Thursday, September 24, 2015

Why all the confusion?

It's getting pretty confusing lately.

People whom I love and respect warn about the so-called "Blood Moons". Other people whom I love and respect belittle those who pay any attention to the astrological event.

People whom I love and respect are praising the Pope and his address to Congress this morning. Other people whom I love and respect are pointing at it being a sign of the last days and him being the "False Prophet."

People whom I love and respect point to all the recent earthquakes around the world as signs of the end times. Other people whom I love and respect belittle those who pay attention to these events as naive.

People whom I love and respect look to a so-called "rapture" of the church to escape tribulation. (so called because "rapture" isn't a Bible word) Other people whom I love and respect say that there won't be a rapture to escape tribulation and still others that Christians will endure the tribulation before a rapture.

People whom I love and respect point to all the events in the world that the "last days" are upon us and Jesus will return soon. Other people whom I love and respect dismiss all the so-called signs as unrelated coincidences and accuse those who believe it as having fallen prey to bad eschatological theology.

So here's the deal. I thought we all (followers of Jesus Christ) had the same Spirit; the Spirit of God. How can there be such a great divide among believers as to what to believe?

Each "group" claims spiritual authority as their guide, but are on opposite sides of an issue.  If each group is following the leadership of the Holy Spirit, how can they each be right? How can either be wrong?

To be honest, as a preacher of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, this is just downright confusing to me. I certainly don't claim to know all and understand all.

But here's what I DO know for sure: Jesus is coming back!  He said He was and I believe Him. I don't know when, but He did give us some clues so that we wouldn't be caught unaware.

I try to live my life expecting Jesus to come back today, no matter what the day is. I am longing to see His face. I want it to happen before I finish typing this line, but I see that it didn't happen....

I don't want to fall into the trap of belittling or even disrespecting my trusted friends who fall on the other side of an eschatological issue. I fell into that trap several years ago with politics, and I deeply regret it. So, today, I will do what I always do; proclaim Jesus!

God loves you so much that He sent His Son, Jesus, to die for you (in your place to pay for your sins). If you believe that, according to Jesus, Himself, you will be saved. (John 3:16)

Won't you trust Jesus for your salvation today? You don't need a priest, or even a preacher; you can do it all through the One High Priest, Jesus! Call on Him to save you and be prepared for eternity. 

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Karma, Angels, and other Instances of Biblical Ignorance

I am appalled at the number of my FaceBook friends who regularly reference Karma, or talk about becoming angels when we die.

Karma is NOT a Christian concept. It is defined thusly on
(in Hinduism and Buddhism) the sum of a person's actions in this and previous states of existence, viewed as deciding their fate in future existences.
In American culture, we have the saying, which could be loosely related to Karma, "what goes around, comes around."

In essence, this speaks to a cosmic force that comes back to get you when you do something bad. You certainly won't find the word "karma" in the Bible and you will never find proper reference to God and Karma.  (You might find a reference to a "god" and Karma, but not the Living God.)

There ARE consequences for your actions; this much is true. The Bible says that "the wages of sin is death." But the whole idea of karma is that the universe (which is attributed with some of the characters of God) must keep things in a balance of good/bad. This is a counterfeit of what God has ordained. And remember, ALL religions (other than Judaism and Christianity) are counterfeits created by the devil to deceive and confuse people from worshiping the True and Living God.

Then, we come to the idea of becoming angels when we die. We see this most often when someone passes away and someone (with good intentions) say something like "Heaven needed another angel."  Dear friends, people DO NOT become angels when we die. Angels are created beings that are a whole different class than humans. Angels CANNOT be saved. The angels that sided with Satan will never be redeemed. Jesus died for people, not angels.

There is no indication in the Bible that we will have wings when we get to Heaven. In fact, the Bible talks about the role of angels in Heaven that is separate from the function of the redeemed.   Frankly, WE ARE BETTER than angels!

Why does this make any difference? What is the big deal if people talk about Karma or about becoming angels?

The big deal is that when CHRISTIANS talk about these things, it confuses people. We are called to be light in the darkness. Truth comes from God; lies from from Satan. When we perpetuate lies, we are unwittingly doing the will of the great deceiver. We are called out of the world. We can't just pick and choose what we like from the Bible and what we like from the world.  It's "all or nothing".

Please, followers of Jesus, KNOW THE DIFFERENCE between God's Word and what the world teaches. Please don't "mix and match" to suit your own needs. That's how cults (like Mormonism & Scientology) get started.

Read and STUDY your Bible! BE light in the Darkness! Live a life of TRUTH in a world of lies!