Hold fast the form of sound words, which thou hast heard of me, in faith and love which is in Christ Jesus (2 Timothy 1:13)
Just to busy to blog!
Tuesday, September 28, 2004
enjoy this one in the mean time...
Here is a little story which really made me laugh a couple of weeks ago. I heard it has made the rounds in just about every inbox in the world, but if you haven't seen it yet, it's worth reading. I believe the original story was from a radio personality called Jim Quinn. This seems to be a variant of the original:The Ant and the Grasshopper
The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away. Come winter, the ant is warm and well fed. The grasshopper has no food or shelter, so he dies out in the cold.
MORAL OF THE STORY: Be responsible for yourself!
The ant works hard in the withering heat all summer long, building his house and laying up supplies for the winter. The grasshopper thinks he's a fool and laughs and dances and plays the summer away.
Come winter, the shivering grasshopper calls a press conference and demands to know why the ant should be allowed to be warm and well fed while others are cold and starving. CBS, NBC, and ABC show up to provide pictures of the shivering grasshopper next to a video of the ant in his comfortable home with a table filled with food. America is stunned by the sharp contrast. How can this be, that in a country of such wealth, this poor grasshopper is allowed to suffer so?
Kermit the Frog appears on Oprah with the grasshopper, and everybody cries when they sing, "It's Not Easy Being Green." Jesse Jackson stages a demonstration in front of the ant's house where the news stations film the group singing, "We shall overcome." Jesse then has the group kneel down to pray to God for the grasshopper's sake.
Tom Daschle & John Kerry exclaim in an interview with Peter Jennings that the ant has gotten rich off the back of the grasshopper, and both call for an immediate tax hike on the ant to make him pay his "fair share." Finally, the EEOC drafts the "Economic Equity and Anti-Grasshopper Act," retroactive to the beginning of the summer. The ant is fined for failingto hire a proportionate number of green bugs and, having nothing left to pay his retroactive taxes, his home is confiscated by the government.
Hillary Clinton gets her old law firm to represent the grasshopper in a defamation suit against the ant, and the case is tried before a panel of federal judges that Bill appointed from a list of single-parent welfare recipients.
The ant loses the case.
The story ends as we see the grasshopper finishing up the last bits of the ant's food while the government house he is in, which just happens to be the ant's old house, crumbles around him because he doesn't maintain it.
The ant has disappeared in the snow.
The grasshopper is found dead in a drug related incident and the house, now abandoned, is taken over by a gang of spiders who terrorize the once peaceful neighborhood.
MORAL OF THE STORY: Vote Republican.
Safely through another week...
Monday, September 27, 2004
time for some well deserved rest...
Well, all done!
What a week I've had. Work was insane: I spent the whole day yesterday (Saturday), and part of this afternoon (Sunday) trying to get an obstinate mass spectrometer
to work. On top of my secular work, I was asked to prepare a sermon for the Lord's Day evening service. Add to that my domestic responsibilities, it made for a pretty packed week.
I'm glad to report that I have fulfilled all my obligations, and I would like to think that everything was done properly. The mass spectrometer is now operating, my house is in relative order, and I was told my sermon tonight was, and I quote:
"One of your better ones."
I'm going to rest now, I'll try to post something interesting for you tomorrow, maybe the outline of my sermon...we'll see.
Goodnight and take care dear readers,
A Few Quick Notes
Thursday, September 23, 2004
so much to do, so little time...
*Work has been crazy lately; I'm paying the price for those two days I took off due to that cold we all suffered last weekend
. It will probably remain busy for awhile too.
*The young man who I witnessed too
during our street preaching ministry has been coming to our services and everything looks promising. He's reading his Bible, coming to evening service, he's had a visit with my pastor a couple of days ago, and he's going through past sermons (on tape) at a record pace. I'm planning to go out for coffee with him sometime this week; please pray that the Lord would give me utterance and wisdom.
*I'm going to be preaching the Lord's day evening service this Sunday. My pastor has family visiting him this weekend, so I'm helping him out. I like preaching, but I have to say, having the pastor in the room (as opposed to me preaching because he's away) always makes things more stressful for me. He's so knowledgeable and wise in the Lord that I often fear my sermons are too plain or too shallow. Oh well, I'll pray that the Lord help me prepare something good...I'll let you know how it goes.
That's it for now, hope you are all well dear readers,
Has the Lord Jesus always had a body?
Monday, September 20, 2004
if you have a headache, don't read this post...
Ok...this one is going to be long, difficult, and by the end, I probably won't have a firm and definite conclusion. But still, I think this is interesting speculation.
Amongst the perfect attributes of God, it is generally accepted that God is above, or outside, the confines of time (as in, He isn't bound by time). God is infinite and He is eternal, time is not a factor for Him. This is easy to say, but not easy to understand since our whole understanding of events, even how we perceive our very lives are usually framed in time. For example:
-∞--------->C ------------->X----------->MB----->MS------>MD---------> +∞
∞ = infinity
C = creation
X = crucifixion
MB = my birth
MS = my salvation
MD = my death
This way of thinking is adequate for our existence, but not for God. You see, in His entirety, God is in eternity past, present and future. Time is not a factor for God. And that's why we have mind-blowing verses in the Bible like:
"And no man hath ascended up to heaven, but he that came down from heaven, even the Son of man which is in heaven." (John 3:13)
"And all that dwell upon the earth shall worship him, whose names are not written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world." (Revelation 13:8)
In the John verse, Jesus is speaking to His disciples on Earth, and yet He tells them that He IS in Heaven. In Revelation, John speaks of a Lamb, not slain under a century ago (which would be the span of time between the crucifixion and the year John wrote Revelation), but rather slain since before creation.
So, if we use the same illustration as above, God's relationship to time would look like this:
-∞<--------------God (Father, Son and Holy Ghost) --------------------->+∞
Now see just how much this is hard to understand. I don't believe it is proper for us to ask a question like: "When did the Father start creation?" or "When did the Father plan creation?" Such questions would mean there has been change in God (and we know God is immutable: Malachi 3:6), and it would bind God to time.
So now that you see how difficult this is to understand, let me add a tough question (LOL) :
When, in eternity, did Jesus become a man (as in receive flesh)? Now we know, that roughly 2000 years ago, the Lord took on human flesh and walked as a man on the Earth. But what was He like before? How is He now? What will He be like in the future?
What He WAS like:
We read in several passages of God in the form of a man in the Old Testament. For example: Genesis 18, Genesis 32: 24-28, Joshua 5: 13-14, Judges 6:11, 1 Chronicles 21: 16, Daniel 3: 25. There is no doubt, this was the Son of God.
And add to these Scriptures the passage stated above about "the Lamb being slain from the foundation of the world"...well...you can't slay a spirit now can you?
And then in the New Testament, we have verses like John 1: 1 and 14, Hebrews 1: 1-4, Hebrews 2: 14 and Romans 8: 3 which make clear that the Son of God was come in the form of a man.
Now I feel there can be some objections here. Many New Testament passages referring to the Incarnation speak of Christ taking on human flesh, so one may then conclude: "Well, if He took on flesh at the Incarnation, then that means that He didn't have it before!" My answer to that is: "Possibly, but not necessarily."
It is possible that Christ had a glorified body before, and at the incarnation, He was taking, as stated in Romans, the likeness of sinful flesh. Flesh that is under subjection to time and the physical world.
What He IS like:
It is clear in the New Testament, that the Lord Jesus Christ, today, is a man. In Colossians 2: 9, we read of the Lord Jesus:
"For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. "
And 1 Timothy 2: 5 tells us:
"For there is one God, and one mediator between God and men, the MAN Christ Jesus".
What He will be like:
The New Testament is also clear in its' prophecies about the future that the Lord Jesus Christ has a body:
"And when he had spoken these things, while they beheld, he was taken up; and a cloud received him out of their sight. And while they looked stedfastly toward heaven as he went up, behold, two men stood by them in white apparel; which also said, Ye men of Galilee, why stand ye gazing up into heaven? this same Jesus, which is taken up from you into heaven, shall so come in like manner as ye have seen him go into heaven." (Acts 1: 9-11)
Jesus left the disciples with a physical body, so He'll return with a physical body.
"And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory." (Matthew 24: 30)
The Son of Man has a physical body!
OK...Recapping all this: Jesus had a body in the Old Testament, He had a body in the New Testament, He has a body today, and we are told that He will have a body in the Future. So the question: Did Jesus always have a body, eternity past to eternity future? Is it:
-∞<------------------------X (crucifixion)-------------------------------> +∞
-∞<----------------------- Jesus takes flesh----------------------------> +∞
If so, what of the visits of a bodily Lord in the Old Testament? And another problem: We've seen at the beginning of this post that God (All Persons) aren't bound by time, that they are eternal and infinite. The problem is this: in eternity, is there a Son of God which has no beginning and now a Son of Man that does have a beginning and no end? (Do you have a headache yet?)
Personally, I think this makes more sense:
-∞<------God (Father: as spirit; Son: with body; Holy Spirit) -------> +∞
Now, this isn't over, I will post further on this. There is a lot of room for debate and correction in all this I'm sure. So let's keep it gracious and let's see what we can come up with. I'm not suggesting that I got all this figured out...I don't. Just like "swimming in deep waters" I guess!
Take care and God bless,
Hello, my name is Rand, and I'm a sinner.
Sunday, September 19, 2004
They should have called it sinners anonymous...
Being sick with a cold, I watched a bit of TV this weekend. On one of the shows I watched, I was presented with a man who had the "alcoholic disease". I'm sure you've all heard about this by now. You see, alcoholism isn't a sin anymore, it's a disease. A poorly understood one from what I hear.
What complete garbage. I can say that because I have first hand knowledge on the subject. My grandfather died an alcoholic. My father was an alcoholic. For close to two years of my life, I was an alcoholic. How about that for genetic make-up! Yet, today, my father and I are no longer alcoholics.
Some will say here: "But I thought once an alcoholic, always an alcoholic, even if you don't give in to the urge to drink."
Nonsense! Not only do I no longer drink, but I have no desire to drink. How can this be? What happened?
God happened. God saved my soul from it's sin, and one of those sins was drunkenness:"Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor DRUNKARDS, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God. And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God."
(1 Corinthians 6: 9-11)
When God got involved, my old wicked way of life was put to an end, and God worked in me the desire for a righteous, holy life:"Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new."
(2 Corinthians 5:17)
The fact of the matter is, alcoholism isn't a physical/psychological disease, it's part of a large spiritual problem called sin. We have proof of this in the Bible. We saw, in 1 Corinthians 6: 9-11, that God condemns drunkards. And yet we see that the Lord has compassion on those who are sick with disease:"And Jesus went forth, and saw a great multitude, and was moved with compassion toward them, and he healed their sick."
To drunkards, wrath; to the sick, compassion. Alcoholism is sin, not illness. The cure of alcoholism isn't therapy or some kind of medication. The cure is repentance.
Dear reader, don't buy the garbage Hollywood pumps out every week on the TV. There is a reason why the old-timers called the TV: the "idiot box".
Feeling like a truck hit me!
Saturday, September 18, 2004
did anyone get that license plate?
Well, it's slow, but I'm beginning to get over my cold. My daughter still sounds congested but she's much happier and I believe she's on the mend too. We're definitely keeping the girl at home tomorrow though (dont' want to take any chances). I'm hoping I'll be well enough to go to the Lord's Day service tomorrow morning, so I can teach my Sunday school class, but as we say in the sport's world: it'll be a game time decision!
Thank you all for your prayers. I'm hoping to put out a more serious, less whinny post tomorrow (Hee hee).
Update on daughter
Friday, September 17, 2004
man! I'm tired...
Well, I hadn't been through an all-nighter in a while...can't say I missed it.
Shortly after my last post, my wife and I decided to take our daughter to the emergency room at a Hospital just a couple of streets down from where we live. We got there just a little before 9pm. The sign at the front of the Triage Desk said: waiting time: 3 hours. That was a serious downer.
I was rescued from my downer when a triage nurse had mercy on my daughter, who quite evidently, was struggling for breath. After some preliminary tests, it became clear that my girl wasn't getting a fraction of the air she needed, so they sent us for x-rays. Well, that was no fun. With kids under 4 years of age, they use this contraption to hold kids in place during the x-ray, and my girl WASN'T impressed. She cried for hours (well after the x-ray experience).
The x-ray revealed a great deal of irritation in her lungs, which one of the doctors diagnosed as possible pneumonia. They then decided to put my baby on an ambulance and send her to the Children's Hospital. There, they wasted no time. The pumped some antibiotics and Ventolin into her and monitored her progress overnight.
By 5 am, her breathing had become good enough to send her back home. Which brings us to now. My wife and I are beat and dead tired, but my girl is still wide awake (a side effect of some of the medications she got was hyper-activity). So we're hoping our little pumpkin will need a nap soon, so we can get one too.
Oh! and did I mention that both my wife and I got a cold overnight (probably contracted from the many sick children at the Hospital)?
Thursday, September 16, 2004
Parenting...not all fun and games...
My daughter's cold got worse. Might have to take her to the Emergency tonight. She's got a really bad cough and sounds terribly congested.
Not exactly what I wanted to come home to after a 10 hour work day.
Please pray for my little pumpkin, she's been sick so often last winter, I was hoping this year would be better.
Yes! Still alive...barely
some much to do in so little time...
Things are really quite busy right now, so I'll have to keep this post short.
-Canada won the World Cup of Hockey
-Had a good prayer meeting tonight at church
-Got my first assist in my second game of ice hockey (work league)
-Daughter caught a cold
-Work has been crazy (I'm having to become a computer networking expert...and it's soooo not happening)
-The NHL has locked out
its' players (Hockey season is in doubt)
That's it for now,
The problem with stem cells
Monday, September 13, 2004
Katherine, this one's for you...
I was asked, a few days ago, for my views on stem cell research and cloning. I am no expert in the specifics of these biotechnologies, but as a research technician, I have been offered projects which studied the various applications of stem cells. So I do know a thing or two about the moral problem stem cell research brings.
First off, let's make sure we all know what we are talking about. Stem cells are cells which are found in humans (at every age) which have the ability to transform themselves into just about any kind of tissue (skin, muscle, brain...etc). Cloned cells are cells which are exact replicas of a parent cell (having the exact same genetic make-up). In more complex organisms, like Dolly the sheep, scientists took a normal sheep cell (could be taken anywhere) and placed the genetic material (DNA) into a sheep egg. The egg then automatically begins the work of forming a new sheep (like Dolly). The cloned sheep will be an almost exact replica of the donor sheep (I say almost because there are problems with mutations in cloning).
Now the problem with these technologies:
Imagine a parent taking his sick child to the doctor. The doctor finds that the problem with the child is that his liver is infected with a rare disease and the only option to save the child in a new liver. The doctor explains how they would all have to wait and hope a matching donor liver comes along, OR option # 2. The parent eagerly asks:
"What is option #2?"
"Well," answers the doctor, "I could call a friend of mine in South America, and for a nominal fee, he'll kidnap a few inner-city street kids check for an organ match, and we'll get you that liver!"
Now I'm sure that you would all agree that such a scenario is disturbing (especially considering that it is actually happening) and unacceptable. Well, dear readers, that is exactly where stem cell research could be or is going.
You see it would be nice if we had the technology to clone a new liver for the child in the example using one of his healthy liver cell, but we quite simply do not. The little success we have had in cloning organs/tissues have proven themselves quite expensive as well (that is why, while I do not know the specifics of the situation you've described to me Katherine, I doubt your friend benefited from cloning alone). That's why the buzz in medical science today is stem cells. Unlike cloning, stem cells have the capacity to form all kinds of tissues, given the right conditions. And in theory, these cells could even, again under the right conditions, form an entire organ.
What is the origin of this theory? Conception. You see, it is stem cells that are formed when a woman becomes pregnant. As the pregnancy progresses, these cells become brain cells, muscle cells, bone-marrow cells, blood cells...etc...etc. So there is promise in this biotechnology. And there would be no moral problem if scientists used stem cells from adults to conduct there experiments, but sadly, that, for the most part isn't happening.
You see, harvesting stem cells from human adults is difficult, time consuming and costly. So instead of going that route, scientists are getting their stem cells mostly from in vitro fertilization and aborted infants from abortion clinics. If you're a Christian, now you see the problem.
"For thou hast possessed my reins: thou hast covered me in my mother's womb. I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well. My substance was not hid from thee, when I was made in secret, and curiously wrought in the lowest parts of the earth. Thine eyes did see my substance, yet being unperfect; and in thy book all my members were written, which in continuance were fashioned, when as yet there was none of them." (Psalm 139: 13-16)
Without a doubt, the Bible makes clear that life begins at conception, as we see in the Psalm above. So, if you kill (abort) an unborn infant, you are committing murder (the taking away of a life).
Now let's recap all this: Doctors/Scientists are getting their stem cells by creating a human life and then killing it in order to cannibalize his/her stem cells, or they are obtaining them through an institution which kills unborn infants (abortion clinics). Now one can argue that if the infants are already dead, why not use the stem cells. It's an interesting argument...I wrestled with it, but in the end, I just couldn't partake in anything that had to do with the evil of abortion. That is why I told my boss that I would hand him my resignation if I was given no choice than to work on the stem cell research (Thank you Lord that he didn't make me).
I hope this answers some of your concerns Katherine (and all my other readers). This post is long enough I think. If any of you have any other questions on this topic, just e-mail
me and I will try to answer you as best I can.
Take care and God bless,
Happy Birthday My Sweet!!!!
don't worry, won't mention any numbers...lol
Yep, today my tender half is celebrating her birthday. Why don't you all wish her a happy one on her site
Happy Birthday Sweetie!!!
Friday Night Ministry - Update
Praise the Lord!!!
The young man I blogged about yesterday, the one who worked in the restaurant, showed up at church for evening service. He said he enjoyed the message and we had a great conversation. He said he'd come to the next Lord's Day evening service, so I am quite pleased.
Thank you Lord, for using me in Your work!
Friday Night Ministry Notes
Sunday, September 12, 2004
A pretty good night all and all...
Again, we were out preaching in the marketplace last night. We stayed preached for 3 hours and actually had a measure of favour with quite a number of people! (A real nice change from the normal)
Spoke to a young man who worked at a restaurant near where I was preaching. He asked me if "my church" had an evening service because he would like to attend (he worked days, so he couldn't make it to a morning service). I was pleased to invite him to our evening service tomorrow. He said he was born-again, but I don't know (a few things he told me about himself kind of has me doubting). Anyway, hope he comes. Hope the Lord will do something for this man.
Another great thing happened yesterday. On three separate occasions, people walked up to me to thank me for my preaching! You have no idea how good it made me feel to have these kind people give me a word of encouragement. People often think that I'm a tough character, used to taking mockery and scorn because of the way we preach, but nothing can be further from the truth. So receiving their kind words was fantastic.
That's it for now, hope all is well with you all, my dear readers,
Friday, September 10, 2004
because so little has changed...
Three years after the horrific events of September 11th, 2001...and you would hardly know anything took place. Sporting events, Hollywood and the economy has once again taken over top spot in North Americans' minds, just as it was before.
This makes me sad.
I know that life must go on, but somehow, this is a little too quick of a return to the normal for my taste. And I suppose that I have a problem with "the normal" as well.
Only 3 years ago, 19 Muslim terrorists hijacked 4 planes and crashed them killing as many innocent people as they could. Hundreds died in the aircrafts, thousands died in the target buildings they aimed for. Among the dead some of the most noble citizen the US can boast (ex: the brave firemen, the courageous passengers of flight 93, and the many citizens on Washington and New York who have shown unbelievable character in the face of a terrible situation). We promised we would never forget. We promised we would honour every soul who perished on that terrible day. People filled the churches praying for God's favour and protection. Supposedly, on September 11th 2001, America had changed.
But today, the day before the 3rd anniversary of September 11th, 2001, what are people talking about? What is on their minds? What I hear is: "Did Kobe do it?" or "Did Bush slip out of his military service?" I don't see a somber people who have learned a difficult lesson, rather, I see a complacent people content to put out of sight and out of mind any thought that would cause them discomfort.
The Free World is content to revert back to life pre-9/11. And now we arrive at my problem. As far as I'm concerned, life before 9/11 brought on 9/11. To go back to the way things were, is to invite another 9/11. And you don't have to look too far back to see how this mentality is still costing lives: the tragedy in Beslan, the continual suicide bombings in Israel, the bombings in Jakarta...etc.
Father in Heaven, as we remember the tragedies which have played out and continue to play out around the World, as we remember the many victims of the fruits of false religion, we pray for the souls who have lost loved ones. We pray that you would comfort them in their grief, and that you would cause the light of your Son to shine into their hearts. Teach us Father, to be compassionate and caring, that we may be a source of sympathy and empathy for all who hurt.
Oh Lord, that your favour would be upon us, that You would protect our nations from our enemies. Righteous Father, give our leaders' wisdom and clarity, that we may lead quiet and peaceable lives in all godliness. Oh Lord, revive us and make us to be what we should be.
Father, give us as much grace, peace and mercy as You will in this dispensation of time, and Your will be done.
In Christ's name, Amen.
Thursday, September 09, 2004
I'm such a good hubby...
It's rainy and depressing up here today, and I think my wife is feeling a little lonely. Why don't you all drop by her site
and say hello!
The offence of the Bible
Wednesday, September 08, 2004
it's not all peace and love...
I have had a number of conversations in the last week which has reminded me of just how offensive the Word of God is to our culture and society. Take your pick:
-Homosexuals are condemned (1 Corinthians 6:9)
-Only Christians are right with God and are going to Heaven (John 14:6)
-Abortion is murder and those who support it are accomplice murder (Psalm 139:13-16)
-God has created people He never intended to save (Jude 1:4)
And the list can go on!
Now I know that I have offended some in my posts. I find that regrettable, but the fact of the matter is, that is one of the effects of the Bible. The offence isn't from Rand, it is from God. The Lord tells us in His Bible:
"Unto you therefore which believe he is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the head of the corner, and a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence, even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed." (1 Peter 2: 7-8)
"To the one we are the savour of death unto death; and to the other the savour of life unto life. And who is sufficient for these things?" (2 Corinthians 2: 16)
"And then shall many be offended, and shall betray one another, and shall hate one another." (Matthew 24: 10)
I have better things to do with my time than to write internet material just to insult and offend people. This blog, as stated in the past
, is an outlet for working through some of my personal experiences as well as a way to challenge and encourage those who are part of the family of God. I do believe in religious and political tolerance (not acceptance...there is a difference), but you will not find much room on this site for opposing views to what I believe is the Truth (the Truth being the Bible). This site was never meant to be a forum for those who would challenge the validity of my views.
So, bottom line: If you don't agree with my views on the Bible, then by all means, using the Bible (and I must insist on this), make your case. If you don't like the Bible, then don't come to this site. If you don't like conservative fundamental Christianity, don't come to this site. If you don't like me, don't come to this site!
I hope I'll still have some ppl dropping by...LOL
Oh yeah...on a lighter note, just wanted to say just how much I love the fact that some of you now fear being caught "raiding the fridge
Tuesday, September 07, 2004
Endangered species: common sense!
See the following link
You know we are really blest to have such wise and diligent researchers. I mean take a look at that study! Can you imagine life without the great education these studies provide us?
I mean seriously, what would we do without them, consider the Bible or something?
And yes...I noticed, the research was headed by the RAND institute...makes me want to change nicks...
(Rand rolls his eyes...)
Did Christ die for you?
a case for the L in TULIP...
Most Christians today hate the system of theology called Calvinism (or TULIP theology). And the "L" in TULIP is THE section of the doctrine that is the most detested. The "L" stands for "Limited Atonement" and the doctrine can be defined this way: Jesus didn't die on the Cross to atone for the sins of everyone, rather, He died for the sins of His people (Christians).
I believe in this doctrine, as I believe in TULIP theology as a whole. Here is why I believe the Lord Jesus died for His elect, and not for everyone in general (for more information on Calvinism as a whole doctrine, read this
1. When were you saved?
The answer to this question will vary from one person to another, as long as we are speaking in time. In time you ask? Yes, in time! Remember God isn't bound by time. To God there is no yesterday, no today, no tomorrow...he is eternal and infinite (I know...it gives me a headache too!).
For example, God saved me 18 years ago. But I read in my Bible that I was CHOSEN SINCE BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD (Ephesians 1:4 ; Acts 13: 48; Romans 8:28-30). Being "in time", I speak of my salvation as having taken place 18 years ago, but as far as God is concerned, my election was an established fact in eternity past.
2. When did Jesus die?
Through the study of Biblical history, we know that our Lord was crucified approximately 2000 years ago. It was then that he carried away "our" sins. But again here, we are speaking "in time", for as far as God is concerned, the Lamb of God was SLAIN SINCE BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD (Revelation 13:8 ; Acts 2:23; Acts 4:27-28). The Crucifixion was a done deal in eternity past
3. What does this mean: Jesus died for you?
We throw this phrase around alot, and I'm afraid that most of the time, it is used frivolously. To say that Jesus dies for someone is to say that he took the penalty of their sin (which is death, Romans 6:23) away. Romans chapter 5 and 6 really make the point. Jesus died FOR sinners and AS sinners. He didn't just die FOR me, He died AS me!!! (Romans 6:5-11). The righteous for the unrighteous. I stand holy and without blame before God today, because Jesus took upon himself the penalty of my sin. There is no punishment for my sin, the punishment was already given out to Jesus.
4. Putting it all together:
The Lord chose me before the foundation of the world. He chose me in Christ Jesus, upon the merits of the Cross work which was also for-ordained before the world. Because of this, I presently stand holy and without blame before God.
So the question:
When was any of this ever accomplished for a soul that is presently or going to the Lake of Fire? When did Jesus die for the sins of someone who is in Hell or who is going to Hell (one who has/will reject Christ his whole life)? When did Christ die as someone who has and will never believe? And if Christ did die for such a person, why is he condemned? Did not the Lord take away the guilt of sin? What we have here folks, is a serious logic problem.
The answer my friends: The Lord Jesus Christ died for His people; "the good shepherd giveth His life for the SHEEP." (John 10:11) . Satan's people are and are going to Hell to pay for their sins; they will die the second death because Jesus didn't take their penalty, they are bearing their own penalty.
Now I can hear the objections already: some of you will say that it all hinges on believing. Well there is a problem here. Unbelief is a sin. A sin covered by the atonement of Christ. Even believers sin in unbelief all the time. You know that from your own experience. We even have an example of this in the Bible: "And straightway the father of the child cried out, and said with tears, Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief." (Mark 9:24)
Ok...this post is already too long, and I believe it makes a pretty solid case for Limited Atonement, so I'll stop here. Again, for more information on the five points of Calvinism, click here
Hope this will get some of you, my dear readers, thinking about the deep things of God.
Sunday, September 05, 2004
you mean...I'm not perfect?
Looks like I made a little boo-boo. In my profile, I made a mistake in my e-mail adress: I put a "." instead of a "_".
So here's my e-mail
I apologize for the mistake.
Oh, and just a reminder:
STOP RAIDING MY FRIDGE
Making a tough work tougher...
Saturday, September 04, 2004
you KNOW the devil is on you when...
We are part of a small fellowship, a church planting endeavor from another church about an hour away. My pastor has been laboring for the establishment of this work for over a decade. And when I say "labor", I mean LABOR! The man works full time to support himself, he counts HOURS of open-air evangelism and he prepares 4 sermons a week.
Through his many years of toiling, slowly, people are beginning to take notice of our little fellowship. Well...it would seem the devil doesn't like that idea, listen to this story:
Couple of months back, we received word that another Baptist church in town was going through a pretty nasty split. The split occurred of differences between the pastor and the associate-pastor. We were told that the whole sad story was pretty carnal.
So the people who left that church formed a home church (just like "my" church), and they decided to name their church the same name as "my" church. My pastor appealed to these people that it would be confusing to have 2 home church-planting works, with the exact same name, in the exact same city. The answer amounted to: "Well...that's just tough!"
Now that isn't my gripe (I'm more mature than that). My gripe is this: yesterday, on the front page of one of the most popular and widely distributed newpapers in the city:
"The Church, The Police and the Pedophile"
Yep, you guessed it, the associate pastor who had caused the split and had started a work like ours (with the same name I remind you) is a convicted child rapist. Yay!
Now, imagine being Rand for a second.
Yesterday, Rand was preparing to go out into the city marketplace to do open-air evangelism. By nature, Rand is pretty nervous (not to say petrified) about such evangelistic efforts but he feels it's biblical and important, so he goes. But you see, added to the stress of having people mocking/jeering/hating him for the Gospel's sake, now he has to prepare for questions like:
"Hey! isn't that the pedophile's church?"
I know, I know, if this is happening, then it's in the Lord's perfect design and will. But man! Adversity I got, how I would love to have, as Paul said "a great and effectual door opened unto me" with it!
Friday Night Notes: Preached in the Market for about 3 hours. We had a good conversation with a woman named Cathy. I gave her a Bible and she promised she's read the Gospel of John. Please pray for her. I also met the pastor who married my wife and I. He was out for a walk with his wife. It was nice seeing him again. All and all, it was a good, quiet night. I thank the Lord for the opportunity to serve and for His continued protection.
The problem is Islam.
Friday, September 03, 2004
the sooner we accept it, the better...
By nature, I'm a pretty tolerant guy. I don't go out of my way to fight with people who's ideology differs from mine. But there are things I believe in that I am quite willing to contend for. One of those things is the false religion of Islam.
Islam is a serious problem in the world today. You don't believe me? Look at the headlines of any news outlet in the last weeks. You will read of suicide bombers, plane hijackings and crashes, hostage takings and assassinations; and the common thread will be ISLAM. Today is no different. Just check out this link to CNN
. Today's Islamic Special was even worst in that we got to see young children injured and killed.
So why is this going on? Why is Islam the source of so many abominations in the world today? Because the religion itself is abominable. This offends you? It shouldn't. Let me ask you:
"Was the Nazi regime not an abomination on the Earth in the 1940s?"
I'm sure most of you will answer: "Yes!"
Well then, why were the Nazis an abomination? Because they sought power through the conquest of the world? Because they desired the extermination of Israel and the Jewish people? Because they denied basic rights and freedoms in order to have "powerful" leadership? If you answered yes to these three questions, then by your own reasoning, Islam is an abomination
; for they have the exact same goals and tactics.
Some of you will say to me:
"Oh, no! Islam is a religion of peace. I know muslims and they are kind people."
Sure, of course there are moderates, and moderate Muslims are like moderate Christians...they are hypocrites. According to the Bible, a Christian ought to:
"Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second [is] like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets." (Matthew 22: 37-40)
This is the aim of a Christian fundamentalist. A Christian moderate, on the other hand, would love God, but would put his family first. A Christian moderate would love his neighbour, but would look out for himself first. The same way, a Muslim moderate doesn't pay any mind to passages in the Koran like...
"Whoso fighteth in the way of allah, be he slain or be he victorious, on him we shall bestow a vast reward." (sura 4:74)
"But when the forbidden months are past, then fight and slay the pagans wherever ye find them, and seize them, beleaguer them, and lie in wait for them in every stratagem (of war); But if they repent, and establish regular prayers and practice regular charity, then open the way for them: For God is Oft-forgiving, most Merciful." (sura 9:5)
...but I guarantee you, the Muslim fundamentalist pays much attention to such passages.
You see my dear readers, when judging the fruits of any philosophy, religion or political system, one must use the fundamentalist as the standard; for the fundamentalist is the one who wants to live out, to the maximum, what the philosophy/religion/political system is all about. When it comes to moderates on the other hand, you'll be hard-pressed to find 2 moderates who agree with each other because, as hypocrites, each one of them will compromise where they want, in order to excuse a behaviour or attitude that is contrary to the philosophy/religion/political system.
Islam, fundamentally, is THE PROBLEM of the world today. And I fear we are committing the same error our great-grandparents and our grandparents committed in the 1930s, when they chose to deal with Nazi Germany through diplomacy, rather than through force. And just like in those days, I believe the time will come (probably sooner than later) when the Free World will once again take part in a Great War, to stomp out the wickedness of Islam. Unlike in WWII though, Muslims are everywhere, not just in one particular country, which means we may be looking at a very dirty, and drawn out war.
This may all seem very pessimistic to you, but it's how I see things developing. I fear for my children; the kind of world they will be growing up in. If war should come, will my children take part in such a terrible event?
Oh Lord, as your promise of war and rumours or war is being fulfilled, make this verse a reality in my life:
"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." (John 14:27)
I'm no computer geek!
and it shows...
I finally got around to fixing some of my links. I'm learning HTML as I go here so please be patient with me. And please!!!! Don't comment saying:
"HTML? Oh! that's so easy!"
I'll go nuts if I hear someone say that one more time...LOL
Seriously though, if you find anything on my blog that isn't working properly, please let me know. Thanks in advance.
A little silliness...
Thursday, September 02, 2004
you know you're Canadian when...We read, in Revelation 4: 6, of a "sea of glass like unto crystal" which is before the throne.What do you think? A hockey rink maybe?LOL(for those of you who don't follow hockey, the World Cup tournament is on right now...Canada is undefeated, having beaten the USA and crushed Slovakia...yahooooooooo!!!!!!!!)
Look at what I've started
Wednesday, September 01, 2004
you go girl!
Well, it would seem that I've been a source of inspiration.
My better half has started her own blog
Look forward to see what you will do with it, baby!