Friday, October 13, 2017

The Best of Barbershop

My family has developed a love for barbershop harmony over the years. Thankfully, many wonderful videos of our favorite quartets and choruses are available to watch on the internet. Here are our favorite performances:

Friday, October 06, 2017

Why did God allow the Las Vegas massacre to happen?

The news media has been presenting their solutions for what happened in Las Vegas. After so many people were killed and wounded, some wonder where God was when it all happened. One man angrily responded, “I can’t bow down to a God who allows this kind of stuff to happen. Why does He never show up at the same time evil does?”

A Christian writer answered his questions with two points: (1) Satan was the instigator of what happened – not God. Satan’s constant desire is to influence people with evil and to destroy them. Why, then, should God be blamed for what Satan is doing? (2) We often miss what God does during these tragedies. Did anyone notice how God enabled people to stop the shooter, to rescue the wounded, and bring together the community in the time of need? God was at work during this terrible massacre and without His help, it would have been worse.

But we must also consider a third and more uncomfortable truth. (3) Most people have rejected God and do not want his hand in their lives. During everyday life, many Americans have no use for God. They only mention his name when it is convenient or when they can blame him for a tragedy like this. People tend to want a God who does what they want instead of the One who requires submission to His will. So, how can He be blamed by those who reject Him on every other day of the week?

We may never completely understand why God allows tragedies to take place. However, we must not forget that Satan’s influence and man’s sinfulness are to blame for what happened this time. God is against evil, but it still exists and causes harm to many. Please remember that God is good and desires what is best. We may wonder why this happened, but perhaps the more important question is whether we are willing to turn from our wicked ways and trust Him.

Saturday, September 30, 2017

1 Peter 5:2-3

"People will chafe under the rule of a tyrant, but they will follow a pastor who is modeling the way to live. The pastor's leadership is not something he demands, but it is something he earns by his life and office."

Adult Bible Study Leader's Guide to Living in Hostile Territory by Regular Baptist Press

Friday, September 15, 2017

Was my faith enough?

How many times has someone doubted their salvation? For me it was many times as a child. I knew that Jesus died for me. I knew my need for repentance and faith. But it was not until someone said something like that below that my doubts went away. Commenting on Colossians 1:4, Harry Ironside said this:

“People are troubled sometimes for fear their faith should not be of the right quality, or might prove of insufficient quantity to save them. But it is important to observe that it is not the character nor amount of faith that saves. It is the Person in whom faith rests.”

H. A. Ironside, Lectures on the Epistle to the Colossians, Neptune: Loizeaux Brothers, 1929, p. 23.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Changing the Weather

During prayer meeting tonight, we will be looking at Mark 4:35-41. There we read about Jesus commanding the raging wind and sea to be still during a fierce storm at sea. When the winds and waves responded to his commands, his astonished disciples learned something about Jesus. Their question, "What manner of man is this?," is answered well by one of the Bible commentators:

"Much that is wrong on earth can be corrected. There are mothers who dry tears, repairmen who fix machines, surgeons who remove diseased tissues, counselors who solve family problems, etc. As to correcting the weather? People talk about it, to be sure. But it takes deity to change the weather. It is Jesus who commands the elements of the weather, with the result that even the wind obeys him, and so does the sea."

William Hendriksen, Mark, Grand Rapids: Baker, 2004, pp. 180-81.

Jesus is God who became man. Although he experienced the same humanity that we do, he did not cease to be God. He still was omnipotent and this is clearly seen in Mark's account of what happened. No human can control the weather. Only God can. So, who is this man. Jesus is God.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Why doesn't God judge sin right away?

These are some good thoughts about God's relationship to sin, judgment, and time from 2 Peter 3:8-9.

"This then seems to be the Apostle Peter's answer to the Christian who is troubled about the conditions, and who sometimes is tempted to query and question with regard to the delay. Remember that we are dealing with God and not with man. Remember his eternity. Remember his relationship to time. Remember the utter righteousness and holiness of God. Remember His love, His mercy, His compassion. We are in time, and let us confess it, we are far too much like James and John. You remember our Lord sent them one day to prepare His way for Him. They went into a city of the Samaritans who would not receive them, and you remember how James and John said unto our Lord, 'Shall we call down fire from heaven to consume and destroy them?' If you and I controlled this world, no doubt it would be like that -- we would bring in immediate judgment. But the reply was, 'Ye know not what manner of spirit ye are of, for the Son of man is not come to destroy men's lives but to save them.' 'The Lord is not slack', but He does not wish that any should perish, but that all should come in this blessed knowledge of salvation. Let us then submit unto God and His absolute wisdom, and especially to His love and mercy, His long-suffering and compassion."

D. M. Lloyd-Jones commenting on 2 Peter 3:8-9 in 2 Peter (Carlisle PA: The Banner of Truth Trust, 1983), p. 183.