Frank Laubach

Ever heard of Frank Laubach? Probably not, I hadn’t until recently. If you were from the Philipines you would know who he was.

He had a goal to teach everyone in the Philipines how to read so that they could read the Bible. And, he did. He was a good Christian man who taught an entire country to read. Amazing stuff.

His Wikipedia page is 6 paragraphs long. In contrast, Miley Cyrus’ Wikipedia page has 115 end notes.

Now, granted, Frank is not as cute as Miley, but still. It obviously shows that what is highly esteemed among men is an abomination to God.

Are we preparing and training ourselves today to be ready for what the Lord may have for us tomorrow?

I beat my sister at Word Twist.

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Sin and God’s Word

Why did the first sin happen?

First answer: Because man chose to disobey.

But why did the first sin happen?

Second answer: Because Satan deceived them.

But why did the first sin happen?

Because God said not to eat from the Tree.

Correct! The reason the first sin was possible is because God laid down a law. Where there is no law, there is no transgression.

This does not mean sin was God’s fault, but it does mean that if God never said anything there would be no sin.

Once God said something, Satan and the flesh got busy rebelling. The result of sin was the curse, there was no going back.

Faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. I’m glad God communicated with mankind; I’m not so glad that we have a hard time hearing.

Hearing God is not easy for us, but life depends on it. Hear the loving words of your Creator.

Church-Going Options

Americans believe that true freedom comes with options. It is the ability to choose that sets us apart from socialist nations and makes us free.

The point is true to an extent. But it is possible to have so many options you become enslaved.

If we take this into the church marketplace (one may call it a “den of thieves”), we can see the point.

You can find a church that fits your exact desires. You can surround yourself with the exact kind of people you want to be surrounded with and these people are usually just like you. They dress the same, talk the same, do the same things on Monday and bring the same dishes to potluck.

If you sense that you “don’t fit in” with your church anymore you leave and join another one that is more like you. You can jump ship whenever it seems right and find a more comfortable place to be.

The problem is that you will develop the thinking that “believers are people who are just like me.” No one calls you to anything higher, if they do you’ll just leave and go somewhere else.

We are optioned to death. We pick the most comfortable option and apathetically drift into hell.

All this time we should have been diligently seeking God, we spent a lifetime seeking those who were like us.

There is one option in true freedom and that is God Himself through the person of Jesus Christ revealed by the Holy Spirit. The three are one. There’s your options.

Advice on Trying to Find a Church

About 337 times a year I am asked my advice on choosing a church. I don’t mind the question, but I thought maybe if I answered it concisely once it may save me some time.

First off, let me say that the reason I am a pastor is because I don’t want to go to your church. OK, there are other reasons too, but that’s a big one.

Secondly, here is my list of church-picking advice:

*The Local Church exists to edify (build up) the believer into the perfect man Jesus Christ. That being said, the responsibility for your growth is on you, not your church. So don’t give me any of this “I’m just not being fed” stuff. It could be you are being fed you just don’t have taste buds for truth. Amen.

*The church does not exist to 1) make you happy, 2) fulfill your every whim, 3) give you a place to be you, 4) entertain you, 5) babysit your kids, and pretty much every other reason you are probably going to use to pick a church.

*It is my contention that a true believer can grow in any church. Some of the most growing times I’ve had in church were when I went to a church I disagreed with. However, picking the worst option so growth might occur is a risky proposition.

*The most important aspect of a church is how well they facilitate your seeking of God. When I say “God” I mean the God of the Bible. This means your church must treat Scripture very highly, as the things that are revealed belong to us.

*If your church teaches Scripture and encourages you to pursue God and godliness, I don’t care what else they do. That’s the main point and the main criteria.

*In the end, good churches are hard to find. There are about 6 of them in the world. This should not surprise you, it’s what the Bible says (OK, maybe it doesn’t say there are only 6, but it says there aren’t many). The odds of you finding one are slim to none.

*The “lack of good churches” excuse matters none at all on Judgment Day. If you “can’t find a good church” spend less time whining about it and more time creating one. Every man will be judged on how he built on the foundation, never once is the foundation judged for what was built on it.

My New Book’s Blog

My new book, The Gospel-Filled Wallet, has a blog. It will deal with various other verses that prove its point, false teaching concerning money, encouraging quotations, and various other aspects of biblical finance.

Feel free to drop by and give it a read. From now on it will be linked to in the blogroll to your right. Here are a few helpful links from it:

Why You Won’t like my Book

Outrageous Claim #1 for those who apply the message of this book

Outrageous Claim #2 for those who apply the message of this book.

How Giving Glorifies God

Give and Forget

My Big News

When I was in first grade I entered a contest for the “best book ever written by a first grader” or something. I wrote a book called How Mallards Got Their Colors. It was a real page turner. Readers laughed and cried and celebrated as the little white duck got his colors.

I won like, the best book ever written in the Western Hemisphere or something. MIllions of dollars were obtained, most of which my parents kept I guess.

Anyway, ever since then I have had many book-writing dreams. I have written many, many books. Many written; very few have been read. I never could quite manage to get one published.

Until now, anyway!

I am absolutely thrilled to announce that I got a book published. It is entitled, The Gospel-Filled Wallet: What the Bible Really says about Money.

It is not as thrilling as the Mallard book, but I must say it is pretty good. The writing is not perfect, but the message is completely consistent with Scripture, which I cannot say for my Mallard book.

The book is not up yet on Amazon. But Transforming Publications has it available from the printers here. You can also read it online at Google books.

Keep Yourselves in the Love of God

The title of this post is a quote from Jude 1:21.

The love of God is huge. It blows the mind. It is a powerful thing. It is a beautiful thing. It is so big it makes people not know what words to use, so they use the word “thing.”

It’s big.

It’s so big we may not be able to comprehend it. Like a person in Iowa imagining the ocean. It’s too big and different of a concept, not similar to any bodies of water they’ve ever seen. “It’s like the Mississippi River just more wider.”

Is it possible for a person to escape the love of God? It must be., or else Jude is telling us to do the unneccessary.

How does a guy go about keeping himself in the love of God? I’m not sure. I have to go with the context, which is surrounded by:

–be built up in the most holy faith
–pray in the Holy Spirit
–look for the mercy of our Lord unto eternal life

That’s a good start! The result of being kept in God’s love is that we reach out to those who are lost. Dealing with compassion for some and hasty fearful deliverance for others.

The love of God is big. It expands when it comes into a person, it flows out and reaches others. We are to keep ourselves in it so that others may enjoy it too. It’s a win-win.