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Allow me to Introduce Myself…

I am a married 39 year old EMT, parent of nine children (five sons, four daughters) and a currently serving Medic in the National Guard. I currently reside in a metropolitan city in the Midwest, though I’m a native Texan.

In case any are wondering, EngMed is short for Engineer Medic. I’m currently serving as a Platoon Medic in a Combat Engineer Company, so that seemed a fitting name, wouldn’t y’all think?

My interests vary between religion, politics, art, literature, hunting, camping, fishing, hiking, music, writing and serving the Lord. Yes, I am an evangelical Christian and I won’t ever shy away from the subject. I invite any to ask questions, debate and will gladly pray for any who ask.

In terms of politics, I’m a Conservative Constitutionalist. No, I’m not a Republican. I’m actually very disaffected with them, given that their commitment to conservative values tend to disappear faster than water on the surface of the sun.

I’m pro-gun, pro-life, pro-death penalty, and pro-limited government. I believe that the Constitution is the law of the land, not social whim.

I’m anti-Islam (a topic I will expand upon in the future), against virtually all forms of gun control, and I’m totally OK with the idea of legalizing marijuana, though I personally detest the stuff.

Well, I think that’s about all I have at this time. If y’all wanna know more, feel free to ask. I’ll just end with this quote:

“Dulce et decorum est, pro patria mori.” “It is sweet and fitting to die for your country.”

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Adventures in Raising Children

If you’ve been a parent for more than five minutes, you know that your children can be an endless source of entertainment, embarrassment, frustration, and laughter; often running the full gamut in less than five minutes. My kids are no exception, and our six-year-old gave us one such example.

My wife and I sat the kids down to watch a documentary on Africa when a segment about meerkats came on. The entire endeavor was derailed by our six-year-old’s hilarious attempts to pronounce “meerkat”.

His initial attempt, meercrap, touched off the need to share this episode. His second attempt, murcrack, was enough to reduce my wife to tears. It was at this point that I decided to coach my young son on how to say “meerkat”. Here’s how it went:

Me: Meer

Him: Meer

Me: Meer

Him: Meer

Me: Kat

Him: Kat!

Me: Meer…Kat

Him: Meer…Kat!

Me: Meer…Kat

Him: Meer…Kat!

Me: Meerkat

Him: Meerclat!

Me: Facepalm

My wife: (choking)

While he did eventually master the pronunciation of meerkat, my wife and I barely survived the experience.

Is Matthew 7:1 the most misrepresented verse?

I was brought up in the United Methodist Church, in a very liberal congregation. As a result, I had a very liberal view of Jesus and His teachings. This is a view that I now know to be incomplete, if not completely wrong.

If you will take a moment and look back through my posts, you will find one entitled “Meat or Milk”. In it, you will note where I stand on the importance of Scripture in doctrine, along with what I think of doctrine that has no basis in Scripture.

In short, the world has no place in the determination of church doctrine. None at all. Doctrine should not be determined by politics, social justice, or anything that isn’t found somewhere between Genesis and Revelation.

This was the main reason why I ultimately left the UMC. Their doctrine is dictated by the world, not the Lord or His Word. They have taken themselves down a path I can’t follow, by permitting homosexuals, transgenders, and even Muslims to worship in their churches without conversion or repentance.

This brings me to the topic of this post, Matthew 7:1. One of the things I was taught was that this verse meant that we could not pass any form of judgement on anyone, as doing so would be hypocritical, because we are all sinners, right? As I am sure some have heard it said, “Why would I hate someone for sinning differently from me?”

Here’s the verse, “Judge not, that ye be not judged.” That is it, a single sentence that highlights why I make a habit of reading the surrounding text before coming to a conclusion about the meaning of a given verse. Taken by itself, it seems to be rather clear, does it not? Don’t judge, or you will be judged, too. But wait, there is always more.

Thankfully, the passage that follows manages to turn this overly simplistic interpretation on its head. For example, in Matthew 7:6 we find, “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.”

Ask yourself, how are we to identify the dogs and swine if we are prohibited from passing judgement? That interpretation renders this verse mission impossible. Cannot be done. Identifying them requires that we pass judgement.

The truth is, it is impossible for any human to go through a single day without passing judgement. Every time you step across the street to avoid someone you don’t like the look of, you are passing judgement on them.

Even when you decide you like someone for any reason, you are passing judgement, so the opposite applies as well. Forming an opinion of anyone, good or bad, is passing judgement on them.

What, then, does this verse mean, if it does not mean that we cannot judge? The short version is, it means that we are prohibited from being judgemental. In case there may be some confusion, here is the Oxford dictionary definition of judgemental:

“Having or displaying an overly critical point of view.”

Taking things a step further, here is what the Barnes’ Notes commentaries say about Matthew 7:1, “This command refers to rash, censorious, and unjust judgment. Luke explains it in the sense of “condemning.” Christ does not condemn judging as a magistrate, for that, when according to justice, is lawful and necessary. Nor does he condemn our “forming an opinion” of the conduct of others, for it is impossible “not” to form an opinion of conduct that we know to be evil.”

What does that mean for the idea that we should not judge? Clearly, it lays the idea to rest. When Matthew 7:1-6 is read and carefully considered, Christians and Messianic Jews are commanded by our Lord and Savior to judge.

What does it actually prohibit? We are prohibited from passing harsh, hasty, and overly critical judgement. Any time you rush to judgement, jump to conclusions, or make a decision without knowing all of the facts, you are being judgemental. That is what Jesus was cautioning us against.

The unvarnished truth is that each and every one of us was born into a war that was already being waged when Adam drew his first breath. We cannot avoid it, we cannot sit it out, and we must choose a side.

In the Book of Revelation, it is revealed that everything will lead to a single fixed point in time, in which there will only be two armies: the Army of Light and the Army of Darkness. This is why it is so important to get Scripture right.

Whether you know it or not, many will find themselves on the wrong side because of false teachings, false doctrines, and misapplied Scripture. Many will be led astray, while firmly believing that they are following the Lord. Sadly, these people will hear, “I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.” (Matt. 7:23, KJV)

Jesus also warned His followers about false teachings, and false teachers in Matthew 7:15, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheeps clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” He knew that Satan would come to dilute, confuse, and distort the Gospel Message.

The end result is that we now have churches that have abandoned the Gospel Message, choosing doctrine that is pleasing to the world, rather than doctrine that is pleasing to the Lord. Today, there are too many people who would rather be right before the world, and it is due in part to misrepresented Scripture, of which Matthew 7:1 is a prime example.

In conclusion, I call Matthew 7:1 the most misrepresented verse in the Bible because of the way it’s been used to silence any opposition from the Christian right. It has been misinterpreted, and that wrongful interpretation has been used as a weapon against any Christians who object to what our society wants. Of course, that isn’t to say that it is the only one, but it is doing the greatest damage.

“For many are called, but few are chosen.” (Matthew 22:14, KJV)

Why I Believe

In all of my posts, I have delved into what I believe, but not really why. The short answer to why it is that I can still believe in God, Jesus, miracles, and the Bible is that I just do. That it is all true is not anything I need to question, I am convinced.

In spite of the prevailing culture, which seems more focused on hedonism, moral and cognitive relativism, and the increasingly stupid antics of Hollywood celebrities, I’m still ready, willing, and able to follow God and His Law. For me, it really is not a question. I proudly proclaim that God is real, and that Jesus is the only way to Him.

In John 14:6, Jesus proclaims, “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” In that one statement, Jesus manages to negate the claims of every other religious and spiritual faith out there. In that moment, He declared them all false.

This brings up a very obvious question. Why the Christian faith? To the people completely inured in our modern world, this seems a rather logical question, right?

To begin, the idea that only one faith is true makes logical sense, contrary to public opinion on the matter. There are thousands of faiths worldwide, all of which make completely exclusive claims, and virtually all of them contradict each other on very fundamental levels. The logical conclusion is that only one can be true.

For example, the Hindu faith makes the claim that the immortal soul exists, while the Buddhist faith categorically denies it. That is a fundamental and irreconcilable difference; either it exists, or it does not.

Similarly, Hinduism makes the claim that there are millions of gods, while Buddhism is essentially atheistic in nature. Which one is correct and which one is false? The question seems unanswerable, but what if I was to tell you that the answer is very simple?

Let us begin with God, shall we? If He does not exist, then this whole exercise is pointless. As such, it makes sense to begin with God and the question of whether or not He exists. I firmly believe He does, but maybe you’re on the fence?

Now, there are those atheists who are absolutely committed to the idea that science has proven that there is no God, that all religions are false, and that anyone who chooses to believe are doing so because they are too stupid, and/or gullible, to be reasoned with. Examples of this attitude are rather openly and forcefully provided by people like Richard Dawkins and Christopher Hitchens.

Unfortunately, they manage to ignore the fact that there are trained scientists who also happen to believe in God, and present very compelling arguments in support of that position. Given that these people exist, one must logically conclude that the scientific community is by no means unified on this. In other words, the science is not settled.

This idea is further supported by the fact that no one can conclusively point to a single scientific proof which definitively states that God does not exist. Therefore, this lends credence to the idea that we can neither prove nor disprove His existence. What we can do, however, is demonstrate that His existence can be extrapolated through the odds, among other factors.

In His book, “Why the Universe is the way it is”, Dr. Hugh Ross says, “Innumerable conditions must be exquisitely optimized for the support of humanity and of civilization. Many of them are highly time variable. Evidence showing that a wide variety of independent conditions all reached optimality during the identical narrow epoch when human beings appeared on the cosmic and terrestrial scene testifies of supernatural design and purpose rather than mere coincidence.”

He also says, “Theologically, the space energy density demonstrates that for physical life to be possible at any time or place in the history of the universe the value of the mass density of the universe must be fine-tuned to within one part in 1060, and the value of the cosmological constant must be fine-tuned to within one part in 10120. To put this in perspective, the best example of human engineering design that I am aware of is a gravity wave telescope capable of making measurements to within one part in 1023. This implies that the Creator at a minimum is ten trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion trillion times more intelligent, knowledgeable, creative, and powerful than we humans.”

With odds like that, it is clear that the chances of God’s existence pretty much amount to a certainty. To create an entire universe would require a super-intellect so far beyond human comprehension that we would not be able to fathom it. As God says, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord.

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Isaiah 55:8-9, KJV)

The stark reality is that the chances against a universe as ordered as ours existing without any outside force acting upon it are so clearly one-sided, it renders continued disbelief in the existence of God illogical and irrational. It is similar to believing that the earth is flat, in spite of the available and very obvious evidence.

On the matter of the odds, Fred Hoyle says, “The likelihood of the formation of life from inanimate matter is 1 to a number with 40,000 noughts after it…. It is big enough to bury Darwin and the whole theory of evolution. There was no primeval soup, neither on this planet nor any other, and if the beginnings of life were not random, they must therefore have been the product of purposeful intelligence.”

A purposeful intelligence many trillions of times more powerful than the best and brightest that humanity has to offer. That sounds an awful lot like the Almighty God of the Bible, but there is still more to this. Neither of the quotes I have provided clarifies why YHWH is the One True God.

To begin, consider the nature of the universe we live in. In the Book of Isaiah, God describes the universe as expanding. “It is he that sitteth upon the circle of the earth, and the inhabitants thereof are as grasshoppers; that stretcheth out the heavens as a curtain, and spreadeth them out as a tent to dwell in:” (Isaiah 40:22, KJV)

If the Book of Isaiah, which was written during the 8th century BC, does in fact describe the universe as expanding, then that makes it the only ancient document on the earth to make that claim until Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity. This means that the Bible not only had it right, while the rest of the world had it wrong, but that was the case for nearly 3,000 years. How could that be, unless someone with higher knowledge revealed such a thing?

At the time the Book of Isaiah was written, the known world was absolutely convinced that the universe existed in a steady state; that is to say, no expansion or contraction, no beginning and no end. They believed that the universe was completely, utterly, and totally unchanging and infinite. Where, then, did this idea come from?

This idea, of course, was put to rest when Einstein developed his Theory of General Relativity, and later confirmed by Edwin Hubble through observation of the red-shift phenomenon found on moving celestial bodies. This discovery confirmed what the Bible had been saying about the essential nature of the universe for nearly three millennia.

This fact alone removes virtually every other religious faith from the running. Buddhism lost out to Hinduism on the issue of God’s existence. Hinduism ends up shut out over the issue of the expanding universe because the Hindu texts teach the steady state model.

In fact, there are only two faiths I know of that teaches that the universe is expanding: Judaism and Christianity. Which one, then, is the right one? Both use most of the same Scriptures and purport to worship the same God, so what makes Christianity correct and Judaism wrong? The answer comes in the form of Yeshua, also known as Jesus.

Contained within Old Testament Scripture is a class of text known as Messianic text. These are prophesies that predict the coming of a singular being known as the Messiah, or Anointed One. To date, Christian and Messianic Jewish scholars have identified more than 350 separate prophesies relating to the Messiah.

These prophesies outline His entire life with so much detail that we know when and where He was to be born, the circumstances of His life, His divinity, His life, betrayal, trial, death, and resurrection. Literally every aspect of His life is contained within all of those texts.

In the 1960’s, a mathematician named Peter Stoner took it upon himself to attempt to determine the statistical chances of one person in history actually fulfilling all of those prophesies. He got as far as 40 prophesies, because that was the point where the statistical probability against such a person existing crossed out of the realm of human comprehension.

He determined that the odds of one person fulfilling all of those prophesies was 1 in 10^157. That is a 10 with 157 zeros behind it. Rather a large number, don’t you think? Yet, Jesus not only existed, but He had a profound impact on the world we live in.

In every sense, Jesus’ existence was a statistical impossibility, so when the person who should not have existed says He is God, the Messiah, the Son of Man, the Son of God, the Alpha and the Omega, I am more than a little inclined to believe Him. Not only was His existence impossible, but the details of His existence match up too well with prophesy to ignore.

While it is true that I have never needed any of this to know that God exists, it certainly does come in handy when sharing the Gospel with non-believers. I know for a fact that God exists, do you?

It isn’t as if the question is trivial, given that your answer to the question will have such a profound effect on what your afterlife will look like. My hope is that you will read this, and consider carefully all that I have presented. What you choose to do from there is your choice.

Let’s Call it What it is: Murder

Introduction

Fewer topics have caused more controversy, debate, and/or vitriol than the topic of abortion. Whether you are pro-choice, or pro-life, it is a fair bet that you have very strong feelings about it, and you probably aren’t very shy about sharing them.

As I have stated before, I am pro-life. In this post, my intention is to present my side of the topic, my own personal corner of the war of words that is known as the abortion debate.

As always, if you are thin-skinned and need a safe space when faced with opposition, you are likely going to be very unhappy in the next few minutes. Please note that I do not care, as I will be using strong, politically incorrect language throughout this post. I refuse to sugarcoat things, folks.

Before I go any further, allow me the opportunity to knock aside one common argument; that is the idea that my gender somehow precludes me from expressing an opinion on this topic. If that’s your argument, move on. I have neither the time, patience, or inclination for such nonsense.

The truth is, at conception, a human child is a 50/50 mix of their parent’s genetics. That means that both mother and father contribute equally to that child’s genetic makeup. As such, barring any mitigating circumstances, they should both have an equal say in the future of that child. (To all feminists, sorry, not sorry)

As this post continues, I will be presenting my reasoned arguments in support of the pro-life movement. My hope is that you, the reader, will take something away from this.

As always, I happily invite open dissent into my comment section. If you disagree with me on any, or all points, I most definitely want to hear from you. In fact, I will reply to dissenting comments first. Without further ado, I present my argument against abortion.

My Conclusion

I will be as succinct as I can be, abortion is not just murder, it is the willful and deliberate shedding of innocent blood, and an utter abomination. It is disgusting, horrifying, and inhumane. What’s more, those who support and encourage the practice are guilty of being complicit in a decades-long campaign of mass-murder that has claimed the lives of millions of the most vulnerable and defenseless members of our species. Tragedy is not a strong enough word to describe it, not by a long shot.

That those who support this practice are absolutely horrible human beings is without question, in much the same way as the people living close enough to Auschwitz were horrible human beings; in other words, they knew what was going on, but chose to keep silent. Silence is compliance, people. However, it goes beyond that. None of this addresses the people who actively participate in this bloodbath.

I am, of course, referring to the mothers, Doctors, Nurses, Medical Assistants, receptionists, everyone. This list even includes the construction crews who built, maintain, and renovate/remodel the facilities used to perform abortions. All of these people have blood on their hands, and darkness in their heart’s. They have, in effect, completely abandoned their humanity.

By now, I am sure some are looking at this, and seeing the usual “anti-choice” vitriol, and they would be right. However, there is always more to the story. What I have presented, thus far, is my conclusions. From here on out, it is time to present the “why” of those conclusions. As I am a Christian, I’ll start with the document that is the most important to me: the Bible.

Scriptural Justification

Motivation Matters

In Amos 1:13, we find, “Thus saith the Lord; For three transgressions of the children of Ammon, and for four, I will not turn away the punishment thereof; because they have ripped up the women with child of Gilead, that they might enlarge their border.” In other words, He took issue with their greed, violence, and their wanton shedding of innocent blood.

We must see to the defenseless

In Phillipians 2:4, “Look not every man on his own things, but every man also on the things of others.” We are commanded to look out for each other, to care for one another. This is important because we often face harsh criticism when we speak out against evil.

Similarly, we are also commanded to speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves. Proverbs 31:8, “Open thy mouth for the dumb in the cause of all such as are appointed to destruction.”

According to the Barnes’ Notes commentaries, Proverbs 31:8 says, “In contrast with the two besetting sins of Eastern monarchs stands their one great duty, to give help to those who had no other helper.

Such as are appointed to destruction- literally, “children of bereavement”, with the sense, either, as in the text, of those “destined to be bereaved of life or goods”, or “bereaved or fatherless children”.” In other words, we are obligated to speak out for those who do not have a voice, regardless of how we personally feel. It is mandated by God.

The unborn are people, too

In the Book of Exodus, God directly confers personhood on unborn children when He says, “If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine.

23 And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life,

24 Eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot,

25 Burning for burning, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.” Exodus 21:22-25

What this means is, if two men are fighting, and they accidentally manage to injure a pregnant woman during the fight, thereby causing her to go into labor, then they are liable to her husband.

If the baby comes, and is uninjured, then the one who hurts the woman takes whichever punishment her husband decrees. However, if harm does come to the unborn child, then the perpetrator will suffer the exact same injury, even unto death. This is where personhood is conferred.

If that child were not considered a human, then the punishments involved would likely have been monetary. Yet, the full weight of the law is called upon anyone who causes harm to an unborn child, even if it means executing the perpetrator as one would do for murder.

Similarly, Psalm 139:13-15 continues the theme of personhood, “For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother’s womb.

14 I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.

15 My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.”

The going theme is that not a one of us was made without God’s knowledge.

Consciousness of the Unborn

Many might not know that John the Baptist was also Jesus’ cousin. The story of John the Baptist goes a long way towards establishing that unborn babies are conscious. “And it came to pass, that, when Elisabeth heard the salutation of Mary, the babe leaped in her womb; and Elisabeth was filled with the Holy Ghost:

42 And she spake out with a loud voice, and said, Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb.

43 And whence is this to me, that the mother of my Lord should come to me?

44 For, lo, as soon as the voice of thy salutation sounded in mine ears, the babe leaped in my womb for joy.” Luke 1:41-44

Children a Reward From God

Each child born is a blessing, regardless of the circumstance. Psalm 127:3-5, “Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.

As arrows are in the hand of a mighty man; so are children of the youth.

Happy is the man that hath his quiver full of them: they shall not be ashamed, but they shall speak with the enemies in the gate.” 

Does this mean that children won’t be born into awful circumstances? Absolutely not. However, we as a society should do what we can to mitigate that.

Scientific Justification

Some on the pro-choice side of the argument like to claim that science has settled the issue, and an embryo is nothing more than an unconscious clump of cells without any value but that which is given by the mother. (See the phenomenon of Fetal Victim Laws) I have had pro-choice supporters tell me that a human embryo is not alive and not a human. Thankfully, Embryology texts teach different.

For example, “Although life is a continuous process, fertilization (which, incidentally is not a “moment”) is a critical landmark because, under ordinary circumstances, a new, genetically distinct human organism is formed when the chromosomes of the male and female pronuclei blend in the oocyte.” -O’Rahilly and Müller, “Human Embryology and Teratology”, 3rd Ed., 8

Note that the phrasing is “genetically distinct human organism”. This means that each and every baby is a genetically distinct human. Are they completely dependent upon their mother’s body for their existence? Yes, but this does not mean that they are part of their mother.

At no point does the mother have four hands, four feet, two heads, two brains, etc. This means that the baby is an individual growing inside their mother.

This is further borne out by Dr. Bradley Patton, in “Human Embryology”, 3rd Ed., when he states, “The formation, maturation and meeting of a male and female sex cell are all preliminary to their actual union into a combined cell, or zygote, which definitely marks the beginning of a new individual.”

Even some on the pro-choice side have admitted that an unborn human child is in fact a human being. For example, David Boonin in “A Defense of Abortion” writes, “Perhaps the most straightforward relation between you and me on the one hand and every human fetus on the other is this: All are living members of the same species, homo sapiens. A human fetus after all is simply a human being at a very early stage in his or her development.”

In “Common Ground and Uncommon Conversations”, Stephen Wagner makes my next point very plain. “Why are sexism and racism wrong? Isn’t it because they pick out a surface difference (gender or skin color) and ignore the underlying similarity all of us share? We should treat women and men, African-Americans and Whites, as equal and protect them from discrimination. Why? Because they all have a human nature. But if the unborn also has that same human nature, shouldn’t we protect her as well?”

Legal Justification

Allow me to begin by stating unequivocally that I am most certainly not an attorney. However, a law degree isn’t required for this part; just a conscience and the ability to read, reason, and comprehend.

The online legal dictionary at Law.com defines murder as, “the killing of a human being by a sane person, with intent, malice aforethought (prior intention to kill the particular victim or anyone who gets in the way) and with no legal excuse or authority.” In other words, for it to be murder, one must make a conscious decision to end the life of another human being.

As I have previously established, an unborn child is a human being in the eyes of both science and the Bible. As such, they are entitled to the full protection of the law. This means anyone who kills an unborn baby is a murderer, and those who help in any way are accessories.

This includes the people I mentioned at the beginning, from the construction workers to the receptionists, to the medical staff carrying out the abortions. All are guilty, and all have innocent blood on their hands.

When it comes down to it, no matter how you try to look at it from different angles, murder is murder. When someone commits murder in our country, they are punished to the fullest extent of the law. That is, unless the human they murder happens to be an unborn child in a medical facility.

Meat or Milk, Which would you prefer?

There are two types of Christians: Strong and Weak. No matter where you go, you’ll encounter one or both. Here’s how you can tell the difference.

Weak

This is the Christian who believes firmly that Jesus loved everyone, that He was some kind of sweet, charming, and overall swell guy, who accepted everyone, regardless of their faith or walk in life.

As Voddie Baucham says, regarding this view of Jesus, “We do think of Jesus as the God who comes along on the right side of the Bible, to apologize for what the guy did on the left side of the Bible. We see Him as a kinder, gentler, administration…” (Side note: Not implying that Dr. Baucham is a weak Christian, only quoting from one of his sermons, entitled, “The Modern Church’s Sissified Jesus”. He’s actually one of my favorite preachers. Here’s the link to the sermon in question: https://youtu.be/VrUzhuk-Uuc)

This Christian seeks to please the people of the world, in the misguided hope of eventually winning them over to our side. They are subtle, saccharine sweet, and remind everyone of that moment around the campfire singing “kumbaya”.

While they are most likely among the saved, they are lacking in a few areas. For one, before He ascended to sit by the right hand of God, Jesus commanded His followers to share the Gospel. He made it clear that it is our duty to share His Word and His Message with all nations, all tongues, and all people.

These guys do that, but to a very minor degree. These are the guys who will avoid sharing the Word if they think it will offend someone. They are the ones that will water down the Message, in order to bring people to them, because they think this is a numbers game.

As if that isn’t enough, they will ignore Scripture, and support doctrines, causes, and trends that God has spoken against. They are easy to spot because they will often say, “I’m a Christian, but I support [insert cause here]”.

These types of Christians will do things like allow Satan worship in their church for the sake of Social Justice. They will also support doctrine and practices that are in no way scriptural, simply because they want to appear pleasing to the world.

They will, in short, surrender their salvation to the world, out of a desire to get the world to like them, because they labor under the illusion that this will bring people to Jesus.

Strong

These are the Christians that people love to hate, because they do not mince words, they do not compromise, and they refuse to support anything or anyone who runs counter to Scripture.

While they recognize that Jesus does in fact love everyone, they also recognize that real love looks very different from what the world at large thinks. They know that the love He has for us is violent, savage, all-encompassing, and so far beyond human comprehension that it can only come from God.

This is the love that drove God to take on human flesh, walk this earth, suffer and die through a form of execution so horrendous, even the Romans considered it unfit for polite discussion; all for the sake of all humans, past present, and future.

This is a love that says it is acceptable to speak up and tell someone that they are behaving like a child, that they are acting the fool, and/or that they are very wrong. This love reveals all Truth, not just the kinds that people will be comfortable with, but also painful, uncomfortable Truth. It is The Truth Against the World.

These are the people who worship a Jesus that stood up to the religious authorities, who called people out on their sins, who overturned tables and chased people out of the temple with a whip. They know that He came as the fulfillment of the Law, as the predicted Messiah, and to be the salvation of all mankind.

What weak Christians view as proof that Jesus accepted everyone, is seen by strong Christians as proof that Jesus knew the multitude of people’s sins, called them out on it, convicted them of it, and then absolved them of it, always with the admonition to go forth and sin no more. He offered His forgiveness to all who were willing to follow Him, and never to those who refused Him.

These are the ones standing on street corners, outside of Mosques, Synagogues, Temples, bars, night clubs, and anywhere else sinners can be found, offering up the salvation of Jesus Christ to any who will take it. They are the ones suffering verbal abuse and assaults from people who seek to drive them from these places, in order to accomplish what Jesus ordered all of us to do; which is to share the Gospel.

Conclusion

The analogy used in Scripture to differentiate between the two is milk and meat. Your preference is determined by your stage of spiritual development.

As babies, milk is the only food we’re capable of taking in. Obviously, you wouldn’t attempt to give a newborn meat, as they are incapable of digesting it. The same goes for spiritual Truth.

The problem is, people are too easily taken by complacency. They become locked in the sameness of church life. The same sermons, the same hymns, the same readings, and the list goes on. The end result is, people can spend their entire lives in a state of spiritual infancy, never progressing or regressing, just remaining static.

Church is not a place where one ought to go to be comfortable. Church is where we must go to be fed spiritually, while coming face to face with all of our sins and iniquity. To quote Voddie Baucham, “If you can’t say amen, say ouch.”

Just some thoughts

While I was in Iraq, I made the acquaintance of an Iraqi Christian man named Fred. Yes, that was his real name. He said his father had been studying the history of Germany when he was born, so he was named for King Frederick.  This post is dedicated to him, and a conversation we had during our short association, especially since I honestly don’t know what ultimately happened to him.

Earlier today I got into a conversation with a fellow conservative who is so fed up with the way this country is headed that he’s ready to pull up stakes and move elsewhere. I let him know in no uncertain terms that I patently disagree with this course of action. In so doing, I found myself speaking to a woman who apparently had been contemplating the same thing, and my answer gave her reason to stop and think.

This conversation took place in the comments section of a video on YouTube, and the guy I’d initially spoken with suggested that all conservatives ought to just quit the country, move elsewhere, and leave the Progressives to the natural consequences of their misbegotten ideologies. Oh, so much wrong with this idea.

I jokingly suggested that we should simply move all of the Progressives to California, grant them their independence, and let them enjoy the natural consequences. Meanwhile, we would simply resettle any Californians who wish to avoid that mess in our own communities, and move on from there. I was being facetious of course, but it still struck a certain note with me.

It took me back to a conversation that Fred and I had. I once asked him if he’d ever considered immigrating elsewhere. Given that he has a background in communications, and the ability to speak fluent English with almost no discernible accent, I told him he could go just about anywhere and live comfortably.

He responded that Iraq is his home, that he couldn’t imagine living anywhere else, and that he wouldn’t be leaving for any reason. Given the condition that Iraq was in back then (2008), I felt the need to question his sanity. People like him were being targeted for death and destruction, and he was perfectly willing to risk it all in order to remain exactly where home is.

Today, as I look out at my own country, I see now why he chose as he did. He is a patriot, and loves his country, warts and all. This isn’t to say that those who choose to immigrate are somehow less than, given that life for me would be very different if my dad hadn’t come to the U.S., but the worst thing that can happen for an ailing country is for all of the good people to simply flee.

I look at my country, and to my shock, I’m able to draw parallels between Iraq in 2008 and the U.S. in 2017. Our country has certainly been taken by various forms of insanity and moral bankruptcy the likes of which hasn’t been seen since Sodom and Gomorrah, or more appropriately, Rome under Emperor Caligula.

Much like ancient Rome, we have barbarians knocking at our gate, and some fool has decided to invite them in. Between groups like AntiFa, BLM, BAMN, and many more, we’ve found ourselves headed down a path that simply does not bode well for anyone. Sadly, even the useful idiots “protesting” by hitting people with bike locks and whatnot aren’t aware that this mess will one day come home to roost, and they’ll be the ones paying the price.

In Iraq, Fred had to contend with insurgent groups who hated Christians, who regarded him as a traitor for working with Americans, and who wouldn’t have had any qualms about dumping his dead and mutilated body on a street somewhere. In the U.S., we have people who look upon shameful incidents like the massacre in Las Vegas, and find something other than contempt and sadness for the shooter. There are those who see that example of abject terror as a good thing, and this can’t be anything short of abhorrent. It really is enough to make one’s heart and spirit sick.

Now, I find myself standing in Fred’s shoes. Someone has raised the possibility of leaving, and such an idea is simply offensive to me. My grandmother patiently waited for years to immigrate to this country. My Dad, in spite of the fact that English was not his first language, wouldn’t allow any of us to speak Spanish until we had mastered English. My entire family instilled a strong work ethic in me, along with an inborn, genetic form of stubbornness that won’t allow me to quit on anything.

It’s for those reasons, along with many others, that I absolutely refuse to leave this country. In spite of all of the problems, this is still the greatest country in the world. It’s still the freest country in the world, and I’m willing to give my last breath in order to ensure it stays that way. To me, leaving isn’t even an option, unless God Himself says otherwise. I will not teach my children that giving up is a viable option to problem solving.

In response to my flippant resettlement program, one woman responded, ” I had to laugh, yet pause with your response to conservatives leaving the nation. As someone who’s seriously considering it myself, with much reservation especially considering the the effects on the like if my own grandchildren and their children. However our nation just seems so doomed… so overrun with the brainwashed of so many decades. It’s really a tough call to make”

I told her what I had said about my own family, and she let me know that I’ve given her much to think about. It was the most positive conversation I’ve had on YouTube in a long time. I still keep going back to that conversation with Fred. What he said to me was so profound.

It’s why I can’t help but chuckle every time I hear anyone threaten to immigrate to Canada if things don’t turn out the way they want. It’s why I find myself grinding my teeth when I see footage of people swarming over others, because they don’t like their political beliefs. It’s why my heart grieves so deeply for those people affected by the Las Vegas massacre, along with every other terrorist act committed by AntiFa, BLM, BAMN, Daesh, and many others. It’s also why I spend every day fearing for my children, and why I spend so much time praying that the Lord protect us all from ourselves.

Now, for the hard part. Since I first heard about the massacre in Las Vegas, I’ve really struggled with how to address this. Make no mistake about it, I categorically condemn any and all forms of terrorism, especially when it’s targeted at large numbers of innocent people. This goes for the mess in Ferguson, the attacks on police officers nationwide, the riots and protests at Mizzou, UC Berkely, the shooting in San Bernardino, and most especially the massacre in Las Vegas.

I mean, how do I explain to my kids that there are forms of evil walking this planet that can’t be described? That there will be times when all we can do is get down on our knees and pray that the Lord forgive those involved, that He give us all the strength to keep on going and that He grant us some kind of understanding for what we keep seeing before our eyes? How?

A man with no apparent motive goes to a hotel room overlooking a major concert event, knocks out the glass on two of his windows, and proceeds to murder 59 people, while wounding and traumatizing thousands more, is someone who has found a reason to surrender any shred of humanity he might have once had. That he had no criminal history just adds to the confusion given that he was in his 60’s.

As if this tragedy wasn’t enough, certain people chose to stand on the graves of those killed, and turn this into a political circus. The nerve of some people. Their bodies aren’t even cold, and you turn them into political fodder for your pet cause, in spite of the fact that it wouldn’t have done a thing to prevent a single death. I’m looking at you, Hillary Rodham-Clinton.

I’m reminded of an old saying. “Complaining about a problem without offering workable solutions is known as whining.” Mrs. Clinton, my advice to you is that you either find something constructive to say, offer up a solution that will 1) work, and 2) not seek to infringe upon the rights of MILLIONS of innocent people everywhere, or you can sit down, shut up and let the adults figure this mess out. Just go back to making your husband deservedly miserable, you old hack.

Nothing about this makes sense. I suppose that’s the silver lining. If it made sense, then one would have to answer some seriously uncomfortable questions about themselves, now wouldn’t they? I guess I have that going for me. I can’t wrap my head around what leads a person to see mass murder as justifiable.

Well, this has gone on long enough. Y’all have a nice day, be blessed, and find a way to be good to each other, for God’s sake. I don’t care which side of the aisle you stand on, this has got to stop. No more innocent people need suffer over what amounts to differences of opinions.

My own two cents

Warning: This patriotic, Latino Christian is angry and deeply annoyed. There will be rough language and no respect for Snowflakes. The gloves have come off. If you have thin skin, I wish you good luck. You’re gonna need it.

Are these people for real?! I mean, I’m not a fan of President Trump either, but when he’s right, he’s right. Kneeling during the national anthem is outright disrespectful, and any who do so are nothing more than ungrateful morons. It’s as simple as that. He’s absolutely in the right to call people out on it.

Perhaps the NFL has forgotten who pays their utterly ridiculous salaries, because now they’re biting the hand that feeds them. Admittedly, I’m not a fan of the NFL, and haven’t been one for years, but there are millions of people out there who are more than willing to spend their hard-earned money on games, gear and all kinds of other things; to the tune of billions of dollars a year.

Now, they’re angry because they’re being disrespected. When you disrespect the anthem and flag of a country, you disrespect the people who live their lives under said flag and anthem. You’re also disrespecting the people who have served, fought, and DIED under those flags.

It makes no difference which country it belongs to, either. I own a miniature version of the Iraqi flag, and I still treat it with the utmost respect, in spite of the fact that it is the version that flew over Saddam’s Iraq. Men fought and died under that flag, so it would be wrong to disrespect it.

Imagine my surprise when I find out that Colin Kaepernick’s antics have somehow spiralled into something that must be some kind of joke. Let’s examine this, shall we?

1. In spite of her many flaws and faults, this is still the greatest nation on the planet. I mean, imagine trying to pull that bullshit in places like North Korea, China, or Venezuela. Your ass would disappear underneath a prison or work camp so fast your ancestors would feel it. Blacks are “oppressed” here? Really?!

A man who made millions of dollars a year, who suffered zero government reprisal for his actions, who’s fellow players have shown support for is oppressed? Oh, Lord knows I wanna be that kind of oppressed. I always have too much month at the of money.

Let’s look at this from another angle. This nation elected a black man to the highest office in the land TWICE. Today we have black members of Congress, black heads of various departments in our government, black Federal judges.

When you look at the driving cultural forces in this country, what percentage of them are black? I’d be willing to bet at least half. Yet, this nation oppresses blacks?!

2. “Oh, what about slavery and Jim Crow?” Yes, these horrendous things existed. Past tense. Existed. As in, no longer, went the way of the dinosaur, thank God, good riddance to bad rubbish.

You know what else existed? The hundreds of thousands of Caucasian Christian men who gave their lives to bring an end to slavery. How many still reside in unmarked graves, known only to God?

Do you know who else did the same? Union Regiments, like the 54th Massachusetts, a regiment comprised almost entirely of black Soldiers, who were among the 179,000 black men who fought for the Union. Just wrap your head around that number: 179,000. That’s 10% of the total Union troop strength during the Civil War.

In case you’re interested, there was a movie made about the 54th Massachusetts, called “Glory”. It stars Denzel Washington, Morgan Freeman and Matthew Broderick. It was a damned fine movie, this coming from someone who has decided that Hollywood has nothing of cultural value to offer anymore.

Did these men fight while facing actual discrimination? Yes, and they not only performed beautifully in battle, but I’m HONORED to call those MEN my brothers-in-arms, because they didn’t let it slow them down one bit! They fought tooth and nail, knowing full well what living hell awaited them upon capture by Confederate forces.

What, pray tell, have the Colin Kaepernicks of the world done? These men fought, bled, and DIED for the sake and HONOR of their country, in spite of the odds stacked against them. All he did was take a knee, like an ungrateful child.

To Colin Kaepernick, and those who back him, those men fought and died for you. Of all the things you could do, you chose to dishonor their memory, and the memory of everyone else who risked it all so that you could have all that you have today. Shame on you, and everyone who has since followed your example.

It doesn’t end there. Frederick Douglass, himself a staunch Republican, not only urged young, black men to enlist in the Union Army, but two of his sons took him up on it.

Once let the black man get upon his person the brass letter, U.S., let him get an eagle on his button, and a musket on his shoulder and bullets in his pocket, there is no power on earth that can deny that he has earned the right to citizenship.” -Frederick Douglass

This man urged young black men to enlist, including his own sons, knowing full well they might not make it back. That’s how strongly he believed in the potential of this nation, and y’all want to tear it apart over stupid shit? How dare you?!

Other men, greater men than those currently occupying rosters in the NFL, stood up and sacrificed their lives, their reputations, their fortunes and their liberty for the sake of equality, and those sacrifices are being thrown away by snot-nosed fucking snowflakes who wouldn’t know real oppression if it attached jumper cables to their nuts.

I’ve sacrificed 12 years of my life, both of my Achilles tendons, both of my knees, my back, and my lungs, for the sake of this country and her people. I’ve asked for not a damned thing in return; I’m happy to do it.

So imagine how much it breaks my heart to see mindless, disrespectful bullshit like this fuckery. Imagine how much it infuriates me to see this steaming pile of manure on the news, like a festering sore on the ass-end of humanity.

That’s all I’ve got. It just burns me up to see people use their freedom to complain about how they don’t have freedom. If you think it’s so terrible here, then find somewhere else to be. I hear North Korea is nice this time of year.

What is Wrong with People?!

Allow me a moment to set the stage. My housemate is in the parking lot of our local Wal-Mart when he’s nearly run over by some random woman. Of course, there’s more to the story, and it’s both funny and sad.

He is a 5’9″ Jew who carries a sidearm in a drop-leg holster. She was a black woman who saw what she took to be a white guy with a gun, and literally tried to run him over for it. That he was walking along minding his own business, behaving in a non-threatening manner, apparently made no difference.

He said that his first response was to reach for his weapon when he saw that her car was about to hit him. This caused her to freak out and slam on her brakes, thereby saving one or both of their lives.

I don’t doubt that he would have fired in defense of himself, and I do doubt she would have been able to control herself if he had opened fire. It’s very possible that one or both would have been badly injured at the very least.

Initially, he thought she was just being inattentive, so he shrugged it off and went inside. From what he said, the idea that she had intended to run him over simply didn’t occur to him. He isn’t the type of guy to jump to conclusions.

After he finished up his shopping, he came across the same woman speaking with someone else. If her back hadn’t been to him, I’m sure she would have shut up instantly. Instead, that’s when my housemate learns that she had actually intended to cause him harm.

I mean, how does anyone make that leap? Does this woman realize that, in her zeal to take a shot at a “white guy with a gun”, she actually validated why it is that he carries? What the hell was her problem?

I honestly don’t know if he actually said anything to her. Knowing him, he probably made some comment in passing about how close she came to dying over something really stupid. It’s a very real possibility.

I guess I’m just frustrated over the whole thing. We tend to treat all people around us with respect. We go out of our way to demonstrate that good guys can carry guns, too.

This lady almost ensured that my friend might not have gone home to his wife and son, and for what? She was afraid? It’s just too stupid for words.

Fare thee well

Today I learned of the passing of one of my favorite Christian Apologists, Nabeel Qureshi. He was diagnosed with stomach cancer last year, so his passing wasn’t a surprise.

It’s tough to write this, though I never met the man. Stil, his passion and zeal for the Truth of Jesus Christ was hard to miss. He fought hard for our faith, and for that the world lost a great light.

For those who might not know, Nabeel Qureshi was a former Muslim, the son and grandson of Muslim missionaries. His father is a retired U.S. Naval Officer, having immigrated from Pakistan the day Elvis died. (Nabeel tells the story in one of his videos about how his dad arrived in the U.S. the day after Elvis died)

He converted to Christianity while in college, after a long series of debates with his best friend, David Wood. From that time on, he has fought a great many battles in defense of faith in Christ, including many against Muslims.

In the veteran community, we have a simple saying we like to use, “Until we Regroup”. To regroup means to come back together and reorganize so that the mission may continue. Though he never served in our Armed Forces, this man was still a powerful warrior, though his war was for the salvation of as many as he could reach.

It’s for this reason I say, until we regroup, brother. See you on the other side.

I’ve signed, have you?

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Our culture has been changing, and it is changing fast. One of the areas that we are seeing this change is on the topic of human sexuality and gender. It is for this reason that the Nashville Statement was recently released. As the preamble of the statement says, “As Western culture has become increasingly post-Christian, […]

via The Nashville Statement: A Christian Response and Testimony — Coffeehouse Questions