And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. (Rom 5:3-6)

Let not those who hope in you be put to shame through me, O Lord GOD of hosts; let not those who seek you be brought to dishonor through me, O God of Israel. (Psalm 69:6)

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Book Update

Sorry friends for not posting much lately. I have been putting extra efforts into writing the book for encouraging those in ministry. This has required several interviews and time in prayer.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Busy Relaxing

Saints, Friends, and others,

I truly believe that when God speaks to us, and with every sermon we hear we will be tested. Every sermon I preach becomes the test of the week. I often fail. When God is preparing us for something He seems to always give us a scripture. It may be in our devotional book, it may be in an e-mail. I am not saying all texts will be tested, but I am saying that God has a great way of provision by sharing with us truths that are necessary for worship of Him in all circumstances. It also amazes me how after failure in one of these tests I will pick up a book I have been reading and then find that the very next few paragraphs speak to the subject at hand. Often this causes me to wonder, "If I had only spend a few more moments with God, would I have succeeded"?

Lately I have been tuned into the topic of resting and being God-centered in our thinking. Too often we are so busy we can not stop and let our mind roll through the glories of God. Our church has been challenged to be godly. This is not mere morality. It is the constant consideration of God in all that we do. Often I struggle to rest. My mind is always racing and I am figity with projects. the family has been away for a few days and after completing the obligatory number of home improvements I found myself longing to rest before God. Thus to be obedient I took some time off yesterday. So, packing a few maps, a camera, and memories I trolled about Illinois in an effort to visit some childhood places.

Along the way I stopped to take several photographs. Many were of cool looking church buildings. Once to my main destination I sought out familiar landmarks. My cousin lives in the house my grandfather was born, lived, and died in. So that was on the list, I also adventured as I did thirty years ago to a state park that still holds more passion for me than an all you can eat buffet. I saw the old town that was safe to walk through for a kid, back in the day. The old park is there where I once found four dollars in change in the mud after a July 4th carnival. The Carnegie library still stands where grandma worked and I learned to read. It is now a military museum. I went by the old church we attended and found the very swing set I played on at age four. All this was done in looking at the providence of God.

Upon visiting my grandparents grave I summed up all my thoughts of the morning in a prayer of thankfulness to God. Heritage and rest. These are two things that the Hebrews of the Old Testament needed to spend more time on. We need to remember our heritage, where God has brought us from, through, and to. Rest, we need to rest in Him, for our our righteousness is filthy rags.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Silent Before God: Rethinking Godlessness

Here are my rough notes for the sermon of Sunday August 1.
We are in Job 38

Silent Before God: Rethinking Godlessness Job 38

Text to read Job 38:1-18

God now speaks to Job. The book of Job is not about Job. It is about God. God is always center stage.

The problem being addressed here is Godlessness. This week I finally was able to hear someone put to words a long time thought I have had trouble formulating. Jerry Bridges in his book Respectable Sins points out that deeper than pride, godlessness, or the lack of concern for God’s point of view or ways is a condemnable sin. Godlessness must occur even before pride.

We think too much of ourselves and not enough of God.
This is translated into Ungodly or godlessness. Four responses are possible to this challenge:

· Disregard

· Yes others do that don’t they

· I should pursue this someday

· Meditate in wonder, repentance, and change.

Godlessness or Ungodly= little thought of the ways of God.

* His statutes
* His name
* His nature
* His promises

It reduces God to a vending machine, convenient when you need it.

Often we think of the call to repent as being more for morality. We repent and then fall right back into sin, why

* Self strength
* No change
* Never renewing our minds to Godly thinking.

The call to repent is quite often a call to change the thought life. To meditate and know God.

Job was moral. But his thoughts were skirting God. They were Job centered not God centered. His thought life was in error. Eight times in this book godlessness is referred to, more than any other book.

Choose this day whom you will serve.

(Jos 24:15) And if it is evil in your eyes to serve the LORD, choose this day whom you will serve, whether the gods your fathers served in the region beyond the River, or the gods of the Amorites in whose land you dwell. But as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD."

Soli Deo Gloria

Do all things to the glory of God

1Co 10:31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly, teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God. And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

(Col 3:16-17)

And so, from the day we heard, we have not ceased to pray for you, asking that you may be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.

(Col 1:9-10)

Verses on ungodly

(Rom 4:5) And to the one who does not work but believes in him who justifies the ungodly, his faith is counted as righteousness,

(Rom 5:6) For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly.

(1Ti 1:9) understanding this, that the law is not laid down for the just but for the lawless and disobedient, for the ungodly and sinners, for the unholy and profane, for those who strike their fathers and mothers, for murderers,

(1Pe 4:18) And "If the righteous is scarcely saved, what will become of the ungodly and the sinner?"

(2Pe 2:5) if he did not spare the ancient world, but preserved Noah, a herald of righteousness, with seven others, when he brought a flood upon the world of the ungodly;

(2Pe 2:6) if by turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah to ashes he condemned them to extinction, making them an example of what is going to happen to the ungodly;

(2Pe 3:7) But by the same word the heavens and earth that now exist are stored up for fire, being kept until the day of judgment and destruction of the ungodly.

(Jud 1:4) For certain people have crept in unnoticed who long ago were designated for this condemnation, ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into sensuality and deny our only Master and Lord, Jesus Christ.

(Jud 1:15) to execute judgment on all and to convict all the ungodly of all their deeds of ungodliness that they have committed in such an ungodly way, and of all the harsh things that ungodly sinners have spoken against him."

(Jud 1:18) They said to you, "In the last time there will be scoffers, following their own ungodly passions."