Thursday, July 31, 2008

There is a lot of talk on The Atonement...

There seems to be a lot of talk about the atonement... more like battle lines sad to say.

Chris Lyons and crew did a great article a while back, thought it would be a great one to revisit.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Alice Cooper...

Cool interview...

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Apprising ministries. org is gone... for now. Update

Update: Apparently this was a publicity stunt. Ken is back. Here is more info at CRNinfo

I don’t care if Ken has a website, I do care that he is slandering his brothers and sisters in Christ and desires to harm others.

I know he does not see he is doing this, yet, if he did not think that he was not guilty at all, I think his site would still be up. Yet, it seems that most of the ODM’s miss that by the worlds standards (which I see as much lower than God’s) it was seen that his site was libel and was after all slanderous.

I do feel bad for Ken that he has to close up shop, yet I hope that when he does come back he will revamp his ministry to be a ministry and not an assassin blog. I also hope that when he comes back he can be an edifier of the Body.

Ken, if you read this, my prayers for God’s best are always with you. My hope is that you grow in grace from this experience.


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Can you find Jesus at this site? Update

My friend, Joe C. entered in at this site and I can't find Jesus anywhere. This is a Christian ministry?

To be fair, here is my site... Jesus is there, you just have to look a bit.


Here is a picture of the new site... and still no Jesus.

I found this funny and interesting....

You might notice who is talked about the most?

Now, you might notice who really gets the glory at these to opposing sites?

Thanks Big Red... LOL!


What we are doing... and what I need really bad!

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic
What we are doing...


Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

What I need really bad!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Ken Silva Lies about Richard Abanes Lawsuit

I found this very interesting as recently Ingrid contacted lawyers to make a website that talked bout her personal life when she was in high school shut down. Not one word about 1 Corinthians 6 was mentioned by the Online Discernment Ministries. Yet, it seems author Richard Abanes had enough of Ken Silva's lies and slander and asked Ken Silva's ISP to help put a stop to Ken's ongoing assault.

Ken Silva still continues the lie that Richard Abanes is threatening a lawsuit.

Interestingly one of the people who overlooked Ingrid's actual using a lawyer seems to be a bit disgruntled at all this. Pastorboy aka John Chisham had these words with Richard over this.
pastorboy Says: after publication. -->July 24th, 2008 at 10:13 pm


It tells me that you are way too concerned with man’s laws, because you feel hurt. I get that.
But just because you perceive that a brother has wronged you and has violated scripture, does that mean you get to violate scripture to get back at him?
just wondering. (source:

Richard reminds Pastorboy that he only contacted Ken's ISP and did not contact a lawyer. This fact seem lost on Pastorboy.
Once again, one standard for themselves and another for those they attack.

This highlights the high hypocrisy of the ODM as they turn their backs on one who does use a lawyer to shut down website and then attack someone who simply asks an ISP to shut down a website that has lies and slander as "research".

Ken also runs Christian Research Network.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Walking Through Romans Download

Walking through Romans Download

walking-through-romans WordDoc.
walking-through-romans PDF

These are the unedited versions. New edited versions will be available soon.

This is free to download, but help a fellow out ok?

Free resource: Response to John MacArthur's book Charismatic Chaos by Rich Nathan

To Donate look for Paypal link to the right ----->

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

No cussing

No cussing

A preacher was making his rounds to his parishioners on a bicycle, when he came upon a little boy trying to sell a lawn mower.

'How much do you want for the mower?' asked the preacher.
'I just want enough money to go out and buy me a bicycle,' said the little boy.
After a moment of consideration, the preacher asked, Will you take my bike in trade for it?'
The little boy asked if he could try it out first, and, after riding the bike around a little while, said, 'Mister, you’ve got yourself a deal.'

The preacher took the mower and began to crank it. He pulled on the rope a few times with no response from the mower.
The preacher called the little boy over and said, 'I can’t get this mower to start.'
The little boy said, 'That's because you have to cuss at it to get it started.'

The preacher said, I'm a minister, and I can't cuss. It's been so long since I've been saved that I don't even remember how to cuss.'
The little boy looked at him happily and said, 'You just keep pulling on that rope. It'll come back to ya.'

Jesus can wreck your life…

Jesus can wreck your life…

Yep, I said it. Now don’t get all bent out of shape and sending me hate messages…

Let me explain.

When I was a young man I was an up and coming “rock star”. I was good enough to play with the seniors when I was in ninth grade and sang and played guitar. Later I was in a band and was approached to record by and evangelist, yet nothing came of it.

I became a believer around age 16 and tried to get a “Christian” band together. I did… we rocked, yet could not get it together enough to record and tour. I hoped to get band together up until about age 25 but nothing would happen for me.

I then became very involved in ministry. I was a youth pastor and was on a rocket ride toward ordination. But, you see that is when God messed it all up and showed me His Grace. I was torn between going through with the ordination yet; the denomination at this time was strictly Arminian in persuasion. It seems they have lightened up a bit on this since then. I decided to not go through with it. I followed Jesus instead.

Two dreams in my life were gone. Jesus wrecked my life.

Since then I have only tried to follow God’s guiding. It is not easy. I was struggling in my 30’s for a time… knowing God would never leave me or forsake me. It was a dark time in my life and I tried many wrong things to just get away from God. I knew in my heart I could not, but I felt worthless and useless… I had three friends die in one year. One from a heart attack related to his diabetes. Two in head on motorcycle accidents. I preached at my best friend’s funeral… he was an atheist.

God is good though. One day I looked in the mirror and asked myself if I liked myself. I honestly did not. I asked myself what I needed to do to change that and God answered.

Funny when God answers one cannot answer dishonestly. God seems to corner you in the Light of His love and grace and overwhelm you with Kindness and mercy. I decided by His guidance to life my values.

Now, as I said it is not easy. I still must depend on Jesus every day to overcome my downfalls. I must press into Him to fight off my anger and my self pity. God is good. He is always there. Even in my darkest hours I sense His loving hand and kindness that draws me to Him. I wish I would not fail and displease Him and He reminds me Jesus already pleased Him and I dwell in Christ Jesus. God reminds me He does not see me and my sin, but sees me in Christ.

In tears I am reminded of the verse… a couple of verses that pull me through.

Philippians 1: 4-6 In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

2 Corinthians 5: 20-21. We are therefore Christ's ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

These are my prayers for you my readers. I pray that if you are in a dark time that you press in and know God is with you and will not forsake you. If you do not know the love of Jesus, I will say it is better to have a wrecked life in Him than to live life not knowing Him. Consider trusting Him today.

Be blessed,

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Jim Bublitz Needs Your Prayers

Jim Bublitz and I have gone a round a bit. To say the exchange has not been a friendly one would be a slight understatement. Yet, it seems Jim is having health issues. In that he is a brother in Christ I ask for prayer in his time of need. Jim stated a letter to his readers you can read here.

It seems he needs some sort of transplant, so pray for his healing either by a miracle or by God guiding a doctors hands.

Jim, I am praying as I have from when we first had our run in... that you grow in the grace and knowledge of Christ Jesus.

Blessings and God's best,


Monday, July 21, 2008

Gospel of Jesus Christ or Gospel of Spurgeon?

Now, before anyone thinks this is a "I hate Spurgeon!" rant it is not. I do not "hate" Spurgeon. In fact I enjoy some of his sermons and writing, though I disagree with some also. Spurgeon was just a man.

I found one of these the other day. It is a 1 billion dollar bill and it poses the question on the back:

"The billion dollar question: Will you go to Heaven? Here's a quick test. Have you ever told a lie, stolen anything, or used God's name in vain? Jesus said, "Whoever looks upon a woman to lust after her has committed adultery already with her in his heart." Have you looked with lust? Will you be guilty on Judgment Day? If you have done those things God sees you as a lying, thieving, blasphemous, adulterer at heart. The Bible warns that if you are guilty you will end up in Hell. That's not God's will. He sent His Son to suffer and die on the cross for you. Jesus took your punishment upon Himself -"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life." Then He rose from the dead and defeated death. Please, repent (turn from sin) today and trust in Jesus, and God will grant you everlasting life. Then read your Bible daily and obey it. "

Now, this is the question and Jesus is the answer, why is Spurgeon on the dollar and not Jesus? Also, Jesus overcame sin and death... God sent His Son to redeem an already condemned world. In the message I really do not have much disagreement. Yet, to see Spurgeon's image when it was Jesus on the Cross and who rose from the dead is a bit... well... strange. The other question is why was this in a newspaper rack in front of a casino... and how effective is this method?

Any thoughts?


Tozer: The Way to God is a Person

The Way to God is a Person

"When they knew God, they glorified him not as God, read the terrible words, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, and changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things . . . who changed the truth of God into a lie. On and on the devastating words flow, mounting in intensity till no one with any conscience left or any fear of moral consequences can stand to look the Judge in the face, but must cast down his guilty eyes and cry, Have mercy upon me, O God, according to thy loving-kindness: according to the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. Apart from the Scriptures we have no sure philosophy; apart from Jesus Christ we have no true knowledge of God; apart from the inliving Spirit we have no ability to live lives morally pleasing to God. How wonderful that Christ could say, I am the way, the truth, and the life. For this we can never be thankful enough."
A W Tozer

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Full Apologies... and forgivness

This site is intense. What if you drove drunk, and killed your friend? It is easy to judge someone over a mistake that is so tradgic. There are victims... and sometimes even the person who committed the crime... becomes a victim of guilt and shame.

Jesus stated we have the power to forgive sins. By forgiving others we release them from the bondage that their actions put them in. Will forgiving bring back the lost ones? No... But it will free the person who forgives from the bondage of hate.


This was one of my favorite Steve Taylor songs...

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Neon Horse...

For some reason this reminds me of some of the people who write silly things about me. ; )


Walking through Romans pt 17 chapter 16

Walking through Romans pt 17 chapter 16

Romans 16
1I commend to you our sister Phoebe, a servant of the church in Cenchrea. 2I ask you to receive her in the Lord in a way worthy of the saints and to give her any help she may need from you, for she has been a great help to many people, including me. 3Greet Priscilla[b] and Aquila, my fellow workers in Christ Jesus. 4They risked their lives for me. Not only I but all the churches of the Gentiles are grateful to them. 5Greet also the church that meets at their house. Greet my dear friend Epenetus, who was the first convert to Christ in the province of Asia. 6Greet Mary, who worked very hard for you. 7Greet Andronicus and Junias, my relatives who have been in prison with me. They are outstanding among the apostles, and they were in Christ before I was. 8Greet Ampliatus, whom I love in the Lord. 9Greet Urbanus, our fellow worker in Christ, and my dear friend Stachys. 10Greet Apelles, tested and approved in Christ. Greet those who belong to the household of Aristobulus. 11Greet Herodion, my relative. Greet those in the household of Narcissus who are in the Lord. 12Greet Tryphena and Tryphosa, those women who work hard in the Lord. Greet my dear friend Persis, another woman who has worked very hard in the Lord. 13Greet Rufus, chosen in the Lord, and his mother, who has been a mother to me, too. 14Greet Asyncritus, Phlegon, Hermes, Patrobas, Hermas and the brothers with them. 15Greet Philologus, Julia, Nereus and his sister, and Olympas and all the saints with them. 16Greet one another with a holy kiss. All the churches of Christ send greetings.
17I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I am full of joy over you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil.
20The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet.
The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.
21Timothy, my fellow worker, sends his greetings to you, as do Lucius, Jason and Sosipater, my relatives.
22I, Tertius, who wrote down this letter, greet you in the Lord.
23Gaius, whose hospitality I and the whole church here enjoy, sends you his greetings.
Erastus, who is the city's director of public works, and our brother Quartus send you their greetings.[c]
25Now to him who is able to establish you by my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, 26but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey him— 27to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.

Romans is a fantastic book. One can be carried away by the doctrines Paul teaches… and one can be carried away with knowledge Paul and forget that we must apply this book to our own life.

Some scholars seem to think that this chapter is either a second letter or a separate letter from the rest of the book. Yet, I see that it is part of the Book as the ones delivering would pass through Ephesus on their way to Rome. Here we see Paul greet many in Ephesus. Maybe, Paul had two motives here in doing this. One could be to greet and love on the people in Ephesus. The other would be to show the love of the churches outside of Rome to further encourage those in Rome toward unity in Christ.

Paul greets his “family”. Some may be blood relatives and others “Blood” relatives. It is heart warming to read the different greetings. Of interest for all the “doctrine” we have Phoebe who is referred to as a “Servant” but the word is the feminine form of “deacon”. This sets some who believe women should not be in leadership in the church on their heads. But it is worthy to notice for all the arguments, that Paul addresses this woman this way without issue.

Aquila and Priscilla, or the eagle and the woman as Aquila means eagle had eagle eyes that could find great men of God like Apollos (Acts 18) as well as Paul himself (Acts 18). These mighty workers of God were very important to Paul as they come up in a few other letters he writes. They seemed to be mentioned as equals and as a team. Man and wife who work side by side with each other and with Paul. They also placed themselves in danger to protect Paul.
Paul addresses Epainetus, whose name means “praised”, was his first convert in Achaia which is part of Greece.
Mariam, could possibly be the Mother of Jesus, who was with John. This is speculation as there are at least 6 Mary’s in the scripture. Yet, we do know Jesus told John to watch over His mother.
Noting that some names are gentiles and some are Jew should be a clue to this being a call for unity. Andronicus who name means “man of victory” was a Jew.
Junias which is a woman’s name is called an “apostle” in reading one way, yet it could also be read she was known by the apostles. It is not clear, be she notable as one or know by again a woman is held in high esteem by Paul.
Amplias which means “enlarged” is a Roman Christian meanin he was from Rome and also a gentile.
Skipping a few we find Herodion, a relative of paul and this phrase, “Greet those in the household of Narcissus who are in the Lord.” This seems to be a Roman official who had were believers.

I do not mean to not mention some. I wish I could write more on each person. Maybe someday I could.

One though that has an interesting story is Rufus. He was a disciple of Paul as thought in tradition, was Bishop of Avignon (though there is no hard evidence of this) though he was bishop to a few other churches. He later was living in Rome when Paul sent this greeting. During the persecution of Trajan, Polycarp speaks of Rufus and Ignatius of Antioch who were put to death in Rome, in his letter to the Philippians.
“17. I urge you, brothers, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. 18. for such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. 19. Everyone has heard about your obedience, so I am full of joy over you; but I want you to be wise about what is good, and innocent about what is evil. 20. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. The grace of our Lord Jesus be with you.”

This is some of the greatest advice. It seems futile to engage those who are divisive as they cannot see the harm they do others. As I have engaged these types of people I find that their own ambition clouds their ability to see that this does nothing for the Kingdom. It is best to avoid and ignore them. If only I would take my own advise! These people try to persuade the naïve with smooth talk and flattery and spread lies, rumors and slander others, so they can have personal gain be that monetary or the attention of others. The great danger is that they desire the accolades of men exchange it for the works of God. It is best to be ignorant of the evil of these people and leave them to God who will crush Satan under His feet. Giving room for God to work is the best advice I could give. Paul states that a blessing of Grace to those who encounter such people.
“I, Tertius, who wrote down this letter, greet you in the Lord.”

This can be confusing to the casual reader. Did not Paul write this book? Then why is this Tertius saying he did? Often one would dictate a letter and another would literally write the words down. This happens even today in business as a secretary will “take a letter” yet the letter is from the one who dictated the letter. So, there is no issue as to the authorship of Romans. Yet, even Tertius sends greeting also.
“25. Now to him who is able to establish you by my gospel and the proclamation of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery hidden for long ages past, 26. but now revealed and made known through the prophetic writings by the command of the eternal God, so that all nations might believe and obey him-- 27. to the only wise God be glory forever through Jesus Christ! Amen.”

This salutation could take a whole chapter to unpack in and of it’s self.
Paul showed us a great mystery. This mystery was Christ Jesus Himself. It was revealed in the Gospel and proclamation of Jesus. Without Jesus the prophetic writings make little sense, yet with Jesus we can not only change on a personal level; we can also have power to reach the nations with the message of Jesus Christ. To this I agree with Paul that we give glory forever through Jesus Christ for God’s great wisdom.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

I just offer this...

I just offer this... without comment.

Walking Through Romans pt 16 chapter 15

Walking Through Romans pt 16 chapter 15

Romans 15

1We who are strong ought to bear with the failings of the weak and not to please ourselves. 2Each of us should please his neighbor for his good, to build him up. 3For even Christ did not please himself but, as it is written: "The insults of those who insult you have fallen on me." 4For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.

5May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you a spirit of unity among yourselves as you follow Christ Jesus, 6so that with one heart and mouth you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

7Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. 8For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews n behalf of God's truth, to confirm the promises made to the patriarchs 9so that the Gentiles may glorify God for his mercy, as it is written: "Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles; I will sing hymns to your name." 10Again, it says,

"Rejoice, O Gentiles, with his people."

11And again, "Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles,

and sing praises to him, all you peoples."

12And again, Isaiah says,

"The Root of Jesse will spring up,

one who will arise to rule over the nations;

the Gentiles will hope in him."

13May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

14I myself am convinced, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, complete in knowledge and competent to instruct one another. 15I have written you quite boldly on some points, as if to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me 16to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles with the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

17Therefore I glory in Christ Jesus in my service to God. 18I will not venture to speak of anything except what Christ has accomplished through me in leading the Gentiles to obey God by what I have said and done— 19by the power of signs and miracles, through the power of the Spirit. So from Jerusalem all the way around to Illyricum, I have fully proclaimed the gospel of Christ. 20It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else's foundation. 21Rather, as it is written:

"Those who were not told about him will see,

and those who have not heard will understand."

22This is why I have often been hindered from coming to you. 23But now that there is no more place for me to work in these regions, and since I have been longing for many years to see you, 24I plan to do so when I go to Spain. I hope to visit you while passing through and to have you assist me on my journey there, after I have enjoyed your company for a while. 25Now, however, I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the saints there. 26For Macedonia and Achaia were pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. 27They were pleased to do it, and indeed they owe it to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in the Jews' spiritual blessings, they owe it to the Jews to share with them their material blessings. 28So after I have completed this task and have made sure that they have received this fruit, I will go to Spain and visit you on the way. 29I know that when I come to you, I will come in the full measure of the blessing of Christ.

30I urge you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me. 31Pray that I may be rescued from the unbelievers in Judea and that my service in Jerusalem may be acceptable to the saints there, 32so that by God's will I may come to you with joy and together with you be refreshed. 33The God of peace be with you all. Amen.
In part this chapter need be connected with Romans 14 and if one is true to the author one should read it in one continuous read. Paul builds from honoring the weaker brother concerning meat, and build further that we need also treat our neighbor who may or may not know Christ in ways that may build them up. It is in doing good to others that one may lead or even earn the privilege to talk to someone about Jesus.

It is a privilege that we get to share the Gospel with anyone about Jesus our King! How great an honor it is sharing with someone the truth that is Jesus. Paul states it rather curiously though in that Jesus never sought His own pleasure that even the insults heaped upon us are on Him. Everything in the Bible that was already writing was for us to show us that Jesus is the Messiah and King. This news was so we could endure sufferings and to be encouraged that we are His and suffering is not in vain.

The Jews and Gentile have come down a long road with Paul. He has shown them that they are one in Christ and exhorts them to seek unity and stop the strife between them. This unity was not based on doctrines, though important, but on Christ Jesus. It should humble us that Jesus, King of all creation, humbly became a servant to the Jew so that a Gentile could be saved. In that this is true, as a Gentile we should rejoice in the loving kindness of God that He did not forsake us but also added the Gentile to the plan of salvation that was Jesus.

Paul speaks bold then and now. His words remind us of the urgency that we should have in keeping the truth of Christ Jesus and the Grace that comes through Him as central to our thoughts as a people of faith.

I believe Paul had confidence in the Roman believers to teach and instruct each other because Paul knew the Holy Spirit was the one teaching. Paul speaks of what God has done by the power of the Holy Spirit and boasts in that and not his own works and teachings. This should be as it is with one of faith. We need to not only boast of the working of the Holy Spirit, but depend on Him as we walk daily.

Paul must have had stories. In a way I wish he would have written the accounts of what God had done. Now, many stories are recorded in the Book of Acts, yet I suspect that there are so many more that Paul had to tell. His desire was to go where Christ Jesus had not yet been preached. This was a good plan as to build on a fresh foundation is much easier than trying to tear down old buildings to build afresh. Paul had worked hard in the regions he had already been and was still looking toward Spain. We do not know if he ever made it, but as one teacher I heard pointed out, God gives us the vision and the drive, and even if it is not we who make it to Spain thought that be our goal, the path was made ready to Spain to receive the Gospel and Jesus.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Walking through Romans pt 15 chapter 14

Walking through Romans pt 15 chapter 14

Romans 14

1. Accept him whose faith is weak, without passing judgment on disputable matters.
2. One man's faith allows him to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. 3. The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him.
4. Who are you to judge someone else's servant? To his own master he stands or falls. And he will stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand. 5. One man considers one day more sacred than another; another man considers every day alike. Each one should be fully convinced in his own mind. 6. He who regards one day as special, does so to the Lord. He who eats meat, eats to the Lord, for he gives thanks to God; and he who abstains, does so to the Lord and gives thanks to God. 7. For none of us lives to himself alone and none of us dies to himself alone.
8. If we live, we live to the Lord; and if we die, we die to the Lord. So, whether we live or die, we belong to the Lord. 9. For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.
10. You, then, why do you judge your brother? Or why do you look down on your brother? For we will all stand before God's judgment seat.
11. It is written: "`As surely as I live,' says the Lord, `every knee will bow before me; every tongue will confess to God.'"
12. So then, each of us will give an account of himself to God. 13. Therefore let us stop passing judgment on one another. Instead, make up your mind not to put any stumbling block or obstacle in your brother's way. 14. As one who is in the Lord Jesus, I am fully convinced that no food is unclean in itself. But if anyone regards something as unclean, then for him it is unclean. 15. If your brother is distressed because of what you eat, you are no longer acting in love. Do not by your eating destroy your brother for whom Christ died. 16. Do not allow what you consider good to be spoken of as evil. 17. For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking, but of righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit, 18. because anyone who serves Christ in this way is pleasing to God and approved by men.
19. Let us therefore make every effort to do what leads to peace and to mutual edification. 20. Do not destroy the work of God for the sake of food. All food is clean, but it is wrong for a man to eat anything that causes someone else to stumble. 21. It is better not to eat meat or drink wine or to do anything else that will cause your brother to fall. 22. So whatever you believe about these things keep between yourself and God. Blessed is the man who does not condemn himself by what he approves. 23. But the man who has doubts is condemned if he eats, because his eating is not from faith; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.

Romans 14 has always had a special place in my heart. In it is such basic common sense and good advice it can almost be missed if one is not careful. Considering in the time of Paul that many Christians found themselves wondering what to do about meat sacrificed to idols. On one hand the best and most in expensive meat was the meat sacrifice in the pagan temples. Often in these temples which in some regard where like our modern day union meeting places, would sacrifice an animal to the god of their specific job title. The blacksmiths would sacrifice to the god of smithery and the construction builders would sacrifice to the god of building to over simplify this. Most probably did not believe it was to an actual “god”, but did it out of social and political motives as part of tradition in keeping with their job.

With this often priests were also “butchers” and would take the sacrifice and sell it right out the back door. This was fresh and often the best cuts so it was well sought after.

So even Christians would buy it and sometimes not know if it was from the temple or if it was just butchered without sacrificed.

Paul was questioned whether it was acceptable that one eat this meat. Yet, if Paul stated no, it could be taken as a legal law and requirement from him that would negate the very Grace he taught. Yet, to say yes, would leave many feeling condemned in their own minds and also cut across the teaching of the cleansing of Christ Jesus. Paul knew that to say one thing over the other would harm the faith.

Wisely, Paul also understood there was “no God but one” (1 Cor 8:4) and that being true, knew men were safe to eat as long as they recognized that all things are of God and if bless is blessed. Paul also realized that there were the “weaker” whose faith was not strong enough to see that there be but one God. Paul called those who see that there be One God to be gracious to those who were either lacking in the fullness of faith or of the fullness of understanding that God is One.

We must consider those who are not yet grown in the faith. Some be they young or even in the faith for years, are still immature in their understand should be treated with love and grace. If for example one has had trouble with alcohol, and you have reached the point that you can partake without self condemnation or falling into drunkenness. You are in fact “free” from the bondage. You should not push or put done the one who still has issue or struggles with the alcohol. This carries over into things like Christian rick music and so on.

We should not deny our own freedom and bow to other men over their will or weakness of their will, yet we should not lord over others our freedom.

Now, also we need be aware we should not judge those that are freer than we may be ourselves or judge those who are less free. Paul’s solution was that if it is a sin to you, don’t do it as it is a sin… if it is not a sin to you; you are free, but don’t judge your brother. The Kingdom of God is not about food. It is about righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. We need also remember that the Kingdom is not about music, or even Theology. We can argue and fight, yet if it is contrary to righteousness, peace and joy, it is contrary to the Kingdom.

Be blessed,

The Wonderful Cross

I found this video on a anti emerging site. Funny as Chris Tomlin hangs with David Crowder... but praise God that even the music from emerging folk are hitting the hearts of those who hate the emerging church.

Be blessed,

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Alkali Creek Fire Billings Montana

Here are a few picture from the July 4th Alkali Creek Fire. Unfortunately, there was some structure damage. For more info read here.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

I want to clear something up.

I want to clear something up.

Some on the blogosphere are referring to me as “Pastor” Carlos Shelton. I do pastor/teach at my church and am on the leadership team. I have not been given the title “Pastor” though I have pastored while doing my church plant and also have been a Youth Pastor.

I do not take the title of office as it is being applied to me because it has not officially been given to me yet.

Pastoring is a gift where one gently loves and guides the people in the congregation. Many people who are not even in the “leadership” role can have the gift of pastor and also love and guide and others. Ephesians 4: 11-13 states:
11. It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12. to prepare God's people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13. until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.
Notice the phrase "It was he who gave"? God gave these people as a gift and gifted them so do this work and service for the Body of Christ. It is not a "title of authority" though most denominations do use it that way.

I am a Pastor, but again do not take that as a title of office, but as a gift. To apply it to me as a title as Ingrid and Pastorboy do is not accurate.

I am ordained, but because some thought the organization I was ordained through was not “legit” to their specification I rarely mention it anymore. But, since I am not officially been instated by the Vineyard Denomination as a “Pastor” in title, I hope that those referring to me as such will stop as it misrepresents me and what I do.



A Planned day of prayer and fasting for Ken Silva... yep I'm serious agian!

As most of you know, last year I called for a day of prayer and fasting for Ken Silva.

Here are some related links.

Link One.

Link Two.

Link Three.

Link Four.

Link Five.

That should give you the background as to why and what is needed to be prayed about.

It is my hope that we bless Ken Silva and call him to true integrity and honesty. I pray also that he and his church grow in the Grace and knowledge of Christ Jesus.

Last year it was on August 28th so let's do it that day again this year. Place it on your calendar. Monday, August 28th 2008. Also pray for Ingrid Schuelter of Slice of Laodicea
The idea is that whether one is for him or sees that what he is doing is harming the Body of Christ, that we all pray a prayer of blessing.
The reasoning is that Jesus taught us to do so.
Luke 6: 27-31"But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn to him the other also. If someone takes your cloak, do not stop him from taking your tunic. Give to everyone who asks you, and if anyone takes what belongs to you, do not demand it back. Do to others as you would have them do to you.”
Please join me. God can make a difference.