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This year, as never before, we are invoking and anticipating God’s Manifest Presence – – invading the scene and filling the void left in those attempting to manage life without Him. Emptiness resonates in every arena of life leaving a trail of failed hopes and dreams. Setbacks and failures are not always negative, for they often sound the alarm that awakens one to face reality. God is real and has always been real, but unless we invoke His Presence, many will not even know that He exists. In light of this, I invite you to read the following speech by Benjamin Franklin during the Constitutional Convention on June 28, 1787: Mr. President: The small progress we have made after four or five weeks close attendance and continual reasoning with each other — our different sentiments on almost every question, several of the last producing as many noes as ayes is, methinks a melancholy proof of the imperfection of the human understanding. We indeed seem to feel our own want of political wisdom, since we have been running about in search of it. We have gone back to ancient history for models of government, and examined the different forms of those…

We are compelled to face life’s greatest challenges. To provide an answer to age old and new questions that will arise out of controversy. Our lives are lived in search of meaning and our values are determined by how we interpret the meaning of life. It is both quietly and overtly expressed by unsuspecting people who are drifting through life allowing circumstances to define them. The ever-changing world squeezes them into the mold of modernity. They become whatever others are becoming—neutralizing their wills by popular opinions and paralyzing their minds by the prevailing ideas of the times. Jesus came to change concepts and to modify the established order by transforming it into a thing of beauty (“He makes all things beautiful in its own time.”) And fortunately, Christ came to usher in a new season of change and restore all things to their original purpose. God, who made all things, is the One who assigns meaning to His creation. But the question is, what is God like? Even though he was described through the prophets and His personality was demonstrated through their lifestyles, that was merely a glimpse into the reality of God and the full display of His glory….

The collective choices of a generation clearly reflect its sentiments. The way that people think at any given time is expressed through their voice by vote. If there are pockets of resistance or individuals who disagree with society’s direction, it serves only as an indication to the level of desperation that influences our need for change. The loss and lack of influence by those who possess the right position create a vacuum to be filled by opposing views that challenge their stance and contradict their position. When personal preferences are not questioned in the light of spiritual authority and absolute truth, every position taken can be justified in one’s own eyes. The spin on the argument in defense of the decision to go the wrong way, even though it may be convincing, only widens the gap away from civility and points towards barbarism. When intellectualism is added to the mix, the result is a sophisticated way of saying nothing well and becoming so broadminded that life itself has lost its meaning. Thank God for the availability of choices. We are forced to make choices every day, and each momentary choice leads to our final destiny. The question is, where are…

Although the State served a bill of divorce to the Church many years ago, they have remained cordial to each other. Now that the divorce is final, hostilities have brooded on the part of a State that despises even the mention of her former spouse’s name. His memory gives rise to hatred as if all oppressions suffered in her past were the result of his cruelty and negative influence over her life. Now that she is free, her state of affairs express an opposing view in all that he attempted to instill as a standard. Now the Church, as a jilted lover, is willing to accept any innuendoes of kindness on her part as a signal that reconciliation may be possible. The visible Church in America has opened its doors wide to influences and voices that speak flattering words yet lack the ability to deliver on any of its promises. It is a reactionary measure to avoid obvious pitfalls for subversive and subtle nuances that are just as dangerous, but cloaked with contradicting rhetoric. The state of the nation is expressed by the will of the people. People choose their candidates for political office, and their choices reflect their current…

The power of agreement is of vital importance in an environment where so many things are separated and dislocated. It is through agreement that progress is made in life and any other endeavor in which people may be engaged. While this is a biblical principle, it is not always applied towards those things that glorify God. When an agreement is reached, the people are of one mind and purpose, and the momentum set in motion has the potential of enlisting unengaged bystanders and absorbing them into the effort of accomplishing that goal. The erection of the Tower of Babel would have been completed unless God Himself had not intervened. We have seen groups of people come together and organize movements either in defense or defiance of a particular cause. It is especially effective when those in favor take ownership of that cause. Yet the question of rightness and wrongness is yet to be determined. However, a conclusion can easily be reached from the surface. But there are variables that could completely change the equation, and if known, could influence the decision of those who had committed themselves to that end. It was stated, “believe nothing that you hear and half…

Heb 12:27-29 The phrase, “one last shaking,” means a thorough housecleaning, getting rid of all the historical and religious junk so that the unshakable essentials stand clear and uncluttered. (28) Do you see what we’ve got? An unshakable kingdom! And do you see how thankful we must be? Not only thankful, but brimming with worship, deeply reverent before God. For God is not an indifferent bystander. (29) He’s actively cleaning house, torching all that needs to burn, and he won’t quit until it’s all cleansed. God himself is Fire!” (The Message Paraphrase) God’s established authority, having been compromised, gives rise to resulting calamities that expresses violence within the heart of the rebellious. Sin is rebellion and is practiced by those who contradict God’s Word and is offended by His standard of absolute righteousness. Since it is impossible to measure up to His standard independent of surrendering to His Son, Jesus Christ, the futile search for alternatives merely lead to further frustration of the heart. The essentials stand clear and uncluttered regardless of contrary opinions among those who consider themselves too intelligent to trust the simplicity of God’s Word. Jesus spoke of the ignorance among His own people when He said,…

“I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live.” Deuteronomy 30:19  Although we are free to make choices, we are not free to determine the outcome or consequences of the choices that we make. Somewhere down the road we will meet the fruit of past decisions that will remind us of what we once thought and whether we were right or wrong. One writer mentioned that “The road to hell is paved with good intentions,” but we also know that the trail of tears left behind is moistened with regrets. If it were possible to hit the rewind button of life, how many mistakes would we delete? Even though we are the product of past choices, the road of possibility lies ahead to choose to live a better life. Freedom in choosing ought to be preceded by a careful examination of the facts. Wisdom must be applied because facts alone can be deceiving. How those facts align themselves to absolute truth will determine the outcome of the decision. When words like absolute are used, it suggests…

There was a time when leadership was both honored and obeyed, and where men of renown would gather together at the city gates or the entryways to decide what was good for the well-being of communities. They would take the prophetic Word spoken by the prophets and interpret its truths so that every family could align him or herself with the will of God. They were usually the elders with years of experience in both life and judgments. Issues could then be easily settled and the people would move in one direction. Without the conveniences of modern technology, the spoken work connected to the fundamentals that governed behavior and were taught by every father and reinforced by every mother. If controversy arose, it was settled among the elders or fathers of the people. The elders were men that administered justice, settled disputes, and guided the people under their charge. Even the king would consult the elders even though he had the authority to determine his own course of action. As we retrace the path of history, it is easy to see those points of departure that adversely affect society today. In order for elders to govern the affairs of the…

It must be pointed out for one to fully realize how important a mother really is. When we take the time to cease from our daily efforts and ponder the value given to the second person of God’s creation, we cannot help but thank God for such as wonder. Yes, fathers originate the process. As God is our heavenly Father; Pater in Hebrew meaning, “brought forth from,” that which is produced must be developed if it is reach its destiny. The seed would remain impotent and eventually die unless it was not deposited into the womb. There it is nurtured and protected in order to be formed into the idea of its original design. Who but God could have thought of such a wondrous plan as to take two distinctly different people and use them as His instruments to bring forth life? Not only does God place this miracle within her physical body, but within her mind and soul is the passion and desire to see that life become all that God intended for it to be. Within the womb is God’s creative genius, and outside of the womb is the demonstration of His love. The continuous love of a…

God’s order is the opposite of our normal way of thinking. Human reasoning would have you to believe that death is the final act of nature, the ultimate sealing of one’s fate. Yet God looks at life differently and reveals Himself through nature. Contained within every created thing is the mystery of life, where one can clearly see His plan of redemption. First, death itself is redefined. The reality of death is sin; a life lived by those who are ignorant of life’s purpose. Sin is defined as “missing the mark.”  Their attempts to make life meaningful only add to their confusion and frustration. When life is lived arbitrarily without the knowledge of God’s original intent, nothing is left but to live life under the shadows of dreadful death. The fear of death becomes the obsession, since no one is able to fully describe what exists on the other side. Yet the magnetic pull of sin attracts one to what he fears the most and blinds him to the consequences. “The wages of sin is death.” Jesus beautifully illustrates salvation as an anticipated death. He first speaks of Himself and then how every human being might participate in His death….