite from the presence of our children?
8) Isn't how we educate our children a preference?
9) What if my husband says he does not want to homeschool?

Friday, August 14, 2009

Social Media Addiction

If you are addicted to Social Media you should watch this, well if you use social media you should watch this :)

PS. I should add I found this while looking through my Facebook home page :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Standing Up For the Lord’s Day

Tim Challies linked to a great article on a man of conviction. Dan Walker speaks on his conviction to not work on the Lord’s Day: Standing Up For the Lord’s Day. It is refreshing to see a man working in a business that sees the Lord’s Day as nothing other than just another day of the week take a stand for his beliefs despite the possible repercussions. I would pray we are all as bold.

Around the Web and Blogosphere (8/12/09)

My son Andrew and I have been working on a new blog, What They Said, that posts various quotes from men of the past. It has been interesting as we try and verify the quotes we find and in the process sometimes find it difficult to find the source. We are attempting to make sure the quotes we give are not simply lore but actual quotes from verified sources. We have also found that when it comes to quotes from our founding fathers on God or the Bible many try and discredit the quotes. Either they say they do not exist, at times they appear correct, or they reinterpret them by their anti-God worldviews so as to have them say what they do not. Enjoy.

HSLDA has released a study on homeschooling as it relates to academics: New Nationwide Study Confirms Homeschool Academic Achievement. While it is good to see that homeschooling does not as a whole provide a sub-standard education we as believers need to be careful that we are not diverted from the true reason to homeschool which is because God requires us to. If our primary purpose is to have children that have the best education then we may be dissuaded from homeschooling if some other system shows itself or persecution arises. However, if our primary purpose for homeschooling is because we are called to do so by God, and the government is not, we will be able to persevere when times get tough. So while it is good to see the statistics that HSLDA has shown let this not be the ground we plant our flag in but let that ground be the only solid and unchanging ground that is in the very word of God. As Christian parents we are called to raise godly seed (Prov 22:6, Eph 6:4 among others) not academic geniuses. If your child is academically gifted by God then thank Him but our primary purpose in child raising is to raise children that glorify God with a godly character. So again let us stand firm in God’s word and His commands as the reason why we homeschool. Voddie Baucham also writes on the study by HSLDA: Home Education: the Strength of our Weakest Argument.

Gary DeMar in his blog post: What Our Founders Understood About Human Nature looks at how the founding fathers held to the depravity of man. This is an outlook our governing officials and even the church need to have as it is when we truly understand the heart of man we then understand the reason for and limits of government.

The video below from The Voice of the Martyrs was posted by James McDonald at Family Reformation. Watch this and realize the freedoms we do have but are slowly loosing. Are we ready to stand firm in our faith when the time comes? Well that time has come now as while we are nowhere close to the sufferings of Sarah in the video it is now that we prepare for what may come later. Let us be prepared to be victorious as Sarah was.

Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Sufficiency of Scripture 2009 Conference

Today there are many battles that are being waged by the church. There is the battle to maintain what the gospel message is as many try and hijack its true message with their own ideas, often ones that align with the world’s goals and objectives rather than God’s. The family is under attack from not only the world but sadly even the from within the professing church. The relationship between God’s law and His people and the world in general is attacked daily but again not simply from without but also from within. I am sure you can name other battles that you see happening daily but there is an even greater battle. That battle is for the sufficiency of scripture

Many have fought for the inerrancy of scripture but to stop there is to fall woefully short. Simply having a revelation from God is inadequate if that revelation is not seen as sufficient for what it was intended, to direct and guide all of life such that our lives are lived as acceptable worship of God. Another reason the battle for the sufficiency of scripture is of supreme importance is that it affects how you fight all other battles. It affects how you live all of life. You will either live by the very word of God or you will live by your own understandings and that is not a place a believer should be. For the church to fight the decline of the world we live in, and it is a fight, we need to make sure we are doing battle by the standards set forth by God in His all sufficient word. Thus the sufficiency of Scripture is the main battle ground and we must regain the ground the church has lost so that we and future generations will be equipped to fight and claim the victory that God promises and thus offer up the worship He requires.

The National Center for Family Integrated Churches (NCFIC) will be having a conference, Sufficiency of Scripture 2009:Practically Applied for Church & Family, December 10-12 at the Northern Kentucky Convention center in Covington Kentucky (just outside of Cincinnati Ohio). They have a great line up of speakers : Scott Brown, Ken Ham, Doug Phillips, Kevin Swanson, Joe Morecraft, Voddie Baucham, Andy Davis & Paul Washer. Below are links to information on the conference :

About the Conference
Travel and Accommodations