How to avoid misery.

stressProverbs 27:12  “A prudent man sees evil and hides himself, the naïve proceed and pay the penalty.”

     A prudent or wise person is able to see the evil around him.   

Some foolish people are not even able to see the dangers around.   A foolish man might say, “I can enjoy much of the worlds entertainment and pleasures and they won’t hurt me or my family.”  But he never realizes how spiritually dull he actually becomes, how worldly his kids become, or how his hunger for more sin is fed through that “innocent” entertainment or activity until it becomes insatiable.

     A prudent person hides himself.

First he must notice it and then he must do something about it.   Like a person who might see a band of thugs coming down the street beating and shooting people, and he hides from them so he doesn’t get beat or shot, the wise person sees the danger of more subtle things in this world and hides.  He gets away from them before they destroy him.

     The naïve continue.

A naïve person is a simple person, one who simply doesn’t get it.  He doesn’t understand what is going on around him.  Satan has blinded the eyes of the people of this world,

 “In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them ” (2 Cor. 4.4).  “For the time past of our life may suffice us to have wrought the will of the Gentiles, when we walked in lasciviousness, lusts, excess of wine, revellings, banquetings, and abominable idolatries: 4 Wherein they think it strange that ye run not with them to the same excess of riot, speaking evil of you. (1 Pet.4:3,4)

It is true that a naive person can’t see simple dangers, but it is even more true that he can’t see the moral and spiritual implications of his actions in this world.   This person will be told of the dangers but will always have an argument for why he think his desires are harmless.

Children are born in this state of naivety and it is the responsibility of parents to train them to be wise.

 “Foolishness is bound in the heart of a child; But the rod of correction shall drive it far from him.” (Prov. 22:15)

Pity the child whose parents can not train him because they themselves are still naive.

     There is a serious price to be paid.

Sometimes is is a personal price paid in lack of success in life, in financial troubles, or in school or a job.  However, the spiritual and moral weight of this price is often seen in broken relationship, habitual sins which trap and destroy a person, or general misery as a person can never attain the peace and joy he seeks in life.

 

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Three Minutes. 8-7-13

Here is a video review of this past week at NLF and a preview of this coming Sunday.

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The Boston bombing, Muslim extremism and Satanic evil

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Very serious things have been happening in America recently.  The most notable for the public being the tragic Boston Marathon bombing.  Evidence points to the perpetrators being Muslim extremist. Reports have been

conflicting as to whether they were part of a larger organized group, but it seems like a probable conclusion.

Of course one need not be part of a Muslim extremist group to wreak violence upon American people. Plenty of seemingly normal Americans have become mass murderers.  But this attack is significant in that it is the largest terrorist attack on American soil since 9-11.  That there have not been more episodes of intentional violence and destruction in America is stunning, especially given the fact that the USA has been stirring the hornets’ nest of the Middle East for a dozen years; and given the fact that our borders are completely open to any motivated aggressor.  

I’d like to suggest some reasons that we may not have been attacked sooner or more often.

The USA is so good at counter-terrorism that we stopped all the other attempts.

OK, our guys are good, but are they really that good?  Seriously, with our virtually unprotected borders, visa’s given to nearly anyone, and a nation that is crippled by political correctness to the point that no one may be judged or even suspected of being terrorist regardless of their religion, fashion, associations, or spending habits, are we supposed to believe that it’s impossible for the haters of America to bomb a school, stadium, or public building?

The great irony is that the US government has trampled the rights of all Americans, ignoring and demolishing the Bill of Rights in order to supposedly protect us from the evil terrorists.   Under the Patriot Act and similar legislation, along with executive orders, Americans are spied on and searched in their “persons and papers” electronically, and may be arrested and held indefinitely without trial, all in violation of the Bill of Rights.  So instead of profiling a foreigner who is not entitled to the rights of our founding documents, we have given the foreigner greater rights than the citizen, and in the process robbed the citizen of both his rights and his protection from foreign aggression – the one clear thing the Federal government is supposed to do for us.

Face the truth.  If those desiring to hurt America so desired, the Boston bombing could be repeated every single day.  America would be bogged down in such a sludge of regulation and government police “protection” that ordinary life would cease.   The economy would likely collapse, people would riot; chaos would reign requiring the government to take ever more stringent steps to “protect us”.  The light of freedom, that thing which has made America so attractive to the masses, has already dimmed but would soon go out. All of this would work to the favor of those desiring to hurt America.

So here’s the truth as I see it: either the haters don’t really want to hurt America, which I find hard to believe; or something other the US government has prevented them.  What could that be?

God protects us.

There is no doubt that God directs in the affairs of man, at times preventing men or devils from conducting their evil schemes or through providential blessing and guidance to fulfill His purposes. We have a number of biblical examples to help us understand this.

In Job we find God protecting his servant so that, though Satan desired to hurt him, he was unable until God lifted His protective hedge.   Even then Satan was limited in what he could do to Job.   When allowed by God, Satan was able to afflict Job by manipulating both men (army’s) and weather.  Throughout Israel’s history God is seen raising up kings and putting down nations.  Nebuchadnezzar, in the book of Daniel, is a great example.  God took his sanity from him so that he acted like a wild animal for seven seasons of time; then God told him:

“In order that the living may know that the Most High is ruler over the realm of mankind, and bestows it on whom He wishes and sets over it the lowliest of men. (Dan.4:17)

No terrorist will ever be able to attack America, or any other nation for that matter, without God allowing it to happen.  There can be no doubt that, to some degree, God has been protecting and blessing America.  He’s not obligated to do so; and our rebellion most certainly will, or has led Him to cease, but He has blessed and protected in the past.

Satan has not allowed it.

The premise of this point is that God has already allowed Satan to afflict America for whatever reason God has in doing so.  I happen to think that God may have a number of reasons.  But why wouldn’t Satan pursue more of these Muslim terrorist attacks?

Islam is one of Satan’s religions.  I’m sorry if that offends you, but it is a fact.  I’m not saying that we should hate people who are Muslims, not at all; we should love them, pray for them, and seek to teach them the Gospel.  But as a religion, Islam was founded by Satan; it is anti-Christ, anti-Bible, and anti-morality.  I will concede that it does have a certain element of morality to it, but that is how Satan works, he mixes truth with lies.  The moral teaching of Islam that is in harmony with the Bible is offset by other teaching that is perverted, gross and anti-biblical.

Islam has perpetrated violence upon human flesh for well over a millennia.  This has often been through external aggression, using wars to win territory and force people into their vile religion.  But it has also been through the internal violence toward its’ own people, especially women.  Satan has used Islam to accomplish his goals; keeping people from faith in the true and living God, and destroying things and people which God has made.  It would seem to make sense for Satan to use Islamic extremists to attack and injure America.  This would be especially true if America were a nation that to a large degree embraced the morality of the Bible; and if there were a large number of Christians in America.

Perhaps, and I’m just taking a guess here, but perhaps Satan has not been pursuing more terrorist attacks by Muslim extremists in America because America has been on a steady path into deeper evil and immorality; and too many big scary terrorist attacks might just turn people back to God.  Seeing that he is achieving success in his goal of keeping people from faith in the true and living God, and destroying things and people which God has made, may it be that Satan knows he doesn’t need many terrorist attacks.   He’s a smart businessman; he’ll just keep doing what is working.

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My thoughts on gun control

Glock 33Gun regulation is not at all about the safety of children or innocent people in America.  But instead it is the impulse of people who believe that, since the government is the answer to nearly all problems, government should have all the guns in order to protect us.  Gun control is also the impulse of all dictators, tyrants, and power mongers who desire to control large groups of people without fear of reprisal.

If the preservation of innocent life were the main point, a logical person would look at all the factors in our society which lead to the damage of innocent life and work to systematically eliminate them.  In truth these factors can never be eliminated, so society strives for a balance between a safety which preserves and protects life, and a freedom that makes life worth living.

The current drive toward gun regulation is clearly not about safety.  For instance, according to a report by the Center for Disease Control, the year 2010 saw 11,078 homicides by firearm (The FBI states the number to be 8,874) .   The same year saw 25,692 alcohol induced deaths (not including vehicular homicide), and 40,393 drug induced deaths.      Another report by the national Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicates that in 2010 a total of 10,228 people died because of alcohol-impaired driving.  Of those killed, 211 were children under age 14.   Deaths from alcohol related vehicle accidents nearly equal or exceed homicides by firearm.

While there may be a so called “war on drugs”, very little if anything is said about alcohol.  No one is crying out to the president and congress for stiffer laws and regulations on alcohol.  We like our drink. The laws for obtaining guns are similar to those for obtaining alcohol.  In most states a person must be at least 21 year of age and show valid ID.    To obtain a handgun one must submit to a background check.  Some may argue that we already have many valid laws on the books to deal with alcohol and therefore more laws are not needed, but the same may be said for guns.

The Children’s Defense Fund produced a report of gun violence and deaths for 2008.    According to their statistics, there were 2,947 children and teen firearm fatalities in 2008.   That sounds like a really big number, however when we break down the numbers we see that 2,571 of those fatalities were teens 15-19 years of age.  Only 408 were under age 15, and 148 under 10.    We ought to lament the death of every single person, but not every death is equally tragic and not every person killed is equally innocent.   A significantly high number of those 2,571 deaths in 15-19 year olds could be attributed to gang warfare in major cities.

Quoting from a 2012 report from the Center for Disease Control, “Gang homicides account for a substantial proportion of homicides among youths in some U.S. cities” and “consistent with similar previous research, a higher proportion of gang homicides than other homicides involved young adults and adolescents, racial and ethnic minorities, and males. (emphasis added).

I have recently read that approximately 71% of homicides involve criminals killing criminals. (Sorry, but I can’t find the source for that.  I’ll update this later when I find it.)  When teenage criminals kill each other through gang warfare or other crimes, it is not appropriate to include these statistics among statistics about death to innocent children by firearms.

The current battle cry is for a ban on assault rifles and to limit all guns to between 7 and 10 rounds of ammunition.   Few people are admitting that they ultimately desire to ban all guns.  They say that they are in favor of people having guns in order to protect themselves and for legitimate hunting and sport.

FBI statistics show that of the 13,164 non-vehicular homicides in 2010, firearms were involved 8,874 cases.   Handguns accounted for 6,115 of these deaths, but rifles only accounted for 367 deaths.   Most of those 6,115 deaths by handgun probably did not involve shooting more than 10 rounds.  It has been reported that most cases of shootings involve less than five shots.  So we must face the reality that if the government enacted the assault rifle ban and the ban of magazines holding more than 10 rounds, crime statistics would remain virtually unchanged.

The assault weapon ban is not about protecting innocent life.  It must be about something else and I think I know that it is.   It is actually about two things:

1)            Convincing the masses that they should not be self-dependent and self-responsible, but instead rely on the government for everything, including personal protection.    For the masses it is about feeling safe because only the government have the guns.

2)            A major step toward removing government’s fear of the people.  The American founders believed that the government needed to fear the people and the people needed the right to keep and bear arms in order to instill that fear.

Recent world history shows that in the 20th century alone over 100 million people were massacred by their own governments.  These governments used everything from starvation (USSR), to gas chambers (Germany), to death marches (Turkey), to assassinations and riots.   The common thread through all the large massacres of the 20th century is that the people had been previously disarmed.

I’m not suggesting that the US government will conduct a massacre anytime in the immediate future.  There are too many guns already in the hands of the people.  If they tried the result would be colossal death, but it would be in the form of civil war.  However, I am suggesting that after the systematic regulating, licensing, and restricting of guns for a period of years, our government could eventually confiscate all guns – at least all the guns they could find.   I am also suggesting that the world can change mighty quickly and that within a very short number of years, say 10 years, the U.S. could see mass killings by a runaway government.

Whatever way the phrase “well regulated militia” is interpreted from the 2nd amendment, one thing is clear, the founders original intent was that the people be armed in such a way as to conduct warfare against invading nations, insurrectionists, or if necessary, their own government.   To pass laws or decree executive orders limiting the ability of the people to do so is a clear violation of the natural meaning and obvious intent of the founders in the Constitution, Bill of Rights, and other writings.

Watch this excellent video.

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Wickedness is like sport to a fool — the hypocrisy of gun control

“Doing wickedness is like sport to a fool, and so is wisdom to a man of understanding.”

 Proverbs 10:23

Our nation’s capital is brimming with wickedness and fools.   They are there partially because other wicked fools put them there.  Many who voted to put them there were made pawns through their own failure to think and their overwhelming covetousness.

Proverbs tells us that a fool considers wickedness to be a game, a sport.  Oh how true of the D.C. crowd.  Little exceeds the wickedness of abortion and this week the government released some sad figures.

Planned Parenthood received $542,000,000.00 ($542 million) of tax payers’ dollars last year.  This half billion dollars account for 45% of their income.  With this American tax payer income Planned Parenthood performed 330,964 murders (abortions), one murder every 94 seconds.

How do I know that it is sport, a game to them?   Well because these bombastic fools turn around and preach that we need gun control to protect children.   On average a little over 300 “children” are killed each year by people with guns.  That’s about the same number of children as who are killed on bicycles!   Notice the word “children” is in quotes.  This is because the word “children” includes all the 16 and 17 year olds who are killed in gang fights, drug wars, and shot by old ladies during home invasions.   It’s a little hard to classify these miscreant young adults as “children”, but in the game politics it is what D.C. does. It is also a little hard to believe that they are serious about protecting the innocent of our land when they so vociferously fight to protect and promote the so called “right” to murder children.

Volumes could be written about the sport our leaders make of wickedness, but what about the second part of the verse?  “Wisdom is like sport to a man of understanding”.   We who know the Lord also have the Word and the Spirit.  This should result in conviction, understanding, and wisdom.  We ought to get mad about sin.  I’m often criticized for criticizing wickedness.   To be angry over sin, especially in our leaders is right.    But anger is not enough, we must apply wisdom to our own lives and to the world that is so enamored with the sport of sin.

It is true that the only real hope for this world is the Gospel of Jesus, but it is also true that part or proclaiming Jesus is declaring sin to be sin, and an offense to God.   A simple (hyperbole), full proof, three step plan for changing America might look like this:

1)            Christians stop living materialist, lustful, selfish lives.  Repent and seek God’s holiness.

2)            Out of passion for God’s holiness, start proclaiming sin to be sin all around them.

3)            Give people to Good News of Hope through forgiveness by the blood of Jesus.

At this point I’m afraid that the brand of Christianity we have around here won’t get past the first step.  I’m not condemning all Christians, or anyone on a personal level.  I am however, pointing out the general hypocrisy and materialism of the American church in general.  Lord have mercy I pray!

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Pondering Proverbs

Proverbs 30:7-9 Two things have I required of thee; deny me them not before I die:  (8)  Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me:  (9)  Lest I be full, and deny thee, and say, Who is the LORD? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God in vain.

present

Tis the season…of materialism.  This is a good passage to consider during the current season covetousness and materialism.  The wise man is asking something of God.   The word “required” is not the best translation and it rubs me wrong to think that man can require anything of God.  According to the BDB lexicon the word means “to ask, inquire  borrow, or beg”.

The wise man is asking God for two things: 1) to be kept from worthless deceptive thinking, and 2) to be neither rich, nor poor, but have his needs met. The two things for which he asks are interconnected.  If a person is affected by the deceptive lies of the world, he may very well begin to feel that he cannot be happy unless he has more stuff, and so he desires to be rich.   If he cannot be rich he may easily become discontent with his own state as he observes others around him living in greater luxury.  So the wise man asks that he be kept from this vain or empty thinking which is actually a lie.   Our world, Christian’s included, has been deceived by the lie that we need stuff to be happy.  Parents are training their kids in this thinking by giving them more stuff all the time.   We need to recognize the deceit and the emptiness of it all and plead with God for help.

The wise man then asks that God will give him just enough.   He recognizes the danger in having too much or too little.   He says, “lest I be full, and deny thee”.   Yes, it does seem to be a truth that people who have their needs met in excess, fail to depend on God.   This may be the reason America is in such deplorable moral condition.  We are all rich in America.  The poor have TVs, cable for their TV, nice places to live, plenty of food, heat, clothing, and even cell phones.  Why should anyone depend on God?

When people don’t have to depend on God they go one step further and deny or despise Him because of the moral law He holds them to.  People like to think that they believe in God, but the God of their imaginations is not the God of the Bible.  May God grant us clear minds, undeceived by worldly thinking and give us what we need.

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Pondering Proverbs

Proverbs 29:27

An unjust man is an abomination to the just: and he that is upright in the way is abomination to the wicked.

This short little snippet of wisdom captures much of the mood of our day.   The unjust person is one who is guilty of injustice.  He breaks the law, God’s or man’s.  This is called an abomination, which means to feel disgust or repugnance towards someone or something.

The second half of the verse states the opposite truth which is that the person who is upright is disgusting to a wicked person.      This phrase hits home for bible believers because others are disgusted by our bible believing ways.  For instance numerous people are disgusted by what the Bible says about wives submitting to their husbands, women being excluded from the office of pastor, condemnation of sexual sin and homosexuality, modesty, and you get the point.

As long as sin reigns in this world, and the prince of the power of the air is on his thrown (that’s Satan, Eph.2:2), good will be called evil and evil will be called good.  Those who believe and stand for biblical truth will be abhorred by those who love evil.  And while we must not hate the person who sins, we are right to abhor and hate the sin itself.

So go ahead and get yourself worked up into a tizzy over all the sin around you, I think God will be pleased.  And don’t worry about it if you are hated for it.

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