a puritan's blog

O God, stamp eternity on my eyeballs…

Monthly Archives: June 2012

The Fatal error of homosexuality

AFTAH hit it square on the head in its letter to Ernst and Young CEO, Jim Turley who is pushing the wicked agenda of radical sodomy on the Boy Scout Organization. According to Peter LaBarbera, the Boy Scouts have issued a resolution stating, "Contrary to media reports, the Boy Scouts of America has no plans to change its membership policy…"

Here is a portion of the letter that Peter wrote to Ernst and Young:

You err in assuming that homosexuality is mainly a “civil rights” issue; it is actually a matter of changeable, unhealthy, volitional behavior — and a contentious moral issue. Most parents simply would not be comfortable with the idea of ”modeling” that unnatural behavior to their sons through Scouting activities. (It should go without saying that it is not “bigotry” but rather common sense for parents to be wary of sending their sons on camping trips with adult homosexual men.)

To which i say, Amen!

The fact remains that putting aside immoral behavior and sexual immorality is God-honoring and, at the same time, not salvation. As Charles Spurgeon said, "Morality will keep you out of jail – but only the blood of Jesus will keep you out of Hell!" It remains for all good moral standing citizens, immoral, jail bound sinners, that Hell will be your eternal resting place. The blood of Jesus is the only preservative from Hell. Now, knowing that fact alone, in that many words, is not salvation either. You must be born again! You must be Heaven born and have the life of God in the soul to not only stay out of Hell but be saved to Heaven.

Flee from the wrath of God that has already damned your soul to hell (Romans 3:19) and Lay hold (1 Timothy 6:12) on the Mercy of God through Jesus’ blood.

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Maran-atha!
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Is this Theological Escapism?

The Minnesota Star Tribune wrote an article about John Piper’s and Leith Anderson’s recent non-stance on Minnesota’s Marriage amendment. You can read it here. I sent the article link out to a few local folks in Arkansas.

Here is what i wrote in the email sent out:

I think Piper should have gone all the way and put his sermon to context/application and brought in the marriage amendment. Not sure why he wouldn’t. Is silence on this point compromise, ultimately? This fear in the pulpit, concerning political stuff, must end. The puritans fired meaningful and God-directed salvos at politicians in their day.

Here is the response from a local pastor:

My two cents.

We’ve faced this issue many times at FamilyLife. Our stand has been to speak clearly and boldly about what the Bible teaches regarding marriage, but to stay away from any specific direction about how those biblical standards are best addressed in governmental policy. So we would say clearly “God’s design for marriage is for one man and one woman to be united in a covenant relationship for a lifetime (Dr. Piper says that same thing clearly in the book he has written on marriage).

But, we would not endorse a piece of legislation, a political candidate or a public policy position.

So, we would say “Marriage according to the Bible is always one man and one woman in a lifetime covenant relationship. Keep that in mind as you prayerfully consider how and for whom you will vote.”

That keeps the prophet focused on declaring the truth of God’s word, but does not put him in the position of suggesting that God is in favor of a constitutional amendment or a particular bill or a particular office holder.

Here is another response from a Missouri pastor:

No…he did not tell the entire truth. In my humble opinion he should have said there is no way you can call yourself a Christian if you refuse to vote NO on this issue. Close my church……take away my "tax exempt status…..do whatever you gotta do…..but we are voting no.

That’s what I would do….but hey….no one has ever asked me how to grow a church…..!

Here is a snapshot of what Pat Necerato’s said at Go, Stand, Speak:

This November, the people of Minnesota will be asked to decide whether the state Constitution should define marriage as being between one man and one woman. This amendment, if passed, would limit the freedom to marry for gay and lesbian couples in Minnesota. My question to you is…why would a Pastor of one of the largest congregation’s in that state refrain from telling his flock to vote against this legislation?

Answer: It’s not his job. Or so he says.

Here’s a quote from well known Pastor, John Piper on why he did not urge his Minneapolis church congregation to vote "no" against this bill. Piper said to reporters, “Don’t press the organization of the church or her pastors into political activism.” Piper said during his sermon, posted on Bethlehem Baptist Church’s website. “Expect from your shepherds not that they would rally you behind political candidates or legislative mandates, but they would point you over and over again to God and to his word.”

Now, giving Pastor Piper the benefit of the doubt, he did speak out against homosexuality and did endorse biblical marriage in his sermon BUT he slammed on

the brakes when it came time to tell his people to take action against this ungodly vote…

With all due respect to any pastor reading this and John Piper, this is completely inconsistent with biblical and historical Christianity. And not to mention, a complete

embarrassment to the witness of the Christian church as a whole. I must say very frankly (and not with the intention of insulting anyone in particular), the theological escapism/retreatism that has overpowered the pulpits in this country (and beyond) has made the Western Church look like nothing more than a self-help, get saved from hell, take me off to heaven, it’s not my job, shrink clinic. The false notions of "Jesus didn’t get involved in social issues" and "His kingdom is

not of this world" has left the church sitting on the sideline. Instead of discipling nations we’ve become nothing more than a clanging symbol. (See our "resource"

section at gostandspeak.com for more info on the meaning of the scriptures above and how they often get misconstrued.)

Loving our neighbor, being salt and light, being a voice for the voiceless, exposing the deeds of darkness, being a light on the hill and discipling nations takes more

than promoting personal piety or a devoted personal life…it means "speaking out" and "doing" for Christ…in every facet of life.

Don’t me wrong, we hear some preaching against sin.

But why do we sometimes hear "abortion is wrong," but then hardly ever hear the words "go out to the clinic and protest"?

Why do we sometimes hear, "homosexuality is wrong" but the words "vote against this bill" or "protest at the statehouse" are nowhere to be heard?

[Read more here]

Here is another article by GodFather Politics for your consideration.

Amen to Pat Necerato…The church is to be that decisive point precisely where the devil is crossing the path of the gospel. They are to make disciples of all nations and TEACH them how to live day-by-day and to establish in the culture the life blood of Jesus Christ. "Behold your God!"

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Richard C. Hagen

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FATHER’S DAY MESSAGE

By Rev. Rusty Lee Thomas

Lou Whitworth stated, "Were one of these two bents given full rein, the balance required for authentic Christian manhood would be lost. Strength and power, without tenderness, for example, give us the brute. Tenderness and compassion without masculine firmness and aggressiveness produce a male without the fire to lead or inspire others." With this statement the challenge for true biblical fatherhood commences.
People in public places occasionally comment on how "good" our children are and how blessed we must be as parents. Yes, we are blessed. However, our blessing is not found in the inherent "goodness" of our children. It is found in Christ, His Word, and in the high calling of Biblical parenting. It is in fulfilling the dominion mandate as articulated in Genesis 1:28, Malachi 2:15, and the Great Commission, Matthew 28:18-20. It is discovered in seeking to conform our lives, marriage, and family in accordance to God’s will.
Our children are not perfect, but prized. They are prized because God has said they are His (Ezekiel 16:21) and they are His reward (Psalm 127:3) granted to faithful parents. Yet, we did not receive "good" children at birth. We received sweet, adorable sinners with the same feet of clay that we as parents possess. Every day we must contend with their bent towards foolish, sinful behavior, our limited energy, and our own short comings. But deal with it, we must, if we are to train up children to glorify God and fulfill their God-ordained destiny, which benefits them and others (Proverbs 22:6).
Character training is the most important and most difficult aspect of parenting. In fact, it is the primary purpose of education. Noah Webster, considered the Father of American Education, defined the term education in these terms, "The bringing up, as of a child, instruction; formation of manners. Education comprehends all that series of instruction and discipline, which is intended to enlighten the understanding, correct the temper, and form the manners and habits of youth, and fit them for usefulness in their future stations." In other words, parents need to inculcate in their children the necessary biblical attributes to forge a godly character that prepares them for their future.
Any good fruit in children’s lives is the result of the Holy Spirit’s sanctification and the parents, especially the father’s, faithfulness to the Word of God. Dads must not only be able to teach the precepts of God’s Word, but model its message faithfully before their families, friends, and foes. To mistakenly believe children are naturally well behaved is to ignore the power of the Word in the lives of even the youngest of sinners and to disregard the lofty position of a father in God’s Kingdom.
This lofty position in God’s Kingdom carries with it a great weight of responsibility. According to Moses, who received the Ten Words, "For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments" (Exodus 20:5, 6). It is not the sins of the mother, the church, the state, or the culture that places our children’s future in jeopardy; it is the sins of the patriarchs.
In light of these truths, what fathers say or do not say, what they do or do not do, carries a profound impact upon their children’s souls, lives and future. We fail to recognize this important human relationship to our nation’s peril. For as goes the father, so goes the family and as goes the family, so goes the church, and as goes the church, so goes the nation.
It is the father who will stand before God to give an account for his family. It is the father who must protect his family from the fallen world, the deceitfulness of sin, and the enemies of God while advancing His Kingdom through a multi-generational vision. It is the father that must stand as guardian at the gate of his home to determine what comes in and what is kept out of his family.
Does evil flourish under his watch that devours his children? Does he neglect the spiritual training and moral welfare of his children? Does he train them in the goodness, holiness, and righteousness of God? If not, why not? All the money, perks, and materialism in this poor-fallen world cannot make up for the failure of not being the loving, yet firm watchmen upon the wall of one’s home. Obviously, this holy endeavor is not for the weak or faint of heart. This is why true Biblical fatherhood is a rare and precious thing. To overlook or ignore it is to devalue it.
William Wordsworth once wrote, "The flower that smells the sweetest is shy and lowly." How does the flower become lowly? It is the Father’s hand from heaven that presses down upon our petals. In the same way, a father must form his children’s character by pressing down on their tendency to grow into something corruptible, something other than a poet, chivalrous warrior, statesman in boys and a meek and quiet spirit in girls that is highly prized by God in heaven.
When the discipline and nurturing of children is done correctly, there is little trace of the father’s hand. Yet, it is the father, who is to work the soil of his children’s heart. Solomon speaking as a kingly father preparing to pass the righteous scepter of a godly reign to his children stated, "My son, give me your heart, And let your eyes observe my ways" (Proverbs 23:6). The heart of each child finds its safest rest in the ways of a godly father.
The ways of the father plow the hardened ground and carefully sows the Word of God. The father pours out the living water, drenching the roots of his children with the Holy Spirit. It is the father, who must tirelessly weed out the evil that surround his children’s frail stalks. It is the father, who constructs a trellis of truth, to which his children can secure themselves and go further up and in to God’s Kingdom.
Finally, it is the father, who carefully builds a hedge around his children, providing the safety of an enclosed garden in which to grow. It is a consecration unto impact and not isolation a father seeks to instill in his budding plants. A spiritual covering arches over their development. It allows the Son to shine, a gentle rain to fall, and when the storm hits, the wise father provides the solid rock of faith that applies God’s word to secure their lives.
Some might accuse such a father of "keeping his children from the socialization of the world," as though his children were wild plants, not exquisite ones requiring constant love and pruning. Yet he is not keeping his children from the world; he is dressing and keeping them to change the world. As they grow and mature in the security of their father’s love, they will bring the fragrance of Christ to all who meet them. To those who are perishing in their sins, it will be a fragance of death. To those who are saved, it will be the wonderful aroma of life (2 Corinthians 2:16).
Remember, those who will finally pluck these children from their father’s garden, their godly characters are no accident of nature. They are a father’s labor of love offered to the Lord. He endured their worse to give you their best. They grew to be a gift to the Maker of the "shy and lowly" flower. They may not have become the fragrance of Christ without God using a father’s cultivation, which combined tenderness and discipline in their training.
Happy Father’s Day to every man who has attempted to be such a father in an age that dishonors true, biblical fatherhood in Jesus’ holy and precious name!

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