My Thoughts

My Thoughts on Christianity and Other Things

Archive for the tag “Jesus”

Their Loss

Matthew 7:13
“You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way.

Years ago I knew a man who at first was a nice man. At first we were friends. Then I told him about the Lord Jesus. This man’s then showed me hate. Lots of hate. Hate for most anything Godly. What’s more is he seemed proud of his hate. I finally broke all contact with him. A few years later, he died of heart problems.

I find the end of his life, very sad. He proudly mocked Jesus and all who believes in Him. He would insult and down grade us with much pleasure. Now he’s gone, and not only that, he even lost his soul. Sad. What a waste.

I also known another man who was a Buddhist. He was telling me how great Buddha was. So I told him about Jesus. He was interested and asked me questions. I did the best I could to answer them.

Finally he was telling me that Buddha was every bit of a holy man as Jesus. I told him “No, Jesus is Lord. He is the Son of God.” Then with ‘great authority’ this man told me that Jesus never told anyone to do anything.

I said, “What? What are you talking about?” He added, “Also Jesus never got mad at anyone. he’s just like Buddha.” I told him, “Yes Jesus did get mad.” He answered back again with his ‘great authority’, “NOT IN MY BIBLE HE DIDN’T!” I then told this man about when Jesus made a whip, over turned tables, and drove people out of the temple because, because they were selling animals there.”
John 2:13-16

I continued, “Jesus is Lord. He died for your sins, but rose back to life again in three days, physically, with His own body. So anyone who believes in him, ask for forgiveness, can go to Heaven. Can your Buddha make that claim?”

Since I would not turn from Jesus, this man wouldn’t have anything to do with me anymore.

A third man, also a good man. However he told me he wanted nothing to do with God.

All three decided they did not want God. I understand that it’s their choice. I also understand when Jesus said, “You can enter God’s Kingdom only through the narrow gate. The highway to hell is broad, and its gate is wide for the many who choose that way.” I understand most will not make it to Heaven. Most will not have ever lasting life. I also understand America is turning away from God.

So should we stop telling people about Christ? Should we give up? How much time, money and effort should we use, bringing people to Christ?

In the mid 1970s there were billboard signs saying “I found it. And you can too.” It was suppose to be a way of bringing people to Jesus. Most people will say it was a big waste of time and money and that it didn’t work. But is this true?

In about 1972 or 73, people started talking to me about Jesus. In 1976, I saw the I found it signs. I called the phone number on the sign and agreed to meet with someone. That evening I decided to give my life to Jesus. The next day I told many people that I decided to follow Jesus.

More and more people are becoming hostile to God. But please do not give up. There are still a few people around who will come to know the Lord.

Jesus said “I have been given all authority in heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, (or people) baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit. Teach these new disciples to obey all the commands I have given you. And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:18-20

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I Have Been Busy

It’s been a long time since my last post, and as you can see, I haven’t prepared anything for our Lord’s Birthday.

All I can say is, “Lord Jesus, Happy Birthday. I can only give myself. Nothing more. You know what I’m trying to do in your name. Please help me succeed and bring glory to you. Amen.”

I am going to cheat a little (Did I just say that after praying?) and insert a link to a post I did before. Here’s the link. I decided to add another link here.

Now I will tell you what I have been up to. I’ve gone back to school. This is my fourth time. (Last year didn’t count as I soon had to drop out due to health reasons.) I started out taking an automotive repair class, then electronic technology, then computer networking, and now American Sign Language. Since most of my life I have been repairing cars, trucks, (both military and civilian) lawns mowers, generators and many other things, I call myself an old mechanic.

Many of you know I don’t hear well. A few of you know because of the type of hearing loss I have, no hearing aids can help me. And my wife and I believe it may be getting worse. Then again maybe it’s temporary. I wrote about this a few months ago. Rare Hearing This is why I decided to learn ASL. ( American Sign Language) Many hearing people tend to look down on non-hearing people. Either consciously or subconsciously. Because of this, if worse comes to worse I want to hopefully become part of the Deaf community.

I have been doing my best in ASL class. My grade point average so far has been 3.9. In the United States 4.0 is perfect.

I was invited to a Deaf church once, so I went. What a very humbling experience. I did a report on it for school. Here’s part of it.

When the sermon started, I was a little disappointed that Pastor Nick and his wife weren’t there. The man who did preached though seemed to have done a good job. I was also surprised that someone there was translating. At first they had praise and prayer requests. It’s been many years since I’ve seen that. I miss it. After a while I got up with a prayer request. I told them that I wasn’t hearing or deaf, but instead am hard of hearing. I need… I didn’t know enough to sign more. The man who sat in front of me signed for me. I spoke, “I need to learn this language because technology can’t help me. I want prayer to become fluent.”

After that there was prayer. They even prayed that I would become fluent in ASL. I like that. The preacher then preached. The subject was on 1 Timothy and 2 Timothy. Even though the man who sat in front of me spoke for the preacher, I understood very little because his back was towards me. I was a little able to fellow along only because all the verses were shown on the projector.

I was invited back and I would like to go back. But, boy do I need more learning!

Anyway back to Christmas. I know it’s Christmas Eve here, but for many of you it’s already Christmas. Remember, this is Lord Jesus birthday. We are saved by grace only when we believe in Him.

Merry Christmas - colored

The Political Party Of Jesus

Google

Google

If Jesus were to come back right now, what political party would He belong to? I have been told at times that if Jesus came back now, He would be Democrat. Well the people who say that are wrong.

Right about now some of you maybe happily thinking ‘Of course not. He would be a Republican.’ And you too would be wrong.

I’m wondering if there are some who believes Jesus wouldn’t get involved in any form of political affairs since He is a religious figure. Believing that one must not mix religion with government affairs. If so, they too would be wrong.

Jesus is not a Republican, or Democrat, or Socialist, or Communist. Oh, and the early Christians in the book of Acts were not Socialist either. Socialism is where the government takes (often by force) and gives some of it to others. The early Christians in Acts gave out of their hearts with love to help others.

Let’s say there is someone in need. Maybe because of earthquake, flood, health problems, homelessness, you name it. And let’s say you personally care and want to help, so you give your time, or money, or both. That is what the Christians in Acts were doing.

Acts 2:44-46
And all the believers met together in one place and shared everything they had. They sold their property and possessions and shared the money with those in need. They worshiped together at the Temple each day, met in homes for the Lord’s Supper, and shared their meals with great joy and generosity

So what political party would Jesus be part of? His own! Jesus is KING. He is LORD. Besides, what makes you think He would be that impressed with anything we have?

There are two places in Revelation that you may find interesting. The first one is when the Anti-Christ’s armies will go to war against the Lamb (Jesus), but the Lamb will defeat them because he is Lord of all lords and King of all kings. And his called and chosen and faithful ones will be with him. Revelation 17:14

The second is Revelation 21:22-26 which will happen after the Anti-Christ is gone, after the thousand years of Christ’s reign, after Satan is released again, and after the whole world is destroyed, then recreated. Revelation 21:22-26 says:
I saw no temple in the city, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple. And the city has no need of sun or moon, for the glory of God illuminates the city, and the Lamb is its light. The nations will walk in its light, and the kings of the world will enter the city in all their glory. Its gates will never be closed at the end of day because there is no night there. And all the nations will bring their glory and honor into the city.

So the LORD will rule the world and yet there will be different nations. How this will work, I’m not sure. The only thing I can think of is the United States of America. Here we have one president, one federal government with federal laws. However we are made up of 50 different states with different laws and customs. For an example: the state of Oregon has an income tax, but no sales tax. Where Washington State has no income tax, but it does have sales tax. In Louisiana they celebrate Mardi Gras. Not so much in the other states. Also what’s legal in one state may be illegal in the next. Yet we are all united states, or United States of America. However when Jesus reigns, it will be perfect.

So what political party will Jesus belong to? His own. He’s KING and LORD. And that’s my thoughts.

First Love Cooled?

Revelation 2:4-5
“But I have this complaint against you. You don’t love me or each other as you did at first! Look how far you have fallen! Turn back to me and do the works you did at first. If you don’t repent, I will come and remove your lampstand from its place among the churches.”

Did you read that? Does this apply to you? I hope not. But think about this. Are you still on fire for God? Or has your love gone a bit cool. I’m not asking if you still love the Lord. I’m guessing you still do. Are you still willing to live for Jesus? Do you still have love for others? Or is it more self-centered?

I know that this is for the church in Ephesus. However I also believe that it could apply to us individually.

About removing your lampstand from among the churches? You can say it applies only to churches, or not. But, do you really want to take a chance? Do you want to disappoint our Lord? I don’t.

There is more written to the church in Ephesus. Most of it is good, but I suggest reading Revelation 2:1-7.

That’s my thoughts.

Are You Proud To Be A Christian?

One of the things I have seen on Facebook are “I’m proud to be a Christian. Share if you are too.

I’m puzzled by this. Knowing that we are all sinners, and fall way short from God’s standards, how can we be rightfully proud?

Copper Ridge, North Cascade National Park -National Park Service

Copper Ridge, North Cascade National Park -National Park Service

Let’s say you are lost in the mountains with a broken leg. Or you’re sitting on the roof of your home because of a flood. You are cold, wet and hungry. You have no hope on saving yourself. Finally Search and Rescue finds you. Are you proud that they found and rescued you? There is nothing to boast about here, except for the adventure. The real question, or the correct question is, “Are you grateful?”.

“Proud To Be A Christian”, also makes me think of “The Proud Pharisee” who did everything right. However if you read Luke 18:9-14. you see being a “The Proud Pharisee” who self-righteously did everything right, didn’t make himself right with God. Yet Luke 18:14 says the tax collector who humbled himself before the Lord, was justified before God.

Ephesians 2:8-10 says:
God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it. For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.

So when people say they’re proud to be a Christian, I wonder; are they really proud that Jesus gave up His life so they might be saved from Hell?

I myself am humbly grateful that my Lord would save me. John 3:14-16 says:
And as Moses lifted up the bronze snake on a pole in the wilderness, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, so that everyone who believes in him will have eternal life.
“For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.

Soon we will celebrate the death and resurrection of Jesus. For those who believes in the Lord Jesus, Roman 6:5 says:
Since we have been united with him in his death, we will also be raised to life as he was.

Happy Easter

Happy Easter

Persecuted

Good news! On January 16, 2016 Pastor Saeed Abedini was finally released from an Iranian prison. Here are two links. Link 1 Link 2 While this is very good news, him as well as the others who were released, still needs prayers as they recover from physical and mental abuse.

The sad news is that there are so many more people who are or have been persecuted. And there will be more persecution, even here in North America. Even in the United States. There are also more people being lead astray. Why?

I read that there Christians who believes that Jesus was not Jewish. Why? Either people don’t read their Bible, or someone sucked their brains out. Jesus was born from a very long line of Jewish people. Every year Jesus and his family would go to Jerusalem for the Passover festival which is a very Jewish thing to do. When Jesus healed the man with leprosy, He told him to go to the priest and take along an offering as required by the law of Moses. Clearly Jesus is a Jew. Even Pilate acknowledged Him as King of the Jews. Why would a Christian who reads their Bible say that Jesus is not Jewish, is beyond understanding. Unless they don’t read.

Another time, many years ago someone told me they were a Christian. I was a little suspicious so I asked if he believes in Jesus. That He died on the cross and rose again physically three days later. He said “No, I don’t believe you have to believe in Jesus to be a Christian.”

How does that work? How can you be a Christ-ian and not follow Christ? When the time comes, these people will escape most if not all persecution that may be coming. Me, my wife, many of my friends and family as well as many of you, will be persecuted. Some of us may be murdered. If you believe and admit that Jesus is Lord, Son of God, and that He has risen physically from the dead, if you say Jesus is the only way to have eternal life; you’re in trouble.

Things are going to get worse. I believe, in the United States there will be more persecution towards Christians. More mocking, getting fired, more bigotry. Families will be divided and friendships broken. Our rights of free speech will be taken away while those who oppose us will keep theirs. For an example: it’s getting where if you speak bad about Jesus people will believe it’s OK. But if you say the same thing about Mohammad, then people will get upset and call you a hateful bigot. A few may try to kill you or at least punish you somehow.

In the past I have been lied about and mocked and other things, only because I’m a Christian.

As bad as things may get, please keep this in mind. Matthew 5:10-12
God blesses those who are persecuted for doing right, for the Kingdom of Heaven is theirs. God blesses you when people mock you and persecute you and lie about you and say all sorts of evil things against you because you are my followers. Be happy about it! Be very glad! For a great reward awaits you in heaven. And remember, the ancient prophets were persecuted in the same way.

Christmas

There’s a song out there called Holly Jolly Christmas that says Christmas is the best time of year. Well for some it is. But for others, it’s a very stressful time of year.

I’ve heard some say Christmas is only for children. I’ve also heard that it’s only for the rich. Or for the stores so they could make more money. And now comes the stress. What do you buy for Aunt Sally? Uncle Fred? Cousin It? And your kids may want 1,346 things for Christmas and you can’t even afford one. And the stress builds. You have 4,025 dozen cookies to bake, and 1,236,489 bulbs of colored lights to put up. And the stress builds more. What will the electric bill be like? Here is an Norwegian-American song with lyrics, I Yust Go Nuts At Christmas that seems fitting for all this.

So what is Christmas all about? Well it’s not about Christmas trees, Santa Claus, reindeer, presents, or even snowmen and sledding. Even as a kid I wondered about snowmen and sledding. Growing up my friends and I may have built a snowman, but more often we would go sledding down the street we lived on. Christmas had nothing to do with it. It was just fun.

I remember the street we lived on, was on a big hill making it perfect for sledding. The only problem was my dog. My friends would hop on their sleds on would go all the way down the hilly street. But not me. When I went down, my dog would run up and jump on my back, knocking me off course. We would both, go off the road and head first into the ditch. Very rarely did we ever make it all the way down the hill. I’m sure my dog must have thought I was a lousy sled driver. But when you’re a 10 or 11 year old boy and a 40 pound (18 kilogram) dog jumps on your back, it’s really difficult to stay on course.

As much fun as playing and sledding in the snow was, it had nothing to do with Christmas. After all we did this all winter long.

So what is Christmas about? It’s about a birthday. The day we celebrate the birth of our Lord Jesus. John 3:16 says, For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

In this culture the person who has the birthday gets the gifts. Yet Jesus came to give us the greatest gift of all; eternal life. It’s for anyone who believes in Jesus as Lord and accepts this gift. After all he came to die for you on the cross and then rise again physically, in His own body so you live. (I know, this sounds Easter.)

This eternal life is a gift you can not match. No matter how many credit cards you max out.

Something to think about as you “Yust Go Nuts At Christmas”.

Here is Mary Did You Know with lyrics.

Merry Christmas - colored

Guns

Ruger AR-556

Ruger AR-556

First let me say that this article is neither pro-gun nor is it anti-gun. Anyone who has been reading my blog for awhile knows I think a little differently than most people.

A few months ago when the gunner shot and killed 9 people in Oregon and wounded many more, everyone said this was very terrible thing to have happen. And this is very true. But I saw two things very interesting. First the gunman asked people if they were Christian. Those who said “yes” were shot in the head. Those who said “no” were shot to wound and not to kill.

Soon afterwards my wife was watching a TV show and they were talking about the shooting and about shooting the Christians was because of mental illness. I found this to be very interesting. If shooting a Muslim is a hate crime, and shooting a minority is a hate crime, as well as shooting a homosexual a hate crime, why is shooting and killing Christians not a hate crime? Why would shooting someone like me, only be a sign of mental illness? Why?

When it comes to guns as well as other things, some people seems to stop thinking.

However this last shooting at San Bernardino, California were rightfully called a terrorist attack.

One day while looking through Facebook I saw an interesting post. Some guy replied, “Thankfully Peter was not armed with a gun in John 18:10.”

When I answered, “Even if he was, I know Jesus could heal the guy who was shot. Luke 22:51”

The same guy answered back, “Really? This is a fun story to do the ‘what if’ game we can do with history, mythology and scripture. If Peter had had a gun, the centurions would have as well. We’ve seen enough shootouts to know the typical outcomes. People killed; bystanders shot….; the author would have had a much more complex story to tell. Heck, maybe even JC could have been shot and died. No crucifixion, no resurrection. Thankfully, sword isn’t as deadly as gun play…even in the same hands.”

I really wanted to reply to that, but I resisted. Please hear me out on this. Most likely I will not say what you think I’ll say.

Even though he may be a Christian, I know he’s wrong. I know there would not have been a shoot out even if the Roman solders as well as Peter had guns. It would have been impossible for Jesus to have been shot.

Why would I say that? One reason is when people tried to push Jesus off a cliff, they couldn’t. He just simply left.

Once in John 7:44-46 they wanted to arrest Him, but didn’t. And in John 10:39 they tried again to arrest Him but couldn’t. They couldn’t do it, no matter what. It wasn’t time.

And this brings us to when Jesus was arrested. According to John 18:1-11, He was met in the garden by Roman soldiers, Temple guards, and others. Then Peter chopped off someone’s ear. At that time Peter would have been considered as a threat. So, why didn’t the trained armed Roman soldiers, kill the fisherman who may not really know how to handle a sword? And while they were at it, kill Jesus right then and there? Because they couldn’t. Even if they had guns. They were not allowed because Jesus is LORD!

When Peter had the sword, Jesus told him to put it away. He also said that if He wanted, He could ask God for a thousand angels for protection and it would have be done. But He didn’t because then prophecy would not be fulfilled as it was told in the Scriptures. Matthew 26:50-56

Think about this. Soon we will be celebrating Christmas. Remember that this is not just about some kid born in a barn. I’m sure that’s happened many times over the years. No, this was not just some ordinary little baby. This is the LORD, and he is in control.

Anti-Christmas?

Starbucks Red Cups photo from buzzfeed.com

Starbucks Red Cups photo from buzzfeed.com

Lately some people got all upset because Starbucks Coffee had red cups instead of cups with Christmas trees, Santa Claus, reindeer, snow flakes, or some other stuff on them. Because of the plain red coffee cups (they did have the Starbucks logo on them) people were saying that the coffee shops were anti-Christmas. Remember, the cups are normally white.

What about the people that decorate their homes with only red lights? Or all green lights? Or white or blue? Are they anti-Christmas? I seriously doubt it.

How about having a Christmas party without Christmas music? Yes I’ve been to a few of them. And even though it wasn’t a Christ centered Christmas party, there were other Christians there besides me. The room was decorated with all the usual Christmas decorations and there were lots of food. But no music. We were a local chapter of Hearing Loss Association of America. Having a lot of music would make it difficult for some of us to communicate.

So back to this so call ‘war on Christmas’ by Starbucks. How many of us will really be celebrating Christmas? I’ve read through the Bible several times and so far I never read anything about flying reindeer, and some guy in a red suit sliding down chimneys. Also Christmas really isn’t about buying a bunch of stuff either.

I’m not saying there is anything wrong with having fun and giving gifts. I’m just saying, remember that Christmas is about the birth of our Lord Jesus. And lighten up on the lack of Christmas decorations some may have.

Here’s the real Christmas story without the man in red and his flying reindeer. And a song: Mary Did You Know with lyrics.

And for those who may need something silly (sometimes we all do) here’s Grandma Got Ran Over By A Reindeer, with lyrics of course.

Merry Christmas - colored

Are We Getting Into Trouble?

If we’re getting into trouble, who are we getting into trouble with?

This post is written mainly to those who are followers of our Lord Jesus. Though of course everyone is welcome to read this. But first I must lay out some ground work.

Exodus 20:13 says You must not murder. Since most people have not murdered, we’re OK with that. Yet in Matthew 5:21-22 Jesus said “You have heard that our ancestors were told, ‘You must not murder. If you commit murder, you are subject to judgment.’ But I say, if you are even angry with someone, you are subject to judgment! If you call someone an idiot, you are in danger of being brought before the court. And if you curse someone, you are in danger of the fires of hell.” Now we have trouble. I believe everyone is guilty of this.

Exodus 20:14 says You must not commit adultery. A lot of people have done this. Yet in Matthew 5:27-28 Jesus said “You have heard the commandment that says, ‘You must not commit adultery.’ But I say, anyone who even looks at a woman with lust has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” Wow every man I know of, has committed this sin. And to make things worst, Matthew 5:32 says if he divorces his wife, he often causes her to sin. Jesus is not being kind or relaxed on sin. Not at all. But he does forgives and often. If you ask.

Kim Davis – Wikipedia/Carter County Detention Center

Kim Davis – Wikipedia/Carter County Detention Center

Kim Davis was thrown in jail for awhile for not granting homosexual marriage licenses. She says it was against her Christian beliefs. Many people agree with her and many do not. But who is agreeing and who is not agreeing? I must say I was a little surprised by the answer. I was surprised that there were Christians who were against her.

One of the most common reasons I’ve heard was: Jesus never said anything about homosexuals or same sex marriage. Therefore it must be OK. Really? Are you really sticking with that reasoning? Then your point is nulled and void.

It is true that Jesus never said the word homosexual in either Mathew, Mark, Luke or John. But guess what. He never said rape either. Are you going to tell your wife and daughters that it’s OK to be raped? I hope not. That would be stupid and evil.

Genesis 19:4-7
But before they retired for the night, all the men of Sodom, young and old, came from all over the city and surrounded the house. They shouted to Lot, “Where are the men who came to spend the night with you? Bring them out to us so we can have sex with them!”
So Lot stepped outside to talk to them, shutting the door behind him. “Please, my brothers,” he begged, “don’t do such a wicked thing.”

In Luke 10:12 even Jesus said the town Sodom was evil.
“I assure you, even wicked Sodom will be better off than such a town on judgment day.”

But like I said earlier, this post is mainly for those who follow Jesus. So here are two more passages:

This from Paul, who said: Romans 1:26-27
That is why God abandoned them to their shameful desires. Even the women turned against the natural way to have sex and instead indulged in sex with each other. And the men, instead of having normal sexual relations with women, burned with lust for each other. Men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved.

This is what Jesus said about sexual sin to the Pergamum church in Revelation 2:14-16. Read it carefully.
“But I have a few complaints against you. You tolerate some among you whose teaching is like that of Balaam, who showed Balak how to trip up the people of Israel. He taught them to sin by eating food offered to idols and by committing sexual sin. In a similar way, you have some Nicolaitans among you who follow the same teaching. Repent of your sin, or I will come to you suddenly and fight against them with the sword of my mouth.”

No matter what we do, we’re going to be in trouble with someone. We have to follow someone. Now here is a question that we all know the answer to. Do we follow the world, or do we follow our Lord? We follow our Lord of course.

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