Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Yes, a question from the back!

Katie asked what is the difference between what you believe and Calvinism


that was an excellent question. Calvinism and Armenianism offer competing views and differ from the truth of a Biblical worldview. I would urge you to review this in detail, spending most of your time exploring the scripture proofs for the truths, but understanding the false teaching of the others. In understanding a false teaching, you can teach yourself to be sensitive to it when you hear it, and then speak out against it. Paul spoke on this to Titus. Titus was at the Church in Crete. They had false teachers that were trying to add their Hebrew rituals to the requirements for salvation.

Titus 1:10-14 (NKJV)
10 For there are many insubordinate, both idle talkers and deceivers, especially those of the circumcision, whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole households, teaching things which they ought not, for the sake of dishonest gain. 12 One of them, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” 13 This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith, 14 not giving heed to Jewish fables and commandments of men who turn from the truth.
The New King James Version. Nashville : Thomas Nelson, 1982

Paul told Titus the "deceivers" mouths must be stopped. It is our job to be so firmly grounded in the Bible that we know when we hear something that is not from God's word. The devil likes to take a lot of truth and add just a bit of a lie to it to deceive us. You have to take it all back to scripture and use that as your guide. Calvinism says that God's elect (saved folks) are picked out before hand. The natural pathway then is, "If God has already elected them, then why do I need to witness to anyone. God is going to save them no matter what." And that pathway is the wide easy path that leads to destruction. I don't believe this is what Calvin intended because he spent much of his life witnessing in Paris. Plus Christ also commanded us to go and to witness, creating disciples, and baptizing them.

All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.  Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”
S. Mt 28:18-20

Monday, October 25, 2010

How many Gods do you worship?

How many Gods do you worship?

That seems like a silly question in our family. We all know that we worship the God of Abraham, Isaac, & Jacob. We worship the one true God.

But is that all we worship? Do you have other idols to worship tucked away where only you know about them? For me in the past, I’ve had my work as my idol. It came first. Other’s have possessions or materialism as their idol. Some even put religion as their idol.

Reserve your worship for God. Christ Jesus, our Lord and Savior.

Q. 5. Are there more Gods than one?
A. There is but one only,18 the living and true God.19
Q. 6. How many persons are there in the Godhead?
A. There are three persons in the Godhead: the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost;20 and these three are one God, the same in substance, equal in power and glory.21

18 Deuteronomy 6:4. Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: Isaiah 44:6. Thus saith the LORD the King of Israel, and his redeemer the LORD of hosts; I am the first, and I am the last; and beside me there is no God. Isaiah 45:21-22. Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. 1 Corinthians 8:4-6. As concerning therefore the eating of those things that are offered in sacrifice unto idols, we know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is none other God but one. For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many,) But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things, and we by him.

19 Jeremiah 10:10. But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide his indignation. John 17:3. And this is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent. 1 Thessalonians 1:9. For they themselves show of us what manner of entering in we had unto you, and how ye turned to God from idols to serve the living and true God; 1 John 5:20. And we know that the Son of God is come, and hath given us an understanding, that we may know him that is true, and we are in him that is true, even in his Son Jesus Christ. This is the true God, and eternal life.

20 Matthew 3:16-17. And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Matthew 28:19. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: 2 Corinthians 13:14. The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the communion of the Holy Ghost, be with you all. Amen. 1 Peter 1:2. Elect according to the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, unto obedience and sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, be multiplied.

21 Psalm 45:6. Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre. John 1:1. In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. John 17:5. And now, O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was. Acts 5:3-4. But Peter said, Ananias, why hath Satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land? Whiles it remained, was it not thine own? and after it was sold, was it not in thine own power? why hast thou conceived this thing in thine heart? thou hast not lied unto men, but unto God. Romans 9:5. Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Colossians 2:9. For in him dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. Jude 1:24-25. Now unto him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy, To the only wise God our Savior, be glory and majesty, dominion and power, both now and for ever. Amen.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Are you saved? How can you know?

My greatest struggle being a young Christian was the doubts hurled at me about the genuineness of my salvation. The first time I went down, it wasn’t even my idea, I wanted to get away from the guilt, and I wanted to go out, not down front. I wasn’t saved. I was baptized, but all I got was wet.

I was living a duplicitous life. (That means two faced.) I was the sweet loving Gregie at home, but a foul mouthed hellion away from my parent’s hearing. My salvation did occur and I was later baptized. I was still, however, a babe in Christ. I did not know how to “test” my salvation.

I recently listened to a good sermon from Paul Washer on “Testing your Salvation”. It is based on the teaching of John the Apostle in 1 John. I believe everyone should go through these verses and test yourself. Are you saved? If you were arrested for being a Christian, would there be enough evidence to convict you?

1 John 5:13 These things I have written to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life, and that you may continue to believe in the name of the Son of God.

You need to get by yourself, with your Bible, pray for God to open your heart and eyes to what He wants to tell you. This is a test of the person you are when you are alone or around no one who knows you. Are you the sweet child always, or are you a rebellious hellion like I was before I was saved?

So what are the things that John has written? I am glad you asked.

1 John 1:5-7 This is the message which we have heard from Him and declare to you, that God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. 6 If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth. 7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.

Test 1: God is light. This is saying that if we walk in darkness, we are a liar and do not practice the truth. What does it mean to walk in darkness? This refers to your “style of life.” Does your life style indicate that you walk with God? Are you going places God would walk? Are you doing things God would do? Are you looking at things that God would approve? Do your friends know that God is primary in your life? If you are walking in darkness, STOP. If your style of life goes against God, then you are not saved.

1 John 1:8-10 If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us.

Test 2: Say NO to sin. Are you sensitive to your own sin? Does God grab your attention when you have sinned and convict you? Does He lead you to confession and repentance? You should be broken over your sin. The devil is a roaring line seeking whom he can devour. Sin is a slippery slope. Just one step; then another; soon you find yourself covered in it. If you can sin and not cast a care at all, God is not in you. Test yourself, confess your sins, and repent. That means you need to turn away from the sin. Turn toward God.

1 John 2:3-5 Now by this we know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. 4 He who says, “I know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoever keeps His word, truly the love of God is perfected in him. By this we know that we are in Him.

Test 3: Do you keep His commandments? Again, this is a style of life issue. Do you allow hate anywhere in you for anyone? Are you angry without cause? As a saved individual you should have a keen interest in keeping God’s commandments.

1 John 2:6 He who says he abides in Him ought himself also to walk just as He walked.

Test 4: Do you walk like Jesus? Do you desire to live your life like Christ? Do you routinely ask yourself “What Would Jesus Do” when faced with decisions or temptations?

1 John 2:9-11 He who says he is in the light, and hates his brother, is in darkness until now. 10 He who loves his brother abides in the light, and there is no cause for stumbling in him. 11 But he who hates his brother is in darkness and walks in darkness, and does not know where he is going, because the darkness has blinded his eyes.

Test 5: Do you hate your brother? In this, John is referring to your brothers in Christ, or other believers. Do you enjoy the company of other Christians? Do you like to worship together with others in Church? We should desire fellowship with other believers. Would you rather spend time with the Christians in your life or with the sinners in your life? This is an indication of your salvation. You can not be a secret service Christian and worship God alone on the golf course or in the fishing boat, or in bed on Sunday morning. Test yourself in this.

1 John 2:15-17 Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. 16 For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world is passing away, and the lust of it; but he who does the will of God abides forever.

Test 6 : Do you love the things of the world? Have you followed tv shows from talking about lust to doing sinful things. We had to stop watching many of the funny shows we used to watch. Sinful situation comedies are no longer funny. The sin of the flesh and lust of the eyes should not be in you. We can’t be a slave to this sinful evil age and be loyal to Christ. In this test, are you loyal to Christ in all that you do?

1 John 2:19 They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us; but they went out that they might be made manifest, that none of them were of us.

Test 7 refers to the unsaved among us that leave. They were never a part of the faith to begin with. You can’t come and go to Christ as if He was an insurance policy and you only need Him on certain occasions. Folks that are pulled away to other “religions” were never truly saved. You know there are only 2 religions; Christianity, and everything else. There are only two paths; the hard and narrow path to God through salvation in faith by Christ, and everything else (the wide path).

1 John 2:24-27 Therefore let that abide in you which you heard from the beginning. If what you heard from the beginning abides in you, you also will abide in the Son and in the Father. 25 And this is the promise that He has promised us—eternal life. 26 These things I have written to you concerning those who try to deceive you. 27 But the anointing which you have received from Him abides in you, and you do not need that anyone teach you; but as the same anointing teaches you concerning all things, and is true, and is not a lie, and just as it has taught you, you will abide in Him.

Guys you must embrace the fullness of the Person of Jesus as Savior and Lord, Prophet, Priest, and King. You can not slice Him up and get the parts you like, but leave behind the hard parts. You must strive to be Holy as God is Holy. Test your self in these areas. Take these to Christ in prayer and really know that based on the tests in scripture that John wrote for us, that you truly have salvation. If you fail any of these tests, talk with God about it. Repent of your sins and confess them. Ask Christ to show you the way of salvation and He will do so. For whosoever calls upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Catechism 4

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,1 and to enjoy him forever.2
Q. 2. What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
A. The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments,3 is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.4
Q. 3. What do the Scriptures principally teach?
A. The Scriptures principally teach, what man is to believe concerning God,5 and what duty God requires of man.6

Q. 4. What is God?
A. God is a Spirit,7 infinite,8 eternal,9 and unchangeable,10 in his being,11 wisdom,12 power,13 holiness,14 justice,15 goodness,16 and truth.17

Proofs of Scripture

7 Deuteronomy 4:15-19. Take ye therefore good heed unto yourselves; for ye saw no manner of similitude on the day that the LORD spake unto you in Horeb out of the midst of the fire: Lest ye corrupt yourselves, and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female, The likeness of any beast that is on the earth, the likeness of any winged fowl that flieth in the air, The likeness of any thing that creepeth on the ground, the likeness of any fish that is in the waters beneath the earth: And lest thou lift (3) up thine eyes unto heaven, and when thou seest the sun, and the moon, and the stars, even all the host of heaven, shouldest be driven to worship them, and serve them, which the LORD thy God hath divided unto all nations under the whole heaven. Luke 24:39. Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. John 1:18. No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, which is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him. John 4:24. God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth. Acts 17:29. Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man's device.

8 1 Kings 8:27. But will God indeed dwell on the earth? behold, the heaven and heaven of heavens cannot contain thee; how much less this house that I have builded? Psalm 139:7-10. Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me. Psalm 145:3. Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable. Psalm 147:5. Great is our Lord, and of great power: his understanding is infinite. Jeremiah 23:24. Can any hide himself in secret places that I shall not see him? saith the LORD. Do not I fill heaven and earth? saith the LORD. Romans 11:33-36. O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Or who hath first given to him, and it shall be recompensed unto him again? For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory for ever. Amen.

9 Deuteronomy 33:27. The eternal God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms: and he shall thrust out the enemy from before thee; and shall say, Destroy them. Psalm 90:2. Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever thou hadst formed the earth and the world, even from everlasting to everlasting, thou art God. Psalm 102:12, 24-27. But thou, O LORD, shalt endure for ever; and thy remembrance unto all generations.... I said, O my God, take me not away in the midst of my days: thy years are throughout all generations. Of old hast thou laid the foundation of the earth: and the heavens are the work of thy hands. They shall perish, but thou shalt endure: yea, all of them shall wax old like a garment; as a vesture shalt thou change them, and they shall be changed: But thou art the same, and thy years shall have no end. Revelation 1:4, 8. John to the seven churches which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before his throne.... I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

10 Psalm 33:11. The counsel of the LORD standeth for ever, the thoughts of his heart to all generations. Malachi 3:6. For I am the LORD, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. Hebrews 1:12. And as a vesture shalt thou fold them up, and they shall be changed: but thou art the same, and thy years shall not fail. Hebrews 6:17-18. Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Hebrews 13:8. Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. James 1:17. Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning.

11 Exodus 3:14. And God said unto Moses, I AM THAT I AM: and he said, Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, I AM hath sent me unto you. Psalm 115:2-3. Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God? But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased. 1 Timothy 1:17. Now unto the King eternal, immortal, invisible, the only wise God, be honour and glory for ever and ever. Amen. 1 Timothy 6:15-16. Which in his times he shall show, who is the blessed and only Potentate, the (4) King of kings, and Lord of lords; Who only hath immortality, dwelling in the light which no man can approach unto; whom no man hath seen, nor can see: to whom be honour and power everlasting. Amen.

12 Psalm 104:24. O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches. Romans 11:33-34. O the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! how unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! For who hath known the mind of the Lord? or who hath been his counsellor? Hebrews 4:13. Neither is there any creature that is not manifest in his sight: but all things are naked and opened unto the eyes of him with whom we have to do. 1 John 3:20. For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.

13 Genesis 17:1. And when Abram was ninety years old and nine, the LORD appeared to Abram, and said unto him, I am the Almighty God; walk before me, and be thou perfect. Psalm 62:11. God hath spoken once; twice have I heard this; that power belongeth unto God. Jeremiah 32:17. Ah Lord GOD! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee: Matthew 19:26. But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible; but with God all things are possible. Revelation 1:8. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.

14 Hebrews 1:13. But to which of the angels said he at any time, Sit on my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool? 1 Peter 1:15-16. But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation; Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy. 1 John 3:3, 5. And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.... And ye know that he was manifested to take away our sins; and in him is no sin. Revelation 15:4. Who shall not fear thee, O Lord, and glorify thy name? for thou only art holy: for all nations shall come and worship before thee; for thy judgments are made manifest.

15 Genesis 18:25. That be far from thee to do after this manner, to slay the righteous with the wicked: and that the righteous should be as the wicked, that be far from thee: Shall not the Judge of all the earth do right? Exodus 34:6-7. And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty; visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children, and upon the children's children, unto the third and to the fourth generation. Deuteronomy 32:4. He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he. Psalm 96:13. Before the LORD: for he cometh, for he cometh to judge the earth: he shall judge the world with righteousness, and the people with his truth. Romans 3:5, 26. But if our unrighteousness commend the righteousness of God, what shall we say? Is God unrighteous who taketh vengeance? (I speak as a man).... To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness: that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus.

16 Psalm 103:5. Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle's. Psalm 107:8. Oh that men would praise the LORD for his goodness, and for his wonderful works to the children of men! Matthew 19:7. They say unto him, Why did Moses then command to give a writing of divorcement, and to put her away? Romans 2:4. Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and longsuffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance?

17 Exodus 34:6. And the LORD passed by before him, and proclaimed, The LORD, The LORD God, merciful and gracious, longsuffering, and abundant in goodness and truth, Deuteronomy 32:4. He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he. Psalm 86:15. But thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious, longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth. Psalm 117:2. For his merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth for ever. Praise ye the LORD. Hebrews 6:18. That by two immutable things, in which it was (5) impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Catechism 3

Getting back into the grind after a very long enjoyable weekend. The memory verse for the week is Numbers 6:23 - 26. This was God's instructions on how to bless the children of Israel. It is a good blessing to memorize.

For review, here are 1 and 2.

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?
A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,1 and to enjoy him forever.2
Q. 2. What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?
A. The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments,3
is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.4

Q. 3. What do the Scriptures principally teach?
A. The Scriptures principally teach, what man is to believe concerning God,5 and what duty
God requires of man.6

5 Genesis 1:1. In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. John 5:39. Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. John 20:31. But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name. Romans 10:17. So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. 2 Timothy 3:15. And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus.

6 Deuteronomy 10:12-13. And now, Israel, what doth the LORD thy God require of thee, but to fear the LORD thy God, to walk in all his ways, and to love him, and to serve the LORD thy God with all thy heart and with all thy soul, To keep the commandments of the LORD, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good? Joshua 1:8. This book of the law shall not depart out of thy mouth; but thou shalt meditate therein day and night, that thou mayest observe to do according to all that is written therein: for then thou shalt make thy way prosperous, and then thou shalt have good success. Psalm 119:105. Thy word is a lamp
unto my feet, and a light unto my path. Micah 6:8. He hath showed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? 2 Timothy 3:16-17. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Delaration of Independence

We are free people. Government tyranny attempts to take away our rights and freedoms. Don't allow it ever. Demand Freedom.

Declaration of Independence

(Adopted by Congress on July 4, 1776)
The Unanimous Declaration
of the Thirteen United States of America

When, in the course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. --Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining in the meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.

He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.

He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.

He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies without the consent of our legislature.

He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states:

For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing taxes on us without our consent:

For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury:

For transporting us beyond seas to be tried for pretended offenses:

For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule in these colonies:

For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments:

For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow citizens taken captive on the high seas to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.

He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble terms: our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have we been wanting in attention to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace friends.

We, therefore, the representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name, and by the authority of the good people of these colonies, solemnly publish and declare, that these united colonies are, and of right ought to be free and independent states; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as free and independent states, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and to do all other acts and things which independent states may of right do. And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor.

New Hampshire: Josiah Bartlett, William Whipple, Matthew Thornton

Massachusetts: John Hancock, Samual Adams, John Adams, Robert Treat Paine, Elbridge Gerry

Rhode Island: Stephen Hopkins, William Ellery

Connecticut: Roger Sherman, Samuel Huntington, William Williams, Oliver Wolcott

New York: William Floyd, Philip Livingston, Francis Lewis, Lewis Morris

New Jersey: Richard Stockton, John Witherspoon, Francis Hopkinson, John Hart, Abraham Clark

Pennsylvania: Robert Morris, Benjamin Rush, Benjamin Franklin, John Morton, George Clymer, James Smith, George Taylor, James Wilson, George Ross

Delaware: Caesar Rodney, George Read, Thomas McKean

Maryland: Samuel Chase, William Paca, Thomas Stone, Charles Carroll of Carrollton

Virginia: George Wythe, Richard Henry Lee, Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Harrison, Thomas Nelson, Jr., Francis Lightfoot Lee, Carter Braxton

North Carolina: William Hooper, Joseph Hewes, John Penn

South Carolina: Edward Rutledge, Thomas Heyward, Jr., Thomas Lynch, Jr., Arthur Middleton

Georgia: Button Gwinnett, Lyman Hall, George Walton

Source: The Pennsylvania Packet, July 8, 1776

Thursday, October 14, 2010

No Catechism Today

I know you were waiting for Catechism #3 today, but I've been driving all day. We left home at 8:00 and got to Granny's at 8:00 tonight. I have the information with me and will get back to it tomorrow. Today we are going to a different topic.

I want to discuss a topic I like to call "Butch up Sally!" I want the 5 boys to pay attention. We need to be men in our relationships. We need to live by the Bible with a Biblical Worldview. We need to be the spiritual leaders in our homes. Rob, Andy and Will, I need to ask your forgiveness for not being the leader I should have been while you were growing up through elementary and high school. We've missed a lot of time memorizing scripture and studying God's Word. I am afraid you've lost your zeal for God and His worship. That is why I harp on you all the time to go to Church.

Did you know that 75 to 88% of college age freshmen leave the church? The fault is not theirs alone, but it also lies with the job the fathers have been doing with family worship and study. That is why I am writing you these letters for the future generations of our family. My grandchildren need a better roll model than my children got. It has to be your job to raise them up to be men and women of God. It is my job now to start where we are at. Can't go back, only forward.

We need to be men for our women. But don't be acting like you are married cause last time I checked, you weren't. You do not need to be spending the night with girl friends. There is nothing good happening after midnight. The temptations are great and the flesh is weak. Sexual sin is the only sin that Paul tells us to run away from. Other sins, he advises us to resist temptation and you can overcome it. On sexual sin, Paul says to RUN. Boys, don't put yourselves in that situation. Heartache and pain is the result.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Catechism Question 2

Today we are looking at question 2 along with the scriptures to support the answer. I trust you are taking the time to read the scripture verses to support the answer. The Word of God is how God has chosen to speak to us. His revealed Word is sufficient for your life. But to know it, you have to read it. And not just on Sunday when you are sitting in Church, but everyday. That is a lesson that has taken me many (too many) years to grasp. Read God's Word every day. Start at the beginning and read it through like any other book. It is fine to study specifics, but as a base study of God's Word, read it like He put it together.

I challenge you to find a friend to read it with you, so you can discuss what you are learning. Just yesterday, I learned the significance of Arron's Rod and why God had Moses place it in the Ark.

I also challenge you to memorize scripture. Our verse for this week is Deut 6:4-5.

4“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one! 5 You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.

There will be a test!

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?

A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.

Q. 2. What rule hath God given to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him?

A. The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments,3
is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy him.4

Matthew 19:4-5. And he answered and said unto them, Have ye not read, that he which made them at the beginning made them male and female, And said, For this cause shall a man leave father and mother, and shall cleave to his wife: and they twain shall be one flesh? With Genesis 2:24. Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh. Luke 24:27, 44. And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself.... And he said unto them, These are the words which I spake unto you, while I was yet with you, that all things must be fulfilled, which were written in the law of Moses, and in the prophets, and in the psalms, concerning me. 1 Corinthians 2:13. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man's wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 1 Corinthians 14:37.

If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord. 2 Peter 1:20-21. Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy (2)men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. 2 Peter 3:2, 15-16. That ye may be mindful of the words which were spoken before by the holy prophets, and of the commandment of us the apostles of the Lord and Saviour.... And account that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also according to the wisdom given unto him hath written unto you; As also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood, which they that are unlearned and unstable wrest, as they do also the other scriptures, unto their own destruction.

4 Deuteronomy 4:2. Ye shall not add unto the word which I command you, neither shall ye diminish ought from it, that ye may keep the commandments of the LORD your God which I command you. Psalm 19:7-11. The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether. More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward. Isaiah 8:20. To the law and to the testimony: if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them. John 15:11. These things have I spoken unto you, that my joy might remain in you, and that your joy might be full. John 20:30-31. And many other signs truly did Jesus in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book: But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name. Acts 17:11. These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. 2 Timothy 3:15-17. And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works. 1 John 1:4. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Catechism Question 1

A catechism is a method of imparting knowledge through questions and answers. In the past, this was used as a way to memorize facts from scripture about God, Man, and Salvation. I plan to go through The Westminster Shorter Catechism of 1648 question by question with you along with the scripture to back up the answer. I am going to copy this directly from the 1648 document and will help provide translation where needed into today's English.

There are 107 questions in the shorter catechism. I also plan to go over the London Baptist Confession of Faith with you. I believe that if you don't know what you believe, then you can't defend your beliefs when challenged nor can you share what you don't know. This confession of faith and the catechism both answer the questions of our faith and build the foundation of belief we need for a Biblical Worldview.

Q. 1. What is the chief end of man?

A. Man’s chief end is to glorify God,1 and to enjoy him forever.2

Psalm 86:1-17 (NKJV)

Prayer for Mercy, with Meditation on the Excellencies of the Lord

A Prayer of David.

1 Bow down Your ear, O Lord, hear me;

For I am poor and needy.

2 Preserve my 1life, for I am holy;

You are my God;

Save Your servant who trusts in You!

3 Be merciful to me, O Lord,

For I cry to You all day long.

4 2Rejoice the soul of Your servant,

a For to You, O Lord, I lift up my soul.

5 For b You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive,

And abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You.

6 Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer;

And attend to the voice of my supplications.

7 In the day of my trouble I will call upon You,

For You will answer me.

8 c Among the gods there is none like You, O Lord;

Nor are there any works like Your works.

9 All nations whom You have made

Shall come and worship before You, O Lord,

And shall glorify Your name.

10 For You are great, and d do wondrous things;

e You alone are God.

11 f Teach me Your way, O Lord;

I will walk in Your truth;

3Unite my heart to fear Your name.

12 I will praise You, O Lord my God, with all my heart,

And I will glorify Your name forevermore.

13 For great is Your mercy toward me,

And You have delivered my soul from the depths of 4 Sheol.

14 O God, the proud have risen against me,

And a mob of violent men have sought my life,

And have not set You before them.

15 But g You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious,

Longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth.

16 Oh, turn to me, and have mercy on me!

Give Your strength to Your servant,

And save the son of Your maidservant.

17 Show me a sign for good,

That those who hate me may see it and be ashamed,

Because You, Lord, have helped me and comforted me. [1]
1 Lit. soul

2 Make glad

a Ps. 25:1; 143:8

b Ps. 130:7; 145:9; [Joel 2:13]

c [Ex. 15:11]; 2 Sam. 7:22; 1 Kin. 8:23; Ps. 89:6; Jer. 10:6

d [Ex. 15:11]

e Deut. 6:4; Is. 37:16; Mark 12:29; 1 Cor. 8:4

f Ps. 27:11; 143:8

3 Give me singleness of heart

4 The abode of the dead

g Ex. 34:6; [Ps. 86:5]

Romans 11:36 (NKJV)

36 For m of Him and through Him and to Him are all things, n to whom be glory forever. Amen. [1]

m [1 Cor. 8:6; 11:12]; Col. 1:16; Heb. 2:10

n Heb. 13:21

1 Corinthians 6:19-20 (NKJV)

19 Or t do you not know that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, u and you are not your own? 20 For v you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body 7 and in your spirit, which are God’s. [1]
t John 2:21; 1 Cor. 3:16; 2 Cor. 6:16

u Rom. 14:7

v Acts 20:28; 1 Cor. 7:23; Gal. 3:13; 1 Pet. 1:18; 2 Pet. 2:1; Rev. 5:9

7 NU omits the rest of v. 20.

1 Corinthians 10:31 (NKJV)

31 u Therefore, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. [1]

u Col. 3:17; 1 Pet. 4:11

Revelation 4:11 (NKJV)

11 “You u are worthy, 7 O Lord,

To receive glory and honor and power;

v For You created all things,

And by w Your will they 8 exist and were created.” [1]
u Rev. 1:6; 5:12

7 NU, M our Lord and God

v Gen. 1:1; John 1:3

w Col. 1:16

8 NU, M existed

Psalm 16:5-11 (NKJV)

5 O Lord, You are the portion of my inheritance and my cup;

You 2 maintain my lot.

6 The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places;

Yes, I have a good inheritance.

7 I will bless the Lord who has given me counsel;

My 3 heart also instructs me in the night seasons.

8 f I have set the Lord always before me;

Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved.

9 Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices;

My flesh also will 4 rest in hope.

10 g For You will not leave my soul in 5 Sheol,

Nor will You allow Your Holy One to 6 see corruption.

11 You will show me the h path of life;

In Your presence is fullness of joy;

At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. [1]
2 Lit. uphold

3 Mind, lit. kidneys

f [Acts 2:25–28]

4 Or dwell securely

g Ps. 49:15; 86:13; Acts 2:31, 32; Heb. 13:20

5 The abode of the dead

6 undergo

h Ps. 139:24; [Matt. 7:14]

Psalm 144:15 (NKJV)

15 l Happy are the people who are in such a state;

Happy are the people whose God is the Lord! [1]
l Deut. 33:29; [Ps. 33:12; Jer. 17:7]

Isaiah 12:2 (NKJV)

2 Behold, God is my salvation,

I will trust and not be afraid;

b‘For c Yah, the Lord, is my strength and song;

He also has become my salvation.’ ” [1]
b Ps. 83:18

c Ex. 15:2; Ps. 118:14

Luke 2:10 (NKJV)

10 Then the angel said to them, g “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy h which will be to all people. [1]

g Luke 1:13, 30

h Gen. 12:3; Is. 49:6; [Matt. 28:19; Mark 1:15; Col. 1:23]

Philippians 4:4 (NKJV)

4 g Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! [1]
g Rom. 12:12

Revelation 21:3-4 (NKJV)

3 And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, e the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God. 4 f And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes; g there shall be no more death, h nor sorrow, nor crying. There shall be no more pain, for the former things have passed away.” [1]
e Lev. 26:11; Ezek. 43:7; 2 Cor. 6:16

f Is. 25:8; Rev. 7:17

g 1 Cor. 15:26; Rev. 20:14

h Is. 35:10; 51:11; 65:19

[1] The New King James Version. Nashville : Thomas Nelson, 1982

Monday, October 11, 2010

Time for a Change

It is time for a change of scenery and direction for the blog. Staleness and misdirection sometimes needs to be thrown out. I am a Christian and have professed such for many years. I was not saved the first time I was baptized. I first asked Christ into my life for real a few years later at summer camp. It took many years for me to grow from the milk of being a babe in Christ to start maturing to the meat of the Word. You have to have real repentance from sin and you have to stop doing the sin you are repenting of for God to get you beyond the milk of being a babe in Christ.

I am only now beginning to understand the process of salvation and looking back over the journey I've made to get where I am today. I've been a Sunday School Teacher, a Deacon, a part time Minister of Recreation, a foreign voluntary missionary; but what about at home? Did my work at the Church translate into my primary ministry of being the spiritual leader in my home? Did my children benefit from time spent in Honduras to bring them closer to the Lord? What can I do about my children now to instill in them a Biblical Worldview to spread to their families? I told Donna this week, that we lost a lot of the influence we have on the older four, but the younger three are still with us. My blog is going to be my letters to my children to instill in them the Biblical Worldview that the Lord is leading us toward.