False Prophets & Teachers Among Us

false-teachers

But there were also false prophets among the people, even as there will be false teachers among you, who will secretly bring in destructive heresies, even denying the Lord who bought them, and bring on themselves swift destruction. And many will follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth will be blasphemed. By covetousness they will exploit you with deceptive words; for a long time their judgment has not been idle, and their destruction does not slumber…For when they speak great swelling words of emptiness, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through lewdness, the ones who [i]have actually escaped from those who live in error. While they promise them liberty, they themselves are slaves of corruption; for by whom a person is overcome, by him also he is brought into bondage.” ~2 Peter 2:1-2,18-19 NKJV

false-prophetsSome time ago I had a bit of a disagreement with some Ghanaian friends on Facebook. They, the Ghanaian People or the Legislature, were proposing a law that you must have a bachelors degree in theology in order to be a minister/priest. I took umbrage with such an argument on several accounts. First as a matter of rights ordained upon us by God and secondly, as a matter of liberty which would be eventually taken away by the government. John the Baptist had no degree in such studies and yet he drove people to repentance. We were reminded by the Apostle Paul that,

For this reason God gave them up to vile passions.” ~Romans 1:26-27 NKJV

While this verse primarily discussed the vile passions as being those of homosexuality, the looser reading would be of the vile passions of our spiritual hearts. How many fallen evangelists have had degrees?

And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.” ~Matthew 28:18-20 NKJV

our sufficiency is from God, who also made us sufficient as ministers of the new covenant” ~1Corinthians 3:5-6 NKJV

We have been charged by God, through Jesus, to minister to the people of the world, every nation. We each are called to do so. But, unfortunately, not all heed the call. Just as we were reminded that we will always have the poor among us, we will always have false teachers and prophets among us, as well. And I say this based upon the fact that “the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth…” For false-teachers1whatever their reason or desire, the evil in man’s heart will always strive to turn man from the spiritual blessings that God has to offer him in his life.

It is my opinion, that we can recognize these false teachers and prophets by the fruits of their actions and demeanor. We are suppose to be active learners and studiers of God’s Word by comparing our actions and the actions of our teachers to the Word we have. Anyone who varies the Word and changes the Word to suit his needs…is not a teacher or prophet of God. We are reminded by the Gospel of Matthew the following:

Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them. ~Matthew 7:15-20 NKJV

My greatest concern with such a situation as this, there are several situations which will create adverse problems with an enmeshing of government and religion.

  1. There will be a state sponsored church or religion and all others made illegal.
  2. If you do not meet the state requirements, you cannot be an evangelist, apologist, or pastor.
  3. Some European countries take your 10% tithes out when you claim a religion as part of your taxes.
  4. Though you meet the state mandated requirements, you are free to reassess the tenets of the religion; thereby teaching it wrongly.

The blind allegiance to a country’s governing authority over all matters within the country is very troubling to me. It is bad enough in America where all things religion and political are being reassessed all of the time and reinterpreted all of the time. Sadly, it is very hard to get the student of the Word of God to actually actively listen and discern what he or she is being taught while sitting in church. All the while thinking it was a great and appealing service. We are reminded by the Apostle Paul in the Book of Romans:

Therefore God also gave them up to uncleanness, in the lusts of their hearts, to dishonor their bodies among themselves, who exchanged the truth of God for the lie, and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever. Amen.” ~Romans 1:24-25 NKJV

I believe God gave us not only the ability to discern right from wrong, truth from false, love for God and His Word and a reprehensible hatred of/toward it. God, by His Grace, gave us reason and logic to formulate an understanding in every situation, as well as, the ability to discern the proper path that we should take in any given situation. While the Apostle Paul’s statement in the Book of Romans was primarily geared toward sexuality, it can and is applicable in all matters of truth. God has, throughout the history of man, given man over to the lusts of his heart when he chose not to follow God’s Word. The term “lust” could be anything that man has placed higher in his own heart and mind above that of God.

The Word of God, the Bible, is a manual for our lives and should be used everyday in order to compare what people say (including pastors, ministers, and other people of God) against what the teachings of Christ are. In so doing, we can determine, through the gift of reason and logic, if a person truly is a man or woman of God. By comparing what they teach, say, and how they act we will know their intentions, because You Will Know Them by Their Fruits.

“Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes from thornbushes or figs from thistles? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Therefore by their fruits you will know them. ~Matthew 7:15-20 NKJV

We, the species of man, should not be placing our governments above our abilities to reason and logic and entrust them is such a way that they will be our moral compass in our lives to protect us from all wrong doings. I have always say, and still believe to this day – despite how crass it may be, “The government is so inept that it can run a brothel into the ground.” [A brothel being an entity which is a self contained and revenue generating business since the beginning of time.] Refer to the article: That Time the U.S. Gov’t Tried (and Failed) to Run a Brothel.

While God has placed our governing authorities in their place for specific purposes, He did not place them where they are that we should place our governing authorities in a higher priority and position to God in our lives. WE must step up our game and strive to make those determining decisions as to what is right and wrong and choose to follow God’s Word and love. These teaching, which Christ promoted and carried forth throughout His ministry, were meant to guide us and lead us to God.

I will leave you with this final word: Read and Follow God’s Word! Rely on no one and nothing else in God’s place.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy

 

Advertisements

Why Do So Many Christians Dismiss Apologetics?

Posted June 14, 2016 by Sean McDowell [SEANMCDOWELL.ORG]

Why Do Many Christians Dismiss Apologetics?

SeanMcDowell.org

I love apologetics. It’s fun to teach apologetics, discuss apologetics, and offer reasons for what I believe to non-Christians who ask. Yet, quite clearly, not all Christians share my enthusiasm. Why not? Below are five common reasons why many Christians dismiss apologetics (thanks to my Twitter friends, acknowledged below).

Apologists have often failed to model gracious apologetics. Rather than blaming others, we apologists might do well to start by examining ourselves. Let’s be honest, we could probably all share a story where we failed to model the kind of evangelism and apologetics we see in Jesus, Paul, and the early church fathers. If you can’t think of a story, then you’re probably not even aware of your own blind spot! As I emphasize in A New Kind of Apologist, many Christians dismiss apologetics because they have seen apologists being arrogant, dismissive, and uncharitable to others. Many dismiss apologetics because of a bad experience.

Faulty understanding of faith and reason. Some time ago my father and I were speaking at a student conference in the southeast. Noticeably upset, a young female youth worker approached us afterwards and (essentially) said, “I wish you guys had a more biblical view of faith. We don’t need evidence. Real faith involves believing something without proof.” And then she stormed away. Sadly, this young lady had bought the idea that faith involves believing something blindly without evidence. If she were right, then apologetics would be frivolous. But the Bible both teaches and models a different view of faith. Simply put, evidence is offered to give people a confident faith (E.g., Exodus 14:31; John 20:30-31; Acts 1:1-3).

Mistaken view of apologetics. A couple years ago I spoke with an influential youth leader about the present state of youth culture. When I inquired about his views on apologetics, he quickly dismissed it, even though his own research showed that many kids were leaving the faith because they had unanswered questions. As I probed further, it became clear that he equated apologetics with a cage-match where people defend their hot-button issue without relationship or gentleness. If that is what apologetics is, then I would dismiss it too! What should apologetics be about? Dallas Willard Perhaps said it best:

Like Jesus, we are reaching out in love in a humble spirit with no coercion. The only way to accomplish that is to present our defense gently, as help offered in love in the manner of Jesus.[1]

Not being engaged in evangelism. Motivated by my friend Brett Kunkle, I have been taking high school students on apologetics mission trips for the past few years. Inevitably, whenever we meet up with atheists, Mormons, student freethinking groups, Unitarian Universalists or people of other faiths, students become highly motivated to study apologetics. Students often study theology and apologetics late into the evening getting prepared for the next day! In my experience, nothing motivates Christians to care about apologetics more than evangelism and spiritual conversations. After all, once you start sharing your faith, people will inevitably have questions about the Bible, evil, evolution, and more.

Apologetics is often motivated by fear. Something stood out to me a few years ago at an apologetics conference—virtually every speaker used the hook of “fear” to motivate people. We were told to fear changing sexual mores, the growth of atheism, the tactics of various “cults,” certain theological movements within the church, and more. While there is undoubtedly a place for healthy fear, apologetics should not simply be a reactive discipline to changing cultural mores. Rather, we ought to provide positive answers and reasons for the supremacy of the Christian faith. Insofar as we are primarily negative, apologists will fail to inspire people to stand up for the faith.

There are certainly other reasons many Christians dismiss the value of apologetics. If you want to see a few more, which were suggested by my friends on Twitter, check out this interesting Twitter exchange. Here are a few samples of their insightful feedback:

@rickwade55: Apologists focusing on true conclusions rather than on the individual they’re talking to and coming to believe.

@triciascribner: Some believe that apologetics undermines the gospel’s supremacy, diminishing the authority of the Word and of Christ.

@smlabonte: I’ve heard people say that Jesus doesn’t need us to defend him. (Not exactly what apologetics is)

@DynAggelos: some Christians think it is unnecessary since the Holy Spirit and the Word of God ultimately do the transforming of the mind.

@prashanthdaniel: I’ve been told that its pointless nitpicking, argumentative and therefore divisive, Sean. Naturally, I disagree.

Sean McDowell, Ph.D. is a professor of Christian Apologetics at Biola University, a best-selling author of over 15 books, an internationally recognized speaker, and a part-time high school teacher. Follow him on Twitter: @sean_mcdowell and his blog: seanmcdowell.org.

*****

I was reading through many saved posts on Facebook to clear them out and thought this was noteworthy.

Hope you enjoyed it!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy

Dysphoria & Identity Crises Today

GenderDysphoriaIdDisorder

This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day when God created man, He made him in the likeness of God. He created them male and female, and He blessed them and named them Man in the day when they were created. ~Genesis 5:1-2 NASB

Look at any news channel or report and you will see something going on with someone and their identity crisis with their gender. They do not know what they are, they seem to identify with the opposite sex, or some other species on this earth. So much so that they are being pushed toward some kind of gender fluidity or non-binary creature. Someone, somewhere, is trying to make a headline for themselves, or  their parent is choosing not to label their son or daughter as male or female, because it is their (the child’s) place to do so. Ahhh, WHAT? Talk about enhancing and enabling a dysphoric or identity crisis where actually none exists until they created it! Admittedly so, there are those who have an identity crisis of such a magnitude because there is no one to help guide them on their path in life. Such as a man for a male child, or woman for a female child, in order to mentor them in life.

Even as a parent, I have made my share of mistakes. Unfortunately, since the advent of the politically correct (PC) wave in this country, let alone in this world, things have only gotten worse. Look at the UK for a moment. There is a rise in transgender reassignment surgeries, as of October, 2017. Rita Cooper was the UK’s youngest transgender reassignment surgery at 15, back to a man at 18, and is set for a third reassignment…

Sadly, if you desire to think about it, the fact that God made two sexes, male and female. Consider this, if you are a college/university student: College student kicked out of ‘Christianity’ class for saying there are only two genders. Yes, there are only two sexes because each complements the other through procreation, companionship, psychological, emotional, physically, etc.

Practically, the concept of complementarity has proven versatile and effective. It offers an explanation of human sexual difference that provides individual men and women with a firm sense of identity within their equal, yet distinctive, experiences of human life. It provides a foundation for a positive vision of sexuality and marriage that avoids the deep-seated negativity and suspicions of earlier eras. And it affords a rationale for defending traditional sexual ethics…” ~Did God create men and women to complement each other? By Jacob Kohlhaas

There are those who will posit that there is homosexuality in the animal kingdom; I would retort that this is usually in order to vie for Alpha male status, or Alpha female status within a pack, or group of animals. I have yet to see truly plausible scientific research where the homosexuality within the animal kingdom, or natural law, where two become long term mates in order to set up a same sex marriage, of sort, and adopt children of other packs or groups, thus creating a familial unit & bond.

Ben Shapiro, a Conservative Jew and a Political Analyst for the Daily Wire, has on numerous occasions asserted, rightfully so (I might add!), that Caitlyn Jenner is a man. Why do I say rightfully so and why does Ben Shapiro say this is so? Caitlyn Jenner was born Bruce Jenner, the same one who won the 1974 AAU title and in 1975 he was PanAm champion and set a world record (8,524) in the triangular meet with the USSR and Poland. In 1976, Jenner won his second AAU title and crowned a brilliant career by taking the Olympic gold medal with a new world record of 8,618 points. The charismatic Jenner became a television and movie personality as soon as his competitive days were over. After splitting with his first wife, he married Linda Thompson, who was Elvis Presley’s girlfriend when that legend passed away in 1978. He later identified himself as Caitlyn in July, 2015. And progressively changed his gender (September, 2015) through gender reassignment surgery. And soon was awarded Woman of the Year on November 9th, 2015. Ironic isn’t it??

Considering the fact that this country, as well as the entire world, has moved so far away from the moral ethics of Biblical teaching and have steered toward the relativistic moral ethos of the self…this world is destined to go down hill much as the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah.

For this reason God gave them over to degrading passions; for their women exchanged the natural function for that which is unnatural, and in the same way also the men abandoned the natural function of the woman and burned in their desire toward one another, men with men committing indecent acts and receiving in their own persons the due penalty of their error.  ~Romans 1:26-27 NASB

When one person who was born as a man and then surgically becomes a woman and advertises himself as a woman and then becomes involved with a man during the course of his life, whether in a long or short term relationship…they (the two involved) are committing an act of homosexuality which is an abomination to God. The fact remains this…though you change your appearance through any means, you are what you were born to be. Your genetics never changed. Though scientists or medical professionals may find a way to alter genetics at some point in time…you are still what you were born to be. Man or Woman, Male or Female…you see, there are still only two sexes!

In the end it is a matter of confusion. Though you may be confused about who you are, this does not mean I am confused about the matter. I am not obligated to be sucked into your dysphoria, or your inability to identify yourself properly.

Sometimes, regardless of our personal thoughts, we must speak & stand up for what moral truth is. I am friends with many who are persuaded to these unnatural ways. But if we believe in the ONE TRUE GOD, then we must be willing to stand alone at times, for the truth of God. Godspeed to each and every one of you!!

It was for freedom that Christ set us free; therefore keep standing firm and do not be subject again to a yoke of slavery. ~Galatians 5:1 NASB

Be on the alert, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. ~1 Corinthians 16:13 NASB

But the one who endures to the end, he will be saved. ~Matthew 24:13 NASB

Forever, O Lord, Your word is settled in heaven. Your faithfulness continues throughout all generations; You established the earth, and it stands. They stand this day according to Your ordinances, For all things are Your servants. ~Psalm 119:89-91 NASB

You may be thinking that this post is about judging others, that could not be further from the truth. The Bible is an edict from our Creator on how to live and act. It is also a history of man and where he came from and where he is headed, his purpose and vision. I believe the Bible tells us that God loves us, He wants what is best for us, and that we must love our brothers & sisters, to love them and warn them of God’s judgement. That we are to love the dinner and not the sin.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy

Are There Consequences For Revising History?

head-in-sand

I try to not get too awfully political in my blog posts; however, sometimes politics seems to creep into our religious topics of interest. We have seen in the news over the past year and a half of all the “politically correct” crowd, students, etc. needing safe spaces. Now keep in mind that a university and college setting is intended to teach, share ideas, and the higher hope is that they (the students) will learn from their experiences and their course curriculum. The Dean of the University of Chicago stated in a welcome packet for those intended to graduate in 2020 the following statement:

Members of our community are encouraged to speak, write, listen, challenge and learn, without fear of censorship.” ~University of Chicago: We Don’t Condone Safe Spaces or ‘Trigger Warnings’ (Elizabeth Chuck ,

After Dr. Everett Piper (President, Oklahoma Wesleyan University) was approached by a student after a university chapel service and complained that he felt “victimized” by a sermon on the topic of 1 Corinthians 13. Dr. Piper had an answer for this student, and those who had similar thoughts:

Oklahoma Wesleyan is not a “safe place”, but rather, a place to learn: to learn that life isn’t about you, but about others; that the bad feeling you have while listening to a sermon is called guilt; that the way to address it is to repent of everything that’s wrong with you rather than blame others for everything that’s wrong with them. This is a place where you will quickly learn that you need to grow up. ~This is Not a Day Care. It’s a University! (Piper, 11/2015)

There are those who are actually changing their campuses for the worse, because they (the student body, at least the loudest group) believes wholeheartedly that microaggressions must be met with violence because they are not to be tolerated. Psychology Today wrote upon this subject matter (Microaggressions: More than Just Race). And of course, Wikipedia has a section on this very topic of Microaggression. And if you look hard on any search engine you will see a plethora of articles and blog postings.

It basically comes down to this: “Oh! You snubbed me so we should riot until your ilk is no longer allowed on this campus!

So how does this come to touch on the consequences for revising history? Was it not the loudest minority who screamed for the removal of the great southern statues?

…can’t change history, but you can learn from it. Robert E Lee, Stonewall Jackson – who’s next, Washington, Jefferson? So foolish! Also…

The above is a Tweet from Donal Trump’s Twitter feed. Funny how he could see the call for such  to happen…and soon thereafter people were calling for the removal of the Jefferson and Washington memorials. hmmmmmmm… We are reminded in both the Old and the New Testaments:

Only take heed to yourself, and diligently keep yourself, lest you forget the things your eyes have seen, and lest they depart from your heart all the days of your life. And teach them to your children and your grandchildren ~Deuteronomy 4:9 NKJV

For whatever things were written before were written for our learning, that we through the patience and comfort of the Scriptures might have hope. ~Romans 15:4 NKJV

Our past happened for a reason. Because we did not know any better, we did not have any proper guidance, or because we did not listen to those who knew better than we did and did what we did because we could! The fact is, at this point it does not matter why we did it way back when, the important thing is that IT DID HAPPEN…whether we like it or not.

Matt Walsh’s podcast (episode 57) entitled “STOP TRYING TO ERASE THE PAST”, which aired on June 29th, 2018. His podcast was drawing on the ludicrous removal of Laura Ingalls Wilder from an award. She was posthumously condemned for being racist and culturally insensitive. Please tell me…when will this ignorance and stupidity stop???

Bad people can teach us good lessons, bad history can be a reminder to us that we should not do such things again. To remove monuments from existence because those people were bad, in some way shape or form, means eventually we will have to remove every monument from existence. If we were to cut off anyone who did something remotely bad or sinful, in anyone’s eye, we would need to revoke eveyone’s birth certificate, pronto haste! Consider the biblical scripture:

There is none righteous, no, not one” ~Romans 3:10 NKJV

We all make mistakes and we all sin. As mentioned above…Bad people can teach us good lessons, bad history can be a reminder to us that we should not do such things again. The purpose for these monuments is to remember that we can do great things while at the same time they can be a reminder that we must not do these things, or allow them to happen,  again!

Viktor Frankl (1905-1997) a man who survived the holocaust Frankl-mans-search-for-meaning-meaning-of-lifeduring WWII. Viktor Frankl’s memoir has riveted generations of readers with its descriptions of life in Nazi death camps and its lessons for spiritual survival. Between 1942 and 1945 Frankl labored in four different camps, including Auschwitz, while his parents, brother, and pregnant wife perished. Based on his own experience and the experiences of others he treated later in his practice, Frankl argues that we cannot avoid suffering but we can choose how to cope with it, find meaning in it, and move forward with renewed purpose. Finding meaning in difficult times (Interview with Dr. Viktor Frankl)

To erase our past, or to even attempt to do so, you set the tone to repeat the same mistakes. Unfortunately, those mistakes will be even greater and more devastating. Our past happened for a reason and we should be strong enough to accept our faults and seek to better ourselves. While we should strive to better ourselves as a personal mantra, this not always the case for everyone…but as a norm we should seek to be better than we were! My opinion…take it for what it is worth.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy

The Basis For Many Of Our Problems

indecision

Indecision, doubt & fear. I just recently finished reading “THINK AND GROW RICH,” which is something I do from time to time, but this time it struck me with the idea for this blog posting. While this book is generally equated to the accumulation of money and wealth, in his own words Napoleon Hill stated, “Why did you write a book about money? Why measure riches in dollars alone?” And such an assertion is true at its heart. This book is a wealth of knowledge and can be applied to your heart’s content. Wealth can be any number of things, dependent upon your mindset!

This is one of our greatest problems…indecision. And, yet, it is associated with a number of other problem children which are associated with FEAR, such as:

  • Indifference
  • Indecision
  • doubt
  • Worry
  • Over-caution
  • Procrastination

Believe it, or not, this blog post is based upon a chapter in the book by Napoleon Hill, “THINK AND GROW RICH.” More specifically, CHAPTER 15 “HOW TO OUTWIT THE SIX GHOSTS OF FEAR.” While I firmly believe that the majority of our problems stem from our divorcing God from our society, our families, and our hearts. That said, let us move on toward the “six ghosts.”

Indifference

It is my belief that without God in our hearts how can we truly have an interest in anything in a godly way? Generally speaking, this interest becomes more of a lust, or perhaps we see it as a god of sort. Which in both instances is rather ungodly.

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.” ~Matthew 6:33 NKJV

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.” ~Romans 12:2 NKJV

Our focus should be on God and the heavenly, not on ourselves. By placing God first, God will guide us to those things that will aid and thrust us forward in our lives and in our profession.

Indecision

Our inability to decide is an ambivalent mind at work, or not…as the case may be.  We can often become indecisive over a number of reasons. Why you ask? Many times we are just too tired, other times we just don’t care about the subject matter, often we do not know enough about the subject matter but do not wish to seem as though we are ignorant…yet our ignorance is shouted out loudly by our disconnect. There are some messaged from the Bible that may help:

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” ~Proverbs 3:5-6 NKJV

Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” ~Ephesians 5:17 NKJV

We can learn much from the Bible, often times we cast the book off to the side in order to read something more interesting like a mystery, sci-fy, or maybe a biography. However, if we truly wish to be grounded in Christ and have some semblance roots…we should read the Bible each and every day! On top of that, prayer is also needed in order to center and focus on God and the heavenly. I typically read in the morning to start my day off. I generally get home, after overtime, at 2:30 am. I will make green tea with honey and I will either watch a half hour instruction/education video (PureFlix) so I can gain another perspective on Biblical or Religious scholarly ideas. Yeah, I am geeky like that.

Doubt

Lets face it, we all doubt at some point in time. And that is usually at the worst possible time. Am I right? But our God is a big God and He can help us learn some of the greatest lessons through this doubt. Just as the Apostle Paul speaks of and boasts about his weaknesses, so does Dr. Michael Liacona. I have read some of his books, interviews, or books/articles which he co-authored and he discussed at great length his doubts and those that aided him in his faith.

For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says.” ~Mark 11:23 NKJV

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.“~James 1:5-8 NKJV

Faith is something that comes through our many bouts of doubt. Sooner or later we come through with a better understanding where have that “Ah-HAH!” moment.

Worry

Worry seems to test us all, especially parents over their children. We all have worries over numerous things in our lives, but in the end our worries are usually for nought.

“Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” ~Matthew 6:25-34 NKJV

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” ~John 14:27 NKJV

Worry, like doubt, is overcome by faith in the promises of God through the Bible.

Over-caution

Over-caution is bred out of fear and fear, as you will recall is bred out of punishment and torment (see 1 John 4:18 NKJV.)

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” ~Galatians 6:7 NKJV

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” ~Philippians 4:13 NKJV

Being over-cautious is something we do due to uncertainty and fear of the unknown. Either we should do something or we should not. If it is an ethical or moral question, it is not over-cautious but wise not to do or to do something. Meaning you can verify through the Bible what you should do. Dangerous things are a case by case basis, in that, we should weigh and decide based upon the costs and the benefits. If fear was a factor in the first flight at Kitty Hawk, NC, by the Wright brothers…we might not have airplanes right now…and many other things, to boot!

Procrastination

Procrastination is another story where we are just lazy or do not like to do something because of the way it makes us feel. Perhaps even because of the pain we may obtain through the process. Although, we all know that the task must be completed, regardless.

In all labor there is profit, But idle chatter leads only to poverty.” ~ Proverbs 14:23 NKJV

See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.” ~Ephesians 5:15-17 NKJV

Sadly, procrastination gets the best of us, at times. But we can make that to do list go away by whittling away at it, one line at a time. Sometimes things just get away from us and our list becomes unmanageable…but you can manage it, one line at a time! Make better use of your time!

We all, at some point in time, have problems with each and every one of these “ghosts,” per se, bu we can control them by removing the fear that is presented by them. Usually that is all it takes. Figure out what you know. Find out what you do not know. Then, research the heck out of what you do not know… Voilà, now you have something new that was once unknown and now you know it. YouTube is a great research tool, Udemy, Khan Academy, and so many others. It all depends upon what you are researching. Any search engine, worth its weight, will get you to a good starting point.

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy

We Must Totally & Completely Rely On Christ To Save Us

Matthew 28:18-20 NKJV And Jesus came and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth. Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amen.

Mark 16:14-18 NKJV Later He appeared to the eleven as they sat at the table; and He rebuked their unbelief and hardness of heart, because they did not believe those who had seen Him after He had risen. And He said to them, “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will follow those who believe: In My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover.”

We as Christians are called to spread the Good News and to make disciples of ALL PEOPLE and NATIONS. So, how is it that people seek to paint us out to be arrogant? We are doing what we were commanded to do, yes commissioned to do! We know we are sinful, as we are steeped in sin from birth; yet that does not make us hypocrites, but keepers of the word which we were commanded to keep and spread to all people.

Consider this, I read some time ago where Jilette Penn where he stated something to the affect that he thought Christians were hypocritical when they did no speak of their faith to him because of the mandate of Christ within the bible. So, how is it that when we do speak of salvation to others that we are deemed to be hypocritical, arrogant, and trolling others to pigeon hole them in Hell?

I came across this video on Facebook…

And cannot say I totally agree with his assessment of the Christian faith! There are Christians who go at things wrongly, simple as that. But are all Christians wrong? Man truly has painted himself to be one who desires the “comforting lies” and steer away from those unpleasant truths in life. But wouldn’t it make more sense, if man truly desired those “comforting lies”, that he would be drawn more toward the hedonistic and pleasurable ways of letting go? Instead the Christian follows the ways of the “unpleasant truth” where he is confronted with his vile ways. I truly believe that Morgue has things twisted just a bit.

There are those Atheists who have had much different experiences, such as Bryan Melvin.

Some people have much greater testimonies in comparison to those Christians who have been either Christian and believers for the majority, if not all of, their lives. Converted Atheists have much greater testimonies compared to those who have strayed from Christ and then went back much later in life.

Contrary to Morgue’s belief, Christians as a whole are not trolling others to stomp them down into the ground so they can feel better about themselves. Their mandated purpose is to steer others toward salvation for the glory of God…or as he noted the invisible alien, as well as other designations throughout his presentation. He asked the question why don’t Christians explain why Jesus didn’t appear before Pontius Pilot? Well, why should they? Also, because it didn’t happen is a great response, as well. There are a great many arguments concerning what would have been great propositions for the furtherance of the Christian faith, but what is in the bible is sufficient for us to understand our faith and promote it, perfectly.

So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.” ~Romans 10:17 NKJV

Even in the book THINK AND GROW RICH, by Napoleon Hill, mentions in the chapter on AUTO-SUGGESTION that repetitiveness of mantras, concepts and commands will eventually cause your mind to bring about into reality that which you desire and command from your mind. Is our faith bolstered by similar such repetitiveness? Perhaps it is, but what is the harm in such a thing??? Is it more advantageous for man to become a hedonist, or steer himself toward a more moral line of thinking?

If one is a hedonist, an atheist, or some other person of belief which dwells upon a relativistic thought…where do your morals come from? What is the basis of your “moral” stance? Being relativistic, your morals are centered on your beliefs, a person who has similar beliefs can have a different perspective. You may believe pedophilia is morally reprehensible; while your friend thinks it is alright. How can either of you take a moral stance against the other, because of the relativism of your beliefs and therefore it is believed that “He is living according to what is true for him.” You can neither argue or dissuade the point. Although, with the belief of a Christian, the moral laws are given by a moral law-giver, God. And therefore, your laws are set before you, they are true and they are to guide you.

Morgue fails to understand that sin has consequences, and there is a time to pay the piper. Everyone will stand before the judgment seat of Christ! Every knee will bow! Everyone will acknowledge the Lordship of Christ!

We are unworthy to go to heaven, excepting only through the grace of God and our faith in Christ! Because “the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth…

We do not need to explain what and why something did not happen, we only have to present what did happen. After presenting the Gospel truth to our neighbors, friends, and family…it is up to the Holy Spirit to guide those whom God has elected to be saved. There are a great number of those professing to be Christian who will be sadly surprised upon their death and when they stand before the judgment seat of Christ.  This is perhaps the arrogance of man, by not checking himself at all times. Let this be a warning, not just to myself, but all others who follow Jesus and learn from the bible…we each must be willing to check our arrogance at the door and see truly what the bible teaches, as a whole, not piecemeal!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD

Comparatively Speaking…We All Suck

SONY DSC

The bible is rather explicit on this point!

As it is written: “There is none righteous, no, not one;”” ~Romans 3:10 NKJV

So Jesus said to him, “Why do you call Me good? No one is good but One, that is, God.” ~Mark 10:18 NKJV

For there is not a just man on earth who does good
And does not sin.” ~Ecclesiastes 7:20 NKJV

The Lord looks down from heaven upon the children of men, To see if there are any who understand, who seek God. They have all turned aside, They have together become corrupt; There is none who does good, No, not one.” ~Psalm 14:2-3 NKJV

This was but a sampling of what the bible has to say about the righteousness of the species of man. As the title of this blog posting indicates, COMPARATIVELY SPEAKING…WE ALL SUCK! That is of course if you compare man to God. Comparing yourself to others in the human race does you no good! While speaking on the good of a person many will think that they deserve to go to heaven because they are no Hitler or Stalin! Think about that for a moment. Nowhere in the bible does it indicate that only Hitlers and Stalins go to hell. No, nowhere!

We are saved by the grace of God…a gift to us that we do not deserve to have. Consider what God did for us, and the sacrifice that Jesus made for us:

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” ~Romans 5:8 NKJV

For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” ~John 3:16 NKJV

All the while we are reminded from the very beginning that man is a bad boy on the block:

the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth” ~Genesis 8:21 NKJV

Do not get me wrong, man can do some good things, too. But the underlying ideology is that man is evil from his youth. Men do great things, we can accomplish feats of amazement, creating what was not long ago a thing of incomprehensible power, and the list can go on and on… Consider the following:

abacusThe Abacus (unknown when it was created) was used Mechanical_calculatorsprior to the Arabic numeral system. This sooner or later morphed into the calculating machine which came on the scene in the 1850’s. Which then morphed into the adding machines. Now I couldn’t tell you which idea came first the adding machine or the computer, but it is my suspicion that one was UNIVAC_1101spawned of the other. The crazy powerful computers (some truly are super computers.) The ENIAC (the first computer) was invented by J. Presper Eckert and John Mauchly at the University of Pennsylvania and began construction in 1943 and was not completed until 1946. It occupied about 1,800 square feet and used about 18,000 vacuum tubes, weighing almost 50 tons. iPhone8Then there was the UNIVAC 1101 which weighed about 8.4 short tons (7.6 t) and used 2700 vacuum tubes for its logic circuits. Its drum memory was 8.5 in (22 cm) in diameter, rotated at 3500 rpm, had 200 read-write heads, and held 16,384 24-bit words (a memory size equivalent to 48 kB.) Now you have the power of an iPhone (i have an 8 with 64 GB of memory); therefore the comparative difference is 1333333.333333333 times greater in your hand than that of the UNIVAC computer.

Sorry, got a little overboard there…but the idea was that man can do good. However, man whatever good he does has a nasty and historical tendency to take what is good and use it for evil intents. Consider the Tower of Babel. Man sought to be as God. Look at Sodom & Gomorrah. The Sodomites sought to do evil and unnatural things and were therefore destroyed due to their great abominations in God’s sight. The two towns of evil were discovered in the 20th century with the added mention of “The entire area was covered with a thick layer of ash from the firestorm that totally destroyed the town.” ~The Discovery of the Sin Cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, Apr 16, 2008 – by Bryant G. Wood PhD.

Sadly, man has proven himself to be good and bad, righteous and evil…and he needed no help from anyone else! We can do it all on our own. Consider medical advances over the last several decades. Some great and others not so much so. Heart transplants, lung transplants, the advancement in cancer research and survival rates have increased astronomically, stem cell research,  and of course Planned Parenthood.  Each can be used for the betterment of the human race, just as much so each can be used for the detriment of the human race. It has always been easier for man to destroy than to create. Now, man has kicked God out of schools and has, in essence, divorced God from his own soul.

We all fail to realize that man, his spirit and his soul, and everything he possesses, everything in and on the earth, as well as throughout the universe…IT ALL BELONGS TO GOD!

The earth is the Lord’s, and all its fullness, The world and those who dwell therein.” ~Psalm 24:1 NKJV

It is truly our purpose to glorify God, that is our purpose in life. All we have to do is accept Christ into our hearts and lives and live for Him, seeking the Holy Spirit of God to be poured into our hearts and souls and therefore be guided by Him.

that you may with one mind and one mouth glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.” ~Romans 15:6 NKJV

Let us seek to follow God and follow Him, thereby, glorifying Him by yielding our whole self, heart and mind to God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit that we may do what we were originally designed to do!

May God Richly Bless You, My Beloved!

MK Murphy, PhD, DD