Exorcisms seem to be big in the news this year. It’s probably due to the Exorcism of Emily Rose movie out now and the Vatican’s new push to train priests to be exorcists. Demons are running all over doing horrible things in the Gospels and Acts. But a change came. We don’t hear anything about exorcisms, how to do them, how to know if someone is possessed or anything else in the rest of the NT.
Colossians 2:15 says that Christ’s work on the cross disarmed the demons, changed their abilities. When demons or spirits are brought up in the NT (after Gospels and Acts) it is always in relation to doctrine (1 Timothy 4:1,2; James 3:15; 1 John 4:1).
Demons are not making people do freaky things now. Now they are focusing on distorting teaching and doctrine. 1 Corinthians 1:22 says Jews require a sign, Gentiles seek wisdom. When Christ was here He did signs and the demons put on a show too. When the program shifts to the Gentiles (Acts 28:28) you don’t hear anything more about exorcism or weird demon possession. Gentiles want wisdom–demons are working to distort it.
Demons are real but they aren’t doing what they did in the Gospels. Now they are attacking the foundations of biblical truth and teaching, which is why the Church is confused over blatant teachings of scripture, such as what demons are doing now. Know your enemy. Respond accordingly.
An appropriate passage of Scripture for Halloween is 1 Samuel 28 where Saul visits a spirit medium to talk to Samuel. There is much confusion out there about talking to the dead and what power future-seers really have. I think several hilariously appropriate points can be made from this one chapter.
1) 1 Samuel 28:7 has Saul asking his servants if they know of any spirit mediums. His servant says “Oh yeah, I know this one chic.” This is funny because back in verse 3 it says that Saul had put away all these people yet his own servants know exactly where to find one! Demonstrates what happens when government tries to enforce a religious obligation.
2) 1 Samuel 28:8–Saul disguises himself when he goes to visit the seer. How did Saul think a disguise would actually work with someone who has powers?! This shows the true belief that Saul exercised here. If the king can fool her with a disguise, she must not be that good of a seer.
3) 1 Samuel 28:11,12–When dead Samuel actually shows up, the only one freaked out was the one who supposedly talked to dead people all the time. She was shocked it actually worked this time!
God has no use for this kind of garbage. It doesn’t work. It’s fake. It’s ridiculous, even people who use them don’t really believe their powers. It’s garbage, stay away from it.
All three picks this week were wrong. But as we all know, God and His people are never wrong, we’re just “growing.” We grew this weekend. We now know some more insights into better judgmentalism, which is what it’s all about. Plus, we’re still 15-6, which isn’t bad.
Denver stomps Philadelphia showing that just because your name is in the Bible doesn’t mean things will go well for you. All you homeschool parents can stop naming your kids Hezekiah and Obadiah now, it doesn’t matter.
Houston beats Cleveland, which apparently means God would rather have Joel Osteen than Ohio. Wow, I was not aware of the depths of God’s negative feeling toward Ohio. I knew it had to be bad, but wow.
New England beats Buffalo. Perhaps it wasn’t really Jesus on the tree in Rochester. Or maybe Ted Bruschi gives credit to God in his heart, God judges the heart, even if we don’t.
Dr. Hank Lindstrom coordinates Bibleline Ministries, is pastor of Calvary Community Church in Tampa, FL, and has been a Moody Bible Institute instructor. He has a new study showing that October 31 is actually the day when Jesus was born.
Through a study of various passages in the Bible, a timeline can be calculated, which begins with the date of priestly service of Zacharias during the Jewish two-week “course of Abia.” The timeline continues through the conception of Zacharias’ son, John the Baptist, on July 31st, and on to the birth of Jesus Christ, indicating October 31st as the birthday of Christ.
You can go to this link to find the link to listen to his study. Hmm, this throws an interesting wrinkle into the Halloween business. It only makes sense that Satan would have his holiday on Jesus’. Guess I’ll skip Christmas this year.
Thank you, I do.
Pastors get tired. One of the weirder aspects of pastoring is figuring out when you’re “not working.” Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining, I’m just saying. Even when I’m on vacation I still check in with the church, if anything “Big” happens, vacation is off.
I know many other jobs are like this as well. You deal with it as best you can. If you love what you’re doing it’s usually not that bad anyway. The Lilly Endowment was started in 2000 and gives churches money so that their pastors can take extended breaks. Sounds cool. Wonder if it actually works for regular pastors or if you have to be a woman pastor from the Episcopal church to get it.
A new contemporary church is handing out free $10 gas cards for every new attender in the month of November. “We are so confident that our worship gathering will be the best hour of your week,” said pastor Brent Birch, “that we are willing to pay for your gas to get here and back.”
The new church is called The Well. “The service is a blend of contemporary music, dynamic media and inspirational messages.” Even though their name is deep, it sounds like their services are rather shallow. Should draw a crowd.
Although I can’t get this picture to copy onto the blog, there is an eerie shot of the radar loop of Hurricane Wilma. In the midst of the loop a number 2 clearly shows itself in the eye of the storm.
Pat Robertson was not available for comment but we can assume his interpretation is that the second coming is soon.
Don’t forget to do your part in resisting the Devils attempts to keep you from church. Set your clocks back, get your extra hour of sleep and show up happy to church!
Each week I pick football games based on the current state of God’s opinions on things as given by modern Christianity. So far this year, Christian judgmentalism is 15-3. Not bad, but, of course, we knew judgmentalism was not bad.
Philadelphia at Denver
Philadelphia is a city in the Bible, the city of brotherly love. Just being in the Bible elevates it above other cities. But Denver, Denver is home to James Dobson, the guy who knew Meier’s would be selected for the Supreme Court. Bad week for him. It will continue. The Bible is infallible
Cleveland at Houston
Ohio is undergoing a huge push to be brought back to Christ with pastor Parsley plus the Transformation Cincinnati rally. Houston is home to Joel Osteen. I wonder which one God wants the least?
Buffalo at New England
Buffalo is a short drive from Rochester, NY where Jesus showed up on a tree this week. If Jesus finds Rochester nice this time of year, He must not feel that bad about Buffalo either. Plus, Ted Bruschi is making his comeback months after having a stroke and not even giving God a nod. You don’t get away with that.
New England 10
Although the church has many people in it with money, it doesn’t have many in it with their Bibles. As churches use Powerpoint and pew Bibles, fewer and fewer bring their own. Which also means fewer know how to use their’s, which usually means they don’t use them at home either.
You’ll have to check out this satire piece on the subject. Quite good.
The Anglican Bishop of Bolton, the Rt Rev David Gillett, says that Halloween should be reclaimed by Christians. “Reclaimed?” Since when did we ever claim it?
He also criticises the practice of trick or treat, in which children knock on neighbours’ doors and threaten to play practical jokes unless they are rewarded. His comments follow growing concern among some Christians that Hallowe’en is promoting an unhealthy fascination with devil worship and encouraging children to wander the streets at night.
He also thinks the church should reclaim black cats, vampire teeth and the bat to their rightful spot in church lore and faith. OK, I made that last bit up. Of all the children I’ve known who trick or treat I’ve never heard of any of them actually doing something to someone who doesn’t give them a treat. I’m sure it happens, but so do fights in hockey.
I’ve also never heard of any kid who made the fatal error of trick or treating only to be sucked into worshipping the devil. There are bigger fish to fry. Oh wait, we can’t fry fish anymore either.
A new study shows that church attendance increases wealth. The study concludes that “Those with more faith may be less ‘stressed out’ about daily problems that impede success in the labor market and the marriage market, and therefore are more successful.”
Let me give you an alternative conclusion on the same facts, one that is likely more correct. Churches attract rich people because they have to pay for their numerous paid staff and buildings. In order to pay for all their stuff, they have to do things that attract rich folks. Therefore, people who attend church more are rich.
Not that there’s anything wrong with being rich or wanting rich people in your church. But, it does raise an interesting point. Do our churches attract the least of these or those with the most? Interesting point to consider.
Just when you stop swallowing goldfish, Jesus shows up in a fish bone!
A couple was given this fish bone they say resembles Christ, about 10-years ago and it has brought them good luck. It’s time for someone else to get the luck so they are selling it on eBay.
It must not have brought too much luck or they wouldn’t have to sell it. I’m sure selling Jesus on eBay will not interfere with their streak of luck.
“There is a legend that the type of fish the bone came from, a sailcat, was chosen by Jesus to remind people of what he went through.”
He went through a fish? Ah, the sign of Jonah (Matthew 12:40)! Wow, you can learn so much on eBay.
My charming daughters received the Winter 2005 American Girl doll catalog today. On the front cover it says, “American Girl: Follow Your Inner Star.” Seeing as how American Girl is now of the Devil because they support abortion and homosexuality, I thought I could give them a few new slogans.
American Girl: Follow Your Inner Thtar
American Girl: Abort Your Inner Star
I’m sure there’s more, you’ll have to help me.
Jesus has not made an appearance for awhile. But rest assured, He’s back!
He is now currently on a silver maple tree near Rochester, NY.
“It’s a sign from God that there should be peace,” Maria Trinidad told the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle. “There is a lot of crime here. People should have faith in God. This is God giving us a sign.”
“We can’t physically see Jesus, so we only have signs,” local resident Karen Marshall told the Democrat & Chronicle. “The only way we can know he’s here is through signs. He’s everywhere. You just have to have faith.”
If you see signs, why would you need faith (Hebrews 11:1)? Oh well, at least we have a tree.
The First Assembly of God Church in Florence, Alabama got a letter from PETA protesting the church’s practice of swallowing live goldfish during a Fear Factor youth event. The pastor agreed to stop the practice and wrote the following letter in return:
“I do appreciate your concern and just wanted to let you know that this will never happen again. My views are a reflection of yours. We love God’s creatures and would never want to show them harm.”
Hmm. Didn’t Jesus tell people where to catch fish? Did they just look at the fish? WWJD? Jesus would kill fish.
“PETA thanked the church for the ban by sending a gift basket of vegan Swedish fish, a gummy candy, as an alternative to live fish.” Makes it all worthwhile.
“As the Imam said, Israel must be wiped off the map,” Mr Ahmadi-Nejad said, citing Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini, the founder of Iran’s Islamic revolution.
The president told an audience of students there was “no doubt the new wave [of attacks] in Palestine will soon wipe off this disgraceful blot from the face of the Islamic world.”
“Anybody who recognises Israel will burn in the fire of the Islamic nation’s fury.”
More peaceful thoughts from Islam, the Religion of Peace.
Former US senator John Danforth hits the nail on the head about politics and religion.
The Bush Administration announced yesterday that starting in 2006, all US passports will have an implanted RFID chip in them. These chips will carry the name, nationality, sex, date of birth, place of birth and digitized photograph of the passport holder.
Weird how we all know how certain things in The End will happen and yet we just keep moving toward it non-stop. Almost as if someone else is in control. In my estimation, Bush has helped several cause,s which I think are significant in terms of our understanding of conditions in The End.
1) His homeland security stuff is pretty much moving toward embedded chips in people. It has taken great steps since 9/11
2) His faith based initiative I think is one of the worst policies ever devised by our government. How this does not freak people out is beyond me. Anytime a faith based group submits to government money, eventually faith will no longer be the base. Tying government in with religion.
3) The fact that he is so revered by Christians as our answer scares me. The close tie of being Christian and Republican is scary. The fact that all politicians know they have to fake religion to get elected is again tying religion and government together. No one will do this better than the Antichrist himself.
I’m just sayin. Be careful out there.
The other day I put up a post about a letter to the editor in the University of New Mexico student paper stating how stupid Christian Republicans were because Jesus is really a thin Michael Moore. It was an inane argument, but I bit.
So did another student of UNM and he did a fine, fine job. Way to go.
iPods are one of the hottest technological inventions of recent years. The new iPod Shuffle is even cooler. So cool, people want to turn it into a cross to wear around your neck.
The creator of the crucifix said the following when asked if this was a Christian thing or just another way to make money “It is both. People will see what they want in it. They may want to visibly show their faith in a more fashionable way. The intertwined meaning is what is interesting. I think we are obsessed with objects today and none more than maybe the iPod. The idea was too funny, controversial, sad, not to visualize.”
The Weigh Down Workshop program has helped tons of women become just a ton of women. It encourages women to lose weight by finding their fulfillment in God rather than food. I applaud their efforts.
However, the founder of the Weigh Down Workshop has begun her own brand of Christianity, which actually qualifies as being a cult. She denies the Trinity, a basic tenet of Christianity that shapes all our doctrine. Her new “church” is called The Remnant Fellowship. Anytime a new religion claims to be a remnant, that’s another sure sign of a cult. To name it Remnant is probably even worse.
This article details Cherri MacPherson’s struggle to lose weight and the success she’s had under the Weigh Down Program. It wraps it up by saying “She believes in the program so strongly, she now volunteers to lead sessions of the program as a coordinator, a position she receives no compensation for. She stopped attending her church and went to a local group connected to the same Tennessee-based Christian fellowship that the diet’s founder attends.”
So that’s nice. Losing weight is now the latest threat to the Christian church.
My wife has known me for 11 years now, yet I can still push her buttons on the same issues. Every time she or one of my girls puts hand lotion on I always tell them that hand lotion just makes your skin dry. It’s a conspiracy from Big Hand Lotion. They get you addicted to it so your skin needs it.
She always argues and gets upset.
Here’s the deal, I’ve never known anyone who uses hand lotion who doesn’t have dry skin. I have never used hand lotion and I do not have dry skin.
You may call this sloppy reasoning, that’s ok with me, you probably read the NIV too.
See, I riled you up too! How often do we fall for poor reasoning in our walk of faith? We condemn organizations that we assume support abortion because some organization they once donated money to once gave money to an organization who once said something about abortion. We condemn believers because they were in a bar or at a Packer game instead of church. We judge too quickly instead of figuring out the motives and the true condition of the other person.
Remember, love keeps its mouth shut at times!
This morning my wife was doing one of my daughter’s hair and felt something sticky on her face. My wife told her to wash her face. The next words my daughter said were “I already did.”
My other daughter, at this time, was playing with a doll, trying to put clothes on it. While putting the skirt on backwards, my other daughter told her to turn it around. My doll dressing daughter said, “I know. I know everything.”
Human tendency is to prove we are right all the time. Proving we’re right by opening our mouths is not always conducive to love. In order to love someone, sometimes you have to appear wrong. To appear wrong, usually you have to keep your mouth shut. Arguing over who’s right helps no one.
Jesus Christ loved us, that’s why He came. If anyone was ever right, it was him. If he had tried to prove his rightness, every mouth would have been stopped. But then no one would have crucified him and no one would be saved.
Even though Jesus was right, he kept his mouth shut because he loved us. Perhaps we can learn from that.
He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth.
American Girl dolls are overpriced dolls made in China that promote the American way of life. They seem innocent and charming, but that’s just the surface. Once you delve into the financial books, you find Satan lurking.
“The American Family Association and the Pro-Life Action League, two conservative groups, did just that in denouncing a fine corporate gesture as one promoting abortion and homosexuality.” Seems as if American Girl has donated money to Girls Incorporated, an organization that promotes the health and education of young girls.
They also promote the killing of the unborn and the gay life style.
But Randy Sharp, special projects director at the American Family Association, insisted that there is an ‘ideological connection” to what his group sees as offensive political agendas. He noted that even when money is dedicated to presumably acceptable efforts, ”it frees up other monies to be used for the promotion of abortion and homosexuality.”
Were protesters not so bent on labeling an enemy, they might find a friend in Girls Incorporated, which, according to its president and CEO, Joyce Roche, believes that the family should be ”the primary source of information on health and sexuality.” She noted that her organization teaches about the benefits of sexual abstinence and works to prevent teen pregnancy.
Buying American Girl dolls has been thrown around in my family for the various young girls in it. I have protested vehemently because they are expensive and if little girls are anything, they are irresponsible and I know these $100 stupid dolls will be in pieces within 13 minutes of being received.
But I have just now had a miraculous change of heart. Let’s buy some. Lots of em. Break em and buy a new one. I don’t care.
Colorado Springs is a bastion of Christian business and ministries. It’s the home of James Dobson, it must be heaven on earth. But it’s not as good as it may appear on the surface.
A Catholic “executive assistant” made a statement that Catholics should not go to protestant services “even if they also celebrate Catholic Mass, saying such services could “confuse” some Catholics and that their participation denigrates the Catholic faith.” God forbid a Catholic should be confused.
“Such ‘active participation’ in a Protestant liturgical service, therefore, acts contrary to our faith which professes fundamentally different beliefs in critical ecclesiological and theological areas.” I would agree with his statement.
Pick one or the other, you can’t have both because they are very different. The sad thing is that it takes someone to tell them this to get them to notice. Then, all the people do is get upset, forcing this “executive assistant’s” boss to issue an apology for him. Apologize for being right then? Unity is overrated.
Just when you thought Ohio couldn’t get any worse in God’s eyes comes this. “Congregations of more than 35 churches, with more than 35 pastors, all set to worship together at one time and place. At the Transformation Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky citywide worship service on Oct. 30 at the Cintas Center, on the Xavier University campus.”
In order to accommodate the pastors, they will each be given 2-3 minutes each to “preach.” “The message is simple: unity. We’ve thought for a long time that Sunday morning is about the most divided time that there is in Christianity.”
“If we want our churches to influence the attitude and approach with which critical issues like poverty and injustice are handled, we must present a united front in our belief that Jesus Christ is the only hope for transforming Greater Cincinnati.”
The best way to unify is to sing songs together, have 2-3 minute long sermons and talk about social issues. That oughta work. I look for huge turnarounds in Ohio. Boy with this deal and pastor Parsley, Ohio doesn’t stand a chance.
Well, well, well. It’s too easy. If God be for me who can be against me? AMEN! 15-3 now, just so you know. I do feel very proud of my oh so accurate judgments, as every good Christian does.
Minnesota did indeed beat Green Bay by 3. Perhaps my prediction seemed a little weird to you. Allow me to explain. Although Jesus turned water into wine, He never said He drank it. Furthermore, as all good Christians know, the wine that Jesus and people in his day drank was not alcoholic, it was just grape juice. So Jesus was not really a beer drinker or maker. Also, Minnesota was judged for their sexual failings severely by the Bears. God is a God of grace. Losing to the Bears is bad, but God doesn’t keep judged people down, He lifts them on wings of eagles.
Washington crushed San Francisco, again backing up our knowledge that God loves America. He hates sinners, especially San Francisco type sinners. Don’t hold our Christian government responsible for the actions of a few heathens.
Pittsburgh beats Cincinnati. Again, no surprise here. God loves industrialization as it aids in the spread of the Gospel. And the attempt by pastor Parsley to give Ohio to God is just not going to impress God much. Cleveland and Cincinnati are not exactly the crowns of rejoicing God was hoping for.
I can’t help it. Stuff like this isn’t worth a response but oh well. It’s too funny not to. I came across a letter to the editor of the University of New Mexico’s student newspaper, oh you know we’re gonna find some gems in here.
The letter expresses how George Bush is a bad follower of Jesus and why do Christians even consider Bush to be following Jesus? “When I ask them questions such as, “Why doesn’t Bush follow Jesus’ beatitudes, like blessed are the merciful, and blessed are the peace-makers,” they usually respond with, “What are the beatitudes?”
Well, OK. The beatitudes were principles for living in the Kingdom of God. It’s one portion of what Jesus said. He also told His disciples when He left that they should take up swords. He also said that God Himself, His Father, was going to wipe out Jerusalem, which isn’t real peace-laden. The Kingdom wasn’t on earth yet, the beatitudes are obviously principles for a believer but will not be principles of governing until the Kingdom.
So, I sure wish this letter writer would tell me what a good Jesus follower looks like. Oh, looky there, he does, and I quote, “If Jesus were alive today, he would be a skinny Michael Moore.” Oh brilliant, just brilliant. This student is certainly getting his money’s worth.