Monday, May 30, 2022

The World We Have Purchased

60 years ago I was raised on TV violence.  But the violence wasn't sick, twisted, and dark.  Even the unwholesome programming was governed by moral standards.

Today's children are being mentored by Hollywood writers who compete to see who can produce the most shocking, graphic, and toxic material.  And Americans, including me and the people I sit with in church, send them money every month to finance their efforts.

Consider... In the history of mankind nothing has been more powerful and influential than theater.  And there will always be unsupervised children and adults who are unable to absorb today's amoral and violent entertainment without being damaged.

Americans have chosen and financed this environment and there will be casualties.  And when these casualties show up for their week of fame, we will wring our hands and argue about who is to blame.

It's time to be honest about the world we've purchased.  And to protect our children from the fruits of our appetites we should lock down every school and provide armed security.  It's the responsible and decent thing to do.

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Monday, March 28, 2022

Images 

Idols, once graven images, are now digital images.  

The worship of these images is reflected in time spent with, pleasure experienced, personal identification with, and separation anxiety experienced when deprived of the images.

The nature of these images, from toxic to innocuous, are simply different shades of the same pollutant.

The principalities and powers of this world are intent upon suborning extra-Divine worship, or idolatry, in all forms, but in the electronic age, the ubiquitous and ephemeral image is the device of choice.  

Those raised in "The Faith" instinctively know they would experience greater spiritual health if they lived between the Earth and God without polluting images.  But our devotion to the digital image trumps our devotion to God.  

The image is a powerful narcotic that facilitates our absorption into the world created by our spiritual enemies.  We rest in that world as if anesthetized, to the extent that our spiritual "waking hours" are few.  

When separated from the image, its influence remains.  We remain altered, existing in, and influenced by, 'The World's" version of reality, which is the primary message of the image.

The influence of "The Image" has steadily increased over the past one hundred years.  Its stealth and the patience of its provocateurs have delivered it into the lives of the formerly faithful with such meticulous and gentle care, the spiritual transition rendered is virtually unnoticed.  The result is that while we pollute ourselves with the world, we are generally oblivious and almost never call it sin.

Today in America our determinant identity is that we are rich men living in the electronic age.  Our besetting sin is idolatry.  There is much more evidence that we love The World than that we love God.  We love and pollute ourselves with this World that the Bible tells us not to love.  Our pulpits are unconcerned, and we are unrepentant.  

 

This Post is a work in progress.




Monday, January 13, 2020

The Elephant in the Sanctuary

When Jesus was asked which commandment was the greatest He said the greatest commandment is to love God.  Maybe that's because everything that distinguishes us as Christian spills forth from our love for God.  But of all the doctrinal issues and other subjects discussed in Brick and Mortar religion throughout America today, I think "what loving God means and what it looks like" is sorely neglected.

We've all heard stories about fathers who supposedly love their kids but they never spend time with them... They never talk to them.  I would suggest that the people who love God talk with Him.  Their prayer life is rich.  If we love God then He is our passion and the main focus of our lives.  Our love for God affects everything... How we treat other people and how we give.

But for the 21st century American I believe the most crucial teaching on what it means to love God comes to us from the apostle John's first letter when he tells us not to love "The World."  He tells us that if we love "The World" then we don't love God.   Jesus' kid-brother James tell us in his letter that if we frolic with the world... Make the world our playmate... If we make friends with the world then we are the enemy of God.  This is particularly disturbing  because it's hard to imagine stepping into Heaven and being greeted by anyone who is the enemy of God.

Because of these warnings I can think of nothing more important than figuring out just what this "World" is... This "World" we are not supposed to love.

 John 1:10 uses the word "world" three times:  "He (Jesus) was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not."   I would translate it:  He was in the world system (culture), the planet was made by him, and the world (people)  knew him not.   I would suggest that the world system is the world that is controlled by Satan, his angels, and Satan's human servants.  This world is the world we cannot love if we are to love God and not to be counted among the enemies of God.

This is the world that mocks God.  This is the world that lies to us.  This is the world that is out to destroy us, to distract us, to separate us and our families from God.  This world is engineered to make us sick... Physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.  It is designed to coax us into walking in the way of the wicked, standing with the sinners, and sitting with the mockers... Definitely sitting with the mockers.

Back in the 90's I sat with the mockers every Thursday night when I invited a group of serial fornicators into my home... A group of individuals that had absolutely no fear of God.  These characters from the most celebrated sitcom ever made were my friends.  I was so disloyal to my Lord that I actually laughed at their sins.   Jesus suffered and died on a cross to fix what I was laughing at, and my attitude was "What's the big deal?"
 
Think of it!  What is the greatest accomplishment of Satan if it isn't placing into every home a conduit of the  "World" that the Bible tell us not to love?
   
But Brick and Mortar religion in America doesn't fear this world.  There are preachers in this country... Better men than I... Who in their worship services - without disclaimer - illustrate points by using clips from movies and television shows that wouldn't have been allowed on TV back in the 50's and early 60's because of their images and content... And no one in the audience is troubled by it.   I must ask:  How polluted by "The World" do you have to be to believe that network television isn't part of "The World" that the Bible tells us not to love?

But let's approach it from another direction.  What does loving God look like?  I believe that at some point in a saved person's life he decides that he's given "The World" his love and attention long enough.  He decides out of loyalty and because of a sacrifice that he can never repay, to honor God with his life...  That he will separate himself from God's enemies in Hollywood, on Madison Avenue, and even in Washington.   He decides he will strive to live between Earth and God without the pollutants that surround him.  He chooses this separated, Holy way of life because it's the best way, and the most honoring to God.

Now this is about the time when a preacher might feel moved to stand up and say, "Yes well, you're getting a little legalistic, and you can't earn your salvation,  and we're all just sinners saved by grace."

Really?   Is saving grace poured out upon every soul that darkens the door of organized religion?  Was Paul sent with his message of Grace to fix what Jesus said about the narrow way?... Was Paul sent to cancel what the writer of Hebrews expressed when he wrote that without Holiness we will not see God?  Are  the warnings in scripture made moot?  Are you saved by grace if you only push yourself away from the World's table for 90 minutes every Sunday morning to attend services, have an emotional experience, and wave Holy hands... Before returning home and resuming polluting yourself with The World?  Until we reconcile Paul's teachings of grace with the warnings in scripture, we are handing out false hope to people who need to examine themselves and repent.

Every Sunday we sit with people who are much more the Bride of "The World" than the Bride of Christ... People who have a much deeper relationship with Hollywood than they have with scripture.  They pollute themselves with "The World" daily and on Sunday they likely listen to a preacher who is having his own hot, sweaty love relationship with The World.

This is the elephant in the sanctuary.  This is brick and mortar religion in America.

Being Holy... Being -Set Apart- is an incredible challenge for the rich of the world.  And we who have never known hunger, nakedness or lack of shelter?...  In God's economy we are the rich of the world.  And I believe it is easier for a camel to pass through a needle's eye than it is for us to repent of our love affair with "The world."

Maybe the first step is to call it sin.  Maybe the first step is to recognize that every time we engage the World we are polluting ourselves with the world, and we are sinning.  I wonder if the first step might be to confess to God that you don't love Him... Because you love the World... But that you desperately want to love Him.

Until we preach Holiness... Until we seek to separate ourselves from "The World" and the wicked culture in which we live... Until then, we are just the Church of the Moral Lifestyle... We are just a gateway religion.

God uses gateway religion all the time.  People come and hear the word.   A few will read the Bible and decide to love God.  A few will, but most won't.  And sadly, among the rich of the world... The few becomes fewer.

I probably pick on television more than is proportional.  But TV is the greatest conduit of "The World" in my life and a deadly snare.  Most of the downfalls and failures in my life I can sum up with the old phrase, "Wine, Women, and Song."  The "Song" part is my sinful desire to cozy up to "The World" and be entertained.   Because of my past I know I am neither qualified nor fit to make choices for others and I know in my heart I will never be good at being good... But my desire to be Holy runs parallel with my increasing love for God.

The greatest commandment is to love God.  And we know that if we try to love both "The World" and God we mislead ourselves and others, becoming false witnesses of our faith.  If we pollute ourselves with "The World," Jesus can be little more than an ornament in our moral lifestyle.

Jesus does not have an adulterous bride.   His Bride may be tempted to love The World and she may often stumble, but she stubbornly seeks to love her Lord only.  She does not try to be cool and fit in with The World.  She does not court The World's favor but is content to be totally uncool... A tiresome outcast who is despised and mocked by The World.  She is not the Church of the Moral Lifestyle.  She is the Church of the Lord Jesus.  She seeks to be Pure, Holy, and Set Apart.  And as she walks down the aisle of life she is not looking over her shoulder to see what she is missing from God's enemies in the Entertainment Culture... Her gaze is fixed upon the Bridegroom standing at the altar.  She is a walking, breathing, Living Sacrifice who has taken up her cross...  And it is her love for the Bridegroom, expressed in Holiness,  that makes His yoke easy and His burden light.   And at her approach The Lord sees the Plain Jane that she is, with so many imperfections.  But He only has to look into her eyes to know that - she - will - have - no - other...  And our Lord sees a beautiful Bride.

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Monday, January 06, 2020

Saving Mayor Pete

In my youth I was a skirt chaser.  There was nothing in my chasing of women that was dashing or cool... I was just a jerk.  In fact the fruits and failures of my life can generally be reduced down to the old phrase  "Wine, Women, and Song."  I hope to write about the "Song" part soon... (Oddly it's the hardest sin to kick...) but that's not today's topic...

First of all I'd like to say that I am convinced beyond a shadow of doubt that throughout history there have been Christians who have suffered with same-sex attractions and have heroically refused to give in to temptation and have honored God by resisting those attractions.  I think it's important for us heterosexual sinners to acknowledge that these individuals have far more character than we do.

Now, may I suggest:
1)  In all my time spent chasing women...  I always called what I was doing... sin.   I made excuses for myself, but I called it sin.

2)  The only homosexual sinners -and heterosexual sinners- in Heaven will be those who are repentant.  In order to repent you must acknowledge what you're doing is...  sin.

3)  When homosexuality became politicized there was suddenly little room for the practising homosexual to repent.  When homosexuality became politicized it gained its own peculiar righteousness, and a kind of "loyalty to the cause" entered into the equation.   To the movement, "Sin"  became only a word bandied about by bigots homophobes.

Now... Mayor Pete Buttigieg is a candidate for president and he is a homosexual.  He is legally married to another man.    Pete claims to be a Christian... And that claim is the most significant impediment to his salvation.


  I'm convinced that God will save the homosexual long before he saves the people who mislead the homosexual.  Those who call themselves Christians and who seek to legitimize and facilitate, in any way, the homosexual lifestyle are False Teachers and the Bible minces no words in describing how God feels about them.

Only God knows how many young people have rejected Biblical Truth and have fallen into sin because of the influence of men like Mayor Pete.  Only God knows how many deathbed conversions have been eclipsed by a stubborn pride and loyalty to like-minded crusaders.

All that to say this:   I know Mayor Pete can be saved.  He can reject the false god he has fashioned that accommodates his desires.  He can embrace the Bible as God's word and accept it as written.  But surely only God could engineer the circumstances which would bring about this change of heart and cause Mayor Pete to call his lifestyle sin... and repent.

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Friday, September 28, 2018

The Kangaroo Court

The only hard evidence from yesterday's hearings suggests that Diane Feinstein is either incompetent or she is a political monster.
I will say this about the Democrats on the Judiciary Committee:  For people who have decided that partial birth abortion and other forms of infanticide are a good thing, destroying an innocent man for political reasons is not a big moral or ethical leap.

I am so angry that I don't think armed thugs could keep me from voting in the midterms.  And I have to think most conservatives and fair-minded independents feel the same way.

…. only hard evidence from yesterday suggests that Feinstein is either incompetent or a political monster.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Every Family Needs a Murder

Years ago back in Muses Mills, Kentucky, my great-uncle Samuel "Glenn" McRoberts murdered his wife "Reva" with a pistol... Which is apparently against the law in Kentucky because he went to prison for it.

Two points:  First of all, you DON'T marry into a family that would name a little girl "Reva." And secondly, with a name like Reva you've got to figure she was asking for it.

All that to ponder this:  When I think of all the women I've dated and worked closely alongside, I  cannot help but wonder if I would have been treated with a little more respect had they known this sort of comportment was in my blood.

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Monday, September 11, 2017

Quote for 9-11-17

"And before you give me that tired argument that the fundamentalists have perverted the faith, let me be perfectly clear on something.  A religion must stand or fall on its own writings and holy books.  The fundamentalists haven't perverted anything.  In fact, Osama Bin Laden is the best practicing Muslim out there.  He is practicing Islam exactly the way Mohammed wanted it practiced.

It's the world's peaceful Muslims, the majority of the followers of Islam, who have perverted the faith.  They have strayed.  If Mohammed came back today you can bet there'd be hell to pay.  He'd be lopping off heads left and right.  And he'd have a lot of help too because in case you haven't noticed, the largest killer of Muslims in the world isn't us filthy infidels, it's other Muslims.  Fundamentalist Islam is booming..."


--Brad Thor... from his novel Foreign Influence

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Monday, September 04, 2017

Quote for the Day

"The Matrix is everywhere. It is all around us. Even now, in this very room. You can see it when you look out your window or when you turn on your television. You can feel it when you go to work... when you go to church.  It is the world that has been pulled over your eyes to blind you from the truth."
--Morpheus... The Matrix 1999


The apostle John could have written this.


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Sunday, July 16, 2017

My Retirement Truck

This may well be the last truck I will ever own.  I've had it for a month now, and I still have less than 500 miles on it... Love that!

Panda Van sprayed in the liner and attached the steps and mud flaps.

This picture is one month old so yes, my garden is a bit farther along than the picture suggests. 

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Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Quote of the Day

"Nothing clears our vision and draws us back from our entanglements with the world more efficiently than illness."
--Malott

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Sunday, February 26, 2017

Keith Ellison and Thomas Perez

Quote of the Day

"It is a classic matchup that places the Democratic Party's unwavering commitment to diversity on full display: The two front-runners in this week's election for DNC chairman are a race-obsessed black hate monger and a race-obsessed Hispanic hate monger."
--John Perazzo

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Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Thirty Days of Trump

After one month of the Trump Administration I wanted to make a couple comments...

This guy is a jerk.  I don't like his style.
But...

1)  I can't think of anything he is pushing that I don't like.

2)  None...  Not one of the other Republican candidates if elected would have pushed for a southern border wall or attempted to keep out dangerous people from dangerous countries.  Trump is the only candidate determined to keep our country from becoming like Europe.

3)  What he says about the press is more true than untrue.

If John McCain and the rest of the Republican Party are smart they will stop grandstanding for liberal press approval and get to work fulfilling Trump's campaign promises.

They don't have to like Trump or his style, but they darn well better satisfy the desires of the voters, both Republican and yes... Democrats, who voted for him.

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Sunday, February 05, 2017

My Poorest Decisions, My Biggest Regrets

Volume I:  The Swimming Team

When I was a small child I enjoyed nothing more than playing in the water.  Everything about it was fun.

After 4 years on the swimming team in high school, getting into the water was boring... and is to this day.

I was a mediocre swimmer and looking back there is only one meet that we would have lost had I not been there:

Eastern  49    Logansport  46
February 1972

Big Woop

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Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Clarity

I believe clarity is always a good thing.  The American people see a president trying to make us safe, and an opposition party that wants us to look like Europe.

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