This Morning I Cried


This morning as I scrolled Facebook, I clicked on a YouTube video, posted by a friend, of the Gaither Vocal Band.  The group delivered a beautiful rendition of the National Anthem.  Their tight harmonies accompanied a moving patriotic video.  As I watched, I swallowed back a lump gathering in my throat.  Then tears welled in my eyes and soon dampened my cheeks.  Yes, I’m an emotional guy, and yes, occasionally a beautifully sung song (or a “Little House” episode) moves me to tears, but neither was the reason this morning.

This morning I cried for America.

I remember the Presidencies of Reagan, Bush I, Clinton, and Bush II. Under these men (even Clinton), I felt more secure in America’s future than I do now.  On 9/11, I watched in horror as planes torpedoed into the World Trade Center, but not once did I doubt America’s ability to rebuild and to stand resolute.  I remember watching proudly as George W. Bush stood on a mound of rubble proclaiming,

I can hear you, the rest of the world can hear you and the people who knocked these buildings down will hear all of us soon.”

Now our Country’s too busy drawing and re-drawing red lines.  Honestly, I don’t know how this current Administration would respond to another mass attack.  Would they offer the terrorists jobs? Or hugs? Label the event as workplace violence? Or would they hold a press conference to warn Americans to refrain from calling this Islamic terrorism?  Granted, this is sarcastic in nature, but how many of us really trust the current leadership in Washington to do what’s best for America?

American Enterprise Institute published a public opinion report evaluating Americans’ level of patriotism. One of the most astounding and disappointing results was the following:

Americans aren’t as proud of their country as some citizens in other countries are of their own nations. According to a World Values Survey, 98 percent of citizens in Qatar claimed to be “very proud” of their nationality. However, only 56 percent of Americans responded positively in this category.

Qatar?  Are you kidding me?  In Qatar, only Muslims can express their religion publicly, all others must conduct worship services in private homes.  Those leaving the Muslim faith face imprisonment or death.  And yet, 98% of those living in Qatar are proud of their country….How can this be?

Everyday we read of new crippling policies, court judgments, or another round of decisions being written into law by an overreaching “pen and phone.”  The Church sits on the precipice of being made obsolete as the government now attempts to shoulder the responsibility of dictating what is and isn’t sinful.  And now innoucuous entertainment is banned because of a flag that Liberals find offensive.  Many Conservative people are cowering in the shadows, fearful of offending the PC police or being investigated by rogue government agencies.  I wish the above was hyperbole, but that’s the America we currently reside in.

That’s why I cried.

I’m not weeping for myself, but for my family, especially my kids. Unless America rights this ship and charts a new course, what will our future generations face? If we’re not careful, in a few decades, America will be nothing more than a footnote in the pages of history. The Founding Fathers sacrificed too much for this to be our Country’s outcome. Too many brave men and women have paid the ultimate price on the world’s battlefields for us to surrender our freedoms to ideologies intent on destroying American exceptionalism.

At times I feel like Elijah.  After a God-given victory against the prophets of Baal, he fled from another enemy…the Queen.  He moaned that no one else was standing for God.  He thought himself to be all alone.  He suffered from a

“nobody likes me, everybody hates me, I’m just going to go eat worms”

mentality.  God reminded Elijah that there were 7,000 others who had yet to bow their knees to false gods.  Occasionally, the filthy haze of America’s ills conceals the possibility of the United States rising from the ashes to greatness again.  That’s not an impossibility. But for that to happen, America must turn wholeheartedly to God and remember the encouraging words of President Ronald Reagan,

“We are never defeated unless we give up on God.”

Keep standing Patriots, and may God once again bless the United States of America.

 

Saving America…and the General Lee


As a child, I looked forward to Friday night television. Every Friday evening, my family gathered around the television, anxiously awaiting the antics of the boys from Hazzard County.  I often imagined myself sitting at the wheel of the car that could fly.  We watched so regularly my siblings and I could sing the theme song, and I developed a decent impersonation of Roscoe P. Coltrane.  Yes, the “Dukes of Hazzard” conjures pleasant memories of my childhood.  I’ll have to admit, I haven’t given the show much thought since the Duke Boys drove the General Lee off into the sunset in 1985.  Although a few months ago, I scanned Netflix offerings to see if I could introduce my kids to the Duke Boys and the General Lee.  To no avail, I assumed the show would make its appearance one of these days.

That might not be the case.

After Dylan Roof murdered nine people in an historic black church in Charleston, investigators discovered pictures of Roof carrying the Confederate Flag.  Immediately, adherents of political correctness demanded the flag be banned from the Capitol Lawn in South Carolina.

Many jumped on the banning bandwagon.  The National Park Service confirms Confederate Flags were removed at Fort Sumter, the site of the first Civil War Battle, and Confederate Flag souvenirs were stripped from the gift shop shelves.  Some have called for banning the book “Gone with the Wind.”  The latest victim of political correctness is the beloved TV classic, “The Dukes of Hazzard.”  Because of the Confederate Flag flap, TV Land announced it would no longer air the show because the General Lee sports a Confederate Flag on its roof.  PGA Golfer Bubba Watson, an owner of one of the original General Lee’s, announced today that he plans to paint over the Confederate Flag, replacing it with an American Flag.  Mr. Watson announced earlier on Twitter,

“All men ARE created equal, I believe that so I will be painting the American flag over the roof of the General Lee #USA

Many believe this is a necessary step forward in eradicating racism in the United States of America.  Instead, this is political correctness run amok. Not once while watching The Dukes of Hazzard did I harbor hatred of minorities.  After watching the show for six seasons, I didn’t join the Ku Klux Clan. The Duke’s never wore white hoods and burned crosses. The only reason the Confederate Flag adorned the car was to celebrate Southern pride.  Something the show expressed with…well…pride.

If the Left seriously desires to rid racism, they should start with their darling, Planned Parenthood.  Margaret Sanger founded America’s largest abortion provider for the express purpose of eradicating

“human weeds.”

Who were these undesirables as described by Sanger?  Black people, immigrants, and poor people.  As Sanger wrote in her autobiography, she founded Planned Parenthood in 1916

“to stop the multiplication of the unfit.”

Now that’s racism, but the Left adores the abortion industry and supports its mission.

“Just two good ol’ boys
never meanin’ no harm..”

Those phrases begin the theme song to the beloved show.  I wish the Left adopted the portion “never meanin’ no harm.”  But instead, they continue to stomp on the Constitution and create an America barely recognizable by a boy who dreamed of one day driving the General Lee.

Though our Country’s being run by people determined to implement a socialist’s “hope and change,” there’s still hope.  Real hope.  God’s still on the throne and the 2016 election is just around the corner.  And for that I can give a hearty,

“Yeehaw!”

And making a Conservative choice is a baby step in saving America….and the General Lee.

 

 

 

Happiness or Holiness


One of my Facebook friends posted a comment supporting the Supreme Court decision to allow gay marriage in all fifty states.  He gushed that gays could now enjoy the same happiness as straight couples.  He then encouraged a relative to go ahead and tie the knot with his life partner.  So, according to this friend’s ideology, happiness trumps holiness.

Both the Old and New Testament condemn homosexuality as an abomination, with Romans chapter one declaring,

“Men committed indecent acts with other men and received in themselves the due penalty for their perversion.” (Romans 1:27)

The word penalty  speaks of discipline or as the dictionary defines:

a punishment imposed for breaking a law, rule, or contract

Happiness does not spring from discipline and punishment.

I Corinthians 6:9-10 delivers this dire warning,

Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor homosexuals, 10nor thieves, nor the covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor swindlers, will inherit the kingdom of God

The Apostle Paul gives a list of the types of people who won’t be in Heaven.  One of the heartbreaking consequences of living a life ignoring God and His Word is eternal separation from God.  Claiming happiness as a reason for same sex marriage ignores God’s condemnation of the act and of the consequential eternal hell for those who ignore the Word of God and His plan of salvation through Jesus Christ.  I Peter 1:15-16 dispels this idea that happy living should be the outcome for every person’s life, no matter if the chosen life contradicts God’s will.

15but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; 16because it is written, “YOU SHALL BE HOLY, FOR I AM HOLY.”

Note:  Holiness trumps happiness.

Maybe this analogy helps.  Imagine for a moment small children playing with a lighter and sticks of dynamite.  Every time the flame jumps to life, the children giggle.  They believe the sticks of dynamite to be large fireworks, so they fear no consequences.  You happen by.  You see the kids, the lighter, and the dynamite and you know the potential outcome.  Now, do you walk on and ignore the scene because the kids are happy?  Do you encourage them to find additional lighters because it will add more fun?  Do you say,

“Listen, I don’t necessarily agree with what you’re doing, but you look happy.  That’s all that matters.”

The Bible shares a warning for those who fail to alert people living outside the will of God:

“Son of man, I have appointed you a watchman to the house of Israel; whenever you hear a word from My mouth, warn them from Me. 18“When I say to the wicked, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn him or speak out to warn the wicked from his wicked way that he may live, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity, but his blood I will require at your hand.…”(Ezekiel 3:17-18)

If we sit by silently and embrace the “live and let live” ideology, we will
politically correct” people into Hell.

So, I leave you with the question:  What’s more important happiness or holiness?

 

So, Hillary Wants to End Racism….


The recent shooting in Charleston, South Carolina has sparked cries from many to remove the Confederate flag from the State House Lawn.  Though no one can prove the flag precipitated Dylan Roof’s violent attack, Governor Nikki Haley challenged the State Legislators to do the right thing and remove the flag that offends those who believe the symbol incites violence and racial hatred against African Americans.  Of course politicians from both sides of the aisle are quick to give their opinion on the Confederate Flag, hoping to win political points with future voters.  One of those offering remarks was Democratic hopeful, Hillary Clinton.

Mrs. Clinton commented,

“I appreciate the actions begun yesterday by the governor and other leaders of South Carolina to remove the Confederate battle flag from the State House, recognizing it as a symbol of our nation’s racist past that has no place in our present or our future,” Clinton said. “It shouldn’t fly there, it shouldn’t fly anywhere.”

Some may consider her words admirable and worthy of support.  However, many fail to recognize that Hillary Clinton supports and champions one of the primary racist organizations in America, Planned Parenthood.

At a March 1925 international birth control gathering in New York City, a speaker warned of the menace posed by the “black” and “yellow” peril. The man was not a Nazi or Klansman; he was Dr. S. Adolphus Knopf, a member of Margaret Sanger’s American Birth Control League (ABCL), which along with other groups eventually became known as Planned Parenthood. (BlackGenocide.org)

In her book, Pivot of Civilization, Margaret Sanger described black people, immigrants, and poor people as

“…human weeds,’ ‘reckless breeders,’ ‘spawning… human beings who never should have been born.”  

Sanger also believed, that for the purpose of racial “purification,” couples should be rewarded who chose sterilization.

In an article written in February 2012, Michelle Malkin writes,

“As she wrote in her autobiography, Sanger founded Planned Parenthood in 1916 “to stop the multiplication of the unfit.” This, she boasted, would be “the most important and greatest step towards race betterment.” While she oversaw the mass murder of black babies, Sanger cynically recruited minority activists to front her death racket. She conspired with eugenics financier and businessman Clarence Gamble to “hire three or four colored ministers, preferably with social-service backgrounds, and with engaging personalities” to sell their genocidal policies as community health and welfare services.

Outright murder wouldn’t sell. But wrapping it under the egalitarian cloak of “women’s health” — and adorning it with the moral authority of black churches — would. Sanger and Gamble called their deadly campaign “The Negro Project.”  (Read More Here, “Goal of Planned Parenthood Founder“)

Sanger recruited black ministers to champion her goals and promote her ideas as ways to better a woman’s health.  However, her ideology was much more nefarious.  She once wrote in a letter,

“We do not want word to go out that we want to exterminate the Negro population, and the minister is the man who can straighten out that idea if it ever occurs to any of their more rebellious members.”

Fast forward to 2009.  Hillary Clinton accepted Planned Parenthood’s Margaret Sanger Award at the 2009 Planned Parenthood Honors Gala in Houston, Texas.  In her acceptance speech, Hillary Clinton said,

“I admire Margaret Sanger enormously, her courage, her tenacity, her vision.  I am really in awe of her, there are a lot of lessons we can learn from her life.”

Does she mean weeding out poor black folks or forcing sterilization upon minority groups?  Or maybe she agrees wholeheartedly with Sanger on this excerpt from her book Pivot of Civilization…

The complex problems now confronting America as the result of the practice of reckless procreation are fast threatening to grow beyond human control. Everywhere we see poverty and large families going hand in hand. Those least fit to carry on the race are increasing most rapidly. People who cannot support their own offspring are encouraged by Church and State to produce large families. Many of the children thus begotten are diseased or feeble minded. Many become criminals. The burden of supporting these unwanted types has to be borne by the healthy elements of the nation. Funds that should be used to raise the standard of our civilization are diverted to the maintenance of those who should never have been born.  (Emphasis mine)

So, if Hillary Clinton finds the Confederate Flag racist, then certainly she should reconsider her support of eugenicist Margaret Sanger and her beloved Planned Parenthood.  But will that happen?  No, not as long as the mainstream media panders to her every whim and shields her from probing questions.  Sadly, for those who support Mrs. Clinton, they care not about truth, facts, experience, or her reputation.  Their only concern is to once again be a part of making history.

Unfortunately, that didn’t work out so well last time.

My Son, the Cancer Survivor


April 11th, 2011 rocked our world.

It started out like any other day.  My wife running errands with the kids on my scheduled day off.   Out the door they went, two of our five children and my wife to a dentist appointment check-up.  On the way, my 8 yr-old son complained about chest and arm pain.  Immediately, my wife considered the possibility of a heart attack.  She detoured to a local pediatric urgent care, and by nightfall a medivac-air crew rolled him into a helicopter and he was flown to St. Louis Children’s hospital.

Three days later, the news came.  Cancer.  T-Cell Lymphoma.  Stage 3.

Thus began a two year cancer fight.  By the grace of God and the competent care of the SLC staff, today my son’s cancer free.

Because we know firsthand the battle kids face when confronted with the scary diagnosis of cancer, we are now supporters of the St. Jude’s Mission.  Noah’s fight inspired a teenager from our church to do something for kids fighting this wretched disease.  She recruited a walk team and named it “Noah’s Hope.”  For the past 4 years we’ve walked and raised money for St. Jude.  On September 26th of this year, we walk again.

Would you consider helping kids like my son?

I’ve set a personal goal this year of $650.  I’d like to blow that away.  Consider donating or joining our walk team.  This link enables you to either….or both.  Click to support our team: Noah’s Hope

Thanks in advance.

Does God Hate Joe’s Crab Shack?


Over the weekend, my wife slipped away with her mom, and for one of the meals they chose to eat at ‘Joe’s Crab Shack.’  She raved about the shrimp, claiming it was the best she ever had.  To be honest, I suffered a bit of jealousy.  I’m a fried shrimp fan as well.

I found it interesting that her dining experience coincided with a friend who chose to use the topic of shrimp to legitimize and normalize the homosexual lifestyle.

It appears everyone determined to declassify homosexuality as a sin, rally around the same arguments.  One of those employed is if homosexuality is a sin, then so is eating shrimp.  That argument fails miserably in stripping the gay lifestyle of its sin classification.

Here’s why the “shrimp argument” falls short of being a valid point.  A Christian should never solely rely on the Old Testament Law to address modern issues.  Jesus fulfilled the Law, ending its requirements.  If a Christian cites the Old Testament as his only source in addressing homosexuality, then he must declare wearing clothing of mixed materials and tattoos is sinful as well.  Christians are not bound by the Old Testament Law but are subject to the Law of Christ.  So then, what was the purpose of steering clear of shrimp or polyester fabrics?  God forbade the consumption of shrimp and polyester to distinguish the Israelites’ diet and attire from that of the surrounding pagan nations.  Should shrimp still be avoided?  No.  Jesus said in Mark 7:28-19,

“Are you thus without understanding also?  Do you not perceive that whatever enters a man from the outside cannot defile him, because it does not enter his heart but his stomach, and is eliminated, thus purifying all foods?”

So, if Christ fulfilled the Law, how then do some Christians insist on labeling homosexuality sinful?

It’s simple really.

The New Testament clearly states that homosexuality is both immoral and unnatural.  Consider the following texts:

“For this reason God gave them up to vile passions.  For even their women exchanged the natural use for what is against nature.  Likewise also the men, leaving the natural use of the woman, burned in their lust for one another, men committing with men what is shameful, and receiving in themselves the penalty of their error which was due.”  Romans 1:26-27

“Do you no know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God.  Do not be deceived.  Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites….”  I Corinthians 6:9

Am I insinuating God hates homosexuals?  Absolutely not!  God provides a list of things He hates and homosexuality fails to make the list.  Proverbs 6:16-19 shares,

“These six things the Lord hates, yes seven are an abomination to Him: a proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked plans, feet that are swift in running to evil, a false witness who speaks lies, and one who sows discord among the brethren.”

For those who claim God hates homosexuals (Westboro Baptist “Church”), that’s a lie.  Homosexuality is not the unpardonable sin.  However, to teach that being gay is merely an alternative lifestyle slaps a holy God in the face.  Jesus addressed the issue of gay marriage in Matthew 19:4-5.  Jesus said the following:

“…Have you not read that He who made them at the beginning ‘made them male and female,’ and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh?'”

Notice, Jesus did not hint that marriage between same sex couples was God’s intention as well.  Nor did He assert that God’s opinion would evolve in the 21st century.  Sadly, we live in a culture where people are more apt to adopt the mores of sitcom ‘Modern Family’ than the morals of the Bible.

Oh, and don’t worry.  Eat all the shrimp you want.

My wife suggests the fare at ‘Joe’s Crab Shack.’

 

 

The Gay Agenda in Bible Belt America


Last night a member of our church handed me a newspaper clipping.  At first glance, I thought it to be a picture of some of the youth from our church sitting in school bleachers, the recipients of some type of special award.  I thanked her and started to walk away when I noticed the photo captured the current members of our school’s Gay Straight Alliance with the accompanying information:

“….Gay-Straight Alliance will be honored with the GSA of the Year Award, presented by First Data Corporation, for its positive impact on their school culture.” (emphasis mine)
The phrase that sticks in my craw is “its positive impact on their culture.”  Obviously, our culture has spiraled down the toilet.

Additional information about the club cites:

“The club was founded by students to combat the anti-LGBT climate of their school and community, and has since become one of the most active student organizations at the school.  GSA members have lobbied for state anti-bullying policies that protect LGBT students and organized community events in support of LGBT-inclusive curricula.”

An admirable accomplishment by an organization headed by students, but the club’s primary purpose is to normalize the LGBT lifestyle.  GLSEN advocates see gay rights as the civil rights issue of the 21st century, comparing their plight to the racial tensions of the 1950’s and 60’s.  However, that comparison is faulty.

When Black Americans marched and spoke for civil rights, they weren’t requesting special rights.  They pressed for equal rights.  The gay movement demands not only that their brand of sexuality and marriage be legal, but also to be liked.  When Christians push back based upon Biblical teaching, those who cry the loudest for tolerance, berate and belittle the dissenters, labeling them “intolerant homophobes.”  So much for tolerance…..

From the American Family Association, Ray Rooney Jr., Digital Media Editor writes concerning the gay rights movement,

“…it’s not a battle for equality as it was with the civil rights movement.  It’s a demand for acceptance.  Acceptance of unrighteousness.  And even if the unrighteous pass laws in this country that recognize homosexual unions as legitimate marriages it will never ever be accepted by those who believe in the holiness of God.  And more importantly, because homosexuality is the fruit of sin, it will never be legitimate before God.

Just because Modern Family normalizes a two-daddy household that gives no group the right to call into question the teaching of a book many call antiquated and out of touch with this “evolved” society. Oh, and go ahead, hit me with the argument beginning with, “What about adultery?”

What about it?

Yes, adultery’s sin as well. But take note, there are no adulterers organizing “Adulterer Rights Parades.” We never hear about adulterers suing bakeries for refusing to craft beautiful, ‘Congrats on your adulteress relationship’ cakes. Even if adulterers attempt to justify their choice of cheating on their spouse, the poster child for infidelity and a former sitting President isn’t out on the speaking tour challenging Americans to legitimize the behavior.

Why? Because that would glorify and normalize a sexual sin, labeled as such, since the dawn of time.

How does a GSA in the Bible Belt win club of the year? A friend suggested ‘momentum.’ I concur but I also suggest it’s a concerted effort by the Left to infiltrate one of the most conservative strongholds in the nation.

The Bible teaches in Proverbs 14:34,

“Righteousness exalts a nation, but sin is a reproach to any people.”

Throughout God’s Word we read numerous accounts of nations experiencing God’s wrath because of an intentional decision to chase after other gods. In the instances of Israel’s wanderings from the truth, many of “God’s chosen people” wound up in captivity. I can’t help but think that God’s Hand of judgment stands ready to strike America, for if He does not, He will have to apologize to Sodom and Gomorrah.

Book Review: Twisted Innocence by Terri Blackstock


I just finished Terri Blackstock’s book “Twisted Innocence.”  Once again, Ms. Blackstock hits a homerun in the crime/murder mystery genre.  I personally find mysteries entertaining, but it’s nearly impossible to find a mystery on the shelves today that isn’t rife with gratuitous sex, gory violence, and profanity.  “Twisted Innocence” is refreshing.

Terri Blackstock is a Christian author who shares entertaining stories, interweaving her faith in God.  In “Twisted Innocence,” I especially love the message of redemption and the opportunity of second chances.  Two of the key players, Holly and Creed, are in desperate need of both….as we all are.

I highly recommend reading works by this New York Times best selling author.

Should Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Get the Death Penalty?


At small group last night, a college aged young man asked,

“If God says, ‘Thou Shalt Not Kill’ then is capital punishment an appropriate consequence for a crime?  I means as Christians, should we support executing  perpetrators of heinous crimes?”  (not exact words, but close)

The verses prompting this question originate in the book of Genesis.  Genesis 9:5-6 says,

“From his fellow man I will require a reckoning for the life of man. Whoever sheds the blood of man, by man shall his blood be shed, for God made man in his own image.”

Obviously these verses reference the consequence of one taking another’s life through the crime of murder.  But his question sparked a discussion, his viewpoint valid.  He asked,

“What if our government executed an individual that God wanted to save?”

Interesting question.  We all agreed that Jesus died for criminals, even the most hardened individuals on death row.  If a serial killer turns to Christ, his sins will be forgiven.  Case in point, Jeffrey Dahmer.  Then we addressed the issue of having enough time to repent.   Though I didn’t cite any statistics, I reminded the group, criminals on death row are sometimes awaiting execution for several years.  According to the Death Penalty Information Center,

Death row inmates in the U.S. typically spend over a decade awaiting execution. Some prisoners have been on death row for well over 20 years.

The Bible shares,

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.  II Peter 3:9

This verse reminds us that God wants no one to be separated from Him for eternity and that He is patient with us.  Patience hints at giving people ample time to consider their sin nature and the need of a Redeemer.  A prisoner on death row has plenty of time to mull over his past choices and render a decision on accepting God’s forgiveness and unmerited grace.

So, we know the Old Testament affirms capital punishment.  Is the New Testament quiet about this topic?  No.  Romans 13:1-5 shares,

Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.

So, according to the Bible should Dzhokhar Tsarnaev  get the death penalty?  Absolutely.

Should we pray that he sees the error of His ways and comes to faith in Christ before he either dies in prison or sits in the electric chair?  Absolutely.

I Peter 3:18 says,

“For Christ also suffered once for sins, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God..”

The key words here being the “righteous for the unrighteous.”  The sinless Son of God, perfect in every way, served as our sacrificial Lamb.  The righteous laid down His life for thieves, adulterers, gossips, murderers, rapists, swindlers, conservatives, and yes, even liberals.

Oh, and for terrorists too.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Would Jesus Condone Same Sex Marriage?


Response to Memories Pizza in Indiana has run the gamut. Some threatened to burn down the establisment; popular Conservative talk show host Dana Loesch set up an online fundraiser to offset the financial lost incurred by the Christian business owners. (It raised almost $850,000 dollars. Wow!) What was the crime of this popular mom and pop pizza joint? Exercising their Religious Freedom and their First Amendment rights.

A news reporter ASKED the owners of Memories Pizza if they would be willing to cater at a gay wedding. Co-Owner Kevin O’Connor responded,

“I don’t turn anybody away from the store, I don’t have a problem with gay people. I just don’t condone the marriage.”

This reply set off a firestorm reverberating across Liberal and Conservative lines. Some staunchly supporting the owners, others spewing hate and vitirol aimed at shutting Memories down.

In the last few days, social media has continued to keep the debate alive. One of my Facebook friends insists if Jesus was asked to supply a cake or build a table for a gay wedding reception, He’d do so gladly. In quoting the post,

He would sell them a table, and a darned good one at that.”

Let’s say he’s right. For those Christians standing with those who embrace the homosexual lifestyle, they stand on the argument of love, citing God’s love of all people. I don’t question the love of God for all people. John 3:16 states,

“For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.”

Note, God fails to insert an asterisk or offer a disclaimer. No Christian famliar with the teachings of the Bible argues God’s love for all people.

“But God demonstrates His own love for us in this, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”

When thinking about how Jesus handled the issue of sin in people’s lives, I often cite the story of the woman caught in adultery. Jesus demonstrates the model of ‘Hate the sin, love the sinner.’

As Jesus taught, religious leaders dragged a woman from the bed of an adulterous liaison and dropped her at the Master’s feet. The religious leaders circled, spewing judgment on the woman, reminding Jesus and all within earshot about the Law. For her infidelity, she deserved the prescribed punishment – a public stoning.

In response to their vitriol, Jesus stooped and scratched something in the dirt, then stood and challenged,

“You who are sinless cast the first stone.”

I’ve often wondered what Jesus wrote. I doubt He wasted His time on doodling stick figures. I wonder if He jotted a list of sins with which these men struggled. Maybe He wrote the words, “pride,” lust,” or the word that labeled the actions of the religious leaders – “entrapment.” (How did these men know about this woman’s indiscretion and the ability to catch her in the arms of a man not her husband?)

As these men cast aspersions at the woman and questioned Jesus’ handling of the situation, I imagine their words trailed off as they watched Jesus write. If Jesus enumerated a list of transgressions, as each man’s besetting sin appeared, the Spirit of God pricked their hearts. When He stood to authorize the first hurled stone, each dropped his rocks, slinking away. Jesus asked,

 ”Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?

“No one sir,” she replied

“Then neither do I condemn you,” Jesus declared.

Many who demand acceptance of ungodly lifestyles, quote only the first part of Jesus’s statement. Jesus added the following exhortation,

“Go and leave your life of sin.”

Let’s visit the carpenter shop owned by Joseph, with Jesus apprenticing.   A couple living in a gay relationship request the Son of God craft a banquet table for a wedding feast.  There’s no doubt He’d make a “darned good one…” But would He condone the wedding?

I envision Jesus requiring the partners to spend time with Him in the carpenter shop, the Master sharing spiritual truths while He sawed, chiseled and sanded. I can see the partners squinting through sawdust laden air, complaining about the threats of the religious leaders to have them stoned to death.  I see Jesus listening to their concerns and maybe even saying,

“Don’t worry, there’s no condemnation here…”

But adding,

“Go and leave your lives of sin…”

Of course the couple’s taken aback.

Oh no, another armchair Rabbi ensnared by the teachings of  some antiquated scrolls…..

Many believe Jesus never addressed same sex marriage, thereby claiming homosexual unions are left up to the discretion of the people who choose them.  Maybe in the writings of the Gospels we find no mention of same sex marriage, but Jesus does address Biblical marriage.  In Matthew 19:4-6 Jesus says,

“And He answered and said, “Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning MADE THEM MALE AND FEMALE, and said, ‘FOR THIS REASON A MAN SHALL LEAVE HIS FATHER AND MOTHER AND BE JOINED TO HIS WIFE, AND THE TWO SHALL BECOME ONE FLESH ‘?”So they are no longer two, but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.”…

Jesus doesn’t add,

“Oh and that’s why men marry each other and women marry each other as well.”

That’s not God’s standard for marriage.

I can imagine the couple in the carpenter shop either being convicted of their sin and repenting or leaving the shop insulted and outraged, either way the banquet table no longer necessary.

If the government forces Christian owned businesses to provide the same services to all wedding ceremonies whether straight or gay, maybe the owners should adopt a “come to the table making” strategy.  To appease both sides, the owners share their views on godly marriage, expressing truths from the Bible.  I can imagine some couples embracing the views, others tolerating the “opinions, and several storming out of the bakery, decrying “discrimination.”  But see, it wouldn’t be discriminatory with all couples submitting to free pre-marital counsel.  Of course the above is hyperbolic, but nowhere is it written that a Christian’s morals and conscience are to be left once vacating the shadow of the steeple on Sunday mornings.

Hang in there Memories Pizza, many around this great nation support you.